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Showing posts from March, 2008

Hasta aqui llego!

This is the third and final installment of my "Spanish-isms" series. If you didn't read the first post, go here.

Today's Spanish-ism, according to my Northside hispanic ladies, means, "It's gotten up to here!" This is what they say when a situation has come to a point where they must draw a boundary.

On Saturday at our life coaching class, one of the ladies I'm mentoring shared that she is facing on-going verbal abuse from a family member. Time and again she has subjected herself to this at family gatherings and otherwise, not only because he's her brother, but because she felt it was the Christian thing to do. After all, should you actually... (gasp) back away from your brother? Limit your time with him? Not include him at family gatherings or go to one because you know he will be there and he will say mean things to you?

Never fear, help was on the way in the life coaching class Saturday as I explained that God never asked us to subject ourselves…

Llerba mala nunca muere

This is the next in my series of Spanish-isms that my ladies shared with me in life coaching on Saturday. See the first post about this if you are just hearing about this for the first time. This Spanish-ism (Llerba mala nunca muere) means, "Bad grass never dies." What in the world brought this up in my question/answer session on Saturday? One of the ladies had a very common question. They are struggling with the issue of a family member who has cancer and has not been given much hope. This is such a common struggle, or question...wondering "why?" Why does it seem that "only the good die young"? The other day I was watching a Billy Joel interview where he shared that he came under attack for his song, "Only the good die young" when it was released. The Catholic Church tried to get the song banned from radio stations. The reason was because they thought it was a slap in the face to God - questioning His sovereignty and blaming Him that He a…

Mejor solo que mal acompanado!

Today I had my life coaching meeting at the church. I meet monthly with a group of wonderful women who are interested in mentoring...growth..."the next level." Some are younger, some are older, but all have one thing in common - a thirst to grow and mature.
Recently I was challenged to put the responsibility on the mentee to ask the questions. So rather than prepare a teaching this time I asked all of my ladies to come with one question to ask me. It was one of the best times we've had. After each of them asked a question and I shared answers (with some great input from the group as well) we had a time of prayer for each person's needs.
One thing that emerged from this time together were some "Spanish sayings." We are an international church with many nations represented, and many of our people are Hispanic and in fact our services are interpreted in Spanish. Well, as I was answering questions today a few of the hispanic ladies would laugh as I expressed myse…

Kiss mahhh grits!

I love grits.
Especially now.
Larry and I and 60 other Northsiders are on a 50 day fast. We are eating fruits and vegetables only. It's a good thing I absolutely adore vegetables! I like fruit, I'm just not as crazy about it as I am veggies. So here we are for 50 days, from Easter to Pentecost Sunday (May 11) fasting and praying our guts out...literally.
We believe history belongs to those who pray. And, we also believe that some things only happen when you add fasting to prayer. So we do!
Grits is simply...corn. So I can have grits. And I do, most every morning. And sometimes twice a day when I need something a little more filling. Other things I'm eating like crazy are:
Salsa
Olives
Peanuts (they are a fruit, believe it or not)
and tons of smoothies.
I never liked smoothies til' I went to Africa. Being that my missionary hosts there were vegetarians, when I stayed in their home we had smoothies every morning. Barb would put bananas, mangoes, and some strawberries in the blend…

Seven things about me

I was tagged by my dear friend, Pastor Tara Sloan at Destiny Driven to do a blog on "seven things about me." If you've been reading my blog a few years you could probably easily take a "Deanna quiz" and pass it, but I'm always one to take a friend's tag, so here we go:

1) The most important thing to me in a relationship is loyalty. If you are truly my loyal friend I will stand with you through all eternity and die for you if I have to. And you'll never have to wonder about where I stand. If you are my friend and someone tries to hurt you...well...I've gone to prison once and won't mind doing it again. (Just kidding, I have gone to prison many times - to minister to people there - but not as a prisoner myself!) However I'm not kidding on the fact of...if you're my tried and true friend, you've got me in your corner and that's that.
2) I overcame more adversity in my first 20 years than many people do in a lifetime. Somebody once…

A breath of fresh air

Some people are just like that... A breath of fresh air into your day...into your life. Today, a pastor's wife friend of mine, Cassandra Stafford, wrote me a quick e-mail that just made my day. She gave me permission to share it here. I've known Cassandra for many years on-line - though never yet "in person" -we have become soul sisters on the web. (I hope to meet her maybe at this year's Unstoppable Conference?) We have corresponded for a long time through my pastoring partners ministry and in fact she designed the first ever "pastoring partners" shirts a few years ago, which I proudly wear, often! Anyway, Cassandra stopped by today and wrote me this precious nugget (which she gave me permission to share here) which she called, "a writing nugget just for you!" Deanna...
I was pondering some things this morning as I washed dishes and it hit me like a ton of bricks...what was the biggest ministry...with the longest living impact that the disciple…

The honor of plagiarism

Recently my son had the honor of having a teacher become concerned that he might have plagiarized. I say honor because he’s not guilty of it. He was accused because his writing just seems too good to be true. I’m so proud of him.


