Friday, January 30, 2009

This is hard, but well worth it!


Ok, this is gonna be hard people. H-A-R-D. The hard part is going to try to explain without giving details because if I gave details, I'd have 20 people instantly on the phone with me yelling "WHAT?" And, it's also not earth shattering.....just family stuff.


So, now that you have no idea what I'm talking about, let's dive right into this....


Prayer....decisions.....getting the kids involved in this HUGE family decision. *gulp*


This is what happened......God laid on my heart something a short time ago that I shared with hubs. He was like "Ok, whatever, sounds good, let me know how that pans out." It wasn't that extreme, but you know what I'm talking about. This thing God put on my heart effected all of us, but it was something God chose to share with me...mom....woman of the household first.


I began praying about it immediately and you know what God did? He ended up messing with things in hubs life and now we are BOTH praying about this thing. Of course God would get hubs in on it...head of the house and all. And, I'm so glad He did too.


Well, by complete accident and through an outside source, the kids found out the thing that we are praying about. Now, you might ask, "huh, what, how can the kids find this out?" That is where I can't go so you'll just have to skip past that part of the story.


Moving right along....last night we had to get it all out in the open with the kids because the outside source brought the thing out in the light. Now, I'll tell you one thing, this is where I got a little freaked out because my first thought was "NOOOOOOO, the kids can't be a part of this decision for our family! This is a decision for me and hubs to make."


God is ready to get our kids involved in this one and I'm a tiny bit excited because guess what will happen?


1. We will all pray about this as a family.

2. They will begin to see how God speaks to them, to us about this situation.

3. They will learn perseverance and commitment to prayer.

4. They will learn to trust Him to see us through.

5. They will learn to go with God regardless of what they think they want to happen.


This is their first experience to do this thing with God on this level and I'm soooooo excited about it. We have already had the most amazing and sweet conversations I've ever had with them about God and how He'll pull this off for us.


We are learning some faith on this one. We are walking by faith and not by sight. Praise you Jesus for the work you are doing in my entire families life right now!
Hugs and blessings~

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Chocolate milk, a door knob, and some snow!

Well, hello from snowy TN!!! Yesterday we were out for some "ice" that never happened. Today we are actually out for snow! SNOW!!! Woo hoo!! People in the South go cuckoo for snow!

This is a seriously makenosense kind of post. Lets just say this is my ADD kickin' in today.

Look what I found in the cabinet yesterday morning. Huh? I promise I didn't do it! I easily could have, but this time I didn't. Not one person would fess up. My guess is boy #2 since he was the last one to fix chocolate milk. He's denying it. Completely denying it.


Ok, this picture is our pantry door. It has looked like this for 2 solid weeks now. And, we have to close the door because if we don't, precious puppy will eat all sorts of things in there. Obviously something has messed up with the doorknob.

Oh, look!!! Here's the doorknob now!! Laying (lying?) on the kitchen counter. Let me remind you that it has been there for 2 weeks now. Anyone know of a handyman? Geesh.


Here is the snow!!! This is Pepper's first experience with snow. She LOVED it y'all. She hopped all over the yard. I think she is wanting out of the fence in this picture. She wants endless hopping I'm sure.



Aren't they cute? They'd still be out there if I'd let them. They run and run and run and run trying to eat the snow.


These are the trees behind our house. Isn't it beautiful? No ice...all snow.


This is the outside of our house. Don't houses look so pretty covered in snow?



Boy #3 didn't want any part of the snow. He stayed inside where it's warm. He's no dummy!



Here is part of the crew eating pizza for lunch. They were in heaven. And, cookies are in the oven as I type. They are so happy. They are singing my praises. And, I'm worn out! :)



And, if you have read my blog for any length of time....you know I have some serious love connections with the cows on the property behind us. Since last Fall, we have had us some babies. I can't wait til they venture up toward my neck of the woods. I'll introduce myself.


Ok, there you have it. That has been our day thus far. I'm pooped from all the tending to of children and drying ALL the clothes that boys go through when it snows. We aren't used to all this!
Have a blessed day!



