April 29, 2013

Three Fiction Heroes My Husband Resembles

On Friday, my awesome critique partner and friend, Melissa Tagg, wrote a post about why she loves men -- and more importantly, about the fact that heroes don't just exist in novels, but also in real life.

I thought I'd hop on the bandwagon and brag on my husband a little bit, talking about how he really does have characteristics featured in some of my favorite novels.

#1: Fitzwilliam Darcy in Jane Austen's Pride & Prejudice
Aside from being tall and a loyal friend, my husband Mike is extremely generous. Remember how Darcy spent time, money, and energy to locate Lizzie's sister Lydia and make sure she married Wickham -- even when it was pretty clear Lizzie wasn't ever going to love Darcy? He went above and beyond, am I right?

Mike has gone above and beyond in so many ways to help other people. One way is by suggesting a friend and her baby stay with us for four months while her husband was in training for Border Patrol.

And you know his generous heart makes mine go aflutter.

#2: Peeta Mellark from Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games series
If you're a Gale fan, I apologize in advance -- but I adore Peeta because he loved Katniss so much he was willing to die for her. He sacrificed for her. That is a true hero right there.

While my husband (thankfully) hasn't had to put his life on the line for me, he has had to die to certain dreams in order to make my dream of being a full-time author come true. And that means more than I could ever, ever say.

#3: Michael Hosea from Francine Rivers' Redeeming Love
If you have not read this book, get thee to a bookstore, library, or Amazon. Of course, Michael's character is based on the prophet Hosea, who God commanded to marry a prostitute and keep going back for her -- a symbol that God will never give up on His people. In the book, Michael keeps going after Angel, even when she makes it clear she'll never change and she doesn't want to.

I'm grateful that my husband keeps coming after me emotionally, even when I shut him out. Even when my emotions don't make sense and they frustrate him. Even when they have the power to hurt him.

Yes, my husband isn't perfect -- a good fiction hero shouldn't be either -- but he is a hero, nonetheless, and I'm so blessed to have him in my life.

Your Turn: What is your favorite hero trait in a guy, real or imaginary?

*PS: Thanks, Melissa, for letting me take your idea and continue it here!

April 26, 2013

Fun Friday: Fitness, Fitness, Fitness

One word: Ow.
My husband and I joined a gym several years ago. But in the last few years, we've been a bit...um, lazy busy.

So we recently signed up for personal training.

And can I just say, I've never been so sore in my life! But it's a good soreness, you know?

We've been doing a lot of weight lifting, and then for cardio I alternate between the elliptical, stationary bike, and zumba. Zumba is my favorite, but the class times aren't the most convenient.

So...what about you? What's your favorite cardio exercise? And when you're weight lifting, what's your favorite thing to do?

*Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

April 24, 2013

Worship Wednesday: "Steal My Show" by TobyMac

Last week, I was asked to sing a song with the choir at church.

I love singing. I do. But I'll admit, there are times it's easier to worship than others. I love the song we sang, but was all nervous about the timing of my entrance. Worried I'd confuse the lyrics.

Bottom line: I was focused on me.

On how I would appear to the crowd.

On whether I would mess up.

If I looked at my heart, I knew that ultimately, what I wanted was for people listening to hear GOD. To hear the lyrics and have hope. To forget about me and focus on Him.

But I had to get out of the way first.

Coincidentally -- NOT! -- the day before, I'd heard "Steal My Show" by TobyMac on the radio. It talks about how smoke and lights aren't enough to put on a good show. God needs to be there, and not just there, but at the very center.

So there I was backstage, and I literally prayed, "God, steal this show. Make it about you."

And instead of focusing on myself and worrying about messing up, He helped me focus on Him. On the hope I had in Him. And He helped me communicate that, much better than I could on my own.

Thing is, even if you're not a performer, chances are you worry about something.
  • Appearing to be the perfect mom.
  • Appearing to be the perfect writer.
  • Appearing to be the perfect wife.
  • Appearing to be ________.
What if, instead of worrying about all that, you were to ask God to come in and steal the show that is your life?

Take a listen to this awesome song and be encouraged. Let Him come in and steal the show.

TobyMac - Steal My Show (Official Lyric Video) from tobymac on GodTube.

Your Turn: How are you praying God steals the show in your life?

*Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

April 22, 2013

Hungry...No, Voracious...for His Word

Pascal likes to eat. A lot. But he didn't always.
Many of you know that my youngest golden retriever, Pascal, got the dreaded parvovirus when he was just four months old.

It was awful. He almost didn't make it. I will spare you the details, but let me just say, it was some of the worst two weeks of my life!

But he survived and he never looked back.

Once he was home, I started to notice something about him.

He ate...differently. In fact, he was voracious in his hunger. The second I would put the bowl of food in front of him, he'd gobble up every last bit, then turn to his older sister and try to sneak some of her food.

Let me back up.

Before the parvo, he'd eat, but he was easily distracted. He'd nibble a little, then wander around, then go back, eat a little more. But he sometimes wouldn't finish his food and often didn't seem too interested in it.

But when he was sick, he basically went about ten days without eating anything.

It wasn't until he was without food that he learned to appreciate it. And still, to this day, he eats as if every meal might be his last. Like a little hog.

And you know what?

I wanna be like my dog.

Yep, I said it. But not with food (that wouldn't be too good).

I want to be like that with God's Word.

I've gone through trouble in my own life. When my mom was sick and later died, I'd spend hours in God's Word and found such great comfort in prayer. I'd journal pages upon pages of prayer.

But that was over eight years ago. And I'm ashamed to admit, I don't do that anymore.

I don't know when it happened, or why, but I slowly forgot what that hunger felt like. I got distracted by everything else. Began to drift away from the food. Sometimes, I wouldn't finish my meal of His Word for the day. Other days, I didn't eat at all.

