Monday, March 31, 2008

Miracle Monday






I'm a little late posting today.. we've been schooling along with all the other "Monday stuff," and I'm FINALLY able to sit and write. In trying to decide which miracle to share, I decided to tell you about a time in recent past when I was in a GREAT struggle with GOD. Before I explain, I'd like to thank Beth for the sweet things she said in her post today. I'm honored that you shared our story.

Okay.. on with this post. After we lost Brent I wasn't quite sure what to believe about GOD. We'd been "encouraged" by some other believers that if we believed hard enough... spoke the word and claimed it enough.. that Brent would be healed. Our sweet little man lay there the last week of his life PRAISING GOD for his healing. He thanked HIM over and over again for it. Then... we lost him.

I wondered if GOD would allow such a thing to happen after we stood on HIS WORD exactly WHERE did we go wrong? (See, the first problem was that we depended on ourselves for the healing. It was up to GOD all along) Remember the passage that says,


1 John 5:13-15 (New International Version)


Concluding Remarks

13I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. 14This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15And if we know that He hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of Him.




See, it wasn't GOD'S will that Brent be healed (on earth).


One night while sitting on the front porch of our friends home (during Bible study) everyone started to singing praise songs. I sat there voicing to GOD how I felt towards HIM. I began to cry and asked HIM to let me SEE HIM. I told HIM "I need to KNOW that YOU'RE THERE."

The very next song they sang was, "As the Deer." (Yes, as this song starts I'm still asking GOD to let me see HIM) I looked up and there was a deer, feeding just a few yards away.







I began to SOB uncontrollably as I thought of how GOD caused the deer to come out at just the right time - to show HIMSELF to me. OH, how HE LOVES US! I'm still humbled by that display of HIS loving character. What a MIGHTY GOD we serve! (Oh, and just so you don't think I'm a loony toon... I didn't mean that GOD took the form of a deer, just that HE used the deer to show HIS love for me)


For most posts on this "Miracle Monday" visit Beth at "A Mom's Life."



Now, I want to thank those who posted with me yesterday. I won't ask you to read the entire post, but PLEASE take a moment to read about childhood cancer. (It's bottom of the post just below) Then click the link to email the right people in effort to get more funding for research. THANK YOU SO MUCH!




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Sunday, March 30, 2008

I've been TAGGED! (And Soapbox Sunday)

Okay, I was "tagged" by my girl Devon. I'm supposed to write a 6 word memoir about myself.. HHHMMMMM......

"Finding my JOY in the LORD."


I heard my friend Heather once say that joy is a choice. After losing our own son I've come to know that she's right. We can choose to stay in bed and grieve, or we can get up with an attitude of PRAISE!


John 16:20
I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices. You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy.



Yes, this was actually talking about the death and resurrection of JESUS.. but it's also so very perfect for those who've lost loved ones. Sometimes you feel so very alone. People "grieve" with you for a while, but then it seems that everyone else's lives go on as if nothing happened while you know in your heart that NOTHING will ever be the same.

Well, we do have JOY because our hope does not end with the grave. We KNOW because JESUS overcame the grave, that our sweet son did too! He's in HEAVEN and we WILL see him again. Now our task is to share what GOD has taught us about HIMSELF and pray that others will come to KNOW and LOVE HIM too.







1 Thessalonians 4:13-18

13Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in Him. 15According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16For the Lord Himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. 18Therefore encourage each other with these words.




Thanks, Devon for "tagging" me. I had a hard time thinking of what to say about myself with just 6 words. (I could've gone ANYWHERE with that!) LOL!!!


Now, Here are the rules:

1. Write your own six word memoir
2. Post it on your blog and include a visual illustration if you’d like
3. Link to the person that tagged you in your post
4. Tag five more blogs with links
5. Remember to leave a comment on the tagged blogs with an invitation to play.




I'm a HUGE cheater when it comes to these games because I NEVER know who to tag. If you'd like to play along then jump right in there!


I hope you guys have an AMAZING day in the LORD! Now, for my post on "Soapbox Sunday."







I don't have anything with spiritual depth for this post, however it is one that is very close to my heart. As you may already know we lost our son to childhood cancer. If you'd like to post with me on this Soapbox Sunday then PLEASE FEEL FREE to copy the exact post below to your site. (Or you can email me and I'll send you the EXACT post with the codes and all already in place - I'll check my email first thing in the morning then again mid-afternoon. We'll be meeting with our Bible study group from 9-? my email address is nason5@aol.com) The more people we can get involved, the GREATER the impact. If you do post with me just leave a comment and we'll "blog hop" around. THANKS SO MUCH for your time!


