Saturday, February 28, 2009

Knowing God's Voice

Bank tellers are trained to recognize counterfeit money. They are given genuine money and told to familiarize themselves with it rather than familiarizing themselves with counterfeit. When a counterfeit bill shows up, a teller can recognize it because he knows how the real feels and looks.

Often people question how do I know if what I felt or heard is from God. By familiarizing ourselves with what He has already said in His Word we will recognize Him. If God is going to speak to us He is going to say things that are in agreement with His Word. Jesus said "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me" (John 10:27). In order to know God and hear His voice we must spend quality time in prayer and Bible study.

The Bible declares, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1). If the Word was God then when we read or hear the Word preached we are hearing the Voice of God.

Elijah described God's voice as a still, small voice. Habakkuk said, "I will stand on my guard post and station myself on the rampart..." (Hab. 2:1). Habakkuk knew that in order to hear God’s quiet, inner, spontaneous thoughts, he had to first go to a quiet place and still his own thoughts and emotions. Psalm 46:10 encourages us to be still, and know that He is God. When we quiet our flesh and our minds we can know God.

Habakkuk said, "I will keep watch to see." It is very interesting that Habakkuk was going to actually start looking for vision as he prayed. He was going to open the eyes of his heart, and look into the spirit world to see what God wanted to show him. This is an intriguing idea. The most obvious prerequisite to seeing is that we need to look. Daniel was seeing a vision in his mind and he said, "I was looking...I kept looking...I kept looking" (Dan. 7:1,9,13).

God continually revealed Himself using dreams and visions. He did so from Genesis to Revelation and said that, since the Holy Spirit was poured out in Acts 2, we should expect to receive a continuing flow of dreams and visions (Acts 2:1-4).

The Bible tells us that Jesus is God in the flesh. Therefore, if you want to hear the voice of God, you must study and know the teachings of Jesus. John describes Jesus as "That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched - this we proclaim concerning the Word of life." (1 John 1:1).

Have you ever tried to carry on an in depth conversation with a person you did not know? It doesn't usually go very far. Likewise how will we be able to listen or converse with God if we don't know him.

God responds to willing hearts. In the book of Revelation, we read: "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me." (Revelation 3:20). God will never force you to obey Him, but waits for your willing response to His call.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Not in Our Youth!

My last post was regarding things we refused to accept in our homes. Today I stand as a pastor's wife with a line drawn in the sand for our youth. Allow me to explain.

Yesterday @ 5:42 am I received a very profane picture sent via text. Just so happens the phone number sending the text was from a youth who previously attended our church. Why would she send me this filth? I was enraged that I was awakened to such filth. After getting up and praying about the girl and the image I felt I was definitely inadvertently sent the picture by the sender but it was purposefully sent by God to protect our youth. I began to question Moms if their child received the text. Of course not one Mom was aware. However, after carefully checking some Moms discovered their children received the text, too.

I discussed this issue with our school Administrator. CCS Chapel is every Thursday. Tina asked if I would speak in chapel as a result of our conversastions. I happily accepted the invitation. She planned a split chapel separating the elementary students from secondary students to better serve me. I prayed about what the Lord would have me discuss with our fine group of students. I felt the Lord drop the word RESPECT into my thoughts.

As I began my devotional I told the students I would be speaking about respect. You could see their countenances drop. I had just witnessed some not showing respect as the Administrator was making some needed announcements. Then I proceeded to tell the students Satan doesn't trip us up or tempt us initially with blatant things. I asked the question, "Why?" One of the students blurted out, "Because it would be too obvious." His answer was my exact sentiments. The devil doesn't respect us enough to not be sneaky with his actions. He endeavors to trick us then we will do the more blantant things.

I discussed with the students many times they are trapped to disrespect, gossip, or being decitful. Then Satan can get them to do more. I explained when I was growing up we didn't have all the many ways to communicate. When it was bed time if my parents thought we were still on the phone they simply picked up another extension of the house phone to listen. Then would very clearly tell me "Tracie, it is too late for you to be on the phone. Hang up NOW!" Now it's too easy for kids to talk late, text, etc and parents not know. Take a cell phone from a child and they can still send texts using the computer to their friend's phones. They can use different online messaging devices - Facebook, Aol messenger, Yahoo messenger, Myspace, and probably many more. As I discussed these things the youth smiled. I asked, "How many of you know what I am talking about is true?" Almost every hand was raised.

I have had parents tell me my child wouldn't or my child doesn't do certain things. This scares me even more. EVERY child faces temptations. I have had parents tell me "Oh Sis. Smith my child would tell me if ...... happened." Really? I want to scream. It's amazing when I have been priviledged to visit with the youth I don't feel the same innocence the parent's feel. Do I think these kids are bad? No! But I do realize the pressures are much different today.

I believe if we will not proverbially stick our head in the sand we will not have to tolerate some things in our youth. Yes, they will be tempted. Yes, they will even fail along the way. But we will not have to tolerate certain things remaining in our youth.

I discussed with the students that according to scripture ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God. I also told them to let those who were without sin cast the first stone. I lead our chapel students in prayer in these two areas. I am thankful that the presence of the Lord swept in. As I concluded praying I looked across the sanctuary there were many with tears. I was blessed to partake in CCS Chapel. Somethings will not prevail....NOT IN OUR YOUTH!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Not In Our House!

My thoughts this morning are derived from communique received from Terry Davidson, Superintendent Comanche Public Schools.

We are familiar with the home court advantage of sports. Often at these said home games you may see signs held up stating "not in our house". The athletic departments make a concerted effort at these home games to create a winning environment.

While Mr. Davidson spoke of having a home court advantage and creating a winning environment in his school district. I realized that a home court winning advantage is exactly what Kent and I have been working to establish for CUPC and every home of our church families. We want to create an environment where people can thrive.

It is important to insure that anything that takes away from a winning environment is eliminated. Pessimism, criticism, selfishness, gossip, and general bad attitudes must be expunged from our environment or we will lose our "home court advantage." When those attitudes do occasionally show themselves, we need to say: "NOT IN OUR HOUSE!" - Terry Davidson

"Attitudes are contagious. Are yours worth catching?" - Dennis and Wendy Mannering

I'm glad I can say we are WINNING the game! To things that would hinder let's say "NOT IN OUR HOUSE"!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


What do these three things have in common? How do they interact? How have they affected me tonight? Thoughts of the family growing and shrinking at the same time. How does it all work out?

My Family, I absolutely love them! The past few days Trent and Calah have been sick. I bleached their house, took them food and drinks, and today cooked them breakfast. Last evening we had house guests. Redonia felt sorry for Trent and Calah. She prepared them soup and cleaned up their kitchen. Families love and help! Tonight the kids felt a little better and were feeling cabin fever. They ventured to our house for fresh air.

