Saturday, March 31, 2012

An Empty Hosanna...

Tonight I sat down to write a post that expressed my feelings concerning Palm Sunday and Easter week. I knew what I wanted to say, just didn't know how to say it. So God in His infinite wisdom worked out the following poem. No, He did not give me the words. He gave them to my daughter Abby. I texted her to see if she had a good poem I could use. She said she didn't; so I jokingly said well if you write something in the next 10 minutes let me know. It took her a bit more than 10 minutes, but she sat down and put her feelings into this poem. Her feelings echo mine!


 An Empty Hosanna 
by Abigail Haynes

Palms waving, hands lifted high

People shouting as a man passes by
A donkey plodding, coats laid down
The man is riding, people gathered around
The words they shout pierce his heart
The empty Hosanna’s tear Him apart
For Thursday will come,
 A betrayal, a kiss
Friday will follow,
Nails in His wrists
They praise Him now, the mocking will come
He knows their hearts, for He is God’s Son
The giver of life, the Savior, the King
He sees right through the empty songs we sing
We raise up our hands, we cry out to Him
But then Friday comes, we chose to live in sin
We’re quick to judge, we’re quick to condemn
But when it comes down to it are we any better than them?
Our lives don’t match up with the words of our song
The empty Hosanna
Echoes on…

Friday, March 30, 2012

5 Minute Friday...Gift from God...

Yep...its 5 Minute Friday again. This is where we bloggers write on one word for 5 minutes...no editing, just what comes to mind. After reading my post, head over to Gypsy Mama for many more great posts! Today's word is GIFT.

Go:

I closed my eyes and slipped away into a dream....it took me to a place where I had never been....looking beyond your eyes, love that is easy to see....you're a gift from God to me...


These are just some of the words to a song called Gift from God. It was sung at our wedding some 23+ years ago. Whenever I hear the word gift, this song comes immediately to my mind. I strongly believe other than salvation, Brian is the greatest gift God has ever given me. God knew just what type of man I needed and Brian is truly that man.

God has blessed us with gifts along the way as well. He has given three amazing kids, Ashley, Abby and Caleb and more recently our son-in-law Larry. All four of them are walking with the Lord, something we have prayed for since Ashley was born.

God is truly amazing and He has surrounded me with amazing people to love!!!
Our most recent family picture. The day our daughter married her best friend and God's gift to her!!


This is the song Gift from God. Brian...I still feel and always will that you are a gift from God to me!!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Word Filled Wednesday....prepare...


This Sunday is Palm Sunday. The day we celebrate Jesus' entry into the city. He was greeted with cheers of Hosanna. The people saw Him coming and rejoiced. This mood would not last, the very same people who cheered for His arrival would soon cheer for his crucifixion. As we approach Easter, we need to prepare our hearts. My emotions get the best of me  when I realize how quickly the crowds turned on Jesus and the horrible suffering He endured for me. Jesus knew how it would it would end...that's how much He loves me and you!!


Sunday, March 25, 2012

A Yummy Easter Illustration....Resurrection Rolls...



Several years ago I came across a recipe for Resurrection Rolls. At the time the kids were still pretty little and I was always looking for creative ways to illustrate Easter to them. This recipe caught my eye due to the simplicity of making them and the power of what it illustrates. The rolls go in the oven filled with a marshmallow and come out empty inside. We made the rolls that year and they have become an Easter tradition in our home ever since. I thought I would share these with you as we get ready to celebrate our Lord's Resurrection.

The first step is to buy a pack of frozen dinner rolls, you could make your own rolls, but we're talking tradition and I've always bought Mrs. Rhodes Frozen Dinner Rolls!

Be sure and spray the pan first, then defrost the rolls for about an hour...


Next flatten the dinner roll out...





Then add a large marshmallow to your dough....



Wrap the dough around the marshmallow, being sure to pinch the dough together...



Cover with plastic wrap and let rise 2-3 hours...



 Brush the rolls with melted butter...




Sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar....put in the oven at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes.



Ready to come out....they are smelling really good about now!



Enjoy and be sure the kids notice that where the marshmallow was, is now empty....just like the tomb.

 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said...
Matthew 28:6

*this post was originally posted on 4/17/2011...it's a great Easter tradition that needed to be repeated!

Friday, March 23, 2012

5 Minute Friday...Live Out Loud


It has been one of those weeks....not much blogging going on in my world. But I can always find time for 5 Minute Friday. If not then I know I'm too busy! So here goes, one word, 5 minutes, no editing allowed. Today's word is LOUD.