Now, besides the fact that childhood cancer has struck our home, the statistics are HORRIFIC. The information below was taken from lunchforlife.org



Childhood cancer is the leading cause of death by disease in the US and it kills more children per year than cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy, asthma and AIDS combined. There are 15 children diagnosed with cancer for every one child diagnosed with pediatric AIDS. Yet, the U.S. invests approximately $595,000 for research per victim of pediatric AIDS and only $20,000 for each victim of childhood cancer.


The information from here to the end of this post was copied from an email. The main site is curesearch.org However there is a link below that will take you DIRECTLY to the place you'll quickly fill in your information and you'll have helped INSTANTLY!


Please help us pass the CONQUER CHILDHOOD CANCER ACT. This bill authorizes $30 million annually for five years to support pediatric cancer research. Imagine hearing your beloved son or daughter has cancer. 12,400 US families will hear these words each year. 35,000 US children are in active cancer treatment and 2,300 will die annually.

This is unacceptable when you consider we've spent 500 billion on a war overseas. 150 million over 5 years for the Conquer Childhood Cancer Act seems like a "drop in the bucket" in comparison. On the plus side, we have 52 wise senators supporting the CCCA. We need 8 more to reach 60, a majority to help pass this landmark legislation. Please honor those children that have been fighting for their lives and those who have earned their wings by taking 5 MINUTES to e-mail SENATORS that are NOT yet CO-SPONSORS. If this bill is not passed by 2008, it dies and we're back to square one.
Here is a list of states that need sponsors...Alabama (2), Alaska (2), Arizona (2), Colorado (2), Florida (2), Idaho (2), Iowa (2), Kansas (1), Louisiana (1), Maine (2), Mississippi (1), Missouri (2), Montanna (2), Nevada (1), New Hampshire (2), North Dakota (2), Ohio (1), Oklahoma (2), Oregon (1), Pennsyvania (1), South Carolina (1), South Dakota (1), Tennessee (2), Texas (1), Utah (2), Virginia (1), West Virginia (2), Wisconsin (2), Wyoming (2).


Click HERE to send a letter to your Member of Congress urging them to vote to pass the Conquer Childhood Cancer Act. It will take LESS THAN 5 MINUTES.


If you have a CaringBridge site, blog, or myspace, please copy and paste this info to your site. If you know someone who lives in one of these states, copy and e-mail it to them. If you're feeling ambitious, lead a letter writing campaign in your state that needs co-sponsors. One grandma sent out thousands of copied letters to family/friends in other states. All they needed to do was sign the letter and mail it in.

"The greatest use of life is to spend it for something that will outlast it." - William James (1842 - 1910)




Friends writing on Soapbox Sunday...

Shari

Stephanie

Heather


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Saturday, March 29, 2008

Then Sings My Soul Saturdays





This song has become one of my favorites... I LOVE IT!





For more on this "Then Sings My Soul Saturdays" visit Amy at Signs, Miracles, and Wonders.






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Friday, March 28, 2008

Favorite Foto Friday - The Eyes Have It

I love the theme that Sarah chose for today. I may be partial to my boys, but I think they've all got AMAZING eyes. I'm going to share some of my favorites.

You've probably all seen this picture of Brent a million times... but it's my FAVORITE! Just look how sweetly he was looking at me. (AAAHHHH... STILL melts my heart)





This is Zach. I had a photo of him holding a bird. His eyes were unbelievable in it but I can't find it.. :-( HEEHEE..





Here's one of Gabe being silly. His eyes remind me of Brent's....




And of course I'll have to share one of Allie Grace - she's got some BEAUTIFUL eyes! I can't wait to see what color they'll be....





For more posts on this "FFF" check out Kiss The Frog 4 Me.


You can see more pics of my sweet little niece, Allie Grace just below.

WHOOPS! I forgot.. I've been "tagged." I'll have to figure out how to post on this so I'll either come back later or will do it tomorrow. =-)


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Thursday, March 27, 2008

Introducing Allie Grace Jenkins.......

YES, the "Happy Dancers" have arrived!!!!


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I'm so happy to announce that little bit is now safe at HOME with her Mama & Daddy tonight. After many YEARS of praying for a child... she's now HERE among us. I was wrong in saying that all paperwork would be final... they do still have to go before a judge. However, all papers are signed and as far as we are concerned she's one of us.



THANK YOU SOOOOOO MUCH for your prayers!




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Thankful Thursday

Thankful Thursday post just below - New update on Allie Grace 10:42 AM


Morning Friends!

The adoption is still not exactly final. I really don't know how much of this I'm supposed to say or not to say so I'm trying to be informative without saying something that they might want kept private. I CAN say that the hold up has NOT been with the birth parents. (Which is a HUGE PRAISE) It's all legal mumbo-jumbo on the hospital end. (They weren't being very helpful at all to put it nicely) Allie Grace should LEGALLY BELONG to her new Mommy and Daddy by the end of the day. She will HOPEFULLY be HOME by then as well. I'll check back when everything starts to fall into place. As it looks... it's a DONE DEAL.. just some minor kinks to get through this morning.

