Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Verses for 2010

Here are a couple verses that I've been thinking would be good goals for 2010.

I Peter 4:11
"Whoever speaks is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen!"

Psalms 104:33-34
"I will sing to the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have my being. Let my meditation be pleasing to Him; As for me, I shall be glad in the LORD."

I found a song to go with this verse - "Making Melody" by Matt Redman. I downloaded it from itunes just because of the name. =)

"i'm making melody in my heart to you
i'm making melody in my heart to you
pouring out your praise with everything within
i'm making melody in my heart to you
i'm making melody in my heart to you
yours will always be the song i love to sing

how can hearts not love your name?
how can souls not sing your praise?
Jesus you put music in my soul"

I can't find it on youtube, but if you go to grooveshark.com, you should be able to search for and find it.

Monday, January 18, 2010

"The Language of Love and Respect" by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs

The Language of Love and Respect is Dr. Eggerichs' follow-up book to Love and Respect. Eggerichs bases his books on Ephesians 5 where wives are commanded to respect their husbands and husbands are commanded to love their wives. The Language of Love and Respect is packed with practical ways for us to live out these commands on a daily basis.
As a wife not particularly gifted in the area of communication, I loved the “how to” part of this book. The author goes so far as to write sentences for me to say to my husband to convey what I'm feeling. It's also good for me to be reminded that my husband is not my enemy. He simply communicates in a completely different way - like a man!
My favorite part of this book was the last section about the Rewarded Cycle. Eggerichs reminds us that we are commanded by God to respect our husbands or love our wives regardless of their response. In obedience to God I must respect my husband when I don’t feel like it, when I think he doesn’t deserve it, and when I see no immediate response.
This book gives solid, Bible-saturated marriage advice in a practical way without condemning anyone – even those who feel like they are failing. I highly recommend it!
I reviewed this book as part of Thomas Nelson's book review blogger program. To learn more, go to booksneeze.com.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Joyful uncertainty

I'm a planner. I like to know what's going on when, so I can get used to the idea. If Caleb calls at 5:00 to tell me he'll be at work til 9:00, I'll probably get upset. I had already planned a nice supper and evening with my husband, and the last minute notice that he won't be there throws me off. On the flip side, I love to dream about fun things like vacations and family get-togethers. I think about them for weeks (ok, months) ahead of time.
It's probably no surprise then that at the beginning of a new year, I like to think about what I'd like to accomplish this year. I usually write a list of goals for the year. Goals for my kids. Goals for my marriage. Spiritual goals. Some show up every year: Get back in shape (again). Catch up on my scrapbooking.
So when I was reading my daily "My Utmost for His Highest" excerpt the other morning, I paid attention when it started out, "Naturally, we are inclined to be so mathematical and calculating that we look upon uncertainty as a bad thing."
Who, me? =) It continues:
"Certainty is the mark of the common-sense life; gracious uncertainty is the mark of the spiritual life. To be certain of God means to be uncertain in all our ways, we do not know what a day may bring forth. This is generally said with a sigh of sadness; it should be rather an expression of breathless expectation. We are uncertain of the next step, but we are certain of God. Immediately we abandon to God, and do the duty that lies nearest, He packs our life with surprises all the time. . . . Spiritual life is the life of a child. We are not uncertain of God, but uncertain of what He is going to do next. If we are only certain in our beliefs, we get dignified and severe and have the ban of finality about our views; but when we are rightly related to God, life is full of spontaneous, joyful uncertainty and expectancy."
I have no idea what 2010 will bring for our family. We will have lots of opportunities and decisions no doubt. I pray that God will grant us wisdom and direct our paths into His ways. I have great peace knowing that God knows what is in store for us this year. And I am excited to relax and live in "spontaneous, joyful uncertainty and expectancy." Or try anyway....

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I know... It's been a long time. It's been kinda busy around here. Let me update you.
On December 9th, we welcomed Ava Claire to the world. She was in a hurry to get here in the middle of a blizzard. Driving through snowdrifts while in labor is not fun! We were very grateful for Caleb's four wheel drive pickup - without which I doubt we would've made it to the hospital at all. We could've been on the news: "Woman delivers baby girl in snowdrift!" I was also very grateful to my friend Niki who drove across town at 4:00 in the morning to stay with our kids. Without her, Ava would've been born at home. Ava was born at 5:26 am on Dec. 9th. She weighed 8 lbs. 7 oz. and was 20 inches long. She was in such a rush that they didn't have time to formally admit me to the hospital or give me an IV. The doctor missed her delivery by about 30 seconds. She certainly made life interesting for a couple of hours. But she's here and she's perfect. Getting used to life with a newborn again has been interesting. But the kids love her and as long as I hold her so they can't hurt her (Kylie and Julia mob her every time I put her down), we're good! =)
I can't believe she's one month old already! I wish she'd stay tiny a little bit longer!

Then it was Christmas time. We got to spend Christmas at home with just the six of us this year. It was great fun! We ventured across town for the Christmas Eve service in the middle of a blizzard and were entirely snowed in for Christmas Day. It's so rare for us to get an entire day at home with just us, so I loved Christmas! And my husband bought me a beautiful wool coat, which was fun too! =)

This is Caleb, Ethan, and Kylie with the Magic Rocks.

The day after Christmas, Caleb's grandpa died. It was actually a blessing for him because he had been diagnosed with terminal cancer and dreaded the thought of hospice. But his passing has been hard on the rest of the family. So we spent that week with Caleb's family remembering Opa and celebrating a new year all at the same time.
The kids and the guys sledding at Tam and Alan's. Brrr!

And this last week, Rob and Christina came to visit from New Orleans. I think they about froze to death! The highs were below zero - freezing even for Nebraskans! Rob bravely drove us to Central City in the dark in the middle of a blizzard. It's pretty scary to drive when you can't see where you're going and there are invisible drifts you can barely drive through everywhere. But Christina got to go sledding for the first time. And we got to celebrate Christmas with the whole Johnson family together at once! There's 19 of us now! Wow! It was pretty crazy, but lots of fun. I'm so blessed to have such a loving, wonderful family.

The mommies with their hungry babies!

And that's about it. Now back to school with Ethan and some sort of routine. I suppose I'll have to start cooking and cleaning again one of these days. But for now, I think I'm going to take a nap...