October 9, 2008

When the nudge becomes a shove

Posted in Seminary tagged at 5:08 pm by timin525

I have been wanting to write about the events that have taken place over the last few weeks for, well, the last few weeks, but I have been struggling with how to write it and finding the time to write it. We have been busy.

2 weeks ago tomorrow (Friday), Tim lost his job. He came home from work and said, “Babe, I am sorry, but I don’t have a job. But, it is going to be okay! God told me this week that I would lose my job today, and we are going to be okay.”

I didn’t respond like most probably would. If I remember correctly, I struggled not to laugh. I think I even chuckled a little. We knew it was coming. Business has been slow, and we just did not see how his boss could pay him much longer to screw in lightbulbs and sweep the floors. My thoughts were basically, “well, I guess we had better get a move on.”

Both Tim and I firmly believe that the loss of his job is all part of God’s plan to move us to Memphis. Tim’s desire is to be in seminary, not in a workshop building doors or onsite refinishing doors. And we needed to take the steps to accomplish this, evidently faster than what we were already doing. We spent Tim’s first week “off” working on getting the house ready to sell. This is something that otherwise would have taken over a month to complete. Tuesday of this week we listed our house with CB Gundaker. http://www.cbgundaker.com/search/advanced/detail.jsp?mls_num=80059797&type=res

Now that the majority of the big work is done around the house, Tim is doing some side jobs. Thankfully God has blessed Tim with skills that allow him to bring in some money on his own. This is something Tim does not greatly appreciate, but he is good at it and it does pay well. He will do whatever he needs to do in order to support his family. Even if it involves paint and doors!

Through all of this, I have to keep reminding myself that I need to trust in the Lord, no matter what. A week ago I was saying that I was confident the house would sell fast. Today I am saying that I am confident that the Lord is in control. The housing market is not dependable. People lose their jobs. Money comes and goes. But God never changes. He is the only constant in this ever-changing world. So we are putting our faith in God’s plans for our move, seminary, the sale of the house and our income. We know where He wants us to be, but still are uncertain when and how we will get there.

We are excited to see how everything plays out, but all the hubbub getting the house on the market has been slightly unsettling to the girls. The girls’ world has not changed much, but they know something is different. We appreciate all your prayers during this time!

Keep checking back to this blog for updates. We have an Open House on Sunday, October 12 from 1-3p. Feel free to pass the blogsite or house listing on to anyone who may be interested. It is a nice house for a good price and we only need one buyer. They just have to see it first!

MOPS Devotional – Identity

Posted in MOPS tagged , at 2:17 am by timin525

Our True Identity in Christ

As moms we can get so caught up in the simple tasks of getting through each day. We wake,  change diapers, help go potty, make food, feed food, clean up food, dress, bathe, do laundry, clean house, play, discipline, drive, help, protect, teach, love, hug, kiss, and we do it over and over and over again. Not one of us would choose to do it any other way. But after doing the same thing day in and day out, we tend to define who we are by what we do. Thankfully, though, the Bible tells us that in Christ we are much more than the tasks we perform. As we think about who we are in preparation for this month’s discussion, let’s take a look at who we are in Christ.

Rom 3:24 – We are justified (not guilty of sin)

Rom 8:1 – No condemnation awaits us

Rom 8:2 – We are set free from the law of sin and death

1 Cor 1:2 – We are sanctified and made acceptable in Jesus

1 Cor 1:30 – We are righteous and holy in Christ

1 Cor 15:22 – We will be made alive at the resurrection

2 Cor 5:17 – We are a new creation

2 Cor 5:21 – We receive God’s righteousness

Gal 3:28 – We are one in Christ with all other believers

Eph 1:3 – We are blessed with every spiritual blessing in Christ

Eph 1:4 – We are holy, blameless, and covered with God’s love

Eph 1:5, 6 – We are adopted as God’s children

Eph 1:7 – Our sins are taken away, and we are forgiven

Eph 1:10, 11 – We will be brought under Christ’s headship

Eph 1:13 – We are marked as belonging to God by the Holy Spirit

Eph 2:6 – We have been raised up to sit with Christ in glory

Eph 2:10 – We are God’s work of art

Eph 2:13 – We have been brought near to God

Eph 3:6 – We share in the promise of Christ

Eph 3:12 – We can come with freedom and confidence into God’s presence

Eph 5:29, 30 – We are members of Christ’s body, the church

Col 2:10 – We have been given fullness in Christ

Col 2:11 – We are set free from our sinful nature

2 Tim 2:10 – We will have eternal glory

(list taken from the NIV Life Application Study Bible)

Oh, isn’t it a relief that God does not define who we are by what we do? He defines who we are by what His Son did for us on the cross! Our identity is not dependent upon a clean house or obedient kids. Pheww! Our identity should be wrapped up in the free gift of salvation rather than our accomplishments as mothers. Take some time in the next few days meditating on the truth of who we are in Christ.

September 22, 2008

Clara’s First Word

Posted in Mommy Journal tagged at 2:00 pm by timin525

Well, it’s really like her (mama, dada, drink, clara, thank you, dog, cat, ball, bye) tenth word, but it is super cute, so I have to write about it before I forget.

