Friday, July 29, 2011

a touchy subject

As I listen to Rimrock's pod casts, I find that I want to write about the things I'm learning. Because, well, this is a blog, after all.

I listened to this sermon about a week ago but a part of it came back to my mind today that was so insightful. So I pulled the podcast (here) back up and transcribed the part that particularly interested me.

He's going to be referring to Rob Bell, his book Love Wins and the controversy therein.

The Dividing Line of Eternity

Pat Karn, 7/5/11

Mat 25: 31-46


We could have talked about eternal judgement and hell and all those. And by the way, lest you have been reading, considering the news in Time magazine and by some of the religious leaders now-a-days. Hell really does exist. It really does exist. And what hell is, is it’s a separation, a continued state of existence apart from God - who is the bread of life [John 6:35], the fount of living water [John 7:38], and is the light of the world [John 8:12]. And so that’s why hell is the place no one wants to go b/c it is a place of hunger. It is a place of thirst. It is a place of total blackness and isolation. It is everything that the human being is not designed to experience. Everything that we look for - light, food, life, water. Everything that we are wired for, everything that we need is in the person of Jesus Christ. And those who put their faith in Jesus will be with Him for all of eternity. Those who do not will receive the consequence of their choice. Their choice being - I don’t need a Savior. I don’t want a Savior. I don’t want to know that there’s a God. I don’t believe that there’s a God. I don’t think anybody needs to pay my debt for me, if I owe one. I don’t want to be with God. And God will honor their decision. And they will be separated for all of eternity from God. By their choice, not His.

If that freaks you out, listen to the whole sermon b/c there is hope.

I've always known Jesus was all of those things, but I had never realized that of course those things are absent from hell. And in this context, it makes so much more sense to me how Jesus said he was bread, water, light, life. He really IS those things.

Also, while I was reading this morning another verse stuck out to me. It was for me. But since it could relate to this subject, I'll include it:

John 6:37

"All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out."


That was very encouraging to me.

dungeon makeover - before and afters

I've already posted these on facebook but have to make them blog official.

When we moved into this house just over a year ago, we re-did everything except one bathroom and the lowest level, also know as "the dungeon." Terry came up with that name, of course, and it had sort of become a catch all area. But we planned on making the dungeon into a home school and work out room. However, it was so gloomy that I wanted some serious fun paint colors down there. I came up with the idea all on my own (I have to give myself props b/c I am not usually creative) and I love how it turned out.

Before: The view coming down the stairs

After: COLOR!

Before: Looking toward the school room half of the room


And here's a shot with the shelves and school books on them.

Before: This window is very small and we only get sunlight through it in the mornings.

After. I got the curtain at Target. We sold our old desk and futon at a charity garage sale.

Before: You can see the desk and futon here.


Hall before

Hall after!

rice cereal time?

Last week, when Samuel was only 2 weeks shy of 6 months, I thought I'd introduce Samuel to some rice cereal. I thought he might like a little more sustenance before bed at night.

He hated it. I tried for 3 nights in a row and he just screamed as if he was stuck in his car seat. He's taking a break from it now. I wonder if I'm gonna have one of those babies who only like milk...

faith like one of these

We have learned that God seems to take Noah's prayers seriously. Very often we have him pray about various things and he gets a response. If we need an answer to something, we have Noah pray. For real.

Examples of Noah's answered prayers:
1. Samuel
2. Lots of lost toys, found
3. Owies healed
4. Monsters fleeing
5. Snap dog found many, many times

Today Terry took the kids and Snap to the building to print just a few shirts. They neglected to let Snap inside. (This happened a few weeks ago at the building and someone else found Snap in town and gave us a call [after we prayed].)

Noah suggested right away that they pray for Snap to return to the building. Terry thought perhaps that might be asking a little much since he had clearly taken off and last time he was not found near the building. So Terry suggested they pray to find him in town or at the building. No, Noah was insistent on praying for Snap to return to the building. So that's what they prayed for.

Then they went ahead and finished the shirts, ran a couple errands and then drove around town looking for Snap - to no avail. Terry was just about to give up when he thought they'd better check up at the building since Noah prayed specifically for that and was quite insistent about it. And there was Snap.

"Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe you have received it, and it will be yours." Matthew 11:24

"'Let the children come to me; do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly truly I say to you whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.'"

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

I exist for such a time as this

I was listening to a sermon podcast from my parent's church yesterday and something he said really struck me. I thought I would share it. Perhaps others think in the same messed up way that I do.

Esther 4:14

"For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"

Designed for Service

Bill Ewing 7/12/11, 28min in

"I want you to think about this. There was a Godly woman in the Bible. Her name was Esther. Esther was put into a tough situation. And in the midst of her situation, we’re not going to go into the story, she had an opportunity to go before a king and plead for her people. She makes a comment. And I want this to be kind of a comment of your life for this week, at least this day. I exist for such a time as this. Think of that. I want you to be able to say it to yourself. I exist for such a time as this. Now how was this made to put flesh on it in light of what we just did? #1 I understand what God did and lives in me and as God comes in me and inhabits me and lives through me then I am called for this purpose. Why am I here? I am here to love and to serve. I exist for such a time as this. You’re on your way home from work. Rough day. People didn’t appreciate you. You're coming home and you’ve just got a text from your wife. Things aren’t too good at home. Things aren’t happening well with the kids. There’s just been a fight. This is where the rubber hits the road. You pull over to the side of the road and you stop and you say, I exist for such a time as this. I was born to serve my wife. I was born to love her. This is why I live on this planet. You can make that true for every single time of your life. Every time something happens you’ve got now the opportunity to forgive because your spouse or your friend has just harmed you. People you were born for this moment. This is why you exist. I exist for such a moment as this: that I will be the loving extension of forgiveness to my spouse. This is the secret of serving. This is why you live. If you live in this, I promise you something by my own experience, occasionally, but by what I see in people’s lives, when you live fully aware of who you are, fully aware that you only have whatever God’s given you, and now you live to serve and now you live to love, you will live free, you will become all that you were intended to be, and you will live in your element."

I exist for just such a time as what's happening right now...

Esther did not have over-whelming proof of God's purpose for her and neither do I. I do not hear God's audible voice telling me just exactly what I should do and neither did she. She simply found herself in those circumstances. And she acted because it was God who put her there.

He is sovereign, after all. Even over me.

God has put me in this place. He brought Terry to me purposefully. He meant to give us the children we have. He meant for us to be living here, working here. He meant for me to be where I am in this day, right now. His will is now. I exist for such a time as right now in this very moment.

I have always thought pretty much the opposite: That I am not where God wills for me. That I have no purpose. That His will is a mystery, complicated and hard to find or figure out. That I will have no purpose until I can figure it out. Well, what if God's will for me is NOW? How freeing is that? I don't have to look further than what's happening in my life at this moment, even if it's not grandiose, like I always thought it had to be.

This gives more meaning to these verses that I've always loved, but had a hard time with since I didn't know what His plans and purposes were for me.

Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you..."

Ephesians 2:10

"For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God has prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them."

Proverbs 16:9

"The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps."

Sunday, July 24, 2011


July 3 evening we went to some friend's to hang out, have dinner, whoop up playing Kan Jam and set off fireworks. It's crazy down here with the fireworks. Annoying really. I just don't get it. But we are getting more and more fireworks every year for the kids. Their favorite is the parachute guys. Evie's shot over the road and Daddy had to fetch it from the corn field. Noah ran after and fell in the mud.

Daddy is smiling about what Noah told him after Terry told him that he should come and show me how muddy he was. Noah told him, "NO! She can't see me like this!" Hilarious. He didn't want me to laugh at him.

They like the tanks too.

Brent and Pastor Rick working the snakes. Boys will always be boys - it's not the kids playing with them ;)

Observing the fireworks from a safe distance. If there is such a thing.

When we got home at 10, Terry let the kids stay up even later - til 11 - to shoot off even more fireworks. They stayed up late the following night as well. Ug. They didn't even want to finish watching the fireworks on the 4th. They wanted to go to bed. So did I!

playing with my camera on july third

How's that for a title? Lame like me. Pretty much sums it up.

