Sunday, October 29, 2017

GROWING SEEDS: How To Hear The Voice of God

When I was in my mid-20's, I taught a Sunday School class full of 5-year-olds.  It was the Kindergarten class at our church and I felt with my limited knowledge of Bible stories, it was the perfect place for me to be.

However, I found out that 5-year-olds don't sit still...and they aren't quiet....and they have an attention span of about 3 seconds.   Having never had children and being the youngest in my family, this was shocking news to me!  I found myself each week frustrated and wondering how to either talk fast enough to get my point in the 3 seconds before their attention moved elsewhere, or increase the volume of my voice to where they could hear nothing but me. Unfortunately, this dog-and-pony show went on for better than a year and didn't work.

So I decided to have a special guest speaker come in and tell the kids a story.  I needed the break, but so did the Kindergartners.  As the kids were busy taking their shoes and socks off, messing up the kids' hair next to them, thumping their foreheads repeatedly, the storyteller, a petite woman named Sammie, started telling her story.  Actually, she whispered her story.  I found myself in the back of the room leaning in....desperate to hear what she was saying...and so did the kids.  The room for the first time ever was quiet.  They were still.  They were leaning in to hear what Sammie had to say.  She had taught us all the SECRET to listening.

“Then a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord, 
but the Lord was not in the wind. 
After the wind there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 
After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. 
And after the fire came a gentle whisper.” 
(NIV) 1 Kings 19:11-12

In the words of the great writer Mark Batterson, "When someone speaks in a whisper, you have to get very close to hear.  We lean toward a whisper, and that’s what God wants.  The goal of hearing the Heavenly Father’s voice isn’t just hearing His voice; it’s intimacy with Him.  That’s why He speaks in a whisper."

Awwww...there it is!  God could intimidate us with His outside voice, but He woos us with a whisper.  And His whisper is the very breath of life.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

BLOG: Long Lines, A Little Volleyball and A Slice of Heaven

October 10, 2017

I skipped a blogging day somewhere this's probably cause I ran out of time standing in line at HomeGoods for 45 minutes just checking out.  Yep, after shopping for an hour, I find myself in the checkout line with 49 people ahead of me.  Not exaggerating....I had plenty of time to count each and every one of them.  Abandoning my cart and walking out wasn't an option...I needed these three items and the hour I just spent shopping would have been a waste.  So I hung in there...making new friends of the ladies around me.....seeing who could take the best picture of the long line to send when we complained to HomeGoods Corporate.  For goodness sake, it was Tuesday...middle of the day...not even near Christmas...what gives??

And made it out of there just in time to watch our oldest granddaughter, Bella, play her mid-week volleyball game.  We don't get to make many of the games, so this was a big treat for me! Oh ya....SHE WON!

October 11, 2017

 And yesterday.......we went to the beautiful Dallas Arboretum.  In all the years Chuck lived in Dallas (most all of his life), he doesn't remember ever going to this little slice of heaven called the Arboretum.  He practically could have spit to it from where he grew up....

It was the most beautiful of days.....75 was just awesome.

And Chuck only went off the path once with his wheelchair.  He was looking to the left when he went off the path to the right.  Stuck.  In gravel.  Along came three older ladies who immediately came up with a plan.  Two hung on to Chuck as he stood up so the other one and I could lift his chair up out of the gravel.  I overheard one lady say, "I haven't held a man since my husband died" while the one helping me whispered in my ear, "I know what you're going husband was in a wheelchair too."  Precious-Precious-Precious-Precious Women....all of them.  And they showed me their muscles just before parting ways.....

We have enjoyed our stay here in our old home town.......but we're ready to move on.  Today, we are packing up the minivan and heading north......north to where?  We'll see.....but we want to see less concrete and more trees and mountains......

Hello Oklahoma and Arkansas!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

BLOG: A Couple Hicks In The Big City

 October 10, 2017

One thing hasn't changed since we moved from Dallas 12 years ago to the country (lake).  Chuck's love affair with Macy's.  The biggest smile....the brightest eyes....the happiest man came rolling out of Macy's yesterday as we took a relaxing day at the Mall....a place we don't have many of in East Texas (who am I fooling...we don't have ANY malls).

I feel like I'm in some type of Sci-Fi futuristic movie being back in Dallas for an extended stay.  "Brow-Bars" for those who want better eyebrows at Macys???  Really??

