Sunday, November 17, 2013

The First of Many

Joe and I have decided to start trying different restaurants around Broken Arrow and then review them for fun. I am always looking for opinions on restaurants in BA and I can never find any, so I guess we are just going to be the start!

Our first shot was the locally owned Knotty Pine BBQ.  Joe ordered the two meat plate with macaroni and cheese and french fries as his two sides.  I chose the chopped beef brisket sandwich with fried okra on the side.  We ordered the kids chicken nuggets with BBQ Lays for Connor. The big laugh of the night was when Connor said BBQ is his favorite - the kid who is allergic to beef and pork.

Reviews are that the chicken (both the fried and smoked) was delicious, great fries, but the mac and cheese was just ok.  The seasoning on the beef was not my favorite and neither one of us thought their sauce was good. The sauce was too sweet and didn't have any tang that you would expect from a BBQ sauce.  As Joe would say, if you don't have a good sauce, the rest is just a waste.

It was great to try a new place and the wait staff was fantastic!  However, because of the meat seasoning and the sauce, we will not be going back.

Monday, March 14, 2011

God's Sense of Humor and Chazown

I know, another post on the same day, but it has been quite a while since I have updated.

Starting in January I have been working on 4 different Bible reading plans/devotions. I have completed one of them! Also in January I did the Daniel Fast for 15 days. I have never felt closer to God other than in worship. I think God is honoring that commitment because he is doing some amazing things in my life.

My life group starting going through a study called Chazown to discover God's purpose for your life. The first thing we did was basically create a timeline of your life. Then, by looking at your history, discovering any themes or life lessons that God was trying to tell you. For me, I saw over and over again that not only has God saved me called me out of generational sins that have been passed down my family, but He alone has been so so faithful to me no matter how I've treated Him. The second lesson was writing down your core values and spiritual gifts. I discovered that my core values and spiritual gifts were all relational - meaning that I value people and my gifts are all about serving people. Within these three things, God revealed His purpose for my life. My mission statement: "To serve God's people through generosity and hospitality and to use relationships to draw others closer to Him."

Within two weeks of doing this, God gave me the opportunity to give 2 times and to open our home to a couple. He has such a sense of humor. Then on Saturday, I emailed one of the Kids Ministry leaders at church and told her that I had a bad attitude about the 2 year old class at church and if ever needed I would be willing to serve in that class one more time to give it a chance (I typically serve with the 1, 3, or 4 year olds...never 2!). Well, Saturday night I was trying to drop Connor off and one of his teacher never showed up. Guess who got to serve the 2 year olds that night! Very funny, Lord! Sunday I went back to church and heard a message that fit right in to how God is moving in my life. The message is titled "Who Do You Think You Are - Disciple." I'll link the message here because it is amazing!

Now we are working on the next part of Chazown - lining up your life with your Chazown. We are looking at the 5 main areas of life - relationship with God, relationship with people, finances, physical life, and work life. Chazown suggest working on only 1 or 2 areas at a time so you are not overwhelmed. I feel like I have been working on the God area since January, but there is only one thing I lack and that is finding a woman to be my mentor. I have a woman in mind, but am nervous to ask her because I feel like she might be too busy. Prayers please!

As soon as that is done, I think I am going to focus on a little bit of everything (I know, totally disregarding the Chazown advice). I am working on my marriage - don't worry, we are doing well, we just know we can grow even closer! I also want to work on getting out of debt by December, working out 3 times a week and eating better (I have discovered I am a stress eater) and finding a job that I can serve God in.

Lord, I have set some goals before me that I am nervous I can't achieve and without You I can't. I pray that your spirit guide me and be with me and help me to achieve all that You have called me to achieve. Amen!

Spring Break

Today begins the first day of Spring Break. I haven't blogged in awhile, partially due to busyness and partially because I have just plain forgotten. The first two weeks of February we were off school because of a blizzard. During those two weeks I did an awesome job of keeping the house clean, cooking dinner, and doing my school work. Mostly because I was trapped inside my house and couldn't go anywhere. However, during this time I had a really hard time keeping up with my daily time with God because I was with Connor 24/7. And for some reason, if I don't get it done first thing in the morning I have the hardest time getting it done, even when I have time!

Then I went back to school. The weather has been alternating between nice and cold so it is messing with my body. On top of that, I started a new course and life has just gotten busy. I acknowledged to Joe that I am not the kind of girl that is cut out to be gone all day at work and then make plans in the evenings and still retain my sanity.

My life group is going through a study called Chazown. It is about discovering God's purpose for you life and it has been truly enlightening. I feel like 2011 is the year that God is saying, "Rachel...WAKE UP! I have plans for you!" Between the fast at the beginning of the year, trying to keep the house up and cook more to be healthy/save money, finish school, be a better mom and wife and serve God the way he intended, I feel like I have this huge unattainable goal set before me. I keep telling myself that school will soon be finished (I graduate in June!), summer will be here, and I have the choice to not schedule things on weeknights. Some friendships may suffer, but my family will thrive and that is more important. My Pastor always says that sometimes you have to say no to good things in order to say yes to the best.

