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Saturday, March 29, 2008

WHATEVER: Toddler to Teenager

We went out tonight with some friends and had a GREAT time by the way. It is always nice to go out with other adults. I find myself talking about the kids and different things they do...I guess that's what parents do. We had a great night. When we got home, Addy was still awake. I went to put her to bed, she was so tired, almost delirious. It was funny but then she'd cry, not so funny. She told me her bed was crazy because she couldn't get the comforter to lay flat. So, she's kind of OCD about some things, like her books at the end of her daybed. She lines them up and they have to be perfect. I put a tissue on one of her books to which she told me that wasn't where it goes. So, I moved it to the end, not on a book. She started to tell me that it still wasn't right and about mid sentence, she looked at me and said, emphatically, "WHATEVER." I got tickled because she totally used the word correctly and like I would use it. She is a mess. It was such a teenager thing to say. Where'd my baby go?

Friday, March 28, 2008


We had a good friend of ours send Addy a butterfly kit a couple of weeks ago. We thought it was cool but didn't realize how cool it would be for ALL of us to watch. Within a few days, literally the caterpillars grew from an inch to 3 inches. We left them Wednesday morning and 2 of them had made their way to the top of the cup, when we got home from the zoo late that afternoon all 6 were hanging from the top. Today, they have all formed cocoons. It truly has been amazing to watch these creatures make their transformation. We are all excited to see them blossom into beautiful butterflies. I'll post some pictures from the day we got them and then I took more today. If you ever get the chance, buy your kids a butterfly is SOOO cool!!

Monday, March 24, 2008

Picture Messer Upper

So, if you'll notice in this picture, this could have been a nice Easter family picture...NOT. If you'll notice just behind mine and Keegan's heads, there's this big, tall crazy man pointing to his hiney!! Yeah, that's our Worship Arts Pastor. Nice right?! He better be glad we love him! If he wanted to be in our family picture, all he had to do was ask.

Okay so then we take a second picture, and look at Addy...silly girl!!

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Easter Sunday: We Go Weekly

We had an AWESOME Easter yesterday. We went to brunch at a hotel downtown. My friend's husband is the head chef so they invited us to have brunch there. It was INCREDIBLE. They had all kinds of food. They had a sushi & seafood room. They had omelets, waffles, beef roast, pork tenderloin, macaroni and cheese, fresh fruit. I finished my brunch off with a Godiva chocolate cake. It was all so delicious. We had a great time. My friend Xuan actually let Addy stay with her because the hotel did an Easter egg hunt. They had a blast. So, we headed to church. We had 60 people there. It was amazing. How cool to see new faces!!! I think we all have a refreshed and renewed outlook. It was so exciting to be there yesterday!! I can't wait till next week. I included a picture of our family with Jonathan & Meagan, our arts pastor and his wife!
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Saturday, March 22, 2008

God Answers

Okay so I've let my mail pile up this week and I went to open all the junk and bills. I opened a letter from our mortgage company assuming it was a bill. It was a refund check that stated we've overpaid our escrow. The crazy part is, it's like $40 short of our NC house payment. Isn't that crazy!! This whole time we've been praying that God would help that house to sell and that He would take care of us! God still answers!!!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Catch Up

Well, it looks like we have a buyer for our house. We should know more details next week and are praying that it goes through quickly and painlessly. We're actually going to rent the house to them for a month while everything goes through. Although this is not the path we wanted to take, it seems that it is what we need to do. We're praying that God would direct this and I've prayed a lot for the buyers. I've prayed that God would bless them.

I know Levi blogged about my fasting which I'm really thankful for that experience. It's amazing how near that I've felt God these past two weeks. I am going to make a habit of fasting and praying. I've had insights into myself and those around me that I haven't had or felt for a while.

This weekend is Easter and how very exciting!! I had a lady tell me today that she doesn't celebrate Easter with her kids, other than Easter egg hunts. It really saddened my heart. There is such a sense of celebration and anticipation and emotion over this weekend. I hope my heart never becomes hardened to the JOY and POWER of this weekend.

Another awesome part of this weekend is that we start our weekly services Sunday. We're not a"real" church yet. Levi keeps reminding me of that...we're going to look more like a church but we're not full out launching until the fall. Our plan is to continue to try to build our team of believers who would say that they believe in Catalyst Rowlett and want to join our team. Then, in the fall we're going to launch for our target of unbelievers. We're praying that God would send us people whose hearts break for the people of Rowlett. We'd covet your prayers with us. We're really feeling anticipation and excitement about what God is going to do here. We're fully aware that it will not be our own power but His alone.

