December 14, 2010

Happy Birthday, David!


Today is his first birthday in Heaven....and I miss him horribly!

I'm trying to imagine the party he is having, sharing so much more than his birthday with our God, grandparents, angels and other saints but I'm a finite being and just can't quite put it all together in my brain!

Psalm 139:14 I praise you because you made me in an amazing and wonderful way. What you have done is wonderful. I know this very well.

That verse was just perfect for David...God formed him just the way He wanted to. The death certificate says 'congential malformation of the brainstem.' No matter what, he was my baby brother...and a very special one indeed!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....and David was a huge blessing!!!

God's girl,

Pamela

November 30, 2010

Memories, Comfort and hopefully a Smile



I thought by now this might be easy...but I was wrong! David has been such a HUGE part of my life since I was 7 yrs old and the hole left behind seems to be bigger day by day. Two weeks from today would be his 35th birthday, which I know makes it even more difficult, and of course, Christmas is just a few days later. All those years ago, he was our Christmas present. Now, he's God's!

I remember when our girls were small, my two and my niece, they would want to be very near to David no matter what he was doing. They would walk down the hallway with him, staying so close to him that he would bump into them as they moved down the way. There were times when we were scared that one or both of them would fall but that didn't happen. However, in the last few days, the memory of our littles running between David's legs down the hallway have been a source of joy and tears for me! He loved his nieces, his nieces loved him.

My youngest, Cupcake, posted a note on Facebook that showed her feelings so eloquently...."My Uncle was special, born with special needs, but to me he's always been just a little boy stuck in a mans body." As she was grieving a few days after we got home, she mentioned that she really didn't think God would take David this time, because "he's always gotten better." That is a big part of the ache we share, that so many times God did touch David's physical life and restore his health...until now.

My CD said,God was gracious in so many areas before he left and for that I am grateful. Yes, He was...gracious to give us David and allow us to love him for all these years!

I was so comforted by the outpouring of love shared through Facebook friends. God used so many friends to give us words of comfort that have been a soothing balm for my hurting heart! I would like to share some of those with you...I hope you don't mind.

From my high school friend, Sean, He as well as you have been the Sunshine in a lot of peoples lifes. I loved him and enjoyed watching him when he was younger.

From Sean's Mom, Miss Jeri, The Angels are welcoming that Precious David into Heaven . No more pain and sickness.I know he will be missed. It was my joy to be his Beginner Sunday School teacher for several yrs. He was always a joy.

From my church friend, Dorothy, I pray that after the tears, the memories would be yours forever and provide smiles and joy.

From my friend, Julie, we were friends before David was born...David was such a joy to be around. I rememeber him and his sweet smile like it was yesterday.

From our Aunt Trudy, David was so precious.

From my school friend, Kim, I'm so saddened to hear about David....I know he meant so much to you and your family and will be missed greatly!

From our cousin, Fonda, David was such a sweet and caring young man. and God Bless him always.. keep looking to God for Peace and Comfort. and try to remember the good times and what Joy he brought to your life.and others. I know personally, he touched my life. all the obstacels he had. he always seemed to be happy. and i do remember him growing up. always smiling.. and anxious to see us when we all went to Nannys' house.

Another school friend, Lisa, Heaven is certainly sweeter with David there.

Another school friend, Richard, Our loss, Heavens gain. David has perfect health now Praise God!!!!!!

My Bible study friend, Linda, Your sunshine is now able to truly shine.

Our church friend, Kay, We remember him from when he was a happy, loving little boy back in the old "Deetsville" days.

My school friend, Wendy, Sweet sweet David I know will be missed!! He was absolutley nothing but sunshine!!!

Another school friend, Penny, David was one of God's sweetest creations to touch all our hearts.

My friend, Melissa (who married a school friend), So thankful that David is running down those streets of gold tonight.

Another school friend, Kristi, I know you all loved David deeply and will miss him terribly. I do rejoice in the fact that David finally has his glorified body and is having a ball in heaven.

Another school friend, Brenda, David was so sweet. Now he is in heaven and your family has its own guardian angel. He was an angel on earth! Now he is in heaven with the Lord.

My friend, Cheryl, who lost her Mom earlier this year, I went to sleep last night picturing David RUNNING down the streets of gold into ...Jesus' arms!

My school friends, BB and Georgia, Cheryl's sister, David was such a special guy with such an impact on everyone who knew him! I bet he is celebrating up there with my Mom!
David was a blessing to all who came in contact with him.


Cupcake's friend, my 'son' Joel, Perhaps they are not stars, but rather openings in heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy.

So, this post is longer than I thought it would be....if you've made it this far, thank you so much for reading! Re-reading these expressions of comfort and love have soothed my heart today. I hope some of them made you smile...they did me!!!

I am so thankful for all the friends that have walked this road with us...including many of you, my blog readers. There were others shared in private messages and e-mails and I am so honored by all who took the time to love on us! Thank you!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like written expressions of love!

God's girl,

Pamela

November 8, 2010

Love and Respect for a Lifetime...a book review


by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

I believe I have found a new 'go-to' wedding and anniversary gift!!!

This little gift book packs a whole lot of scriptural and practical ways to relate to our wonderful spouses in a mere 152 pages...and I love it!!! (yes, I pretty much just love books, but this one is really cool!!!)

A quick summary of the book is on page 106..."Winning or losing during conflict is not the goal. Oneness is..." Oh, how true and how my heart was lifted to read these words in black and white!

We are coming upon 22 yrs of marriage and while I wish someone would have given us something similar in the beginning, I think the fact that we have fought through so many areas and issues makes this book even sweeter now...so, it really is for every stage of marriage!

I hope that if you do purchase Love and Respect as a gift, that you will take the time to read it for yourself and ask God to help you apply the principles in your own relationships, not just marriage!

The book is an easy read, and while it can be convicting at times, Dr. Eggerichs is never condemning or condescending, in my opinion. This is a companion book to Love and Respect; The Love She Most Desires, The Respect He Desperately Needs. I'm hoping to read that one soon!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like my wonderful husband of 22 yrs!

God's girl,

Pamela

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

October 18, 2010

Processing my weekend in the mountains


My Sissy and I buried our baby brother yesterday.

Mom buried her baby boy.

Dad buried his only son.

The mountains of North Carolina have always held a special place in my heart, but now it will be even more special. Now, those mountains hold my little brother's shell.

David was the only one of the three of us not born in October and after the service yesterday, Mom mentioned that October was her month for welcoming babies, not letting them go. I told her David wanted his own special day in October – and special it was for him!

One of the pastors yesterday spoke of “the prison of bones” and David brings a deeper perspective to that. David’s body was never like it was supposed to be; he was born with multiple birth defects including lack of nerves, eyes that would not completely open and just recently we learned no arteries in his legs.

When he was younger, David didn’t let anything stop him…he started walking when he was three – flanked by Sissy and me! He participated in the 50 yd dash and shotput at Special Olympics. He was an honorary rodeo clown for the Mesquite Rodeo as a young teenager. He told everyone about the love and grace of God. He was a busy young man! And, a man who loved the Lord.

His joy was contagious! You couldn’t be around David without cracking a smile at some point!

