Friday, November 28, 2008

Faith in a Crisis

Genesis 22:2 "Take your son, your only son Isaac, who you love, and go to the region Moriah. Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains I will tell you about." As a parent, I can not begin to think or imagine how Abraham must have felt. Abraham did not question or doubt God. He did as he was told. The walk up the mountain must have been excruciating. "Please God, not my son." "Is there any other way?" With each step Abraham and Isacc made up that mountain, the thoughts of a parent and then the thoughts of the child run through my mind. They get to the mountain, sacrifice going to be made, and look what happens...verse 12 says "do not lay a hand on the boy. Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God because you have not withheld from me your son. Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught up in its horns. He went over, took the ram, and sacrificed it as a burnt offering." Now I am looking at the mountain from a different perspective. As Abraham and Isacc were making the long, agonizing walk up the mountain, the walk of faith to the very top, the walk of no sight...there was sight on the other side. Coming up that same mountain was the ram. How many times have I not even had the faith to climb the mountain? Now I realize what I have missed on the other side. My mountain of faith right now may be God providing direction and provision in our own finances. Another persons mountain may be the healing of a marriage or another ones may be physical healing of disease. Whatever my struggle with faith is, I can always know that God's ram is going to be on the other side.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Is Jesus Worth It?

The last few days, weeks, and months have been leading up to this time around my living room Sunday night. My sister began to share some things on her and Jake's heart; things that they had learned and experienced during their time in Virginia. One particular discussion really stuck out to them. They heard a story of a man that had been persecuted for the Gospel. During an interview, someone asked the man, "Is Jesus Worth It?" As Dodie shared her heart, she had to say, with the utmost conviction, that yes Jesus is worth it. Worth living in a foreign country. Worth sacrificing the finer things we enjoy. Worth sacrificing even your life for Jesus. Then the challenge came to us, her family. Is Jesus Worth It? Is Jesus worth being from your daughter and your sister for years at a time? Is Jesus worth not seeing your granddaughter or niece? Worth you taking a stand and vocalizing to your own family, friends, and neighbors that He is the Son of God. Dodie reminded us of the verses in Luke 18:29-30 that say "I tell you the truth..."Jesus said. "no one who has left home or wife or brothers or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come, eternal life." What a promise to hold on to! It brings me such comfort when my heart is heavy. I am challenged and I want to look at my own life and say "Is Jesus Worth It?"

Is Jesus Worth you?

the Pumpkin Patch

Last monday William had a school holiday and we visited the pumpkin patch with his friends from school. What a fun day! Jumping in bounce houses, climbing pumpkins, going on a hay ride, and walking through the pumpkin/hay maze. It was alot of fun to see him with his friends.

Monday, October 20, 2008

the State Fair of Texas

Several weeks ago on a beautiful Thursday afternoon, Tim, William, and I went to the State Fair of Texas. It was such a great day! We found out it was senior adult day so William had most of the rides to himself. Here are the pictures from our fun day!

William before the ferris wheel ride!

His favorite thing to do-ride in cars!

the famous Ferris Wheel

Saturday, September 27, 2008

the Face of Change

Tuesday was a first in our house...William lost a tooth! He had told me several weeks ago that his teeth were wiggly. At first, it startled me. I thought 'oh no what is wrong.' Then it hit me, they are suppose to be lose! I came home from my moms group Monday night to find the tooth barely hanging on. As the day progressed Tuesday, he wanted it out!...and he wanted his daddy to pull it! Tim came by the house and tried several ways to pull it. His fingers were too big and he couldn't get a grip on it. was my turn. We were in the bathroom...I asked William 'are you ready?...(the whole time I am thinking to myself, No I'm not ready! I am scared! This isn't happening! He was just crawling yesterday! But that's another post! ) with one good tug, it was out! I could not believe it! William could not believe it! He didn't cry... he just kept saying "it's out Mommy!" This was a very exciting and emotional thing to experience. He was ready for bed sooner than normal (knowing that the tooth fairy was coming) and the next morning woke us up saying "she brought me cash; I have cash to spend!" What a great day and look at that beautiful face!

