A Moment to Ramble

How do you even jump back into blogging when you haven’t done it in so long?  Wow.  It has certainly been a stretch these past couple of months.  Just when I think I’m about to start to really de-stress, something else comes along.  Eh, that’s life. 

I really miss writing, although I have been writing some-just not here for everyone to see.  I kind of felt the need to not write for everyone to see for a little bit and gain some of my own perspective on some life stuff.  You know, the stuff that only God can really help me with anyway. 

So here I am, rambling on about how I haven’t written for awhile.  Give me some time, I don’t have anything profound to share at the moment…or even really funny.  But I will tell you about the last week or so….

I did get to spend my Thanksgiving break with my brother, Dave, and his family, in Chicago.  Stephanie’s parents were there too, and that certainly added to the enjoyment.  Anthony and Angie Sorbo…one was a church planter and Bible school builder in Indonesia for 50 years and the other was a church planter’s wife for about 30 years, I guess.  Angie was also the Pennsylvania/Delaware District Missionettes Coordinator, and when I was a little girl, she was one of my heroes.  That’s an entirely different story, but nonetheless, I got to hang out with some heroes.  Good times. 🙂

Ryder is getting bigger and funnier, Ross is getting better at soccer and Robert is actually getting smarter…who’s 12 going on 16.  What’s up with teenagers anyway?  Today’s newest update is that Ross has a new email address, so we’ve already emailed several times this evening, and I’ve even introduced him to chatting online (did I mention he’ll be 8 in February?).

Mom gave us a HUGE scare on Thursday when my dad had to call 911 to rush her to the hospital because she wasn’t conscious.  It’s a long story, but PRAISE GOD, she got out of the hospital yesterday and she seems to be doing much better.  Her heart rate is a bit abnormal, so please pray for her complete healing.  She’s been working hard to get healthy…

Funny story about her heartbeat though…So she was telling me that when the nurse put her in her new room (from ICU), she had noted that she could see Target from the window.  My mom’s heartbeat immediately sped up when she realized that and the nurse said, "Well, I can see where you’d rather be today!"  My mom’s response was, "Yeah, the worst part about me being in the hospital is that I’m missing all my good sales!"  Well, folks, that’s my mother for ya!  I’ll be praying that God gives her even better sales than she would’ve had before.  He would honor that kind of stewardship, right? :0)

In talking with her today, she inspired me in a healthy way.  I’ve not been doing so well with all of my health goals…well, with any of them.  I get so discouraged and that really stinks.  I can actually sit there and read The Word and reject encouragement about my issues.  Now, that really stinks!  So I’ve been praying through this…crying through this…and coming up and down over this.  Then I talk with my mother today, while I was in the grocery store, and I feel inspired!  So I dragged myself back to the produce section, which I originally sped through, and bought some great stuff to make vegetable soup.  Well, it’s a start…again.  I wish I was as patient with my own failure as God is with me…then again, I’ll never quite reach God’s potential.  Still, it’s something to shoot for.

Lately I’ve had some tough walls to push through, and thankfully, I’ve pushed through many of them.  They have to do with several areas of my life, not just one or two, but somehow they all intertwine into ME.  I’ve seen sides of me that I don’t like and sides of me that I’m shocked by.  Moments of bravery and confidence have come out of nowhere and insecurities attack when least expected.  Let’s just call my life, Cedar Point, and hopefully that makes some sense.  Through every moment of sick desperation and ugly depression I want holy moments to arise.  I want missional moments to bring life to dead moments and I want to seize opportunities of hope.  There are few things more certain than hope, as it comes to life from the grave!  Deep hope and trust arise from deep places of gravity…but only if we allow them to.  This is key.  Staying in the deep places of gravity too long will lesson our senses to the true hope of the Cross.  We become numb to the Cross and it’s purpose in the world…in our lives.  It distorts our desire for community with others and fabricates something else…something that was never intended for us.

Jesus.  He is the focus.  Who He is…this is what draws us from the depth of our graves to the depth of the presence of the Holy Spirit.  Wait in His presence.  Wait.

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New Pictures

Here are a few pictures from Indy this week, with Dave, Steph and my nephews…just a few.  You can check out more pictures of Ryder in his updated album below…Img_8007

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Happy Birthday Stephanie!!

Can I just tell you about my sister-in-law for a minute?  Her name was Stephanie Sue Hafner, until she married my big brother, David, 13 years ago, and became a Burton for life:)

She first got to know me during my most awkward years as an early teen, and she definitely knew me during my brattiest years.  At first I didn’t want to get to know her because Dave had just broken up with his high school sweetheart, whom I’d adored, and I was just so mad at him for that!  I didn’t want to give this new chick a chance.  But eventually, once she showed me how much she knew about nails and makeup, I was hooked on her (and let me tell you, she knew how to pile on the makeup and do her nails:)  It’s ironic because she’s isn’t even high-maintenance about those things anymore! 

