New & Improved

Adam and I have a new love…IKEA! I was dreaming of the day it would come to our town and it’s here! IKEA is the biggest furniture distributor in the world. It originally started in Sweden and there are stores all over the world now (I have a 5th grader who told me she has been to ones in Germany, Russia, Paris, and here…I thought that was cool). Anyway, IKEA has anything and everything you could think of at a very low price…name it and they’ve got it (almost). For example, Adam and I have bought everything from a pack of knifes ($2.99), to a 6ft mirror ($99), to a toilet brush ($1). Here are some pictures to show off some new things we got for our living room…

Here is a shot of everything…

Here’s our new mirror!

New pillows and vase…

If you haven’t been there yet…go! If you don’t have one in your town, check out ikea.com for your viewing pleasure.

Talent at its Best!

Our friends, Candice and Daniel, took pictures of us about a month ago (go here to see some of them…turn your volume up). As you can tell from their work, they are great at what they do! While they were taking our pics, they had an incredibly talented videographer (I think that’s the word), Jared, shoot our “shoot” to catch Daniel and Candice in action for their new promo video. Can I just tell you that these are the best pictures anyone has ever taken of us and Adam and I cannot be more grateful for them!!

Listen up people…if you are in need of photographers for an event, wedding, new baby, or anything these are the people to get (click here)! They are so sweet and genuine and work together to achieve the best shots they can get! Taking pictures can be uncomfortable for some people, but they make you feel right at home and when you feel at home, you get amazing shots!

Candice and Daniel…this post is for you…thank you for taking amazing pictures for us, they will be forever cherished! Keep doing what you’re doing, you both are very talented photographers and I can’t wait to see where your business takes you!

Bleed Purple…

Our pastor just finished a series called the “Purple People Leader”. (Go here to check it out). Basically it was a series all about pulling the leadership potential out of anyone and everyone. This series definitely encouraged me…especially with the job that I have now! I am in a position to bring out leadership qualities in generations to come and I don’t want to take that for granted!

He told us that we were peculiar people (hence the title “purple people leaders”) with a remarkable purpose. One Sunday he talked about being visionary leaders (Adam and I missed that Sunday, but hearing from other people, it probably made the most sense to me…especially in understanding how our church works and the vision that our Pastor has for Elevation).

Being in a leadership position and not having a vision of where you want to go or where you want to be is not good. Teachers have a vision to see their students succeed, Realtors have visions to sell houses, Salesmen have visions to make their quota, Doctors and nurses have visions to help heal people, and so on. Everyone is in a position of leadership no matter where you work, who you are, or what you hope to be one day. And once you figure that out, you’ve got to set your sights on a vision.

With every vision comes a strategy, or a plan on how to accomplish your goals. Our pastor gave the example of Noah. God gave Noah the vision to build an ark for him and his family and the animals to keep them safe from the flood waters. Noah obeyed God and God did what He promised. But…don’t you think Noah had doubts running through his head? He probably had people telling him that he’s crazy and wondering why he was taking all his time to do this. Noah knew what he had to do, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that he had a strategy on how or why he did things. Pastor Steven read a verse that summed everything up…

“By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.” ~Hebrews 11:7

Do you get it? You have your vision…you don’t have your strategy…however, when you have faith in the middle of those two things, God will unfold the strategy as you choose to follow and obey what He commands. Picture “vision” knocking on the door of “strategy” but it can’t get in until you unlock it with the key of “faith”. Maybe that’s a little cheesy for you, but it completely helps me understand the vision that Pastor Steven has for Elevation. One of his goals is to have 10,000 people in attendance by 2010. He’s got the vision and the faith it takes for the Lord to unfold the strategy on how we’ll get there.

I know this was kind of a long post, but I hope that it encourages some of you to become visionary leaders even if a strategy hasn’t been revealed to you yet. All you have to have is faith as small as a mustard seed to see the amazing works God can do in you life!

