Saturday, November 16, 2013

Powerful

I have been thinking a lot today about the power in Jesus' name. At the sound of his name every knee will bow. At the sound of his name satan flees. It's so simple, people. Why do we hesitate to call upon the name of The Lord when there is so much power behind it?! Instead we tend to use his name in vein and throw it around like there is no meaning. Let us recognize who God is and how much power there is in his son's name!!!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Paper Flowers

Hey guys! Here is the really simple tutorial on making the paper flowers I am making for the wedding. Hope it helps those that are wanting to learn! 

Make sure you have a perfect square. 
Fold it in to a triangle.
Fold both bottom ends up to meet the top of the triangle. 
It will look like this. 
Let the edges you just folded fall open then flatten them out like in the picture. Do both that way. 
It will look like this.
Then fold the tips in so they are even with the edge. Do both sides like that. 
Then re fold the ends closed on the fold you made earlier. (Like the left side of this picture) Do both sides like that.
Glue the ends together so it looks like this. Then glue five of these together to make a flower! 
Happy crafting!

 


Thursday, September 19, 2013

Cry Out to Jesus

   Sometimes I just need to inhale as much air as I can and scream out to Jesus. The last few days have been such days. My little Piglet (one of my best friends kiddos) has been visiting me and I swear that is God's way of keeping joy in my life right now when all I want to do is throw something breakable at the wall! He is my little ray of sunshine. "Auntie, I come to see you on an airplane!" "I was thrust into your arms at my birth. You have been my God from the moment I was born. Do not stay so far from me, for trouble is near, and no one else can help me. My enemies surround me like a herd of bulls; fierce bulls of Bashan have hemmed me in! Like lions they open their jaws against me, roaring and tearing into their prey. My life is poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint. My heart is like wax, melting within me. My strength has dried up like sunbaked clay. My tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth. You have laid me in the dust and left me for dead. My enemies surround me like a pack of dogs; an evil gang closes in on me. They have pierced my hands and feet. I can count all my bones. My enemies stare at me and gloat. They divide my garments among themselves and throw dice for my clothing. O Lord, do not stay far away! You are my strength; come quickly to my aid! Save me from the sword; spare my precious life from these dogs. Snatch me from the lion’s jaws and from the horns of these wild oxen. I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters. I will praise you among your assembled people. Praise the Lord, all you who fear him! Honor him, all you descendants of Jacob! Show him reverence, all you descendants of Israel! For he has not ignored or belittled the suffering of the needy. He has not turned his back on them, but has listened to their cries for help." (Psalms 22:10-24 NLT)
   Verses like these help me remember that even David who was the "man after God's own heart" had similar moments and he did just what I try to remember to do...... Cry out to Jesus!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Much Change

Well, let's just say I have been a bloggy failure in the last 6 months but here is an insight as to why. First, the end of my trip to Washington that I was telling about in my last post will go mostly untold but, it was good. We spent the last half in Tacoma with Jefri, Kai, Seth and the Goertzen's. How could it be anything but awesome?! Then I got home and went right back to work, planning my trip to ca for Mikael and Jessica's wedding, my Cousy visiting and then came......Zach. Man, what an amazing whirlwind this has been. God sent me a major out of the blue blessing in this amazing man! We have learned so much about each other and have really felt God moving sooooo we are getting married in December! 3 months to plan, ready, set...GOOOOO!!! 







Sunday, April 14, 2013

A Chunk of My Heart Lives in Washington (Part 1)

