Friday, June 25, 2010

Muy Impaciente

I tend to be impatient, and I think I don't even realize that I do it. I am a very impatient driver. Even though compared to the world, I am a very slow, safe driver, I hate it when cars go slower than me or pull out in front of me. I mean, I can go that slow, but don't try to go that slow in front of me, NO SIR! I am also super impatient at restaurants. I should be s SecretShopper person because that is how I act. How long did it take the server to come greet us after we were seated? How long did it take for them to take our drink orders? For our food to come up? To give us our check? It's not like I am in a rush. I have just created this awful habit of constantly assessing the server. And usually what happens is I tend to spread my sin around to the table, too. "Really, where is she?" "I am so ready to go?" "I am starving!" And then the whole table is like a brewing pot of impatience. In Jerry Bridges' book he defines impatience as a "strong sense of annoyance at the (usually) unintentional faults and failures of others" (116). I would sure hate it if every time I did something on accident, someone else got impatient with me! What areas of your life do you tend to show impatience?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Inside is what's Important!

Today I was reading, and some thoughts really stood out to me. It's not like I hadn't heard these things before, but a reminder is always nice.

I love chocolate, most kinds I will devour. However, when it comes to chocolate candies filled with something, I become very suspicious. The outside may look beautiful. It may come in a little gold box or have a decorative design, but 9 times out of 10 when I bite into it, I am sorely disappointed. It is usually filled with some sort of strawberry or coconut nastiness. Even though the outside is beautiful, it is the inside that is important.

That is true of believers as well. What are men and women praised for in the Bible? For their internal character, not how they look on the outside. In fact, God often warns us against worrying about what we look like. God wants us to focus on becoming like Christ , on shaping his character into His image.

1 Samuel 16:7 says, "The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."

How much time do we spend on fixing on outward appearance? (hair, makeup, shower, gym, clothes) And how much time do we spend working on becoming more like Christ?

Thoughts to ponder...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Denton Air Show

I have been planning all summer to go to the Denton Air Show. I am not particularly interested in airplanes, but it sounded like something fun and different to do. I am always up for something fun and different!

Gates opened at 10, and it started at 11. I don't know what they were referring to with the pronoun "it," but "it" was definitely not the airplanes flying. We parked and sacrificed 8 bucks each. Well technically, it was only $7.50 each because they ran out of change. I did not feel bad about this at all for two reasons. First, the people who were taking the money were from PointBank. Yes, a bank. They should have lots of change. And secondly, I thought it was over-priced to begin with.

We got to walk around and look at all the different planes. My dad would have super liked this, but he had to work, so I took lots of pictures for him. We got to walk in a military helicopter. It was like the size of a bus and looked like a massive bug. I felt very much like I was on the set of Honey, I Shrunk the Kids. This one guy let me climb into his plane. It was from WWII. I burned my rear end on the skillet-hot seat belt buckle. And the two pictures that Anthony took of me while in the cockpit are not the greatest. One of them is when I was climbing in with my large tookus high in the sky. The other one, because I was wearing a strapless top, makes it look like I am naked in the cockpit. Wonderful... But it was fun to get in the plane. This other dude was charging $5 to get in his plane. I was like, "Um, how 'bout I just get in this here plane for FuREEEEE-E?!"

We found a nice spot right off the runway to watch the show. The grass was like straw, and it was ridiculously hot. Thankfully, there was a nice breeze to cool the stinky sweat running down our backs. Anthony has this really nice chair to sit in. You know, the kind that fits in a bag? I unfortunately do not have one, but I did bring a sheet to sit on. I just pretended I was sitting by the pool getting a tan.

They had some really fun acrobatics to watch, music to listen to, and a commentator. It was a lot of fun. I had never been to an air show before, and I am super glad I went. Alas, the sun was stronger than my will-power to stay, and we left early. I was a little bummed because Anthony said that the closing number was AWESOME. He got a sneak peak the day before from his work, which is right by the airport.

