Saturday, April 30, 2011

Root Canals and Fairytales

Thursday morning I had a root canal! Thank you to all those who prayed for me and what seemed like something that should be no big deal...but brought lots of pain for 3 weeks! The removal of those root nerves has made an unbelievable difference!!! Praise the Lord for modern medicine and dentistry!!! With the pain just about gone, I feel like myself again!

Thursday was also our ladies tea at the church and Grace and Faith felt a bit like "princesses" that night. They were the "bookend" flower girls in a "parade of wedding dresses" from as far back as 1926. They had so much fun getting there hair and makeup done at the church and just as excited that they get to keep the dresses. I have a feeling we'll be seeing a lot of "flower girls" waltzing around our house in the coming weeks!

The woman who put together the bridal show is a precious college gal in our church who has an amazing eye for a good picture...so much so that she has her own photography business. She took some sweet pictures of the girls and I thought some of you might have fun taking a peak

And, speaking of photographs...if you happen to live in upstate New York...I've got just the gal for you...my sister-in-law, Chrissy, is fantastic! She makes me want to have another baby, just so I can get some super cute pictures!:)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Crazy, Crazy, Crazy!!!!


I don't know about you, but that is how life feels right now for the Pichura Family! I feel like we are living in fast forward mode and I wish I could hit the play button or, better yet, pause things all-together!:)

I don't know if you feel that way too, right now, but I know that in the midst of the "crazy" there is only one thing that is necessary...one thing that can't be taken away from us...sitting at Jesus' feet (Luke 10:42). Mary was able to do it amidst the "hub-bub" of a bustling house...I am not there yet...I am too easily distracted! I need the quite and still that only comes in the early morning at the Pichura home. What about you?

We all desperately need to sit at our Savior's feet...sit so close that, through His Word, we feel, learn, and know His heartbeat so intimately that it becomes our heartbeats, too.

"Be still and know that I am God." Psalms 46:10


P.S. Casting Crowns has a beautiful song about sitting at Jesus' feet...it's become one of my favorites!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Learning Lessons


The Lord has been using this tooth pain to teach me lessons. He has given me a new sympathy and understanding for those who deal with chronic pain. Through a molar, He has helped me to better be able to share in the sufferings of others. In that regards, this pain has been a gift!

He has reminded me that even small things can wreak havoc...much like James says our tongue can....and much like "little sins" that we try to ignore can damage our walk with Christ in big ways.

He has used the pain to humble me. It's hard to feel self-sufficient when I have a pain that will not go away...it's hard to feel like everything is "under-control" when the pain is out of my control. It's hard to feel strong when I feel weak. And that is exactly where God wants me (2 Cor. 12:10). Weak...because He gets all the glory. He gets all the glory when the Advil and Tylenol work. He gets all the glory when I sleep through the night. He gets all the glory when I am able to smile and press on. He gets all the glory when I don't snap at the kids (although, He has also been getting a lot of repenting in that department as well this past week!). He gets all the glory when I get some helpful advice!

Why does He get the glory? Because my eyes are fixed on Him! "Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, Maker of Heaven and Earth" (and my teeth!)Psalm 12:1-2. Don't get me wrong, I am not against modern medicine. I have an appt. with a dentist next week and am well aware that my roots might be getting a visit soon...but I am just as aware that even my tooth is in His hands!

This post might seem a little "out there" to you. Maybe I seem a bit dramatic for your liking!:) But I think we all have a "tooth" in our lives that the Lord is using to remind us that our sufficiency, our hope, our strength, and even our very breath comes from Him. Maybe your "tooth" is a rebellious child, maybe it's a husband who seems anything but passionate about the things of Christ, maybe it's a bunch of unexpected bills, maybe dreams you had and plans you were making have come crashing down, maybe it is physical pain or sickness. And God is asking, "Do you trust Me?(Proverbs 3:5-6) Do you truly believe that I am good?(Psalm 16:2) Will you choose joy in the midst of your trial?(James 1:2) Will you put your hope in Me and not the situation?"

I pray we all can say yes, yes, yes and yes!!!

"Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God." Psalm 42:11

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

My tooth :)


I had a bunch of old filling taken out and new ones put in last week. The old ones, from my Jr. High years, were cracked, falling apart, and needed to be replaced. I thought I would have a day or two of discomfort and pain...but it has been 8 days and the pain continues in one tooth (and into my ear and head!). Extra Strength Tylenol has become a very good friend of mine, and I feel a bit like I am nursing a baby again as I am woken up by the pain each night and have to "refuel" so I can fall asleep again. I had an "x-ray" taken of my tooth yesterday and, while all looks well, the dentist thinks I may have permanent nerve damage in the one tooth that can only be remedied with a root canal (and then a crown). I didn't know whether to cry or laugh when they handed me an estimate of a couple thousand dollars!!!

What I did do was start praying that God would heal the nerve (if that is the case) and take away the pain! And, to keep the tears at bay, I started preaching to myself about the fact that all money is God's money and that He is in control of every detail, down to the hairs on my head and the teeth in my mouth. All things are his servants (Psalm 119), including pain. And that pain and possible root canal are a part of His plan for my life. He doesn't just want me to trust Him in the big things...but all the little things, too. Preaching to myself what I know to be true about God and His promises truly made the fear and worry disappear...now, if only the pain would, too!:)

Friday, April 15, 2011

It's Dancing Time

...I bought a CD by Andrew Peterson called "Counting Stars" and I have so very much enjoyed the stories he tells through song. One of my favorites is "Dancing in the Minefields" and, in light of yesterday's post, I thought it was the perfect time to share the song with you! It's dancing time, ladies!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Becoming the Woman of His Dreams


Does it sound a bit corny? Maybe a bit "out of reach"? Should your husband just keep dreaming because that is as close as it going to get?

"Becoming the Woman of His Dreams" is the title of a book written by Sharon Jaynes. I had never heard of her before until reading Aileen Challies article "False Messages". You know, the free e-book I posted back in January all about that short little word that we don't like to say or talk about though we all could use a healthy dose of advice and encouragement about...yep...sex!

Anyway, Aileen cited Sharon's book in her e-book and so I decided to read it. It was well worth my time. She uses the book to look at seven qualities every man longs for. According to Sharon, he longs to be prayed for, respected, adored, have you initiate friendship with him, safeguard your marriage, encourage him, and sexually fulfill him. I have to say, after reading the book, I think she hit a lot of "nails on the head" and I was reminded, blessed, encouraged, inspired, and taught things I did not know or had really taken much time to think about!

I realized how easy it was for me to become "me-centered" in our marriage...often thinking of MY needs, MY desires, and MY thoughts on how things should be. Sharon did a great job of helping me to see more clearly what my husband might be needing, desiring, and thinking. It's a perspective that I so very much need to have if I am to truly honor the Lord in my marriage by considering Bryan more important than myself and considering how I can spur him on to love and good deeds!

I was thinking what a neat gift it would be to give your husband your already read copy of "Becoming the Woman of His Dreams" on Father's Day...and letting him know that, by the grace of God, you are working on making his dreams comes true!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

A Prayer of My Heart


A prayer of my heart as we continue to settle into our new home and new neighborhood is an echo of some beautiful words of J.C. Ryle and I thought you just might feel the same way (wherever the Lord has placed you) after reading his precious encouragement!

Are you alive? Then see that you prove it by your actions. Be a consistent witness. Let your words, works, ways and tempers all tell the same story. Let not your life be a poor lethargic life, like that of a tortoise or a sloth—let it rather be an energetic stirring life, like that of a deer or bird. Let your graces shine forth from all the windows of your life, that those who live near you may see that the Spirit is abiding in your hearts. Let your light not be a dim, flickering, uncertain flame; let it burn steadily, like the eternal fire on the altar, and never become low. Let the savor of your religion, like Mary’s precious ointment, fill all the houses where you dwell. Be an epistle of Christ so clearly written, penned in such large bold characters—that he who runs may read it. Let your Christianity be so unmistakable, your eye so single, your heart so whole, your walk so straightforward that all who see you may have no doubt whose you are, and whom you serve.


There is a whole blog blog dedicated to J.C. Ryle quotes! It's worth checking out.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

A Sneak Peak...

...our families have been asking for some pictures of the house we are renting...so here is a peak into our blessing from the Lord...








Friday, April 8, 2011

Happy Birthday Samuel!


Yesterday marked one week in our new house but, more importantly, it marked Samuel's 9th birthday!

