I'm not a petite, soft spoken, gentle woman. I'm a tall, blunt, vigorous lady who loves to make people laugh. I'm competitive, and can usually be located in a room by my loud laugh or animated motions. I have a twisted sense of humor and occasional foul mouth. This is basically for tying in life's quirks with God's sincere goodness, pursuit, forgiveness and ultimate joy.
Moms...for the past 2 days I've gotten a little taste of what you experience at times. What's that? Lack of privacy. Thursday night Maddie and Ella spent the night at our house so yesterday morning they were playing in the house while Dad and Eric were working outside. So I was getting a shower before work and next thing I know Ella is in my bathroom asking me to fasten her belt. Thankfully it's not a clear glass door!! Rather surprised I opened the door slightly and said, "Ella I'm a little busy at the moment can I help you when I get out?" Her sweet reply was of course yes. When I was done I walked into the kitchen and asked what I needed to help them with. I was then told Pop went ahead and did it for them. My response? "Ask Pop first next time!"
This morning I was getting a shower. Next thing I know I hear footsteps in my bathroom. It's Ella...AGAIN. Her reason was to tell me, "We're here!" Seriously? It just makes me laugh now but from now on I think my room door will be locked. That way I don't have anymore surprise visits.
Moms, I'm sorry that you have to experience this sort of awkwardness often.
I am so blessed. Yes, I screw up and do it often but am so thankful for the grace of our God. My family is so encouraging as are some very precious friends. I was able to talk to 2 very great ladies(you know who you are) tonight about some stuff and parts of what they said was reaffirmed when I was reading the intro to the study we're going to do in Sunday School. The study is called Jaded and it looks like it's going to be goooood! The author asks us to write down about some of our disappointments and how we felt after them. He then asks us how God has reacted after we disregarded Him and about paint we've experienced from that. A little bit later there were a few lines that struck me...tonight these words were "just for me." "He chose-and still chooses- to engage with people even when they hurt Him through their disobedience. He doesn't give up, He still moves forward." How awesome is that? I've been praying for a desire to thirst for God more and tonight He showed me where I needed to start! He knows that I screw up and am one inconsistant woman but doesn't give up on me. He still moves forward. Sounds like a familiar blog title? Oh wait...yep, sure does. I haven't been living by this lately. I have gotten so frustrated with myself about backsliding in different areas. I focus on the negative rather than the positive at times and that's going to cease. God doesn't focus on it...He chooses to "keep moving forward." For that I am so thankful and love the fact that we get to start anew. I'm looking forward to diving into this study and to see what God has in store for all of us as the year progresses! Now it's time for bed...tomorrow is my craziest day of the week.
Ha...ok not really popular demand but nonetheless, I'm back baby! I've felt so busy lastely and by the end of the day when had some time to blog I either didn't feel like it or just went to bed. Where do I start? I'm officially a college student again!! Can you believe it? I've paid for my classes, bought 3 of my books and got my student ID. I'm giddy with excitement and that's just strange. Crud, does this mean I'm going to be a nerd? In all honesty, I hope so. I have a desire to learn and move forward with my life. I'm striving for all A's...and that A does NOT stand for absent this time. :)
With the bible study we've been doing, "no other gods," God has shown me what I've been putting before him and how I've not been trying to see things through His eyes. That's my prayer now, that He will give me His eyes so I can see things with more understanding and love. Compassion for others has increased as has conviction of my poor attitude with people who get on my nerves. Be careful what you as for! My patience for others has even increased some so that's a plus! I'm trying to enjoy life and making a choice to do so every day and be thankful. God has me in the place for a reason and I'm choosing to be happy about it, no matter what place everyone around me is in. It's really neat to stop and look around and see how God has been weaving the parts of our lives and how it all clicks. He really does care about our day-to-day.
Disney World countdown...34 days!!!! I am so looking forward to that trip with my awesome family. It will be entertaining to say the least.
I'm about to go do some 1 mile thing with Mom and Dad at Walnut Square Mall so that's why I'm up this stinkin early on a Saturday.
