Archive | June, 2008

Lazy Eye

27 Jun

When I was born I developed a lazy eye. I had two surgeries. One when I was 4. I had the other one for a different issue when I was 6. This was the source of my self consciousness. I was constantly made fun of as a child for having “crossed eyes”. Even with the surgeries, my eye would still move inward if I was sick or really tired. Mostly the boys were the ones that made fun of me. I did not hear too much once I went to private school but once I got back into public H.S and thought this was all behind me it started again. Some guy asked me if I had crossed eyes and how it felt to be that way. He did not mean it in a nice way. My self esteem was crushed once again. Once I lost most of my weight it did not seem to be much of an issue but it has been very difficult to look people in the eye that I did not know or felt uncomfortable around. I had this fear of being teased again.

I went to the eye doctor today and received a compliment I had never had before “you have beautiful eyes.” I wanted to leap for joy “really” I thought. I find this funny to hear since most of my life I heard the opposite. I think it is so neat how my two girls are often complimented on their eyes. I feel like it is pay back for all those years I was tormented. I say that because what is worse than being teased yourself is to have your child teased. Each time I found out I was pregnant I would pray please Lord do not let this pass down. Apparently it is genetic but no one in my family that I am aware of has this. I believe mine was caused from my complicated birth which led to a lack of oxygen.

I am mostly writing this post to help those out there who have children with this condition or who suffered with this most of their life. My parents made the very tough decision to have surgery. I am so fortunate because most people do not know I ever had this condition. Apparently I had a wonderful surgeon because my eye doctor told me that most people with this condition have to have surgery 3, 4 or more times. I did not. I had the one surgery and the other surgery was for something else. I am now almost 31 years old and all looks well.

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Doors: The door of blessing

25 Jun

Here was this past weekends sermon from our Pastor. It was really good and encouraging. I pray it encourages you this week.

DOORS: The Door of Blessing
In a world where everything seems to be getting more difficult by the day – where budgets are tightening and gas and grocery bills are on everyone’s mind – don’t we often wonder how we can continue to prosper when the outlook seems to be so bleak? The good news is that, even in the midst of global chaos, God insists on blessing us and His ultimate desire is that we each live an abundantly prosperous life.

“So,” many ask, “why do we see so many bad things in the earth?” Quite simply: we have a good God and there is a bad devil. Both are at work in the world and have set up their own economies. And, all of us are governed by one or the other. The devil’s economy is based on shortage, poverty, indebtedness, famine, sickness, etc. The economy of God’s Kingdom, however, is based on plenty, blessing, freedom, peace, love, joy, etc.

Many people don’t realize that there are two economies. They just keep on trusting in the world’s economy, hoping things will get better, living life governed by fear and greed. They don’t recognize that God wants to bless them; that from the very beginning, when Adam and Eve turned over control of the world’s economy to Satan, God began to set in motion a plan for redemption.

Throughout Scripture, we can see God looking bless each generation. To Abraham, Isaac, Jacob and many others God said, in effect, “I’m a God that likes to and wants to bless people. I didn’t create people to live under a curse. I created them to live under blessing.” It’s important to notice that in order for each generation to get the blessing, they had to both believe and receive it.

According to Deuteronomy 28:1-8, God will command blessing in every area of your life. How? John 10 says that it is through Christ. Even though our enemy, the devil, comes like a thief to steal, kill and destroy, Jesus came to give us abundant life. Christ redeemed us from the curse. He has enabled us to leave Satan’s antichrist economy and enter God’s economy. The blessing of Abraham is now ours. We are now joint heirs with Jesus. That means everything that was available to Jesus is available to us.

Now, the sickness, poverty, debt, etc., that are a part of the curse, can be turned into a blessing because they cause us to focus on God. You see, Satan’s goal is to get you looking at anything else besides God. He wants you to focus on the curse. Obviously, we have to reject the curse and accept the blessing. Let the difficulties of this world cause you to turn your eyes to Jesus and keep them there. On the other hand, don’t start focusing on the blessing either; that is as dangerous as focusing on the curse. In fact, it will bring back the curse. Rather, stay focused on the One who blesses.