All this rambling on has a point - though sometimes I fall short, I feel such a hope and a calling at this time in my life and I know God has me in his hands. I am so thankful to be doing life with Him who loves me.

Lord, guide me and hold me. Let your light guide my way. Help me to focus on You and Your will rather than the obstacles I see before me. Amen!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Standing on His Word

9 “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.

I have one prayer that I have been praying over and over again since January 3, 2011. I have fasted for this, prayed, begged, and pleaded. When I read this scripture today it reassured me that I should continue pestering God to answer my deepest desire. This came right after Jesus said that persistence gets answers. I love that the Bible tells me to be annoyingly persistent!

Yesterday I did a pretty good job of cleaning and doing school work and being a mom. Today, I am struggling. It is a little past noon and I have done nothing but my quiet time. I need to do more homework, clean, and EXERCISE! Joe and I had our monthly weigh in yesterday and of course the whole of the week before I had been 3 pounds down, but yesterday I was only one pound down due to terrible eating on Monday. Boo!

Lord, you know my prayer. I am going to keep asking until I receive my heart's desire. I believe your word and it says that you will answer if I continue to knock. We love you and we love all the things you stand for. Amen.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Beautiful Day!

Wednesday I had to go to another middle school during the morning for a training. It was a great training and I learned a lot, but then it made Thursday seem like a very long day in the classroom. And then today the kiddos were sooooo hyper due to the beautiful weather. Needless to day, I am wiped...but I'm not complaining about it because I have the amazing weekend to recoup!

Tonight Joe and I are having dinner with the newest couple in our life group. We are really excited to get to know them. Plus we get to eat really yummy food!

I really have nothing important to report this week. Connor told me no yesterday and the way he did it was so stinking cute I didn't even get him in trouble! I just told him he couldn't watch Barney until he said please, which was why he was telling me no in the first place. For some reason the word please was poison yesterday.

Addi came over last night and begged to get in the tub when I was giving C a bath, so in she went. They had a great time splashing each other. Joe and I have gotten a little more relaxed on Connor's bed time for special circumstances, and Addi is definitely one of them! He stayed up and they wore Joe and I out from 6:45-8:45!

Lord, thank you for orchestrating a day of rest! You know we need it, and I want to live wisely just like you! Thanks for giving me motivation to be productive this weekend and help me to be the mom and wife you have called me to be! Amen.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Still Not Complaining. Nope. Not Me!

This morning I thanked God that I am alive. A stuffy nose will not keep me from rejoicing that I have my general health. Then, in fifth hour, I emailed Joe and told him that I am thankful to have a job when so many don't, and I am thankful that God thought highly enough of me to put me in a location with a lot of what I like to call "lovelies." I have been praying that as I speak these words of thanks, my heart will truly align with Christ's heart and that those thoughts will truly be my thoughts.

Joe joined a basketball league and they play every Monday. Connor and I were supposed to go and watch tonight, but Connor has been coughing and snotty since Saturday and last night I came down with it, so we decided we would stay home so we could both go to bed on time. So, he and I went on a Mommy-Connor date. And of course, just because I love him, I took him to get pizza. Now, Joe and I are on a budget and unplanned eat outs are under the category of allowance, so I had to choose a pizza place that C and I could both eat at for under $10 - it was all I had left from my last allowance. We went to Pizza Hut. And I had to rejoice for the time with my son because I usually do not rejoice over pizza from that location. I also had to rejoice that I had enough money to take my son out to eat. Phew, this not-complaining thing is quite difficult!

After C went to bed, I was able to do some cleaning (thanks FlyLady!) and some homework. Only 19.5 weeks until I graduate with my Master's degree!

Lord, continue this work in my heart and I choose not to complain, but instead to rejoice each and every day. This is the day the Lord has made, I will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:34. Thank you for your healing hand, and thank you for leading me to a place where I can grow each and every week in the company of your children. Amen.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Not complaining...

Since I'm not allowed to complain, I'm going to rejoice that all I'm dealing with is a scratchy sore throat and a stuffy nose, keeping in mind that there are people out there suffering from painful diseases and such.

I'm also not going to complain about not being able to sleep, but instead rejoice in the fact that I have a roof over my head, a nice warm bed, and a computer to entertain me while I try to get sleepy.

Lord, be with all of those who are suffering with pain or illness right now. Bring amazing, supernatural healing to their lives and reveal your goodness. Be with the congresswoman who was shot and all those who are trying to beat cancer. Be with all the little babies who are fighting for their lives today. Help my heart to align with yours and remember that your ways are better than mine. Oh, and Lord, heal my nose and throat before work tomorrow! Amen!