Friday, June 23, 2006

Sweet Time in the Desert

"How can going to the desert quench your thirst in so many ways???" Jana Miller

This sums up my time in Odessa for these 6 weeks. Thirst quenching.

I have loved it.

Every minute.

West Texas gets criticized sometimes. Even by our own.

I am really sorry for that. It makes me sad and I wish it wouldn't happen.

But for the record and in case my last reminiscent posts haven't clued you in :-), I love this place. And it is my prayer that "springs" will continue to rise up from this desert land.

Springs of Living Water to quench the thirst of those desperate for its reviving power.

Thanks Family and Friends for welcoming us and loving us these six weeks. It has been a sweet blessing.

Thursday, June 22, 2006


The life of a nomad. Sigh.

It is currently 2 AM. The house is silent except for the clock ticking. My husband, sick with tonsilitis, retired several hours ago.

Our time in Odessa is up. The boxes are out. The U-haul awaits.

I have one whole day ahead of me to gather, find, clean, pack, and shut.

My brain spins madly--details, laundry, space. Where will it all go?

So now, I write this blog and try to train my tumbling thoughts into peaceful silence.

Amidst the brouhaha of lists, plans, cases and stuff I need to sit at His feet. Hear His voice. Rest my head on His knee.

And be reminded. Of why we do all this packing and moving around. (pause)

His compelling gift.

Our extreme gratitude for it. Our desire to tell someone else. Our longing, that is His, for all to accept it.

Can packing be that noble? :-)


But He is.

Our "worth it all" King.

Who now calls me to rest for awhile...

Friday, June 16, 2006

Call to Prayer

We received sad news today regarding Richard and Cyndi Chowning missionaries in Benin, West Africa. Cyndi was hit by a moped/motorcycle while in the village, and was thrown against her car. While being treated and stabilized she passed away.

Richard and Cyndi worked in Kenya,East Africa, taught missions at ACU and have served in Benin for the last several years. They are a part of our African missionary heritage and we,as well as all the others who have known them, been encouraged by them or served with them...are deeply feeling this loss.

Please pray for Richard as he makes many hard decisions over the next hours...
Please pray for the missionaries and friends he has in Benin that are ministering to him and serving him during this time...
Pray for Cyndi and Richard's children (they have three) and their grandchildren...
Pray for the churches they minister to in Benin....pray that Cyndi's physical death will bring Glory to her King...
Pray for those you know and the many you don't...who serve on the foreign field...

Mostly, please pray that our Enemy who delights in discouraging will be silenced....and that we will instead be drawn firmly into the comforting embrace of our Hero..where Cyndi also rests now...

I echo my sweet sister Patty..."Maranatha"..."Come Lord Jesus"...

Thank you for praying...

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

R n R

"Recreation and Recovery" :-)

We vacationed in San Antonio with my family last week. It was Seaworld for two days,the Alamo and Riverwalk for one day and a whole lot of good steak, mexican food, and ice cream interspersed throughout.

The kids made MANY great memories.

The adults, now four days later, are mostly recovered from all the fun! :-)

It was really warm (read:stinkin' hot) and we walked alot. Seaworld had great shows and a fun water park. And alot of fish. Big ones that do cool tricks.

After a rather unfortunate experience with Travelodge we landed at a beautiful Holiday Inn with giant rooms and we felt very proud of ourselves for keeping up with my family on the San Antonio freeways that were fraught with construction issues and fast lane changes. We only followed the wrong car once. We were trying to figure out why Wade was headed to Lousiana after a long day at Seaworld but we were dutifully following until a phone call alerted us we were behind the wrong vehicle :-)

It was an adventure capped off at the end with sweet fellowship in San Angelo.

We are left now with the satisfying vacation stories we will repeat for many holidays to come. It's all good!

Sunday, June 11, 2006


It was Day Two of Seaworld.

We had made the steamy hike from the parking lot (if I could only transfer one quarter of that tarmac to Uganda...) and were putting our shoes back on after a run through the water play place--

When I felt someone staring at me.

Oh. My. Goodness.

The shrieks and squeals reverberated through the park!



My Amy and her boys at Seaworld. At the exact same time as me.

Well. It was only fitting.

We survived summer camp, boyfriends, breakups, trials, heartbreak, finals, chorus tours, college commutes, engagements, weddings, marriages, and pregnancies together.

It was hightime we faced Seaworld! :-)

Amazing how things work out isn't it?

My boys LOVED the sharks. Kinley LOVED the Log Ride and the Water Slides. Silas LOVED the squishy ball Jeff bought him in the gift shop.

I LOVED seeing Amy. What a gift.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Taco Villa

Bean b-e-a-n burrito. Nachos--no peppers. Medium coke with a shot of cherry flavor.


I have had so many meals at Taco Villa in my life. I can't even count them. It was the regular for our youth group. If I thought long enough I could even think of what everyone else used to order.

I love to go there.

I shared alot of secrets, dreams, laughs, moments over beans and nacho cheese.

The arched entry ways. The red bricked countertops. The unmistakeable scent of refried beans, nacho cheese and jalapeno peppers.

Crushes, first love, warm summer nights, dollar movies...


It's funny how a place and its scents can take you back.

the Game

In alot of places its just another thing that happens on the weekend. You only go if your kids are actually involved.

And in some places it isn't really very fun. (gasp!)

My first participation was a long time ago. 1970 something.

I remember the lights. The voices around me. The wooden planks we sat on. And the way the black and white looked against the green.

It was pretty impressive. Even to a 5 yr old.

Holding hands. Taking a knee. Prayer. They were in it together.

Young men. Learning how to stand for each other and with each other.

Just kids. Sometimes making mistakes. Sometimes getting it right. But never quitting.

It was (and is) a community gathering.

An event that brings people together.

All cultures have them.

I grew up loving it so much.

In my humble opinion the moment that illustrates all the best of this event took place in Dallas.

The Arlington Game.

We were outsized. We were not expected to succeed.

The odds...the reality...the logic...

All were against us.

But our guys showed up. And we did too. About 22,000 of us.

It was an amazing phenomenon.

The other guys steamrolled our crew. They had it in the bag.

Our young men were tired, beaten, worn down and determined.

34-14 at the end of the third quarter.

34-34 at the end.

We won on penetrations.

It was amazing.

Some folks wonder why the whole town shows up. Why everyone talks about it. Why everyone knows.

Many have evaluated it. A book was written. Opinions abound.

The answer?

Passion? For some.

Love of the game? For most.

Supporting kids? Almost always.

Community? Most definitely.

Black and white against the green.

It is an impressive sight. And still, thirty something years later, it makes my heart pound with excitement.

Something GREAT could happen here. In an unexpected place. In an unexpected way.

Hard work. Determination. Team.

A definitive event for my home culture.

I love it still.

(Go Mojo!)