Wednesday, October 31, 2007


I was talking to a friend yesterday who was telling me that she has been praying for someone. She saw this friend yesterday and the friend looked so good, better than she has in a long while. My friend has been studying the scriptures on healing and God's sovereignty and His presence and His power. Our conversation spurred me to think that while I don't understand all there is to know about how God's sovereignty and healing and prayer are intertwined, I would want the people who were praying for me to believe that God could and would heal me.

Will you take some time to petition an Almighty God on Arlene's behalf today? And for my friend's friend as well?

Image taken from here.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007


This headline captured my attention this morning "Untidy beds may keep us healthy". Upon further reading, this article from the BBC news went on to say "Failing to make your bed in the morning may actually help keep you healthy, scientists believe." Apparently, an unmade bed helps to keep your bed dry, thus preventing dust mites from inhabiting your mattress and pillows.

I, who absolutely hates bugs so much so that I couldn't even post a picture of a dust mite here on my blog, seriously considered not making my bed each morning so as to alleviate any potential breeding grounds for the abhorred dust mite. However, I am a bed maker. Every morning, I must make my bed even if the rest of my room bears a little clutter. And each evening, there is no better feeling than climbing into a fully made bed. I can sleep soundly with dust bunnies covering the floor under my bed, but give me wrinkled sheets and I will toss and turn all the night long.
Much to my delight, my dilemma was solved when Professor Wardlaw, later in the article declared "It is true that mites need humid conditions to thrive and cannot survive in very dry ( desert like) conditions. However, most homes in the UK are sufficiently humid for the mites to do well and I find it hard to believe that simply not making your bed would have any impact on the overall humidity." Thank you, Professor Wardlaw because even while I do not reside in the UK, Michigan is famous for its humidity, thus you have resolved my dilemma and put my mind at, I think!
Image taken from here.

Monday, October 29, 2007


Things making me do the happy dance today:
1. two couples that I love had their babies this weekend!!!!!
2. one of my friends got to share the gospel with a co-worker in such a simple but awesome way this morning.
3. another of my friends received an unexpected blessing from the Lord today.
4. my daughter gave me the best hug and kiss before we both left for work today.
5. i had so much empty space on my desk when i unlocked my office this morning....haven't seen it this way for a long, long time.
6. i was asked to babysit next Sunday for two of my favorite kids in the whole world.
7. it is a beautiful autumn day...crisp, clear, sunny and brisk. my favorite!
8. reading your blogs!!!!
Image taken from here.

Friday, October 26, 2007


i know you don't need this today....but the pot is always on the stove...and prayers are being said for you (and your family) daily!
image taken from here.


Image taken from here.

One of my pastors had posted on the concept that if Jesus is the flag, what is the flag pole that you rally around? You can read more here and here.

I have to admit that I have been stumped. I have spent more than a week doing some soul searching, trying to figure out what my answer to this flag pole question is. Today, as I was reading archived posts one of my new favorite blogs (thanks DT), I came across this quote:

"The Church: Central to God’s Plan of Redemption
We must, finally, help our people see that the church is the center of God’s redeeming and self-glorifying plan in heaven and on earth. That’s what we gather from Eph. 1:10, 22-23; 2:14-22; 3:9-11, 20-21. It’s through the church that the evangelism of the world is carried out. The church reveals God’s wisdom and glory. The church proclaims the defeat of the “principalities and powers in the heavenly places.” Through the church, the Lord will gather all things under His feet.

Our people must know that God has not plan of redemption and no plan for spiritual edification and maturity outside the church. They must know that participation in church is about far more than their individual needs. Participation in the church is essential to advancing the plans of God to bring to himself glory, to redeem humanity, and to bring all things to completion. And they must be taught to prize all of that above their individual selves. We must teach them that if it’s God’s glory they wish to pursue, then one of the easiest things they can do is to join, commit to, and love a local church—which is God’s eternal design for them anyway."

For the entire post, go here.

So, what do you think?

Thursday, October 25, 2007


I hate to admit that:
  • I plug my nose at the stench of the sick You have given me to care for.
  • I often rant and rage at my circumstances and don't rest in the knowledge of Your goodness.
  • I don't want to live with less....I want more and can be wasteful with what You have provided.
  • I am often resentful and do not exhibit the quiet, steady love that is You.
  • I spend more time feeling sorry for myself than having compassion on the poor, the unfortunate, and the hurting.
  • I exalt myself more than I exalt You.
  • I don't motivate the world to take a second look at You.

