amazing lyrics

Not all the blood of beasts on Jewish altars slain
could give the guilty conscience peace or wash away my stain

But Christ, the heavenly Lamb takes all my sins away,
a sacrifice of nobler name and richer blood than they.

My faith would lay her hand on that dear head of thine,
while like a penitent I stand and there confess my sin.

My soul looks back to see the burdens thou didst bear,
when hanging on the cursed tree, and knows her guilt was there

Believing, we rejoice to see the curse remove;
we bless the Lamb with cheerful voice, and sing his bleeding love.


Cleaning out the closets

Farewell, Gap sweater.
It's not you--my expectations exceeded your abilities
I expected sixties glamour--you made my arms itch
I thought I'd wear you forever--you didn't grow with me
I was sure you were the perfect red--you weren't
So, goodbye.
Into the charity bag, with my other mistakes.
Find someone who'll appreciate you for who you are.
Someone tough-skinned who seeks warmth
Someone who has short arms
Someone who suits tomato red
Ten years we were together--don't be hurt
It's not you, my expectations just exceeded your abilities.


Interesting Lessons

I've been going to "MOMS" Bible study at First Pres this fall. It's a good thing. I enjoy having a set time to get out of the house each week and the speaker (Shirley Windham) for the large group time is wonderful! The book we are doing: Holding on to Hope by Nancy Guthrie deals with her own story of suffering and the life of Job. I knew going into this that it was going to be a bit of a personal struggle/learning experience apart from lessons learned during the study. I've had to deal with my personal prejudices/preconcieved notions about "northeast Jackson" ladies, and truly get out of my comfort zone. It's been an experience. I've learned quite a few things (above and beyond the study itself): that wealthy, fashionable people can be godly and are my sisters in Christ, that I have to be content with who I am and my situation in life--pedicures, expensive, fashionable clothes, SUVS, and jewelry, are not within my means and that's okay.
I'm actually VERY happy with my life. I wouldn't trade Tuan, Johnny, our life, even our random assemblage of furniture for the world. It's really myself that I don't like--ever since third grade when I realized that I weighed more than any other kids in my class, I've struggled with liking myself. Excepting a few periods in life, I've always been discontent with the way I looked, my hair, my gifts, my personality. Having small, cute, petite friends never helped. Tuesday as I was looking through/sorting photographs, I came across photos from the ninth grade--"I wasn't "fat" at all", I thought with amazement. In reality, I was just a tall, long-legged, large boned adolescent who was blessed with clear skin. I wish long ago that I had realized that instead of wallowing in insecurity and self-loathing. I still groan when I looked at "trouble spots" in the mirror, or see photos of bad clothing choices, but I need to realize that who am I, the created, to complain about what the creator has made? Trouble spots and all, I bear His image and that counts for a lot.
My small group leader at MOMS handed out some "operation Christmas child" (the shoebox thing) info last week and said if we wanted to bring one in, then she'd get them sent off. I had a LOT of fun filling my box with stuff for a 2-4 year old and was so happy to be able to do that for some kid. I went in to our room and watched as two of the other women came in bearing four boxes a piece and my heart sank. My one little box just seemed so insignificant. But then I realized that I had given out of what I had just as those other women had. Who was I to feel subdued because God had blessed someone with the ability to give to His kingdom work? It was a little bit like the story of the widow's mite, but kind of inverted and turned upside down.
So, the LORD has been teaching me a LOT. I'm still not wholly comfortable there, but I did look around in large group yesterday and realize that not everyone there is one of the "beautiful people". That was comforting. I never speak with this much candor about how I _really_ feel, but here it is. Laid out and naked on the table. I leave you, faithful readers, with this:

(overheard in the bathroom at MOMS)
" . . . . blah, blah blah"
"oh, my gosh, it's not like it's Chi Omega rush at Ole Miss."
"Oh, yeah, like I know"


thoroughly rested

Oh, the joys of a good night''s rest! I was dragging all day yesterday (monday) as was Johnny. By late afternoon, he'd been up for two hours and had sleepy eyes--I gave him a full belly of cereal and put him to bed at five thirty. Tuan went to play tennis and after reading, I climbed into bed with a headache around seven. Three-thirty found me rested and I was awake reading/thinking until four thirty, expecting Johnny to wake up for an early bottle. Woke up again around 8:00 (Tuan was off) to Johnny finally waking up. He had slept 14 1/2 hours and I had gotten a good 10+. We were both very happy today. I have found that as a new parent, I've sort of lived between feedings for the past six months. It is a very exciting thing to calculate those times and see them exceed three hours. Johnny actually went 16 1/2 hours--a record!--last night, although he did have a good helping of cereal. He went to bed somewhat early tonight as well. It will be interesting to see how that goes.
Why am I writing all of this? I have no idea, it is not of "general interest." But I did want any readers who care to know that I am now well-rested. Oh, and I must say that although I still don't "get" facebook entirely, it is addictive.


