Friday, October 30, 2009

THIS IS IT... or is it?

Yep! I went today to see the Michael Jackson documentary, "This is It!" I had not planned to go see it. But after a recommendation from a friend, I went. I walked away with some thoughts.
One... Michael Jackson was really talented. The creative stuff that came out of his mind was amazing. Seeing what that show was going to be like was pretty phenomenal. AND he could dance!
Two... A lot of different times in the show I found myself sad. Sad that his "show" was never going to be seen. Sad for all the people who put in HOURS of training and heart to get ready for the show and were left looking for the next thing. But mostly, sad for him. To think that he had fame, fortune, and talent, and yet he was so unhappy in his own skin. He was in pain so much of his life. And it all ended abruptly.
This week I read Ecclesiastes, Solomon is sharing his thoughts on the meaning of this life and tonight I was seeing the correlation to Michael Jackson's life. So much of what Michael chased and experienced in this world never satisfied him. It could not help him sleep at night, it could not make him ok with himself.
At the end of the book Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 12:13... "Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey His commands..." That IS it!
Lastly... I was reminded that THIS IS NOT IT! There is life after this, we must decide whom we will serve!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

The Top 10!

Well, my 8 day vacation has come to an end. It was a great week of hanging out with the Creator and in His creation. I feel like I learned some good stuff on this trip, some new and some reminders.
Let's see if I can give the top 10:
#1: My need for perfectionism, being sure I am doing the right thing, and wanting others approval sure can get in the way of relaxing.
#2: Psalm 119 is RICH with truth about God's Word!
#3: I love being out in nature, I feel really close to God out there.
#4: It is wise to wear orange in deer season.
#5: Cooking all 3 meals in one day is not something I love, but I can do!
#6: I have 2 camps of people in my life... those that think I was crazy for getting on those ATV's and those that don't.
#7: I like writing this blog, but will have to let my need to say the "right" or "great" stuff go.
#8: A trip every year where I get alone and out of Dallas is good for my head and heart.
#9: I take more pictures than most people on an 8 day trip to Arkansas... over 700 this time!
#10: I have an incredible family (both blood and not) that love me.
Thanks for keeping up with me and praying for me this week.
More postings to come... from "no tellin' where"!
Beside the pics I already included... above are my other Top 10 Favorites.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

A little bit of fog...

This is what it looks like here today! Rainy, foggy, and cold!! Great day to study, journal, drink hot drinks, make cookies, and maybe take a nap!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Lots of processing today...

I will try to post more tomorrow.
Here is a pic to prove it is me posting and that I am actually here :)
And for wondering minds...
Yes, I am on the edge of a drop off and yep, I climbed through the barrier to get there.

Sharing a little of what I know...

The reality is... 147 million orphans.
Thought... daunting!
I have just spent the last hour reading blogs about orphans and people helping orphans. I can get really caught up in how overwhelming it is! So I thought... share what you are reading. And I realize that I think maybe 10 people are reading my blog, so this does not make much of a dent in sharing with the masses.
BUT... if all of you reading my blog, who have a blog, post some of this on your blog and the hundreds that read your blog do the same... then we got something going. (facebook works too!) And the reality is... God is the one that moves hearts, we just get to be obedient!
So... here are some links to info about orphans and people helping them.
My heart aches for all the kids out there that go to sleep each night without someone to hold them and tell them how special they are and that there is a God that loves them very much.
I'm contuing to ask God what He wants from me. We'll see!
But today... I'll share a little of what I know.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

What if this things snaps?

Today I decided to head out a little later so I could spend more time just studying and journaling. It was a little cloudy this morning so it worked out perfect.

Around 1pm I headed out towards the Oark General Store and Cafe. Had a late lunch and then headed out to see the "swinging bridge". And that is exactly what it is. This bridge that was built out across the Mulberry River and is on 2 cables with some rickety wood and some wire on the sides so you don't fall in. It is not fancy and very bouncy! I did calculate the distance I would fall if it broke, it would have been painful, but don't think it would have killed me. The picture above is the scene I found once across the bridge and climbed down a little :)

I spent the rest of the afternoon just driving around on a curvy road with beautiful trees overhanging. It was an amazingly beautiful day so most of it was driven with my windows down. As adventures go, none major to report. Vernon did come check on me this morning to make sure I was doing ok. Such nice people.

