Monday, December 5, 2011


"It is better by noble boldness to run the risk of being subject to half the evils we anticipate, than to remain in cowardly listlessness for fear of what might happen."  


Saturday, December 3, 2011

No security....

Security is mostly a superstition.  It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it.  Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure.

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.

~Helen Keller

Friday, December 2, 2011

Make me smile

This little statue of twin boys was given to me by my mom right after I had Roman and AG.  Always makes me think of becoming a mom for the first time.

A really small ceramic wall hanging that belonged to my mom.  Makes me think of cherubs and love!

This is over 25 years old and an original piece of artwork by a New Mexican artist that my mother and I knew in Albuquerque.  There's such strength in the profile and I love the colors of the desert in it.

A cairn made from rocks Bennie and I found out hiking at different trails.  Cairns are made by travelers to leave small monument to leave their mark.  I've got this on the bar which leads from the kitchen to the dining room.  This cairn brings hiking with my sweet best friend, my wonderful husband, to mind.

I love faces!  I would have my walls covered in different portraits or paintings of faces if I could.   This is one of my favorite things to put up when I move......let's me know I'm home!

My twin sons are such gifted artists!  Here's a painting that they did over a year ago.  Roman took a print out of this frame and replaced it with this painting of his right before we moved to Raleigh.  I fell in love with it and now it's the first thing you'll see when you come in the front door of our home.

Just a few of the "candy bars" I have around my home that just make me happy to look at!  

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Why so proud?

As I was driving this morning and naming off things to God that I'm thankful for, I also began apologizing for what I see in society (and that DEFINITELY includes me).  It's so natural for us to put ourselves first; our needs and wants above someone else's needs and wants.  Sure, we can be generous with our children or close family members, but I'm talking about on a day to day basis.  How often do I yield to someone else, just because?

That lead me to thinking WHY is it so UNnatural to not be self focused?  Why is it so difficult for me to just LET someone cut in front of me without getting angry or annoyed?  What is it in me that says, "That TICKS me off! They can't do that to me!"  or "You don't talk to ME like that!"  I think that is what is called PRIDE.  Pride goes hand in hand with DESERVE.  I've found myself thinking at times, "Well I deserve this...I've worked hard for it".  But others have worked twice as hard and gotten much less.

We take pride in our education.....but how much did we really have to do with that?  We went to the college  our parents sent us to or one we could afford.  Maybe we got a scholarship?  But how much do we have to do with our own intelligence?  We worked hard and took advantage of opportunities.  But who put those opportunities in our path and who gave us the wisdom to recognize those opportunities?

We take pride in our appearance.....but did we have anything to do with the genetics that gave us the face and body we have?  If I'm told my eyes are pretty, what do I have to be proud of?  I had nothing to do with the color, shape or appearance of my eyes.  Thankful for the compliment?  Absolutely!  Proud?  Of what? We could take pride in our athletic accomplishments, but again, who gave us a body with that athletic ability?  Sure, we train, practice and are disciplined....but ultimately, do we REALLY have anything to do with our muscle make up, physical ability, or athleticism?

We take pride in our talents.....but who gave us those talents?  Some can sing beautifully and that could be a great source of pride.  But who gives voice to sing?  Again, one could argue, "Well, I took a lot of lessons and worked really hard."  But how many others with beautiful voices have no money for lessons?  Drawing, writing, sewing?  All of those talents are God given, not earned, but given and EVERYONE has been given talents with no one's being more important than anyone else's.

We take pride in our country....but did we choose where we were born?  Let's be honest.  If I were born in Norway, I'd probably be PROUD to be Norwegian.  We were born where we were born to a citizenship not of our choosing (most of us).  And while there are many who CHOSE to come to the US and become a citizen, who gave them opportunity to even consider such a thing?  Is any person's citizenship a greater source of pride than another's?  I'm no different than a woman in a remote Brazilian tribe.  Neither of us CHOSE where we were born.

We take pride in our kids. THERE'S something we can take pride in right?  I mean, WE raised them.  They make straight As, we can stick out our chests and say, "Yup!  That's my kid!"  But how much of  their intelligence can we really take credit for?  How many kids are born in horrendous conditions and go on to achieve great things?  So can THEY take credit for overcoming their dysfunctional upbringing?  Again, who gave them their intellect?  Who gave them opportunities to have a life that offers more than poverty?

We take pride in our possessions.  Our big homes. Our nice cars.  Our designer purses.  Our jewelry.  Our toys.  But AGAIN....why are we even able to have those things?  If we lived in any third world country and worked twice as hard as we do now, we probably wouldn't even come close to having a fraction of our possessions.  So what is there to be proud of?  

