December 29, 2011

Prayer Pails

I have a new blogging friend. 

Her name is Kristin Sellars, and I found her through Pinterest.

I emailed her and asked permission to "copy" one of her blog posts on here. 

I absolutely fell in love with this idea and wanted to share it with others.

So, here is Kristin's blog, originally posted on Thursday, July 9, 2009.

Prayer Pail
Aaron and I try to be intentional about living out our faith for Mackenzie to see so we can teach her to know and love the Lord and live her life for Him. Lately I have been brainstorming some new, fun ways to implement spiritual disciplines and truths into our day.
And I came up with the Prayer Pail.

The plan is to let each of our kids pick one (or a couple) sticks out of the prayer pail while we are at the dinner table and then let them pray for whatever or whoever is on the stick.

Hopefully it will work out well!

Want to make your own prayer pail?
All you need is:
-large craft sticks
-a bucket (or you can use an empty tin can, flower pot, mason jar...whatever really)
-scrap paper
-double sided tape
Step 1: Cut out a strip of card stock, add the words "Prayer Pail" with stickers or a pen, and attach to the front of your bucket with double sided tape. Feel free to decorate the back as well with some stickers, verses on prayer or anything else you would like!

Step 2: Write the names of friends, family and any other people or things you want to be praying for on the craft sticks and place in your bucket.

Some of the ideas I added:
-The names of Friends and Family
-The Lost (People who don't know Jesus)
-Missionaries we know
-Our Church
-Our Neighbors
-Our City
-Thank Him!
-Praise Him!
-You Choose (they can pick anything they want to pray about)

Step 4: Cut a bunch of ribbon pieces and tie on the handle to spice things up a bit.
Yeah! Your done!

Deuteronomy 6:1-9
1 These are the commands, decrees and laws the LORD your God directed me to teach you to observe in the land that you are crossing the Jordan to possess, 2 so that you, your children and their children after them may fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life. 3 Hear, O Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the LORD, the God of your fathers, promised you.
4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. 5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
Be sure to visit Kristin on her blog:
Or you can grab her button below.
Thank you so much for allowing me to re-post!!

December 28, 2011

Turning Wounds into Gifts

I've kind of come to like this blogging stuff, but I find that I am running out of time to do it!

A while back, I told you that I was reading this book:

I don't usually take so long to get through books, but this one is, well, ordinary (no pun intended).

Just like the title says.

It seems like it is taking forever, but I am learning some valuable lessons!

I was trying to get through a chapter today, and came across a brief section that I want to share with you.

"According to yoga teacher and writer Stephen Cope, every human being is born with a unique gift, a gift that, once discovered, is the doorway to a fulfilled life, to our particular path or calling.  Not surprisingly, the gift requires practice, an enormous investment of time and energy and faith.  But what is surprising, according to Cope, is that our gift is often paired with a wound.  In other words, our strength seems to be born of our suffering, growing and flowering out of our limitations."

I'll wait patiently while you take a minute to read that one more time. . .

After taking some time to think that through, I have come to this conclusion:

That is an honest-to-goodness-profound-truth.

Let me give you some examples, without using names.

Friend #1:  Spent years upon years and who knows how many thousands of dollars trying to have a child.  Waiting and watching.  Desperate and feeling broken, I'm sure.  Wondering why God would allow her to be in this situation.  Yet, with time and energy, and out of a tremendous amount of wounds and suffering, is one of the most dedicated moms that I know.

Friend #2:  Was in a relationship that was slowly destroying her.  And, having come from a rather dysfunctional family anyway, this was just more that she could endure.  The relationship ended, not easily, and the woman was very unsure of what to do with her life.  But God.  In walked the man of her dreams--a Godly man who would love her and together they would move forward in a ministry for others that could only be ordained by God Himself. 

Friend #3:  Got married young in life.  To a man who was abusive to her in many ways.  And she felt she had no way out.  But eventually, she swallowed her pride and left.  And found God along the way.  Of course, nothing is ever that simple, but I don't want to include too many details. . .those things are quite private after all.  But, after finding a Godly man and starting their own family, she is one of the Godliest women I am privileged to know.  Her wounds are her testimony.  And her healing helps to heal others.

Christ tells us in 2 Corinthians 12:10

"Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: 
for when I am weak, then am I strong."

I don't usually do this, but I am asking for anyone who is willing to share, please give an abbreviated version of your testimony in the comments section below. 

