Saturday, January 31, 2009

Agony

The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:9


In accordance with my New Testament reading plan, I just finished reading 2 Peter. There were several verses in chapters 2 & 3 that struck a very profound note with me.

Lately I have felt a heavy weight on my soul; I know that it is for all the loved ones in my life who are running from the Lord. Chapter 2 of 2 Peter warns against the teachings of false teachers, and false teachers are running rampant in our society today. It's nearly impossible to avoid their influence. From politicians, to talk show hosts, to televangelists, to people we know personally, there is always someone whispering in our ears. Of course, the most common false doctrines are exactly what Peter warns of in verses 18-19:

For when they speak great swelling words of emptiness, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through lewdness, the ones who have actually escaped from those who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.


The human mind is weak, and false teachers constantly prey on that weakness. They are quick to make everyone feel good; they tell everyone that they are "entitled," they make the human being #1. And let's face it, everyone wants to be #1. It's an easy sell: "You're okay; everything's okay; you won't be challenged or convicted if you follow me." So even people who have heard the truth are sucked back in, ignoring the Good News of freedom and engaging in the bondage of carnal lusts.

But it has happened to them according to the true proverb: "A dog returns to his own vomit"..."
2 Peter 2:22


Please do not misread this post. I am not judging or condemning anyone; my heart just aches for the wandering souls in my life. It positively aches. But praise God for this:

The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
2 Peter 3:9


He waited for me for many difficult years, and I pray He will wait for all my loved ones too.

Hot, Steamy Goodness

Bo, Jack, and I all have a cold. It is a strange cold; it doesn't bring much in the way of nasal congestion. Instead, it brings on a scratchy throat, headache, and a cough. Fever is optional. I just went into the kitchen to feed Jack lunch, and I was looking for something to eat myself, but I have no appetite. One thing did appeal to me though: I nice, hot cup of tea. If you ask me, there is nothing better for a sore throat, and it warms me up from the inside out. Not to mention that green tea has some caffeine in it (yay!).

Mmmmm...soothing...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

It's Cold.

I don't much care what anyone else has to say on the subject: to me, 42 degrees = cold.

I know it's probably a bit early to be whining about it, but I am going to go ahead and do so anyway: I am over the whole "winter" thing. I honestly didn't expect moving to Virginia to be too much of an adjustment, but I think I was majorly spoiled by the easy Texas winters.

Not only am I sick of the cold weather, I am also sick of dry skin, sweaters, freezing cold feet, and the sound of scraping ice!!!! WORST. SOUND. EVER. Only to be rivaled by the sound of creaking/crunching snow. I shiver just thinking about it. It actually makes me feel nauseous.

Honestly, I applaud those of you who are brave enough to live in the frigid North. I cannot imagine how cold your toes must be.

I was born in Michigan and lived there until I was 8. I then lived in Connecticut for 4 years, so I have experienced the whole "long, cold, snowy winter" thing...but that was a long time ago. And apparently my tolerance for cold has decreased by at least 75%.

Of course I have romanticized memories of snow: sledding with my sisters down steep, death-trap embankments; walking to the school bus stop in a blizzard; etc.

But I seriously doubt I could tolerate a winter any colder than this. Anywhere north of Virginia and I would surely perish.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Relief

You know that feeling when you've been gone a long time and you get home and you just feel so relieved and happy that it almost makes you cry? You sit on your couch and you can't imagine anything better; you close your eyes and take a deep breath. That is how I feel when I think about heaven.

I was in the car today and MercyMe's song "Homesick" came on the radio. The song is about being homesick for heaven, and that is exactly how I feel. I can't wait to feel the sweet relief of relaxing in eternal paradise with the Lord. How amazing will that be? No worries, no stress, just endless opportunities to praise God. I cannot wait.

