Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Happy 12th Birthday T-Nic

Today my darling girl turns 12. Wow... So much has changed in the past 12 years, but every day I thank God for the gift he gave me, my daughter. She is amazing. She is smart, she is sassy, she is independant, she is responsible, she is mature beyond her years, she is fun, she is God-loving, she is a good example, she can be bratty, but I think it comes with the territory. I am proud to be her momma and I love her with all my heart.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The Book of Numbers

Genesis Life Project Week 4 : Numbers
Matt Roberts

The Hebrew title for the book of Numbers is bemidbar, which is literally translated as "wanderings in the desert". What a fitting title for this book. We pick up in the story after one year has passed since Moses and the Israelites walked out of Egypt and through the Red Sea. Israel has just received the promise of their own land at the base of Mt. Sinai and very detailed instructions of how to get there. It was a 9 day walk from Egypt to the promised land, the path was laid out before them, God was with them, this promise seemed like a slam dunk. But it wasn't. What should have happened didn't. They knew what was expected and they did the opposite. They took the long way, a 9 day walk turned into a 38 year journey.
The first detour Israel exited onto was a detour of fear. In only one years time they stood on the precipice of a new land, a new life, a new beginning. The promises of God were clear, "I am giving YOU this Land". Twelve spies were sent out and what they found was both wonderful and terrifying. The land was fruitful and beautiful. It was like nothing they had ever seen before but it was also inhabited by giants and armies and seemingly insurmountable odds. All of a sudden God's promises seemed to pale in comparison to what stood before them. They were afraid. Paralyzed by fear. They had stood at the border of the promised land, peeked into a world so perfect that it made the dry and dusty wilderness seem like a distant memory. Yet they chose fear over promise, wilderness over paradise, to be wanderers in a strange land instead of a glorious homecoming. Fear robbed promise, robbed the next 38 years, and robbed God's purposes and promise from Israel.

Isn't it funny that one wrong turn, one wrong decision always seems to lead to two more? It seems as if the moment the people chose not to grab hold of their promised land everything else began to fall apart. The next detour Israel charged into was the detour of rebellion. At the time I am sure it felt like a shortcut. "Why is God bringing us to this land only to let us die?". God is clearly confused, I know a better way! Over and over God spoke and His people completely ignored Him. He commanded them to seize their promise and they retreated in fear. He asked them to follow and lift up their leader and they found it much easier to throw rocks at him. He told them to speak to the rock for water and they struck it. He gave them a law to live by and they despised it. Over and over again God was leading His people towards promise and time and time again they rebelled declaring "our ways are better than Yours!".

The third detour Israel took was the detour of apathy. Soon wandering began to feel normal. The wilderness began to feel like home. Israel was no longer a promise driven people. They stopped waking up every morning driven by a passion and a purpose. They had been convinced that this nomadic life was all that was left for them. So they stopped caring. Stopped fighting. Stopped living. Stopped hoping for something more. The wilderness was too vast, they had walked for too long, and the beauty they beheld standing at the gateway to their promise seemed too long ago to remember. They had their shot and they missed! In their minds they lost, the game was over and the wilderness was all that was left.

So they gave up and made the wilderness home. But even when they quit on God, God never quit on them. While they wandered God's presence stayed with them. When they retreated in fear God kept whispering promise and potential. When they rebelled God forgave and when they quit God kept
pushing them towards His promise. He commanded them to build a Tabernacle in the middle of their camp in the wilderness so that He could dwell among them. His presence rested over the community as a cloud during the day and a fire in the sky at night. No matter how far off track Israel got God pursued them, loved them and stayed faithful in spite of them.

