Monday, April 29, 2013

Jesus never fails,
Jesus never fails,
You might as well get thee behind me Satan,
You cannot prevail,
'Cause Jesus never fails!

Friday, April 26, 2013

Day Trip Across Oregon

 So, on Monday my folks and I went on a lovely adventure with my mom's cousin and his wife over to beautiful eastern Oregon. It was SUCH a gorgeous day. Brilliant blue skies and sunshine. ( Okay, and really cold wind. ) Most of the day was spent sitting in the car while we drove there and drove around the different towns and driving home. It was just kinda a relaxed day and I wanted to be comfortable ( not to mention I had to get up like, two hours earlier than I normally would ), so please forgive the awful sight of a truly messy messy-bun. :D Most of the pictures I captured through the window, but my camera did amazing most of the time. ;) Without further ado, here are quite a few shots of our trip:

I was so amazed at first that there would still be snow! But, there was...and lots of it!

See? LOTS! :D

Can't remember the name of the mountaiin :/

The stacks of Bend's old mill, now a mall and tourist attraction

Memorial on Pilot's Butte, Bend

Me, Lea, and my mom
Pilot's Butte, Bend

View of Bend and Black Butte ( I think )

We ate at Black Bear Diner for lunch and they have these cute spoof newspapers as their menu ( inside )

LOL! This pic gets me every time. This is such an awkward pose!

Check out the jukebox and the stuffed bears at the counter! :D

MAMOUTH burger! There is nothin' skimpy about their portions!

My meal: A HALF stack of pancakes... = 2 ginormous pancakes. I couldn't even eat all of it!

Touring a candy shop...mmmm :)

I love old stuff like this! :D

These little guys followed us all around the walking trail via the river hoping for food

Talk about gorgeous scenery, hey?

Caught this cute little place as we drove home - LOVE the sunflower!

Three Fingered Jack, Black Butte ( ? ), and ( ? )
Lol, for being a native Oregonian, you'd think I'd know my geography better - but I don't

Random little pull-off place we happened to stop at to stretch our legs.
Cool thing is, I've seen a documentary about this!

Well, until next time friends!
Bon Voyage!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Book Review

 So, I have an account on this really awesome website called Goodreads. This website is kind of the Facebook of books. You can have a profile and follow authors and people and get updates on what they've written/read. I love it. I am also able to keep track of what I've read and write reviews etc...
 A couple of weeks ago, I got a friend request from an up-coming author searching for readers who want to review her book in exchange for getting a free e-book copy! Cool deal, right? I'm certainly not going to pass up a free book - especially since this was a Christian author. She asked if I would do a review on Goodreads ( which I have yet to do at this point in time ) and on any other social media I have. Which would be my blog. :) Not into social media so much anymore.

 Ok, So down to the nitty-gritty. The book is called Fire Storm and it is written by Mackenzie Dare. ( Really cool title and name, right? :D ) It is 308 pages, but it is so engaging, I assure you it will fly by. Despite circumstances that prevented me from reading a book as quickly as I normally would, I was quite sorry to have it end. However, I must give applause to the fact that I really enjoyed the ending. I am picky about endings. I don't like it to end and there is something that seems like it didn't get resolved and you are left hanging. I will also add though, that I did have a bit of a time getting into the story at the first. ( But that may also have something to do with the fact that I was so distracted the first few chapters ) It was enjoyable, but it seemed like the action began too premature, then leaves you in the dust trying to figure out where the story is heading for the next several chapters. As I got further into the story though, and was able to more fully focus on it, I can see how it all pulls together. The author has great ability to keep your attention because you are never quite sure what to expect next and it is very exciting! I love the focus on Christ and how the fun, sincere relationships in the story make it seem like you are hanging out with friends. When the story gets intense you are praying for things to turn out okay right along with them. You feel what they are feeling because it is that realistic. There is a depth and detail in how certain parts are written that show that either it is something familiar and dear to the author's heart, or she has done a lot of research and is quite gifted. Perhaps both! Certainly a great story for a first publish.

 There ya have it! I am not going to spoil it and tell what it is all about. I'm only giving my honest opinion about the book. You will have to go read it to find out what the scoop is. :D

Bon Voyage!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Exciting News!