Monday, January 26, 2009

So much stinkin' fun!

You see bloggy friends, when Stephanie called me a couple of months ago to see if I wanted to come to Hot-lanta to see her and throw in a little Travis LIVE RECORDING, why of course I had to! I WANTED too!

Stephanie was one of my fabulous roommates in San Antonio, last August, at the LPL event. And, over the past several months, many of us have become dear friends. We call, text, email, and pray for one another often. It's the real deal.

So, if Steph calls and wants me to come stay with her......I'm on it!!! And, throw in Patty, Georgia and 25 of my other BFF's.....I'm on it!

There are 201 more pictures on facebook, but you'll get the drift here. And, the surprise guest during lunch was the icing on the cake. My mouth dropped and I think I screamed. That is what I was told anyway. Maybe a little starstruck. We took pix and she talked and was cute and funny and then she had to skidaddle. Man...she is the real deal. She is a momma in the faith to so many of us. Our lives are changed because of her and her studies.

These are some old friends and some very dear new friends. The internet and all this ca-razy stuff is simply real.

So, in my very tired little nutshell, we were able to be together as friends, visit with Beth Moore, and attend FBC Woodstock and be a part of a live CD/DVD worship recording for Travis. It was completely AWESOME y'all. AWESOME!


Me and Stephanie at the restaurant Saturday night! What was it called again?

This picture makes me laugh. I have no idea what they are laughing at, but it's soooo cute!


Me, Robyn and Nikki!


We miss you Abby!



And, here she is......and, Robyn is in awe.


She has some killer hair. We all want that color now. And, the moose....don't ask if you don't know. I could never explain.


Me and the famous girl...what's her name??? Oh yeah....the infamous "Preachers Wife!"


Doing what we do......thankfully, we were inside and just loved hanging out before we could get in the sanctuary.


Have we ever laughed harder?? All weekend was nothing but laughter!


I love this girl! Meet Cheryl......she is having baby #4 this Spring. She's adorable!


We had our life verse put on a card and attached to some yummy desserts. How sweet?


And, what else would you do after a live recording event for Travis Cottrell?? You go to McDonalds and chow down!

And, we missed you Jenny. There was no bed jumping since you weren't there. We had to silence that idea. It just wasn't the same.


We missed all of you that couldn't be there.....Cheryl and Lindsee! It was a sweet, sweet time together. We have us a real life community that happens to be all over the United States.
What a joy to be with these girls.
So, hop on over to FB and check out the 201 more pix! ;)
Hugs and blessings~







































































Friday, January 23, 2009

Better watch out...

Well, it's time to hit the road. I'm picking up Patty and Georgia and heading to the big state of G-A!!

We are staying with another amazing blogger, Stephanie. I think there are about 25 of us getting together for the weekend and have some FUN! How cool is that???

Bloggers are getting together! Woo hoo!!!

Fun, food, fellowship, and some praisin' is gonna be going down!!!!

Hugs~

Thursday, January 22, 2009

How much fun is this??!!!!!

Y'all go on over to the Praise Baby blog and share the love would ya?? We all know about some music and our kiddos, right?

Have a beautiful day. Don't forget to turn up the volume and get you some praise on!

Blessings~

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Working together

Inauguration has come and gone. If you follow me on facebook, then you know yesterday my lovely little status update was "Fran is having a hard day." That day has come and gone. Thank you Jesus your mercies are new every morning and crying may last just for a night, but joy comes in the morning! Thank the Lord, for sure!

So, I've done a little bit of thinking. I've written about being real and not going to be the fake girl anymore. I want to live freely as God wants me to. I have also asked us to prayer for Harper a few days ago. That family is the real-stinkin-deal and I love that. By the way, that baby girl IS getting better slowly but surely. PRAISE HIM! I also wrote a little about some cool things in Esther that I have learned. Why are we walking down bloggy memory lane??? Feel free to scroll down and read these things.

Bloggy memory lane is important because the last 3 posts are REAL to me. They are about community. They are about human beings working together to give God glory and praise. They are about difficulty and still glorifying God. Life is about relationships with people. REAL relationships with real people. The good, the bad, and the ugly is going to happen.

