Friday, June 29, 2007

Chilled Wine and Sandington Beige

Now don't get excited - those are just colors from the paint palette of the home improvement projects that I will be working on over the course of the next week. My hubby can build a computer from a box of spare parts but he does not delight in my home improvement projects. He doesn't try to talk me out of them either - so I guess you could say he is an enabler of sorts.

So tomorrow I venture into a new frontier - exterior painting! I will let you know how it goes - if you happen to be reading this blog - be sure to pray for me. My mama has always said that I am one to bite off more than I can chew - and then I have to drop back and punt til I get it right! We'll see.....

Enjoy your weekend!


Thursday, June 28, 2007

I Love You , Mama!

Right now, my son is at a friend's house playing for the afternoon and I should but isn't blogging more fun? When I dropped him off, he was so excited. Suddenly, I noticed how much he had grown this summer - how tan he looked standing on the outside of the car grinning at me through the fingerprint stained glass -and then he whispered,"I love you, Mom!" and I delighted in rolling down the window and whispering back, "I love you too - buddy!"

He turned to walk down the sidewalk to their front door and I watched as he walked to the door and knocked. I thought, "My, where have those seven years gone?" as I watched him enter their home - man, that tugs at a mama's heart strings doesn't it? Oh, don't get me wrong, I have no problem letting him experience things because I trust God to protect him - it is not a license to just let him go anywhere - he only goes where I know and trust he will be well supervised. But even so, I still get a "little lump in my throat" when he exercises that new found freedom of independence so confidently.

and then I thought - that's probably how God feels when He lets us experience something new too!

Have a great day in Him - I've got some cleaning to do!


Wednesday, June 27, 2007

All of Creation Praises Him

I love praising the Lord for His creation, therefore, I love the book of Psalm.

Psalm 148:13 says, "Let them praise the name of God - it's the only Name worth praising. His radiance exceeds anything in the earth and sky."

Good ole' summertime! With the additional rains that we have had this week, don't you just love the green lushness of summer? I love standing in my kitchen window watching the birds flutter about in the backyard. I have really grown to love filling the feeders with bird seed to see what new varieties will stop by for a visit - and Sam loves interpreting what they are "Saying to us!" when we exit our home. They really have "fussed" when we have been in too much of a hurry to refill the feeders! :)

Last night my son and I had dinner on a friend's patio overlooking their pool. Their home is quaintly nestled in the woods. Cozy and charming - Despite hearing my seven year old say every few minutes - "Can I go swimming now? Can I go swimming now? Mama, Can I go swimming now? I somehow managed to listen to nature's symphony: the sound of birds and crickets chirping, dogs barking, cicadas, the buzzing of dragonflies - I adore it! Together, all of the sounds create a song of praise to our Creator - they were after all the first choir -

But as hot as it is today - I am looking forward to hearing a nice autumn symphony! Aren't you?

Get outside this evening and enjoy the symphony!

Praising Him for His creation -


Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Camp Cleanup

For the past two weeks, I have transported Sam from one themed camp to another - so this week I decided to hold my own - Camp Cleanup. Martha Stewart I am not - Oh, don't get me wrong - I would love to live like that - to draw from a linen closet of ironed pristine 4000 thread count sheets - or a stack of white fluffy towels - but the truth is no matter how hard I try - God blessed me with two special men in my life that just don't share that vision.

Oh, I am tidy - I despise clutter in the kitchen and my hubby knows that if he doesn't read the paper or mail in 0.3 seconds it will be in the recycle bin. Tidying is one thing - but cleaning is another. It takes some REAL motivation to get me to scrub baseboards and mop a kitchen floor - and that motivation only comes from the Lord when I decide that it must be done.

Last night, in a moment of premenstrual frenzy, I decided it was time - I just couldn't stare at those dusty baseboards dusty carpet edges any longer and I got busy. I hate house cleaning so much that I have to pray my way through it. I thank God that he placed two healthy boys in my life that are active enough to generate messes - healthy feet to track the dirt in, a budget that allows us to purchase new shoes for the quickly growing feet of a seven year old. I thank him for the milk stains that I scrubbed from the stairs (put there by a boy on his way to bed) because it means that the Lord has always provided for us....You get the picture. I have to pray my way through it or I am NO FUN to be around and the attitude from PMS would take over if I did not look to the Lord for perseverance.

