Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Caprica's First Dog-Park Visit

Well friends, we took our new puppy to her first dog park outing!  We would have taken her weeks ago, but until she had her first trip, we wanted her to get up to date on her shots.  And before she could get her second round of shots, she had to get over her pneumonia....I know, who knew dogs got pneumonia?!

We were so excited to be taking her to the dog park.  Moxie loved the dog park.  She was the life of the party, running up to every dog and introducing herself, running up to every human and sniffing pockets for treats, and ran around like a kid at the candy store.  Moxie LOVED the dog park.  She thought everyone brought their dogs there for her to play with.  She never met a stranger.  Tongue out, drooling, bouncing around, nub wagging, Moxie was the friendliest dog you had ever met.

So with Caprica showing all the same personality traits as Moxie (with the exception of Moxie's extreme fear of cats, paper, clothes---yes, she was scared of white t-shirts) we expected her to like the dog park too. This was Caprica's first visit:

Laying down, only interested in the dirt and not the other dogs.  Granted, the other dogs weren't really playful and one dog was aggressive with her...Capri is definitely not an alpha.

She would randomly get up from her spot in the dirt to drink water out of the buckets around the dog park.

So, that was our precious Caprica.  We took her somewhere, heaven on earth for dogs, expecting her to run and have a great time, make new friends, and just...be free.  Isn't that what God does for His Redeemed?  He has these plans for us--places for us to go, people to see, lives to live that we never would have imagined on our own.  All He asks is for us to follow Him.  Trust Him.  Instead, we follow Him to a point and then decide we would rather lie down and not go any further, or drink from the same empty barrels we have always attained, unwilling to trust Him entirely. 

I have no doubt that Caprica will come to love the doggy park and she will one day jump around, tongue lapping out the side of her mouth, and think she is just the most special dog in the world with all these new friends to play with.  But while we increase her 'comfort level' with the dog park, I hope God disturbs us in our comfort zone, beckoning us to come and follow Him, whether we are ready, tired, or thirsty.  

Saturday, May 28, 2011


This is not one of my favorite things.....probably because I'm so horrible at it!  I enjoy being good at things.  Something like patience, a lesson being taught continually that I just never master, is not my idea of a 'good time.'  However, in my household...my hubby and I have been learning a lot about it lately.

I've blogged before about strength rising when we wait upon the Lord.  How we are to wait upon the Lord, but far too often we wait upon the event and wonder why we aren't feeling strong.  Oh we are so weak when we are waiting on the event.  In my case, the event is the job my husband has yet to nail down.  And I know it isn't because he isn't qualified, or a great candidate, or not interviewing well.  The truth is he is the top candidate coming out of one of the top schools for his program.  So why is he not receiving offers yet....well, because that is in God's hands and He is at work in our lives. 

I was reminded last week by some girlfriends that when we first started asking for prayer, it was that opportunities would come.  They most certainly have!  Then I started asking that people would pray God would make it quite clear where we are supposed to end up....there were certain jobs that if received would be too difficult to turn down, so if God didn't want us there, the offer wouldn't come through.  Well, God has most certainly be shutting doors!  And then I, in my lack of patience attitude, get all upset that God isn't moving fast enough.  haha....if I would only slow down and see that God's timing is perfect and that He is right here with us, answering our prayers and guiding us this whole time. 

So, here is what we know:  our baby is on the way in Sept., our lease in Athens is up July 15, and we have absolutely no idea where we will be moving to, where Zane will be working, what church we will be at, how much longer my car is going to run (it has 250K miles on it, and I add another 100+daily traveling to and from work), a ballpark figure of a budget that we will work with, and that God is working something in our lives that we cannot even imagine.  What He has in store for us is better, far better, than anything we could have planned for ourselves.  So while He teaches us patience, our trust and faith in Him--the God who loves His children, always provides, never forgets--will continue to increase as we look forward to what lies ahead.  We may stumble and fall in our attempt to master patience.  But we know that God is good, that He is able, and that He will see us through.
"Be joyful in hope, patient in tribulation, constant in prayer."  Romans 12:12

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Mourn or Rejoice

The last two days I have felt a whirlwind of emotions.  I started this blog in order to tell you what God is teaching me, what I'm studying in His Word....as an invitation for you to join me on my journey, and hope that somehow, someway, God would use this blog as a light for His Kingdom.  But I know that if that is to happen I need to be transparent... honest...and willing to share my struggles.

