A New Kind of Pillar

Judges 16:26
Samson said to the servant who held his hand, "Put me where I can feel the pillars that support the temple, so that I may lean against them."

As I looked at this picture of Olivia standing by my dad at one of her basketball games and as I read the verse above, I was struck with the reality that as parents and as grandparents we truly have to be the "pillars" of the church for our children to lean against in a tough, tough world.

I'm thankful for a mom and dad who raised me in the church. I remember MANY times when going on Wednesday night, especially, was the LAST thing I wanted to do because of homework and school activities....

But we went.



For my entire childhood.

I believe that because of their commitment to being my pillars as a little girl, I am more equipped to be a pillar for my children.

I still have so much to learn.

But seeing this picture reminded me that my kids and ALL OF OUR KIDS need pillars to lean on.

Even if they can't lean on their parents or grandparents, are we being pillars for the kids in our community?

I feel convicted this morning.

Convicted and inspired to do more.

Thank you, Mom and Dad, for raising me in the church.

I've had to do a lot of leaning through the years!!!

Not What You Would Think!!!!

gardnersville visit 2009 033

I'd love to tell you that this bucket is holding something other than hamburgers that I grilled, but I can't!!!!!!!!!!!!

Fortunately, I had already taken in one tray of edible burgers before somehow allowing our gas grill to burst into flames!!

Thankful I wasn't home alone when this happened!

Tim and Scott saved the day..and somehow STILL have eyebrows!!

Thankful for our Gardnersville Christian Church memories and lifelong friends!

2009-06-280121 holiday world trip resized

2009-06-280122 holiday world trip resized

A Glimmer of the Joy of Heaven's Reunions!!!

Today has been such a special day!

15 of our dear friends from Gardnersville, KY, where Tim had his first preaching ministry over 20 years ago came to spend the day and night with us!!!!  When they all pulled in and got out of their cars, we cried tears of joy as we hugged in the driveway!! It has been sooooo long since we've since each other, and we have all suffered such losses since the last time we were together.  Wendall, Marvin, and Nick are no longer with us here on the earth..but today was such a reminder of how wonderful Heaven will be when we are reunited with those who share the love of Jesus Christ with us!!!  Oh, what a glorious day that will be!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2009-06-280037 holiday world trip resized   

From 87-year old Catherine to 2-year old Alli, our house has been hopping since early this afternoon! (Not all are pictured here!)  We've shared lots of laughs and tears throughout the day, and I feel so blessed to have my house so full of love.  .

I just had to share pictures from the day and the evening ..

 2009-06-280017 holiday world trip resized

It's so hard to believe that kids from our youth group now have kids of their own!!! It was wonderful to hug little kids whom I had only met through Christmas cards!  They are all precious!

2009-06-280018 holiday world trip resized 

Janet swings with three of her grandkids!

2009-06-280026 holiday world trip resized

Relaxing while the kids swim!

2009-06-280055 holiday world trip resized

Evan and Maria played a little game of chess while we got the house situated!

2009-06-280053 holiday world trip resized

Rob and Scott played a little Rock Band while the moms bathed the kids and got the beds all ready!!

2009-06-280050 holiday world trip resized

Craig managed to fall to sleep in spite of the noise surrounding him!

2009-06-280057 holiday world trip resized

Todd took a couch for the nighr!

2009-06-280052 holiday world trip resized

Olivia shared her room with Sarah, Ashton, and Katelyn!

2009-06-280056 holiday world trip resized

Tim ended up in a recliner! I promise I covered him up!

2009-06-280051 holiday world trip resized

Joseph fell to sleep before Dana could get Shrek the III started!

I wasn't able to photograph every bedroom..some were already sleeping!

But, that was our day in Grayson!

I'm now heading for bed knowing that as wonderful as today was...

Heaven will be even more wonderful than words could ever express!!!!!!!!


So Thankful for the Hope of Heaven!

Thank you, Chi Omegas!

I went to Morehead this afternoon to meet the girls from

Chi Omegas.

They had a gift for Nick's foundation!


2009-06-260001 holiday world trip resized

I was so touched!  I told the girls that their hard work would be making a huge difference in so many different areas! 

$300 will go towards Adrienne's Angel Memory Boxes. 