Friday, September 26, 2008

the First of Many

Last Saturday William had his first soccer game. He was so excited. We had a 10:00am game and he hardly could stand it. He ate a good breakfast ( so I will have lots of energy mommy!) and had his uniform on before I could brush my teeth, let alone get dressed. As the game started, you could tell the kids were getting the hang of it. Which kids were on their team. What goal was theirs and where the 'hot' zone was. When the whistle blows, we freeze. It was the first time most of them had played ,so for obvious reasons, they will only get better with time. As I (and William's Grumpy and Granny Lou) cheered him on from our side and his dad did the same, with a little bit of coaching too, from the other side, I started to observe something in my boy. To look at him, to know him, he is an outgoing, never meet a stranger, type of guy. the game progressed, I saw a somewhat timid, non-aggressive, concerned boy on the field. As I thought more about his actions, it made me aware of what a special boy I have. He liked the game and wanted to go after the ball, but when another player was hurt (on the opposite team) he stopped to make sure he was alright. I know this is only the beginning of probably many sporting events for William. I was glad to observe this all-boy, new athlete in action and realize that some of this is not taught, it is just seen and learned.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Ahoy Mateys...William is 5!

Last week my baby, my little boy turned 5 yrs.old. On August 28th, 2003 at 3 something in the afternoon, our precious miracle entered the world. When I think back about that day, his personality shown through immediately. He had a vigor, a determination, and also a raw sweetness that encaptured you. Fast forward five years, and that same vigor, determination, and sweetness abounds in him. All he could talk about was a pirate party when he turned 5. Well...fellow mateys...we had a great pirate party. He and his friends (all 14 of them!) walked the plank like pirates from long ago. They hunted for treasure...and found some in our own back yard! All the pirates had a pirate snack and drink and then it was time to look at all the loot. What fun it was to see his face. We all had a great time!

William, I can not believe you are 5. I am so proud of the boy you are becoming. You are strong, determined, and you truly care about others. I pray that God will daily bless your life. You will always be my baby, my special boy. Love your first-mate, mommy

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Women of Faith and Grace

A couple of weekends ago, I had the opportunity to experience God's amazing love and grace through the Women of Faith conference. I had always heard about it but it was my very first time to attend. There are so many things that encouraged me and warmed my heart. It is so hard to pick just one thing that stood out. Patsy Clairmont completely blew me away with her firecracker personality, her wonderful humor, and great insight to God's word and to what is relevant to women today. She spoke of the woman in the Bible that had been stooped over, crippled for many years. ( see Luke 13: 10-17) She related to us as women we sometimes live our life like that. We live stooped over lives; carrying our burdens as wives, mothers, sisters, and friends. We finally come to the point where we meet Jesus and He heals us of being 'crippled' and we have the opportunity to stand up and shout and thank Him for what He has done and what do we do? We continue to live stooped over and unthankful. What words of wisdom and relativety to my own life.

Another aspect of the weekend was the wonderful music. I would go back just for that. I am a singer just waiting to come out any chance I can get so it was such a blessing to hear these women praise God with their voices. Natalie Grant, Sandi Patty, and Nicole C. Mullen each spoke of the grace of God in their own lives. What inspiring words. As I attended the conference, I had been carrying in the back of my mind some words from our worship leader that really struck a chord with me. He had said that the more you and I are around the Word, the more 'churched' we are, the less aware we become of how God's grace touched our lives. We lose that excitement and wonder at God's grace that was once there when we first came to know Him. As I thought of his words and experienced God's grace, I was very humbled. I do not ever want to take that for granted. I want to always remember what God's grace looks like in my life. Nicole spoke of the woman in the Bible who was bleeding and she wanted to just touch Jesus. To be made whole. I want to daily remember when I was first touched by Jesus and my life was made whole.

This weekend encouraged me in ways that I never thought possible. To God be the glory!

the concert

Those who know me know that I am a huge Keith Urban fan to the very core. Tim's cousins wives (my cousin-in-laws, I guess that is what you call them!) and I went to a Kenny Chesney and Keith Urban concert. What a fun time! We got to know a little more about each other and enjoy some great music...not to mention great seats! I would not trade it for the world. I had a blast and realized these women are not just family, they are my friends.
p.s. more pics of Kenny to follow :)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A Lesson

Have you ever had one of those weeks that you feel completely overwhelmed and such a mess? happened to me a couple weeks ago. It started off great. A wonderful and beautiful time spent with my sister and her family. A time of connecting and sharing. Another beautiful moment happened that monday night at a restaurant in Ft.Worth. Moments shared. Experiences heard. Wisdom given. Then...all of sudden it happened. The moment where I could not breathe and everything started staring me in the face. As I took a breath and started to make sense of it all, the tears started to come . In that moment of despair I realized that the peace, the peace that I have spoken about before, was becoming more real to me. This had been a hard week for me yet I finally caught a glimpse of the here and now and knew that God was growing me to be more like Him. Each day I am learning breath at a time.

the beach

We had a lot of fun at the beach this year. William had an amazing time- boogie boarding, body surfing, and jumping off a 15ft. diving platform into a spring that is 68 degrees year round. There were lots of firsts for this trip to Florida and we look forward to many more!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