Aren't you glad God is faithful through our wanderings? We live in a world that offers more detours from the promises of God than ever before. Big shiny signs that promise an easier road, a shortcut through rough times, an escape from the reality of the journey. But just like with Israel those detours lead to nowhere. We find ourselves stuck in the wildernesses of life scared of what is in front of us, stubbornly fighting to find our own way through it, and exhaustedly asking "is this it?". The good news is that God doesn't abandon us in the wilderness. His presence stays with us like the cloud in the book of Numbers and He is always reminding us that His promises do not come with an expiration date. No matter how long and how far we have wandered God calls us back to His path of promise whispering into our hearts the whole way that we were not created for the wilderness. God gave his only Son, Jesus to meet us right in the middle of our wilderness of sin and carry us into the promise of relationship with Him.

1/30/12 - 2/4/12
Monday 1/30/12 - Numbers 1-3
Tuesday 1/31/12 - Numbers 5-10
Wednesday 2/1/12 - Numbers 11-17
Thursday 2/2/12 - Numbers 18-22
Friday 2/3/12 - Numbers 23-25, 27-30
Saturday 2/4/12 - Numbers 31 - 36

Friday, January 27, 2012

What are you confessing today?


I Confess... that being with my ex's family this week wasn't as bad as I thought.

I Confess... that I actually found myself missing them and am grateful for the presence they have in my kids' lives.

I Confess... I fell in love with my husband a little bit more this week when he took the day off work to go to my ex-husband's grandma's funeral to be a support to my kids.

I Confess... I am going to get my tattoo touched up today.

I Confess... I didnt make it to the gym today. I feel really guilty about it.

I Confess... that I am going to be skipping the confessions next week, for a good reason, that I can't share yet :)

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Hunger Dinner 2/18/12

On Saturday, February 18th we are doing a “Hunger Dinner” as a fundraiser for our mission trip to Guatemala.

During this dinner we will go into specifics of the trip, what we are going to do there, who we are going to meet there, and the dinner will consist of the type of food the Mayan’s eat to give you an example of what it will be like for us while we are there.

Tickets are $15/each for dinner. If you are in the area and are interested in coming or if you just want to donate towards the cost of my trip, let me know. Checks can be made out to VisionTrust with my name in the subject line. (All donations are tax-deductible.)

Please let me know if you have any questions and thanks in advance,

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Weigh In Wednesday

Another week down... and I am down a little bit from last week.

I am now at 174 (which is still up from where I started)... but I can tell a difference looking at myself. I am upping my weight on the machines, so I know I am making progress. I feel stronger.

My hubby is down 3lbs and its interesting to me the difference that makes... he seems slimmer to me, especially his face/neck.

We'll see what next week brings!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Goodbye Grandma Lloyd

This week has been interesting. A lot of emotions and strange feelings, like anxiety and worry; however today I feel peace and comfort instead. That's how the Lord works:)

My exhusband's grandma passed away last week and her funeral is today. She's been sick for a few years now, so we've known this day would come but it doesnt make it any easier.

My kids had a lot of questions... and I didnt have answers. They wanted to know if they would see her in heaven one day... if she was a believer b/c as a believer you know that this isnt the end, its just good bye for now. It was hard to tell them I didnt know.

It was hard for me b/c I am not part of that family anymore... and I was getting thrown in. I was to spend 4 hrs with them last night at the viewing. Some I havent see in years, or atleast since I've remarried. I was worried about people's reactions of me being there. I was worried about things they would say that my kids would hear.

So I prayed about it... and rather than having anxiety and worry, I was ok. People were nice, I was thanked for being there, it went as it should... being about Grandma Lloyd and not about a failed marriage.

Today we say goodbye to a spunky little woman. She wasnt a lady of many words, but you could tell her love for people. She worked until she was 83, she was strong, and stubborn. She will be missed.