Siblings not twins but as close as twins could ever be. Redonia and Trent are a mess. Redonia is 22 and Trent is 21. Redonia has a new friend and Trent is maybe jealous. Of course he says he isn't. Sibling feelings arose tonight. I LOVE that they are so close. Trent wants Redonia to only talk to his buddies and only talk to people living not further than 20 miles away. Poor Redonia... At one point I was defending Redonia. Trent blurted out, "Ok Mom just approve it and she's going to move away from here." So the real truth came out...he fears his sissy leaving.....Of course Redonia was loving the idea that her brother was making such a fuss over her. If I had it to do over again I'd have another boy and a girl and 13 months apart. What buds they are!

In-laws, our daughter-in-law is fun. Calah can stir it up and then sit back and grin. She loves tormenting Trent over Redonia having a new 'friend'. The girls are close, finally! I thought Redonia never would decide to be see Trent is only treating Redonia like she treated him. Calah, is really sweet. She came in tonight with a thank you card to "Mom". She thanked me for taking care of them while they were sick. Trent could have searched the world over and not found anyone to love him more. Why does Trent think Redonia would even want to date anyone any less? Hummm why did Redonia think Trent would date anyone less?

As I set the table tonight I decided I need a new breakfast table. We have to crowd around ours when the kids are all home. Of course we could go to the dining room table and get lost since it is so large. If I buy a larger breakfast table what happens if Redonia decides to move out? Then Kent and I will sit at a table and get lost....What do you do when your family shrinks and grows at the same time. I guess then I will need 3 tables. One for when it's just Kent and me. Another for when the kids are home. Then my dining room table for entertaining larger crowds.

Life gets complicated and fun at the same time. Tonight Kent went to bed with the chickens. Redonia and I have stayed up chatting. She's involved with a 'project' and every now and then laughs and talks to me. She stole her Daddy's chair all afternoon and evening. I think she's getting sick. She has a headache. Please, Lord, don't let it be the virus Trent and Calah had.

I love my family. I'm thankful my children are close and love one another dearly. I'm thankful for a great wife for my son who also makes a wonderful sister for Redonia, finally! I'm glad I have a fantastic husband who is an awesome dad and dad-in-law.

Family - definitely a rich thing in life! The Smith household hasn't always been perfect but one thing for sure we all realize that as a family we will love and support one another no matter what! Our family is all about CARING for others. We realize we will never CARE for others any more passionately than we do each other. I do CARE for my family. Kent, Redonia, Trent & Calah, I love you all so much. I'm glad we are FAMILY.

Wow! CUPC has some AWESOME People

Yesterday I received several reports of the way people are being CARED for! I'm totally overwhelmed.....In fact we have been journaling when we hear about it. I receive emails almost every single day of someone being blessed because someone CARED for them.

MANY and I say many of our people are CARING. People are sending text messages, making phone calls, sending cards, passing out hugs, giving desserts, having people over, and on and on the list goes. I love being the pastor's wife. Yesterday I got two emails from people letting me know how people in the church reached out to them.

Sunday morning a 'newer' lady came to me and said she had brought a pie to church and wanted to give it to someone. She mentioned a lady that has a need in her family and asked if I thought it would be ok if she presented them the pie. Wow!!!!

CARE is being shown to new converts and to people who have been around the church longer. We've had times in the church were we reached out all the time. While this is good sometimes those within get overlooked. Then we have had times where we have spent most of our efforts having to tend to the needs within. Wow that really created some monsters of selfishness. I can truly say that today CARE is transforming our church...No one is intentionally going unnoticed.

CARE would not be possible if it weren't for the AWESOME group of people that calls CUPC home. It's our goal that no one feels like a newcomer long. In fact even if you are new you can reach out to someone else. CARING for others gives a sense of belonging.

As a pastor's wife since MANY from our congregation have caught our burden I can truthfully say my worries have been lightened. If you read this blog and you attend another church help your pastor's wife....find people every week to show you CARE. If you are a pastor's wife introduce this concept to your people...I promise you will not be disappointed. If you are a member of CUPC reading thank you for CARING!!!

Monday, February 23, 2009

My Day....Crazy as it is!

I was awakened before 6 am to the horrible sound of the alarm clock. Didn't it understand that I was much too tired to hear its loud noises? I managed to go back to sleep after Kent crawled out of bed and went to the gym. Then only minutes later Trent called really sick. He nor Calah had slept. Apparently they have food poisoning or a horrible virus. I went over and bleached everthing that could be bleached, passed out lukewarm Sprite and tried to make sure they would be ok today. After realizing how violently this bug has hit them I gave them some medicines. They have managed to sleep and seem to be some better yet not completely well at this point.

We are having house guests tonight and my morning just didn't help my plans come together any faster. I love to cook. Today cooking, cleaning, and entertaining seems a bit challenged. I decided to contact Pie in the Sky and order Chicken Tetrazzini. I'm adding the veggies, salad, etc. Why sweat over a mixed up plan? At least I had a plan so revising one isn't too difficult.

Kent had hospital calls and visits this morning. Then he had several out of town ministers meet him at the golf course. Hardly had he started playing until a man connected to our church whom Kent has been visiting passed away. Well, needless to say his golfing day ended.

We have an awesome secretary, Deadra. Deadra does everything from work in the office to help rescue me at the house. Today was definitely rescue day. Thanks Deadra for mopping my floors and all the other chores you did.

Yesterday one of our computers crashed. Kent is off to replace it and I finally got a second to sit down and take a breath for a moment. I hope all of you are enjoying your Monday. I have honestly enjoyed mine. I love taking care of my kids, being in my home, and entertaining. Today I have had the fun of doing all three!!!

I'm looking forward to a great week....hope you are, too! We want get anything that we don't plan for. My plans are for my week to be grand if I hit another bobble or two it doesn't mean my week will not be good it just means I'll have the opportunity to slow down, problem solve and go forward.

Don't forget....plan to have a great week!

Sunday, February 22, 2009

READ This.....CHECK This Out.....

To God be the glory now and forever........

Today was our annual World Missions Day. It's the day we take a sacrificial offering and renew our Faith Promise Commitments. Kent and I have worked hard to put together a nice sizeable offering of $2500. Kent had been saving money for golf clubs and that was our 'seed' money. Somehow it worked and we made our the hair of chiney chin chin but we made it! I have sweated it since I am very much a realist, budget minded, etc....This morning I got up early just to reconcile my checkbook one last time. I know I'm the pastor's wife but hey I have stressed over it. I wanted to do it but just didn't see how we would ever be able to pull it off. The past few weeks we have lived very tight....I wouldn't spend a dime of unnecessary money. Well, I did get a few Starbucks! But not many.... Kent had a goal of our church giving $10,000. We surpassed the goal!!!!! What a miracle! Our annual commitments grew to almost $70,000. Yet another miracle!!!! The offering and commitments were made in our morning service.