   I have been avoiding blogging lately. It is such a sweet place to reminisce and clear my head, but, it can also be a painful place as I hash through the issues of life in writing. Sometimes it's easier to take a break and not think for a while. To say the two weeks preceding my trip to WA were awful, would be a complete understatement. So, for now, we will focus on the trip and maybe come back to the other stuff later.  
   So....the trip. It was long and short at the same time. I never understand how that happens, but it does. It was so fun watching Rebekah meet Kai for the first time. He loved her. We had 24 hours with him and Jefri right when we got to Tacoma. Jefri picked us up from the airport, then, the agenda contained A LOT. We took pictures with the easter bunny, ate chipotle (for Rebekah, who begs for it every time she is near one), went to swim lessons, drank Boba Tea, perused Pike Place Market, Uwajimaya Market for Sushi and Pho (MMMMMMMMmmmmMMMMMM!!!!), had movies and cheesecake at Jefri's condo, a good night sleep and a great morning conversation with the Geortzens and breakfast with Jefri. Whew, it was a packed but AWESOME 24 hours!
   After breakfast, Seth brought me and Rebekah our parent's Toyota Camry, which he had brought back with him when he went to visit them via bus a few days earlier. Seth went home then Rebekah and I took off. The road trip was SO FUN! We talked, laughed, took pictures, played in the snow on the passes and just plain ol' bonded. It was great! By the time we got to Endicott, it was mid afternoon and we were so happy to be there. Mom took us on a walk to see the "thriving metropolis" of Endicott (as my parents like to joking call it), which took all of 15 minutes. haha. On the walk back around to the house (it is located right next to "city hall"), my mom noticed the door to city hall was open and there were people there. We went in to check out what was going on and found out it was a food bank run by Second Harvest. SO COOL! Second Harvest is an organization that our church back home partners with once a month to do a food bank for the community. Anyways, that evening we made dinner and chilled.
   Friday morning, Rebekah, Dad and I walked to "coffee with the guys" at "Jenny's Store" (the only store in town). The guys got a total kick out of Rebekah because she could "shop talk" with the best of 'em. They are mostly farmers (or were at some point in time). This group of guys goes to coffee every morning and hangs out together until about 10am. Sometimes, Jenny serves breakfast and coffee. Other times it's just coffee. Every Friday is breakfast sandwich day. This is a big deal, mind you! After coffee, dad had a dr appointment in Colfax (closest "big" town), so mom, Rebekah and I went along to see the sites. We stopped at "Tick Clock" to get dad's meds. It is an adorable gift shop/catch all type store with a pharmacy inside. Next stop was the grocery store to get stuff for Easter breakfast at the church. We couldn't find what we needed (mini donuts) for our little Pinterest project, so we went to the gas station and found them there. At home, we hung out and mom and Rebekah gardened. After that, we made dinner then did some prep for the easter egg hunt the next day.
   To be Continued......

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Surprisingly Similar Sermon

   This morning, as I was sitting in church, it was kind of obvious that God was speaking directly to me. It didn't really matter who else was in the room, because God wanted ME to hear him speaking through our pastor this morning. It was one of those deja vu moments. "Hmm..I'm pretty sure the blog I wrote last night was about this EXACT same thing." (I even texted Julie and said something to the effect of, "this is all sounding really familiar.") God is funny like that.
   The Sermon was on Progressive Sanctification. Our Pastor was preaching from Romans 6. We didn't stay there for long though.  It was a sword drill kind of morning, for sure (flipping from one Bible passage to the next to the next). The verses that hit me the most were verses I actually memorized during at Wildwood (summer camp) the summer following senior year of high school. Romans 12.

Romans 12

English Standard Version (ESV)

A Living Sacrifice 

I appeal to you therefore, brothers,[a] by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.[b] Do not be conformed to this world,[c] but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.[d]

Gifts of Grace

For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned. For as in one body we have many members,[e] and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith; if service, in our serving; the one who teaches, in his teaching; the one who exhorts, in his exhortation; the one who contributes, in generosity; the one who leads,[f] with zeal; the one who does acts of mercy, withcheerfulness.

Marks of the True Christian

Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit,[g] serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.
14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.[h] Never be wise in your own sight. 17 Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. 18 If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. 19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it[i] to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” 20 To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” 21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

   Roger that, Lord. I hear ya loud and clear. Thank you for knocking me upside the head until my pitiful little brain comprehends. 
   I have been hearing this song (see below) on Pandora a lot lately. To say I have fallen in love with the words doesn't even begin to explain it. It came on today while I was thinking about the sermon and doing some baking. The words struck me even harder than before. "My WHOLE life I place in your hands." Think about that. Do you mean it? I do. At least, I want to mean it. I know God is helping me to understand how to do that. Here I am, Lord.

Take a listen.....


Saturday, March 16, 2013

Letting Go. Then what?