Dustin has writing in his blood. He’s like me – he does it daily and thrives on it. In his heart of hearts he wants to be a writer but he worries profusely about being able to support himself, and a future family on a writing career. His concerns aren’t without merit. Becoming a writer is not so unlike telling people you’re moving out to Hollywood to become an actor. The profession is replete with rejection. Wisely, he does realize he needs something steady, especially at first, to “fall back on.” So he is now in college to become a middle school or high school English teacher. He loves kids, has a gift of teaching, and will teach to support his future family and his love of writing. He is a step beyond me already. At 18 he has already been paid for a writing …

Turning your wound into a weapon

This is my "cup of coffee" devotional ezine that went out to my Northside women last week...thought my blog readers might also enjoy it.

The ship in this photo was made from 24 tons of scrap steel that used to be the World Trade Center. This ship is in a new class of warships the Navy is building, designed specifically for missions that will involve special operations against terrorists. It’s crew will include 360 sailors and 700 combat-ready Marines that can be transported ashore by assault craft and helicopters.

"It was a spiritualmoment for everybody there" when the molten steel was poured into the molds, according to Navy Capt. Kevin Wensing. "Those big rough steelworkerstreated it withtotal reverence." The foundry operations manager, Junior Chavers, said that when the Trade Center steel first arrived at the foundry, he touched it with his hand and the hair on his neck stood up. "It had a big meaningto it for all of us," he said. "They kn…

Spectacular Day in the House!

Awesome!
That's what today was!
Totally off the chain! What a day!
We had a packed house at Northside for Easter service and the atmosphere was just electric. Everything went perfect, without so much as a slight glitch. Lemme give a re-cap here for anybody who is the slightest bit interested...
We started with a continental breakfast once again this year as we have done...I think every year we've been here now that I think about it. Usually we do things like muffins and danishes from Sam's Club as well as yogurt and fresh fruit, tea, coffee, milk and juice. This year Teeb wanted to do Dunkin Donuts so we did and WOW...everyone loved it. I guess they love donuts as much as I do. :-) Let's just say they went crazy over 'em.
Then we had our video countdown like we always do to start service and this Sunday we had a special DVD opener just for today and it was OFF THE CHAIN, I mean, so awesome. I just loved it. After the opener we kicked off worship which also went well wi…

A note from my dentist office

Still no permanent crown on my tooth. I went yesterday and Dr. Ghabbour says we need to wait. I have still had discomfort and he wants to make sure I don't need a root canal. I am soooo hoping not. But I trust his wisdom. He's such a good dentist. Yesterday he adjusted the temporary crown and we are hoping for the best over the next week and a half. He says he's hopeful. I love when he talks to me, he always uses certain church terms because he knows my profession. He will say, "sister, you are preachin' to the choir" and stuff like that. The one consolation of having to go get my teeth worked on is that I love the people at my dentist office and seeing them is always a blessing. By the way, they read my Hannah Montana blog and loved it! I just got an e-mail from Lia, their office manager, this morning. Lia has become my friend and has even come to Northside before! She lives pretty far away from the church (too far to come regularly) but has been to women…

Today's Easter Prep

Today I'm getting all in order for Easter. Stuff for church is done, and now I'm working on home stuff. We are having 18 people here ~ us, the Mackley's, (our children's pastors) Garland's our assistant and her family), Bill (one of our board members/friends), Bobby (our "son" you've heard about many times), Alexa (friend of our boys - but also like another member of the family), and Jasmine (friend of the kids from school/friend of the fam) and then Casey (Dustin's girlfriend) and her parents are stopping by just to say hello before we eat and maybe share an appetizer. They will be on their way to another family dinner but want to stop in, as we invited them. So I will have a house full as usual!

My day has been spent so far cooking and cleaning and right now I need to sit a spell. (Don't they say that in the south?) I don't consider myself living 'in the south' although by exact location I am in the most southern United States, do…

"Jordan, this is Grant Brandell

from Underoath..."

