Just a glimpse of me...

My photo
Do you ever feel STUCK? In 2000, I began looking for answers to some tough questions in my life. I'd searched high & low and finally conceded to search the promises found in the Bible. Those promises have sustained & guided me through the loss of a parent, the struggle with anxiety & depression, the loss of a valued relationship and so much more! I've found joy amid the pain. And, I want to share it with you!

30 May 2014

PAIRINGS - Goodness & Beauty

 I walked outside my door today & took in the goodness & beauty which surrounds me. And, I was once again reminded not to minimize the "little things" placed right in my view! Things like huge, aromatic peonies lining the east wall of our home & lush green ivy covering the ground in the shady areas where grass would not grow well & lilies which come each spring -- lilies which were gifts to the former woman of the house from her two children. I see the birds returning to our outside hanging plants to nest again this year. I hear the horses in the neighboring pasture dashing across the field green & ready for grazing this spring. In our 4th spring here, none of these things are new to me. Yet, not one of them fails to bring a sense of joy & wonder. 

Each one of these "little things" can bring a lot of joy. Let us not forget...  
"How great is His goodness, and how great is His beauty..." Zechariah 9:17

28 May 2014

PAIRINGS - The Power of One Person

The power of one person... do we really understand that? Do we understand that our words can make a difference in the lives of others? Do we understand that how we make others feel is what's remembered over our words and our accomplishments? Do we understand that each of us has the power to make a huge difference in this world?

Today a candle flickered out here on earth. And, I believe, a torch was lit in Heaven to shine a path to God. The life of Maya Angelou made a difference in this world. 

Upon hearing of her passing, I paired one of her quotes with a picture from 2008. I took that picture of my own footsteps in the snow on a cold, yet beautiful, winter day as I went on a walkabout. That day & that walkabout marked the change in the life of my dear friend (and me in many ways) forever! That post is still in progress...

"Listen to yourself. And, in that quietude,
you might hear the voice of God."
Maya Angelou
Today, I celebrate the life of Maya Angelou... who was a well of wisdom. The POWER of ONE person... ONE WOMAN... can be eternal.

Today Girlfriendology shared a link to a video of Maya reciting her own words. We all share sorrow, shame, loss, fear, etc.  We each have the choice to RISE ABOVE it all! Maya chose to RISE!

And Still I Rise!

Never underestimate the power from within! I believe that power is planted within by a loving God... for each of us to call upon and for each of us to share with our world.

Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

20 May 2014

PAIRINGS - Certainties in an Uncertain World

I got a message from a friend this morning that she'd sent in the night. My heart broke as I read her words. Did I miss seeing signs that this was happening in her life? Aside from prayer, what can I do for her all these miles away. I wrote back and sent her my love, my prayers and a number where she could reach me. I thought, "What can I do to really help!?!?!"

I sent a second note...
I am so sorry if I missed the signs of this... I'm praying earnestly for you now though!!! Words are cold & hollow in times like these. But, I am praying that you will find peace, comfort, safety & strength in the only LIVING WORD!!
I looked back upon the darkest times in my life and remembered the nights when God's Word brought comfort and the name of JESUS was all I could cry out when my heart was speechless.

For my friend... for all of us... as we fight the battle each day...

Who really wants to hear the words, "Here on earth, you will have many trials and sorrows"? But, what a wonderful reminder of the future... in the words of Jesus, "Take heart, I have overcome this world."

So often there's nothing we can do to change things in this world. In those times, we must hold tightly to the certainty of the world to come!

Be encouraged friends! God completes what He starts!!

Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

19 May 2014

PAIRINGS - A House By The Sea

Since being a young child & a family vacation in a camper along the Atlantic Ocean on the Outer Banks of North Carolina one summer, I've dreamed of having a house by the sea. I dreamed of the sounds of the sea in the night & the hint of daybreak on the waves. I'll mostly like have to wait until heaven for my "house by the sea". But, my drive home through the newly tilled and planted corn fields of Indiana tonight gave me a feeling that I was living near the sea...

I've lived near the sea before... and spent many a sunrise and sunset walking along it's shore. There's just something about the colors of the sky reflected in the water. On calm days it's almost like a mirror. Tonight was like that I as drove slowly home through my Indiana fields...

