Insert Grace Here…

…finding grace to help in the time of need…

Archive for October, 2008

The Melody of Her Heart

Recently, I joined a wonderful group of ladies for my very first Beth Moore Bible Study—Stepping UP:  A Journey Through the Psalms of Ascent.  I’m stirred in my spirit as I’m reminded of the importance and power of song.  Today I received a sweet reminder that worship through song is not only a wonderful privilege for the redeemed soul, but it is also a vital need.  I “need” to worship Him.

I went about my day loaded down with the enormous weight of my current circumstances and stresses.  Staying focused was a strain.  I found it difficult to pray.  While Sophie ate lunch, I busied myself in the kitchen fighting off tears.

Then I heard the sweetest sound.

“Jesus love me, this I know.  For the Bi-ble tells me so.  Lit-tle ones to Him be-long.  They are weak, but Him be strong.”

A warm blanket of peace settled over me.  I walked over to her little table with a huge smile.  “SOPHIE?  That was the sweetest song!  Will you sing it again?”

“You won’t me sing Bringing Home a Baby Bumblebee,” she asked.  But she didn’t bother waiting for the answer.

In spite of the many times I’ve sung “Jesus Loves Me” for Sophie, I had no idea that she knew the entire song.  What a sweet blessing this gentle reminder was to me!  “Him BE strong”, indeed!

And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit; Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.  Ephesians 5: 18-19 (KJV)

Thank you, Lord!

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Angela’s Heartwork Contest!

Angela at http://angelasheartwork.blogspot.com/ is hosting a contest.  Click the link and check it out.  Also, you can find her store at http://angelasheartwork.etsy.com/.

Have fun, and good luck to all who enter.

The Real Life of Courtney

Princess Delynn

Princess Delynn

Courtney’s been a busy bee—make that, busy Yellow Jacket—since school started.
If you know Courtney, you know that her grades are high priority.  But she’s also busy with volleyball, her youth group, friends, her boyfriend, Aubrey, and this past weekend—Homecoming.  And dance has not yet started.

Volleyball season will wind down before the Thanksgiving holidays. (Give Him PRAISE! 😉 )  It’s been a blast watching Courtney and her team this season, as well as Sophie cheering her on.  It is, however, exhausting.  Because of this, I’m thankful that Courtney’s new dance studio has not yet opened.  Not just for me, but also for Courtney.  The girl runs in high speed most of the time. 

Courtney and three friends from volleyball have taken dance together the past couple of years.  This year, they made a switch.  The new company was in the middle of rebuilding.  As with most construction, they’ve had one delay after another.  The delay may be a blessing because of the hectic volleyball season. 

Courtney is blessed with many wonderful friends.  Her best friend, Mercy, spent the day with us yesterday as Courtney got her nails, hair, and make-up done for the dance.  This is the second year in a row for Mercy to share this experience with Courtney.  What a blessing to have a friend at her side until the moment she, Aubrey and the other couples drove off for the night—especially with Cammie gone.  Mercy did not attend the homecoming dance, yet she gave of herself in such a beautiful way and shared in Courtney’s joy.  Many blessings to you, Mercy!  You are so special to us and we love you!  I thank God for yours and Courtney’s friendship.  Your day will come, Mercy.  I can picture Courtney running around behind you before your wedding day, letting you bark out orders…  You owe her, Court. 😉

 

Courtney has also formed strong bonds with three girls on the volleyball team and in upcoming dance class—Katelyn, Kate, and Malayne.  These four girls have strong, but unique personalities.  Sophie named her new baby doll after Katelyn.  She totes baby Katelyn along with her most of where she goes.  I pray these girls remain good friends throughout the rest of high school and beyond.  Girls, lean on each other, find your strengths, learn your weaknesses.

Courtney has been dating Aubrey for more than seven months now.  Aubrey is a sweetheart and a joy to be around.  He treats Courtney like gold.  He’s great with Sophie, too.  We’ve been blessed having him in our lives.  His family has included Courtney on many outings as well as a trip to Orange Beach.  (LUCKY!)  They are blessings as well.  It’s been a pleasure getting to know them.