GO:
You've heard the expression "You're actions speak louder than your words." This is so true. As Christians it is especially true. Once we have declared to others that we are Christians our lives become like that of a specimen under a microscope. Shouting out loud that Jesus is our Lord is very important, we should never fear singing our praises to our King.

However, if our lives don't match up with our words, the actions will speak more to an observer. We need to live our faith out loud. This means 24/7, everywhere we go, no matter our circumstances. We are like ambassadors for Christ. If people see something different in our lives, that is good. If our lives blend in with those around us, then we need to ask our selves if we are doing something wrong.

My desire is that my life be a witness to Christ. I am convicted today to examine my own life and that of my family and see what kind of life we are living out loud for the Lord. The reason for this examination is so that one day I may hear these words from my Savior..."Well done good and faithful servant."


Friday, March 16, 2012

5 Minute Friday...My brave heroes....


Today is 5 Minute Friday. 5 minutes of writing, no editing, just what comes to mind. It's amazing to me how some weeks I can barely write a paragraph in 5 minutes and others my fingers fly. It's fun, you should try it sometime!

Today's word is BRAVE.






 Brave...this word does not describe me...if you walk in a room and startle me, I jump...if I see a mouse or worse a snake, I scream...when it comes to flying, don't even try and get me on that plane! I am just a jumpy person who worries way too much. So when looking for examples of bravery do not look to me. To me a hero is a brave person. Following are some of my heroes:

Ruth...she left her homeland to go with her mother-in-law. She could have returned to her own family, but she went with Naomi and was blessed for that.

Corrie ten Boom...she lived in a complex time and helped save Jews from punishment. She herself was imprisoned, but that did not silence her voice.

Elisabeth Elliot...her husband was killed was killed by the Auca Indians, yet she went on to live among these very people and minister to them.

Tenille ...four year ago she received devastating news about the baby she was carrying. Isaac would not survive for long once he was born. She bravely faced a pregnancy nurturing and loving a baby she knew would most likely not live long after he was born. She gave Isaac life and loved him as fully as she possibly could. He only lived a few hours, but I know that is time Tenille and her family will always treasure. God helped her face this difficult time.

Jennifer...she watched her four year old son Isaac suffer for weeks. This ended in a funeral not long ago. Yet, she still is clinging to Jesus. She is suffering herself, but she is telling Isaac's story and is praying for this tragedy to lead others to Christ.

Jennifer's daughter Emily...she is 7...she gave bone marrow to Isaac. What a brave thing for a little girl to do and what an act of love!

All of these women probably never thought they had what it takes to face the circumstances they did, but God gave them the grace, perseverance and bravery to carry on. These women are my heroes!

Monday, March 12, 2012

A Day Unlike Any Other...

This day started out different than any day prior to it. This day started with the realization that our oldest daughter would be married by the end of it. Everything seemed surreal and perfect all at the same time. This is a day Ashley had been dreaming about for sometime, and a day her father and I had been praying for since her birth. So to say this day was 22 years in the making is not an exaggeration.

I want to share with you some of the highlights from this most special of days. You have followed along as Ashley and Larry got engaged, as I've had shoe melt downs and therefore I feel like you need to hear and see some of the special happenings that day.

Bride and Bridesmaids all made up and in flannel!
Love the back of her dress!
Bride and Bridesmaids all dressed up!


Proud parents and beaming bride.

Proud and excited siblings!

So in love!

This was outside the reception site: Headwaters Science Center.
First Dance
 
Time for cake!

Centerpieces

Guest Book Table

Another use of old light bulbs!



My favorite moment of the ceremony came at the very beginning. I kept my eye on Larry as Ashley and Brian appeared to walk the aisle. It was his first glimpse at his bride that day. I will never forget the look of love and affection he gave my daughter. Makes me cry now just to think of it. Then to turn and see my daughter with her eyes focused only on Larry, it was priceless!!

My husband had the privilege of marrying these two. I don't know how he did it, I cried through the whole thing! He was amazing. The wedding was amazing. Brian gave them 5 keys to marriage and he literally had keys for them. Here are the keys he shared with them:

King ...live for the King!
Kingdom...serve His kingdom.
Kids...one day (no pressure though Ashley and Larry!)
Kneel...pray together.
Kiss...and make up.

At the end of the wedding before he pronounced them husband and wife, Brian took the keys out of his pocket and showed them one more key. This was a car key...to a 2012 Lamborghini! Ok, it was a key to an imaginary 2012 Lamborghini! When Ashley was younger she heard a speaker say that girls are like a Lamborghini, of great price and value and they should be treated as such by a man. Ashley even had a shirt that said "I'm a Lamborghini". So Brian explained this and then handed Larry the keys. Hopefully they aren't too disappointed that we didn't buy them a $400,000 car!