I've kidded with people before saying that I want a "waterfront house" even if it means my lawn has poor drainage. We have a little bit of that at this home :) The huge amount of rain we've received in this area in just the past few days has overflowed our creeks & flooded our fields. You can see new sprouts of corn popping up everywhere. I'm hoping the amount of water won't hinder their growth.

I have to admit it, I loved the views driving home tonight. I caught a glimpse of the view... from my house by the sea... in heaven.
“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be." Matthew 6:19-21

Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

16 May 2014

Really, What Are Mere Mortals... Photos From My Drive Home...

I could NOT resist stopping again & again to take pictures as I drove home tonight. The beauty was incredible. My camera couldn't capture it. All of the following pics are without any filters -- just God's colors. Here are a few pics I took...

I cry out with the Psalmist:
What are mere mortals that you should think about them, human beings that you should care for them? Yet you made them only a little lower than God and crowned them with glory and honor. You gave them charge of everything you made, putting all things under their authority—the flocks and the herds and all the wild animals, the birds in the sky, the fish in the sea, and everything that swims the ocean currents. O lord, our Lord, your majestic name fills the earth! Psalm 8:4-9

Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

15 May 2014

PAIRINGS - Bloom Where You're Planted

I heard that from my mother over & over & over again as a child, youth & young adult. It was almost always followed by me shivering & wincing - similar to the reaction some people have when they hear fingernails scrape a chalkboard. I knew what she meant by it. I knew it was true. And, I knew I wasn't in the mood to embrace that truth most of the times she said it.

I didn't even realize that I was following that piece of advise as the years went by. The life of a "PK" resulted in me living in seven different states from birth into my early 20's. Between Kindergarten in Belding, Michigan & college in Anderson, IN, I attended 6 more different schools (in 3 additional states). And, you know what... ? I found wonderful things to do and made great friends in every new place. 

One opportunity we have as the years pass by is to embrace some of the truths we avoided in our youth. Truths like...
  • Bloom where you're planted...
  • Make lemonade out of the lemons in your life...
  • Life's not fair...
  • Actions speak louder than words...
  • If the shoe fits, wear it...
And those truths become more like familiar friends and less like enemies over the years - when we allow them to do so.

Today I was thinking about the pictures posted by a friend who recently moved back to the city of his origin... the Emerald City... Seattle, Washington.  I see those pictures & think WHY CAN'T I LIVE THERE. Upon having that thought, I heard a voice in my head. But, it wasn't my mother's voice speaking the words. And, I didn't shiver & wince. The voice was ME speaking. The reaction was a feeling of embracing the statement:
Bloom where you're planted!
And then, my silly mind tacked on a personal reminder for today after feeling a bit jealous over all the gorgeous Pacific northwest photos:
After all, not ALL of us can live in Seattle. 

God has proven to me, over & over, that there will always be plenty for which to give thanks - if I open my eyes to those gifts!
"Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus." 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

You're Not the Boss of Me!

I kept a journal when the kids were young - mainly at the suggestion of Chris - my accountability partner then and life-long BFF now! At the prompting of the Holy Spirit when I was praying back then, I asked her & another friend to meet with me weekly as accountability partners. My youngest was 3 years old. I'd share a "mommy story" each week. Chris would tell me that I needed to write them down in a journal. So, I did. Eighteen years later, I continue to thank her for suggesting that to me!!

Here's a favorite story from that journal...

When our son was 3 and our daughter was 5, they were sitting beside each other one morning at the kitchen pass-through counter eating breakfast. Our daughter made a "suggestion" about how our 3-year old son should do something, He immediately & emphatically replied:

"I don't have to! You are NOT the boss of me!"
Amused at his reply, I asked him who WAS the boss of himHis reply: "Well, of course, you are Mommy!"

I then asked who the boss of his sister was. His reply: "You are."
I decided to test my luck & asked "who's the boss of Daddy"? There was a pause, as he thought about the question. Then his reply: "You are! (pause) You are the boss of everyone -- except the Cates family! (our neighbors to the west).

