Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Finish

New Year, new word.

That's how it has been for 4 years straight. This year...Finish. Not like, I'm from Finland Finish, but to complete what I start.

I have a bad habit of seeing or dreaming up big ideas, and never seeing them through. That is honestly why I went into acting (for those that don't know, I have a degree in Theatre.) I was passionate about a new career every week! So, what is the best thing to do? Go into a field where you can pretend to be whatever you want and then move on...perfect for me, at least.

So, that is what I do. I find something that lights my fancy, for a time, and then I move on. When it gets too hard, or doesn't excite me as much as it did last week or I feel a nudge...

But this year, I want to start only things I plan on finishing. And finishing everything I commit too. So if I say no to you, don't take it personally, just trying to not overload so I can do all things well.

So, I plan on starting and finishing
-my running plan
-my healthy eating plan
-disciplining my children in love, not anger
-monthly date night
-weekly Bible Study
-Daily BCP and Scripture study

and who knows what else. David told me a quote he read on a local pastor's FB page and it is my subtitle for the year.

Desire doesn't change our destiny, discipline does.

May your year be one that you finish...well.


Oh yeah, and the music is new too! Some songs that I like, have liked and make me bop my head! uh,uh...feel it!

Monday, December 14, 2009

What if...

It's quiet...shocking,at 8:29 am. Millie is usually up and ready to go, but the Lord is giving me what I need...So I write, again, what I need.

As I have been thinking this Advent season, about the journey that Mary took, the logistics of the culture and details of her pregnancy and birth, I am seeing God in new places. Seeing how her trust in him, is more an inspiration to me than I realise.

As a woman, of such young age-I cannot forget, in that culture, the preparations that were made for the birth of a baby. Even if her own parents were disowning her, which I don't know whether they did or not, Elizabeth, she would want to help. She would be Mary's mother. But then, Joseph, deciding to be a man of moral character (which I'm sure made some snicker) agrees to go into Bethlehem for the census. She's in her last month...the ride/walk...and no one goes with them. Did Mary have to tell the women not to come with her? I couldn't have kept my mother away from my kids being born with a stick?! Did they sneak out in the middle of the night? Did they all go, but split up? Regardless, if the women who were set to be with Mary at the birth of her baby were there, no way, any of them would let her give birth in a stable, no way, they would have let her travel!!!

Mary, had enough trust and courage to do it alone. She didn't know what would happen, she didn't know how to do this...she barely knew her husband! How did it all go down? Did Elizabeth teach her what to expect and how to nurse? No La Leche league for her!

What if Mary had asked for what was rightfully hers? She had given up so much...her dignity, the name of her family-which back then...was everything, could she not have a decent birth?


And what if...what if Elizabeth thought too much of John's odd nature? Come on people, you know he always had to be a little off...but if he wasn't, would he have gone, into the wilderness? Maybe the oddities in our children are what God has placed there for them to fulfill? What if she wanted to medicate or analize the strangeness away...what if?

I question a lot and trust little. I am at the point that I recognize that. I am ready to step out except for one thing...what's out there? What else needs to be given up? ALL OF IT. So much that is "rightfully mine" is not promised to me. I believe it, I want to live it.

She lived a life of pain, I know it. How could you not when Jesus is your son? I can only imagine the difficulty. And yet...did she see her Messiah come? Did she know, like we think she did?

Tough thoughts I know, It's quiet now, but a cry is about to shatter the stillness, a cry that rocks the very framework of time, a cry that makes satan swallow hard and crack his knuckles and say "it has begun" (with a fearful arrogance that he actually thinks he has a chance...I think he still does think that...but we know differently) a cry that will be met by it's twin...later, of a much deeper voice, but the match to the cry of life, the cry of death. The quiet is about to be over.

Friday, November 20, 2009

My style...



I saw this picture and immediately said...."If I could wear anything today, this would be it" In case you wanted a glimpse into my style...once I drop my weight...this is it:




NEW MOON REVIEWS!! (SPOILER ALERT)

I know this a complete 180 from my previous posts, but thus that statement explains it all.

Twilight...it's so funny all the backlash...I like to call it TwiHaters. They come out of the woodwork at the mention...Questioning faith, fidelity and fantasy...to me, that has nothing to do with it. I think that every person, man or woman, needs to have something to get together with peers, enjoy themselves and have a moment to escape reality. That is the sole purpose behind theatre...thus...my BA. For my husband it is his golf trips, where he can go away with friends he trusts and let his guard down, do something he enjoys at a level that can only be handled twice a year. It refreshes him, reminds him not to take life too seriously and in the same moment that the people he loves are worth fighting for.

For me, Twilight isn't that extreme, but it's fun. Straight up.

Okay, so we went to see the 12:05 movie last night and it was a blast. Only the second opening night I've ever been too. We got into the theatre 2 hours early and got GREAT seats and thanks to Kristen had magazines to read and La'Walker had her DS to keep us busy. A couple things shocked me...how many GUYS were there and how many non-teenagers were there! Loved both of those!

So the movie starts (Pause: Pattinson's new movie Remember Me looks AMAZING! Not what I expected and seems to be a great roll for him) The look, the feel all of it is different...thank goodness. Edward is...wait a minute...he's smiling...a lot...he's laughing! Bella...did you just crack a joke?! This is madness!

Yes, you do have to live through Jacob's wig (which looks 150%better) longer than I would like, but it is worth it to see the supporting characters get much deserved screen time.
It's tough, RPatz does a great job...both he and Stewart aren't nearly as flat as Twilight. Such a refreshing change.

I have to say with ALL the leaks and trailers, the movie still surprised....didn't look anything like what I thought it would and the scenes that I felt I saw the entire thing...was wrong! Hooray!

Oh yeah...the new sparkle and running technique and special effects....SO GOOD!

Don't want to give anymore away, but I truly enjoyed the movie. The ending is not the New Moon ending...but OH My GOsh!!! I love it and I love HOW it directly ends. I wish there was more dedication to she and Alice on the plane, but honestly, this could have been a 4 hour movie.