On Saturday evening, my family had arrived in NC and we were very graciously welcomed by a retired couple that let us stay in their beautiful home. My Dear and I were standing out on their deck looking at the lights below and he began to comfort me. I was having a difficult time processing it at that point. I don’t know what all he said but I thought about the fact that if I asked God to raise David from the dead, he could! I know that sounds just odd but I was really missing him at that point and Jesus did raise Lazarus from the dead after 4 days!!!

Then I thought of how David would feel…he is now free from his very broken body! He is now in the presence of our Almighty God, praising and singing at the top of his lungs! And I realized, he would kill me if I wanted to have him back that badly!!!

Tim Surrett sang “Wish You Were Here” at the funeral….a very fitting song to know that it is how David is probably feeling about now! He is no longer a prisoner of that broken body…he is WHOLE! And, in the presence of Jesus –which is exactly where he wants to be!



I still miss him, and I know that I always will. However, I don’t ache like I did at first because I know he is so much better in Heaven! I am also reassured that one day, in the not too distant future, I will see him again….after I get over the ‘shock and awe’ of seeing my Lord for the first time!

I'm praising God from whom all blessings flow....and David was a HUGE blessing!

God's healing girl,

Pamela

I wrote this on the way home yesterday. Didn't want to change anything, though...I'm truly processing these emotions. Thank you for reading.

October 14, 2010

David Lee Odell Eddy


December 14, 1975 to October 14, 2010

God called His angel home this morning. David passed away peacefully in his sleep.

I'm thankful...that I got to see David in July.
I'm thankful...that I got to hold his hand and give him kisses.
I'm thankful...that he was at home.
I'm thankful...that Mom and Dad got to take care of him the last couple of weeks.
I'm thankful...that I got to hear him clearly say "I love you" last week.
I'm thankful...that my Sissy had the opportunity to be with him this week.
I'm thankful...that David will always be my Sunshine!
I am so very thankful that for 34 years and 10 months, I have had the privilege of being David's big sister!

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow....including COMPLETE healing!

God's broken-hearted girl,

Pamela

October 12, 2010

My Sunshine



David has been home for a couple of weeks. Hospice is not there full-time so Mom and Dad are exhausted. He's had a few rough days lately; yesterday they came in and took x-rays and changed out his trach. There was too much activity throughout the day and he didn't rest very well last night.

My Sissy is in Tennessee this week, helping them as much as she can. I'm thankful that she can take the time to go up and help out.

Around here, we are still praying for provision and seeing when the best time to go is according to CD's schedule. My heart is really struggling at times, but I am trying to rest in my precious Savior's arms knowing that He is in control.

Thank you for continuing to lift up our family during this time.

Is there something we can pray about with you? Please don't hesitate to let me know.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

September 16, 2010

I can't do this without crying....

but I'm gonna try!


UPDATE:We learned this morning that David will be going home on Thursday with hospice care. Thank you for continuing to lift him up.
A fund has been set up for expenses, please ONLY give if you feel led. You can designate any gift for the Eddy family. The address to mail donations to is:
Victory Baptist Church
278 Victory Church Rd.
Sylva, NC 28779


David has good days and not so good days. He has good nights and not so good nights. I wish I could be there with him.

He was off of the ventilator for nearly a week, but his body just wasn't strong enough. He's back on the respirator full time again. They haven't yet found the root of the initial reason for him going into the hospital in July.

Talking with Mom today, they have mentioned them taking David home with a hospice nurse to care for him there.

Can I tell you how much I have cried? and prayed? and cried? and praised?

Oh, my....David. My kid brother!


I see the world differently for having David in my life....I see through rose colored glasses - the ones I borrowed from him! Seriously, I have never seen him ANGRY! He would rather laugh at anything than to be upset about it! I think he LOVES laughing at us, his big sisters! He does that alot! I asked some of my Facebook friends to share a special memory of David and two of my friends from high school mentioned his smile! Yeah, it's a very special smile!

He loves to touch....just reaches out and touches whoever is walking by! He reaches out to touch and says our name, usually to answer with, "I love you."
When he gets excited, he LOVES to clap; for someone, something on TV, something that was said...he just claps - LOUD! That boy has some strength!
He loves to sing....it has always been a comfort to me when we visit Mom and Dad, or they come stay at our house for a while, to hear David 'sing'. When he goes to bed at night, he rocks from side to side and truly makes a joyful noise! If he stirs in the night, he comforts himself with the same motion.

I know it may seem funny that it is a comfort to me. You see, though, when I was 17 or so, it bugged me to wake up in the night and hear him singing....our rooms were side by side. After My Dear and I married, in the five months I still lived with Mom and Dad, I learned to enjoy that noise, knowing it would be absent for most of the nights ahead.

I wanna hear him say, "I love you" again....I wanna hear him sing himself to sleep. I want to feel him reach out for me when I walk past....I WANT him to be okay!

However, I am a big enough girl to know that I don't always get what I want, that is God's department. So, I'm trusting God to take care of David, in His way.

Thank you for taking the time to read about my special Sunshine. Thank you, also for continuing to lift David and our family up in prayer.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

September 10, 2010

Out Live Your Life by Max Lucado - a book review


You were made to make a difference

"Salvation is the work of Christ. Compassion is the consequence of salvation."

I want to be clear up front; this is a Christian blog book review of a Christian book written by Christian author, Max Lucado. I certainly pray you will read and be blessed!

This book, Out Live Your Life, is written in true Lucado fashion...down to earth and easy to read. Mr. Lucado's position is one that we've heard many times,"None of us can help everyone. But all of us can help someone." Then he continues, "And when we help them, we serve Jesus." Mr. Lucado gives stories of how people have made a difference in the lives of those around them and specific ways that you and I can give of ourselves.

Mr. Lucado bookends each chapter, there are 16 in all followed by a discussion guide, with scripture and at the end of each chapter is a prayer asking for what is specifically mentioned in the previous chapter. For example, the prayer that follows the chapter "Stand Up for the Have Nots" includes, "Help me to be creative without being condescending, encouraging without being egotistic, and fearless without being foolish."

He is only asking for what God has already asked of us....Luke 10:27 He answered: " 'Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' "

I've told My Dear, it is like a change of thinking for me. One principle that I have walked away with is that I can help those around me and not ever even have to mention the name, Jesus. I realize that when I say something along the lines of I am here on behalf of Jesus, or my church, I look arrogant to the 'least of these', and that is not my desire! That is the impact the book has had on me personally....how might it change your thinking?

I would recommend this book for every Christian who has ever read through Acts and wondered if we could still look like the first century Church. I would recommend this book for every Christian who has ever asked, "How can I serve those around me?" It is truly an easy read that can change our thinking.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

August 26, 2010

Cast of Characters by Max Lucado - a book review


Common People in the Hands of an Uncommon God

2 Corinthians 12:9 My power shows up best in weak people.

Common Sense....Common Courtesy....Common Good
These are phrases that I have heard all my life. What does it mean to be common?
One of Webster's definitions is "occurring or appearing frequently; familiar."
I think that is fair because I believe we can see something of ourselves in the characters of Lucado's book, Cast of Characters.

Some of his characters are famous, like Matthew and Paul and Moses. Some of his characters are less known, like Abigail and Mephibosheth. However, famous or not, we can relate to the 'common folk' of the Bible and that gives me hope that our lives count in the eyes of a loving God.

