Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Wind and the Waves

The Lord woke me up at 6:45 this morning.  For real. Saturday. The day after summer break begins. Those who know me well know I'm not a morning person. The sad part is, I'm not a night person either.  Paul says you can catch me best from 10-2.  I wasn't ready. Boy was I not ready. But He was.

Before the coffee was even finished brewing He had directed me to Matthew 14:24-33. Yes, sometimes I get on my phone first before I go to the Lord.  Sometimes I open Instagram to wake up.  I know it may be a horrible habit, but I can't seem to dive into anything until the fog has lifted a bit from my eyes. This morning the Lord used it to point me to him.  A friend I follow posted a picture of her Bible this morning opened up to these very verses (Thank you, Lisa Young!!).  I knew at that moment the Lord put it there just for me.  He wouldn't let me get past it until I opened my Bible and dove right into what He put there just for me, for this morning.

My heart seems to stay in a very raw place these days.  I'm so ready for this season of pruning/chiseling to be over with for a while.

Verse 24..."Meanwhile, the disciples were in trouble far away from land, for a strong wind had risen, and they were fighting heavy waves." A strong wind and heavy waves.  Do you ever feel like you are drowning beneath the wind and the waves?? What is your wind this morning? What is in the waves?? Part of me doesn't even want to peel back the layers to look.

Verse 27..."But Jesus spoke to them at once, "Don't be afraid." he said, "Take courage, I am here!!"  After I read this verse my heart began to see a glimpse of hope.  Take courage, He is here, beside me, holding me by my right hand...holding my husband by his right hand, holding my children by their right hand, holding my parents by their right hand, holding each of us by our right hand.

Verse 28..."Lord, if it's really you, tell me to come to you, walking on the water."

Verse 29..."Yes, come," Jesus said. So Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus.

Verse 30...But when he saw the strong wind and the waves he was terrified and began to sink.  "Save me, Lord!" he shouted.

Verse 31...Jesus immediately reached out and grabbed him.  "You have so little faith," Jesus said.  "Why did you doubt me?"

Why do we doubt Him? Why do we struggle so much with trusting that He is in control and we can let go and let Him take over?

When I started reading these verses I just had to stop a minute and reflect a moment at how good the Lord is.  He has been preparing me for this morning. He knows that worship music speaks volumes to my soul.  I've had this song on on my playlist and every time it comes on I have to push repeat.  I had to just smile at how He works.

Come to Me

I am the Lord your God, I go before you now
I stand beside you, I'm all around you
Though you feel I'm far away,
I'm closer than your breath
I am with you, more than you know

I am the Lord your peace, no evil will conquer you
Steady now your heart and mind, come into My rest
Oh, let your faith arise, lift up your weary head
I am with you wherever you go

Come to Me, I'm all you need
Come to Me, I'm everything
Come to Me, I'm all you need
Come to Me, I'm your everything

I am your anchor, in the wind and the waves
I am your steadfast, so don't be afraid
Though your heart and flesh may fail you
I'm your faithful strength
I am with you wherever you go

You have to take a minute and listen to it.  I can't even.  I am your anchor, Shannon, in the wind and the waves.  I am your steadfast, so don't be afraid.

I am your husbands anchor, your children's the wind and the waves.  So don't be afraid.  Let go.  Hold onto me.  Come to Me.

What is your wind? The more I allow fear to control my thoughts and my actions, the more of a mess I create in myself as well as my family.  It's time to let go.  It's time to take hold of His right hand and step out on the water.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Live Life Intentionally

Happy New Year from The Mints Fam!!  It is hard for me to wrap my head around the fact that 2014 has come to an end and it is already 2015.  Does that sound weird to anyone else but me?? Can time just slow down for a bit already?? 

It seems as if I see myself coming and going in so many different directions lately.  I can't seem to wrap my head around what needs to happen today, much less all that happened yesterday or needs to happen tomorrow.  