Things I learned and will remember for next year's air show:
1. Buy a chair.
2. Bring that chair.
3. Bring lots of water.
4. Come halfway through the program. The best is always saved for the end.
5. Picket the Air Show Committee to have it when it is not so blazing hot.
The End

Friday, June 18, 2010

Wedding Bells

Last weekend, my best friend, Brittany, and I traveled down to Austin for my good friend Rainee's wedding. I had to leave training early so we could get to Austin in time. (It was a really sacrifice, I know!) I am so glad that Brittany was driving because I hate rush hour traffic. I am always afraid that I am going to run into the person in front of me if I look away for like two seconds. However, just because I am not driving in rush hour, doesn't mean that I am a great person to have in the car during rush hour traffic, especially in the passenger seat. Anthony and Brittany can both attest to that! It isn't that I don't trust their driving ability, because I do, most of the time, but it is just hard for me to have absolutely no control. I close my eyes or put my book in front of my face because, ya know, that if we were in an accident that the book would protect me.

We made it down to my other friend's Courtney's apartment where we would be staying that weekend. No offense to Courtney or her pets, but I found out last weekend that I do not like cats, the way they smell, their hair, their food, their nasty habits. And never, ever, ever will I have a pet in my bedroom with me. This strong feeling towards cats kinda surprises me because usually I am pretty even keeled.

Thursday night we drove way out into the middle of nowhere for the rehearsal dinner. This was an impressive feat. We did not get lost at all. Courtney and Brittany put me in the back seat so that I wouldn't be a paranoid, crazy person. Friday night we went to the wedding in Georgetown. Brittany and I were pretty sure that we would run out of gas and get stranded, but we did find a gas station. The wedding was super fun. I am running out of my enthusiasm to type, so I will have to write more on this latter. Congrats Rainee and Zeke!

Self Control

I am sitting in a very clean living room on a very comfy lazyboy. My sweet, sweet roommate Martha spent all yesterday cleaning our house, and it looks and smells wonderful! I live in a very large house so cleaning the whole house is quite a task. I had a bowl of corn flakes this morning with strawberries. I find it amazing that those little fruit can change the flavor of the whole cereal. Yum!!

Anyway...I just started a new chapter in Jerry Bridges' book called "Lack of Self-Control." I guess compared to the other sins that I have read about, this is one that I won't deny I struggle with. Some of this areas of struggle are pretty personal, so I won't post them on here, but I did want to share some of his insight with you this morning.

First off, what is self-control? I have always defined this as saying "no" to something I don't need. Bridges defines it as "prudent control of one's desires, cravings, impulses, emotions, and passions." It is not uncommon for unbelievers to exercise self-control in a few areas of their lives, but as a believer, we are to have self-control in all areas of our life. How do we get to that point? By continually meditating on the words of God and through prayer.

Rabbit trail here: For a long time I would not pray for things (changes in my behavior) because I did not want to be change even though I knew I was in sin. Within the last couple years, I have realized that I can ask God to give me the DESIRE to want to change. Knowing that really changed how I viewed my relationship with God. Instead of knowing that I needed to change, but didn't want to and backing away from God, now I know I need to change, even though I don't want to change, I crawl closer to God, and say, "Give me the desire to change from this sin because in all honesty, I like this sin I am in." This was such an "ah ha" moment for me. I didn't feel like I had to fake it for the one person who knew how I was feeling anyway. Soooo liberating!!

Back on track: Even if the area that we are lacking self-control in is a small area, it can greatly weaken our resolve in other more important areas. Self-control can't just cover certain areas of our life; it needs to be consistent throughout.

I am going to get up and go to the gym and exercise my self-control, instead of being lazy all day. I am getting back on track to run my 5k in August.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Selfish Part 2

Good Morning world!
I just finished the chapter on selfishness in Jerry Bridges' book Respectable Sins. He showed me two more areas where I can strive to be less selfish. The first area is with money. I am a complete money hoard--I dislike spending my money. I don't have a problem spending someone else's money, just not mine. Despite my personal preference, we are commanded to give.

The Lord has given me a very compassionate heart for those in need. I often am in tears when I see a homeless person or pass by the place where all the day-laborers stand waiting for work. It is great that I have compassion, but I need to put that compassion to work. Romans 12:15 says, "If anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him???"