I ain't no saint. How is that You still call me beloved?

Search me, O God, and know my heart!Try me and know my thoughts! And see if there be any grievous way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting! (Psalm 139: 23,24)

Image taken from here.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


This morning I was doing some studying in the Bible and I was led to Psalm 139. As I read the verses, I couldn't help but think of Arlene. Perhaps it was because Wednesdays are dedicated to Arlene. Or perhaps, it was.....well read her post for today and decide for yourself. Either way, joy sprang up in my heart as I thought about how much Arlene's God knows and loves her, knows every cell in her body, every desire in her heart. Won't you rejoice with me and pray for my friend? And by the way....He knows and loves YOU as well!!

Psalm 139:1-18
O Lord, you have searched me and known me!
You know when I sit down and when I rise up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
You search out my path and my lying down
and are acquainted with all my ways.
Even before a word is on my tongue,
behold, O Lord, you know it altogether.
You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me;
it is high; I cannot attain it.

Where shall I go from your Spirit?
Or where shall I flee from your presence?
If I ascend to heaven, you are there!
If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!
If I take the wings of the morning
and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
even there your hand shall lead me,
and your right hand shall hold me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me,
and the light about me be night,”
even the darkness is not dark to you;
the night is bright as the day,for darkness is as light with you.

For you formed my inward parts;
you knitted me together in my mother's womb.
I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.
Wonderful are your works;
my soul knows it very well.
My frame was not hidden from you,
when I was being made in secret,
intricately woven in the depths of the earth.
Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,when as yet there was none of them.
How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!

How vast is the sum of them!
If I would count them, they are more than the sand.
I awake, and I am still with you.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


Ok, my friend Richard had this meme on his blog. I did it and was a little shocked when my instrument turned out to be an accordion and there were words such as "wacky" used in the description. Not 5 minutes later I had the following instant message conversation....and that is when the accordion "light bulb" clicked on for me!

1:47 PM Melissa: Do you have paper of some sort?
me: what?????
what kind of paper?
this is a rather odd question
1:48 PM is someone being paper trained?
do you need to swat someone?
are you coloring?
you are leaving me in suspense
do you need to throw some gum away
Melissa: Well I am trying to take some notes on 1 corinthians 14 and my notebook is in my car and I don't want to go get it
Melissa: cuz I don't want to leave my desk
Melissa: ok
1:50 PM Thanks :)
Image taken from here.
(Ok, I know that the resemblance is so close that some of you are wondering if that is really me,
but trust me, I don't have an accordion in real life!!)

Thursday, October 18, 2007


One of my pastors' blogs really got me thinking about truth and commitment in relationships. (You can read his post here.) I have been thinking about truth/commitment and my relationships quite a bit since and here are some of the thoughts that have been rambling around in my mind.

First of all, let's separate sin and scriptural truth right out of this discussion. Aside from those, I think there are a lot of "truths" that we hold on to very tightly--our preferences, our biases, and our prejudices. I don't think withholding these is necessarily a bad thing. In fact, sometimes I think it can be the wisest thing to keep quiet on those.

I don't think I can always handle your "truths" either. I don't know if I want you to tell me if I look fat or am having a bad hair day or if the sound of my voice gives you the same feeling that someone scratching their nails on a chalkboard gives you.

Truth and honesty should build up people and relationships and most of all glorify God, and should not be welded as a weapon. I taught at a women's retreat a few years back. The topic for the entire weekend dealt with authenticity. A few months later, I was talking with a woman from that church and she had been dealt a hurtful blow by another woman's remarks. The woman topped off the remarks with this comment, "Well, you know Kathy told us to be authentic." Obviously, nowhere in what I presented was there an encouragement to use authenticity as a means to "take down" another person. If anything, the encouragement was to be introspective and honest with ourselves, our motives, drives, etc.

Timing is important to our "truth" telling. We've all seen this played out a million times in commercials and sitcoms. The wife is standing in front of the mirror, all dressed up for a big night out and asks, "How do I look?" I am a firm believer in "not asking the question if you don't really want the answer", however, I also think that timing is an important ingredient in sharing truth, especially difficult "truths". And being loving....timing and being loving are both important.

