Monday, August 29, 2011

Well, school has begun. I have to say I love my kids. They are fun and are going to definitely keep me on my toes. I can already tell I am going to learn so much from them and I might even learn a little about myself through these children.

This weekend has been especially difficult for me. I am not too certain as to why. I have sat in my bed for the majority of it, just feeling like I don't belong here. I feel that I have no purpose. I have wanted to be a mom all my life....and here I am....with no children. What am I doing here? I try not to worry about it, I really do..but it is not easy. I just need prayers. I need to believe in God and His perfect timing. But, I am having a really difficult time with that right now. Please pray for me as I try to have peace with the fact that I am not in charge, that my timing may not be His timing, and I don't always have to understand why.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A journey

I read a blog called The Journey. It is about a girl named Katie who is about my age 29 or younger. She lives in Africa and has adopted 13 african girls who are of all ages. Not only does she care for these little girls, but she is so available to anyone who comes to her door. Her love for Christ is so captivating. I read her stories and I am in tears and utterly amazed. Her life turns all eyes on Him. It is truly amazing. It makes me realize a deep dream I have had. When I was in high school I would go to an orphanage in Mexico during the summers. Ever since, I have wanted to have something to do with missions and kids. I would one day love to be the "parents" of an orphanage. I would love to be somewhere where I can pursue making disciples...a place where people have never heard His word. But, we (Curtis and I) are not available. We are so bogged down by our responsibilities here we can't just leave it. I want to be available. I want to not have things here that are tying me down. I want to be able to pack up and go to Africa for a few weeks if I want to go do some work over there. Maybe now is not the time, or maybe I am making excuses because deep down I am terrified of what God may have in store for us. Whatever it is, I pray that I will be able to make sense of what God is entrusting me with. I want Him to entrust me with much. I want to have a life story that points others to Him and his sovereignty and power. But, for now, He has me on this journey. So, I will accept the place I am in now and pray that for now I will still point others to Him. I am, however, sitting here, wondering what others roads He will have Curtis and I take along this journey. Here is a link to Katie's blog. You should read is truly and utterly amazing!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Absolutely Refuse

Day 2 of workdays and already I am thinking..."REALLY?" But I refuse to let the doom and gloom of our state's budget get the best of me. Since I have been a teacher, every year we hear how the next year is going to be even more devastating financially. And..every year, things seem to turn out okay. God has our back. So I refuse to let it get the best of me. I refuse to let it interfere with me and my students. I refuse to allow it to consume my thoughts and make me worry. I refuse, I refuse, I absolutely refuse.

I am excited about this year. The fun thing about teaching is every summer a year ends and every August it is a fresh clean start. I am looking forward to getting to know the little younguns that are going to walk in my door next week. I am anxious to see their growth by the end of the year! I know that each child was given to me for a reason and I can't wait to figure it out.

Here is to a successful and fun 2011-2012 year!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

And so it begins

The new school year is about to begin. This is always a nerve racking time of year. Students don't realize that teachers are as nervous as they are when it comes to starting off the year. I am not ready to say goodbye to sleeping in, cuddling with my puppy, going places, eating out for lunch, going to movies anytime of the day and not being always extremely exhausted. I love summer and am thankful I have a job that allows us that time off. The break is much needed for both teachers and students.

The new year brings about a lot of new feelings. It makes you wonder who your students will be and what will the dynamics be like in the classroom. You wonder if you will make a difference in their lives. The public school system gets a lot of bad publicity, but in the school I work in, there are many people who dedicate their life to this job. They love the children, they value education and do everything possible to help each child in their class succeed. I am fortunate enough to work with these people who value tomorrow's future.

So, here is to another year. Another year filled with good times, making differences, learning tons, and growing in multiple ways!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Saved from something by someone to do something

Today's lesson was a continuation of last week on The Great Commission. And, as always, my brain was enlightened and my heart softened.

Now, I have never viewed my being a Christian as a get out of hell card. In fact, even though I am a Christian, I still often wonder if I am going to make it up to heaven. But these simple words were said in today's message "I was saved from something by someone to do something."
I have seemed to have let this go unnoticed. I seem to let the death that Christ faced for me fade away. Since He died for me, He has given me the HONOR to go and tell others about His love for us. I should view it as an honor to tell others about God, but I usually view it as an awkward, difficult task that I am not worthy or able to do.

Most of the time I am not a Christlike example and I make myself not available most of the time. What if my church I grew up in or my parents had made themselves unavailable to me? Where would I be today? Who would I be today?

Father, help me to be available to others. Force words and actions to come out of me that bring You glory. Give me a heart that is open to others and their needs and to put my needs to the side for once. Father, help me an instrument to be used for You, one that brings peace and love. Do not let my lack of confidence keep me from remembering and acting out what Jesus authorized me to do...the reason He died on the cross for me. For I was saved from death by God through Jesus to go and make disciples.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Being Impactful

Todays lesson was really good for me. Docusen did an awesome job. I love how genuine he is about Jesus and His love for us. I love how he preaches pure truth!

The Great Commission was given to all believers. We are to go out and MAKE DISCIPLES and baptize them and TEACH THEM EVERYTHING THAT HAS BEEN COMMANDED OF US!

