Friday, October 19, 2007

Magazines and Life

I remember growing up, I used to love it when my mom splurged and brought home Women's Day, Redbook, Family Circle, or Good Housekeeping. She subscribed to Reader's Digest. I loved reading her magazines because it opened up a whole different world to me.

In the homes of others, I could define them by the magazines on their coffee tables. My Aunt Minnie had Psychology Today. Mrs. Scott had National Geographic. Grandma Mary had The National Inquirer (Inquiring Minds...). When Mom started her nursing career, nursing magazines filled the magazine stack. Later, her interests blossomed into Better Homes and Gardens, Southern Living, and others.

As a pre-teen I learned all about celebrity crushes by reading hand-me-down Tiger Beat magazine from my cousin Kristy. I inherited her clothing, her magazines, and one time even a chemistry set! Tony Defranco was my my first crush, thanks to Tiger Beat!

Fall of 1980 was a big time in my life. I read every holiday magazine I could get my hands on. My mom's, Russ's mom's, you name it. Why? Because I wanted to throw a blow out party for my friends, to announce my engagement, and the engagement of one of my best friends (Patricia). I received the ring on Christmas Day, and a few days later I hosted the dinner party. We set up various tables in one room, and decorated a little bit (not nearly as big as I dreamed in my head). I cooked most of the meal. The menu included baked pork chops with apples on top, and homemade yeast rolls. I can't remember what else we fixed. Mom helped me get it together. In fact, it was a tense time because I also went to St. Louis for a shopping trip rather than staying home to get things finalized (sorry Mom). I had my head in the clouds those days! What started all of this was dreaming big by reading the holiday magazines.

I go in phases with magazines. I used to buy them at the magazine counter all the time. Sometimes I subscribed. Other times I'd go to the library to check out older mags or sit in and read the current issue.

Right now I'm in between phases. When I get settled into my new home (flying there October 29th!) I will begin to subscribe to my favorites again. I know we will be putting roots down, so I won't have to mess with those awful change of address forms.

I combine work with pleasure on my magazine picks. Sometimes I buy magazines because I want to consider writing for them, or targeting them for one of my author clients. Other times I have ministry in mind. Or home and hospitality.

I guess if I picked 5 to subscribe to, at this phase in my life, they would be:
Today's Christian Woman
HOPE For Women
Real Simple
Writer's Digest
The Writer

I also enjoy reading the magazines I picked up over the summer at our SBC church. I looked forward to each new month, for new reading material to bring home. These include:
Mature Living
On Mission

Check them out!

What magazines are you reading these days?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

A God-Thing

I just have to share a "God-thing" with you. It's how God gave an affirmation about a book doctor project I'm working on. This project has become very dear to my heart.

I prayed about where to worship today. We already said good-bye to the church where we served in an interim capacity this summer, so I didn't really want to go back there to worship (just too hard after saying good-byes). Russ isn't here-he's already in Raymondville. Here in Southwest KY, I live in the belt-buckle of the Bible Belt, so churches abound. In a 20-mile radius, I had about 30 good Bible-believing churches to consider. I decided to drive twenty minutes away, to Martin, TN to attend church at Central Baptist.

God confirmed my choice in a unique way. The pastor spoke on the very topic I've been working on in this book project THIS WEEKEND. It was Chapter ONE all over again!

He even used some of the same examples. It was like I was reading my author's manuscript! NO KIDDING!

It was an amazing affirmation of the author's direction, and I'm glad to be a part of it.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

A Birth Announcement of Sorts, or Maybe More of a Marriage

It's official. First Baptist Church of Raymondville, TX voted unanimously to extend the call for Russ to be their pastor. (The unanimous part is a first for us!) We are excited. Russ said this is a wonderful affirmation that his purpose in life is ministry. This is a relief, and more than that it gives us a renewed sense of direction. We had the burden, passion, and vision for ministry-we just needed to be plugged into a church. Now we are!

Thank you so much for praying!

Monday, October 01, 2007

A Day to Remember!

Today was our going-away day at Clinton's First Baptist Church. We were invited to sing with the choir, so that was special. And before the morning message, Russ and I sang a duet (and he played the trumpet) of the song, "Go With God." There were some tears in the audience, as the words hit home (HOPEFULLY it was the lyrics and not the notes! Just kidding!).

Before the evening service, we were honored to a church fellowship. The meal was yummy, the goodbye messages from the congregation meant a lot, and they even had a money tree and gift/card table. How thoughtful! We were only there for 4 months! But it did seem like we were FAMILY for all our lives-we just hit it off from day ONE.

Some of the sentiments we heard:

You'll never realize just how much you've done for our church.

You blessed our hearts just by being YOU.

You brought our church out of a dark despair with your music and with your smiles.

You loved on us in ways you probably didn't even realize.

You gave us confidence and helped us sing material we would have never attempted before-our choir sounded like double the voices because now we aren't afraid to sing out.

We know you went through some fires in your life and we just want you to know we think you have come out of the fires shining like gold. Your lives have inspired us to move forward when we didn't think we could.

I'm not ready to let you go.

Wow! Can you believe just how good God is to let us enjoy such kind words at a time when we needed it more than THEY knew! The truth is, the church became our family this summer-our brothers and sisters and grandparents too. They blessed us as much as they say we blessed them. The opportunity to serve there came at just the time we needed it.

Thank you Clinton FBC, for being YOU. And for those reading this from the church, thank you for the generous outpouring of gifts. And the notes were precious reminders of God's goodness to us through you.

It was a great day! It was so hard to say goodbye and to give final hugs. Some refused to say goodbye and said, "Until we meet again."