Sunday, September 6, 2015

Why I Serve.

You see that lady right there?

That's my Nan.  We started attending Trinity decades ago.  She modeled many things for me but one of the biggest things she modeled was having a servant's heart.

Cake needs baked?  No problem.
Just got out of the hospital?  I'll bring you dinner.
Dishes need washed?  OK.
Some one needs a ride? I'll be there.  (Although in all honestly they didn't ask that one very often.  She wasn't a great driver).

I grew up seeing these things done and helping from a young age.  It's a good thing. 

I read the book Hometown Tales by Phil Gulley several years ago.  In it he said "Jesus never went out of His way to help anyone".  I remember being a little shocked at that statement.  But you see, he went on to explain that Jesus never went out of his way to help anyone because helping people was never out of his way.  Helping others was just part of his life, not something he had to add to the schedule. 

I hope my kids see that. 

I hope that one day they can say "Mom never went out of her way to help anyone". 

I hope that just like my Nan showed me - helping out, serving others, serving our church - it isn't out of the way.

It's just what we do. 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Movie night this Tuesday!

We're meeting this Tuesday at 6:30pm at Tygart Valley Cinemas.  Hope to see you there!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Keep It Shut Starting September 9th.

From Bible times to modern times women have struggled with their words. What to say and how to say it. What not to say. When it is best to remain silent. And what to do when you’ve said something you wish you could now take back. In this book a woman whose mouth has gotten her into loads of trouble shares the hows (and how-not-tos) of dealing with the tongue.

Beyond just a “how not to gossip” book, this book explores what the Bible says about the many ways we are to use our words and the times when we are to remain silent. Karen will cover using our speech to interact with friends, co-workers, family, and strangers as well as in the many places we use our words in private, in public, online, and in prayer. Even the words we say silently to ourselves. She will address unsolicited opinion-slinging, speaking the truth in love, not saying words just to people-please, and dealing with our verbal anger.

Christian women struggle with their mouths. Even though we know that Scripture has much to say about how we are—and are not—to use our words, this is still an immense issue, causing heartache and strain not only in family relationships, but also in friendships, work, and church settings.

Charli is homeschooling mom to three boys, ages 10, 9 & 8, as well as a part time RN, small business owner, and reluctant farmer. She and her husband Ronnie have been married 14 years. She blogs at WV Urban Hippies as well as here at Woven.  Join her as she strives to learn when it's time to keep her own mouth shut. 

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Jesus, the One and Only Starts September 9th.

He walked on earth two thousand years ago and changed the world for all time to come. Now comes a remarkable study on the most remarkable person to ever walk on this earth.

Come along with Beth Moore on a life-changing journey which will lead you through the hills of Galilee with the Teacher, across the lake with the Master, and finally, on the road toward the cross with the Savior. Get to know Jesus intimately ... as though you had walked with Him during His days of earthly ministry.

This 10-week, in-depth Bible study includes weekly personal assignments and 11 video sessions taped on location in Jerusalem and throughout Israel.

Dee Dee is a mother of three, two daughters in college and a son in high school. She teaches middle school Math and Bible at Heritage Christian School. She loves Jesus and can't wait to grow closer to Him through our next Beth Moore study, Jesus, the One and Only. Join her Wednesday, September 9th as the journey begins.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Positive Adoption Starting September 9th.

If you are thinking about adopting, this class is for you.

If you are fostering children, this class is for you.

If you have adopted children, this class is for you.

If you work with special needs children, this is for you.

If you have a special needs or a foster/adopted child and need some support and encouragement, this class is for you!

Positive Adoption meets on Wednesday evenings from 7pm-8:30 at Trinity Assembly of God. We are discussing The Connected Child and supplemental videos covering Trust Based Relational Intervention.

It is family based intervention that is designed for children who have experienced relationship based traumas.

This material is great for foster/adoptive parents, those seeking to adopt, teachers and professionals who work with children on a daily basis

Hi, I’m Kathleen.
I wish we could sit out on my back deck and have a cup of coffee. I’d tell you my story and you could tell me yours. I do not do well with surface chit chat, so I’d get down to the deep stuff right away. I’d tell you about my heart for orphans.
Almost thirty years ago, I married my soul mate, Jerry.
God planted a dream to one day adopt in both of our hearts. Fourteen years and three biological children later, the adoption dream sprouted into reality.
We traveled to Poland to adopt a sibling group. After spending five weeks in Poland, four of them living in the orphanage, we flew back to the United States. After a second trip the four new Guires came home.  We were suddenly a large family.
My feet hit the ground running every morning trying to keep up with everything and everyone.  I amassed a library full of material on hurt children, attachment issues, fetal alcohol syndrome, family and adoption. The children grew and so did I. See that posed photo at the top of the page?  Looks like we have it all together, doesn’t it?  What it really says is, by the grace of God, I lived it. I learned.  I am right there with you.  Adoption is a struggle.  Building a family is backbreaking, brick upon brick work. I love what Nehemiah says- 14 I looked [them over] and rose up and said to the nobles and officials and the other people, Do not be afraid of the enemy; [earnestly] remember the Lord and imprint Him [on your minds], great and terrible, and [take from Him courage to] fight for your brethren, your sons, your daughters, your wives, and your homes. Nehemiah 4:15  It’s a good work. A positive work. Let’s work on it together. Let’s grow our family tree. 
Kathleen blogs at Positive Adoption and is the author of the book Positive Adoption: A Memoir.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Sowing into it.