Monday, January 23, 2012

The Book of Leviticus

By Pastor Matt | January 22, 2012

In Leviticus we pick up three months after the Israelites deliverance from the grasp of Egyptian slavery and we find the emerging nation at the base of Mt. Sinai. They were a nomadic people in a barren land suddenly forced to live together, travel together, eat and sleep together as a people. For forty days the Lord dictated incredibly detailed law through Moses for His people. What follows is gruesome, bloody and often times downright weird. God laid out boundaries for His people. They needed guidelines for hygiene and health. Rules for worship and community. This was all new for them and God laid out a groundwork for His people to prosper. A practical "field guide" for community and worship.

First we recognize that God desires His people to be set apart. The Israelites were supposed to look different, act different, worship different, and spend their time in different ways than the nations around them. It was an integral part of their calling. Gods people were challenged to rise above easy conformity to carve out a culture of Godliness and health.

The manifestations aren’t quite the same, but Christians have the same calling today. To be the light of Jesus in a dark world, aliens and strangers in a place that so desperately wants us to think like they think, talk like they talk, and live like they live.

Once we understand this truth we soon realize we aren’t set apart enough. The law points out our insufficiencies. Even if the law were just a set of external rules, we still couldn’t keep them perfectly and then Jesus asks us to examine our hearts! That is a "whole 'nother can of worms"! We just can’t measure up to following the law or Christ’s example that has been set before us..

Leviticus still reminds us today that God is serious about community, serious about health (spiritually, physically, emotionally) and most of all serious about holiness. But the problem I always find with holiness is as soon as I try to be holy I soon become convinced it is impossible. There are too many rules. Too many stipulations. Too many layers to my brokenness and corruption. If you are anything like me we soon realize we need help! We need a Savior. Holiness is what God desires. But holiness is what we cannot achieve. That is why Jesus is everything to us. That is why everything we live, teach and preach boils down to grace.

Could it be that, in ignoring Leviticus as a whole today, we forget how awesome grace is? That somehow we forget we are the same lost group of people desperate for a new way to live, a new way to experience God, a new way to fulfill the desires of our hearts.

Only in Christ can we find rest from the law and a new identity that really sets us apart. Yes, the law is a good thing – it makes us realize how much Christ had to overcome on our behalf. Sure, we’ll still fall, but those failures should only remind us to run back to the grace of Jesus. How beautifully Christ not only supersedes the law, but fulfills all of its demands for us. This is what it means to be Christians. Not religious parrots strutting about in arrogance speaking of our own holiness but ugly, broken people who have been healed and restored by the power of grace, the power of the cross, the power of Jesus.

Daily Suggested Reading in Leviticus 1/23/12 - 1/28/12
Monday 1/23 - Leviticus 1-4
Tuesday 1/24 - Leviticus 5-8
Wednesday 1/25 - Leviticus 9-12
Thursday 1/26 - Leviticus 16-19
Friday 1/27 - Leviticus 20-23
Saturday 1/28 - Leviticus 24-27

Friday, January 20, 2012

Friday Confessions

I confess... I am SORE! Yesterday we did lower body and my thights hurt... today we did upper body and I can barely move my arms.

I confess... I was lazy last night... I didnt do anything, I laid around. It was a free for all for dinner (which is Drew's favorite anyhow).

I confess... in my laziness I didnt check Drew's homework. Only to find out he didnt do it when he told me he did. Guess who's doing homework this morning before school?

I confess... I am enjoying the gym. It's kicking my butt and I hope to see some progress soon. Getting on the scale and having it go UP when I am working out so hard and not eating any junk... but I believe this is my test for patience... because God knows I dont have any!

I confess... I am excited for tomorrow. My mom and I are celebrating Ty's birthday early b/c she will be out of town on her birthday and Ty will be with her dad the weekend before. We are going to get pedicures and lunch. Fun times!

I confess... I am unsure what to think about next Tuesday. My ex's grandma passed away and that's the day of her funeral. My ex hasnt really come out and said what he wants to do with the kids so finally I said "Well, you have two choices... either I bring them to the funeral and you take them the rest of the afternoon to the graveside and the reception or I get to hang out with you and your family all day to support my kids".... Looks like I am hanging out all day with my kids and my ex and his family. Will be interesting...