God put us on this earth, not to live under the curse, nor just to receive the blessing, but to share the blessing with everyone around us. Now, God wants to bless us, but that doesn’t mean He wants us all to be millionaires. It means that He wants us to be blessed in order to be a blessing. He wants to get us to the point where we don’t have to worry about money and we can use the resources He’s entrusted to us, however great or small, to bless others. God wants us focus on Him, not on our circumstances, our job, the economy, etc.

So what has to happen in order to get there? Well, to put it plainly, we have to go through the trials of the desert in order to get to the Promised Land. That means we have to learn to trust God, even in the midst of difficulty, before He can bless us. We have to walk through the door of faith before we can enter the door of blessing. When we walk through the door of faith, we learn that God has set us free, that we’re not slaves anymore, that God has called us out of darkness and into this blessing.

Beyond that, in order to walk through the Door of Blessing, we must believe that God wants to bless us. Surprisingly, most people believe that God does not want to bless them. If that is your belief, you’ve got to get free of it. God does want to bless you. It brings him pleasure. If you have any doubts, read Psalms 35:27 and 112:1-3. These passages, and many more besides, clearly paint a picture of a God that delights in blessing us.

We also need to understand that God requires faithful stewardship to release the blessing. (See Luke 16:10-13.) Why would God bless us if we can’t handle it? We have to learn to be trustworthy with small things first. Then, slowly but surely, He will entrust us with greater things. Ask yourself, can God trust me? Do I have the characteristics of a faithful steward: honesty, wisdom, contentment, obedience and trust? If not, invite the Holy Spirit to build those things in your life.

Finally, have a generous heart that trusts God. God wants you to be a giver. Go through life asking, “Who can I bless today?” Look for ways to bless people. When you do, God will bless you more. You know, you cannot out-give God. Along that line, it’s important to note that an essential part of trusting God is tithing. We need to trust God enough to bring Him the first ten percent of all our increase, before paying our bills. God says, “Prove me in this [tithing], see if I will not open the windows of heaven and pour out more blessings than you have room for.”(Malachi 3:10) I urge you to test God in this. If you’re not tithing, you’re living in fear, in the cursed life, not in blessing.

So, let me ask you, do you believe God wants to bless you? Are you a faithful steward? Do you have a generous heart that trusts God? If so, God will bless you. If not, isn’t it time to break the curse? I encourage you: take a step of faith today. Walk, no, run through the Door of Blessing!

Cook and Archuleta in Vegas

24 Jun

Both Davids were on the View this morning, David A. sang Stand by me and David C. sang his new number one hit from Idol that was written for the winner. They had David C. mom and David A dad. There was a lot of controversy over his dad being a stage father but he denied that and so did David Cook on his behalf. He said that was just another way the media perverts things. They did a great job and it was good to see them again. They are touring with the top 10 finalists starting July 1st.

Soy Pudding

19 Jun

Finally, my girls can experience pudding. I found a soy pudding at wal-mart. I think it is organic. Pookie loves it. Both of my girls have dairy allergy/lactose issues. If they eat or drink milk, ice cream, yogurt or cheese they will get really sick or start screaming in pain with their stomachs. They both did this as early as a week after being born. It took us almost two months to figure out what was going on with Pookie and we knew right away with Peanut. They both took Alimentum formula which did not constipate as soy formula did. I discovered soy yogurts when Pookie was a toddler and now they have pudding. You have to watch the soy products though because the veggie cheese actually uses milk proteins which is what I think my girls have sensitivity too. I am just glad they are starting to offer alternatives. There are more and more people becoming intolerant to milk.

Doors:The Doorkeeper

18 Jun

Our Pastor was back and preached a special message about fathers and real men. It was called Doorkeepers. It was great.

