Friday, March 30, 2007

He's Here:o)

Little (or maybe I should say big!) Ethan Phillip made his grand debut on Thursday afternoon. His mommy got to 9.9 cm, but Ethan's head wouldn't drop, so after 16 hours of labor, the doctors decided to do a C-section. Ann's in pain, but so happy that Ethan with all his 9 pound 6 ounces is here:o). I quick ran over to the hospital today in between work and helping Tiff pack...

(meeting Ethan for the first time!)

(My brother is one happy daddy!)

(Mr. Chubby-cheeks with lots of hair)

(A very happy Auntie with nephew #6!)

Now all together: "awwwwwwwwwwww...":o)

Thursday, March 29, 2007

It's Kinda Ironic...

I find it rather amusing that just the other post or so I was saying I don't remember seeing the Statue of Liberty and that I really wanted to go. So guess where I was today...

My friend and I discussed on Tuesday going today, but then we didn't think it would work out, so we decided not to go. Yesterday afternoon while walking she brought it up to just go to New York City (her daughters wanted to go shopping there... yeah, about that! All I could see was $$$ and lots of it for buying something in NYC), and I told her yes because I had a great time when we went a couple of years ago. So this morning I was just planning on walking several dozen city blocks all day, but then at the last minute we decided to go see the Statue and Ellis Island! The extra blessing was we got to go to the base of the statue, and there are limited tickets per day for that. My mom remembers climbing the actual statue, but we only got as far as the base of it, and then we had some pretty views of the NYC skyline!

After we were done with Liberty Island, we headed over to Ellis Island. As I read the comments from the immigrants who treasured freedom so highly, I thought to myself that I'm spoiled here in America... I was born in freedom; I didn't have to pursue it.

Once we got back to Jersey City via the ferry, we took the subway into New York City to do a little exploring. The subway stop we got off at was actually the World Trade Center, and we saw the little memorial that was put up in honor of those who gave their lives that day. This picture really caught my attention...

The nice thing my friend and I agreed upon was that we do live in a prime location. It would only take a couple of hours to be in DC, New York City, Phila., Lancaster, and so on. So while most people can't get up and take a day trip like that, we can:o). And it's always a nice treat!

I probably wouldn't make a very good New Yorker. It's always rush, rush, rush, busy, busy, busy... and I would get flat tired out too soon! I mean, where else do you find this many stair cases???

All in all, it was such a pretty day to be spontaneous and go to New York. The weather was not too bad; mostly windy at the statue, but I would rather go now with a little wind, then in the summer with tons of people and muggy heat. What a great day! What sore feet we have:o)

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Nothing At Stake?

Every morning a choice you must make
Should you make time for Bible and prayer;
You may think nothing much is at stake,
God prob'bly wouldn't even meet you there.

Extra sleep you could surely use.
Or time to get some housework done;
Or just maybe you should choose,
To laugh, play, and have some fun.

But you see not the Lord standing near,
Longing to meet you each day;
You do not see that quivering tear
As away from your Saviour you stay.

You'll miss what God has for you
By not taking time for the Lord;
Trials you may go through
To get you back into His Word.

But if you will take time for God,
He will surely meet with you;
Then no matter what path you may trod,
He will walk with you, too.

(This poem was written by a student at EBA and I have her permission to post it here... some good thoughts to ponder.)

Friday, March 23, 2007

The Answers.

I had fun asking the questions... and it looks like some of you had fun answering them! Hopefully this post will fill you in on the *correct* answers and you might find out something about me that you didn't know before... so here goes!

#1 I went to see the Statue of Liberty when I was...

The correct answer is three, although most of you thought it was eight. I've always bemoaned the fact that I've never seen the Statue of Liberty, or at least, remember seeing the Statue of Liberty! So I do have a plan in place to rectify that with a little trip sometime in May to the Big Apple and to Lady Liberty!