…Now for the good stuff!  Courtney, Aubrey, and friends—Denham Springs High School Homecoming 2008…

Heading out the door….

 

At Katelyns:

Sisters

Sisters

 

Aubrey & Courtney

Aubrey & Courtney

The couples:

The girls:

The guys:
The girls with Mercy:
Courtney & Aubrey:
Malayne, Kate, Katelyn, Courtney (someone’s shoulder, and someone’s head):
Courtney & Mercy (and someone texting):
Courtney & Mercy

Courtney & Mercy

Sweet memories!  I love, you, Courtney!  You will always be my Princess Delynn!  Sniff, sniff over not getting a pic with you! 
Your biggest fan,
MOM

Happy Birthday Meeka & Sandy (40th)!

Happy Birthday Shout Out to my mother-in-law, “Meeka”, and to my good friend, Sandy, who is 40 today.

In case you’re wondering….Meeka’s name is Jeanne.  Sophie Jeanne is named after her (as well as my sister, Katie, whose middle name is Jean) and um, well, “sure”, we’ll just say Meeka is 40 as well.

Yea, that’s it!  Happy “40th” Sandy “AND” Meeka! 😉

We love you!

HELP!

While watching Courtney’s volleyball games this season, I’ve observed something.  When the ball is in play, a fan—often a parent—will sometimes yell, “HELP!”  The purpose is clearly to grab the team members’ attention in hopes that a missed ball will be avoided and a successful hit made.

This got me thinking.  Psalm 46:1 says, “God is our refuge in strength, a very present help in trouble.” (KJV)

How many times do I go through my day caught up in my own circumstances, forgetting this profound truth?  For Courtney’s volleyball team this simple word says a lot.  It means that the one calling out realizes that there is a need and has confidence in the one called on to meet that need.

The next time I find myself in need of help—may I cry out to the One Who is truly able to make all grace abound to me.

Please Don’t Feed The Ducks!

My fabulous friend, Diana, and I were talking the other day about life being so hectic and the wonderful fall season passing us by.  So we decided to be spontaneous and visit a pond by a local hospital, have a picnic with Sophie and possibly feed the ducks.  It was supposed to rain and we weren’t supposed to feed the ducks, but that didn’t deter us.  We were desperate for some adventure.

The rain held off, but the temperature dropped a bit.  We grabbed a couple of blankets and quickly decided on McDonald’s for lunch.  The ducks were clearly thrilled by our arrival.  The sound of bumbling humans unloading their vehicle was obviously welcoming to them.  In a nanny-second they flocked around us quacking loudly.  Before retrieving Sophie from her car seat, we pondered our course of action.  Our original plan to eat our divine choice of food no longer seemed feasible.  We would settle for a pair of benches near a tree.

“Please Don’t Feed The Ducks” and “Enter At Your Own Risk” jumped off the sign in front of us.  I glanced at the pack of crackers in the car.  Throwing caution to the wind, I snatched them up along with our blankets and lunch, and loaded Sophie in her stroller while Diana shooed the ducks.

Feed Us!

Feed Us!

We managed down several steps and safely past the ducks to the cold concrete benches.  We hadn’t considered that waterfront temperatures were cooler.  We sat huddled together under our picnic blankets trying to engage in a little girl talk.  Duck poop surrounded us.  There was no safe place for our feet.  A few ducks stayed close by quacking in expectation as they eyed our food.  I desperately tried to ignore the poop, but still found it difficult to resist gagging.  My difficulty was compounded when Sophie began spitting out her half-chewed hamburger.  What kind of mom orders a hamburger Happy Meal WITH the onions?  The cold surroundings (literally) along with visions of attacking ducks replaced the delusions of grandeur that deceived our minds and emotions and lead us on this rendezvous.  But we were not willing to surrender—at least not the part of our plan that openly defied the rules that were spelled out so plainly before us.

