Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Thank you Alyssa!! We love them!
- For the doctors hands as they operate on this sweet girl.
- For PEACE PEACE PEACE for parents, Salomae, and the 4 other children they have.
- That Salomae will have a miraculous recovery and that the surgery would be completely successful.
- That Salomae will have an understanding of what is happening and why. She's only been home for a few months and has already undergone so much medical treatment.
If you'd like to visit their blog hop on over and leave them an encouraging comment. I've been amazed sometimes at the power of a comment on someone's blog- even when you don't know the person!! http://notquitedoneadopting.blogspot.com/
The lyrics are:
All I have is what you give me
All I am is what you make me
Forever I will be
Thankful for each day you give me
Resting in the hands that saved me
Forever I will be
In awe of Calvary
Such a simple song yet so powerful. A simple prayer to the Father, expressing my heart's desire to be faithful forever, thankful forever.
Note: I found this idea in a scrapbook magazine so I can't take the credit for the idea. Nice job whoever thought of this!! :)
It has been a great week. I've been very busy but feel incredibly blessed. The Lord has been so good to remind of His promises and the hope that He has for me. I feel free to be who He's made me to be and who He wants me to be.
So enjoy my posts as I catch up on my busy week!! :)
Thursday, September 25, 2008
A wonderfully wise woman at our school gave a talk to us once about apathy and giving 100%. She told us this quote that has stuck with me all of these years:
Trade in what is good for what is better;
and trade in what is better for what is best.
Last week our pastor talked about work and trying your hardest ALL THE TIME- not only when people are looking.
So it got me to thinking about what areas of my life do I settle for the average. What areas can I press on and pursue the best? No, of course I can't be perfect, but i don't have to settle for what is good. Sometimes I'll pray, "Lord, please help me to be a good friend/daughter/employee/etc." And the prayer kind of ends there. This week I've really been trying to work on striving for the highest. I hope that, in time, I will become a better friend, a better sister, a better daughter. I will never be the best (for only Jesus can take that place), but I hope that, by God's grace alone, my life will be a shining light of Christ and that I will rise above the low standards set by our culture.
Anyway... i think i just rambled on but maybe it made some sense!!! :)
Have a great weekend! God bless!
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Thanks for sharing this one Mrs. Semlow! :)
Some people have a knack for writing humorous blog posts. Several of the blogs I read leave me laughing. Somehow they can relive an ordinary day and make it hilarious. I can't do that. And it's probably not going to change. I can write serious poems but not funny blog posts. Hmm.. oh well. I'll just keep writing.
Eventually something exciting will happen that will actually be interesting to read about. Meanwhile, my life is basically consumed with school, more school, work, and church stuff. School is going very well so far. I officially despise chemistry (but that's the only class i really dislike). I'm SO thankful for my incredibly intelligent dad to help explain it to me. We've had some good laughs over my pathetic misunderstandings lol (right dad???) :) Health has been depressing the past few days. So far, I've watched 4 videos on domestic violence, abuse, and dating violence. When the video ends I'm just blah. What are you supposed to do after seeing such horrible situations? How sad it is when relationships that could be beautiful turn into horrific nightmares. God did not intend for a dating relationship, marriage, and family to function like that. I'm so thankful that there are still men who follow the Lord and love their wives and children well. Praise God that He has brought up Godly fathers to raise up Godly sons to lead the girls of my generation (in the coming years). If there's one thing I've learned, it's that relationships like that don't have to happen. In Christ's strength, I believe that we can grow up to have healthy, wonderful marriages. It's just sad to see all the people who get hurt everyday from the relationships/marriages that don't work out.
Monday night I started my new babysitting job. It's just every other week for two little boys. They are so cute. The 3 year old said the funniest things. I also realized again just how different boys are from girls!! Girls will sit with me and play for hours with dolls and a kitchen. NOT BOYS!!! We played with every toy in the room, moving back and forth and back and forth. We never played with something for longer than 2 minutes (except for when i pulled out the building blocks- they LOVED those and we played for about 20 minutes with those. Of course, we had to build towers and knock them down over and over again lol!)
Tonight I had girl's bible study. It was great, again. God has been so good to provide so many opportunities to dig into the Word. I'm so thankful.
