Friday, July 28, 2006

Answered prayer....

I haven't had a lot of time to post this week... but I did want to let you all know that I accepted the job at Cary Christian School and start in a week! This is an answer to prayer...we had been praying that I would hear something about a job before going out of town this week. The Lord has been good and I have learned to depend on him throughout this whole process of praying for and looking for a job and then praying through the decision (which was a little harder than I expected). I'm excited about this opportunity and looking forward to seeing God's continued faithfulness! Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement (and those of you who wrote references for me!!!), it has been a blessing.

Tomorrow I am leaving for vacation... can't wait to be there :) It will be great to have a break before I start into the new work schedule!

Have a great week!!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Job Offer...

I received a job offer today! It is for a 2nd teacher assistant position at a Christian school. I am taking today and tonight to pray about it. Please pray with and for me as I make this decision. If I accept I want it to be because I have faith that it is the Lord's will and not just because it is the first offer.

Thanks...I'll keep you posted.

PS: on another note...
A couple people have asked me about this recently: You do not need to have a blog or blogger user ID to comment, anyone can post a comment on this blog...just click on other and type in your name.

Friday, July 21, 2006

One pretty cool chica.

This is me with my sister Jo. Yesterday I went to see her at work, which pretty much made her day. Today I prayed for her when she wasn't feeling well, and now I'm letting her hang out in my room. Yeah...I'm pretty cool. I'm so cool that a few minutes ago I even let her get her picture taken with me. You know, I'm so very cool that you should leave me lots of comments telling me so.

FYI...(in case you weren't sure) this blog was
written by Jo.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Ava is 3 months old!

For those of you who have been asking for new pictures of my niece, there's some updated ones over at Joy & Dan's blog...
however, none of me with Ava, which I think this is evidence that she needs some more Aunt Bethany time. Hopefully this will be remedied when I go over there tomorrow night (with the camera, of course.)

She is a pretty serious little girl...but she is starting to be more expressive and smile more, so I'll try to catch one in a picture :)

Isn't she precious? I am so blessed to have her close by...


YOU CHOSE THE CROSS with every breath,
The perfect life, the perfect death:
You chose the cross.
A crown of thorns You wore for us,
And crowned us with eternal life:
You chose the cross.
And though Your soul was overwhelmed with pain,
Obedient to death You overcame.

I'm lost in wonder,
I'm lost in love,
I'm lost in praise forevermore.
Because of Jesus' unfailing love
I am forgiven, I am restored.

You loosed the cords of sinfulness
And broke the chains of my disgrace:
You chose the cross.
Up from the grave victorious,
You rose again so glorious:
You chose the cross.
The sorrow that surrounded You was mine,
'Yet not My will but Yours be done!' You cried.

Martyn Layzell
Copyright © 2002 Thankyou Music

Monday, July 17, 2006

more friends...

Here I am with Shaynah and Kendra, two of my very good friends from Charlotte. Together, they have founded the 24* singles group, and made me an "honorary member of the Raleigh chapter" (according to Kendra).

*this group is named for the age of the members not an infatuation with Jack Bauer.

Kendra was my first friend when I moved to Charlotte, my closest friend for those four years, and has continued to be a faithful friend since I moved back home. Shaynah and I kind of traded places when I went from Raleigh to Charlotte for college and she went from Charlotte to UNC for college. Then we traded places again when we graduated. But, we still managed to become friends :)

Sometime soon they will have a 24 group event here in Apex...

Saturday, July 15, 2006

My Girls... (or at least some of them)

Missy, Ashley, Jamie, Amy Kay, Sarah, & Lynne...
before the big dodgeball game.
Watch out...these girls have some mad skills!

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Open Doors

I have an interview on Monday at Cary Christian School...
...also I will be going to 'shadow' the drama and music teachers at Turner Creek Elem. on Wednesday. Turner Creek does not have a full time position available, but I'm still looking different options with that.

I'd appreciate your prayers!