DOORS: The Doorkeeper
Today, I want to talk about what it means to be a man, to be the kind of husband and/or father God intends you to be. It’s good to be a man, but becoming a man takes great responsibility.
God created men to be the doorkeepers of their households. A doorkeeper is someone who allows or disallows entrance or activity according to the will of a higher authority. God has commissioned us to be a covering over our wives, our children, our households and, ultimately, our society.

But, something has happened. Most men are not fulfilling their God-given role. Ever since Adam relinquished his authority in the Garden, hid from God and blamed both God and his wife, men have been allowing the Enemy to come in and wreak havoc in their homes and lives. Just as God asked Adam in the Garden, so today our nation and our world are crying out to men, “Where are you?!” For every major problem in society can be traced back to fatherlessness Whether alcoholism, teen pregnancy, marital infidelity, addiction, pornography, homosexuality or others, somewhere at the root of these things there is a lack of fathering.

Men, God wants us to step into our rightful positions of authority. He wants us to lead. It is essential that we do so. You see, our enemy the devil, who wants to destroy what God has created, knows this. So, using bondage and deception, he tries to take authority over the man of the house. This is how he gains access to the household. If he can bind the strongman of the house, he has free access to the goods, the wife, the kids, the money, the peace, the well being, etc.

Because we men are often unaware in certain areas (even dumb at times), I want to expose five strategies that Satan uses to get past us, the doorkeepers:

  1. Disorder – He has made it very unpopular for a man to lead his family and, consequently, many men have abdicated their authority to their wives, contrary to the order God has established throughout Scripture.
  2. Distraction – He tries to get men so caught up in their careers, hobbies, sports or whatever that they withdraw from their families and stop paying attention.
  3. Deception – He tries to get men to remain ignorant of, or forget the power of media and allow things into our homes that are not of God via the Internet, TV, movies, music, etc. Once we fall for this deception, we are easily bound.
  4. Division – Knowing that a house divided cannot stand, Satan works to sew discord and disagreement wherever possible. It’s the man’s responsibility to make sure his house is in a place of agreement. If you and your wife aren’t in agreement, it’s your responsibility, men, to do what it takes to bring that agreement.
  5. Desertion – Satan tries (and all too often succeeds) to convince men into leaving their families altogether. This can be physical desertion, when the father actually leaves for whatever reason, or emotionally; he may be physically present, but he’s completely checked out otherwise.

While all of these things have proven very effective strategies, the good news is that Jesus came to set us free from the devil’s bondage and deception. When he came, he began to establish his authority over the devil. This is no less true in the area of manhood than in any other. You see, Jesus was a real man. He led in the way that we as men need to lead, not through domineering, testosterone-induced tyranny, but by giving himself sacrificially in love and service. And, because of Him, we now have the authority to tread on the enemy. He has empowered us to be real men, to cover our family and guard the doors of our houses.

How? First, we need to sober up to the times we live in. The time is short. Be aware. We can’t get caught dabbling with the things of this world. Spend quality time doing things that build the Kingdom. Recognize that these times are critical. Next, start cleaning house. Take an inventory and find out what goes on inside your home, what goes on behind the closed doors. Establish in your house an open door policy: there is no door in the house that you, as the man, cannot open and look around. Make sure you have the right to challenge your kids in the areas of TV, internet pornography, chat rooms, etc. Also, there can be ungodly things in our house that keep the door open to the devil. Sometimes you’ve got to get radical in your cleaning. Get and keep everything out of the darkness and in the light. The devil cannot operate in the light.

Build a spiritual presence in your home. Every man should be the prayer warrior of his family – not only the wife. Your family needs to see you praying, reading God’s Word, walking in the authority God has given you. It is our responsibility to cover our families in prayer and to wash them in the Word. And remember, you can’t do that for others if you’re not doing it for yourself.

This is such a serious matter; you have to stand guard at all times. Think about how guarded your house is. Are you watching over it, guarding it, or letting the enemy come and go as he pleases? Men, know what’s going on with your family. Don’t leave them unguarded. The enemy wants to hurt your family, but the only way he can get in is if you open the door.

