Sunday, November 30, 2008


So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. -2 Corinthians 2:16

We as humans are quick to see other people by how the world places value on them. We categorize them. We call them rich, poor, smart, slow, popular, nerdy, beautiful, plain. There are people who are different from us and have lived different life experiences and make different choices from us. Some of these people are easy to be around because they are like us. Some people we don't want to be associated with or we don't understand. God tells us to look at them see them as He sees them.

On the Titanic, people boarded the ship as people with labels. They were either 1st class, 2nd class, and 3rd class. Each group was vastly different in the amenities that they received. However, when the ship sank, there suddenly was only 2 categories of people....

Those saved....and those lost.

In the end all of the differences between classes of people did not matter. God does not see rich or poor, jobless or career bound, single or married, beautiful or so-so. He sees those that know him and those that don't.

And how much he desires that those that don't know him come to know him. Therefore, we are to be his ambassadors. Much like an ambassador carries a message from his nation to another, we are to carry the message of reconciliation to those who are lost. Regardless of where they are in life, regardless of how different they are from you, regardless of how much their personality clashes with yours...they are still a child of God who's life holds weight and value and deserves to know the love of Christ.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Give thanks in all things...edited

After talking to my smart husband I decided to reword a few things. I don't think it is safe to say that I am thankful for sin when sin displeases god. So...

I am thankful that god delivered us from lust and pornography. I am thankful that he delivered me from controlling jealousy that took over me because of it. I am thankful that god healed our marriage for it to be built back up stronger than it was before on a foundation of God. I am thankful that he has given us all that we needed to be able to honestly say that we are victorious over the stronghold that lust and jealousy held in our marriage. I am thankful that he has used the crappiest situation to bring me closer to Him. If I knew not how disguisting, hateful, and selfish lust and jealousy were, I would not have known its opposite....Christ's love. I am also thankful that it happened for we are now able to reach out to other couples who are struggling with the same situation.

That is easy for me to say that I am thankful for all of that now, because all of that has been redeemed. Christ has made all of that right. Christ has shown himself in all of that and been glorified in all of that.

If you had asked me to say that 3 or 4 years ago...I couldn't have done it. I would have cursed you for being so insensitive to my feelings. I would have said, "You don't understand." I pray today for the people who are in the midst of situations that have not yet been redeemed. I know it is hard to say thank you in the middle of all that. Know that a day comes when everything will be redeemed and made right.

Other things I am thankful for.....

  • the Lord's provision in moving away
  • my parents for their support and just making me laugh when I am around them
  • Jeff's parents for loving me just as much (if not more...haha) than their son
  • my loving husband and his commitment to me. he teaches more about discipline every day. i so look up to him and respect him.
  • my son. he is healthy and full of energy and learning new things every day. i love him and love being his mommy.
  • Jenni and Tiyum for being our best friends.
  • Daniel and Mary for being our best friends.
  • my house
  • my job and the people that he placed there for me to be friends with
  • Jeff's job. For the way that God placed that ministry in our laps. For the way God chooses regular old unequipped and unqualified people to be a part of something big. That is exciting.
  • Taylor. I am thankful for what she teaches me and for her genuine and real spirit.
  • I am thankful for Christ "sweeping me off my feet." I am thankful that he is beautiful and loves me unconditionally. I am thankful that he can meet all of my needs. I don't even deserve to have my needs met.

When I told Jeff about this challenge this is what he said. "I am thankful for student loans." haha....true. Not fun to say you are thankful for massive amounts of debt. However, if there were no such thing as student loans, he would not be going to school!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

because i am bored...2 posts in one day

I may have 3 or 4 posts before the day is over!

1. Two Names You Go By: Sarah and Saeeer (in a shrill voice by Jenni)....and Mrs. Stapleton by my students.

2. Things You Are Wearing Right Now: my new comfy mocassin like shoes and my favorite jeans

3. Two Things You Want Very Badly At The Moment: a bigger car and another baby

4. Two people who you look up to: Sara Lefever and David Rice

5. Two things you did last night: went shopping and ate at TGIFridays w/ mom and Jeff

6. Two things you ate yesterday: chicken and fried green beans from TGI's

7. Two people you last talked to: Mom and Jeff

8. Two Things you're doing tomorrow: eating lots of food and going to Granny and Papas

9. Two longest car rides: TX to Florida and Tx to Minnesota

10. Favorite Holidays : Christmas and 4th of July

11. Favorite Vacations : Port Aransas w/Stapletons and Branson w/mom, sharon, and alana

12. Last trip: coming here from Marshall for Thanksgiving

13. Two favorite beverages: Dr Pepper and Sprite

Tag you are it:

