Archive for February, 2009

a little dinner exchange

Ava’s little friend, Anicka, joined us for dinner the other night.

As the six of us sat down for our meal, Anicka observed that there were 3 girls & 3 boys at the table.

“No, Anicka,” Ava said.  “God is at our table & He is a boy.  So, there are more boys than girls.”

Anicka & Ava looked at each other, stumped (you know us girls, we’re so darn competitive…).

All of a sudden, Ava shouted, “What about God’s wife?  Now we have 4 girls & 4 boys!”

Adam & I nearly choked on our pasta!

“Who is God’s wife?,” I asked.

“Eve!,” piped up Ava.  “No, it’s Mary!,” chimed in Anicka.

Yep, just another night at the Newton dinner table.

Lor, will you please handle this one?  I’ll tell Ava to look for you on Sunday…


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the turnaround

turnI’m a nice person.


But, not always.

Once upon a time, back in high school, I was constantly teased by a boy.  The funny(???) thing is, today, I have no idea what he teased me about.  He wasn’t mean, but he would say things that always made me feel dumb.  I’ve always said I’d be great on the speech team, but horrible on any debate team.  I just can’t think that quickly on my feet.  I’m the person who comes up with the witty retort an hour too late.

So, on one particular day, this boy said something to me & I of course was hopelessly flustered.  But, I came up with a plan & I thought about it all through my Social Studies class.  Since I couldn’t get back at him with my words, I’d do something to him with my actions.

Social Studies was the last class of the day & it took place in a little building just off the school.  I remember it was a nice day, so everyone was casually strolling back toward the main building to hit their lockers before heading home.  Now, the boy was walking ahead of me, leisurely holding his belongings under one arm.  I quickly moved up behind him & swatted the books from under his arm.  Instantly, books, papers & folders sprawled out everywhere on the walkway.  I thought I was so cool & laughed out loud.  “Finally,” I thought, “I got him!” As I turned around, I saw him stooping down in an attempt to gather everything up, while the rest of the class laughed as they walked around him.

I felt terrible.

I instantly stopped & ran back to help him pick everything up.  One of my friends called out, “Kel, what are you doing?”  I told him I was really sorry & that I don’t normally act that way.  As we walked back to the building, again, I told him how sorry I was to embarrass him in front of everyone else.  He chuckled & said it was okay.

And he stopped teasing me.

One of my favorite books in the Bible is 1 John.  Check out this passage:

3We know that we have come to know Him if we obey His commands. 4The man who says, “I know Him,” but does not do what He commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5But if anyone obeys His word, God’s love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in Him: 6Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did.  (1 John 2:3-6)

I love the image of walking along side Jesus as I go through this life.  And one thing I have recently discovered is I have a tendency to think inside a very small box when it comes to walking.  I think I’m only progressing when I’m walking forward.  However, I have found that some of my defining moments occur when I turn around.

For example, I would have always regretted not turning around to help that boy pick up his belongings.  I’m embarrassed by what I did in the first place.  The action itself was bad enough, but the intention behind it is what really disappoints me.  Talk about moving in the wrong direction!  Sometimes, we need to work on turning around.  It’s such an intentional motion.  You have to literally stop moving in one direction & consciously choose to go another way.  Perhaps it’s a moment in our past where we need to apologize to someone & ask for forgiveness.  Or maybe it’s stopping & turning to lend a helping hand.  I think we have an opportunity to reveal who we really are in the turnaround.

I guess it’s just another one of those things that makes life so interesting.

Sometimes, it isn’t until we walk backward that we actually begin moving forward.

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I went through my camera the other night, looking to see if I needed to delete any pictures.

I came across a few that made me go, “huh???”

Turns out Mister Garrett figured out how to use the camera.

Here are a couple of his shots.  From an artist’s perspective, I would say that he uses clever composition & interesting objects.  An ordinary person would probably just say, he hasn’t figured out how to use the camera completely yet!

I had a fun time coming up with captions for these masterpieces…



The green balloon in the picture…what does it mean?  Does it represent the economy?  Its lying in a shaft of light…does he think we have hope?



Every artist needs a self-portrait



The shaft of light again.  Perhaps his mother’s positivity is rubbing off on him?



And yet again…nice way to thread your theme, Garrett.


Ahhhh, looks like the master photographer has a little apprentice…


Would someone please tell the boy’s mother to wipe his face?

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He has my attention

So, I just posted about my struggle with stillness, two days ago.

Then, this morning, I read today’s OYB passage from the book of Mark, chapter 4.


35 As evening came, Jesus said to his disciples, “Let’s cross to the other side of the lake.” 36 So they took Jesus in the boat and started out, leaving the crowds behind (although other boats followed). 37 But soon a fierce storm came up. High waves were breaking into the boat, and it began to fill with water.

38 Jesus was sleeping at the back of the boat with his head on a cushion. The disciples woke him up, shouting, “Teacher, don’t you care that we’re going to drown?”

39 When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!” Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm. 40 Then he asked them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?”

41 The disciples were absolutely terrified. “Who is this man?” they asked each other. “Even the wind and waves obey him!”



so the apparently even the forces of nature get it.

Yet I, His child, made in His image, struggle to obey Him.

I have a long way to go…

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star3“Worship is the submission of all our nature to God.  It is the quickening of conscience by His holiness; the nourishment of mind with His truth; the purifying of imagination by His beauty; the opening of the heart to His love; the surrender of will to His purpose – and all of this gathered up in adoration, the most selfless emotion of which our nature is capable and therefore the chief remedy for that self-centeredness which is our original sin and the source of all actual sin.”

~ William Temple

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struggling with stillness

“Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him…”  Psalm 37:7

I’m a mover.  I’m a doer.  I’m a problem solver.  I am not stagnant.

I like these qualities about myself.  However, I find that when I move too quickly, I rely on my own understanding.  I’ll do what I think is best, only to discover later that my choice was not the wisest course of action.  Quite honestly, sometimes I do things just for the sake of doing.  Because for me, at the end of the day, I’d rather say I did something, than nothing at all.

And then I get these gentle reminders to be still & suddenly its like I’m experiencing internal whiplash.  I’m wired to go, not to wait.  I’m then instructed to wait patiently & all I want to do is cry out, “But I need an answer now!”

I struggle when God’s timing and my own are not in sync.  And God is ever pressing me to listen for Him first & spring into action second.  And ultimately, learn to wait for Him instead of urging Him to catch up with me.

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my hair is a mess

Thanks so much Grady.

It’s actually pretty sweet.  Grady loves running his fingers through my hair.  He’ll come up right in front of me & wrap his arms around my neck.  He then cups his hands behind my head & runs his fingers the entire length of my hair, while cooing, “ohhhhh.”

one teensy weensy problem…

Have you seen how messy little two year old fingers are?

let me rephrase that…

Do you know how sticky little two year old fingers are?

Between the suckers, syrup from his waffles & seriously, God only know what else that boy gets into, my hair is practically it’s own food group.

Last night, we took the kids to Chili’s.

Grady had ribs.

You know it’s bad when even the dog comes up to your head looking for a treat.

Oh well, I don’t mind the extra hair washing.  The shampoo will always be there, but little fingers only stay small for so long.


“There never has been, nor will there ever be, anything quite so special as the love between a mother and a son.”
— Author Unknown


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