I walked away and NOT once got annoyed with KStew! Shocking, I know! There is one scene that the entire theatre erupted in laughter...it's not meant to be funny. See if you can figure out which one it is.

Enjoy, would love to hear what you thought...can't wait for Eclipse. Audrina...you were missed...way too much.

Monday, November 16, 2009

...(pt 2)

God is gracious...when I'm angry He doesn't scold or take me to scripture that says be slow to anger...He holds me...He strokes my hair and sings me a lullaby...He understands and appreciates Righteous Anger.

I need to go further into the drive behind my last post...and the comments that went on it, showed me that I was not Righteous in my Anger, or at least only 1/2 way.

You see the anger towards the perversion not only pertains to the young girl, but to her mother. She, above all others, has her perception of love perverted. She has somewhere along the way, been shown that love is meaningless and intimacy matters to no one. That self, above all else, is the only thing worth protecting, at any cost. That once you mess up, you cannot go back. There are things that are "too bad" for God to forgive, and blood to redeem. She has believed the lie.

She has believed it, been defined by it and therefore passes that identity on to her daughter. My heart burns for the young girl...it breaks for her mother. She had no hope, no love and no truth.

You see, my passion is not only for the victims of sexual exploitation, but for those who feel the necessity to place them there. To rescue children from choices made for them, but to offer hope to their guardians that they are not forgotten, left behind or unable to recieve mercy. There is hope for all...I know that, I believe that...I pray that I live it.

Liberty for all.

...

I'm crying right now...slowly, painfully,quietly...it is hard to breathe and there is a not in my throat...those of you who know me, know that I cry for to reasons: Anger and for others. This is both.


http://www.greenvilleonline.com/article/20091116/NEWS/911160322/Police-now-searching-for-body-of-missing-N.C.-girl

If you paused to read it, then read on...if not...read it first.

I am truly nauseaous. 5 years old...her own flesh and blood...for men to have sex with. What the hell is wrong? Sorry, language is necessary here. My heart hurts for the children who have no choice, and know nothing different than perversion. It's not just about sex, it's about intimacy and the perversion of the most sacred of relationships. If a child cannot trust her mother...who can she trust?

I am an advocate of redemption...I live it, I believe it is the greatest thing offered to us by our God who loves and desires justice, but offers something better...to be redeemed, in the midst of injustice...but now...right now...I cry out for deliverance...for the Lion of Judah to roar in ANGER over the sick and evil perversion of what it means to love and be loved.

The fire inside me has been lit, fanned, and I can tell getting close to igniting...stand back, unless you are ready to ignite too.

Do justice, Love Mercy, Walk Humbly WITH my God....Micah 6:8


Monday, November 9, 2009

It's the time of year...

Ah, Johnny Mathis...Evie...Anne Murray. Those are three people that evoke the Christmas spirit within. So hard to believe it is already November, and it is moving along quickly. Pondering whether or not to decorate early this year, we will be gone for Thanksgiving and some of Christmas Vacay too, so I need to get the most out that I can. I do love fall, but when EVERYTHING turns to Christmas, it's hard to still get excited over harvesty stuff.

Aside from that dilemma...a lot going on in the Reichley house. From the bottom up:
*Millie is, well Millie (I think I say that a lot, if you know her, you know why). She turns 3 a month from today. This is the longest I have gone not getting pregnant! Praise the Lord! I am truly about to enter new territory. She is so girlie it is ridiulous...dances and sings (Jesus loves the little children, all the children of my mom-a little narrow sighted still). She is a blast and a pistol in the same moment

*Eli is in pres-school and doing well. He is a sponge, learning everything and retaining it. Crazy. He is addicted to the Science channel and his favorite show is Catch it Keep it. He also loves watching hours of File video on the Nasa channel. Fun. David put training wheels on the a bigger bike last night and he was thrilled...pray people, David is threatening to cut his hair. I KNOW!

*Logan (sigh) Logan. He is honestly the sweetest boy I know. Concerned about the planet, less fortunate and just about everyone. He has raised money for poor people ($15 with a water stand) and organized a trash pick up in our neighborhood. Logan, we have no doubt, will changed the world in a dramatic way. Getting there, is going to be a journey, but it is jaw dropping to look at him and you just KNOW that God has something very unique in store for him.

*Brennan is adjusting to 3rd grade. So am I. Lot's more work and grading. He made the honor roll this nine weeks and is doing well. Some behavioral stuff, but so far pretty good. Brennan is an enigma to me. I am trying to figure him out everyday. What makes him tick, and what does he want to do with himself and how to culitvate that...I'm tired just writing it. He is amazing though and we are working on harnessing all that knowledge.

*I am living in groundhogs day! Same thing day in and day out...I am trying to do it with purpose though and with passion. God has reignited several passions in me that have been dormant for a few months: teaching, Garden of Hope, pursuit of justice...he's also given me a few new ones, like hopefully going back to school. David looks at me cross-eyed whenever I say that. But if God wants it, He'll make a way.

*David...wow, do you have an hour? So much, and I have never been more proud of the man that he is. One of integrity and goodness. He has the fruit of the spirit evident in his daily life, and I am inspired. It is possible to carry what seems to be the weight of the world, with grace, dignity and elegance. All the while juggling life. Pray for him if you get a chance, that he will continue to be the man God enabled Him to be in the midst of storms and stress and doubt.

So that about does it for my random post. I hope you are all doing well, and are blessed to laugh with your Abba today. He likes you...a lot!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Healing

David found this on a catalyst blog today, I love him for knowing me so well, for knowing that Dan Allender knows my heart without knowing me and puts words to thought I haven't known yet. Be blessed...

100 Words by Dan Allender




Dr. Dan B. Allender serves as Professor of Counseling at Mars Hill Graduate School. He travels and speaks extensively to present his unique perspective on sexual abuse recovery, love & forgiveness. He is the author of The Wounded Heart and Leading With A Limp.