Tommorow is See You at the Pole, and our church is hosting "Saw You At the Pole" (a pizza dinner, slideshow of pictures from the morning, praise, and prayer). It should be a good day.
Some scripture I read today really hit home:
"Many are the plans in a man's heart, but it is the Lord's purpose that prevails."
Good stuff! :)
Have a great night everybody!
Sunday, September 21, 2008
Fall is going by SOOO fast!! I cannot believe that September is nearly over. October is sure to go just as quickly. My schedule is filling up with college trips.... i have one free weekend left in October! Ahh!!
Speaking of college... I'm in limbo right now. We don't know what's going to happen next year. I think we're making progress on getting the necessary paperwork, though. I faxed the request form so we could get a transcript from LAST YEAR's grades. Forget about junior year grades! Let's just get the basics here! And we don't even know how long it will take for them to do it. Slightly frustrating. I do know that either way, I will graduate this year. The question is whether or not I can still go off to college next year. I'm REALLY hoping. But I have also come to a point of surrender with it. Yes it will be very disappointing after all this hard work to have to go to a jr. college for a whole year and no it's not AT ALL what i want, for many reasons. There will be tears if I don't go and it will be hard. But I have to focus on the ultimate plan, not just the immediate positives to graduating early. I know that the Lord will do what is best for my life (even if it doesn't seem like the best plan!).
I had a good, relaxing weekend. My laptop is back (yaay!) so I spent most of last night doing school/email/facebook while watching TV. It was nice. Yesterday afternoon Corinne and I went to paint pottery. Of course, I didn't bring my camara. I carry it around in my purse for weeks and never use it. The week I take it out I needed it! I made a plate (but I'll hang it on my wall). I hope it turns out..... :)
Tonight is first small groups at church!! I'm so excited. We have the best leaders EVER! It's going to be awesome.
Saturday, September 20, 2008
For some reason that verse popped into my head today and I realized that I don't follow it very well. He's not joking when he says BE STILL!! I don't know about the rest of you but I'm always asking Him, "Ok God, what next? What do you want me to do now? What ministry, service? Who do you want me to go encourage?" And I think sometimes He's asking us to just stop. Stop rushing. Stop stressing. Just rest! So I did a little of that today and just soaked up His word. It was worth it! I have so much to learn. But I was glad to have a few moments of quiet with the Lord. Our culture needs to just take a break and be still once in awhile. Life is too precious to just let fly by! God has much to teach us if we'll turn our ear to Him.
Friday, September 19, 2008
Me and my sweet girl
My "papa" and Claudia. She called him "el doctor"
This cutie was probably one of my favorite babies. She LOVED LOVED LOVED being held and you couldn't put her down. So I would usually end up picking up another one because I couldn't monopolize her but couldn't stand to hear her cry. She was the last baby that I held when I left in August. As the tears spilled down her cheeks when I put her back in her crib I cried right along with her...
Claudia, Jesus has His hand on you. You're blessed to be in a safe orphanage with loving "mommas" to take care of you. I would adopt you in a second if I could. God gave you and I a special bond and my heart soared when you recognized me after 5 months when I came back to Guatemala last August. You asked about "el doctor papa" and if he was going to come see you too. I miss you, sweet girl. I hope that someday i can come to see you walk in with your forever family from the airplane.... but that may not be God's plan. Whatever it is, may He bless you and keep you. You'll always have a special place in my heart.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Basically, this young man moved from Dublin to London to study medicine in 1866. He hoped to become a medical missionary in China. While in London, he heard of an effort to bring schooling to impoverished boys. He fell in love with these street children who had no families and no home. He began taking in some of them, but could only fit so many of them in his small apartment. A little boy called "Carrots" for his fiery red hair, pleaded with Dr. Bernardo to let him come in. But Dr. Bernardo couldn't take anymore, and he had to turn Carrots away. Awhile after, one of the boys led Dr. Bernardo to a small nook in the buildings. When Dr. Bernardo pulled back the wood, he found two boys lying very still- one dead and one alive. In horror, he realized that the dead one was Carrots. He had died from exhaustion, hunger, and exposure. Dr. Bernardo turned no child away after that. He raised money to start a home for the children and on it he prominently placed a sign that said, "No destitute child ever refused admission- open all night." In the coming years, he started a program that brought boys to Canada to work, and in the end he rescued thousands of boys with his efforts.