My son Jordan was all excited last night because the bass player, Grant Brandell, from his favorite band, Underoath, called him personally on this cell phone! Yes, it’s really true. Underoath is recording their new album right now. They have a web cam that shows them doing this in the studio and you can watch them record their new project. This is not at all my kind of music but I do understand this band is very Godly and I support my son in being one of their fans.
Recently one of his friends, Stephen, took him to their concert for his birthday. The photo above is from the concert -- Jordan took this photo himself. Then he actually met the drummer, Aaron Gillespie, backstage and got a photo with him! Here it is...this is one of Jordan's prized possessions. You can see the look on his face here is like, "I can't believe I'm standing here next to Aaron Gillespie!"
Well anyhoo, on to the details of this phone call. Jordan has been coming home from school and watching…

5 Rules for Meeting with a Mentor

Like my friend, Pastor Tara, I absolutely love Pastor Perry Noble. I eat his leadership stuff like candy. I have recently started reading his blog (at her suggestion) and have learned so much from him. Yesterday he had another awesome post - this one on his 5 personal rules for meeting with a mentor. I couldn't agree with what he said more. These are things I have found to be valuable in meeting with those who have mentored me as well as things that I greatly appreciate in various people that I have mentored. It sure does make the experience much better and I think it's a major key to a long lasting mentorship, versus something that burns out because the mentee simply doesn't respect the mentor as they should. Alright, here we go with Perry's insights:
I have had the privilege of being mentored by some incredible leaders, some you would know, others you might not–but nonetheless, God has used them to teach me SO MUCH about life and ministry.
Over the years I have develop…

Prepping for Easter

I woke up at 5:00 am with my ear really hurting. I got up and got my heating pad and a few tylenols and went back to lay in bed until I had to get up at 6 am. I never really slept because I laid there "concerned" (we Christians aren't supposed to worry) about the fact that it was raining cats and dogs. When I say it was raining, I mean it was a torrential downpour.. And Larry and I had to leave at 7:30 am for sectional council. So I couldn't take Savanna to the bus today. I thought maybe I'd have Dustin take her but I laid there "concerned" about what to do and I got up at 6 amand got her a pair of my shoes that are pretty water tight (we wear the same size now...she's 10 years old and wears a size 9! Go figure! She's one TALL girl...almost as tall as me now, it's pretty AMAZING.) In addition to the shoes I got my pink raincoat that she likes, and a big huge umbrella. But praise God she never needed any of it. Thank the Lord by the tim…

Go Robin!

Yesterday Dr. Phil had T.D. Jakes as his guest on his show and they discussed the situation with Governor Spitzer, that I blogged about the other day about his wife standing by him during the press conference. (I tivo'd it -- I love Dr. Phil & next to my hubby, T.D. Jakes is my favorite preacher...) I have transcribed part of their remarks here about this situation. I have always liked Robin McGraw and each time she opens her mouth it confirms to me one more time how great she is. With everything I've ever heard her say, she seems to be a true advocate for women. Dr. Phil: The question though, that I think a lot of people are interested in is the fact that when he has made the two appearances he had his wife standing at his side...uh, were you surprised at that? TD Jakes: Not at all! That's public relations! He's got people who are handling him who have said we don't you to be seen there without your wife in that situation... Dr. Phil: yeah, but I don't thi…

I will praise You through the pain

Today I am home sick. No, not homesick as in longing for Baltimore (although I'd love some steamed crabs) but home...sick. This is an online card/bouquet that Larry sent me today from the office. He always tries to make me feel better. I woke up with a migraine...added to the earache I already woke up with yesterday morning. I know what some of you are thinking...this woman...if it's not her tooth it's her ear or whatever. You're right. Honestly I am pretty much used to pain of some sort. I take a sick day at home but still work. Maybe that is part of my problem -- I nurse a migraine or whatever kind of ache by sending up a prayer, taking a "faith enhancer" as my friend Pastor Sandy calls it (faith enhancers are any kind of legal drugs/prescriptions), and get a heating pad on one side and my laptop on the other. There is no good time to get sick I guess...and with Easter coming up and stuff, I don't have time to lay here and be sick. I have to rest and wo…

Betrayal and custom ordering the furniture for my mansion

So I went to the conference in Orlando on Monday and like I said, it was really good. The first speaker we heard was John Eldredge. I am not a fan, so I was sort of dreading it, to be honest. I was considering the idea of going to sleep on Larry's shoulder when he started speaking and catching up on sleep. Before hearing him, (based upon reading his books) I just wanted to "get through it" but I was pleasantly surprised that he said nothing I thought was heretical. Praise God! was just on listening to God and being led by His Spirit and to one who is living a life led by the Spirit, His message was just a reiteration of what we are already living. But I guess for those who are not in the lifestyle/atmosphere of living the spirit filled life, then it's a radical message. At any rate, I was very pleasantly surprised.