But I want to be like Pascal. I don't want to take the meal for granted. I want to be voracious for each moment I spend in the Word, in prayer.

And I don't ever, ever want to forget what it was like in those dark days, when God was my only comfort. Because THAT reminds me of His goodness, and His faithfulness...and of how much I desperately need Him.

Your Turn: Do your pets or kids ever do something that totally makes you think about your own life? And how do you keep yourself voracious for His Word?

April 19, 2013

Fun Friday: Best Movie Kiss

Never Been Kissed: Best Movie Kiss Ever
On Tuesday night, I was exhausted. So, I browsed my Hulu account for a movie I hadn't seen. I found a Hallmark movie. It was cute enough.

But. There. Was. No. Kiss. At. The. End.

You just don't do that to a girl! I mean, c'mon!! It was Snow White and the Huntsman all over again!

That got me thinking...I definitely need a kiss to make a romantic movie worth watching. Almost any movie, really. But I digress.

So, then I started thinking about my favorite movie kisses: North and South is pretty delicious, as is the one at the end of You've Got Mail. But I'd have to say my favorite is the kiss at the end of Never Been Kissed.

There's just something about the way the guy walks into the kiss. *love it!*

So...what's your favorite movie kiss?

April 17, 2013

Worship Wednesday: "Our God" by Chris Tomlin

I think I speak for most people when I say...my heart hurts this week.

With the bombings in Boston at the marathon and other injustices going on in our world, it's easy to believe that God doesn't care.

That He is just a Being in the sky who made the world and let it spin.

Or even...that He doesn't exist.

Here's the thing. I don't know why God allowed the bombings. I don't know why He allows bad things to happen to innocents, except so we see the darkness of our world and are drawn to Him -- the light.

But I do know this.

He is so much bigger than we can imagine.

And even though evil may seem to have an upper hand, its "reign" is temporary.

God will overcome.

He is greater, stronger, more powerful than we know.

That's why I love Chris Tomlin's "Our God." It reminds me that God is in control.

And that I'm so, so, SO glad that I'm not.

Your Turn: What attribute of God has meant the most to you lately?

April 15, 2013

You Can Find Me at...

Where, oh where, in the blogosphere is Lindsay?

Today I'm honored to be a guest at Jennifer Hale's blog! She's out on maternity leave (just had the most adorable little boy!!) and I'm happy to be helping her out.

I'm talking about how God gave me a fall-flat-on-my-face moment that showed his love and care for me.

Won't you come say hi?

Your Turn: What did you do this weekend?

April 12, 2013

Fun Friday: Weird Food Combinations

The other night, I ate pizza. It was yummy.

But what made it even yummier was this:

Yes, I drink milk when I eat pizza.

I've been told this is "weird."

Me? I just think it's delicious.

Your Turn: What food combination is delicious to you but "weird" to others?

*Photos courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

April 10, 2013

Worship Wednesday: "Worn" by Tenth Avenue North

You know what I appreciate about the Bible?

It's honest.

Especially the Psalms.

Think about it. David and others wrote so many Psalms that cry out to God. They don't have answers...mostly just questions.

Questions like
  • How can you let this happen, God?
  • Why am I suffering unjustly?
  • What do I have to do to return to your good graces?
  • Will things ever be okay again?
  • How can I trust?
The Psalms also express sorrow, heartache. The awesome thing about God is that we can bring our feelings to Him -- and He listens. He cares.

The song "Worn" by Tenth Avenue North (listen below!) is an awesome reminder of that to me. Because it's not a song about answers. It's a song about plain old honesty and telling God, "I don't know how to keep going on. I'm worn out. I need to see some sort of evidence here that it'll all be okay. I need to know you're going to fix this--maybe not in the way I want you to, but in the way that's best."

Simply put, it's a cry from our spirits that tells God we need Him.

Your Turn: What's your favorite Psalm and why?

April 8, 2013

What to Do When You're Emotionally Exhausted

Last week was emotionally exhausting for me. I'm sure you can relate. There was a lot of extra "stuff" to deal with and my schedule was fuller than usual on top of it all. I didn't have a chance to deal with all of the emotions I was feeling or really process them.

So, I asked my friends on Facebook to contribute some ideas for relieving my exhausted spirit. They gave me so many amazing answers, and I wanted to share them with you in case they can help you today (I'm summarizing and not using their exact words here):
  • Eat chocolate...and pray.
  • Let yourself lounge on the couch and think.
  • Listen to praise and worship music.
  • Clear your to-do list of all but must-do's.
  • Make yourself a cup of tea and bust out the Psalms.
  • Cook (whacking veggies can relieve stress!).
  • Take a day trip and reflect/pray.
  • Get outside. Take a walk or hike. Be quiet.
  • Pedicure and/or massage. 'Nuff said.
  • Take mini-breaks and do something you enjoy.
  • Let yourself cry.
  • Give yourself permission to veg out with a good book or movie.
  • Take a bath in a Calgon-scented tub.
  • Meet up and chat with a good friend.
  • Snuggle with a puppy or cute kiddo.
  • Go shopping (hehe, love this option!).
  • Take time out and just go somewhere with your hubby.
Thanks again to all of my wonderful friends and their awesome suggestions. I was able to do a few of these and clear my mind. After an awesome weekend, I feel rested and am ready to face another week. I'm praying you have an absolutely amazing week as well!

Your Turn: Anything to add to the list? Which is your favorite suggestion?

*Photo courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

April 1, 2013

Spring Break!

So...I've been really nostalgic lately. I miss having a spring break.

So I'm giving myself one in the only way I know how. ;)

I'm taking a blogging break this week and will see you next Monday!

Hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend with loved ones. He is risen!