I didn't know whether I should smile or cry after Pastor finished telling the story. I have SO MUCH respect for this man. He dedicated his life to giving these kids a better life. That is so awesome. I love seeing ordinary people do BIG things with their lives. This man might not have changed the entire world, but he changed the world for those 30,000 kids. So it made me wonder what God has for me. I want to change kids' lives like Dr. Bernardo did. He's such an inspiration. My youth pastor's wife and I were talking on Sunday about the orphans and how it's such an overwhelming crisis. They've adopted two children but she said, "What about the rest?" Honestly, I don't know. I'm so thankful for the lists of families who are adopting. You guys are awesome. But there's still such a need. And very few of us can drop what we're doing, hop on a plane, and go rescue children (though I SOOOO wish I could!). But I believe that together, if the body of Christ would unite, we can conquer this together. I'm praying so hard for my generation. In the next 10 years many of us will hopefully be married and thinking about starting families. I pray that we will save our money well, have strong marriages, and be willing to surrender to the work God calls us to. I pray that adoption will be heavy on the hearts of many and that numerous children get to come home to their forever families. All it takes is a nudge from God..... the question is.... will we listen??
We had girls bible study again tonight. I've so enjoyed digging deeper into the Word with these girls. We're studying Romans right now and so far we've discovered a strong theme running through the first couple of chapters that we've looked at. Our observations kept turning back to God's grace. And it's true!! Nearly everything in the Bible leads back to His grace. That's the essence of the gospel. I long to understand the mystery of His grace more fully. I'm not really sure that we, who live on a sinful earth, can even understand the full extent of it.
Tonight we read through Romans 2 and part of 3. I felt that God was pressing on my heart the reminder that without Him my life is NOTHING. So often I think things like, "Look how far I've come!! Last year I wouldn't have done this (or something to that effect)." But it wasn't me!! To Him be the glory that I become even minutely more Godly. No positive changes in my life were without Christ working in and through me. He's the one that works on the heart, softens it, molds it, encourages. Any work in our lives is totally Him. We wouldn't be the people we are today without Jesus.
Monday, September 15, 2008
I'm going to backtrack to the weekend since I was too busy to even blog! It was an awesome weekend. I spent time with friends, took my ACT, and then yesterday our church had our annual fall picnic. Thanks to the endless rain, we held it inside. It actually worked out well. When I first arrived I was the only teenager there and I'd decided that I was leaving as soon as my shift at the "duck pond" game was over. But slowly, more people began coming and I soon busied myself with helping out with other games and talking with the adults. When I walked into the room with my food at dinnertime I had three little girls come and say, "Miss Molly!! You have to come sit with us!!!" How could i resist? They were too cute. So I sat with four kindergarten and first grade girls that giggled the entire time. After dinner, I got to hold a little baby so his parents could finish dinner. I love holding babies. My ACT went well, I think. I'm definitely going to take it again next month. Hopefully I will gauge my time a little better and not have to guess on the last few of the Science portion. Anyway, I'm pretty sure I didn't get what I wanted but I know I didn't do terrible either!!
Well.... I guess that's all for now. Sorry for the boring post. Blogging just isn't the same as talking to a real person. So I think I will go back to reading my literature book. This post is so random and boring! I'm sorry! :)
Friday, September 12, 2008
You keep runnin after me
I'm so close, yet so far away.
You keep calling me to be
a girl that's different from today.
You pursue me,
with your never-ending love.
You pull me closer
you bless me from above.
Why you bring me back.
With all my sin, my depravity,
all the holiness I lack.
like no earthly person could
You call me daughter,
I was bought with your son's blood.
with joy, peace, and rest.
a grace and mercy I can't test.
this thought just makes me cry.
Yes, Lord, you love us.
From now until we die.