The other picture is of this little guy that keeps hanging around me when I am on the porch hanging out with the Lord. He just looks cool I think!

Monday, October 19, 2009


After an amazing morning studying Psalm 119 on my deck overlooking the beautiful trees, in the sunshine, and the cool breeze... it was off to find the waterfalls.

I got all loaded up... camera, 3 lenses, backpack, water, snacks, crazy creek, map, jacket, orange vest so I don't get mistaken for a deer and my compass... CHECK! I'm off!

Drove down to where the trail starts, the guy told me that it would take 30 minutes downhill to get to the 1st waterfall and then about 1 1/2 hours UPHILL to get out. He also told me that they had places red markers on the trail a month or so ago so that might help me. I start heading in, pretty confident of my abilities.

OK HONESTY... I'm a little worried I might get lost. Just for good measure I pull out the compass to see which way I am headed. North! That should be easy to remember!

It is an amazing hike, beautiful trees, birds and little critters everywhere. I finally reach the little creek and am not sure if I am suppose to cross it or turn left beside it to get to the water fall. So I hike beside it, doesn't take much time before I realize... I was suppose to cross it!

So I head back through the muck and cross the creek and then start hiking up. I can hear the waterfall at this point, so I know I am heading the right way now. Then I hear an ATV behind me. I move over to let them pass and the first guy, who I learn later is Justin, stops to say HI and ask where I am headed. I told him the waterfalls. He says there are about 4 other guys behind him and they will try not to push me off the road. The 2nd guy pulls up and asks if I want a ride.

PAUSE... just for the record... Justin is really cute! And also, my pride is telling me, no you can do this, you came to hike!

So I get on the ATV with one of my new friends. They drive me up there, which by the way, would have taken be a pretty good hike to get there. And then once there, they get me to where I could not have gotten without going knee deep. Really great guys. We quickly figure out we are on opposite sides of the football, couple of razorbacks and an OSU cowboy! :) So the Aggie ribbing begins!

I'm just walking around taking pictures, when I realize they are waiting on me. Oooops! They ask if I want a ride to the other waterfall.

AGAIN... my pride says... Oh no, thanks guys, I'm good!

I get back on and off we go. This ride was not short. It was fun though, and muddy! And when we do get to the next waterfall... it is B-E-A-utiful! (pic at bottom) They let me tool around and take pictures. When we get all done and ready to leave they really want to be able to take me back, but realize I came from a different direction than they did and they can't take me back, no ATV's allowed.

So, they want to make sure I am going to be ok and send me off. I assure them I will be fine and off I go. When I got back to the creek I am a little confused, we have crossed a lot of creeks at this point and I'm not sure which way to head. Mom and Dad, you will be so proud. I took the compass out and starting heading south. I make the trek back up in an hour! I feel pretty good about that.

So to my ATV freinds... thanks for the lifts, thanks for caring that I got out safe, thanks for the laughs, and thanks most of all for thinking I was young enough to set me up with your 25 year old single son!

Sunday, October 18, 2009


As I arrived in Ozark, AR this afternoon and ran to get groceries for the week. The first picture is what I saw in the grocery store. It is their High School mascot! LOVE IT!
On my way to my place I drove upon a motorcycle accident that had just happened. It was scary to jump out of my car and run up on it. The trailed on the motorcylce had rolled over the driver's wife. She is going to be ok, and today I saw why you NEED to wear your helmet!
Then I arrived at my new home for the week. The 2nd picture. My little home above the conference center is precious. I was checked in by the owner, his name is Vernon. He was the nicest man and told me about the property and where I could go to get great pics. He also told me that he would show me how to get to the waterfall that they keep private. So I got all unloaded, drove around the property a little and then decided to go get the scoop on the waterfalls. When I went into the store I talked with Vernon's son, Paul. He gave me a lot of maps and told me how to get where I needed to go. Such nice people. Then as I was leaving he came out and here is how the conversation goes...
Paul: "Ma'am, I don't mean to scare you, but do you have anything orange you can wear when you go out into the woods?"
Me: "No! Why?"
Paul: "Well deer season just opened and I don't want you to get mistaken for one."
Me: "Thank you for that. Do you have extra orange I could borrow?"
Paul: "Sure, follow me."
That would be picture #3. I am going to be stylin' as I head out tomorrow on my waterfall search!