Tonight Trent and Calah (even though she's horribly sick) planned an awesome worship service. The presence of the Lord was strong. Then in the middle of the service we baptized 5 people!!!!! Isn't it amazing when you focus on others like we did this morning how God blesses?

Of late we have been encouraging our people to reach out and show more CARE than ever before. We suggest they send cards, email, text or call people to let them know they are thought about and especially if they miss church. Well, tonight one of our new families had to be out of service. When I got home I had an email from this sweet lady. She sent the email to me and several other ladies letting us know how much she missed us!!!! I love it! So amazing how it worked....they should be receiving care on two points, they are new and they missed church tonight. Instead she sent 'us' emails letting us know we were missed. I'm pretty sure she's a CARING person. I love when we try to teach people to CARE God just gives us someone who doesn't even need to be taught....just a ready made CARE giver for CUPC.

Yes, my head is spinning...I'm excited....I hope to be able to sleep tonight. This pastor's wife is a happy camper. I trust each of you have a blessed week serving the Lord.

hugs and kisses.....

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Taking Back our Minds

Have you ever heard a man coming through you bedroom window. You know you heard it. Then you look in the direction of the window and you see it too. Only to realize it's a shrub or rose bush scraping against the window. Have you ever woke up and realized someone was coming at you only to realize it's something 'hangin' on your bedroom door? Where do these thoughts come from? Have you ever been dealing with a problem and go to bed unable to sleep? Then you 'play' it all out in your mind. Wow! It can become horrible you can't sleep for three nights.

The above paragraph was the introuduction to my devotion @ Refresh, a ladies only prayer meeting @ CUPC today. Following are more random thoughts and scriptures I shared with the girls.

Negative thoughts & feelings (anger, resentment, fear & stress) towards yourself and others harms the body by slowing down growth & healing. This makes you more susceptible to disease and increases aging.

II Corininthians 10:5 Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;

We must take control of minds. Philipians 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Often when going through a time of negativity, oppression, depression, mood swings, etc the devil thows a different tactic, isolation. Too often laides fall prey. Isolation is one of Satan’s most used methods. He wants to draw us out of healthy relationships and healthy meetings into secretive, unhealthy settings. He purposefully woos us away from those who might recognize the stronghold he is trying to place on us. A ploy of Satan is to keep us hindered from receiving complete victory in our lives. If you know someone who feels negative towards being associated in positive settings I urge you to pray God’s protection over your dear friend. Many times it’s too late once Satan completely isolates them. We can defeat the enemy thru togetherness or unity. Ecclesiastes 4:12 "A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-t0-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken."

I pray for discernment in my life. I want to discern the nature of those who may be troublemakers. I don't want their inner struggles to become my struggles. I don't want to be discouraged by them, I don't want their negative complaints to make me not enjoy something. Ever notice how one negative lady can turn 3 against a good wholesome church sponsored event? What a shame! Instead the 3 others should not listen to the one gripey soul! All to often the gripey soul is the most spiritual or at least wants all to perceive her as such. She prays the most, reads the Bible the most, and is definitely the most holy! Lord, help us to discern the truth.

Proverbs 16:28 "A troublemaker plants seeds of strife; gossip separates the best of friends." Troublemakers and those who have given their mind over to Satan can often be detected by their actions.

Following are a few things I've noticed that may help you recognize a negative person:
· always complaining about things, even it's in a rational, logical, "Well here's somehting for you to just think about" kind of way. (refute it you don't need to think over anything they offer!
· they notice the flaws in things (people, plans, church, ideas, events).
· have a tough time seeing the bigger, overall positive picture.
· If they see a flaw in something, they just have to speak up and say something about it.
· If other people are talking about the positive aspects of something, they have this urge to go, "Yeah, but..." and point out its negative aspects. They really aren't saying "yeah" but really spinning out their negatives.
· They get glee when being negative with someone else and tearing something down.
· Remember they aren’t anyone’s friend but rather simply will rant to anyone who will listen. How can they be your friend speaking negative to hinder your life...shut up and see what happens they just run to someone that will listen...they run from 'friend' to 'friend'....eventually they run back to someone who has listend in the past. They are many times smart enough to see when someone is down and just put them further down with their negative garbage.
· If something is going well, they have a dozen reasons why its really bad and will eventually go bad or why they can’t participate…usually made up reasons! Can't afford it, husband doesn't want them to participate, don't have a sitter, already have something planned, and on and on their list can roll...ever need an out a negative person they can supply you with many!
· They think positive people are naive, have low standards, and are impressed too easily.

Positive thoughts strengthens the immune system and lengthens life. Another good way to think positive is to THINK of ways to motive others to acts of love and kindness. Hebrews 10:23-24 "Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works." It's hard to be negative when you are mailing cards, sending emails, or text messages of encouragement. I purpose in my heart to regularly do such things. I enjoy giving and sending flowers to others. It is truly more blessed to give than to receive. One of those blessings is I can't be down when I'm cheering someone else up! While this past week I have mailed several cards, sent several thinking of you emails, and sent a few happy face text messages I want to do more. The more I think of others in a positive sense the more positive I become, too.

I am claiming this year as a year of setting free every lady from every thought that would exalt itself against the knowledge of God. Our minds can be submitted and obedient to God. A true friend will help a friend take back her mind. An idle man is the Devil's workshop....I will sing praises, I will think on the good things of God, I will think on the good things in life.

Ladies, free to add comments that maybe beneficial to helping others. Any negative comments will be deleted by the administrator! :)

Blessings for a thoughtful weekend....

Thursday, February 19, 2009

This is the Day!!!!!!

How often do we plan for that special day? Plan for our children's graduation. Prepare for a special party. Work hard and plan for our son's wedding. Plan for the birth of a new baby. In our case it would be a new grandbaby - no more children, Lord! Plan for the perfect vacation by car, plane, or cruise. Plan for your parent's birthday celebration. Plan for church growth. Plan for personal growth.

I am a planner and a list maker. I get very involved in all the preparations ahead of time. In fact last night after church I sat with my brother and sister in law and finished planning out our food and decor for The Rich Things In Life - Family Friends & Chocolate Seminar. I am so excited about the upcoming event. I can hardly wait for the day to arrive.

It seems life as a pastor's wife has me always working on more than one special day. Of course I normally keep a plan going as a wife, too. Currently it's new carpet and two rooms of new furniture. Plans, goals, I work hard to achieve them. It's always worth it when the day of reaching the goal arrives. I'm a Mom to two and I love planning for each them and our daughter-in-law, too. I love thinking ahead and make days special.

This morning I sprung out of bed and literally within 15 minutes I had a load of clothes on to wash, piano music playing on my new bright red under cabinet mounted cd player (thanks Deadra!!!), the dishwasher unloaded, and things straightened up. I simply had to prepare for the day.