What a blessing to have a home to clean - (Nicki and Lisa) I prayed for both of you last night. I am thankful that He called me to be a wife and mommy - and when I count those blessings - I count it all joy! (Even when I am scrubbing away the dirt in our home.)

How will you view your blessings today?

Have a great day in Jesus!


Monday, June 25, 2007

Everyone is in a Patriotic Mood

The "Celebrate America" Tribute yesterday was incredible. Our son enjoyed seeing all of the servicemen in uniform and he thought it was ultra-cool to see the men repel from the ceiling during the military tribute. Sam waved his little flag with such pride - it reminded me of a poem that copied for a 4th of July scrapbook page years ago - I will share it with you -

I want my boy to be the best,
I want him to be great;
I want him in Life's distant West,
Prepared for any fate.
I want him to be simple, too.
Though clever, ne'er to brag,
But Oh! I want him, through and through,
To love his country's flag.

When I was a little girl, my family lived in a small southern textile town. Each 4th of July brought on a special town-wide celebration - sack races, diving for dollars, climbing the greased pole (yes, seriously), chasing a greased pig (I promise I am not kidding), three legged race, watermelon eating contest - you get the picture. The highlight of the celebration was a bicycle decorating contest - Mom would take us to KMart to buy streamers, crepe paper, tissue, artificial flowers, and anything else we could use to decorate our bikes - my brother and I had a deal that which ever one of us won - we would split the money - a great deal for my brother since I was the most creative of the two - older siblings do take advantage of us younger ones - don't they? I usually placed and had to split the money with my brother.

Activities such are those are forever etched in my memory - and I remember almost every boy in my elementary class wanted to be "THE PRESIDENT" when they grew up - sad, our young b0ys don't say that anymore - the office of presidency now receives such criticism -

What are you doing to teach your children how to love their country? What activities will you participate in with your family to celebrate the 4th? You never know how it will touch their hearts!

Have a great day in Jesus and take some time to pray for our country and those who serve to protect it -


Saturday, June 23, 2007

It's a Matter of Confidence

"He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son. " I John 5:10

My hubby has invested many hours in witnessing to a family member who is certain that he is saved. However, his lifestyle greatly reflects otherwise - not judging - just calling it as God's word indicates. Anyway, the situation has lead hubby and I to have some fantastic discussions. The once saved, always saved is a topic that has always stirred great debate in my own family when we compare denomination beliefs.

Anyway, this brought about a curiosity in me to learn more - and I have found it in this scripture. This scripture provides the greatest test - a test of confidence. You do not just believe ABOUT Jesus - You believe IN Jesus. Research on this verse reminded me that the verse in written in the present tense - not the past - It reads, "He who believes....not He who believed." Our confidence is to be in the present tense.

You often hear people talk about their testimony in terms of " I remember walking down the aisle when I was 10. I gave my heart to Jesus then -Oh, I may not be living for Him today - but I know that I am saved because I remember what I did when I was 10. I remember believing what Jesus did for me."

The Bible does not use an experience as proof of salvation. It never says that you will know that you are saved by an event in the past. Don't get me wrong - that is a necessary step to begin a personal relationship with Jesus. However, the focus is on the present tense - "He who BELIEVES" It is simple. If you are believing, you did believe.

Don't just rely on some prior experience. The question is "Are you believing in Jesus right now?"

Have a great Saturday and enjoy your worship experience tomorrow!


Friday, June 22, 2007

What do you wish for your children?

At our Christian School, we are trying our best to help children develop a biblical worldview. God has called us to do it and it seems that everywhere I turn there are articles being published on it. I read a great article yesterday on how we, as Americans, view college. It described the two ways that we live our lives:

Do you live your life on the Biblical story? - the true story of creation, fall, redemption and consummation.


Do you base your life on the world's story which goes like this - Life is about you. Life is about making a lot of money to have a lot of stuff?

