Saturday, February 20, 2010

And the winner is ...

I think I have as much fun hosting giveaways as you do, and always wish I could pick each one of you as the winner! Thanks to all of you who stopped by and left comments! Thanks to my daughter for picking the winning number, and to Emma (augustlily) for winning this months prize!

Please come back the beginning of March as I'm planning a month-long blog party with lots of giveaways in celebration of Blood Ransom's official release!

On another note, we all know that things don't always go exactly as we plan. Today, we headed for the beach, taking Saturday off instead of our typical Monday so we could take one of the kids' friends with us. As long as it's not summer holiday in South Africa (December) the beach we go to is typically all ours. In fact, I think we all view it as our private beach. Our last day off, I stayed home writing while Scott took the kids to the beach, so I was really looking forward to some downtime, reading under one of the umbrellas around the small pool area that overlooks the ocean, and enjoying the quiet while the kids played on the beach nearby.

Not today.

When we arrived, there was a large group around the pool shooting a music video. (We're not talking MTV quality here, but a music video nevertheless.) Not only was the music blasting while they danced around the pool, they shot a variety of scenes, all the time playing the same song over and over and over... (You get the picture)

We went ahead and ate lunch (which is opened up to the pool area) and the kids played on the sand for awhile, but since all the outside covered area was taken--the heat index was about 95 today--we finally decided we'd heard the song one time too many and decided to leave early.

I'll admit, I wasn't to thrilled to spend my day off trying to relax beside a rapping, pool party, and felt my frustration began to rise. On the way home, though, I started thinking about how we're all faced with hardships--some small and some not so small--and that it's hard sometimes to rise above the circumstances around us. The bottom line is that in the big scope of things, a roaring, rap party that messes with my day off is trivial compared to some of the things life can throw our way. Right now, I'm watching friends struggle with serious illnesses and job losses, and I'm certain they'd do anything right now to be sitting beside a rockin' party in exchange for what they are going through.

But isn't it often the small things that throw us off course the most? Something that irritates us, like a sliver of glass, ends up putting us in a foul mood that we in turn end up taking our irritations out on spouses, children, and friends and can easily spiral out of control.

I think that's why Paul encouraged us to keep our minds set on things above. To constantly keep our minds tuned into what is good and holy and worthwhile so we don't let the minor irritations of life tear us down.

So whether your facing a mountain or just a tiny mole hill today, let's encourage each other to set our hearts fully on Christ and things above. Our life is now hidden with Christ. How glorious! In the midst of frustration and pain, there is one thing that is truly wonderful. We are hidden, enclosed with Christ, and kept safe. He will protect us! Our delight needs to come from the Lord and His word.

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things.” Philippians 4:8

Be blessed today!



  1. I really love the give-a-ways also, and I have one starting March 1 on my blog check it out