Thursday, January 31, 2008

Prayer

Tonight we went to a dinner and short prayer seminar for local prayer leaders and prayer team members. One of the speakers discussed this verse: "The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." James 5:17
He then spoke about being righteous. Usually when we hear that word, we think of someone who is a "super Christian", or someone we can never be like. He told us what righteous actually means - in right relationship. Not perfect, not religious, but in a relationship with God. And really, that's what prayer is about. It's not saying the right words, it's not being brave enough to pray out loud, it's just talking to God. I don't know about you, but I am certainly not anywhere near perfect nor am I any great model Christian. Isn't it amazing that God wants to have a realtionship with us everyday people and loves to hear from us? Isn't it even more amazing that God says when we talk to him, it is "powerful and effective?"
The speaker left us with this quote:
"When man works, man works. When man prays, God works."

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Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Winter strikes back!

Winter has struck Michigan again! Yesterday we were having rain and our high temp was 49 degrees. Last night the temperature dropped rapidly, (the weathermen called it a flash freeze) and we had near blizzard conditions all night. This morning when I took this picture the temperature was 6 degrees.This is a picture taken out of our garage this morning. Yesterday there was no snow in the driveway, today - things have changed!
I was very lucky today in the fact that it was my day off and I didn't have to drive through this weather to work like my friend Nancy, or daughter Laura.
Actually Bob also had the day off and college classes where even cancelled for Heather!
Since we were all home, I thought it would be a good day to start on a little challenge from Girlymom of The Red Door. She challenged us yesterday to do a few fun things from her list of 100 things. Her idea is that a lot of people have been sick, blue, tired of winter... and if we all did something like this we would see the lighter side of life. So - here are our 5 things from the list.
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#8 - learn a new word. Our word for today was:
Flaneur - a person who strolls aimlessly, a lounger, a loafer. We said that this kind of described Bob today. He is never really content to just sit around but because of the weather today he was trapped in the house, and was bored.
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#34 - make funny faces:
Here are Bob and Heather, doing their part in this little challenge!
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#29 - take an upside down picture
My camera doesn't believe in upside down. No matter how I turned it, the picture turned out sideways. As you can see Cleo is thrilled to be taking part in this challenge!
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#19 - do a puzzle
Heather and I worked on a puzzle that is still not finished. It's a gumball machine, and it is quite difficult.
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#28 - make a new recipe
I made this Bean soup with ham for supper and it was so good - just right for a cold winter night! If you want the recipe, go here.
That's my 5 things. If you are interested in joining this challenge, visit Girlymom here.

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Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Stethoscope

I have to share a story with you that I found on a blog that's new to me. This blog is The World of Chelle'. I encourage you to visit her blog and then put her on your prayer list. Chelle' is undergoing some pretty intensive treatment for Lyme disease. She recently had a PICC line inserted for the medication she needs. In spite of her health issues, her blog is uplifting and full of praise for the way God is taking care of her through this ordeal. Here is a post she shared recently.A nurse on the pediatric ward, before listening to the little ones chests, would plug the stethoscope into their ears and let them listen to their own hearts. Their eyes would always light up with awe, but she never got a response equal to four-year old David's comment.
Gently she tucked the stethoscope into his ears and placed the disk over his heart. 'Listen', she said...........'What do you suppose that is?' He drew his eyebrows together in a puzzled line and looked up as if lost in the mystery of the strange tap - tap - tapping deep in his chest. Then his face broke out in a wondrous grin and he asked, 'Is that Jesus knocking?'



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Monday, January 28, 2008

Guess what day this is?

I'm a little late in posting this, but I just found out that January 28 is Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day! I do appreciate bubble wrap, not so much for it's intended use in packaging, but because it's so fun to pop!
If you like to pop bubble wrap like I do, visit here and click on the button that says"pop some bubble wrap now".
Happy Bubble Wrap Appreciation Day!

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My Cozy Corner


Monkey Giggles has been holding a cozy corners contest. The contest ended today, but I thought I would still post a picture of my corner. It isn't really even in a corner, it's just in my living room, but it's my spot. This is usually where I do my devotions and Bible reading. The table next to my chair is a handy place for my books to be, and a good place to set an occasional cup of hot chocolate (since I don't drink coffee or tea). When my family is watching tv you will also see me there, but then I am playing my Nintendo DS!
Thanks to Monkey Giggles for hosting this. It's been fun seeing other peoples cozy corners.

* ps - In response to comments - the chair is a lazyboy, so I can sit with my feet up. (and I usually do!)


