Sunday, November 30, 2008

I just have to say...

I had a continual feast this Thanksgiving holiday (see Tuesday, Nov. 25 post). I'm so excited!! I didn't even need to resort to my chocolate bar at any time for comfort. I was reminded (and even quickened a couple of times) to walk in the Spirit. It was such a rewarding experience that I want to repeat it at Christmas! (I would say "every day," but I'm being realistic---I'll start with another holiday.) Last night, Andy even mentioned how "easy" this long weekend was---and that included visits from 3 kids and 4 grandkids, a continual houseguest, and visiting 2 mothers. That's pretty successful when your husband thinks it was easy---he tends to feed off of my stress and emotions! Thank you, Jesus!!!!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

A Few More Pictures

It was so fun watching our grandkids with our adopted student, Amanda. They all fell in love with her, as you can see below.

David walked by the bedroom and saw Addie laying on Amanda's shoulder and called us all in to look. I ran and grabbed my camera!

Of course, we then got caught! Here you can see "Travis" joined the photo op. Ryan was acting as Travis in Old Yeller---pretty cute!

After the kids went to bed, we had a quiet night of guitar playing and praise music. Andy loved getting his hands on a guitar again.

David played some new songs for us. I love how he plays.

David & Lindsey sang some songs for us. It was a great night. I miss music in our home. When our kids were growing up, there was constant music. Good times.

Friday, November 28, 2008

A Day for Cousins

David & Lindsey & kids came over this morning and then Lisa & the girls came over this afternoon.  Caitlin had read in an email I sent out that we had a guest from The Congo here and she said she needed to come meet her.  There was an instant connection, as you can tell!

Caitlin getting cozy with Amanda.  Caitlin left her Bible here for Amanda to read.

Alexis, right, is introducing cousin, Addie Belle, to the wonderful world of false fingernails!  Press-on nails is something every girl needs to learn early.  Isn't Alexis adorable in her Santa's helper outfit?  I told her she looked like the little elf on Santa Clause that served Santa his cocoa.  Addie was impressed that Alexis had on pearls just like her!  (They both love to dress up!)

Addie Belle adored her new fake fingernails!  She clicked them on the table, scratched her face, and tried to eat with them.  She LOVED them!!

Ryan felt quite lonely, being the only boy here today...Later, he dressed up like Travis on Old Yeller and kept shooting his dad who was barking like a rabid dog.  I don't think that movie pulled his heart strings like it did mine!

The three girl cousins here today.  (They all three love having their photo taken, too!)  Alexis had changed so much just in the last month.  She's lost a few more teeth.  I kept staring at her all day because she reminds me so much of Amy at that age!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Our Thanksgiving

We went to Pampa for Thanksgiving. We took Andy's mom with us. My brother & sister were there. I realized as I was loading my pictures that I didn't get one picture of all the great food!! Trust was good...the first and second time!

My sister-in-law, Amy, in a cute Christmas apron. Scott, Zach & Shanna on the couch.

Amanda joined us for an American Thanksgiving. (She's from The Congo) She wasn't crazy about all of our food, but she did find some familiar things she liked. I could sympathize after having been to other countries and eaten their foods.

This is a picture of my brother, Gary, and Andy's mom, Liz.

My nephew, Aaron, passing through the kitchen as my sister, Sandra, and my mom are cooking. I guess I was hiding out behind the camera!! Busted!!

Zach & Shanna

The first shot of Zach & Shanna that we made Zach do-over.

The annual family football game begins.....

Zach takes off with the ball with cousin, Scott, right behind him. Later, Zach ruined the ball and the game was over!

A picture of the guys as the Cowboy game started. You'll notice where I get my desire to get all my Christmas decorations up early. Like mother, like daughter, like son....

Sandra's family introduced us to a new game: Apples to apples. Lots of fun! I think we played it for 2 hours. First, though, we played Catch Phrase. But some people never caught on to the rules! ha! You'll notice only one stocking hanging on the fireplace. My mom's youngest grandchild, Benjamin, found his and got it up there early!!

This actually took place yesterday. Our adopted daughter, Amanda, talked Andy into hanging the Christmas lights outside. He had no intentions of hanging lights. Daughters (adopted or otherewise) are pretty convincing!!

The finished result. Our little Gingerbread House.


I just want to say that I am so thankful for all of my blog friends. You make my day! I love reading what all of you are doing---and how creative each of you are. I sincerely hope this day is full of gratefulness at your home. I love you!
(I'm waiting up on Zach & Shanna to get here---so I saw the day in)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Hey Dalhart Girls!

Remember our scenario we broke into groups to plan for at the retreat in Cuchara? Check this out!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Have a Holiday FEAST!

