Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Multitude Monday delayed to Thankfulness Tuesday - #21-34

So I didn't make it to write for Multitude Monday on MONDAY due to a busy day filled with fun, laughter, tears, chats, and much more. I will write more on that in the days to come. But for now, I want to add to my gifts today....

Gratitude - a feeling of thankfulness or appreciation, as for gifts or favours;
the state of feeling grateful

~21. Seeing into the heart of a man whose name I don't know as he shared his brokend words whose life Arno and I had somehow touched - {humbling}

~22. Playing with my friend's little girl, splashing in the water

~23. Nudging her to go a "little farther" into the waves

~24. Laughing as she sees the waves coming and repeats over and over, "I'm not scared. I'm not scared. I'm not scared."

~25. Rejoicing as she tells her friend after our play time how she is NOT SCARED ANYMORE

~26. Feeling melancholy and then giggly with a girlfriend

~27. Watching a movie with my hubby(in person) AND some girlfriends(over Facebook) -- TOO FUN!!

~28. Little boy warms my heart with his overflowing, no-holes-barred love toward me

~29. Discovering a new friend in this "blog world" whose journey is mirroring my own

~30. Growing with my bokkie(Arno) through every learning curve

~31. Seeing the awakening of new understandings in my relationship with the Father

~32. Realizing HOW MUCH I still don't know or understand about HIM and HIS plans on this journey

~33. Basking in HIS grace and patience with me as I learn

~34. Thankful to be loved by a Father such as HIM

I have joined The Gratitude Community -- a place to be inspired by others and what God is doing in their lives, a chance to share my own journey of gratitude, and an opportunity to REMEMBER to be grateful in ALL things. So every Monday, I will add to my list of 1000 gifts of all the graces God has provided in my life. Would you consider joining me? Even if you don't blog, you can join the gratitude community by starting a gratitude journal, mentionning your gifts on Facebook, or sending e-mails to your friends. Let's work together to help in creating a more thankful, joyous world.

holy experience

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Posts That Warm My Heart

and sharing some of my favorite posts for the week.

From ME

I didn't write a lot this week as I have been pondering and analyzing (more intensely than usual). You can check out that post here.


(In)Courage is a compilation blog from women of all walks of life. Bianca compared the processes of our lives to this plant that grows in the desert and takes 20 years to flower. It is a story you HAVE to check out!

Ray Hollenbach at Students of Jesus shared last week about the life of E. Stanley Jones. His post has inspired me to put E. Stanley's final book The Unshakable Kingdom and the Unchanging Person on my "must read" list.

Jenny at Just a Minute is praying through the Psalms every Saturday. Love her perspective and the way that she applies the Word in a practical way.

Personal Journeys

Especially Heather shares her journey with cancer as well as life with a daughter with chronic health issues from the womb. Her post on honesty is what lead me to her site, but check out her full site for her story.

Claire at Fast Forward Girl opens up about her and her husband's difficult decision to leave the mission field in South Africa -- her openness and raw transparency in the face of such a hard choice is refreshing.

My new blogger "friend" Jen is challenges us in her blog, I Believe In Love, about what ONE thing in your life would you want to change that would transform the other parts of your life.

Hope that you enjoy!! Do you have a blog or some posts that you think I should check out? Please add it to your comments below! I would REALLY love to hear from you!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Another Step in the Journey

I haven't posted in few days. My thoughts have been vast & varied, and I have therefore struggled to find the words to put into cohesive & coherent sentences to make a point that will challenge, touch, & inspire.

In this blogging world, you meet many people and view many styles of writing. You come across people who "write their life," others who teach Biblical principles, many who share about their children and their "Mommy" journeys, some who have many followers and others who have a few, people who encourage comments and others who hide their comment box, some who have turned blogging into a business, and others who want to beware of making a "blog kingdom" for themselves.

In all of this, the greatest fascination for me is seeing the human experience lived out across the world. God is working in the lives of people around the globe, weaving the tapestry of His love in us and through us in very different ways.

