Friday, October 26, 2007

The Blessing

For months I have struggled over completing a prayer shawl that was started in January. It was not that I had stopped praying for my friend, but more that I felt that my small gesture would not be enough for her. I did not want to think about what she was suffering through and unable to help in a tangible way since I live so far away. The shawl would call to me from my knitting bag, but all I would do is pray a short prayer for my friend and choose to follow other paths.
In the last two months, conversations began about an interest in a prayer shawl ministry at the church. It kept coming up and I knew that it was a reminder that I had a wealth of prayers sitting in the corner that were not being used as God intended them to be used. I picked up the shawl and began knitting on it last week. The stitches flew off the needles and it felt good to be back in that rhythm of prayer and motion. Before long I had finished the shawl and was adding the fringe.
A small group of ladies met on Thursday to learn to knit and to find out about the prayer shawl ministry. I brought my shawl and told them about the recipient and we took turns praying over it. This shawl has been blessed by a sweet, loving bunch of ladies and I am ready to send it on it's way. Listening to the Holy Spirit and obeying has been a blessing as well.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007


We Will Not Forget. The anniversary remembrance. A dark day in history of a nation. A day after we lost my father in law. We were grieving his loss and preparing for his funeral when we saw the events unfold on the tv screen. Our minds numb from grief, it was difficult to comprehend what was happening that day. Loss, pain, hurt, peace, love, many emotions came forth. Overwhelming love. "Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning" Chuck we will miss you. We love you.

Friday, August 17, 2007


I found this jewel today and what an awsome video! A prayer for today!
Credit goes to: Innovative Corey Mann

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Are we Hirelings or Sheep Owners?

Last week I was privileged to attend a Willow Creek Community Church in South Barrington, Ill. live simulcast seminar. About 250 local leaders gathered at First Baptist Church, Shreveport. We had 10 folks from our church staff attending. The theme of the summit was "A Vision to Die For". Bill Hybels led the opening session, Followed by Carly Fiorina (former CEO of HP), Rev. Floyd Flake and Marcus Buckingham.

Bill Hybels taught that a vision must be "owned" or it will never succeed. In John 10- are we just "hired hands or owners of the sheep"? He spoke about developing the vision and establishing ownership among your team. He warned us that vision "leaks". *Your followers will only take their ownership cue from you. MLK and Jesus would die for their dream and mission. Is your vision to die for? Give people a vision that is more compelling than their fears. A leader must have passion and dis-passion to see the truth and make changes as necessary.

Marcus Buckingham (Author of motivational research books) was a humorous speaker. He asked what would help you be more successful? Building on strengths or fixing our weakness? In America we tend to focus on our weaknesses and try to change rather than continue building on our strengths. We can grow the most in our areas of strength. He urged us to take a strengths assessment. Start a list of what we do in a week. Sort it on a sheet of paper labeled- I Loath It/I Love It. Find your 3 top strengths. You may even be good at things that you hate to do!

4 Signs of a Strength:

S- Success

I- Instinct- Things you look forward to

G- Growth (Time flies when you do something you like)

N- Needs - Fulfilling things you like to do

How do certain activities make you feel? What appetites drive your abilities? I feel strong when.... Fill out a Strength Statement Card.

On Friday Colin Powell gave an inspiring talk about Leading at the Highest Level. He talked about surrounding himself with leaders who were more qualified than himself and allowing them to challenge and argue ideas with him. Reward your best performers and Check your ego at the door. He stressed the need to have fun in your command. Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier. Trust the element of Instinct. His concluding statement, "All of us have a debt of service that we will never be able to repay".

John Ortberg, of Menlo Park Presbyterian Church spoke Friday afternoon about the greatest fears of leaders. A Shadow Mission- something that is about 10 degrees off from our gifts. A chronic sense of non-goal satisfaction. For Soloman it was lust; Pilot abdicated judgement, Adam and Eve had the apple. He spoke of the story of Queen Esther and Mordecai. Who loves you enough to call you out of your shadow mission? We need not fear because God's hand is in all that goes on. Don't be afraid to speak God's truth.

Jimmy Carter was the speaker on Saturday morning. Carter spoke on Psalm 34:4. Seek peace and preserve it. He spoke of his humble childhood and the lessons that he learned that continue to guide him. He was such a gentle, humble speaker.

Bill Hybels finished out the summit speaking on the Power of Inspiration. He said that motivation urges you to "Take it up a notch!" You and others can accomplish so much more when you are motivated. It is our job to keep ourselves personally motivated. We are not to rely on others to motivate us. Surround yourself with motivating people. Get rid of demotivating people. Find other areas for them to work. Be clear about your calling from God. Don't give up until God brings clarity. Participate in physical disciplines. Practice inspiring recreation outside of your work. What re-creates life-spirit inside you? Practice daily spiritual disciplines.

Live a motivated life before others to inspire others around you. It's a "force motivator" and it will be the greatest gift for your team.

1. Connect everyone on your team to a compelling cause/grander vision. 2. Learn the inspiration language of all on your team and then speak it.

3. Identify and reduce any demotivating items in your life and job envionment. The strength of motivated employees can be undermined if the work environment is not good.

4. Celebrate every sign of progress of your team's goals.

What would a church look like if all were inspired? Look at Acts 2.

What a team of motivating leadership speakers!!!!

Now to apply it to our ministry areas. What a motivating vision!

How does that help a non-disciplined knitter-blogger-Child of God?

Well, it is up to me to keep myself motivated and surround myself with motivating folks and environments. Time to "take it up a notch". I do not want to be just a hireling in life!