As I sat down to check emails and go to my first website of the day the thought hit me, "This is THE day". Today's forcast is sunny, 68 degrees, with 0 percent of precipitation. Wow what a perfect day! Then my thoughts swiftly went to every day is the day that the Lord made for me to rejoice and be glad in. I'm afraid too often I get caught up planning for another day and fail to realize the excitement, benefits, and things God has for me in any particular day.

Do I want to stop planning and preparing? Absolutely not in fact I think it's necessary to adequately plan and prepare. I don't want to be so consumed with plans that I fail to be sensitive and enjoy the day.

Blessings to you my friends as you enjoy your hard to enjoy another day but don't become overcome with another day's plans and fail to enjoy today. This is the day that the Lord made...let us rejoice and be glad in it!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Lessons I'm learning...

Hebrews 10:23-24 "Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works."

Romans 12:9-11 "Don't just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically."

Proverbs 16:9 "We can make our plans, but the Lord determines our steps."

Ecclesiastes 4:12 "A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-t0-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken."

Psalm 46:10 "Be still and know that I am God."

Proverbs 16:28 "A troublemaker plants seeds of strife; gossip separates the best of friends."

Proverbs 27:17 "As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend."

Psalm 133:1 "How wonderful and pleasant it is when (sisters) live together in harmony!"

Matthew 6:14-15 "If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins."

Proverbs 19:11 "Sensible people control their temper; they earn respect by overlooking wrongs."

These are a few scriptures I read tonight that I MUST apply to my life. There are so many valuable lessons to be derived from the Word of God.

Monday, February 16, 2009

...and I LOVE People

My previous two posts were about loving my husband and God. Another LOVE of mine is people. Strange as it may seem since I'm not a super dynamic or sanguine person that I LOVE people!

Redonia has been blessed with her launch full-time into her business. If you need an outstanding graphics design job, printing or photography give her a chance! Of course you have to be local to utilize her photography but she can serve you with graphics and printing anywhere in the world. Today I spent some time helping her with some of the administrative side of her business. I love watching her grow. She is like her Mom & Dad and LOVES people!

I enjoy being with those I LOVE. Today a friend of mine, Victoria Green, called and invited me to meet up with her and shop. Then meet up with several others @ Pappasito's for dinner. Redonia and I decided to skip the shopping but we did meet Victoria & Jonathon Green, Mamaw & Papaw Smith (Kent's parents), Myron, Kim, Gavin & Jackson Smith, and Ron Woffard. Kent, Redonia, & I shared fajitas. We enjoyed our time with family and friends. Jonathon and Victoria feel more like our older children. I LOVE all these people!

Tonight @ dinner I overheard a conversation at a nearby table trying to decide if we were the Smiths. Of course I quickly turned around. The three dear ladies attended my in-laws church when they pastored in Aransas Pass. One of them I remembered well. Amazing these ladies live near Conroe. What an honor if they visit us in church! We were so thankful to see them again. I LOVE people even if we haven't seen someone in a very long time!

Today I received an anonymous comment to my previous post. Dear anonymous, you will certainly be in my prayers. I am looking forward to seeing you @ CUPC soon. If you come alone please notify a hostess or usher to have me meet you in the foyer. I would love to sit with you in church. Of course not on my front row seat!!! I LOVE people and meeting new people!!!

Years ago when I was only a teen I recall my Dad having a conversation with a minister who had evangelized and pastored. He complained to my Dad that he hated people. What a shame! I can't imagine being in ministry not LOVING people. I LOVE people!!!!

I hope where ever you may be reading this post that you realize you are LOVED because I LOVE people....

Blessings for an exciting week....

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I Love HIM, Too!!!!

My previous post was about loving my husband. Tonight I would like to say how much I love the Lord. He is a wonderful friend. I love HIM!

Today was incredible because of HIM. I KNEW today was going to be a great day as all three vehicles pulled into our first apartment complex. Four enthusiastic visitor children came running to the van and asked if they could go to church with us. Three of these are brand new residents. Wow! We didn't even have to knock on their door and give them an invitation. Then as we rounded the corner one of little girls who always comes was standing with her Mom. From time to time the Moms will chat with us. This morning the Mom asked if she could ride in one of the vechicles to church. YES!!!! I was so excited to sit away from my normal front row pastor's wife pew and sit with Christina. After church she told me she would like to go to church Wednesday night, too. We had another visitor lady and her two children today, too. This lady said she has driven by our church several times and just wanted to come. Of course we had several other visitors as well.

My niece, Mallorie was dedicated this morning. I love baby dedications. Kent always does a great job. There was probably much more Kent wanted to say but would have never gotten thru his remarks for crying. He did break and cry a little. Kristi was a very little girl when we married. She has always been very special to both of us. Mallorie was so beautiful! She wore a beautiful long gown given to her by my sister, Vicki. After church Mickey and Kristi had lunch for all the family and out of town guests who came for this special moment. How could anyone doubt creation when seeing the beautiful creation of an infant so wonderfully made? Just looking at a sweet innocent child makes me love HIM more.

Tonight was another great service. I knew it was going to be great when I arrived at church around 5:30 pm. The choir was practicing and several had their hands lifted worshiping God. Of course the worship carried into our service. As the choir sang the annointing of the Lord swept in so powerfully. People responded in prayer whom I have never seen respond. I know many wonderful things transpired. Trent baptized his first person tonight! The service was amazing. I enjoyed walking around and praying with people whom I don't always get the opportunity to pray with. The presence of the Lord was so sweet. I LOVE HIM!!!!

We have so many new people right now. It is wonderful watching as God moves in their lives. We had three new persons in the choir tonight. We had a brand new usher tonight. Next week is our faith promise service. We had some pamplets explaining the concept of missions giving. Tonight one of our brand new converts was standing in the foyer visiting with an usher. I decided he could help the ushers before service in the foyer. I asked if he would help by distributing the pamplets as people came in the doors. This young man just beamed with excitement that he was asked to do something at church. Of course he wasn't dressed in nice dress clothes and tie as we ask our ushers to wear in fact he was wearing a t-shirt and denim shorts. As I watched him proudly carry out the job I asked of him I thought one day just one day my friend may become an usher. I enjoy watching God changes lives. This young man goes by the church several times a week during the day and prays at the altar. Oh to have a church full of new converts or people with the desire just to kneel for 5 minutes or so in the presence of the Lord. I REALLY LOVE HIM!!!!

Thanks for allowing me to talk of the goodness, the mercy, and the grace of God. I LOVE HIM!!!

Friday, February 13, 2009

I LOVE Him...

This is our 27th Valentine's to be in love. He is my best friend, my husband, my pastor, an incredible Dad, the best father-in-law any girl could ever want, a wonderful son, a great son-in-law, a friend to many, a mentor, a Godly man, but I am glad he is my Valentine. I LOVE him...