Have an awesome Easter weekend!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Grace & Peace

I listened to a sermon the other day about grace and peace. I think it’s funny b/c a lot of people sign off with grace and peace, which is fine but I've never really thought much about it. The sermon basically spelled out what grace and peace mean. He defined those two words different ways. My understanding is that grace is God’s unmerited favor and kindness and compassion that is NOT deserved. And mercy is leniency, compassion, withholding punishment and trading it for love. As I listened I thought about the past year and difference situations and challenges that I've faced. It was Rob Bell's sermon and the challenge was to begin every conversation, day, argument, everything with grace and mercy, literally saying, "Grace and Mercy." Rob Bell pointed out that so many books in the New Testament begin with grace and mercy. I was challenged to offer grace and mercy. The things that we get wrapped up in hurt and they hurt bad sometimes and deep but so did the things that the writers in the New Testament endured, prison, beatings, persecution, etc. I think about the sacrifice that Jesus made and how badly He hurt and He endured so much pain for me. He could have called angels to rescue Him but he didn’t because He knew the big picture. It is easy to have our eyes a lot of other things, people, situations, hurts, busy-ness, etc. It’s so easy to do. I’m guilty of that too. I’ve kind of had my own little pity party here. That’s dangerous because that’s when my focus needs to be on God saying, teach me from this situation but in the meantime, keep me above reproach, guard my lips to speak grace and mercy instead of all the things I humanly want to say. I had a friend send me an email today and he was reflecting on a journal entry from this summer and the prayer that he wrote was really powerful. I emailed him back and rephrased some of it but I'm including it because I want it to be my prayer too.

"I pray that you will struggle to Know God. I pray that He would constantly be revealing Himself to you in different shades. I pray that He would give you strength and newness and a backbone grounded in Him. I pray that you would notice the Creation that He’s given us to enjoy and take care of. I pray that you would continue to work on forgiving those that you have animosity towards. I pray that you would extend grace and mercy to them and receive grace and mercy from them. I pray that God would rattle your cage all throughout your life while He teaches you to become a man/woman of God. I pray that He would use you in ways that you never thought possible. I pray that God would ignite your life and those around you with His flames. I pray that you would completely give yourself over to Him. I pray that He would bring followers of His into your life that would be lifelong friends. I also pray that He would let your path cross with those who need Him so desperately and that you would offer His light and His joy and His power to their lives. I pray God’s best as you discover more of who you are everyday!!"

We Made the Paper

Levi & Jonathan have been in contact with a publicist and in the Dallas Morning News there's a Neighborhood Section on Saturdays. This guy wrote an article about our church. It was really cool to open up and see Levi and Jonathan's faces in there. I tried to find the article online but couldn't. I just wanted to share that bit of exciting news! It does seem like things are finally coming together for us. We continue to be in prayer that God will bless us and that we listen to His leading. Have a great Sunday!

Here's the article. Enjoy!!

Friday, March 14, 2008

House News

Please pray for us this weekend. We have 2 leads on our house and hopefully we will hear GREAT news on Monday. We have a guy who is very interested and he will know about financing on Monday. Please join us in prayer. Our desire is to get out from under this house. It will lift a HUGE burden off of us. Thanks for your prayers!!

Reflection of This Week

This has been a really good week...REALLY busy but good. Levi's mom left Monday afternoon so we did some fun stuff with her on Monday. Tuesday I tried to get caught up on housework (ha) and laundry and get some things done around here. I also got a free haircut at Toni & only took 2 1/2 hours. Wednesday we rode the DART downtown with our playgroup and went to the Farmer's Market. You've never lived until you've done this with about 9 strollers through downtown Dallas. It was a hoot!! Thursday we were supposed to have a picnic with a couple of friends but ended up at McDonalds because the weather. So, today we did our picnic at the park and fed the ducks. Woah!! Crazy week but a lot of fun. This week was good for me. I never have fasted. It is just not something I thought about or really even considered. A couple of weeks ago I really felt like I needed to fast and pray about the selling of our house. I talked to Levi about it but did nothing. Then, last weekend, out of the blue a friend told me about a fast that someone did. It just was confirmation to me that I needed to be obedient. So, I fasted this week from sun up to sun down one day to pray about our housing situation. I really felt a peace that God has been and is going to continue to take care of us. I also felt convicted of some things and patterns in my life. God definitely brought some things to my attention. I was glad I did it and definitely learned some things.