"For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.
O LORD of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you!" Ps 84:12

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Closed Doors

Today the job search yielded two doors closing in a row. (Actually, I guess you could say that I closed the second one myself.)

The first one was a little more disappointing. (it was for teaching at a Christian school) I didn't have enough experience for the job, which is perfectly understandable. I appreciate Missy's encouragement to me... 'a closed door just means that God has something else planned that you haven't even thought of yet'. Thanks Missy! I needed somebody to speak the truth to me today. You're a faithful friend and a super accountability partner :)

The second one was a Marketing Assistant job that I applied for at the Carolina Ballet. I called to follow up and they were going to give me an interview, but then I asked about the schedule and pretty much they wanted me to sign my life away to the ballet company. "This would have to be your #1 priority. If you have other things in your life you want to schedule around than this is not the job for you." hmmm....yeah, I kind of like my church and my family and my friends. I appreciated them being straightforward about it, though. It was really a confirmation of what I had already been thinking about this job. The more I am around the professional dance world the more I realize it is really not for me.

So... pressing on... I delivered another resume today, and hopefully will get another one out tomorrow. I also go to talk to the principle at Turner Creek Elementary tomorrow (about teaching dance). I'll keep you all updated. Thanks for the prayers!

Monday, July 10, 2006

I will greatly rejoice in the LORD;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herslef with her jewels.

For as the earth brings forth its sprouts,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up,
so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise to sprout up before all the nations.

Isaiah 61:10-11

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Should we celebrate Independance Day?

Last week there was an question emailed out by Steven: Should Christians celebrate July 4th/ was the Revolutionary War Biblical?... Here is the reply I sent; much of this came out of conversations with my dad, mom, and sisters. I really do not have any original thoughts.

After thinking over this and talking with people, I have come to a few conclusions...

  • Whether or not one believes the gaining of Indepenance was Biblical, I think we should all celebrate it. Since some might not read this whole email, I am going to start with what I think is the most important thing to consider:
    "Everything goes back to the gospel" (to quote Mike Bullmore). Does our celebration hinder the furtherence of the gospel or malign the gospel in any way? I believe the answer is, No. Instead, a celebration of 4th of July is an opportunity to give glory to God and spread the gospel of His kingdom. We have so very much to be grateful for in this country - just read through the 1st amendment or consider how many other countries have a peaceful transfer of authority every four years. We have an opportunity, as Christians to express to our unbelieving neighbors and family members our gratefulness to God. If we refuse to celebrate, what message is that sending to them? We, as Christians have more, not less, to celebrate because we see God's providential hand over the affairs and history of our nation. We can also take this opportunity to share with them that, though we love and celebrate our country, we know that - because of the gospel - it is not our ultimate home.

  • Let's apply Rom. 13 to our lives today, not the lives of men who lived 200 years ago. Yes, I believe a study and analysis of history is important and fruitful so that certain parts of history are not repeated. However, we need to guard against self-righteousness. We can only know so much of history, and we cannot fully know the hearts of those who lived it. Like I said above, God has placed us here in the USA in the 21st century. So, in light of Rom. 13: Who are the leaders God has placed over us? How can we honor our leaders? How can we respect them? How would God have us be good citizens of this nation? Is my obedience to leaders causing me to disobey God? If so, what would the Lord have me do? By God's grace, - and this is something to celebrate - we have the opportunity to elect leaders who will, Lord willing, lead in the fear of God.

(Also, Romans 13:7 " respect to whom respect is owed, honor to whom honor is owed". We need to show respect and honor to those who founded our country and those who fought for our independance. Like Steve said, we need to go back and study these men and study what they stood for and what they fought for. Taxation without representation was a small portion of it. History is more complex than that. If we study these men and their times, I do not think there will be any question of whether or not we should celebrate.)

