Archive for May, 2007

They’ll Never Know the Half of It

I do not have time to be writing on this blog this morning. I have five – count them FIVE – lessons to finish for my taping for Life Today this weekend. But I am also out of Midol and I’m hoping that blurting a few things out there in Siesta land will make me feel better. Keith and I had a perfectly wonderful morning until 11 seconds before I was pulling out of the driveway when he teased me about something and hurt my feelings. No, made me MAD. As mad as a hornet. A hornet with PMS. I knew I had to stop by the Walgreens on my way to work to get women’s personal supplies so, after waiting on the world’s longest stop light, I wheeled into the parking lot with considerable expression. (I’m not one given to road rage but I am on occasion given to husband rage.) I made a bee-line to the feminine supply aisle, looked through 47 different kinds (for crying out loud, I want choices at Starbucks. Not on the feminine aisle! What ever happened to two simple categories??? Next thing you know they’ll have supplies for women with highlights and without, with stay at home jobs or corporate careers. Oh, I am in such a bad mood).

THEN, TO TOP IT OFF, after I finally make my choice and am standing there balancing two jumbo size economy boxes, a man (did you hear me say A MAN?????) came right up to me and said, “I just wanted you to know that I just finished ‘Get Out of That Pit’ last night and it meant so much to me.” I nearly sent him back to the pit. OK, not really. He was so sweet. Now you’ve made me feel guilty. I nearly sent myself to the pit. There I was trying to act normal, with two (did I emphasize HUGE?) boxes of feminine supplies under my arm like a man would hold two footballs. It was the longest short conversation of my life.

I don’t know if I was just humiliated or having my first hot flash but then I started to sweat. I am in the worst mood. On my way to work I made my usual stop at Starbucks and after I made the order, I felt the first real stir of the Holy Spirit that I’d felt in a half hour and, under divine influence alone, blurted out, “You better make that a decaf today.”

To top it off, Keith hasn’t tried to call me yet. I’ve been dying for him to call so that I can let it ring and not answer it.

And here’s why I’m telling you all this. Because I am in the middle of researching the Book of Esther for the next study God is leading me to write and a good while back I chose the subtitle: “It’s Tough Being a Woman.” I just want to tell you in advance that, because I’m going to have to be proper in my approach, when I get to the end of that Bible Study, there won’t be a soul on the earth but a full grown woman who will know the HALF OF HOW TOUGH IT IS TO BE A WOMAN.

Sniff.

I love you, my fellow Siestas. And if you’re not a siesta, you might want to wait until tomorrow to talk to me. I’m in no mood today.

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It’s That Time of Year

When I married a student minister and speaker, my wedding vows included, “I promise to love you, cherish you, be faithful to you, and follow you to as many camps as I can humanly take as long as we both shall live.” I think the second summer of our marriage we were only home for three weeks. This summer, our sixth married summer, will be a little less hectic. I’m thankful for that since I have no idea what I’m getting into by taking a toddler to camp. Tomorrow is the big day when we’ll load everything but the kitchen sink into our car and head off to our first one of the summer. We’re so excited!

Since your one and only comment moderator is going to be off in the piney woods of East Texas, presumably without Internet access, the blog is going to be a little quiet this week. My mom might post, but you won’t see any of your comments until I get back into town. My parents will be at a Life Today taping at the end of the week, so Bethie might be a little out of touch too.

For our Boone girls who are eager to get their commissioning, keep an eye on the LifeWay event recap page. They should post it soon. I’ve provided a new link to it on the left side of the page for future reference. They have recaps for a ton of events, so if you’ve attended one in the last two years you might see yours listed.

Yesterday, Memorial Day, I thought a lot about my grandpa. If he had still been alive I would have written him a little email or left him a message thanking him for serving our country so bravely. Last month I took a picture of the shadow box we have that contains his medals.

If you look very closely at his picture within it, you can see the hole in his cheek where he had been shot. Part of the bullet traveled down to his heart and remained there for the rest of his life. He had that picture taken to mail to my grandma so that she would know what he was going to look like from then on. Fortunately, the doctors were later able to patch it up better so that you couldn’t see the hole.

And this is a picture I forgot to post of my grandpa with that bunny I told you about in this post. One of the bunnies is a decoy and the other is the famous Thumper.

See you next week!

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Boone Recap

View it here on GodTube.

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A Tribute to Travis Cottrell

Beth and Travis are serving at the Living Proof Live event in Boone, North Carolina, this weekend. What makes this event so special is that Boone is Travis’ hometown! In honor of this big weekend, many friends and family members, the LifeWay team, the Living Proof Live team, and Beth put together this Tribute to Travis Cottrell. I’m so excited and so thankful to be able to share it with you all. Travis is such a huge part of Living Proof Ministries. I can’t tell you how much all of us LPM girls love him, Angela, Jack, Lily Kate, and Levi. I hope you will enjoy this video as much as I did. And if you’re like me you might need to have a tissue handy.

Many thanks to Rich and Stephen for helping us get this on the blog!

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Living Proof Live – Boone, N.C.

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Esther

Today is a big day for our Beth. After many weeks of studying and researching for Esther, today she will take on the vital task of writing the outline for the Bible study and video lessons. Everything in the study stems from this outline. Please pray for Beth today and ask God to give her His thoughts, creativity, organization, and vision for this project. She will also work on it tomorrow and Monday, but today is the most important day. Thanks, siestas!