I met with my prayer partners this morning and we all acknowledged that holidays are stressful. In fact, in different ways, we were all dreading parts of our holidays for different reasons. How about you? Any stress going on in your heart or mind?
Chow down on this verse:
Proverbs 15:15 (Amp)
"All the days of the desponding and afflicted are made evil [by anxious thoughts and forebodings], but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of circumstances]."
WOW, you say. And you are exactly right! What are you thinking on? What evil forebodings are you entertaining? What is making you anxious? Examine what you're thinking on. Another verse that comes to mind is this:
Proverbs 23:7
"For as he thinks in his heart, so is he." If you're dreading the days ahead, what do you become? Because whatever you're thinking on is what you become or how you act out. But you don't have to have evil forebodings. You don't have to be anxious. Is it something you can change or control? Should you? The only person we can (or should!) control is ourselves--and that's only a fruit of the Spirit. God reminded us this morning that He wanted us to be the Proverbs 31 Women who laugh over our future! (vs. 25) He's told us not to worry about tomorrow, but each day is sufficient for its own worries. (Matt. 6:34)
So this morning, we three women (get it?) laid our worries down at Jesus' feet. We exchanged our heavy burdens for His light burdens. We reminded ourselves that we are not responsible for other people, other relationships--especially in these holiday seasons and situations. I even had visual aids for the girls this morning. And I just wish I could get one to each of you! A Dove candy bar. Chocolate for your comfort food, should you need it...and the Dove to remind you to walk in the Spirit and not the flesh.
And remember the end of that first verse? "... but he who has a glad heart has a continual feast [regardless of circumstances]."
I don't know about you, but I want more than one kind of feast this week!! I bless you with a glad heart!!

Monday, November 24, 2008


Is anyone getting up early on Black Friday to go shopping? What great bargain will you be shopping for?

Sunday, November 23, 2008


Sorry, Tammy! I told you I could wait until after Thanksgiving to change my blog into a Christmas theme...but I couldn't.
I also had to decorate at home....I'm such a pushover for Christmas!!

God is AMAZING!!!!

I was overwhelmed by God this morning at church.  I was asked to write down the prayer requests in our S.S. class---and there were more PRAISES than requests!  Now that's a good day!  We were able to praise God with our S.S. class that Jay & Amy's house sold, that Emily is doing much, much better, and that God is taking care of our kids who don't have a job.  We also had a praise from a woman who was scheduled for shoulder surgery and we'd prayed for her last week.  When she got to the doctor for her surgery, they did another scan---and she was healed!!  And then our worship/praise time in our service was so meaningful that all I could do was praise Him as tears rolled down my cheeks.  Andy preached this morning and he was especially anointed.  His message was from Matthew 20:29-34 where the blind men were healed.  He highlighted the part where Jesus asked them, "What do you want me to do for you?"  And Andy's question to us, as a church, was:  "What do we want God to do for us?"  We must define what we want in order to receive our requests.  We've seen God do awesome and amazing things in our lives this week.  He is worthy of our praise!!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Thanksgiving Preparation

Two questions:

What are you doing to prepare for Thanksgiving?

Does anything stress you out?

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thanksgiving at Living Water

Today was Turkey Day at Living Water. It was so much fun!! We had 135 people show up to get groceries---114 families. Plus we also supplied groceries for 16 shut-ins that HutchCares delivered to them. Here are some pictures of our morning. My nephew, Aaron, helped take pictures. My sister, Sandra, brought Aaron & Benjamin to come help today. Aaron said it was better than school!

George offered to go to United Supermarket to pick up the turkeys for us. Here he is with his trailer unloading 150 turkeys that friends purchased for us. Vance is helping.

Here, George, Gib, David, Richard & Charles are bringing turkeys into our food room.

We had over 280 Bags of Blessings---for Thanksgiving & Christmas--supplied by our churches. These bags include all the extra "fixin's" for a great holiday meal.

People began lining up by 7:30--in the cold--to receive groceries. Our doors didn't open until 9:00!! This little beauty was all wrapped up to stay warm. It was cold out there!!

You can see the line snaking around the perimeter of the room as the chairs begin filling up. It was standing room only today!

People settle in for the fun. You can see our Christmas tree in the back. (And no...I don't have my own tree set up at home!) The people on the right are taking freebies off of our freebie shelf.

I'm giving instructions and leading a time of Thanksgiving and Prayer.

Matt & Sheri Cox led our worship time. So much fun. A little girl was dancing as we sang.