Surely, we would all like to think that we live our lives from the Biblical story - but according to this article - part of the answer lies in how you view college.

According to the world's story - college is about getting a degree to get a higher paying job to make a lot of money. A college degree appears to be a ticket to a better life. A way of fulfilling the American Dream. I would agree with the article that most of us Christians do view college that way.

However, when we look at the Biblical story we know that we are created in His image, given mind's to think and gifts with which to serve Him. A person who bases his or her life on the Biblical story will understand college as a great opportunity to develop the mind and gifts that God has given him or her - and discern God's call. In other words, college is all about increasing our serviceability for God.

Think of those who serve our families and communities - policemen, fire fighters, teachers, and the many others. Many have to work several jobs just to support their families. It seems we have become too concerned with SUCCESS in this world rather than service. Jesus' life was marked by service. That should give dignity to the service that some feel too important to do. May the Lord give us more people with gifts of service - and our children the right view of this world.

What do you wish for your children?

Have a great day in Him -


Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Loving Gestures Even Though I Am Pooped

After three LONG days of baseball camp and three evenings of VBS crafts, I will be honest with you - I am pooped! I so wanted to impart some Godly words of wisdom this evening - but I am pooped! I managed to accomplish a few things around the house today and spend some quality time alone with my hubby - but I am pooped! Went to visit a neighbor across the street when I came in from VBS tonight - even though I was pooped - she needed some encouragement. (and the neat thing was that I walked away encouraged instead!) Never too pooped to be blessed!

So tonight's message will be simple and shared from a devotion that I just read:

We have kept ourselves pure and have been understanding, patient, and kind. The Holy Spirit has been with us, and our love has been real. 2 Corinthians 6:6

Never dismiss an act of loving kindness as being too small or insignificant. God will magnify even our smallest deeds as we reveal His love to others. Maybe it is that casserole that you baked for a sick friend, or that note of encouragement that you penned to a SS or school teacher, a thank you note to a minister at your church or to someone who performed something that spoke to you in a special way - or a genuine call to someone to say, "How are you?"

We may not consider them acts of witnessing but they are - Every act of loving kindness reflects God's loving kindness for His people. We give because Jesus Christ gave so freely to us.

Every act of loving kindness reveals loud and clear that "I love you - God loves you. I care - God cares."

To whom could you show your love today? Be creative - involve the kids and go be a blessing to someone in HIS precious name. :) You'll be glad you did!

Thanks for loving and praying for Lisa and Mike this week - @


Monday, June 18, 2007

Angry Women

This article really got my attention today. Click below to read it and post your thoughts.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

My Sweet Sam

He Reigns

"More than the sounds of many waters, than the mighty breakers of the sea, the Lord on high is mighty. "
Psalm 93:4

Thanks to those of you who emailed to say you had missed me - you see, I was off to play at the beach with the family for a week. To put the pressures and stresses aside for a while and enjoy a glorious week filled with relaxing activities and precious time spent with my hubby and son. Seriously!

I have to share something that my son said that is precious - The first day we headed out on the beach, we reached the top of the stairs leading to the beach and when Sam spotted the ocean - he said, "Holy Smoke, I forgot how BIG God made the ocean Mom. WOW!"

That's one of the things I adore about my seven year old - that he is so awed by life. That started me thinking - Can you remember what it was like before you had so many responsibilities in life? How time seemed to move sooooo slowly?

You know, if you are able to take yourself back to the time where you had few responsibilities, you can return to your sense of wonder and awe that you experienced when you were younger. That's what I love about spending my day with a classroom full of first graders - and it's what I love about being a mother to a naturally curious boy as well.

The best way to experience a vacation or each day for that matter - is to shed our weariness and earthly
wisdom and begin to see the world through childlike eyes - Children do not have difficulty believing that God made all things. When do we lose the ability to do that in life? We get so task oriented that we abadon that sense of wonder.

I thought about that a lot this week as I watched Sam soak up his week on the beach - Hubby even surprised me with an evening walk on the beach alone - Yes, we had Mimi and Poppy in tow to entertain Sam in the evenings so that we could have some alone time :) - as we walked, Todd said, "You ever wonder how shells are made?" I said, "Nope, God made 'em!"