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Sunday, January 27, 2008

Six things Meme

Kim at Scattered Stones and Sharon of Quiet Reflections challenged me to this Meme. I am to list 6 Non-important things/habits/quirks about me! These are the rules:
(1) Link to the person that tagged you.

(2) Post the rules on your blog.
(3) Share six non-important things/habits/quirks about yourself. (4) Tag six random people at the end of your post by linking to their blogs.
(5) Let each random person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their website.

Here's my six things:
* I was the youngest in my class in school from kindergarten on. The rule was the student had to be 5 before December 1. My birthday is November 24, so I just made it.
* I don't like heights. Driving over tall bridges always gets me.
* I was born on Thanksgiving Day.
* I am a little OCD when I shovel the driveway. I don't like the little bits of snow that fall off the side of the shovel and leave a trail, so I go back and redo each swath. I don't seem to have this tendency anywhere else!
* I grew up on a farm, where we had lots of land to investigate. We had a stoney hill that we found fossils on. They were very small plant fossils (about 1/2") but fun to find and great for show and tell! (I still have a small bottle of them that I collected when my Dad sold the land)
* When I was a student nurse, one of my patients was the Father of a Detroit Tiger.

Wow - I had to really think to come up with those. I should have asked my family. They could come up with more, I'm sure!

Here are the six bloggers I am tagging:
Perri at My Life in Bits and Pieces
Nancy at In My Neck of the Woods
Julie at
Memories
Leigh Ann at The Bird's Nest
Renee at Life at Aspen Trail Hill
Jean at What's up at the Stauffers?

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Friday, January 25, 2008

Awards to share

I've got a little business to take care of. I've been blessed with a few awards this week! This award was given to me by Rebekah of Diagonally parked in a Parallel Universe. Here's a few of the kind people I have met blogging that I want to pass it to.
Melissa from Mel's World

The next 2 awards came from Lorie of Food, Family and Fun. She is the mother of Nathan who many of you prayed for last week. I'm happy to say the whole family is doing well!
This is being passed on to a few bloggers who really do Rock the Crib!
Megan from Fried Okra
Rebekah from Diagonally Parked in a Parallel Universe
Leslie from The Wright Girls
Jennifer from Meditations and Musings
Sarah from Short Stop
Renee at Life at Aspen Tree Hill

And last, but not least, here are a few loveable Blogs.
Joanne from One so Blessed
Cheryl from Cherdecor
Jennifer from Gathering Grace
Cheri from Just another Day in Paradise
Sandra from
Diary of a SAHM
Bonnie from Simple Beauty
Terri from Terri and her Talk


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Thursday, January 24, 2008

Winter - then and now




Here are a few pictures I took this morning out the side door at work. It was nice to look out and not have snow falling. It has been quite a wintry week here in Michigan. Snow has been falling in fairly large amounts every day. (and our snow blower decided to take a rest!) It has also been very cold. While I enjoy the changing seasons, I think I have had enough of winter for a while!
Yesterday, the local news was talking about this winter being bad and then started talking about the blizzard we had in 1978. This was one of the worst blizzards on record for Michigan. I am now going to date myself and tell you I was a senior in high school that year. It was quite a storm! My Dad worked for the Road commission and was working (attempting to plow roads) with just a few rest breaks for about 5 days. For about 1 day, they gave up and only made runs to get people out in case of an emergency. Much of the state lost power, including us and my family all stayed in our family room to keep warm by the fireplace, for a few days until the power was restored. The roads and highways were closed down. After about 5 days, someone came down our street on a snowmobile and got a few groceries for people. Our school was cancelled for a week and because of the week it fell, we ended up not having exams that winter. When the blizzard finally passed, people were putting tennis balls on the antenna's of their cars, because the snowbanks were so high, you couldn't see the cars coming without them. It was a tough week for the adults, but for those of us lucky enough to still be in school it was fun. We played lots of games that week and did a lot of reading. It isn't often that a family spends that much time together in one room!
Compared to that, I guess I can't really complain about this winter! Do any of you have winter memories? I'd like to hear them.