Homesick Lyrics:
You're in a better place, I've heard a thousand times
And at least a thousand times I've rejoiced for you
But the reason why I'm broken, the reason why I cry
Is how long must I wait to be with you

I close my eyes and I see your face
If home's where my heart is then I'm out of place
Lord, won't you give me strength to make it through somehow
I've never been more homesick than now

Help me Lord cause I don't understand your ways
The reason why I wonder if I'll ever know
But, even if you showed me, the hurt would be the same
Cause I'm still here so far away from home
[ Find more Lyrics at www.mp3lyrics.org/8PJC ]

I close my eyes and I see your face
If home's where my heart is then I'm out of place
Lord, won't you give me strength to make it through somehow
I've never been more homesick than now

In Christ, there are no goodbye
And in Christ, there is no end
So I'll hold onto Jesus with all that I have
To see you again
To see you again

And I close my eyes and I see your face
If home's where my heart is then I'm out of place
Lord, won't you give me strength to make it through somehow
Won't you give me strength to make it through somehow
Won't you give me strength to make it through somehow

I've never been more homesick than now

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Waiting

Waiting is the hardest part.
Every day I have thoughts of impatience:
"God, please get Bo a new job."
"I cannot wait to move out of this house."
"I feel like such a loser, being 25 years old and living with my parents."
"God, please get us a house of our own."
"Everyone else we know owns a home or at least lives on there own. We are such losers."
"We are never going to get out of here."
"I feel so helpless. So hopeless."

I need to be reminded constantly that things are never hopeless--our hope lies in Jesus. I'll wait on Him, but I need Him to give me the patience to wait. I definitely don't have it in me, only in Him.

So I'll wait on Him.

hungry I come to You
for I know You satisfy
I am empty
but I know Your love does not run dry
and I wait
and I wait
so I wait for You
so I wait for You

I'm falling on my knees
offering all of me
Jesus, You're all this heart is living for

broken I run to You
for Your arms are open wide
I am weary but I know Your touch restores my life
so I'll wait for You
so I'll wait for You

I'm falling on my knees
offering all of me
Jesus, You're all this heart is living for
Oh, I'm falling on my knees
offering all of me
Jesus, You're all this heart is living for

and I wait for you
and I wait for you
and I wait for you
and I wait

I'm falling on my knees
offering all of me
Jesus, You're all this heart is living for
Oh, I'm falling on my knees
offering all of me
Jesus, You're all this heart is living for

hungry I come to you,
for I know You satisfy

("Hungry (Falling On My Knees)" by Kara)

Friday, January 23, 2009

Eating Milk.

video

Thursday, January 22, 2009

It's just "that" age...

I am around children of all ages every day. From age 2 to age 15, they are an active part of my life every day, and it is amazing how different kids of every age are. Obviously, we all know that 2-year-olds are crazy, but really, if you ask me, children of all ages are insane--especially when the hormones kick in.

Clearly, 2-year-olds are crazy. Enough said.

8-year-olds live in a dream world; anything is real, and nothing is real. Anything is real because they really believe that anything can happen and anything they can imagine can exist. And nothing is real because the real world means absolutely nothing to them; school is just something they do because they are supposed to, and life is just an cycle of school/chores/play, school/chores/play.

The other day I forgot my siblings' piano books and dance bags when I picked them up from school, so my mom dropped them off in the neighbors' driveway so that I could pick them up quickly and then speed off to piano lessons. I pulled the car up to the bags so that Rebekah's door was perfectly lined up with them. Rebekah is 8. I told her to hurry, get out, and put the bags in the car. She jumped out of the car and proceeded to run all the way around the car, intending to wind up by the bags. Precisely where she started. I was absolutely flabbergasted. I mean, I was just stunned. That child does not live in the real world.

9. Boys are different from girls, but nonetheless they are insane. They must have the attention of the whole room at all times, and theywill stop at no lengths to acquire it. Not only that, but they have virtually no shame. They will not hesitate to regale you with tales of their privates.

10-12 year olds are also out of their minds. Your typical 11- or 12-year-old is a hormonal wreck. And when I say wreck I mean WRECK. One minute they are snotty, literally the next minute they are a pure joy, and a minute later they are moping in a corner. Insane.

I'm not even going to touch the teenage years because we all know what those are like. If you think about it, it is truly a miracle that anyone ever makes it through childhood and becomes a complete human. It is an absolute miracle.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

I Stand Corrected

Today at the grocery store, Jack admonished me that I had forgotten to do his breathing treatment this morning. Let me tell you, being reminded of something important like that by a 2-year-old does nothing for the mommy-self-esteem meter. At the same time, I did see the humor...and I'm pretty proud of my smart little guy for remembering! :)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Explanations

Last night at dinner, I asked Fedila and Temima if they knew why they didn't have school yesterday. They didn't know. Now although that seems insane to us, just stop and think about it: how would they know? They have only been in America for a year, and only in school for about 6 months of that year. Apparently their current teacher did not feel the need to inform them of Dr. Martin Luther King's life and legacy, so last night we tried to explain to them why we were celebrating this man.