Look around today for all of the proof of God's greatness and majesty - the little birds in your yard that fly from branch to branch, the clouds as they dance in the sky today, the stars that appear tonight, the giggles of your children - they are everywhere - Praise HIM and get outside and enjoy His creation - after all - He made all those things for us so that we would in turn give Him the glory and honor for it all!

Enjoy your day admiring God's creation and treat the men in your life with extra kindness today!

I am glad to be back - I've missed you!


Friday, June 8, 2007

Our Happy Mission

I will extol You, my God, O King;
And I will bless Your name forever and ever.
Every day I will bless You,
And I will praise Your name forever and ever.
Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised;
And His greatness is unsearchable.

One generation shall praise Your works to another.
And shall declare your mighty acts.

- Psalm 145 (vs. 1-4)

When we think of witnessing to our friends, neighbors, loved ones - we often limit our definition of witnessing as telling someone how to be saved. That view of witnessing puts a heavy burden on a believer - for if witnessing only means winning the souls of others - then each time we witness and that person does not respond - then in our eyes many Christians feel that we have failed.

But how different that view of witnessing becomes if we read the 145th Psalm. In this passage, David instructs us that witnessing is not just soul winning - but rather a form of praise. Our happy mission is to extol God and bless His name forever. David speaks of one generation praising God's work to the next -

We are called to rejoice in the Lord - and let me tell you this is exactly what God laid on my heart as I "prayed up" this morning to visit my former school. As I drove in to the parking lot this morning, Ol' Satan started throwing the "what if" darts. What will they think about the way you've grown closer to Jesus? He started jabbing me with the memories of the times I failed my sweet Jesus in the classroom - But I quickly rebuked him and started praying.......and a peace washed over me....and I ENJOYED MY VISIT!

I saw many former colleagues and many inquired about how things were going at "the Christian school" and I had to let that light shine - not in a boasting manner - but genuine. (Had to be cautious not to toot the ol' spiritual horn! I so didn't want it to be - "I have it better than you now.")

The holy spirit filled my mouth with such fragrant answers - What freedom! My joy just spilled over in words about His greatness - So that is what I discovered today about my Lord. I just pray that as we go about Our Happy Mission speaking of His wondrous works - that He will draw others to Him....and I trust that He will!

What a Great Day in the Lord!


Thursday, June 7, 2007

Knowing the Will of God

There have been many books written and many sermons preached on finding and knowing the will of God. How can we know the will of God? One of my favorite scriptures is John 15:7 - "If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you."

If you ABIDE in Me and My words ABIDE in you - Whew! I love that word - do you know what it means? Have you ever pondered over it? To ABIDE is to lean on Jesus minute by minute - moment by moment - to look to Jesus and depend on Jesus. It also means that we are to stay in His word so much that it moves from the pages to our hearts. In all circumstances, if we seek the will of God, we will know the will of God. Why this thought today? - please read on.

Tomorrow morning, I am going back to visit the staff of the public school that God once called me to serve in prior to calling me to a wonderful Christian school in 2005. Each morning on the way to school, I pray for all the Christian teachers in the public schools that I pass along the way to "my school." I pray that their lights will continue to shine even when they are sidetracked by the rules and regulations of the system. I also pray that God will never let me lose the passion that He gave me for Christian education. I don't ever want to be a teacher with a negative attitude. I want those I serve to view me as a Christian Educator - not an educator that is a Christian. There is a huge difference!

Anyway, I told you all that to share this with you - I remember the day that I resigned from public school. I had mixed emotions - on one hand I was thrilled about the new path God had laid before me and on the other had I was sad to leave some of the friendships behind that I had formed in the ten years that I had worked there. I asked the principal - a non-Christian - if she had a view moments. She invited me to sit down and from the look in her eyes, she knew this was serious. I began to explain to her that God had called me to Christian education and that I would be leaving at the end of the school year. I shared with her that this was not a result of any unhappiness or isolated incidents - that this was something I had prayed about for several years and that God had revealed His plan for me for the next season of my life.

