Tuesday, February 26, 2013

brb. gone 2 nyc.

it's too early to be taking pictures :P see y'all when i get home!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

the LORD will provide.

the sermon today was on the eighth commandment - 'you shall not steal.' and our pastor challenged us with these questions:
     - are you a thief?
     - do you see what you want and covet? do you take what you want from others?
     - do you ever treat others without the respect and honor they deserve as children of God?
     - do you glorify God according to the way He deserves to be treated?
     - God gives good things to His children, we must respect His wisdom and judgment.

What stood out to me the most from that section was this:
"We need to think of ourselves as stewards, rather than autonomous owners." 
Instead of the materialistic "I need this, I need that" mindset that our culture promotes and embraces, it's important for us as Christians to realize that our treasures are in fact in heaven - and we should use our material, earthly possessions to further the Kingdom and store up the right kind of rewards.

Christ came to fulfill the commandment by living the sinless life. He never stole from anyone - possessions, time, etc. He never slandered (stealing someone's reputation), or gossiped (stealing their right to privacy) or anything else along those lines. He came to redeem and save the thief. I nearly cried as Pastor Keith read Luke 23 - the thieves on the cross with Jesus. Christ came as a GIFT for the thieves who He knew would reject and kill Him.

And then, by way of application, some challenging questions from Christ's teaching on material possessions.
     - Do we trust God to provide for our needs?
     - Do we trust that He is generous and DOES give good gifts to His children?

Also, when we DON'T give back to God what He has given us, then we are forgetting the resurrection and the hope stored up for us. What holds us back from giving back to God? Do we truly believe that there are treasures to be had in heaven? Because ultimately, giving back to God is based on faith. How often during the day do we stop and just thank God for what He's given us?

to close the service, we sang this wonderful song, 'the Lord will provide.' a beautiful reminder of how good and great our God is.
Though troubles assail and dangers affright,
Though friends should all fail and foes all unite;
Yet one thing secures us, whatever betide,
The scripture assures us, the Lord will provide

We may, like the ships, by tempest be tossed
On perilous deeps, but cannot be lost.
Though Satan enrages the wind and the tide,
The promise engages, the Lord will provide.

When Satan appears to stop up our path,
And fill us with fears, we triumph by faith;
He cannot take from us, though oft he has tried,
This heart-cheering promise, the Lord will provide

No strength of our own, or goodness we claim,
Yet since we have known the Savior's great name;
In this our strong tower for safety we hide,
The Lord is our power, the Lord will provide

When life sinks apace and death is in view,
This word of his grace shall comfort us through:
No fearing or doubting with Christ on our side,
We hope to die shouting the Lord will provide
"the Lord will provide" - matthew smith
hope y'all had a blessed Sunday, and that every starts the week off fresh and full of energy to serve the Kingdom tomorrow! I'm a big fan of happy Mondays.

With love and hugs and blessings,

your jo-girl.