We're PRAISING GOD that she's a HEALTHY baby girl! They could find NOTHING wrong with her - nothing at all. Now we'll pray for these things....

- Please pray that anything legal will be worked through quickly.
- Pray that the hospital won't hold them up and will discharge her IMMEDIATELY
- Pray for safe travels for Mama, Papa, and Allie Grace as they come HOME!

THANKS SOOOOO MUCH for your prayers!!!

I'll check back as soon as things start happening.















Hello Friends...

This Thankful Thursday I am VERY THANKFUL for the new bundle of JOY that's become part of the family. I still don't have much to tell... but we're OH-SO-GRATEFUL! For those of you who may be new here... my sister-in-law (Elizabeth) and her hubby Jason have been in the process of adopting their first child. Little Allie Grace was born on Easter Sunday! There was some question about her health so she was taken to another hospital (about 2+ hours from here). Her adoption SHOULD be final TONIGHT.. however... there's a little more to this story...

The "Happy Dancers" have their shoes on and are READY to JUMP and SHOUT... only we still don't "officially" know anything. The hospital that Allie Grace was taken to has a "no cell phone" policy so phone calls between them and home have been few and far between. I can honestly say I still don't know anything. Our 72 hour wait is up... and I'm assuming that no news is GOOD news... however I won't jump the gun and make any official announcements UNTIL we hear from the proud new Mama & Papa. You guys hang in there... I PROMISE to update as SOON as I know something. Until then.. our dancing crew is warming up... Heehee...

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Thanks SO MUCH for praying and keeping watch with us. You just can't know how much you mean to us.

BIG (((HUGS))) from a VERY EXCITED Aunt and Family...
We love you!



For more posts on this Thankful Thursday check out Sting My Heart.






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Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Word-Filled Wednesday

Allie Grace Update - 2:04 PM

I was hoping to show up with the "happy dancers" but I still don't know anything for sure. As best I can tell they got some pretty amazing doctor reports. If I've not got my wires crossed up they were told that she looks like a perfectly healthy baby to them. I thought that maybe there might be more testing so I was waiting for final results before I shared the news. I didn't want to make you wait any longer... and I've not heard anything DIRECTLY from Elizabeth, so we'll take the GREAT NEWS and wait. When we get the final word I'll break out the ole happy dancing crew and we'll CELEBREATE!

As for other good news... we're getting down to about 8 hours before the adoption is FINAL! You'll probably hear us shouting PRAISES from here! LOL!!!

I'll check back again if/when I hear anything different.

THANKS SO MUCH for praying!

Love you,
Tonya



Word-Filled Wednesday

Hello Friends...

Before I get started I wanted to tell you that I'm still anxiously awaiting a call or text from Elizabeth. (My Sister-In-Law) HOPEFULLY little Allie Grace is doing well. I'll update on her again AS SOON as I hear.


Now... for my scripture on this Word-Filled Wednesday. (Giving credit where credit is due... I just learned that many of my blogging friends are making their own - I found mine on Google. I REALLY NEED to learn how that Photoshop works!)








For more posts on this "Word Filled Wednesday" check out The 160 Acre Woods



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Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Please PRAY for Allie Grace

Update - 9:23 PM

Hello Again...

I'm checking back to let you know that we don't know anything. LOL! How's that for an informative update? I talked to Elizabeth a little earlier and the doctor had just walked in. (She was saying, I think this is the doctor, let me let you go) SOOOO... I can't say for sure if it was or not.

She seemed pretty confident that everything was just routine. I was a little nervous when we talked earlier so I may have gotten this wrong, but I THINK that I heard them say that the doctor in Jackson was the only Neonatal heart specialist in the state of Mississippi.

I'm thinking since we've not heard anything tonight it'll probably be tomorrow before we know anything. I PROMISE to update ASAP.

THANK YOU SO MUCH for your prayers and words of encouragement. I agree with our friend Randy. I think "little bit" may very well be breaking us in. She's not to be outdone by her older cousins. (I've probably told you this before... but Zach was so accident prone that after a while I started to worry they'd call social services when we took him in the ER) HA!!

Until next time....
Tonya

PS.. I did get to see the little doll yesterday. She's BEAUTIFUL! I took pics but they were with Elizabeth's camera. Obviously they've been a little too busy to send them. I'll share those ASAP as well.






Update from earlier...

