August 13, 2012

Directly from our CD:

Gotta Have Faith

8082012
I have been blessed time and time again to see God provide in amazing ways for the things I need! Last week I received a free tire and my school bill for summer got paid off! It amazes me to see God work things out time and time again. However, last night I got a little wake up call from God as I realized I have trusted Him for big things, but not little things.
I was spending some time focusing on praying for myself and things I am dealing with and said to God, “I’m sorry, I keep asking for things and having to trust you to give it to me.” What a terrible thing to say to the God who promises to provide for me! Who calls me His child and says He will not withhold things from me. How awful of me to keep Him out of parts of my life that He desperately wants to be a part of because He knows what is best in each situation. I realized that God wants to be part of everything I am part of. He wants to me to make known the things I want and need and He delights in giving them to me. It does not mean that God is my personal Santa that I can make a wish and have it come on demand, but it is about the faith involved in believing that I am not expected to take care of everything myself. He wants to provide for me! So I am making a decision to trust God for all the things I want and need allowing Him to work it all together and be my provider!
If you are reading this please take the time to be a part of God’s plan to help me register for school this semester. Simply go to http://www.mythirtyone.com/shop/eventhome.aspx?eventId=E2088316&from=MYEVENTS&verify=true and make a purchase! I will receive 20% of the commission made from your purchase. Plus you will be entered in for a chance to win $25 in free products when the fundraiser is over!!! Don’t miss this opportunity to support not only me, but all the people I am directly influencing this semester! Share the link with your friends and get the word out there!! Thank you so much!

Thank you for reading and sharing our journey.  If you are interested in purchasing from ThirtyOne Gifts to help us raise funds, we would be so appreciative! 

Praise God from whom ALL blessing flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

June 19, 2012

The Founders' Key by Larry P. Arnn - a book review

I'm not too sure how to begin....I usually love reading but this was one book that I really struggled to just pick up!

My apologies to Mr. Arnn, I simply did not like this book.

Many times while trying to read it, I felt it was written in circles and that while I had already grasped the concept he was trying to get across, I would then get lost in the wording and have to re-read the section to fully understand what was being said. And, I'm not even sure that made sense.

I do believe we need to gain a better understanding of what our Founders' wanted to establish for America, though, and if you are a very deep reader this book may be just the one for you.

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

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 2, 2012

God provides....

Update:  All the monies due were miraculously given in time for CD to move in and begin working with other YFN interns!!!  I knew that God would provide!  Her next due date is the beginning of July, to finish paying for this summer session.  She still needs quite a bit, but I am still confident that my God is big enough to provide for what He has called her to do!  Thank you for your part!!!

I'm not even sure how to begin.....my heart isn't heavy, but life didn't go the way we had planned today.
CD had planned to move back to school today and start on her summer internship, working at the Summer youth camp they host.  She has been so excited, basically sitting on pins and needles the few weeks she has been here! Being a dorm counselor at youth camp has been a dream of hers for a very long time!

We packed up her car and she headed off. About an hour later, she calls.....she can't move in until she has paid a registration fee for this Summer session. We thought that when last semester's bill was paid off that she would be able to register and pay out the Summer monies over the next few weeks.

Obviously, we were wrong!

I know that God provides and I feel very strongly that I am supposed to post this on my blog....even though it goes against some of my rules of personal sharing.

I'm not specifically asking anyone to come forward and pay it, but rather to join with us in prayer, knowing that God does provide!

God has never failed us!!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow......like needed finances!

God's girl, Pamela

May 6, 2012

Mother's Day....different

I have battled within myself for several hours just how I was going to write this post....and I've decided to take the high road! Years from now, if one of my precious girls comes across this blog, I want them to be proud of me - and that I did it different!

This is my last "Mother's" Day....not that I plan on going anywhere any time soon, but rather, the last Mother's Day that I choose to make the day for myself and my family - and it's not even Mother's Day. This is Cupcake's senior year and when she moves out of the house, there will be no need for me to fix them breakfast in bed! And I don't plan on doing it again for quite some time!

See, I realized many years ago that if I was going to be a Mom on Mother's Day, I had to take some things into my own hands. My Dear isn't really good at 'taking care' of celebrating birthdays or special days and I spent a few years frustrated; I was feeling like he must not care very much about me if he wouldn't be willing to take a moment of Mother's Day to actually make me feel special!

I did the whole pout and stomp routine, the silent treatment, the whine....to put it simply, I acted like one of our children! And that was not the way I wanted my girls to see me on Mother's Day!

So, I prayed!

The meaning of Motherhood is selflessness, right? I wanted that to be what my children saw, I didn't want to be THAT Mother....the one they remembered more for being selfish than selfless. So, I continued to pray! I realized that I could make the day what I wanted it to be....I alone could choose to be happy!!! My Dear and my girls are not responsible for my happiness - that is up to me.