Andy preached for the day. He talked about Nicodemus and that we must be born again! Two people prayed to receive Christ. A good day.
OH! And believe it or not, we had room for those extra turkeys in our freezer!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I may have a dilemma. Friday is our Thanksgiving Grocery Give-Away Day at Living Water. It's such a fun time!! It's a "free" day where you don't have to have your card punched to get groceries. Last year, we had 110 families come for food. And since our numbers have been up, I'm figuring on 150 families this year. The guys have been so busy all week making sure all our ducks (or turkeys) are in a row.

A neat thing of our former "clients" who used to come for groceries came in and told me last week that he'd donate $1000 for everyone to have turkeys for Thanksgiving if I could get it matched in 2 days. And we did it!! It was so much fun. Not only having money donated---but by whom it was donated. God is definitely growing fruit here at LW.

So...I called our local grocery store and ordered 150 turkeys. And because we didn't know we were going to have turkeys for everyone, I had been ordering fat hens to give away from the food bank. I tell you that to tell you our freezers are full!

I'm so hoping I don't have turkeys left over Friday. Anyone with freezer space??

Monday, November 17, 2008

Andy's Favorite Things

Amy tagged me to post my hubby's favorite things. I was afraid of this when I saw Emily start it. The pressure!!!! But here we go...

I would have to say that Jesus is first on Andy's list. I know, I know...sounds corny. But I'm glad it's true!! (I wonder when he had this photo taken?)

Let's pretend that I'm next on the list. But actually, I may come in at close 2nd to these 6 precious kids---plus the one not pictured here!

The next thing would probably be music...musicians...anything to do with it---especially when it involves his kids! He's really a proud daddy of his musical children. ARLT above and then his 3 sons pictured with Point of Grace---a few years back! All of our sons have had a band. Amy is also very musical---she just never lets anyone know it---she has a beautiful voice! And she can play guitar. So not just music & musicians---but his 4 kids! He's really proud of them.

I don't have a picture of them together, but Andy is also very partial to his kids-in-law! He thinks he hand-picked each of them.

It has his heart.

His favorite football teams.

Where he watches those favorite football teams!

His favorite fruit that he loves to share with those cute grandkids!

His very favorite food---medium rare.

His favorite afternoon...after dinner...midnight snack.

Hmmmm....guess he really likes food! Oh! And I didn't have a picture of Ralph. But he likes Ralph.
Ok...I tag Lindsey, Marfaye, Sandra & Holly!

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Tonight, we had our Thanksgiving meal and service at our church. Several people gave their testimonies of what they're thankful for. I'd like to tell you what I'm thankful for.
I'm so thankful for the body of Christ. This year has been one of the most amazing years of seeing the body come together to meet needs---from where I sit, anyway. We may not always agree. But we can still be in unity. I don't always agree with Andy, but I still love him. And even though we may not always agree, we can still work together for the common good of the body of Christ. I think that's something that has taken me some time to learn.
But isn't it amazing when we agree? Isn't it awesome to see people working together for others? God has put me in a unique position of knowing about needs and making those needs known. I LOVE seeing people falling all over themselves to help someone who needs the help. I love seeing people give when it's not even necessary---maybe someone else just needed encouragement. It makes me understand why Jesus loves his bride so much. When you see that kind of unity, that kind of agreement, you can understand why Jesus was willing to give his life...just because he loved us so much.
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving season?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Check it out!

I'd love for you to go to my sister's blog and read her post of how she taught her sons patriotism. What an awesome idea! Just look to the right at my blog list. It's under Sandra Langford. You'll be blessed! In fact, I don't think you'll be able to read it without crying....

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Difficult Relationships

Do you have any difficult relationships? I think most of us do. Can I share what I've learned over the years that may save you some heartache, stress, struggling, and expectations? Here it is: You may never get what you're wanting, desiring, needing, or hoping from that relationship.

First of all, let me say that I hope your difficult relationship isn't with your spouse. I've done a lot of counseling and I know it could be. If it is, let me just say that the only person you can change---is YOU! And if you're a wife, I'd encourage you to memorize, meditate on and drown yourself in I Peter 3. Let it become your best friend. I promise it will help you.

But if your difficult relationship is a parent, a sibling, an in-law, a pastor, or a friend, I'd encourage you to put your expectations in God---not in that person. In fact, let God meet all your needs! There's not another person on the face of the earth that can meet your needs. Here's a secret---God intended it to be that way---because He wants to be that person in your life! And if we can just realize that those people that you're having a difficult relationship with are probably hurt, damaged, or were abused--and they may not have worked through those issues and just don't know how to relate to you on the level you need.

