Monday, April 30, 2012

Gratuitous Snippets of A Day

I walked outside to a fingernail moon, a sky full of stars, and a cool breeze and I thought,

"How many times have I missed this?"

I came home to a husband who was anxious to tell me about his day, who was delighted to see me and I thought,

"Do I marvel that a man loves me like he does?"

I went in to kiss my girls sleeping peacefully in their beds and I thought,

"Did I really stop and soak in their spoken thoughts today?"

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Sing Your Praise to the Lord (Come on Everybody)

Several weeks ago I heard an advertisement on the radio for this and remarked to my husband how much Mary Elisabeth loves Laura Story.  He said,

"Why don't you get tickets and take treat!"

I did not argue and promptly came home and order the tickets.  

The evening was a blessing.... a fun time for both of us.  We laughed hard and shed tears and had the privilege of experiencing the "sensation" of worship at a Christian concert.  It has been a long time since I've been to one and the memories of my teenage years came flooding back.

My first Christian Concert was at Six Flags over Georgia.... Amy Grant's "Straight Ahead" Tour.  The one where she had a big "red light" on stage that flashed red, yellow, green when she sang the lead song.  Michael W. Smith was her opening act and he just sat at the piano and played.... no flashing lights, no dancing around.... just Michael and the piano.  Amy had on a leopard jacket and her hair was long and full of curls and I thought she was beautiful (still do).

I never missed an Amy concert after that.  Nor a Michael W. Smith one for that matter.  I can remember Steven Curtis Chapman's Great Adventure Tour where he brought his wife and three tiny children on stage, two of which are now married.  "More To This Life" was my absolute favorite song.  He made me laugh when he shared how he had three children, "Eenie, Meenie, and Minee, and he hoped to have no Mo."  He has since adopted three from China... one who is now with Jesus.

I saw many a "barefooted" Rich Mullins concert and learned the cup game to "Screen Door on a Submarine" which I often teach my classes.  Rich was ALWAYS so raw and real and vulnerable.  His lyrics still make me think deep.  I cried when he died.  He did, indeed, "go out like Elijah" and I look forward to meeting him in heaven.

I saw DC Talk open for Billy Graham live in Atlanta.  Kevin Smith climbed up the scaffolding to sing and I thought Billy Graham was so cool to let this group open for him.   Just last night, Mary Elisabeth enlightened me that Michael Tait is now the lead singer for Newsboys and Kevin sings background vocals on their newest hit, God's Not Dead (where have I been???)

Today I have new favorites.... Mandisa, Audrey Assad, and  Britt Nicole to name a few.  But when one of the oldies comes through the radio, I stop and reminisce, and thank God for the gift of those tunes that shaped my teenage years and taught me how to trust and rest and hope in Him.  They still do.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Gratitude Haiku

Morning melody
Geese flutter by in a "V"
Open eyes to see.
(ASL 4-17-12)

So, this morning I had a little time on my porch before school.  With my Bible and a piping hot cup of coffee, I settled in to the "symphony" of beautiful birdsong all around me.  I had no more started to thank God for the delight of the moment, when suddenly a flock of geese came squawking by above me.  It was as if the Lord said, "You're Welcome."

I shared my happy morning with my students and told them of the geese in perfect "V" formation.  And then, as usual, came the questions.  "Mrs. Lamb, why do they fly in "V" formation?"  And then, my usual answer, "I don't know.  God just made them that way."

