One Year

Can you believe its been a year since I've been in AZ? For those of you who thought I'd never make it through the summer - I nearly didn't! Praise GOD that I'm still alive and not completely melted (slightly melted, but not completely).

Anyway, there have been some awesome things that happened this year. God has had to work overtime on me. There was a lot of junk that he and I had to work through. And we did. And we still are. And we always will.....I'm sure. Its amazing to me how faithful he really is. I mean, seriously. If I were him, I'd have counted me out years ago. But he doesn't. He never will. How awesome.

He brought me to a job where I can literally impact peoples lives every day. I spoke to a young woman yesterday whose 2 1/2 year old daughter had just been diagnosed with Hodgkins Disease. I was able to be an ear...thats all she needed right then. I told her I would pray for her. Thank you Lord, you know? Even though my job can be stressful, and sad, and discouraging I am right where I need to be.

I think the best part of this year has been finding my 'home' at Desert Springs Church. I know, I know, I talk about this place all the time. Trust me, if you had been through some of the things that I went through at church - you'd talk about this church all the time too! I mean, all churches have their issues, and I'm certainly not saying they are perfect by any means. I really can't describe it. Its a freeing place. Its a delivering place. I've heard it described as a hospital for the sick - and that is really what it is. I had some wounds when I came in, and now those are healing and I'm ready to start finding others who are wounded and bring them in, too. You know? Anyway, that little paragraph doesn't do what God has done in me through this church justice. I've had a couple of old friends call in the last few weeks and they have said, "Wow, you sound happy again." Praise God. I am happy. I found my home.


Costume Gun - Before and After

My mom says I'm spending too much time on this costume. I say - whatever, I don't care. I was up until almost midnight the other night turning this boring pirate gun...

into this....
Argh matey!



1. a well-fortified place; fortress
2. a place that serves as the center of a group, as of militants or of persons holding a controversial viewpoint
3. a place of survival or refuge

Stronghold. Its a word that many times Christians use to describe sin. Something that has become so embedded in our life that we no longer know how to get rid of it. If you've read here for very long you'll know I've talked about certain strongholds in my life. One in particular I have dealt with for years. Many, many years. In that time walls have been built up around that area of my life. Big, thick walls. Stone ones. There's probably even a moat with crocodiles surrounding the thing. Its become a stronghold. A fortress. I have told God, "God, you can have my life - I'm giving it freely to you." Yet this stronghold remains. This sin struggle remains. Guilt, shame, discouragement. It all remains. Why? I've thought all this time that I am the one who built this stronghold. That stone by stone, I'm the one who labored and made the walls and the moat, because of my sin. For one, I would hope that I would not have willingly build such a fortress around a known sin in my own life. Truthfully, I don't know if I'm strong enough to have even done that. But I know who is. I know of someone who would like nothing more than to build walls like that around my sin. Our enemy. Our nemesis. Satan. He is the one who lugged these stones in here. He is the one that I myself allowed to dig a moat and entrench himself in this area of my life. He has made himself well fortified in that area.

Something stuck out to me as I read about strongholds. I was thinking about the enemy making himself a stronghold, making himself a place where he can go in our life that no matter what its safe. Maybe its an addiction that we have that we have given to God, but haven't really given to him. Satan knows that is an area that he is safe in. Its a stronghold for him. The mighty fortress that Satan has built is nothing compared to the stronghold the bible says we have.

Psalm 9:9 The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.
Psalm 18:2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
Psalm 27:1 The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?
Psalm 37:39 The salvation of the righteous comes from the LORD; he is their stronghold in time of trouble.

The Lord is my stronghold. He is the place where I can go and be safe. The enemy can't go there. He is not allowed within its walls. Does that mean we won't have to battle? We won't have to fight to keep Satan out. No, I don't think so. 2 Corinthians 10:4 says, "The weapons we fight with (so, we have weapons, and we're fighting) are not of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power (power that comes from God) to demolish strongholds." Now, God wouldn't give us weapons that could destroy HIS stronghold. So what strongholds would he be talking about? The same one I'm talking about - the enemy's. The passage goes on, in verse 5, "We demolish areguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." Guys, we are in the midst of a war. An actual, literal war. Our lives are the battleground. The enemy has a stronghold in my life where he feels he is safe. No more. NO MORE! No longer will I allow Satan any inch of ground in my life. Its over. It stops here. Satan's stronghold will crumble. Stone by stone - its going to fall. The only stronghold I need or want in my life is the one where I can run to and be safe.


Halloween 2

Okay, I've made my decision..........

Yeah....this is what I was doing last night....should have been practicing for worship, what can you do...

You shall see the full effect October 31.


Who decides...

Who decides that guys can have hairy legs and armpits, but that girls should shave theirs?


A Grandpa Story

My mom, my aunt and my grandma basically took care of my grandpa in the weeks before his death. My mom told me this story that happened just a few days before he died.