Wow. Life has seemed so busy lately and I just haven't made time to post on here. I can't believe it's the middle of July...that means school starts one month from yesterday! Let's see...
Last weekend was SETN Tres Dias weekend #30 for the men and from what I've heard, God definitely showed up in mighty ways! The women's weekend is actually in progress right now and I can't wait to hear about how He has worked!! Please pray for those working and the women going through. I so look forward to hearing about how God worked in and through those women!!! Oh yeah, I had mentioned two of my guy friends, Drew & Brandon, were going through this men's weekend but something came up for both of them so they're now planning to go through weekend #31...here's hoping.
So this one is short and sweet. That's a first! Mainly because I have to head to that run/walk thing. More posts to follow...
I'm in Florida til Thursday and must say that I'm loving it very much. We left out Saturday morning and went to the beach yesterday & today. We've also layed out on the dock a bit. Oh and get this, I have already read 1 book and have started another. I CAN READ!!! I know that was doubted by some (my brother in law was probably one). We've watched movies and played games and have just enjoyed being awaya!! I do miss my family, I'm not going to lie. I'm so blessed by them and am so stinkin thankful for where God has brought us from and to where we are now. We actually kinda like each other. :) Maddie and Ella both asked me yesterday after finding out I was in Florida, "Are you at Disney World without us?" There was some disappointment in their voices. It was sweet, they are precious and no, I'm not at Disney World without them. Mom, Dad, Tammy & even Eric...I miss y'all too and look forward to seeing you as well. :) Maddie Belle & Ella Bella, I can't wait to see you and show you your surprises. Be sweet and pick on Pop & Daddy for me while I'm gone.
It's crazy how thigns can change. Later on this week it will mark 1 year since I met him. A few months later most of us thought he was "the one." We're not for one another and that's been confirmed many times. Wade told me back in Feb. that he was part of the healing process and that God used him to put some pieces back together. I'm still thankful for those words, Wade.
I've been over it for awhile but am really excited about what the future holds. Yeah, I get impatient at times...hard to believe huh? Haha. I know that God has something great in store and look forward to that. It won't be easy but it will be right and God ordained. How could it be any better?
Well gangstas, after rambling I'm going to sign off and enjoy more vacation.
Yep, get ready...to be bitter. J/K. In just 7 days I'll be at the beach!!!! Oh yeah, by the way, I'm pretty stinkin excited (as if you couldn't tell). I'm quite thankful for this trip I must say. I'll be going to Florida with Kimberly & her parents for a week. Where if Florida? Does it really even matter? If so, sorry cuz I don't remember the name of the town. All I remember is that we're staying at Kimberly's Mawmaw's and it's on the east coast. The time is great because we'll be getting some much needed R & R plus a tan the just before Alfred & Heidi's wedding.
This morning was the Riverbend Run and I must say it was quite enjoyable. Mom and I participated in it with Dad. Just to clarify, he did the 10K and we did the 5K. It was a little tougher than expected but didn't kill us!!! I think this was my first one since last year's Peachtree. My official time was 37:28 and I'm rather happy with that. It was fun spending the morning w/Mom & Dad after the race. Oh and Pop placed 3rd in his age group!!! It was also neat because as I was jogging over the bridge I saw Brittany's husband, Jimmy. Brittany if you were there I hate that I didn't get to see you & Ada!
Towards the end of the race I saw father and his little girl and they reminded me so much of Dad and me at my first race. The dad, Hunter, kept encouraging his daughter, Savannah, to keep going and that they were almost there. "Just a little bit longer, you're doing great." Well, I usually talk to strangers. Surprised? Didn't think so. :) So I started to tell her she was doing great and asked them their names. I also told Hunter that he reminded me of my father and assured him that was a good thing. It was a rather heart warming finish to that race and made my heart smile.
Ok peeps, I'm off to bed. Getting home after midnight last night and getting up at 6:00 this MORNING don't mix well...
He knows what we need! I had planned to just crash early but didn't that didn't happen. I decided to get out an old journal and start that back up again. In the process I found something I forgot purchasing months ago. A book by Beth Moore, "Discovering God's Purpose for your Life."