$300 will go to Basket of Hope. 

And $300 will be used in the India Orphanage Campaign!!

2009-06-260002 holiday world trip resized

I just adore this sorority!!  These girls raised all of the money for our family's Make A Wish trip and ever since then have been there for family in such special ways!!!  Now they have adopted Nick's Foundation as one of their community service projects, and we are so thankful!!

Thank you, Chi Omegas!!  We love you!!!!!!!

And I just know Nick is grinning!!

2009-06-260003 holiday world trip resized

The girls are getting ready for recruitment week, and one of their events is "Safari Night."

We decided to use the elephant as our back drop for the check to show how HUGE the gift was!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thanks again, girls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I love you so much!!

As Faithful as the Rising of the Sun...


Lamentations 3:22-24 (New International Version)

22 Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,

       for his compassions never fail.

23 They are new every morning;

       great is your faithfulness.

24 I say to myself, "The LORD is my portion;

       therefore I will wait for him."


2009-06-250077 holiday world trip resized

It happened gradually.

As we drove from Grayson to Columbus.

The darkness gave way to sunlight.

The clouds gave way to the powerful rays.

 2009-06-250081 holiday world trip resized

And once again I knew.

God never fails.

Darkness never ends in darkness.

It is always followed by light.

The darkest of nights need not be seen as a sign of hopelessness.

For morning comes..just like God's faithfulness.

So I trust Him and I wait.

Knowing He has the power to transform all aspects of darkness that surround me.2009-06-250080 holiday world trip resized

And as I look at these photographs tonight I am reminded of today's headlines.

The lives of two American legends have ended.

Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson have passed away.

This life is fragile even for the wealthiest, most famous, most successful of people. 

The only thing that is 100% certain is God's faithfulness.

He is as faithful as the daily rising of the sun.

Thank you, Lord, for allowing creation to display Your most-needed quality...Your Faithfulness.

Praying for the hurting families and friends this evening.

Praying they are somehow drawn near to Him who is faithful,


...His brilliant splendor fills the heavens, and the earth is filled with his praise.

~ Habakkuk 3:3, NLT

It's just one of those days when I need to sit back and remember Him.

And praise Him for Who He is.

And for the Hope I find in Him alone.

Resting in Him,

India..always on my mind

It's 11:07, and I'm waiting for Todd to get home so I can head to bed.  We're leaving at 7 a.m. for a day at King's Island with the junior high kids from church.  (Tim and I are sponsors).  :)

So, I sat down for a minute to check my email and found myself back in my pictures from India.

Oh, the faces.  The sweet faces.  The people who need hope and love.  The people who don't want to be forgotten. I'll never forget the orphanage dorm mom at the train station as we were leaving Damoh.  She hugged me and said, "Please don't forget us."

Yet here I sit in America having just packed a bag with swimsuits and beach towels for a day of fun tomorrow.. 

I can't really put into words what I'm feeling.

I just want to know that we did SOMETHING to make their llives a little better.

2009-04-22 0466 resized

So I think of Nick's foundation and our dream to help raise the funds to build part of the  orphanage that is so desperately needed.  And I pray that hearts will be stirred like mine is, because the task is too big for one family.   It is definitely a God-sized dream.  To have 2,000 people each give $30!!!

With that money, a kitchen, food storage area, and dining hall large enough to hold 100 kids at a time can be built!! 

$30 is the price of a ticket to King's Island.  Surely I can give up one ticket to an amusement park to help build a permanent home for homeless children.

I know God can do this!!

If you want to help, please visit Nick's foundation website for more information by clicking on this link below:

Nick's Foundation Website

2009-04-22 0541 resized

An Albino India boy..found living on the streets with his sister and brothers.

God bless you as you consider this ministry outreach opportunity.

2009-04-22 0665 resized

The Measure of our Worth..

2009-06-170081 resized

I'm sure the candy shop owner at Holiday World wondered why in the world I asked if I could take a photo before paying for my items in her store.

2009-06-170080 resized

But as I saw my cookies and candy sitting on the counter, and as I heard her say the total.....only 83 cents...

I knew that God was telling me something.  Something I didn't want to forget.

2009-06-170079 resized

See, the candy and cookies I bought were from this special jar on the counter.