She tried to rationalize my decision. She said things like,"But, what about your state retirement? What about your health insurance? What about your 401K? What about your professional growth opportunities? You have worked so hard, Kim. Are you sure about this? I know that you are a smart woman - I know you have thought all this through - are you sure?"

Through her desperation and search for words, I realized how lost she was - how much in need of a savior she was because she had no idea of why I would surrender all of these earthly achievements for Jesus. I went on to explain how I knew it was right, how I put obedience to God over all other benefits and how I knew that this was His plan for me.

She closed with "You'll be back.....and then she hesitated and said, "You won't, will you?" I said, "Not unless God calls me..." The amazing thing took place on my last day there - the assistant principal (who lives an alternative lifestyle) stopped me and said - "You seem so certain about this decision - how did you know it's God's will?" I would like to talk to you about that sometime.

I would love to tell you that I had the opportunity to do so - but I did not - I tried to see her several times on my last day there but she had been appointed principal of another school and was in and out of meetings all day. But I at least know that God allowed me to plant a seed that I pray will be cultivated by others.

So pray for me as I visit that school tomorrow - that the light of Jesus will radiate all around me and that it won't be about me....but that what I say and do tomorrow will be for His honor and glory.

Shining for Him,


Wednesday, June 6, 2007

It is Up to Me!

I love this passage in Psalm 51:

Create in me a clean heart, O God and renew a steadfast spirit within me....Restore to me the joy of your salvation..."

David had lost his joy. He had sinned with Bathsheba and this was part of his prayer of confession. He is not saying - Lord, restore my salvation - he still had his salvation, but he had lost the JOY of his salvation.

We have all known miserable people. The most miserable people that I have known were not lost - they were saved people out of fellowship with God. You see, your SIN is the ONLY thing that can take joy from your heart.

Notice I said YOUR sin - I once told my students to not rob me of my joy by complaining unnecessarily - (fancy lingo for PLEASE STOP TATTLING) - a common characteristic of darling first graders. But then it hit me, THEIR sin cannot rob me of MY joy - it is MY reaction to their sin that robs me of my joy! Wow - it is up to me! (I went back the next day and explained to them the difference - I think it is so important for them to know that God teaches me new things everyday too and that adults don't have all the answers)

When someone sins against me, it may hurt - it may take my happiness, but it CANNOT take my joy. However, if I react to them in the wrong way, it can take my joy. You see the difference is my response to it - it is up to me!

I have always heard that true character is not revealed in our actions - it is revealed in our reactions. Watch someone when they become upset - what spills out is what they are full of - is it honey or vinegar? Love or bitterness? Jesus or anger?

The key point I am trying to make is that JOY is supposed to be constant despite what anyone does to us. Christians aren't supposed to walk around being happy all the time - but even when the happiness is gone - we are to be joyful. Being joyful doesn't take away any pain, but it does help us bear the load. Misery is an option - but for me, I choose JOY! After all, it is up to me!

How will you react to your circumstances today? It's up to you -


Monday, June 4, 2007

She Remembered the Joy

Well, I am 40 now....and I am still okay with it! I had a blast yesterday just feeling it - I must admit that I spent more time in the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) renewing my license than I did at dinner with my hubby and son. The staff at the DMV was actually cordial and they all delighted in wishing me a Happy 40th!

As I sat there waiting for my number to light up on the board, I realized that I had to choose joy and come up with some way to pass the time - so I took out a pen and began to journal my observations. First of all, the DMV is one of the most interesting places in the world to "people watch." There were young, nervous teens there to try for a license for the first time and some even more anxious ones that were there to take the road test for the 2nd and 3rd time.

There were drivers with suspended license waiting for a second chance. Some there to get a commercial driver's license so they could seek employment. There were procrastinator's like me, there to get a license renewed at the last minute, there were some who did not speak English and relied on others for direction and help. And my favorite, the old men who had nothing else to do today but strike up conversation with anyone who appeared to be willing to talk. I loved eavesdropping and hearing them talk about "the old days."

