Happy New Year! I can't believe it's been TWO MONTHS since I posted last! Shame on me!!! And Now I have so much to catch you up on!!! 2009 has certainly been a MAGICAL year and 2010 is shaping up to be every bit as MAGICAL, if not more!
So . . . do you believe in magic??? I've heard that word a lot between Christmas and New Years because, as you can see, Chris and I were able to take the girls to Magic Kingdom for two days! Oh my goodness, did we ever have a wonderful, memorable time! (And with only one trip to the First Aid station, I think we did alright!) But there is that word right in the name of the park: MAGIC Kingdom. So the question remains: do YOU believe in magic?
I believe that as Christians we are taught that "magic" is not godly, that it is evil, and I'm certainly not disputing that!!! According to one dictionary, "magic" is defined as: "The art of producing illusions as entertainment by the use of sleight of hand, deceptive devices, etc." No one can argue the fact that there is NOTHING godly at all about illusions and deception! Magic is synonymous with witch craft and sorcery, which the Bible warns against. So . . . what if I change the word to "magical"? The most special of evenings are often described as "magical". Definition? "Mysteriously enchanting." Sound better? Less evil? You decide.
As a teacher, I KNOW that to be effective, you have to use a VARIETY of learning tools to successfully teach different concepts and skills. And the fact of the matter is that there are some "tricks" to learning the 9 multiplication facts among others. Plain and simply put, whether wrong or right, kids like tricks and I'm pretty confident that my students won't ever forget the trick with the nines.
Now, I could be embarking on a controversy that I certainly don't need to do, so let me clarify. Do I believe in "magic"? As a noun, NO! And, this could just be my naive way of thinking here, but I don't think most others do either. I think people are fascinated with figuring out "how'd they do that". Do I believe in "magical" moments that impact and change our lives forever? This picture should answer that for you! Look at that face! Olivia was so filled with joy and awe and excitement to see what the ladies had "magically" done to her at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique! And, let me tell you, that kind of magic is contagious because Chris and I both felt it in our hearts!!! The real difference for my family is that it wasn't a mystery to us at all. When it's a FEELING, I believe it's a gift from God and we thank God for making this trip possible through the generous Christmas gifts of our family. It was truly a MAGICAL experience!
Update on The Heart's Journey Home: Everything is on schedule and I should have my copies in my anxious little hand in just a matter of DAYS! Now, THAT will be a magical moment! I have several events scheduled with more sure to come so please check back with my website to get the latest information and to check on updates with The Heart's Lullaby, which has been started and is TENTATIVELY scheduled for release in Fall of 2011. Of course, I will let you know when my package arrives and, please, I'd love to know when you get yours! If you haven't preordered, it's available on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, christianbook.com, and, of course, sheafhouse.com. After February 1st, EVERY bookstore, though they may not have it on their shelves, should have the ability to order it for you. If you have any trouble, please let me know! You better believe I'll take care of it! ;o)
PRAYER CONCERNS AND UPDATES: Since I've been so rotten about updating this over the past two months, I have quite a few to add and several updates.
CONCERNS: Please pray for Kathy Kanue who was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer and is now on 3 different types of chemo, which is making her very sick. Pray for healing for Kathy and pray for our dear Lord to ease her sickness. Pray for her to be able to rest in Him and pray for her loved ones. Her son is having a very hard time with all she is going through. Please pray for the Lord to fill his heart and give him a peace that passes all understanding. Miracles are NOT magic and they still happen all the time! I completely believe in miracles!
Another person in need of a miracle right now is Kitrick Schrader, a 29-year-old man who was involved in a snowmobile accident with a car. The last info I received on him is that he has a broken leg and pelvis, internal bleeding, and is still unresponsive. Please pray first of all the the Lord will spare this young man, that God can be glorified through his healing. Please pray that his recovery will be quick and that the pain will be minimal. Pray for his family and friends that are riddled with worry for him now. Pray that their hearts are filled with peace, and their minds filled with the promise that our God is always with Kitrick, holding him in the palm of His hand.
Prayer warriors, I need you all to pray mightily for Dezarae Dittmar, who is nearing the end of her 2 year battle with cancer. Hospice has been called in and her family is with her. She is married and has 4 kids. FOUR CHILDREN are having to prepare to be without their mama!!! My heart aches for this family! What do you say? What do you pray for? All I know to do is to pray for PEACE. Pray for strength for all involved. Pray for Dezarae and her family to find comfort and rest in the promises of the Lord. Pray that her pain in minimal. I'll update you on Dezarae as soon as I get one. In the meantime, pray, pray, pray, my friends!!!
Along those same lines, please pray for Bill Ruffing who is also nearing the end of his battle with cancer. Pray, above anything else, for his salvation. We don't know his heart, but God does. Pray that God will work in his heart and make Himself known to Bill in a mighty way through this illness he's been facing. Pray for his family to know how to minister to him in his last days on our earth. Pray that Bill will committ his heart to the Lord (if he hasn't already) before he takes his last breath. I thank the Lord that it is never too late to receive the awesome gift he gave us through His Son. Pray for his family to rest in the promise that the Lord will never leave us . . . even when we've turned our backs on Him. Pray for Bill's pain to be minimal and for comfort to cover him and his family like a soft, warm blanket.
Unfortunately, I also have several to add to the "For Those Grieving the Loss of a Loved One" list. These all happened in the month of December and first two weeks of Jan. We all know to pray for peace and comfort for those grieving family members. I don't mean to be casual or heartless in anyway, but rather than repeat myself over and over, I'm just going to give you the names and set you free to pray as you feel led. PLEASE, REMEMBER, THESE INDIVIDUALS NEED PRAYER TODAY, BUT WILL ALSO NEED IT IN THE DAYS, WEEKS, AND MONTHS TO COME AS REALITY SETS IN.
Please pray for Teresa Diseker and her family at the sudden and unexpected loss of her father. Also pray for Julie Munroe and her family at the loss of her grandfather. Please pray for Daon Johnson and his family at the sudden loss of his mother. Also pray for Stephanie Tuschl at the loss of her mother very close to Christmas Day. Please pray for my step-mom, Shirley Dominick LaVoie and her family at the loss of her mother on New Year's Day. Please pray for Don Osborne, his daughter, Danni, and son, Matthew, at the loss of his wife and their mother, Bea. Also, please pray for the wife and two young children of Jeff, an editor from Baker, who passed away today after having been in a head on collision. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you and will be in the days and weeks to come.
UPDATES: Are you ready for some good news??? Well, let's start with Robin Baughman, Romney McLellan, and little Tyler, all having battled some form of cancer and all CANCER FREE!!! I've been told that Robin's doctors are saying she is in remission because they are cautious to say the words "cancer free". You know what? We'll take that!!! Little Tyler's parents had been told to take him home and enjoy what time they have left with him and now they can't find a bit of cancer in his little body!!! Not a bit!!! YAY, GOD!!! (Still, I'm not taking them off the list yet, as I'm sure there are ongoing issues - financial, emotional, etc. that they need prayer for.) Similarly, Erica Foster has finished her treatments and is in remission, but she is struggling a bit with her emotional and spiritual side of post-cancer. I'm happy to report, though, that she is engaged to be married and I will definitely keep you up-to-date on wedding plans. Chris Dekker, the young man sick with H1N1 and pneumonia, is doing much, much better! I'll keep him on the list until I get the word that his is officially back to good health, but I'm pretty sure he is out of the woods at least. Reagan, if you're reading this, maybe you can post a comment on the latest with him. Amanda Belsich is reportedly doing well with her treatments. Keep praying for a cancer free report! Ethan Bibb, unfortunately, is in the hospital with a high fever and vomiting. Please pray mightily for this little man! I'll update his status as soon as I can. Karianne Peltier has had her baby, a beautiful boy, and mama and baby are doign very well, so I'm going to take her off our list. My dear friend from high school, Patty Smith, has had some ups and downs, but she just had a doctor's appt that went well. She's having bloodwork tomorrow. Keep praying for restored health and complete healing for my dear, dear friend.
Well, my friends, I've taken up enough of your time. Please keep checking my website for updates and scheduled events. Also, I vow NOT to let 2 months go by before I make a new post. Things will be getting busy for me, but I'll do my best to put something new up here every week, at least so, stop by again soon. In the meantime, please keep praying. There IS power in prayer!
Warmest blessings to all during these cold, cold days!