quick thoughts on gentleness

So I have always struggled with the verse that talks about having a "gentle and quiet spirit." I'm just not gentle. I tell it like it is. I am a proactive and productive woman who gets things done and gentleness has always seemed like something that would hinder all that. I never wanted gentless to compromise all of those very positive things about me. Gentleness in my mind has always been kind of a weak thing. However, I found a new take on gentleness. I read in an option from my sunday school lesson about what gentleness really means...

If you were lifting weights, would it be easier to lower the weights gently to the ground or to drop it? Of course, its easier to drop it. Therefore, lowering it gently to the ground takes more strength. This is the quote that got me.

"Gentleness is not the absence of strength but rather the control of it."

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook....early

If I understand this correctly this daybook thing is supposed to be every Monday....but I am doing mine early because I will be gone all day tomorrow traveling and such.

FOR TODAY Sunday Nov.23, 2008

Outside my a car that is LONG overdue for an oil change and a wash (inside and ou We are looking (sort of) for a new car. Not to replace mine, but Jeff's. We want to trade his in for a used older (2000ish) Yukon or Tahoe or maybe an Expedition. We want something with a 3rd row of seats that is not a van.

I am thinking...that ministry is hard. Much like teaching, it is a job that you can't leave at the office. It is with you always and it is such an emotionally involved thing. It drains me sometimes...and then sometimes I feel overjoyed and honored to be doing it.

I am thankful for... my God. He has changed me. We sang the song this morning (by Shane and Shane) "When I think about the Lord, how he saved me, how he raised he picked me up and turned me around, how he placed my feet on solid ground." I am thankful for the salvation and life that he has given me. I am thankful that he has provided and that he is faithful and able.

From the learning rooms...I am happy to say that there will be no learning rooms this next week! I am off and I am super glad.

From the kitchen...I have to make a "finger food" dish to bring to church tonight. I am thinking of making clam dip (my favorite). It is so good. Jeff hates it and I don't completely blame him because it gives me HORRIBLE breath. You mix cream cheese, mayo, minced clams, lemon juice, chopped onions, and garlic salt. You can eat it with veggies, but I love to eat it with fritos.

I am wearing... brown dress pants and a green shirt with a tie around the waist that I wore to church this morning.

I am creating...I am going to make stockings. I already have the stockings (cheap from Dollar Tree). I think I will get felt and cut out block letters of our names to hot glue on there.

I am going...home tomorrow. I am glad.

I am reading...Devotional Classics by Richard Foster (still) I am a slow reader.

I am find a Yukon or Tahoe that we can afford with not too terribly many miles on it.

I am hearing...Jeff flip between the Cowboys and Survivor Man and him messing with the piano application on his new Iphone.

Around the house...its beginning to look alot like Christmas. Got the tree up...just need a few more ornaments. I cleaned all day yesterday and there is no evidence that that ever happened now. It is a wreck. I really think it is because Sunday morning occured. It is like a mad whirlwind of clothes and breakfast and diapers and hairspray and shoes trying to get us ready in time.

One of my favorite things...words. I love vocabulary and word origins and spelling, etc. I love when people or speakers or authors use words that are powerful. For example, the song "Near to the heart of God," could say "a place where sin cannot come." But instead it says, "a place where sin cannot molest." That paints a more vivid picture of sin does to your life. So....i like words. That is why I am obsessed with scramble on facebook.

A few plans for the rest of the week: travel to A-town, get Colin's hearing tested, go to Kooken, hang out with my fam for a few days, shop a little, go to Jeff's granny and papa's, spend the night there, hang out with jeff's parents for a few days, come home, go to church....back to work.

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

He is beautiful.

For more info go to

Saturday, November 22, 2008


We had a thanksgiving feast at school yesterday and it was really cute and fun. Here are a few pics of my precious students that Jeff took for me.