I am at a place in my journey of MUCH soul searching and self reflection, evaluting my life thus far in the Light of the Father and His love for me, His love for the world, and His purpose for me in reaching that world. So, I don't know what this -- my blog -- will be or become, however, my desire here and in the tangible world around me every day is to live a life that is REAL -- to be transparent, to be open, to truly BE Jesus to people -- even if it is in how I have failed to show Him! This journey.......this journey......

"Life is not the destination but the journey."

What are you learning from the heart of the Father in your life right now? How do you see the tapestry of His love in your world?

Monday, August 23, 2010

Multitude Monday - #16-20

Gratitude - a feeling of thankfulness or appreciation, as for gifts or favours;
the state of feeling grateful

~16. "Geeking out" with my husband on our laptops next to each other in the evening ~

~17. Learning, learning, learning SO many lessons -- thankful (most days!) that the Father DOES NOT RELENT ~

~18. Making my Aunt Bonnie's chocolate chip cookies in South Africa brings a little of my "family" to my home here ~

~19. Sharing those cookies with my "family" here in SA! ~

~20. Words of encouragement from a friend who has "known" me for years -- for better or for worse ~

I have joined The Gratitude Community -- a place to be inspired by others and what God is doing in their lives, a chance to share my own journey of gratitude, and an opportunity to REMEMBER to be grateful in ALL things. So every Monday, I will add to my list of 1000 gifts of all the graces God has provided in my life. Would you consider joining me? Even if you don't blog, you can join the gratitude community by starting a gratitude journal, mentionning your gifts on Facebook, or sending e-mails to your friends. Let's work together to help in creating a more thankful, joyous world.

holy experience

Saturday, August 21, 2010

What is Your Obsession? - Part 3

I read this post today at Holy Experience and it connected with my heart due to my own musings about my own personal obsessions that you can read in part 1 and part 2. Please check it out if you have time. If not, in addition to her own struggles with making her accomplishments idols in her life she shares this short story:

While other monks lived close enough to cities to sell their handiwork in the markets, Abba Paul lived such a distance that the cost of transportation would exceed any profits from selling the baskets. Nonetheless, each day he collected palm fronds and worked as faithfully as if basket making were his primary means of support.

And come the end of the year, when his cave overflowed with long months of toil, he took torch to the work of his hands and the flames devoured and rose higher and cackled long into the night. Then, come morning, the heat died away, satiated.

And Abba Paul stood in the long quiet and the wind blew away the ashes of all his work.

Can I live to not prove myself by my hard work? Can I do what I do NOT for the accolades of man? Can I give of myself with no expectation in return, no recognition, no admiration?

Thoughts to ponder.....lessons to learn.....

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. ~ 2 Cor. 4:18

Hope Revisited: Hope or Despair?

I found this on the Livesay Haiti weblog yesterday and thought I should add it to my "hope" collections. "Hope" that this encourages you as much as it encouraged me....

“Hope and despair are not opposites. They are cut from the very same cloth, made from the very same material, shaped from the very same circumstances. Most of all, every life finds itself forced to choose one from the other, one day at a time, one circumstance after another.

The only difference between the two is that despair shapes an attitude of mind; hope creates a quality of soul. Despair colors the way we look at things, makes us suspicious of the future, makes us negative about the present. Hope, on the other hand, takes life on its own terms, knows that whatever happens God lives in it, and expects that, whatever its twists and turns, it will ultimately yield its good to those who live it well.

When tragedy strikes, when trouble comes, when life disappoints us, we stand at the crossroads between hope and despair, torn and hurting. Despair cements us in the present; hope sends us dancing around dark corners trusting in a tomorrow we cannot see.

Despair says that there is no place to go but here. Hope says that God is waiting for us someplace else. Begin again.” (unknown author)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

What is Your Obsession? - Part 2

(Yesterday, I shared a little history on things that were my obsession growing up. The following is where the idea for these posts came from.)

A few weeks ago, our pastors spoke on "What is Your Obsession?"

And it got me thinking about my life and my greatest desires, and I began to ask myself that question, "Lindsey, what is your obsession?"

Is my obesession being with my family?
--I have always been a close-t0-my-family-and-friends girl

Is my obsession being a mom?
--I have wanted to be a mom since I was 18

Is my obsession being healthy?
--When you have struggled physically for AWHILE, you suddenly realize how valuable good health is.