I know I found peace when I admitted I was probably never going to be loved or accepted by the person I was hoping to find it from. And I spent so much time struggling and anguishing over it!! It's still a difficult relationship, but I'm just learning to love them, give to them, and help them without expecting anything in return. That's the difficult part. But isn't that what God called us to? He told us to love our neighbor as ourselves. And He gave the example of being a servant. Give...whether you get anything back or not.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


It keeps coming up. That word. This morning, in my prayer time with my prayer partners, it came up again! Have you ever looked at the Proverbs 31 woman with that word in mind? Her life doesn't appear simplified. She worked through the night, she gave her maids their orders, she gave to the poor, she strengthened her arms, she bought real estate, she had a home-based business....etc., etc.
But God showed us something this morning. It's something I'd already been thinking on...but this morning, God got a little personal. I think the Proverbs 31 woman's life was simplified---even though it looks really busy. But here's why I think that. I believe she was doing what she was gifted to do and what she was called to do! Have you ever thought about that? Do you know how you're gifted? Do you know what God's called you to do? When I'm doing those things, I'm energized! I love it. And I could keep doing it for hours. Really! Can't you? I think that's even part of discovering what your gifts are. What energizes you?
And what is it that drains your energy? What do you dread doing? What things do you get yourself involved in that you wish you could get out of? That's what you need to simplify your life from!!
How did it get personal this morning? Well, we each discovered what was draining us---what we needed to simplify our lives from. And guess what? It was different for each of us! (Duh...) For one it was relationships; for another it was emotions; and for another, it was a way of doing things. Isn't God amazing how He can give one word and individualize it?
So...I'm back to simplifying. And now I have clear directions in how to do it.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Burning Question

I have a burning question: Does anyone have a pillow that they just love? A pillow you sleep on at night. I have searched for YEARS for one that is perfect. I like a medium height, soft pillow. The ones I've gotten either squish down too quickly and become flat or they're too high to start with. The one I have now has broken up and is lumpy. I've gotten them fromWal-Mart, Target, Bed, Bath & Beyond, Dillards, etc.
Please, please, please let me know if you've found the perfect pillow!! I'm getting desperate! And my neck will thank you.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Playing Hooky...

I never played hooky in school...never!!  I would have been too afraid of getting caught!  The closest I came was when I was a "basket girl" in 7th grade P.E.   (Man!  Am I showing my age!)  After collecting and putting up all the baskets in P.E. (where our clothes were stored), we were allowed free time.  You could finish homework, etc.  I'm not sure if we were given permission or if the example was set by those before us, but we would sometimes leave campus and go to "Patrick's"  across from the school and get some of their fresh, homemade ice cream.  I don't know why that appealed to me....I really don't even like ice cream.  But theirs was really good.  I did that a couple of times.  My last time was when my postman of a father showed up there delivering the mail to Patrick's at the same time I showed up to get ice cream.  I think he just laughed, if I remember correctly---which was par for how he disciplined me.  But it either took the adventure out of it for me or scared me into not going anymore.  It's been too long and I can't really remember.

But today, I played hooky again.  Andy went to Lubbock to hear a man from China.  And since I'd been sick all week, a trip just didn't appeal to me.  But as I contemplated what I'd do while he was gone, "hooky" kept popping up in my mind.  Do you realize how seldom a minister's wife gets to play hooky????  Well, I did it.  And not only did I do it myself, I tried to find an accomplice!!  I called one of my best friends (who plays hooky often enough herself, mind you....) but for once, she was going to church!! ha!  Ok...I'm kidding, kind of...she goes alot.    Oh well, I played hooky all by myself.  And if I'm being honest with my story, I must tell you that I enjoyed it alot!  I did some laundry, read the beginning of a new book about Chinese martyrs, and took a nap.  So now my hooky-playing is over (since church is over) and I must venture out to find some lunch.  In all probability, someone will see me and ask me why I wasn't at church.  But that's a price I'm willing to pay this morning to find food.  

Friday, November 7, 2008


I guess what motivates me to give is to really see a need---or to be persuaded of a need. Yesterday, I went with some United Way representatives to talk about how United Way helps Living Water and try to raise more funds. Another agency in town was also sharing. Norma is the director of the women's shelter here in Borger. She was so convincing and very persuasive. By the end of the 2 hour tour of speaking, I was ready to give to the Women's Shelter here in Borger! She presented the needs so well and made us feel the hopelessness of the women who come there. I know they're helping lots of women and children who are in bad situations.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Giving Season

We have definitely entered the holiday-giving season! Praise God for all those people who are bringing food to Living Water!! I'm sincere in saying that. It's going to help so many people. But seriously....I didn't sit down once today!! It's a good problem to have.
My question to you...just because I'm nosy and I've been speaking on this subject since I got off work:
What motivates you to give? (Besides Jesus, obeying the Word and all those godly answers. ha!)

Wednesday, November 5, 2008