Archives for April 2010

Frame That Moment!

I can’t help myself. Some things are just too good not to share. Kelli and Jake had their engagement photos taken on Sunday, and their photographer, Will Flowers of J. Flower’s Photography, immediately rewarded (and teased!) us by posting three shots on his Facebook page. Is this photo adorable or what?!

Just so you know, I’ve tried very hard not to overrun my blog with all things wedding since Kelli and Jake’s engagement last August, but I thought you might enjoy getting a peek at their fun photo shoot. Am I right? :)

If I had to write a caption for this photo, I might call it “Frame that Moment!” The love, the fun, the promise of more to come… Some moments are just meant to be captured, aren’t they? Some moments are meant to be framed.

I hope you’ve been lucky enough to capture and frame some of your precious memories. Whether they’re framed and hanging on a wall, carefully preserved in a dearly loved photo album, or tucked away safely in the deepest part of your heart, they’ll bring you renewed joy each time you let your eyes return to them.

I can even imagine our Father in heaven calling out, “Frame that moment!” as He watches the days of our lives unfold. Just as we long to hang on to certain memories of our loved ones, I think God must feel the same way.

I can’t help but wonder if He’s decorating heaven with photos of His kids — scenes from our lives that He smiles over and displays with love. The ones that are meant to be captured, the ones that are meant to be framed…

“The Lord your God…will take great delight in you…” Zephaniah 3:17

*Don’t forget to enter the Extra Sweet Giveaway. See post below for details!

*Also, the next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out next week. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*Photo by Will Flowers

Extra Sweet Giveaway!

Hey all, it’s time for another giveaway — an extra sweet giveaway! And you know me, when I think extra sweet, I think chocolate. How about a little Godiva goodness this time?

To make it extra fun, I’ll announce the winner of the $15 Godiva gift card on Mother’s Day — just two short weeks from today, if you can believe that!

To be eligible for the drawing, just leave a comment on this post by noon (CST) on Mother’s Day, May 9th. If I don’t know you personally, be sure to include your email address or link to your blog. To add to the fun, tell me what your favorite candy is. If you’re not a candy fan, tell me what you indulge in when you need a taste of something extra sweet. (For the record, the dark chocolate truffles from Harry and David are my favorite special candy, and my “everyday” favorite would have to be Peanut M&Ms :) )

I’ve got something else extra sweet for you today, too. How about a little goodness from the Word of God? The author of Psalm 119 expressed it well — “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Psalm 119:103)

I hope you’re blessed this week by reading one of my favorite psalms:

“I lift up my eyes to the hills— where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.

The LORD watches over you— the LORD is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.

The LORD will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.” Psalm 121

*Flickr photo by love♡janine’s photostream

**The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out the first part of May. Sign-up is free and to the right!

Emergency Run

I should have known better. I should never have bragged to my sisters in my Sunday email about not having any out-of-town trips this week. That’s all it took. By Monday afternoon, I saw that I was going to have to hit the road again — and the sooner the better. We had a mini wedding crisis on our hands.

I won’t go into all the details — I’m too worn out :) Let’s just say we had a snafu with the invitations and were faced with a bit of a time crunch. Someone had to make an emergency run to the nearest Hobby Lobby (no, we don’t have one in our town), and of course, that someone would be me. So by Tuesday morning, the mother of the bride was off to save the day.

Yes, my plans for Monday and Tuesday shifted beneath my feet, but an MOB has to be ready for such seismic activity. The good thing? Hobby Lobby had what we needed, and I even got it on sale. (MOBs happy dance over sale items, by the way :) ) Another good thing? My best friend came along for the ride, and we got in a good catch-up session. She even bought some chocolate for us along the way. I know how to pick friends, huh? :)

Of course, this wasn’t my first emergency run as a mother, and I’m sure it won’t be my last. As long as there’s breath in my body, I’ll be making those kinds of runs. That’s what happens when you love someone.

It makes me think of the One who made an emergency run for all of us. The One who came not only to save the day but our souls as well. Someone had to do it. A sacrifice had to be made.