The last area where selfishness is be manifested is in the trait of inconsiderateness. Bridges had a lot of good points, but I wanted to share the one that applies to what has been on my mind lately...marriage:) Selfishness can be found in marriages where each spouse expects the other to meet his or her needs, instead of thinking how they can serve each other. Anthony is such a great, selfless servant. He is constantly thinking about what I need. Last week, he knew my messy car was stressing me out, so while i was away in Austin, he went and had it cleaned. Wow, great guy, right?? I know! Not only does he know my tangible needs, he understands my emotional needs. For example, when I am hanging out over at Anthony's place and it is time to go, he knows my reaction. I tend to get all worked up because I don't want to go home. And then I start panicking because I have to find all my stuff that I have strewn all over his apartment. Bah! It is a big, stupid ordeal for me. He knows that though, and he goes and gets all my stuff for me, so that I will be ready to go. Could I do those things? Yes, of course. But he is going out of his way to meet my needs.
An unselfish person is always balancing his or her needs and concerns with the needs and concern of others. That is what I am striving for.

Monday, June 14, 2010

God created my personality and my body

I write this morning with a heavy heart as I contemplate the things the Lord has shown me this morning. This burden is from the fact that I know what I am supposed to do, and yet I do not do it. I am being stubborn and sinful. All I can do is ask the Lord to trust that His ways are the best ways. Regardless, I did want to share what I am reading in hopes that it might encourage and convict others.

I delved back into Calm my Anxious Heart this morning. After reading Psalm 139, the author points out some great things that I had not thought about before. In verse 13 the psalmist says, "For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb." The author continues to explain that in Hebrew the words "inmost being" represent our desires and longings, essentially our personality. Wow! The Creator of the universe thought about me, and not just my physical form, but my emotional identity, as well.

Then as I continued reading, I got into the sticky goo. In verse 15 the psalmist says, " My frame was not hidden from Thee, when I was made in secret, and skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth." The author says it really well, so I will just quote from her, "In Hebrew, the word translated wrought means 'embroidered.' Although no one else could see you, God saw every detail of the formation of your body. As a weaver intricately embroiders colors together to create a beautiful pattern, God knit together your veins, muscles, nerves, and every curve and indentation that is uniquely yours. What tapestry can begin to equal the human fabric?"

If I was to make a list of all the things I liked about my body, it would be a very small list. I could go on and on about the things that disgust me about my body. Unfortunately, this is often a mental habit of mine when I stand in front of the mirror. There are just so many things that, according to the supermodel society we live it, are wrong.

The only way this sinful thought process is going to change is with God's help and conviction. That's all I can ask for this morning.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Frodo and his search for lost ring

Wow! I have a had a whirlwind of a few days, but I love to stay busy, so that has been wonderful!!

I wanted to share a story of how God shows himself in the small, seemingly insignificant things of our lives. Last week as I was perusing Facebook, I saw this on someone's status:

My yard desperately needed to be mowed, and I could not find the business card for the guy who I had last hired to do the job. I just prayed that God would help me find that card today as I cleaned and organized. As I was sitting eating lunch, the doorbell rang. It was the yard man. He just dropped by... to see if my yard needed to be mowed! God is good!

And then this last week, my mom told me about their camping trip. My parents and sister were planning on meeting my brother and sister-in-law and sweet baby Lucy in Oklahoma to camp for a few days. Eric called right after my parents had left saying that they were having car troubles. My parents decided to just meet Eric in Tyler and camp at the state park there. Prior to leaving, my parents debated about whether to take the second seat out of the suburban and cram all the camping stuff in there or to take the trailer. They opted for the trailer, which seemed to be an insignificant decision at the time, but later allowed them to fit all of Eric and Sheryl's stuff in the trailer, so they could go camping. If they had just crammed it into the back of the car, there would not have been enough room for their stuff.

My mom is so great about recognizing these situations as an answer to prayer or God looking out for us. Today, I had the opportunity to experience God's grace as well. Thankfully, God gave me the foresight and sensitivity to realize that this situation was a time to put my faith into action.

Last night Anthony could not find his UNT alumni ring when he left my house. (This ring cost a lot of money, Anthony loves it, and it symbolizes all the hard work he put into school.) We assumed it was somewhere at his house, but when he got back home, he could not find it anywhere. I am very familiar with the feelings that follows after losing or thinking I lost something of importance. Panic, frustration, anger. As I was telling Anthony different options of where to look and to not freak out, I was also praying. I was praying that the Lord would give us wisdom where to look, peace so Anthony would not panic, and trust that God knew what was best in this situation. After much looking, Anthony did not find the ring last night. To be honest, I expected Anthony to be in a horrible mood this morning at church, but he wasn't. He had also said that he had prayed about finding the ring as well. (A man who puts his faith is in action is so attractive!)