The past 27 years have given me many memories. We have shared some wonderful times together and have braved storms together. Kent is an optimist, a man of faith, a visionary, full of humor, loving, compassionate, and dedicated. He is very tender to our children and to me. Today he made sure Redonia had a candy bouquet for Valentine's. He gave Trent & Calah a little gift. Of course he made sure everything was planned perfectly for our weekend together, too. We had dinner tonight @ Pesce. I love seafood and it is truly some of the best. While having dinner he presented me with a most beautiful box of homemade truffles from Chocolate Passion. I love cards and he gave me a card with words that was simply 'us'. He laughed because he bought two cards. I'll get the other one tomorrow. Aaaahhhh how sweet! I LOVE him...

Tomorrow we are going to simply enjoy being with one another. We aren't sure where our day will lead but it will be great just spending it together. We'll start with breakfast and then we plan to take a little road trip. We love riding and holding hands. I LOVE him...

Some years we have chosen to eat more elaborately, give more elaborate gifts, or do more elaborate things. This year how ever we decided the greatest gift we can give to one another is ourself. There's absolutely nothing more important to me than Kent. I LOVE him...

I LOVE my Valentine of 27 years. I know it seems over used but I truly love him more today than ever. He's my boyfriend.....I LOVE him...

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Valentine Sister's Celebration

A few days ago I asked my sisters if they would like to have a Sister's Day to celebrate Valentines. Today was our fun day. Vicki is my OLD sister! lol Kristi is my BABY sister. Kristi's baby, Mallorie, was the only child allowed. We met @ my home and left around noon.

Our first stop was LaMadeline in The Woodlands. Of course all three of us ordered the EXACT same thing - 1/2 Croquet Monsieur sandwich with chips and a cup of delicious potato soup. After lunch we started a shopping spree. I think we went to every baby boutique in Houston. We went to Little Patooties, Doodles, Purple Mango...and I can't remember if there were more. I think I have all these names correct. It's been a long time since I've shopped for infants except for baby shower gifts. I did find a beautiful diaper bag that I just knew Calah would love. No she isn't expecting but for when she does surprise us with a baby. It is red with big gold gauty buckles. The diaper bag was only $450. Wow! Things have surely changed since I had babies. You guessed it...I left it hanging on the rack. Maybe by the time Calah needs it they will have a 90% off sale...$45 wouldn't be too bad! ha

Mallorie's dedication is Sunday. We were looking for shoes for Mallorie and a dress for the big sister, Madeline. We found the dress for Madeline but decided Mallorie's dress will look best with bare feet. Ahh...nothing like baby's pretty bare feet!

After shopping till we dropped we decided to stop by Sugarbaby's for cupcakes. Much to our disappointment Sugarbaby's had sold out of cupcakes. How can that be? Mean time Scott, my brother, called and needed a gift picked up from Rice Village. So we back tracked. Anything for our 'little' brother. Then we stopped by Ruggles Cafe & Bakery for dessert.

Vicki enjoyed the Strawberry Bomb which is a homemade Angel Food Cake with Marscapone Cheese, whipped cream and lots of fresh strawberries. Kristi had the Chocolate Truffle Cake. It's a Grand Marnier Mousse Dark Chocolate Cake Roll with a creamy Grand Marnier Mousse Center. Served with ice cream. I had a scrumptious Tres Leches Cake. It's one of their most popular desserts. It has a moist yellow cake soaked with a mixture or "Three Milks". Topped with a fluffy white icing. The desserts were all huge so we enjoyed sharing them.

I gave the girls little valentine trays I had prepared for them similar to gift baskets. I filled them with a candle, chocolates, a valentine dish cloth, a bath pouf, and Bath and Body Products. I have always loved giving my sister's gifts. I can honestly say that each of them are fun to buy for. We were raised to not expect gifts nor have to have life's finest. No matter how big or small we get excited about gifts. I had fun putting the gifts together for my sister's last night.

On our way home we stopped by the florist to see Scott & Courtney. Too bad it's Valentine's week or we would have loved having our sister-in-law join the party. She owns a florist and this time of the year is much too busy to enjoy a fun day. Courtney, we will have to plan another excursion later! We did miss you!!!

Once we made it back to Conroe we all went to Mom's for a little bit. My Uncle Billy and Aunt Nancy are visiting from Alabama. We talked about taking Mom & Aunt Nancy but I'm afraid we would have worn them out. Besides, it would not have been a sister's thing if others would have joined.

Vicki and Kristi, I truly enjoyed my day! Thanks for going with me today. I have endeavored to show appreciation to those I love of late. I needed to spend the time with each of you today because I truly love and appreciate you both. I love you both dearly and always want to be able to share special times with you. We are all older now and each have different responsibilities and cares of life but one thing that will never change is we are sisters! We all have separate friends. Oh sure we share some mutal friends but we each have separate friends, too. I never want my friends to overshadow you girls, my SISTERS! We all have preacher husbands and no telling where we may all end up across the globe but I never want miles to separate our hearts. I want to always remember we were SISTERS first!!!! I hope you both enjoy a Happy Valentine's Day!


Of late I have thought of the word perception. What makes perception different than it really is? How can two people see something so differently? How can people see things that aren’t even there? You know like the man standing at a door and it really be a coat draped across the door. This morning my daily Bible readings brought this word back to my thoughts.

From The Amplified Version, Mark 8:23 And He caught the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village; and when He had spit on his eyes and put His hands upon him, He asked him, Do you [possibly] see anything? 24 And he looked up and said, I see people, but [they look] like trees, walking. 25 Then He put His hands on his eyes again; and the man looked intently [that is, fixed his eyes on definite objects], and he was restored and saw everything distinctly [even what was at a distance.)

Surely many things can cause perception to be different than reality. How horrible for things to become distorted in our eyes. Consider the frustrating feeling of distortion after an eye exam with dilation. Going thru life with distortion would eventually hinder more than eye sight. Balance, coordination, emotional stability and more could certainly be affected. Recently a friend discussed with me certain angers. I was reminded how anger distorts life. Everything is then viewed thru anger. This application that my friend discussed can really be applied to any word, emotion, or struggle.

How horrible would it be to go thru life thinking men were like walking trees as in the scripture passage? Too often things become distorted or even larger in our eyes than reality. As my Bible readings discussed, maybe another touch of the Master’s hand is needed. The first touch possibly brought sight but another touch would bring focus.

“Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing” – Author unknown

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Why is it easy to establish a new goal, decide to do something different, make a new plan, or begin doing something great? Why isn't it equally easy to CONTINUE? Perseverance is truly the test of the task.

Some personality types change easier than others. Some of us are like huge slow moving turtles in regards to change. One great thing about that huge slow turtle he will get there! I don't want to be like the beautiful fluffy bunny hopping from one thing to the next. We live in a subdivision with over one acre wooded lots. Hence we enjoy lots of wildlife. My favorite is the beautiful bunny rabbits. One thing I have observed in watching them is they certainly don't stay in one place very long. The slightest noise or flicker of light and they move on to another feeding place. In contrast turtles are longer living creature, too.