Just look at my husband's expression...priceless!


The day went by far to quickly, the reception was so much fun. People had time to play in the Science Center, enjoy some good food and even dance a little. At the reception our daughter Abby gave her Maid of Honor toast and she chose to present it as a song. She wrote it herself; it is an amazing song!! (This was recorded on my husband's phone...so excuse the quality...but you can get the idea of how awesome of a song it truly is)

video



It was truly a special day! The newlyweds are all settled in their apartment and happy as can be! 



Friday, March 9, 2012

5 Minute Friday...Empty

It's once again Friday, that means 5 Minute Friday. One word, five minutes, no editing!
Today's word is EMPTY.

GO:

When I first read today's word I wasn't sure what direction this would take. You see my heart is so full right now. Our oldest daughter was married last Saturday and it was the most amazing day ever. Yesterday our son's Mock Trial team competed at regionals and made it to state. Our middle daughter has been home on spring break and I have loved having her around and talking with her. My heart has just been so full...on Monday my hubby and I spend the whole day together driving home from the wedding and we had the BEST day!

But then, it hit me what the word empty means to me. My nest will be emptying out very soon. Our son graduates in May, he is our youngest and it looks like he will not just be going away to school, but he will be going to Texas. I have very mixed feeling about this. I love being a mom and I know that will continue, it will just be different. We are a homeschooling family, so that means I have spent every day....all day with my kids. 

My quote has been..."what do I want to be when my kids grow up." Motherhood and intentional parenting has been my life for 22 years. Now I am facing the unknown. What shape will that take? I know the good byes will be hard, I know there will be tears (lots of them). I also know who holds my future and that excites me. I have some areas I am very passionate about, the persecuted church, pro-life, prayer, the family....what ministry will God guide me to involving those...or does he have something even different in store for me. All I know is this next year will be an emotional one, but exciting at the same time. As my kids continue to follow God's plan for their lives...so will I!

For I know the plan I have for you declares the Lord. 
Jeremiah 29:11

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Scripture and a Snapshot


Just couldn't wait to share a picture from my daughter's special day! 
God was present every step of the way!!





Saturday, March 3, 2012

TODAY IS WEDDING DAY!!!

Today is a day we have been looking forward to and dreading since the day our daughter was born; her wedding day!

This is the profile picture her sister had posted all week...it's perfect!

**no more "pretend weddings".... the real is so much better anyways. love you sister. ♥ 


And this was on the groom's wall earlier this week.

**Six days before I finally get to see that white dress, but I doubt I'll notice anything once I see that smile...


Pictures will be shared...I promise!!
God is awesome. We have prayed for this day since Ashley was born. So exciting to see those prayers answered with such a great man of God to be her lifetime partner.


Friday, March 2, 2012

5 Minute Friday...My heart aches for this family...

Today is 5 Minute Friday. The word is ACHE.



Many years ago when my husband was a youth pastor we had a girl in our youth group named Jennifer Meyer. Her family was special to us in many ways, one being her grandmother helped lead our Ashley to the Lord! So we have a special place in our heart for the Meyer family.

Today Jennifer is married and is now Jennifer Thompson. She has a beautiful family, but I have to say my heart aches for this family today. They are going through a trial of extreme measures right now. They have a bright eyed little boy named Isaac. Two days before Christmas he was diagnosed with a very rare form of leukemia that infects only 25 people a year in this country. They are no strangers to hospitals right now.

Nine days ago, Isaac's sister Emily donated her bone marrow to Isaac. From what I understand it takes 21 days to see how well it worked. The time in between is critical for Isaac. Yesterday he was intubated and they discovered his kidneys were shutting down. So dialysis is needed. Jennifer's last update said that he is in a dangerous place right now. Her heart aches because she just wants her little boy back. It's hard when the doctor's are not optimistic. Please pray for Isaac!

Emily giving Isaac her bone marrow.

Update- He's with Jesus now. Please pray for this grieving family.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

One year....

One year ago today, I stepped out and took a risk. I sat down and created a little blog called The Things I Ponder. I started this blog as an outlet for so many of the things my mind thinks about. I have really enjoyed this new ministry. To celebrate today, I thought I would post my very first entry. 



Questions, that is something I do. I ask tons of questions. I just have this need to know and understand things. My questions can be as deep as trying to comprehend the reality of what heaven will really be like to something as simple as what does that call mean in any sport. I am always thinking and asking questions. Keep Reading