#2 I am the happy auntie to...
6 nieces and nephews
7 nieces and nephews
8 nieces and nephews
9 nieces and nephews

While we could be technical about it and say I only have 6 for the time being, I choose to agree with God and see each life as precious and valuable, including two that are waiting to make their grand debuts! Little Ethan's might be as early as this weekend, while Briana has a little bit more to go.

#3 I am the youngest of...
4 children
5 children
6 children
7 children

Again, we could be technical and say I'm the youngest of 5 children, but half-siblings do count for something, right? My oldest (half) brother Jack and my oldest (half) sister Sherrie are pretty special to me, even if they don't think so :o). Filling up the rest of the order are Mary, Tom, Michelle, and Phil. That would be seven, Tiffany, not six;o).

#4 I have moved (how many times?) in my life...

The number was twice, but where Paula got hung up was in the fact I've lived in Bethlehem, Bath, and now Emmaus:o).

#5 How tall am I?
5 foot 1/2
5 foot 1
5 foot 1 1/2
5 foot 2

When asked how tall I am, the emphasis is usually placed on "5 foot 1 AND A HALF!". That half inch is very important to me, as I'm teased enough by my "taller" friends for being short. (And why is it that almost all of my friends are so tall?!?)

#6 My favorite color is...
sky blue
pale violet
velvet green
sun yellow

Hands down, it's blue. My very first post will attest to this fact. A close second favorite would be, of course, pink!

#7 If I was given a free afternoon, I would choose...
talking on the phone
reading a book
taking a drive
watching a movie

If I was given a free afternoon, I would not choose talking on the phone or watching a movie and most of you knew that! But it got a little tricky with the other two options and I think the majority chose reading a book, but alas! My very first choice would be taking a drive, although I should include the words "spring, summer, and fall" in there. When it comes to winter, I would much rather stay at home and read a book rather than drive in the messy weather!

#8 At a party, you will find me...
starting the games off
laughing loudly
wanting to leave early
sitting talking with two or three friends

I almost never want to leave a party (unless I'm sick or extremely tired... and even then I would tough it out!), but you would normally find me sitting in a corner having a cozy chat with a couple of friends. Some of the most thought-provoking conversations have occured during a party! But usually in the end I'll join up with the games and laugh loudly;o).

#9 I am ...
easily bored

Without a doubt, this one wins hands-down. Just today I was given the opportunity to go to Missouri next week with a lady from church and her daughters, but the voice of reason and logic won out (missing work, $$$, a babysitting commitment with two sweet girls in our church, etc). Let me tell ya, I was sorely tempted to say yes! A road trip.... man, that's tough to turn down!

#10 If I could meet a Bible character, he would be...

My Bible hero (outside of Christ) is Paul. Acts has long been my favorite NT book, and it captures a lot of the life of Paul. While going through Bible Institute, Pauline Epistles (1 and 2) stand out to me as some of my favorite classes!

#11 I love to...
plan and organize
read and write
design and decorate
cook and bake

Are you surprised at this answer??? I think I threw a few of you for a loop! The one you can definitely eliminate from the list is design and decorate. I like to decorate but I certainly lack the talents of Rachel and other friends in the designing area, so this is definitely "not me". I do like to cook and bake; however, I was raised as a meat-n-potato girl, so you won't normally find me coming up with culinary delights. So given the choice of planning and organizing or reading and writing, I will, 8 times out of 10, choose planning and organizing. That's not to say that reading and writing won't win out, because I'm pretty routine with reading (about 45 minutes before bed) and I write when I write (as evidenced by the smattering of posts you'll get here and there!). So that's why my friend Michelle loved to give me an unorganized room to work with... she knew my love of organization!

#12 I clean out my room and closet...
every 3 months
every 6 months
every 9 months
every 12 months

I shouldn't have to explain this answer (refer back to #11 if you wonder why!), and I just got done going through my room and closet last week! Paula and I want to have a yard sale come Aprilish-Mayish (right Paula?!?), and so now I'm beginning to gather goodies together! (Just don't walk into our spare room; the one half of the room is covered with "stuff"!)