p.s. and here's to Les Mis winning a handful of Oscars tonight! *grin*

Saturday, February 23, 2013

the procrastinator's daybook published on saturday afternoon

Date February 23, 2013
Starting time 3:46pm
Moodsuper tired but pretty happy
Outside my windowa gorgeous cold winter day - sun shining through an overcast sky.
I'm thinkingthat I don't care how long it takes, hamantaschen is THE BEST dessert on the face of the earth.
I'm currently readingThe Bible by God.
I'm listening tomy sweet baby sister watching a movie. It's funny, when we were little, Maddie and I wanted to watch Cedarmont Kids or Hide 'Em In Your Heart or Blue's Clues or Clifford. Susannah? Speed Racer. Yes, we liked SR too, but not with the frequency of this little lady :P
I'm wearingjeans, stripey sweater (been cleaning all day)
I'm looking forward toour Purim party! One of my favorite holidays. I can't remember not celebrating it, and it only gets better each year. Such a beautiful story of God's faithfulness to His people, and a picture of the salvation that Jesus brought so many generations later.
I'm hopingthat MaryAnne will send out the cast list today. Just sayin'.
Yesterday, Ihelped out with the BBP workshop production of "The Princess and the Pea". Super cute, super fun!
I'm hungry fornothing, honestly. I've already had too many hamantaschen, and there's more food coming tonight (think falafel, hamantaschen, shawarma, hamantaschen, tabbouli, more hamantaschen, etc.)
The song stuck inside my head is"Deep Purple" by Donny and Marie Osmond
I loveJesus.
I loathewaking up in the night with mascara burning in my eyes. lazy, lazy Liza - I always pay on the days I don't take off my makeup.
This week, my goal isto enjoy myself in every way while in NYC. What a goal. But then, I'm in THAT kind of mood.
Did I meet last week's goal?whatever it was I'm sure I did.
Picture of the Weekstory of my life.

Ending time4:02pm.
"And Mordecai told them to answer Esther: “Do not think in your heart that you will escape in the king’s palace any more than all the other Jews. For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father’s house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” - Esther 4:13-14

Friday, February 22, 2013

thoughts on ice

via pinterest

right, left. right, left.
out and out. out and out.
blades on ice.

fifty or sixty others here too.
but i'm skating alone.

a shout, a spin, a fall
i chuckle as i go by
"get up, keep going, you'll get it"

still alone.

a little friend hangs on the wall
he reaches out his hand
i take it.
we skate.
he needs me.
out fly his skates
i catch his fall
his little laugh,
his spanish lilt
brighten my spirit

all too soon: "i got it"
and he does.
so i let him go.

now i'm alone again.

i shouldn't be unhappy
i wanted it this way
i prayed for it this way
i know it's better this way.

i laugh, i race, i play
i chat and joke
i help the other on their feet

but i know what it is to love,
to be loved
but not at the same time.
or the worst
to be together, yet very alone.

then the thought comes.
softly now.
it does not cure the longing
nor completely dull the ache
but tears i might've shed dissolve

Jesus is with me.
i am never alone.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

awkward and awesome // 2.21.13 // corey and kara

supposed to have posted this yesterday, but didn't. so let's just pretend I did, savvy?
"There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love." ~ 1 John 4:18
- making eye contact with people while working out at the gym. Do you smile at them, ignore, wave, WHAT?
- dropping jelly down my front while making hamantaschen
- very nearly getting run over by fast moving set pieces during break down after tech last night #dangeroustimes
- my toe nails. they look AWFUL. I have got to do something about this.
- goodbyes. not looking forward to the one I have to say tomorrow.
- falling on the ice. it just is, no matter how used to it I am :P
- working car line at preschool…do the parents want to bring their child in? do they want you to go out the car to get them? or meet them at the sidewalk? hold the door? I don't knooooowwww! (and I've been doing this for two years)
- having to seam-rip the zipper in my NYC dress *four* times. And now I'm having to come to terms with the fact that it's not going to be perfect. Bummer.

 - ice skating and SweetFrogs with Stephanie, Nate and the crowd. So much fun! Enjoying myself more now that I'm steady on my feet. Skating also prompted some interesting inner reflective thoughts…still trying to decide whether to share them or not *hmm*
- getting called up at the last minute last night to help with Black Box's workshop "Princess and the Pea"….which opens TONIGHT. *grin* Every show that I say I'm NOT going to do, I end up helping up with somehow.
- preparing for Purim, which is tomorrow. Making dozens, and dozens, and dozens of hamantaschen…close to twelve dozen right now, I think.
- planning and thinking about and packing and getting ready for my TRIP TO NEW YORK CITY. Not that I'm excited or anything. Tuesday, here I come!
- hanging out with the older ladies at church - teasing them and being teased in turn. They're just awesome, through and through. So blessed to have them!
- driving slow on the road home, rolling the window down, feeling the damp spring-like air, wearing my cowboy hat and singing Taylor. *sigh* that was such a lovely day. I can't wait for warmer weather!
via pinterest - but it kinda looks like me, don't it? :D

Talent for the week - the adorable Corey Cott and Kara Lindsay, currently starring opposite each other in Newsies, singing "A Whole New World" from Aladdin as part of a Hurricane Sandy benefit concert. This video is the *peak* of awkward and awesome. Enjoy it! *grin* Kara has some pretty fantastic facial expressions, and Corey is a ham. :P They obviously have a lot of fun acting together - so cool.