   Letting go....it's not easy. It's not even slightly simple. Have you ever heard God asking you OVER AND OVER AND OVER to let something go but, you (being your lovely stubborn self) reply, "God, you're kidding right? I can't let that go. It's too much a part of my life. I'm not addicted or idolizing it, I just, I just, I just....uh....like it."But, again, He patiently says OVER AND OVER AND OVER like he does in Deuteronomy, "You shall have no other gods before me." Well, crap. I guess he really means it and yes, in fact, YOU ARE IDOLIZING IT. Oops. Shoot. Dang it. ok ok ok ok, FINE!!! I'll let it go. 
   Now, what do I do with my time? What's that you say, Lord? "Have an eternal focus?" As in, learn to be more like Jesus? Ok, let's look at what Jesus spent his time doing. Ready for this (I'm not sure I am)? Here goes:
1. Teaching
2. Discipling 
3. Praying
4. Loving 
5. Stepping outside of himself to help people
6. Feeding the hungry
   These are just to name a few. Well, crap again. So if I want to be more Christ like and have an eternal focus, I need to teach, disciple and pray more often. Stop filling my time with meaningless junk. Sarah, you spent an entire year at Bible college preparing to be a missionary. Just because you didn't end up being called to a mission field in a foreign country, does NOT mean you have an excuse to hole yourself up in your apt and ignore the mission field at your finger tips. 
Ouch. 
   Matthew 28:16-20
16 Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. 17 And when they saw him they worshiped him, but some doubted.18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Yes, Lord.
     

Sunday, March 3, 2013

3am is the new 6am, right?!

   What is it that people are saying these days? 30 is the new 20? Well, I guess I am just taking this advice to heart in every area of my life, even when it comes to sleep. I have blogged about this before and tried everything under the sun to get it in order, buuuuut, my body hates me. haha. So, that leads to me wrapping my mind around the fact that 3am is my new 6am. I guess I'll just have to live with that fact for now until by God's saving grace, SOMETHING starts working.
   Eating healthy, going to the gym, taking supplements and just plain ol' relaxing my mind have not done a single thing and it only seems to get worse as I get older. So, here I am on the brink of 26 years old, aaaaand I sleep like a 3 month old. Oh well, one day, when I have screaming infants and no choice of whether I do or don't sleep, I'll be thankful for learning how to function on no sleep. Until then, well, I'll just be thankful for the very few good nights of sleep I get per month.
Holla!!
White girl out.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Ever Wonder Why...?

   Have you ever wondered why it hurts more to watch someone else go through a painful situation than it does to go through it yourself? I think it's because you can't do anything to fix it. At least when it's you, you can self soothe or just sit around and feel sorry for yourself. When it's someone else, all I want to do is reach in to their chest and cradle their heart!!
   I'm learning that I'm just plain 'ol doomed in this area. Being a tender hearted person, who truly and genuinely loves people to their core, comes at a very high cost! It makes me also wonder how Jesus did it. I mean, obviously he was Jesus, so that part about being fully God helped, but being fully man too? How could he walk this earth and not be depressed ALL OF THE TIME?! When my friends and family hurt, I hurt bad! Jesus loves EVERYONE on this lowly earth so much that he died for us to keep on living our messed up lives and still spend eternity with him!
   Welcome to my thoughts. I have very high highs and very low lows. My dad likes to call it being "passionate." I'll stick with that description because this world would probably label me as "dramatic." Thanks for helping me put a positive spin on it dad.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Heaven

   I have been thinking about heaven a lot lately. Is it possible to miss a place you've never been before? Because, I do.....a lot. I can't wait to not have to miss anyone again, but rather, be kneeling side by side with them singing "holy holy holy is the Lord God almighty, who was and is and is to come."
I miss my family, my cousin, my sisters and their families and my friends.
My heart hurts.
Jesus, hurry for me.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Domestic Princess

   There is no earthly pleasure, at this time in my life, that makes me happier than being domestic. After church on Sundays, I tend to go home and "Pinterest it up." With whisk in hand, the culinary adventures begin!
   Today I made Taco Cupcakes, Chicken and Salsa (in the crock pot), salads (for lunches this week) and, to top it all off, a no flour chocolate cake. My kitchen was a mess! Although the dish washer has been run twice this weekend, my heart couldn't be happier!
  Taco Cupcakes


Thursday, January 31, 2013

On This Day 4 Years Ago....

my true story began.
   January 31st 2009 was the beginning of a journey that I am still on today. A journey to find joy in this hopeless and lost world. I can very clearly remember my feelings on that morning. As every young bride is, I was nervous, excited and full of hope for the future. I had dreamed about my wedding since I was a little girl. What female doesn't? If I would have known ahead of time what that night was going to bring, my life would not be the same today.
   Often I have been asked, "If you could go back and change things, would you?" My answer to that would look something very similar to the article I am about to share. The author, Lesha Myers, was one of our beloved authors for the Institute for Excellence in Writing. She was an amazing woman. This is her story titled, "Cancer Blessings."