Finally, live in the authority to which God has called you. Be a loving, kind, gentle, serving-based leader, unapologetically and boldly. Get to the place where you’re not worried about what others think about you. Declare as Joshua did, “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Kick the enemy out of your house, completely – out of the TV, the computer, your kids’ rooms, etc. Don’t give him any access whatsoever. Can you imagine what your house, church and nation would be like if you started operating your God-given authority? That is what God is calling us to. And that is what I’m challenging you to do today. Be a real man. Be a doorkeeper!

Generic vs Brand name

15 Jun

Well I have changed so much since my husband and I first got married. I used to only buy brand name and never cared about prices. I was in for a rude awakening when Pookie was born and we really had to pinch pennies since I was staying home.

I started slow and would buy one or two generic then I started shopping at Wal-mart then I added more and more generics to my list. There are still some things I only buy name brand but I may wait and get that as a treat or something. I now buy generic diapers and pull ups. Kroger brand is my favorite. The training pants are great and their Kroger Complete are wonderful because the sides stretch. I typically buy generic cheese and bread, canned items, etc.

Cereals I buy brand name because we do eat organic cereals and they have not come out with generic on that yet. We buy Kashi or Cascadian Farms. I like the pure sugar cane and whole grains Instead of all the sugary things they have. Pookie and Peanut eat them too. Pookie also loves multigrain Cheerios or Blueberry cereal from Kashi. I also buy Eggland eggs. They do taste better. Spaghetti sauce I also buy brand name because Prego Garden Combination tastes so much better than the generics I have tried. I also buy All free and clear and bounce no fragrance because of the girls allergies and Peanut’s extremely sensitive skin. I also use a fragrance free organic shampoo for the girls too. Other than that it generic for us. we save so much money. I shop at three stores though. Publix for lunch meat because it does not have nitrates and artificial stuff and Kroger for things that are cheaper than Wal-mart and Wal-mart for 90% of my stuff. I always buy chicken at Kroger when it is $1.99 per lb. I will never buy it at full price it is just too expensive. Usually in the summer it is on sale more, so I stock up. My favorite store would be Publix for their customer service. They are so nice. I also get my fruit from Kroger or Publix because they have nicer stuff than our Wal-mart. I had to just stand up and try things. If I don’t like them or the girls did not care for something then I will take it back or not buy it again.

I also clip coupons. I think I had close to $10 or more dollars in coupons yesterday at wal-mart. This was a great day. Kroger doubles there so sometimes if I know the price is a tad higher but they will double the coupon I will buy that item at Kroger. I know this sounds crazy shopping at three stores but this works for us and we get everything we like and need while at the same time saving money. I just make sure I have errands in the area so I am not wasting gas.

Tim Russert

14 Jun

I was saddened at the news yesterday that NBC bureau chief and Meet the Press Moderator collapsed in his office yesterday and died at age 58. He was a great journalist and will be deeply missed especially with the elections coming up. He seemed like a very devoted father and family man. Our prayers are with his family and colleagues and everyone that enjoyed his show.

Three things made me really cry after hearing this sad news. The first was Tim Russert from last Father’s Day wishing all the father’s out there a happy Father’s Day and saying good bye. The second was Tim’s empty chair with the lights dimmed and silence and the third was the picture of Luke Russert standing next to his dad’s empty chair. How moving. He is an excellent speaker. He said he was able to keep his dad’s chair. I am glad he can keep it. I could see him in broadcasting or journalism. He spoke so well and I know his father is so proud of him. You know this was a real, loving, compassionate, hard working man who knew where he came from. He was so proud of his country and so excited every time he was able to meet another president. He will be missed! I was also thinking NBC has some very big shoes to fill. Meet the Press will not be the same because Time Russert brought such authenticity to the show and really asked those questions we all wanted to know from a politician. It will be interesting to see who they pick to replace him or if they replace him.