Well this week was my first experience in there. All I did was gather some pre-made videos and worked the dvd player. (And I do appreciate the appreciation, but it's all Jesus). Now, I've worked with kids before - when I taught marching band for years. I've been through it all with them - even a girl's "first day as a woman" when she had NO CLUE what was happening to her. But Wednesday night was something I had never experienced before. It was amazing. You can read the fine details in Joe's and Rebecca's blogs. All I can add is that when the night first started I could instantly recognize those kids that weren't really taking it serious (cause we adults have to take everything so seriously). But they were enjoying themselves! And when Ryan & Joe & Rebecca talked, they were quite - among themselves (at least the ones that were in the back with me). But when we started the "Lead Me To The Cross" video - wow. And the leaders were just that - leaders. They went to that cross first and together. And you could tell - arm-in-arm kids were coming to pile in. After about the 5th kid went up - I just broke into tears. Couldn't hold it back anymore. And through the music and prayers that were lifted up - all the kids (but one, and we're praying for him) - went up to lay it all down at the cross.
Wonderful! And I was blessed to be a part of it! And I'm excited I get to continue to help!
And I've talked before about my "babies." I've included a video of my "water baby," Melody. But I've had some great cats in the past - Cadenza, she loved to pretend she was a dog (especially a prairie dog) somedays. And other days I would find her curled up inside hangers hanging in the closet. That cat could jump from floor to the top of the door - no fooling! And there was Varmit who knew how to box with you - and he would shove me out of bed at night. Ahh, and my true baby, Lilly. She used my outstretched arm for a pillow every night when we went to bed - like we were "spooning" (drove my ex crazy!).
And for dogs - I remember Hot Dog the dachshund, and Candy, the beagle, from my grandparents when I was little. Of course, their names came from what they ate the most! Candy loved to ride in Papaw's big rig too. And Duke - he was the beagle/basset hound of my aunt & uncle's. He threw up on me on his first ride home. But he was a good huntin dog and loved to play and be rubbed. Ol Sis was my ex-stepdad's prize champion coondog - she got to come in every year at thanksgiving. She had a lot of pups, but two were the favorites - Lefty and Sugar. Now Lefty was a brute - but he got loose and got hit by a car - his back leg had to be amputated. The doctors said he would never hunt. He went on to win a few trophies. He and we were so oblivious to him only having 3 legs...he would drag us around the yard when he was leashed! Now Sugar - she was a little crazy. I think because she was so spoiled. She was Sis' last pup. Oh, then there was Blackie - he could start a push mower by pulling the cord! But the ultimate was Pee-Wee. She was born without the "balls" in her hip sockets. She had surgeries - and another prediction of no hunting from the goofy doctors. This was the dog who would hunt anything and everything all night long. She would tree a coon - come back to the house if noone came to her - then make you go with her just to see that she STILL had it treed. She also was tricky when it came to having new pups around. She would "train" them, take them across the creek far enough, and when they were distracted, she would come back home leaving them to find their own way back! And if she was tired of playing with kids - the furry or human kind - she would just play dead!
And then there's all the animals I get to be an "aunt" to. There was the Barth's Humphrey & Grace & Gottleib the cat. Pastor Steve's Tommy-girl. My aunt & uncle's Princess, Legend and now Dottie. Barry Brewer's Boomer the cat, Sissie and her pup Baxter, and Moo the kitty. (Moo I think is Melody's mom). And now I get to have a doggie-fix when I visit Rebecca and Ricky's house! Sydney, Zoe, Buffy, and Bruno just get so excited when I walk in the door. Now, I'm not stupid - they just love people (just like their parents), but that feeling you get when someone is excited to see you! I love it! I need to get over there again soon!
And I had this video sent to me - so I thought I would do this posting in tribute to all of our furry-babies. It's about 6-8 minutes, so watch The Amazing Skidboot when you have time.
Once I finally got home yesterday I TRIED to get my Thrive message video into production. I even had 2 laptops for "just in case." Well, the video camera I used to do the filming is digital (no tapes), and my laptop will view the clips, just won't import them into the editing program. So I tried installing the editing program on the newer laptop from work in hopes that would take care of it. Nope. Software wouldn't load. So I am faced with having to buy new software today to get this sucker accomplished. But I think it will all work out. Because of the glitch I can't get something done for work either that will come after the Thrive message is finished. So, that means I can get work to buy the software again. So through all this little hiccup - God still provides! And so when I tried to get some auction work done in place of video editing, I realized I hadn't downloaded the images or the copy for the ad - couldn't do that either last night. So I cleaned up computer files and got ready for an early bedtime. Cause since I couldn't get anything done, I was going to work early!
