Monday, December 31, 2007

Prayer

I don’t normally recommend sermons but the one we had this weekend on prayer was excellent, very motivating and helped me with the perpetual “why?” question. It’s not about me, it’s about His glory.
Here’s the link.

Happy and Prayer-filled New Year!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The dumbest things make me cry

I miss my mom

I was just reading through some recipes trying to choose what to make for a New Year’s brunch. I came across a recipe in my mom’s handwriting and just after the fond recognition of it being hers I burst into tears. This happened to me a couple of weeks ago too. I was sorting through the many donated children’s books given to the missionary apartment. I came across one about this mother who had a little boy that she would rock and recite a little poem to about how this would always be her little boy, no matter how big he got and she would always love him. As the book progresses, the boy gets older but the mom still takes that big boy or even man in her arms and rocks with to this verse. By the end of the book the son rocks his aging mother. The whole scene sent to down the memory lane of missing my own mom so dearly. I can hardly type this without it all coming back again so vividly and fighting off the tears again.

This was my third Christmas without her.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Remedy for Numbness

I haven’t been blogging much. I am trying to figure out why. I have time to read blogs. You might offer that it’s a busy season. It’s understandable that I haven’t been writing much. But I don’t buy that excuse. I think I might be just a bit numb. I set my expectations low for Christmas this year (for the most part). I had a nice dinner with my older brother and sister-in-law a few days before Christmas.

I spent Christmas eve with the Maves Family. It was nice to see the girls opening gifts and all excited. I managed to get to church twice that day.

I remembered again why I love the 10:45 pm service at Bethlehem. It’s the right time in all the hoopla to slow down and focus. I always love the music that is chosen. The lessons that are read are so clear for helping me focus. The message Pastor John gives isn’t holiday fluff, it’s straight to the point of Christmas. Some of the numbness melts away and I remember why there is so much hoopla this season.

Jesus came. He came to be with us. – Emanuel –

He came to die. But for his death to accomplish what it set out to do, namely pay the price for our sin, Jesus had to come as one of us. He had to be born a little vulnerable baby, grow into a man and experience life the same way we do in order for him to be what we needed to atone for our sin. Pastor John puts it so much better. Here’s his sermon from this past weekend. It’s worth listening to.

I spend Christmas day with the Jones family. Zach and Andrea live there too and we had a very nice Christmas breakfast. Eventually more friends arrived and then somewhere along the day I lost focus again. Two more large meals, lots of Christmas cookies, kids playing or fusing due to lack of sleep and abundance of sugar, squeeze in a movie and no wonder I’m numb. I finally get to the 26th and I have what I call a “Christmas hangover”. I haven’t had a drop of alcohol, it’s all the overdoing it; I’ve had too much food and not enough sleep. But more than that I haven’t remembered, let alone dwelt on what Jesus has so incredibly done for me.

It’s fun to spend the holidays with friends. It’s natural to miss my mom and wish she were still here. But clich├ęd or not, Jesus really is the one thing that I should be focusing on. Not because Jesus is a “should” but because he’s the part of Christmas that doesn’t disappoint. When I have come down from the sugar high and slept off the days of short nights I have one thing alone to look forward to: Jesus.

Hopefully, my focus will generate thoughtfulness here on the blog, too. I am so grateful for Jesus what came to die for me and grateful I am still able to remember, focus on Him.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

News in Madison, Wisconsin

Ed Brown is the guy that Craig and Tracy Sorley asked to set up the US office of Care of Creation after they had started their work in Kenya under the Southern Baptists. This morning Ed sent us a link from a Madison newspaper that did an article on him. If you would like to read it here is the link.

Friday, December 7, 2007

lola bea

This is a little person I have known since her birth. In a couple of months she'll be three. I see her at least weekly and many weeks I see her two or three times.

Yesterday I arrived at her house and she said to me, "Who are you?" This is Lola Bea's advanced sense of humor. I replied, "You know who I am!" in a sing-songy manner as to communicate I was getting her joke.

Then she asked in her same inquisitive manner, "Are you the other Auntie Jan?" I could no longer keep a straight face. Others in the room starting laughing too.

I'm left to wonder, how do little people get so funny?