Now, I am on break and I am SOOOOO glad. I bought a new 6.5 ft prelit tree last night (before I had a little 4 ft one). I decorated it and now I am going to have to keep little Colin man away from the ornaments all season long. He's cute though....I think he just thinks its a ball.

Today is Saturday and we have nothing to do for the first time in like 3 months. I am going to decorate some more and make some stockings. Then I am going to get my Sunday School lesson ready.

We are leaving on Monday morning after Jeff's staff meeting and then going straight to AISD's annex building to get Colin's hearing tested. Then we will spend a few days with my family and then a few days with Jeff's family. I am excited....we haven't been home really since Jenni's wedding. That's way too long. But thats how it is now that Jeff "works" on Sundays.

Well I most go now. Colin is in his crib letting me know that he is awake!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY Monday, Nov. 17th

Outside my is cold. I do not like cold. However, ETBU put up their pretty Christmas lights and I can see them reflecting off my car as I look out Colin's window. It makes me smile.

I am thinking...about finding the balance between challenging myself and being too hard on myself.

I am thankful for... my husband. He bought me Claritin today just because he noticed that I was stopped up. He knows that I have never had allergy issues until we moved to East Texas. I am also thankful for my son. He is healthy and wonderfuly cute! He is learning so much. He is learning even some things that I don't want him to the word "no." He even points at me while he says "no."

From the learning rooms...I got observed this past Friday by my principal. She is a joy to work for. Her positive remarks mean the world to me and motivate me to keep going. I know I should be more of a self-motivator, but hey...words of affirmation are my love language.

From the kitchen...hmmmm....not alot goes on in there. I should be better about that. The biggest thing that happened in there is that I made a big pot of mac n cheese and some pigs in a blanket. That is gourmet for us!

I am wearing... the clothes I wore to work today. Except now, it has glue stick smudges on it, Colin snot, and a grease stain from when I made the pigs in a blankets.

I am creating...I am trying to create a safe and positive atmosphere in my classroom that encourages my students to monitor their own behavior and progress. Some days are better than others. Mondays are harder.

I am put up Christmas decorations this weekend before we go home to Arlington for Thanksgiving. I am going to go buy a new pre-lit tree. We just have a rinky-dink 4 ft tree right now.

I am reading...Devotional Classics by Richard Foster

I am find a house after Jeff graduates.

I am hearing...a documentary on TV about JFK and my son throwing every object that he comes across on the floor.

Around the house...I cleaned today. I absolutely LOVE to clean. When I feel like I have "order" in my life, I feel calmer. However, I REALLY want a dishwasher. Jeff would say, "We do have a dishwasher...its right there (and would point to me). haha. i don't mind washing dishes, but it is really really time consuming

One of my favorite things...chips and salsa from Chilis. I won $10 to chilis at the women's retreat, but I lost it! I was so bummed. If you know me, you know I frequent the premisis of Chili's quite often.

A few plans for the rest of the week: to survive...just kidding. I plan on taking a few high school girls out to eat on Thursday if they respond to my messages. Friday we are having a Thanksgiving feast at school. Then I'm off for a week!!!

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

This is my Jeff at Pikes Peak this summer. He sent this to me via Text while he was gone from me. I just think he is really cute. That is my only reason for sharing....cause he is cute.

For more info go to

Saturday, November 15, 2008


I've been struggling with feeling at home at here. Satan has definitely tried to tell me that no one cares for me here, there are no good relationships here, etc. to make me doubt our decision to move here. However, a good friend reminded me that "it takes time and memories" to feel at home somewhere. Of course! That changed my outlook on it. I started thinking about the memories that I have already made here in the past year and a half. Here are a few....

1. My sweet son was born here. This place will always be special to me for that reason. That was the most special (and hilarious) day of my life.

1.When my sweet son was born not alot of people came to visit (mainly just cause we had just moved here and no one knew us yet and it was too far for people in Arlington...I understand.) But our pastor at our church (which we weren't even members at yet) came to visit us. He and jeff talked for a while about his vision for the church....interesting since we didn't even know that Jeff and I would be part of that vision later.

2. We started a Tuesday night bible study with some other couples/friends. That really made some memories and some really really special friends. Then they all moved....and now I'm sad.

3. We found a WONDERFUL babysitter for Colin. Ms Betty is truly truly a blessing. She is so good to us about watching him late or telling us she will watch him so we can go on a date...and she never charges us. And she adores Colin. She gets mad at me if I don't bring him. Its wonderful to know that Colin is taken care of by someone who WANTS to take care of him. I don't know what we would do without her.