We were driving home from Eckert’s Saturday and Grandma Bea was talking to one of the older girls probably about apple pie and ice cream dessert. At the end of her statement, she said “okey dokey?” And without a second’s delay, Clara said “okey dokey!” It was the cutest thing and we all laughed for about a minute. It really sounded more like “kdydkdy,” but that’s close enough in my book.

September 11, 2008

MOPS Devotional

Posted in MOPS tagged , , , , at 2:51 pm by timin525

And I pray that you being rooted and established in love, may have power to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” Ephesians 3:18-19

If you are anything like me, you are probably wondering what this verse means and how it applies to the 2008-09 MOPS Theme: Adventures in Mothering. Does it mean that God’s love is like a roller coaster? Of course not! Does it mean that God’s love will guide us as we navigate the ups and downs, bumps and bruises, and ins and outs of mothering? Well, we are getting closer, but I am still not convinced.

Let’s take a look at what the verse actually says. If you read the verses leading up to verse 18 we see that this “power to grasp” comes from God Himself, through His Spirit. God gives us the power to know Christ’s love – His big, immeasurable love that “surpasses knowledge.” But why does He want us and even empower us to know the hugeness of His love? The end of verse 19 tells us – so that we can be filled to the fullest extent with God himself!

These verses are not about how God can help us. They are about GOD and how we can be more like His Son Jesus Christ! And when we become more Christ-like, we naturally will be better mothers, wives, church leaders, neighbors, and business women. When we become more like Christ, we will be better equipped to respond to life’s challenges, the roller coasters and bumper cars of life. When the highs and lows come our way, we will be so filled to the brim with Christ and His love that HE (not we) will overflow into the situation.

So this is my prayer for us, MOPS moms of 2008-09: that we “may have the power to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.”

My husband is wonderful

Posted in Seminary at 1:05 am by timin525

We are trying to make our home look appealing to a buyer, so I suggested to Tim that we (he) paint the kitchen. The walls were a drab, off-white color that neither of us particularly cared for, so he was game. 5 coats of paint and 3 colors later, we are (he is) finally finished! The first color was green. I was going for light, limey and fresh. We got blue-ish green and dark. Then we chose yellow with the intention of letting some sunlight in on our old dark cabinets. Since I told Tim to go yellow, he decided to give it two coats even though I was not home to give my nod of approval. When I saw it, I wanted to like it. I tried to like it. He had just re-painted the kitchen because I did not like the first color. But the look of disgust on my face gave me away. In my defense, Tim did not like it either; although, he said it was better than the green. Too orange-ish and dark. So tonight, we (he) got it right. It is yellow, but light and creamy. Not exactly bright and fresh, but I probably wouldn’t have liked that either! Anyway, he is good to me. Thanks, Tim! You are a good husband and a good painter!

p.s. I forgot to mention that he had to paint the bathroom twice, too! But we (he) got the dining room right on the first try.

August 26, 2008

Homeschool

Posted in Mommy Journal at 11:53 pm by timin525

I started homeschooling the girls this week. They are only pre-k, but I wanted to use this time to test the waters, so to speak. You know, give it a try before I have to start logging hours and making sure the girls are actually learning something. Plus I don’t think we can afford “real” pre-school.

So far I think it is going well. These are the highlights of the week:

Five minutes into it, Aubrey said, “Mommy, I am tired of learning! Are we taking a nap today?”

After telling her that we would be starting pre-school the next morning, Norah said, “Will my teachers be there? Will my friends be there?” in her Norah voice (she is OBSESSED with her teachers – ballet teachers, that is).

Aubrey – “Teacher mommy, are you our teacher?” And then she continued to call me teacher Mommy .

As we were heading to the van, Aubrey asked excitedly – “Is this our school bus?!”

So – I think we are going to have fun. I am excited about all the things I am finding to teach. And I do think the girls are excited about learning new things. We just need to get used to the routine and structure. Thankfully we are only doing Tuesdays and Thursdays. We will do some things, like the calendar and Bible verse everyday, but for now 2 days is all we (I) can handle.

August 22, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

Posted in Special Days tagged at 3:18 pm by timin525

It doesn’t get much better than this:

-flowers from your husband (and baby girls)

-babies wishing you happy birthday even before they ask for breakfast

-family and friends calling and e-mailing all day

-a birthday playdate and lunch with a good friend

-mis-spelled and scribbled on birthday banner and cards (okay, so it doesn’t even look like “Happy Birthday,” but that is what makes it great!)

-a child’s excitement that it is mommy’s birthday – “Where are your balloons, mommy? When will the party start? Can I have a cupcake? Open your presents, mommy! Look at what I made you, mommy!”

-smooshed cupcakes – “It’s okay, mommy. They still taste good!” (and they do ;))

-a surprise mocha from Tim and a giftcard from a friend to help satisfy the next craving

I am getting older, yet I feel too young to be blessed in so many ways.

Random, Sleepless Thoughts

Posted in Random Thoughts tagged , at 3:03 pm by timin525

I couldn’t sleep lasnight. I tossed and turned for a little over an hour before I decided to get up and do something productive with my sleeplessness.