I am desperate for community. I am at a season in life where I am desperate for that group of friends who are the real deal at its finest and being beautiful in doing so. That, my friends, will encourage me.

Just think what we can do and who we can be when we come together with open and honest hearts. It's ok...take a step out of that "got-it-all-together" box and let others see that we don't have it all together, that we are far from perfect, that life will be messy and hard, but yet we continue to strive after the Author and Perfector of our faith.

Working, loving, serving, and growing together!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Not my usual Monday drill....

It is late on Sunday night as I put all this together and as bad as I want to go into something on "faith in crisis" because of that precious Kelly, I can't get my thoughts together. God bless her sweet self, her strong husband, and that amazing baby that God is going to use mightily in her future. Keep praying for Harper.

So, since my brain won't cooperate (what else is new, right?), I'm going to just do a little bloggy throwup. Is there another word I could use there? Bloggy spit up? Bloggy spit out? Maybe just a little "bloggy get it out."

And, of course, we love it when we number things, so let's do that shall we?

1. I'm anxious for the inauguration on Tuesday. Won't say more than that. I did read somewhere that 3 Senators anointed the door that Obama will walk through with oil and prayed over it. Simply beautiful.

2. God can use any willing, weak vessel to accomplish His purpose. Hallelujah He can!

3.It's tough being a woman in another woman's shadow.....sometimes? All the time??

4. Seek Him and His will is going to find you.

5.Did you know that the book of Esther has a king named Xerxes who is tall, dark, handsome and one serious spoiled playboy? Hmph.

6. Life is full of trouble...could be small daily annoyances or huge, canyon-sized problems. We all have it.

7. Also in the book of Esther, there is one wild 7 day party with lots of wine. Had no idea. Also, Xerxes was like a high school kid having a party while his parents were gone. I wouldn't know anything about that one.

8. I'm getting to meet up with about 30 amazing bloggers in Atlanta this weekend for a fabulous time of refueling and fun. Big event going on here. And, includes some fun people like Beth Moore and some worship guy named Travis Cottrell.

9. One more thing about the book of Esther....talks about a trophy wife. We wouldn't know anything about that either would we ladies? Again, who knew Esther could be all about 2009.

10. My memory verse for the next 2 weeks is this: Isaiah 58:11 "The LORD will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like a spring whose waters never fail." Over at the LPM blog, we are learning one scripture every two weeks. Renewing the mind. LOVE IT!!! I need some of that wallpaper in my head.

I could go on and on with the things swirling in my head tonight, but I'll stop with a nice, even number of 10.

Have a great day! Remember to be real in 2009. No phony stuff allowed! :)
Hugs and blessings~

Friday, January 16, 2009

We have to pray!

I have followed this precious girl for quite awhile and I need y'all to pray for Kelly, her husband Scott, and her baby girl, Harper. You will fall in love with her as soon as you read her blog.

They need us. They need us to be on our knees. "Lord Jesus, we pray for complete healing."

http://www.kellyskornerblog.com/

Closing comments so you can leave her one on her blog.
Much love and gratitude~

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Just gotta say....

I've got to get something off my chest. Will you just sit back and listen and say something real sweet at the end of this very short post? K, thanks.

Welcome to Fran's small pity party. It won't be that fun. But, I think you'll understand.

I work for my church. I'm over Children's Ministry. Its a complete blessing. However.......

I have to work every single Sunday. Yes, I know I signed up for this, but I'm just about being real in 2009. I don't get to go to classes on Sunday's or Wednesday's. I don't get to really just "be" in a worship service because my mind is on the job at task. It's been nearly 5 years.

Play the violins. I hear them. I'm actually sick of them.

So....how do I get fed? I LIVE off Him, His Word, and Bible study. My Bible study group (which varies on who is in the group from study to study) mean the world to me. They have no idea how much they feed this tired and weary soul. I could probably stand to be in a couple. Ha!

I hope you get what I'm saying. I just didn't realize how dry I was or how hungry I stay.