Hello! Coincidence? I think not! It was like one of those big flashing billboards that Tammy and I want sometimes. "My determined purpose is that I may know Him, that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person." Philippians 3:10 (Amplified Bible) Beth talks about how there is a constant dispute going on within us between our inner man & things of the Spirit. To truly know our purpose we are to truly know God. In knowing his character, we are to learn his plans. DUH! This has been said to me by others before in different words and it was like a light bulb went off above my head...ding ding ding!!!
Then when I signed on here I saw two precious comments that reaffirmed God's knowing his plans and that I'm right where I'm supposed to be. God used you two ladies tonight in that!
A lot of you know the main thing I said after going through Tres Dias. "I got my joy back." Well this quote from the book makes me all happy inside. "He is determined to pursue you because He knows the greatest joy in your life will come from His plan for you."
Isn't God great? He meets us where we are and always comes through!
The past few days have been kinda blah. In all honesty, I don't know all of why I feel this way. Part of it is because the devil is trying to get at me like he does us all. Today marked 5 years from my high school graduation and I'm not anywhere close to where I feel I should be. I'm frustrated with myself for getting so far off track. College diploma? Nope. Married? Nope. Permanent job? Nope. Oh and I started to backslide with my eating and have gained a little weight back...that's just frustrating because I knew I was doing it and at the time I didn't do anything about it.
As I was typing the above, God reminded me of something that I've been ignoring all day...Whose standards do we compare to? The world's. I'm human and I admit it and it just ticks me off. I'm unorganized, selfish, petty and the list goes on. Thankfully there is God that loves me and has a plan...I just wish I knew what that plan was. There is no need to compare myself to anyone's life because mine is different. Please pray that the Lord's plan will be revealed to me or that I would receive some sort of peace or direction about where I'm going. I must say, I'm glad HE knows and is in control because there is no telling what kind of trouble I'd be in if it were up to me!
What now? I'm back on the healthy wagon, trying to dive deeper in the the Word (easier said than done for me) and am about to sleep. The only option is to hold tight to the Father and to keep moving forward right? Grrrr...sometimes words come back to bite ya in the rear? It sure does make feeling sorry for yourself hard to do. Started this one out all bummed and am kinda refreshed now. He's a great God huh?
I went back and forth about posting this before or after work and have a little time so here it goes...
Thank you all for your support and encouragement with my weight loss/getting healthy. I have appreciated you more than you know. It's been so helpful to me to keep going with it on days that I get frustrated. Special props goes out to Mom who has been awesome but we already knew that!!
It's official folks, I stepped on the scale this morning. 20 POUNDS DOWN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 20.2 to be exact but who's counting? Oh wait, that'd be me! :)
*Jen-Dawg (Oh, that's my nickname from Ryan...it's fun.)
I want to share with you something from a bible study I'm doing. It really reminded me of something me tonight! It's one that I felt called to go through again. "Becoming a Woman of Purpose"
2 Corinthians 3:18 "And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit"
"The on marvelous secret of a holy life lies not in imitating Jesus, but in letting the perfections of Jesus manifest themselves in my mortal flesh. Sanctification is "Christ in you." It is HIS wonderful life that is imparted by faith as a sovereign gift of God's grace." - Oswald Chambers
I'll be the first to admit that I do not always reflect the Lord's glory. But that is a growing desire of mine. He has blessed me with so much more than I ever could deserve and I don't show enough gratitude or praise for that. By wearing my emotions on my sleeve, it's evident to others where my heart is that day...and all too often it's not glorifying God. His glory reigns and is shown in everything around us. Whether it be from the smile and laugh of a child or in the gorgeous stars at night. So let's try and reflect that gorgeous glory of our creator!!
"To God be the glory great things he hath done." ----TRUE THAT YO!
These two little girls bring so much joy to the lives of my family and many others. I've said it before and will many times more...I love them "a whole stinkin bunch!" There really is never a dull moment in our crazy family. Below are just a few pictures of the past few weeks..
Here's Ella the day she got her ears pierced! She's looking so grown up and is definitely a big ole mess!