At Peace

Have you ever wondered that as you grow older you are becoming the worst case of yourself? Those little annoying things that someone in your family does or that one friend that gets on your nerves and then all of sudden, you are becoming those things...displaying attitudes or little annoyances in your own life that you always thought, 'oh, I will never do that'. God has been slowly and painfully working on my heart about those things. Whether it is an annoying behavior or something that is not Christ-like, I need to come to terms with who I am. I need to daily give my whole self over to Him and walk in His ways. I know that each day brings new 'things' but I also know that they are never going to go away if I never take them to Christ. I have been looking through the scripture tonight trying to find an application, something to make this make sense and these are what I found. Colossians 3:15 says " Let the peace of Christ rule in your were called to peace and be thankful." Instead of focusing on all those things that I do not want to be or do, I need to break free from them and be at peace. At peace with myself. At peace with who I am. The annoying and the not-so annoying. And then I need to be thankful. This leads into the other verse. Colossians 4:6 says "Let your conversation be always full of that you know how to answer everyone." When I look at the worst case of myself, I am not thankful. My words are not filled with grace. you see the worst case of yourself? or Are you at peace? That is where I want to be.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

My View Point

Last week William attended the Central Charger soccer camp. He was so excited to get all the gear: the cleats, the shin guards, and socks. As he was appointed to his team, I observed a sense of excitement and of hestitation. Each day became a little easier and familiar. Throughout the week he learned skills such as dribbling, passing, and blocking. The view from the side of the track was heartwarming as he listened with such intensity to his coaches. He thrived on seeing and talking to Coach Mahr and Coach Melissa. His desire to do good and be able to kick the ball was evident; his frustation and disappointment when he didn't get to the ball was also evident. I am proud of his dedication; his desire to learn and I look forward to watching many games this fall.

Monday, June 2, 2008

A Hope and a Future

As many of you know, Tim, William, and I have been a part of a new church plant for almost four years now. We have seen many trials and growth pains come our way as a church and as individuals. As I look back at where we have come from and where we are going, I am reminded of Jeremiah 29:11. " For I know the plans I have for you" says the Lord. "Plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you hope and a future." I see that hope and our future in the lives of our small group every week. I am encouraged by our growth and humbled by how God is using the lives of these men and women. We had no idea of the plans for our family...for our church. God did. He knew that we would prosper and for His ultimate glory. What an amazing thing to experience and be a part of.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Words can not express how much joy and fun we had last week during our time with sweet Hannah. She is growing and changing so much; developing her own little personality. She loves her cousin William and whenever he would leave the room and come back, she would squeal with delight. (her arms and legs moving as fast as they can!) We will cherish this time together. We love you Hannah!

your aunt Dondra

Friday, April 11, 2008


On wednesday night of this week, I experienced history in the making. It wasn't a cure for cancer. It wasn't the latest and greatest addition to the IPOD. It was seeing 92 people (2 of them are my sister and brother-in-law) be commissioned to be foreign missionaries around the world. As the praise team sang "He Reigns", each of the missionaries filed in with the presentation of the flags from each country and with an excitement I have never seen before. Dodie and Jake gave their testimonies of how God brought each of them to this point of surrender and obedience. They will take their family of three and be missionaries, be Jesus, to the people of Peru. As the speaker challenged each of us to be our own missionaries, I am reminded of the words in Acts 1:8 "You shall recieve power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you; and you shall be my witnesses to me in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the end of the earth." How exciting it is to know that they are going to a part of something great. As the day ended, I was forever changed. I am proud that I caught a glimpse of history...the history of lives being changed through Jesus Christ.


Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Celebrating Easter

As the Easter season approached, I knew early on that I wanted to share the true meaning of Easter with William. This would be the year that we discussed everything from Palm Sunday to the Resurrection. With the help of some great research (via the internet), helpful advice from friends, and wonderful books, we discussed at length the meaning of this special day. We read the books entitled The Legend of the Easter Egg and the Legend of the Three Trees. What amazing words and illustrations to show him that this isn't about the eggs or the candy but about the love of Jesus and what He did for us. As each day came and went, the closer Easter was. As we prepared for our egg hunt at church, we made a cake for the cake walk. William asked me "who is the cake for?" and before I could answer he said "it's for God and Jesus!" This is what it is all about. :)


p.s. the pictures below are of him showing off his decorated egg and his cross we made on Good Friday

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Teachable Moments

Last night as we were getting ready for bed, William wanted to read some books. As he looked through his bookshelf and decided what to read, I reminded him only 1 or 2 books. Much to my amazement, out of all his books, he brings me this small book from a Bible story collection called 'the First Easter.' (It is one of those books you get with all the others at showers and you forget what you have.) I was blown away and thanking God in my heart for this precious moment. Of all the books he could have picked, he picked this one. As we began reading, I was praying for God to truly speak thru those words and that in some small way William would understand what the true meaning of Easter is. I have spoken in other posts about those teachable moments and what a wonderful blessing it was for me to experience one. I look forward to many more...