All this to say....I love my Bible study group. You mean the world to me. And, you had no idea.
Please don't stop coming!

I hope you have a small group, Bible study group, or some kind of close knit something or nother that feeds you too.

Hugs and blessings~

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I was a fake

Yep. You read that title right. I lived so much of my life, even well into adulthood, as a big, fat, phony fake.

I sit here and wonder if that is really very accurate and well, it is. I don't want to water down who I was and who I'm trying to be so I won't. Maybe one day I'll muster up the courage to really tell you how far God has brought me. He's so amazing to me.

I'm not bothering to look up the correct definition of "fake" via Webster's, but my guess and my own Fran definition would be.....

not real.....not authentic.

I have 3 character traits or part of my personality that I think were wired into me and they are:
1. people pleaser
2. addictive personality
3. can't say no

These things can be very dangerous when you line them up at.the.same.time. I struggle with these three STILL to this day, but nowhere to the degree I used to. Thank you, Lord, for freedom and helping me deal with my stuff.

Why am I telling you this?? Because I have some HUGEMONGOUSKEEPINGMEUPATNIGHT things going on in my mind, in my heart, in my life that are causing me to go back to the core of who I am. And, who I do not want to go back to being.

No more games. No more fake me. No more saying one thing and doing other things that don't line up with who I am, who I am trying to be, or who God is desperately wanting me to be.

You see, God began a life changing work in me 11 years ago. He hasn't stopped. And, I don't think He will. I might get tired and pull back, but I think He's in this thing for the long haul. I'm at a point where I really trust Him and have faith in Him. I am willing to do whatever He asks of me. No matter what. *shudder*

I have lead the life of wearing multiple hats in the course of a day and it almost killed me. Literally. I cannot and will not do it anymore. So help me Jesus.

Part of my deepest desires and dreams for this year are to be exactly who God wants me to be.
Not to be who I want to be, who my husband wants to be, who my coworkers want me to be, who my friends want me to be. I only want to walk with Him. Who are you molding me to be God?

I have such tears in my eyes right now. I have never in all my life been able to say this.....

All I want is Him. Nothing else.

For someone who completely made fun of those people, who were sold out to Jesus, I've now become one. And, I want to do that with 100% authenticity. No "fake Jesus in Fran" deal. No "only at church, Jesus in Fran" deal.

Maybe it all boils down to is if you are sold out to Him, then let's play the part.....with some realness.

I pray that as we go through 2009 that we will be the real deal through it all. Whatever God brings our way, let's handle it with grace, love, and the humility to see we cannot do it without Him.

We aren't perfect and we "don't have it all together" so let's do life together, together, with God.

2 Corinthians 5:17 "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"

Have a wonderful day. See you on Wednesday!
Hugs and blessings~

Friday, January 9, 2009

A bunch of Friday randomness

Hey all my bloggy friends!! Are you not sooooooo happy its Friday??? And, for us it was a very short week since we just started back to school and you'd think we hadn't had a break in weeks the way I'm acting. Woe is us.

Anyway...just a couple of things to get off my chest. And, of course we will read them in a short numbered fashion. We are wild like that.

1. THANK YOU JESUS FOR THE NEW ESTHER BIBLE STUDY!! Did you feel the emotion behind that sentence since it was in all caps and in bold? Mercy, this is going to be one amazing study. I watched the intro session the other day and wanted to stand up and applaud God, Beth Moore, and that session when it was over. SO FIRED UP! Feel free to clap right now on your own if you are excited too.

2. I'm in a season where I'm desperate for a word from God. I've been praying about something for a year now. Still no answers. I have a feeling He's working out some other things while I wait on the big answer. As our beloved Bible teacher says...."just perse-dang-vere." I am and it's about to kill me. *Sigh*

3. We watched the BCS Championship game last night on tv. GO GATORS. GO SEC FOOTBALL. We are sports freaks around here. It might be a little over the top. My husband is so blessed to have such a wonderful wife who just naturally desires to see a good game on tv rather than anything else. *Ahem* So, how about that amazing Tim Tebow? John 3:16 was his Bible verse on his eye black last night. Most times it's Philippians 4:13. I need his parents to write a book. I need Tim Tebow to write a book. The Manning parents wrote a book that I heard was so good and I'm about to pick that up. I just love to see parents raise outstanding kids that become professional athletes and turn out ok and stay ok. WOW!