I love how Max Lucado takes a biblical principle and makes it simple yet profound! Through this book, I see 1 Cor. 13 in a new light; you know, 'the love chapter.' He says, "Many people tell us to love. Only God gives us the power to do so." We cannot live out a love that 'is not proud' or 'does not boast' unless we have surrendered our heart to the God who calls us to love like that!

My favorite chapter is on Job, though. I've read the book of the Bible, I've heard the sermons preached, I've sat in Bible study and thought I had picked Job's life apart...until now. "Before he heard God, Job couldn't speak enough. After he heard God, he couldn't speak at all." Oh, the power of Almighty God!

If you have ever wondered if you would be able to be one of God's chosen in life...for a mission trip, a Sunday school teacher, or maybe even just to speak into someone else's life, then I would encourage you to read this book!

Near the end of the book, Mr. Lucado writes about the common bond between Sarah, Peter and Paul and how Uncommon God changed their minds about Him. I love one particular sentence used in this chapter and feel it sums up the point he is trying to make. "...when they gave up, God stepped in, and the result was a roller-coaster ride straight into the kingdom."

I want to be ready to give up and truly give it all to God and let Him make my very common life uncommon for His glory!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

August 17, 2010

I'm really still here!!!

I'm not sure that I can even put into words what the last month has been like in my life! However, I sure can try!!

You can ask the ladies in my Bible study...I was really missing seeing my Mom, Dad and little brother the beginning of July. I was staring into so many memories around me leaving home, about to let my oldest 'go' out on her own, and feeling so sentimental - I'm not sure it was pretty! At that point, it had been two years since we had physically been together.

I know...shameful!

Taking a trip to see them got lost in the shuffle of a senior year, mission trip, camp, summer band, school and work. Them coming to us is not a truly viable option because David tends to get sick when traveling.

Then our walls of busyness came crashing down! I'm pretty sure my world stopped with that one phone call - "he's in ICU on life support."

That first Sunday after he went into the hospital, David pulled his vent tube out in his sleep and crashed...our hearts sank but we were thankful that they were able to quickly revive him. Mom kept telling us that we didn't need to come, David was getting better.

One week to the day of receiving that first phone call was My Dear's birthday, and I didn't really want to miss it. However, we got a phone call that morning telling us that they had tried to wean him off the vent and he had crashed again! By this point, I didn't feel my heart could take much more. Obviously, my sister felt the same way and we made the decision to head to Tennessee the following weekend.

Three of us girls headed up...my sister, my niece and me, along with their dog! It took us 14 hrs that Sunday and we chose to go to my brother-in-law's that night rather than the hospital because David had been stable and we wanted to get rest before we saw him with the ventilator...that was a sight we did not want to see!

When we arrived at the hospital the next morning, a nurse came out the doors of the ICU and told my Dad that David had come off the vent!!!! You simply cannot imagine our excitement! When we finally did get in to see him, he had an oxygen mask covering his nose! That was a beautiful sight and yes, I took pictures!!!

When we went in the next day, his breathing was more labored and he appeared to be in pain. The scariest part was the rattle of pneumonia still in his chest..and it had been almost two weeks since he went in! That night, he crashed once again! And, once again, they were able to revive him quickly...thank you, Lord!

We spent one more day with him. Poor baby, he looked so tired. He couldn't talk to us, could only blink his eyes to tell us he loved us!

As we headed for home the next morning, they began doing surgery on David to put in a trach and a feeding tube. We got the call somewhere in Mississippi that everything had gone well and he was in recovery! I swear, you could HEAR that sigh of relief!

Today, he is in a long term, acute care hospital about 40 mi from their home. He's had some rough nights and is once again experiencing pain. They hope to wean him from the trach within a few weeks, which would be a very good thing!

I call every couple of days and ask Mom or Dad to hold the phone to his ear so I can talk to him...while he can't talk, I know he can hear me. I sure do love that kid!

God gave me an interesting scripture the day after we arrived in Tennessee...
Ecclesiastes 7:2,3 It is better to go to a house of mourning than to go to a house of feasting, for death is the destiny of every man; the living should take this to heart. 3 Sorrow is better than laughter, because a sad face is good for the heart.

Gave me lots to think about and pray about...and praise Him for! We have been so blessed!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...like David's healing!

God's girl,

Pamela

July 19, 2010

Still Praying for David

David is still in ICU. Please continue to pray for his healing.
For the most recent updates you can go to David's caringbridge site. Mom and I are working to keep that post updated.
Thank you so very much for your prayers and support!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

July 15, 2010

Prayers Needed for A Very Special Gift

The original post is below on our Very Special Gift and right now, that gift needs prayer.

UPDATE for July 16, 2010...

David is awake and trying to communicate with Mom around his respirator!!! Thank you so much for your prayers! Please continue to lift David up for complete healing! We are hoping to head up to see David when he is home recovering!!!


My sister and I just learned that David is in the hospital in Cleveland, TN. He is in ICU on life-support due to complications of double pneumonia. We thought he was doing better after being on anti-biotics but apparently, something has gone horribly wrong.
Sissy and I are trying to find a way to get there and be with David and our parents. Would you please pray that God would provide...especially healing and finances!


December 14, 1975...a day forever in my memory, in my heart!

I don't know what time they woke us up, all I remember is leaving the house in the dark of night and it being so cold outside that we were smoking! I believe I made a comment about the smoking and my Mom did not reply...which was highly unusual!

We drove to Aunt Martha's house (otherwise known as the children's home, a local ministry in Murfreesboro, TN) and my sister and I made our way to one of the unused bedrooms on the girls side. In my memory, just a few hours later, my Dad came in as we were getting ready for church and let us know that we had a baby brother! We were so excited, we had hoped and prayed for a baby brother!!!

They named him David after the biblical David, the one who fought Goliath and won! Very fitting, indeed!

Little did we know at that time that David would forever alter the course of our lives!

David was born with many handicaps, both physical and mental. As a child, I can remember watching others stare in the store, or whisper as they passed by. However, I don't ever recall being embarrassed by him being my brother!

He is a miracle...not supposed to have survived childhood according to doctors. Not supposed to learn to walk, talk, write...all of which he accomplished at one point in his life! I am proud to be his big sister, and to have experienced history in the making as he has grown into a wonderfully sweet man!!!

David turned 34 a few weeks ago...I won't tell you how old that has made me feel!!! I will tell you, I am so thankful for every one of those 34 yrs...and look forward to sharing many more birthdays with 'my sunshine'!!!

David, you are my sunshine and I love you!!!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...

God's girl and David's big sister!

Pamela

June 25, 2010

Post 125!!!

This is my 125th post...and on a very special 25th of the month!!!

Today is CD's 20th birthday!!! Happy Birthday to my sweet babe! I can never say in words all that you are to me. You are the precious one that God chose to make me a parent and for that, I am more than grateful!!!

If I were a more intuitive person, or maybe just more mature,(I was 21 when she was born) I may have realized an awesome truth months before you were actually born. I would have realized how God was shaping your personality inside of little ol' me!

Ps 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
Oh, how true! I have loved this verse even more as my girls have grown into lovely young women! His works are wonderful!!!

Oh, my CD. She was not a mover and shaker, she preferred to just sort of roll every now and then! I was always surprised when she began moving because it really did not happen all that often. The only time she really KICKED me was when her Daddy was talking to my belly and called her Cristopher, our chosen boy name! At that point, I got a good swift kick from inside of me and I made the statement then that it was a girl and she knew her name would not be Cristopher!! (We waited until birth to know what she was!)

