Monday, June 27, 2011

Surprise Blessings

Don’t you just love how God sends little surprise blessings your way? I had such a surprise Saturday night at a Southern Gospel concert in South Pittsburg with my mom.

We went to see Jason Crabb (and thoroughly enjoyed him!)...

...but the surprise blessing was singer/songwriter Don Poythress.

As he was introducing his first song, I realized that he had penned one of my new favorites, “The Promise” sung by the Martins that I first heard a couple of months ago when they sang at the Gaither Homecoming. I was floored by the lyrics, because it so mirrored many lessons I had been learning in our study of Isaiah at Bible Study Fellowship and what the Lord had been speaking to my heart for some time.

“The Promise” has actually been my go-to song the last couple of weeks when I needed to be reminded of truth. On Saturday, I was overcome with emotion as I heard the story behind the song and heard it sung by the man who wrote it.

We were floored by this man’s talent and gentleness. After Google-ing him when I got home, I realized what an honor it was to meet him. He’s found great success in both gospel and country music (he also wrote “A Little More Country Than That” sung by Easton Corbin!) and strives to honor his faith in both genres.

Not only was my spirit encouraged by hearing Don sing, but I gained a whole new appreciation for songwriters. I tend to associate my favorite songs with the artists who sing them, but Saturday night I realized there are super talented people pouring their hearts and lives into the songs first.

I hope you’ll take a minute to read the lyrics and let them sink into your heart…

“The Promise”
by Don Poythress

I never said that I would give you silver or gold
Or that you would never feel the fire or shiver in the cold
But I did say you'd never walk thru this world alone
And I did say don't make this world your home

I never said that fear wouldn't find you in the night
Or that loneliness was something you'd never have to fight
But I did say I'd be right there by your side
And I did say I'll always help you fight

'Cause you know I made a promise that I intend to keep
My grace will be sufficient in your time of need
My love will be the anchor that you can hold on to
This is the promise, this is the promise I've made to you

I never said that friends would never turn their backs on you
Or that the world around you wouldn't see you as a fool
But I did say like Me you'll surely be despised
And I did say My ways confound the wise

I didn't say you'd never taste the bitter kiss of death
Or have to walk thru chilly Jordan to enter into rest
But I did say I'd be waiting right on the other side
And I did say I'll dry every tear you've cried

'Cause you know I made a promise that I've prepared a place
And someday sooner than you think you'll see me face to face
And you'll sing with the angels and a countless multitude
This is the promise, this is the promise I've made to you

So just keep on walking don't turn to the left or right
And in the midst of darkness let this be your light
That hell can't separate us and you're gonna make it thru
This is the promise, this is the promise I've made to you
Oh, this is the promise, this is the promise I've made to you

Friday, June 24, 2011

This makes me SO happy!!!

No matter how down I might be, 3 things are sure to always bring a smile to my face:

1. A dog in the back of a truck

2. A dog sticking his head out a car window

3. A dog in the driver's seat

I found this moment of pure happiness in the Fresh Market parking lot- it was the best part of my day!!!

-Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

0.1 mile

Two years ago, my friends moved 500 miles away to Texas.

Last year, a different friend moved her family 10,000 miles to Indonesia.

A few months ago, another friend moved 13 miles from Madison to Huntsville.

Last week, I moved 0.1 mile to my new house.

Here’s what happened:

My parents lived in House A.
My sister and I lived in House B.

House A and House B are just around the corner from each other.

Down the street from House A and House B is House C, which my parents bought about a month ago.

My parents moved to House C the first week of June.
My sister and I moved to House A last weekend.

Goodbye, House B.

Confused yet?!? We are!

So in the last 22 days, we’ve painted, packed, lifted, moved and cleaned EVERYTHING in TWO HOUSES!!!

Here’s what I’ve learned during the move:

1. My house is dustier than I ever imagined.

2. Things (painting, repairing, etc.) always take longer than expected.

3. My heating pad and Aleve are the most important things I own.

4. Friends are necessary! We are so thankful to the Phillips for bringing their truck, muscles and determination…they were lifesavers!

5. Picking paint colors is HARD! We went through about 10 of those little sample jars and still have decisions to make. I think the Home Depot guy groaned every time he saw us!

6. My parents and sister are superheroes of moving! They have worked tirelessly (and sometimes franticly) to get the houses moved, painted and cleaned.

There are still a few things that must be done by the end of June, but the end is in sight!