Healing





Healing is found in seizing the delight generously offered by Jesus for our weary, broken, angry, empty heart. It comes through following the wild goose into the presence of love; it quells the accusations of the evil one so we can hear the relentless invitation to lay our heart before our Beloved. It is in reconciled rest that our deepest burdens call us to come and play for the sake of love. Healing is never merely about our body or heart; it is always the outward movement of love to transform all ground by his holy and irresistible grace.

How have you found healing? Or how has it found you?


[Image via Joshua Longbrake]

Monday, November 2, 2009

Full

My love tank is pretty full right now. You know how it is one of those things that you don't know it's empty until you have felt it full! That is how I am right now.

my husband has loved on me in the best ways...being present...giving me a present...loving on me when I don't feel well...being himself (the guy in the room everyone enjoys and wants to know). Which makes me feel pretty darn good to be "that" guy's wife...before I would have recoiled into the "I'm not good enough for him and everyone knows it" place. But he knows now to show a little more PDA in settings now...we are growing and I feel loved.

My friends, between having the person you love and love who they make you around, it makes me bubble! David said that I act completely different around Gina. I asked him how and he said "You can tell that you trust her". That is huge! I never thought of it like that, but that is the most important thing for me. A simple thing like letting her cook for me...if you know me, that screams volumes.
Along with that beauty, Kim left me one of the best gifts I have ever gotten. It was something I needed, I wanted, I borrowed and yes I couldn't afford. Neither can she, but she gave it anyway. I love her for telling me in my note the reasons why I can't argue or question her for doing it. Basically just shut up and take it!!!
Then cheering Wendy and Kim on Saturday morning. David and I LOVE the race environment, enough that we feel the need to stay involved with it. Enough that I have convinced myself that I somehow AM a runner?! Not really, but it was great to see them kick it in!

My God. He is ever present with me. He has let me know in some of the most beautiful ways, ways that I appreciate and value...words. He speaks to me and laughs with me and dances for me when I squawk out a song for Him. I love Him...He knows that. He loves me...I know it too.

So this is why I am full today...my family will reap the benefits of it as I hug my children a little closer...am willing to work with Millie on her screaming and attitude...and begin to fill my husband's love tank with a clean house and dinner.

Without love...it doesn't mean a thing.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

It started with one...

Let this get you going today...1 person...taught 20,000 NORMAL people...how to make an impact



Be part of something great!
Mazal Tov

(thanks for the tip Rhodes')

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Perspective...

It all becomes a little clearer when you take a look around...

...Admission of an affair that will change the life of you and your children

...the news that you have 1 year to live

...the news that your child has a mass in the center of his brain

...belief that only the good and popular people get their prayers answered

all of these things have happened to people that my family and I care about.

It makes one silent...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Think Love, Think!

In High school, there was a teacher that would bring one phrase to mind..."Think Love, Think" Ms. Mcmurtry! She had that phrase hanging all over her classroom. A little brash and truly a teacher who wanted her students to learn...in the old school way, she encouraged (or threatened) students to not be spoon fed but to think it through.

Well I heard her voice echoing in my head yesterday as I turned the clippers on...I ignored it.

I just wanted to trim Brennan's hair up, it was a mop. Well, now he is headed for the Citadel. He wanted to KILL me. It is short, and the kids looks great with whatever haircut, but his hair has been long for a year and he wants to grow it out. It was beginning to curl in the back, so he was super excited...but I thought it was out of control.

His brothers did the best job of encouraging him, "you look so cool" -Logan
"I'll play with you Brennan, I'll be your only friend."-Eli
They all went and wore hats together and just were good brothers. Of course I took them to McDonalds and got them whatever they wanted AND a sundae, followed by renting a movie on a school night. I don't think that taught Brennan anything, but he forgave me and loved me again!! It's all about me right?!

So no, I didn't think...in fact, I convince myself that I went to the Horst Academy (Aveda headquarters) and that people should be begging me to cut their hair...

...yeah...not so much.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Retreat

It is a dreary day. Most people get depressed on days like this. I get energized. I feel like I can breathe deeply and take inventory of what I have...who I have. This is the kind of day, I would grab an umbrella and go shop, window shop, grab a cup of tea and read a book under the awning of a cafe...if I lived where cafe's were in abundance. But instead I do the other rainy day thing. Throw on George Winston, clean, cook and randomly tell my kids how much I love them and what I like about them. Yeah, I'm learning to not make that a rainy day thing.

Today proves that God knows me, knows that I needed to slow down and breathe, think...pray. When I feel isolated, I retreat. I start to slowly back away from people, things and start listening to lies. I have realized this weekend, just how much I have been doing that. Slowly inching backwards, not enough to cause a stir, but enough that some people are starting to notice. Not depressed, not down hearted, just retreating...

So what do I do? Well, God has given me people to make me realizes my vices and now that I realize, it is my job to do something about it. What shall I do? I will take steps back in, slowly, purposefully and intentionally. I will start pulling people back into my circles.

Enjoying the rest of this day, this moment is my favorite moment. Between day and night, closing and opening, beginning and end. The moment of remembering and planning for a new day. I live too often in this moment, it's what I know, it's where my comfort is. But it is also a moment of uncertainty, "did I make the most of today? What will tomorrow bring?" I like to live in questions...in questions, there are no answers and no definates, those scare me...why because I am a control freak and I like to have a say. Working on that too...

So as I pack my things up from retreating and begin to prepare to step out with purpose in steps I look to the Lord for His absolute love to bring me peace, wisdom and discernment. To be intentional in the words and choices I make, just on a daily basis. To protect my heart as I begin to put it out there again...wow that scares me...it's time to get back in the game.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The BEST!!!

Ahhh...another one down! The weekend that I love and dread and swear to do so much better with next year! Ramblin' Rose!

Yes, it's just a super sprint. Yes, it's a really easy course. Yes, it's all women (almost 1,000 this year!) But it is the BEST! Fun, empowering and a sense of accomplishment like never before.

This year we had 17 ladies. 15 participants and 2 cheerleaders. These women are from 3 different states, ages ranging from 27-54. Can you believe that?!!?!?! They are the best in their class.