Stephanie was my first sister-in-law, and the only sister figure I had during those teen/college years.  She bore me my first 3 nephews, and I get to hear all her wisdom as a young mom (still young at 37, Steph:)…I’m so grateful for that.  She’ll do anything for her kids, or for her husband. 

She’s a woman of God who is continually giving the Holy Spirit room to change her.  She  challenges me deeply.  Steph’s one person that has the right to speak into my life at any time and kick me in the butt about anything.  There’s nothing that I would hide from her or be ashamed to tell her…she knows me well.

We love to talk about kids, Jesus, change, ministry…She’s quite the confidant to me.

I could go on and on and on about what Stephanie means to me, as my sister and as one of my very best friends…but that’s not even possible to do right now.  I absolutely love her deeply and and I am so glad she’s been in my life all this time.

Happy Birthday Stephanie!

This is a funny picture of her at Ryder’s baby shower last year…
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This is a better picture of her pregnant with Ryder last year…(so beautiful!)
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And this is Stephanie with David…I love this couple:)

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I’ve gotta throw a recent picture of Ryder (the offspring:)  Isn’t this kid hilarious?  I love his "alternative" hair style.
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Home Sweet Home

Today (Friday) was amazing.  I’m tired, but it was amazing.  I hit a hammer into wood for the first time today.  Knowing that this was not going to be my specialty, I mostly held wood for others to pound nails into, but a few nails I did drive home:)  (I was kind of a girly girl today, I guess you could say)

Take a second and think of what the word home means to you.  Think of what your home looks like; how big it is, how cozy it is, how cool/warm it is, how much stuff you have in it, the paint on the walls, the pictures hung…I’m a spoiled brat.

Here are a few pictures of one of the homes that my team built today, for a widow and her five children.

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Think about the word home again.  Don’t you feel kinda spoiled?  We don’t have to feel bad about our blessings, but it’s nice to recognize that we have so much, in order to give.  After all, in the reality of the Cross, we don’t deserve anything, and we haven’t earned anything. 

This widow, and her kids, were so grateful for our small kindness.  I’m pretty sure that it meant the world to them.  We got to share blessing with someone that desperately needed it. 

Philly Weekend

This past weekend I spent some time in Philadelphia with my parents and my brother and sister in law.  Congratulations to Tiffany for getting her Masters Degree!  …and a 4.0, at that!

It was Father’s Day and the Tigers were playing the Phillies.  What a great day for me to take my dad and mom to a game!  To top it off, the Tigers won.  Dad wasn’t as happy…but I think that the sting of watching his beloved team lose was at least a little less because I was there:)
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This is my dad and me outside Citizens Bank Park.

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I was told that I looked like I was confused…wearing my Tigers shirt and my Phillies hat:)

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This is mom and me, right before I left.  She’s the one that kept elbowing me when I would scream for Pudge at the game, Sunday.  She tried to kick me out of their row!

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And as an added bonus, I got to see a good friend from college, Ryan, who’s working in the culture of Philly.  It was also great to see him.

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And just because I wanted to take a picture of the beautiful scenery of Pennsylvania…while I was driving…dad, pretend you didn’t read that:)

Kay, the beautiful goddess statue

Meet Kay.  She’s my beautiful goddess statue.Dsc03369_2

A few years ago when I was at my grandma’s house (the one that passed away in January), I commented on
her statue.  I said that I liked it and I asked her if I could have it someday.  She said that she would make sure I got it.  Well, she moved out of her apartment about two years ago, so the statue had been at my parents’ place, hiding out in the upstairs closet.  This past weekend I drove to Philly to be with my parents and I brought Kay home with me. 

Why "Kay"?  My grandma’s name was Katherine (like a wonderful writer/friend I know;), but she went by Kay.  So now I have her in my apartment.  She doesn’t match one thing that I own, but Kay will always have a place where I live, somehow and somewhere.

Well-Hidden:)

I told my mom, this morning, that I was sorry she was getting her mother’s day card late.  I’d bought it last week, wrote it out and put it in the mail-to-go-out bin at work this week.  It never got mailed, so I had to mail it on Friday afternoon.

She told me that she had one up on me.  Remember my dad’s birthday a few weeks ago?  My mom had bought his birthday card 3 weeks before that, and hid it so he wouldn’t find it.  She said that she read through a whole bunch of cards and picked out just the right one that she wanted.  Well, Mom hid it so well that she still can’t find it:)