Thursday, August 27, 2009

Accountability and Fun…..

Weekly I meet with a couple of ladies for accountability. We encourage one another about staying in the word, prayer, and ask the hard questions like: Have you put anything evil before your eyes this week? Have you been any place you shouldn’t have been? Have you gossiped, lied, etc, etc. Today, I shared with them that the biggest thing I’m dealing with is my mom’s retirement. You know I have counseled people for over 28 years that have had to deal with the issue of retirement. I remember when my Spiritual Dad retired, I got to see my Spiritual Mom ‘really’ practice what she had taught me over the years about how to honor your husband, and submission with a pure heart, etc. That was so much easier before he retired. Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha In fact, I mused many times as I watched her make the adjustment to my Spiritual Dad being home and around all the time. The funniest thing was her frustration with his nibbling between meals habit. I remember her commenting one time that he eats from the time he gets up till he goes to bed! Yes, you guessed it……He never gained a pound. And there you have the root issue! Hah,a,ha,ha

Funny how easy it is to live with each other when one or both of you are at work and only see each other for a few hours in the evening and then go to bed and get up and start the process over the next day. Even the weekends are something you look forward to in regard to spending time together. But all that changes when you are together 24-7.

My mom and I are blessed in that I still go to the office and spend most days. However, we have had our share of adjustments and are still working on it. Let me share a few laughs with you.

The first thing that started happening was the cleaning syndrome. It is almost funny. Women start cleaning. Men start building, remodeling, etc. And the really smart people travel! My Spiritual Mom and Dad do a lot of that.

My mom has cleaned anything that sits still longer than one minute. Her closet, my closets, her drawers, my drawers, her cabinets, my cabinets, etc. In fact, several weeks ago I told her, "just don’t tell me what you’ve cleaned today. If I end up missing something I will deal with it but don’t tell me if you cleaned anything of mine. Then if I don’t miss it I didn’t need it anyway".

Once the inside of the house was cleaned then you got it…we moved to the outside. Shrubs, flower beds, trees, etc. Can we say ‘heat exhaustion’? I finally had to just tell her that I have accepted the fact that one day I may drive off to work and come home and find her dead in the yard. The hard part of this is that last week she decided to dig up a pecan tree trunk outside our screened-in porch. That was last week. Monday night of this week,when I came in from prayer time, she was out there digging and hacking away at that tree trunk. So, Tuesday when we came in from our day of Doctors visits, again she was out there digging and hacking away. Yes, I went out and helped take part in the digging and hacking. Not because I really wanted to dig and hack. But, it was the right thing to do.

After about 30-40 mins of digging and hacking I started thinking maybe I was going to be found dead in the yard! Ha,haha,ha.

Another thing that has happened since my mom retired is ,for some reason we both have this tendency to want to help each other DRIVE! I don’t know how either one of us got to where we were going before she retired!

All and all I must say however, my mom is a gem! Not many mothers and daughters get the opportunity to have the friendship relationship that the two of us share. God is so good to have allowed it during our life time! I’m praying for much more life time with my mom, but this means she will have to retire from digging and hacking or you will find us both dead in the yard!

I told my accountability group that I have found myself praying for a husband since my mom retired because we need someone around to do all this work!

Don’t forget our Middle East trip is just two weeks away. Pray, Pray, Pray!


Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Monday...

Hope this finds everyone having had a good weekend. School is getting back in the swing around here and for many of you it has already started.

My precious niece informed us that this year she was going with the “hippie style” of clothing. To which my mom and I had a quiet chuckle between us. "Miss Stylish of America" going “hippie” yeah, right. My sister took the first round of buying clothes for the school year. Best we can figure out she got several pairs of jeans and some blouses. However, we never heard the term bell bottom or tie-dyed. Makes you wonder doesn’t it.

This weekend my mom and I are going to visit my niece and Nana gets her shot at buying clothes for "Miss Stylish of America" that is going “hippie”. Personally, I will do what I always do when the two of them shop together, find the nearest coffee shop and a book. I love shopping with them!

Would love to hear some of your back to school moments. It is always so much fun to watch the preparation of it all!

Let’s do remember all our children who are attending public, private, and home school this year and pray for their salvation, spiritual growth, and protection from the influences of this world!

Changing topics, our Middle East trip is around the corner. Please remember us in prayer. We will be packing on the 31st and we need everything to fit in those trunks and make it through to the other side. We still have over 25 missionary women who need to be sponsored so please, if you feel led of the Lord, jump on board and make a donation towards this trip.

I have given the Team that is going to the Middle East our word for the trip. It is "Behold Him!" That is my prayer -- that we will "Behold Him" in every shape, form, and fashion! May you also desire that in your hearts.