Is my obsession being famous? Being known? Being loved? Being lifted up?
--As I mentionned yesterday, I wanted to BE SOMETHING, CHANGE THE WORLD!!

With lots of prayer and pondering, I realized something -- "the things" in my life are not my obsession, nor are my relationships. But my greatest obesession is a fear of failure, of not making a difference in the world, of not measuring up to my PERFECTIONISTIC standards, of disappointing the people I love and respect, of making decisions that could be wrong.....

And, well....that's a problem!

If Jesus, His love for me, & sharing that love with other people isn't my TRUE obsession than all the other things are idols.....fluff.....extras.

So that is the cry of my heart, the help that I need from the Holy Spirit, the longing of my soul -- to truly have HIS heart, HIS will, HIS desires, HIS plan as my obsession. I don't have it right yet & I have A LOT to learn, but I am just so thankful that because HE LOVES ME -- HIS Spirit --The Master Teacher will show me how to obsess over Him daily!

Do you have something else or someone else that competes with making THE FATHER your BIGGEST obsession? What are some principles that you personally apply to your life to keep or to make Him your FIRST obsession daily?

What is Your Obsession? - Part 1

Just like most little girls (from my generation) I loved Barbies, playing dress up, putting on makeup, twirling in my new Easter dress (with matching gloves & socks, no less, thanks to Mom Moms and Aunts), watching love stories (LOVED Gone With The Wind from the time I was 8), giggling with my girlfriends over silly secrets, crazy crushes, and daring dreams. I LOVED pretending to be the princess in the fairytale (sister, Kasi - Cinderella; cousin, Wendy - Snow White; Me - Sleeping Beauty).

However, for me, even greater than the love for all things "girly" was the love of books -- to travel to new worlds, to achieve successes I could only dream of, to become the hero or heroine, to save the world, to be crushed by the tragedies as if it were myself and to soar to the highest heights with each victory.

When I started school, I just loved, loved learning -- I KNOW -- I was a nerd!! What am I talking about -- I still am!! Ha!! But I can't help! I have always loved knowing things, just ask my PATIENT mother. I think my first 3 words were, "Mama," "Dada," and "WHY?"

In knowing & learning things, I loved to compete. My family encouraged healthy competition in games and fun things at home -- not crushing the opponent but teaching us by giving us the opportunity to grow through defeat as well as victory.

In elementary school, it wasn't enough for me to just get an A; I wanted to get the HIGHEST grade in the class. In high school, I relaxed "somewhat." There were others in the class with a consistently higher GPA than me so I carved out a NEW identity for myself. I became a peer tutor, I took on a part-time job with my school, and I wrote an article or two for the local paper.

Once I got to O.R.U., there were so many people with SO many gifts and talents that at first it was quite daunting. However, the Lord began changing my heart and I began to go full force into all kinds of extra-curriculars--tried out for being a wing chaplain & eventually became one after first being denied; tried out for the ORU worship team, but didn't make that; got asked to try out for Head Chaplain but only got accepted after applying the second year; tried out for a school play and made it; took all the classes that I wanted to take except one; worked a variety of part-time jobs for experience; travelled to a different place almost every Fall & Spring Break; and made friends from not only all over America, but also all over the world.

I enjoyed the journey and grew up in the process. In my classes, my professors collectively named me "The Sponge" because I truly loved to learn and I approached every situation and activity with that same passion and desire.

When I finished at ORU, I began contemplating my next step: job, ministry, Master's degree, etc, and I came to a crossroads & face-to-face with myself. I really LOVE learning so getting a Master's degree was the logical next step especially since my BA was in Psychology. However as I began to seek the Lord about it, the Holy Spirit was so clear to me:

Don't set up a kingdom for yourself, Lindsey.

Now, I am not saying that higher education is wrong -- not at all -- and one day, I may still get my Master's and even my Doctorate. But this was the thing for me, you see since I was a little girl, I didn't care about being the prettiest, but I really wanted to be the smartest, the most successful, or the one who had acheived this HIGH accolade. And although, at this point in my life, I didn't care about being the best anymore, I still wanted to make a SIGNIFICANT mark on the world. I wanted to BE something!! However, I realized the GREAT, BIG, HARD TRUTH in the Lord's words to me so I received His words and guidance for my life, trusting that AS ALWAYS, He has the BEST plan worked out.