4. However, those dang "drinkability" commercials that run all over ESPN and really all the major networks are getting on my last nerve. It makes beer drinking look so normal and so yummy. SICK OF IT. I don't want my boys seeing that every stinkin' commercial.

5. My face is so dry. I'm paranoid about too much moisturizer on my chin where the zits like to come. Not so much of them any more, but some things never change as we get older. I may have to bite the bullet and put a dab more than usual on so I don't shed a layer of skin. However, that could be a good thing as I approach 39.

6. Oh yeah...I almost forgot the biggest one of all. As I was learning, praying, spending time with God the other night......I felt His presence and His hand on me and this particular situation so much so that I cried. It was beautiful. It has made me a mess over this super long prayer request though. I just want to walk in His will and His plan and His path over this decision.

Hebrews 12:1 "Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us."

Have a great weekend y'all! See you back here on Monday.
Hugs and blessings~

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Stop it!!!

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Yeah, easy for me to say, huh?

I'm the scaredy cat kid of the South. It doesn't take much to get me "all worked up." Now mind you....I'll keep it all in check and have it under control on the outside. The inside?? A big fat mess! A big, fat, sweaty mess shaking from head to toe.

So...as I work toward being "better" in many things in '09.....I don't want to be such a scaredy cat.

If we are saying that we are sold out for Jesus, then why do we live in defeat in certain areas of our life???

I want to walk in complete confidence. Don't you??

So, what's got you scared?? The present?? The past?? The future?? What do you think you'd do for Jesus if there were absolutely NO FEAR whatsoever in your mind or heart?

What would you do??? What would you do for God's kingdom if the fear were gone??

Let me hear it. I'm curious. I'm wanting us to be free from all this mess and be completely sold out and walking humbly, but confidently before Him.

Ok...who's going first??

Hugs and blessings!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

All in the Family

I'm a little behind on posting because once "Throw Up Christmas '08" moved on, it was time to pack up and get ready to head to the big D. As in Dallas. TX. Beautiful, fun, exciting Dallas, Texas and home of the last and final Cotton Bowl to be played in whatever stadium that was.



We had the absolute best trip. I thought about putting all 527 pictures up on the blog, but a lot of you have seen them on Facebook by now, so I'll just put a couple at the end of my "New Year, New Fran" post. Just kidding. But, isn't that exactly what we do this time of year??? I have had 16 hours in the car to do a lot of reflecting, dreaming, hoping, and planning for 2009. I won't get into all that with you because I bet some of our items are exactly the same.



However, at church this morning....I had an epiphany. It was an "ah-ha" moment indeed. I have spent much time thinking about me. What are my goals? What are my dreams? What are my desires? What are my wishes? What are my plans for 2009??



The last time I checked, I am part of a family of 5 that God has deeply blessed me with. I have a fabulous husband and 3 beautiful boys. We are FAR from perfect and probably more outside the norm than inside the norm. So......what am I planning for us this 2009?



I'm begging myself and I'm begging you to spend some time really thinking about what God has in store for your family to grow spiritually in 2009. And, even if you are single with no children, God has entrusted you to many sweet people in your life who are a part of your family. Family is and can be defined differently by each one of us.



So....don't let this idea go. Jot some things down. Pray hard. And, let's do something amazing and challenging and different for 2009 as a family.



"Sweet Lord, stretch me and cause me to take my family to a different and exciting place with you this year."



I can definitely be better at spiritually growing my children.



What can you do to take it up a notch and seek God more for your family??



Oh, He's ready to grow us all. Not just me. Not just my husband. Not just my kids.



ALL OF US JESUS! HAVE ALL OF US!!!



Hugs and blessings and Happy 2009!






I blog so you can get a glimpse into my life as wife, mom of 3 boys, and someone who simply wants to bless others along the way. Have fun and be sweet :)

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