Tuesday, February 19, 2008

the season of Spring

This past weekend I attended a mother's conference hosted by Sally Clarkson. The discussion all weekend was about the seasons of a woman's and mother's heart. As I have thought and prayed about the different seasons, God has revealed that I am entering the season of spring in my own life as a mother. A time to reflect and start anew. A time to know and be content as a wife and William's mother. God layed some things on my heart about truly making Him known to William and I want to start fresh. Just like we get to start a new season of spring with new grass, flowers, and a new feeling in the air. To be mindful of those teachable moments and to let William know of God's beauty and love; to be proud of the season of my life and be joyful in doing and going in that season. I need to be excited about what God is going to do thru this time in my life and how each of us will grow. I was also reminded that teaching my child how to know God is one of the most important things I can do. All of my focus should be on revealing God to William thru his education, his play, his activities, his discipline. This is a very humbling thought to know that God has entrusted me with this challenge. I look forward to the days ahead and the season of spring. I look forward to growing and becoming like David and having a dancing heart. A season of spring is just around the corner.


Monday, February 4, 2008

Life Lessons

We have been busy the last couple of weeks with various activities. As I look back at those weeks gone by, we have all been learning some lessons along the way. William has really been testing the patience of his mom and dad at bed time. For several nights it turned into this game (a game that I don't like to lose!) of him needing several things before actually settling down and going to sleep. Back and forth this went night after night. The rules were laid down and again this one-sided game would unfold. William (finally!) learned that these rules need to be followed or there will be consequences. I (finally!) learned that these rules need to be followed or there will be consequences. These life lessons do remind us that we need to be proud of what we are trying to teach William. Whether it is about obeying, telling the truth, and/or forgiving, these are the lessons he will remember forever.


Sunday, January 20, 2008

Celebrating the Sabbath

Last night we started a new celebration in the Pyle house. We are celebrating the Sabbath or as William kept calling it "special family time and family dinner." A dear friend of mine (thank-you Krista!) gave me a book about making your home a true place of worship. One of the key points that really convicted me was the act of celebrating and honoring the Sabbath. Each family can decide on how they want to do this. Ours went something like this: we had some commitments early in the day yesterday and afterwards we went to see the new Veggietale Pirate movie. We came home and had our dinner with candlelight and great conversation. We talked to William about what he is learning in his group time at church and this week was the Great Commission. What an amazing opportunity to witness God's love and see that His Word makes an impact and is relevant to all of us. We discussed how we can see Jesus in other people and it was truly rewarding and humbling how much William can see and take notice of. The act of celebrating the Sabbath is going to be a time of teaching and reflecting and setting aside our saturdays and sundays as a family to honor God. To rest in Him and know that we are daily growing and becoming more like Him.


Saturday, January 12, 2008


Over the past week, I have had the priviledge of spending time with my niece Hannah. As I watched William interact with her, I was truly amazed at how they understood each other. He is this very sweet, loving boy yet he is all boy. He likes being loud and running around. A boy. She is this very sweet, special little girl and each time they looked at each other it was like "I get you; you are my cousin." We spent monday and tuesday together and William was my little helper. He talked to her when I needed to get her bottles ready. He played with her and would say "Hannah, this is your cousin. Hannah banana...this is William. I love you." He even decided he was the 'big brother' as he helped me put her in the jeep and then helped (on his own I might add) take her out of her swing! It is neat to be a "fly on the wall" as you observe kids intereacting with each other and the special bond that can form. I look forward to the many times that they can share as cousins and know that they will always 'get' each other.


Wednesday, January 2, 2008

the new year

Isn't it amazing that as the new year approaches we always start thinking about the things we are going to change and things we are definitely going to 'stick to' and on and on it goes. I have been thinking a lot this week about the way my new year can be different and I have decided it needs to start with me and then the rest will just follow. As it follows, I hope and pray that it won't be just something I did one year but it will become a lifestyle. Our speaker and friend at church said last sunday that consistency is always good unless whatever you are being consistent at is well...bad. That statement really struck me and as I have pondered that and other things this week I have said to myself "Am I being consistent at the good things? The things that matter?" I will admit there are things I want to change this year but like I have said earlier, I hope that whatever I do change it will be for the good and not just this year but for years to come.