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Showing posts from February, 2010

He not only likes you, He loves you...

Larry and I are preaching another tag team message this morning ~ the finale of the 4-week "In Sync" series...and our message today is centered on the the fact that God not only loves us, He likes us.  During the message I'm actually showing this t-shirt pictured above along with three others I found actually FOR SALE on line...(yeah, some people are actually marketing this stuff...) My point?  These shirts are all lies, by the way.  Horrible lies.  But many people actually believe them, and some have, "been there, done that and bought the t-shirt to prove it."  This morning we're talking about the bottom line about the nature of God's love for us, and how our love should be extended to others, especially those in our lives who might present more of a challenge to love.  The conclusion of the message will be a video of this song, and an invitation to love more deeply and unreservedly.   It's going to be a great day at Celebration Church , fil

Max & Maddie out and about...

Max taking driving lessons Maddie and Magoo Torres taking a snooze together, during her time with them while we were in Gatlinburg.  We are so grateful for Cathy and David Torres and the Heather and Troy Mayercak who took Maddie and Max and treated them as their very own during our time away.  They even did facebook photo albums while we were gone so we could see what our "babies" were up to!    Max with Ashley Mayercak I knew Max would be a bit of a challenge for them -- he is so sweet and loving, and snuggles and sleeps until the cows come home, BUT.........he makes such a mess when you're not looking!  Every day I clean up dirt from plants, shredded paper, trash cans he has gotten into or knocked over, and...he is still very much getting the hang of potty training.  :)   So, Max keeps us on our toes, but he is so sweet, I don't know what we ever did without him, except have a lot more time that we were not cleaning up messes.  Maddie with Sugar Ray Torres - the

Look out, Rachel Ray!

Last night Savanna wanted to cook dinner for us, which I was thrilled about.  Mondays and Thursdays are my most tiring nights.  Monday because it follows Sunday, and Thursday because it's the last day before my one "day off" a week and by that time I am just so wiped out I can't think straight.  The last thing I want to do is cook dinner on those nights.  Savanna wanted to make us dinner and all on her own she put out the linens, china and stemware and set quite a lovely scene. She made us salad and homemade personal pizzas just like each of us like them individually. ~ mine had olives and bacon, Larry's was pepperoni and Savanna's was plain cheese.   For dessert we had strawberries and bananas dipped in chocolate sauce.  Mmmm  mmmm!!!  So much for watching my calories tonight, (I'm trying to stay on track) however if you knew what I had for lunch yesterday (long story) you would also  know that I could basically eat anything for dinner last night and be

Is anyone hearing from God anymore?

"I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what he will say to me, and what answer I am to give to this complaint. The Lord's Answer:  Then the LORD replied:  "Write down the revelation and make it plain on tablets so that a herald  may run with it.  For the revelation awaits an appointed time; it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay."   Habakkuk 2:1-3 Habakukk knew well when God was speaking to Him. He had practiced hearing from God and took time to wait and get God's mind about what he should do.  Whatever happened to us getting on our face and begging God to speak to us, and then when we get an answer, implementing it and sticking to it?    I've found that God is so willing and ready to speak to me, and most times I don't have to get on my face and beg.  But when I need to, I absolutely do.  Whatever it takes, we've got to hear fr

I like to discover what made people famous

Recently when Larry and I were traveling through the mountains of Georgia and Tennessee we stopped at a Schlotzsky’s Deli to eat lunch. I have never eaten at a Schlotzsky’s except for once in high school and I can’t remember what I ate as that has been a few years ago. Larry ordered a chicken sandwich but I knew immediately what I would be having – their “original” sandwich. When I go to a place to eat for the first time, I like to do that to get a feel for what made the person or business successful in the first place. Larry was surprised that I didn’t add mayonnaise to the sandwich. I explained to him I always order the item “as is” to get the true experience of what made them famous and not dilute it by my own preferences. He would rather just order what he wants the first time and doesn’t care about what made people famous. But I’m curious about what catapults people or businesses to success, so this is what I do. It’s also how I’ve come to like a few sandwiches I would hav

Lessons from Kathryn:
The power of powerful questions

The majority of my years in leading people have been done in the style of mentoring, not coaching.  Mentoring is sharing with a mentee your experiences, and the most effective way I've found of doing that is to let them experience life with me, up close so they can shadow me and learn. Mentoring involves giving the person you are helping actual advice or in some cases very strong direction.  Obviously I haven't been coaching as long as I have been mentoring.  I started a life coaching program for the women of our church four years ago however I did that flying by the seat of my pants, creating the program as I went along .  Amazingly, it worked well.  I've been career coaching for a little over a year now and I love it.  The company took a risk in hiring me as I had no career coaching experience prior to that.  I took it as my mission to make sure they didn't regret bringing me on board and in fact would one day consider me a valuable part of the team.  A great majo