"My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing." (James 1:2-4)
The gals at the Look Good...Feel Better seminar I attended were talking about how cancer had changed their lives, and I mentioned how cancer has been a huge blessing to me. All of a sudden the room got very quiet and everyone stared at me. I felt compelled to continue and said how it had taught me a lot about myself and my family, increased my faith, taught me what is important in life, and brought me greater clarity and focus. The room was still deadly quite, and then one of the cosmologists changed the subject.
Afterwards, I got to thinking about this awkward moment and the truth of what I blurted out. Cancer has blessed me tremendously. It's not something I've enjoyed, suffering never is, and it's definitely something I never want to go through again, Still, it's taught me lessons that I don't think I could have learned in any other way. The verse at the top says to "count it all joy when you fall into various trials"; not if, when. All of us will suffer at some point in our lives; it's what we receive or take from the suffering that matters.
Apparently we commemorate John Calvin's 500th birthday this month, and I've read a couple of bios about him in various Christian magazines. I never realized how much the man suffered. His only child died at 22 days, his beloved wife died after only 8 1/2 years of marriage, he had malaria, migraine headaches (think—no aspirin), kidney stones (whoa!), hemorrhoids (in the days before cars—he had to ride a horse), stomach pains, insomnia, and the article says "and much besides."
When people experience severe suffering, like my cancer or Calvin's maladies, it's tempting to ask Why? or Why me? Calvin said this is the wrong question, and a better one is What for? What lesson does the Lord want us to learn? What part of our selfish character does He wish to chip away? What kind of empathy does He want us to develop (2 Cor. 1:4)? Suffering builds character. Even the Perfect Man had to learn obedience through suffering (Heb. 5:8). Why should we expect anything less?
Suffering isn't a punishment from God; it just is. It's a result of a fallen world, a consequence of sin. Yes, God can relieve suffering, and yes, He never gives us more than we can handle (1 Cor 10:13), but He is not unjust to allow us to suffer. Think of it this way: Imagine all of us running as fast as we can towards a cliff with a sheer drop-off onto a rocky ocean. When we get there, we're through—a symbol of our life and the eventual end of it. If God reaches down and changes the direction of a runner, He's not being unjust to the rest, is He? No. He's being merciful to the one, but the others are experiencing normality—at least the normality of this world since the Fall (Genesis 3)...
Suffering is a great mystery and not a lot of fun. But it is our lot (Job 5:7). That being the case, let's not waste it.
   
   My "cancer" came in the form of a man. A man who walked in to my life, took my hand and asked me for my future. Through the trials that followed, when this man turned around and walked away, I learned to trust the Lord more than I ever have in my life. These lessons have been tough, so very tough. Would I change them? No way!

On this day 4 years ago, I entered in to what I thought was a pretty predictable future.
On this day 4 years ago, my world became a different place.
On this day 4 years ago, my trust in the Lord began to be rocked.
On this day 4 years ago, I made a choice and a promise.
On this day 4 years ago, my life changed forever!  

For that, I am grateful.


Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Voice of Truth

   Lately I have really been thinking about listening to the lies of Satan. He really knows my weaknesses and likes to hold them against me, let me tell you! "You are not pretty enough. No one will ever want you again." "What are you thinking trying to live on your own and take care of yourself financially? You WILL fail!" "You are never going to amount to anything since you never went to school." blah blah blah and on it goes. Try as I might to ignore those lies, they really creep in and get right to my heart.
   On my way to work this morning, I was rockin' out to my good old "Jesus tunes" (aka, worship music) and the song "Voice of Truth" by Casting Crowns came on. I have heard this song a MILLION times but the words never truly sank in, until this morning. "But the Voice of Truth tells me a DIFFERENT story. The Voice of Truth says, 'Do not be afraid.' The Voice of truth says, 'This is for my glory.' I will CHOSE to listen and BELIEVE the Voice of Truth. AMEN!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KwsvqVmFV6Y