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Sorry

I just removed a post a put up yesterday that had links to other blogs in it. I didn't check it out as I should have and now I find that some of the sites listed were not appropriate. I'm sorry for not checking it out - I will be more vigilant in the future.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Slow Cooking Thursday

It's Thursday so it's time to get those Slow Cookers out again! Today's recipe is from a friend at church. She reads the blog so she knows I like slow cooker recipes. She made this a few weeks ago and says it is "very good and very easy". Thanks Jean, for sharing this recipe. I'll be trying it soon.
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Slow-Cooked Meatball Stew
1 bag (1 lb) ready to eat baby cut carrots
1 lb small red potatoes (2 1/2 to 3"), cut into quarters
4.5 oz can sliced mushrooms, drained
1 small onion, cut into thin wedges
1 bag (16 ounces) frozen cooked meatballs (about 32)
1 jar (12 oz) beef gravy
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
Freshly ground black pepper, if desired
In 4 to 5 quart slow cooker, layer all ingredients in order listed.
Cover, cook on low for 8 to 10 hours.
Before serving, gently stir stew.
*6 servings (1 1/2 cups each)
If you want to check out more Slow cooker recipes, visit Sandra at Diary of a SAHM.

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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

What's in a name?




Here's something fun I found, just in case any of you want to change your name! Some of these could work - most are a little out there!

1. YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car)
Poncho Ford Windstar

2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fave ice cream flavor, favorite cookie)
Chocolate Chocolate chip

3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name)
Mbru

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal)
Green Cat

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, hospital where you were born)
Beth St Mary

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first)
Bruma

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (”The” + 2nd favorite color, favorite drink)
The Blue Diet Coke

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers)
Peter John

9.WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names )
Francess Milton

10. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (Your 5th grade teacher’s last name, a major city that starts with the same letter)
Fyneweaver France

11. SPY NAME: (your favorite season/holiday, flower)
Spring Hydrangea

12. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now + “ie” or “y”)
Strawberry Jeansie

13. HIPPIE NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree)
Granola Beech

14. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (”The” + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element + “Tour”)
The Scrapbooking Thunder Tour




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Monday, January 21, 2008

Fixing my Life!




Melody from Pennies in my Pocket tagged me for this Meme.

Here's what I have to do: Devise a list of 5-10 courses you would take to fix your life. It’s more fun to be in classes with friends, so include one class from the person who tagged you that you’d also like to take.

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So - here are the classes that will help fix my life:
1. How to Organize Chaos. Melody had this one on her list, so I think I will take it with her. My house isn't as chaotic as it was when the kids were younger and all home, but there are some areas where chaos builds!
2. How to keep your scrapbooks up to date. I love to scrapbook, but I have never been caught up with my scrapbooks. Right now I have too many pictures to count waiting for me.
3. Losing weight and keeping it off. How many times have I lost weight only to gain it all back? It's truly a never ending battle.
4. How to have more hours in a day, or get by with less sleep. There is always more to be done, than there is time to do it. I think every Mom has this problem!
5. How to have a consistent quiet time with God in a life with an inconsistent schedule. This has been an ongoing problem for me. I have a short devotional time in the morning before I go to work and try to have a more in depth time when I come home, but too often I put other things first.
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That's a nice bunch of courses, don't you think? Just think how well my life would run if these courses were really available and worked. I'm not going to tag anyone specific, but feel free to do this fun meme if you would like.

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Sunday, January 20, 2008

Snow in Heaven?

Sunday morning I drove to church separately from Bob, as he had things to do in the second service. The drive was just beautiful, snow was covering everything. The trees were covered, the roofs were white, even the road was not showing through. Snowflakes were gently falling down in front of me. Then I had a song pop into my head - I'm sure you all know it:
This world is not my home,
I'm just a passin' through,
My treasures are laid up,
somewhere beyond the blue,
The angels beckon me,
from heavens golden shores,
and I can't feel at home in this world anymore!
So - there I was, driving through the snow, singing this song! It made me think of how often I admire the beauty in nature. For me it is one of the ways in which I am able to worship and praise God the best. I am so often amazed and awed by what God has created for us to live in and enjoy. I then thought - "What about Heaven? Will there be snow there?" It's not something I ever thought of. When I think of Heaven, I think of a beautiful city, blue sky, green grass and rivers. I don't like to be cold so I think of Heaven as being the perfect temperature. But - God created snow. It is beautiful, so maybe there will be the beauty of snow without the cold temperatures! I know that it doesn't really matter. When I get there, I certainly won't be concerned about snow. I started thinking about what we do know about Heaven:
There will be no tears, no pain, no sin.
We will have new bodies (sounds good to me!)
We will have perfect health.
There will be no fighting and no wars.
There will be a crystal clear river
and a tree of life.
There is a beautiful city,
with pearly gates and a street of gold.
I'll get a crown and will praise God with others!
There's no fear and no sorrow.
I'll see friends and family that have gone on ahead.
Isn't that exciting? And that's only just the beginning. So, for now, I'll just thank God for this beautiful world and all the things he has created in it. And - I'll continue to thank him for sacrificing his Son to allow us to join Him in Heaven, when the time comes. I'll be there - I hope you will be too!

