Monday, June 25, 2007

Texas Gals Visit the Land of Bluegrass

This past week was a nice break from my usual work schedule. My mom and aunt came to visit! I only worked Monday and Tuesday, and they stayed through Saturday. One never quite knows what's in store when you get these ladies together... Wednesday was spent in Cincinnati and Newport. We were in the city for my annual appointment at the TS Clinic and stopped by Newport for some sun and seafood on the way back to Louisville.
Thursday was spent at the Downs: Churchill Downs. What was originally intended as a visit to the museum, complete with tours and a stop by the gift shop, turned out to be a full day! A valet handed us three free tickets for seats to the afternoon races that included our own personal waitress, flat screen TVs in case our seats still weren't satisfactory (trust me, they were), and freedom to go pretty much wherever we wanted! No no no, we did not bet on the races, but they were still fun to watch. The horse I rooted for was named "Goes"...yes, that was his name - how original.

This is how close we were to the action! It was pretty thrilling to hear the din of voices around us cheering for their favorites as these beautiful creatures tore past the finish line. My mom and aunt were raised riding horses, and my mom now actually owns one! I think this was a unique and memorable experience for them.

Oh, but the fun didn't stop after the Downs! We met up with my boyfriend afterwards and headed to Rocky's Italian Grill for dinner (see below for the picture from where we sat on the river). The weather was perfect: so perfect we didn't want the evening to end, so we managed to save room for dessert.

Ever since my car accident last month, I have gone back and forth with being somewhat homesick. I looked forward to my mom's visit for weeks, just to have her nearby so that I could hug her and so that she could see that everything worked out just as it was intended. We had a very relaxing visit, and we're already planning what to do when she visits next year!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Like a shadow declining

swiftly away . . . away . . .

like the dew of the morning

gone with the heat of the day;

like the wind in the treetops,

like a wave of the sea,

so are our lives on earth when seen

in the light of eternity.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Four Then and Four to Come

I was tagged by my friend at Pandapalooza to do this meme. I haven't done this one, nor do I participate on a regular basis. Here is how this one works: You share four things that were new to you in the past four years. Four things you learned or experienced or explored for the first time in the past four years. New house, new school, new hobby, new spouse, new baby, whatever. Then you have to list four new things you want to try in the next four years. I liked thinking about the four new things that I want to try.

Four new things I learned or experienced in the past four years:
  1. The Lord brought a certain young man in my life in summer of 2003. We
    spent many days learning more about one another, and now, four years later, I
    can't imagine what life was like before him! He's my best friend, leader,
    encourager, but most important is that he continually points me to the truth of
    the Word. I tend to lose focus when my emotions take a front seat in
    certain situations, but he consistently points me back to Christ and the truth
    of His Word (even when I don't like it at the time).

2. In summer of 2003, I had my third overseas experience in Istanbul,
Turkey. My team spent two weeks on a college campus building relationships
with students. I wouldn't say I was "distracted" while over there, but it
was definitely a time of intercession and reflection. I would go back to
the hotel every evening and check my email, signing into Yahoo with anxious
anticipation for receiving emails from a certain someone: it was part of the
"getting to know you" season...
3. I graduated from college in May 2004 with a Bachelor of Behavioral
Sciences. I didn't rush into seminary immediately following that, but
instead stayed in my college town for a few months working and wondering where I
would be headed next.

4. I've been in Kentucky for two years!!! It's hard to believe, but I
moved here in June 2005. My boyfriend and I both moved here and began
classes at the
Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in the fall of 2005.
I finally found a biblical counseling masters degree that actually relies on the
Word! Not only did he and I move here, but our other Texas friends
followed us a year later!

