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Archive for November, 2010

Hot Pink Post-Its

Today, Paula tells us about her recent experience where she shared her story….

In Sunday School people are taking turns testifying to The Mighty Acts of God in our lives. Well, a couple of weeks ago, it was my turn.

There was so very much to talk about I felt over-whelmed. Very quickly ‘over whelmed’ turned to ‘over-come.’ As I spoke publically for the first time about some things from my childhood I felt my organized timeline start to slip away from me. All order in my thoughts escaped me and I began to babble. I am not completely sure what the other 19 people in the room heard, but it felt like kind of a mess to me.

As time had run out for my testimony- it felt very incomplete. But I had something very important to say about my story and the mighty acts of God in it. So I stopped talking and took out 2 hot pink post-it notes and read this aloud…

 “And do you know what makes this mess OK?

It is that I can look any one of you firmly in the eyes and say… I know what hard is

But you know what? I know what hope is too.

I know what it is to be hit, And I know what it is to be healed.

I know what it is to be tempted to hate, And I know what it is to choose to have a healthy heart.

I know what it is to have harm come to my tent, And I know what it is to suit-up and storm the gates of hell.

I know what it is to hemorrhage, And I know what it is to hold His hem.

And even baring up under this heavy, heavy stuff- I still have a happy heart.

I still hear the quiet humming of the Holy Spirit in beautiful harmony with the Father and Son.”

 

I am so grateful for the hot pink post-it notes in all of our lives…that God is bigger than anything this world can throw at us…that, as Phil talked about in his sermon yesterday, despite the darkness that may surround us, it does not overcome us because God gives us that light to lead us. We concentrate on the light and the darkness cannot win.  Thank you, Paula, for sharing with us glimpses of that victory in your life.                                                                             – Kacey

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Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving week is upon us!  This morning on the way to school, Abby, Will & I prayed and thanked the Lord for short weeks and breaks, right when we needed them.  🙂  As you prepare to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, whether it be by cooking and eating a huge feast with family, by watching lots of football or the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade, by being brave and joining the masses for some Black Friday shopping, or whatever you do – my prayer is you will be constantly reminded of God’s goodness in your life and of His love for you!!!

"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. - Colossians 3:15-17

Take a look at Cathryn’s earlier post about Thanksgiving and let us know what you are thankful for this year… TurkeyDay ….and while you are at it, throw in there what some of your favorite traditions are for Thanksgiving.  One of mine is we always read the real story of Squanto to our kids on Thanksgiving. And what is the one food – dessert, dish, whatever – that you cannot wait to have on Thanksgiving? 

StillWaters will be on break until next Monday while we enjoy our family, feasts, and football.  May you have a very blessed Thanksgiving….see you soon!

                                                                                                                                                                            – Kacey

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Sum of Us

We are sharing with you a post by Paula Sonnenberg. It gives thought provoking insight into the body of Christ and how we react to our part.

Some of us are chosen- appointed; assigned to carry out
a mission-

Some of us are gifted with discernment to recognize
those people- even when they do not recognize
themselves.

Some of us are the mission field to whom, on which, the
mission is carried out.

Some of us are ‘extras’ – background noise; scenery.

Some of us march boldly forward with the message.

Some of us hesitate.

Some of us take seriously our assignment to encourage
the warriors.

Some of us hoard that encouragement because we’re
afraid of being empty ourselves.

Some of us stand eager in a receiving position.

Some of us stare blankly into the light.

Some of us turn with military precision and walk away.

Some of us flutter around safely being seen.

Some of us are chameleons.

Do you have a “some of us” statement of who you are called to be? Feel free to respond with any other comments…

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Still Here

My (Kacey’s) daughter’s favorite band ever is Superchick. I hear Superchick just about every single day at my house. We even were able to take Abby and Will to see them in concert recently. I have to admit – they were amazing.

