Thursday, April 28, 2011

"Living in Oregon"

So technically, I am not a true Oregonian, as I live 10 minutes north of the border. But growing up in the "Portlandia" metro area, this FB post hit home. Had to share, it was too true! Perfect timing, for my hideous mood due to the rain was overcoming my determination to be cheerful. Another friend posted- "Only in the Northwest would you see someone jogging with a shower cap on." Bahahahaha! Thanks to laughter, I suppose I can tolerate a few more weeks of miserable rain.


If someone in a Home Depot store offers you assistance and they don't work there, you live in Oregon.

If you've worn shorts, sandals and a parka at the same time, you live in Oregon.

If you've had a lengthy telephone conversation with someone who dialed the wrong number, you live in Oregon.

If you measure distance in hours, you live in Oregon.

If you know several people who have hit a deer more than once, you live in Oregon.

If you have switched from 'heat' to 'A/C' and back again in the same day, you live in Oregon.

If you install security lights on your house and garage but leave both doors unlocked, you live in Oregon.

If you can drive 75 mph through 2 feet of snow during a raging blizzard without flinching, you live in Central, Southern or Eastern Oregon.

If you design your kid's Halloween costume to fit over a 2 layers of clothes or under a raincoat, you live in Oregon.

If driving is better in the winter because the potholes are filled with snow and ice, you live in Oregon.

If you know all 4 seasons: almost winter, winter, still winter, and road construction, you live in Oregon.

If you feel guilty throwing aluminum cans or paper in the trash, you live in Oregon.

If you know more than 10 ways to order coffee, you live in Oregon.

If you know more people who own boats than air conditioners, you live in Oregon.

If you stand on a deserted corner in the rain waiting for the "Walk" signal, you live in Oregon. (BAHAHAHAHAHA! You KNOW you've done this, fellow Portlanders! Jay-walking is illegal!)

If you consider that if it has no snow or has not recently erupted, it is not a real mountain, you live in Oregon.

If you can taste the difference between Starbucks, Seattle's Best, and Dutch Bros, you live in Oregon.

If you know the difference between Chinook, Coho and Sockeye salmon, you live in Oregon.

If you know how to pronounce Sequim, Puyallup, Clatskanie, Issaquah, Oregon, Umpqua, Yakima and Willamette, you live in Oregon.

If you consider swimming an indoor sport, you live in Oregon.

If you know that Boring is a city and not just a feeling, you live in Oregon.

If you can tell the difference between Japanese, Chinese and Thai food, you live in Oregon.

If you never go camping without waterproof matches and a poncho, you live in Oregon.

If you have actually used your mountain bike on a mountain, you live in Oregon.

If you think people who use umbrellas are either wimps or tourists, you live in Oregon.

If you buy new sunglasses every year, because you cannot find the old ones after such a long time, you live in Oregon.

If you actually understand these jokes you live or have lived in Oregon.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

To be a turtle on a log is a wonderful thing....

Could Friday have been any more beautiful? I love that I was able to adjust the work day and go sit in the sunshine watching the horses graze for awhile. It made me wish I was a turtle...have you ever noticed that the minute the sun comes out, all these turtles you never knew were in a pond suddenly are lined up in rows on every log they can find- just SOAKING up the rays. What a life they lead!

After my "baking time" in the sun I had to resume real life. And to be honest, it was a tough afternoon. Sometimes the fight and the struggle just feels like it is winning and "Why bother" comes to mind.

The greatest thing though, God gets that. He knew I was discouraged and tired and feeling just a little hopeless. And so he gave me Good Friday. When I took a minute to reflect on all that was "good" about this Friday 2000 years ago, suddenly the world really did look brighter. The best thing I heard at the service I was attending comforted my heart so much...praise You, Lord for always being ENOUGH. Oh, how I love you!

"Your service may please God,
Your worship may exalt Him,
Your study can reveal God,
You need never aspire to SATISFY God
because He is completely satisfied in the
work of His Son."

Sunday's Comin'! Woot Woot! The flowers are trying to bloom, the sun is shining, and God is GLORIOUS. It just doesn't get any better...Happy Easter, friend.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Why 87 year olds are cool.

