Tuesday, January 31, 2006

A snapshot of rustic Texas.

The simple beauty of a sunflower as it radiates joy and sunshine. Even when no one is there to see, it continues to smile and bob it's head, contentedly brightening the corner that God has placed it in.

It matters little what the work is in which we are engaged,
so long as God has put it in our hands. -J. O. Fraser

Monday, January 30, 2006

Life is not lost by dying;
Life is lost by the minute;

day by dragging day,
in all the small uncaring ways.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Exactly one year ago today I bought my camera! Alot has happened in this past year -- it seems like I have always had a camera, and yet it has ony been 365 days! Time sure flies. But we have been lots of places, seen lots of things, and captured many memories. As our family prepares to head out on another trip tomorrow, I am excited about the possible pictures out there -- just waiting to be taken! But as I read in John this morning during my devotion time: "Unless a grain of wheat falls into the ground and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit." My life is only for a moment compared to eternity. I want to bear fruit! I want the Lord to be pleased with my life! It is as I die to self more and more that He is able to more completely fill and live through me.

I think of Betty Scott Stam - she was young, married, and had a precious baby daughter. Life seemed so full and beautiful! So much before them! Yet John and Betty felt called to be missionaries and went to a hostile China. They ended up being martyred for their faith at the ages of 27 and 28. Some may say that their lives were wasted, but ultimately God was glorified through their lives and testimonies to live completely for Him. Betty recorded this prayer, which has also become my heart cry:

Lord, I give up all my own plans and purposes,
all my own desires and hopes,

and accept Thy will for my life.

I give myself, my time, my all utterly to Thee to be Thine forever.

Fill me and seal me with Thy Holy Spirit.

Use me as Thou wilt,

Send me where Thou wilt,

Work out Thy whole will in my life at any cost, now and forever.

Our greatest fear should not be of failure,
but of succeeding at something that doesn't really matter.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

A good many are kept out of the service for Christ, deprived of the luxury of working for God, because they are trying to do some great things. Let us be willing to do little things.
Let us remember that nothing is small in which God is the source.
~Dwight L. Moody

Psst....did you hear the latest?
Bethany was able to go to the Rehm Ranch today and she had a wonderful time! When God does something, everybody is blessed!

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

This may seem like a very uniteresting and boring photo (it is certainly unusual!), but when I look at it, it brings back to mind a very special answer to prayer:

When I was about 8 years old, Mommy loaded us all up to go play at the park and enjoy the beautiful day. And what fun we had! What a bummer that some of that joy in simple things tends to wear off as we get older. We were all enjoying the swings and slides while Mommy was sitting on a swing watching us all. She started playing with her wedding ring, when all of the sudden - plop! The prongs around the diamond came loose and her diamond fell into the gravel filled pit. Now look at the picture again, and imagine trying to find a diamond among all that gravel!

She quickly had all of us children move to the grass, while she and Grandpa got on their hands and knees and started looking and praying for a tiny little diamond among the thousands' of peices of stone and sand.

Impossible? Sometimes situations seem like that! Yet I remember Mommy told us kids to all pray while she and Grandpa looked. And before long - yes! Grandpa came up with the diamond! Praise the Lord!

Amazing, isn't it? My God answers prayer - aren't you glad? "Be anxious for nohting, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God." Philippians 4:6

Prayer is not conquering God's reluctance, but taking hold of God's willingness. -Philip Brooks

Friday, January 13, 2006

What a beautiful day! I was able to enjoy the weather and head out on a walk down a small gravel road near town -- and of course took my camera! I have really enjoyed seeing the beauty in the simple, everyday things in life, and try in small way to capture them.

Please feel free to add any additional thoughts, comments, or critiques - they will always be welcome. I once heard the saying "Every picture is a self portrait." Well, there are obviously defects in my life to work on yet, and also in my photos, so please feel free to put your two cents worth in! To God be the glory, for He continues to do great things!

Everything I am or ever will be
Is either from God's intention,
or my mistake.
God is more concerned with who I am becoming
than with what I am doing.
-Chuck Holton

Happiness depends on happenings -- joy depends on Christ.

Peace does not dwell in outward things, but in the heart prepared to wait trustfully and quietly on Him who has all things safely in His hands.
-Elisabeth Elliot

"Lord, that [my] eyes might be opened." (Matthew 20:33)
Opened to the truths in Your word,
Opened to see my faults and failures.
Opened to see how I can serve my family and others,
Opened that I might see You.

Only one life - will soon be past
Only what's done for Christ will last!