As I entered the building to obtain a number for waiting, I thought I recognized the beautiful face of a young lady already seated in the room. I smiled at her and took a seat in the row behind her. I watched her as she graciously translated Spanish to English to some strangers in the room that sought direction and understanding. I sat there a while wondering how long this would take before reaching in my purse to take out a pen.

I noticed that the lady next to me had just started reading a Nicholas Sparks novel and I couldn't resist quizzing her about the other novels she had read by my favorite author. We chatted and as soon as I laughed the beautiful young lady in front of me, turned and said, "Mrs. Staples, I knew it was you as soon as I heard you laugh - I remember your laughter." At that moment, it clicked. She was Marilyn - a beautiful young lady that I taught back in 98 -99. We recalled our 5th grade year together and she shared with me that she was now a junior at Wingate University. But she ended out conversation with - I will always remember your laugh!

Now, ladies, that left an impression with me - at the time I taught her I was teaching public school. I was not allowed to verbally share my testimony with my students - but they saw me live it daily and what left a lasting mark on her was not just the sound of my laughter - it was my joy in Christ! Boy that made my hour and a half wait at the DMV worthwhile - I didn't pat myself on the back - it is so not about me - I prayed for Marilyn and I thanked God that He let our paths cross again....I count it a joy to have served Him as Marylin's 5th grade teacher - What a privilege He has given me to be important in the lives of His precious children!

Thank you Lord for allowing former students to cross my path to remind me of the awesome task that you have called me to do - You are awesome and you made my 40th birthday special with a gentle reminder of who I am in you!

Living Out the Joy That Can Only Be Found in You, Lord -


On Turning 40....

Today I can stop worrying about turning 40 and begin to enjoy being 40....No, I am not down, depressed or distressed because I made the dreaded turn. Instead, I feel liberated. At 25, 30, 35...I just didn't get it but today I do.....If life really begins at 40, it's because women finally grasp who God created them to be. Bottom line: I am actually excited about being 40.

Some things I have noticed about turning 40, turning 40 means I have had to start using wrinkle cream around the eyes to reduce puffiness and wrinkles. Even though, those wrinkles around my eyes are proof that God has blessed me with such joy and laughter.

Turning 40 also means that I am probably going to have to start eating right and taking better care of myself. I have also notice that lately, I require more trips to the salon for pedicures and manicures....and more eyebrow and lip waxing and more frequent hi-lighting to blend in the gray. :)

Most excitedly, being 40 today means my hubby is finally married to an older woman and if he forgets to take out the garbage....I will no longer waste my energy on pouting about it.....I will just do it myself confidently in my silky jammies.

Being 40 means my parents are getting older. And while I am not a little girl anymore...I always will be in their hearts.

Being 40 means I have more wisdom to share with those younger than me for I have reached the point in my life where I have achieved a healthy balance in who I am as a child of God, wife, mother, daughter, co-worker, teacher, friend....etc.

So today, I am clinging to Jeremiah 29:11. Even though I am 40, I know that God still has great plans for me. I am looking forward to this decade....I plan on it being one of my favorites!

Walking with Jesus for years to come,

Friday, June 1, 2007

Funny Things Kids Do

"When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child." I Corinthians 13:11

You know several of us have been blogging about what we plan to do to prevent our children from experiencing the summer blahs! But I have vowed to enjoy this summer with my child...I think it is easier for me to appreciate being home with our son since I teach during the school year. I know that soon we will be back in the classroom preparing for another school year.

Our seven year old Sam marked the first day of summer vacation by looking up the answers to two important questions: :What are the white bumps on my tongue? (and we knew it was coming) Where do babies come from?

I have vowed this summer that instead of getting annoyed, I will enjoy my child by laughing at whatever is possible to be laughed at and accept that this stage too will soon pass. I have noticed that lately - he kisses us on the cheek and no longer on the lips. He loves his independence and is so proud that he can spend the night with a close friend. He is attending a week long baseball day camp in a few weeks - I promised God last night that I will trust in him to protect Sam as he experiences new things.

Last night, the two of us laid on the couch giggling and telling jokes - and I couldn't help but think about how short this season will be - but for now, I will savor it!

Have a great day enjoying your children -