Monday, August 10, 2009

"Emotional Kate Gosselin: Why I still wear my ring??"

Kate Gosselin is the reality mom of Kate and Jon plus eight. As I read this headline on the yahoo news page I thought of my own headline for the past 4 weeks...

Hormonal Vickie Arruda: Why I am just glad to get a ring on my swollen hands ...

Ok, so today I made it in to see my oncologist for my six month check up. Praise God I am officially 3 years clear of cancer as of this month. I am also clear of everything else due to my hysterectomy two months ago. This has resulted in what I personally call, "hormonal mania". Translated this means that at random moments in time I become a human sprinkler system. Seriously, if I would just stand up and shake instead of allowing the sweat to saturate my clothing, the grass would be greener on the other side. This also means that no matter what you do, I will be agitated about it. Why? I don't know! Do I have to have an answer for everything! Oh, see what I mean. This also means that I will be hyper sensitive about anything you say about me good or bad. If it's good, I won't believe it and if it's bad, I will be agitated about it. The other night my mom informed me that she felt I had been a little irritable and moody the last couple of weeks. To which I responded, Well, I just don't agree with that! Yes, I was agitated again and in denial. Ha,ha,ha Oh, and let's not for forget the ?tear faucet?. You know what that is. That is Niagara Falls just below your tear duct glands that overflow at random. Recently, someone was concerned about my crying at which point I encouraged them with?Oh, I'm not really crying, my body is but I?m not in on it!? Did I mention denial?

Today, of course my oncologist was not one bit concerned about it all. He said this is a normal response to the hysterectomy. My surgeon also told me the same thing last night over the phone. Because of the type of breast cancer I had I can?t take anything with hormones in it. I'm thinking I have enough already! Anyway, he did start me on something to level me out. Praise God! I?m also praying it shuts down the sprinkler system and Niagara Falls and I return to a peaceable state of being. I must say, the Holy Spirit has been working over time in my life these past four weeks or it would have really been ugly!

Don't forget to be praying for our Middle East trip -- it is less than four weeks away. Wow! Can't believe it! We still have missionary women that need to be sponsored for this trip, so if the Lord so leads you, please be obedient! We at Pure Joy International love you!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Mexico - Lukewarm?

Hello again - Vickie is out of town and asked me to share some of my recent experiences with you. So here goes -

The Jeff Stotts family (that’s mine) spent two consecutive weeks in July on the road. First, we traveled with two other families and two extra teenagers to Reynosa, Mexico to minister at Rio Bravo Ministries Children’s Home. It was hot, hard, exhausting and WONDERFUL! We conducted a Music VBS – Wade accompanied on the guitar, Jeff and I led the Music rotation (singing everything in Spanish with a NE Arkansas twist), Will helped with the youngest group and Melody helped in crafts and teaching the motions to the songs. It was an amazing experience for our family. As we left there I hoped that the Lord would call us there to serve full-time. I just knew He was calling me .

After the long drive home, we had one day to prepare to leave for a family vacation to Gatlinburg. I had many expressions of concern from friends about how we were going to be ready to leave; how I would get the laundry done and packed, etc. I believe it was God’s plan that we be gone two weeks in a row. After the mountaintop experience we had in Mexico, we were sitting in the middle of the gorgeous Smoky Mountains. God’s glory was everywhere. We each spent time with the Lord every morning and shared what He was showing us. Wade was reading a book called “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan. Before you call and scold me for letting him read something with that title, let me share the subtitle, “Overwhelmed by a relentless God”. He read the whole book in one day. (I’m hoping he can count it in his summer reading requirement for Junior English this Fall.) Anyway, he passed it on to me and said, “Mom, you gotta read it”. Well, I started it, still pondering and glowing about Mexico and again, wishing we could just go there and make our lives really count for God. Well, “Crazy Love” is worth the read. But Chapter Four held my attention for many days. Even after we returned from our Gatlinburg vacation, I read and re-read it. “Profile of the Lukewarm” is the title of the chapter. It is 20 pages of “Lukewarm is . . .” with scripture following each one.

Through that reading God has revealed to me that I am willing to move Mexico, or even to move across town to a less desirable neighborhood to minister in His name, but what about where I live right now! What impact have I made for eternity with those who are right here around me? When He showed me that, He prompted me to call my neighbor who has visited our church, and invite her to my “Life Group” (Sunday School Class). You know what – she came! Gloria Dios! (that means Glory to God in NE Arkansas Spanish) There are a few other things I’m feeling led to do in my neighborhood. Please pray for me because I know the good I ought to do and I want to do it – James 4:17 Wendy paraphrase.

“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ ‘This is the first and greatest commandment.” Matthew 22:37-38

“And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” Matthew 22:39

Because of Jesus –
Wendy Stotts