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Saturday, January 19, 2008

Baby, It's Cold Outside!









Here's a few pictures of our back front and side yard here in West Michigan. We are having some cold weather. When I took these pictures around 4:30 on Saturday our thermometer said it was 6 degrees! Because we live near Lake Michigan we often fall victim to lake effect snow. This happen when cold air moves over the warmer lake, causing clouds to build over the lake and snow falls when the clouds reach the land. What this means to us is - it is cold here and it's been snowing all day! This is predicted to continue for the next few days. In this weather I certainly am thankful for things like a home and a furnace!





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Friday, January 18, 2008

What a week

It's been a crazy week for me. Things have been tough at work. We have had about 5 new admissions, which is a lot in a short time. An admission means a lot of work. You wouldn't believe the amount of paperwork required just to get someone admitted and more is required over the next few days. It's also hard because it doesn't give me a chance to get to know the person very well before another someone else comes. Worse than admissions though, is that some of our old friends not doing well. One of my favorite men has been declining over the last few months and will probably not live much longer. This resident is well loved by all the staff and they are all having a hard time. Then when I came in on Thursday I was told that another resident had a stroke the night before. She was someone who loved to talk to us and would always ask me how she could pray for me. She still knew me when I saw her, but could hardly talk. Her condition has declined since then and it doesn't look like she will live long either. I have this weekend off, so I went to see them both before I left. The woman who had the stroke held my hand and was able to get out a few words, which were "I'll see you in Heaven". As you can imagine, that about did me in. I then went to see my other friend and said good bye to him and his daughter, wondering if this would be my last good bye to him. I left work with red eyes and a lump in my throat. They have both lived good, long lives and are ready to go. I also know where they both will be going and I will see them there, but it sure is hard to say good bye here.

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I did have a nice thing happen today. I was given an award! Karen, from Karen's Ramblings gave me the "Spread the Love" award. I think Karen gets more awards than anyone! Of course, she deserves them, so I am honored that she passed this to me.

Here is what the maker of this award says:
"I have met so many lovely and very talented ladies here in Blogdom, what more can I do or say to express my humbled heart to each, than to give all my dearest readers and friends a special award filled with love. So, spread the love dear ones, spread the love to those you love."
Thanks so much Karen! I am going to pass this to everyone on my blog roll. If I didn't love your blogs, you wouldn't be listed!

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Giveaway's!


Mary from Mary's Writing Nook is having a giveaway to celebrate Valentines Day and her 200th post. She has a box filled with goodies that some lucky blogger will receive. The deadline for the contest is Tuesday, January 22. If you are the winner, the prize will arrive before Valentines day. Go visit her blog and sign up - good luck!
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There is another giveaway at
Pennies in my Pocket. Quote the walls is giving away a $50 gift certificate toward quotations you can put on your walls. There are quotes of every type, so if you are thinking of redecorating, you'll want to check this out.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Kids in church

Bob e-mailed these to me and I thought they were cute enough to share. Hope you get a smile from them!


3-year-old Reese:
"Our Father, Who does art in heaven,
Harold is His name.
Amen."
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A little boy was overheard praying:
"Lord, if you can't make me a better boy, don't worry about it.
I'm having a real good time like I am."
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After the christening of his baby brother in church,
Jason sobbed all the way home in the back seat

of the car. His father asked him three times what was wrong.
Finally, the boy replied,
"That preacher said he wanted us brought up in a Christian home,
And I wanted to stay with you guys."
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One particular four-year-old prayed,
"And forgive us our trash baskets
As we forgive those who put trash in our baskets."
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A Sunday school teacher asked her children as they
were on the way to church service,
"And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?"
One bright little girl replied,
"Because people are sleeping."
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A mother was preparing pancakes for her sons, Kevin 5, and Ryan 3.
The boys began to argue over who would get the first pancake.
Their mother saw the opportunity for a moral lesson.
"If Jesus were sitting here, He would say,
'Let my brother have the first pancake, I can wait.'
Kevin turned to his younger brother and said,
"Ryan, you be Jesus!"