Now, I read before going to sleep most nights. I've recently read two of the Narnia books: "The Magician's Nephew" and "Prince Caspian" - the movie comes out this summer! Now I am reading a book called "God's Eye View" written by Tommy Tenney. The first chaper is titled, "Pick Me Up, Daddy!" It's about feeling like we are 3 years old in a crowded elevator of adults. We want to be able to see what's going on - so we want our dad to pick us up. Well, that's the theme here. Once we are picked up by our dad, the perspective on life drastically changes. And it all starts with worship. One of his points I really liked (and goes with Chad's "vertical thinking"):
"Worship possesses a supernatural ability to correct our spiritual vision problems and bring everything into divine focus."
Divine focus. That's what I needed yesterday that's for sure! And another point he makes is to wait on the Lord. And he uses a popular verse to back it up. But then he makes a twist in what we always think "wait" means. I always think of being still - wait like in a doctor's office. But he reminds me of being waited on like a waiter/waitress. We are to "wait" on the Lord. He follows this up with the concept of blessing the Lord. It doesn't say for the Lord to bless my soul, but for my soul to bless the Lord. What kind of service am I giving the Lord? And what kind of tip would he leave me for my service? Now, I'm a decent tipper - even when the service wasn't that fantastic. So how much more would God bless me when I wait on Him to His pleasure?
But like today, Stephanie Heitz sang a fabulous song for the message - "East to West" (Casting Crowns). And Stephanie is a fantastic singer to-boot. But my INITIAL thought was "what about me? Why couldn't I have done a special? Am I not good enough to be thought of to do a special? Just because I don't sound like Stephanie Heitz or Jessica Kayrouz or even like the sisters, Kelly and Debbie, doesn't mean I can't sing well. Or maybe I can't. maybe I shouldn't even be a back-up if I'm that bad." Do you see where my mind goes when there's no protection! I prayed hard in that moment then thoroughly enjoyed the song and the singer!
I've even been trying to distance myself a little from the Jr. High Coaches. I love them all dearly - and absolutely crave their company/fellowship, but they're doing great things that I'm not part of helping with. And again - it's not about me. I know they love me, I'm just not a part of that. And I don't want to get in the way of anything either.
And I used to be considered a leader at church, but not so much anymore...or at least since Chad's come on-board. And that's fine too - yet again, it's not about me. Too much detail for this blog in this area.
And I'm getting ready to do a Thrive message next weekend that deals with getting out of the pit - and the mind being transformed. Well, let me tell ya - it's a daily, no, minute-by-minute practice to be (as Chad taught) vertically focused - not horizontal. It's about where my HEART is - not just my actions. I don't have to be busy or "involved" in church to please God. He wants my actions to be an overflow of my heart. And I do love God with all my heart - but lately I've been wondering what else to do with my heart. What do I have a "heart" for? You know, the Jr. High coaches "have a heart" for those kids, Vicki "has a heart" for the First Impressions ministry, Kim Kane "has a heart" for the KIA group, Charlotte "has a heart" for the high school girls. What is it that I "have a heart" for? I think that's more frustrating than feeling left-out. I'm obviously not a part of anything because right now I don't think I have heart for anything. I'm distracted with my life - key word being MY. And I do care about others, I just hope I show that and not be so outwardly selfish. This is a down side to being single!
So to all who read this, please don't think ill of me. I love you all, and just needed to get that out.
And for anyone who doesn't know yet - I am giving the Thrive message the first Sunday in March! It'll be interesting and creative to say the least. If you've kept up with me you remember the crap I was in last fall - well, it's teaching a lesson from that - From the Pit to Peace. I've been preparing some video for it, and well, I couldn't resist putting together something just for fun in the process. Check out my babies!
When I got up this morning at 5:45 a.m. to walk on the treadmill I thought I was doing pretty good. The cats aren't quite used to it, and well, me neither. But I know it's good for me to get up early to exercise a little and continue it throughout the day. But THIS morning did not shape up like I had hoped. I was doing good, but by the time a got to .40 mile - I started getting a migraine. Surely I'm not allergic to exercise! So I did a 1/2 mile took my last excedrine and a sinus tab and went back to bed for an hour and 1/2. One nice thing about my boss - he's pretty good about us being late if we're feeling horrible - and tells us to stay home if we're contagious. And if I had high-speed internet at home I would have pulled all the shades down and stayed there. But I made it in. Even though it hurts to blink. And you never realized how loud your co-workers are till they start "yelling" to tell you something. I actually had to shush someone....she didn't take it well at first...but she got it and is whispering to me now. I may have to put my headphones on just to drown out the HVAC fans or me typing on my keyboard.