I don't know about you, but I'm over it. OVER. IT...DONE.  There has GOT to be a better way.  

For the past few years The Lord has given me an area of my life that He wants me to focus very intently on.  Apparently I'm a slow learner, because there have been a couple of times that one area has spilled over into the next year.  I am also realizing that although He gives me one area to focus on, He is only using that area to build upon the next.  Just follow me here for a little bit and I'll explain myself.  

For a couple of years my focus was REST.  There were areas of my life and continue to be areas that The Lord has shown me that I need to focus on when it comes to REST.  First and foremost, I needed to learn to REST in who I am in Christ.  As I learned and continue to learn this, it has helped me so much when it comes to resting my thoughts, emotions, fears as well as just allowing myself to slow down physically and give myself permission to rest.  Why do we as women have such a hard time with this area of our lives? 

Isaiah 30:15 (emphasis mine)
This is what the Sovereign LORD, the Holy One of Israel, says, "Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved.  In quietness and confidence is your strength. But you would have none of it."

For the last two years (remember I'm a slow learner) the word The Lord gave me was HOPE.  Thank goodness He quickly led me to the book by Renee Swope, A Confident Heart.  I wasn't quite sure where He was going with this one.  Why is this so important?  HOPE...what He continued to teach me was that hope is holding on....holding on when things around you begin to feel like they are slipping away.  Hope is praying expectantly when it seems as if there are no answers or you might not even know how you need to pray.  I read where HOPE motivates when discouragement comes in quickly.  HOPE energizes when your mind, soul, body and spirit are just plum worn out.  HOPE endures, it smiles confidently, it presses on.  

January 1, 2014 I came across Ann Voskamp's blog, A Holy Experience.  It was definitely a life-changer for me.  She shared how there would be new resolutions, new words for the year, new plans...but that maybe, just maybe, the one word we needed to focus on was Jesus.  Just Jesus.  Change in Him, Become like Him, Hope in Him, Rest in Him. 

So as 2015 comes barreling in without invitation (I'm still trying to work on my to-do lists from 2014), The Lord put a few thoughts on my heart...thoughts I'm still trying to process through, pray through. 

Shannon....what would it look like if you intentionally woke up each day and just lived life in Jesus...Just Jesus...instead of letting life live you?

Trust me, I'm still pondering this question, so I'm not quite ready for 2015 yet and it's already January 2.   If I'm honest, thoughts of fear and overwhelment have already crept in.  What if I can't figure this one out?? (Dang Satan) But then I also have thoughts of hope....what if I really could do this?? What if I allowed myself to REST my soul, HOPE in the Lord and INTENTIONALLY live life in Jesus...Just Jesus. 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

It Is Well.....or is it?

It Is Well....or is it???

This song has been a part of my life for years.  I knew as a little girl that it was my Peepaw's favorite hymn.  As a little girl I remember singing the words to this song and wondering why a hymn would be someone's favorite song. At that point in my life, hymns were pretty much just words on a page that we sang in church but I never really FELT in my heart what they truly meant. 

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

A few years later I learned that it is one of my Mom's favorite songs as well.  This song kept coming up in my life over and over again.  It was then that I started really mulling over the words. 

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

It is Well.....or is it???? If I were to be completely honest, there are more times than not that I allow everything going on around me to cause it to not be well with me....much less my soul, my SOUL.  I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that the Lord knew over 20 years ago that this song would need to be introduced to me.

The Lord has created a tender spot in my heart towards things that are sentimental.  I am very much a traditions girl. I hold very tightly to them.....whether it be our traditions on the first day of Fall, the first day of school, Christmas, my Christmas Eve date with my Dad, Hot Springs Village in the summers right down to what meals we eat every year on that trip, etc. If I'm not careful, I hold on very tightly to these things in such a way that if they don't go exactly as I think they have each year it becomes very restless in my soul.  As trivial as it sounds, it's real.  This, along with the trials and train wrecks that have occurred in my life, as well as everyday things not going exactly as I think they should, can cause my soul to stay in a restless state. 