And yes, I'm gonna see these two when I'm in NYC. Sorry… :)

“I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living.” ― Dr. Seuss

Monday, February 18, 2013

movie night: the african queen {1951}

The African Queen
via pinterest
Since the last two Tuesday posts have been "on the shelf" book reviews, it's only fair that I do a movie review this week. Hmm…let's see….already done Hobbit, Les Mis, October Sky….ohhhh, yes, I know.

So my Dad is like me in many ways. Actually, make that, I'm like HIM in many ways, since, after all, he did come first. For example, he can be really cute sometimes, everybody likes him, he's really fun to be around, makes great breakfasts, never met a stranger, etc, etc.... *cough cough*


The other day, Dad decided to watch The African Queen on Netflix since it streams and he hadn't seen in a really long time and he really likes Katharine Hepburn. After he saw it, he told me that I would really like and think it was cute, but that probably no one else would. He was right *grin* Caroline sat with me for about a half hour, then went to bed, leaving Dad and I to finish it. (he was painting for a lot of the time too, so it was really just me)

It's all cheese, it is. But it IS cute, and quite funny, and Katharine Hepburn and Humphrey Bogart are brilliant, as usual. I laughed a good deal, raised my eyebrows a couple times when the story got a little silly, and accurately predicted the ending - a happy way to spend my evening. :D

Rosie. {The African Queen}
"Fancy me a heroine!" ~ Rosie Sayer

The missionary adventurer, the bachelor mailman - two fantastic roles from an actor's point of view. The best part of the movie wasn't the storyline (meh) but the hilarious love story. 

Humphrey Bogart, The African Queen
"It's a great thing to have a lady aboard with clean habits. It sets the man a good example. A man alone, he gets to living like a hog." ~ Charlie Alnutt

Cha-lie, dear. :DKatharine Hepburn
"A man takes a drop too much once in a while, it's only human nature."
"Nature, Mr. Allnut, is what we are put in this world to rise above."
The African Queen
"I never dreamed that any mere physical experience could be so stimulating!" - Rose Sayer
Humphrey Bogart & Katharine Hepburn in The African Queen (1951)
"Dear?... Dear?... What is your first name?" - Rosie Sayer
Verdict? If you're a classic 50s hollywood fan, and you don't mind a film with hardly any plot, but with great quotes and a sweet story - you should watch it. But if that's not your cup of tea, then this probably won't float your boat…literally. *chuckle* But I enjoyed it! Thanks for sharing the fun with me, Daddy. *grin*

giving this 3 out of 5 stars.

the crafty side: fashion // braids and colors and denim

jean jacket: borrowed from mama
long sleeve black shirt: red camel "favorite fit" from belk
skirt: on sale at belk (choices brand)
boots: nordstrom's 
earrings: nine west

this was my church outfit this week. I did my hair in three french braids headed to the center of the back of my head, then made them into a ponytail bun with a scrunchie. I guess doing Mihret's hair has started influencing my own styles *chuckle* The skirt is new, and I love it. It was my first time wearing it, and it's a keeper! Thanks to Catherine for the pictures - you're the best!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

how high and how wide

No eye has seen and no ear has heard 
And no mind has ever conceived 
The glorious things that You have prepared 
For every one who has believed 
You brought us near and You called us Your own 
And made us joint heirs with Your Son 

How high and how wide 
How deep and how long 
How sweet and how strong is Your love 
How lavish Your grace 
How faithful Your ways 
How great is Your love, O Lord 

Objects of mercy who should have known wrath 
We’re filled with unspeakable joy 
Riches of wisdom, unsearchable wealth 
And the wonder of knowing Your voice 
You are our treasure and our great reward 
Our hope and our glorious King 

How high and how wide 
How deep and how long 
How sweet and how strong is Your love 
How lavish Your grace 
How faithful Your ways 
How great is Your love, O Lord 

played the piano for this with the band as the postlude today - easily one of my favorite worship songs.