She really wanted to hide!!! In those last few weeks, we did lots of walking around the PX and one day a lady struck up a conversation about the size of my belly. Of course, the first thing she asked was when I was due. When we told her it was the 22nd, she responded there was no way, that I only looked about 5 mo along! Unfortunately it was true...CD would burrow herself toward my right hip! Many times I would stand, only to fall flat down, because she had put my entire right leg to sleep!

I learned when pregnant with Cupcake, that I should be able to feel the baby moving at least 10 times per hour. If someone had told me that with CD, I would have been freaked!!! I can tell you she never moved more than 2-3 times per hour!!!

Now, her personality traits follow so closely with what she was in the womb! She is so not a mover and shaker! She prefers to arrive early to everything,(although she came 3 days late!) but once there, she kind of hides in the crowd. She doesn't necessarily want to be in the spotlight, nor have an army of friends around - she prefers to do life one or two friends at a time!

Imagine, this child that many times seemed shy and reserved, now desires to learn how to be a Worship leader!!!

Where Did You Come From, Baby Dear?

~George MacDonald

Where did you come from, baby dear?
Out of the everywhere into here.

Where did you get your eyes so blue?
Out of the sky as I came through.

What makes the light in them sparkle and spin?
Some of the starry spikes left in.

Where did you get that little tear?
I found it waiting when I got here.

What makes your forehead so smooth and high?
A soft hand stroked it as I went by.

What makes your cheek like a warm white rose?
I saw something better than anyone knows.

Whence that three-cornered smile of bliss?
Three angels gave me at once a kiss.

Where did you get this pearly ear?
God spoke, and it came out to hear.

Where did you get those arms and hands?
Love made itself into hooks and bands.

Feet, whence did you come, you darling things?
From the same box as the cherubs' wings.

How did they all just come to be you?
God thought about me, and so I grew.

But how did you come to us, you dear?
God thought about you, and so I am here.


Praise God from whom all blessings flow...especially my CD and all that she is!

God's girl,

Pamela

June 19, 2010

Captivating; Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul

by John and Stasi Eldredge - a book review


The heart of this book is to let us, as women, know that we have "a beauty to unveil", and "an irreplaceable role" in the lives of our families.

"As Paul..writes, man 'is the image and glory of God; but the woman is the glory of man'(1 Corinthians 11:7). Not an afterthought. Not a nice addition like an ornament on a tree. She is God's final touch, his pièce de rèsistance."

Do you feel like a work of art? Holy art at that? What do you feel is your role in your marriage? Are you a servant or a life-saver? Or, are you both?

God created us, the ladies, to be the ezer kenegdo, like one who comes to save.

Can you soak up that principle in your life? I know I am trying to.

I am God's masterpiece, truly! I have an irreplaceable role, not only in my family but in my church, in my community, in my world!!! This is what God created me to be!

So, why are we as women so tired?

We are wounded, plain and simple. In the book, John relates how he felt ambivalent about joining Stasi in writing this book. He tells of how most men feel afraid to delve into his woman's world because "he won't have what it takes to help her there." This also applies to our Father's, and that is where the wound began for most of us.

Are you ready to dig deeper into what God has for you as a woman, as a wife, as a Mom? I know I am.

I recommend this book for every woman! This was my second time to read Capitivating and I will have to say that I was more blessed through it this time. The Eldredge's use scripture and modern culture references to point us to what God had in mind when He created us as women.

I pray that you have been blessed by this review.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

June 3, 2010

Today has been a God day...

...I'm not ready to call it a good day, though.

I'm sure we've all heard the idiom "Trouble comes in 3's." I hope that means we are through with the car trouble, and any other trouble, for a bit...a really long bit!

#1. CD and I head out Tuesday, crawl in the van, turn the key, hear the motor turning over but it would not crank. At.all.

#2. I call My Dear and ask if he has any clue about what I might do to get it going...I had things to do! He responds with a very depressing "great!" Um, not really, Dear!! Come to find out, he had a flat tire on his car and was waiting on AAA Texas to come change his tire (since he was dressed for work!)

#3. Okay, so for two days, I have taken My Dear to work so the girls can get to where they are supposed to be, when they are supposed to be there. Can I just add, I LOVE TRAFFIC??? (sarcasm indeed!) Today, we had friends coming over to spend a bit of time with us and they arrived at the house as I was leaving to pick Bunny up from school. I would come home with Bunny and we would eat, visit, then take CD to work in a bit...at least, that was MY plan! So...I go to the high school, pick Bunny up and head toward home. We were no more than 1/8 of a mile down the road when I hear the clunk-clunk of a flat tire - again, on HIS car!

I called AAA Texas and they quickly dispatched a service truck to my location. The original thought was that we could air up the tire and drive the car the 1/4 mile to Sam's Club which is where we bought the tires. Remember, it was just Tuesday that AAA changed his tire out with his spare, so I had no spare...only another flat tire in the trunk! However, we noticed a hole in the sidewall - yes, the sidewall, and realized it would never hold air even for the 1/4 mile drive.

I'm not kidding about Sam's being so close to the high school! And Wal-Mart, too.

The tow service then dispatched a tow truck, which took about 30 minutes to arrive. By this time, My Dear had borrowed a co-worker's car and had arrived just a moment earlier...I am so thankful for both Neil, his co-worker, and My Dear choosing to come to my rescue, as it was!

Jeff, the tow truck driver, was very proficient at putting the car up on his flat bed and we were at Sam's in moments. Only to learn that Sam's no longer carried our size tire! They could special order, but it would take a week, something we don't have!!! So, we then had Jeff drive to the Wal-Mart tire center, right next door to Sam's - no joke!

At Wal-Mart, we were able to buy 4 new tires. By the time they were on, it was time to head to pick My Dear up from work...so I was on the road, again!

I am not trying to complain...in fact, I have a lot to be thankful for at the end of this day!

I'm thankful for family and good friends that have shuttled my children around for the past couple of days...you know who you are and I love you so much for serving us this way!

I'm thankful for cloud cover today, that kept the Dallas area temps in the 80's - not the high 90's as was forecasted earlier in the week!

I'm thankful for the 3mph breeze that continuously blew across my face while waiting for the tow service to arrive, and the tow truck!

I'm thankful that both vehicles broke down in places that were safe and out of harm's way!

I'm thankful for the ONE Father that stopped to ask if we needed help! About 100 cars passed by (including a policeman!) and only one truly stopped to offer his service!

I'm thankful that we now know what is wrong with my van - it needs a new computer!

Again, I'm thankful for Neil allowing My Dear to use his vehicle, and my sweet man for coming to my rescue!

Truly, it has been a God day! He has been my Strong Tower and my Refuge!

I'm ready to put this day to bed and can't wait to see what God has in store for us tomorrow...I think!!!

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

May 23, 2010

Tears...A Guest Post

Through much prayer, I have decided today to let a friend of mine share her story with you, my dear blog reader. I hope that you will be touched! I also pray that if your story is similar, that you will please reach out...leave me a comment so we can be praying for you, find real life friends that will hold you up, both spiritually and emotionally, dig deep into the Word of God because He truly does have all the answers.

With no further ado....

The Tears of an Addict's Wife

How many times have I sat before God, crying once again because of my husband's addiction?