What are you confessing today?


Thursday, January 19, 2012

Tag, I'm It!

Becca from http://www.everydaylifes.com tagged me... so I'll play along :)

Post these rules.
1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post.
3. Create 11 new questions for the people you tag to answer.
4. Go to their blog and tell them that you've tagged them.
*No stuff in the tagging section about "you are tagged if you are reading this." Legitimately tag 11 people!!

  • Yes, I live in Utah, but am not Mormon
  • I have a white tattoo on my wrist
  • I have 3 kids; two are mine, one is his.
  • I go to an awesome church. The Genesis Project, www.genesisutah.com
  • I LOVE coffee
  • I am on a quest to get fit
  • I enjoy spending time with my hubby on the back of our Harley
  • I am going to Guatemala in May on a mission's trip
  • I am high risk for breast cancer and fight daily to never be diagnosed (although will be prepared if the time ever comes)
  • I love getting pedicures, going on Saturday
  • I have a new love of photography, thanks to the camera I got for Christmas.
  1. If you had only 24 hours to live, what would you do? Spend time with all my family and friends. Make sure they know how much I love them.
  2. What Is one song that discribes your life? Hmmm... one that stands out to me is The Stand by Hillsong United... "I'll stand with arms high and heart abandoned..."
  3. Are you good at making new friends? Online yes, in person it takes a minute
  4. Where did you grow up? South Bend, Indiana
  5. What is the silliest prank you ever played on someone? I'm not much of a prankster... but I am doing an awesome suprise for my daughter in 2 wks that could be viewed as a prank. (more details to come)
  6. If you could have a $10,000 shopping spree to one store, which store would it be and how long would it take you to spend the $10,000? Probably Target... clothes, electronics, books, house goods... I could do some damage!
  7. Do you exercise regularly? As of last week, yes
  8. Who would you want to play you in the movie about your life? Julia Roberts maybe?
  9. Who is your celebrity crush male/female? Bradley Cooper is Hot!
  10. Do you exercise? Didnt I answer this at #7?
  11. What is the weirdest thing you will ever admit to having done in the past? Hmmm... weird. Danced on a piano? Puked off a patio? Hell, I dont know... I think I did a lot of weird stuff in my "previous life". LOL

1. Who do you admire most and why?
2. What did you want to be when you grew up?
3. What is your favorite beverage?
4. Dogs or Cats?
5. What is your least favorite excersise to do?
6. What is one thing you have done that you aren't proud of?
7. If you could do 3 things on your bucket list tomorrow, what would they be?
8. If you could go on a trip anywhere, where would you go?
9. What is your favorite book?
10. What is your favorite candy bar?
11. If you could tell someone from your past one thing, what would you say?


1. http://wanibug.blogspot.com/
2. http://confessionsfromanimplusiveaddict.blogspot.com/
3. http://christaandlogan.blogspot.com/
4. http://lonetater.blogspot.com/
5. http://theirondaisywrites.blogspot.com/
6. http://happinessisajourneyforjanna.blogspot.com/
7. http://summer-summersstoryafamilysjourney.blogspot.com/
8. http://www.ourdandelionwishes.com/
9. http://gilberteschler.blogspot.com/
10. http://crystalleblanc.blogspot.com/
11. http://marycateutah.blogspot.com/

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Weigh In Wednesday

Well... I'm up about a pound from last Wednesday. Muscle weighs more, right? I can't believe with my healthy eating and 5 days of working out that it's anything else. That's ok... I'm not looking for a quick fix, but a healthy change. I was able to do 3 more mins on the elliptical than yesterday, that's progress :)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Hello Fitness! Goodbye Donuts!