And maybe sometimes we take pride in our charity, how much we give to others.  How much we DO for others.  But where did the resources come from with which to give to others?  

So why are we so proud?  Why am I so proud?  Hopefully, the next time I want to hold my head up in pride over something that I've accomplished or have, I'll just say, "Thank you Jesus!" instead!  Because, I guess I'm coming to realize that gratitude is everything and pride is foolish.   And there's really nothing for me to be PROUD about.  Thankful for?  Well that's a different story!  How much time have we got?!


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Nature of Love - Nature of God

What is love and what is the nature of God?

Image Source

1John 4:7-8

7 Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. (Emphasis mine)

So given that God is Love, I can know the nature of God through.....

1Corinthians 13 (parenthesis added by me)

 4 Love (GOD) is patient, 
love (GOD) is kind. 
It (GOD) does not envy, 
it (GOD) does not boast, 
it(GOD)  is not proud. 
5 It (GOD) does not dishonor others, 
it (GOD)  is not self-seeking, 
it (GOD) is not easily angered, 
it (GOD) keeps no record of wrongs.
 6 Love (GOD) does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 
7 It (GOD) always protects, 
(GOD) always trusts, 
(GOD) always hopes, 
(GOD) always perseveres.
 8 Love (GOD)  never fails.

 13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love (GOD) . But the greatest of these is love (GOD) .

To know God's nature, I look to the nature of love because GOD IS LOVE!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Unsure Territory

I feel like I'm not really sure what I'm doing here.  For some time, I've felt like I need to write about things that I'm learning, going through, seeing, etc.....  But even as I write this, it feels terribly arrogant to me.  What in the world do I have to contribute to the PLETHORA of Christian writing.  I'm certainly no Bible scholar.  I'm no great example of Christ.  And this is not self deprecation with a side of, "I'M NOT  WORTHY!!!" (picture Robert Duvall in The Prophet).  This is NOT, "If God can use a wretched sinner like me...." (chest pounding here).   It's just.....NOT those things.

I don't believe that I have any more wisdom or enlightenment than anyone else.  Okay, there may be a FEW people I think I may be wiser than (comic relief here, as I am WAY outside my comfort zone); but that's beside the point.  Writing things down helps clarify things for me.  It helps me to put in order my thoughts and hopefully make some sense of them.  THAT'S what this blog is all about.  It's about writing these thoughts and epiphanies down.  If anyone else GETS it, that's wonderful.  If not, that's okay too.  Truly, I'm just doing what I'm feeling compelled to do....not trying to TEACH anyone anything.

Years ago, I wanted to write a book.  I wanted to write about God, but to be honest, I only really knew God through others...what other people TOLD or TAUGHT me about God.  I read my Bible pretty regularly, but that reading was filtered through my own experiences and personal beliefs that I really wasn't very good.  That I was living a charade.  People thought I was such a nice person, but I knew in my head that my thoughts weren't always "happy happy joy joy" and so I felt like a fraud.  Now, I realize that's pretty ridiculous.  I'm HUMAN.  Surely even Mother Teresa want to slap the fool out of someone sometime and NOT just out of righteous indignation!  Anyway, more about what I believed God to be later.

I already had the name picked out for my book....Candy Bars from God.  Here's where that came from.  Have you ever had someone do a small act of kindness for you?  Like bring you a candy bar JUST because they know you like that particular kind?  Remember how much that MEANT to you?  It's a small act that makes you feel BIG loved.  I feel like God has given me a lot of candy bars.  Don't get me wrong.  He's come through in BIG ways, over and over again.  But that gives me the picture of a policeman that intervenes when you're in trouble, otherwise really not giving you a second thought.

 But it's these little candy bars that God gives me that help me to see, every day, how loved I am.  Little things like sending someone across my path to give me a compliment.  Or someone saying EXACTLY what I need to hear at just the right moment.  It's been allowing me to find a pair of shoes I love for a couple of bucks!  Sometimes, the candy bar has been a song that has particularly moved me.  It's these small acts, "candy bars from God" that let me know that I  am loved and cherished and deemed precious.  If He just INTERVENED, I think He would be like the aforementioned policeman......a good God, but not much moved by how I feel.  The fact that He shows me kindnesses all the time, like my husband surprising me with a favorite treat, shows me that He's interested  and invested in EVERYTHING about me.  I'm NOT a disappointment.  I'm NOT a mistake.  I'm not a human to be TOLERATED.  I am loved.  and so are you.....