Samuel wanted to have a couple of friends over but we had told him that, with just moving in, it was probably not the best idea! Of course, that made it so much easier to plan a little surprise party for him last night.:)

As we keep getting to know Samuel more and more (it will be two years this summer since his adoption) the window of his heart keeps getting bigger and we see more of his personality, abilities, and desires!

He truly is an easy going kid! He usually is not one to initiate an activity but is quick to join in with whatever might be going on at the moment. Having said that, our new home has given him the opportunity to be outside more and I think that is where we are going to find him a lot!:) He LOVES to play hockey (both on the ice and on street)...especially goalie (Papa...who would have thought your "genes" could end up in Samuel after all!) and he loves to ride his bike and skateboard. I have a feeling there will be many skinned knees and hands in the coming months!:)

He is also a sweet helper. He is one of the first ones to "jump up" when I ask for help and it's not uncommon to find him helping his siblings with one of their chores!

It still amazes me to see how far he has come in his school work. At the rate he is going, Samuel will finish out grade 3 with a B average! He will have completed 4 grades in two year. What a gift from God!

Samuel,

Dad and I are so thankful for the gift God gave us in being your parents! We are so thankful for God's plans!!! We pray, son, that you would fall in love with Jesus more and more each day! He has given you a tender heart for others and we pray that He would grow that tender heart with each passing day and that it would bloom into a heart passionate for others to know Jesus!

It has been so fun to watch you "bloom" in the game of hockey, too! To see you "glide" around the ice when, not the long ago, you did more "sliding" along the ice!:) It has been fun to see the giftedness God has given you for a sport that involves ICE...some -thing you had never seen till a couple of years ago!

We love you, buddy! Happy 9th Birthday!!!

love,
Dad and Mom




Tuesday, April 5, 2011

We are in and settled!


Sunday afternoon I sent out the following email to our family to let them know where we were at...and I thought it was just as fitting to post it here! Since then, we have finished setting up the house ( I have been so thankful for the help and tips with where to hang pictures and what to put where!) and we are feeling very much at home!!!

The tenants in the basement have kindly let us use their internet...so, I get to let you all know how it went! :)

This past week, I was reminded of the quote by Elizabeth Elliot ( I think it was her), "God's grace does not go where our thoughts often take us"! His grace is sufficient for the day, the hour, the moment!

Wednesday my stomach felt in knots with all that needed to be done and just how overwhelming moving is....and I had to keep preaching to myself to just take it one step at a time and to keep my eyes on Jesus...here is a glimpse of our great God.

-We had 10 guys come help us move (and the main floor of the house wasn't ready for us so we ended up having to move it all into the garage at the new place and treat the U-Haul like a second garage to store the rest of it in overnight). Our stuff was literally packed to the ceiling in the garage. The guys were great...cheerful, joking, and hard working!

-a family in our church watched the kiddos all that evening while the move was going on and fed them dinner!

-One of the gals in our small group made dinner for all of the guys and stayed with me at the old house cleaning it...HUGE BLESSING!!!!

-We got into our new place at noon on Thursday and our youth pastor came over and he and Bryan got the whole U-Haul unloaded and half of the garage into the house. A couple of the ladies in our church helped move around boxes and put them in the right rooms.

-By Thursday evening all the furniture was in the house and an elder and his wife brought us dinner....a full course turkey dinner!! :)

-Friday a dear couple stepped in like adopted parents :) He came at 9 am and stayed all day....helping Bryan set up bunk beds, tables, media equipment, and helped him with boxes and the garage. His wife helped me unpack the whole kitchen and then they bought pizza and stayed for dinner!!!

-Saturday I got the rest of the boxes unpacked, Bryan got a lot of the garage done and we got most of the pictures on the downstairs floor hung up (thanks to help from our new sweet neighbor who is also my friend from church). And we even sat down with big bowls of ice cream and watched a movie that night! :)

-We are working on the bedrooms and garage today....but I look back and my eyes fill with tears at how God brought along just the right people at just the right times to help and minister to us! It has been beautiful and humbling....and ALL GOD!!!!!

-The kids have been outside almost non-stop (and did I mention that it didn't rain at all while we moved??!!!!)....playing hockey in the street with neighbor boys and the girls playing with a friend from church who lives across the street!!! It's truly amazing!!!!!

I need to go...but couldn't wait to tell you about God's provision these last few days!

"O Lord, You are my God; I will exalt You, I will praise Your name. For You have done wonderful things, plans formed of old, faithful and sure." Isaiah 25:1