Monday, December 20, 2010

Dorman Reunion 2010

We do the same things every year. "Traditions", we call them. We are starting the fifth generation coming to be spend time together every year. Kids have been potty trained out there and taught how to bait a hook.

Water basketball has never claimed a life, but come close a few times.

Family pictures are taken/dreaded. This year Lynn was in Christy and Cary Ann's so we decided to take several pictures of her by herself and put her in every family group. The photoshop skills are nothing to marvel at, but seeing her in them cracks me up.

I love having grandkids out there now. I'm hoping they love it and continue the tradition. Just as their parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and great-great-grandmother has done.

Sweet times.

First cousins. We aren't too pretty, but we really like each other.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

'Tis the Season

The other day I remembered the first Christmas I had the kids buy a gift for each other. We lived in Houston. Kayla had just turned five and had forever been asking for a 64 pack of crayons. I thought the other hundred or so crayons we had, although broken and paperless, would suffice because they still colored the same.

That year I took each kid by themselves to go shopping for their siblings. Adam went knowing exactly what he wanted to get Kyle and Kayla, and even if we saw something else later, he never changed his mind. I was trying to remember it right and I'm pretty sure Kyle got Kayla a Miss Piggy toothbrush.

When it came time to open presents that year, the whole atmosphere was different than years before. Instead of running to open their own, they couldn't wait to see the reactions of the ones they bought for.

When Kayla opened up her Miss Piggy toothbrush from Kyle and her 64 pack of crayons from Adam, she jumped up to hug her brothers. I'll never ever forget looking at the boys and seeing them smile. I'll never ever ever forget seeing the tears in Adam's eyes.

Oh, the joy of giving.

There is so much I wish I could give. When you are buying for eleven kids, you have to stretch things well. We just have so much dad gum fun when we are all home, though, that the gifts don't matter so much.

There are some things I couldn't buy but if there was any way possible, I would make happen. I wish I could give Sharon, Janet, Deanne, Ms. Alice, Debbie, Cathey, Myrna, Loma and Aunt Nancy their children back. Some are going through their first Christmas without them, some have survived several. I would give Genevieve her sweet Tony back and Bennie his beloved brother Don. I'd give sisters their brothers back and brothers, their sisters. As I'm typing we just got news that another wife will be burying her husband on Saturday and the Cowboy Church of Mabank will be mourning the loss of their pastor along with her.

I would give several of our unemployed a job. I would give several children their parents back under the same roof. I would give some of the couples I love so much a loving, faithful marriage. I would give the lonely a mate. Or a dog, whichever they prefer. I would bring the soldiers home.

I would give empty arms - a baby.

I'm not supposed to do these things. There is a greater purpose we cannot see with these old human eyes. Natalie Grant sings a song called "Held". Part of it goes like this:

This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and to know
That the promise is that when everything fell
We'd be held.

The promise is not that we won't go through tough times or be given everything our hearts desire; the promise is that we will be held when we do. Held by Hands that will make it all beautiful at some point.

What a gift!

Thank you Father that I can trust You. You are the Giver of good gifts. Thank you for Your hands that hold us when hearts are hurting. Help us recognize how You love us. I'm so grateful for all You have done for me. Thank you for Jesus. Thank you that we get to serve You. And thank You that I haven't heard Christmas Shoes sung once this year. You make my heart smile.


Sunday, December 12, 2010

They Missed Him

The sermon was so good yesterday. Michael preached from Matthew 2, as I'm sure many pastors did. Oh, it was good. It's recorded on our church website under Inspirations.

Jesus had been born in Bethlehem and the wise men were searching for Him. They came asking where the king was born. Old King Herod pulled in the chief priests and scribes - the part of the Jewish race who knew all the prophecies - and they told those wise old men their king was to be born in Bethlehem. They knew it because they read Micah 5:2 - King James Version. Or maybe just some old scrolls, I don't know.

Just a few miles away, their King was toddling around the house.

Even old King Herod believed it to be true. He believed so much he had all the baby boys killed so another king wouldn't live to take his place.

Yet these scholars, these men of the law, MISSED Him. I can't believe they missed Him.

Even now, as I am typing, I'm listening to my Christmas music. Oh Come All Ye Faithful is playing. The other day I was driving home and this song came on and I just felt overwhelmed by the magnificence of Jesus. The invitation to come and adore Him I took seriously. Very seriously. I don't always do that. Parked in my dirt driveway, my head on the steering wheel of the tootsie roll truck, I adored Him. I wept over His graciousness in my life.

Sometimes, just like those religious men of the day I get caught up in the busyness of being religious. I hate it when I do that. I don't want to miss times of worship, wherever they are, because I'm busy getting ready for the next event of ministry. I don't want to miss times when He needs me to be still and listen to Him. And I don't want to miss times of soaking in His amazingness.

I just flat don't want to miss Him.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

If the Lord is the Lord of Them

This family is very dear to me. Robbie and Paula were in Snyder back years ago when I was there. They were our youth ministers and dear friends. Paula and I enjoyed so many of the same things and I was blessed to be a part of the birth of her beautiful daughter Sarah. There was a popular song back then that said, "Friends are friends forever, if the Lord is the Lord of them". So true. Time doesn't change heart connections.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Swimming in Forgetfulness Sea

I woke up about 3:00am the other night and, for the life of me, couldn't go back to sleep. I prayed for everyone I knew, their puppies and goldfish, and before I realized what was happening, I was "remembering". Remembering times of complete disobedience to the Lord.

Don't know how I got there. To that pit of unworthiness. Or should I say, to the pit of feeling the unworthiness. As tears rolled to my pillow, I couldn't imagine why He chose me. Why He keeps choosing me. I'm sure there are a lot of purer vessels out there. Ones who never really messed up much.

There is a scripture in Micah 7 that says "He will again have compassion on us; He will tread our iniquities underfoot. He will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea." It never calls it the sea of forgetfulness, although I've heard it called that many times, but in Isaiah 43 the word says, "I, even, I, am the One Who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake; and I will not remember your sins."

I like to think of it as the sea of forgetfulness.

Not sure why I decided to take a dip that night, swimming where I don't have to swim. He remembers those things no more - why do I go diving to the point of feeling so unworthy for use?

Thank You, Jesus, for choosing to use someone even like me. A girl who deserves nothing of Your grace and mercy. I like to call myself a girl. Okay, that was random. You know how my brain works. I'm so thankful You know me. You know me, and yet, still choose to use me. I'm so amazed by You.