I think I mentioned before that I joined a gym last week... I did it for various reasons. I don't want to miss out on opportunities while on my missions trip to Guatemala b/c I am too out of shape to hike the mountains. Second, I didn't like how clothes are fitting anymore... or how I look without them. Too many ripples and rolls for my liking. Honestly, I really don't have that much to lose though... maybe 10-15 lbs, so its more toning I guess. The third reason I am doing this is b/c my darling husband has been asked, I mean, ORDERED by the doctor to exercise and lose weight. He has high BP and needs to lose about 50lbs to lower his risk of a stroke. (in addition to this, he quit chewing about a month ago, yay!)

I need to take a before picture so I can show an after picture later... but being that my looks aren't my biggest reason for this, I haven't done it yet and hesitating on posting any. I just want to be healthy. I want to continue to lower my very high risk for breast cancer. I want to grow old with my husband and kids... so I am doing this for my family mostly.

We met with the personal trainer yesterday morning to go over our goals and make a plan. Both of us are on the same workout plan (his reps and sets are just different than mine) so we can do everything together. We went back today to try it all out and I think the elliptical tried to kill me... but I did what I needed to do and feel good about it.

I am getting rid of junk food at my house... and doing my best to eat better and make a conscious choice in what goes in my mouth. The trainer said that 2x a week its ok to splurge b/c then your body doesn't plateau... so we aren't weeding everything out, just making a change to be better over all.

Not too hard, just need to stay motivated :)

Monday, January 16, 2012

Book of Exodus Devotional

The Genesis Project: Life Project Part 2: Exodus
Pastor Matt Roberts
At the end of the book of Genesis we find the budding nation of Israel fleeing famine and drought to Egypt under the leadership of Joseph. The 12 sons of Israel were welcomed with open arms, a party was thrown in their honor and it looked as if Egypt offered every possibility for a great new life! Isn't it funny how time can change everything?

When we pick back up with the story of Israel we find the party is over! 430 years later Egypt was a very different place than the hospitable nation under Josephs rule. Soon after Josephs death the nation of Israel was enslaved to the throne of Egypt's Pharaoh. Isn't it interesting that there was no great battle, that there was no invading army in the middle of the night, not even the slightest hint of a fight. Israel had walked into their slavery with hopes of a better life, a new beginning, a reinvention of themselves. But slowly the lights of Egypt faded and what was once a new and promising land soon turned into a prison of long days, hard nights and a complete lack of freedom. Israel had lost control and probably had a hard time telling you exactly when that happened.

Even in the depths of despair God began to unfold a plan to deliver His people from their desperate circumstances. No matter how poorly Israel was treated they seemed to prosper. So much so their growing numbers alarmed the insecure Pharaoh. A decree was set forth to have every male Jewish child killed on the spot. Horrible? Yes, but God was working. A baby boy named Moses was born. The hand of God saved the life of this slave child and delivered him into the house of Pharaoh. The stage seemed to be set for another Joseph to rise to power in Egypt and deliver his people. But God had other plans.

With everything going for Moses; power, influence and riches. We find him at 80 years old a murderer on the run in the middle of the wilderness not realizing any of the potential his early life had seemed to promise. Moses 1st 80 years was a story of what might have been. What if he would have made different choices? What if he hadn't lost his temper that fateful day? What if he could have made a difference for all of those hurting people back in Egypt. Had he blown his one chance? It seemed as if he had. For now he was an old man with no power, no influence, and not 2 pennies to rub together.

Then there was a burning bush. It was not just another brush fire in the dry and arid wilderness. This fire was different. It burned brighter than anything Moses had seen before, it seemed to permeate the darkness of Moses' wandering life and bring to life things inside of him that he believed were long dead. Moses' encountered the presence of a living God and that day through that bush God spoke to Moses and his life would never be the same again! All of a sudden a man whose tomorrows always looked like today was consumed with the passion of a freedom fighter, the direction of a visionary and the purpose of a man confidant in a promise that was bigger than anything he had ever known before.