We're working through Exodus as a church on Sunday mornings, and right now we're in a mini-series on the Ten Commandments. Today's sermon was on the seventh commandment - "You shall not commit adultery." It was a great blessing to hear the challenge and call to purity proclaimed faithfully from the pulpit. Faithfully in that there was no wiggle room for "what about this?" Yes, there is always forgiveness in our Lord, but there's no going back once you cross the line. And the call to modesty, no only to protect the minds of our brothers, but also to protect ourselves. Today was a day I felt very blessed to be a member of this wonder body of believers, and under the teaching of our gifted pastor. God was glorified today.

How was your Sunday? What challenged or encouraged you today?

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

does the world REALLY need another love song?

While I think it's great that Valentine's Day is a time I can enjoy and be grateful for the love of my family and my Savior, it's also fun to daydream a bit about the day I (Lord willing) will spend this holiday with that special someone. And, as I realized the other day as I was nuttily chatting with +Sarah Heffington (and +Rachel Heffington too, through the former), a good many of the songs in my library are love songs - golden oldies, songs from musicals, and some pop in there too. So, in honor of the sappiness of this ridiculous holiday, here are some of my favorites:

your song by elton john
sweet. classic. simple. beautiful.

you belong to me from fireproof
the best love songs are ones that could be from/about God. the ultimate love story. and the scene this song is the soundtrack for makes me cry in a big way.

all i ask of you from phantom of the opera {sierra and hadley}
most beautiful love song in musical theatre history. period. no question. especially with these two.

because nothing says it like country.

i think i love you by the partridge family
this song never fails to put a smile on my face. classic 70s. fantastic beat.

everything about this song is beautiful. lyrics. piano. music. harmony.

love changes everything by michael ball
this. song. 

my go-to swirling in front of the mirror song *awkward chuckle*

top of the world by the carpenters
this one's for mama - 'cause she loves this song, and because of that, i love it too.

leaving it up to you by donny and marie
this song doesn't really make sense, but it's the Osmonds, and they're so cute and i love their harmony and their chemistry - and their outfits *grin*

another possible God song. the truth is, we only know what love is because of His example - and He is one who enables us to love. AND, He loves us more than anyone on earth possibly could.

i see the light from tangled
summertime, warm fuzzy feelings, disney sentimentality and all that jazz

aaaand…closing with the words of The. Musical.

Pinned Image

Monday, February 11, 2013

on the shelf: passion and purity

I have always admired and respected Jim and Elisabeth Elliot for their total obedience to God, and for the sacrifices they made for the sake of the kingdom. I read many different biographies of Jim when I was in middle school, and when I was a junior I read Through Gates of Splendor, and Mama read aloud Shadow of the Almighty. The latter is easily my favorite Christian biography, and I cannot recommend it enough. Actually, I've given it as a gift to several friends. If you haven't read it yet, go get your hands on a copy - it's worth it.

Anyway. That's another post for another day.

Back in the fall, my dear "Mom W" asked if she could give me Passion and Purity for my birthday. I'd never read it before, and as I'm always hungry for new material, I said yes! But due to conflicts with scheduling and holiday busy-ness, we didn't get around to giving each other our birthday gifts (her birthday is a month after mine) until about two weeks ago.