Since I've known about his secret life for more than half of our marriage, I would say that I have cried countless hours for me, my marriage, my children, but more often than not, for HIM!!!

Some time into this journey, the Lord revealed something precious to me, something so wonderful - MY TEARS ARE GOOD! After all, David says in Psalm 56:8 that God puts our tears in a bottle and keeps record of them in his book.
( Ps 56:8 You number my wanderings; Put my tears into Your bottle; Are they not in Your book? )

Now, I wonder if God has different bottles for me:
A bottle for tears cried in emotional overload as I married this wonderful man. The tears I have shed seeing him return home from a military mission. And the tears I cry as I snuggle deeper into his arms in the middle of the night, knowing he truly loves me.

A seperate bottle for the tears shed in sadness as I board a plane alone, leaving home for the first time. The tears that I cry when I am alone even now and miss being with my Mom and Dad, who live several hundred miles away.

A whole different bottle for tears of indignation at the sight of terrorism, both here and abroad, knowing that innocent lives have simply been taken by hate. Tears that fall when I truly consider those less fortunate than myself.

And yet another bottle just for the tears I cry for my husband and myself when his addiction is out of control. As you can see, I cry alot!

If God does keep them all in one bottle, just how big is mine?

The most wonderful thing, though, is what these tears accomplish; they cleanse my spirit as I come once again before the Lord and allow Him to smooth the hurt place in my life - truly broken and spilled out before Him. These tears give me strength to keep walking on the path God has for me. Most importantly, these tears show me and God just how much I still care for the man whose life I share.

Psalm 56:9 When I cry out to You, Then my enemies will turn back; This I know, because God is for me.

I suppose that knowing all this, it really is okay to cry for my sweet husband. And I'll do so, as long as this battle is waged, for I know in the end, my God WILL win! LV


Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

May 15, 2010

Alone....Really Alone

Two are better than one because they have a good return for their labor. Ecclesiastes 4:9

I am a middle child, have been since I was 7. I am a wife, have been for over 21 years. I am a Mom, have been for nearly 20 years...YIKES! I love the fact that those are pieces of my life! But how would I know ANYTHING about being alone?

That's just it, though. I am very rarely, truly ALONE! I don't sympathize well with people that are alone, I have zero empathy for them. And some of the closest people in my life know what it is to be alone. When my girls were small, I would dream of what it would be like to be alone, especially when My Dear was in the field!

On the rare occasion that I am alone now, I have so many things that I can do that I struggle with knowing where to start! I usually spend the first hour just sitting, enjoying the stillness - that is if the dogs are settled! So see, even if I am alone, I still have the dogs!

However, the other day, I had a very rare glimpse into being and feeling alone!

I am in an awesome Bible study group at church, and a few of the ladies have started walking at a nearby trail. One morning, I had an opportunity to join up with one of the ladies and walk the trail with her. Now, I like to walk around my neighborhood but the most I can ever seem to go, even with the dog, is about 1 1/2 miles....not really all that far! Well that day, walking with another adult, a friend at that, we walked nearly 3 miles and it seemed to pass quickly and I wasn't even sore the next morning!

I was able to walk 3 miles because I was with a friend, and not alone! I had a really good return for my labor!!!

The next time I could walk was a few days later, and timing transpired that I was unable to meet my friends at the trail. I chose to walk around the neighborhood and push Bambina in her stroller.

And I felt so alone!

It was difficult to even go 3/4 of a mile basically by myself! Every little thing seemed to annoy me...the sun was hot, the wind was hot...and blowing my hair into my face and eyes, the uneven sidewalk was even bugging me - and it has always been uneven!

I came home that day with a new perspective...I seem to be having a lot of those, lately! It really is easier to complete a task with a friend. God made us relational...we need our family and friends because of that. However, when I felt truly alone, God was with me. He has promised, even made a covenant with me, to not leave me alone! Hebrews 13:5 For He Himself has said, "I will never leave you nor forsake you."

If you are alone, or feel lonely, please know that God is with you. Also, please don't be afraid to let someone know...ask for prayer, invite someone over for dinner or even ask a friend to walk with you. I know that is a temporary 'fix' but maybe someone you know needs a change of perspective - trust in God that He will lead you to the right person. Get a good return for your labor!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

April 23, 2010

The Storehouse of God

I am a news & weather junkie...really! I feel a need to watch our local news once a day and HAVE to watch the weather forecast before I go to bed! Is that an addiction?

I feel as a Mom that I need to know how my girls need to dress tomorrow, according to the weather! However, I do realize that watching the weather doesn't always mean I'm going to let them go out dressed appropriately for the day.

I am always amazed, though, to see how often the forecast changes from day to day in the 7 day period. I'm not sure why I get surprised, it is only a forecast!

A while back, life got really busy. I mean so busy that I didn't have time to catch the news or weather for a couple of days in a row. This was one of those times when the forecast changed tremendously within that couple of days!!!

I watched the weather forecast one evening and the weatherman called for only a chance of showers over the weekend....a 10% coverage! 10%! That's not much chance of rain! I took notice but didn't figure we would get much, if any, rain for the upcoming weekend!

Boy, was I wrong! I missed the weather forecast for two days, and lo and behold, it seriously changed - to 70% chance! I will have to say, though, it was really cool to lay there in the middle of the night and hear the unexpected rain gently fall to the ground!

It reminded me of the scripture in Job 38:25-28....
25.Who cuts a waterway for the heavy rains and sets a path for the thunderstorm?
26.Who waters the land where no one lives, the desert that has no one in it?
27.Who sends rain to satisfy the empty land so the grass begins to grow?
28.Does the rain have a father? Who is father to the drops of dew?


I love that my God is in control, even of the rain! I am once again reminded that we are mere humans and that He sends the rain to satisfy the land and allow the grass to grow!

I hope He is sending rain your way this spring, to water the earth and your life!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like rain!

God's girl,

Pamela

April 20, 2010

Please Welcome….

Trevor James

He was born yesterday at 6:16 pm!

Weighing in at 6 lbs, 13 oz and is 21 3/4 in!

His proud parents are Kayla and Chris!

Kayla and our CD are friends from our previous church.

Kayla, congratulations!!!  We love you!

Please pray for Kayla & Chris, they are still newlyweds and he is stationed overseas with the Army.  Chris was able to get home for baby Trevor’s arrival! 

God is so good!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow….

God’s girl,

Pamela

April 14, 2010

“We don’t allow children”

Seriously?  That is what I was told when I started strolling Bambina into a local upscale resale shop earlier today!  I walked out of there thinking, “Then you don’t allow my money, either.”  I’m not sure that I can say I will NEVER visit this store, but it will be many years before I am even tempted to…and by then, they will probably be out of business!

Contrast that with Jesus attitude toward the children in Matthew:

Matthew 18:2-5 says  
    • 2.He called a little child and had him stand among them.  3.And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. 5. “And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.

Then, when we got together with CD afterward, she asked if I had read her latest blog post on childlike faith!  I thought how much that is like God to gently remind me that even though, for just a moment, I was angry with a worldview, His view is so much higher than mine – and the world’s!

 

Not only is Bambina accepted by Christ, when I humble myself and approach His throne, I am fully accepted there!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow….like acceptance!