I just got a call from Elizabeth just a few minutes ago. She'd been told yesterday that Allie Grace might have a heart murmur. We understand that this is not uncommon, nor is it life threatening. The pediatrician wants to be thorough and has had her taken to another hospital. They're assuring us that everything looks okay, but they have to rule other things out. We don't have a lot of "big hospitals" around here so when there's something more serious they send you to Tupelo or Jackson. Allie Grace is on her way to Jackson. (They're flying her down) Jason & Elizabeth will follow in their car. I guess you can see why there's stress? Maybe not.. maybe I overreact when it comes to unexplained illness in children. I know we're supposed to trust GOD in all things, and we will. PLEASE PRAY for good test results for this little one. We'll be praying for Jason & Elizabeth as they wait.

At about 9:30 tonight we'll be 48 hours into the 72 that are required before the adoption is final. There will be some SERIOUS REJOICING in our area around that time tomorrow night! =-)

I'll keep you posted....

Thanks for your prayers!






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Monday, March 24, 2008

Miracle Monday - Easter Miracle

[Click here to find out more]




As many of you know.. my sister-in-law (Elizabeth) and her hubby Jason have been in the process of adopting their first baby. After many months of "maybes" there has been an AMAZING thing happen. Someone near by found them and the rest as they say, is history. We've been waiting on the birth of baby girl Jenkins. Well, YESTERDAY - EASTER SUNDAY she arrived!

Her name is Allie Grace Jenkins. Allie is named after Elizabeth's Great Aunt (Their Grand-Daddy's sister) Grace was chosen because she's the result of GOD'S GRACE & PROVISION for this sweet couple.

She weighed 6 pounds and 8 ounces. She's 21 inches long and I hear she has a head FULL of hair! Oh, I can't WAIT to meet her!

There is a 72 hour waiting period in the state of Mississippi - after that it's all legal. (We're almost 13 hours into it now) Please pray with us for a smooth transition and many years to come with this beautiful HEALTHY baby girl.

I'll post pictures as soon as I can. I hope to get to go to the hospital today. I'm SO EXCITED to meet this sweet baby girl! Wait, I said that already... LOL! I can't help it... I'm EXCITED!!




For more on this "Miracle Monday" check out Beth at A Mom's Life.









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Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter! Welcome to -Soapbox Sunday-




Matthew 28:1-10

The Resurrection

1 Early on Sunday morning,[a] as the new day was dawning, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went out to visit the tomb.
2 Suddenly there was a great earthquake! For an angel of the Lord came down from heaven, rolled aside the stone, and sat on it. 3 His face shone like lightning, and his clothing was as white as snow. 4 The guards shook with fear when they saw him, and they fell into a dead faint.

5 Then the angel spoke to the women. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I know you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He isn’t here! He is risen from the dead, just as He said would happen. Come, see where His body was lying. 7 And now, go quickly and tell His disciples that He has risen from the dead, and He is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see Him there. Remember what I have told you.”

8 The women ran quickly from the tomb. They were very frightened but also filled with great joy, and they rushed to give the disciples the angel’s message. 9 And as they went, Jesus met them and greeted them. And they ran to Him, grasped His feet, and worshiped Him. 10 Then Jesus said to them, “Don’t be afraid! Go tell my brothers to leave for Galilee, and they will see me there.”









Hello, and WELCOME to the first edition of "Soapbox Sunday." (It may well be the only edition..LOL!! Depends on if anyone joins me) HA!! Seriously, though... I realize that I couldn't have picked a busier weekend so don't let me put too much pressure on you guys.

As I've been saying all week... it'll be a chance for us to "preach" our little hearts out about any and everything. (No, I don't mean literal preaching, I just mean fulfilling the Titus 2 calling) OH, and if you do want to post under this new meme.. just leave a comment and we'll "blog hop" our way around. =-) If we have a few ladies to join in over the next few weeks I'll set up a "Mr. Linky" and have a graphic/code set up. I suppose we'll see? ;-)



So.. for my first post I want to talk about the third commandment.

"Thou shalt not take the Name of the LORD, thy GOD in vain."



When I hear someone misuse the LORD'S Name it makes my skin crawl. I chose this for today because the LORD'S name is so commonly misused that it's now accepted as just another "slang" word.

I wanted to take our boys to watch a new movie that's coming out. It's rated "G." AWESOME! But wait, when researching on Dr. James Dobson's site pluggedinonline.com I quickly found that the movie used the term "Oh my God" more than once. So.. could someone PLEASE tell me WHY movie makers can't make a movie that's family friendly that DOESN'T misuse the LORD'S Name? Oh YEA... THIS is where my soapbox begins..