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

This morning is the first morning I've had off in quite a while.  I've finally gotten a chance to go through some old emails.  While doing so, You Tube had notified me of a new song that I might be interested in.....are you kidding me???? You Tube has never done that before.  Coincidence??? No, I choose The Lord's sovereignty this morning.  To truly digest this song and allow it to become a part of me, I've still got a lot of hard work to do.  I'm so thankful though that His mercies are new every morning and that today is a new day. 

Even though it doesn't FEEL very well this morning, I'm going to choose to continue to devour the words of this song and let them penetrate deep into my soul. I've heard it said before....Sometimes we have to act ourselves into feeling instead of feeling ourselves into action.  May it be said of me....It is Well. 

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Embracing My Journey

Oh my word.   I haven't blogged in FOREVER.  I mean, I had to go in my profile and literally update the ages of my kids four years!!! CRAZY!!!

I'm learning that I love to journal and write.  I'm going to try out writing on my blog again.  For reals though, this is more for me to trace this journey I am on.  If it helps someone else, great.  If you disagree with me, God love ya, disagree in your head and not in my comment section.  Amen and amen.  Moving on....

I got a wakeup call this morning as I received an email that included blood work I had done this past week at my 6 month checkup with our family doctor.  Bless his pea-pickin' heart.....along with he and The Lord, we've been having several visits about my physical health.  Boy has this been a journey.  I realize more are on a much more difficult journey than I am when it comes to this, trust me, this is also an area the Lord is dealing with me in.  But He is also teaching me to embrace MY journey as well, and that is what I'm writing about today. 

I come from a genetic line of heart disease, thyroid, and diabetes.  For years I have struggled with my thyroid getting regulated.  Just this last year I've begun taking blood pressure meds (growing older is not for the faint at heart).  I had a hysterectomy about 4 years ago so according to my doctor my body has experienced menopause and my metabolism has shut down.  I had my gall bladder out two years ago (Praise sweet baby Jesus!!). As of today, my cholesterol is up higher than it has ever been before. 

Before anyone sends me emails, FB messages or comments on Advocare, Plexus, etc....I have done ALL of the research on each of these and the Lord keeps bringing me back to one thing......this is YOUR journey.  This is between you and Me.  As much as I'd love to use some of these products, the Lord hasn't given me peace when it comes to these.  Trust me, this is not a bashing of these products.  Some of my closest and best friends use each of these and on their journey they are working for them and I celebrate with them.  But, as in so many other areas of my life, the Lord is teaching me to embrace MY journey.  So, as of April 5, 2014, I am embracing another piece to this puzzle the Lord is putting together in me. 

Most who know me know that I'd rather poke needles in my eyes than exercise.  I don't even get these people who love it.  I don't.  Don't even try to explain it again to me.....I won't get it.  I am one of these who has such great intentions, walks for a few weeks, sees no results, and quits.  I could go on and on and on.  I've done boot camps for 6 weeks and seen  After trying to get me to count my calories my doctor has encouraged me to get a heart rate monitor and focus more on burning calories.  I have ordered a Polar T4 heart rate monitor that was recommended to me by one of my good friends/accountability partners.  So this is where it stands.  My monitor should come in a couple of days.  Until then, I am going to continue to make wise choices in my eating and continue to walk,  be it walking my precious puppy/dog baby/crazy thang apparently I wanted for my birthday from my kiddos and didn't know it......or walk/running on the treadmill.  Maybe it was the Lord's way to force me outside to take walks.  Whatever it is, God love her, it's getting me outside.

So, this is me.  April 5, 2014.  Embracing another leg of MY journey.  If you think about it, pray for me.  Pray for strength and focus, not to focus on losing weight, but to focus on taking care of this temple the Lord has entrusted to me.

