As I get a little older, I am amazed how much faster time seems to go by. Sunday at church a couple of friends commented on how much my daughter Rylee has grown. It is true, and sometimes I stop and look at her and I am in disbelief. How can she be 13? How can she be going in to 8th grade in a few weeks? I am remembering with a mixture of emotions what I was like at that age. Hormones are raging, intense confrontations over the littlest things occur more often than Ryan and I would care to deal with, and somewhere along the way our little girl is blossoming into a lovely young lady. I keep thinking God has done an amazing work in her life because we can only thank Him for how she is turning out. I know we wouldn't be the parents we are without the example and influence of our parents. Junior High was a difficult time for me, because we moved and I was forced to face some fears--new school, making new friends, finding our place in a new city, new church, new world. Going from southern California to southwest Missouri is in itself a culture shock for sure. God is good, He provided and somehow I lived through those years, made new friends, fell in love with our new church family. I see my daughter making strides as she faces challenges in her life, overcoming fears, standing up for her faith and finding new confidence in herself. I am so proud of how she has found her way, and that our efforts to support her, love her, guide her and dedicate her to our Father God will keep her moving on the right path. I realize already there are times in this life I have to let her go, let her find her way in the world among her peers, teachers, mentors, friends and family. Thank you Lord, for the path so far. I look forward to what lies ahead.

Great Expectation

There are many things I can think of in my life for which I have had great expectation. I remember as a child 2 things I looked forward to with great expectation: Christmas and Summer Vacation. That pretty much held until well into my high school years, possibly college years. As a college student/young single adult, I can remember thinking, "Lord just get me through this so I can graduate and get on with my life!" And of course, "Lord, when are you going to bring a good man in to my life?" and, "Why did he turn out to be such a disappointment/heart breaker/jerk/...___fill in the blank!" Then when it did happen, when I had those moments of sheer joy, of seeing God reveal His plan and His presence in my life, Wow! I can't imagine doing it over any other way! Meeting Ryan, Oh my Gosh! God is so amazing and so good! Our wedding was a dream come true, and diving right into life with every single moment of its ups and downs, who could have planned it the way it came about? Nobody but God. Our children...well, the Lord has His ways of really keeping us guessing. It was so different with each one of them, pregnancy, birth, their lives so far. It is truly a wonder how each one of them has turned out and how uniquely God has made each one of them. As I have gotten a little older, I know more and more that God is not done with me yet and I have so much to learn. It is sad I think, how lazy we become as we get older. We become comfortable with our lives, think somehow it can't get any better or worse, but things seem to be going okay. We lose our sense of great expectation, wonderment, awe, and passion. I can think of moments along the way the past couple years when God has practically whacked me upside my head as if to say, "Wake up! You're gonna miss it!" What happens when we lose the need to sit on the edge of our seat, expecting that God is about to do something so amazing and how can we sit still waiting for it to happen?! I don't want to lose that and I think as we get older we are in danger of that and it is even worse when we start passing it along to our children. There is something to be said about a life lived with Great Expectation. God wants that for us, I want that for me and my family, so what are you waiting for? There's a lot of life to be lived, no matter how old you are and what your life situation is today. Give Him a chance, God will knock your socks off. I guarantee it.

Waiting

Okay, Lord, I know you are tired of hearing this from me but man....I am tired of waiting! I could really use this now, so what is the issue? I'm ready. Go ahead, you can give it to me now.

Anybody else relate to this conversation? I find myself doing it more often than I care to admit and it seems to be getting worse as I get a bit older. My father is a strong, firm and outspoken man but he does not lose his cool very often. He is one of the most patient persons I have ever known. There have been those occasions over the years when he has had his limit and unfortunately, I and a few others have had the rather unpleasant experience of being in the path of his temper. I was on the direct receiving end of it as a college student at one point in my life, and I would rather not re-live that scene again. He was apologetic shortly afterward, chose to be transparent with me and admit his weakness and his temper getting the better of him. It was not pretty, but it was a learning experience for us both. I was able to see my Dad's humanity and we were able to resolve it with love and forgiveness. All too often we can get impatient, angry, temper gets the better of us and before we know it we are on our knees realizing that we have been so selfish, not seeing the bigger picture. What's the bigger picture? It tends to put everything in perspective honestly. How to weigh what you really need, and what you can live without? Do you really need that to happen right now? Are your needs being met? Waht do you have to be thankful for right at this very moment? Are you fully trusting God, fully obedient to Him in that moment of your request to him? That is what it comes down to, isn't it? Are you trusting and obeying him every day of your life? Are you thanking him for His Son Jesus Christ every day of your life? Are you thanking him for what He has already provided, the blessings in your life? Count your blessings, and count yourself blessed to have a God in heaven looking out for your best interests, rather than dwelling on what you don't have. It will put it all in perspective. I guarantee it.

my Ebenezer...

“…Thus far the Lord has helped us.”-1 Samuel 7:12 There are moments in my life when I look back and can see how God in His perfect yet my...