Maddie and I chilled out at my house for a little while yesterday afternoon and took a few silly pictures...here's one that she requested be put on my blog. As many of you know, I've taught your kids to say "peace out yo" and a few other "gangsta" sayings. Maddie's peace out is a little backwards but it's so cute!
Goofy girls!!! I'm not sure what inspired the little pink and little blue riding hood attire but it certainly suits them. How cute are they?
...to get married (or engaged). Fa la la la la-la la la (barf!) ONLY KIDDING! I'm in the stage of life now where it seems to be happening all around me. Well, it's been around often but I'm in the stage of life where it's more noticeable to me. HA! I'm going to be honest here and don't really expect or desire responses to this post...I'm just laying it out there. This whole blog thing is great for accountability. I'm not going to lie, it's been hard at times being the single one again. I've wanted to date some since ending things with Wes but God is showing me things. It's not the right time. I need to lay that desire at HIS feet and leave it for good. It's not about what I want. It's about serving Christ and doing work that glorifies Him. I believe that being married one day is in His plan for me but until then, I need to be focused on showing the love of Christ in a practical way.
Going back to school will also be a big time consumer! Going to classes is a must this time around...and I'm still looking forward to it. With the crazy schedule I have, I won't be able to help out with the youth anymore but God has given me a peace about that. I do hope to get plugged into some other type of ministry near by though. Please pray for God's guidance there as well.
OH, back to the wedding thing(A.D.D!!! A.D.D!!!) ...I'm one of the 2 maids of honor for Kimberly and am super excited about that. It will be fun to help plan things over the next 11 months and to keep her sane!! It's really great to see her with Tony. They truly love one another and it's such a blessing to be around the two of them. She's getting to marry her best friend and that's what she's always wanted and is what she deserves.
I'm so excited...and I just can't hide it! It's official folks, 3 guys who are very dear to me are going through the upcoming Tres Dias men's weekend!!!!!! Drew, Brandon & Whit (Lacey's brother).Please be praying for these guys and their families as the weekend draws closer. Like always, the devil is going to try and interfere. These guys all have a heart for the Lord and desire to attend (at least at the moment they want to go...they might change their mind as it approaches though.) Also, please pray for a renewing in their relationship with the Father and a clear vision for them to see His plan and open ears and hearts to hear His voice. It brings sooo much joy to my heart to just think about what all God has in store for these guys before, during and after that weekend.
In my blog that is. I get so caught up in things and don't think to post until it's the time of day where I don't really have the time to post. Like many of you, I'm plum tuckered out by the time I am home to stay and am ready to crash. I'm trying to catch up on reading and posting so be patient...or don't but either way, this is who I am. :)
This just in on the weight lost update...I've officially lost 16.8 lbs!!!!! I've said this to a few people, "I have more than one curve now!" I must say, that has started my day off on a happy note fo real yo! (Gotta add the gangsta when I get the chance haha.) I have to give a special shout out to Mom who has been very instrumental in this. She's held me accountable and started out counting calories for me because I wouldn't have done it. Dad has been really supportive in this whole thing as well as Tammy, Eric and Kimberly and several other people. I really appreciate all the support!!
I dearly love my brother-in-law and am so glad my beautiful sister married him. We laugh a lot together and even more at one another. This is one of those times. For those of you who think my family is a bunch of rednecks...here's your proof!!! He's been working hard on their pool lately and this was what I saw pulling in their driveway last week. In his defense, the weather was hot and humid so I guess this is what he does to stay cool. Oh and I was told that his shirt had been off earlier...eye candy? Sure thing!!
Let's just say that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree. Many of you have heard or made comments about Maddie being a lot like Tammy and Ella being a lot like Eric. Here's more proof.
Yesterday she rolled up her pants just for the heck of it...I guess trying to act like her daddy. Oh and notice that she is sporting the one slipper on and one slipper off look. Oh dear!