Ed Young spoke on betrayal. It was awesome. He introduced it by calling it the "Elephant in the Room."

At first I was very confused. I didn't …

Today is Jordan's birthday

He's 17! Can you believe it?

Rock the Universe YP Summit

Just getting back home right now at 1:30 am Tuesday morning...and checking my bazillion work e-mails and rattling off a quick blog... I know, I know, I'm a junkie. Larry and I went with the staff today to Rock the Universe Summit/Conference in Orlando. It's for youth leaders however the leadership teachings at the Summit are good for any leader, not just youth leaders. This is something we've attended every year here and it's really good. They have teaching up until about 3 pm and then the rest of the day/evening you can spend (for free) at Universal Studios and Islands of Adventure. They had four teachers today, but by far Ed Young was the best...he really rocked. I so enjoyed his message. More on it (possibly) later on tomorrow or later this week when I truly have a brain to think about anything with any degree of depth. Right now I'm fried from riding rides, (although I didn't ride anything really wild) and WALKING - most of the afternoon/evening. We went to…

A Palm Sunday message from the Holy Ghost

"Lift up your heads, O you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in." Psalm 24:8

WOW! WHAT A MORNING! This morning I presented a teaching in my adult Sunday School class on worshipping in spirit and in truth. We were primarily in John 4, but I referenced Psalm 24:8 and shared that I believe the "ancient doors" and gates spoken of here are meant by the Psalmist (David) to symbolize our hearts. There are things in our lives that become like gates and doors to hold us back from fully welcoming the King of Glory and His presence in our lives. I talked to the class about the walls we have built up within ourselves that keep us from His presence and glory...and about releasing those old bondages, letting go and allowing Jesus to take His place. I have to be honest with you that I didn't do a deep study of Psalm 24 in prep for this class - I was primarily speaking from John 4 and just referenced Psalm 24 briefly but then... as He is s…

Stuff PK's go through - Part 2

a.k.a. Two little words might keep your kids from going spiritually bonkers!

Easter photo of my adorable kiddos about 8 years ago...


Years ago I attended a pastor's wives retreat and learned one of my most valuable lessons in ministry. One of the speakers was a pastor's wife who testified about a situation they had gone through with their son, who had ran away from home, gotten on drugs and basically became a "wild child" for quite a number of years before finally coming home and getting right with God and re-uniting with his parents. She was sharing with the ladies "lessons learned" from her experience.
She testified that the problem began when he was a teenager in the youth group. The youth pastor had been there a couple of years and had really bonded with their son and been very instrumental in his life. Then the youth pastor had a moral failure. Although he lost his ministerial credentials and had to resign the church, the pastor allowed him to save face and did not bring him before the church or announce it to the congregation. O…

Deanna Montana

Got this idea from Sharon over at A Hoosier Family.

Try a few yourself by going to http://www.faceinhole.com/! This is part of what I'm doing today on "Fun Friday" - my day off - to amuse myself. I have to figure out what to do now. My original plans for the day have changed. Why? I was supposed to get my permanent crown today (on my tooth...my heavenly one's still being made). However, on this day which is ONE IN A MILLION, my day is CLEAR because the dentist office called this morning and said they have an emergency to deal with and can't do my crown today. Drats! Now I'm just sitting RIGHT HERE. I thought I would CRY. I wanted to say, what do you think that EVERYTHING'S ABOUT YOU? All this because my tooth was GOOD AND BROKEN. Now I'm just sitting here AS I AM. Another week of putting up with this temporary one that I have to eat ever so gingerly with!!?? Now another week is gonna START ALL OVER with me having to be careful of this crown not coming …

Stuff PK's go through - Part I

The Shrodes brothers are headed to PK Retreat in Orlando today. (That's "pastor's kid's retreat for all who don't know what PK means.) They will be there for 3 days. They have gone every year since they were just in kindergarten! In our previous district they had a PK retreat from kindergarten on up - here in FL they do it for kids in middle school and up, so next year will be Savanna's first year. She is so excited!


You might wonder why Dustin is going now that he is 18 and graduated from high school. Well...they asked him to be a counselor! Wowee. What a moment for me when I realized my son is now going, not as a camper, but as a counselor! My boy is indeed growing up.

Our boys have always loved PK Retreat. They can't wait for it! They get all excited when the brochure comes in the mail. I can't thank the AG enough for having this retreat. It means so much. If only people knew what pastor's kids went through. Let me just give you a little teeny gli…