I have never regretted my decision and I have seen God's hand in my life over these past 10 years. The world that He has created FOR ME has been beautiful...

Come back tomorrow where I will share more on "My Obsession."

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wordless Wednesday: Sweet Success

After 5 years, Patches has Arno wrapped around her fingers...or um, paws that is...hehehehe....too cute for a man who used to "hate" cats and be allergic!!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010


I want to share with you a few sites that have encouraged or inspired me
over the past week/month.

On Spiritual Challenges

On Following Jesus in Ministry

On Waiting and Trusting

On Creativity & Fun

There are many more but these are just a few that you, too, might enjoy today.
Check them out!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Joining the Gratitude Community....Multitude Monday (#1-15)

Gratitude - a feeling of thankfulness or appreciation, as for gifts or favours;
the state of feeling grateful

I have decided to join The Gratitude Community (Click on the link to find out more information) --a place to be inspired by others and what God is doing in their lives, a chance to share my own journey of gratitude, and an opportunity to REMEMBER to be grateful in ALL things. Even if you don't blog, you can join the gratitude community to help in creating a more thankful, joyous world. So every Monday, I will add to my list of 1000 gifts of all the graces God has provided in my life.

holy experience

1. Finding a community of people committing to sharing and walking in thankfulness

2. Living life daily with my best friend -- my husband

3. The lady in my home cell who brings home made snacks every week "just because" she wants to (without being asked)

4. Other sweet ladies who clean my kitchen before they leave...also without me asking

5. Morris, my kitty, curling up next to me while I share my gifts

6. Daily revelations from the Father -- just what I need for the day

7. Being encouraged my other women's journeys around the world via blogging

8. Coke Zero (an excellent alternative to Coke -- made the switch almost 8 months ago)

9. My snuggly green blanket

10. Inspirational quotes - “Hope is the thing with feathers, that perches in the soul, and sings the tune without words, and never stops at all.” - Emily Dickenson

11. A heart-warming SMS/Text from a girlfriend

12. Discovery that I REALLY like biltong (South African jerky...well, sort of)

13. Worshipping God with other followers of Jesus

14. Knowing I am loved by the Father

15. Choices -- scary, but freeing too

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The Prodigal

I love the parable of the Prodigal Son, and I know the story well. I have taught it many times from Sunday School classes to Women's Encounters, and I love the story of the father ALWAYS believing and hoping and longing for his son to come home.

Yesterday, I was listening again to Your Love Never Fails by Jesus Culture (I will post again since only maybe 5 of you actually read all my posts ...:)

....so I was listening and this song just encourages me every time I listen to it from the very first and my favorite line..."Nothing can separate, even if I run away -- Your love never fails."

And then my mind went back to the Prodigal Son. I suppose in all the years of teaching and studying this parable, I have never thought that I was the prodigal because I didn't have major rebellious episodes with my parents, choose a partying lifestyle, or link up with wild friends.

However, the prodigal WAS someone just like me.

He grew up in the father's house.
He watched how his father ran the farm.
He observed how his father treated the servants.
He experienced the generosity of the father.
He KNEW the father's love.

Yet...he wanted his own way. He wasn't satisfied with the Father's timing. He was impatient to do what he wanted with his inheritance.

Aren't we all that way sometimes? I know I have been. I get impatient with my Father's plan. I have complained about His timing or what seems like a "lack of timing" in my mind. I have analyzed and suggested a plan that I think is best. I have been angry and thrown "spiritual" temper tantrums or frozen Him out.

Yet His love never fails.....even if I run away.....

He is ALWAYS waiting and drawing my heart back to Him. He wants me. He longs to share His plans and His future FOR me WITH me. He wants my best. His plan has TRULY incorporated that even when I can't see it or don't believe. He truly "...makes all things work together for my good..." as the song goes on to proclaim.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

Just For Fun!!

I have always had a secret desire to be an actress/performer. If there was a type of performance that I would choose, it would definitely be THE STAGE -- singing, dancing, & acting -- so fun!!

