Saturday, March 28, 2009

Friday; A Little Late

My husband rocks was yesterday... And I missed it, but I wanted to catch up because my husband really does deserve as many kuddos as possible! He has a terrible flu thanks to Jillie being sick and bringing it home. He has been miserable and suffering but he's still been wonderful. And I love him. For one thing, there has been a lot of work that needed to be done this week in order to get ready for Grandpa coming over. Because Lowell has been sick, I've done most of it - and most of it has been outside doing yard work or cleaning up the yard. And Lowell has been very grateful - he's shown his appreciation and he's been thankful. And I appreciate him appreciating me. :) Too often moms feel taken advantage of, but my husband is good at showing me that he loves me and that he appreciates the work that I do. I'm lucky. :) And my husband rocks.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

I Surrender

I have been very hesitant to post in the past couple of days... the major reason for this is that we've had a very unnerving development lately... I keep telling everyone that we're "living on faith". I was saying it in almost a superior way because I felt good that I was able to take this big step of faith.. And I was kind of encouraging other people to do it too.. At least that's what I thought. And then Lowell came home from work Friday. I had spoken to him earlier in the day and all had seemed fine. However, apparently around 3 (a few minutes before they left for the day) Lowell's boss had called him into his office and informed him that he was fired. Yep, you read that right. Lowell got fired. He has never been fired before and his boss didn't give him any reason other than "It's just not working out for you here". That was the extent of it. And then he starting acting like Lowell's best friend. I didn't believe him when he came home and told me that he had been let go. I was sooo shocked and, honestly, a little speechless. And a little panicked. Lowell kept saying that he felt at peace about it. And honestly, when we talked about it, the worst that could come of it would be that we would move to Phoenix a little sooner than we planned. The only downside to that would be that we wouldn't wait until the kids got out of school... But maybe this timing is perfect for a job opportunity.
For school this week, I have to write a paper about James so I've been reading it this week. Lo and behold, I come across a devotion about 5:12. This verse says, in part, Let your yes be yes, and your no be no, so that you may not sin and fall under condemnation." I had never interpreted it this way, but the devotion says "indecision and double-mindedness not only bring confusion and complication, but they also cause condemnation" (Joyce Meyers Everyday Bible) It also says "Start making decisions without worrying about them. Do not live in fear of being wrong. Once you do make a decision, do not let self-doubt torment you. Being double-minded and never deciding anything is complicated and will steal the enjoyment from everything you do." So, that got me thinking along the same line as I was blogging earlier, we should make the decision that seems right and just go with it. And, earthly wisdom says, 'freak out', but I'm not operating with only earthly wisdom to guide me, am I? I have a much higher power to follow, and I believe He wants me to "Be still and know that He is God". And that He's a whole lot bigger than a lost job or simple fear. So, I am here, being confident in my husband, and confident in my God. We are going to be fine. This life is not about me, anyway - "Its all about You, Jesus, and all this if for You - for Your glory and Your fame... And I surrender to Your ways."

Friday, March 20, 2009

Its silly to introduce you to our newest family member without including a picture.. So, here it is! :) Also, I suppose I should mention that Lowell has definitely claimed the truck as his own... So, we'll be looking for a vehicle for me, I guess! :) I think we're going to try to get our Mazda to survive the trip down there and then find something in Phoenix a lot cheaper (and with more selection) than up here. So I'm praying that my "bubble" around my car holds out long enough to protect my car through the whole trip! :) We're living on faith anyway, so why not count on God protecting my car a little longer! :) What do you think???

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A New Addition to Our Family

Yesterday was a big day! We bought a truck. This was not an easy decision and came only after much prayer and seeking of counsel... When we discussed it, it was aparent that we will definitely need a vehicle that is in good working condition before we move... That much we've known for awhile... And we got our tax return that we've been planning on using to help us move. Well, the cars that we have would have to have a significant amount of money dumped into them before they were ready to make the trek to Phoenix... And, in all honesty, they really don't deserve to have money dumped into them because they are basically ready to die. They aren't worth spending any money on... So, we've been agonizing about what to do. Then, Lowell wanted me to look online and see about transmission prices for the Suburban and an engine for an Explorer that we have access to... And low and behold, I found a complete truck that fit into our budget... So I asked Lowell about it, called the guy to see if he still had it and to find out what was wrong with it... And it turns out that the damage was all cosmetic and that it had only been listed for 20 minutes!!! He had literally just put it on Craigslist..... And sure enough, we found out later, someone called right after us and offered to give the guy more than he was asking just to not sell it to us! So we made the trek to Gilroy (3 hours away) to look at it... At we drove it home. Lowell was so wonderful about it... And he made me so proud! The whole way down he was really seeking God's will and desiring to listen to His direction. I love hearing my husband say "I just want to do what He wants me to". :) :) :) :) What more could a girl ask for??!??!!?? Oh, by the way, did I mention that this truck is a 98 Dogde diesel, quad cab (meaning it has 4 doors) and its a dually (two wheels on both sides in the back).... Oh, and its a stick... And its for me! this is my new family "car". :) And I don't know how to drive a stick. yet. Lowell is going to teach me, and he wants me to learn by Saturday so that I can drive it to Jillian's birthday party!!! :) (That was a prayer request if you missed it!!! :))
Also, I wanted to share with you a new song that I recently learned... It's beautiful and I love the message.. "Its all about you, Jesus. And all this is for You. Its not about me. That You should do things my way. You alone are God and I surrender to Your ways." check it out... :)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The Adultress and I