What does it mean to take the LORD'S Name in vain? Well, I've heard it said that the Jewish people (GOD'S CHOSEN PEOPLE) had such a fear and reverence for GOD that they wouldn't even use the name GOD. (Can anyone confirm that?) So, taking the LORD'S name in vain is not only when it's used to curse, but ANY TIME that's it's used in a light manner. The easiest way to explain how I've heard this taught is that if we're not talking TO GOD, or ABOUT HIM... we should NEVER use HIS name. Those are the only two instances we would be using it in a way that HONORS HIM.

What do you think??




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Saturday, March 22, 2008

Then Sings My Soul ~ Saturdays




I was looking for an "Easter type song" and found this video instead. It's SO POWERFUL - showing how we can "dance" with JESUS one minute, then move away from HIM and become entangled in sin. When we finally decide to RUN back to HIM, HE'S THERE waiting for us to return! I LOVE how the video shows HIM PULLING us back to HIMSELF. I always find myself SOBBING as I watch this. I know what it's like to be "in the pit" and I know what it's like to find forgiveness. I hope you'll enjoy this as much as I do.









For more "Then Sings My Soul Saturdays" posts, check out Signs, Miracles, and Wonders.




Now, I had another video that I saw on a new friend's blog... "To Know HIM." This video is about one AMAZING little lady and I couldn't wait to share her story!






Now, to share another "amazing" story - although maybe not on that level...


A few days ago grief overtook me. (For anyone new to my blog - we lost our 11 yr old son to cancer a little over a year ago. Most days are pretty good, Wednesday.. not so good) When I get really upset I always try to get somewhere alone to "cry it out" but on this particular day my two little ones quickly found me. Zach (our 10 year old) sat and held my hand. I could hear him send Gabe for something. I was pretty sure he told him to "Go get Mama a tissue." Gabe (our 7 year old) came back a couple of minutes later with this over his face....








What a sweetie! And creative too! I was completely blown away at his effort to make me smile. (He actually got me tickled) We're O-SO-BLESSED to have such AMAZING little boys!



For those of you that are interested in taking part of our first "Soapbox Sunday" be sure to check back later this evening (or tonight). I'm going to post early to avoid chaos tomorrow morning.


THANKS for stopping by!



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Friday, March 21, 2008

Favorite Foto Friday - Easter




After looking at the date on the computer I'd say this was the last Easter picture I have of Brent. (Pretty sure I didn't even make pics of Zach & Gabe last year) I'm SO THANKFUL for photography and how far it's come. =-)


For more pics on this "Foto Friday" visit "Kiss the Frog 4 Me."



Now, before I go I'd like to share a great way to explain the Easter Story to our little ones. (The cookies really are yummy)




Tomb Cookies


Ingredients

Bible

1 cup whole pecans
1 tsp. vinegar
3 egg whites
pinch of salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 qt. or gal. size zipper bag
wooden spoon
tape





1. Preheat oven to 3000 F or 1500 C.

2. Place pecans in ziploc bag and let kids beat them with the wooden spoon to break into small pieces. Explain that after Jesus was arrested, He was beaten by the Roman soldiers.

Read: John 19:1-3. Then Pilate took Jesus and had him flogged. The soldiers twisted
together a crown of thorns and put it on his head. They clothed him in a purple robe and went up to him again and again, saying, "Hail, king of the Jews!" And they struck Him in the face.

3. Let each child smell the vinegar. Add teaspoon of vinegar into the mixing bowl.
Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross He was given vinegar to drink.

Read John 19:28-30. Later, knowing that all was now completed, and so that the
Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, "I am thirsty." A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus' lips. When He had received the drink, Jesus said, "It is finished." With that, He bowed his head and gave up his spirit.


4. Add egg whites to vinegar. Eggs represent life. Explain that Jesus gave His life to give us life.

Read John 10:10-11. The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. "I am the Good Shepherd. The Good Shepherd lays down His life for the sheep."


5. Sprinkle a little salt into each child's hand. Let them taste it and brush the rest into the bowl. Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus' followers, and the bitterness of our own sins.

Read Luke 23:27. A large number of people followed Him, including women who
mourned and wailed for Him.


6. So far the ingredients are not very appetizing. Add 1 cup of sugar. Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because He loves us. He wants us to know and belong to Him.

Read Psalm 34:8. Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who takes
refuge in Him.

John 3:16. "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that
whoever believeth in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life."


7. Beat with a mixer on high speed for 12-15 minutes until stiff peaks are formed.
Explain that the color white represents the purity in God's eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus.

Read Isaiah 1:18. "Come now, let us reason together," says the Lord. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool."


John 3:1-3. Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the
Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, "Rabbi, we know you are a
teacher who has come from God, for no one could perform the miraculous signs you are
doing if God were not with Him." In reply Jesus declared, "I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again."