Sent from "no tellin' where!"

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Day 2

Arrived in Mena, AR to my cozy little carriage house. It is precious.
Found my way around town and had breakfast for dinner.
Today I spent the morning reading Esther and some of Job. Such amazing
stuff on God's sovereignty. Then off to lunch at a little coffee shop
and then drove the Talimena Scenic Drive. Pretty leaves. Cold breezy
Tonight... Dinner at a little Italian cafe and then to the little
community theatre to see Barefoot in the Park.
Verse for today... Psalm 119:2
This little Psalm is kickin' my butt!!

Sent from "no tellin' where!"

Monday, October 12, 2009

Mr. Fix-It

So tonight my Dad came over and "helped me" fix the belt on the dryer. In quotes because, let's be honest, he fixed the belt while I supervised.

I have always been astounded by my Dad. He has always been able to fix or build anything. When I was growing up, he spent hours in the front yard fixing the cars or building something for the house.

And as a side note on the fixing things, he is a little bit of a perfectionist. In college he built my roommate and I the most deluxe set of loft beds any college room has probably ever seen.

As a kid, I for sure would have challenged any other kid's dad to go up against my Dad to fix something and know my Dad would win!

Well tonight as we were putting the dryer back together he revealed a little bit of his secret. This wire came off and I wasn't sure where to put it back on. He reaches down and just sticks the wire to this spot. The rest of the conversation goes something like this...

ME: "Is that where that wire goes?"

DAD: "I don't know, I guess we'll find out if it blows up."

ME: "Oh good, that's comforting."

DAD: "Hey, I can always tear it apart, just not always sure how to put it back together."

Ok, so my image of him wasn't shattered in this moment, but it did remind me that there has always been some trial and error in his work... and then it hit me.

I now know where I learned to just try it, go in, feel around, try some things, see if it works, and most of the time, you will figure it out. Doesn't usually take a rocket scientist.

Well, thanks Dad for that skill and for the confidence to try it and see what happens. It has served me well. And thanks for being willing to be my handy man. I am thankful for you.

And, just for the record... I would still pick you in any fix-it challenge!!!

Friday, October 9, 2009


A week or so ago, I was at lunch with my friend Leigh. We went to Blue Mesa, at my request, to sit on the patio in the amazing weather. Mexican food and a cool sunny day... who can beat it!
Well... close to the end of our meal a rather large beetle fell into Leigh's soup bowl. She was basically done thankfully. The beetle is on its back now covered in black beans. I feel sorry for him so I decide to take a spoon and scoop him out and flip him over the fence into the grass. At this point I feel like I have done a good deed! Right then, a big black bird scoops down, lands next to my bean covered friend and starts to peck at him.
I was so distraught that I did not watch the ending, but I have a feeling that the bird was thankful for his meal with a touch of black beans. Here is a picture of end of the story unfolding.
I really was, "just trying to help!"


This last July I was blessed to go to Ethiopia with the Fournet family to pick up their twins, Beck and Deshi.  Truly it was an amazing trip, getting to see this family together, lots and lots of prayers later!
I also got to go visit Kidmia.  An organization helping orphans in rural Ethiopia.  You can visit their sight here to see what they are about,  You can also click here to hear about our adventures and see a few pics from our trip... .

Before going I sent an email offering my friends a chance to partner with them by donating money to buy sheep, chickens and books for the kids.  While I was there we got to purchase 2 of the sheep, we actually got 4 for the price of 2 because they were both pregnant.  They have had their babies now.  They have also purchased all the chickens and I received an email the other day that the hens are producing eggs.  What an amazing thing.  It warmed my heart today to think about kids half way around the world eating eggs that my friends were a part of bringing to them.
So all that to say... thanks friends for partnering with me to bless this kiddos! 