But then I realized something strange and wonderful. Those two girls with "brown skin" have never known the dark America of the past. They have never really experienced racism at the hands of white people and they know nothing of slavery. Although there are of course many negative things about the way they have grown up, think of how wonderful it is for them not to be burdened with the knowledge of the cruelty of Americans past. Amazing.

Of course ignorance is not bliss and sooner or later they will learn of the horrors of the past, but how wonderful that they will never experience those horrors firsthand. How wonderful that the only America they know is an America that elects a president who has brown skin just like them!

We gave them a brief history of the United States, telling them that a long time ago in America, people were mean to people with brown skin, and that Dr. King fought to change that and make people be nice to people with brown skin. We told them that Dr. King was killed and that we honor him one specific day a year for the work he did to help people with brown skin. They seemed to vaguely understand, and they seemed shocked and hurt by the revelation that people with brown skin were not always treated well. It was an interesting experience.

A New Era

So I am not going to state the obvious about today being a historic day, the beginning of a new era, etc.

I am going to say that I am praying for our new president.
And that with God anything is possible. I believe in miracles.

And that I would feel a whole lot better if this new president didn't vote in favor of leaving babies who survive abortion alone until they die. That bothers me.

But with God all things are possible. So I will continue to pray and support our new president.

Honesty Scraps

Suzy tagged me on her Honesty Scraps blog so now I shall attempt to be interesting. 10 interesting things about me. Here goes!

1. I, like Suzy, am afraid of the tiny pink geckos. I think it is because one jumped out of our pantry at me once. NOT COOL.

2. I have lived in 4 different states, and in 11 different "homes" in my 25 years. 2 houses in Michigan, 1 in Connecticut, and apartment in Virginia, a house in Virginia, 2 different dorms in Texas, 3 apartments in Texas, and 1 house in Texas. Soon, I hope we will make it an even dozen when we finally get our own place in Virginia!

3. I love music; I always have. Even now that mostly all I listen to is Christian music, it is very important to me. In fact, I think that is the most important part of going to church for me, is the corporate worship. Don't get me wrong, I love hearing the pastor preach the Word, but there is something really special about worshiping God through singing at the top of our voices. It can be the most sincere form of "offering," I think.

4. I am socially awkward. Don't get me wrong, I love having friends and hanging out with people, but it has always been pretty difficult for me to make friends. You'd think after all the moving I've done in my life I would have mastered that art, but not so. It's still something I struggle with.

5. I hate lima beans. I love most vegetables, but I cannot and will not eat lima beans. They are disgusting abominations.

6. I started working on a farm when I was 12, and got my first job (at Freshens Yogurt) when I was 14. 6 months later I began working at a restaurant at Wintergreen and I worked there until I was almost 18. Then I worked at Ruby Tuesday until I moved to Texas at age 19. In Texas I worked at the Red River Cafe for a few months, then worked at Mangia Pizza for 3 years. I have paid my dues in the service industry.

7. I found out I was pregnant with Jack 1 month before graduating college. That meant that although I did graduate, I have never held a job in my chosen field of study, English. That used to bother me until I joined the writers' missional community at our church--now I get to use what a learned and the best part is that I get to use it for JESUS!!!!!

8. I have broken 2 bones in my lifetime: my ankle (fell off my bike when I was 7 or 8) and my arm (fell rollerblading when I was 10). The ankle hurt so bad I cannot describe it. My arm didn't hurt that much, and I went several days without even seeing a doctor about it.

9. I have had strep throat 10 times. When I was little, I had it a lot; I think I had it 8 times between ages 6 and 10. Then I had it once when I was 17, and once this past November.

10. The only salad dressing I really like is the Good Seasons Italian kind that you buy in packets and mix yourself. That stuff is sooooooo good!!! I will make myself a salad in the middle of the day, just so I can eat it.

Okay that's that. Pretty boring. Now....Mom and Erin! Your turn!