I've been working on being a more caring person. In order for me to accomplish my goal I have tried to incorporate care in my everyday living every way I possibly can. I will persevere I will not give up. I'm not perfect but like the old turtle I'm not giving up.

Today, I am working on a project to show 12 people I care. I can do this! I DO care....I am not going to be blinded or hindered from being the person I want to be. Every day I will persevere. Regardless to situations that arise I will still persevere.

Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did. ~Newt Gingrich

I may not be there yet, but I'm closer than I was yesterday. ~Author Unknown

Monday, February 9, 2009

Let's Make It A Week Rather Than A Day!

Saturday is Valentine's Day. However, why don't we take this entire week to show gratitude and admiration to those we love. Why don't we reach beyond simply expressing our love and appreciation to our 'valentine'? Let's express APPRECIATION to others, too. What are some ways we can show appreciation? Of late I have endeavored to show CARE but what about APPRECIATION? Generally in a church setting CARE is offered to someone with a need or someone new to the assembly. What about showing appreciation to someone who may not necessarily need care?

I have purposed that this entire week will be Valentine's for me. I'm sure my sweetheart and I will enjoy a nice Valentine's Day but prior to that I intend to show appreciation to others. Often I fail to express appreciation to those who do everything right, work the hardest, or may be the closest to us. I don't want to take people for granted.

Last week Kent and I spent some time talking about how important our relationship is to each of us. How that though life gets busy we always want to spend time together. Oh we work at the office together every day but we were talking about being together and having each other’s undivided attention. Often we get busy and just need to slow down for 'us'. Though we didn't slow down for us a date or special time together we did slow down to share the little things that mean so much to us. I wonder if we think about our other relationships and the meaningful things in each of them if they too would be strengthened.

I hope rather than celebrating Valentine's Day we can celebrate all week. I have invited my sisters, Vicki and Kristi, to a Valentine’s afternoon later in the week. I hope to treat both of them to yummy cupcakes. Check out Charming Hospitality. You may want to enjoy a cupcake, too. Happy Valentine's week!!!!

PS I wrote this blog this morning but decided to wait and post it tonight. Let me share a few events of my day. Around lunch time a precious saint came to the office with a most beautiful long stem flower and a card addressed to Pastor & Mrs. Smith and family. The card was an appreciation card. Maria wrote kind words expressing her appreciation for our family. This afternoon I received two cards in the mail. One was from someone who reads my blogs. Sue sent a beautiful card to express her appreciation for my writings. The other card was a beautiful card of thanks and appreciation for the way that we have loved a church family. Tammy wrote some very heartfelt words to our family. I have been totally blown away today because the VERY thing I felt impressed to do for others this week was first done for me. Friends, when you commit your works to God you can never out give Him. I sit here in my home feeling blessed. Redonia and Bishop are playing with one another. Kent is snoring in his recliner! I have been blessed by friends today, too.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Day Spent Enjoying the Lord....

Today started a little earlier than normal. Our quizzers hosted a breakast before service. I dropped by before going on the bus route. We had great results on the route. We even had a Mom ask for a Bible Study! Oh, yes I'm super duper excited. God is working big time. I know it's been a while since I posted about our bus route but just let me tell you that God is working.

We had a great service this morning. My husband preached a MOST incredible sermon. We had a very powerful altar service, too. Our worship leaders, Chris & Misti Ferguson, Calah and the entire praise team did an outstanding job this morning. We are blessed with wonderful musicians and singers. Good worship sure helps pastor with the preaching of the Word. Thanks to entire music team. I love all of your guts!!!! :)

This afternoon I had a friend whom I haven't talked with in a very long time call me. I admire this friend greatly. I love how true friends can go a while without contact yet when there is communication its like you never missed a day. She and I both know her calling today was a God thing. This was just another way I spent time in the presence of God. Our conversation was about God. She began to talk with me about prayer. Wow! The wealth of knowledge that poured from my dear friend. As I grow older I pray I can have her wisdom and insight. I will FOREVER cherish our conversation today and the nuggets of truth she shared with me. Wow is all I can say! I have prayed much of late to be a better Christian. My dear friend opened such a revelation to me. She's not a blogger and has never been to my blog. I'm not sure she'll read this post. I think I will send her a card of thanks tomorrow. I am truly thankful for God using my friend today to share so much of His Word with me.

Tonight was another great service. Trent and Calah and the entire choir lead an incredible worship service followed by Matt Newton encouraging worship and Mickey preaching. We had four persons baptized. It was truly another great service. CUPC is a blessed congregation!

I am expecting great things this week. I am planning to spend more time enjoying the Lord. Find time to enjoy His presence.

Day Spent Enjoying Friends

Several days ago Kent received a phone call from Kevin Seymour. He and his wife Lynda were planning to be in our area preaching this weekend for our friends, the Whitakers. We didn't know the Seymours but they follow our blogs and asked about meeting us for lunch. Thankfully, we had this afternoon free. We met @ Macaroni Grill. We enjoyed meeting new friends and talking about the things of the Lord. Tonight I found Lynda's blog. I'll have to add her to my Google Reader. Kent and I always enjoy meeting new people. The Seymours have committed to preaching without renumeration for home missions churches. Kent and I explained that David & Sally Whitaker are some of the finest people on earth. We feel the Seymours will leave Montgomery better than they came. This weekend will be a win/win.

Tonight two of our small groups, Thrive & Element, met for their Valentine celebrations. We began with our age group @ the home of David & Linda Weldon. We had a great time. CUPC is blessed with some of the finest people. We enjoyed lasagna, salad, garlic bread, & delish cakes. Darren Roberts made one of the best lemon cakes I have ever eaten. As soon as I get the recipe I will post it on Charming Hospitality. The barista was David Weldon. I had a yummy cappuccino. Some enjoyed espressos while others just had coffee with flavored creams. Thanks Bro. & Sis. Weldon for a supberb time. Oh by the way Nikki Greer beat the socks off of her Pastor playing Wii Bowling. Of course a couple of men had to be for their pastor....right David Weldon & Jimmy Hobbs. Hummmm they were wanting points. Thank you David & Linda Weldon for hosting our group!

Our younger adult group met @ Mickey & Kristi Blagg's home. They enjoyed wonderful Gumbo and all the trimmings. I couldn't resist a yummy cupcake with buttercream icing. Aaaahhh it was so good. The house was full of laughter and pretty valentine decor. I know this group enjoyed playing the Wii and even spoiling my baby, Mallorie! Thanks Kristi & Mickey!!!

Keep my sister-in-law, Pam, in your prayers. Pam and her husband Andy Smith (non family calls him David) pastor in Marble Falls, Texas. Pam has been in the hospital this week with pneumonia. She is still quite sick but recovering at home. I know she has been wanting and needing rest but this isn't what she had in mind. Pam, get well and let's take a road trip rather than a hospital trip! :) Love you girl!