  • Lastly, We should spend less time considering and discussing what we, as Christians, shouldn't be doing...and more time pondering and discussing what we, as Christians, should be doing. As Steve mentioned, this is not our home. We are citizens of Heaven and we are looking forward to coming of Christ's kingdom. So, we should be asking questions like: How can we better serve the church? How can I grow in delighting in God's word? How can we reach our friends with the gospel? How can we further the kingdom of God in the workplace? How can we encourage our family more? etc..etc...etc...

"Let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but eencouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near." Heb 10:24-25

This email discussion led into a conversation about the sanctity of life. Eric wrote an insitful and thought provoking post on his blog (see the link on the sidebar.)

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Thoughts of the day....

All of you who know me well know that I struggle a lot with decisions. Most of all, God knows it and has been giving me opportunities to learn how to seek Him, wait on Him and act in faith trusting in Him. Most recently I have been praying about going to Mexico with our church. I went last year, and loved it. While I was there I thought 'I am definitely coming back!' What I didn't know was that I would once again be without a job when the time came to commit. But, after praying about it I feel confident to move forward at this point with plans to go!

Speaking of jobs...this is the other area where God has kindly and providentially chosen to give me an opportunity to grow in faith. I had been getting kind of weary of this process, but the Lord has given me renewed energy and faith for it. He is so good. I put in an application at Grace Christian School today for a Kindergarten teacher. And planning to visit a few more schools tomorrow and next week... Turner Creek Elementary and Morrisville Elementary. I'll update if anything happens :)

The Lord has been increasingly putting a burden in my heart to pour my life out for His purposes and mission and not my own. I can get so self absorbed, caught up with my own little 'problems' and situations and not aware of how God is near and at work. As Eric Simmons said, God has placed us in our specific culture for His mission. So, I've been asking the Lord to open my eyes to the opportunities he has placed around me right here right now.

I read Isaiah 58 today... verse 9-11 stood out to me:
"Then you shall call and the Lord will answer; you shall cry, and he will say 'Here I am'. If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, if you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in darkness and your gloom be as the noonday. And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water whose waters do not fail."

This has also been my prayer....
"Take all I am Lord and all that I cling to,
You are my Savior I owe everything to,
Take all the treasures that lie in my storehouse,
They cannot follow when I enter your house.

So I surrender all to you....
I surreneder all to you.

Take all my cravings for vain recognition,
Fleshly indulgence and worldly ambition
I want so much Lord to make you the focus,
To serve you in secret and never be noticed.

Take all my hunger for all that's forbidden
Every desire and sin I keep hidden
Search me and know me, I want to bring to you
A life that is holy and sanctified through you.

So I surrender all to you....
I surrender all to you.

From SGM 'WorshipGod' (can't remember the author at this moment)

PS: on a totally different note...I was lying awake last night (the result of caffeine)...and thinking about this blog and different possibilities for it -- so here's a sneak peak at what will be coming soon (probably in semi regular installments)....

  • Things I'm grateful for (CJ says a grateful person is a humble person, and I want to be a humble person)
  • Tributes to people I think are truly great...
  • Pictures

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Here I am....

I finally broke down and started a real blog. I say a real blog because I have a xanga sight that I started so I could comment on my friend's sight. Then I created a yahoo360 sight because I liked it better. But, I like blogspot best, and since many of my friends are starting blogs I thought I would join them. It seems like it is harder and harder to keep up with everyone as we all get spread out across the country, hopefully this will help. I can't promise to update often, but will try to use this to share some of the events in my life, ways God is at work and accounts of his faithfulness, and maybe some other random things. However, I am counting on my close friends and family to make sure that this does not take over time that should be spent in meaningful fellowship (which cannot be experienced on the internet), time in God's word and prayer, my responsibilities at home or work and serving others. So, call me out if I post too much. I also want to ask you to please hold me accountable to making sure that this blog follows Ephesians 4:29: "Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." I would love for you to comment, but please also use this verse as a guide for comments.

I pray that the words posted here will give grace to those who read.

ps: If you only have time to read a couple blogs, please see the links on the sidebar and read someone else's blog.