We gathered our belongings, pushed Sophie towards the open grass and tore open the crackers.  The sound of crackling plastic was more than enough to entice the massive number of ducks at that pond.  Quacks grew louder and louder as they waddled in from several directions.  Anxiety tried to grip me, but I remained calm.  I passed some crackers to Diana instructing her like a teacher would a student to first crush the crackers so they would go further.  As I began crushing and throwing, Diana eyed a cracker like a kid with candy and asked, “are these WHEAT crackers?”  Yes, yes they were.  And so she found out when she nibbled one. 

Sophie tried to throw a cracker but it didn’t go very far.  As the ducks closed in on her stroller, I suddenly recalled my mother-in-law being pecked on the cheek by a duck near the pond behind her house.  A painful peck, mind you.  The realization that there were far more ducks than crackers urged us to move towards our entrance as we fed the wild birds.  I’m still in awe of Diana’s awareness of ANYTHING other than our fiasco.  “LOOK, a pigeon.”  As we neared the steps leading to our getaway, the ducks—led by a large white bully duck—surrounded us.  I panicked.  I threw the pack of leftover crackers—plastic included—screamed, “SHOOOOOO,” and ran.

While Diana stood behind me in a fit of laughter, I shielded myself with Sophie’s stroller.  Only…Sophie was still IN the stroller.  “SHOO, SHOO, SHOO ducks!  Get out of here!  We don’t have any more crackers.  We should’ve NEVER fed you!” 

In the midst of my fit I noticed two vehicles—occupied.

“THIS is why we’re not supposed to feed the ducks,” was all the wit I could muster.  My only response was a slight nod.  The lack of emotional show from our audience was clear indication that they had come for solace.  Something told me that they’d witnessed this episode before.

I pulled the stroller up on its back wheels.  I ‘had’ to protect my child.  “I’M SKEERED!  I’M SKEERED!” 

“Help me get her up the stairs, Diana.”   Sophie leaned towards Diana as I lifted the stroller.  “Just get her, I’ll get the stroller.”  What a team we made!

In between giggles, I continued to holler obscenities at the ducks.  “You DO know they don’t understand you,” Diana teased. 

I thought I was home free once Sophie and Diana were loaded.  Just as I finished unpacking the stroller, I heard them.  Several ducks led by “the bully duck” followed me.  STALKERS!  I wanted to toss that stroller in the back of my SUV and jump in the driver’s seat, but it was the only thing shielding me from their rage.  “SHOO!  GO!  AWAY!  DUCKS!”  They began waddling towards the road.

This opportunity wasn’t passing me by.  Once I was safe in my car, I let out a sigh.  But I couldn’t help wondering as I backed out if those ducks were gonna’ meet their doom. 

Then it happened.  Was that a bump?  “We cooked his goose,” Diana shouted in victory.

Not really.  She did say that.  But the ducks were unscathed.  Would’ve been an interesting ending, now wouldn’t it?

Well, hopefully our little adventure “quacked you up”.  It left me tired.  So, I’m off to unwind from our “wild goose chase”.  Sorry, I couldn’t help myself…

If that wasn’t vivid enough, here’s a pic of the vicious beasts that tormented us—via my cellphone.  Much, much scarier in reality!  Really.

Duck, Duck, Goose

Duck, Duck, Goose

We interrupt this blog to inform you….

Psst…..

This is mind-boggling news…. I found an interesting link on my blog.  Apparently I’ve been listed on today’s WordPress Blogs of the Day.  That’s right!  Scroll down to number 21.  There I am.

Earth moving? Not really.  But mind-boggling.  In fact, I happen to have a raised brow over the fact that the link on my dashboard that informed me of this news also included a language I am completely unfamiliar with.

My mind really wants to wander to the possibility of readers in other countries.  OH WAIT!  I DO have a reader from another country!  YES, I AM serious!  Donna @ Thirsty is in Australia. 

I’m a bit astonished.  But I’ll take it.  Or I’ll just let Pillsbury take it.

Now don’t miss the ‘really’ good stuff below this post! 😉