Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Sanctuary

And the word of the year is...

I enjoy reading the blog of Ali Edwards, and she has introduced me (and a few thousand other people, apparently) to the concept of choosing a single word to focus upon for the new year. I found it to be a good exercise to come up with a focus for my year. I started with a fresh page in my sketchbook and just wrote down words as they came to me. Then I doodled a while and thought a while and prayed for some guidance. The word that rose to the top of it all is Sanctuary.

My first thought when I think of Sanctuary is our home. I want our home to be a sanctuary. A place of peace, shelter, safety, nurturing, warmth, comfort. I want anyone who enters our home to let out a deep breath, feel their shoulders relax, and let their guard down. I want my family to feel like they can leave any stressors of the day, frustrations, discouragement, at the door and be restored. Our home is not the sanctuary that I would like for it to be at this point. I hope to change that this year. But what about sanctuary in my life? 2008 has been a year of transition with a huge helping of stress. I definitely need more sanctuary in my life at this point. Another goal is for sanctuary in my relationships. I pray that people whose path crosses mine that need sanctuary--a safe place to talk, to pray, to share, to cry--that I can be used to meet that need. I pray that my relationships are nurturing and caring and positive and that God can use that and be glorified through that.

Sanctuary in 2009

Do you have a word for this year? I would love it if you shared it here. You can also go share it at Ali's blog. http://aliedwards.typepad.com/_a_/2008/12/one-little-wo-1.html

The ball just dropped in Times Square. Happy New Year!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time to reflect on the many things for which we have to be thankful. I have the usual things on my list, family, friends, our health... But none of these things would be possible without God's incredible faithfulness to provide for us--all that we have, all that we are, all that we will be. I love to sing "Great Is Thy Faithfulness" but I can never get through the hymn without being overcome with gratitude for His great faithfulness to me. By the end I am struggling to sing through tears while wanting to just fall on my face and worship the One who has provided for me and delighted me and loved me even when I didn't deserve any of it! Oh GREAT is Thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

Here are the words so you can sing along with me or you can listen to it here:


Great Is Thy Faithfulness by Thomas Chisholm


Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father!

There is no shadow of turning with Thee;

Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not:

As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.


Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest,

Sun, moon and stars in their courses above,

Join with all nature in manifold witness

To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.


Pardon for sin and peace that endureth.

Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,

Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow,

Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!


refrain

Great is Thy faithfulness, Great is Thy faithfulness,

Morning by morning new mercies I see:

All I have needed Thy hand hath provided.

Great is Thy faithfulness, Lord unto me!



Have a blessed Thanksgiving, everyone!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Daybook

Outside my window…

The sun is shining, but as we were waking up this morning, there was quite a little storm out there.

I am listening to…

The sounds from the playroom—cartoons on the TV, girls playing “kitchen”—it’s so nice to have the kids home this week!

I am thankful for…

My husband’s faith, dedication to his calling, and the way he takes such good care of his family.

From the kitchen…

Not much to inspire there. I’ve been sick this week and have been trying to avoid sharing my germs.

Living out the liturgy…

I didn’t make as much progress as I had hoped on the Jesse Tree ornaments this week since I was sickly. But we still have Jotham’s Journey ready and will be making Advent wreathes at church next week. We’re ready for Advent!

I am creating…

Frustration! My sewing projects have not been going well this week. It seems like everything has taken longer than it should or has had major issues. I smocked a beautiful bishop, but the sizing is way too small. It’s not my first bishop. I have no idea what went wrong there… I’m praying for a much better week this week!

Towards creating sanctuary…

I am working on getting clothing sorted, outgrown clothes cleared away, coats cleaned and ready for winter, filling in missing pieces.

Bringing beauty to my home…

My objectives for this week are drapes for the living room and rearranging furniture in there so we will have room for the Christmas tree.

I am reading…

Home by Julie Andrews

I am hoping…

For a nice week of family time with no illness. The kids have the entire week out of school!

One of my favorite things…

Is Thanksgiving dressing. I’ll be making two batches this week. Yum!

A few plans for the coming days…

Fun with the kids, the living room project, making dressing

A picture or thought I’m sharing today…

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is Good. His love endures for ever! (sing with me…LOL)

Sunday, November 16, 2008

A view of my day

Outside my window…

A beautiful deep blue November sky. So weird to have southern seasons again.

I am listening to…

Decorating shows on HGTV and Fine Living today.

I am thankful for…

A relaxing weekend. Things were so crazy the past few weekends!

From the kitchen…

Lingering memories of last night’s Low Country Shrimp & Grits. Yum!

Living out the liturgy…

Looking towards Advent. Searching for our copy of Jotham’s Journey. Thinking about Jesse Tree ornaments.

I am creating…

Some skirts for my girls.

Towards creating sanctuary…

I’m washing school uniforms so we’ll have peaceful mornings this week.

Bringing beauty to my home…

Reducing the laundry pile? I’m contemplating Advent/Christmas d├ęcor plans, though.

I am reading…

Magazines! I love Christmas magazine season.

I am hoping…

For a productive week. The kids will be on Thanksgiving break next week and we’ll be visiting family and having fun, so the more prep I can do this week, the better!

One of my favorite things…

Is the way my 3 year old puts together words and phrases. She has been a little under the weather this weekend starting with a nice fever on Friday. She told me that she had the fever because the trees outside were shaking and making her sick. But when she has her birthday and turns 4 and is big, then she will feel better and the trees won’t shake any more. LOL She cracks me up!

A few plans for the coming days…

Finishing up some much needed sewing projects and photographing them. Getting laundry caught up. Addressing Christmas Cards. And if I’m really on the ball, I hope to weed out the kids’ closets and drawers a bit more. They still have outgrown clothes taking up valuable real estate.

A picture or thought I’m sharing today…

Preparation now will pay off in a peaceful Advent where we can focus on the story of the One who came to set us free. Alleluia!