Monday, November 10, 2008


I often find my self thinking like Paul, “For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing.” (Romans 7:19) Little things separate me from God’s heart when I want to draw near, and that grieves my spirit. My prayer life has recently been more of me asking for the Holy Spirit’s direction and guidance because there are still some rooms in my soul that need God’s remodeling work.

As we have learned over the past few weeks at The Vine, the Holy Spirit is God presently available to each of us. As I have been contemplating God making Himself available to me, I have had to take a serious look at what motivates me. Buried in this inward journey God again hit me with the obvious; the Holy Spirit is just as His name declares…HOLY, and cannot dwell in unholy places. That’s not to say that we, who sin, cannot have the Holy Spirit, but we can’t actively sin and expect the power of God to be at work in us.

The conclusion I have come to is that our motives tell the story, and what God has revealed to me is that I am motivated by happiness more than holiness. In The Pursuit of Man, A.W. Tozer writes, "The true ideal is not to be happy but to be holy. The Holy heart alone can be the habitation of the Holy Ghost." So my challenge is to die to the idea of happiness and grow in the pursuit of holiness, only then can The Holy Spirit become a full time resident and be more than occasional guest, bringing with Him Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faith, Gentleness, and Self Control. That is when we will truly experience the abundant life Jesus promised.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Halloween 2008

We were lucky to go back to L'town and continue our tradition of trick-or-treating with the Ryan family. They are some of the nicest people and we miss having them as our neighbors!! Calen and their son, Chase, are big buds. Ellie Grace likes to hang out with him too. Emmy Kate loves to tackle and kiss (to the point of gnawing) their youngest son, Cade. Taking pictures with these guys was not an easy task and sadly, we didn't get any of Cade. He was the cutest - he was Eeyore with a removable tail!! Calen was a pirate, Ellie Grace was a flower/fairy, and Chase was Buzz Lightyear with blow-up wings. The peacock costume had to return this year and Emmy Kate loved it!!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Thoughts on a Wednesday morning

"Be still and know that I am God;
I will be exhalted among the nations,
I will be exhalted on the earth."
Psalm 46:10

Saturday, October 18, 2008

The girls' birthday

We had a party for Ellie Grace and Emmy Kate. Their birthdays are 2 weeks apart and I just didn't think I could do 2 birthday parties in 2 weeks, so we did them together. It was a little chaotic, especially since the girls' could have cared less about the presents. So..I ended up opening 2 sets of presents. But, I think a good time was had by all.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Political Mess - by Candace

I felt the need to put by Candace because Patrick has been blogging so much lately.
I just felt the need to vent a little about my frustrations about all of the political drama. My family has always been big into politics so I find it hard to turn off that switch in me. I get so riled up between the campaigns and I check the news every minute for updates. My big plan on Friday night was watching the debate with Patrick. I was pumped about it. But a person whose blog I stalk really has hit me hard. I would link it, but I haven't figured out how to do that yet. Anyway, she made the point that God doesn't care about this election. The reason why He doesn't care, is because He already knows who wins. He has already known who would win this election from the beginning of time. But, what He does care about is our hearts. He does care about where we will spend eternity. I know where I will spend eternity, but I am not so sure about some of my friends. And, how I handle this election and what happens and my opinions, could affect the way my friends feel about Christians and Christ. I have to keep my eye on the big picture, the main goal. My goal cannot be - have my team win this election. My goal has to be point to and glorify God in all that I do. So before I get up on my high horse and say "I am right and you are soooo wrong", I have to think about does this glorify God? It is so hard. Especially since, I think my team is going to lose.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

confession time

Confession: I love my wife. She is beautiful, not just outside, but inside too! (I know that's a cheesy cliche, but its true) She cares about and thinks about things that don't even cross my mind. I guess it's true that opposites attract, because in all the ways that it really counts she really does help bring focus to things that I would not even notice.

a heart epiphany

Colossians 1:22 says, …”He has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation.” This was the key verse we talked about at Cluster group the other night…and I had a heart epiphany today as I listened to "The Way I Am" on my stuff. (I call it a heart epiphany because it was one of those moments that connected something I have known in my head for a long time and something my heart had not felt in a long time.) God loves me right where I am; just like I am, and doesn’t want me to try to be perfect. He wants me to embrace the freedom he has given me and experience life free from accusation. The hard part for me is the simple part of the Gospel…Accept what God unconditionally offers.

Here’s the epiphany. Paul uses the word reconcilED…past tense!!!

The hard part for me, on my journey with Christ, is really understanding that the reconciliation is not a continual process. I have been reconciled. Once I chose to accept Jesus as my Lord and Savior the reconciliation was sealed. I don’t have to live up to a standard. I just need to heed the words Paul writes to the Church at Colosse(1:23): “continue in your faith established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel…”

That’s the launching point for everyone’s faith journey. We have to accept that God has already done all the work for reconciliation. It has already been accomplished. All we have to do is accept it, and if we continue in our faith established and firm, we will see a change in how we react to the world around us. We won’t be perfect. We will mess up, but the good news is that we don’t have to continually be reconciled. We are reconciled, and always will be. That is where true freedom lives.

So today I choose to be free!!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

My cluster group says I am not shallow!

So my cluster group says that I am not shallow and that I can post on this blog. I redeemed myself by saying "Jesus came to put a face on God, and we (Christians) are here to put a face on Jesus". I cannot take credit for this statement. I just heard it somewhere and it stuck with me...and it applied to what we read tonight.
Anyway, hopefully this will bring Candace Queen back to the blogosphere.