We stayed Friday and Saturday at Lake Norman at a wonderful lake house. Yes, it rained, but it didn't stop us from getting in the hot tub and encouraged us to stay in our jammies and light a roaring fire (thanks Scout Wendy!!). It was truly a relaxing weekend. The best!

The food...my mom prepared dinner, baked banana bread and sent High Heel Sugar cookies. I don't need to say much about my mom's food (we all know it is the best) but she is the bestest!

Cheerleaders! For you to come get up early and wait around as people swim/bike/run...that is awesome. For you to do it when you are 3 weeks away from having a baby, while it is drizzling and you are taking care of your friends 6 week old! THE BEST!!!!

Speaking of, I have the most amazing family ever. As we are sitting there waiting for Kim and Me Mi to get into the pool (who btw, did awesome!!) K.Trone says "that looks like Courtney's dad" wendy replies" that IS Courtney's dad!" NO WAY!!!! My dad, mom, Steph's kids and David and our kids come prancing in, posters in hand and smiles on their faces!! A total surprise and so what I needed. Amazingly, amazing. I love you all and don't deserve you.

The best of our group...Lauren Beckner. I know, we aren't here to compete, but let's just think people...this warrior of a lady finished in the top 100...and she had her 6 WEEK OLD THERE. (She nursed while we were setting up our transition areas)...and...SHE HAD A C-SECTION! I know...we don't even compare ourselves to her when we are training...league of her own. So proud to have her part of our team...humbly the best!

The only way this can get better...is if YOU come and do this with us....as I say every year, if I can do it...trust me, You can too. You are the BEST!!!!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

I'm sorry...what was I thinking??

Tomorrow...

Tomorrow marks the beginning of a weekend that is going to be filled. Filled with fun, girl time, new friends, old friends, LOTS of catching up, laughter to tears and so much more.

All of that will be followed by nerves, tears, tears, hopefully no throwing up or peeing my pants.

It is the 3rd annual Ramblin' Rose Triathlon. This year we have decided to make a weekend of it and get a lake house on Lake Norman. There are 17 ladies this year from 3 different states and all walks of life. It has been a whirlwind to plan housing, meals and the BEST Gift bags ever!!!

In the midst of all this, it hit me today...I am so NOT READY FOR THIS THING!!!! I haven't trained enough and I don't have the excuse of being super sick this year. Why, oh why do I agree to do these things.

I will wear my markings for as long as I can, avoiding the soap that will wash them off. I will wear my SWEET t-shirt with pride and not be embarassed of the concert -t mentality. I will place my sticker for all to see on my van, no matter how dorky all my stickers look and pale in comparison to David's accomplishments.

I SHALL STAND TALL AND LIMP WITH PRIDE...FOR I AM...A TRIATHLETE!!!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Lemons and Lemonade

So life has handed us some lemons. Some being "hand-picked", others just put into our basket. So we are left, making decisions that leave our children crying at times (don't worry, nothing life shattering, just evaluating needs and wants) some leaving me crying(Lemon's usually do that to people), and all requiring a lot of Trust. Yeah, the BIG issue of my life. But I am getting clarity on it.

I truly know and believe that I trust in my God. But, do I trust myself? Do I trust that I am making the best decisions, or is David making the best decisions for our family? Not really. Do I trust that I/we won't mess things up big time? Not really. Do I trust that I am worthy of being called out of the boat? Now we are getting somewhere.

I wrote a post on this about a year ago, but God is pushing it in front of my face. Chris Brooks (because I am not permitted to call him Brooks!) did a talk some time ago about Peter getting out of the boat and walking on the water. It is clearly stated that he began to sink because of doubt, but doubt in who? Jesus called him out on the water and love able Peter went without thinking it through (at Wayfarer we like to call that "Go before Know") That is why we love him, reckless abandon. But as he began to think, or hear lies, he began to doubt. Did he doubt that Jesus could keep him afloat, or did he doubt in his worthiness to be called out of the boat for such an amazing task?
I have heard it said A LOT about Peter taking his eyes of Jesus and just keep our eyes on Him and we will not sink (which I don't think is necessarily correct) but what hits me about it, is that Jesus didn't let him sink. He BEGAN to sink, but Jesus grabbed his hand pulled him up and tossed him in the boat.
It's a partnership, I have a part in it and for me to be effective, I need to find that "part" (which I have) and believe that I am worthy, as worthy as everyone else, to act that out. And when I begin to sink because of doubt, which I will, He'll pull me up, toss me in the boat for a bit, and call me back out again. Why, because He is good and He has faith in me and He loves me when I can't look Him in the face.

So Lemonade...I don't know, maybe a Lemon Pie or Garlic Lemon Pasta, but we'll do something with these lemons. and it will be great...

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

New Read

First let me say that I type this with a batman mask on and little "millie fingers" poking me in the eye. Why, you ask...because I'm a mom, and mom's have to do some silly things sometimes. So excuse the typos.


I am reading a book that is refreshingly rocking my world. Refreshing, because it isn't smacking me in the face, stopping me in my tracks or anything like that. But it is taking me back to foundational beliefs that I have and have always had, but refining them.



Forgotten God, by Francis Chan


So good, and Exactly what I need right now. There are parts that, eerily, feel as though were written for me. (addresses Greenville!) Chock full of scripture and not opinion, calling you to step away from the book, again and again and get into the Word and communion with God. Just good, good stuff.


Be Blessed. Batman...out.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Cooped Up.

I have been struggling with a nasty illnes for about a week now. So, I am staying cooped up and am getting close to cabin fever. I need to go out today, only to get a load of lysol and pick Eli up from school. You know how you start to just think about all the germs floating around, don't do that, it's depressing. So I am just earnestly praying my family doesn't get it. If they don't, God gets ALL the glory, because it will be a miracle. If they do, He gets glory anyway.

So, as my head is floating and my eyes are blurry, I have nothing witty, creative or thought provoking to say...nor do I have the energy to copy a page out of a Brennan Manning book (even though I could everyday and it would revolutionize your and my thinking).