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Life's Twists and Turns

I visited this local labyrinth last week. It was my day off and after slowly getting around for the day, my first stop was the labyrinth. It is located behind a church just a few blocks from the house. No one was outside of the building, so I was able to spend time at the labyrinth and take lots of pictures. It was an overcast day, so the colors do not stand out as much in the pictures. This labyrinth is a hidden jewel in the neighborhood. So close to a busy street, yet a quiet refuge tucked behind this house of worship. "You show me the path of life. Your pressence there is fullness of joy." Psalm 16:11.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Texas Mourns a Grand Lady

I was saddened to hear of the death of Lady Bird Johnson. Texas wildflowers come to mind when I think of her campaign to spread beauty along Texas highways. Her legacy will live on in the beauty of those blossoms.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Blog Cloud

I always wanted to try a blog cloud, but I figured that I had not blogged enough to have an interesting one. Here is my cloud. I really had a hard time navigating the site and it did not give me the code, so this is just a copy of it. Surely I have more interesting things to do with my Saturday afternoon!!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Finding Discipline in a Changing World

Seasons come and go. Nature continues its steady change from winter to spring. The ground bursts open with new life and growth. Trees and shrubs awake from their winter rest and begin new growth, buds and blooms emerge. However, while all this new birth blooms around me, I have found it hard to stretch myself and produce new fruit.
The new year brought about a flurry of activity at work with new responsibilities and challenges. It has been rewarding and exciting meeting new people and stepping into my place within a group of creative and talented folks. However, in my personal life, I have not had the energy to be creative. My knitting sits and awaits my company. Other projects are lined up, but I do not have the ambition to pick them up and see where they take me. I originally attributed it to the wedding because I was saving my creative energy for that big undertaking. I worked at a flower shop during Valentine's Day. It was energizing to be in "holiday" design mode. You just jump in and begin designing and it felt good to know that I still could throw together beautiful arrangements.
When March arrived and the wedding drew near, I was excited about doing this for the kids and very anxious about such a large project without having my shop and tools handy. The wedding was great, and I was thankful for my helpers- my sister and several friends. It was truly a labor of love and I hope it is awhile before the next family wedding!
Easter seemed to be a more creative time for me. I began to take more quiet time to myself and slow down a little. I started going to parks and spend time at nurseries to feel a little closer to nature. I began to use more fresh flowers and plants at work. My new camera became an excuse to stop and look at the flowers and budding trees in the area.
April brought a new house into the horizon and we moved in by May. There is the basis of a beautiful yard and I have been enjoying the plants around the house. Now that we are settled in a little better, I know that I will be able to take time to work on creative endeavors. My mind has been swirling with all kinds of projects. The biggest hurdle will be allowing myself the time to work on those projects, knowing that I have to have a creative outlet. I will have to let you know how disciplined I am and how it use the talents that God has given to me. The verse that has been placed on my heart lately is Psalms 1:3- "And he will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season, and its leaf does not wither, and in whatever he does, he prospers." I need to send out my roots to the "living water" so that I can be fruitful. Please pray that I continue to drink from that source. Take care and be fruitful.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Mardi Gras Season

It is Mardi Gras time again. Purple, Gold and Green decorations come out. Doors sport gaudy, sparkly wreaths adorned with beads. King Cakes appear. I always seem to get the piece of cake with the baby at work, parties or wherever I get to eat a King Cake. I am making plans to visit New Orleans the weekend before Fat Tuesday. It should be a fun trip. I did not even attend a parade anywhere last year. I have a perfect scarf this year. I knitted a scarf of Yarn Bee Aurora yarn. I can not find the label, but the colors are purple, green, gold and a metallic gold. It makes the perfect scarf for waiting in the cold for a parade to start. I am sorry about the quality of the picture. My camera is in the car and my phone takes poor quality pictures. I will repost soon with better light and perhaps a new camera. I want to get a new camera for my birthday and it might just be an early birthday present to myself.
Our KNIT Cafe met tonight. It wasn't a large group but it was definitely quality time. These ladies are always an inspiration to me. Often there is more fellowship and sharing than knitting. I am thankful for these "knit wit sisters". I couldn't ask for a better knit therapy group.
I made some progress on an old UFO. It was a prayer shawl that I began with no particular recipient in mind. My sister then asked me to finish it for a friend of hers. Her friend died before I could get very far. I knew this lady as well and so I just put the shawl into a project basket. I haven't picked it up until tonight. It needs to be finished and sent on its way to someone who needs it.
A closing thought-
"Faith is the strength by which a shattered world shall emerge into the light." Helen Keller

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Happy New Year

Happy New Year and I pray that you receive many blessings in the coming year. The new year is already a week old and I have not touched my knitting needles yet. I am anticipating KNIT Cafe on Wednesday and look forward to my time and fellowship with my knitting sisters. This is the year that I will knit socks!!! New projects call to me- felting, purses, hats, scarves and others. I am ready to be free of the wordly burdens that zap my creativity and spend some time in fiber!!!
I received At Knit's End Meditations for Women who KNIT TOO MUCH by Stephanie Pearl-McPhee, from my nephew. I am going to enjoy it so much.
Hopefully, I can begin to blog on a more regular basis.
My top 10 reasons:
1. I am not traveling cross country anymore.
2. I have internet access in my room now.
3. I plan to be more disciplined.
4. I will respect my creative muses.
5. I need to work on that stash of mine.
6. I promised my self to knit socks by the time I am 50.
(That monumental occassion occurs next month)
7. I love to read other knitting blogs.
8. I hope to inspire others to join the knitting ranks.
9. It helps to blog and put my fears, joys and faith out in a journal format. 10. It will keep me accountable once I start some of my projects.