I absolutely love the way a day rolls. It's like what Bilbo Baggins says, "“It’s a dangerous business going out of your door. You step into the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to.” That was exactly what God did for me, and I am so glad.

Not so much swept away, but inspired and encouraged. I have been feeling a bit hopeless praying lately. Mostly because I feel like so many people I pray about are lost causes. Horrible, I know. I so easily get discouraged when I look at situations and try to analyze and plan. I go back to Luke 18:1-8, you know the story of the persistent widow, and remind myself that God is good and just, and hears me...I try to see Jesus saying to me, "(Here's a parable)to show (you)that(you)should always pray and not give up." Luke 18:1 And for the moment, all is well. But then I have to pray for them again...and I feel hopeless.

Well, last Wednesday was a day like this. When I arrived to my sweet 87 year old patient's (Mr. Sweet, let's call him) house to do his wound care, I was very BLAH. Spent my drive to east county praying half-halfheartedly and wondering if I should quit and find a more interesting thing to pray about. Like maybe a new Dodge Ram pickup truck. Got inside and settled my big guy into bed, taking the dressings off his feet and telling him jokes.

What you should know about this gentleman is he was a fighter pilot in his day, and speaks with a wonderful Texan drawl. He also is completely, and pleasantly, demented and really can't carry on a conversation but just points to pics of his family and babbles. Real words, but with no rhyme or reason most of the time. His main phrases are "Why, sure!" and "Easy there". Being effected by dementia and a stroke, I see him struggling to find words to tell me what he wants or needs, or about his family- but he can't form them. So he says one or two words, then lays back and stares at the wall.

This day was different, and it was a total God thing. Here I was, doing the mundane and with a dis-interested heart. Mr. Sweet keeps pulling his foot up (making changing his bandage very difficult) until I stare right into his eyes in exasperation. And he proceeds to open his mouth, and in the clearest, richest old man voice...he starts to sing me "Amazing Grace". Every word of the first 2 verses clear and precise. Oh, Lord- you are GOOD. I bet it was fun to see this "know it all" girl's jaw drop. I couldn't hold the tears as I thanked God for His faithfulness in the light of my unfaithfulness. Seeing Mr. Sweet smile at me and sing of God's Amazing Grace was the best moment I've had with the Lord in weeks. No matter how demented, ill, or impaired Mr. Sweet is- the words that must have meant so much to him in youth are still in there somewhere, and he can still sing God's praises. Even better, he can still minister and encourage a weak sister in Christ. Oh, it was good.

As I listened to Mr. Sweet round the chorus again, he smiled at me and said, "Your turn." Hahahaha! No word finding issues there. Those that have heard me sing probably cringe (no one willingly asks me to sing) but sing I did for the audience of Two. And as big as Mr. Sweet smiled, I know God was smiling bigger. Probably laughing at what a goomba of a daughter He has...and feeling my gratitude that He loves me anyways.

I felt like this moment was God's promise that I would always be able to come back to singing His praise for the grace He has given. There is never a lost cause, or a reason to lose hope- because Jesus is REAL, God is on His throne, and the end is secure. And just for fun, Our God is the kind who will use a demented, stroke effected, 87 year old Texan to take this little girl to Sunday School one last time. <3

(Pictures are just for fun...Spring Break beach trip that was too short but so refreshing. There are a few good things about the Northwest.;)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Cassie's first week!

Oh what fun this little horse is!

Spring Thaw 2011

Just a few days after our excitement over a new baby foal, Jordan and I were off to the Multnomah University campus to ride Mario Karts, Segways, shoot paint balls and ride in a hot air balloon. But that wasn't even the best part! The students and faculty at this particular Bible School had organized an amazing event for high schoolers to learn more about their true "Mission". And it was awesome!

The hot air balloon was grounded due to weather, but great times were had in all the other areas of the campus. In my heart, I absolutely did not want to be there. Having a little filly in a boarding facility that was short on staff, and the one stall cleaner who was around knows nothing about horses, was just slightly terrifying for this Control Country girl. Not to mention with Cassie's neck lump and funny legs, I was extra cautious. But as usual, God knew better than I. Spending these 3 days with our youth was the best! I love laughing with the girls and hearing their stories. I had the opportunity each night to pray for them as they chatted in their sleeping bags, and ask God to shine truth and wisdom into their lives as they navigate the mine fields of high school and beyond.