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Wednesday, January 16, 2008

A lesson on Relativity

Many of you have read posts from me regarding my job. For those who don't know, I am a nurse in a Nursing Home. I really enjoy my job although there are some tough days. I love getting to know our residents and their families. I don't think a day goes by that one of them doesn't say something funny, sweet or inspiring. Today I want to share a story about one of our men. He is a real gentleman. I don't think I've ever seen him angry. When I think of him, he always has a smile on his face. We have often remarked on his positive attitude. His health has been declining in the last few months, but when I ask how he is, I usually hear "I'm doing good" and see that smile. His nickname is "Coop" and his daughter is a realtor. She sent me her newsletter with a story about her Dad. She has given me permission to share it here.
My Dad, The Price of Gas, and a Lesson on Relativity
Just like me, many of you who are receiving this newsletter are at an age where you have or are currently helping and caring for elderly parents or grandparents. My 93 year old Dad (a/k/a "Coop") has been one of my best mentors throughout life, and although he's physically frail and his short term memory isn't what it used to be, he is still one of the smartest people I know. His humor and wit are still sharp as a tack, and I'm still learning from his wisdom everyday.
During one of my recent visits with "Coop," I mentioned that the price of gas had just reached an all time high of over $3.00 a gallon. One would think that to someone who is 93 years old, in a nursing home, and hasn't filled his car up with gas in at least 10 years, this would come as a huge shock. Rather, "Coop" shrugged indifferently and replied, "Ya, but then everything is relative...I remember the days when you could get 10 gallons for a buck, but then I didn't have a buck!"
As I was tuning into NBC's national news coverage that same night and once again heard the "gloom and doom," about the US housing market, I couldn't help but compare this situation to my Dad's rationalization about the price of gas. Is the fair market value of your home less than it was a year or even two years ago? Unfortunately, yes. That's the downside of the real estate market these days. But, there is a logical upside to this! If you choose to buy a home today, the fair market value of that home will also be less than it was one or two years ago. And the "Up-Up" side is interest rates are at historic lows. Not only is it a great time for first time home buyers, now is a great time for anyone to buy up or buy down!
I have to admit, I'm a news junkie, and I love watching and reading the news. However, I believe that many times when there's a positive side to a story, we only hear and read the negative spin, and that negativity only becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. Maybe good ol' "Coop" could give the news media on relativity!
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When I read that newsletter, I thought this was something that could be applied frequently in our lives. How many times don't we get frustrated by something, that in hindsight, is not worth it? How many times do we complain about something, like the the cost of gas and not take into account the fact that we have jobs and money to pay for it? We truly are blessed and I think we could all learn a lesson from "Coop!"
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*Thanks to Sharon Sikkema for allowing me to share this.




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Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Works for me Wednesday



It's Works for me Wednesday time again. This year I received a Go Duster for Christmas. I had seen advertisements for it and although I am usually quite skeptical of these ads, I thought it looked like it would work, so I put it on my list. I have to say, it really does work. I have used it for lamps, dining room chairs (it works well between the spindles), picture frames, the TV. One thing it really worked well on was the dashboard on my van. I always had a hard time getting back near the windshield, But when I used this, the dashboard and the whole steering wheel and column was dust free in a few minutes. It has a small head that can be used for electronics, like a computer keyboard. It spins but is very gentle and doesn't seem to dislodge anything but the dust.

These are available at Walgreen's for about $15, and it really does work for me. If you want to check out other tips or ideas, visit Shannon at Rocks in my Dryer.


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Monday, January 14, 2008

Movie Recommendation

If you haven't seen this movie, I highly recommend it. Our office manager at work just bought it and has been passing it out to the rest of us to watch. She gave it great reviews, then our administrator told me I had to see it. My co-worker Nancy and her husband watched it next, and also said it was great. We watched it Friday night and were really moved by it.

This movie came out in 2006 and was released to video in 2007 so many of you may have watched it. We didn't because we thought it was another sports movie about winning. It is a sports movie and it is about winning but there is another theme running through it and that is doing your best for God. It was actually made by a church in Georgia, so the fact that it was completed and did so well in the theatre is amazing. The actors are members of the church and took no money for doing it. If you watch it, be sure to check the section on the filming of the movie. Not only will you enjoy the movie, but you will be challenged to do your best for God and praise him regardless of the situation.

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Update on Nathan

Here is a picture of the little boy you were praying for. He is doing much better. He got into his Mom's blood pressure medicine (even with the child proof cap on). She is feeling bad about leaving it where he could reach it, so keep her in your prayers that she forgives herself. He went to one hospital and was airlifted to another, where he spent the night in pediatric ICU. He was out of bed and wanting to play today so our prayers were answered. Lorie thanks everyone for their prayers.


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