God’s girl,

Pamela

April 13, 2010

A change of perspective

I'm not sure if that is an appropriate title but I know there has been a change somewhere! I really felt led to limit my computer time over the Easter holiday but I could not have told you too much about it, specifically. However, I noticed in those few days off that I spent more time with my husband and children...and face to face relationships are most important!

So, I'm still learning exactly what this means for me, less computer time. Less Twitter. Less Facebook. Less Tumblebugs!

With Bambina, I still don't have opportunity to phone, or write, but I know that God's desire is for me to have real relationships...not just on the surface.

As you can see, I'm trying to figure out just what this means for me...but I'm still searching. The good thing, though, is that God is in the search and that is the way He likes it and the way I want it to be!

Thank you for hanging with me through this journey. I pray that God will be glorified and that this truly will work for my good and His glory! Rom 8:28

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...like my bloggy friends!

God's girl,

Pamela

April 2, 2010

Easter Sunday!

Happy Resurrection Sunday!!!

I’m actually taking the weekend off from the computer, but on the off chance that you may drop by I wanted to let you know that I hope your weekend is awesome, that your days are blessed!

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow….like His Son, Jesus!!!

 
God’s Girl,

Pamela

 

March 28, 2010

She Held the Hand of God

We decided that since our whole family was together on Friday evening, that we would catch a movie we have all wanted to see for quite some time, The Blindside. Since we were meeting My Dear there, we chose to eat at CICI’s Pizza close to the theater, not on our ‘normal’ side of town.

We girls were running a bit late and My Dear had already purchased our meals, so we rushed in, grabbed our food and joined him at the table. I noticed a large area of stuff near my chair, all covered by a camouflage tarp, as I sat down. As I was in a hurry, I did not give what was near me much thought…now, I kind of wish I would have!

When I had taken a few bites of dinner, the gentleman at the next table asked if his stuff was in our way. I then looked at our table neighbor for the first time – a homeless man! Why had I not noticed him, or for that matter, his stuff? You may remember I reviewed the Andy Andrews book, The Noticer, a few months back and mentioned that I wanted to notice more around me…obviously, I still need to work on that!

I felt a tug on my heart that I should carry on a conversation with him, but how do I even begin that? I’m still a work in progress. Very soon, though, this man was leading a conversation with me! It was such a delight!

He is from the area, having lived in our city for many years. He graduated from my daughter’s rival school, South, when North was just starting out. He told us the grocery store in the center was at one time a Piggly Wiggly, and then became a Safeway before shutting down over 20 yrs ago. He told us how he lived in a brand new home on a close by street at one time, and how his family was one of the first tenants in a brand new apartment complex where the Super Wal-Mart now stands. I do remember the apartments!

My Dear and his family lived near the area for several years, including the almost three years we were together before marriage, and visited this shopping center many times. At one time, there was a Furr’s Restaurant in the center and that is where my in-law’s brand new Buick was stolen in the spring of 1990…yep, the same one My Dear drives now! There were some things about the area that we already knew, but he was such a wealth of information that we all listened intently!

As I began to gather my purse, I noticed our CD had come to stand by the man’s table and was talking to him. I heard her ask him if she could pray for him and his response humbled me. He said that was his ministry, to pray for others, but he did not mind her praying for him. OH, MY!

Then, my sweet, now adult child reached out her hand to gather his and prayed!

A sweeter prayer, I’m sure I have never heard. I know she touched God’s heart, because I could feel mine breaking under the weight of innocence and grace!

Matthew 25:40 Then the King will answer, "I tell you the truth, anything you did for even the least of my people here, you also did for me." How is it that our children can teach us so much more than we could ever teach them?

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow…like homeless men and precious daughters!!

God’s girl,

Pamela

March 21, 2010

MOM'S BIBLE; God's Wisdom for Mothers


A BOOK REVIEW Notes by Bobbie Wolgemuth

What emotions come to mind when you see the title, Mom's Bible?
Do you see your own Mom's hands lovingly turning the pages of her Bible, or see her tears falling on well-loved, onion skin pages? Do you picture in your mind's eye, her sitting on the second pew, taking notes from the pastor's sermon?

When I finished my review of This is Your Brain in Love, I asked my youngest daughter, Cupcake, to help me choose the next book. I was stuck between two books and truly could not figure out which one I wanted to review. She suggested Mom's Bible. I could not see just how important this decision would be in the next few weeks.

You see, the struggle of the last few weeks in our household has centered around our precious Cupcake. She's 16! Need I say more?

This Bible,Mom's Bible, has been a tremendous source of comfort and strength during these difficult weeks. Even more so than my 'normal' Bible. It's not perfect, I have found some minor flaws, but my overall opinion is that it came into my life just when I needed it and is perfect for this season of my life. Hmm, I believe God knew that when it was a presented choice!

Mom's Bible has devotional areas written by a team of ladies headed by Bobbie Wolgemuth. These devotionals are excellent, I did not find one that I could find fault with - theological or otherwise! They are under such headings as "Walking in..."(areas such as awe and tenderness), "Insights", "Passing It On", "Moms in the Bible", "Godly Character" and "Our God is..."(like Exalted and Holy One). These devotionals all fall on pages close to their scriptural foundations so it makes it easy to find a context for each devotional. At the back of the Bible is a topical index for each of these devotionals.

If you can't tell, I have been very impressed and impacted by these devotional areas. God has used many of them to show me a new way to pray for the situations going on in our home! These devotionals are written for all Moms...from new babes to adult children, we can all learn something about relationships with our children from the hand of God.

As much as I have loved this Bible, I have found some design flaws.
I'm not sure just how I feel about the particular version, New Century Version. I grew up on KJV and have used NIV and New American Standard for the last several years, so a 'new' version is a bit difficult to embrace!
There is also a problem for me with the numbering of individual verses...I have my 'quiet time' in the early morn by a soft, incandescent light and have found it problematic some mornings to find a particular verse. The numbers are small and tend to blend in with the lettering.
While I like the idea of the 'First Touch' verses, inspirational verses in a different color, the actual font color is lighter and was difficult for me to read in various lighting situations...even in fluorescent lighting at church.

If you are in need of a new Bible, I would suggest you look into Mom's Bible. It is truly meant for Mom's of all ages and stages of life. Mom's Bible does a great job of reaching into our emotional state of Motherhood, in my opinion.

It is sold in hardback and leatherbound versions. I like the hardback for this time in my life and it has synthetic oninon skin pages, so while reading I could truly feel I was holding a Bible in my hands...because I was!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...like His Holy Word

God's girl, Pamela

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

March 14, 2010

It's me, oh, Lord, standing in the need of prayer!


Could you please pray for our family? I desire our home to be as beautiful inside and out as this picture...and we can only do that with God's grace and mercy!

We are going through a sticky situation as a family! We are praying for unity during this time and for all of our hearts to change, to reflect the love of God! Not only outside of our home, but to each other, as well.

Thank you for sharing your time with me and my family. I pray your week ahead is blessed!!!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow...like my family!

God's girl, Pamela

February 28, 2010

Getting to know YOU!