God was so gracious to me too! He had this event happen 20 minutes from my house, so I could sneak out at 5 am each morning and go check on my little baby horse. He truly gave me the best of both worlds this weekend.

The big theme was focused on the fact that we are ALL on mission right now, not just to live on earth and take up space, but to actually look around ourselves to a world that that needs Jesus. They had Dan Kimball as speaker, Aaron Gillespie as worship leader and even a Stellar Kart concert Saturday night just for fun.

I can't know what each student came away with this weekend, but I can know that God's word never goes out and returns empty. I so hope that the teens walked away realizing how blessed they are to know Jesus...and wanting to share Him with others.

"Jesus went through all the towns and villages, teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom and healing every disease and sickness. When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few. Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” Matthew 9:35-38

11 days old and going strong!

(Minutes old)
What a crazy month we have had! I almost feel like I have been on a roller coaster ride everything has been so fast and furious. Right now- if I could just get right side up, I think I might be alright! We spent the last two weeks of March on "foal" watch, as Jazz mare was showing all the signs of impending labor. Praise the Lord, we had a healthy filly at 10:27 pm on March 29, 2011. We just had one false alarm, and as we hunkered down for another night of sleeping in the barn- Rosie delivered!

(12 hours old)
My biggest concern for my sweet girl is that she had contracted tendons at birth and what appears to be a goiter. The vet thought it might be a blocked salivary gland, but this lump is not painful to the touch, or enlarging in any way. Hypothyroidism also can cause contracted tendons- so either mama was too fat, too long in gestation, or baby really does have an underactive gland. The vet comes out again this week to check her out.

(1 day old)
I was just continually amazed at how fast she is growing. One other thing Dr. Johnson said was her tendons would stretch on their own, with exercise and time. I felt like I saw them straightening by the hour!

(1 week old)
This whole adventure has been stressful, but so worth it. Steve adores the little girl, so it looks like we will keep her. Which is best if she is going to have some soundness challenges, but I am just praying like crazy God works all the kinks out so that Cassie has a healthy future. For a horse, usability is truly the key to preventing neglect and abuse.
I know that I have a big God who cares even about the littlest of His creatures. Lord, just use us and give us wisdom as we navigate this new adventure. Help us, help Cassie.
""Do you give the horse his might?
Do you clothe his neck with a mane?
Do you make him leap like the locust?
His majestic snorting is terrible.
He paws in the valley, and rejoices in his strength;
He goes out to meet the weapons.
He laughs at fear and is not dismayed;
And he does not turn back from the sword.
The quiver rattles against him,
The flashing spear and javelin.
With shaking and rage he races over the ground,
And he does not stand still at the voice of the trumpet.
As often as the trumpet sounds he says, 'Aha!" Job 39:19-25
(Yeah, we are just a little horse crazy around here!)

Ljubljana Stadium Tonight!

Passing this along to all- pray! May tonight be the night YOU rock their WORLD, Lord!! <3

"Tonight the final event of this week happens in the capital city of Ljubljana. In faith we've rented the brand new sports arena. (The owners canceled the European handball finals in order to give us the facility!) As soon as you get this, please be praying that people will come. It's a beautiful day here which tends to keep people in their gardens.

Continue to pray for the Holy Spirit to be resting on Nick Vujicic as he prepares for tonight and for his story to penetrate hearts. Many of the young people connected to our ministry will be attending along with relatives and neighbors. We are anticipating a great work of God!

P.S. We know this verse is out of context, but Jer.39:2 says "in the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month, in the ninth day of the month, the city wall was broken through." We're praying the walls in the hearts of this city will be penetrated TODAY, 4/9/11." The Wynn's- Missionaries to Slovenia

"The LORD reigns, let the earth rejoice; let the many (lands) be glad. Clouds and thick darkness surround Him; righteousness and justice are the foundation of His throne." Psalm 97:1-2