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Believe in You – You Will Bloom!

Believe in You – You Will Bloom!

Thursday was filled with mixed emotions.  Our youngest daughter  stepped out of her middle school never to return again as a student.  She is moving on to high school.  Being our youngest child,  it was our last 8th-grade promotion ceremony making it, as a parent,  a somewhat melancholy experience. However, on the other hand, it was our last 8th-grade IMG_0120promotion ceremony! 🙂

The gymnasium was packed, completely  showing that the developers of that school building had not anticipated such a growth in the area.  Due to fire code restrictions, students could only have three tickets each and even with that restriction, there was standing room only.     Even after numerous reminders by my daughter, I still forgot our tickets which required a quick trip back home and ended with a tail end entrance to the event.   Seating was limited and to prevent being whisked away to the overflow room we had the good fortune of being directed to sit on the choral bleachers.    So instead of facing the stage where all of the kids received their promotion certificate, we sat facing the 400+  students;  a new perspective.  I watched the faces of the eighth-grade class.

The event was a well-organized program with a video commemorating the class’s year, a choral song or two, a class speech, award presentations, acknowledgments and a lot of whoops and hollers for all of the kids who had struck a chord with their classmates somewhere down the line.  During one point of acknowledgement, a teacher had students stand according to their team or club participation.  We, like other parents, waited to see our daughter stand.  The football team, basketball ball team, archery team, Beta club, choral group, band, wrestling, and on and on and on… all asked to rise.  Some groups received loud cheers while others received moderate applause.  Those acknowledgements ended with asking all of the students who had been a part of any of acknowledgements to stand again.  I would guess about 80% of the students stood and words were said about the greatness of the kids, the greatness of their representation and the greatness of the school.  Roaring applause erupted.  I watched the faces of the eighth-grade class.

Then arrived the momeIMG_0122nt in which each parent had their video camera ready, to hear their child’s name read and for some, hopefully, pronounced correctly.  It was also the same moment that many kids had been waiting for, to hear how popular they were to their classmates and how proud their family was of them.  It was very apparent as the names were read which students had left an impression on the masses.  The cheers, roars, applause and yelps were at times comical while the awkward silence that followed for the next child was almost painful.  I watched the faces of the eight-grade class.  I watched the faces of the kids who didn’t get the “high fives” on the way back to their seats.  The faces of the kids who didn’t stand because they weren’t in a club or on a team.  The faces of the kids whose only acknowledgement of their time in Middle School was their name being read with no applause following or only the applause of the three ticket holders they were allowed to invite.  It was to them I wish someone would have spoken… I wish I could have spoken.

If so, I would have spoken to all of the kids……   I would have told them;  eighth grade is not the pinnacle, nor is high school.  Work and look beyond those years. Whether you stood during acknowledgements of accomplishments or whether you sat, whether following your name announcement there was loud applause and cheers or whether the room was quiet, whether you received an award or whether you struggled to pass eighth grade, look around you… A few sitting in this room may always be your friends, however, most will only be memories of a season.  So, don’t allow your peers to measure your worth for they will give you a false sense of your value.  Those who received accolades, applause, cheers, participated in numerous clubs and teams, you have bloomed ear316634_2447057897912_1295853344_33180404_1993577937_nly but be careful, early bloomers face the danger of exposure.  Cover yourself with humility to avoid the damaging effects that the frost of arrogance, privilege, and self-importance bring.    To those remaining students, those who may not have had a moment to shine today.  It is okay.  Hold your head up!  You are a bud just waiting for the right season to bloom. Believe in yourself, be proud of who you are, who you will be and when you bloom you will have the maturity and patience to change the world!!

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Posted by on May 28, 2016 in Life Stories, Uncategorized

 

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Conversations in the Car- It’s Now Available!

51GjaPxd0vL._AA160_After several years of recording some of our family’s conversations, I decided to compile them into a book.  If you want to smile or maybe laugh out loud, you will not want to pass up this opportunity to get yours today.  Conversations in the Car can be purchased through Amazon and the Amazon Kindle Store.  Let me know how you like it!  Thanks!- Nancy

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Posted by on July 2, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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A post from the past

The Prodygal Life

Can you imagine if people of the Bible would have had facebook?

We’d see things like this-

Joseph: Relationship Status- It’s complicated

“Mary just checked in at the stable in Bethlehem with Joseph.”