Monday, January 19, 2009

More than all I want, more than all I need

I have really been struggling with contentment. Ever since we moved to Virginia and moved in with my parents, it has been really easy to slip into self-pity, why-me mode.

Phil. 4:11
"Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am, to be content:"

1 Tim. 6:8
"And having food and clothing, with these we shall be content."

Heb. 13:5
"[Let your] conduct [be] without covetousness; [be] content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, 'I will never leave you nor forsake you.'"

That verse from Hebrews says it all.
No, we do not have our own place.
Yes, we only have one car.
Etc., etc., etc.

But we have Jesus. What else is there?

So that is my fervent prayer these days; I want Jesus to be everything to me. I want to be content with Him and nothing else.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Jackson's First Real Haircut.










Mommy almost cried. For real.
I know.








Wednesday, January 14, 2009

A "Weekend" Getaway

Bo and I just got back from a 2-night stay at my parents' Wintergreen house. It was the first time we have left Jack for an overnighter, and it was really strange! We missed him a lot, but we had a great time.

We decided to go up to the mountain for a few days because I had always wanted to try tubing, and so that Bo and I could go skiing together. Now, I hate skiing--I hate everything about it--but I decided to take one for the team and accompany Bo on the slopes for an hour or two. We also planned to go swimming at the spa and just generally relax.

At first, we had planned to go skiing when we got up there on Monday, for the "Twilight" session, which includes afternoon and night skiing. When I researched prices online, I found that there would not be any night skiing on Monday, so that idea was thrown out immediately. So then I thought maybe we could to tubing for a couple of hours on Monday and just ski on Tuesday....but there was no tubing on Mondays either. So then I thought maybe we could just go and have a leisurely lunch at Blue Mountain Microbrewery, which is on the way out to Wintergreen. I got on their website to research their hours and found out that they are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. Finally we settled on Devil's Backbone Microbrewery, which was actually OPEN!!! Yayyyyyyy.....

So then when we got up to the Mountain we went right away to buy Bo's lift ticket for Tuesday and to figure out what would be a good time to go tubing. The lift ticket was purchased without a problem...but then we found out that they would not be offering tubing on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday, which were the only days we would be up there. GREAT. A little disappointment ensued, but we decided to make the best of it. Later Monday night we decided to go to dinner at the Edge (where I used to work) and then go for a night time swim at the Wintergarden Spa. Typically, the spa is open until about 10pm, but we decided to call and make sure of their hours. Good thing we did because they decided to close at 7:45 that night. So.....we decided to do the spa first, then dinner.

Tuesday morning we got up and got ready to hit the slopes. The plan was for Bo and me to ski together until lunch time, then have lunch and Bo would go back out on his own (since I hate to ski). So we went through the whole ritual: finding ski pants, hats, mittens/gloves, skis, boots, hand warmers, foot warmers, etc. around the house. Then, we layered some clothing, put our ski boots on, and were ready to roll. Bo loaded up the skis and poles into the car...and then I had to re-do my ski boots. Then we were ready to go. We got in the car, and *click click click* the car wouldn't start. We tried several times and got nothing. Skiing postponed.

We called a local auto shop and they said they could get a tow truck up the mountain in 3 hours. We called Wintergreen and they told us there was a shuttle to the slopes that could pick us up at the end of the road...but that would entail walking to the end of the road in ski boots. Not happening. So Bo put on his tennis shoes and walked down to the shuttle so that he could get a rain check for his lift ticket. When he got back, we relaxed a bit, and then he decided that he would try to start the car again. It worked. Strangely enough, the car started with no problems! Praise God! We called the auto shop and cancelled, then settled in to watch a movie.

Later that afternoon we decided to get out of the house and go get some soup at the Black Bear Cafe. It's a cute little coffee shop near the spa, and they serve great little sandwiches and soups. We pulled up and found a sign on the door saying...you guessed it...that the Black Bear Cafe was closed until further notice.

That really was the last mishap of our vacation, with the exception of the vacuum breaking in the midst of our clean-up time. I have to say though...it wouldn't be a Cobb family vacation without a few mishaps. Or several.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Day 5

Well, Day 4 ended with the oft-spoken-of "bang" of lore; it was super fun. Today everything has been going surprisingly well; we will see what happens as the day progresses, but the good news is that we have already passed lunch time and everyone is still alive and as yet unharmed (at least no blood). We are looking at fewer than 6 hours until relief comes in the form of Bob and Carrie. I don't know if I'd call it the home stretch yet, but we are at least rounding the bend to the home stretch! :)

Friday, January 9, 2009

Hope this helps...