Well, I will have to say this was fun last week...and I really like having fun! I know that eventually this cannot be the only post I do each week but for now...well, for now, this is all I got! I have a hard time doing housework when Bambina is here (Miss PD) and I cannot be on the computer for more than 30 seconds with her, so this is what I got for now! I am getting to a point where my house is driving me insane, so I'm working on cleaning a couple of rooms each weekend and praying that my family will figure out just how Mama does want the house to look! (yes, you may laugh at my naivete'!)
I do want to share that I am reading through 'Mom's Bible' right now, from BookSneeze. It is absolutely wonderful and I am enjoying working through a new version..as in, a version I've not read before. I've not yet given myself a firm date to review it, it is a Bible and that takes just a while to read! However, I will post my review here for all of you to read, hopefully in the near future!

So, now you know what I have been up to! Okay, without further ado, here is this week's Getting to Know YOU! I hope you enjoy and if you want to join us on this blog meme, visit Keely here.



The questions..


1. Would you rather bungee jump or sky dive?
2. When using a public restroom do you squat over the seat or sit?
3. Favorite flower?
4. Pedicure of manicure?
5. How many siblings do you have?
6. Do you pee in the shower? (gasp!)
7. Bikini, tankini, or one piece?
8. Where do you hate to shop at, but go there anyway?
_____________________________________________________________________________________

1. Would you rather bungee jump or sky dive? I think I would like to try a tandem sky dive, where I am strapped to a veteran sky diver!

2. When using a public restroom do you squat over the seat or sit? after not knowing where I 'caught' something from many years ago, I now wipe off the seat, then cover it with toilet paper, then sit. Previous to that, I hovered and it is not easy when you are in a hurry!

3. Favorite flower?

can't you just smell those??

4. Pedicure of manicure? manicure

5. How many siblings do you have? I am a smack-dab middle child, one older sister, one younger brother!

6. Do you pee in the shower? (gasp!) umm, NO...and yes, I think this is TMI!

7. Bikini, tankini, or one piece? I have a one piece that I like right now...hubs does, too!

8. Where do you hate to shop at, but go there anyway? I'm with Keely on this one, Wal-Mart! But since we have to watch all those pennies right now, that is where I go because overall, it is usually cheaper!

Well, there you go. More useless random facts that you may or may not have wanted to know about me!

Y'all have a blessed week!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl, Pamela

February 21, 2010

Getting to Know YOU!

So I've been popping in occasionally on a blog from a fellow Texan for a few weeks now and have decided to join in on her Sunday meme - "getting to know you."


If you would like to join in, jump over here and link up with your answers.

Okay, here I go -

The questions..


1. How often do you wash/change your sheets?
2. When is your birthday?
3. Have you ever met a bloggy friend in real life?
4. Brad Pitt or George Clooney?
5. If you could change one thing about your body what would it be?
6. How often do you wash your hair?
7. Do you have pets?
8. How many social networks do you belong to..if you had to give up one, what would it be?

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1) How often do I change my sheets? I change them every other week...religiously (or at least try to, really hard!)

2) When is my birthday? October 10, 1968

3) Have you ever met a bloggy friend in real life? Well, a couple of my real life friends are fellow bloggers...Hi, Kat and Tona.

4) Brad Pitt or George Clooney? Seriously? I have to say neither...sorry!

5)If you could change one thing about your body what would it be? There are a couple of things but I think the one I struggle with most is my 'tree trunk' legs! I've always had them...even when I was skinny!

6)How often do you wash your hair? Every other day...it is naturally curly and I've been told not to wash it any more often than that.

7) Do you have pets? We have two dogs...one is the family dog and the second belongs to CD but for now is part of the family! Christmas was born in our home Dec 22, 2003 by our puppy, Ziggy. We got Ziggy shortly after learning I was prego with Bunny and had to put her to sleep Oct 1, 2004...the day before Bunny's 11th birthday! That was a rough time! The other, Sasha, came from my parent's home as CD's Christmas present in 2006! They are both mixed breed and SPOILED ROTTEN!

8)How many social networks do you belong to..if you had to give up one, what would it be? I blog, (obviously!) have a Facebook and MySpace, (but don't use it often) and I Twitter! I could very easily give up MySpace.

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Okay, I'm sure that is more than some of you wanted to know about me! I'm not sure yet if I will make this a weekly post but for now, it was fun!!!

Y'all have a great week and be blessed!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl, Pamela

February 15, 2010

HEAR NO EVIL – My Story of Innocence, Music and the Holy Ghost by Matthew Paul Turner (A Book Review and A Give-Away!)

UPDATE: Beth...One Blessed Nana is the winner of Hear No Evil!!! YAY Beth! I will try to get in touch with you over the weekend to get your book to you! The winner was chosen by random.org!


Have you ever been afraid that listening to a syncopated drumbeat would cause evil spirits “ to shimmy their way inside” your head?

Have you ever been part of “covert operation, See Sandi Sing” so that your fellow church members would not be aware of your love for all things Sandi Patty?

Have you ever questioned, “Should I know who Dylan is?”

If you can answer yes to at least one of these questions, then you should read Matthew Paul Turner’s latest memoir, Hear No Evil and be prepared to laugh!

I would say Mr. Turner had been a fly on the wall of my life as I grew up in Fundamental Baptist churches in the Southeast but I can’t because he is younger than I am. However, our experiences with music and culture are very similar! The difference is, he can tell his story with humor and make us laugh!

After graduating from his small Christian school in Maryland, Matthew chose to go to Belmont College in Nashville to study music business. While there, he was confronted with different theologies and ways of relating to God. He also was exposed to secular culture and lost his “movie-theater virginity.” His fellow students questioned his beliefs and his upbringing and he questioned theirs. Then, he began visiting a church that some fellow students attended, and it wasn’t a Fundamental Baptist church…it was Presbyterian!

He went to church with his friend, Josiah, who was a Calvinist. Matthew says, “Talking to Josiah made me feel dumb,” only because Josiah knew why he believed a particular theology. Matthew responds in the book with, “I didn’t study God. I just memorized scripture verses and practiced Bible Trivia….I knew a thousand Bible verses by heart, but I couldn't explain why God’s story was important to me personally. At least not without using hell as a starting point.”

Matthew went on to manage a Christian coffee house in Nashville, booking Christian talent and hosting open mic night for people trying to become Christian talent! Oh, the stories he has to tell...I'm sure he left out more than he included in the book! He was also editor of the popular CCM, a magazine dedicated to Comtemporary Christian Music. While working for CCM, Matthew had opportunity to interview several well-known gospel artists, including Amy Grant. He even tells a bit about that interview in a chapter of the book titled "Chasing Amy."

While Matthew’s writings stir up many memories in my own life, I appreciate the fact that he can do so with laughter and wit. I also appreciate the heart this man now has for God…you can get to know Matthew a bit by reading his blog and visiting his website.

This book, Hear No Evil, is seriously funny and worth reading!

I'm excited to say I have been given one copy of Hear No Evil to giveaway!!! Just leave a comment below by Thursday, Feb 18, and I will have random.org choose a winner on Friday, Feb 19. Thank you to Matthew Paul Turner, Ashley Boyer and WaterBrook Press for this opportunity to bless one of my dear blog readers!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like really good books and really cool authors!

God's girl, Pamela

This book was provided for review by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group. If you would like to purchase this book or for more information please visit Random House.

February 6, 2010

A blog of randomness!

Well, I have so many thoughts running through my head...they don't all go together but they are pretty good and I want to share with y'all!