Anyways, one of their more recent songs called “Still Here” has taken over my brain and will not let go. It’s become a tool that God is using to get me to admit that I’m not as strong as I think I am or that I think I have to be. Here are some of the lyrics:

Cross through the night 
I looked down and lost my way my light 
Brought to my knees 
Though the dark surrounds it pulls me down 
I do not sink beneath 

Still here 
Staggering on 
Through the impossible 
We remain 
I can breathe one more day 
Still here 
Still fighting on 
All we have is today 
Find my way 
To the beauty of one more day 
Still here 

Hope fades away 
When tomorrow holds no promises today 
Then today I am set free 
For amidst the tears amongst the fear 
I find the joy to be Still Here...

 

Over Labor Day weekend, I lost a baby 11 weeks into pregnancy. Not only did I lose a baby, but so did my husband, and my children lost a brother or sister. My heart was smashed into ten thousand tiny pieces – from the loss of all of the hopes and dreams I had for our family and that child and from watching my children deal with the loss as well.

 

And I lost hope. I lost trust in my Father God. I found myself wondering if He really even did care about me and my heart at all. I began questioning why, when I begged and pleaded with everything in me for a healing for this child, that God said no. Was it me? Did I displease Him in some way? Was there something that I needed to get right in my life first? I was actually disappointed in myself because I thought that when adversity struck, I’d be one of those “It is Well” kind of people – you know, it’s okay with me because I know you are still sustaining me, Lord. It didn’t quite work out in my heart like I thought it would in my head.

 

I completely fell apart. That’s not supposed to happen, you see. I’m supposed to be strong, I’m supposed to just keep my head up and keep moving – you know, just shake it off and get back in the game. I have some pretty amazing women in my family who are what I consider the strongest people I know- in their faith, in their character. I’m supposed to be strong, just as I’ve seen them as I’ve grown up.

 

But, despite having fallen apart and despite my questions and my aching heart, there were still things that had to be done. Life doesn’t stop just because your world has been shattered. Sunday school wasn’t going to teach itself, the women’s retreat was still happening, my kids still had homework and piano and still needed their mom, the blog had to be administered, I had friends who were hurting who needed me to be there for them, and, oh, and then there is my job, etc, etc., etc. Each one of you could make a really long list just like mine. I found myself believing that moving forward, doing all of these things – that was how I was going to be strong….that it meant I shouldn’t FEEL deeply about my loss. I had to just admit it was out of my control, what’s done is done, and leave it behind. And I was resentful of having to do that. Doesn’t God love me enough to let me hurt for awhile? Doesn’t He want to hold me when I’m hurting rather than just putting me back in the game so quickly? Why can’t I just hide out in some hole somewhere for awhile? Why can’t I do that?

 

Then I read a blog that compared the concept of an athlete playing hurt to our walks with God sometimes. And then I listened to my daughter’s SuperChick song “Still Here” over and over again. And I began to slowly hear what it was that God was trying to tell me. In my weakness, He is strength. And while I may feel like I am staggering on through life, I am still here because of His love for me, even through those things that feel impossible to overcome. And it’s ok to stagger on as long as I am moving forward with Him. And, believe it or not, God can still use me, despite my pain – in fact, He can use me even more because of it. In my weakness, He is stronger because I’m out of the way.

 

So God doesn’t want me to just bury my struggles and move on. He wants to deal with them with me, step by step- even if the steps are slow or really really small. He loves me enough to know that staying in that place of hopelessness isn’t what is going to heal my heart. And that He can still use me, even in my struggles. And, in the middle of my tears and amongst all of my fears, God wants to show me a deep sustaining joy like I’ve never known before.

 

So – I’m still here, and on good days, I may move forward with confidence, and on bad days, I may barely stagger foward…but  I am moving forward and learning more and more about our Savior with each and every step.

                                                                                              – Kacey

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Turkey Day!

Let the countdown begin! Fourteen days until turkey and dressing!!! I am a huge fan of Thanksgiving. Love it, love it, love it! The food, the grocery store shopping, the cooking, the visiting, the laughing, the all day grazing!