Sometimes it seems like such a trite thing to ask, "Did you pray about?" My mom always asked me that while I was growing up, even now. I used to get frustrated thinking that well, God already knew about my problem or that it is such a small problem, I just need to figure it out myself. Shocker, Angela, God does know about all my problems, and, even though they may seem insignificant to me, He concerns Himself with my desires, needs, and wants. The thing He wants from me is to see that I trust Him. Completely. Even in the small things. He wants to know that I am humble enough to give Him all of my problems. Sometimes I wait to pray until I feel like it is the last option available. Wrong, wrong, wrong. It should be our first move, always.

Right after Anthony got home from church, he found his ring. It had slid down into the back of the couch. Right when he told me, I stopped what I was doing and thanked God for showing us grace and wisdom in that circumstance.

I have always wanted to have one of those stories of how God answered my prayer in such a tangible way. I am sure my life is full of them. I have just been too busy looking for my own solutions instead of searching out the Lord. Anthony did not find the ring because of our good detective skills, or exhaustive searching, or remembering where it fell out of his pocket. Even if we hadn't prayed, we would have probably found the ring. The only thing that would have been different is that God wouldn't be getting the glory, and we would probably have sinned a lot (worry, frustration, anger).

Thank you, Lord, for pointing us to you and reminding me how real you are, even in the small things.

Matthew 6:25-27 "For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more important than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor do they gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?"

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Short and Sweet

I have training this morning, boooo, but it is with my friends Michelle and Jennifer, so that will make the day go by much quicker. And then tomorrow, Brittany comes in town!!! I digress...

This morning I read about how one can be selfish with their time. This can happen when someone either unduly imposes on someone else or by guarding one's personal time. I would like to think that I don't impose on people, but I am sure I do. I take that back. I do impose on Anthony. I don't have to work this summer, but he does. Sometimes I guilt trip him into hanging out with me super late simply because I have nothing to do, ignoring the fact that he has to get up the next morning and work. I only do this because I love hanging out with him, but it is selfish.

I can also be selfish with my time. If you know me at all, you know I love to take naps. And not just wimpy 30 minute naps. My naps are only considered good naps if they are two hours. Sometimes I can place more importance on my nap time than hanging out with my roommates or running important errands.

This is hard to look at myself and say, "Angela, you are a really selfish person." BUT how great is it that God is so gracious to show me my sins and allow me to work on them????

Off to the wonderful world of training. I am bringing my Sudoku with me:))))

Tuesday, June 8, 2010


Watching The Bachelorrette with other people is so much fun! I get to feel like a little psychologist, analyzing everyone's feelings and motivations. So, here is my take on last night's episode. I DO NOT understand why everyone is picking on Justin. What has he done to incur their wrath? I think a lot of the guys are really insecure, so they just gang up on whoever is being picked on. I don't understand why they all thought it was unfair of him to go to Ali's house. They could have gone over there just as easily. And Ali is such an idiot!! Bah!! Really, do you think Justin came back to the house and blabbed to everyone about what he just did? If he did, then yes, that would mean that he is there just for attention. Now, thanks to Ali and blabbermouth Roberto, the whole house knows.

Compared to episodes of The Bachelor the guy contestants are by far the bigger whiners, gossipers, and drama queens. Frank and Weatherman are both whiners. *Weatherman's music video scene and him asking Ali to go somewhere else to have a "real first kiss" were the funniest, most awkward moments of the night. And why, o why, is Craig still around? What does he have to really offer? Hunter got sent home because he wouldn't make out with Ali in the hot tub, which, according to her, is the only thing hot tubs can be used for. I think Chris from Cape Cod is still a really great guy, and I love the outtake with him and John trying to catch the mouse. I used to like Jesse, but he wore a jeans suit to the rose ceremony. Way to get dressed up, dude!
Next week, I think that mullet dude goes home. I don't think that I have heard him speak at all. And Weatherman goes home. That would be kinda sad because he does create so many awkward moments to laugh at. I still like Justin, Chris, and Ali likes Roberto. Until next week:)

"Bobby, share your toys with Billy"

I have been reading this book with my mentor from church for several months now. Each chapter focuses on a different sin that is often times not even considered a sin by the world or by many Christians. Just because I am not aware of it not being a sin, doesn't make it any less of a sin. It is so easy for me to find the sin in others, but this book has really helped open my eyes to the sins that I am committing that I didn't really consider as sin.

