Monday, June 24, 2013

weekend report

It's always so surprising the positive feedback we receive on the weekends that we struggle the most!  We can be totally discouraged and already planning ahead for how to improve next time - and God moves despite us!  That describes this weekend.  New series, all new pre-service slides, new playlist, new stage design pieces added, new video advertising - everything new with a less than satisfactory execution in our opinion - still our work was used by God!  So thankful that His ability to change lives doesn't rest on our shoulders!

I pray you felt God's presence in your services as well!

Our setlist:

As We Pray - Gateway
The Whole Earth - Gateway
Stronger - Hillsong
The Same Love - Baloche
The Only One - Tomlin

Pastoral Prayer - Deering Dyer
Video Announcements: Gateway Church coming for Night of Worship
Message: White/Black Pt. 1 - Senior Pastor Tim Armstrong

Exit Song: As We Pray

To watch our services on line go to

To see what other ministries used in their worship services go to

Have a blessed week!

Sunday, June 23, 2013


My post today is one of thankfulness.

Your faithful reading has put the views on this blog at 100,502.  I have no idea how that is possible, or why - and that is not false humility.  It makes me more thankful than I can ever express that you have continued to read the words that I write.  And it renews my determination to live for Christ.  For only in Him is there worth in anything I spend my days doing or writing about.

I currently have a lot of challenges before me from a work standpoint.  I would suspect that anyone  over 15 years into something needs to take a step back and closely examine the direction and evaluate the excellence of what you've been doing.  I'm willing to do whatever it takes to improve.

Writing has become a powerful friend, a means of expressing myself without audibly verbalizing even though many times I'm shouting from this page.  You hear my shouts, my confessions and my pleading and still you read.

I appreciate you all - I celebrate that we've been together for over 100,000 views of my writings,  and I invite you to journey on with me - with Him.

Thank you my dear friend!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

loving regular

I LOVE just plain old regular stuff.

Regular schedule
Regular eating - anything will do
Regular friends - no thank you celebraties (or those who think they are)
Regular moods - not into moody or those who are not dependable
Regular family time
Regular learning
Regular jokes from friends
Regular challenges - I like to problem solve as long as it doesn't include tantrums
Regular changes - I get bored easily

I feel I have an extraordinary life.

It's funny though, when I ask myself why - what makes it extraordinary?  It's the regular ordinary stuff that does.

The older I get the more satisfied I am with regular.  (don't confuse regular with settling for less then excellent - I highly value and strive for excellence!)

However, when I see the dis-satisfaction all around me with people that appear to be important, rich, constantly seeking attention or notoriety, I realize they actually have nothing.  And in many cases can even be considered foolish based on what they chase.

It's not wonder God values the most insignificant among us as the most significant.  They need Him - they are satisfied with little and praise Him for everything they have.  They are regular and yet extraordinary in His sight.

I am very thankful to be just plain regular!

Monday, June 17, 2013


I just returned from vacation...

We went to Butler Pa amidst the largest gathering of Jeeps in North America.

We packed my Jeep and pulled Ron's.

We drove our Jeeps, slept in our Jeep - we lived in our Jeeps for 4 days.

It was hard work making our beds, tearing them down each morning and moving all of our stuff from a friends truck and back to our Jeep each night, but we had fun and I never realized how many conversations there could be about Jeeps, Jeep parts and Jeep accessories search discussions.

Watching how much my hubby enjoyed talking to everyone and driving his old Jeep around made me very happy as Vern and I tagged along.  I read a lot and ate a lot.

We're home, we're laundered, showered and everything's put away.  It was fun and interesting and good to get away - but very good to be home!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

not praying

My busyness has caused me to neglect intentional prayer recently.  I realized last week that I was feeling disconnected from the Lord.  Shame on me.

Asking for forgiveness from putting anything before Him - I've enjoyed rich closeness since then and find I'm VERY hungry Spiritually.

Soon after this I heard a pastor on the radio speak on, you guessed it, prayer.

He said - "Prayer is not a device to use to get what we want, our will.  But rather to pray over what God's will is.  He already has a plan in place.  When we pray it isn't God that changes what He had intended to do, it's us that changes.  Our prayer should always be motivated out of an understanding of God's Word.  When you study it should drive you to prayer."

I want to be driven by the things of God.

Are you like me - often putting earthly things before Him?  Busyness is far more dangerous than many other sins.  Busyness blinds us to our true priority of putting nothing before our spiritual growth in Him.  Other sin is black and white and has a beginning and end even if deemed more evil than busyness.

And so I'm recommitting to a whole lot of praying!

Join me anyone?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

how critical are you

Part of any job is to evaluate.  At least it is if you care about improving.