I was drawn to the jar - not because a cookie valued at nearly $2.79 was somehow being offered for less than a dollar..but because the sign said, "Broken."

As a broken human being, I am drawn to this word......even if it is describing a cookie.

I felt an immediate connection with the cookies in this jar.  I felt empathy for them.


Because they were broken. 

Same recipe as the higher-priced cookies.

Same ingredients.

Same oven.

Same wrapper.

Same taste.

Just broken.

And suddenly their worth had plummeted.


How quickly value and worth can change for a cookie!

And in our human world.....things aren't that much different, are they?

At least in my mind anyway. 

I'm so thankful that God sees worth in our brokenness and promises that in time His Glory will be revealed through our pain.

2009-06-170077 resized 


Roman 8:17-8

"Now if we are children, then we are heirs-heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.

I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."


Thankful that my brokenness (present sufferings) cannot compare with the glory of God.

Taking my place in the "reduced price" cookie jar knowing that one day my "cookie" will be restored and redeemed!

It's Already Happening!!!!!!!!!!!!

Luke 19

37When he came near the place where the road goes down the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of disciples began joyfully to praise God in loud voices for all the miracles they had seen:
38"Blessed is the king who comes in the name of the Lord!"[a]
      "Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"

39Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Jesus, "Teacher, rebuke your disciples!"

40"I tell you," he replied, "if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out."

2009-06-170118 resized

As we walked through Holiday World Tuesday, Ian stopped me as we were passing an area of flowers along the sidewalk and said,

""Listen, Tammy, the rocks are singing!"'

Sure enough!  All through the landscaping, rocks had been strategically placed containing speakers.

I couldn't help but think of the time when the Pharisees commanded Jesus to rebuke the disciples for praising Him.  Jesus responded to their complaints by saying that if the disciples were silent even the rocks would cry out!!!!

Then as I stopped to look at the rocks in the landscaping I thought to myself,

"If man can make a rock sing,


2009-06-170117 resized

Thank you, Ian, for having the precious eyes and ears of a child!  I love you!


Crying out "Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!"


Refusing to be silent,

We took the plunge..for Nick!!

2009-06-17 0002 holiday world trip resized

Pilgrims Plunge Facts

165 feet

135 feet

131 feet, 45-degree angle

Five 10-passenger boats

50+ mph

World's Tallest Water Ride



plunge two

Nick loved log rides of any kind!  He wasn't a big roller coaster fan, but he would take on any log ride that he could!

I, on the other hand, have always been the opposite.  Something about a free-falling log over a waterfall just doesn't seem as safe as a roller coaster mounted onto a track.

But when we arrived at Holiday World and discovered that it has the world's largest water ride, I told mom that I had to do it for Nick!  No matter how scared I felt inside, there was a peace in knowing that Nick would be so proud of me....

So Tim decided to buy the picture as proof!  We all did it!!!  And Tim has the thumbs up to show how happy we all were as we hit the water at the bottom of the slide!

You know....I've learned that cancer may think it has the final victory..but it doesn't!

Cancer actually gives some of us an early and blessed chance to be with our Father and for those of who are left, it leaves courage to face whatever lies ahead..

Even if it's the world's largest water ride!


You lose. 

Nick wins.

We win.

But you lose!

2009-06-170159 resized

Christmas in June?????????

2009-06-170074 resized Tim, Todd, Olivia, and I slipped away for two days to Santa Claus, IN, with some friends from church!


2009-06-170073 resized

If you've never heard of Holiday World, you might want to check it out online!


I learned a lot on this little trip that I'll share over the weekend.

For tonight, I'll just share this:

Even in a world where it is becoming more and more difficult to share your faith, there is a little place for families where the Nativity Scene is still displayed year round with no fear of being removed and where Christian music is piped through the air and no one is complaining!

Oh, and I almost forgot! 

Free coffee and pop all day everywhere throughout the park!!!!

2009-06-170139 resized

2009-06-170050 resized

 2009-06-170111 resized

2009-06-170054 resized 2009-06-170103 resized 2009-06-170155 resized

2009-06-170152 resized

Thank you, Jeff, Brook, Cameron, and Ian for a great time!!!

Thank you, Lord, for a nice little vacation in a place that remembers the true "reason for the season" all year long!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

About Me