Now, before you think the worst of My Dear, let me say that he is not perfect, but I bet most men aren't! However, he loves me well. He doesn't 'believe' in celebrating days that are only special on a calendar....i.e., Mother's Day, Valentine's Day, birthdays. He believes more in making random days feel special; he brings home pizza on a Wednesday evening, just so I don't have to cook and clean the kitchen! He invites us up for lunch on days off from school, just so we can spend time together. He takes us out after a big rainstorm to look at the swollen creeks - and that is a really fun adventure where we get to see different kinds of wildlife that we normally don't see.

Sometimes, though, I would really like those special days to be celebrated, and when the girls were small, Mother's Day was one of those.

So, God answered my prayer - and gave me wisdom instead of a more compliant husband or children!!!

About 10 yrs ago, I thought instead of whining about always being the first person up and not getting breakfast in bed on Mother's Day that I would take them breakfast in bed that morning....it is Mother's Day after all, and that means Mother gets to do what she wants, right??

That has become the tradition around here and coming upon this Mother's Day, I found myself looking forward to taking them breakfast in bed and made the decision that since this is Cupcake's last year of high school - really??? - that I would make this the last year to make them breakfast and take it to them in bed. Then, we figured out that Cupcake's prom is the night before and that CD would be moving her stuff back home that day from school.

The meaning of all that....neither of my children will be here the morning of Mother's Day! At first, I kind of kicked and screamed and told Cupcake that I didn't want her staying out all night 'cause the next morning was my last Mother's Day to fix breakfast for her. Then, I sadly realized I was being THAT Mom again.....hanging selfishly on to what I wanted of the day! Man, I am really selfish, huh???

You see, that is why I got up this morning and fixed Monkey Bread for my precious family. CD was up before I could take it to her in bed but Cupcake and My Dear were awakened by the yummy aroma of me carrying it into the bedrooms. I would say overall, it was a huge success.

Besides that, both of my girls have found an opportunity this week to thank me for specifically being their Mom....life affirming words from my precious girls that I would not trade for anything - especially breakfast in bed!

I do still feel that Dad's should teach their children how to honor Mom, even on Mother's Day, but I can't change my sweet man, only God can do that if it is necessary.

I am loved and that is what matters at the end of the day. 

Praise God from whom all blessings flow.....like My Dear, CD and my soon to be grown Cupcake!

God's girl, Pamela

February 29, 2012

A Broken Memory

I first wrote this blog a little more than three years ago as part of a memory meme. I don't know why, but last night I just really began to feel impressed to post it again today. My Dear and I have now celebrated our 23rd anniversary, we have a child in college and our baby is wrapping up her senior year of high school. The truths learned through this time in our lives, '94 & '95, continue to shape and mold our marriage and I fully believe that is what God desires! A quick glance back to remember where He brought us from but always looking forward to the path He lays out each day!

I pray you are blessed today and can see that ONLY GOD can resurrect a VERY dead marriage!

After 20 yrs of marriage, I have learned that most every marriage hits a brick wall within the first 10-15 yrs that humanly speaking, seems impossible to overcome. These times usually come when you have small children...and that adds a stress of its own! But, what I have seen is that God usually allows these times to grow us up into Him and into who He is calling us to be. Some of you know, though, it is really hard to walk through those times!!!

I KNOW WE ARE NOT ALONE!!! If you are walking through a hard time in your marriage right now, please know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE!!! Not only is God right there, holding you every step of the way, but a lot of marriages around you have walked through something so similar. If you need help, please search out someone that you can talk to and lean on in order to possibly save your marriage and your sanity!

I'm not saying that every marriage is salvageable...that is simply not true. However, God's grace is there just for you to hang onto, no matter what happens in your marriage and your life! Knowing just what we have walked through, I have a soft spot in my heart for marriages and I would love to see them all continue...but I know that is not always possible. No matter what is going on in your life, you are in good hands as long as you are in God's hands!

Okay, now for my memory:
In the mid-90's, God began to reveal heart issues between dear hubs and I that we could either ignore and kill each other, or deal with and continue to love one another...and did it ever get rough to actually live in the same house!!!

Christmas 1994 - the girls were 4 and 1 and life seemed simple, not easy but simple. I knew what our days looked like and I loved being a Mom of young children. However, like I said earlier, God was beginning to reveal deep heart issues...and it hurt.

By late '94, I had realized that my dear hubs was running from the hand of God! I was also beginning to realize that my marriage could not survive without leaning on God and His word! One Sunday morning in January '95, I was getting me and the girls ready for church and hubs was sleeping soundly in our bed....and I do mean soundly! It bugged me that we were struggling to make it through the days together and yet he chose to sleep on Sunday morn...and that is where I found hope - in the community of church and digging corporately into God's word.

