Wednesday, September 28, 2011

She just kept running...

I ran today....

4 1/2 miles  

18 lone laps

for several reasons but one is in honor of my friend Kerri

Yesterday was a big day. 
The state of Ok now recognizes her 2 younger daughters as legally hers. 
I was blessed to get to experience it with them. 

along with some other very special people

It was a finish line of sorts

And it was over in minutes. 
Seconds, really. 
He asked some questions. Kerri gave her answers. There was 
a signature and a congratulations and
 a "have a good life", we'll see you later....

The hugs began...

The pictures were snapped....

And the presents given...

And the cake was cut...

And it was all over in minutes. 

Kerri's oldest daughter Tiffany said, "I can't believe it went so quick" 

"The finish line always is" replied the bag holder, (aka Mr. Incredible around here).

The finish line. 

Ironically Kerri and I know all about the finish line. 
That's why we started running in April. 

And we have. Several in fact.

But life happens on the journey to the finish line. 

The first lap is always the hardest. 

There is always some little pain. My shoulder bugged me today. 
But I just kept running.
One foot in front of the other. 

Or in Kerri's case one day after another. 
Week after week. Month after month. Season after Season. 

18 seasons Kerri has mothered these girls. 

4 1/2 years

Many prayers, many scares, many victories, many memories
A mother to the core
One very Captivating and BRAVE woman!

Do you not know? Have you not heard? 
God is the everlasting God, maker of all the earth.
He does not grow tired or weary. 
No one can measure the depths of his understanding. 
He gives power to tired and worn out and strength to the weak.
Even youths will become exhausted and young men will give up.

Those who wait on the Lord will receive new strength. 
They will soar on wings like eagles. 
They will RUN and not grow weary. 
They will walk and not faint.

Isaiah 40:28-30

Adoption is a beautiful thing.

There are finish lines worth crossing....just keep running.

Monday, September 26, 2011


I turned 34 this weekend so I give you my 34 reasons to just keep on living
1. because seasons change and bring new life and experiences
2. because there's always another tree to climb or adventure to have

3. because there are real treasures out there for those who are looking

4. because you will need to tell your nieces and nephews all about growing up with their parents
5. because there are things God's still working out in your life
6. because your parents will need you one day and they gave you life so respect theirs in their old age
7. because you never know when an old friend will call to catch up
8. because life will not always be pretty, stuff happens but your creator, HE is real good at redeeming things! newness is his specialty 

9. because there are foods I haven't tried and experimenting to be done with new flavors 
10. because there are coffee dates with my girls to be had

11. because there are still lessons to learn

12. because there is joy in serving

13. because my babies and Deacon are growing up and I don't want to miss a minute of it
14. because my house isn't completely organized yet
15. because I still need to buy 3 more place settings of my china pattern
16. because I still haven't won first place at a 5k race
17. because I need to visit my family in NC 
18. because I have a book to write
19. because I want to finish my masters
20. because there is beauty in the world in the most unlikely places

21. because there are victories to be won

22. because there are students who want to learn music 
23. because the college students at church need my cookies to help them learn
24. because my friends need my listening ear
25. because there are songs I don't know & stories I haven't heard
26. because you never know when you may get flowers

27. because I still love kissing my man
28. because my boogie boarding days are not over...there are wave to ride
29. because my snow skiing days aren't over either....and my kids are just beginning to love it.
30. because you never know when a fairy may fly by

31. because God is good and his ways are right
32. because their are still people I love that haven't heard the gospel and accepted God's grace
33. because the sun is still coming up and setting everyday in beauty and

34. my life's story is not over!
Cheers for another year of living!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Memory & Therapy

In the ebb and flow of ministry, 
 and preschoolers

 the mind wanders

The heart ascends and descends in the constant flux of words. 
Words that bring worry, 
                               words that bring peace, 
words that bring poison, 
                                                                words that build courage. 

Strange that I find therapy in moving many of the same words around on a page. 


noun, plural -pies.
the treatment of disease or disorders, as by some remedial,rehabilitating, or curative process: speech therapy.
a curative power or quality.
3. any act, hobby, task, program, etc., that relieves tension.

I am going with #3

therapeutic  (ˌθɛrəˈpjuːtɪk) [Click for IPA pronunciation guide]
— adj
1.of or relating to the treatment of disease; curative
2.serving or performed to maintain health:

and #2 here

so I write...and soon ideas come and perspectives change and I cope....

10 years ago today, I was beginning the day as most days the same way- cleaning up after my 15 mo. old son. He'd had a "blow out" all over the crib. It required a complete overhaul. It took time.

We were living in Alex, Ok in a parsonage. Cody was still at home that morning when the phone rang. It was Trevor, our resident conspiracy theorist and youth pastor and more importantly, friend.

"Have you seen the news? Turn on the TV man, a plane just flew into the twin towers in NYC, they are thinking it's a terrorist attack. "

And with a single phone call our day changed. Our lives changed.  We simply sat in front of the TV for hours and watched it all unfold. We didn't know fear of this scale in our country until that day. Everything shut down. Every eye watched. Everyone had a story.

2 weeks later we took the picture above. We had planned a fall trip to New England and couldn't change it. We enjoyed the time with dear friends, Becky and Brad Graves and their boys. The picture was taken in Kennebunkport, Maine.

Today my neighbor came in to church and said he had Alzheimer's. In his 80's he still can take me to Alaska or Seattle or Colorado in a story.  He wife walked on past, this wasn't what she wanted to talk about in the hallway. The weather, or a ballgame, or a child's new shoes....anything but loss.

