Wednesday, April 28, 2010

New journals

I went and bought two new journals today. I love to journal and have journaled pretty regularly since I was in high school; however, these journals are not for me. These are going to be journals I keep for my children. I got the idea from my dear friend, Pam Sharp. She told me recently about how she has kept journals for her children ...chronicling special times in their lives,etc.

I definitely don't do well with pictures/photo albums and such so this might work for me! My intent is to use these journals as places to write about special things that happen in their lives, but also to write down prayers for them. Taylor has been giving me a really hard time lately (please pray for her if you are reading this, and pray for me as well!!) and I am just trusting that God will soften and change her heart. I think it will be helpful to write down specific prayers for both Taylor and Zach, prayers for their future spouses, for their friendships, for their relationships with God and then watch and see how God works in their precious lives.

I will also include Phillip in this journaling endeavor if he wants to participate. I think it will be a really cool gift to give them someday, maybe when they get married (after age 30, of course!!) So, off to journal entry #1 in both journals today!!

Monday, April 26, 2010

I am a broken funnel

I had the privilege to go to Winston Salem this past Friday night to speak to a group of ladies on Saturday morning at Reynolda Pres. Church. I stayed in a hotel Friday night, which was utter bliss...because I was able to sleep in a room that was as dark as a cave!! (-:

I got to the church on Saturday morning around 8:15am (which if you know me, that is EARLY for a Saturday!!) and the meeting was to begin at 9am. I went early because I was asked to come early so a group of ladies could pray for me before I spoke. That was really great because I realized Friday night as I was praying about my talk on Saturday morning, that it is hard sometimes to walk into a room cold turkey and speak to a group of people who have never seen you before! I was praying for a quick repoire with the ladies I was speaking to, and that they would hear what God wanted them to hear. I also prayed that my words would not be my own and that I would speak with clarity.

After being at the church for a bit, the women who were going to pray with me came and got me. Once these women started praying, I was definitely touched and thought "I would love to have these women come and pray with me every day!!" They seemed to all have very intimate relationships with God. One lady in particular spoke words I will never forget. She started by saying, "This week as I was praying for you Cammie, God gave me a word picture." When people begin something by saying "God spoke to them" or "God gave them a picture", my ears definitely perk up! Then she said, "Cammie, the picture God gave me is that you are a broken funnel." Huh? A broken what? She went on..."There is a funnel in my home that is bent and worn and broken, but when you pour something into it, it still works...the water pours through still and then comes out strong though the end of the funnel. That is like your message today, Cammie. You may be broken and damaged, but the Lord wants to use you and He wants you to be the funnel for Him."

Now, no one wants to be told they are broken (ha!), but of course, I know that I am. I know that I screw up all the time and the fact that God still uses me is mind boggling. It was so cool though, as those words were prayed over me, I felt such a peace come over me. I don't have to hide. I don't have to pretend. I am who I am ... and I am a broken "funnel" that wants to be available for God's Spirit to flow through.

It sure does take the pressure off. God is who is being poured through the funnel...I need only to be available. I don't know the name of that lady who prayed for me and gave me that word picture, but it is surely one I will not forget.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Good date night questions

Phillip and I love to go out on dates. We just seem to connect better when we are away from our home/routine/diaper changing. Yesterday we were able to go out on a "date afternoon" because my parents kept the kids at their house (ALWAYS A HUGE GIFT TO US!!) We ran an errand, then went and hung out at Caribou coffee, each of us taking time to read the Bible, pray, journal,etc. and then we topped it off by having dinner at Village Tavern. We were able to enjoy outdoor seating and it was a beautiful night so that was a major plus!

I had brought along some questions that I had heard before that are great to ask your spouse every once in a while:
  1. What have you been observing in me lately?
  2. What is inspiring you?
  3. What is encouraging you?
  4. What is challenging you?
Phillip and I found those to be great questions to discuss last night. If you know me, you know that I love asking questions anyway, and I am always up for some good, in-depth conversation! I definitely learned some things I did not know were going on with Phillip and so that encouraged me to try and be a better question asker of him in the future.

I wrote my parents a note thanking them for keeping the kids. It was definitely a win-win. My children LOVE being with their grandparents, and I in turn told them that when they do that for us, they are making an investment in Phillip and I having a healthier marriage. So, here's to dates and good question asking!! (-:

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Grateful Heart

Do you ever have those times in life when you sit back and realize just how grateful you are?
It has been one of those weeks for me. I have been in a season of blessing and I am so grateful.

This past weekend, I had the privilege of speaking on a youth retreat. It was for the youth of Two Rivers Evangelical Free Church of Knoxville, Tennessee where my very good friend, Chris Jessen, is the youth pastor. Here is a pic of he and his son, Oliver.

It was just one of those weekends that I felt so blessed and privileged to be a part of what God is doing in people's lives...and on this particular weekend, it was the lives of an awesome group of high school students and leaders. This was the second year I have spoken on this same retreat and I feel like these folks are really a part of my heart.

So, this week I have had such a full heart. I love that God is giving me opportunities to do what I love to do, and I feel very blessed!