I read Passion and Purity cover to cover in one day. And then I went back through with a pencil, and then again…and honestly, I think it will be a while before I'll uncover all the nuggets of wisdom to be found in its pages. I'll probably be re-reading it every now and then for a good long time.

via pinterest
First of all, this is a book about waiting. I've read many wonderful encouraging books about being content while single, waiting patiently for God to bring the right man, etc…but none of those books were about waiting once you've already *found* the right person. I was inspired, challenged, and deeply moved by the waiting aspect of the Elliots relationship - in love for *five* years before getting the "green light", as it were, from God to get married. And most of those years were spent apart. Rather far apart sometimes. And that's hard. Really hard.
"I do know that waiting on God requires the willingness to bear uncertainty, to carry within oneself the unanswered question, lifting the heart to God about it whenever it intrudes upon one’s thoughts. Its easy to talk oneself into a decision that has no permanence – easier sometimes than to wait patiently." ~ Elisabeth Elliot, Passion and Purity
It's a book about staying physically pure - a point almost entirely lost in our current society. It was incredibly refreshing to read a book so clear on the importance of saving yourself for your spouse, while being honest about the difficulties. This is important stuff to being thinking and praying about - more and more the older and more mature you get.

Most importantly, it's a book about Jesus. The Elliots were not capable of doing what they did alone. But they had Jesus. He, the Lord of Creation, wrote their beautiful love story with His own hand, and you can see that as clearly as the letters Jim and Elisabeth wrote back and forth, and as clearly as their living testimony was played out. Both of them were committed to following God's will for them - even if it meant lots of hard decisions, and seemingly unbearable circumstances. But He led them through, and now their story is an encouraging and challenging testimony of faith for our generation.
"But the question to precede all others, which finally determines the course of our lives is What do I really want? Was it to love what God commands, in the words of the collect, and to desire what He promises? Did I want what I wanted, or did I want what He wanted, no matter what it might cost?" ~ Elisabeth Elliot, Passion and Purity
Mom W wrote in the front of my book that she prayed that my own love story will be just as beautiful. That is my prayer too. I'm just as romantic as the next person, with lots of hopes and dreams for my own home and life with my own family. But I can't make it happen, and if I tried to, it wouldn't be right.

But this is do know: if I leave it in the hands of our all-powerful, all-knowing, loving God, it will be beautiful. 

Read this book with an open mind. Be challenged. Be encouraged. Be inspired. And the cliche phrase "God's writing my love story" takes on a whole new meaning.

giving this 5 out of 5 stars.

Note to the mamas: I highly recommend this book without reservation, but there is material that may be better suited to girls who have reached the age where physical purity is something you've already talked about with them, and they are familiar with the concept. It could be confusing, or unhelpful for younger girls. I would say almost fifteen and up would be best. But it's up to you. :) ~ L.M.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

it's worth it.

It's not easy being the oldest. It's not easy being a peacemaker. It's not easy holding your tongue when you're tempted to tear someone down. It's not easy to support your parents, even when you don't exactly agree with them.

But it's worth it.

It's worth it to have the respect of your younger siblings, 'cause they know they can always count on you. It's worth it to be known as a humble person, and to sacrifice your desires for others. It's worth it to save that relationship by swallowing your words. It's worth it to have the trust and love of your parents.

"...but we also glory in tribulations, knowing that tribulation produces perseverance; and perseverance, character; and character, hope. Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us." ~ Romans 5:3-5

It's not easy to "give up" your summer at home to go all the way across the country. It's not easy to say goodbye to friends you love in such a way that your life *will not* be the same without them.  It's not easy to follow where the Lord leads.

But it's worth it.

It's worth it to spend a season pursuing NOTHING but your Savior. It's worth it to encourage dear ones in their own walk with the Lord. It's worth it to know you're in God's will - the safest place you'll ever be.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

in the kitchen: banana bread

We've used many banana bread recipes over the years, and I think most have been pretty great. But I honestly can't remember which ones were staples - so here's the one that we use now, and it's pretty delicious. So let's just say it's my favorite one, okay?