Words came and my heart sank. I hurt for him. He knows now but he won't for long. He hates to be a burden. He's a walking history book full of stories of his travels and his community, his work and his pain. Losing a child, robed of possessions 2 years prior in a house fire. With ailing health there is not much left but the stories....

4 weeks ago he told me of getting off of a medication and how much better he felt. 10 years on the same medication and it's drained the vigor from him. But the celebration is short lived with so many years behind him.

And why?
            When did life get so hard?
                                                     Was I napping?
                                                                              I'd rather go back to sleep.

As I understand HIS beautiful grace more and more and his very presence in my every moment I delight in my creator, our relationship & his word. The dance has gotten sweeter yet each moment harder, as I feel the weight of the curse in my own bones. Death visits us all, it started in the garden. A man, a woman, Satan and disobedience gave way to death.

Terror will come, fears abound, phone calls and words said will change lives forever.

Memory is a curious thing. We try and forget, we try to recall. A gift and a curse, intertwined with tears and joy, pain and delight.

I am a story teller at best a rambler at worst. Witness to what I see, hear and feel. A Physical and Spiritual being. A whiner & thief saved by a single act of sacrifice. Being made new in spirit while my body is fading.

I am walking by faith in a dimly lit room, the hour is late but there is still time. There is a story to be told, I've eluded before....Two women's lives intersecting....words spoken...the Sovereignty and Goodness of, death, pleadings....pain, hope, promise.... be continued

Saturday, September 3, 2011


One year ago I was overweight and none of my clothes fit. That was getting ready to change.

Today I ran a 5K race with Kerri-

Who won a cowbell at the GReat STeaks Race in Ringling, OK- coming in at 2nd place , and daughter Kasidy who also won in the 1m division.

Exercise is one of the hardest parts of losing excess weight....

I had no idea how much fun it would be to do all the things I can do now. I can run, I can climb, my kids think I can do the Wipeout show! But I haven't always been that way.

For years I believed the lies-

1. Your a mom. Mom's don't do these things.
Bologna- (which should be spelled beloanie lol but no one asked me) Truth is the kids love to exercise with me- dancing, trampoline jumping, running, walking, swimming, hiking, climbing - they take great joy in the fact that I get in there and do it with them and they are better off from the exercise. They need a role model not just a cheer leader.

2. It's just too much work.
Ok truth is it is work but as with all work there is reward. And I was believing the lie that the reward wouldn't be enough. It takes time to see results. Most people give up too soon. Please let this sink in- there is no feeling like finishing a race- pushing through, enduring the pain, seeing the blessed finish line!

And the fellowship with the others who are doing it too- I have met more cool interesting people at the races. That's not even mentioning the therapy sessions I get with Kerri 2-3 times a week when we run.

3. I don't have time.
Hog wash! You make time. Truth is you find time for the things you need and want to do. You have been given time & you choose how to fill the time. You can get up early (which I highly suggest) and make the sacrifice by going to bed earlier, forgoing late night tv or facebook. Or find time during lunch or be a weekend warrior, getting in 2 workouts a week. You make it a family activity (evening walks or wiifit session) or like me a therapy session with a trust friend. It's time well spent.

side note- if you happen to have just had a baby, pregnant or find yourself after an injury or surgery- hang on, start with reasonable expectations and goals- you will get there! Don't believe the lie that you are too far gone to ever get back into better health. Eat well, stay focused, find support networks and listen to your doctor for sure! 

4. I will be sore. 
Yes you will be but it won't last long, they make recovery drinks, bananas if you want a more organic supplement. Start smart. Don't kill your self, get a trainer, and stretch. On P90X there is a 60 min. video in the rotation that is nothing but stretching...yes it's that important! 

5. Exercise is boring.
Are you kidding? What was I thinking? Do these pictures look boring? Zumba is not boring. Running maybe, but hiking? The fresh air , the new scenery, the life, the connection with other created things..

Over coming a fear of heights....

The view from the top...

Fun ride coming down...

It's adventure and we were made for it. 
Another bordom buster- listen to books on ipods or good fast music- I memorize things from the Bible to occupy the time. Smart phones have apps with encouraging quotes and logs. Vary the routine, too, no one is going to want to do p90x or Jillian Michaels forever- I do a netflix workout at least once a month and am always looking for a new challenge...

like the Jump Rope- 

I set a goal (50) and go until I reach the goal. It took several days of trying. I am goal oriented. Find out what works for you and just do it!

I have been set free from an old way of living that wasn't really living at all by what Jesus did on the Cross, he took my punishment and gave me his spirit. I had wanted to be free a long time before I started living like I was. Many of my decisions were based on lies, ( I'll save the food lies for later). Truth is I have an enemy of my soul (think like how EVERY movie has a villain, where did you think they got that idea?) and there is a plot to take me out. But there is a way , the truth, and life in the person of Jesus Christ. Stepping out in the truth isn't a one time thing. I choose truth each day. Freedom is found one day (sometimes one hour) at a time. Just brace yourself , it's a LONG obedience in the right direction. And it's so incredibly worth it.

To move this body is to worship the creator of it.
 To say thank you with every step.
 To rejoice with every goal met.
 To feel delight in sweet victory.
There are times where I think I'd rather just sing with the band, but I'd miss the incredible scenery if I did.

Putting one foot in front of the other one day at a time,