I can do all things for Christ, but if I am not doing this one task, then I am not doing enough. Whoa! As hard as it is to hear that, it is true. I sat there listening to this, cringing because I know I am not doing enough. I am not bringing others to Christ. I am not doing everything commanded of me...I am not doing the Great Commission.

Some things I understood today that I have never thought about are:
  • I do not have to bring someone to church to show them Christ. When I was baptized, right then the angels rejoiced and the Holy Spirit began to live inside of me. I have the power to bring others to Christ. But it will not happen with the way I live my day to day life.
  • There are many things I have done or said that I am most certainly not proud of. There have been many times in my life, especially at work, where you would not know I am a Christian. I am certain that there are some that know I go to church but look at me as a hypocrite. And, sadly to say, there are people who I am sure would not go to church because of things I have done or said. It hurts to think that this could be true. But it is what it is. I can't go back in time and change those things, even though I wish I could. I wish I could start all over. But I can't. I can however change that way of life and live one filled with Christ's goodness and love.
  • I will never know how much of an impact I have on others, but one thing is for sure, I am making an impact. SO I BETTER BE MAKING A CHRIST LIKE IMPACT. I have failed at this in the past, but plan on making the future a clear path to Christ.
Father, I am sorry for being a disappointment to You so many times in my life. I am sorry for not making Your name famous, for not showing Your love and grace to others. I am sorry for turning others away from You because of the things I might say, or ways I act. I can't erase my past sins. But, You, Father can forgive me for them and I ask for Your forgiveness. I also ask for Your wisdom and strength to be a Christ-like impact to others, because I will never know who is watching and more importantly, it is the GREAT COMMISSION You have commanded me to do.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Moved by You

I have been walking in the morning lately, and as I walk around, I can't help but feel God's presence....and I am so moved by Him. Ever since finding out a week ago that it is quite possible that my husband and I will not be able to have our own children, I have felt God holding me in His arms-whether it is by friends He has placed in my life, comforting words from others, my great mom and dad who are showing us so much love through this, people praying for us, and comforting words from His word. I am truly thankful and feel at peace. I can't say that I don't think about it, because I do. When I see a new baby or a mom who is pregnant, there is a sense of jealousy and envy, and a lot of questions pop into my head. But, I am not angry. I am not angry at Him. More surprisingly, I have been strong. This is surely a strength given only by God. I know that there is something God has up His sleeve for us...who knows...maybe I will get to be an orphanage mom one day...which is a dream of mine. Or perhaps, maybe there is a child waiting on us to find them, or maybe God is going to fix this problem and allow us to have our own. I don't know...I have no idea what His plan is, but I know He has one. He has had one from the moment I entered into my moms womb. I fully trust and believe that! I am so moved by You, Father.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Our Body belongs to Christ

So during this whole summer....I have watched myself eat, sleep, watch tv, eat, sleep, watch tv, and eat and sleep some more. I had a whole checklist of things I wanted to accomplish on my house this summer...yet none of it got done. I have had absolutely no motivation. But then I will start thinking, "Who am I hurting anyway? This is my summer and my life and I am going to do what I want to do!"

While it is true that this is summer and I do not deny that God gives teachers summers to sleep and rest and do things they want to do, I do not think He would agree that this is my life and my body. My body belongs to Christ. It says so in 1 Corinthians 6:19-20 "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price, therefore honor God with your body."

My body belongs to God. I wasn't created to live Mandy's Life, I was created by God, for God's purposes and only to bring glory to God. I live every day doing what I feel like doing. It is rather selfish. My father sent His son to die on a cross. His son had nails pierced into His hands. He had a crown covered in thorns bearing into his head. He died and He had done nothing wrong. But because God knew I would sin, He had mercy on me and asked His son to bear the burden of all my sins and all the others in this world. So, my body is God's body most definitely.

Father, I pray that I can have a physical body that glorifies you. I pray I will vigilent. I will guard what I see, hear, do, think, and choose for my life. I pray that I will walk in righteousness and fill my body, which is Your temple, with holiness. Please forgive me for always thinking that I could do what I want when I want with my body and not allowing it to glorify You even after knowing that You gave up Your son on a cross for me.

Monday, August 1, 2011

It has been a while since I have been on here...I wish I came with some great things to say and offer, but I don't.

Curtis and I are trying to start a family, but my doctor called me Friday with some unfavorable news. I have had a hard time since Friday smiling and enjoying life. Tomorrow, Curtis and I celebrate 8 years together and all I can think is that it is 8 years with no children and we may very well not ever have our own. I am not closed to adoption, nor have I ever been, but we wanted to have a couple of our own first. But, it seems God's plan is very different than mine. I know His plan is better, but right now I am having a hard time understanding that. I sat in church Sunday and I was not there. I felt so far away from God. I know I put that distance there. My heart was definitely not in the right place.

My mom told me that I have always been very good and loving towards other people's kids, so maybe God has been preparing my heart to love and care for someone else's child that needs a home. Even though that may be true, it doesn't make the feelings easier that come with finding out you may not be able to physically have your own children.

We are meeting with a special doctor soon, but in the meantime, we are going to start researching adoption and getting a better understanding of that. So, here is to what may be a new journey for us and I hope that my heart will open up to it.