Tuesday, November 30, 2010

*Gasp!* Christmas is in December this year????

Oh. my.

December has come WAY too fast! It's already time to break out the Christmas music. There's so many Christmas songs that I love. What have you been listening to? Not only do I like to listen to them, but they're pretty fun to sing... really loudly... in German accents. Haha. Anyyyywayyy...

I now have a new favorite Christmas song: "While You Were Sleeping" by Casting Crowns. Have you heard it? It's a beautiful and touching song about the city Jesus was born in, yet it ends with a powerful challenge to America. You'll just have to hear it....

America, what will we miss while we are sleeping?
Will Jesus come again,
And leave us slumbering where we lay;
America, will we go down in history,
As a nation with no room for its King;
Will we be sleeping?

What do you want to be doing when Jesus calls His Church home? Will you be ready? This Christmas, let's not be sleeping, caught up in all the holiday hustle and bustle. It's time to wake up. God has given you a purpose in this life. What are you going to do with the time that He has given you?
This time of the year is a HUGE opportunity to reach out to the hurting and show the love of Christ. If you're thinking about how you can make an impact this Christmas, I'd encourage you to check out the blogs I have on my sidebar:
Wake Up Stand Up, Teens for Orphans, Do: Living Water.
Each of those projects were started by young people who made the effort to reach out and make a difference to people in third world countries. Even if it's just following their blogs and praying for their projects, you could be part of the change. Of course, there are so many other ways to make this Christmas an impactful one. But I challenge you to do something if you're not already.
I've already read some posts from fellow bloggers about what they're doing to make a difference this Christmas. Are you doing something? I'd love to hear all the different ways that you all are reaching out this year! What are you doing to make a difference this Christmas?

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Pumpkins + Colorful Leaves + Sunlight = Awesome photos

But I'm only one month behind! Oh well. Even my Thanksgiving break is busy (but I'm still thankful for it, of course). I absolutely LOVE the fall season! That's why I love these photos....

Silly picture!

L to R: Cierra (5), Aaron (12), Austin (15), Me (17), Mariah (11)

A random cat got in the picture.

Have a happy Thanksgiving everyone!!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Shutterfly - 50 FREE Holiday Cards!

I have heard of Shutterfly before, but I have to admit, I've never used it. However, when I heard about their amazing offer from Charity Anne's blog, I knew I couldn't pass it up!!!

So here's the deal: If you sign up to post about Shutterfly's photo gifts, you automatically get 50 free holiday cards! Too good to be true? Not this time!

What can you do with Shutterfly? You can upload your pictures, order awesome photo gifts and prints, and you can pick up what you order at any Target, Walgreens, or CVS. Here are just a few of the neat cards you can make with your photos (Click on the photos to see more from Shutterfly):

Christmas Cards - like this one! (ONE of my personal favorites. This would be great to send out with Christmas letters to family and friends.)

Holiday stationary (and even Hanukkah cards)

Personalized photo calendars!
Photo mugs

This is the one that I would probably choose:

SERIOUSLY. Check out their Christmas cards (and do it in time to send them out for Christmas). There are literally hundreds to choose from; and if you sign up and blog about it, you get 50 FREE! Do it.

Monday, November 8, 2010

My Healer

Recently, I've been listening to all of Kari Jobe's music. Not only does she have an amazing voice, but her lyrics are so sincere and uplifting. I've been especially touched by the song "Healer." If you haven't heard it. check it out!

This is video is a story that brought tears to my eyes. Watch the video to see how her music inspires hope and how miraculous our God is!

Nothing is impossible for You
Nothing is impossible
Nothing is impossible for You
You hold my world in Your hands

STORY's Worship Leader Kari Jobe from Story Chicago on Vimeo.

P.S. Charity Anne from Footprints in the Sand interviewed me on her worldview blog! To read it, go HERE. You should totally check out her blog - she has a passion for Christ that shows through her posts!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wild for Wild Olive!!!

I don't post about very many give-aways, but this one is just too awesome not to! Wild Olive Tees is giving away some of their cool Christian tees for ladies! Check out their new blog to find out how you can enter! :) Go HERE to enter.

That's all.

God's Peace.... A Guard?

In a humanities class I'm taking, we recently finished studying Philippians. Have you all ever studied that book in depth? Man, it's packed with spiritual nuggets of wisdom! =)

I'm sure you have heard these verses before, right?

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 4:6-7

When I read that, I usually think something along the lines of, "Okay, so God doesn't want us to worry about our troubles, but instead pray, and then He will give us His peace." However, when I read it this time, something totally new stuck out to me. Read the verses again. (Seriously.) Now what do you think it means when Paul says that God's peace will "guard your hearts and minds"? This is the question I asked myself. I mean, I've never really thought about peace...guarding. So what does it mean?

As I kept reading these verses with that question in my mind, the Holy Spirit taught me something totally new to me. (Aren't those moments just so amazing???) God's peace guards us from focusing on ourselves

I don't know about you, but I'm a worrier. If something can go wrong, then I'll be thinking about it. And especially if something does go wrong, then I'm definitely worried! However, when I am worrying, I'm focusing on my problems, my troubles, my embarrassment, situations in my life that might go wrong.

Do you see the problem here? I'm not focusing on God, who is in control of my life - and nothing happens outside of His plan. God's peace guards me from focusing on myself. Instead, I'm placing my life in His hands and leaving it there. His peace keeps me focused on HIM: who He is, what He has done, and what I know He is going to do. God's plan is perfect, and I know I don't have to worry about anything. That's how God's peace is a guard.

Are you a worrier? Then cast your cares upon the Lord, and ask Him to give you His peace - it surpasses all understanding! Keep your focus on God, 'cause He will never let you down.