#13 My favorite books to read are...
Christian fiction
inspirational stories
missionary biographies

My friend gave me a book last Sunday entitled "If I Perish" and I couldn't put it down! I read it in two days and was amazed by this one lady's faith. I plan on doing a post about it soon.

#14 My longest missions trip (to date!) was...
13 days
9 days
15 days
10 days

My South African trip was the longest and the farthest one! Lord willing, my Thailand trip will move into first place for being the longest and farthest. I've started looking at airline tickets and I'm playing around with dates, praying for the right ticket at the right time!

#15 If given a free trip, I would want to go visit...
South Africa

I've told both missionary wives in Chile I would like to visit them next summer, and I've never really had a desire to go to Australia, but Scotland has been burned on my heart since July 1999. At that time, Bro. Jim Males came and preached on 1 Corinthians 16:9 ~"For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries." I have never forgotten that Wednesday night service, and as a result, have always wanted to go to Scotland. Will I get there? If the Lord chooses so.

So there you have it!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

It's All About The Food.

I will be posting the answers from the last post soon, but first, here's another Anne-moment brought to you by (who else?) Anne:o).

So, it's been a couple of weeks (months???) since I did a post on doing stupid things. But there's no need to panic because I am a blonde, a klutz, and a Hammond which means there's no lack of material:o). My latest stint happened Sunday night...

Pastor Hammett finished preaching early (I was home by 7:45... 7:45!!!), which afforded me a quiet rest of the evening. After making a cheese dip (the absolute best! and it only has 3 ingredients too!), I gathered up my Bible, notebook, a book lent to my by a friend, purse, water bottle, chips, and cheese dip and headed for the stairs. Being the ever-conscious conserver of electricity, I turned off all the lights downstairs (except for the stove light) and headed for the stairs, which were also light-less.

As I walked up the stairs carefully balancing everything (including the cheese dip which was very warm and smelled very good!) I was on the 10th step when my slippery church shoes went out from under me and I started to go doooooown the stairs.

All the way.

To the bottom.

I shrieked as I went down, not because I was falling, but because I was afraid of the glass dish of cheese dip falling on my head (priorities here people!). As I stood up at the very bottom of the stairs, I approached the light switch with disappointment since I was sure the cheese dip would be everywhere and I wouldn't get to enjoy it.

So imagine my great delight when I noticed the dish resting peacefully on the second step with almost all the contents in the dish. Yippee! And the three marks on the wall didn't bother me too much as I quickly wiped them up because, after all, the dip was saved! (In case you can't tell, I'm not one of those girls who feels she can't eat more than 2.3 celery sticks).

And that, my friends, is my latest embarrassing story! I'm sure in the not-to-distant-future this story will be overtaken by an even greater and more embarrassing story. Until then, I remain bruised on the left leg and sore from the unexpected trip:o).

Sunday, March 18, 2007

I'm Just Curious...:o)

Create your own Friend Test here

Go ahead and try it!!! All you have to do is answer the questions that I wrote out and select the answer that you think is right. Once you're done, click "submit" and see you results! Thanks to Rachel Marie for the link:o). Have fun!

Monday, March 12, 2007

He Can.

While not trying to take a bloggy-break, that's what I wound up doing:o). I am very tired right now (courtesy of talking with a friend in the church parking lot until 3 AM in the morning.... yeah... anyway:D), so I really don't know how blogging would have fit into this past week anyway;o). But one thing that I did want to post from last Sunday was the Sunday morning service.

Pastor was preaching from Mark 6 about the events of the day the 5,000 men were fed. There were so many gems in this precious passage that it would take me quite a bit of time to share them all with you! So, in true "Anne-style", I'll put down the highlights for me and encourage you to go read the passage:o).
  • When Jesus saw much people (v. 34), He was moved with compassion for the multitude and began to teach them many things.
  • When the disciples saw the multitude, they said to Jesus, "Send them away" (v. 35-36).
  • The disciples didn't ask Jesus, they told Him to send them away. (Why, oh why, do I have the feeling that Peter was at the front of the disciples urging Jesus to send them away?)
  • Jesus told the disciples to sit the men down in an organized way. These disciples did so, even though I'm sure they were wondering why they were seating them in groups of fifty and a hundred (v. 40).
  • Jesus took the five loaves and two fishes and divided it up amongst the disciples. The food didn't multiply until the disciples (by faith!) began to hand out the food to the people (v. 41).
  • The miracle of the loaves was quickly forgotten and not considered because their hearts were hardened (v. 52).

Then this past Sunday the title of the message was "Lesson 1 - Take 2". Pastor preached from the parallel passage in Matthew 14, but this time he approached it a little differently. He talked about the feeding of the 5,000 again and mentioned that as the disciples passed out the food, they were probably thinking, "look at what I'm doing! I'm providing for all these people!" Pastor' point was that the disciples got self-sufficient.


That word resounded in my mind: self-sufficient. As I tried to swallow the pill of conviction over being self-sufficient, my mind drifted in the direction of this upcoming Thailand trip and how God provided two-thirds of the money for me. But then the thought hit me: I've been trying to figure out how I can pay for the rest of this trip, because I mean, God started me out (which was awfully nice of Him!) and now He doesn't need to worry and bother with the rest of the money because, well... I can do it!!! (By the way, that was said tongue-very-firmly-planted-in-cheek!). Whether my need is $5000.00 or just a dollar, I. can't. do. it. on. my. own.

I can't... But He can!

"Wait for God's time to bring it round and He will do it without any heartbreak or disappointment."

~Oswald Chambers~

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Umm, About Me Talking Lord...

Someone, anyone, remind me next time that there is no such thing as an "ehh" week. Please?!? At the tail end of last week, no less then three people asked me how my week was and I replied, "Umm... ok, I suppose. It's not been good or bad, just kinda ehh - in the middle. I'm not sure why it was like that, so I'm really looking forward to next week."


Open mouth, insert foot.

This week has definitely not been an "ehh" week already. I feel like all I've done is spin my wheels as I've tried to climb my way out of a hole that gets deeper and deeper moment by moment. I've had schedules to keep (and break!), classes to teach (and take!), phone calls to answer (and make!), faxes to send (and send again and again...!), projects to finish (and neglect!), notes to write (and receive!), and Bible studies to mail (and to pile up on my desk until it looks like a colorful paper bomb exploded over every inch of desktop!). It's that last one I'm most bothered about because these studies have been sitting in my inbox for almost a week and I finished only a quarter of it tonight just before Visitation. But then I stop to think about the people who I get to minister to through the Bible Studies. It's like having someone come to me and ask about the Gospel and I'm the one who has the privilege to mail the studies back to these seeking souls.

But the thing that really brought the point home to me was when I saw a Bible Study Request come in as a result of this lady viewing the good person test. Here her address was ___________, Indiana which just happens to be the next town over from my brother and sister-in-law. I was encouraged to find out that they are being faithful in witnessing (I am assuming here that this lady got a card from my brother and went to check out the link) and that this lady is interested enough to ask for a Bible Study!

Suddenly my wheels aren't spinning as much. I still go about my work, but not at the frantic, fast-paced speed I was doing just hours before. I realize I can't gauge my state of mind based on the amount of work that does or doesn't get done (which is a lesson my little organized heart needs to learn often), but it needs to be based on what matters: faithfully doing what the Master has asked, no, expects me to do.

After all, it's just reasonable for me to do it. And not surprising, my heart is lighter and my head is happier...
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service."
~Romans 12:1~

Monday, March 5, 2007

Ready For Either.

One of my favorite books is "God Planted 5 Seeds" by Jean Dye Johnson. I had to read this particular book for a Bible Institute class ~ Introduction To Missions. I was captivated immediately as I read through the story of the men who gave their lives in order for the Ayore tribe to get the Gospel. I have numerous books on my shelf giving testimony to the fact that many Christians have blazed the trails before me, and have for some laid down their lives. This inspires and challenges me to push on in my own walk with the Lord so I'm always on the lookout for another missionary book.

Just recently (in fact, for my birthday!), my pastor's wife graciously gave me a copy of the book "Evidence Not Seen" by Darlene Deibler Rose. I've only gotten to chapter two of this delight, but the "Dedication" page of this book stopped me. In fact, I didn't even make it out of the first paragraph... I was so gripped by the simple message:

"An old Roman coin was found on which was a picture of an ox, one of the servants of man. The ox was facing two things, an altar and a plough. The inscription read, 'Ready for either.'"

In reality, I too am faced with the same options. An altar. A plough. Am I ready for either?

The other day I went out to lunch with co-workers and the topic came up as to why so many people dread their 50th birthday. The general consensus was that the realization has sunk in that there isn't much more time to serve the Lord. Perhaps another 10, 20, maybe 30 years.

One of my co-workers wrote on my birthday card last year that if I served the Lord faithfully until I was 70, then that would leave me with 17,155 days. Well one year has passed since she wrote that card, and now I'm down to 16, 790 days.

An altar.

A plough

Am I ready to face either with the remaining days that I have? Will my 16,790 days (maybe more, maybe less) result in giving my all on an altar or faithfully following a plough?

Lord, make me ready for either...

"For the ways of man are before the eyes of the LORD, and he pondereth all his goings."

~ Proverbs 5:21 ~

Saturday, March 3, 2007

A Blurb:o).

Ultimate Blog Party

I've just been meandering around and visiting different places and noticed this on a few blogs so I figured it wouldn't hurt to put up a little blurb about myself:o) I actually started blogging as a result of wanting to comment on a friend's blog, and I've been doing it ever since! I don't think I've ever done an "about me" post, so now is just as good of time as any!

Let's see, I'm a 24-year-old single Christian girl who just celebrated being saved for 9 years! My life revolves around God thankfully. Many times my family wonders at the time I spend at church or doing things related to church, but I think that that's just a natural result of wanting to draw closer to God and be around those who want to follow Him too!

From kindergarten until 8th grade I was in public school, but for my high school career, my parents put me in a Christian school and I'm so glad they did! I graduated in June 2001, and started up with Bible Institute in the fall:o). I worked at the local grocery store for 2 years before calling it quits (as a result of the rock music being played over the speakers) and was jobless for a month before I was asked to work in the church office. I've been doing that ever since, plus working in the very school from which I graduated:o). Most people hate their job, but I find mine very pleasurable and fun. The only thing I miss being able to do is witness to my co-workers:o).

I'm constantly taking trips here or there, and have a strong bent towards mission trips. The next trip God has opened for me will be to Thailand during this summer. He has been most faithful in providing in various ways for this trip, including an unexpected babysitting job tonight!

When I do have spare time, I enjoy taking walks, reading, and scrap booking. I managed to do two of those three things today, as this was a nice day without any major plans (which is quite a feat, let me tell you!).

So there you have it, in a nutshell. Or, maybe I should say in a blog post! I enjoy life so much since it has been given to me by the Creator of Life... each day is a new opportunity to take time to count your blessings and praise the Lord!

Friday, March 2, 2007

Trust Me.

"Trust Me, My Child," God says,
"Trust Me with a fuller abandon than you ever have before.
Trust Me, as minute succeeds minute,
Every day of your life, for as long as you live.
And if you become conscious of anything hindering our relationship,
Do not hurt Me by turning away from Me.
Draw all the closer to Me, come, run to Me.
Allow Me to hide you, to protect you, even from yourself.
Tell Me your deepest cares, your every trouble.
Trust Me to keep My hand upon you.
I will never leave you.
I will shape you, mold you, and perfect you.
Do not fear, O child of My Love, do not fear.
I love you."

~Amy Carmichael~