Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Fill My Cup Lord

I heard an expression several times this evening.  How do you fill the cup of another person?  What can I do to fill someone's cup.  Allowing grace, sacrificing self, giving, encouraging someone in their gift and blessing others perhaps to name a few.  I love this expression and hope I will use it often and keep it close to my heart.  My cup was filled by sitting around a fire talking, listening, laughing, loving, caring, and just being with other women who are ages 14-57.  I craved it and wanted to drinking in more of that moment gift from God.  Often times we feel guilty if we allow time like that for ourselves as if we don't deserve it, that we are not worthy of it's privilege, and the uncommonally good feeling we get when we do it makes us feel like maybe we are doing something wrong.  Knowing how good this feels I should wish and want this for others to experience the goodness and grace of God.  When I sacrifice going and doing for someone else because they really want me to, it fills their cup.  Instead of stepping in and taking over, I allow someone else to operate in their gift receiving the blessing their gift and passion brings to others.  Encouraging someone to try something new or experience something they never would have had they not had the encouragement overflows the cup. I am tempted sometimes to take matters in my own hands instead of allowing God's plan to unfold forcing the issue which usually leads to sin in me.  Instead we must trust God to work out His plan, filling His cup that overflows my cup with joy.
I know of may times my cup has been flowing, overflowing and filled to the rim.  Jesus did that for me. The "cup" was the suffering and crucifixion that Christ faced in order to atone for the sins of the world.  "You can indeed drink from my cup...."Matt.20:23  When I drink from His cup He fills my cup in an abundant flow of living water that feeds my soul daily.  How am I filling His cup?  It is a question I will ponder, so that I might fill the cup of Jesus with as little as my faithful heart.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Swans a Swimming

No this is not a story about the classic 12 days of Christmas' Seven Swans a Swimming.  I promise.  I can't promise you 5 golden rings if you read this post, that 6 geese will lay you some eggs or that any Lords will do any leaping. What I can hope for is that you will be enlightened and encouraged in some way.
One day coming home from carpool my daughter and I notice on the opposite side of the interstate, like interstate 10 going east, was this very large white bird.  He was pacing back and forth looking really lost and afraid.  We were headed west and our exit was quite a ways down the road.  I had to make a split decision whether I was going to turn around and go help this bird......I decided yes I would.
So we went to our exit and got right back on to the interstate. I was praying the whole way back the bird would not move and still be there when I got back.   I see the bird is still there as I pull up, so I park back away from him so he wouldn't run out into the interstate.  I realized how stupid this was, but I also saw this bird who looked panicked about what to do and where to go.  A swan in the headlights so to speak!  I look behind me and wait for a time when there was a break in the 18 wheelers that were flying by and then jumped out of the car.  I instructed my daughter to stand behind the car and just motion for people to slow down.
I start walking toward the swan and he actually started walking toward me so I stopped to see what he would do.  He stopped.  Then he turned around and zzzzzzzoooooooom a big truck went sailing by.  He was ok and just stood there.  So with a big break in the cars I started clapping and praying and saying "ok swan fly away", as I walked toward him again.  He then began to walk away from me, gaining speed more and more.  I watched and heard his little webbed feet as they pounded and scratched the pavement that was not made for web feet.  As he gained speed he began to gain altitude but he also was wandering left out onto the interstate.