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One More Thing, My Dear Siestas

A few minutes ago, I jotted AJ (Amanda) an email to let her know that I had posted the commissioning for our “Sistas” and my spell-check objected and insisted that I call you my “siestas.” It made me laugh.

And made me hungry for an enchilada. Then ready for a nap.

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Belated Albuquerque Commissioning

My Darling Albuquerque Sisters, please forgive me for not getting your commissioning up until now! My delay could not possibly be a poorer reflection of my high esteem and deep affection for you. I totally loved my time with you. You were a terrific group and hand picked by God for that exact weekend. So gracious and compassionate. As you remember, I had just buried my Dad a few days before I came and, although God granted me complete focus and engagement while I was there, I returned to mountains of details to still take care of regarding his death…and my own grief to deal with. And in the process, I lost my notes of the commissioning! Dad blast it! Thank goodness, my buddies on the LifeWay event team had copied it and posted it and I was able to get it from them. I love you dearly and I am so thankful for you. For all of you who were not with us, our text that weekend was Philippians 2 if you care to read it first then reflect upon the charges below.

I am deeply grateful to be each of your servant. My inmost desire is to serve you Jesus and for the bottom line of all our interaction to be a more passionate love and knowledge of Him. Make no mistake. He is Life.

Dearly loved one
You’ve been called by God
To shine like a star
In a dark, depraved world
Don’t blend in
Refuse the daily temptation
To be absorbed in yourself
Take interest in others
Deliberately humble yourself
And live the life of a servant
As you live in the crisis
Of “continue to”
Keep working out
What God is working in
Watch your mouth
Choose words of life
And one glorious day
You will see the face of Christ
And He will show you
Every good purpose
He fulfilled through you
And there will be delight
Even if you are despised or ignored
You are Christ’s star
Go forth and shine

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Jackson – 15 Months

My first time to play with the water hose.

Waiting at the airport a few days ago for our mystery guest.

Jackson’s expression when he realized who the mystery guest was.

I can’t be bothered to take a posed picture.

See ya! I have a squirrel to chase.

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The Self Condemnation of a Red Bird

I just have a second but I can’t get something off my mind so I decided to log on and throw it up here. I’ve told you before that I really dig birds. I keep lots of feeders and feel really co-dependent when I’m out of town and can’t fill them up. As ridiculous as it sounds, they bring me untold joy. One of my birds, however, is having a serious issue. I think it’s mental – and I can certainly relate – but it’s manifesting itself in all manner of outward expressions. I’ve been home plenty lately so it’s not my fault…I don’t think. But it may be my responsibility. I’m too co-dependent to know for sure. Here’s the scene: This lone female red bird keeps attacking the mirrors on both sides of my car. She wildly flaps her wings, chatters madly, and runs into one mirror repeatedly then flies to the other side of the car and gives it an equal piece of her mind. Like she’s got anything left. She makes such a racket that I can hear her all the way in the kitchen and I just stand there in total astonishment, looking out the window onto the driveway. I, then, proceed outside and try to talk some sense into her. No matter how close I get, she never lets up. She just keeps attacking her own self. Only she doesn’t realize it’s her.

She’s got such a beef with the red bird in the mirror that she has nearly pecked her blessed little beak into a nub. Clearly, the whole ordeal has her stomach upset. I’ve had to hose down the car on both sides. I keep trying to tell her, “It’s you! It’s only you in the mirror! Let up, Girlfriend!” For lack of a better solution, we now have old kitchen towels draped over the mirrors which upsets me since some of my neighbors think we’re crazy religious freaks as it is. Now they’ll think we’re vampires to boot.

I think the problem could be hormones. Hers. Not mine. I’m not sure if birds have hormonal issues but I know that girls do and she is clearly a girl. (In case you aren’t up on your basic ornithology, you can tell by the color.) It really doesn’t matter what age she is. All it takes to have to have hormone problems is to be the right gender. She and I could start a support group. I feel sorry for her and I hate to see her go on this way. After all, I know how she feels. I’ve been pecking at myself a lot lately. I always have had the tendency to self-peck. I recall one time clearly but silently in my own mind saying to God, “You hate me.” Absurd, I know. And after all He’d done for me. The chilling part was that I sensed an unexpected clear response come right back at me in my mind. “No, Beth. You hate yourself.” Dang it. And it’s sin. Self loathing is sin. It’s just another form of self-absorption.

Maybe you’ve got some anger issues like that bird and maybe the person you’re maddest at it you. Maybe regret over a decision you made years ago or a path you took a long time ago is still eating you alive. Maybe you’ve nearly self-pecked your beak into a nub. Maybe, truth be told, you’ve been thinking that God hates you, despite all He’s done, but today He’s opening your eyes to the fact that it’s you who hates yourself. And it’s got to stop. Nothing about it honors God. Your God loves you with an everlasting love. A love that heals and restores and takes a disfigured soul one day at a time, treats it with Truth, and makes it whole. A love that breaks old patterns and paves new pathways and not just for you. For a lot of people who are walking behind you. But you have to let that love in. You have to believe God feels it for you just like He says He does. You’ve got to be convinced of it to the marrow of your bones. What more could He do to tell you? What more could He do to show you? Choose to accept it. Embrace it. Wallow yourself in it.

“This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in His presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and He knows everything.” 1 John 3:19,20

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