As for the sweethearts...here are Maddie and Ella all smiles in the car yesterday afternoon. They are absolutely gorgeous and really are sweethearts. Girls I love you a whole stinkin' bunch!! You bring so much joy to my heart and laughter to my day. -Aunt Jen
Ok so I'm going to add a funny quote from Ella in this update. Thanks to Mary Beth, I am enjoying a lovely song she taught us this weekend, "SMRT, you are so smart." Well, I got Ella to sing that to Eric tonight and after singing it correctly a few times she said, "MSRT, I am so smart." I have to admit, that made me laugh...a lot.
This weekend was so much fun and such a blessing. It was nice to just get away for a few days and relax. I, along with all the other ladies, needed that. I really enjoyed getting to know you all better and just straight chillin w/my girls. Gotta keep it gangsta!!
Accountability update...I have now lost 7.6 lbs in the past 3 or so weeks so that is a nice start. I go first thing tomorrow morning to register for classes and am so excited. I'm sticking with the Psych. major but Shana made me think the other night and for that I am thankful. In all honesty, I haven't prayed about this near as much as I should have. Definitely a much needed thing. Believe me now yo, I'ma prayin!!
This weekend it gets finalized. I'm finally going to meet up with Wes in Kennesaw on Saturday to give him his stuff. It's relieving to get it over with but at the same time it's so strange. For 9 months or so, marriage was definitely the mindset I had and thought was coming but now, that mindset has to leave. I'm glad we're not together anymore and am thankful for the "signs" but I'm a girl and do miss having someone by my side at times. In all honesty, I'm finally coming into a place where I'm good with not having that extra priority in my life. With so many things changing, it gives me some time for new things. I look forward to dating again when the time is right.
So that was basically random and all over the place but seriously, did you expect anything other than that?
Some may be curious as to why I'm posting these. I'm the queen of starting something and not finishing. It's a habit have had since I was a child and I don't want it anymore. I need accountability...I'm a slacker at times. I want to be a better example and witness and being a slacker doesn't necessarily help in those areas.
1. Grow closer to Christ. Sounds cheesy huh? Perhaps, but it's true. I want to know Him more and learn more about His character. Maddie really pushes me to desire that. Her thirst for knowledge in the Bible is so great. She loves Jesus and reads her Bible all the time. If a 5 year old can do that, why can't I as an adult? The Lord pursues me on a daily basis and I reject those pursuits time and time again. That's so silly and selfish of me. I want it from an earthly man but not from my Father in Heaven? That just doesn't add up. He's the one that is worth the time and effort. My focus needs to be on Him.
2. Lose weight. I want to be healthy and in shape. Yes, I DEFINITELY want to be thin but I do need to look out for my health too. I don't know what runs in my biological family and that's a little frightening. Plus, I've got 4 flipping weddings to go to over the next year(that's another blog topic in itself). One of which I am in...next April. I want to lose at least 80 lbs. 4 down...76 to go!!!! It won't be easy but it's HAS to happen.
3. Become more organized. With starting back to school I'll need it. I need an organized environment to study in and will have to keep up with more stuff from classes. This will cut down on stress levels tremendously! Again, another weak point but it will be a good thing to do.
There are many more but those are the 3 main ones for now. They are rather big ones but they are important. If you see me step out of line...pop me. I give you permission. Just don't tell Eric that ok?
That about sums up my life right now. I feel like such a girl. Yes, I know that's a good thing considering the fact that I am a girl but I'm sure you know what I mean. There is so much change going on right now. Change is a good thing and I'm thankful for it because God definitely uses it but it certainly seems overwhelming at times. I don't understand how some people can't really feel emotion. It's heart breaking to think that some people in this world go through life never really caring for or deeply connecting with another human being. It really baffles me and just makes me want to cry every time I think about it. I know that God can use those people but I wonder how. What do they do about the "age of accountability?" Do they even have one? Is it possible for them to comprehend the love of Christ? I am so thankful for where God has brought my family. He is still working and I'm so glad because there's no telling where we'd be without His hand in our lives. I look forward to seeing how He continues to work things out. School...Yep, I'm going back to Dalton State in August-full time. I don't think I've ever been this excited about college. Hey, remind me of that in 6 months or so when I'm tired of it. :) I am basically starting over and am glad. I am trying not to look at things as if I'm behind anymore...that just bums me out and I'm not a fan of that feeling. I'm going to get my Associates Degree in Psychology. I'm not entirely certain of what I'll do with it but I'm seriously considering becoming a Child Life Specialist or a Child Psychologist. Either way, I'm really wanting to get in the mind of a child and see all the things that contribute to their behavior, thoughts and etc... I want to do what I can to help them. Oh and we're going to re-do my room this summer. I'm looking forward to that because this room is OLD SCHOOL! Um...not that there is anything wrong with that. Ha. It's going to be a long process but it will be worth it. Plus, it looks like I'm going to be here through college so I might as well enjoy the scenery. Did I ever tell you that my family is awesome? Because they certainly are. My lovely sister helped me clean out my room on Saturday and that was a chore. That's actually what started the re-decorating discussion so I'm pumped.
