Friday, November 20, 2009

Buckle Up

I saw her lean down and with significant effort pull the straps up on the back of her shoes that she had let slip down during the service because of her aching feet. She quietly moved the stool that she has to bring to rest her legs on and repositioned the cushion she needs behind her back. The preacher that morning had been speaking on mission and how we should be open to His tasks for us at any stage in life. He was a very dynamic speaker so we could tell there would be an appeal at the end. I watched her as she listened intently and as the preacher asked for those who wanted to respond to stand, she lifted herself unsteadily and used the chair in front to support her weight as she stood before her God.

Even with a body that no longer worked as it used to, and a house much quieter than it used to be, she is choosing to spend the next stage of her life faithfully serving her God. She is a faithful prayer and will now expand her ministry praying for more of those on the mission field. She also bakes for our youth ministry, to encourage the mums of the kids to stay and chat which is a great ministry for building relationships and taking opportunities when they arise to share our faith or just lend an ear.

She is a great example to me about not sitting back and letting circumstances or excuses stop us from fulfilling the calling or purpose God has for our lives. She has more reason than the rest of us to opt out. Her feet ache and her legs are weak but her faith is strong. Is there something that God is asking you to do but health or work or recreation is getting in the way? It’s time to get ready, rearrange things and listen for what God wants you to be doing. Some things might be easy: He already wants you to be in a real relationship with Him and meeting regularly with His people, but He also has a specific purpose for you to fulfil.

The God of the Universe, who sent His Son to die so that I could have a restored relationship with Him, has a plan and a purpose that is just for me. He certainly doesn’t want me just sitting here doing nothing. And when I hear His voice, when those verses that jump out at me or I recognise that quiet prompting in my heart. I will buckle up and stand before my God and say “Here I am. Send me!”. (Isaiah 6:8)

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Eph 2:8-10

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Thursday, November 12, 2009

On The Lighter Side

I didn’t want to tell you until now. The truth is, when I first started, I wasn’t sure I would even continue past a couple of days. I was going to wait until Christmas for the great unveiling. But, how could I hold out on you when this might just inspire you too and we can all fit into our summer clothes!

I wanted to give you my total because it would sound so much grander, but my premise all along has been to be honest with you even in the average stuff so here it is. I have lost 8kgs! (about 18 pounds for you American gals). I would love to have said 15kg (33lb) by Christmas, but I dont think Ill make that one, and since Christmas is 6 weeks away, if I share it now, you might just reap some benefits by then too! (update - made 10kg by Christmas)

Wanna know how I did it?
I Got Organized, Got Honest and Got Out!
(I just made that up ;)

But… as the Good Book says “physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come” (1 Tim 4:8) … so let me share with you some great spiritual application too.
So if you want to get a healthier body or a healthier spiritual life, read on!

OK this is a long one, so I’ll give you a rundown of my tips then you can read on if you’re interested:
1. Get a diary
2. Weigh in
3. Get ready
4. Be honest about your body (metabolism, cravings…)
5. Don’t skip meals
6. Small portion size
7. Exercise daily

Get Organised

The first thing I did was to purchase a diary. There is no way I can be disciplined in the physical or spiritual aspects of life if the rest of my life is disorganized. You need time aside for important things.

The second thing I did was to commit to weighing in on my Wii Fit every day, even when I knew I had done the wrong thing (eaten badly or missed exercise). You need to be accountable to aid in being disciplined and so that you can recognize the consequences of making wrong choices. Join a group, they will give you training, companionship, accountability and encouragement. Join a church, we’re here for the same thing!

The third thing I did was to make sure I had the supplies that I needed. I required shoes and clothes for walking, topped up the songs on my iPod, got rid of my favourite biscuits, chocolate and sweets, and stocked up on healthy alternatives and water bottles. I also put away my magazines and got out a good devotional book and occasionally an uplifting novel. What you choose to put in will have a direct effect on how you go both physically and spiritually!

Get Honest

There are heaps of things I have realized that have helped me in my journey so far, here are the main ones…

I’ve realized – skinny people don’t just have good metabolism, most of them actually do exercise and generally eat well. And Good people don’t just have a good conscience, most of them spend time reading the Bible and seek to honour God in what they do.

Sometimes it will be easy not to pig out, and sometimes it is all you can do to not have that chocolate slice at morning tea. That’s life. And in life it’s the same. Sometimes it will be easy to ‘be good’ and sometimes you will be trying your hardest and still be tempted even though you know it’s not the right thing.

I had to realize what certain foods did to my body and my hunger. If I eat sugary or highly processed carbohydrates, I crave more of the same. A packet of fruit mentos or some McDonalds fries and a coke make me feel good temporarily, but not for very long, and I end up eating more of that kind of stuff. And if I compromise on values such as loyalty, honesty and integrity, it gets easier and easier to do worse and worse. So, for me, it is way healthier and easier for me if I don’t.

Its important to have a good menu planned out. That way you can have some variety and choice of good things. Have a good bible study, devotional book or reading plan (such as Deliberate People) so you’re getting fed in good quantities.

Now I would have thought that y’all know what kind of foods are bad for you, but for the record, go for lots of fruit, salad or veges with egg or other protein to keep you going and stay away from biscuits, lollies, cakes and fried food. I also cut down on bread, and it actually made me feel less hungry, but see how you go with that. It really really really does make a difference. Give your body what it needs and you will feel better at the end of the day and throughout your life.

