Tuesday, March 30, 2010

It's that time of year again.  Easter has "snuck up on me" this year.  Usually there are weeks of planning for Easter services but I've been so busy that I haven't given it much thought.... until today.
It's hard sometimes, to go into a Holiday with freshness and excitement.  Just like Christmas... how many times have you heard "The Christmas Story" and remained unmoved?  Easter, too.  Every year I think about how I want this year to be more meaningful.  I know the story and I am grateful beyond words for Jesus' sacrifice for me.  How can we make this more meaningful for the folks who come to worship?  I wish somehow we could hear the words as if for the first time. 
"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."
"It is finished."
"He is not here, He is risen, just as He said!"
and that great Gospel hymn...
"Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.  
Because He lives, all fear is gone.
Because I know He holds the future,
and life is worth the living, 
just because He lives."

Thursday, March 25, 2010


We are on "break" starting Saturday.  It used to be called "Easter break" now they call it "Spring break" or "Spring Intersession" or some such thing.  At any rate, we'll soon be off for two weeks.  Well, Exeter is 2 weeks, Mt Whitney is only 1 week (bummer!).
I love this time of year.  I get energized to clean house and clean yard.  I'm looking forward to pulling out bushes, hosing off the patio, getting rid of those nasty weeds that have taken over most of the yard, working in the house and MAYBE finishing the living room project.  This all might be a bit ambitious for one week (with Easter preparations in the midst of all that!).  We'll see how much I/we actually get done.
Thinking about weeds and such.... I do a lot of "just thinkin'" while I'm out pulling weeds.  There are all those verses about not letting a root of bitterness grow up in our hearts.  When you pull weeds (as my Daddy taught me) you gotta pull 'em out by the roots or they'll grow back.  Sometimes weeds break off at the root and they look like they're gone but they really aren't.  I've got some things growing in my heart that need to be pulled out by the root....things like bitterness, bad habits, etc.  There are times I think they're gone but really, you just can't see them anymore but the roots are still there.   I need God to soften my heart.  There's an old Keith Green song called "My Eyes Are Dry".  Honestly, this often comes to mind as I'm pulling weeds.
My eyes are dry
My faith is old
My heart is hard
My prayers are cold
And I know how I ought to be
Alive to You and dead to me

But what can be done
For an old heart like mine
Soften it up
With oil and wine
The oil is You, Your Spirit of love
Please wash me anew
With the wine of Your Blood

My hope and prayer is to do more than just the outside yard type of pulling weeds, but to cooperate with God in getting some of the big, ugly, nasty growing things out of my heart. 

Tuesday, March 23, 2010


My boys and I were talking today.... with the way things are going we might be calling ourselves the U.S.S.A....The United Socialist States of America.  A friend of mine also suggested we call ourselves "South Canada".  :)    Yes, a lot of things need reform but I really don't think this is a good thing.  As government takes more and more control then more of our freedoms are taken away.  Yikes!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

I've finished two books in the past few months.  The second one wasn't very long and I read most of it on the bus a few weeks ago going on the choir trip.  The first book "Introverts in the Church"   I found really interesting and insightful.  I also found it encouraging knowing that I'm not just some weirdo... there are other people like me who just don't get energized by being with people all the time.  My lifestyle has forced me out of my shell more and more, and there are times when I really enjoy people... like my jobs at the High Schools, for example.  Teenagers are different from others.  They are passionate, funny, crazy, sincere, teachable, etc.   Still, when I get home at the end of the day I need (crave) some quiet for a little while before I can jump right into something else.

The other book I read and just finished is called "Walking With a Shepherd" and was written by a Pastor's wife friend of mine.  I was amazed at how similar our struggles have been and pleased to see how they have come out the other side and are now flourishing.  I've been challenged by her and others to not let bitterness take root in my heart but to trust God (who knows all things) to make everything right some day.  Again, like the afore mentioned book, it was refreshing to read and find myself within the pages.   I'm not grateful for my friend having gone through (with her husband) what they went through, but I'm glad for the comfort and reassurances I found in her writings. 
Now it's time for something totally different.  I may actually get around to reading the mystery novel a friend loaned me.  Or perhaps I'll finish one of the many books I started months ago!  (Harry Potter, Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy)

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Pioneer Choir trip 2010

The Mt Whitney choirs went to Anaheim last week for "Heritage Festivals".  The Four groups that went all sang and walked away with 1 silver, 3 golds, 1 sweepstakes and 1 overall grand sweepstakes for "Finesse" (the advanced women's choir).
We had a GREAT time in Disneyland afterwards.  I went on "Space Mountain" (twice)... "California Screamin'" (only once) and "Splash Mountain" (in the rain... twice!).  I continue to be oh so very thankful that the Lord provided this job for me.  I love the kids, the music, the program.  Thank you, Lord!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A few random thoughts

1. This is the "green" season here in California.  The hills near my home are a soft, pretty green color that looks beautiful against the blue mountains covered with snow.  In about 3 months it will be the "brown season" that will last until next year. 

2. I'm really scared that music in Exeter schools may be extinct within 5 years.  The changes being made in schedules and budgets don't bode well for the arts in our community.

3. It's Tuesday, which means half-price pizza from Straw Hat!

4. People really have no idea how difficult it is being a pastor these days. Unless you are a pastor (or are married to one) you have NO idea the demands and expectations put on you by others....not to mention the strain and stress of being in the ministry.  In terms of spiritual warfare is it any surprise that Satan would do anything to strike down "shepherds" of churches (and thus "scatter the flock").  There's discouragement, temptation to "moral failure", time pressures that keep families apart, gossip and strife in churches that create division and make churches and pastors ineffective, depression, financial pressures, etc.  Some pastors quit or are forced to resign.  Still others, like a pastor we just heard of, will take their own lives.   Pray for your pastor!!  It's a tough job!

5. I successfully filled out the FAFSA (twice!)!