4. Jenni and Tim are a part of home here and I love that. They are a blast. We have great adventures with them. I love how we all squeeze in one car with Colins huge car seat just cause we don't want to drive separately...and we want to save on gas. And cause we want to help eachother find GPS's. THey are great and it makes me sad to think that someday we might not be in the same town. I think we should just move together.

5. Daniel and Mary were a part of home here and I am sad that they are not here anymore, but they are always a part of my heart. They are very special and I miss their accountability and the fun memories we have with them.

6.I have memories with my team at school. That means alot to me. Work is more fun when you "fit in" and enjoy your team. I care for them alot and know that they care for me.

7.Now...this is the part that means the most to me. My church family. This is where I have struggled the most with wanting to "fit in." But over the past few months, we have developed some really great friendships. All of the nursery workers (esp Ms Pam) are so good to us. They love my son, they love me and Jeff. Ms. Pam, shared her concern with me about thinking Colin might have a hearing problem. She looked nervous to tell me that. The fact that she is taking care of my son enough to notice that and the way that she told me with such genuine caring concern means the world to me. Also, Bob and Jeanie are so good and generous to us. They just give us stuff all the time! Like our bedroom furniture...and other smaller things. Its not the "stuff" that means alot. Its knowing that they have thought of us and them saying, "We just love you and think you have a sweet spirit about yall." Its been fun getting to know Ben and Tiffany who help us with the youth group. They are way cool and I think they are going to be great friends. Jeff is really liking getting to know our new music minister/associate pastor. I think that will be a great relationship too.

I say all of this just as a reminder to myself that memories are starting to be made in this place that is not my home. After time and more memories this place will be more of home to me. However, in just one week I will get to go "home" to Arlington and I am so excited. I miss my family and friends. That will always be home too. It's kind of nice to have 2 homes!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I just have to say...

that God is good. He is faithful to keep his promises. Right before Jeff and I started youth ministry, fear struck me like a storm. I knew my past. I knew that any other time of my life that had been filled up with too many activities, and not enough rest had sent me into depression. I didn't want to be at that place again and I feared that entering the ministry would take me there. And it still easily has the potential to do so. However...

God has PROMISED me that "HIS divine power will give me everything I need for life and godliness." (2 Peter 1:3)

I can't tell you how many times I've thought...."this is it. today is going to be one of those days that is going to send me over that line into the darkness of depression." But God has consistently and continually said, "no you won't...because MY power is greater than your fear of depression." I can't explain how I am not weary or weak in the chaos of my life. I can't explain how I am not brought to weeping because I am anxious and overwhelmed with my perfectionism. God is good and he is carrying me through the stuff that I can't walk through alone without falling on my face in exhaustion and tears. God is faithful and good and worthy of more than I can give him.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Halloween Fun

Colin loved the bounce house at the harvest festival!

I am a "black eyed pea." Jeff is "facebook." Colin is a monkey.

sweet man!!

Jeff and his strong-bad-o-lantern.

I am.....

So freakin tired. But I am enjoying every minute of the craziness of my life. I would much rather be doing this than to be doing what I was doing this time last year....which was sitting around being depressed, lonely, and crying.

Sometimes I get overwhelmed at not being able to have any type of break in the foreseeable future. And sometimes I get frustrated at not feeling like I am getting through or getting results with the different people that I am trying to reach out to. And sometimes I get frustrated that I still don't feel like this is my home yet. But I have peace with being here and doing what we are doing....even though we don't know what we are doing!

Soooo.....our schedule......

-Last night was EF's football game and haunted house at the high school that Jeff led groups through (which is funny since Jeff is a weany about scary stuff)
-Today Jeff takes pics at ETBU's football game and then we go to the harvest festival at 4:00
-Sunday is the next youth leader meeting
-All next week I have subs coming for me so I can test my kids.
-Friday (the 7th) is early release day and then the women's retreat til Sat.
-Nov. 15th is a youth mission project with the College students at the Weismann center
-Soon after that will be Thanksgiving!!!!! We both get the whole week off so we will be in ATown all week.

I'm thinking about taking a day off of work soon just to clean my house and watch tv all day.