So, back to bed I go for another hour until I can grab that Lysol.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Excerpt from The Furious Longing of God

"And then a moment in Jesus' life that is more shrouded in mystery, denser with misunderstanding and incomprehensibility than perhaps any other.
Jesus, the eternally beloved Son of the Father, is abandoned by His Abba. Sin appears to have its way over the entire world. For the first time since He was an infant, Jesus feels Himself to be without the sustaining presence of His Abba, and inner bleakness of forsaken aloneness in the desolation of abandonment.
In a scream that surely split the sky:
My God, My Abba. Why, Why Have You Forsaken Me Now?

St. John of the Cross said it will never ever be given to any human heart to understand the depth of desolation, utter abandonment, indescribable, loneliness and complete forsakenness that lay behind Jesus' cry. But even in that cry, there is no indication that Jesus ever lost trust or hope or confidence in His Abba.

After 35 years of praying over the passion and death narratives in Luke's gospel, French biblical scholar Pierre Benoit believed that the Abba of Jesus spoke to His Son as He hung naked, nailed to the wood with spit dripping down His face, His body bathed in blood. And Benoit believes the words Abba spoke were words from the Hebrew Scriptures, Song of Songs 2:10-14

Come now, my love. My lovely one.
Come.

For You, the winter has passed
the snows are over and gone
The flowers appear in the land,
the season of joyful songs has come.

The cooing of the turtledove is heard in our land

Come now, my love. My lovely on.
Come. "

-Brennan Manning

Thursday, August 13, 2009

so good.

I am sitting...all is quiet...so I type.

Hmmm...what shall I type about, there is SO much swirling in my head, I mean so much. Ah yes, just picked a thought to land on.

This past week our church has been having a series of worship services in the evening. They were really,really great. Can I be honest, without people jumping all over me (spiritually that is? I felt very oppressed when I went in. It makes sense, I mean, Satan doesn't stay out of churches, and I tried to make a conscious "cleansing" effort each night. I am not saying that the Lord wasn't there, because He was, but just putting it out there. I really have just thought of this as I have begun typing...so random.

ANYWAY, that is not what I wanted to write about, but it sets the stage. Tuesday, a friend prayed for me that God would come to me with joy. I nodded in agreement and then flinched a little. Am I not joyful? Well, I would never say that people think that of me, or I of myself. So I started looking at people who approached me.
-Yep, I would say she's joyful
-oh, absolutely joyful, always with a smile and a compliment, heartfelt at that.
-Oh my, yes she bubbles over with joy, not happiness, true joy.

Man, I want to be joyful.

Anytime people are asked what they think of me, the words that come out are honest, truthful...not happy,joyful,full of life. What happened to me along the way? I used to be able to say I was a happy person, now, I'm an honest person? YIKES!

Audretta told me a few days ago about a sermon her pastor gave, about the fruit of gentleness. In it he said that this is a fruit of the spirit, available to everyone, it's not a gift that some have and others don't. WHAM! That hit me. I use that excuse all the time, for most of the fruits.
-Patience, is not something I possess (um, it should be)
-I am not a person of gentleness (whose fault is that)

I realize that I do not evoke most fruits of the spirit. Gosh, is that humbling. So, for the next, however long it takes, I am going to yearn to possess and express those fruits.

Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, goodness, gentleness,faithfulness and self-control. I am commanded to live those out, as they are already given to me.

So good when God hits you where it hurts.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

raw

I wishing I were talking about my diet. I would love to be able to eat raw, all the time...but alas, lack of discipline and funding, and house full or kids raised on hot dogs and chicken nuggets, leaves me here.

So, by raw, I mean myself.

I feel stripped down, to my core, my soul. I have been broken, empty, overwhelmed and worn out, but this is different. I have nothing left, and yet, I am beginning to be filled.

It all started in April, when the Brooks family dropped the bomb, the Mother bomb...they were leaving. (cursor, just sitting and blinking as I think...it still stings). It has all worked out for the good of them that love the Lord, but it is still painful, that dull pain that is constant and everywhere. Today on the phone, it sharpened as I realized how much I miss my friend. It THROBS, when Eli daily asks for Simon to come over, or how he is saving half of his cookie for Simon. It hurts. I don't want it to go away though, it reminds me how much they mean to our family and how much I love and am loved.

But pair that with other circumstances in our life right now...and I am raw. But have realized so much in the past few days. As I lay face down before the Lord, seeking direction for myself and others, I have noticed that my soul is speaking, not me. My soul that longs for it's creator and knows more than I know, or ever thought I knew. My soul that has seen my God...not my spirit or my gut...but my soul. Enveloped and inhabited by the Spirit of a living God, it is ministering to me.

When my mind, my gut, my heart; have nothing left...all is quiet.

My soul begins to sing, a song of knowing, a song of trusting...a song of love that it has experienced.

I am raw, but I am not defeated.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

More than meets the eye.

THANK YOU! To all of you that encouraged me with comments, facebook messages and personal words. My last post was just a vent, but proved to be so much more. Thank you, again.

So, on to what that post was originally supposed to be. A call to arms (at least for me)
While at my parents, I watched only a couple of movies...a few times each. Transformers(1st) and Prince Caspian. I walked away each time, just filled with...adrenaline. I love a good action movie...a GOOD action movie. But these two movies, stirred something, in my soul.

There is a point in Transformers where Shia and Megan (blech) are standing in front of Bumblebee (my favorite) after he reveals who he is to them and transforms back into a car. He opens his door and Megan Fox rants about not wanting to get into the car after just seeing what it is. Shia replies (something like)

"50 years from now, do you want to wonder what would have happened if you had got into the car?"

YES! That sets it all into motion...the fight.

Caspian, the end of the movie just makes my soul want to just jump out of my body, for real. It is like something in me knows the power behind those images and knows which side I am on (BTW, I LOVE the part when the river throws back his hair, so beautiful!) But the faces of the men (on both sides of the battle) looking at Lucy on the other side of the bridge. She should be afraid, she should be a little scared. Then Aslan walks up...

All of these images re-birthed inside of me the desire at the core of us all (or should be) to fight for something greater than ourselves. Whether or not I make it out alive isn't the point, the point is I am engaging in it. What is I never "get in the car" what will I miss...I think a lot.

