Friday, October 31, 2008

Start asking, "What Now?"

I read this today, and it blessed me so. I know it will encourage you, too!

Fun Fall Festival

Last Friday night, we had a fall festival with our Bible study girls. Rebecca was our host- thanks, Rebecca- and it was so much fun! We ate alot of delicious foods including taco soup, mexican cornbread, corn pudding, and fruit salad. Oh, and how could I forget all the candy corn I ate?! The girls taught me and Rebecca how to carve pumpkins, since neither of us had done it before. I think that will be a fall tradition from now on. It was alot of fun! Tommy and Yancy built us an awesome bonfire, so we made yummy smores and wondered if anyone was waiting in the woods for us! :) Thanks, guys, for the fire! We stayed up late, of course, laughing and having a great time together. Rebecca and I say this all the time, but we really do have the best girls ever!!!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Good Times

Yancy and I had a great time last week on our trip. We had never before been on a cruise and it was so much fun. I was a little worried about feeling claustrophobic and getting motion sickness, but a balcony and Dramamine cured that! Sysco was so generous and they chartered the whole ship just for Sysco award winners. There was about 1 crew member for each passenger. We felt very special! And I cannot begin to tell you how much food we ate! I'm sure it falls under the category of "gluttony"! It was all so good! After the cruise, Yancy and I stayed a little longer in Pompano Beach and were able to tour the Everglades on an air boat (something Yancy has always wanted to do) and we actually saw several alligators! We also drove down to Key West for the day. It's not really a day trip from Pompano Beach, but we were committed and made it happen! We didn't get many good pictures of us together, but here's a few from the trip.

Yancy's favorite spot

Horseback riding on Half Moon Cay- Don't you love the helmet?!

Touring the Everglades

I can't believe I held that thing, but when else will I be able to hold a baby alligator?!

Eating key lime pie in Key West... YUM!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Short Term Memory Loss and A Cruise

OK... so I've already forgotten all my wonderful lessons on waiting! I had a roller coaster of a week last week and it has just left me feeling very sad. I so long for a baby and I'm so sad that I have to keep waiting. Yesterday at church, I cried a lot. I had the lip-quivering cry, you know, the kind you can't control no matter how hard you try. The special music was a song called "Our Hope Endures" by Natalie Grant. It goes something like, "Sometimes the sun stays hidden for years, Sometimes the sky rains night after night... But our hope endures." That was how I was feeling at the moment, like the sun had been hidden for years. Sometimes I get down on myself for feeling sad (and Satan likes to tell me that if I were a "good" Christian I would be able to handle it), but I shouldn't feel that way because Jesus understands my feelings. He created my feelings. He knows my pain and each tear I cry. Jesus felt sad at times too. Anyway, I love the ending of the song, "our hope endures." Even though I am feeling sad, my hope- in Jesus Christ alone- endures!

I am slowly coming out of my sadness though. Number one, Jesus is my hope. Number two, Yancy and I are going on a cruise Thursday! Yancy found out in August that he had won the Pacesetter Award this year! The Pacesetter Award is a recognition given out by Sysco corporate and it's very hard to earn. Basically it means that Yancy is a superstar!!! I'm so very proud of him! His reward for being a Pacesetter is corporate recognition and a trip. This year the trip is a cruise to the Bahamas. I'm so excited about going on vacation, but I think I'm more excited about spending a whole week with Yancy. The timing of the trip could not have been more perfect! You think God had something to do with that? I do! God has been so good to us and blessed us so much! Pray that we'll have a safe trip and come back rested, with renewed hearts... and maybe a tan!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Lessons on Waiting

This is a long post! I had a lot to say!
Our college girls' Bible study had a lesson one day a couple of weeks ago about waiting on God. Well, since I'm kinda an expert (if you can call it that) on waiting, I put together a few things that God has taught me- and is still trying to teach me!- about why He wants us to wait sometimes.
1. To grow us, teach us perseverance. There's so much we have to learn!
Romans 6:3-4 "We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help us develop endurance. And endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation."
2. To test our faithfulness. Am I going to be faithful? Am I committed to Him? It please God when we wait with faith.
Hebrews 11:6 "And it is imposible to please God without faith."
3. To change our desires. I believe that God doesn't just give us the desires of our heart (He doesn't just give us what we want). But He is the one who actually places certain desires in our hearts. He has definitely used our waiting time to change my desires. When Yancy and I were first trying to have a baby, I so wanted to experience pregnancy and childbirth. But God has used this time to refine my desire to just wanting to be a mom.
Psalm 37:4 "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart."
4. To work out His will somewhere else. I think waiting sometimes has nothing to do with me! God has pieces of my life that He is working out that I have nothing to do with. That's pretty amazing, huh?
Romans 8:28 "And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them."
5. To trust Him more. He wants us to just believe Him and take Him at His Word. He is worthy of our trust!
Psalm 9:10 "Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you."
Jeremiah 17:7 "But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him."
6. To be persistant. There is something about persistance that God honors. I think that when we are persistant with God, it proves our faith in Him. You all are proving your faithfulness as you continue to lift us up in prayer! I think about our nephew, Dylan, who prays for us and our baby every night. It's gonna be an awesome day when we introduce him to his cousin and say, "This is the baby you've been praying for!" Oh, how that will increase His faith!
Luke 11:5-10
Luke 18:1-7
7. To bring God glory. When we wait for something and have no control over the outcome, I think it brings God such glory. I think of the day when Yancy and I get our baby, what glory God will receive from that! It will not have been because of anything that we have done, but completely the work of the Lord.
Psalm 40:1-3 "I waited patiently for the Lord to help me, and he turned to me and heard my cry... Many will see what he has done and be amazed. They will put their trust in the Lord."
John 11:1-44 It's long, but worth the read. It's the story of Lazarus being raised from the dead. God got even more glory by raising Lazarus from the dead than He would have if He had just healed him. It was hard for the family to wait for Jesus to act, but so worth it.
8. To remember our reward is in heaven. When I get to heaven, I'm not gonna be bitter or angry about having to wait for our baby. Our suffering and waiting can't compare to our reward in heaven.
2 Corinthians 4:17-18 "For our present troubles are small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! So we don't look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever."
Romans 8:18 "I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."
9. To trust in God's perfect timing. I've heard it said that God's never early and never late; He's always right on time. His time frame may not be my time frame, but I believe His is better. And in the light of etenity, what's a few years?
2 Peter 3:8 "A day is like a thousand years to the Lord, and a thousand years is like a day."

I hope that this is as encouraging to you as it is to me. But I don't want to sound like I've got it all together, because believe me, I don't! Just this week, God challenged my faith and made me question whether or not we are doing the right thing. I think more than anything, God wants to know that we desire Him more than whatever we are waiting for. That's a hard thing sometimes, but I know that God will honor and reward our desire for more of Him! I'll end with my favorite quote. "If I could see things from God's perspective, I would change nothing!"

ps...Next time I'm depressed and discouraged, will someone remind me of all of this? I have such a short memory!