Wednesday, December 27, 2006

It's a Girl!

pregnancy week by week

As many of you know, my husband wanted to wait until delivery to find out the sex of the baby, but I didn't. A week or so ago, he asked the youth Bible study he leads to do a radical act of service for someone in their family. His radical act of service for me was going to be to get up early and bring me back an egg and cheese biscuit from Hardees but that didn't work out. So his radical act of service ended up being that we could find out the sex together at the ultrasound. (I was already going to find out and "try" to keep it a secret.)

Emmie is thrilled that she is going to have a little sister. Although she wasn't surprised when we told her. She looked at me like "I know it's a girl, I've been telling you that all along."

So thank you Brian! I am thankful to be married to you and sharing our lives together. Happy 9th Anniversary!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Christmas Morning at Home

Emmie with her new Belle dress AND her new cooking apron (and I guess you can see all the new "jewelry"!

Calvin enjoying his new cars!

Coleman is thrilled with his new cars as well!

Everyone in their matching Christmas p.j.'s.

It's been a fun morning. Merry Christmas everyone!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Christmas Tour

A little late, but better than never. Check out BooMama's site for other tours.

Advent: Love


Today as we celebrate love in the advent of Christ, consider the words to the song, O Come All Ye Faithful. O come let us adore Him. Joyful and triumphant, let us adore Him. The call is to the faithful to come and adore Christ. The call is to the faithful to regard Christ as more precious than all the world. To consider Christ alone as worthy of all praise, devotion, honor, and glory. The call is to remember that the Lord and Creator of all that we see condescended to this earth and was born in the flesh.

But why do we do this? Why do we come to adore him? Why do we love him? The beloved disciple answers these questions for us in 1 John 4:19 – We love because He first loved us. God loved us and so we are able to love.

Our concept of love has become so corrupt in our day and we are very far removed from a biblical definition of the love of God. So many would say that because God is love, he tolerates our mistakes and shortcomings. So many preach a gospel that describes God’s love as being centered on mankind. But the God of scripture is love because He gives to us that which is the most precious in all the universe, Himself. He gave His son. Why did He give His only Son? Because God, who is love, hates sin. He hates sin because sin belittles His love and wars against it. It is because God is love that He hates sin. He sent His son to die the death that we deserved because of our sin. He demonstrates His love in this - that while we were still in sin, Christ died for us.

Do not think this Christmas that God’s love is centered on you and your life. Instead look away from yourself and see the love of God in the manger and on the cross. Do not think that God’s love is so easily defined. Instead, let us know the love of Christ, it’s height and depth and breadth and width. And to know the love of God we must see the baby laid in the manger and we must see the man on the cross with our guilt upon His shoulders.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Advent: Joy


This week we celebrate the Joy of the advent of Christ. We know of the joy of the angels, the joy of the shepherds, the joy of Simeon and Anna at the temple, and the joy of the wise men who started their long journey to find the King of the Jews and offer their gifts to Him. But there is another account of great joy in the Christmas story that is often just skimmed over. In the text of Luke 2, we are told of Mary’s visit with her cousin, Elizabeth. In verse 44 Elizabeth says to Mary, “Behold, when the sound of your greeting came to my ears, the baby in my womb leaved for JOY!” Even the unborn were given the joy of God at the advent of Christ.

What about us? Do you know the joy of Christ? What if there were no gifts? What if there were no blessings? What if all your family and friends were gone? What if your very life were fading away? Would the coming of Christ bring you joy?

To see what that looks like you need only look as far as Mary, the mother of Christ. She was the lowest of the low in her society. A teenage Hebrew girl who lived in utter poverty. Her only hope of survival was based on her position in her family as a girl betrothed to be married. And then, before the consummation of her marriage with Joseph, she becomes pregnant. Every blessing, every gift, her position in the family, even her very life could be taken away from her. In the midst of this desperate circumstance we hear the words of Mary and see exactly what true Joy really is. In Luke 2 starting in verse 46: And Mary said, ‘My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked on the humble estate of his servant. For behold, from now on all generations will call me blessed; for he who is mighty has done great things for me, and holy is his name. And his mercy is for those who fear him from generation to generation. He has shown strength with his arm; he has scattered the proud in the thoughts of their hearts; he has brought down the mighty from their thrones and exalted those of humble estate; he has filled the hungry with good things, and the rich he has sent empty away. He has helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy, as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his offspring forever.’

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Advent: Peace


The angels proclaimed to the shepherds who were keeping watch over their flock by night, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!” God’s glorious angels and Bethlehem’s meek shepherds both proclaimed the coming of Christ. It was proclaimed that Jesus’ advent was to the glory of God and to the peace of those with whom God is pleased.