Don’t skip things that build you up. While cutting down is the first logical thing to do when you have been overloading, cutting out meals isn’t the right way to go about it. Work out what you need (use a dietary calculator if you like) and do it well. Don’t skip things that build you up. If you’re stressed out or overloaded, cut out on things which don’t add to your life or don’t fit your personal mission. If you do need to cut down, make sure you keep a good amount of things that build you up and are nutritious for your soul.

Don’t have too much on your plate. A amazing little truth that helps every day! If you put too much on your plate you will be overloaded (calories or stress) which may very well have been your problem in the first place. It requires a lot of self control not heaping up an extra serving of lamb, and extra big piece of cheesecake or saying yes to that newly offered position, but if you say no at first and sit back, almost every time you will find that it was necessary anyway. And if you change your mind, it is even more satisfying!

Get Out

By far the most important factor in losing weight is going for a walk almost every morning. Putting this all into practice is the only way to make any difference to your life. Be honest about your commitment. If you aren’t prepared to make the sacrifices necessary to see change, stop talking about it! Seriously, physical and spiritual health require discipline. It is extremely rewarding, has great results, and isn’t really that hard if you get organised, get honest and get out, but you’ve got to be committed.

Did you know that exercise goes on burning fat, even when you sleep? Even when you don’t feel like getting up for a walk, you’ll always be glad you did. And even when you don’t feel like getting up for to read the bible, going church, or going to bible study, you’ll always be glad you did. And the effects keep multiplying even when you aren’t aware of it.
I hope that gave you some inspiration and some tips to living well. I hope your clothes are a better fit after you put some of that into practice and you find that life is a better fit too.
Let me know if it worked!

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Friday, November 6, 2009


Lisa @ The Preacher's Wife is holding a scavenger hunt so I thought I'd join in.

The Treasures

1. First Name: Donna

2. State and Country of Residence: Queensland, Australia

3. Husband’s Ministry Title: Associate Pastor

4. Length of time in Current Ministry Location: Almost 2 years.

5. Children: 7yrold daughter and 5yrold son.

6. Number of unique homes in which you’ve lived during your marriage: 8 houses in 9 years and we are definitely over packing and moving!

7. Cook Sunday lunch or eat out: It's 'fend for yourselves' ie leftovers, unless we are having guests :)

8. Typically on time for Sunday School or not: just on time.

9. Favorite TV Show: NCIS

10. Something you watch/like/do that you would never tell the church people. (Except now you just did…lol): My kids often have cereal for dinner and can make themselves tomato sauce sandwiches if they are hungry (but I make them eat the crusts ;)

11. Most annoying church-related pet peeve: Nothing really annoys me, but sometimes I feel sorry for our kids having to be happy about attending everything we do.

12. One thing you need to throw away but can’t bring yourself to do it: I just threw away my smaller sizes, but I think Ill be needing them again soon (yay!)

13. The one food you can not live without: Is Pepsi Max a food? ;)

14. Parsonage or have your own home? Own home, just 2 minutes from church, almost completely renovated by generous family and church volunteers!

15. Freak when the doorbell rings or always ready for a visitor? Sure, come on round. I have learnt to change out of my PJ's very early in the morning and have resigned myself to the fact that there will always be dishes in the sink and washing to fold on the couch. (So if there isn't when you pop around, be very impressed!)

And speaking of treasures, this is one treasure that I am totally hanging out for! Its Lisa's new book coming out in January!

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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

For Your Mother

Most of my headaches are as a result of my kids not doing what I say. Today I have a headache cause I DID do what MY mum said.

I started walking regularly about 10 weeks ago and not long after that I noticed a weird looking spot on my skin. It wasnt a mole, more like a scar with a purple bit inside. I made an appointment with my GP just to be sure and he wasnt overly concerned when he saw it, and suggested I come back in January to check it again. Excellent, the perfect diagnosis!.. For about 2 minutes until I happened to add that the reason I came was because I could hear my mums voice in my head saying "have you got that spot checked yet?". He said that because she has had a melanoma, he had to cut my spot out. Doh!

So my little 2 stitch scar had healed up quite nicely after just 2 weeks and was hardly noticeable...until today when he had to take "the rest" out which made a z shaped scar and sports 12 stitches on the outside and a total of somewhere around 20 the nurse guesses including the ones under the surface. And just so I couldnt hide it this time, I have to look like this till Friday...


I'll be fine, it wasnt a dangerous one. But I know there are many of you out there wondering about a spot or a mole that you have noticed on yourself. Well, allow me to be the voice of conscience (or the voice of your mother ;) "Go and get that checked!!"

Your GP or skin clinic might say, "It's fine, come back next year" or they might take it out and the scar will be hardly even noticable. On the other hand, your quick action might just save a whole lot of trouble down the line, or may even save your life.

So if you have any querie as to the health of your skin, please please please get it checked! Pick up the phone and make an appointment with your GP or skin clinic. Go on. Off you go!

And y'all know I cant just leave it there - If you have any doubts about the health of your soul, do something about that today too!

Don't ignore that still small voice inside.

It might just save your life.

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