Hy mom and Grandpa were in his bedroom doing something and Grandpa said, "Now, Liz, there is a gun and magazine (clip) under the bed. I don't want Aimee to come in here while she is playing and get a hold of it." My grandpa was thinking I was still a child. He was suffering from terminal dementia my mom called it. When they asked him the date he replied March 1985. I would have been 7.

"Okay, dad," my mom said and she lifted the mattress to look for the gun.

"UNDER the bed, Liz UNDER the bed. Would you listen to me?!" cried my grandpa.

So my mom climbed down on her hands and knees and looked not expecting to find anything, but sure enough there was a pistol and the magazine clip under the bed.

Just wanted to remember that story later, so I posted it here. :)


In over my head?

I'm not a quitter. When I say I'm going to do something - generally I do it. (Unless its the gym - yeah that lasted like 3 days). Tonight I started a 2 year bible/leadership course at my church. I'm pretty excited. I was pretty excited. Well, I'm still pretty excited, its just that - I don't know what I'm doing there. I'm not planning on being in any form of leadership any time soon. Some of the people in the class have been in ministry, are currently in ministry....want to be in ministry. I guess we're all called to be ministers, but..... Why did I sign up? Thats what I said! No really, I had heard about it a while ago and thought, Wow, that is something I'd like to do. This summer I decided I would try to go back to college and that I wouldn't have time for this course. Well, school fell through and I felt like God said, "Now you have the time. I want you to do this." I sure hope that was him and that I'm not doing this to fulfill some selfish desire to complete this course just to complete it.....anyway. Well, the first thought I had as we're sort of going through the introductions is that, Man, I am SO out of place. I wanted to quit. Sorry, I've made a mistake - have a good year. SEE YA SUCKA'S!!! I won't do that, but its what I was thinking. Anyway - I'm still excited about it. I am pretty sure everyone in the class is married....and I'm single. Thats ok. I don't care. (I probably wouldn't have metioned it if I REALLY didn't care, huh?) I'm not going to quit. I quit the gym, thats enough for this month.


I don't know - you choose the title....

I'm sure I'm not the first one to come up with this "new" thought. Sometimes I have to "choose" to feel or act a certain way, even if I don't really feel that way. Case in point (and I apologize in advance to any male readership - you know who you are...) you know "that week" during "that time" of the month? Well, as I get older I'm finding I'm getting more and more emotional during that time. Not all crying and boo-hooing either. No, one day I'll be sad, but then the next I'll be very annoyed, and then I'll be very angry, and then I'll be depressed, and then I'll finally figure out what week it is, and I'll calm down (a little). Can I hear an AMEN?! Or, another case in point - shyness. Okay, I call some of my recent behavior being shy. You know, standing back and watching group interactions from a distance. Being in a group, but not being a part of the group. Not wanting to stretch myself enough to actually reach out and make new friends. I call it shy, God calls it something else. Pride? Stuck-up-iveness... I think I've said I'm shy because that makes me feel better about not talking to anyone at church or work.

You know, I can be so stinking selfish, too. That is one thing I really want to work on. Something I really need to work on. I tell myself that I am entitled to these feelings and that I can act in whatever manner I choose. But I can't. I just can't. Not only is it not fair to my friends, but my life is supposed to be a living testimony to those around me. To those closest to me. To those who need to see Him through me, because they're not going to see Him anywhere else. I have to keep myself in check, you know?

God was impressing that on me this morning. How can I be a living testimony and I have an attitude, or I'm depressed, or I'm fill in the blank. THEN, once I am a testimony and someone asks about God, how am I supposed to respond if I haven't even been in His word the last week? *sigh* Okay, so back to my initial thought: Sometimes I have to "choose" to feel or act a certain way, even if I don't really feel that way. I may feel shy - but God says that he has not given us a spirit of timidity. I may feel depressed or down - but God says rejoice in the Lord always.

DISCLAIMER: Oh, one last thought - I'm totally not saying that we should suppress our feelings or anything like that. I'm saying that personally I have a tendency to let my emotions control me - and for ME, these are things I, myself need to work on.


Grandpa - William Gill

Four months ago, while I was in Colorado for Memorial Day, my grandfather, Bill Gill, was playing golf and threw out his back. While at the doctor it was discovered that he hadn't actually thrown out his back, but rather he had cancer in his bones, lungs and liver.

He lost his battle with the disease yesterday morning. He was 75 years old.

Please pray for my family (my mom, aunt and uncles and grandmother specifically) during this time. Thank you so much.



Okay, before you start lecturing me on how sinful Halloween is....I know. I really do. I'm still dressing up, though. For those who feel I'm sinning....pray for me (I need it).

I want to be something really cool. I really REALLY want to be Jack Sparrow....but I haven't gotten up the courage to dress like a man in front of people at my church. (I assume we are having a Harvest festival....I haven't heard yet) Even still - thats the coolest thing I can come up with. I don't have my Jedi costume anymore, though I am not against making another one.

What do you think I should be? I really want something me.