Just thinking of this holiday makes me smile. I have so many great memories of this time of year. I remember my Memommy making her famous cornbread dressing. I remember making a late night grocery store trip with my sister, Megan and my mom (the night before Thanksgiving) while the store was practically empty, and we danced down the aisles to the Christmas music. I remember introducing Jerod to my family for the first time eight years ago. I remember eating Thanksgiving with Jerod’s family the next year, at which time his Pappaw informed  eighteen year old me that if I did not marry Jerod, I would owe him for the dinner. 🙂 I remember packing up our Thanksgiving meal in Waco to take up to the hospital when my nephew Colter was born on Thanksgiving day. I have always loved everything about Thanksgiving…except for that moment when someone says, “Let’s all go around and say what we are thankful for.” As someone who does not like having a group of people stare at her as she speaks, I dreaded this moment.

I would immediately become nervous. What am I thankful for? I would try to be unique and creative, because I felt like there were certain expectations of what you said, and I did not like to say the “usual” responses because I felt like that was a “cop-out”. However, when I think about it now, that is just plain silly. When reflecting on this past year and what I am thankful for, the answers seem like the “usual” response, but they are anything but mundane to me.

I am exceedingly grateful for a healthy and perfectly created baby girl. I can hardly remember what it was like before she came into our lives, and that is not just from the sleep deprivation. 🙂 She has completely turned my world upside down, and I am thankful for every high and low because it means she is here with me.

Elizabeth and Cathryn

I am thankful for God’s provision so that I could resign my teaching job and be a full-time mommy and wife. It is the most challenging and most enjoyable job.

I am thankful for support from my husband who allows me to vent and cry when I’m frustrated or babble on about all the new things Elizabeth did that day, for my parents who are literally minutes away, for my family close by and even those hundreds of miles but only a phone call away, and for a church community that is there is to hold up my arms when I feel like I can’t any more.

For all this, I am sincerely thankful.

-Cathryn

Without concern of any expectations, what are you thankful for? You can list one or many things and feel free to copy and paste pictures into your comment. I’d love to see what you are thankful for!

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Little Girl Gone

    Little Girl Gone by: Missy Caporale
 
A little girl in a great big world
Scared but not alone
She bends her knee and calls His name
To her His face is shown
 
The beauty that surrounds Him
Her words can not describe
Her Maker, Lord, Redeemer
Now standing by her side
 
No longer is she frightened
As her focus is on Him
She’s where she’s longed to be
In her Daddy’s arms again
 
So sweetly and so lovingly
He takes her by the hands
He sings a love song over her
As the two begin to dance
 
Dancing with her Father
Her toes upon His feet
They dance among the flowers
But it’s His fragrance that’s so sweet
 
Alone with her Daddy
He carries her along
As their time together ends
He sets her feet upon a rock
 
Renewed by her Father’s love
Strengthened by her King
The frightened little girl
Is no longer to be seen

    Thank you, Missy, for sharing your heart with us and for these beautiful words describing your Poppa God.  Now it’s your turn, ladies.  Using one word, how would you describe your Father God?  No right or wrong answers here – don’t  give the “churchy” expected answers – like HOLY or ALMIGHTY or whatever.  What does Father God mean to you?

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Favorite Scriptures

Happy Thursday everyone! Today I wanted to quickly remind all our readers that this blog is open for anyone to send us a post. We want to hear what is on the hearts of the Women of the Springs and the “honorary” women of the springs. It can be serious or funny, complex or simple; we want to hear your voice. You never know how what God is putting on your heart can impact someone else’s life.

If you would like to share with us, please send your post in an email to springsstillwaters@gmail.com. Kacey and I will receive it there and get it on the blog. Look forward to seeing what comes in!

  For today, we would love for you to tell us what your favorite scripture(s) is(are). Feel free to editorialize as much or as little as you like!

-Cathryn

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