God’s Promises

Promise: A declaration that something will, or will not be done, given, etc.
Declaration: That which is declared or proclaimed; announcement; distinct statement; formal expression, avowal.
Proclamation: Something that is proclaimed; a public and official announcement.
Announcement: The act of making known publicly.

Lately during my devotions “God’s promises” have been a reoccurring topic. I haven’t realized quite yet if God is teaching me something, or if He wants to use me to encourage someone. Well, I think it’s both. A couple of weeks ago our pastor talked about God’s promises and how there is a process you go through before you get to the payoff…

Promise—>Process—>Payoff

…and how God’s promises to us never change or will go away, however you might have to go through a grueling process to receive the remarkable payoff He has promised you. I am currently doing a Beth Moore bible study on David and yesterday it talked about this topic and she used Romans 4:20-22 to explain it. Man these verses are perfect:

“20Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, 21being fully persuaded that God had power to do what he had promised. 22This is why “it was credited to him as righteousness.”

We are seen as righteous when we believe and have faith that God has the power to perform and carry through all the promises He has made us! If you’re going through a valley or through some dark areas in your life…hold on! There is a light at the end of the tunnel and even though you may not see it right this moment, it’s there and it’s coming! Stay faithful because in the end you will be seen as righteous in the eyes of God when you receive your payoff! God’s promises are meant to be made public. He has made declarations of mercy and love for you and He wants you to accept those things and make it known to the public that you are loved by the God of this Universe! Do not let the temptations of “unbelief”, “doubt”, and “impatience” enter into your thoughts…they could delay God’s blessings in your life. Instead fill your minds with hope and perseverance…long for a heart of obedience and patience. God’s promises are true, you just have to be faithful and believe.

Like I promised…this post is dedicated to Valentine’s day and all the special things Adam did for me (I love to brag on my man)!

Well, the day started off as any other day…we woke up, had our coffee, watched some tv, Adam started working on our taxes. Adam was in our office working when I walked in and opened the blinds…and what did I see?? A fed-ex truck in front of our house. I didn’t have a clue he was coming to our house until I saw him walking up our sidewalk. My mind started asking questions, “what did I order?”, “is this a mistake?”…no mistake here, Adam had 30 tulips delivered to the house…for me!! Now, I’m not one of those girls who say flowers are a waste of money because they die anyway…no sir, I love flowers and tulips are my favorite! You can’t help but smile when you look at them!

The day doesn’t end there…we got to eat at one of our favorite restaurants (with no wait) and he told me to pack my bags because we were going to one of our favorite places in Charlotte for the night! Man, did he surprise me! The next morning, we woke up and went to The Original Pancake House to eat breakfast (best pancakes around) and then went “shopping” around at our favorite places (the tray you see was one of our purchases)!

I could not have asked for a more special, romantic, sweet Valentine’s Day and I am so blessed to have a husband who knows my heart so well. Thank you Adam for making that day one of the most fun days ever!

The Love Doctor is in….

Happy Valentine’s day people! Man, I hope your day has been “lovely” so far because my day has been the best! Adam definately over did it, but if you couldn’t tell from my last post…this is my favorite holiday! I can’t tell you about it now, more details to come later…until then, “love is in the air…”!

Te amo!

Happy Valentine’s Day Eve!

Valentine’s Day is tomorrow and I am super excited! Most people think Valentine’s Day is overrated and stupid, but man oh man…not me!! Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday…yes, even over Christmas (it comes in at a very close 2nd). I don’t know why…I guess I’m just a hopeless romantic! Adam tells me he’s got something special planned for tomorrow and I can’t wait! I guess it’s just all the surprises and having a day where it’s all about the love.

It’s very easy for me to get caught up in all the gushy stuff, but I keep reminding myself, and want to remind you that Christ showed His ultimate love for us when He died on the cross to save us from death. When we receive Him as our Savior we receive His love and that is the greatest gift we could ever ask for. I want to encourage you to remember that as you celebrate Valentine’s Day, and remember that “it’s Christ in you who’s shining through when you give your love away” ~Elevation Worship.

“And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” ~1 Corinthians 13:13