I hate goodbyes

“Love from the center of who you are. Don’t fake it.” Romans 12  ~ The Message One of the hardest things about loving from the center of who you are is that sometimes that love hurts like you-know-what when you have to say goodbye. Last week while we were  in Tennessee we had the sad task of informing our congregation that our children’s pastors have resigned and will be moving.   Pastor Trinity and Misty are more than staff members or employees. They are   family . To say we will miss them doesn’t begin to describe the feeling of loss in our hearts.   They will always be an important part of our lives, but I will miss the "up closeness" -- the many heart to heart talks we've had over countless times of holidays and restaurant hopping and whatever else we've done in five years in between serving God's people together. It’s easier to find a needle in a haystack than find a staff member who is 100% loyal. In Trinity and Misty, we had this to the ‘nth degre

Up and coming preacher...

While we were away this week, Dustin preached on Wednesday night in Refuge and Pastor T taped it.  We're so proud of him!   He is sensing the call to preach and with his tender heart for God and people, (not to mention he's in the top three most outstanding kids in the universe!) I think he'll do just amazing.  You can watch/listen here... Note:  If you are reading this on facebook, the videos do not transfer when it publishes there, so please just go to the original post at http://www.deannashrodes.com/ .  By the way, it's going to be an amazing day today at Celebration Church!   So excited to be back.

The way back home

We got up yesterday morning to leave A Bear Encounter and start the journey back.  We took our time on the road, stopping along the way, whether it be for photos on a scenic hill, or to sightsee. We went to Ruby Falls , which is the nation's largest underground waterfall. Located over 1120 feet beneath the surface, Ruby Falls is the deepest waterfall open to the public. Hundreds of gallons of water rush over it by the minute.  They have no idea where the water comes from. They do know where it ends up, but don’t know where it originates. Just another one of the wonderful mysteries of God. His creation is spectacular.   This was especially meaningful for me after reading the book, Crazy Love while I was away this week.  Anyone who has read chapter one knows what I'm talking about.  I might have gone to Ruby Falls as a kid, since I went through Tennessee so many times growing up.  I do know if I did see it back then I didn’t appreciate it, because I don’t remember it like I w

One last look back...

Larry and I last night at Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat at the Miracle Theater .  It was awesome!   We had dinner at the Applewood Restaurant and yum, was it ever good!  Then we had some time before the show so we went to a book outlet nearby where they had amazing sales.  We were having the time of our lives in there...bestselling (recent) titles for $3 and $5 each.  No kidding!  We ran out of time so I want to stop there on the way out today.   I get so engrossed in what I'm doing in a bookstore it's like I'm in a trance.   I have a love affair with books...just can't have enough of them. The cabin we stayed in ~ A Bear Encounter.   I would highly recommend it ~ it's an absolutely beautiful cabin, and rated "5 stars" online.  I would definitely  want to return.  In fact, sometime we'd like to come back and bring any of our kids who are able to come.  We may bring a shovel and some salt next time if we're coming in the wintertim

Fixin' it and Forgettin' it in Gatlinburg

I was hoping that there would be a crock pot in the kitchen at the cabin.  I really wanted to cook with one while we were here but  not bad enough to lug one of mine from Tampa.  I just didn't have a desire to pack "everything but the kitchen sink" and planned to improvise.  Imagine my delight when I got here and saw that there was a little crock pot -- big enough to make food for just about 2 people...which is all I need because that's all I'm cooking for this week. Crock pot meals are some of my favorite and always have been since we've been married.  I love it because you can make the food the night before or early that morning, turn it on and then forget about it until you're ready to eat.  When we're home in Tampa going about our regular schedule it's nice to walk in the door from work, or from church on Sunday and have our meal already waiting for us. If you are really wanting to get into crock pot cooking you really need the book, Fix it

Come and see this place through my eyes...

I am enjoying "Moonlight Path" baths by candlelight... The view from the top of the stairs as you step out of our bedroom... I enjoy looking out all the many large windows of the cabin, sitting in front of one of the fireplaces, drinking my tea and just listening to the sound of...NOTHING.  I've needed this so much. The view from the front porch... In between looking out windows, I've been reading books that I've had on my list to read.  I just finished Francis Chan's Crazy Love .  It pretty much rocked my world.  Larry trying to make it up the hill...as he finally successfully did late yesterday afternoon.  (Thanks to all of you who prayed...)  The problem is, it's a steep hill and we were informed yesterday -- a private drive.   It never got plowed, because it's a private road.  The maintenance man just salted it.  It is very hard to go up an unplowed hill, obviously.  Very kind man (see him between the trees) who finally came and shoveled ice o