Whenever I hear or say the words, "You're not the boss of me!" my mind goes back that day with my young children. The words of my adorable 3 year old boy replay in my head & a smile breaks forth on my face.  And, I am reminded that... it's all a matter of perspective!
Screen shot of what I messaged to my sister
when she suggested that I
make lemonade out of the lemons
in my life right now :)

For me, if I could choose anyone or anything to BE THE BOSS OF ME, it would be God's Holy Spirit! I would surrender to the Holy Spirit's authority & thereby be set free to live an abundant life!
"So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. Let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives." Galatians 5:16-17 & 25b
Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

08 May 2014


I continue to wake... 30 days after Easter... with the reminder that His resurrection is as real today as it was all those years ago. I want to live as one who walks among the "Resurrection People". Often as I watch the sunrise in the morning, the words and melody to an OLD song fill my mind. 

For me, there's something sacred about watching the day begin. Many days it's played out, not only on the eastern sky but from east to west and from north to south. Some mornings are more spectacular that some. Others are more subtle. But, I've yet to see one that doesn't humbler my heart before the One who knows me most and loves me best!

The music & lyrics to one of my all-time favorite songs was written in 1912 -- over 100 years ago -- by C. Austin Miles:

I come to the garden alone
While the dew is still on the roses
And the voice I hear falling on my ear
The Son of God discloses.

And He walks with me,
And He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known. 

He speaks, and the sound of His voice,
Is so sweet the birds hush their singing,
And the melody that He gave to me
Within my heart is ringing. 

And He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

I’d stay in the garden with Him
Though the night around me be falling,
But He bids me go; through the voice of woe
His voice to me is calling. 

And He talks with me,
And He tells me I am His own;
And the joy we share as we tarry there,
None other has ever known.

This morning, I am praying for God to show up in a POWERFUL way for a person who's working their way back to a close relationship with the Lord recently. My prayer comes straight from The Word:
"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life." Psalm 143:8
Linking with Ann Voskamp - A Holy Experience today... 

01 May 2014

2014 April ONE THOUSAND GIFTS #JoyDare

APRIL 2014 
One Thousand Gifts (by Ann Voskamp)
#1000Gifts #JoyDare

Buy book here...      

I took the 1,000 Gifts Dare for the year of 2012...
I continued in 2013...
I'm now into 2014! 

Today I find JOY in...

4/1/14 Tues
2444. gradually de-wintering the inside house decor
2445. rocking a sleeping baby while listening to great lyrics & music by Fernando Ortega 

4/2/14 Wed
2446. Everybody just needs a little PEACE, LOVE & UNDERSTANDING
I love the hand-me-downs we have gotten for our little one!

2447. a husband who cooks dinner (quite often lately)
2448. chocolate chip cookies right out of the oven
and a glass of cold milk :)

4/3/14 Thurs
2449. reminders in music
Little is Much When God is In It
2450. comforting a baby who's teething...
and not napping :/
2451. my bed - I am worn out

4/4/14 Fri 
2452. morning scriptures
Lamentations 3:23 - what a promise!
2453. loving deeply - even when it's not easy
2454. pizza party - reminders of when the kids were small :)

4/5/14 Sat
2455. the uplifting feeling of... anticipation of celebration
2456. the most incredible celebration of our daughter

2457. high heels at a great party

4/6/14 Sun
2458. time with family
2459. a long Sunday nap - a rarity these days too
2460. reminders that God has won ALL battles
This is one of my favorite shots... NO FILTER AT ALL...
God totally filtered the sunset like that through the haze of newly harvested soybean fields.

4/7/14 Mon
2461. big breakfasts :)

2462. green grass - it's starting to grow 
2463. chillin' with the family & watching DWTS :)

4/8/14 Tues
2464. a morning nap which got rid of a 36-hour headache 
2465. chicken salad with craisins & toasted pecans
2466. a dishwasher - so glad I don't have to do them ALL by hand!

4/9/14 Wed
2467. books all over the great room floor - 14-month olds love books!

2468. all the family art in our home

2469. early to bed

4/10/14 Thurs
2470. fresh WARM air :)
2471. Dilly Bars
there should really be a confess-all post about these some day!
2472. stubbornly claiming that we will see good in a certain situation

4/11/14 Fri
2473. intensely dark chocolate
2474. the struggle within
... dichotomy...
2475. best Friday night in... oh... so... very... long!!!

4/12/14 Sat
2476. wounds that are healing
2477. a supportive LOML
2478. a CHECK in my spirit about my general ATTITUDE lately -
not fun at all... but, OH SO NECESSARY!