The attached clip is filled with crazy, brave people after my own heart....enjoy!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

30 Days of Hope: Day 30 - My Dreams, Part 2 (TTC)

I shared yesterday on a few of my dreams....MY language of hope. Today I share one of the greatest dreams of my life....

Perhaps the BIGGEST dream of my life has always been to be a mom. I suppose it started when I was a little girl like all little girls with dolls and then Barbies. However, when I was a 18, I remember thinking, "I can't wait to be a mom." I wasn't so sure about getting married QUITE yet. (lol) I just knew that I already loved my children and would give my life for them.

I used to walk around the dorms with a fake pregnant belly to make my girlfriends and dorm mates laugh. What they didn't know was that when I would go back to my room by myself, I would keep the fake belly on to study, to clean my room, to call family, or whatever for hours just so I could see what it would feel like to have this big "thing" as an obstacle to my day-to-day tasks (minus the weight of course). I wanted to be as prepared as I could be for the process.

A few years later, my cousin, Wendy, gave me the privilege of being in the room when she gave birth to her 2nd child. She asked me, "Did that scare you from wanting to have your own children?" I said, "NO WAY! That was one of the most amazing, most beautiful things that I have seen in my life." To see life where there wasn't before....wow....I just don't understand how obstetricians can see that every day and NOT believe that there is a God.

Of all of my dreams, this one has been the one that I longed for the most, envisioned so clearly, and prayed for so intently.

After being married for two and a half years, Arno and I decided that we would "start trying." We got off of all birth control and just assumed that in no time, we would be expanding our nest! YAY!

6 months passed, and we were not worried or stressed. We believed that God had a plan. A year passed, and we were still at peace. We figured that maybe we had thought it was time, but God's timing wasn't quite there yet.

A year and a half after we first started trying, the longings started to get to me. I wondered what we were doing wrong. I believe that God creates all of life and God has ordained my steps, so I thought that I MUST be doing something wrong to be stopping the progress. There MUST be some tragic flaw in my life that would cause God NOT to want me to be a mom. I remember asking Arno one day, "Why does God hate me?"

Over the years, I have had words from the Lord given directly to me as well as through other people about my children. I had a specific "vision" of my children, laughing & playing, long before I ever got married. I have hoped and believed in God's promises to me & Arno and even to our parents that they would see their children's children.

And yet it has been two and half years, since "we" were actively moving in this direction, and still no baby in my belly.

The day I began 30 Days of Hope, we found out that Arno's sperm levels in all 3 areas are low. Biologically, we CAN get pregnant, however, statistically, it will take much longer for us (as we well know). (Click here for Day 1 where I refer to this)

As you can imagine, I thought to myself, how can I write on hope? My dream....the biggest dream of my life...has been diagnostically threatened. How do I look past the reality and the diagnosis and see HIS plan?

Before receiving this report from the doctors, about 2 months ago, I realized that I had been angry at God. Why were teenagers, drug addicts, or unfit people allowed to father and mother children, while Arno and I who have both worked with children for over 10 years each, denied this blessing? I had NEVER wanted this testimony. I remember hearing people tell their journey through infertility and I was DETERMINED that THAT WOULD NOT BE ME!! I even made a decision to use NON-hormonal birth control in an attempt to keep my body functionning "normally" as God intended it to be.

And yet, with all my planning, praying, hoping, dreaming, I find myself at THIS place -- talking to you about my journey of waiting, hurting, praying, longing, and quite honestly -- quietly experiencing agonizing pain. On the outside, I have seemed normal, but inside, there is a loss every month -- a loss of what "could" have been, a laying down once again of my dream, a piece of myself that I have had to lay at the altar.

I know that many people seek out adoption or extreme fertility measures, but at this stage, the Father has not given us a peace to go in either direction. We know that we may expand our family via adoption in the future, but for now, we believe that God has directed us to focus on His promises for us -- in His timing.