Prior to Gods calling Moses' life never seemed to gain any momentum, 80 years of walking in circles physically, emotionally and spiritually. But things changed! Within months Moses' was leading an entire nation out of slavery in Egypt, through the parted waters of the Red Sea and towards a promised land of hope, heritage and healing.

But the journey wasn't an easy one. 250 miles is all that separates Egypt from Israel and the journey took 40 years! That's a snail's pace of just over 6 miles a year, well that's assuming they walked in a straight line and we know that's not how journeys look. There were starts and stops, impassioned pleas and temper tantrums, affirmations of loyalty and coups, laughter and tears, life and death. After 40 years you would have thought Moses' would have quit a dozen times over (he tried many times!), what kept him going? What fueled his desire to keep walking through the wilderness even when it seemed impossible? What tied him to a people who were always grumbling and complaining? What sustained Moses from the beauty of a burning bush through the hell of the wilderness? A divine promise. He was heading somewhere only God had seen, a place that far exceeded his wildest expectations. Moses knew that trials and setbacks were temporary holdups to a surefire promise. Without a promised land in front of him the wilderness would have been a very hopeless place.

Just like Moses God has spoke promises into your life. It is easy for us to understand the awe, wonder and excitement of standing at that bush barefoot and bewildered. We have to hold on to those moments, guard the promises of God in our hearts. Sometimes that is the very strength that sustains us in the wilderness of life. May we not lose sight of the truth that we are a chosen people with divine destination! God's promises to you are just as sure as his promises to Moses. Don't quit walking towards all God has called you to. Discouraging circumstances, dead end roads, lost relationships and angry mobs all pale in comparison to God's plan for you.

Suggested Reading For 1/16 - 1/21
Monday 1/16 - Exodus 1-6

Tuesday 1/17 - Exodus 7-13

Wednesday 1/18 - Exodus 14-19

Thursday 1/19 - Exodus 20-27

Friday 1/20 - Exodus 28 - 31

Saturday 1/21 - Exodus 32 - 40

Friday, January 13, 2012

My White Ink Tattoo

I've had a request for a picture of my white ink tattoo... keep in mind, it's still healing and a small spot needs to be touched up :)

Infinite Love

Friday Confessions

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I confess... it's been an emotionally draining week. I didn't realize that his police officer's death would impact me as it did. I even made the news for a 2 second clip of me crying in front of my work on the funeral procession route. Seeing his casket on top of the firetruck pulled at my heart, but seeing the police officers following behind, with their lights on, and wiping tears from their eyes, that's what got me.

I confess... it's been a physically draining week. We joined the gym. I need to get in shape for my mission trip to Guatemala, Mister Husband needs to get in shape to better his health. I've gone daily since we got the membership... I cant do a whole lot b/c of my neck, but I've been riding the bike. 35 mins gets me 12+ miles on the bike. My legs feel like Jell-o but I'm making progress. We meet with a personal trainer on Monday to find out what else I can do that's low impact.

I confess... my daughter is babysitting a co-worker's baby today. I'm a little nervous. Not sure why b/c she is uber-responsible and good with kids, but all the same... little nervous.

I confess... joining the gym is giving me a reason to shop. I already got new sneakers... off to Old Navy today to get some new pants and a sports bra. Nothing like having your shorts go up your butt while you are on the bike!

I confess... I got a white ink tattoo on my wrist. Mister Husband has a matching one on his arm. I really like it. It's an infinity symbol with the word "Love" in it. We did it for God's infinate love and the love we have in our marriage.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

A Photo Tribute to Ogden's Fallen Officer

Yesterday I had the privilege to witness the funeral parade for one of our officers who was killed in the line of duty last week while serving a drug warrant. What a humbling and emotional experience that was.  The outpouring of community kindness was overwhelming for all.

Here are some pictures I took throughout the day...