For example, the chapter I started today is talking about selfishness. I see this with my third graders A LOT. "I want to be first in line. I want to hold that. That was my idea. Blah, blah, blah." As we grow up, we learn that selfishness is not socially smiled upon, so we learn to mask it in different ways. I can definitely identify with the first way that Jerry Bridges mentions selfishness and that is in regard to our interests. I wonder how many times I have finished a conversation with someone, and they are like, "Geez, could they talk about themselves anymore???" I did this last week with my roommates. We were talking, or should I say, I was talking about all these different things that I had happened to me that day. And they were funny stories, too! And then, "Oh, it's time for bed." I had just monopolized the entire conversation.

Bridges points out that the reason this is a sin issue is because it is a symptom of self-centeredness. I need to cultivate a sensitivity to allow the other person to discuss things of interest to them. What a great thing to put into practice!

Monday, June 7, 2010

My Summer TV

So, I recently started watching Lost. Recently, as in yesterday. Anthony started watching it a last week ago, and I refused to watch it because well, it is about this group of people who get lost on this island and then they get rescued and then they go back to being lost on the island. How ridiculous is that? Very...or so I thought. For a very ridiculous show, it has a had a very interesting beginning episodes. I will keep you updated on my Lost status.

Another show that I am watching is The Bachelorette, *said with an embarrassed look on my face.* I am not embarrassed that I am watching it, I am just embarrassed because after the last season, I swore of the show. But I love the drama. I love that the drama is in their life and not in mine. And I know this sounds stupid, but I like "getting to know" the contestants and playing matchmaker.
Last year I read the spoilers. First time ever and last time! Way to ruin the show! Even though I read them, I was like, "No, that can't be right. It says he chooses Vienna." I was wrong and a little hurt. I felt like I knew Jake better than that. We had a history and all. (Meaning: I had watched the season with Jillian and him.)
Some guys I really like are Chris from Cape Cod, Jesse, Justin, and Roberto. Is that too many predictions???? I will narrow down after the show tonight. Oh, and I don't necessarily like Ali that much. She was kinda a jerk last season and she is kinda skanky on the show. I wonder what drama will happen this summer...


As you can see, I have not kept up with my blog as often as I would like. However, since I have no obligations this summer, I would like to post once a day.
One goal of mine this summer is to be more diligent with my time in the Word each day. During the school year I often found excuses to neglect this. I have recently started reading Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow. It seems that as a woman I tend to worry more than men. It also seems that society has deemed worry as an acceptable route to show one's concern. If you aren't worrying, you aren't concerned, right? Linda says, "Our anxiety should be used as a springboard to pray specifically. Our part in the process of learning to be content is a heart choice--a choice to pray rather than be anxious. Sadly, many of us reverse this and worry about everything, praying only as a last resort!" Unfortunately, I know that this last statement has been true of me. I am asking the Lord specifically to help me remember to go to Him first before trying to solve all my problems on my own. Sounds like a simple task, but that dang ole human nature has a way of creeping up on me.
The verse that I am committing to memory this week is Philippians 4:6. "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God." God doesn't really give us an option to worry. We are commanded not to do it. I was reminded of this a lot this last year. At the beginning of the year I was concerned about my job performance and about what other coworkers were saying about me. I also remember worrying about the my kids' scores on the TAKs test. Now remember this was after their test was taken and turned in. Really?!?!? Was my worrying going to alter the scores of the test? It sounds so silly to worry about things that we have absolutely no control over, but we do that so often. This verse was such a great reminder that God has given us another option besides worry. He tells us to give it over to Him. It sounds a lot more logical to give all my concerns to someone who can actually handle it. In hindsight, I sometimes just want to smack myself on the head and say, "DUH!"