Thursday, September 11, 2008
For starters, today was the first day of real school for me! Yaay! To re-cap, it's an accredited, Christian, online school. It's so different than last year's program!! I LOVE it! It's very structured (which I love), very flexible, and I love what I'm learning. It feels so good to be back into a routine and to be learning again. I really want to try my very best this year and put forth 100% effort. I really do feel like this program is a gift from God. However, the ChemLab is probably the most ridiculous program ever. It's too confusing for my little brain!! And if anybody ever wants a good laugh just come over and I'll show you some of my videos. I was sitting by myself laughing while watching them. Oh.... I love this school. It's going to be GREAT! :)
God has kept me on my toes this past month and I finally realized today why He's been teaching me the things He has. It was just a crazy month with the unsureness about school, graduating, college, etc. This whole time He has not only been teaching me to trust but showing me that my life is not my own. I've had my life planned out for forever. I knew exactly what kind of college I wanted, what kind of room mate, what I wanted to do for a living, when I wanted to get married, etc. And I really do think that in my heart I have held onto and desired "my plan" more than God's will. Sure I pray, "If this is in your will, please..." but deep down I'm holding onto my "life plan" with both hands. I just couldn't let it go. Couldn't give it over to God and surrender these dreams.
So He's had to shake things up in my life to get my attention. He longs for me to let go and rest. The reason He doesn't show us our future is so that we have to trust in Him all the more!! But it's painful. By surrendering I'm saying that I can be content in the life that He has for me. I want that life! More than I can say. But I just realized today that there's that part of me that just can't let go. I'm not really sure that any human can completely just sit and let God take the wheel but He's shown me that in my heart i need to clear some of that out. The future I long for is taking my focus off of Him and the beautiful story He's writing. It seems to be an ongoing process. As Christians, we're constantly havingI'm not sure anything I wrote made sense... :) But that's what I've been working through. Giving all of me to Him! So today whenever something didn't go the way I thought they should, or something started to look like our plans might not work I just stopped, took a breath, and prayed, acknowleding that our God is all-powerful and that if this is His will then I will take it and trust Him. Life is a journey. It's not all sunshine and flowers. There's tough stuff. But why live my life focused on anything but Him? Life's hard enough as it is (and really, my issues are minute compared to some!!)!! He's here to hold me, lavishing me with grace and love like no other!! How blessed am I to be a daughter of Him. Praise God.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Jeremiah 29:11 (i know I talk about this verse alot. Sorry. I'm just kinda' obsessed with it right now!! lol!!)
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
So today.... i spent the morning doing Spanish homework, studying for the ACT, and walking Chloe. After lunch I got in my scrubs and went to Target to get a baby gift, causing me to spend 35 minutes in the store getting distracted by cute baby stuff and eyeshadow colors I'd like to experiment with (even though my spending budget was zero!). So that left me running into the post office to ship my two packages before going to work. It's always interesting going out into public in my scrubs. People always look at medical personnel wearing scrubs in public anyway. Then when they look at me a little more closely they realize, "hmm... that is a teenager wearing scrubs. Something isn't right with this!!" Even better are the looks I get from our patients. People have said the funniest things to me!!
Tonight we had our first girl's bible study. There were just three of us but we had some really good discussion and it was so great to dig into the Word a little deeper. I'm hoping to blog a little about what God impressed on me during that time but i have to finish my Spanish homework and practice piano. I have the biggest ice cream craving right now. I need to convince my parents to go for ice cream tonight!!
Here's some boring pics from my day. Sorry this is such a random post. I'm in a chatty mood but you can only go so far with a keyboard! :)
That was probably the last night that I will have nothing to do. My regular school will be starting tommorow or the next day (YAAAY!!! Finally!!) and once it does I will be working on that in order to get through it quickly!! I've never been so motivated to accomplish anything! I've been wanting school to start since May. I'm so ready to tackle this and I'm excited to start!
This morning I think I'm going to go on a long walk with Chloe and run some errands. Oh, and study for my ACT which is in FOUR days!! I'm also shipping out two orders today for our adoption business which is very exciting.
Pretty boring post but that's what's going on in my life!
Sunday, September 7, 2008
School starts either Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday. I CAN'T WAIT!! Seriously.
And my ACT is on Saturday. Oh boy.... :) The biggest test in my life is about to happen in 6 days. Ahhh!!!
Some may think this picture is weird. Some might think it's cute. Some might think it's creative. I think that I like it. :)
Don't miss my post below as well. I put both of them up today.
"..... they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives. Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as braided hair and the wearing of gold jewelry and fine clothes. Instead, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is great worth in God's sight. For this is the way the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful."