Wiseman Status- “Camels packed and ready, gifts loaded, GPS (star) updated… ROAD TRIP!”

Shepherds Status- “Does anyone know what swaddling cloth is?”

“Gabriel just added photos to the album, ‘Do not be Afraid'”

Zechariah’s Status – ” At least I can still write”

Angel’s Status- “Had a great time hanging out with the shepherds tonight.  Thanks everyone for making it so much fun!”

King Herod’s Status- “Anyone want to go with me to “worship” that new king?”

I’m certain Christ’s timing on earth was perfect.  Not just because I think texting, facebook, twitter and more could provide so much false or irrelevant information that we would be overwhelmed trying to decipher what was truly being said…

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Posted by on December 4, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

December 4- Advent Daily Chocolate – Timing is Everything

Can you imagine if people of the Bible would have had facebook?

We’d see things like this-

Joseph: Relationship Status- It’s complicated

“Mary just checked in at the stable in Bethlehem with Joseph.”

Wiseman Status- “Camels packed and ready, gifts loaded, GPS (star) updated… ROAD TRIP!”

Shepherds Status- “Does anyone know what swaddling cloth is?”

“Gabriel just added photos to the album, ‘Do not be Afraid'”

Zechariah’s Status – ” At least I can still write”

Angel’s Status- “Had a great time hanging out with the shepherds tonight.  Thanks everyone for making it so much fun!”

King Herod’s Status- “Anyone want to go with me to “worship” that new king?”

I’m certain Christ’s timing on earth was perfect.  Not just because I think texting, facebook, twitter and more could provide so much false or irrelevant information that we would be overwhelmed trying to decipher what was truly being said and done by Christ, but because Galatians 4: 4-5 tells us it was the perfect time and perfect timing of his arrival.

I know that my enjoyment of technology, electricity, indoor plumbing, word processing, automobiles and other 21st Century perks makes the timing of my life perfect for my abilities… I trust that was the same for Christ’s life.

Something also tells me that had the nativity scene been in our day and age, Jesus’ birth announcement may have resembled this Christmas Card-


 

Galatians 4:4-5

 4 But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. 5 God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children.[a]

 
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Posted by on December 4, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Advent Daily Chocolate- Day 2: A Little Help Please (Isaiah, 42:1, 5-6)

I’m not sure if you have ever had the privilege of teaching a 16-year-old to drive, but lets just say that when I was 16 my parents told me that in order for me to get my license, I had to learn to drive our stick shift Volkswagen.  Two times out practicing in the car, one time with each parent, and they changed their minds and decided it wasn’t necessary. 

It’s funny that we believe that mid-teenage years are the best time to distribute driver’s licenses to kids… I’ve experienced it first hand in the past few years and this is the age when they believe they know everything, are invincible and some even immortal…. and we let them drive. Here’s an example of what I mean…

Quotes In the car while letting my 16-year-old daughter, Allison, practice driving in our church’s pretty much empty parking lot…

Allison:

“I am a good driver…. Now, this one is the brake, right?”

“I meant to do that.”

“Can I just go on and go through the grass?”

“So now, how do I put on makeup while driving?”

“How’s this parking?….. Wait, we’re still moving”

A little later… Still in the parking lot

Me: “Why did you stop?”

Allison: “I just got pulled over”

Same parking lot…

Allison’s friend Lexi who was in the back seat: “Why are you stopped now?”

Allison: “Uh, the light is red…

Lexi: (Playing along) “The light is green now”

Allison: “No, it’s not… that’s the turning lane… Keep complaining and this Disney trip is over!”

Still in the parking lot…

Me: “Okay, Allison, I need to get back to work”

Allison: “Come on, Mom, this is my first road trip…Anyone need to go to the bathroom? I don’t want you to tell me that you have to go down the road twenty minutes from now … now is your chance… And quit whining about being hungry and thirsty….”

Lexi: (after we had been sitting still in the car for a while) What are you staring at, Allie?

Allie: (As she continues to stare) Canadians… we’ve driven a lot today….

(I don’t know where she gets this)

Lexi: (playing along again) “You’d better go… Dinosaurs are coming after us…”

Allison: (looking at Lexi like she’s crazy) “That’s all you could come up with??”

As we are still driving around the parking lot….

Me: “Allison, I need to get back to work!”

Allison: Mi nombre es Allison. No hablo ingles.

See what I mean???