Read the story of Jonathan and his Armor Bearer (1 Samuel 14) and see what it means to get in the car. I want to be about more than what is seen...

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Grow up.

I am in PA...excited to reconnect with some long-since friends...makes me realize that there are several people in this world, who knew me well and accepted me, and dare I say liked me...even before I knew that was what they were doing. I miss them...I miss a lot of people, that I never thought I would. I realize that when I go on Facebook. I wish I could sit down and REALLY chat with people.

I also realize that I still live in High School when I come back here. The same people that would be nice to you, depending on who you were dating or friends with (that particular week) are still the same way.

Exhibit a:
Go to Giant Eagle (the world's best grocery for many reasons) and run into a former classmate. My mom sees her first, I try to dodge (as I am VERY self-conscious about my weight, looks, etc and only have 2 kids with me to blame it on!) but I suck my gut in, walk over and it begins
-Hey, how are you?
-You look great!
-I hear you have...how many?
-Just 4, not what people think...
-Oh, well I have 5, so I understand
-(I am thinking) and you are still a size two with the cutest hair cut ever...I hate you
-(I say) Great to see you.

As this conversation goes on I see her out of the corner of my eye. One of "those" girls I mentioned above. She looks EXACTLY the same and I see her double take me...great, she's checking out my thighs!
I turn to actually smile and wave, when she quickly turns away...I understand...then as I am checking out there she is again, then in the parking lot...by this time. Bitchy me is out! BRING IT!
I see that same smirk I saw at the High and see her get on her cell phone as soon as she gets in her car. As she drives off, she is grinning...I can list the people she called to say
"You will not believe who I saw at Giant Eagle!"

Seriously...as much as you want to fight it...that stuff kills...wounds reopen, doubts and lies flood in. what is wrong with people. Do you realize I graduated...15 years ago! I mean, COME ON! Sadly, there are more people in that category than I would like. It stinks...I'm different, I would have thought they were different...

would have thought they would have taken the chance to grow up and move along.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

5 senses

This month at church, we have been taking part in the One Prayer movement, inviting pastors from all over into our church via pre-recorded message. I usually don't like this, but these have been really good. Today was the last week of this and the message was really good. It was from a pastor in Georgia, Jentezen Franklin.

He wasn't the best speaker, a little old school for my taste, messed up on words/phrases several times...but the content of his message...wow, I really needed that.

He compared the 5 kings that Joshua killed to our 5 senses. In Joshua 10 Joshua pulls the kings out of their caves (bringing them to light) then puts his foot on their necks, tells the people to not be afraid, but courageous, then slays them and hangs them from a tree as a reminder.

Jentezen said how we need to get our feet on the necks of our 5 senses sometimes, and the sense that stuck out to me the most was smell. He said how when the 3 bad *(^es went into the fiery furnace, they came out not even SMELLING like smoke! How often to we go through "fiery" situations and come out smelling like it too, and for how long? I, like Jentezen, don't want to smell like the situations I go through...we all know those people that reek of what ever tragedy has hit their life...I do that too often...but recently have decided that if I claim freedom in Christ, I must live it too. Another way of saying Explained not Defined.

He went on to say that if we are in a situation that stinks or we ourselves are smelling of smoke...light some incense...praise the Lord oh my soul. The priests had to do it after a sacrifice, why shouldn't I. It gets rid of the smell, and not only gets rid of it...replaces is...redemption.

I want to smell of redemption...I want to reek of it. I want to omit the fragrance of one who has been in the fire and comes out unharmed.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Whew...

So much has happened since I last wrote
*Eli and Millie went up to Mame and Papa J's
*My neice (maddie) and her friend (sydney) stayed with us for a week and some change
*We not only completed Wayfarer Camp, we KNOCKED IT OUT OF THE PARK!
*My kids have grown leaps and bounds in a few weeks.
*I have fallen in love with my husband all over again
*I have been reminded of what it feels like to live as God intended you too.
*I have gained almost all my pre-1/2 marathon weight back
*Brennan is now having a week on his own with my parents
*I am learning how to cope...when I want to fight

Alot of that I will expound on later. If I may brag on camp a little. It was...outstanding, exhausting and inspiring. I LOVED seeing my husband use a passion and gift, every part of it, some for good and some to bring good out of bad. I must say, that I truly believe there is not a more creative, christ-minded group of people as that at Wayfarer. I really believe that. God has brought this group together, for this time, and has blessed them with the ability and prayerfully, humility to do what they do. Hard to explain, never forgotten. Camp did not just come and go, however, it was as Rhodes says "a movement, not a monument". This will never be duplicated, for many reasons, but will propel us into the next phase. I am fastening my seat belt. That's for sure.
It was so great to not only see these kids take the opportunity to be responsible in their lives and faith (and wow, they did) but also my kids. Brennan and Logan were a joy to have there.

So exciting to see life, lived with God, the co-authorship thing, because clearer by the minute.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Surprisingly enjoyable.

This week was, well, to put it nicely...awful. I think I go ahead and add at least another 3 sessions onto my kids future therapy for this one. However, today has ended up rather well.

David sent me out to do some errands for him today, on my own. That is what I consider retail therapy. Even though I wasn't shopping for myself, I was shopping...without kids. I even got an iced coffee to celebrate...wow. Anyway...

So I get home and David mentions an idea...let's go to Paris Mtn (a state park about 20 min away) and cook out. Ummm...I don't do state parks, or any woodsy thing...(kind of like Bella with cold wet things...you know). I don't know how I survived TMI bootcamp, I really don't. Ask me about this if you need to.

So we go and miss the rain, by about 20 minutes. Make our way in and find a place to set up. We are going to grill and then go to the amphitheater to hear some blues.

Well lo and behold, the rain plan is for the music to be moved into the shelter across the creek. So we had our own shelter, our own field, a stream, woods and now music. It was a wonderful evening. The kids enjoyed, got a long, didn't get into trouble and ate all their food! Grilled corn, steaks, and smores...mmmmmm.