I think intimacy has another thing to do with transparency. I am not as transparent with people that I am not as close to. For example, I might use a certain palindrome to tell a sister-friend that her top is too low cut. However, I would most likely not say that to a stranger.

Do I always tell the "truth" in all my relationships? No, I don't think I do. I am blessed with a quite a number of close, intimate friendships. Relationships forged over time. These friends know the best and worst there is to know about me. Not all my information is available to everyone. Nor do I think it should be.

Image taken from here.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Mightier than the thunders of many waters,

mightier than the waves of the sea,

the Lord on high is mighty!
(Psalm 93:4)
Lord, You are Mighty. Will You touch Arlene in a mighty way? Will You heal every cell in her body? We bow in Your presence. With all our love, Amen.
Image taken from here.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007


I have 181 emails in my personal email inbox. I need to get moving on clearing these out.

Image taken from here.

Monday, October 15, 2007


I don't often do this....there are so many people who are needy, so many organizations and people who are deserving of your time, attention and resources....but if you have an extra dollar, would you mind considering helping Mallorie?

I heard about Mallorie from my young friend, Abby, who has a missionary's heart and has led a number of missions trips to Africa. Mallorie is a part of the World Race. She has $1,600 left to raise. If you can't spare a dollar, could you spare a minute? To pray for her and her team?

If you can't spare a minute for Mallorie and the lives God has used her to touch...take a moment or two for yourself. I can GUARANTEE that your life will be changed as you read her blog. You won't be comfortable. You won't be able to shake the stories and images from your mind. You won't be able to turn a blind eye. But you WILL "see" in a new way!

Thanks, everyone, for your graciousness with my request.

Thursday, October 11, 2007


STILL DO NOT LIKE (Image taken from here.)
NOW I LIKE! (Image taken from here.)

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Please send some lovin' my friend Arlene's way by praying for her and her grandbaby.

Much appreciated, truly!!

7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. 9 In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. 10 In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12 No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. I John 4.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

SPEAKING OF LOVE.... seems I have brushed shoulders with love a number of times recently. I was talking to a friend this weekend who was telling me about a lost love. My friend said, "I was really, really in love with this person." I could hear the regret and the loss echoing in my friend's voice. I could almost visualize how my friend's face would light up at the sight of this person, or the little spring in my friend's step this person must have brought. It made me feel very sad for my friend and I wonder-will my friend ever find love like that again? I hope so, oh I hope so.

Another friend of mine is in the beginning throes of a new romance. When I came in to work yesterday I just took a moment to observe. This friend has been literally glowing and I am very sure I have seen my friend floating "on cloud 9"! So, I just took a moment to watch my friend and feel the excitement. I am happy for my friend. I am enjoying my friend's joy.

When I was camping a couple weeks back, I must have seen 10 gray haired couples walking around, hand in hand. As we were leaving, we passed one of these couple and much to my daughter's chagrin, I rolled down the window and shouted, "You two are ADORABLE!" It made me happy to tell them that and from their smiles, I think it made them happy to hear that. Older couples walking hand in hand is one of my favorite things. To see a love that has stood the test of time, the ups and downs of life, the freshness and wonder to get to a place of deep and quiet passion and commitment is just a very beautiful thing.

Another of my favorite loves is the love that has been fought for and regained. This is not a pretty love, but it is a mighty love. There is a strength and determination you see in couples with this kind of love that creates an air of steadiness. I am in awe of this kind of love.

Personally, I don't remember what it was like to be in love. I know I must have been. I was shocked awhile back when I showed someone my wedding picture. The girl that I saw in the photo was so fresh faced and full of the future. I don't remember her. I don't really have a memory of what that love must have been, it is more of a thought really.

Before you feel too sorry for me...I have to say....while romantic love may not have been in God's plan for me, I have been incredibly surrounded by love. I am not just saying this so I don't look like a big I have told my daughter so many times, that if I were to die...I would die happy and fulfilled. God has filled my life with so many people, and so many wonderful relationships, that I feel I am a very rich woman!

Image taken from here.

Monday, October 08, 2007


I have been reading and rereading this chapter of scripture over and over and over.