It would be ideal(and save me a lot of money in gray covering hair color) if we could teach our kids how to drive from a remote location …Yes, I could sit at my desk and guide her through the parking process. However, I can’t imagine the lack of understanding and trying to teach without actual help or an example…..especially teenagers who struggle with attention anyway. Sometimes… most of the time….we just have to show them what to do.

Here we are still in Isaiah (Isaiah, 42:1, 5-6)

God, through Isaiah, is letting us know that he is sending someone to show us the way…. the way to live; the way to God, himself.  His chosen people, though try as some did, couldn’t meet the mark with the laws… they just didn’t get it and He had promised a solution.  Like Isaiah, God had sent prophets to explain and warn but the people still didn’t catch on.  He loved his creation so much that he needed someone, just like us but more importantly, just like Him, to show us how to react to injustice, how to pray, how to trust, how to believe, how to love and more…. We needed an example…Isaiah was letting the people know that God was going to fulfill his promise of a new covenant with them ( a new way to get to Him) and the Light would come to show us the way. 

That Light was born and we celebrate his life during this time.  How has his example impacted your life? Have you allowed it to?

More Chocolate Tomorrow!

 
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Posted by on December 2, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

It’s a Good Book….

Children’s lives are, in many ways, like good books. You become so engrossed with each page of their life that chapters fly by and before you know it, you have finished the book and you wish there were more pages to read.

But the Author continues with another chapter… a brand new book in the series is written. There are new characters and settings.  So it may take a little awhile to get caught up in it like the last one, but the Author is good and won’t disappoint …. the new chapter will be just as good and quite possibly even be a better book in the series.

The Hall household has just bought the next book. The first chapter in it is titled, “College”… I’m sure it will be a good book too, but I sure didn’t like having to put the first one down.  I’ll keep reading though…. I’ve heard the good part is coming up.

I do think, however, that I’m going to read the other two books that I have at home a little slower. 😉

 
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Posted by on September 11, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Introducing The Chrysalis Brothers… They’ll be here all week

Sometimes my kids ask for something and because I find educational value in what they’ve asked for, I will get it immediately… okay, maybe it’s just because I think it would be fun…… but the point is this, sometimes I just get it for them … A couple of years ago my youngest just had to have a butterfly habitat. You know, the kind where you watch caterpillars turn into beautiful butterflies right before your very eyes… Yep, we got it and once we got it home the conversation between my husband and I went something like this….

Me: Great, we’re going to have to take this back.

Chris: Why?

Me: They didn’t give us everything.

Chris: Here let me see… (He takes it and looks at it)… It’s all here

Me: No, it’s missing the caterpillars

Chris: You have to order them

Me: Order them?!

Chris: Yes… what, you thought they came in the box?

Me: Um, Maybe…

Chris: How  could they have survived in the box like that?

Me: Freeze dried.

Chris: Freeze dried?  That would kill them

Me: Are you sure?

Chris: Yes, I’m pretty sure.

Me: Doesn’t it work for Sea Monkeys? ….(the thrifty side of me totally kicked in) Ugh, I don’t want to buy caterpillars

So the Butterfly Habitat sat empty until one day I happened to luck into a cute, little, furry caterpillar crawling across the driveway.  I grabbed it, ran inside and announced my find to the family.  Nobody shared my excitement but it didn’t deter me one bit… I was going to watch it turn into a beautiful butterfly and they would all be sorry for their lack of enthusiasm.  It lived in the habitat for a day or so.  Apparently caterpillars eat more than air because I had no clue what to feed him and, well, lets just say he went on to his eternal reward after grass didn’t satisfy his caterpillar metabolism.  No worries though… I did a little research and it was a terrible caterpillar that was a moth larvae that has been a horse killer here in Kentucky….. so, I’m actually a hero… but that is not the point… The point is, I didn’t want to buy caterpillars but the habitat doesn’t work if you don’t.  Fortunately my 6-year-old quickly forgot about the habitat and we went on with life.

Last Christmas, however, a package arrived in the mail and my cousins had sent my now 7 1/2-year-old a brand new habitat as a gift.  I will admit I felt the excitement jump back into my spirit when I thought about the caterpillar metamorphosis process, but still, there were no freeze dried caterpillars. So with constant urging and a pitiful looking sad face from my youngest, I broke down and ordered the caterpillars a few months later… okay, it was a lot of urging.