Ok to the rest of you friends I wish we could have spent some time together today, too. Hopefully you got to spend sometime with a friend. Make a new's fun. Find an old friend...that's fun, too!

Hugs to all of you....

Your FRIEND!!!

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Return of the Playlist....

Ok to all of you who use my blog playslit for your 'listening' music my origianal playlist is back. A couple of days ago I thought my music may be distracting to some as it was me. I enjoy music on the blog but I thought a diversion of "How Great Thou Art" would be nice.

Of course the day I changed the playlist Redonia complained. I changed it that morning and by 9:00 pm or so she finally fussed that she was tired of the same song all day long. To me it was just background music & seemed very relaxing and worshipful. Since others have mentioned missing the music as well I thought I'd launch the mixed playlist again.

I kept Kyleigh, my MOST active 2 year old niece, this morning. She, Redonia, and Bishop were lively and loud. Now that the girls are gone the house seems too quite. It made me think of updating the blog music. Actually, after a couple of people said they missed it I had intended to change it but got busy and forgot.

Today is BEAUTIFUL in Conroe. I hope each of you enjoy your weekend. Blessings for great services tomorrow.

Friday, February 6, 2009

90 Years and Counting......

This morning Kent and I made our way to the hospital to visit several sick people. Our first stop was to visit a 94 year old lady. She is still a very energetic beautiful lady. This lady attended our church for many years until she moved out of town. Yesterday she called the office and let Calah know she was in the Conroe Hospital. She said she would love for us to stop by for a visit. What a joy to be able to pray with this dear sweet saint of God. As we prayed she began to weep and speak in tongues. I think Kent and I probably left more blessed by her prayers and presence. She said, "If God wants to take me home I'm ready but my kids will give me a big birthday party when I turn 100 and I really hate to miss that!" I couldn't help but smile.

Kent and I made our way to another room of another sweet lady who is also over 90 years of age. This dear lady doesn't attend our church. In fact I'm not sure she attends any church. 18 years ago when moving to Conroe I worked occassionally for the Montgomery County Elections Office. I met this dear lady while working. She would come in to vote and was a very sweet special lady. This year I was blessed to have her attend a Christmas party in our home. When we walked in it was obvious she had been crying. She had just received the news from her doctor that she probably didn't need to live alone anymore. She was insisting she is still able to care for herself. Her eyes lit up when we walked into the room. She was so respectful and reverant when I asked if she minded if we prayed with her. She held our hands and wept as we prayed. Again, when we walked from the room I think I was more blessed by her sweet spirit than our visit was to her.

Of course we visited others in the hospital but I couldn't help but pause this afternoon and honor these elderly ladies who enjoy the beauty of life. These sweet ladies made me reflect on my Mamaw Ingram. She was such a christian and someone that influenced my life greatly.

I hope each of you enjoy your weekend....count your days and hope for more of them. Life is beautiful. Sometimes we get so busy that we may not slow down and enjoy the simple beauty of life. A simple kiss (thanks Redonia for the one you gave me on my forehead a few moments ago), a phone call received from a friend or loved one (thanks to my Mom-in-law for calling to make sure I was feeling better a few minutes ago), a baby's smile, a note from a friend, your family (I LOVE mine!), a hand held (thanks babe for holding mine EVERY DAY), and all the other small things in life that we so often take for granted.

To each of you my friends....I love you and I'm thankful to call you friend! I'm a long way from 90 but I want to count the days of blessings! Love you all....

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Exercise .... what kind???

So Kent got up and was @ the YMCA exercising @ 6:00 am. Redonia left about 7:45 pm to exercise with a couple of friends. I think they are trying to show me up. Here I sit still feeling as tired as I did when I went to bed last night and as tired as I was when I got up this morning. What have I accomplished today I ask myself.

My accomplishments haven't been many. However, they have been GREAT! I communicated with a few friends via email and text. I observed as Redonia almost finished her new website. I planned a couple of events for the church. Calah called and said she needed my help. How could I not help my daughter-in-law so off to the office I went! You gotta help your girls. This afternoon Deadra needed me to help her with some church stuff. I was much too exhausted to go to the office so she loaded up her work and came to the house. A home office is nice every now and then. Most importantly, I sat in my chair and relaxed. Speaking of exercise...what's that????

One of my new friends emailed she has been thinking about me today and praying for me. She encouraged me to do something for myself. Aaaahhhh it just made my day! I try to send happy notes to friends. Now I know why I enjoy sending random notes. It sure does feel good to get a friendly note. Well, if sitting in my living room in my chair is for me...I ACCOMPLISHED! Thanks Rhonda from GA for the note! I have to say from GA 'cause I have a Rhonda from AL and a Ronda from CA. I love ALL my Rhonda's or Ronda's. In fact I LOVE all my friends.

Kent just called on his way home from a remodel project @ the church. He's bringing me a Starbucks Decaf Carmel Frap. Yummmm now Rhonda that's for me!!! I feel buzzy tonight like oh no am I getting sick....I sure hope not! We have had about a dozen cases of strep in the church. A couple of cases of the flu and who knows what all else. I don't want any of that stuff. I battle an occasional seizure so this week I've decided to slow know life gets busy and stressed and sometimes you just need to slow for me my best exercise for now is park it in the chair with my feet propped up.

I think I'll get a little exercise when Kent comes home. I'll exercise my ability to drink thru a straw and enjoy the yummy flavor of my drink. Will I need more tonight? Well, I will make it to my garden tub. I think I will turn on the jets and enjoy a nice hot bath. How's more exercise for crawling into the bed and placing my head on my tempurpedic pillow????

Girls, I love you to pieces.....get you whatever kind of exercise feels best....You all deserve it!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

a FUNNY and our life today

Well, atleast it was funny to Redonia, Kent , & me. Yesterday Kent was so proud of himself for working on his health issues. (He's diabetic and it takes work) He called and was leaving the YMCA. Of course we normally communicate from point to point in case the other needs something. I did this time! I asked him to go by the grocery store to pick something up. When he was in the store I called and called and texted and texted but he didn't answer. When he got back in the car he texted "Sorry I forgot my phone in the car. Do you need something else." I texted back "No, it's ok". Then I texted "c u n a min" After about 5 minutes he texted back "Cinnamon or Cummin" I texted my message back. Then he called me he said "Tracie, I have a lady helping me look for Cummin but did you mean cinnamon?" I just hollered! Then I said, "Oh babe, I'm sorry I said c u n a min (spelling what I typed). Babe that was my abbreviation for see you in a minute." He did a little ha ha but not really a laugh at that point. He quickly got off the phone to inform the little lady

I hung up the phone and told Redonia all about it. She laughed and laughed. Redonia tells me all the time my texts can be confusing and needs an interpreter sometimes! Most times I don't have on my glasses...I still haven't adjusted fully to my blackberry and I make lots of spelling errors!Oh well, I'm thankful for the laugh....Kent and I have been really busy the past few weeks.