Last night we put the last round of carrots in this year's garden.  This section of garden you're looking at has about 1200 carrots planted.  So yes, you'll be seeing carrots at this year's potlucks - don't complain, it will give you a break from all the green bean dishes I usually bring. 

The boys and I like to work barefoot, feeling that soft, freshly tilled soil under our feet.  They've helped us in the garden for years.  When they were younger, we'd put them in charge of simple tasks like making the holes with a stick or just pushing dirt over the seeds.  Now that they're older, they actually help us work together by pairing up with Mom or Dad and having a race to see who can plant their row the fastest (John & I are the current team to beat). 

Each year, we plant the seeds.  We make sure the ground is tilled and fertilized.  We put up the electric fence to protect those delicate plants from deer and rabbits.  We pull the weeds that threaten to choke out the good plants that we want to grow.  We prune the suckers off that are diverting the nutrients from making good strong plants.  And we pray for a good harvest. 

You see, plants aren't the only thing in this picture that we're growing. 

Every day, I'm planting seeds in my boy's hearts.  And as the electric fence keeps out the garden's predators, it's mine and Ronnie's job to protect them from predators - not only people, but things they shouldn't be listening or watching.  It's our job to recognize those weeds of anger or to prune off those suckers like selfishness so that their hearts can remain a fertile ground for the Holy Spirit to work in their lives. 

But mostly, we pray.   And just like we've prayed for these seeds to become plants that produce vegetables that we can use, we pray that these boys will become Godly men that will be used by the Lord for His purpose.

Gardening isn't necessarily a lot of skill.  It's diligence.  It's patience.  It's hard work.  It's staying the course and doing your part, knowing that the seeds are doing theirs.

Parenting is diligence.  It's truckloads of patience.  It's definitely hard work.  It's staying the course and doing your part, knowing that God is doing His.
       Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.
                                                                                                                       Galations 6:9               

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Whatcha Reading?

Is there anything better than lounging in the sun on a hot day with a good book? 

OK, maybe curled up in front of the fireplace on a cold day is pretty great too.

The point I'm trying to make is that I love a good book!

Fiction, non-fiction, something to help me grow, something that's total fluff - I just love a good book.

Here's my Summer reading list:

Nobody's Cuter than You: A Memoir about the Beauty of Friendship by Melanie Shankle
You and Me Forever: Marriage in Light of Eternity by Francis & Lisa Chan
Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay
All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr
Parenting the Wholehearted Child: Captivating Your Child's Heart with God's Extravagant Grace by Jeannie Cunnion

So what are you reading this Summer?

Monday, June 15, 2015

When you just don't understand.

John & I were working a puzzle a while ago. 

And not just any puzzle.  A yard sale puzzle - you know, the kind with no box so you're not really that sure where everything goes.  Trust me, it's a great challenge for a nickel. 

As were separating pieces - insides from outsides from corners - I'm looking at these little puzzle pieces and we're talking about what the puzzle might be. 

It's at that point that it hits me.

There's no way I can look at one tiny piece of a puzzle and know what the puzzle will look like in the end.  I don't have a box to see the final picture. 

There have been so many times in my life when things have come out of the blue and caused such hurt and loss.  And so many times my response is "God, why are you letting this happen?"

You see, when I wasn't living for Christ and I made bad decisions, it was kinda easier to accept.  Bad choice, bad consequence.  That just makes sense, right?

And not that I'm a champ at making great choices now, but I try.  I try to live a life that's authentic and pleasing to God and that's also filled with bucket's full of grace.  So when hardships come against me, I'm frequently left with "Why?".

For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways, my ways, declares the Lord.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways,
and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.
Just like my yard sale puzzle, I can't look at one little piece of my life and always see where it fits into God's overall plan.  I can't see how it's going to turn out or recognize the blessings to others that may come of the results of what I'm going through. 
So I keep my head up.  I keep breathing.  And I trust that the one who made me, who loves me despite all that is me at times - I trust that He is in control. 
And He's working the puzzle so that my randomly shaped piece fits in to make the completed picture that He has for my life.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Seeing Something New.

Here's something you might not know about me: 

I love, love, love those crazy remodeling shows on TV. 

Fixer Upper, Rehab Addict, my girl Jen Hatmaker and her show My Big Family Renovation.  Heck,  Ronnie's even caught me sucked into an episode of The Vanilla Ice Project (Ice, Ice, Baby). 

They find these houses that are just eye sores - neglected, sagging, no where near serving their purpose.

And while I'm sure the rest of the neighborhood just wants them torn down, these designers are able to look past the water damage, the broken windows, and the 70's shag carpet to see the vision of what this home could be.  To restore it not always just to it's former glory, but to an even better state.  To make it a real show piece.

I don't know about you but a lot of times I too feel neglected, like I don't have a purpose and, well, now that I'm 44, a little saggy also. 

But I have a God who loves me.  And He looks at my mess and see's my potential.  He want's to restore me not only to my former glory, but to what He has designed me to be. 

You see, just like these homes, there's beauty in the restoration.  We don't have to wait for the "big reveal" for everything to be finished and perfect.  If you will allow Him, He will chip away at those broken walls.  He will make your foundation solid.  He will remove all that ugliness that is holding you back from fulfilling the purpose that He has for you.  He can use you, even as the "work in progress" that you are.

Is it any wonder that I love a good restoration story?