I looked back and pretty far away was a truck with a bed camper in the back.  I started really clapping and yelling, "come on swan, come on, faster faster".  I could tell as he was trying to gain vertical and he appeared to be tired.  We were standing on the backside of a hill, so we were beneath the draft he needed to get up under his wings.....here came the camper truck........Just as he got enough lift and the wind caught his wings he just barely cleared the camper top.  He continued gaining altitude as we jumped back in our car and followed him.  We exited the next exit (hard to drive btw while you are watching a swan) and saw that he went down on the other side of the interstate where I knew there was a lake...I was guessing but hoping at the same time.....We drove a few yards and pulled over but couldn't see the lake, so we went a little further til we could see a clearing in the trees and saw the water......and the swan.  HE FOUND IT!   There swimming, resting, drinking, and relieved was this swan.
I took a chance to save this poor bird from well.....you know.  It was a lesson for me that taking a chance to help someone else is yes rewarding for them, but the blessing in return far outweighs anything I have ever experienced.  Obviously this was not a person, but imagine if it was.  I can not tell you why I took an interest in this swan, but I am so glad I did.  Just as I am so thankful my Lord Jesus takes an interest in my life and He helps me.  He is powerful above all things, He is merciful, and He is King.  He stepped out of His own, became man so that He could save us, know what we deal with, help us, guide us and lead us to a life with Him.  A life where we can rest, drink from living waters, and live life relieved.
"Have you not known?  Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth and all living things, neither faints nor is weary.  His understanding is unsearchable.  He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength.  Even the youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles (or swans), the shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint".  Is. 40:28-31

That swan is still there and I noticed another has joined him.......like him we are never alone. Amen.

One2One Network & Blissdom 2011

One2One Badges

One2One is not one of those things that your find and forget.  It is one of those social media phenomenons that finds you when you post a lot about giving.  And most importantly it is one of those networks that really makes sense, works for the benefit of others and never lets go of your heart.  I am hoping that through my awareness, my blogging about and coming to a greater understanding of what they do it will get me closer to a greater ability to give back and of course hopeful of winning a trip to Blissdom 2011.
Tis the season for giving that is for sure and many and all charities are calling and getting their last minute requests out to make year ends quota.  Tis the season at One2One Network is more than just a season its a lifestyle of giving to help others.  It is helping others get in the mindset of giving back all year long and not just seasonally.  They "ignite conversation and spread awareness" for others about all different kinds of charities, brands, ways, collaborative efforts, opportunities to achieve and give and getting people connected in ways unlike before.
This past month and a half I was asked again to be an Ambassador for Macy's Department Stores and their new campaign for the season Heart of Haiti items sold in the stores.  It was another opportunity to give a gift that gives back. I really enjoy the people I met and got to talk to when I am involved with this sort of thing.  And I know whatever I am doing is making a difference in someone's life somewhere in the world.  That is the part I love best.  With six children I have had limited time to volunteer and give back of my time.  Most of my giving back has had to do with their lives and activities.  But, I have volunteered at a local Christian Women's Job Corp in Kerr County helping women achieve their goals, heal broken hearts and lead women to the One who knows them the best, Jesus.  I have volunteered in my local church singing and leading worship as well as teaching bible study.  I am helping to raise money for a local family whose 14 year old daughter has recurring Leukemia, by selling bracelets made by women in the Philippines through Threads of Hope that helps give back twice.  One to the family and one back to the women.  I also am partnering with Soles4Souls, 2 Minutes to Greatness, and 147 Million with my online tv show called Madre Minutes that airs twice a week on MomTV and Mingle Media TV.  I am hoping to raise awareness of these awesome ministries.
This message of giving back may seem trendy to some, but really that is what will make a difference in our self centered world.  And really isn't that what God did for us?  He gave the gift of His Son, Jesus, as a gift that saves souls and gives back......and keeps on giving.  Forever.  My hope is yes to possibly win a chance to get to Blissdom, but my greater hope is that more of you will join in with One2One Network and come to a greater understanding of the blessing you receive when you give and the difference it will make in your life and someone elses.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Visions Dance in Their Heads

I'm dreaming.......of the one I love.  I'm wishing....for my one true love.  I am dreaming and wishing I could say this is a picture of my tree......but it's not.  It is a picture take a few years ago when we all went to Disney World at Christmas time to meet up with Chandler's basketball team who was playing in a tournament there.  We went to the Christmas Choir performance and it was incredible.  This was one of the many trees around Disney World and on the stage that night.  I just thought it was pretty the way they had it lit like it glows.  I think this is how we think our trees are suppose to be......perfect.