We lived in post housing at the time, a 1940's duplex that had a long hallway from which you could look from one end of the house to the other. Standing at my bedroom door, I could look down the hall and see all the way to the outside wall of the dining room with no obstructions. On the outside of the dining room wall was a small storage room connected to a carport. I know this is a boring description but if you can follow this, you will understand just how big God was on this particular day!

On this particular Sunday in January 1995, I was walking from my bedroom to the girls to begin getting them ready for church...only a few steps away....but before I could even get to their door, I watched as our wedding cross-stitch, made by my Mom, literally jumped off of the outside dining room wall! I heard the crash before I could move my feet down the length of the house - a very loud crash for a simple 8x10 photo frame! There was a picture right next to this frame that DID NOT MOVE at all! To this day, it is still a mystery to me how this particular decoration simply fell off the wall! We were all on the opposite side of the house and no one, not even the dog, was in the dining area.

When I made it to the mess on the floor, I realized that the glass had shattered into little tiny pieces....lots of them! I simply sat down and cried!!! The cross-stitch itself was fine, only the frame was broken...but it was not just broken, it was shattered. I thought, "This is what has happened to my marriage. Our marriage isn't just broken, it is shattered." The reality of that broke my heart into those same little pieces! As I sat there in my tears and sorrow, I felt God say, "Yes, this is what your marriage looks like and there is no way that you can just glue the pieces back together. But I can!!!"

Then God gave me a verse. It had been used in our wedding, along with many others, but now that we had been married for 6 yrs, it started to make sense in living daily life...not just a flowery verse at a wedding.
Matthew 19:6 So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.
As I went through that week, I found myself meditating on my verse. As a young bride, I had heard that verse warning others to not try to tear apart our marriage. That week, I began to see the verse in a different light...let man not separate. This didn't just mean others, it also applied to the two of us!!! I began to realize that if anyone could tear apart our marriage, it was us!!! Our selfishness, our past wounds, our stubborn pride! Those were the things we needed to guard against...things of ourselves!!!

Present day - we just celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary on Dec 27!!! I love this man more now than I ever could have imagined on our wedding day! It is truly a privilege to be his wife!

The road to this point was NEVER easy!!! We have both had to learn to give up those icky parts of our hearts and let God bring in the new attitudes that He had for us. Hubs now attends church with us and while it is not always perfect, he tries very hard to be the spiritual leader of our home. I could take the easy road and tell you what HIS problem was that almost destroyed our marriage but that would not be fair....he was not alone in that! I had some really deep wounds myself. Some places in my heart that God had to expose and heal and boy, did that hurt some days!

WE ARE NOT PERFECT!!!! We still have days that we struggle with those old hurts and attitudes! We still argue...sometimes selfishly! Please hear me, the only way that we could have made it here is with the hand of God guiding our steps! With God holding our hearts and our hands, we can give each other the grace needed to make it through those rough days!

The cross-stitch??? Well, I never did put it back together! It resides in one of those boxes in the garage. I know it is there!

Would I trade those struggles??? NO WAY!!! It is during these struggles that I have learned to lean even more on the arms of our Lord! It is because of my imperfect humanity that I see so deeply my need for our Savior!

I pray that you have been blessed today. I know this was not an easy read...it was really hard to write! However, I pray that you will be encouraged to hold onto your faith and hope in our precious Lord...He is always right by your side, no matter what you are walking through!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....like my marriage and my dear hubs!

God's girl, Pamela

January 17, 2012

Love Lifted Me by Sara Evans....a book review

Awesome love story!  A marriage rocked by infidelity and addiction - a very modern romance, indeed!

Love Lifted Me is the story of a couple that get a fresh start after the husband battles his addiction to pain pills.  He wins his battle, and some hearts in the process, in a small Texas town before returning to his wife and home in East Tennessee.  After returning home, he realizes that his heart is just not in his former day job and takes a big risk to live his 'hip-pocket dream' - in the same small Texas town where he found victory through Christ.

Sara Evans, country singer and author, found a way to show the emotions of grace being played out in a marriage. 

While I was reading, I will admit there were times when I truly felt I was reading a fairy tale.  There were situations where a child was involved that would have played out very differently in real life.  However, that is why it is called a book of fiction!

There are two previous books in this series that I have not read, but that did not keep me from being able to jump right in and enjoy Love Lifted Me.   Now, though, I will probably go back and read the first two.  I think Ms. Evans did an excellent job of referring back to major issues of the first two books without re-telling the whole story, though.

So, my suggestion would be to start with book one,  The Sweet By and By, followed by Softly and Tenderly, and then read Love Lifted Me

I am a huge fan of romantic fiction, so if you are expecting a hard hitting book, this is not it!  This is a pretty fru-fru book, but written well and I enjoyed it immensely!

Praise God from whom all blessings flow....

God's girl,

Pamela

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.”