Monday, August 25, 2008

The truth about sin

So...I had another God moment this morning as I was sitting in my office reading. In Seeing the Invisible, A.B. Simpson writes, "The first act of faith is to believe what God says about sin." That was a hammer to my head. It got me thinking, if we don't believe EVERYTHING the Bible says about sin then we can't believe anything the Bible says about God. Our faith exists in embracing everything the Bible tells us about us and eveything it tells us about God. Our condition is inseparable from God's redemption. You can't have one without the other.

This was earth shattering for me, not so much because I don't know how much I have sinned, but because I never really thought of faith in terms of embracing my failures and owning them, so that God can redeem me.

One of my favorite verses in Scripture is Micah 6:8:

He has showed you, O man, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.

As far as I can tell there is nothing more humbling than embracing your sin (and redemption) dailyso that you can walk with God.

Friday, August 22, 2008

My wonderful Wife

So Candace read my post yesterday and informed me that she can no longer post b/c my post was so deep, and hers are so superficial. I, however, think that her posts show much more about our life than mine ever would, that's why I don't post often.

I always look forward to seeing what she posts. Her stories and her posts always have a way of making me smile and we all need to smile more often.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

random thought and the urge to share

So finally a post from Patrick...

Today I am exceedingly thankful.

I turned on the computer to check the blog, and the music started and I was drawn in. Now, those of you who know me know that I am, at my core, a music person. Music resonates in my soul. Anyway..."From The Inside Out" started playing when I got on the blog and I was immediately emmersed in the presence of God. I was immmediately prostrate in my heart, and consumed by the glory of God. I clicked unknowingly into a God moment, and was reminded that although I have failed thousands of times His mercy is still available and His grace is still sufficient.

Then as if I needed another reminder, "In My Place" came on, and God reminded me that, inspite of his longstanding goodness toward me, I spend a lot of time running from Him, and there is not a thing I can do to change that.

I was then pointed toward Colossians 2:6-7:

So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thanksfulness.

Then the next song..."Here Comes the Sun". I'll let you connect the dots:)

Then as I spent a few more minutes meditating on the words from Colossians, I got the urge to share some words God had put in my heart over the last few weeks (Maybe Gregg can help put them to music):

You are my glory
I will praise not other name
I will sing of Your goodness
And declare Your fame

In my life's story
There is none but you
I will sing of Your mercy
And declare Your truth

Sunday, August 3, 2008

My blog needs some love!

Sorry that I haven't posted in 2 weeks to the few who read this blog! Patrick went on a business trip to Phoenix and I took the kids to stay with my parents. My dad's computer was in the shop so I couldn't post. Then we left for Longboat Key for a week and we didn't have Internet access. It is really weird when you are used to clicking a button and being connected to the world and then suddenly not being connected. A good weird, but definitely weird.

Anyway, I am back. And Rebecca Moon, I will blog about random things soon...very soon!

Longboat Key 2008 - a lot of pictures!!!

Apparently, Emmy Kate thinks sand tastes good!

My dad and niece Sophie.

Ellie Grace's feet. I like feet pictures.

My parents with all their grandchildren

My brother Matt, his wife Autumn, and their children - Fisher and Sophie

My sister Amy - who swears that she is never having kids after spending the week with us. Her husband John couldn't make the trip. We missed you John!!!

The grandchildren!

My parents with my kids!

My parents

An attempt at a family picture!

The most beautiful place in the world!

We went to this cool jungle garden place. We got to hold parrots and feed flamigoes.
Some of the pics got separated, but keep looking below.

This is the walkway at Little Gull where we stay. I love it.

Calen and Amy wrestling the alligator....statue.

My brother Matt feeding flamigoes. Sorry the picture is flipped! The flamingoes came right up to us and let us feed them. It was really neat.
Anyway, Longboat Key is where I would live if I could choose any place in the world. It is really beautiful. Maybe I will win the lottery one day!
Back to work and reality tomorrow!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Shoe Battle with a 21 month old

These are my favorite shoes of Ellie Grace's. I try and come up with outfits just so she can wear these shoes.
This is what Ellie Grace thinks about the shoes.

These are the shoes Ellie chooses to complete her outfit. Classic Ellie Grace.

Here is a recent picture of my precious Emmy Kate.

Her hair looks awesome!
I love you girls!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Calen, stitches, and a new look

This was my cute guy yesterday, with cool long hair. It was his style. It was getting a little too long and we were going to get just a trim (a very slight trim) very soon. But, a fall made us change our plans. I was trying to get Ellie dressed to go swimming this morning. Calen was dancing around and lost his balance. He ended up slamming his head into the corner of Ellie Grace's dollhouse bookshelf. I started screaming and Patrick came running. He quickly loaded him into the car and took him to the doctor.

This was the result of the doctor's visit. 5 stitches and a hunk of hair gone.

I am grateful. It could have been worse. He could of hit his eye or broken his nose. The Lord was looking out for him definitely. But now, we have to shave his head. I could cry. Patrick said, "He will just have to get used to a new look. It will grow out again, eventually." So here we go. A new look for Calen.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Cape San Blass 2008

6 grandchildren - 6 & under!

Just the girls - Ellie Grace, Emmy Kate, and Lena

Calen and Clayton showing off their wild side!

Papa Queen chillin'!

Sweet Jackson!

Papa and Gigi

Calen and Clayton!

Ellie Grace

Emmy Kate

Pictures from our vacation with the Queen family! It was so much fun and we can't wait for next year!! These pictures are from Kellie (thanks!). Our camera was broken so sadly, we have no pictures. Kellie and Heather took a lot for us though. Heather will be giving us some too, so those will come soon!