We decided to hike a bit (that means walk through the woods on an almost paved trail!) Of course, what do we see 10 feet in...A SNAKE! It was a baby and more like a worm, but STILL! I freak and am ready to go, Logan is thankful that God let us see a snake, Brennan is following my lead and Eli is looking for it's mom and dad. Oh dear.

We trudged on for a bit and then had to return so we didn't get locked in the park.

It was great, we will be back many times and no, I won't be camping. I must draw the line somewhere.

Monday, June 8, 2009

He does all things well.

Yesterday at church, we watched a video sermon from a man named Dino Rizzo. Now, I think if David and I were to have one more, his name would be that...Dino Rizzo. So perfectly italian-o!

That is neither here nor there. He spoke on the passage in Mark, when Jesus heals the blind and mute man. When Christ was finished it says that the people couldn't stop talking about it and said "He does all things well." To me, this was evident, in the scripture. One part made it all clear. When he healed the deaf and mute man he began speaking...clearly! Not only did this man regain hearing and the ability to speak, but he was able to speak. Watch any movie on Helen Keller or hear a hearing impaired person speaking and you can understand the awe. Not only that, but he knew words! How does a deaf mute know words????? How does his tongue now how to move or lips for the vowels? How does his voice box and palate know how to resonate? Because God does all things well.

I think when I get to heaven I will find these people, the 2 blind men, this man, the bleeding woman...all who were healed. What was life like after? I have it in my mind, because I too am one that is healed...and life after isn't at all what I expected it to be.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Green and Copper

Those are the two colors running around my house. I am living my childhood all over again.
Floaties, wet towels, the smell of chlorine, the cutest tan lines ever and the dreaded blonde nightmare...green hair!

It has been one week that we have been going to the pool and already...the green monster! And yes, before you start leaving comments, I know how to get rid of it! had to do it my entire life, until I was old enough to make my own decisions, and at that point, I was living at the beach! (that is a joke people, I made my own decisions before that!)

Poor Eli, it is like I am looking at Kelly Bedillion! Shiny, super blonde, kind of seaweed looking Hair! I know that the next phase is super shiny, chlorine damaged bleachy hair! Millie is just bleaching out and super tan. Logan has too short hair and Brennan and I are in the straw stage. I just laugh and start to gag a little thinking of the tomato juice at the end of the summer. I don't know if they (or I) will be able to handle it.

Speaking of, I remember one year when I had to do the tomato rinse, all my mom had in the house was a bottle of Clamato juice. Oh gosh, so nasty. Burnt my eyes too.

Summer is officially here and if you see some green headed "monsters" walking around town, those are mine! And I LOVE it!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Disclaimer

Before someone goes and posts a passive aggressive, blanket statement blog post on my previous blog post...let me clarify.

Brag on your kids. I don't do it enough, as I said I fault on the side of not enough. This stems from my childhood. There were "those kids" who would treat you however they wanted, because they knew they could. Their parents thought they could do no wrong, and they knew it. My parents got sick of it and so did I. I don't want to do that, and as I said...to a fault.

It doesn't bother me when parents brag on their kids, it bothers me when they only share the good. I tend to be drawn to mother's who admit that their kids drive them crazy, they aren't perfect and don't know how to deal sometimes. It makes me feel sane, not alone and somewhat normal.

So brag away, and I hope to balance out my venting with praise for my children.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

I have to.

I am sorry, I don't know why this annoys me about other people, it is perfectly acceptable, but for some reason, I get ill about it. I find myself not doing this, to a fault. A HUGE fault. To other people or the people it really matters to. I'm talking about bragging on my kids.

But, today, I can't contain it. I am going to read this to them when I am done typing, and letting them see that it is on my blog for all the world to see!!!!!

Yesterday was Logan's end of the year program and today was Brennan's. They sang a few songs, showed us a picture story of the year. Then we went back to their rooms and they did a student led conference where they walked us through their writing portfolios for the year, their goals for the year in math and reading and their MAP test results (standarized testing). It was so cute, because you can tell that they had practiced for the conference. Logan brought out his writing and stumbled through his presentation:
"Here you can see, um, that at the the beginning of the year, I only drew a picture and wrote the name of it. Now you can see that I write words and use pungtwation."
Then her brought out his test scores. You have to know that with Logan, we fought hard to keep him back in Kindergarten. We didn't think he was ready AT ALL for first grade. Strictly academic. So here are his results
Beginning Reading score-155
Goal to raise 15 points
End Reading score-182

Beginning Math score-165
Goal to raise 15 points
End Math score-186

Rigby reading level went from a 4-12~!!!!!!!
He surprised, surpassed and impressed his teacher and David and I. Keep shocking up Logan!!

Brennan had his conference today. Same details as Logan. Brennan has tested for the gifted program and is even a teacher's helper, so we have always known that he is a smart little guy, I guess we just had never seen numbers

For the testing and average second grader is at a 179 at the beginning of the year and a 190 at the end, for both math and reading. Here are Brennan's results:

Beginning Reading Score-190
Grow 10 points
End Reading score-210

Beginning Math Score-194
Grow 11 points
End Reading Score-212

So as you can see he surpassed as well.

I have no idea what other kids scores were in the class, and neither do they! That is the way it should be! They set the goals and they beat them! I love my boys, I don't show them enough, but I am BLOWN AWAY at how they grow and learn and hunger after knowledge. I pray I continue to create enviroments where they can creatively do that.

So here are two boys, who spent the first few years of their lives watched by someone else, in a home that was not their own while I worked. Went to 1 year of pre-school and are now in public school. They are thriving, excelling and exceeding even their own expectations! Way to buck the status quo boys! Keep it, for the lifetime to come!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Take my breath away.

Has it ever happened to you?







You see him out of the corner of your eye. You know you shouldn't look, but you must, just one little glimpse. Before you know it, you can't pull yourself away, you have to remind yourself to breathe. His beauty, just his very presence is enough to leave you breathless, speechless...








If it's so wrong why does it feel so right? He will never be mine, but maybe...no, I shouldn't. I know it's wrong, I should leave now. But David, understands. I know it is lust and I know it is wrong, but isn't there room for him in my life.