I'll leave you with these words to one of my favorite songs.  As I was doing the treadmill this morning and was so tempted to quit before my goal, this song came on.  Isn't it funny how He knows exactly what we need to hear and when we need to hear it??

No Not One - Chisty Nockels

No better word than from Your lips
No perfect life than what You lived
No greater gift, no not one

No brighter star has ever shined
No better hope for all mankind
No higher mind, no not one

No one has ever known
This kind of love You've shown

There has never been a greater love
Than Your son
No, Not one
And there will never be a name above
No, Not one

With His life You have forgiven us
Hope has come
Hope has come
And there will never be a greater love
No, Not one

No image true or sweeter frame
No simple word can match Your name
No greater fame
No not one

No one has ever seen
The depth of Your majesty

No greater call - You gave us all a reason to live
No greater love - You gave us all a reason to give
No greater life - You gave us all a reason to shine
No greater love - forever mine!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

First Day of School - 2008

School is off to a great start!!
Chandler started the 8th grade. This is his last year at Danny Jones Middle School and it's off to high school!! He will tell you he is not a big fan of school, but I don't know too many boys who are. We put him in all AP classes this year. I know he'll do great, he needed a little challenge, though he was content with not having homework ever, ever, ever!! His soccer team is gearing up for playing an indoor season this fall so he's glad to be in off-season with school athletics. I'm sure they'll start doing some training for track and golf soon. But for now, running cross country is keeping him in shape.

Chandler is so excited about having his pic taken

We're a little more smiles now!!

Kayleigh started fourth grade. This is her last year at Elizabeth Smith then it's off to Intermediate School!! But, we're looking forward to a great year!! She absolutely loves Mrs. Gonzales. I've already gotten to sub in her class. I love that I get to be up there with her. I loved having my parents at the same school with me, so I hope she loves it as much as I do!!

Sweet Kayleigh is so excited!!

Proud Momma!!

After dropping all the kiddos off to school we met up with Brad and Julie at Joe's for some yummy breakfast!! This is Julie's first year to have both boys at the same school all day!! Bennett is now in Kindergarten!!! We then went and indulged in spa pedis!! We're looking forward to some good hang out/play time!! Of course, that's after all the housework has been done , stationary printed - Shan, pics taken/edited/etc!!! - Julie!! Can't neglect all of that now, can we???!!??? Ok...maybe some days!!! :)Gotta love breakfast at Joe's!!


Oh my word!! Is this summer a blur to anyone else but me?? Where has all the time gone? This is the third week of school and I promised myself I'd update my blog the first week!! Mercy!! We have had a fast and furious summer as I'm sure everyone else has too. I am so loving Paul's sermon series on Simplifying our lives and putting the main things first, but it is kicking me in the booty!!!

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is our family trip to Hot Springs Village with my parents and my brother's family. We absolutely had an incredible time!! It just seemed to really go by fast to everyone this year! The guys enjoyed golfing and the mom's and kiddos enjoyed time around the pool. Our favorite part of the trip was getting to go to Mr. Rowe's house on Lake Hamilton. He took us around on his boat and let the kids tube. He also had two jet skis that we enjoyed. Mr. Rowe is a very close friend of our family from a long time ago when we lived in West Memphis. My dad and he were coaches together and our families played a lot together growing up. I don't know who enjoyed it or Casey and Josiah!! Daddy played on the jet skis like a 16 year old boy!! Casey and Josiah had never been on a boat or tubing so it was so much fun just watching them eat it up!! That will definately be an addition to our family trip again next year!! Thanks Mr. Rowe!!
More to come....

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Kayleigh's "big girl" haircut

Well, my precious nine year old asked for a "big girl" haircut yesterday. After calling daddy and getting the "ok", we went through with it. He wasn't very excited at all. He loves his Kayleigh Bug's hair long!! I encouraged that it was just hair and could grow back out. So, here are some pics of our new do!! Excuse the jammies...we're being lazy while the boys are away!!