8. Fold in broken nuts.

9. Line the cookie sheet with waxed paper. Drop mixture by spoonfuls onto waxed paper.

Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus' body was laid.

Read Matthew 27:57-60. As evening approached, there came a rich man from
Arimathea, named Joseph, who had himself become a disciple of Jesus. Going to Pilate,
he asked for Jesus' body, and Pilate ordered that it be given to him. Joseph took the body, wrapped it in clean linen cloth, and placed it in his own new tomb that he had cut out of rock. He rolled a big stone in front of the entrance to the tomb and went away.

10. Place the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF. Give each child a piece of tape and seal the oven door. Explain that Jesus' tomb was sealed.

Read Matthew 27:65-66. "Take a guard," Pilate answered. "Go, make the tomb as
secure as you know how." So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on
the stone and posting a guard.


11. Go to bed. Explain that they may feel sad to leave the cookies in the oven overnight. Jesus' followers were in despair when the tomb was sealed.

Read John 16:20. "I tell you the truth, you will weep and mourn while the world
rejoices. You will grieve, buy your grief will turn to joy."

And John 16:22 "So with you~ Now is your time of grief, but I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy."

On Easter morning, open the oven and remove the cookies. Take a bite. Notice that the
cookies are hollow! On the first Easter Jesus' followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty.

Read Matthew 28:1-9. After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary
Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb. There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men. The angel said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. He is not here; He has risen, just as He said. Come and see the place where He lay. Then go quickly and tell His disciples: "He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see Him. Now I have told you." So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell His disciples. Suddenly Jesus met them, "Greetings," He said. They came to Him, clasped his feet and worshipped Him.






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Thursday, March 20, 2008

~Thankful Thursday~





This was a really easy post for me. Sometimes it's a little difficult because I don't do well making decisions - ESPECIALLY when there's so much to choose from. Well, with TODAY being set aside as "Thankful Thursday" and Easter Sunday quickly approaching... I'm posting on my JESUS!





Of all the people and things I love and hold dear... I can HONESTLY say there is NOTHING I LOVE MORE than HIM. HE loved us enough to live and die for us. I would GLADLY give up my life for my children - but for a hardened criminal that beats his wife and children. NO, ABSOLUTELY NOT! (Sorry, just being honest here) JESUS did that very thing. He died for us when we were still marred with sin. HE didn't ask us to go and get straightened out then come back... HE took us just as we were when we accepted HIM.

I know my life and all the ways I've hurt HIM. I'm sure there are many times that I'm not even aware of. Yet HE loves me still.

I'm especially thankful that HE provided us an eternity with no sickness, no death, no pain. There will be no rejection - just LOVE EVERLASTING! (I'm also INCREDIBLY THANKFUL that we'll be reunited with our loved ones)

So before I sign off I'd like to share a video with a powerful message. If any here today do not know JESUS, I PRAY this will touch your heart and you will find HIM.









For more posts on this "Thankful Thursday" check out Sting My Heart.





Once again, I'll end reminding everyone that I want to try a new meme this Sunday. (I'm thinking of calling it "Soapbox Sunday") God calls us to be Titus 2 Women, right? Well, this will give each of us a chance to get on our trusty little boxes and encourage each other with whatever GOD has placed on our hearts. As I mentioned in previous posts... we'll experiment for the first week or two and see if it catches on. Simply sign the guestbook and we'll "blog hop" around finding pearls of wisdom as we go. If it does catch on, I'll have a Mr. Linky done and make our travels easier. Okay.. hope to see you Sunday! (Oh, for the sake of time on Sunday morning I'll probably post mine sometime Saturday night - feel free to start early as well)



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Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Word FILLED Wednesday




I just love this graphic and scripture! Look closely at those "aged" hands. I'm sure they belong to a man, but they still remind me of my grandmother's. I know I've seen them clasped so many times in prayer.







For more on this "Word-Filled Wednesday" check out "The 160 Acre Woods."



Now, I need to pass out/return some special awards that were given to me.








I'd like to thank my friends e-Mom and Kim for the Very Sweet Friendship Award they've given me. Guys, I'm SO SLOW at this and am honestly still learning the ropes around here. My best gal Susan awarded with with the one just below a while back... (Thank You, Susan - I'm sorry I never formally acknowledged it)





Yes, I admit it... I'm a goofball! So, since I'm just terrible at catching on and making decisions I'll just pass the friendship award on to all of my new blogging friends. (Yes, I realize that's cheating, but hey, I'm afraid I'll leave someone out) If you're here today then consider yourself AWARDED! THANK YOU all for being so kind and extending your hearts and friendship to me!


Now, before I could get this posted I found that my new friend Sarah has "tagged" me for another game (meme?) not sure what it's formally called. Once again I'll "cheat" and invite anyone reading to play along. O=-) SO, here are the rules....



