Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ash Wednesday




Lent-

A time to focus on the greatness of our God
the beauty of His relationship with us
the power of wanting us to love Him so much that He sent His Son
so that our debt is paid in the solemn sacrifice
that only He could fulfill

Only wanting us to pursue HIM

loving us, though we constantly try to do things our way
push back, rebellion

His way is the better way...

it's a promise we don't understand
it's a love we can not comprehend

I am His
and
He is mine.




Wednesday, February 6, 2013

New York


 I really, really love being in NYC! This year it was SO  COLD!!!!

I just had the best girls-only weekend with one of my besties, Eileen (you know, the one that's the big sister I got to choose:)).

We got to stay right close to Times Square and she totally surprised me with tickets to Mamma Mia for my Birthday!  We also got to see Rock of Ages!! HILARIOUS shows, but REALLY HILARIOUS for Rock of Ages.

So totally cool!



We also got to hang out with one of Eileen's other besties, Father Bill.  Yep, a real, live priest.  He's so cool!  We went out and had beer and mussels (which I did not eat- I was brave and tried one, though).



We went shopping, ate out, I got to open the Disney Store on Saturday morning(!!), and we had fun at the M&M store (did you know you can personalize M&Ms while you are shopping?).


I'm so grateful for the means and opportunity to have fun like that! Mark took charge of everything, friends at home volunteered to ferry children about to various activities, the house wasn't totally trashed (Katie's room is so another story, though) when I got home.  It was so great to get away.

It was great to get back home, too, though.

It is good to be loved, to know you're loved, and then to have it shown to you.  I am overwhelmed at the excitement both the kids and the husband displayed upon returning home (chuckles):  "You're home! You're home!!! (Danielle) "Mommy's home! Mommy's back!! (Tommy) "We missed you so much! I'm so glad you're back!!" (Mark) and "Oh, Thank Goodness you're home, and don't ever do that again!" (Katie)...

Yep.  Loved.  It's definitely good.

It's like the Toby Mac song:  "... I was made to love, and to be loved by You..."

So, love is one of the most important emotions we have going for us.  I can say I loved New York, and hanging out with friends, and loving being home with my family...  and it's all true for me.  Love, though, ultimately is an action.  It's a verb.  It's not easy to be in a big city and not notice all those who lack love-  whether it's a lack of a gesture (there are some rude people in NYC- it's true), or a lack of receiving.  The homeless, helpless, hopeless need that kind of love.  I'm moved to pay more attention to those issues and serve where I (and my family) can. 

 Isaiah 1:17 learn to do right! Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow.

I don't believe it's up to the government to take care of it's people... it's up to the people to take care of it's people.

That means we need to walk our faith.
And that means we need to share our faith.
and that means we need to LOVE.

1 Corinthians 13

New International Version (NIV)
13 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast,  but do not have love, I gain nothing.

It's a command