Not quite like Disney's but this is the first year I have sort of done a themed tree.  I sent my husband out and daughter to get another pre-lit tree which we have to have due to allergies.  When they came back it was a much narrower than trees we have had in years past.  They thought I was upset it was smaller, but actually I think I felt liberated.  I was not sure how we would put all our ornaments on the tree.  Then the light went off in my head......I don't have to put them all on I can put on the ones I want to and maybe do a certain color and or themed tree.  O my, it was like a deliverance from a mindset that my tree had to look a certain way.  And.......and I got it decorated so much faster.....I used white, silver, crystal, gold and a little bit of blue ornaments.....I used some of the decorations I used for my daughters wedding like the white hydrangea, feathers beaded wire glitter adornments and I think it turned out really nice........
This visions of what our tree will look like dance in our heads, the details of Christmas all crammed in like sardines waiting to come to fruition all at once and in about an hour poof its gone and done.  It is in the small details that God wants to reside. Love is a gift.  His Love is our free gift.  He cares so much about our visions and dreams.  Yet, if we were to tell others those visions and dreams they may seem silly to them, they may discourage you from persuing them, but when you know that God has put them there, when you give them to Him and ask for His glory to shine through all those dreams ( cause lets be honest here.....He is the One that gives us the visions and dreams to start with) then you know He's got your back, He will be your strength, He will be your guide and your Rock upon whom you may stand when the going gets tough.  Life gets hard, but we stand firm and push harder.  With God ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE.
This one is for you Lai Lai & Boo......how bout BooLai Unique Boutique

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

He's Known Me Microscopic

Planning a birthday party is a big deal in our house.  Birthdays are huge and we love them. Full of traditions, presents, food, and maybe even a party.  The day you were born is very special. Yes this is a picture of me when I was born.  God's Word says in Jeremiah, "I knew you when you were in your mother's womb" and "the hairs on your head are numbered".  He knew me when I was microscopic.  He knows me that well.  He knows me better than I know myself.  I surprise myself sometimes with stuff that I do or that comes out of my mouth. I think after, "Gosh did that just happen and did that just come our of my mouth?"  Do I want to know that person inside?  Who is that person?
God always has a way of redeeming that person inside because Jesus is in there doing a mighty work and shining His light in those dark places that person seems to hide.  When I don't allow His light to shine there, or I ignore His calling my name, or think I can slough off His pruning cause I am too busy, then I am sadly mistaken.  I think that is when our mistaken identity slips out......"that person" who misses the mark and takes me down a road I never intend or want to go down.  I am mis-taken for someone else.  I allow myself to be taken.  For some reason I cross over, I allow, I ignore, I disregard the opportunity to commune with the Creator of the universe.  I fall short of His glory.  I don't know about you, but I wouldn't mind living in His glory.  From glory to glory like a hopscotch game never having missed a box or number in the square, hopping from one to the next in perfect rhythm, not stepping on any of the lines, landing on two feet then one foot knowing He will keep my balance, bending and stooping to pick up the prize (Jesus) in one of the squares, not faltering in any way and then when it's time for me to turn around and hop home, He helps me again to make it all the way back to Him.
This is His birthday gift to us every day. We don't have to have a mistaken identity.  We don't have to fall short and He wants to be with us, on our side, on our team in this game we call life hopscotching our way back to Him. Even when we falter He is there to get us back on track, back between the lines, with lines redrawn, His gift remaining steadfast as we continue on.  This is why He came to set us free from that sinful person that is no gift to us, but more like a disaster waiting in the wings.  Why is is so hard for us to receive the gift Jesus brings?  He brings the gift of Hope wrapped in swaddling clothes.  The fact that He has known me since I was microscopic tells me that when faced with His truth, His love, His character, His Spirit I must have an innate sense of who He is in me.   2 Timothy 2:13  "If we are unfaithful,he remains faithful,for he cannot deny who he is."  When we have Jesus living in us and when faced with His truth, He cannot deny Himself in us. It resonates, sounds the alarm, puts up a banner that Jesus is in the house. Hallelujah!  Receive His gift.