Saturday, November 28, 2009

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the year.....

Thanksgiving is already over and Christmas is well on it's way! I am so pumped too! I put my Christmas tree up like two weeks ago! It may have been a little early, but it's our first Christmas in our new place, and well, I just couldn't wait!

I love this time of year, oh so much! The smells, the decorations, the music! I am a fan of Christmas music! I have so many sweet memories of decorating the tree as a kid, or singing in the car with my sister. All of those memories are such tiny pieces that I hold dear, each and every Christmas! I so look forward to creating those precious memories one day with our own children!  This is my favorite time of year!

My guy and my little lady

Maggie already is loving her first Christmas, she is super excited about our tree and always wants to play underneath it, as I watch all of my ornaments hold on for dear life! She is hoping that a big bone will be underneath the tree for her because she knows a new toy isn't going to be, since she demolishes each one she recieves!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thanksgiving Thoughts

Thanksgiving. It's not about Turkey. In fact quite frankly I could probably be a vegetarian, I don't get at all excited about the bird, or any meat really.It's all about the sides baby! Gimme some sweet potatoe casserole, and I am a happy girl!

On a more serious note, this holiday has completely changed for me as I have gotten older and errr..mature! Eeek! Growing up I never really took it to heart. But as I sit and truly think about how extremely blessed I feel and am, I can't help but be thankful!

The other night I was lying in bed, and talking my husbands ear off, as usual, as he drifts in and out of snors. Poor guy! I layed there so warm and cozy in my oh so soft sheets and thought...Thank you God. Thank you for this bed!! How often I take something that seems so expected and basic for granted. Thank you for our house-shelter! Thank you God for my husband! He was and is the sweetest blessing by far! Even this blessing I tend to take for granted at times.

I am blessed more than I know or deserve. I am also so thankful for a loving God, who gives a new strength and an abundance of grace each and everyday! This scripture stuck out to me the other day: It's in Isaiah 38:17 " God's love has delivered my soul from the pit and He has cast all of my sins behind His back!" I am so in love with this! God has totally taken all of the way I used to live, think, act and speak and thrown it over his shoulder! In His eyes, none of that no longer exists. Thank goodness.

These are just a few of the things that I am thankful for! I want to work on this mindset to continue year round, not just around a holiday. Don't you?

Happy Thanksgiving! I am so thankful for family and friends...and all of the yummy food!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Date Night!

Date nights..don't you love them? I know a ton of my friends with little kiddos, would look at me and say you always have date nights, no need for baby sitters and such. Well, dinner for us isn't always a date. I guess it could be considered as one. But a real one, where you have to get some what dressed up and go somewhere downtown. You know, that kind of date night. We had one! Wahoo!

On Friday night, we went and saw this lady:

I just love her! She is one of the Christian speakers out there who tells it like it is! We got there extremely early, so we could get good seats. Darlene Zschech lead worship and the music was fantastic! We actually ran into some women from our church and we all sat together.

There was a ton of people and we sat for what felt like forever before it started!

So, what do you do when you are bored and have a camera you ask? Take a million cabillion pictures of everything...! Ha ha!

This was my waiting forever, want to start worshiping look! Well, hello there nostrils! (Sorry about that!)

The message was great! It was actually a three day conference, but we only went that night. She spoke about, how before you were even born, God had a purpose for your life. How he still does, not our purpose-but His! Sometimes it isn't what you have dreamt about doing your whole life. Sometimes it is something that you never imagined. Perhaps something that you think: "No way, no how! I can't do that!"  But, if we get past that and our selfish desires, he wants to use us! We are a part of His plan! How lucky we are that He would want to work through us, for His Glory!

God completely changed my life and showed me where He wanted to be able to use me. At the time I remember thinking, Un Uh! I don't want to, God, there has to be another area, somewhere else I can help out. He is continuing to this day to make it clear to me.

I grew up being forced to sing in front of my little Baptist church. "Melanie, how about you sing the dreaded special?" My worst fear, getting up in front of people, with all of my insecurities exposed to the fifty something members we had! No way! Then I would have the guilt pushers say: "God gave you a singing voice, if you don't use it, He might just take it away!"

Who wants to hear that?!?! So I sang my only three songs that I knew practially every other weekend. It got old, fast. I dreaded coming to church, because of something so silly.  Years passed. I realized I wanted more of a realtionship with my God, that He so desperately wanted to have with me. I went searching all by my lonesome self, and found my amazing home church that I go to now.

I thought I was home free! No more getting in front of people anymore! Whew! Worship at my new church was amazing! The presence of God was all over, something I had NEVER experienced. I remember getting a vision once of me singing on stage during worship and it totally freaked me out! Why would I want to do something that I am finally free of? Our worship leader approached me one day and said, "I hear you can sing and feel that God wants to use you on the team. Pray about it, and see what God wants you to do."

All that I knew, was that it was something that I was terrified of and it didn't make sense at all me doing. However, I knew that God wanted me to help out. Of course it wasn't easy. My legs would physically shake when I was on stage, I think I even gave myself a panic attack one morning! I know...that  is crazy! But it is true! I would get soooo nervous. I still have my moments too! Belieeeve me!

The most awesome part! God uses the people, who you wouldn't expect! The area of your life that you feel may be your worst fear, He uses. I know that the Bible says that we can do ALL things through Christ, because He gives us the strength an ability. I think sometimes, He wants to prove it to us. He wants to show us what we are capable of, when we ask....ahem, beg Him, for His help on. ;)

I started singing on the Worship team about four years ago. I love it! Right now, this is where God wants me to be. I may not always be doing this, but right now, I know that this is where God has placed me. I sing in front of a lot more than fifty people, and thankfully more than three songs! I feel so blessed to be a part of His plan! I absolutely couldn't do it without His help.

Hopefully, this is encouraging to some of you who are trying to find your place in the church. Just know that where God is calling you, might just be the place you least expected!