Keegan's Birthday

Keegan turned 1 last weekend. I can't believe it. He is so big and doing so much. We had a great weekend. Levi's mom came in and we just had a great time being with her. She's a wonderful lady. We had a little party. He loved his cake but was so funny about it. He kind of pinched it with two fingers and then wanted to feed everybody. He had icing EVERYWHERE!! It was fun! I am so thankful for him.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


I am thankful today. I am thankful for all of the blessings in my life. I am thankful for a great husband who has taken risks to follow God. I am thankful for two beautiful, hilarious, loving children who are healthy and strong. I am thankful for my parents and family that are God loving people and truly exhibit love to others without judgement. I am thankful for my sister (& brother in law and niece) who is strong and an incredible friend. I am thankful for my husband's family. I am thankful for the time I got to spend with my mother in law this weekend. She is awesome and has so much to offer this world. I am thankful for my friends who are so far away. I have the best group of girlfriends and I can't wait to be with them later this year. I am thankful for my friends in NC who supported us and felt like family. God has truly blessed us with awesome people. We miss them so much. I am thankful for our new friends in Texas. God has definitely brought us together with people that are matches made in heaven and how we found each other is a mystery. It's funny to look back on the relationships that I've had in my life and God brought the right person or people right when we needed them. He has stretched us to reach out and make new friends and get out of our comfort zones. It's so cool to know that when God stretches me, I know that He's going to do some awesome stuff. It's kind of exciting to see how God is going to provide and work things out. I am so thankful for all the people in my life and that I have met on this journey. I look forward to meeting new people and making new relationships. I always want to be flexible and pliable and obedient to what God is calling me to do!

Today & Our House

So today I've really been praying about our house situation in NC. I would invite you to pray with me. When we moved here, 7 months ago, we considered it taking a while for our houses (us and our worship pastor's) to sell but we didn't think it would take this long. It's been kind of disheartening. We knew we were to move here to plant this church, we all felt that in our spirits and knew that God was leading us. I never want to doubt that. Humanly though, it is so difficult to have 2 mortgages every month. I really don't know how long we can continue. So, today, I've really felt impressed to make it a matter of prayer and to focus my prayer and energy on praying that God would do a miracle in this crazy housing market and sell both of these houses. I've done some soul searching, confessing, and just thinking on God. I want to be His servant and I want Him to check me. There are definitely areas in my life that He has brought to my attention. I have to surrender control on a daily basis to Him. I find that I try to pick it up and worry and then there goes my joy. I get focused on the wrong things, things that are petty and really make no difference. There are things with Levi that irritate me and I focus on those instead of all of the wonderful things about him. I hate that about myself. I want my kids to remember me as a Christ centered person who was full of joy and love, not worried about everything being perfect and right. I want to be positive and I struggle with negativity. I struggle with wanting justice. I listened to a sermon this morning that talked about when we're weak, God can be strong. His Kingdom is built on weakness and the opposite of what society considers strong and mighty. It's okay for people to lie about us, it's okay for people to spread gossip and half truths, it's okay! God will bring the truth to Light. God will be our justice. God wins in the end. We know that. Why is it so difficult to digest for me? Why do I want so badly to set people straight? This is what I'm talking about when I say daily that I have to lay down control and just say, "Okay God, You know me, You made me. I want You to control my actions and reactions today. Control my thoughts, control what comes out of my mouth. Help me to live like your daughter today. Help me to love like you love and care for the things you care for." So, as I'm trying to pray that God will do a miracle with our real estate, I'm thankful that He is bringing my attention to things that I need to change in my life. I'm also praying that God would continue to do a miracle in my life and make me more like Him daily.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Not Even Sure How to Title This

I haven't blogged in a few days. This week has been good so far. Sunday evening we had our Ground Breaking Ceremony on our property. It was really cool. I've never been a part of that before. I found myself at one point almost tearing up. It's actually happening. A friend of mine brought her family and I was so excited to see them. I catch myself telling her things like, "You don't have to come." or "It's really not a big deal." She always tells me to shut up and that she wouldn't miss it. I'm glad to have her. It is a big deal and I'm glad she was a part of it. She hasn't really grown up in church really so she brings a totally new perspective. Also this week it snowed..yes it stuck for a while. It actually snowed pretty hard for a little bit. I know Levi and I aren't going to win Parent of the Year but we got Addy up so she could see it. She's never really seen snow or been old enough to enjoy it. Today it was 68 degrees and it's supposed to snow again tomorrow. Texas weather is so jacked up!!! Levi's mom flies in tomorrow for Keegan's birthday weekend and I'm so glad. She's awesome and it will be fun to have her here. There's a lot of emotion going on for me this week. Keegan turns 1 on Sunday. Keegan's milestones have been different than Addy's. It's almost like since I know he's my last baby, it's so bittersweet. I'm in no hurry for him to walk or talk or grow up. I want to savor each second with each of my babies. I remember crying the morning of Addy's first birthday just remembering how blessed I was (and am) to have such a miraculous human. I couldn't believe a year had gone by. So with Keegan, I'm afraid it's going to be worse. Just kidding, kind of. With that, I probably won't blog again until after the weekend.