For those of you who follow me on Facebook, you will have seen this Scripture in my "About Me" section. This is the verse that the Lord promised to me a year ago when I started doubting His hand and heart towards me:

Isaiah 54 - 1 “Sing, O childless woman, you who have never given birth! Break into loud and joyful song, O Jerusalem, you who have never been in labor. For the desolate woman now has more children than the woman who lives with her husband,” says the Lord. 2 “Enlarge your house; build an addition. Spread out your home, and spare no expense! 3 For you will soon be bursting at the seams. Your descendants will occupy other nations and resettle the ruins."

So as I wrap up these 30 Days of Hope, I realize the work that God has done inside of me. Does it mean that I now have all of the answers? NO way!! Does it mean I won't have those heart-breaking days ever again? Probably not.... Does it mean that I will never wonder and ask God what His plan is or why it is working out this way? NO, I am sure that I will.

What this journey HAS meant to me though is this -- the Giver of hope, the Lover of my heart, the Redeemer of my soul means MORE to me today because nothing makes sense without Him. My friend Sarah Raabe once told me, "In God's great economy, nothing is wasted. He uses everything--good & bad--for His glory."

Although I do not always understand, I choose to put my HOPE in Him, to go to the cross, to apply His blood -- there all questions, confusion, pain, failures, mistakes, & sins fall away.

Though it wasn't my plan, I know that I HAD to share this journey with you, even if only one person's life is impacted, changed, or encouraged. One day I WILL share with you the reality of my dream come true, but for now, my challenge to you is place your dreams and your hope in HIS hands. Focus on the GREAT DREAMER, not merely on your own dreams. He has a way...He has a plan. With Him, there is NO WASTE!! :) :)

30 Days of Hope: Day 29 - My Dreams, Pt 1

Yesterday I shared some quotes on dreams. Dreams are the language of hope. They are how we share the desires of our heart, the plans for our future, and the vision that will brings our tomorrows.

I have never thought of myself as a dreamer. I am a planner. I am an organizer, but not a dreamer, not a visionary. I worked for my uncle for 7 years at a ministry called The Promise Land and later at The Tabernacle, the church that he established and currently pastors. I remember him telling me one day, "Lindsey, you say you are not a dreamer, but you are." I looked at him puzzled of course. He said, "Do you know how I know? Because you always know what will work or won't work in a plan and aren't afraid to say it."

Hahahahahahaa....not sure if that is good or bad, but I think he had figured out something about me that I didn't know about myself. Although I am practical...I, too, am a dreamer.

When I was a little girl, age 2 to be exact, I used to dream of being a ballerina. I was scared to take dance in Haiti because the French teachers there were quite intense, so I opted out. When I was 12, I took a summer class during my school vacation in America. I enjoyed it, but that was the end of it. Then, the year that I turned 22, I had finished college, was working full time, and decided to take dance classes full time. I got to dance in a recital that year and the theme -- Dreams DO Come True....I know, maybe cheesy, but perfect for me.

When I was a teenager, I used to dream of being married. I would go outside at night and gaze up at the stars and dream about that special someone looking up at the same stars dreaming about me too. I know. I know. Classic. Cheesy. Boring. But hey, I previously admitted to my hopeless romanticism. Now that I have married a South African, I KNOW that given the 7 hour time difference, we were not looking at the stars at the same time, but that doesn't ruin the dream for me. It took about 10 years from that time, but I am now married to my McDreamy! :)

The love of travel was probably always there, but really developed fully in my college years. I started going somewhere, anywhere every Fall and Spring Break as well as some summer breaks -- Arkansas; Illinois; St. Louis, Missouri; Los Angeles, California; Denver/Co Springs/Boulder, Colorado; Dallas, Texas; Maine; Rhode Island; India; Phillippines; Thailand; Malaysia, and of course Maryland and Haiti. Since then I have travelled to Columbia & South Africa and previously to Jamacia. I have travelled to 34 of the 50 states, travelled to 10 out of over 250 countries (SO NOT close yet), lived in 3 countries, and had airport stopovers in 3 other countries -- doesn't really count, I know, but a notable mention nonetheless. Travel is in my blood, and I hope to keep travellling A LOT until the day I go on my FINAL DESTINATION. :)

Check back in tomorrow for my conclusion on "30 Days of Hope" as well as my reveal of the biggest dream of my life and the journey that God has had me on while I am waiting to see that dream fulfilled.