4/13/14 Sun
2479. the beginning of Holy Week & all the emotions... and gratitude
2480. a Catholic church on Palm Sunday afternoon

2481. pride of a MOMMA - our son's girlfriend playing one of his original compositions!
I don't understand this...
but, it was beautiful!
4/14/14 Mon
2482. a rainy day

2483. texting!
it really helps me stay in touch!!
2484. Dueling Divas :)

4/15/14 Tues
2485. snow on the ground... too cold for 4/15... still beautiful

2486. making it - despite my depression - to RefresHer Bible Study!
2487. confusing answers to prayer

4/16/14 Wed
2488. helping teach independence
(can be hard on the teacher & the student... but, it's necessary & noble)

2489. the ideas I come up with when talking with my older sister on the phone make me SMILE!!!  For example, I thought of this...
"Working on a post for my StuckInIndiana blog today... "Jesus Loves the Simple Minded" Will publish when I get the perfect picture. Shouldn't be long!"
2490. dancing

4/17/14 Thurs
2491. a morning which felt peaceful & productive all at the same time :)
2492. my silly 3rd grade self
I have no idea what he did...
but, it MUST have been really bad
for me to deface his pic like that!!
2493. sticks & stones with little "A"
Here DeeDee... I have a stick for you
4/18/14 Fri
2494. counting

2495. moments which will be memories
2496. Good Friday observation
great service led by Alanna Story

4/19/14 Sat
2498. Rustic beauty along my walk... never disappoints... always draws my mind to God. This is my Father's world! Spotted a crawdad today -- totally grossed out Jessica - ha ha!!

2499. a few hours alone in the house -- very rare

4/20/14 EASTER SUNDAY!!!
2500. celebration with my church family
2501. first Easter egg hunt w/baby A

2502. to die for... homemade almond, vanilla bean cheese cake w/FRESH raspberries

4/21/14 Mon
2503. waking up with the thought...
His Resurrection is as real this moment as it was that very day!!!
Our sunrise was a little bland but... my friend captured a great picture this morning.
It looked to me like an angel who is reminding us that
Christ's resurrection is as real this morning as it was the very morning it happened!

2504. putting pics on Facebook that I would rather not but, feel that I should
2505. Ann's post about being Resurrection People
4/22/14 Tues
2507. walk-about with Ruthann & Koko... and Ayla
2508. hot dogs from the grill - summer is getting closer :)

4/23/14 Wed
2509. earlier time for a walk-about
temps in the low 40's - but, beautifully sunny! 
2510. some serious yard work accomplished
2511. peace, love & understanding... a little one in a PEACE shirt :)

4/24/14 Thurs
2512. hitting the "TO DO LIST" hard
2513. Christian sisters who share each other's burdens
2514. the weather turning a corner - finally!!!

4/25/14 Fri
2515. God's faithfulness - especially in the CRAZY times!
2516. lots of organizing & cleaning AND a little music

2517. safe trip home for T & K 

4/26/14 Sat
2519. a boy, a baby & Bach

2520. the little things which bring family together

4/27/14 Sun
2521. Sunday afternoon nap for our little one for THREE HOURS!!!
2522. in-laws who are ethical, have GREAT values & love the Lord
2523. family movie night - happy to have our 2 UC-CCM kids here :)
Sitting on the laps of Uncle T & Aunt K
and watching FROZEN for the first time!
4/28/14 Mon
2524. centering my life & God's PERFECT ART
"Your love relationship with God \
prepares you to be involved in His work
by developing in you a God-centered life."
Experiencing God. Henry Blackaby
2525. the power of words - the power of truth

2526. hard, long day - glad that tomorrow is a new day :)

4/29/14 Tues
2527. being stuck by a train for over 30 minutes & actually reading my lesson before Bible study
reminded that I AM DRESSED TO KILL
by my Lord when it comes to satan!
2528. killer colors - which ONLY GOD can do!

2529. news of a 4.0 this semester for our son
this has been a LONG journey - since, in my opinion, his spirit was broken by a cruel 4th grade teacher!!

4/30/14 Wed
2530. a collapsible play pen which follows me around the house as I clean :)
complete with 15-month old baby girl :)
2531. news of a 4.0 this semester for our son's girlfriend
oh... THAT journey!