As I got out of the shower this morning I had the IPod blasting Third Day's "Call My Name" and I realized how blessed we are as Christians to have that very opportunity everyday. I also wondered how many times do we take that for granted? I know I'm guilty of it but I also know that whether I'm suffering, sad, afraid, down, cheerful, thankful, or whatever it's just awesome that Jesus is awaiting my Call with open arms all the time. Have a great day!!!
Bo

Day 4

Okay, the ages of my siblings that I am babysitting are as follows:

15
14
13
9
9
8
8

Now if you had to take a guess at which child would cause the most headaches, which would you guess? Probably one of the 8-year-olds, right?

Wrong.

I don't understand why some people just think they are above the rules. They don't have a single respectful bone in their bodies, and they constantly try to undermine anyone who expresses any kind of authority. It's ridiculous and I am exhausted. Give me the little ones any day over that.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Day 3

As predicted, today has been quite a doozy. I don't have the energy to fully explain at the moment, but although none of it is surprising, it is very frustrating. *Sigh*

I did have MOPS today, which is always a good thing!! Unfortunately I was so tired and distracted the whole time, I don't feel like I fully enjoyed it. Oh well, we have another meeting in 2 weeks! :)

Also, it was our group's turn to bring breakfast. I decided to try a new recipe, and it turned out awesome! It was a hit, and that made me happy. There's only a little left...and that will be reserved for Bo (and me)!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Day 2

So far, Day 2 of my babysitting fun is going much more smoothly. The morning started off pretty easily, with cereal for breakfast! :)

At 10:00, I gathered my coupons and headed for BJ's Wholesale. I think I probably had at least 20 or 30 coupons, and it was a pain in the butt, going from aisle to aisle, searching for the exact product and size I needed in order to get the savings. In fact, the shopping alone took an hour, and checking out took 20-30 min. Did it pay off? Oh yes. My total savings from coupons was $87.73. That's right. 87 dollars and 73 cents. Pretty impressive! I have mad shopping skillz.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Day 1

Today is Day 1 of my parents' Colorado ski trip, and Day 1 of my 5-day babysitting adventure. That's right, I'm in charge of the 7 youngest DeLilles for the next 5 days.

I have done this before, but let me assure you, it never gets old. There is always some new "adventure," which usually comes in the form of steam rising from my ears...it is always a test of patience.

This morning started with someone rattling around in the kitchen. I went down to check it out, only to find out that Nick had decided to "help" by attempting to make pancakes. The only problems were that the batter had the consistency of cement, he was using the wrong burner on the stove, and he was not actually using a griddle, but a cookie sheet.

It's the thought that counts. Mind you, my plan had been to give the kids the danishes that were in the refrigerator for breakfast: quick breakfast, easy clean-up. Unfortunately, Nick foiled that plan. The other problem was that pancakes actually can take quite a while to make when you're cooking for 7 (10 if you count Jack, Bo, and myself). So, I did my best to fix the batter, switched burners, and got out a griddle while the kids ate danishes. We will have pancakes on Thursday.

There were several more small incidents in the hour (yes, literally only an hour) I had the kids this morning, but I will just name my other favorite: Rebekah AND Nick both tried to leave the house in short sleeves with no jacket (Rebekah in a skirt, no less). It is 37 degrees and raining.

This afternoon will bring piano lessons, dance class, and the always-fun homework hour. I can't wait.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

2009 is off to an interesting start...

Would you expect anything less?




Jack's first illness of 2009

Jackson is sick with a really awful cold. He is coughing, he has green snot all over his face 24 hours a day, his eyes are puffy, and his ears hurt. The poor guy is miserable, but he is a trooper. We took him to Patient First this morning, since he hasn't been sleeping due to coughing fits the last few nights. It was his first doctor visit of 2009....I am praying desperately that this winter won't be like last winter...last winter was so peppered with doctor visits that we probably spent half our income on co-pays, medicine, etc. I pray that this year will be different!