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


This week at our staff meeting we talked about how our world is changing.  That it will probably get tougher and tougher in the US to be an outspoken believer and not be persecuted.
It left me with the question... what would I do?
If faced with the decision to say "YES I BELIEVE IN JESUS CHRIST" or deny Him to save my own skin, what would I do? 
I have to admit I have really struggled with this question over the last couple of days. Being honest with myself (and y'all)... I have insecurities, at times my flesh seems bigger than my faith.  I hate it, I don't want that to be the case, I want to be able to say, absolutely, no question, I would say I believe and take the consequences knowing that God is with me.
But... What would I do?
Then a friend reminded me that no matter my response, Jesus loves me, remember Peter?  Honestly, I felt a huge sense of relief to remember Peter. He was so sure that he would never deny Jesus, he would be the last one standing.  But he did! (Matthew 26:31-35, 69-75) And Jesus loved Him all the same.  And God continued to use Peter to spread His truth.
Then I think about Paul.  (Acts 20:24, Romans 1:16, and Philippians 3:7-9) These verses are just a few examples of how Paul considered his life nothing compared to following Jesus and making Him known.
And lastly I remember the sick boy's father in Mark 9:24 when he says to Jesus, "I believe, cure my unbelief!"
So I have decided to change my question from: What would I do?  To... What am I going to do?
I am going to continue to pray, to read His word, to surrender my life to Jesus, to be obedient to what He calls me to, to give Him room to continue to change my heart, ask Him to change my unbelief to belief and trust Him with what is coming.
I'm going to be thankful, that whether I respond like Peter or Paul... I know that God's grace is more than sufficient.
And it really is so great because He already knows... What I would do!

Monday, October 5, 2009

"THINGS"... ie: Commandments, Laws, Regulations, Decrees, Instructions

I have been spending a lot of time in the last months with Psalm 119 attempting to memorize it. I reached the 1/2 way point today!! (I have wanted to quit on it a lot the last couple of weeks, it feels impossible, but trusting the Lord and taking it one day and verse at a time.) The entire psalm pretty much says the same thing over and over again... obey God's ________! The title lists all the "things" that go into that blank, many times over throughout Psalm 119. In reading it over and over I have continually asked myself... what exactly are are all of these "things"?
I have also joined a group that is attempting to read the entire Bible in 90 days. I say attempting, because true confession is that I already got behind and decided to jump ahead to catch up with them. The reading over the last couple of days has been about the kings and repeatedly it says that they did what was evil in the sight of the Lord because they did not do what David had done. In 1 Kings 14:8 it says, "But you have not been like my servant David, who obeyed my commands and followed me with all his heart..." Again the question is asked... what are the commands, the "things?"
Then today as I was journaling and thinking about these things I was gently reminded by the Lord what these "things" are. I say gently because I feel a little dumb that I had not gotten it before, and yet His patience with me is so amazing! He took me to Matthew 22:34-40, the last verse says, "The ENTIRE law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments." I am suppose to love the Lord with all I have and love my neighbor as myself. That's it, that's the "things" I am suppose to obey, the "things" I am suppose to follow with all my heart.
I am thankful that the Lord has sweetly answered my question so clearly, but now the reality of what that means. These "things" are NOT EASY! And I know that I can not keep any of His commandments without His strength, His Spirit, Him working them out in me.
So... today I rest in HIS GRACE and pray for Him to continue to draw my heart to LOVE HIM more and therefore to be able to love my neighbors.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Thoughts As of Late!

There has been a lot going through my mind lately.
Here are just a few of the thoughts...
I want to make a difference in this world. I want my life to count, but what does that really mean? I know that I believe in God. I absolutely think it is worth it. Worth it to trust Jesus with everything I have. And so, I want to be used by Him, I want His name glorified through me. Each day I want to wake up and ask the question, "What do you have today Lord?" And I want to lay my head on the pillow at night and know that I was with Him on His journey today.
I want to be fully surrendered to Him!
My brain gets overwhelmed sometimes with all the questions that I don't know the answers to. The kind of things that make my head hurt. But I am thankful that He has given me FAITH and allowed me to trust Him. There is a lot I don't know, but I do know that God loves me, I love Him more each day, and I want others to know Him and His love too!
I'm laughing that I think I could go on and on here. The dangers of an external processor having free reign!!