Many will say we do not live in peace. War is ravaging nations. Political squabbles are ripping apart governments. Immorality is destroying lives and families. In the middle of all of this we celebrate the advent of Christ and the peace that was brought to those with whom God is pleased. I’m reminded of the last stanza of the old hymn that says:
Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” The peace of Christ transcends circumstance. The peace of Christ removes fear. The peace of Christ is not like the peace that is found on this earth. The peace of Christ is everlasting.

As we celebrate the advent or coming of Christ this week, do you know the peace of Christ? Do you know what Paul means when he writes in Romans 5:1, “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

This peace that we have with God here on earth and that the angels announced to the shepherds is just a foretaste of the peace that Christ will bring when he comes again. Then he will remove his people from this sinful and corrupt world and we will know a peace that we never imagined possible. Let’s sing of the coming of our long expected Jesus again, but this time not looking back to the incarnation of Christ. Let’s look forward with great expectation to the peace that will be made complete at his second coming.

Monday, December 18, 2006

Advent: Hope

I have been trying to get my husband to start a blog because he has a great deal of wisdom in how and what he communicates. But for now, he’s going to ‘guest’ blog here. This week I am going to post the advent devotions that he has written for our church. I hope they help you focus on the birth of Christ and what that means for God’s people.


Today is our first week in the celebration of advent. This week we light the first advent candle to celebrate the hope that we have in the coming of Christ. The word advent means arrival or coming. For centuries the prophets foretold the coming of one who would rule and reign over God’s people and rescue them from the oppression of this sinful world and redeem them from their sins. God, in speaking judgment upon the serpent in the Garden of Eden, spoke of Eve’s offspring. God further clarified to the serpent that He was talking about a person, a man. He says to the serpent, “He shall bruise your head, and you shall bruise his heel.” Nearly 7 centuries before the birth of Christ, Jeremiah spoke of the hope to come in the Shepherd King who would be in the line of David. He says, “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch, and he shall reign as king and deal wisely, and shall execute justice and righteousness in the land. In his days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely. And this is the name by which he will be called: ‘The LORD is our righteousness.’” In between these divine revelations and even after the return of the exiles, glimpses of hope are given through God’s word as recorded in the prophets and wisdom writings and history books of the Old Testament. For centuries the nation of Israel suffered at the hands of pagan nations, immoral and idolatrous kings, false prophets, and in the midst of all these sufferings, God gave glorious glimpses of the hope to come in the person of Christ.

One of those glorious glimpses is found in the book written by the prophet Isaiah. Let us all stand together and read from chapter 9 of Isaiah.
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shined…For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will do this.Isaiah 9:2, 6-7

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Busy Weekend

On Saturday we spent the morning together riding the Christmas train at our local mall.

Emmie and I went to the Nutcracker together on Saturday afternoon. This is the second year we have done this. I am hoping to make it an annual Christmas tradition.

All of the older girl cousins on my husband's side of the family went to the nutracker together. Thanks Granny!

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Baby Update

pregnancy calendar

We're almost 17 weeks now. We had a check-up this week and everything looks good so far. I am feeling alot less tired now. The only problem right now is my back so we'll have to see how the old back holds up. My next appointment is the ultrasound. Brian still wants to wait to find out what it is and I still don't want to wait. I am thinking about finding out and trying to keep it a secret. Think I can keep it a secret?

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

God's Sovereignty

From Stepping Heavenward by E. Prentiss:

“Do you always submit to God’s will thus?”

“In great things I do …What grieves me is that I am constantly forgetting to recognize God’s hand in the little, everyday trials of life, and instead of receiving them as from Him, find fault with the instruments by which He sends them.”

I am thankful that God is sovereign – in anything and everything. May I remember to see His sovereignty in not just the big things, but in the everyday things as well.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Christmas Shopping Tip

Yesterday I noticed an email in my husband's inbox. I saw he had emailed himself a link from work. When I clicked on the link, it took me to a picture of a George Foreman grill/griddle combo. I immediately recognized what this was - hopefully he hadn't ordered it for me yet.

When he got home from work, I asked him about it and I was right. He had thought about that as a Christmas gift for me but he hadn't gone through with it - yet. Whew! I asked him where he got that idea and he told me about a website they were discussing at work. At this site you can look under personality types for gift ideas. I am thankful that he picked me as a "supermom" but not so thankful that they recommended the grill/griddle combo. Don't get me wrong, we use our griddle pretty often, but as a Christmas gift from my husband? I'll pass.

We decided to go back to how we normally do it. I give him a carefully selected (and detailed) list, (like on aisle 13 at Target) - and he can independently choose from that! (Or I told him to ask my friend Kim. Don't let me down Kim!)