Ok so that's enough rambling for this one. I'm probably about to post one or two more blogs just to get it all out. Thanks for reading and beware...If you think I'm a long winded talker, I'm sorry... it can be worse with typing. :)
So last night I went out with some wonderful ladies for dinner and it was, as always, an absolute blast!!! It was great catching up with you all and the laughs were definitely needed. Beth, we missed you though. After dinner I went to Cyndee & David's house to anxiously await a phone call from Kimberly. Her boyfriend, Tony, had planned to propose to her last night and she said yes!! I stayed there until a little after midnight and decided to come home and crash.
As soon as I pulled into our driveway it hit me! OH SNAP!! I can't get in the front door because we don't have a front porch at the moment. It's been an eventful week at our house so the last thing I wanted to do was wake up Mom & Dad. I cringed as the garage door opened and closed but thankfully they were both sound asleep and didn't hear it. Next thing I realized was that no one has a flippin key to the back door and Mom locks it every night before going to bed. Literally holding my breath as I walk up to the door, I try to turn it and sure enough...it's locked. What should I do? If I knock then they'll have to wake up or be startled. So for some reason I decided to try and sleep in the utility room...aka Dad's office. Thankfully I had some sweat pants in my bag that I could wear. So I curled up with a blanket I found out there and used my jeans as a pillow. Sure enough, I couldn't go to sleep. My mind raced back and forth about recent events (let's just save that for another post) so I looked around the room for any other things I could wear since it was getting a little cold so thankfully I found two socks. I think one belonged to each of my parents but hey, socks are socks. I then noticed a long sleeve t-shirt on Dad's chair and thought, "SCORE!!!" So I put that over my current shirt and curled back up to try and sleep.
After sleeping about 20 minutes, I woke up. I then remembered there was a sleeping bag in the trunk of my car. Going back out to the car would require opening and closing that loud garage door again and potentially risk waking up my parents. "CRAP!" Yeah, I typed crap so don't let the little ones read this haha. At this point I got to thinking that once they saw me just laying in the floor that morning might cause a negative reaction and tons of thoughts to race through their mind so laying down might not be a good idea.
Three o'clock rolled around and I saw a light on!! Sweet action my friends, sweet action indeed. Then, the light went off. I didn't want to run up to the door and knock b/c that might freak them out at three in the morning. Soooo I sent Dad a text message asking him to unlock the door. HOME SWEET HOME! Why did I not just knock on the stinkin door when I got home? Both parents asked that question. I was trying to be nice but ended up being "special" in that moment. (I'm using Dad's definition of special in this on and it means: stupid-in a loving way of course.)
After all this rambling I do have a Jesus note to end it. I am so thankful for where the Lord has brought me. Last night gave me a very tiny glimpse to what being homeless might be like. No, I wasn't in pain or suffering but I certainly didn't like the cold, concrete floor of that utility room. I, like most Americans, am quite comfortable in my way of living. The path I was going down a few years ago would have gotten me into more trouble, in a lot of debt and more than likely separated from my family. I am soooo thankful that our Father pulled me out of that dreadful hole!! And thankful that I get to live in that comfy house with my fabulous parents.
Goodnight all. I've got some sleep to catch up on. Goodness knows I don't need two "special" moments in one week.