 I am super, super excited about this! Next week, a long-time friend of mine will be coming out to Oregon for a visit with her mom! Better yet, it will most likely be an extended stay for her, so we will get lots of time together! :) I feel so blessed. I think the most amazing thing about this though is how much it shows me personally the tender love of God. For the last couple months I had been thinking that I should ask my friend if she would be coming out this year for a visit or not. Just a couple weeks ago, I got on skype and guess what? Her status was " Going to Oregon in three weeks ". YIKES! WHAT?! Ever since then I've been doing a happy dance inside and out at how God gave me the desire of my heart. I hadn't even asked HIM yet. I was just thinking about it and He decided to give me a little love gift. :)

 I'm sure we'll have lots of adventures together, so hopefully I will have stuff to post. I may have posted a few pics of our time together when she was out here last year about this time. Here are a couple shots of just how crazy and wonderful we are ;P  ( jk jk, lol )

Friday, April 12, 2013

Let Go And Let God

" Let go and let God have His wonderful way,
Let go and let God have His way.
Your sorrows will vanish,
Your night turn to day.
Let go and let God have His way. "

 Such is a little chorus that has been going through my mind since last night. Powerful isn't it? I have been pretty busy this week and a bit stressed. As soon as that song popped into my head, I felt such a rush of release. It reminded me that I don't have to worry about it all on my own. If I let God take all my burdens, I will have peace and joy the way He desires me to have. It is not easy to relinquish control though, is it? Although I have felt a measure of peace, Satan is still right there trying to disturb my peace. Telling me all of the things I'm wanting to give over to God and trying to keep my mind in a tizzy. However, there is another little chorus that my grandma wrote that goes:

" I'm nothing Satan says I am
And little of what others think I am,
So why should I let that influence me? "

 Amen? Amen! :) It's a daily battle, but THE LORD IS ON OUR SIDE. If He is for us, WHO CAN BE AGAINST US?! The answer is no one!

Saturday, April 6, 2013

Though mountains fall and valleys fill,
The love of Christ holds me still. 
When my strength fails in the tempest,
In His arms I find rest.
In the midst of raging, fierce sea
His love is the anchor staying me.
When it seems all hope for safety is gone,
God, You show me the way.
Lord, You hide me in Your pavilion.
In the cleft of my Lord,
Christ, the Solid Rock I hide.
I stand on safe, solid ground.
While men die in waves of sinking tide,
 No other have I seen so sound as Christ,
My cleft, my Rock.
My Hope ever strong.
In Him I stand.
In Him I hide.
Though fierce doubt and trouble assail
When I in His high pavilion stay
Mine enemies can ne'er prevail.
Even when they fight their hardest,
Jesus saves the day.
He is my Banner of Love o'er me,
My cleft, my Solid Rock.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Crucified with Christ

 I hope ya'll had a wonderful Easter Sunday! Here in Oregon's Willamette Valley we had an unusually warm, sunny Easter. What a blessing! :) Even more of a blessing was getting to spend the whole day with different ones from the congregation. Not how we have typically spent our Easters in the past, but since grandma has been gone, holidays are a bit different in the family. We took a meal over to my grandpa's on Saturday instead.
 Sunday's service wasn't a specific Easter message, but a wonderful sermon all the same. I honestly kept forgetting that yesterday was Easter Sunday all last week and even up until the day itself. Some of that may have had a bit to do with how we did not get involved with all the typical things leading up to Easter - buying some of our favorite treats, getting in on all the sales, and so on. Personally, I wanted to get away from as much of the stereotypes of Easter as possible. I wanted to make the day simple. Every Sunday is about honoring the resurrection, and Easter Sunday is no different except for extra emphasis on that fact.
 Remember how I did those verses and such for the Christmas season? And how the day or so after I wrote about how that the birth of our Savior and Christmas isn't the end of the story? Well, I believe the very same thing is true for Easter. Many people have become disconnected from the real meaning of Easter and the fact that every Sunday ( especially communion Sunday ) is a celebration ( not like a party, but a remembrance ) of the resurrection for the Christian. And truly, every day should be a remembrance of what our Lord has done for us. Because we must die daily from our own thoughts and ways so that Christ in us may fulfill His perfect work, it is as being crucified with Him. Death signifying Life. A paradox, to be sure. However, there is no greater Truth than this.
 I've been remembering something that happened last Easter morning as we pulled out the driveway to go to church. It was pretty special, and I half wonder if it really was the Holy Spirit, just like the times in the Bible, but... right by our driveway was a white dove. We only have the grey doves now and then where we live. I even got a picture of it: