Church Chat

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Blogety Blogety Boo!

It's been a few days since the last time I did this, so here goes a lot! :o) Friday was the 25th, and I wrote a short entry saying that I couldn't really take the time to write much. Yadda yadda, it was short. Well, here's what has happened from Friday up to this point in time...it's Wednesday. Be prepared to read a bit.

Friday- I got up at a decent hour and started getting ready for the day. It wasn't a typical Friday, it was Good Friday. I had to sing in a Good Friday service that was put on by all the community churches, so it was a big deal. That started at 6:30pm, but I didn't know that at the time. Well, that day I went to work in full "Sunday Uniform", so that means nylons all day long. After work, I had to drive to the next town with a carload of teenagers so that we could set up for our next big fund raiser; the Kent City/Casanovia Carnival at Kent City High School. My teens ended up decorating the two booths that they were running and helping make cotton candy. The carnival itself actually started Saturday, but there was so much to do to get it going, that it had to be done that Friday...Good Friday, mind you. So, at 6:00pm my teens and I got back in my car and headed back for Cedar Springs. I thought I would have a little time to get refreshed and run through my song before the service, but not quite. My pastor had the wrong information, and the service actually started at 6:30 and not 7 like he had thought. Ah well, it worked itself out any way. I had gotten to the church at 6:20 that evening and had a little time to catch my breath, and that was most important to me any way. :o) So, I ended up singing my song for the service right before the pastor of that church spoke. The funny part of it all is that they forgot to put my name down on the schedule, but they made me sing any way. I was glad to do it and all the pastors represented appreciated it. It was a good day in all areas.

Saturday- This was a good long day just like Friday in many ways. I had to go to the church and run through some things with my friend Bruce. He and I had decided to play our guitars during a certain portion of the Easter Sunday service (I'm not going to spoil it and tell you about it now, it's only Saturday...sheesh!). We met at noon and went through our little set of songs, and it was smooth sailing. Then, I went home and got ready for the evening's coming activity = the Carnival. I showered, ate something so I wouldn't die later, and then Rebecca came over to drop off some posters for the youth room. After she left, I had to go up to the church and pick up my teens for part two of their weekend excursions. When we got to the carnival, we didn't know that we would have to pay to get in because we were working at it, but we did. I paid for the teens and cooled off ( I got a little steamed about it), then we went inside and took our posts. It was a very fun filled evening. The theme this year was Mardi Gras, and I ended up buying a purple tiara with purple feathers and a multi-colored boa to go with it. It was a great night. I think we all got home around 10 that night, so it wasn't too much of a struggle to get into bed.


Sunday- Wow, like I said, a lot has happened lately!! Ok, so Sunday was excellent, not just good. I woke up at 5:45am and got in the shower. I don't normally get up that early, so that's why I had to mention it...lol. I actually got up and had a smile on my face. Easter is my favorite because of what it means...yay, our Savior lives!!!! Haleluiah!! Yes, so along that whole line of thought...the service. I got to the church at a quarter to 8am, still in a great mood. People were setting up for the Easter breakfast in the fellowship hall, and it smelled wonderful. Choir members started showing up and so we rehearsed a little, and then had breakfast at 9am. The actual service started at 10:30am, and it went off without one hitch. The choir sounded good and full of the spirit, we had communion by intinction, and that's when Bruce and I played our guitars and led songs. There was no overhead, no words written down for people to look at anywhere...it was a time of deep personal reflection of the cross and what it meant to each person in that sanctuary. They each had a small piece of paper to write down something they were ready to give up and pin it to the cross. Then they could take communion, which was ready at the foot of the cross. It was so beautiful!! Everyone got a small nail that looked like the steak-sized nails that peirced our King for remembrance. Pastor's message followed, and he spoke on the resurection! It all flowed so nicely. For a while there, we didn't know if pastor would allow communion during an Easter service, but once we explained to him that we wanted it so that people can understand the celebration portion of it, he agreed. We talked about it today in our weekly meeting and he's so excited about the results of it. It was a wonderful day completely focused on the King. I went home to my parent's house later that day to join them for Easter dinner, and I ended up staying with them until Tuesday morning for a little R & R. Much needed and much appreciated.

Wednesday- Well, I took you right on through the best I could. I'm kind of tired right now because it was such an action packed weekend, but I feel very good. God has blessed us all in so many ways, and I hope you recognize that in your own life. God bless you today, tomorrow, and forever. I'll write more about today, tomorrow...like I always do in the mornings I have alone. Bye for now!!

Friday, March 25, 2005

No Time to Breathe

I feel like that rabbit from Alice in Wonderland today...not time, I'm late I'm late I'm late, for a very important date...well not really, but I have a lot to do today. It's all good, but I can feel the pressure of it all coming on. God is good, and all will be well. Please pray for me today, for tomorrow, and for Sunday. Easter weekend might kill me.... :o). I gotta get goin' but God loves you and so do I. Bye for now, but not forever.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

The Purposed Burdened Church

Reach one more sould for Jesus! One more, then one more, then one more after that... This is what I've heard this past Monday through Wednesday. It was all very good, but now I'm exhausted. I had a Minister's Conference at SAU, and I feel refreshed from it all. I had so much trouble getting there, however. My car broke down in Grand Rapids while on my way down to Spring Arbor. Thankfully, I did not slam into the Semi truck I was so close to, and when I got off the highway I was by one of the sister churches to my own. How good is God, eh? It was pretty awesome...well, that part of it. I didn't feel that it was awesome at the time, but God is so good and He takes care of His children. When I got to the conference, Phil MacClaren was one of the first people I ran into. I haven't seen him since he was first diagnosed with cancer. He's a living miracle! I squeezed his neck and got a bit teary-eyed. It was so good to see him and spend time with him. We stayed together for most of the conference, and that was fun. The only problem, which wasn't really a problem, was that one of the other youth pastors in Phil and my conference got it in her head that he and I should get married. She wouldn't let it go the entire time. It was funny, but a little uncomfortable at times. Ah well, it was funny. I also saw old Wellspring friends, and I felt like it was some kind of Wellspring reunion. I felt God's blessings the whole time I was down there with the conference. It's a cool thing to be in a room with 200+ ministers worshipping God together. How the angels must have been rejoicing on high! Wow! Again, God is so good!! I got the call while I was down there that my car was fixable and it was all set for me to come and pick up. It didn't cost me an arm and a leg, and that was another miracle. Also, I got to visit with one of my favorite professors, Dr. Livesay, and then I got to sit in on the choir's first performance before they head out on tour. I say first performance because it was the first complete runthrough of the entire program, and I was their only audience. How privelaged was I? It was sweet!! Now I'm back in Cedar, and boy did I sleep hard last night. I'm glad I did because I have so much to do today and tomorrow to get ready for this weekend. I can't believe that Easter is already here. Please pray for me and my church, my teens, and everyone else that is effected by this weekend. I love you all, but I must go now so I can get ready for work today. Many blessings!! Bye.

Sunday, March 20, 2005

Shop 'Til You Drop!

Well, I lost a day on my blog, so I need to make up for lost time. On Friday, which I mentioned in Friday morning's blog, I went to Montrose with my Sr. Teen girls. I had a packed car when I reached my destination and my mom was very excited about it. I couldn't wait to get there and spend some time with them and with my mom. We had popcorn, watched movies, the girls got a ride in my brother's Camero, and we all fell asleep in the living room. It was a great night. One of my girls showed up to the church a little late to leave on Friday night, but that wasn't a big deal. There was only one small problem, and that was she forgot her clothes at home. She remembered everything else, but her clothes. So, we left about a half hour later than planned, but it was no big deal. We all got a good laugh from it. Then, the next morning we all went out to breakfast and then headed to the Birch Run mall (Prime Outlets of Birch Run). They absolutely loved it there. We stayed until about 5 that night, so needless to say, we were all a bit tired on our journey home. I was so glad we had this opportunity to go and spend a couple of days together. I loved it soooo much!

Today was also a good day. We didn't have praise and worship because the children's program was priority, and we didn't want to take too much time because we had a lot to do today. Then, I sang special with one of the gentlemen in the church. He has such a great voice but he's painfully shy! Wow! He did very good, and I was proud of him for getting up there and doing what he did. Finally, our evening service was a passover service and that was just beautiful. We finished it with pie and icecream. It was a good night.

I'm extremely tired from all the wonderful events that happened this weekend, but I don't get a break tomorrow because I have to go to Spring Arbor for a few days for a Minister's Conference. Also, a very good thing, but I am in need of a little break at least. This coming weekend is Easter Sunday and I know that it's going to be super busy with the cantata and everything else that's going on. I can't wait because I know it's going to be great, but I am very exhausted. I hope that I can spend a little bit of time with Sarah (Cruce) before she heads back to the Dominican Republic. She's only home for a week, and so I want to get at least one "Starbucks Hour" in with her. I had better plan it now before it's too late! Well, I should stop here because this is a lot to chew on as it is. I love you all, and I'll write more later. God bless and keep on bloggin' it up!!!

Friday, March 18, 2005

Fun in the Sun..er...I Mean, Snow

Blast!! Does it ever stop snowing around here? You'd think I would know better growing up in Michigan, but no. I want spring so bad I can already hear the massive spring thunderheads rolling in. Oh goodness, that sounds awesome! I miss and love spring storms soooo much. My mom thinks that I'm one sick puppy because I find it to be thrilling to watch Twister when the weather outside looks scary. I can't help myself though. I love seeing the power of God move in a storm. Have you ever thought of it like that? You should try it sometime. Next time there's a big storm moving your way, really look at the churning clouds and feel the hard rain fall on you. It's amazing!! You can see the greatness of God in it all. Then, when the storm is all over with, you can see the gentleness and grace of God hugging the land that the storm just ripped through. Not that I think God is mean, no way! I love storms because you can see His cleansing power on the earth and then easily relate it to the storms of your own life. You can feel their wrath, sense the movement, feel the cleansing power, and finally feel the comfort after it's all over. God is sending you a huge I love you! I dunno, maybe I'm strange, but I can't help it. When I see a storm front moving in, I see the love of God in it.

Well, I must call this the end of this blogety blog because I have to go get ready for the day. I leave for Montrose/Birch Run with my teen girls today. I'm taking them to the mall of my youth. It's a nice sharing time for me, and a great shopping extravaganza for them. It will be fun for all, I'm sure :). God bless you all, and may His grace and peace be your guide today!

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Happy St. Patrick's Day!!

I absolutely love this holiday, but so many people celebrate it all wrong. It should be celebrated by praising God and lifting up holy hands to Him for His faithfulness. You see, St. Patty's day is not about pubs and green beer, but we Americans have made it that way. It's about a man who went against the odds, followed the call of God, and went to a land that once treated him like a slave and brought them the word of God. It's about perceverance, love, God's grace, His mercy, and all that's wrapped up in that! It's about Jesus and His reflection in the eyes of His servant, Patrick. Did you know he wasn't even Irish? Nope, he was actually born in England but he was taken to Ireland as a boy an was made a slave to a pagan land owner. He had a vision from the Lord of a ship leaving Ireland and there was a place for him aboard this ship. He followed his heart and his vision from God and climbed aboard. He went back to his home in England and his heart grew more hungry for the Lord. He later became a priest and felt God's call once again...only this time back to Ireland. He did have some followers, but he had more opposition than anything. It was a completely pagan land he was dreaming about and no one thought it worthy of much. Father Patrick knew better...he felt the heart of God calling for his lost Irish children. So, he went back to the land that once persecuted him and he told the people of God and his love. Ireland was changed forever!! I know that this is true, not just because I studied it, but because I went to Ireland and I saw his impact. Everywhere you go you can see the people's faith in the Lord above, and thanks to St. Patrick for his noble calling and his faithfulness to the Lord. We need more people in this world today willing to change an entire nation if the Lord calls them to do so. God bless you all, and again, happy St. Patrick's Day!!!

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Golden Opportunities

I'm feeling much better today, and I'm less stressed than I thought I would be after being sick for 3 days. I do have a lot to get accomplished, but I know it all will eventually. I have to get my car fixed, and hopefully it won't cost me an arm and a leg before my trip with my Senior teen girls. I'm taking them shopping this weekend. We're heading over to Birch Run, and it could be exciting. I probably should take the church van knowing how much these girls love to shop. We'll see, I guess. Also, I will be down in Spring Arbor for three days this next week for a Minister's conference, then I have to help with a carnival on Friday and Saturday for my teens. They are raising money for IYC this summer and it's going to cost them a pretty penny. Plus, Good Friday is that same week, and I have to sing in a community service representing my church. The actual carnival is Saturday, and the Easter Cantata is that Sunday. Talk about a lot of work. Oh, and this coming Sunday is the Children's program and I'm running the sound for it. Hopefully all goes well. Please pray for me and my sanity...as well as everyone else who is participating in all of this. It's going to be a lot of work. Let's see, what else...I should clean out my car today while a warm front moves in and I can handle being outside. Yeah, it's supposed to hit 38 degrees today. Oh yeah, bathing suit weather...totally! Well, maybe not, but it's Michigan and I can't expect March flowers quite yet. I should go now and get things going so I don't feel so overwelmed later. I have my coffee pot going and so I should be just fine. God bless and may his peace be in your hearts today!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

One More Day

It's another snowy Michigan day, and I think that it would be best spent bundled up in covers. I've had a stomach bug for the past couple of days, and it's probably best that I stay in doors one more day so that I can get my energy back...and start eating more foods besides broth and crackers. I also think that it's a good day to sit back and meditate on God's word and pray. I need to do that more often than what I do. When I get depressed, I tend to not work on myself and that's dangerous. It's dangerous for anyone, but I'm in a position where I am in charge of teens and adults so I had better fill my cup! :) Well, I should probably end this here and call the church so they know what I've decided to do. My pastor called me last night to check on me, and he told me if I needed one more day to rest, I should take it. So, I'm going to. Please pray for me, I'll pray for you, I love you, and may His peace and wellness be upon you!
~Crazy Church Lady

Monday, March 14, 2005

Holding My Head Up...

I thought yesterday was going to be absolutely wonderful. Well, I know the beginning of it was alright, but I don't remember the rest. Actually, my day started out at 5:30am. I had to finish packing up my stuff and head to Cedar from Montrose. I had a wonderful time with my family and I didn't want it to end, really. I couldn't sleep that night before, so my energy level was pretty low. About a third of the way over on my 2 hour trip my heater stopped working in my car. That really stunk. When I got home, I warmed up a bit, got ready for church, and left once again. When I got to church everything seemed alright. I played Irish music in the beginning of the service and played my drum on my way up to the stage. It was very cool, and everyone enjoyed it a lot. When I sat down after the hymn, my stomach started to hurt really bad. It felt like someone had kicked me and I couldn't recover. I ended up going into the bathroom and sitting on the floor for a while. Cherryl got me something to eat hoping that it was just because I was hungry, but the role she brought didn't taste good at all. I ended sitting in the pastor's office sweating with chills, and I couldn't put any pressure on my stomach whatsoever. It was aweful. I was sent home during the Fellowship dinner and Beth took over choir practice. I completely missed the District Rally with all the pastors in the area. I slept from 1:30 until a quarter to 6. My housemate, Kari, checked in on me a few times and brought me some Vernors. I got up for a few hours but went back to bed. Today, I'm still drinking Vernors, eating saltless crackers and taking it very easy. I hate being sick, but I know that no one likes it. I wasn't expecting this to happen. It came on so quickly. Ah well, I guess I needed to relax some. Well, that's where I'm at today...sick, watching tv under blankets and drinking Vernors. Nothing exciting. I pray your day is better an full of excitement. I know it is for you, April. Have fun in Prauge!!

Saturday, March 12, 2005

Dallas, Here I Come!

Yeah! Today, I bought myself a round trip ticket to Dallas Texas for May this year. I'm so excited because it's the first time I've ever been able to do something like this for myself and my vacation. I'm spending a whole week with my best friend, and I can't wait. I'm very proud of myself for saving the money to do this. I tried last year, but I just didn't make enough money. Being able to do this for the first time makes me feel so good. Last year was hard anyway because I was just getting started in a new job (my current one) and so leaving really wasn't an option. But God is good, and I'm flying out this year. I can't wait (I know, I already said that). I haven't gone down to Texas, let alone the Dallas area, in years. It's probably been at least 8 years, I think. I'm a little nervous because this is the first time that I've flown by myself, planned a vacation by myself, and saved up for a vacation. It's a thrill for me, really. Right now, April is almost to Prauge. She decided to spend her spring break it the Czhech Republic with her mom, and I'm so excited for them both. What a trip, eh? Yeah, I thought so too.

I'm at my parent's house today, like I said I would be, and I got my first massage ever. What a great way to relax! I loved it soooo much. The lady who gave me it is a good friend of my mother's, and she's an awesome Christian. After we left, my mom told me that she is silently praying over each client she has and she prays for each one before they get there. Also, she's blind. She was and is an amazing woman, let me tell ya!

Tonight, I'm going to go see Avalon in concert, and I'm very excited about it. Right now, I'm a little tired, so my energy level is a bit low, but tonight will be very different. My prayer is that God will fill me with His peaceful spirit and give me His strength for the next day. Tomorrow is Sunday, and it's ALWAYS full of stuff to do. Ah, the life of a youth/music director.

