Wednesday, October 1, 2014

I'm Back

Well, hello.

Sometimes I find out that someone has been missing from my virtual world only when they reappear. Honestly, that happens to me in my real life as well sometimes {unfortunately}. Does that ever happen to you? Someone you know shows "back up" at church or in your email inbox and you ask yourself, "Wow, I wonder where they have been?"

Maybe you're asking yourself that question about me? Where has Dana been? She hasn't written on her blog in a looooonnnnnggggg time. 

The truth of the matter is my Dad went to meet Jesus in June '13 and I lost any and all ability to write. The words were gone. The thought of writing something my dear ole Dad wouldn't read and respond to broke my heart. 

My Dad was my first love. He was wise. He laughed with his entire body. He gave strong hugs. He loved greatly. 

And I miss him. 

There are days when I am still overwhelmed with tears and loneliness as I ache to chat with him. I long to hear him laugh again. 

I know I'll see him again in heaven {eternity gives us such hope}. I know he would love to see me still writing. 

And since I have so many ideas swirling around inside my head - I feel compelled to share with you! There have been many changes in our lives since I have written last. 

Be on the lookout for updated pictures {I cannot believe how big my girls are now!}.

Look for articles coming soon on - 

  • Healthy Living - including some fabulous recipes that are based on a whole food diet. Gluten-free. Dairy-free. Egg-free.
  • Essential Oils - Join me as I get started down this exciting adventure with healing naturally.
  • Homeschooling - Yes, I have a 4th grader and a Kindergartner now! It is such a fun and very challenging time in our lives! I am so excited to share schooling ideas and challenges.
  • God-centered living - The most important thing about me is my God and my Savior. I am always thrilled to share God glorifying articles to enrich your thought life. 

Looking forward to hearing from you as well! 

"What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us.
-A.W. Tozer

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Drawing a Conclusion Pt 1

I admit it. I am a documentary addict. I love to learn and it turns out there are many, many documentaries available to watch {and from all different perspectives, so I must put on my thinking cap to separate truth from propaganda}.

I also love books, especially non-fiction books that glorify our great God and encourage my walk along the narrow path.

I am about to draw a conclusion that is disturbing, but at the same time, it is full of hope because I think I see a link. I'm going to introduce each piece of the pie as evidence.

Evidence #1

This past summer, I did a book study through the book, "Six Ways to Keep the Little in Your Girl" by Dannah Gresh. In chapter 8, she is encouraging parents to unplug their kids from electronic devices. She states that the lack of imaginative play eliminates {or decreases drastically} children's self-control. One example is a child's ability to stand still.

Before all the technical gadgets, TVs and gaming devices came along, a child ages 5 and above was able to stand still for an indefinite period of time. Can you imagine that? Can your child stand still for any amount of time? Now that our children are spending hours in front of screens, they have lost the ability to focus and stand still. They cannot self-regulate.

Sound familiar? I'll bet if you are a first grade teacher, you would understand this in a big way!

Evidence #2

Stay tuned...

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

A Time of Reflection, Pt 2

So 20 years ago, I was a High School senior dreaming of what I would be when I grew up and preparing to start tackling those dreams.

I pointed out in the previous post that, even though I would have told you that I was a Christian, I was not walking with the Lord at all. Mistake #1.

Fast forward 10 years. I am married {to an unbeliever - mistake #2}. After several months of trying, we are finally pregnant! We called everyone we knew to tell them the good news. We even came to an agreement on a name for the baby {if it were the boy we were hoping for}.

I had an early ultrasound since it was my first pregnancy. There we found out that we were not in fact pregnant. My body just thought that it was. The technical term is a blighted ovum, which means something went wrong during the fertilization and there was not a baby in the growing fetal sac.

Devastated. My entire world came crashing down. My foundation was built on shifting sand and it just imploded.

It hurt so badly and deeply to even think about, so I began to numb the pain. I escaped reality. I looked for anything or anyone that made life fun and happy, even if it was temporary. My husband was not being supportive or loving {I mean who could love the tornado I had turned into anyway}, so I looked for love in other places.

At the time, one of my best friends was also going through a very difficult emotional situation. We often referred to ourselves as train wrecks. We were out of control friends searching for anything to make us happy. I was a horrible influence on her and she was a horrible influence on me.

But we would have both told you that we were Christians.

10 years ago...

I lost the baby I longed for.

I ruined the marriage I thought would last forever.

I pushed everyone away and hurt anyone who dared get in my way of having fun.

I was on my way to breaking all 10 commandments.

I ran as far away from God as I possibly could.

God was going to show me that it took more than walking an aisle or being dunked in water to be a follower of Christ. I had to lose everything so that I could clearly see the glory and grace of God.

Whoever says “I know him”
but does not keep his commandments is a liar,
and the truth is not in him {1 John 2:4}
Whoever says he is in the light
and hates his brother
is still in darkness. {1 John 2:9}
Do not love the world or the things in the world.
If anyone loves the world,
the love of the Father is not in him. {1 John 2:15}
Ashamed and broken. Hurt and alone. I had broken so many hearts and I cannot even imagine how God was feeling at this point, looking down on the mess I had made of my life. It took a while to get back on the right path to God, but at least I was starting to search again. At least it was becoming very, very obvious that I needed to be back in church.
Hebrews 12 tells us, "My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord, nor be weary when reproved by him. For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives.” 
I was not being punished for my sin - Jesus took care of all that on the cross. I was being disciplined in order that I might seek the Lord. I was being disciplined to save my life.

I am ashamed of my sin, but I am thankful for the Lord's forgiveness and mercy. My life has changed so much in the last 10 years that it is hard to remember who I used to be. Of course, there are ramifications to the sin I committed {mostly emotional scars and temptations for sin} that I will carry for my entire life - but I have found love, forgiveness, grace, mercy and eternal hope in Jesus.

Have you experienced forgiveness through Jesus? Do you know for sure that you will go to heaven when you die? If not, I highly suggest you learn more about Jesus and how to become a genuine Christian.

Do you ever take time to look at all you have been saved from and the person you used to be {the "old man"}? I think remembering who I was makes the salvation I find in Jesus even more sweet.