Tuesday, January 30, 2007

A Thankful People

"Praise the Lord! I will praise the LORD with my whole heart,
In the assembly of the upright and in the congregation.
The works of the LORD are great,
Studied by all who have pleasure in them.
His work is honorable and glorious,
And His righteousness endures forever.
He has made His wonderful works to be remembered;
The LORD is gracious and full of compassion.
He has given food to those who fear Him;
He will ever be mindful of His covenant.
He has declared to His people the power of His works,
in giving them the heritage of the nations."
Psalm 111:1-6 (NKJV)

"Enter His gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise;
give thanks to Him and praise His name."
Psalm 100:4 (NIV)

On Sunday, our church took pause to reflect on the last year and to celebrate the 9th anniversary of our church (It's hard to think that I have been involved for about a year now). We took time to reflect on where we have been... almost like when God would command the people to build an alter so that the Israelites would remember the things that He has done and that it would be remembered through the genenerations. We remembered what things God has done among our congregation in the last year(s).

There was a testimony time and it was a sweet time to look into the hearts of the people as they shared joyous times and also hard times... but through it all we saw the story of God's faithfulness, justice, love, and glimpses of how He brought glory to Himself through joys and trials. Husband and I were asked to be prepared to share. What we thought would be "fairly simple" was quite emotional. To give you a peek in for those who were not able to be with us there... Husband shared how we were thankful for the way that God brought us together, the way in which He had uniquely prepared us to accept the things of our past, how the church family made me feel so at home, and a few other things. I then talked more about the church family and the women in our church, two little girls who have endeared themselves to my heart (and how we celebrate that one was there to celebrate with us because we thought we would lose her a couple of weeks ago), and then we thank our pastor for how he shows us the love of the church in such a powerful way.

There was more, but it would take more than my lifetime to list it all here. It was such a sweet time in honoring the Lord for what He does and continues to do in the midst of His Body at Emmanuel.

We are to be a thankful people... how often does that slip from our minds when we are in the midst of a "want-tantrum."

I think that I will ponder over this last Sunday evening for awhile. What a wonderful reminder that it's not about us...

What are you thankful for?

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Heat Restored

Just a little update...

We do in fact now have heat in our house. Thanks to many of you for asking!

We had no heat for one night and our house dropped down to about 59 degree and the next morning we had on all the lights trying to warm it up a bit. Husband worked from home so he could take care of things with the gas people and I ran around the house trying to get all of our Christmas decorations away for the next 10 months or so (nutty!) Oddly enough, the gas people never stopped by our house! We realized they had restored everything to our neighbors house so we opted to light our pilot lights ourselves. So, about 2:00 PM on Tuesday there was heat radiating through our home and my hands started to defrost.


So, there you have that update...

In other news we will be heading to Austin around March 31 for my sweet friend Amanda's wedding. FUN! In other travels, it's official, we will be heading to Ireland in April for about 9 days. We are super excited for the upcoming adventure... Ireland we are coming "home!" (Our last name is an Irish name and I am Scotch-Irish, my original last name was McIntosh and my ancestors changed it when they came here for a variety of reasons to Tash)

We have been listening to the speakers from the Auburn Avenue Pastors Conference (that was held Jan 8-10) and the theme was the "Great Commission." They are quite interesting and have caused some fun discussion between Husband and I. We can't wait to listen to more... We have only heard the first three... more to come!

until next time...

Monday, January 15, 2007


On a somewhat random note... it's COLD!

Okay, so I know that some of you may just think "whatever, you live in Arizona... suck it up."

Humor me for a moment...

Husband and I ventured up to Prescott this weekend and then took a fun little drive up to Sedona and Flagstaff. The trip to Flag was to allow me to play in the snow for a bit... which was quite fun! Well, as we returned to the Valley of the Sun the temperatures were indeed getting warmer (not much) than the higher altitudes. We looked forward to coming home to our warm cozy home.

For those of you that don't know Arizona and much of the west is experiencing an unexpected cold snap (Californians afraid they will lose $1 billion in citrus) with below freezing temperatures the last couple of nights and the same expected for tonight.

Back to our story... we arrived home to find our house slightly chilly and the heater and water heater not working properly. The final test was the gas stove... no go. We did some calling and "investigative" surfing on the net to find that there is a gas outage in the area due to the colder temperatures and the higher demand on the gas source. Nice. The house is staying at a toasty 63 degrees right now (with all the lights on) and outside right now about 41... temps dropping.

Not as bad as some of my friends in the Midwest who haven't had power for three days... but it's kind of entertaining... ha ha ha ha!! You just gotta laugh.

More later....

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

New Year, New Adventures

Welcome, 2007!

What a year 2006 was and we have so much to look forward to in 2007. As I reflect on 2006 it has been a year full of blessings and learning. Sometimes I laugh at where I was and where I am now. Things like dating Husband, then breaking up with him in January, and then getting back together at the end of January... and a few short months later we were engaged and then married. WOW. I have learned a lot about myself, about Husband, and a lot about the sovereignty of God through our relationship. I look forward to learning even more...

...I traveled a lot, too! So did Husband. Back and forth for the both of us between Phoenix and Albuquerque. Husband made his first international trip to Japan. He was able to visit the CREC church there which is pretty cool. For me, I was all over the place in the months leading up to our wedding. I was in Gettysburg, PA for a conference that took place in various locations on the battlefield, New Orleans for Hurricane Katrina Relief, Alaska (where I met incredible people and watched God do amazing things in lives of cadets from around the country), and a sundry of other places. Together Husband and I traveled to Nebraska to visit my family, to Colorado for his family reunion, Seattle for our honeymoon, San Diego for a conference, and most recently he took me on my first trip to Disneyland with a side trip back to San Diego. Again... WOW.

2007 looks to be promising in the area of travel as well... we hope to go to the Grand Canyon (which will be a first for me - most of my travel has been to the eastern part of the US and Europe), back to Nebraska and Colorado to visit our Grandparents, Ireland, and we will find out at the end of the month if we head back to Japan. (Not to worry... there will be trips to New Mexico, too!)

There are at least four weddings on the calendar (one of which I am in) and we are excited for the next chapters of our friend's lives. One of Husband's Christmas gifts to me were tickets to the March Josh Groban concert... so we look forward to that. I always look forward to birthday's and other celebrations, too.

I think the thing that we look forward to the most is growing in the grace and knowledge of the Lord. We are excited about what He will be doing in our lives - we know that joy and sadness awaits... but we await it all in eager anticipation because He is in control and ultimately SOVEREGIN over all.

2007... I think it will be a great year.