utterly exhausted

I am so tired I can barely move, and were it not that Tuan is still up and on duty, I'd be out cold. If I go on to sleep before he gets back in, chances are I'll wake up and not be able to drift back off. Why so tired you ask?
It all started two weeks ago. Vacation was the word and we kicked Tuan's off with a late Wed. night cleaning/packing frenzy and a jaunt to Columbia for two days with his folks. (mental tally: two nights at Mrs. Dorothy's) Saturday sent us to Chattanooga (on our way to Gatlinburg). We went to church Sunday at Lookout Mtn Pres, saw Rock City and made it in to Gatlinburg in time to hit the strip and eat supper. Five days/nights followed and brought us home rested and ready to jump back into life on Friday night. Unfortunately, Tuan's grandmother had taken a turn for the worse while we were gone and the prognosis was bad (or good, depending on how you look at it). So, on Saturday, we re-packed, I dashed to Mistletoe with Caroline and then we headed to Columbia to be with the family. (Got to see Daddy Khanh, Tuan's dad, which was good) Sunday, 9 am found me on the road to church, bound and determined to teach Sunday school (had missed two weeks before). Sunday, 9:15 am found me sitting on a strange lady's front porch, discovering how we knew each other as I waited for Tuan to come and figure out why the car had overheated on me. Monday, we lunched with and were driven home by Daddy Morris since our Jeep was still in the shop and Mamaw was neither better nor worse. (2 more nights at Mrs. Dorothy's) Tuesday morning got a call from Sonny that Mamaw had passed. Took Johnny to town in search of a dress for the funeral, Re-packed, drove back to Columbia in our Jeep wrangler, went to visitation with Sonny and went to bed knowing I had to get up early because . . . Wednesday is Bible Study day for me and Sonnny couldn't miss school, so I got up at 5:30 to ride to Jxn with him, go to Bible Study and dash back for the funeral at 3:00. We hung around Thursday waiting on our car to be fixed. Surprise, surprise, it wouldn't be ready until Friday. Traveled back home, crashed, phone rang: "We" (parents and warren) "are coming for the weekend. Tried to sleep in on Friday, but heard a rumour that someone was coming by at 10:00. Up at seven something to shower, clean the public areas of the house, then had to wait for company to come by before tackling disastrous bedroom and finishing project started that Monday. That Company never came. (note to self--despise flaky people when acting flaky) But, did have other company, had Anna G. for lunch and went to Wal-mart late that night. Saturday: up at seven to get self/Johnny ready to go to Mt. Olive to visit parents and brother. Went to Hattiesburg with Sister, Mom and brother to shop/eat/see grandmother. Got home at seven and spent three hours cleaning the kitchen, baking a pie and preparing a casserole for church dinner tommorrow. Ate supper at 9:45. In the past two weeks and two days, we have spent six nights with Mrs. Dorothy (whom I love, and is so wonderful to help with Johnny and give us a break), six nights on vacation and four at home. Our bedroom refuses to be clean and whenever I bat an eye our house becomes a huge mess. And, I just heard Johnny (he is not supposed to talk at this time of night).
But you know God is so good--I am especially aware of his grace to me and my family. I am so thankful for Tuan and Johnny. I am thankful that we are very likely going to get an addition to our tiny house (and a laundry room!). I am thankful that Tuan will be home soon and that we don't have evening church tommorrow (YAY! An afternoon nap). Lastly, I am glad that tommorrow is a day that offers the promise of rest, and that if I should not see tommorrow, then an even better rest will be mine. Good night, sleep tight.



vacationing in Gooberburg

We are enjoying our last night of vacation in Gatlinburg, or, as my dad calls it: Gooberburg. It's not a typical destination for us as we usually do the Asheville/Brevard side of the smokies. But, it's been good. Tonight, we got over our spending stupor and bought a beautifull piece of pottery (I cried over it--it's just perfect for us), and did the aquarium of the smokies. (you can find wireless anywhere here) As I write, I am sitting in front of the ray/shark tank listening to Pachelbel's canon. Tuan is feeding our little snugglebug Johnny. He has LOVED the aquarium. He's been wide-eyed at the fish and the combination or lights/music has seriously chilled him out. Tuan and I are pretty mellowed, too. The graceful, pirhouetting sting-rays are so fun to watch. When we leave, we're going to pick up the pot, grab some Wendy's and head back to our hotel and perhaps get in the hot tub. Our hotel is really great. (thanks priceline) and has a great indoor pool, etc . . I have to go now, but will write more later. You can also check out Tuan's xanga. www.xanga.com/lotr5x