So the caterpillars, a.k.a. The Chrysalis Brothers, arrived and we watched them grow from tiny, little caterpillars to gluttonous, lazy, about to burst, huge caterpillars… it was actually pretty amazing at how fast they grew.  And soon they began to take their spots and form their very own chrysalis at the top of their habitat jar.  Again, amazing to see God’s creativity in their little lives… so for days they sat and we waited for them to step out and show themselves as the beautiful Painted Ladies they were supposed to be.  It happened and though we didn’t snuggle them or call all of our family with our excitement, we did find great pleasure in watching them mature and be able to fly.  So interesting to have such a close-up view and watch.

The instructions said that we were to let them go after a couple of days of observation so they could go into the world and multiply. We knew that day was coming… there was a sense of accomplishment with a bit of disappointment for having them for such a short period.  We let them go and they flew like they couldn’t possibly fly in their small habitat…now they had the whole world… or at least the neighborhood and it was actually beautiful to watch.

Watching them was a reminder to me that change is difficult… even when it is good change…. it often affects more than just those experiencing the biggest change.  But when God ordains the change there is so much to be excited about and so much to be expected that staying in the little “habitat” inhibits what God can do.

In Acts 11, Peter experienced others wanting him to stay in his “habitat” when he began eating with uncircumcised men. The circumcised believers began to complain until Peter told them how God ordained what he was doing.  Then the men who had complained opened the habitat door and allowed God to do his thing.

I can totally relate to the complaining men….

My neighbors are moving tomorrow….These aren’t just any neighbors… these are two people with whom I spent time with daily at work (I worked with both of them for several years) We’ve spent the day at the office together only to bring our families together at night for dinner.  We have shared quite a few Thanksgiving and Easter dinners together, prayed together, we’ve each been included in each other’s family holiday times, spent accumulated hours talking on the porch or making s’mores at their fire pit and we’ve borrowed everything from mayonnaise to toilet paper. …. these aren’t just friends or neighbor’s … they are unrelated family.  They are also in ministry and God has called them to another place.

You know, it’s easy to be selfless when it doesn’t really matter… the Chrysalis Brothers left and though it was fun watching them and would have been fun if we kept them longer, it was also fun to let them go…. But when it matters, it is easy to be selfish… I don’t want my neighbors to go…. I want more hours of talking on the porch….I want those shared times together… I want to hide their “for sale” sign and I want them to stay…but God has called them to where they are going.  They need to go to experience God’s freedom.

I love them and will miss them terribly, but I know that doing what God calls us to do is the only way we can truly see the beauty of the flight.  If we keep them from that then we only see a bit of what God can do.  I must open the “habitat” and let them go… didn’t say it would be easy… I know they will be such a great addition to the state of Missouri.  I love you, Howard and Shirley.  You can fly away now…. Godspeed.

Acts 11

1The apostles and the brothers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. 2So when Peter went up to Jerusalem, the circumcised believers criticized him 3and said, “You went into the house of uncircumcised men and ate with them.”

4Peter began and explained everything to them precisely as it had happened: 5“I was in the city of Joppa praying, and in a trance I saw a vision. I saw something like a large sheet being let down from heaven by its four corners, and it came down to where I was. 6I looked into it and saw four-footed animals of the earth, wild beasts, reptiles, and birds of the air. 7Then I heard a voice telling me, ‘Get up, Peter. Kill and eat.’

8“I replied, ‘Surely not, Lord! Nothing impure or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’

9“The voice spoke from heaven a second time, ‘Do not call anything impure that God has made clean.’ 10This happened three times, and then it was all pulled up to heaven again.

11“Right then three men who had been sent to me from Caesarea stopped at the house where I was staying. 12The Spirit told me to have no hesitation about going with them. These six brothers also went with me, and we entered the man’s house. 13He told us how he had seen an angel appear in his house and say, ‘Send to Joppa for Simon who is called Peter. 14He will bring you a message through which you and all your household will be saved.’

15“As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit came on them as he had come on us at the beginning. 16Then I remembered what the Lord had said: ‘John baptized with[a]water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.’ 17So if God gave them the same gift as he gave us, who believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I to think that I could oppose God?”

18When they heard this, they had no further objections and praised God, saying, “So then, God has granted even the Gentiles repentance unto life.”

 
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Posted by on July 3, 2010 in Uncategorized

 

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