Rules are:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.




7 Facts about myself in random order... Oh, and I'm going to try to share things that you might not know about me.

1. I LOVE spending time with my little family - my hubby and our 3 boys mean THE WORLD to me! (Okay, that's a GIVEN)

2. Soon I'm going to be an "Auntie" again! (WOO-HOO!)

3. (Weird fact?) I have a REALLY WEIRD sense of humor. I LOVE to laugh and find humor in almost EVERYTHING! (Did you see the flame trowing commercial I posted on my blog party? Enough said. LOL!)

4. I'm afraid of flying. Yes, I went to Vermont and back, but my sweet Brent was "calming me" all the way! (He'd say, "It's okay, I'm here, Mama")

5. I've learned to like football, westerns, hunting and fishing... but golf STILL BORES me to TEARS. (Thankfully it's NOT on my hubby's "things to do" list)

6. I do NOT like bugs... I'm HORRIFIED of almost ALL of them! ICK! (I'm shivering just thinking about it) Don't like snakes either!

7. I'm also squimish in high places.


Thanks, Sarah for thinking of me! =-)




WHOOPS! Before I forget... I wanted to share something from my post yesterday.

I wanted to share an idea for a new meme. I'm thinking of calling it "Soapbox Sunday." It'll be a time when we can pull out those trusty ole soapboxes and share what's on our hearts. (You know, kind of living out Titus 2?) I've really enjoyed the "memes" and have noticed there's not a lot to do on Sunday. (At least not that I've found) This theme can be made as quick and easy as you'd like, or as long and informative as you wanna make it. Let me know what you think? Check back on Sunday and leave a comment if you want to participate. We can hop to each other's blogs via the comment section. If it takes off I'll see about getting a "Mr. Linky." If not.. we'll, I babble all week long to myself.. one more day sure won't break me. LOL!!


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Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Tuesday's ~ In Other Words

[Click here to find out more]




Today I'm joining my sister in Christ, Michelle on this "Tuesday's In Other Words." I like the quote she has chosen because it is true for each of us. There are some things that just HAVE to be worked out between GOD and ourselves.






I seem to always talk about losing Brent, and I worry that it makes others uncomfortable.. but this is my cross, it's what I must bear, it's where I am. With that said, this quote kind of sums up my testimony. I know that I struggled with GOD after we lost Brent. I battled anger and trust issues. I had to forget EVERYTHING I had been taught about GOD and find HIM again for myself. GOD is to be trusted when our world falls apart around us. HE is to be trusted when we're DESPERATE for HIM to take "our cup" from us. HE is to be TRUSTED when we feel we can trust no more.

As humans we battle pride, greed, selfishness... the list can go on and on. When things are "good" in our lives it's VERY EASY to fall into a rut and grow cold in our relationship with GOD. HOWEVER, it is in those valleys, those dark and scary places that we LEARN that our GOD CAN be trusted. We come to KNOW HIM as our ROCK, our SHELTER, our STRONG TOWER. Our GOD us unshakable. HE'S IMMOVABLE.. HE CANNOT, HE WILL NOT STUMBLE OR FAIL. HE LOVES us with an everlasting love... HE drew us to HIMSELF when we were unlovable. HE STILL DOES. These are lessons that other humans could not teach me. I had to learn these things on my own. I'm reminded of a passage from the book of Job.


Job 42:5 (New Living Translation)

5 I had only heard about you before,
but now I have seen you with my own eyes.








Yes, as much as some lessons hurt, and as badly as we might want to share them with others... I'm SO THANKFUL for the things the LORD will teach us when we're all alone - with HIM.




Okay, before I sign off I wanted to share an idea for a new meme. I'm thinking of calling it "Soapbox Sunday." It'll be a time when we can pull out those trusty ole soapboxes and share what's on our hearts. I've really enjoyed the "memes" and have noticed there's not a lot to do on Sunday. (At least not that I've found) This theme can be made as quick and easy as you'd like, or as long and informative as you wanna make it. Let me know what you think? Check back on Sunday and leave a comment if you want to participate. We can hop to each other's blogs via the comment section. If it takes off I'll see about getting a "Mr. Linky." If not.. we'll, I babble all week long to myself.. one more day sure won't kill me. LOL!!


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Monday, March 17, 2008

Miracle Monday



Wow, another "first" for me in blogland! I'm so excited to be participating in "Miracle Monday." I've seen GOD do some AMAZING things, but what I'm about to share with you is by far the GREATEST!

See, just days before our 11 year old son went HOME to be with JESUS, he began having conversations with GOD. No, I don't mean "praying" (he did lots of that too) I mean we could tell that GOD (in whatever form HE revealed HIMSELF to Brent) was talking back. (Isn't that the way prayer is SUPPOSED to work? It's usually "one-sided" on my part... I chatter away and then it's like... "In JESUS Name, Amen."