Leather reclining seats with a tray table at the movie theater (we were halfway through the movie before I realized they reclined)??!!  I'm such a hick.

And I'm starting to sound like my mother.  We excitedly went up to the box office to purchase our movie tickets and suddenly my $20 bill vanished.  I heard these words leaving my mouth as I spoke through the little hole in the window to the 16 year-old cashier, "$20?  Are you sure?  It's only $5 for matinee in our neck-of-the-woods".   Yes....I actually said this. 

But I discovered something in our adventures yesterday.  I realized this no longer felt like home to me.  I used to LOVE the I couldn't wait to get out of the mall.  A "Brow-Bar" would have excited me back in the I think its just bizarre that someone would be that attached to their eyebrows.   And $20 for a matinee?  I don't care if they do have leather-reclining-chairs-with-a-swivel-table.  These things are wayyyyy on down the list of essential components of my life.  I've changed......

I'd much prefer to see a beautiful sunrise that didn't include a high speed freeway in front of it.  I much prefer seeing a quiet lake instead.

Monday, October 9, 2017


October 9, 2017


It's been just under 40 years since this chick's been to the State Fair of Texas.  I was in college dating a hot guy with a hot black Trans Am at the time....

This time, I was with my hot husband with a hot burgundy Minivan and our awesome family.  And I've discovered.....eating Fletchers Corny Dogs and Fried Banana Pudding then riding some ride called "Don't Throw Up", is something left for the "younger" crowd to do.  Yep, we stopped at Walmart on the way home and grabbed some Rolaids and Advil. 

We now have a student-driver as a grandchild, so the Car Show was a must.  It's almost impossible for me to think of Bella driving as I mostly only remember her and cars having a love-hate relationship as she was growing up.  Motion-sickness was not her friend as a child.......TRUST ME.

And it was discovered that, although they lived in Dallas their whole lives, Chuck and his son Troy never went to the Fair together.  So it only took (no comment) years for Father and Son to head to the fair and share a plate of kurd cheese together.

What an awesome vacation we are having so far.  We may not be at the Ark in the middle of a hurricane, but we are somewhere better; with family.  And isn't that what the Ark was all about anyway?  

Bella hitching a ride on Grandpa's wheelchair

Granddaughters and their Lele

FAMILY (& Big Tex, of course)

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Funny Thing Happened on the Way To the Ark

October 7, 2017

So......a funny thing happened on our way to the Ark....the Ark Encounter, that is.

It rained. (Don't think for a second I don't see the irony here.....)

We've been planning a trip to Williamsburg, Kentucky for...ohhh.....about 6 months to see the actual replica of the Ark and check out the Fall colors along the way.  This was an anniversary present from my beloved, was suppose to start today and included the promise to "not-give-you-grief-or-whine-every-time-you-stop-the-car-to-take-a-picture, Liz".  SD cards were cleaned and in position....batteries charged and every photo-op between East Texas and Northern Kentucky had been researched and written down.

We are not in Kentucky. 

Twenty-four hours prior to take-off in the minivan, we aborted Kentucky.  We simply couldn't see driving 24 hours round-trip in hopes the doors to the Ark weren't already closed and floating when we got there.  Quick change of plans.....

We considered Grand Canyon.....never been there...always wanted to....36-hour-round-trip drive.  My butt is already wide enough.....


We considered Colorado Springs.....our beautiful niece and her family live there and we haven't yet seen her place.  We love Colorado....and we love Tiffany even more.  But it showed SNOW on Tuesday (plus, we hadn't exactly run this thought past Tiff yet) we decided to delay the trip to Colorado for another time.....'s the deal.  We decided with an odd head home.  Home to Dallas.  We are going to be tourists for the first time ever in our home town.  We are going to do touristy things....taste touristy food....look like tourists.

So we loaded up the minivan yesterday, headed 1-1/2 hours west and landed north of Dallas.  Checked into a hotel, headed over to our son and daughter-in-laws house for a visit and dinner, and for the first time in a gazillion years, we aren't racing in and out of Dallas to have a colonoscopy, cystoscopy, endoscopy, MRI or mammogram.  Nope.  We are going to have some FUN time.  And an added perk is....we won't get lost.

Granddaughter Bella
So, this week will be filled with State Fairs, Arboretum, Granddaughters, Family, Museums, Shopping, maybe a Haunted House or two and.....Resting.  We are downright giddy about this upcoming week!

Want to travel with us??