If you’re like me, you’re always amazed when you think of how Jesus was willing to leave heaven, take on an earthly body, and then allow Himself to be tortured and killed in order to pay for our sins and make a way for us to join Him in heaven. After all, who makes that kind of sacrifice?

Who? I can almost hear Him answer — “Don’t be surprised. That’s what happens when you love someone…”

“‘For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.'” John 3:17

*Flickr photo by The Gut, Creative Commons License

**The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out the first part of May. Sign-up is free and to the right!

All Ears

I’m all ears today. You’ve listened to me tell you all kinds of things about my life, and now it’s your turn to talk to me. Like the pup above, I’m all primed and ready to hear what you have to say. It’s about time, huh? :)

For the next few days, let’s enjoy a little fun and fellowship. Everyone chime in and answer any or all of the following questions. Some are serious and some are light-hearted, but all will give me — and fellow readers — a chance to know you a little better. Can’t wait to hear from you! :)

1. Who is your all-time favorite movie star?
2. What’s one of your most embarrassing moments ever?
3. What’s the best thing that’s happened to you so far in 2010?
4. What Bible character (besides Jesus!) do you admire the most? Why?
5. Where do you hope to travel next?
6. What’s one of the biggest challenges you’ve faced so far this year?
7. What was the last book that really wowed you? What do you hope to read soon?
8. Tell me one thing that drives you crazy — even if it’s about me! :)
9. What are you passionate about?
10. Last, but certainly not least, what’s your favorite sweet treat? :)

Okay, like I said, I’m all ears so let me hear from you. Yes, even you lurkers :) Join the fun and fellowship and let me know you’re out there! Blessings to you all this week!

“We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us…” 1 John 1:3a

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, will come out the first part of May. Sign-up is free and to the right!

*Flickr photo by tanakawho

Insider Tips and Sight Encouragment with Cec Murphey

Call us darn lucky. Our Fellowship of Christian Writers group benefited Monday night from valuable insider tips presented by Cec Murphey, NY Times bestselling author of 90 Minutes in Heaven (coauthored with Don Piper). Cec had been in the area teaching at a writers conference and graciously extended his stay to be with us and spur us on in our writing endeavors.

He spoke about the business of writing, giving special emphasis to things to watch for in a book contract as well as questions regarding literary agents. And since he’s author of well over 100 books and is one of only about 2% of writers who actually make their living from writing, his expert advice can be trusted. In other words, he knows what he’s talking about.

Not only is Cec knowledgeable, but he has a heart for helping other writers (for example, speaking to our group). Since I posted Cec Muphey, Author and Mentor a couple of years ago, I won’t repeat that mentoring info but do have one thing to add. Recently, Cec started his Writer to Writer blog and faithfully shares “lessons learned from a lifetime of writing”. Upon hearing about it, I jumped to subscribe, added his link to the “For Fellow Writers” section on my sidebar, and have been gathering nuggets of wisdom ever since.

Even though it’s a blessing to hear Cec’s insider tips and nuggets of wisdom, it was also a real blessing just to see him and be encouraged by his gracious spirit and the common bond we share as writers and Christians — especially since he’s been down the writer road longer than any of us in FCW. Writers, much like any other like-minded group of people, can be encouraged just by hanging out together, just by seeing one another.

The Bible tells us the apostle Paul experienced “sight” encouragement, too. After appealing to Caesar during one of his imprisonments and trials, he sailed to Rome under guard of a Roman regiment. After delays, storms, and shipwrecks, they arrived in Rome and were met by some of the believers there who had heard that Paul was coming. Scripture records, “At the sight of these men Paul thanked God and was encouraged.” (Acts 28:15b)

Isn’t it wonderful how just the sight of fellow believers — or fellow writers — can encourage and refresh us? Isn’t it a blessing to think that we might be that encouragement for someone else? Let’s be ready for our own opportunities to offer insider tips and sight encouragement. Let’s be ready to spur one another on…

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up…” 1 Thessalonians 5:11

* I posted a review of one of Cec’s books last year and also included another in a past issue of Life Notes, my free quarterly newsletter (sign-up to the right).

*My photo – did you spot me in the shot? I’m sitting at the far-right corner of the table, taking notes as fast as I can. Just hope I can read them now :)