Well, friends the last two days have been a struggle.  Actually...it has been a lot longer than that, but the last two days brought a lot of things crashing down inside me.  I've been discussing with myself predestination.  God is all knowing.  He is all powerful.  He is sovereign.  For whatever reason, God in His great mercy, let His Son, Jesus, bear my sins on the cross.  In His grace, He has called me His own daughter, redeeming me from an eternity apart from Him.  There are many reasons why we, as humans, fight the sovereignty of God....or should I say, fight the idea of His sovereignty.  We want to be in control.  We want all of our choices and ideas to be our own.  We want to take credit.  We want to be individuals.  We want to be self-sufficient.  And the list can go on, and on, and on.  But that doesn't take away from the Truth that we all know. 

As a believer in Christ, I also have to believe in the Sovereignty of God.  The Holy Spirit draws me into that Truth.  There is no denying it.  The same God that gave me cysts on my ovaries is the same God that healed me from those cysts and is enabling me to carry mine and Zane's first child.  The same God that chose my wonderful parents here in the United States of America is the same God that chose for the child in Romania in the baby orphanage to have parents that would abandon her.  The same God that breaks us is the same God that heals us.

For me, no matter how much I believe this, it is still so much to take in.  Then again, if I weren't overwhelmed by my God and the thought of all He is....well....that is a heart issue that we won't get into tonight.

So, in light of Sunday night's announcement, and the death of Osama Bin Laden, all of these thoughts that were already bouncing around in my head came to the forefront of my mind.  My initial reaction:  Praise God!  The next morning,  praise God!  And every moment since, praise God!  But me praising God hasn't completely been in rejoicing. 

When we were attacked on 9/11, my Pastor began asking us to pray that God would change OBL heart for His Kingdom, or that God would take him away.  Do I wholeheartedly believe that God allowed OBL death to happen?  Oh yes! And that he should be rotting in hell for his actions against Americans....the world...and fellow brothers and sisters in Christ?  Most definitely, he should be. 

But as I've had time to chew on what is really going on in my heart, I stood ashamed.  Shouldn't I also be sharing in that same fate?  Sure, he outwardly killed thousands.  Tens of thousands with his many attacks.  But how many times have I killed in my heart?  I am usually one that is broken for the lost....but what I said to my friend yesterday morning at work shocked me...and was a revealing of what was in my heart.  I said, and at the risk of you seeing the ugliness within I will quote what I said:  "I'm pretty sure God predestined Osama to go to hell.  And that is where he belongs." 

Please understand that this is not me just trying to say what I 'should' be feeling.  I truly am wrestling with how I feel in my heart and how I know I should feel.  How I should rejoice in all circumstances for this is God's will, and how I should mourn also for the eternal separation from God. 

I know that Christians everywhere are struggling with their reactions...and judging the reactions of fellow believers.  I've done the same.  But we are not all going to agree on how we should respond to this.  Everyone experienced the attacks differently.  We all longed for justice in different ways.  But ultimately, this is a time to rejoice in God's will and the timing of His will, and mourn as well, for those who do not know Him, who do not worship Him, who are headed for a life of eternal separation from Him.  While I rejoice that Osama Bin Laden can no longer hurt anyone and that justice has been served, I mourn for the lost and for those who do not know God....for those that live unapologetically opposed to Him. 

I pray that God can use this time for His glory.  That somehow, someway, God will raise His church up to pray for the lost and to show the lost who He is....and for our reactions, however human they may be, to not get in the way of what our Father is doing.  And I pray that God will continue to break me and kill the sin within me.  I know that I still need to be refined in the fire, and I pray that God will do so continually.