I spend quite a bit of time critiquing how our services can be better, how to tighten transitions, how to eliminate anything that distracts from worship.  Unfortunately I find it carries over into everything.

I constantly catch myself making comments about how to improve things around me and it sometimes annoys even me, I can't image how tired those around me are of it.

Is it possible just to accept things as they are?  Can I ever enjoy less then perfect?  Should I ?

In many cases someone who is overly critical is often most critical of the very things that are weaknesses in themselves.  Ouch!

I don't want to be known as someone who is critical.  I'm so thankful for all that I have, for our family, for our jobs, for our ministry.

Are you critical?  Hard to please?

My prayer is that my spirit is one of peace and support and kindness to all those around me...  my prayer is to be like Him.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

what I learned today

Ephesians 5:11 
Take no part in the unfruitful iworks of darkness, but instead jexpose them.

I think this passage gets taken out of context a lot and is sometimes used by Christians as permission to live an exclusive life totally separated from the lost that so desperately need the message of Christ.  

As I read through the daily reading posted on our Crossroads facebook site today, this verse really stuck out to me.

I believe that we must be set apart in our actions, in where we go and what we participate in so that others will not fall into sin that are weaker than we are.  We are to demonstrate what it means to be in a relationship with Christ by how we live everyday.  Otherwise - we look just like the rest of the world and no one sees their need for a Savior.

This Christ-like living has nothing to do with 'earning' our way to heaven, or placing check marks next to lists of rules,  but everything to do with a desire to mature in Christ - to look more and more like Him the older in Him we get.  Much like our earthly children begin to reflect some of our physical looks and habits as they become adults.  (hopefully only picking up the good traits!)

The local church in many cases throughout history created lists of rules and regulations  requiring ridiculous things of their attendees - their followers.  This is how the Pharisees got in so much trouble.  Keeping track of what people did right and wrong - in their eyes.  Many of their laws had absolutely nothing to do with what Christ asks of us.

We are to take part in NO unfruitful work of darkness.

Today I will examine my day - trying to let no unclean - darkness steal even a minute of my thoughts, my actions and my words.  I long to be set-apart so that my life creates a curiosity in people around me that can be satisfied only by coming to know my Lord...

Monday, June 3, 2013


Last week a project I've been involved with since February came to fruition and it was magnificent to be a part of it!

Robert Wesner of Neos Dance Theatre had choreographed dance for Akron University last year using music from The La De Les - the band my son-in-law and daughter were part of.  Ever since then Robert and I had talked about creating a 'live' show using their music and so we did!

Robert got permission to clean out the old Eagles Lodge downtown Mansfield so that we could us the old upstairs great room - with balconies at each end for the performance.   He and his dancers and friends worked extremely hard to clear out and move out all the unused tools, architectural treasures and pieces and parts that had collected over many, many years of vacancy.  We helped him clean when we could.  With the building cleared out chairs were brought in and plans were made to fill the lower floors with artists and art displays.

We designed the show to visually and audibly demonstrate the relationship between many different forms of art - music, dance, physical art, beautifully displayed food and various sounds.  Thus the name - Symbiosis -
  1. Interaction between two different organisms living in close physical association, typically to the advantage of both.
We further visually supported the title by projecting cymatic images on the walls.
Cymatics -
is the study of visible sound and vibration

If you click on this link you can watch how sound affects sand - it's a fascinating study!  Cymatics

It was so creatively satisfying to participate with so many professionals in putting this production together - I only hope I have a chance again to work with all of them.  And it was such an opportunity for our Crossroads Artist Group - several of our artists worked live and displayed their art while the rest of our group served as volunteers.  What a great opportunity for our little group to be involved out in our community!  So thankful!

And of course my favorite part - listening to the amazing talents of our kids perform as well as watching our son create an amazing video of the evening...sad that it's over!

Take a look at some of the sights and sounds of the evening...

Loved the big empty room the Crossroads girls worked in

Bev and Jen - 2 of our very talented Crossroads artists

Carrie - beautiful work!

Hannah working on the floor!
Carrie's pottery - beautiful!

Even The La De Les' merch was creative

the room was amazing

The bow

Jackie Crawfis' creation - another piece of art!

weekend report

Austin and Jocelyn leading us to the thrown!

3 of my favorite friends!

We had a great weekend lead by a powerful worship team and guest pastor Jacob Ley from The Chapel in Akron Ohio!

It was so good to be at Crossroads with all my brothers and sisters this weekend!

Our setlist:

Your Great Name
Forever Reign
Here For You
Our God
Be Lifted Higher
Message:  Grow Pt. 3 - Jacob Ley
Exit Song:  Our God

To watch our services on line go to

To see what other ministries used in their weekend service go to