Next project: unpacking, organizing and decorating…so if you don’t hear from me for a while, just know I’m spending some quality with my heating pad!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

My summer in one word...

monster mix

paint swatches

dust bunnies

home depot

creamsicle floats

creamsicle-colored fingers


claim it! iPod mix

...well, maybe more than one word, but that's how my summer's unfolding!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

In Good Hands

Sometimes I get stressed out.

One of the things I was stressed about concerning my recent birthday party was capturing the night’s memories with pictures. I wanted to be able to enjoy the party without having to tote my camera around everywhere, plus with the funky lighting in the skating rink, I wasn’t sure if my pictures would come out clearly.

To ease my stress, I decided to ask a couple of friends to bring their fancy-shamcy cameras to the party take pictures for me. On the night of the party, I was able to completely enjoy the party and my guests because I knew great pictures were being taken. I wasn’t stressed for even a minute!

When I got the proofs back, I was floored by how great the pictures were! They were so professional and crisp! Plus, my friends took candid pictures I wasn’t expecting, capturing the festiveness of the party perfectly. They did a much better job than I ever could!

Fast forward three days.

A friend and I were talking about facing life’s disappointments and what God’s peace feels like.

In an instant, I knew the perfect way to describe what God’s peace feels like in my life.

It feels like knowing my friends were taking great pictures and I didn’t have to worry about it…I could enjoy the party.

How’s that for a picture of life?

God is doing beautiful things I don’t even know about. I can enjoy life.

At the party, I only took three pictures with my camera and you know what? They were a little dark and blurry.

Why do I strive and stress when my life is in the capable and loving hands of my Lord and Savior? My prayer is that I can relax, enjoy the party and let Him create some beautiful pictures.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Partyin' like it's 1981!

I had an absolute blast celebrating my 30th birthday with an 80's themed roller skating party! Not only was it hilarious to see everyone's 80's outfits, makeup and hair, but we all had plenty of laughs as we remembered how to roller skate and do the Hokey Pokey!

I spent my birthday the best way I know how- surrounded by the people I love!

Strikin' a pose :)

These cuties couldn't decide if I was turning 80 or just born in the 1800's!


The roller rink created the perfect atmosphere for our 80's theme!

I think Keri skated more than anyone! This girl knows how to have a good time!

With BSF friends, Alisha & Laura

Cooling off & catching some air with Sarah & Jeana

Church friends Laura, Joy & Melissa also strikin' a pose!

Enjoying being one minute older than Abby!

Possibly the funniest part of the night is when Abby's candles wouldn't light so we four Foresters moved the cakes to different tables. I'm glad our friends are used to our "nothing is ever as easy as we planned" ways!

So many of my BSF friends came! Love these ladies!

My fantastic friend, Jeana, who impressed me with her dance moves all night!

Wonder if the Hokey Pokey IS what it's all about?!?!

I can't decide when I laughed the hardiest- dancing the Hokey Pokey or looking at the pictures! Seeing my friends and family cut loose was beyond hilarious! Who knew so many Baptists could dance!?!?!

With our high school friends, Jennifer & Melissa (also twins!)

With church friends, Deree, Jennifer, Karen & Laura

Thrilled my cousins, Linda & Patsy could come over from Rising Fawn, GA for the party!

With sweet friends Jeanine & Grace


A HUGE thank you to my friends Melissa Schuster & Jennifer Ezell for being the photographer's all night! They relieved a lot stress for me and captured beautiful memories! I couldn't possibly post all the pictures or list all my friends that came, but thank you to everyone for helping me Celebrate 30!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

30th Birthday Prayer

I officially turn 30 at 6:36am (Abby at 6:37am), but I wanted to stay up and bid farewell to my 20's and greet my birthday at midnight! The day promises to be one of relaxation, loved ones and some 80's flashbacks...I'm already feelin' the love!

I heard a song this afternoon that grabbed me and I knew I wanted to share it as my birthday prayer. About two weeks ago, I heard this artist for the first time in a song that brought me to tears and within three days, two other friends randomly mentioned her to me...sounds like a God-thing!

{I hope you'll take a minute to listen to the entire song on Youtube since I'm just going to share the chorus with you. }


Make Something Beautiful
Laura Story

Take all of my life, all of my life,
And make something beautiful.
I open my hand, trusting Your plan.
Make something beautiful so all will see
Your work in me, as You make something beautiful.