Wednesday, February 27, 2008


This was written for our church bulletin for Sunday. We will be moving, again. We are renting another church's building, but will be having church at 3:30pm instead of 10:30am....Big changes!

Are you comfortable today? Here you are sitting in a new seat in a new building. The worship team isn't in the right place. The service isn't starting at the right time. Everything is strange and new. So, are you comfortable? Probably not. Last week, we talked about how fabric stretches and how that applies to us as Christians. As I think about this new temporary building situation, I'm feeling stretched.

But stretching isn't a bad thing. Taffy has to be stretched to achieve the proper texture. Stretch-Arm-Strong was one of my favorite toys in my brother's toy box. Great inventors stretch their brains to create new wonderful things to make life better. Athletes must stretch to prevent injury. Even stretch marks can be a positive when they are the result of having a baby.

Without stretching, there is no growth. God doesn't want us to stay in the same situation. His desire is to move us into a greater ministry for Him. I think about how Hannah prayed for a son and promised God to give him back to God when he was weaned. How she must have felt when it was time to leave Samuel with Eli. As a mother, I can't imagine the emotions that she went through. The desire to have a child is so strong, but then to have to give up that child, it's inconceivable to me. We, like Hannah, have been given an incredible gift. With that gift, comes great responsibility. We must be willing to stretch, to invite others to come join us as we look toward the future.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


When learning to sew, most people will eventually come across the term "bias" at some point. For me, it was after I had already cut the fabric the wrong way. Sewing on the bias is something that few designers attempt let alone home sewers. It is one of those mysterious qualities that fabric has can be used to work for a designer to make a fabulous outfit stretch in all the right places. For the novice sewer, sewing on the bias can make a fun afternoon of sewing become a nightmare.

Fabric has three different grains, straight grain, cross-grain and the bias. The straight grain of a fabric tends not to stretch at all. It holds its shape and would sooner rip than stretch. Cross-grain fabric has some stretch. It will keep its shape, but will give some without ripping at the seams. Bias, on the other hand, is very stretchy. It not only has enough stretch not to rip at the seams, but it can be very useful to making fabric hang just so on the body.

People are like fabric. Some are straight grain folks who see things only one way; there is no stretching them. Some are cross-grain folks; they will give a little, but if you stretch them too much they will come apart at the seams. Then there are those wonderful bias cut folks; they will stretch for days and they are great for adapting to different forms and figures.

I really feel like we are in a time of stretching by God. We have moved from our old building to the theater, now we are moving again to a new building and a new time while we wait for our building to be completed. How are you cut? Can you handle the stretching from God? Or are you coming apart at the seams? As we look toward the future, we need to be ready to stretch out of our comfort zones. Our Hebrew word for the day is barak, which is an act of adoration, kneeling expectantly and quietly before God. It seems so fitting in our time as a church that we need to kneel expectantly before God. Take time this week to get on your knees before God. Thank Him for stretching us and ask Him to show our church His Perfect will for us.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Have you ever watched other people during worship service? At my old church, we choir members would joke about having the best seat in the house, because we were able to watch the entire congregation during the service. There were the benchwarmers, who looked as if they were just there to fulfill their weekly obligation; the note-takers, who were either very studious or maybe they were making out their grocery list; the sleepers, which included but was not limited to a choir member and a deacon; and the clock-watchers, who appeared to be more focused on the big clock on the back wall than what was happening in the front of the church.

There was one woman though that wasn’t like the rest. “Claire” would raise her hands in worship and sometimes even sway back and forth. Granted, she was pretty tame compared to most Pentecostals, but she was doing this in not only a Baptist church, but the biggest Southern Baptist church in town where quiet, orderly decorum if not followed would result in the elderly sitting on the third row of the piano side giving the offending worshipper a stern frown until they had the sense to slither back to their padded pew. One night at a high school function, I had the opportunity to talk with Claire. She had a genuine love for God and really wanted to let others know in the church that it was ok to express your feelings in worship. She wanted people to quit looking on the outward appearance of what was going on in the church and become intimate with the Savior. She said that she really wished more people shout, “Hallelujah!” (In most Baptist churches the only time Hallelujah is heard is when it is sung in Handel’s Messiah)

In my studies of words for praise in the Bible, I found Halal is the primary root in Hebrew for the universal praise word, Hallelujah. It means to shine, celebrate and rejoice in the Lord with a distinct sound. When was the last time you celebrated Jesus with a “Hallelujah”?

Saturday, February 9, 2008

Thursday, February 7, 2008


The other day, I sat and watched my daughter playing with an old stuffed tiger from the collection of toys I saved from my childhood. This tiger is over 30 years old; the faded, lime green, orange and yellow stripes are reminiscent of the groovy patterns in the early 1970’s. My child likes this old faded tiger more than the new toys that were given to her. She likes to wrap it up in her baby blanket and carry it around as she sings to it. So, I wonder, where does her song come from? Does she remember when I carried her around and sang to her? The joy in her eyes as she makes up new songs and sings them to the tiger is captivating to me. I love to sit and watch her play. She does not care who is watching or that the words don’t make sense to anyone but her. She just wants to sing.

God wants us to sing a new song, too. Tehillah is to sing a new, spontaneous song. It is a song from the heart. Sometimes it is called “singing in the spirit.” Tehillah takes time. It is where you set aside your schedule, your phone, your watch and just wait in God’s presence. It implies the total involvement of one’s self in praise. When was the last time you sang a new song? When was the last time you let yourself get lost in praise and worship? Forget about what the person next to you might think and spend some time in Tehillah today.

And He hath put a new song in my mouth, even praise [tehillah] unto our God: many shall see it, and fear and shall trust in the Lord. Ps. 40:3

Tuesday, February 5, 2008 Sorry, you're too fat to eat here

Good ole Mississippi lawmakers!

Sorry, you're too fat to eat here
A Mississippi state lawmaker wants to ban restaurants from serving food to obese customers - but please, don't be offended.

Byetta update and warning!

Well after 2 weeks of Byetta, I have lost 9 pounds! For the most part, I haven't had the horrible side effects that others have reported either.

Now for the warning! If you forget to eat withing the 30 minutes to an hour afterwards like they tell you to do, you will feel horrible!!! I wasn't hungry, but I had the shakes and felt like I could just sleep all day. Won't do that again!