Monday, January 28, 2013

God

    Sometimes I wonder, "what did I do to deserve a heavenly daddy like I have?" Gosh, he sure knows how to take care of his little girl! I was just pondering with a friend last night about how I can't seem to shake financial worry. It's the one thing that gets me EVERY stinkin' time! I leave it at the thrown and five seconds later, here I am, sneaking back over to the feet of Jesus, trying to take it back. I'm mean, REALLY?!?! What is wrong with me?! He never gives up though.
    Lately, my car has been nothing but a worry. In November, I hit a deer. Oh joy, $500 for the deductible, that I don't have. In Jan, a huge crack showed up on my windshield, randomly. I chose to ignore it because I don't have $250 to replace it. Later in Jan my battery dies, completely. Gosh, another $250? Sure, let me go get that off my money tree. Oh wait, I DON'T HAVE ONE! Ugh....it seems like the never ending battle!
   Well, in dealing with this never ending battle, while getting my battery changed, I happened to mention that my windows haven't been rolling up properly. After being rolled down with the drivers pannel they refuse to go back up without finagling. A week after mentioning the problem, I got a call from Hyundai. They said, "your part is in." "Excuse me? I didn't order any parts." "Yeah, for your window." "Um, is that covered by the warranty?" "Yep, it's covered for full parts and labor until 60,000." The day I took it in (only a few days later), my car was at 59,000 and something odd miles. God is good.
   Due to all of these issues as of late, I have been looking for ANY way to make my monthly budget lower. One of the things I was looking at was a cheaper insurance company. After about 4 months of research I finally pulled the trigger on Saturday and changed to a cheaper option. During that process, I noticed that my current policy (which effectively won't end until a month from now) said something about "full glass" on it. I had never noticed this before. After emailing and asking what the heck that meant, they told me to call their "glass claims department." Soooo, I have a $0 deductible and a company coming to my doorstep to replace my windshield on Thursday. God is good.
   I seriously can't believe how good he is. If I could just STOP DOUBTING and start TRUSTING, all would be well with the world. So continues the humbling saga......

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Thankful for the Little Things

When I got home from work today, there was a Target gift card in my mail box. It's for ten dollars. Right about now....that is crucial. I'm blessed.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Parents

   Recently I have been presented with many opportunities to reflect on how blessed I am to have the parents that I do. Most often in life, children tend to rebel against, reject and insult their parents. Me, well, I did all of that A LOT. As I've grown, I've learned that they are a fountain flowing with a wealth of knowledge. I need to draw near to that, not push away from it. It's funny the things you start to appreciate more when you don't have them standing right in front of you.
    You know the saying, "Distance makes the heart grow fonder?" That is probably one of the most true statements I have ever heard in my life! However, I hate being so far away from them. The thought that there is a 99.9% chance that we will never live in the same state again, kills me! But, I know that God has a plan for us all and this seems to be in His cards right now.
   Their move has had more of an effect on me than I thought it would. It has been horribly difficult to picture them living somewhere other than home. But, our family has been through a lot in the last few years and this is just another hurdle to jump over. It seems like, through the trials, we have learned to appreciate each other more than we normally would. Heaven help us to keep seeing Jesus through the good times and the bad while holding tightly to the memories that we share.
   This is the end of an era.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Cute!

I just found a totally adorable blog back round site! It's called shabbyblogs.com. Loving it!!!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Heavy

   Ok, I'll say it. It STINKS that "home" is changing! I am MORE THAN excited for my parents to be following the will of God and moving to Washington! I really am! Buuuut, I already miss home (CA), A LOT. Knowing that they won't be there anymore makes this girl's heart heavy. They were keeping my connection with home alive. It was still realistic to tell people, "See you when I come home to visit." Now I don't know what to tell people. When I vacation, I will want to go see my family. Especially now that Kai, Seth, Jefri and my parents are all in the same state. This is a good thing. No more immediate family in CA, however, is not.
   I know I will be able to stay with friends and/or extended family when I come to CA. Having a place to put my suitcase is not really the issue. I don't get much vacation time and like I said, Washington will be vying for my time. Also, it won't be the same knowing that someone (strangers) is going to be living in MY HOUSE! I grew up in that house. There are countless memories that will forever live in that house. I know everyone feels this way at some time or another in their life. It's just....weird.
   I have been keeping this to myself. Partially because I didn't know it was bothering me this much. Partially because I didn't want to make it harder for my parents than it already is. God is in control. He knows what's best. These are the things I keep telling myself.