This is my bonus year with CD, and it really is a bonus for all that she is teaching me. She is such a student of the Word (Bible) and truly seeks God so our morning conversations are rich and full of something new she has come across. One of those conversations revolves around verses found in 1 Corinthians:

1 Corinthians 6:12 NIV
[Sexual Immorality] "Everything is permissible for me"--but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible for me"--but I will not be mastered by anything.

1 Corinthians 10:23 NIV
[The Believer's Freedom] "Everything is permissible"--but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible"--but not everything is constructive.

Wow! Those are powerful. I have run across them before, and been blown away, but this time I really feel like God wants me to grasp the truth of these verses...everything is permissible! Everything is not just permissible for me but for others as well, so another area to learn a special grace! I would ask that if you have a Bible close by, that you read the verses around these to get the context of these verses.

Another passage that is changing my heart is Acts 9. We are studying through Acts in our ABF class on Sunday morning and this week we are reading chapter 9. This is the chapter where Saul is met on the Damascus Road by Christ Himself and truly becomes a Christ follower after just persecuting those that were believers! This passage has spoken to me that it is really NEVER TOO LATE to see Jesus for who He really is...our Savior! I can't give up on those around me that seem to be so far from the Truth, I still desire to love them any way that I can.

Okay...next piece of random...hubs and I talked tonight and in the coming weeks, I would really like to share some of my personal testimony. Not exactly sure when I will have time for that but if you would be interested in reading it, would you please let me know? I do not want to bore any of you!

Next...Right now I am reading Hear No Evil, the latest book by Matthew Paul Turner. It is an awesome, easy read and I will be reviewing it right here next week. Also, I will be giving a copy of Hear No Evil away - sponsored by his publisher!!! I am pretty excited about it!

Well, I think that is all that I have for now. Are you looking forward to Valentine's Day or is it just another day for you? No matter how you feel about the day, may I say

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl, Pamela

January 30, 2010

This Is Your Brain in Love by Dr. Earl Henslin - a book review



The subtitle of this book drew me in - New Scientific Breakthroughs for a More Passionate and Emotionally Healthy Marriage. Now, seriously, who doesn't want that?

However, I want to be truly honest with you...this is one of the hardest book reviews for me to write. There are so many emotions and thoughts swirling through my brain that I'm not sure I can actually put down a coherent review for y'all!

One of my favorite sentences in the book is, "Cheap sex never satisfies. Soul sex, however-now, that is a gourmet experience." Oh, my...I believe this may be the whole crux of the book, that the writer wants us to experience soul sex in our marriages! Isn't this what our Creator desires for us, as well?

Dr. Henslin, before he begins the scientific explanation of how our sex lives are fully wired in our brains, shows us what we can learn from Jewish tradition. I got stuck on this section for several days because our 'western' thinking is so far from the Jewish tradition. After reading this section, and letting it sink in, I feel that if we begin to teach some of these points to our children there might not be as much divorce in the next generation. Of course, that is my very personal opinion.

Dr. Henslin then goes on to show us the five types of imbalanced lovers - and aren't we all imbalanced from time to time? He also gives practical tips to help us and our partners learn how to live and love in spite of these imbalances!

I learned that I am a Scattered Lover...a bit ADD!

Dr. Henslin balances a very scientific book with stories from his own counseling experience. He also shows "Ways to Foster Honesty in Marriage" and has an appendix on "The Joy Diet", which will also boost our brain power! (and physical stamina, as well.)

I'm not so sure that this is fully a self-help book. Yes, the basics of a self-help book are there, but I found so much more inside these pages. I hope you can read it for yourself and truly find hope for a better marriage - the one you are in now!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like an awesome marriage!

God's girl,

Pamela

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

January 17, 2010

Focus Weekend!!!

If you have followed this blog for anytime, you know we love our church! Focus weekend is one of the reasons we love it! Our Student Pastor has taken bits & pieces of various youth retreats and sifted the good from the bad and each year, it gets better!

This year, Brad Fogarty was the speaker. Actually, I would have to say the Holy Spirit was the speaker because Brad did a terrific job of setting aside his agenda and letting God lead the services! IT WAS AMAZING! I should have taken a box of kleenex because I cried at every service...no kidding!

It is so cool to see our children choose to become a Christ-follower or watch them find a deeper way to love their Lord and Savior. I have been so blessed this weekend!

I only have two children, both girls, but this morning when I went into the sanctuary, I learned my quiver had doubled!!! Seriously...I sat my stuff down in a chair, stood up and there were four beautiful teens, two boys and two girls, standing there waiting to hug me and say Good Morning! Only one of them was my natural child! I so love getting hugs from kids...especially the big ones!

I hope to post more on this weekend in the near future but right now, I really need to process some of what went on for myself. I have been challenged to guard my heart more closely as I continue to follow Christ on a daily basis. Please understand, I am so far from perfect, only forgiven and covered by the blood of Jesus Christ!

I pray that as you read my little blog, that you will be blessed by the Creator of the Universe! I pray that you see His light, not me!

I'm so Praising God from whom all blessings flow....like teenagers!

God's girl, Pamela

January 12, 2010

A Fitting Memorial

Do you remember Kevin from this post?

He passed away last Monday, January 4, 2010. Peacefully. So ready to meet his Lord. So ready to be HOME!

We learned that Kevin had family here in the Dallas area but chose to live independently, even when that meant homeless. His Aunties and several cousins were there. And the family that brought Kevin into our church, into our lives, was listed in the obituary as his family!!!

The memorial Friday morning, Jan 8, was officiated by the Pastor that oversees S.O.U.L. Ministries and I love how he blended Kevin's favorite scriptures in his brief message! One of Kevin's favorite scriptures has stood out to me during these few days...Hebrews 11, the Hall of Faith!

I desire to have the same level of faith that Kevin did. To know, beyond knowing, that the path I am on is the perfect path God has for me...the same way Abraham, and Noah, and Enoch did. I desire to live surrendered, the way Kevin did, to whatever it is the Lord has for me - whether pain, trial or a sense of comfort, like Paul! As you can see, God has really used the end of this man's life to shape some of my thoughts to look more like His, and the journey has been awesome.

I was totally moved by some of the stories when the podium was opened for audience members to say something about Kevin...oh, and the audience....HUGE!!! The funeral home was somewhat small but the room was filled, wall to wall with people there to remember Kevin and pay their respects! The last audience member to speak, though, (if I can stop crying long enough to type this out!) totally got to me! He was a homeless man that never met Kevin. NEVER! Someone had invited him that morning at The Bridge, Dallas homeless shelter, and again, someone invited him at The Stewpot.

It was no random invitation, though! NO, SIR! He was meant to be in that packed room on a very cold Friday morning - and it wasn't just to get warm. He heard the gospel preached, and he saw how people from all walks of life had loved Kevin. And he had a word to share - stay in touch with family. Don't start walking a path so alone.

I struggle with this, to a degree. I get busy and forget to call my Mom - I did it just this past Sunday...so sorry, Mama! I spend my time writing this blog to give family a glimpse of our lives, but then forget to e-mail or write them later on.

Now, I am trying...to be available, first for my sweet man and our girls!

I don't think I can convey in this little blog just how much of a blessing Kevin was to me. I know I cannot give enough glory to God - He deserves it ALL!!! I'm thankful we found a sitter for Miss PD (man, it was hard leaving her!) and found our way to Oak Cliff for a memorial service that I won't soon forget.

Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow....

God's girl, Pamela