In the meantime, please share some of your dreams -- fulfilled or unfulfilled -- let's learn, grow, rejoice, and journey together!!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

30 Days of Hope: Day 28 - Dreams

“Isn't it the moment of most profound doubt that gives birth to new certainties (dreams)? Perhaps hopelessness is the very soil that nourishes human hope; perhaps one could never find sense in life without first experiencing its absurdity...” --Vaclav Havel

“Hope is a waking dream.” --Aristotle

“Of all the forces that make for a better world, none is so indispensable, none so powerful, as hope. Without hope people are only half alive. With hope they dream and think and work.”

“The ninety and nine are with dreams, content but the hope of the world made new, is the hundredth man who is grimly bent on making those dreams come true.” --Edgar Allan Poe

“May the dreams of your past be the reality of your future.”

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

30 Days of Hope: Day 27 - Change


That word conjures up different images for different people. To some, change is a princess to be won, a foe to be conquered. To others, change is a tornado or hurricane blowing through one's life destroying eveything in its path.

Arno loves change -- BIG changes. In 2005, he moved to America, he became a children/youth pastor, we started dating, and then we got married in less than 5 months...THEN he wanted to start getting into real estate! :) However, when we go out to eat, especially at our "regulars", Arno has all of 2-3 items that he will EVER order off of a menu. He almost always takes the same route home every day. He will wear the same tie with the same shirt every time although he has a variety to pick from.

I am the EXACT opposite! BIG changes and decisions FREAK ME OUT!! When Arno wanted to research real estate options...I said, "Please give me a break -- enough changes and new things for one year." When we finally started to look into buying a house about a year ago and started closing in on our deal, I felt more and more freaked and told Arno, "It's on you, Baby, because I just don't know and I am scared to death." However, I love to try new foods, wear random combinations in my clothing style, attempt "some" variety with my hair (hey, I AM a red head now), find new cool hangout places, etc.

And somehow these differences work for us....we learn from each other and push & challenge each other and also have grace for each other. This opposite balance has helped us to weather the ups and downs that we have experienced in the last 5 years.

Arno will always play it safe in the little things, but find joy in my ability to find variety in the most random things. I will always be scared of BIG change, but Arno is so sure -- so I am learning to trust in him as he leads our home through the leading of the Holy Spirit.

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step - Lao Tse


If you don't like something, change it; if you can't change it, change the way you think about it. - Mary Engelbreit

How do you feel about change? Are you more like me or more like Arno? Somewhere in between? Weigh in below.....

Monday, August 9, 2010

30 Days of Hope: Day 26 - Happy Women's Day

(Warning: Lots of pictures to follow)
Today in South Africa, it is Women's Day -- a day to celebrate the impact that women have made in homes, in the work place, in arts, in science, in culture, in the world.

When God created woman, He did so differently than He did man.....

Genesis 2:21-22
So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep. While the man slept, the Lord God took out one of the man’s ribs and closed up the opening. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib, and he brought her to the man.

Immediately Adam rejoiced in the beauty of the gift that God had given to him....

Genesis 2:23
“At last!” the man exclaimed.
“This one is bone from my bone,
and flesh from my flesh!
She will be called ‘woman,’
because she was taken from ‘man.’”

There are so many beautiful and amazing women that God has placed in my life and I would like to honor them for the hope that they have instilled inside of me..

My mom - strongest woman I know

My mom-in-law - one of the MOST compassionate hearts ever

My sister, Kasi - the girl you WANT in your corner; will defend you to the death

Aunt Bonnie, Aunt Paula, & Granny - have ALWAYS been there no matter what I needed -- birthday parties, wedding planning, graduation celebration, hugs, love, laughter, etc.

My Mom Mom - taught me to keep my head up high & to be proud of who I am

Pastor Charne - who taught me to be the strong ME and not apologize for it & the 3C G12 ladies - who are a team of warrior princesses that I have been blessed to learn from

And some of my best girlfriends without whom my life would not be the same...

I love you ladies (& many more not pictured)!! My life holds more value from the lessons I have learned from your presence in my life.
Happy Women's Day!!
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