 My prayers are with his family and friends, along with the other officers who were injured. I admire what you do on a daily basis to protect and serve. For that I thank you.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Farewell Officer Jared Francom- Ogden Police Department

Picture from KSL.com

Picture from KSL.com

I've been keeping up on this story because it has shook our community and I feel it  has brought out the goodness in people. Everyone is coming together and doing funraisers and different things for the family... getting involved in ribbon making and flag holding as his funeral procession tours the city before he recides at his final resting place. My work is allowing us to go outside as they pass today to honor our fallen officer, how humbling this will be.

I was on my way to work this morning and passed the mortuary where his viewing was last night. I glanced over and there was a dim light in the lobby and at the doorway to the left, I saw another officer in his dress uniform standing guard. It hit me then... I was SOBBING in my car. I dont know this man... but I do know the impact his has left on our community. I know the protection we had due to his faithful service. I know our city is heartbroken with his loss.

I am imagining him in Heaven and the Lord saying " 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!" (Matthew 25:23)

Officer Francom, thank you for your work here on Earth. You were committed, you served and protected, you gave it your all. Rest in Peace.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Book of Genesis

This year, my church is diving into the bible one book at a time... Sunday we started with the book of Genesis and here is the devotional my pastor put together in case you want to follow along. I hope to be able to post these weekly. Enjoy!

Genesis Project Life Week 1 Devotional : Genesis

The book of Genesis is all about God's story of Covenant lived out in the lives of men and women. In the beginning we see a Creator with a passion for relationship, so much so that He created us in His own image and gave him the gift of choice. What a risk to take for an all-powerful God. To create a being that is so intimately tied to you and give him the ability to hate, reject, and walk away. But real relationships cannot exist outside of that choice. Love is all about choice and God chose to love us! How would we respond to that selfless of an act?

Well, we know how Adam and Eve responded, they wanted more! Didn't they have it all? A beautiful garden they could call their own, all the resources and luxuries of creation, daily walks in the cool of the garden with God himself. Sounds like Heaven on Earth.....it was. But it wasn't enough. Or at least it didn't seem to be when the serpent made his infamous sales pitch.

Of all the spoils of the garden there was ONE tree God asked Adam not to eat from, the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Can you imagine how awesome it would be to not know evil? To not be plagued by its taunting voice? To be free of its scars, its baggage, its worry? This was the innocence Adam and Eve enjoyed. Living life naked and happy with no idea of the world of horrible possibilities that laid outside the presence of God.

But the serpent was clever, "Did God really say 'you must not eat from ANY tree in the garden'?" Here was the beginning of a long line of liars who would try to rob, kill and destroy by adding to God's Word. It is just like our enemy to try to use legalism to make God's Words sound ridiculous. The truth was God's lone commandment was to preserve and protect the innocence of his beloved creation. To protect them from a sure death. "Surely You will NOT die" said the serpent, Gods word was clear and absolute and the allure of sin stood in direct opposition to it. Adam...Eve, what will you choose? Who will you serve?

That day in the garden Sin won. Adam and Eves eyes were opened to the horrors of a life away from God. Sin replaced the intimacy they once lived in. Toil replaced paradise. No more walks with God. No more innocence. No more life as God created us live. Sin was unleashed upon a perfect creation and the world would never be the same.

The next 47 chapters of Genesis walk us through the implications of this mighty fall. Death, murder, destruction, debauchery, lies, laziness, lust. Sin was multiplying as rapidly as man. But God didn't quit on us! Maybe He should have. This wasn't his mess to clean up it was ours. He clearly warned us that the wages of sin was DEATH. Yet in spite of our rebellion God continued to peruse men. In spite of our atrocities God continued to spare us from complete destruction.

He continued to call out men like Noah who were still willing to walk with Him and offer salvation when He could have just ended it all and put humanity out of its misery. God's heart

for relationship beat on. He made a covenant with Abraham that was passed down through Isaac and Jacob and even when they broke that covenant God upheld His promises. God's heart for relationship beat on. From old women past their prime, to deceivers and liars, to young shepherd boys in colorful coats God's plan to rescue his fallen creation marched on.

