Friday, December 19, 2014

Parties Parties and Parties!!!

The last christmas party I was at, was probably a family function or in high school.
Well I am officially back on planet earth!

My first ugly sweater party.
Our Churches' creative arts volunteer party.
AND I finally got to host my first community group gathering/christmas party.

All of this has been a huge blessing! and tons of fun :)

The ugly sweater party felt a little like a college party since it was mostly a bunch of college kids and a few friends from group. But it was a fun experience. Michael even participated in beer pong, haha.
Our Friend Liz from group hosted with her roommate. Nice apartment complex with a fairly large 2 bedroom apartment.
One that I visited again a week later for girls night with Liz, Arielle, Megan and I.
A nice intimate affair, featuring wine, Manicures and the movie 'Just Married' :)


The volunteer party the next day, was filled with a ton of people I didn't know. But it was nice getting to know some more people from the church and join a giant White Elephant exchange.


Last, but not least, the Christmas party I hosted for our Community group.
I literally spent two days baking and still ran around with a chicken with my head cut off getting things together. I so should have pre-prepared better. Without blaming, a few friends were supposed to help out and bailed, so things took a bit longer.

Thankfully the party went fantastic! almost everyone from our group came at one point, and we all had a wonderful time! it was such a blessing having everyone here at our home, enjoying the food we made and having a blast with one another.
So far its been an amazing holiday season.





















Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving. What we seem to forget - The nature of being thankful

So I want to give mad props to the bloggers who blog through the holidays.
Now I ain't a busy person, haven't been for a long time; but over the last 2 weeks, I've had something going on almost every day, and thats big for me. Some big stuff, and some small, not everything has been an all day event. So you would think I would have plenty of time to get some writing out.
but with everything going on, I've just been way to exhausted to blog.
It makes me so jealous of the people who can still keep blogging every other day through the holidays. How do they not just drop for a week needing a break from their perfect blogging lives? Haha

We had 3 Thanksgivings in the span of 8 days.
Our group had a potluck Thanksgiving the Thursday before Thanksgiving (see last blog post) Then Michael and I hosted a small thanksgiving the next day with my mother and stepfather. Since my stepfather hadn't been home for a holiday in quite awhile.
Then we went to my Aunt's house for actual Thanksgiving the next week.
and we have had so much going on in-between

It seems nowadays that Thanksgiving is a time we end up focusing on who we are spending it with and how much we are eating.
and although I'm sure a lot of us say we are thankful for a bunch of things at the time of the event, I think a lot of us fail to realize how good we have it, and how blessed we all really are.

I've gotten so caught up in the festivities, that I haven't taken the time to look at all the wonderful things that I have, the progress I have made this year, and actually thank the Lord.

What people seem to forget is, we shouldn't be thankful on just thanksgiving, we should be thankful all the time. Being thankful and acknowledging that to God, is the same as worship. It's giving glory and praise to him for the things he has given us and gotten us through.

Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

Praise the Lord! Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!

Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name; make known his deeds among the peoples!

And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.

Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.

May he grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans!

That my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!

And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

And you will say in that day: “Give thanks to the Lord, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the peoples, proclaim that his name is exalted. “Sing praises to the Lord, for he has done gloriously; let this be made known in all the earth.

_____________________

It can be so hard to acknowledge how good we have it, especially in today's society when it seems all we do is complain and talk about the negative.
Don't get me wrong, I fully believe in venting/ confiding hardships in friends, and discussing negative things happening around the world, so that we can be aware of the world we live in and pray for those who need it.

But thats not what I'm talking about.
The last two months I've been singing the 'woe is me' song for the lack of money we have, and not having been able to put together the perfect christmas so far. Stretching to even get a tree.
Even though we haven't even known if our finances are going to be covered.
It's been very stressful and my way of getting through it, is focusing on christmas, and thats hard to do when you don't have finances.

Yet in taking a step back, God knew that a tree was important to me, and he provided one. Michael has been working on getting paychecks in for 2 months and although it hasn't been going well, somehow we have been taken care of. 
For no real reason, the checks that we have gotten have been late and barely cover what needs to be taken care of, and I've been irresponsible with finances being willfully blind and so focused on having the perfect christmas.
Yet having given that up, and the both of us praying over our weaknesses. Asking forgiveness and thanking the Lord for getting us through this with no major casualties.
We are still standing strong, and the blessing have still continued to trickle in.

Thanksgiving is a holiday that happens once a year, focused on spending time with family, eating good food and giving thanks. But i will try and be thankful and give thanks to the Lord as much as i can.

Friday, November 21, 2014

A Community Group Thanksgiving

Last night was our Community group thanksgiving potluck.
An amazing time with amazing people, sharing good conversation, many laughs and the different things we were all thankful for.
Its such a blessing to have this group of people in our life.
I would also like to mention my wonderful husband, who cooked the turkey at his business partners house, on the fly that day.
second turkey he ever cooked, and he didn't look up how to do it.
and it turned out great!

Iv never been good at Candids, but I'm very proud of these.
let the Photos speak for themselves...



























Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Our Community Group and What it Means to us

In August we joined a church called The Crossing, which was long overdue, and its been one of the best things to happen this year. They do this great thing where they have series that last around 6-8 weeks focusing on different subjects and areas of the Bible.
Its also the first Church I've been to that feels like a family, that has clear and direct messages directed at helping and changing your life for the better. Its not just a mundane message surrounded by a passage in the Bible, its actual encouragement or guidance, or Gods word without making nice of the harsh truths.
The pastor, the workers, and the volunteers are all so lovely and warm. Not fake warm, but genuinely loving and warm. It truly feels like a family.

One thing that has been great is our community group.
Its like a bible study, except we are focusing on a curriculum called "Freeway", that's all about getting freedom through Christ from our sin and our problems.
Anger, resentment, hurt, unforgiveness... etc.
But one of the best things, is having joined with 25 people, once a week in fellowship and friendship. Getting to know each other, being there for each other, and supporting each other through this curriculum, and our daily lives.

Sadly the group is so large that it's hard to be there for everyone, and getting to know everyone is hard when a percentage of people don't show up on a weekly basis.
It has been a comfort and encouragement in many areas, and a light in our life.

I think we have only had 6 weeks, but it's already changed my life, even just a little and I'm looking forward to continue to have fellowship with this lovely group of people

(Missing seven people, I think)