Lowell and I have had such a wonderful couple of weeks... We've had a couple of pretty heated disputes but they've both brought us to a better place. The first fight was about not spending enough time together, and so we've set aside Tuesday, and the second one was about the importance of the day that we've set aside. We have been really enjoying our time and we've made a point to spend more time together everyday of the week - not just Tuesday. Today, however, I had to go to church by myself. Lowell misses being able to go to church and I really miss having him sit next to me during service.
Today's message was great... It was about love - the real love that we are supposed to show to the world in order to display the love of Christ. Pastor George used the story from John about the alduteress who was brought before Christ by the Pharisees.. "Let him who is without sin cast the first stone." It was a very moving portrait of Jesus showing mercy and displaying love when discipline and wrath were deserved and definitely expected by the religious leaders. In those days, adultry was a sin that was punished by death by stoning. Jesus, instead, seemed almost unmoved by the terrible sin this woman had commited and instead gave her a simple suggestion, "Go and sin no more". Because of this mercy, she recognized Him as Lord.
The application of the message was to ask ourselves how frequently we show condemnation to others instead of showing them the unconditional love of Christ. While sin must definitely be addressed, those who don't know Christ don't know His law either. Therefore, they first need to meet Him. Obviously, the greatest character of Christ is His love. Also, we were reminded that our sin is equal to that of the adultress... And we need God's mercy just as much as she did. How often we forget that we were found by Him and loved by Him while we were still in our sin. Often our own sins look much more serious when we see them on others... And we tend to be much more forgiving of ourselves.. Often because we make justifications and excuses for ourselves. Jesus looks only at our souls, however not at the circumstances or whatever rationale we come up with.
We also sang a song that said, "Jesus, lover of my soul.... " and I was reminded that God doesn't look at the circumstances of our lives, or even the actions really - His focus in on the condition of our hearts and our souls. The good we do comes from the condition of our souls as well as the sin in our lives that comes from the condition of our soul.
I also realized today that it really isn't the big of a deal where we live... If Lowell and I believe that moving to Arizona is the best move for our family, I think that's okay. And I think God will bless our move because we are going with the intention of bettering our family. Our motives are not greed or fear, we aren't running away and we aren't trying to be rich. We are trying to provide our children with a life that is blessed with experiences and free (as much as possible) from the stresses that come from stressed parents. Also, we are moving so that I can continue school and I KNOW that I have been called to be a counselor so I need to finish school... The timing is the only thing I question...
Anyway, God's focus is on my soul. He desires for me to be more like Him - He wants me to know Him and to love Him more deeply every day. It doesn't matter where I live - only where my heart is. And I know that wherever we are, wherever we live, I will never be out of His sight, out of the reach of His hand or too far to experience the reaches of the cross... So, here or Phoenix, I'm loved. By Jesus and my husband. And I'm not worthy. But I'm thankful.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Tired but hopeful

Well, there haven't been many big things happen lately. We've been working with the cat, who we've discovered got bitten instead of broken. So I'm trying to keep his medicine on him without him pulling his bandage off and without going to the vet and getting a satellite put on his neck. We've had quite a few snow storms and some bad weather but its all been for good - California needs the water, and Lowell's job really benefits from the snow for sure! I have finished my second to last quarter and I'm in the middle of my week break before starting my experimental psychology class - the one I have to take and interpretating the bible for youth - I don't have to take it but I thought, if its anything like its name, it'll be great for the kids.
I have senior-itis really, really badly and I'm hoping that I can stay focused for these classes. I have to get about $325 together for my books and for graduation.. Graduation... That's quite an idea.. :) As of now, I'm hesitant to even begin my masters because I'm struggling with having motivation with just my bachelors classes... I'm told that possibly my medicine could be at an incorrect level and when it gets fixed, I may feel better. I'm going to have an MRI and another EEG also. I'll let you know when I get the results from my tests. I had my blood drawn today and I'll have the other tests as soon as my insurance oks them. I'm praying that fixing my meds will fix my lack of energy because I'm just tired of being tired... I don't think everyone else is this tired, are they? Are you? I can barely get myself out of bed in the morning and I can hardly function at about 3 in the afternoon... I feel like I need a nap, but if I take one, I don't feel any better when I wake up. I just want to go back to sleep. Granted, not every day is like this.. But definitely more so than should be...
All that aside, Lowell and I have decided to make Tuesday our day. I've cancelled all my other commitments and we have set aside the morning time, when the kids are at school, to just be together. Yesterday was the first day, and it was really nice... Its nice just to have us time, even if it is only a couple of hours - I'll take him whenever I can get him! :)
I have a project in the works for Chloe's teacher. I saw it in a family magazine. It's a tub or a jar that is filled with paper hearts. The plan is to send a few hearts home with each child and ask the parents to work with their kids and write something that they appreciate about Mrs. McCracken. I just have to find a day where she's not at school so that I can send the hearts home without her knowing about it.
Also, I'm asking for prayer about our move. So far we haven't heard about any job prospects and we are trying to live on faith. We really believe that God wants us to move so.... Faith. :)