Well, that's about it for now. I love you all, and may God's blessings fill your heart today, and may He kiss your eyelids tonight as you sleep. Chao for now!

Friday, March 11, 2005

Homeward Bound

Well, today is Friday and I have a lot to do. Everything is good, but I can't wait for the end because that means I will be in Montrose with my family. I haven't been home in a long time, and the hardest part is that I haven't gone home by myself since before Steven and I started dating. So, despite my excitement to go see my family, I'm kind of dreading this first trip alone. I'm already doing the whole "reminicent" viewing of the past, and I'm a bit depressed. He stopped by the church the other day by my requesting. I needed something back from him, and he was willing to bring it to me. He stayed less than 30 seconds and wouldn't even come inside the building. I am hurting more than I thought I would from that encounter. I thought that I would be fine with him dropping it off, but I still miss him a lot. I miss my friendship that I had with him. It wasn't just a relationship of convenience for me. I was there for him and he was there for me. We hung out and talked, watched movies, had wonderfully deep conversations, and I never once tired of it. I miss that. I don't want him back in any romantic way, but I do miss my friend so much. He was the one person I could count on when I moved here. I could talk to him about anything and he could talk to me and count on me, too. Ah well. I have to stop dwelling on this and just face the trip today. It will be fine, but it will be hard. I'm going to have a good time with my parents this weekend and it's a much-needed time, for sure. We're going to see Avalon together and it will be great. Well, I must get going now before I get disconnected, and I have to get to the bank so I can pay for my airline ticket to Dallas! Woo hoo, I'm going to Texas...in May. Please pray for me today, aight? Aight. Peace out!

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Rock em' Sock em' Robots

Maybe I'm a freak, but I love to watch 2 shows before going in to work each day. The first one is Starting Over. It's a reality tv show about women who want to "start over". I love the show because it's so theraputic. Yeah...don't laugh, ok? The second show is The Tony Danza show, and today he had Sugar Ray Lenard as a guest. That was pretty darn cool. Before he left, Tony wanted to box the great boxing legend, but to my suprise the match was a game of rock em' sock em' robots. That made me laugh a lot. That game always reminds me of my brother, Ryan. We used to pretend we were the robots, but now he's too tall to knock his head off. Any way, it's a good memory for me.

It's another snowy morning/afternoon here in the great state of Michigan, and I have a great day ahead of me. It's not going to be as full as the ones I've already had this week, so that's nice. Last night I didn't get in until 9, but it was fun because I was at the church helping a friend out with a song she wrote. We are going to do it on Sunday for worship and I'm pretty excited about it. I can tell she's nervous. I haven't told anyone about it because I want it to be a suprise, and it definately will be. She wrote the words, and a guy from our church put music to it, and together, we three are going to introduce it! How cool, eh?

Well, I must depart for now, but I'll write more later. This is the Crazy Church Lady signing out for now. Peace be with you, and God bless!!!

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Look on the Bright Side

Always look on the bright side of life...hee hee! I just saw Eric Idol on the Tony Danza show, and apparently he and the other Monty Python gurus made their version of the Holy Grail a Broadway show. It's called "Spamalot". I bet it's a riot and past SAUers would really enjoy it...esp. from my circle of friends.

Any who, so far so good today. I can feel, however, many things coming about that aren't so good. I can sense the tension in my church growing and I don't really know what to do about it. It's a war between certain peoples in my church and I know that satan is using it as a destraction from what good things God is trying to bring. It's terrible, and all I can do is pray. I pray that it is resolved soon and that many blessings will be felt by these peoples that are at war. Only God can fix this.

Well, I can't really think of anything else to write at the moment because my mind is fixed on work and I must go get ready for it. Love you all, and please pray! God be with you and may His peace be upon you!

Shans

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

I Need a Hug

Sometimes when your sick, all you want is your mom. I've been sick now for 3 days with a sinus infection and tonight I have practice with my worship team. I will, but will you also, pray that all goes smooth and I can get things accomplished. It's all in God's timing and strength, I know. :) I finally got my book back from Steve. He had a Matt Redman book of mine and he finally dropped it off. I don't even think he was in my presence for more than 30 seconds and then he was gone again. That was the first time that I saw him since he broke up with me. I guess I don't know what to think anymore when it comes to him. He has told me before that he still wants a friendship, but the effort he's putting forth does not show me that at all. I think that the only reason that he's bothering me today is because I'm sick and all I want is to be somewhere safe and warm with no responsibilites. Sounds pretty darn good, eh? Oh, yes it does.