Friday, November 16, 2012

What really matters, I'm just sayin'...

There's a big to-do in our news lately about the ban of panhandling in downtown Colorado Springs.
A large portion of our homeless seem to congregate there.
Some folks don't like their looks.
Some don't like their smell.
Some couldn't care less, they just want to get to work every morning without being harassed every time their car comes to a stop.
I understand the attitude.
I really do.

I've noticed myself becoming more and more cynical over the years . . .

. . . for obvious reasons.

You have those whose appearance and demeanor confirm that they really are in need.
Then there are those who sit at the intersection texting on their cell phones until the light turns red, at which point they pick up their cardboard signs and start their well rehearsed 'brother can you spare a dime' speeches.
Like I said, cynical.

Most of us really do want to help. But how?
That discussion in itself is a minefield.
* "Never give a beggar cash! They'll just use it for drugs or alcohol. Give them a hot meal instead!"
Well, don't know about you, but I don't usually drive around with extra Big Macs in the car, and I'm certainly not going to pick up a stranger.
* "Go ahead, give 'em cash. It's not up to you what they do with it, it's just up to you to be generous."
Trust me, I want to help! But guys like the one in the pic above aren't getting a dime of my money!
* "Don't give them anything! They can go to a shelter or a church if they really want help." 
That just sounds like Pilot washing his hands to me.

Joey and I have been approached at stop lights, shopping centers, restaurants, gas stations, and several times in the parking lot at church.
We always try to help.

Yes, we've given money.
Yes, we've given food.
Yes, we've directed the person in need to our pastors, deacons, or anyone else we thought might help.

I don't know if there is a definite right and wrong for these situations.
What I do know is that, above all, we should show Jesus to those in need.

Not long ago, we were filling up at the gas station.
As the girls and I waited in the car, a young woman approached Joey.
I couldn't hear the conversation, but I knew what she wanted.
Without hesitation, Joey walked over to her car, paid for, and pumped her gas.

The girls watched intently.
"Mom, who is that?"
"I don't know."
"Does dad know her?"
"No, he doesn't."
"Is he buying her gas?"
"Yes he is."
"Because daddy wants to be like Jesus."


"Wow. That's really cool."

I saw her children in the back seat.
I saw her talking on her cell.
I saw her husband sitting in their warm toasty car texting away while my husband stood out in the frigid air and bought their gas!

My girls saw their daddy being Jesus to a stranger.

Lord forgive me for the times my heart is hardened. Help me to always be a reflection of your love.

That's what really matters.

I'm just sayin'. . .

Thursday, November 8, 2012

From 'Spring Forward' to 'Fall Back'

May through October was a blur this year.
Those "Lazy Days of Summer" are a thing of the past.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I'm a bit word poor right now, but I've got pictures to spare!
(Feel free to start your own montage music now...)

Early spring was warming,
but the girls wore their hats as long as they could.

We finished up Awana with the Grand Prix!

So proud!

They deserved a treat after all that work!

New glasses - 
for both girls.
I'm a mean mommy. We do summer school around here!
Joey took the girls to the Pueblo dwellings for one of their
Daddy day's out.
Loved our trip to the Denver museum.

This was the girls' favorite part!

Poppy made a new friend at the zoo,

and Shelby loved the wolf preserve.

Our brave girl waiting to have a cyst
removed from her wrist.
There was definite swooning involved,
but she made a quick recovery!
Little Maddie sunshine was a great help
to her sis.
Poppy loved Garden of The Gods.
Joey in the Denver Memorial Day Parade.
The girls said he was cooler than Batman!
Echo Lake half way up Mt. Evans - 

the highest paved road in North America.

Ready for the Derby - bring on the mint julep!
Old Colorado City farmer's market - 
and Whole Foods. Two of our favs!
Nothing like homemade pesto made with
hand picked basil!

Why, oh why, does he roll in the dirt.

Crossing the Continental Divide.
Water fall in the San Juan National Forest.
Durango hotel overlooking the Animas River.
Can we trash a hotel room or what?!
The Painted Desert.

Our fearless trekers.
Easter Sunrise Service at the Grand Canyon.
Working our way around the South Rim.

We had a little surprise on our front porch
when we got home!

Took Grandma and Poppy to Focus on The Family,
and Cripple Creek.

Cripple Creek Heritage Center.
Crossing the Divide on the way to Leadville, CO.

Leadville was absolutely worth the drive!
Testing the headwaters of the Arkansas River.

Add caption
One of the girls' favorite stores.
Visitor's Center at Mueller's State Park.
We gave the girls mustard seed neclaces this year
for their 'New Birth' days!
This was so fun to watch! Almost 100 balloons,
and they would take turns dropping down
to skim the water before rising again.
Just Crusin'.
Red Rock Canyon.
Mt. Rosa.

Helen Hunt Falls.
Cheyenne Canyon.

Narnia at Focus on the Family.

Every month we have a theme night.
August was Casablanca!
Also this summer; 'Colonial Williamsburg' and
 'Welcome back Football'!
Three Amigos cuddling in my bed while daddy works late.
So glad the girls love to read!
Very moving dedication ceremony
with the NYFD presenting a piece of the
Trade Tower wreckage.
Gary Sinise and the Lt. Dan Band!
Great concert!!!
The girls' last year of VBS. Can't believe it.
Anniversary at Marigold. Unbelievable coffee
and cake!
Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day!
Oh yeah, we were there.
Shelby's cute new 'do' for the symphony...
This year we've heard Mahler, Shostakovich,
Schumann, and Barber. Can't wait for the next!
This Halloween I had a Ninja,
and a mad scientist!
Guess the princess days are over.
Unexpected visitors at 'Trunk-or-Treat'!
Why call it a 'slumber' party if no one sleeps?!
Hope to see more of these . . .
And much less of these.

We've had a wonderful summer. Can't wait to see what the holidays will bring!