Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Are you joyful?

Last weekend I attended a conference in Ceta Canyon.

"You Can't Steal My Joy"
was hosted by Daphne Delay and Family Harvest Church!
(play the You Tube video below if you want to hear our theme song by Mandisa)
I went expecting to spend time in God's Presence.
I received a thousand times more.
I watched friends get saved, marriages get restored, girls go to another level with the Lord, and more!
In the first session Daphne showed us the number one way to keep our joy:
Psalm 16:11 AMP

"You will show me the path of life;
in Your presence is fullness of joy,
at Your right hand there are pleasures forevermore."


You see joy comes from being in relationship with God, face-to-face with Him. That is why anyone who is legalistic and set on following the rules will never be filled with the full joy of a RELATIONSHIP with God (2 Cor 3).

Joy doesn't come from our circumstances or our situation in life.
So many women, me included, blame others for "stealing our joy".
We blame our husbands, our location, our parents, our job, our pants size,
our bank account, even our kids and their busy schedules for robbing us.

But in reality, it is our choice.
We choose to give it away.

Some might say, "What do I have to be joyful about. Look at my life."
Michel, another speaker, posed this question,
"If all God ever did was to send Jesus to redeem you and restore you into right standing with HIM, wouldn't that be enough to shout for joy for the rest of your days?"

"Is it enough?"
That is the question I have been asking myself.
Neh 8:10 says the joy from what God has done in our lives is our strength, rock, and fortress. How often do we remember what He has done, or are we like ungrateful children who forget the moment the "new" wears off the blessing or gift?

When we choose to allow self-pity, ungratefulness, offense, and bitterness get a foot into the door of our thinking we walk outside of God's protection.

Instead of walking through the valley of the shadow of death,

we stop, sit down, and pitch a tent.
Don't believe me?
Just ask the Israelites who roamed in the wilderness for 40 years complaining instead of walking out the 11 day trip.

"Am I walking, or am I hanging out in the tent named
'poor me'?"
Another question I have been asking myself.

God says we will all endure trials (John 16:33), but He has already won the victory. What matters is how we respond to the trial because our attitude determines how long we stay in the shadow of death. Some people never reach their promise land because they have been walking around the same mountain for many, many years with a bad attitude.

Having joy is a choice because God says you can walk through the trial with joy and peace.

How we react to problems is suppose to us apart from unbelievers.
Proverbs 24:10 in the MSG says
"If you fall to pieces in a crisis, there wasn't much to you in the first place."


It is our strength, not self-pity, it is our victory, not defeat that is the sweet-smelling fragrance that draws in the lost (2 Cor 2:14). It is an attitude of thankfulness, joy, confidence, peace, and love that causes the lost to stop, observe, and say, "I want what they have."

"Am I living that way? Am I a liability or an asset to the Kingdom of God?"
More questions I am asking myself.

I just have to step up on a soap box for one minute...I can't hold it in any longer.
Deep breath...
The majority of Christians aren't a sweet-smelling aroma during trials,
or anytime for that matter.
We complain.
We murmur.
We gossip.
We worry.
I have to say that again, WE WORRY.
We are filled with bitterness.
We are ungrateful.

Just to keep it real, I thought I was doing okay with being thankful. My mom raised me to always see the glass half full, and my nana always told me to count my blessings when I was upset...
reminded me of how many times I put myself down for my flabby, saggy tummy instead of thanking God for the babies that caused it.
reminded me of how many times I walk in my closet and say, "I have nothing to wear," when my closet is over-flowing.
reminded me of how many times I complain about the three (or maybe four=) disgusting hairs now growing out of my chin instead of thanking God for His amazing creation of hormones--
I mean really, where would women be without them?

It is impossible for me to be JOYFUL if I am not GRATEFUL.

"Your altitude of influence in the lives of others is directly related to your attitude of gratitude" Michel Powers.

I have been saved for 8 years. I remember looking at "church-goers" when I wasn't one, and thinking, "I don't want to be anything like those people. They are more unhappy, miserable and dissatisfied than I am."

The church is so big on "bringing in the lost" and "reaching out", but as a whole most churches are not growing (except for member's children and believers coming in from other churches.)

But, if we, the church, would learn how to become victorious and thankful in our daily walk at home, at work, and at the ball park
the lost would flock to Christ.

I think this is the #1 problem with the Body of Christ.
We lack practical teaching.
We lack "how to" preaching?
We don't hear enough testimonies on how other Christians have over-come through the power and love of Christ.

We don't need another church program.
We don't need another "trick" to get people in the door.