As a standard to measure myself against, I fall far far short.

As something to achieve, it presents me with a lifelong project.

As a teaching tool, it presents me with something new and fresh each time I take a look at it.

As a guide for life and relationships, it sets me on a true course.

It is a treasure that I do not hunt, but one that searches me out, leaving me exposed yet full of hope, and faith, and well.....LOVE!

Image taken from here.

Friday, October 05, 2007


I was tagged by Richard to post my desktops. Ok, you will learn alot about me from this little exercise. First, I am boring...yes, it is true. No creativity here, as you will see. Second, I am technologically in the stone ages, although I did use a digital camera to take pics of my desktops. Third, I am teachable because I learned how to crop pictures during all this. So, for your viewing pleasure:

This is my office PC. Lots of files on my desktop that I really should organize into folders. And, no background. That is because I have so much on the desktop that you really can't appreciate any pics. In the past, I have had a picture of my friend, Sandy and her two grandchildren. Now, boring boring....nothing. (Yes, that flash is me taking the picture...I know there must be a better

This is my new office lap top. Purchased so I can run PowerPoint for the new training program I am helping to write. Not much there. Standard Microsoft provided desktop pic. But it does make me happy and makes me wish I was living in a little cottage near the sea shore, surrounded by flowers. (Again, with the flash...what is wrong w/ me?!!!LOL)

My daughter set this for me on my home screen. One of my favorite scenes from my favorite movie (and book) Pride and Prejudice. I must admit that I am in love w/ Mr. Darcy...all the Mr. Darcy's from every version and my own mental image from reading the book. (No goes to Rachel for being more technologically advanced than her mom!)

I am going to tag Max, Pat, Margie, Tina, Tracey, and Sara ...Heck, really I am tagging everybody...just don't have the time to link you all. If you read this, consider yourself tagged. The rule is simple, post a picture of your desktop on your blog. (But as you can see, I am rule there is freedom to deviate from the rules for you as well...wink)

Thursday, October 04, 2007


My shoe selection this week reminds me of the movie, The Karate Kid. Sandals on, sandals off. Shoes w/ socks on, shoes w/ socks off.
I thought for sure that autumn was here in full swing, but today I have these little strappy sandals on because it is 83 degrees out!
I have lived in Michigan my entire life. Why do I continue to let myself be fooled by the weather and seasons????????
Image taken from here.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007


Last week, we received a phone call that our friend (he is really more of a brother) was having some heart problems and could possibly be facing open heart surgery. We drove back and forth to Kalamazoo a couple of days to be with him and his (our) family. This morning, another call came in that he might have complications. I sent him a text with one word..."Praying".

It got me to thinking about how much it has meant to me when I know I am being prayed for. I mean, it just feels like such a love gift.

I know I don't possess the power to heal...but I know ONE who does.
I know I can't change the course of a river, of a country, or of a life....but I know ONE who can.
I know I don't know much and I certainly don't know the future....but I know know ONE who knows all.
I don't always understand the hard stuff that happens...but I know the ONE I trust.

Got the call just a bit ago that my friend is doing well.

Would you mind praying for another friend of mine, Arlene? I know she will appreciate it and I know she is constantly sending out her own love gifts of prayer on the behalf of others.

Monday, October 01, 2007


Every autumn we go camping at Pokagon State Park. There are about seven families. Just for a few days. Nothing spectacular....but such a respite in the middle of busyness. Here is what I am most thankful for:
  • My friend Rob was able to come up for a day after a very scary time in the hospital on Wednesday and Thursday of last week.
  • My daughter and I had a lot of down time together.
  • The Roast Beef panini's Rachel made us all for lunch.
  • The long walk we took one morning, dogs in tow, and the way Maddy hung on my shirt tail most of the way back.
  • A side trip for Rachel to the Gap outlet.
  • Maddy, Ty, and Noah riding horses.
  • Mint double stuffed Oreo cookies.
  • Campfires....lots of them....I can still imagine how they smell.
  • Darryl and Vicki...for having our tent set up when we got there and for blueberry pancakes.
  • Sleeping in.
  • Great weather....not too hot...not too cold.
  • Our "community" dinner.
  • Celebrating Sandy and Vicki's birthdays.
  • Tradition.
  • the middle of it all

Image taken from here.