Time after time, generation after generation God continues to seek and save men and women from the curse of sin. And time after time, generation after generation we continue to choose that same old tree of sin and rebellion. We find ourselves naked and broken because of that choice and there is the God of love, actively waiting on His creation, His people, His Sons and Daughters to come home. And He fights for us, calls to us, perfectly loves us the entire way!
Pastor Matt

Suggested Reading for 1/9/12 - 1/15/12

Monday - Genesis 1-4, 6-9 &11

Tuesday - Genesis 12-19

Wednesday - Genesis 20-26

Thursday - Genesis 27-33

Friday - Genesis 37-41

Saturday - Genesis 42-45, 47-50

Guatemala Meeting- Fundraising

We had our first meeting last night for our mission trip to Guatemala. We have 21 people who are going with us. Our groups has a variety of ages and backgrounds, so its going to be neat to see everyone's perspective while we are there. This trip is the pilot trip for our church, so we are going to be doing a lot of videos and pictures to show the people at home what we did and get them excited for other opportunities. I can't wait!

We are in the fundraising stages of our planning. The trip costs $2500 to go plus supplies for while we are there (seeds, gardening tools, etc). We are going to do a Hunger Dinner on Feb 4th at the church that we are selling tickets for. We talked about waitressing for tips at Golden Corral. We talked about selling pizza or candy bars. We have a lot of ideas, it will be neat to see how God uses them.

One thing that keeps coming up is the fact that we need to be in shape. There is a lot of hiking up mountains involved. I am going to be going to the gym today to sign up. It's the motivation I need. I've been putting it off long enough and I want to be in the best shape possible so I can focus on serving and not worrying about pulled muscles and huffing-puffing up the mountain. I'm not a big excersise person, pray for me!

Friday, January 6, 2012

My Little Beauty

For Christmas I got a new camera... and it's kinda fancy and I am trying to figure out how to use it. My daughter, who normally hides or cover her face when I have the camera out, decided she wanted a photo shoot to "help" me learn my camera. Thanks dear!

Here are some of the pictures I took of her... my little beauty.

(Ty age 11 with a picture of herself when she was 6 or 7)

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Loss in our Community

I woke up this morning to a lot of facebook messages regarding an officer shooting where I live.... then I saw it on the news... and heard it made national news... then I found out that of the 6 people injured/killed I know people who know atleast half of them. So very sad... so heartbreaking.

Here is the news article: http://www.ksl.com/?nid=148&sid=18748705&title=1-officer-killed-5-injured-in-ogden-shootout

Father God, I come to you on behalf of the officers who were shot... for those injured and the one who lost his life. I pray for their healing. I pray they feel comfort and support from You. I pray for their families and friends, I can't imagine what they are going through. They make a daily sacrifice for us and I am so grateful for their service.  Lord, none of this makes sense. It's heartbreaking, but I know that you have a plan for all this and I trust in You. I say these things in Jesus' name, amen.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Guatemala with VisionTrust

I feel like God is calling me to something big... Something more.

A few months back, I learned about a mission's trip to Guatemala and kept coming up with reasons not to go... But now things keep changing and moving in the right direction so I've made the decision to go. It's for a week in May and were going to build gardens at 40 Mayan houses to help them be more inacially responsible for themselves. They will be able to take the veggies from their gardens, make it into salsa, and sell it at market to support their families. In addition to the construction, they're setting up soccer matches and pampering parties where we can share the love of Jesus with them. What an awesome opportunity!!

If you feel led, I'm accepting donations to fund the trip. It's going to cost about $2500 to go. It is 100% tax deductible and sent to VisionTrust in my name. ( i can get you the needed info) If now isnt a time to support me financially, I'd love to have your prayers.

I'm so excited... Nervous... Happy... I can't wait!!