Urgent: prayer for Zack

My cousin’s son is in the hospital and has been for coming up on a week. He is having some sort of serious breathing problem and is on a resperator. This is a really young kid, who has been on a breathing tube for several days, has been through a surgery, and has been living in the hospital. Please pray for him, for strength for his family, and wisdom for his doctors!


UPDATE: Zack is no longer on the breathing tube, and has actually made it out of the ICU! (Yeah, Zack!) However, he is still in the hospital and on a BiPAP (forgive me, I have no idea what that is, beyond it’s being some sort of breathing aparatus). Your continued prayers are appreciated.


Isaac is quite the athletic little man. He impressed his PE teacher the other day because hes been teaching himself how to stand on his head, and he has awesome strength and agility, too. When our very best friends came over a couple weeks ago, (to celebrate Teds 30th) Isaac was throwing beautiful spirals uphill to Jeff, who is a towering 64. It was quite a feat on Isaacs part. (Isaac was throwing better then Jeff, too :))

Isaac has been plowing along on his piano. Hes composed a couple of different little snippets of music. One hes said is the beginning of a fairy tale. Another sounds like the middle of horror movie, if you ask me. But hes doing really well, so well that were going to try something new. Ill be teaching him piano after my class ends in March, and well use the money to further his physical talent with Karate.

First Mate Blackheart Steel Tooth

Brittany got straight As this quarter. Shes extremely proud of herself. She never thought she could do it. Ted and I knew it was in her, she just had to find the motivation. Now that shes going to the same school as her best friend, they compete, I think, to see who can get the better grades. Shes still blasting out on the trumpet and doing very well. Shes also been tinkering on the piano, reading Isaacs piano books and teaching herself how to play. Shes read through the Lord of the Rings trilogy again, and is very much enjoying the Lemony Snicket books. She went to camp the weekend of Jan 21-23 with the Jr. High for a Pirate Retreat. Her pirate name is First Mate Blackheart Steel Tooth. Valerie, her best friend, is Captain Long John Val. Ill try to attach the story behind the names soon. They returned with A Pirates Life for Me sweatshirts. (No, Virginia, sorry you cannot have one :))

We Are All God’s Beloved

I was driving around town one day and noticed someone’s bumper sticker. I have a habit of reading every bumper sticker I see. Not sure quite what it is that draws me to them. Some times they’re very uplifting and I think, “What a nice person that is.” Some times they’re very vulgar and I think, “That poor person, I sure hope they find Jesus soon.” Not being a very social person, I tend to learn about people through their actions: watching them interact with other people, what they’re wearing, where I’ve met them, and reading their bumper stickers. So when I read bumper stickers I assume (not very correctly, I’m sure) it gives me a clue as to whom that person really is. After all, why would they put it there if they didn’t want people to read it and promptly associate them with the saying?

Anyway, this bumper sticker made me think of the next well-celebrated holiday, Valentine’s Day. So then I started thinking about the Valentine’s Days before Ted and I got married. Brittany was my valentine for most of it. It was awfully cute to give her a Valentine bear, almost as big as her, and a small box of chocolates. But some don’t have a Valentine at all, and then it’s just another holiday spent alone watching the reruns of “Sleepless in Seattle” on all the networks. I want you to know that you are not alone. You are God’s Beloved.

My New Testament studies have brought to my attention that Jesus was not just a victim of persecution. He was in complete control at all times during His trial, and crucifixion. My book, A Survey of the New Testament[Gundry], says “It is ‘the Jews,’ the very leaders to whom Jesus said, ‘destroy this temple’ [his body], who take and crucify Jesus. But true to no one’s taking his life from him and his laying it down on his own initiative (“For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it up again”- John 10: 17-18), he carries his cross by himself. (19:17) He did this because He loves us so much. John 15:13 says, “No one has greater love than this, to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” We don’t fully comprehend this love because it is so awesome. Ephesians calls it the “love of Christ that surpasses all knowledge,” in 3:19.

So do not feel alone this Valentine’s Day. Jesus loves you more then anyone ever could. And He is always with us. For you are God’s beloved.

Are you still wondering about that bumper sticker? Well, it was the title of this little snippet: “We are all God’s beloved.”

Have a Blessed Valentine’s Day

Our worst enemy

In my experience as an adult, I often find I am my own worst enemy. The critical battles that I face each day are usually the little struggles with myself. Am I going to read some scripture and pray for a few minutes, or would I rather read the most current political news for example.

However, as I look back on my youth, I often think my worst enemies were my siblings. That’s not to say I don’t love my brothers, today I would count them as two of my very favorite people.

I see some of the same scenarios playing out with my children. They love each other dearly, but they also drive each other nuts. Often on purpose. We have made a point over the last several years of trying to convince Isaac and Faith particularly to just walk away and come get one of us. Don’t fight over the cereal, or the new toy, or what movie to watch, just let the other child have their way and come to us. We’ll sort it out.

So this morning, after Isaac and Brittany had finished their breakfast and gone on to other things, and Faith was just sitting down to eat hers, she told Brandy, “Don’t worry, Mommy. If I fight with myself, I come get you.”