Friday, July 9, 2010

Contest...I love contests!

So my sweet friend and amazing photographer, Grethel Van Epps is having a contest. Curious? Want to know more???
Wellll it's the 3rd anniversary of her photography business, and she's celebrating by giving away a FREE session AND $100 print credit. Isn't that awesome?! If you don't know her work, then you are missing out!
You can learn more about Grethel and her work by visiting her blog @ or her website @

She has done pictures for our family on some very special occasions, including the newborn pictures of our sweet Rhiannon. I have included a couple in this post, and you can see some of those pictures on my blog header.She is always a joy to work with and has an amazing eye. She puts our kids at ease and allows their personalities to shine through in her pictures. She is incredible. SOOOOOOO, though I REALLY REALLY want to win this contest, I am going to encourage you to enter as well. That way, when I win, I'll feel extra special. ;)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Slippery Slope

Ok, so I haven't posted in MONTHS, and here I am. I've wanted to post and have so much I want to share (more for my scrapbook than anything) but just have not found the time. I must catch up because this is how I scrapbook for my kids. UGH! Where is the time to be found?!

Anyway, today my post isn't about my kids, and it isn't to share my random thoughts. Well, not my funny random thoughts anyway. Today I want to share my thoughts on the craziness that is America right now and how our priorities seem so out of whack.

So the big news is the healthcare bill. It passed, narrowly, but it passed. Many Americans are against this bill, and for good reason. These Americans are experiencing all kinds of emotions, but what stands out the most is 'anger'. People are angry that their rights are being taken away and that things are being forced on them. On the flip side, the Americans who wanted this bill passed are experiencing their own wave of emotions. They are full of hope or excitement or whatever. I don't really know.

This is all beside the point I am focusing on. What I have noticed through all this is that it is a HUGE distraction. HUGE, and I think Satan has got to be smiling, laughing, and enjoying every minute of this. Smiling and happy because the healthcare bill passed? Smiling because this bill is so "evil"? No. I think he's happy because Americans' focus has majorly shifted. People are SO obsessed with politics and with getting "their way" (on both sides) that they have forgotten why they're here. So many of us have spent so much time arguing our points and why "we're right" that we've forgotten to even try to understand where someone else might be coming from. Worse than that, people's lives are being threatened, people are being slandered, discriminated against, personally attacked, and are living in fear because of their political views and choices. People are spending so much time hating these politicians that they don't have time to focus on Jesus and His message. Matthew 5:43-44 says, "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbora]"> and hate your enemy.' 44But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you...".

So many of us aren't loving our enemies. We want them to hurt and to be wronged the way that we feel we were hurt and wronged. We are so angry. We are so self-righteous.

This healthcare bill may not be what some of us wanted, but it passed. If we don't like it, we need to go about challenging it with class, with love, and for the right reasons. We need to stop making it an 'us vs them' and try to work together. We live in the greatest country in the world, yet most of us are tearing it down brick by brick. We have lost our fundamentals. We have lost our faith in God. We want to do everything ourselves and, often times, for selfish reasons.

I truly believe that we need to look at the issues through the other person's point of view, whatever the issue may be. Only then can we understand their point. We may still disagree, but maybe we can disagree with the issue and not with the person.

Barack Obama is our president. In 1Timothy, Paul tells us to pray for our leaders:

I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth. (1 Timothy 2:1-4).

If I'm being totally honest, I have to admit that I often forget to do this. Do you? Will you join me in praying for our President as well as others in authority?

I want America to still be a great place to live. I want to take the smile off of Satan's face. I want to be a good example for my kids. I want to focus on Jesus rather than being right. I mean, if we were to really look at all the issues, do we all know as much as we think we do? I mean, are any of us the supreme authority on every issue? Many of us think we know more than the other person and want to accuse others of being ill-informed, but let's be real. That's not always the case. There are always two sides to every story, and in politics, there are always lies and skewed points.

I believe in America, and I trust in God. I am going to commit to spend more time focusing on Jesus and less on trying to prove others wrong. If I believe strongly in something, I am going to pray and ask God to show me how He would have me handle it.
Well, these are my plans, anyway. "Nothing is impossible with God", right?

Thoughts? Be kind... :)