How has God taken a weakness or a wound in your life and used it to make you stronger?

I will be sharing my own testimony in my next blog.

December 19, 2011

Happy Birthday, Sweet Princess!

My sweet H turned three on Friday.


She was only born like, yesterday.

I love the way she makes me smile.

I love to hear her laugh.

I cry to think of the journey we took before she arrived.

I shudder to think what might have been.

But God. . .

Happy Birthday, my sweet princess!!

December 6, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Well, it's that time of year again.

Time for the annual Mull family Christmas card.

First, there's the drafting of the letter. . .

Then there are labels to make. . .

Envelopes to address. . .

And stuff. . .

(My little helper elves!)

Then, there is the licking of the envelopes (my least favorite part--yuck!)

And, as with most other tasks, as soon as it's possible. . .

the help moves on to find better things to do!

Merry Christmas!

December 1, 2011

Give Honor Where Honor is Due

Some of you may think today's thoughts are kind of cruel.

Or biased.

Or both.

But sometimes I think things just need to be laid out and told like it is.

Today is one of those days.

I heard last night on the news that Rev. Billy Graham is in the hospital again.

I heard it again this morning on the news and on the radio.

And on my way to work, lost in my own thoughts, I began to think.

It is inevitable that one day, one day, we are going lose Billy Graham to Heaven.  He, just like the rest of us, will see his Saviour face to face someday.

Which got me to thinking.

~Will anyone stand guard at his casket for hours on end so that others can honor and respect him?

~Every year, on the date of his death and on the date of his birth, will there be millions of "sightings" of him, just like there are with Elvis?

~Will they permanently mark the sight of his death and turn it into a historic landmark for all to see like they did in Dallas, Texas for President Kennedy?

~How many flags will be flown at half-mast that day?

~Will we have a national and state holiday in his honor where everyone gets a day off from work and school to celebrate the change that he instilled in the lives of millions of people like we do for Martin Luther King, Jr.?

~How many days will we, as a country, spend in mourning?  I think it is close to thirty days for the Pope.  I wonder how many souls he led to Christ?

~When I turn on my television that afternoon, will it be on EVERY channel, over and over and over again.  CBS, NBC, Fox, CNN, and on and on and on. . .or will I have to tune in to the INSP channel to see what I want to see?

~Every single year, will they show footage of him and his life and the difference that he has made?  They do for the Shuttle survivors, and the 9-11 survivors, and numerous other people of celebrity status.

~Remember Princess Diana?  Were you able to see a normal television show for weeks?  It was all about her. . .her death. . .her presence. . .the way others viewed her.  Think Reverend Graham will have the same respect?

~And Michael Jackson?  Do we really even want to go there?

I could keep rattling off names, one after another, but I think you get the idea of where I am going here.

For some reason, I have this image that, when God finally calls Reverend Graham home, things will happen in exactly the same way things have always happened for him. 



Without a lot of chaos or show.


And, to be honest, that is probably the way he would want it.

But, to me, it just doesn't seem right. . .

Then I think about it this way. . .

I wonder how many crowns we will see Elvis get for having millions upon millions of fans fall at his feet when he simply walked out on stage?

How many people can say, "Thanks be to Michael Jackson and his 'Thriller' video!  I am now walking streets of gold"?

I will NEVER argue the fact that Martin Luther King, Jr. had a role in our history that can be compared to no one else.  I am in awe at his persistence and the effect that he had on people everywhere that he went.  But I wonder, how many people were led to a personal relationship with Jesus Christ to go along with those newfound relationships with people of a different race?

Do you think that when the Beatles were singing "Love Me Do" they were referring to Jesus?

Just saying. . .

There are so many times that life just doesn't seem to work quite right.

Priorities are just way out of sync.

I don't know how the world will choose to remember Reverend Graham when his time comes.

But I know that he will always hold a special place in my heart, and that I want my kids to know of his legacy.  And to know of the effect that JUST ONE PERSON can have when they are truly, totally sold out for God.

I can't wait to track him down in Heaven so I can hear some of his stories. 

Just one more example of how, while we are here, and while we have the chance to influence others, we can't take our money.

Or our possessions.

But we can take our family members.

And our friends.

And our loved ones.

And people we know and care about.

If we do our part.

It is harvest time. . .are you working for God or are you laying idle waiting for the seeds to plant themselves?

Just a thought. . .