While I was flipping over in bed I started to brainstorm for the next MOPS newsletter.                                 www.mops.org

I didn’t get very far, but I will share what I came up with.  

You know you are a frugal mom when you:

1) feel wasteful if you throw the toothpaste out before you have scraped the inside of the tube.

2) make your husband take the kids’ leftovers from dinner to work the next day. 

3) eat the kids’ pb&j scraps before you make yourself a sandwich.

4) save left over drinking water to water the house plants.

And then I got writer’s block. That is when I gave up on sleep and got up to read. Reading always makes me sleepy and I am surprised I lasted as long as I did. I actually finished a book that I have been trying to finish for at least 6 months. It is called Don’t Waste Your Life, by John Piper.  www.desiringGod.org

There are so many quotable lines in this book, but I will only share a few that jumped out at me as I read lastnight. 

“It is true that God can be known and enjoyed in every legitimate vocation; but when he deploys you from one place to the next, he offers fresh and deeper drinking at the fountain of his fellowship. God seldom calls us to an easier life, but always calls us to know more of him and drink more deeply of his sustaining grace.”

Piper quoting J. Campbell White – “Most men are not satisfied with the permanent outcome of their lives. Nothing can wholly satisfy the life of Christ within his followers except the adoption of Christ’s purpose toward the world he came to redeem. Fame, pleasure and riches are but husks and ashes in contrast with the  boundless and abiding joy of working with God for the fulfillment of his eternal plans. The men who are putting everything into Christ’s undertaking are getting out of life its sweetest and most priceless rewards.”

These quotes pretty much speak for themselves. This book has been a challenging read, in that it really puts into perspective the things of this world versus the things that will last. For which do we work so hard day in and day out? Will it all just fade away in the end or does our work have a lasting purpose? An everlasting purpose?

With that, I began to feel sleepy and went to bed.

August 19, 2008

Many are the plans…

Posted in Seminary tagged , , , at 2:14 pm by timin525

“Many are the plans in a man’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Proverbs 19:21

When I was eight years old a missionary family from the International Mission Board came to our church to speak to us about international missions (it was called foreign missions back then). They were serving in Brazil. I don’t remember much of what they said, but I do remember having an overwhelming sense of God telling me that I would do that some day. In my mind (I like to plan everything out well in advance, you see) I would marry the missionaries’ son and we would be missionaries together. But I was only eight and I never saw little Dan Hall again. But I also never forgot what God did in my heart that day.

As the verse above says, “many are the plans of a man’s heart.” As time went on, I made my own plans. I figured I could work God’s call to missions/ministry around my life and plans. I would marry, have a family, make a home, volunteer in the church, etc. All honorable things. And I have done that. I am married to a godly man, have three beautiful little girls, have a nice home with 1/2 acre near family, and work in the church.

“But it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” I have the things that I want, planned and worked for, but they are not enough. I have a sense of wanting more, not because what I have is not good, but because God has a bigger plan for my life. The call He placed on my life as a child cannot be buried and forgotten.

Strangely enough (but not really strange, because it is the Lord at work), Tim has been sensing God’s call on his life as well. In fact, he is ready to leave his job, sell our home and move to another state in order to pursue God’s call on his life to ministry. And I am ready to follow. Tim telling me that he felt a call to ministry was like opening a door to a whole new world of possibilities. I was not/am not unhappy living my life the way I have planned. We have it pretty good, actually. But I know that following God’s call on our life will be so much more satisfying than following our own desires, even if some of our temporal satisfactions are removed.

Isn’t it neat?! That is a Tim expression. We work sooooo hard to make things happen. And we even succeed sometimes. But if it is not the will of God, he will make those “good” things we have achieved unsatisfaying. The things the world loves to consume will leave a bad taste in our mouths.

I have said all of this to say, Tim and I are preparing to follow God’s call on our life. We are in the process of getting our house on the market. We are moving to Cordova, TN so that Tim can attend Mid-America Baptist Teological Seminary to pursue a Master of Divinity. We are excited. So many things have to come together that the hand of God will have to be in it for it to happen. It will be “neat” to see God at work in our lives. I don’t want to do it any other way. If it is not the Lord’s will, I don’t want it. I have tried to make my own plans, and I am ready for the Lord to take over. I want His purpose to prevail in our life!

August 15, 2008

My First Attempt

Posted in Uncategorized at 7:58 pm by timin525

It has been suggested to me, by a couple of people, that Tim and I start a blog. First, to keep people up to date on our call to ministry and all that will entail and second, to keep a record of the exciting events that take place while raising three girls 4 and under. I have not yet decided for which purpose this blog will be used. Is it best to have one blog for each purpose? Can husbands and wives share a blog? I guess these are things I will figure out as I gain more experience in this world of blogging.

My main goal right now is to be consistent with posts. My entire life I have really struggled with consistency. I find out about something, think it’s a good idea, get involved, and then lose interest or become side-tracked. My habit is to be bad at developing habits. So we will see how this goes. Maybe you all can keep me motivated.

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