So I came home and "googled" it.  And here is an explanation I found:

 Why do geese and some other birds fly in a V formation?
New Scientist in 2002 published several contradictory possibilities. But we liked this reason from Charlie Bateman (slightly edited):
“A goose's eyes are set in the sides of its head, giving good all-round vision but leaving a small blind spot directly ahead and behind. If a goose were to follow directly behind the one in front it would have to turn its head slightly to see it clearly and would have to resort to asymmetrical flapping to maintain a straight course, reducing its aerodynamic efficiency and wasting energy. It would also have to fly a little below the one in front to stay clear of its wake, not a good place to be as geese defecate in flight. This leaves some kind of echelon formation as the only practical solution.”
There are other advantages to flying in a V formation. For example, experiments have shown that 25 geese flying in a V can travel 70% further than solo birds. The birds function more efficiently in a group working together. Canada goose
Now couldn't you just break out in a shout to glorify the Creator of the geese who implanted this marvelous ability in the birds? Of course you could. God has planted some amazing abilities in birds (mallee fowls take temperature, penguins navigate to land from far out at sea, etc.). But compare that with what New Scientist said:
“Putting these observations together suggests that there is more than one advantage to flocking, and that aerodynamic and social benefits may have evolved together.”
“May have evolved together”? The wisdom of this world is truly foolishness in God's sight (1 Corinthians 3:19).

I can't wait to share this with my class tomorrow.  What a privilege that we can, indeed, "break out in a shout to glorify the Creator of geese who implanted this marvelous ability in birds."

Monday, April 9, 2012

Even the Winter

Our business is very dependent on the weather.  We watch the weather channel so much that I know just about every tune they play during the local forecast.  It's usually the last thing we watch after we climb into bed at night.  

Last night, while watching, the extended forecast "promised" us mild weather throughout the week with no rain in sight.  We both looked at each other and smiled, "It's gonna be a good week."

The song I've attached above is one of my favorites and this youtube video provides some pretty marvelous pictures of God's amazing creation.  The song's sentiment can pertain to many things (Audrey probably meant it most for the "Winter" our marriages often face), but I love how the lyrics so beautifully illustrate the year we have had.
During the winter, God planted the seeds deep in our own personal walks with him and taught us how to be "deep-rooted" in Him regardless of our circumstances.... something we thought we knew until our circumstances became difficult.  

As the Spring arrives and we "blossom and grow", I am thankful that He took the time to take us deep, because I know that is the only way to truly have lasting fruit.

Praise God.  Even the Winter won't last forever.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter Gratitude

For how He sustains...and all that He teaches as we wait on Him.

For children who He has raised up to love Him and talk to Him and walk with Him...already.

For the empty tomb.

For a happy "in between" day (between Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday) and all of the fun that we had and how we laughed so hard and celebrated life together.

For tradition and the joy of filling the Easter baskets each year.  

For sisters who DELIGHT to share.

For tulips and springtime and the fun that is in every little detail.

For coordinating Easter outfits... and family.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Peep Silliness

Every year,

We make these little bird nests.

We melt butterscotch chips and peanut butter and toss in a bag of chow mein noodles.

Then we mush them into a muffin tin.

After they harden,

we take them out of the fridge and fill them with Robin's Eggs.

And then we add the Peeps!

 This tradition usually produces a fair amount of silliness. 

But you know, Peeps can do that to ya! 

Nana's Bed and Breakfast

For ten years we've been making this trip.  Thankfully God blessed me with a Mom-in-Love who is so much fun to hang out with!  Every April, "me and my two girly friends" take off for four days of sheer delight!  We shop, we eat, we laugh, we, we laugh, we "craft", we drink lots of coffee and Dr. Pepper, 
and we laugh.... alot.

This year we did alot of sewing!

Nana was lookin' purdy cute in her fun jammies we brought her.

I quilted!  (And my "younger" friends laughed at me in my granny glasses.)

We found lots of new little happy stores and I added to my fabric stash!

These little juice glasses were one of my favorite finds. 

Elizabeth's Antiques was delightful and this lone creamer had "Alisa" written all over it.

As always, it was a blessed trip.  I am so grateful for dear friends, a gracious and loving mother in law, 
and His provision for this sweet tradition.

And I finished Caroline's quilt!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Maundy Thursday

In this year of "NEW" I am so thankful for His presence in my life. 

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish 
but have eternal life."
-John 3:16