I am behind on my blogging so these pics are from July 3 when I was playing around with my camera, trying to figure out how to get brighter, crisper photos. I didn't succeed. If you know how, clue me in.

Wow, Samuel is bigger now than he was here. He was doing a pretty good job at grasping that pink ball, but he's even better now. He now can roll all over the place. He'll be six months in a week!!!

That last photo was in the basement which is dark so that inside photos were brighter than they usually are. The outside ones are "noisy..."

Serious Noah

Let Evie show you how to eat a delicious runny chocolate cupcake. Be very careful. Make sure you're outside wearing a white shirt...

Then show off all the remnant cupcake in your teeth and frosting around your lips and even on your nose.

Try to pretty much just be cute.

He's a handsome boy.

"Play wiff me mama!"

It was hot. Snap had a back itch.

Mama doesn't play. She takes pictures. Daddy plays. He's chasing Evie after she hit the ball off the tee. She freaks out if you catch her (as does Noah but we're trying harder to teach him not to) so Daddy is lagging behind.

Oh, and here you can see our old swing set. We got rid of it! Went to 2 good causes.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

first dip of the summer

This weekend was quite hot so I had Terry pull out the kids old pool. It's got a leak, but it holds for a while. I worked really hard to set up the back patio, which I had to weed (that also set the stage for finishing that area soon).

It looks like he's squirting her but I'm not sure if he is. Perhaps!

Little squishy stacks

Cold water!


Right after the wedding Terry took the kids out on his old dirt bike. He misses how he used to motor around on it. There might be 2 kids on there...

Yep. 2 kids. This is ranch style you nay-sayers. They had a blast.

And here's the kids on the way home. Samuel is NOT a happy traveling dude. This was just before he started screaming.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

my sister's wedding

My sister, Stephanie, married her fiancee Steve on Thursday, June 23rd, 2011. They planned and carried out a very small, intimate, casual-ish, beautiful ceremony in Spearfish Canyon in front of Roughlock Falls. Stephanie and Steve are both reserved, preferring smaller groups of people so that's how they planned their wedding. It was perfect for them. Not a lot of work involved either - the most labor intensive thing was the flowers - wild flowers. I was worried they wouldn't find any but they found some great ones and we made some beautiful bouquets, perfect for the setting.

Only family was at the ceremony. Their premarital counselor and my parent's pastor, Pat, performed the wedding. He did a wonderful job. Here we are waiting for Stephanie to arrive with my dad. No music except the falls. And boy oh boy were they loud!

I think Pat is wrapping it up. Rings given, vows recited. Time for the kiss.

Hanging out afterwards for pictures. I loved my hair. Good ol' E-Clips! I liked the dress Steph picked out for me and Ana too.

New family picture. Christmas card material?

My brother, Nathan and his wife Ana were only 5 days away from their 2 year anniversary. They're so cute. Here you can see the falls better.

Too cute are they!

I don't know how single parents do it. Terry was such a help with the kids. Plus, he recorded the ceremony. Oh, and Samuel was cute during the wedding. He was supporting his head with his hand as if he was so bored. Oh, and you can see my pretty bouquet here.

Steve admiring his ring. Love it. He got Tungsten like Terry and Nathan. And see how his flower is in his pocket? It would not stay pinned. Oh, and he got married in his chain. Haha.


On the way outta the canyon Terry put the kids on this boulder.

I think it's time these kids had some of their own!

Stephanie imitated Evie over the air conditioning vent. What a lovely dress.

Piece of Cake cake. YUM. Just like at my wedding.

Two Steve's.

The small reception was in the Latchstring Inn, a restaurant in the Canyon. Perfect again.

Noah walking towards me. He was ready to go.

Steph's going away dress. They drove to Fort Collins from there. How pretty her hair was!

Terry's family represented. I love this picture b/c it shows how different these two baby cousins are. Samuel requires a lot of distraction. Grace is just incredibly laid back.

Love that dude.

Time to go!

They rented a car since they were going to be doing a ton of driving in the west on their honeymoon - they camped.

Afterward, we were all feeling like this.