We need victorious Christians...

...believers who KNOW how to forgive those who hurt them
...believers who KNOW how to conquer their thought lives and die to their feelings
...believers WHO REALLY believe in the power of prayer (that would take care of all worry;)
...believers who KNOW their words hold the power of life and death
...believers who never complain
...believers who KNOW their authority in Christ and EXERCISE IT,
...wives who respect and adore their husbands
...mothers who quit whining about their schedules
...believers who have peace during this recession
...believers who smile

I am just asking?

It is one thing to think I am joyful, but what is really coming out of my mouth?
Is it gratitude?
Just another question I am asking myself?

After the first session, I wrote the following summary:
"God never leaves me (Heb 13:5), so I am always in His Presence(Ps 16:11) and filled with triumphant joy and ecstatic delight (Jude 24). When the trials come I will remember that I KNOW A GIRL IN CHRIST (2 Cor 12:2). I know what Jesus Christ has done for me the last 8 years (Neh 8:10). I command myself to be happy, blessed and fortunate (Acts 26:2) because I am face to face with my Redeemer and my Strong Tower."

This video is kind of silly, but I LOVE THIS SONG!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

4 Posts In One

Valentine's Day Get-Away
Last weekend we with two other couples on our second annual Valentine's Day trip to Ruidoso.
Our cabin...the view was AMAZING.

The boys had to haul all the luggage up three levels. Between all the huffing and puffing they kept saying, "Me no breafe. Me no breafe." They blamed it on the thin air, but the girls joked it was because they are getting old and out of shape.
Just the beginning of a weekend FULL OF LAUGHTER!!! Cody and Misty Johnson
Ryan and Holly Crutcher
Our friends Haylee and Chance (at the end of the table) met us at the steak resteraunt.

We got there Friday around 12, checked-in, and played Rummie until dinner. After dinner we went to the Inn of the Mountian Gods and played a little Black Jack.

Saturday the boys went skiing (supposedly it was the best snow they'd ever seen!)

The girls went shopping on Saturday morning after we got pedicures!

My three new purchases. The jacket was only $13, and I love my two new scarfs.

Saturday night we were all tired, so we ordered pizza and played Scattegories. I laughed so hard, I almost...well, let's just say I laughed really hard. Sunday morning we ate at the Log Cabin and headed home where Ronnie and I spent the rest of the night relaxing and eating Chinese.


The BIG Purchase

Monday we met his mom to get the boys in Floydada.
Then on our way back through Lubbock we bought our first king-sized bed!

It's a Simmons Beauty Rest, World-Class with a Visco top, and unless you have been bed shopping none of that means anything ;)

We got the bed on clearance; it was $1100 off. I bought the bedding at Bed, Bath, and Beyond, and it was 50% off. It isn't the "bedding of my dreams", but the price was right ;)


Valentine's Day Party 2/11/10
My first Valentine's Day present from Drew, two bracelets. I haven't taken them off!
Drew's Valentine's Day party at school was a "dress-up" day.
He is holding vitamins because it was "v" show-and-tell too!

Drew mixed, cut, and decorated these cookies for his friends all by himself
(except for the oven and icing!)
He was so proud.

Kade decorated this cookie with M&M's and sprinkles.

Drew's first Valentine's Day cards.

Drew was so excited that Ronnie came to his party. When Ronnie walked in Kade ran all the way across the room yelling, "Daddy!" Then Ronnie picked him up Kade asked, "How was work Daddy?"

Drew's teacher, Mrs. Sonya

The goodies

Monster Truck Rally

January 31, 2010

Cash Crutcher

The boys loved it...can you tell?

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


You can go to Holly's blog, click HERE, to see pictures of Drew and Kade at Cash's 2nd Birthday party.
Remember I posted about this book a few days ago???

If you want to join Beth, 2200+ other women, and me in discussing her new book,
So Long Insecurity, on-line click HERE!
Hope you'll join us!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Out of the mouth of babes...

Conversation at lunch with Drew as the rain is POURING down:

Me: Sorry we didn't have an umbrella for school today Drew.

Look at my hair, it's a mess.

Oh, the rain is coming down...we won't be able to play with Eva today!

I don't know where our umbrella is?!?

We'll have to buy another...

Drew: Mom, don't you remember?
God says to be thankful in everything.

(1 Thes. 5:18)

Me: Good Word Drew!!! Preach it little buddy!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

New book on my list

Go here to read more about the book.
Click here to read the first chapter.
I am going to buy it today!!!
Thank you Beth!!!

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