Four things that I want to try or do in the next four years:

  1. 1. "Good things to come to those who wait." While everyone around
    me seems either already married, more impatient than myself, or all of the
    above, I would like to be married in the near future. I'm the silly
    girl who told him that I want to be completely surprised (and trust me, some
    days I wonder why I ever said that!) I am patient in knowing that now is
    not the time. What worth is there in being impatient for something that
    clearly has not come yet for reasons known to the Lord? The day
    will come when it comes, and until then, I'm enjoying my best
2. Graduate from Southern with a Master
of Divinity in
Counseling, and receiving my
. My current school and
schedule limit my time to invest in extensive counseling, but I do treasure
both the studies and relationships I have been given during this

3. Pending marriage (yes, let's not put the cart before the horse
here), I would like to have at least one child biologically. While there
are concerns that accompany tuberous sclerosis, and I am in favor of genetic
counseling, I would like to have that experience. I have realized more
than ever during these past few years just how fragile life is, and how the most
minute details of life are completely in the Lord's hands. If He wills it
so, I would love the experience of carrying my own child.

4. I would like to live in a HOUSE! While I am thankful for
where I live and
the low expenses that come with my apartment, I would love to
have a house
at some point, whether buying or renting. There is something
much more
personal about a house than sharing walls and floors with other

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

"To learn Christ, this is life!"

I read the last page of Stepping Heavenward over the weekend, and I have yet to narrow my thoughts down to a concise recollection of why this book is now on my list of favorites. However, I seem incapable of further prolonging an entry dedicated to this particular novel. The little paperback is currently sitting atop a new journal at my bedside. My approach and purpose for writing, for filling those empty pages, has been renewed by reading Elizabeth Prentiss' dear little novel. A novel! The journal entries penned by "Katy" seemed so true to life, I oftentimes felt I was reading the confessions and insights of a very near and dear friend. Not only was I moved to tears in reading of conversion, sweet moments of the Lord's presence during the darkest of hours, the patience and sanctification lived out between husband and wife, but I was also offended. I was offended by some of "Katy's" thoughts and attitude toward individuals and events in her life. And just when my jaw would drop at such candid outbursts, I was immediately brought to humility at the reality that these particular journal entries were the very ones with which I can most often resonate. Because of this, I was moved as I read of "Katy" questioning the Lord's hand only to later see that He was working in every detail of those events which brought her to her knees. All this to say, I was moved by this little book in ways I have rarely, if ever, experienced.

  • “You would not speak so kindly if you knew what a dreadful creature I am. I am angry with myself, and angry with everybody, and angry with God. I can’t be good two minutes at a time. I do everything I do not want to do, and do nothing I try and pray to do. Everybody plagues me and tempts me. And God does not answer any of my prayers, and I am just desperate.” p.38 ("Katy" in her youth)

  • "'You may be sure of it,' he said solemnly. 'I, His minister, bring the gospel to you today. Go home and say over and over to yourself, I am a wayward foolish child. But he loves me! I have disobeyed and grieved Him ten thousand times over. But He loves me! I have lost faith in some of my dearest friends and am very desolate. But He loves me!’ I came away, and all the way home I fought this battle with myself, saying, 'He loves me!' I knelt down to pray, and all my wasted, childish, wicked life came and stared me in the face. I looked at it and said with tears of joy, 'But He loves me!' Never in my life did I feel so rested, so quieted, so sorrowful, and yet so satisfied.” p. 38-39 (conversation between "Katy" and "Dr. Cabot")

  • "'And I am so astonished that we are restless under His unerring hand! Think how He has dealt with me. My soul was sick unto death, sick with worldliness, and self-pleasing and folly. There was only one way of making me listen to reason, and that was just the way He took. He snatched me right out of the world and shut me up in one room, crippled, helpless, and alone, and set me to thinking, thinking, thinking till I saw the emptiness and shallowness of all in which I had hitherto been involved'...I was glad to be alone, to walk my room singing praises to him for every instance in which, as my Physician, He had disappointed my hope and defeated my joy, and given me to drink of the cup of sorrow and bereavement." p. 244-45 (conversation between "Katy" and "Helen")

  • “Mother says we ought to study God’s providence more than we do, since He has a meaning and a purpose in everything He does. Sometimes I can do this and find it a source of great happiness. Then worldly cares seem mere worldly cares, and I forget that His wise, kind hand is in every one of them.”p. 216