1 Peter 3:1b-5b
I guess I'd never paid attention to these verses before! But when I read them this morning they ministered to my heart. Our culture focuses SO MUCH on things that will make us look more beautiful, more appealing. And we listen!! We go and buy the latest trends, get the newest makeup, have our hair styled the new way. I'm not saying this is wrong. However, speaking for myself, I forget that it's not all about how I look, it's about what's inside. I wouldn't want someone to like me just because of my appearance anyway. Jesus loves me because of who I am on the inside. He looks at me when I wake up in the morning with dark eyes, disheveled hair, and baggy pajamas and he says, "You are beautiful! I love you because of your heart not for your appearance."
It says in the last verse that "this is how the holy women of the past who put their hope in God used to make themselves beautiful." They focused on their attitude, their spirit, their hearts. They trusted that God would bring them a husband who would look past their faces and into their hearts. Why can't I do that? Is it pride? Am I too scared that I will be rejected by people if my outward appearance isn't beautiful enough? Why do we spend more time trying to impress the people of this world than we do on our hearts? The One who has shown the greatest love deserves our attention, not the mirror!! Our inner beauty is of great worth to God and I think I need to focus a little more on that. I want to be the wife someday who has the "unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit," "noble character (proverbs 12)," "a wife who is hardworking, compassionate, has strength and dignity, full of laughter, wise with faithful instruction on the tongue, and who fears the Lord." (majorly summarized Proverbs 31:10-31)
Khalil Gibran, (1883 - 1931)
Beauty is not in the face;
beauty is a light in the heart.
For every beauty there is an eye somewhere to see it.
For every truth there is an ear somewhere to hear it.
For every love there is a heart somewhere to receive it.
Beauty is how you feel inside,
and it reflects in your eyes.
It is not something physical.
Saturday, September 6, 2008
- First of all, it is my FAVORITE weather right now. Cool enough to wear jeans but not hot. It's perfect fall weather.
- My dad took my brothers to an out of town football game so they were gone for the day. That left my mom and I to have a girls day! :) Last night, I moved my fall/winter clothes up to my closet. I quickly realized that I didn't have that many (and the ones I did have were all basically brown and blue- I was obsessed with those colors last year apparently)!! So my mom and I spent the afternoon at the mall shopping. I found some really good deals and brought home some cute stuff! It's kind of fun to see how far you can stretch money if you spend wisely. And it's always fun to have some new clothes! Before we left the mall I'd already decided what I was going to wear to church tommorow!
- Spencer (who's teaching with me) and I organized all of the Sunday School stuff and planned our lesson for tommorow! It'll be the first class and I'm excited to see how it goes!!
- We've been pet-sitting our neighbor's dog, Rocket, during the day and Chloe doesn't like it one bit!! She's incredibly jealous of the attention we give Rocket and she refuses to play with her like she does the other dog we've had at our house. She has been hiding under things. When I'm at my desk (see below picture) she sits under it. She's NEVER done this before. And when I practiced piano today she scooted behind the keyboard stand. She is so pathetic. I think we've spoiled her rotten! :)
Friday, September 5, 2008
God just has a way of doing that!
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Tuesday, September 2, 2008
So anyway, I painted for awhile and stopped for lunch. While eating, I realized that this is His plan. I just didn't think it was because it wasn't how I envisioned it. Why was I worrying? This was how God had intended it to be- so that I could learn patience and trust. Our God is such a patient Father. I'm in awe of how He hasn't given up on me yet! He just keeps bringing me back into His arms and showing me His love and grace.
So while I haven't learned like I thought I would the past few weeks, God has certainly been teaching me. He has made my heart free of the concern that was there and I can rest His arms because i can trust Him! He has a plan for me. And these weeks of waiting were just a part of the story He's writing.
Monday, September 1, 2008
This picture makes me smile! :)
Helping Aunt Diane organize her new kitchen!!! My specialty! Just kidding lol!
Everybody have a GREAT week!! :) I thought I was starting my online stuff tommorow but it doesn't start till FRIDAY! I'm serious, I don't think I can wait another 3 days to start. It's depressing to not have anything to do that I feel is productive. If I feel useless it's not a good thing! lol! Ughh... I will have to find something to occupy my time. I'm so motivated to start my school but I can't! So frustrating!