Release Day of Leaving Eden. Felt like Christmas morning!
Mike from MIKESCHAIR on the show today.
“Catch Phrase Morning Cruise Edition with MIKESCHAIR win something that starts with an “M” or there about.” Excellent contest title, don’t ya think?
January 11, 2011 really has nothing to do with this post, other than the fact that this entry is happening on this date. I just liked writing 1.11.11 and will never have the opportunity to do that ever again. Well, except for 11.11.11. And then it’ll be like another 100 years.
One of my most treasured possessions is my NIV/Message parallel bible. I absolutely love this thing! I love having both translations side by side. In the last year, I’ve really come to enjoy the New Living Translation best and I would love to have a NLT/Message parallel bible, but I don’t know if they make one. And I digress again….
I read this scripture tonight:
1 John 4:19.
We, though, are going to love—
love and be loved.
First we were loved.
Now we love.
He loved us first.
Let it be said of us, though, that above everything….we loved.
We love because He first loved us.
Simple enough. Heard it all my life. Get it. Strive to do it.
I’d like to hear from some of you this year! Do you have something that you’d like to share with the rest of us? Something inspirational? Encouraging? Or maybe just funny? If so, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, along with a picture. I like pictures! I feel it important to note here … that just because you email me does not mean automatic posting.
I have never been exceptionally photogenic.
In fact, before digital cameras, the old joke used to be “If you want a good picture of Regina, you’d better have three rolls of film!”
The only reason people thought I take good photos is because they only see the good ones. And anyone close to me knows how super critical I am of every photgraph taken of me – and how adamantly I insist they remove most of them from FB immediately.
So it was with trepidation I ventured out with the kids yesterday to try out Shannan’s new camera. Shannan is a camera nut. She loves photography and is quite good. She is constantly snapping photographs, and unlike me, is remarkably photogenic. I told the kids that I would take the photos, and perhaps try to be in a couple, but I was far from enthusiastic.
By now, you have seen the results of our day. The kids are gorgeous, this I knew. As I looked at the photos which contained me, though, I began to realize that they represented far more than a little photo shoot in the park.
Perhaps because I have looked for so long, to no avail, for someone who truly loves me, romantically speaking…with so many disappointments…my life has been a long journey of going overboard trying to stay skinny, trying to stay ever younger looking, and yes, examining every photo so that all that the public saw was exactly what I wanted them to see.
As I studied the photos from yesterday, I saw for the first time,go figure, that I have aged a bit. My hair is thinner, I have crows feet, and I can most certainly not pass for someone in my 20s anymore. I have always secretly dreaded the day my daughter would become a gorgeous young woman, and wondered if I would be jealous of her youth. As vain as it might be, the attached picture never would have made it to these pages without the magic of photoshop before now. It sounds irrational. But I was always striving to be someone…else. Someone younger and cooler and prettier.
But as I looked at the photo, I saw something I never saw before. I saw a woman who is truly, and honestly, happy. For the first time in my adult life, I love me. I love who I have become, I love my little family. And although I regret many choices I have made, I have forgiven myself…and Jesus has forgiven me. For the first time I can remember, I am comfortable being Regina, 44 year old single mom of two. I absolutely love looking the part. It is who I am, and I fought hard to get here.
It wasn’t until I let God show me who I was through His eyes…until I realized how treasured I am in His heart…that I was able to let go of everything and realize how beloved I am. Wrinkles and all. And it feels so good to see myself, at 44, and know I am beautiful because of who He has made me.
Thanks, Regina! I applaud your vulnerability. From someone’s who’s struggling a bit with age (stupid & vain, I know!), I needed to hear this. Without question, the world is much harder on women than men about beauty & age.
Last week, we spent some time just north of Asheville at Windy Gap, a YoungLife camp. We left last Sunday enroute to Macon, Georgia. Breaking up the trip, I had made reservations at a Residence Inn, on Sheridan Avenue. Or was it? When I wrote down the address, I wrote “Sheridan”. So that’s what Pete typed in his Garmin. The street name came up but not a street number. I was sure it was a new hotel and that the road just wasn’t in the GPS yet. Believing that, I put the address in my Sprint Navigation system on my Droid. Same thing. Street name. No street number. Still …. I insisted.
This video was shown during Christmas Eve services last night at my church. Dave, Bill & I narrated…..
“Mary Did You Know” is one of my all time favorite Christmas songs! Here are a few of the lyrics:
Mary, did you know that your Baby Boy has come to make you new?
This Child that you delivered will soon deliver you.
When you kiss your little Baby you’ve kissed the face of God?
Mary, did you know that your Baby Boy is Lord of all creation?
Mary, did you know that your Baby Boy will one day rule the nations?
Did you know that your Baby Boy is heaven’s perfect Lamb?
The sleeping Child you’re holding is the Great I Am.
When I read through these lyrics, I can barely hold back the tears. Could Mary have possibly known? I don’t believe so. I don’t think she had any idea that the child she’d just delivered had been born to deliver her. To deliver us. To die for her. To die for us. To bring her life. To bring us life. No, I don’t believe she had any idea that one day she would see Him hang on a cross to cover her sins. Our sins. No, I believe she was an ordinary young girl who was afraid, confused, and overwhelmed. YET open to being used by God. And when God called, she answered, “Yes.”
“Oh, how my soul praises the Lord.
How my spirit rejoices in God my Savior!
For he took notice of his lowly servant girl,
and from now on all generations will call me blessed.
For the Mighty One is holy,
and he has done great things for me.
He shows mercy from generation to generation
to all who fear him.
His mighty arm has done tremendous things!
He has scattered the proud and haughty ones.
He has brought down princes from their thrones
and exalted the humble.
He has filled the hungry with good things
and sent the rich away with empty hands.
He has helped his servant Israel
and remembered to be merciful.
For he made this promise to our ancestors,
to Abraham and his children forever.”
He came for Mary.
He came for Us.