I bought him a golf membership which he has played twice, I believe. By afternoon he just gets busier and hasn't had time to stop to play. He's cancelling that membership and joined the YMCA. I'm proud of him he got up with the chickens and worked out this morning. Also, the Y membership is 1/2 of the golf membership. Hummmm does that mean I can go to SteinMart. Teasing....

Oh, well today is another busy day. We are going to visit an elderly lady, have a baby being born today, have a doctor's appointment today, have church tonight, and all the other things that might come along our path.

I'm looking forward to church tonight!!! Can't live without an occasional laugh and sure can't make it withough CHURCH! Try to find a laugh really does do good as medicine does for our bodies....Then if your church as service tonight be sure and go!

Hugs, loves, and laughs to my friends!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

A Pastor's Wife....

Last night I asked my husband if I could stay home this morning. It isn't often that I ask for the day off but I just needed the day. I admit, I'm tired and have carried great pressures of late. Of course, I didn't really take the day off. I've done some work from home. This morning I sent an email to a few ladies to help me encourage a retired pastor's wife. Shortly thereafter I got a call to pray for a desperate need of another pastor's wife.

My mind has raced all morning to that of the cares of a pastor's wife. They love deeply, cry with some while at the same time rejoice with another, and love serving others. I can't imagine being anything else. I absolutely love our saints, our church, and our city. I have a sweet little retired widowed pastor's wife in our congregation who is incredible. Today she sits alone but I KNOW she still cares deeply for those she served for many years. I have another sweet friend in another district that is in desperate need of a touch from God today. She has given and given and worked and worked. Today my sweet friend feels empty. I understand her feeling yet I know God is going to fill my friend.

I guess caring for these two friends and even my own cares today has caused me to realize one thing:
How Great Thou Art

O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
He bled and died to take away my sin.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
And then proclaim: "My God, how great Thou art!"

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

Thank You for YOUR greatness, Lord. Thank you that You are great and will refesh our souls to share with others. Lord, You truly are great.....HOW GREAT THOU ART!

Monday, February 2, 2009

It's Official - The Rich Things In Life, Family Friends, & Chocolate

For quite some time I've had this little idea for a weekend ladies seminar @ CUPC. Then a few months back some of my California friends posted about their minister's wives retreat. When I read their blogs, I knew that was it! Thanks, girls, you made my job easy.

I've developed my theme, worked up some ideas, and prayed about who I would get to be the guest speaker. Wow! I have so many friends and acquaintances that could do a MOST remarkable job speaking. I wanted to bring in enough to create a General Conference but my budget wouldn't allow it. I hate budgets! Well, I began to pray about it. After a few days of careful consideration and prayer I felt to ask my friend, Veta McLaughlin. I know the ladies of CUPC are going to LOVE LOVE LOVE her! I can hardly wait. So on Friday and Saturday, March 6 & 7 will be our fun, exciting ladies event! I can't wait.

Everyone is invited...I wish all of you could just hop a plane or hop in your car and head to Conroe. We could have a huge fun time of being together with friends. Wow! Wouldn't that be incredible just spending a whole weekend with one another? Seriously, if any of you can come I'd be honored!!! I'll make you a hotel reservation and you can just come and help make the party more special! I want to encourage all the CUPC ladies to invite their friends. So you my dear friends are MOST welcome, too! Veta is bringing a friend with her, too. This is going to be such a dynamic time of being together.

Ok....if you can't come...I'll miss you all! Family, Friends, & Chocolate really are the rich things in life! Hugs...Kisses.....Tolberone....chocolate fountains...maybe even some chocolate cheesecake bites!!!! yummmmmm Maybe all my female types family members can be there, too (16 & older) I'm thinking Vicki may have to stay over a little longer! Then to have some friends there! Wow! What a weekend....

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Thankful Super Sunday

What a blessing it is to serve the Lord! What a privilege it is to know Him! What a great family of God! Thank you EVERYONE for joining in prayer across the world for prayer for people involved in ministry. I sincerely appreciate the prayers. I KNOW there have been needs supplied because we agreed in prayer. To those still dealing with urgent needs, I know God is your help. Keep praising Him!

Just as I know God is meeting my needs, I know He is meeting your needs, too! God is no respector of persons. He is an on time God! I am thankful for His mercy, His grace, His provision, and thankful that our healing is already taken care of!

Today CUPC enjoyed Super Sunday church. This morning my husband preached an incredible message about sacrifice, no not of money but of giving of ourselves. Often our sacrifice or the things we do for God do not continue to the place of the true sacrifice to God. Rather we stop just short of pouring out the sacrifice of tears and humility towards God. Many times we feel used up or burnt out yet never pour ourself out in annointing to God. Just prior to the message the ensemble sang "Pour My Love on You"

I don't know how to say exactly how I feel
And I can't begin to tell you what your love has meant
I'm lost for words
Is there a way to show the passion in my heart
Can I express how truly great I think you are
You're my dearest friend
Lord this is my desire to pour my love on you

Like oil upon your feet
Like wine for you to drink
Like water from my heart
I pour my love on you
With praises like the perfume
I lavish mine on you
Till every drop is gone
I pour my love on you

Is there a way to show the passion in my heart
Can I express how truly great I think you are,
My dearest friend
Lord this is my desire to pour my love on you

Tonight we had really good church, too. The choir sang and then Trent stepped in and preached. He did an amazing job admonishing us to worship and praise regardless to what we feel. Several needs were obviously meet. After a time of worship Kent began to sing several old hymns. Many of our congregation don't know the songs. Later Kent called for those of us over 40 years to the choir. We sang a really old song "Hallelujah Side". Our church is a very modern young church. We began the church only about 18 years ago. Mom played the organ for the 'choir'. It's too funny because most our musicians don't even know the songs. We have one lady that is my age otherwise all of our musicians are under 22 years of age. I am thankful whether the song is new or old we can worship and praise God!

Following allow me to share with you from the Amplified Bible:

Psalms 59:9 O my Strength, I will watch and give heed to You and sing praises; for God is my Defense (my Protector and High Tower). 10 My God in His mercy and steadfast love will meet me; God will let me look [triumphantly] on my enemies (those who lie in wait for me).

Psalms 59: 16 But I will sing of Your mighty strength and power; yes, I will sing aloud of Your mercy and loving-kindness in the morning; for You have been to me a defense (a fortress and a high tower) and a refuge in the day of my distress. 17 Unto You, O my Strength, I will sing praises; for God is my Defense, my Fortress, and High Tower, the God Who shows me mercy and steadfast love.

Again, thanks for praying with me the past few days for some of my friend's needs.

Let's spend some time praising, now!

Hugs and blessings to you all....