That happened today, when I stumbled upon pictures of him. My heart literally skipped a beat. Him, just setting there...waiting for me. We are a perfect fit, just waiting to be matched. Someday...maybe just. Do you have the same reaction?








Oh Christian Louboutin, why do you taunt me so? Is it so wrong to want you more than I should? Someday, those 8 1/2 stilettos and I will be making our way into the night...

Hmmmm

Trying to decide which that to write about first...do I go:
-Instrospective
-Opinion-etive
-mother-etive
-shooting-off-at-the-mouth-etive

I will need to think on that. For now I am off to the gym to get my workout on. Joy.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Monday on steroids.

I heard a dj on the radio this morning, say that the Tuesday after a long weekend is like a Monday on steroids. I agree.
I could see it in David's face this morning. The week is already one day short, but the same amount of stuff needs to get done.
I could see it in my kids as it is taking a little longer for them to "get going' this morning.
I can feel it in myself when a "latte lite" hasn't even lifted the fog. I downed it in like 2 minutes too, I guess I thought that would speed it up?!
Still can't see straight though.

This wasn't just a normal weekend for us though. David and his golfing buddy's went down to Daniel Island to live the life and pretend they were members at a new inclusive golf club. (Thanks Johnson for feeding the fantasy!) I was at home having one of the toughest "mom" days that I have had...in a while if not thus far. That was thankfully followed by a good girls night at my neighbors house as we had a surprise birthday shindig for another neighbor. We had good food, played a little game of Operation and watched the best videos from the 80's A-Z on VH1.

Then Saturday. We had our "intimate" circle over to celebrate our 10 year anniversary. Again! It was wonderful. David surprised me by popping in our wedding video, and our friends surprised us with writing us beautiful letters and getting us a door knocker engraved with our name. It was so ,wonderful.

Sunday.
After church I hosted my first ever Gold Party. It was not well attended, but the people that came walked away with cash. From $54 for a chain to $180 for a handful. It is so worth it, and I got a piece of the commision! Let me know if you want to have one! That followed by a fun night of community group with Kickball and a Sundae Bar! David and I watched Australia way too late into the night. It was worth it thought, much better than i expected.

Monday.
The kids slept in...a little. First visit to the pool. Millie did great! The boys loved it, and mom forgot to put sunscreen on them. First visit, come on! It was overcast too, I should know better. (I was layering on the Aloe before bed...I know, I know!) Then an impromptu cookout with the cul-de-sac. Cornhole, Connect Four...good times! Have I mentioned we have the best cul-de-sac EVER?!

So now we are on Tuesday. Wow, where has the week gone? K-4 meeting at school, millie singing to me as I type and Eli and Elephant snuggled in close. I may get back in my PJ's and we may lay in bed all day. My kind of Monday!...I mean Tuesday.

Monday, May 18, 2009

The week...

...that seems to go on and on.

Baseball. Let me be more specific...D5 baseball. Every year, I ask David WHY, oh WHY did we sign Logan up for this? Our lives are not capable of handling this right now. This week we have 3 games and practice. He is 6, I have 3 other kids, it is not a good combo. The worst part is that David and I can't both be at the games. We just can't take the kids out there, especially Millie. And no, it isn't like it was when we were kids and "grew up" at the fields, times have changed and people have changed. It isn't what it used to be.

Meetings. How do I not work and still have meetings? I really can't complain about this, I enjoy it. Conversation, maybe coffee, brainstorming! I enjoy all of those things. All of my meetings have to do with creativity and worship, so I am SUPER excited about that. Just fitting them into the baseball schedule is a bit tricky.

Gold Party. Having a gold party Sunday, come over if you can, this is not so stressful. Make a few apps, and sit back and let my friends make money. Who thought of this stuff? Thanks though!

Anniversary. Thursday is David and my actual 10 year anniversary. Oh, how I wish we were back in London. Seriously feel, almost...homesick. I would love to insert every part of our lives into that city. Kids, marriage, work, church, all of it. Maybe someday.

Crazy week, but the fog is starting to lift and the coffee is almost done. I could be going stir crazy and wishing for something to do. For now, I will clean the kitchen, get Millie dressed (Eli's already dressed) and get the day going.

Deep breathe....(inhale) Abba...(exhale) I belong to you...repeat...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Rainy Days and Saturdays.

Thanks to all of you who have continued to follow me over here on blogger. I hope this is a good transition.

So, I am sitting here on a Saturday mid-morning, while David has Eli at a birthday party, Logan is taking care of Millie (covering her with a blanket on the couch and getting ready to read her a book) and Brennan is up in his room reading (not by choice!) ...I think that is everyone. I will say with 4, I am always wondering if I have everybody. That hasn't changed.

I had a great time last night out with friends. Some new, some I wish I knew much better and some that I just love spending time with. It was a great relaxing time. I got my baby fill and my cannoli fill...well, I can always have more of both.

It's raining now, and we are just killing time before we meet some other friends for lunch at On the Border. I am living for their Guacamole right now. Mmmmm, that sounds so good.

It is interesting that we are leading the community group at church, learning and talking about how exactly HEALTHY community is formed and continued. It seems to me that my circles of community is a living thing. Expanding and contracting constantly. I think the one thing I have learned, and would like to share on this rainy Saturday, is that community and friendship are NOT interchangeable words.

I have several "communities" in my life, sometimes more than others. But within those communities, I don't always have "friends". And even more so, intimate friends. I am not one to have 100 Best Friends, I do have more than I ever thought I would and they are scattered all over, but it is still a small number. But to bring friendships out of community, you need to invest, in other and their lives (all of it, especially if children are included) and choose them. I believe that choice creates a necessity for them.

Just rambling about my constant learning.
Thought on community?

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Welcome!

Please do come in!

For those of you new here, you can track back old posts at my former residence:

creichley.wordpress.com

For those of you who found my change of address, thank you for following.
I am looking forward to this venture on blogger, as I now have the ability for one of my other passions, music. That is important to me. As are the super cute backgrounds you can put on here!

Thanks for coming over, and the door is always open.