Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Farewell Surrender...

We are living the last paragraph of this year.
The story of 2013 is ending.
The unexpected awaits and a new story is upon us.

2013 has been a teacher, an enemy, and a friend.

I've learned to pray. I've learned to wait.
I've been told yes and I've been told no.
But mainly, I've learned to watch.

I've learned to watch our great and sovereign God work. I believe He has placed within each of us desires and dreams that can be manifested when we let the spirit of Christ dwell within us. And when we set aside our plans and wait and wonder and watch Him work, our story becomes His story.

I am truly thankful for every family member, friend, and every stranger that was a part of my story this past year.


I know nothing of you yet.
That is thrilling.
That is scary.
But mainly thrilling.


I surrender.
I surrender it all.
To the God who spoke us into existence.
It's all His.
My family. My work. My walk.
I surrender.


You will bring new life.
New relationships.
New experiences.

Shine so bright that the world will stand in awe
of Christ's creation.

I stand surrendered.
Watching and waiting.
A new story is about to be revealed.
Open your new book friends.
Here's to Chapter 1.

Farewell 2013.

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Happy Birthday

"Mrs. Noles, before I open up my presents on Christmas morning, I always thank God for sending His son Jesus to the world."

I paused and let those words turn around in my mind before I responded.
A ten year old understood.
He got it.

"What a wonderful thing." I told him.
He went on to speak of presents and how they really don't matter all that much.
He was teaching me. Students have a way of doing that. Teaching the teachers.
If we are listening, that is.

He got me thinking about Christmas morning and what I will teach my little boy about this blessed time of year.
What will it mean to him?
What will his first thought of Christmas be?

This year, considering he is only 18 months, it will probably be, "I'm ready to eat, mom!"

What if we came to Christ first?
What if we sang to him?
What if we read his glorious story aloud in Luke 2?
What if we broke bread, instead of looking to see if Santa ate the cookies we left for him.
What if we just sat and paused and thanked him?

I want my son to experience the Miracle of Jesus and the Magic of Santa.
Jesus Saves.
Santa Gives.

How does your family celebrate the birth of the greatest gift we will ever know?

Our family always baked Jesus a cake and sang to him on Christmas morning.
We had to yell "Christmas Presents" before we got out of bed. A tradition passed down in our family from my great-grandmother.
Mom and Dad would turn on the Christmas music. Get the cameras ready and my brother and I would walk down the hall. That long hall, that lead us to our gifts. Bright lights flashed in our eyes, as they wanted to capture our sleepy, excited faces.
I remember that feeling joy upon the first glance of Santa's gifts to us.

May your Christmas be full of Jesus and Santa, Joy and Peace, and a New Hope.
A hope for what is to come.

Happy Birthday to my Savior.
We have a balloon and cupcakes ready for you tomorrow.