The reason I say that this wasn't prayer was because of the way it happened. See, Brent didn't know he was dying. We STOOD on GOD'S WORD and BELIEVED that Brent WOULD BE HEALED. We KNEW HE would, we just didn't know if it'd be here on earth, or in HEAVEN. Brent accepted Christ as his Savior on Easter Sunday at the age of 8. We KNEW that JESUS would have Brent no matter what and we didn't see any point in worrying our little man over something so scary.

Well, GOD did just as any loving father would do. HE spent time with HIS son and prepared him for what was to come. The first time we heard anything of that nature from Brent was when he said, "It's PERFECT, LORD, I LOVE IT!"

Another time....

"LORD, please let me look... can I look, LORD?" Later that same day, "Lord, I'm sorry I tried to look.. I just wanted to see YOU."


As his time on earth was coming to an end we heard, "It won't be long now, will it, LORD?" (He waited and listened for a response then said) "I knew it, I knew it wouldn't be long now."





Yes, I've heard of people talking with the LORD before they pass... but I'd never witnessed it for myself. We saw and heard enough to bring our hearts peace with "letting him go."


Do we serve an AMAZING GOD or WHAT??? Friends, I know this might all sound discouraging, but watching our son interact with his CREATOR was the GREATEST MIRACLE (AND BLESSING) of all time! I'd like to invite you to read all about his last days. (It's truly miraculous - and so AMAZING) If you'd like you can visit his caringbridge history by clicking here. You'll want to start reading around December 18, 2006. You can read more current family updates on the main page. caringbridge.org/ms/brentnason


You can read more on this "Miracle Monday" by visiting Beth at "A Mom's Life."

I'd like to end today by asking for prayer for another family that recently lost their baby. You can visit the Oswalt family blog here, or you can visit their son Carter's caringbridge site. THANKS SO MUCH for your prayers!



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WHOOPS! How can I forget??? Today is my first day "sporting" my new blog design. I'd like to thank Jennisa for doing a FANTASTIC job! I think it's just BEAUTIFUL!! I'm BEYOND BLESSED and am SO THANKFUL for the way it turned out. You can find her at jennisajoy.blogspot.com

THANKS AGAIN, Jennisa!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

~Then Sings My Soul Saturdays~




Wow! I'm SO EXCITED about this new "meme!" Well, it's new to me.. today is actually the second edition. As I admitted the other day... we LOVE to sing and dance with our boys! It took some serious thought as to what song I wanted to share with you. (I LOVE so many) Today I chose one by Mandisa. I had the privilege of seeing her last summer in Nashville, Tennessee. (At least I THINK it was Nashville - I'm SUCH A LOONY TOON!)

I LOVE Mandisa's version. (It's actually originally by "Mary Mary") This song is INDEED my testimony! As many of you know we lost our 11 year old son last year after an off and on two year battle with cancer. I've been "in the pit," I've been bound by fear and sorrow, and NOW my GOD has removed those "Shackles" and is daily restoring my JOY!

I KNOW you will be blessed.





Of course you'll have to overlook those nasty comments made by some of the "American Idol" judges at the end of the video. (They obviously have problems with Christianity)



For other posts on this ~Then Sings My Soul Saturdays~ check out Signs Miracles and Wonders.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Favorite Foto Friday #31 Spring Fever!

I'm running short on time this morning so I'm only going to share one picture today. This one was made a few years ago, before Brent got so sick. I LOVE to find pictures of our boys together... especially when they actually APPEAR to LIKE each other. LOL!! There is no doubt, even when fighting - these boys were CRAZY about each other.







For more fun on this "FFF" check out Sarah's Blog.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday





Today I'm thankful for dirty faces...





muscle men....





cowboys...




and pictures of our 3 handsome boys...





I'm also thankful for good times we've had, memories we've made, and those we will continue to make. I'm thankful for boys who like to dance and be crazy with their Mom... and I'm also THANKFUL for cool music!

Yes, Brent when was approaching those "preteen" years much of his life revolved around music. We sang and danced and enjoyed life to the sound of our favorite tunes. In protecting our boys we've always kept the music clean by listening to Christian music. Most of which brings tears to my eyes as so many songs remind me of times with Brent. I'm VERY HAPPY to say that I met a new friend online (Kysha) who introduced me to a new artist. Well, he's new to me. O;-) His name is Coffey and I'm proud to share a video from GodTube. Our boys & I LOVE him! I hope you enjoy...








If you'd like to read more posts on this "Thankful Thursday" then hop over to Iris' place... you'll be blessed!