Banana Bread

1/3 cup butter (or coconut oil)
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup brown sugar or sucanat
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups mashed bananas
1 3/4 cup white whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 cup water

1/2 cup dark chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 325*
2. Lightly grease a 9x5 inch loaf pan with butter.
3. Combine flour, cinnamon, and salt in a bowl. Whisk and set aside.
4. In another large bowl, combine butter, honey, and sugar and beat for two minutes. Add the eggs and lightly beat until just combined. Mix in bananas and vanilla -- do not overmix. Gradually beat in the flour mixture.
5. Dilute baking soda in 1/4 cup hot water, then beat into batter.
6. Stir in chocolate chips.
7. Pour batter into pan and bake at 325* for 52 minutes. (or longer - be sure to test the middle. it's not very tasty half-cooked)

Let it sit in the pan for thirty minutes after it's cooked if you want to slice it and have it look pretty....if not, then let it cool for five and then just dig in :D

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

tuesday inspiration.

"This is strength; this is peace; to feel, in entering on every day, that all its duties and trials have been committed to the Lord Jesus — that, come what may, He will use us for His own glory and our real good!" - John Paton

"Let us see that we keep God before our eyes; that we walk in His ways and seek to please and glorify Him in everything, great and small. Depend upon it, God's work, done in God's way, will never lack God's supplies." - Hudson Taylor 

"People who do not know the Lord ask why in the world we waste our lives as missionaries. They forget that they too are expending their lives ... and when the bubble has burst, they will have nothing of eternal significance to show for the years they have wasted." - Nate Saint 

Sunday, February 3, 2013

i surrender all.

All to Jesus I surrender;
all to him I freely give;
I will ever love and trust him,
in his presence daily live.

I surrender all, I surrender all,
all to thee, my blessed Savior,
I surrender all.

All to Jesus I surrender;
make me, Savior, wholly thine;
fill me with thy love and power;
truly know that thou art mine.

I surrender all, I surrender all,
all to thee, my blessed Savior,
I surrender all.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

kentucky. pirates. family // 2.2.13

"You know, for having such a bleak outlook on pirates you are well on your way to becoming one: sprung a man from jail, commandeered a ship of the fleet, sailed with a buccaneer crew out of Tortuga, and you're completely obsessed with treasure." "That's not true. I am not obsessed with treasure." "Not all treasure is silver and gold, mate." - Jack and Will, Pirates of the Caribbean

Date February 2, 2013 
Starting time... 8:27pm
Moodso happy and cheerful
Outside my windowa cold snowy Kentucky night
I'm thinkinghow wonderful it is to be here with these "friends who are more like family"
I'm currently reading… Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
I'm listening toPirates of the Caribbean, 'cause that's what I'm watching right now with everyone.

"So, this is the path you've chosen? After all, he is a blacksmith." "No…..he's a pirate." - Governor Swann and Elizabeth, Pirates of the Caribbean
I'm wearingjeans, pink shirt, stripy sweater
I'm looking forward toAnnie auditions on Thursday! So excited.
I'm hopingthat I'll get a role that I'll really, really enjoy
Yesterday, Irode in the car for ten hours, watched two old Downton episodes, ate Chick-fil-A, took a nap, listened to soundtracks, and then had a wonderful evening with our friends when we finally arrived :D
I'm hungry formore of the carrot (but actually sweet potato) cake with cream cheese frosting that Caroline and Kate made today.
The song stuck inside my head is"Deep Purple" by Donny and Marie Osmond
I lovemy family. My parents and siblings, and my honorary parents and siblings. Especially the ones I'm staying with right now. I love these people. so. much.
I loathethe fact that you can actually have too much cake. 
This week, my goal isto be good, responsible big sister this week, and have all my siblings learn their audition songs perfectly :P
Did I meet last week's goal?yes. And it took less time than I expected (yay me)
Picture(s) of the Weekfrom hair day.

Ending time8:54pm.