Family is where it is!!!!!

Family is where it is!!!!!
Christmas in Disney
Thanks for stopping by. Let me know if there are topics I should be spouting                                   off on.  

Remember that "Life is short. Break the rules. Forgive quickly, kiss slowly,                love fully and laugh uncontrollably....."


Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A prayer for 2009

BLESS you with what you PRAY for,
REWARD you with what you WORK for,
GRANT you with what you HOPE for, and
SURPRISE you with lots of MIRACLES in your life.

Dr. Salvador Ortiza,

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

A "special" Texas High School Football Game (ESPN story)

They played the oddest game in high school football history last month down in Grapevine, Texas.

It was Grapevine Faith vs. Gainesville State School and everything about it was upside down. For instance, when Gainesville came out to take the field, the Faith fans made a 40-yard spirit line for them to run through.

Did you hear that? The other team's fans?

They even made a banner for players to crash through at the end. It said, "Go Tornadoes!" Which is also weird, because Faith is the Lions.

It was rivers running uphill and cats petting dogs. More than 200 Faith fans sat on the Gainesville side and kept cheering the Gainesville players on—by name.

"I never in my life thought I'd hear people cheering for us to hit their kids," recalls Gainesville's QB and middle linebacker, Isaiah. "I wouldn't expect another parent to tell somebody to hit their kids. But they wanted us to!"

And even though Faith walloped them 33-14, the Gainesville kids were so happy that after the game they gave head coach Mark Williams a sideline squirt-bottle shower like he'd just won state. Gotta be the first Gatorade bath in history for an 0-9 coach.

But then you saw the 12 uniformed officers escorting the 14 Gainesville players off the field and two and two started to make four. They lined the players up in groups of five—handcuffs ready in their back pockets—and marched them to the team bus. That's because Gainesville is a maximum-security correctional facility 75 miles north of Dallas. Every game it plays is on the road.

This all started when Faith's head coach, Kris Hogan, wanted to do something kind for the Gainesville team. Faith had never played Gainesville, but he already knew the score. After all, Faith was 7-2 going into the game, Gainesville 0-8 with 2 TDs all year. Faith has 70 kids, 11 coaches, the latest equipment and involved parents. Gainesville has a lot of kids with convictions for drugs, assault and robbery—many of whose families had disowned them—wearing seven-year-old shoulder pads and ancient helmets.

So Hogan had this idea. What if half of our fans—for one night only—cheered for the other team? He sent out an email asking the Faithful to do just that. "Here's the message I want you to send:" Hogan wrote. "You are just as valuable as any other person on planet Earth."

Some people were naturally confused. One Faith player walked into Hogan's office and asked, "Coach, why are we doing this?"

And Hogan said, "Imagine if you didn't have a home life. Imagine if everybody had pretty much given up on you. Now imagine what it would mean for hundreds of people to suddenly believe in you."

Next thing you know, the Gainesville Tornadoes were turning around on their bench to see something they never had before. Hundreds of fans. And actual cheerleaders!

"I thought maybe they were confused," said Alex, a Gainesville lineman (only first names are released by the prison). "They started yelling 'DEE-fense!' when their team had the ball. I said, 'What? Why they cheerin' for us?'"

It was a strange experience for boys who most people cross the street to avoid. "We can tell people are a little afraid of us when we come to the games," says Gerald, a lineman who will wind up doing more than three years. "You can see it in their eyes. They're lookin' at us like we're criminals. But these people, they were yellin' for us! By our names!"

Maybe it figures that Gainesville played better than it had all season, scoring the game's last two touchdowns. Of course, this might be because Hogan put his third-string nose guard at safety and his third-string cornerback at defensive end. Still.

After the game, both teams gathered in the middle of the field to pray and that's when Isaiah surprised everybody by asking to lead. "We had no idea what the kid was going to say," remembers Coach Hogan. But Isaiah said this: "Lord, I don't know how this happened, so I don't know how to say thank You, but I never would've known there was so many people in the world that cared about us."

And it was a good thing everybody's heads were bowed because they might've seen Hogan wiping away tears.

As the Tornadoes walked back to their bus under guard, they each were handed a bag for the ride home—a burger, some fries, a soda, some candy, a Bible and an encouraging letter from a Faith player.

The Gainesville coach saw Hogan, grabbed him hard by the shoulders and said, "You'll never know what your people did for these kids tonight. You'll never, ever know."

And as the bus pulled away, all the Gainesville players crammed to one side and pressed their hands to the window, staring at these people they'd never met before, watching their waves and smiles disappearing into the night.

Anyway, with the economy six feet under and Christmas running on about three and a half reindeer, it's nice to know that one of the best presents you can give is still absolutely free.


Saturday, December 27, 2008

The future (Written by 10 year Mattie Stepanek)

Even though the future seems far away,

It is actually beginning right now.

And while we are living in the present

We must celebrate life everyday.

Knowing that we are becoming history

With every word, every action,every moment.

Because we, today,are the history of tomorrow.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Thanks kids

We just finished opening Santa's presents with the grand children.

The gratitude & excitement from the younger set is always so refreshing. Whether the present is large or small, expensive or inexpensive, the receiving joy is there. In so many ways, children should be our role models. To often, however, we (I) forget to look, listen and emulate them and loose their message of joy, forgiveness and acceptance/

Thanks kids where ever you are. Oh, how much we can learn from you.

The Lord's Christmas letter to Christians (author unknown)

Dear Children,

It has come to my attention that many of you are upset that folks are taking My name out of the season. Maybe you've forgotten that I wasn't actually born during this time of the year and that it was some of your predecessors who decided to celebrate My birthday on what was actually a time of pagan festival although I do appreciate being remembered anytime. How I personally feel about this celebration can probably be most easily understood by those of you who have been blessed with children of your own. I don't care what you call the day. If you want to celebrate My birth just GET ALONG AND LOVE ONE ANOTHER. Now having said that, let Me go on.

If it bothers you that the town in which you live doesn't allow a scene depicting My birth, then just get rid of a couple of Santas and snowmen, and put in a small Nativity scene on your own front lawn. If all My followers did that, there wouldn't be any need for such a scene on the town square because there would be many of them all around town.

Stop worrying about the fact that people are calling the tree a holiday tree instead of a Christmas tree. It was I who made all trees. You can and may remember Me anytime you see any tree. Decorate a grape vine if you wish. I actually spoke of that one in a teaching explaining who I am in relation to you and what each of our tasks is. If you have forgotten that one, look up John 15:1-8.

If you want to give Me a present in remembrance of My birth, here is My wish list. Choose something from it.

1. Instead of writing protest letters objecting to the way My birthday is being celebrated, write letters of love and hope to soldiers away from home. They are terribly afraid and lonely this time of year. I know. They tell Me all the time.

2. Visit someone in a nursing home. You don't have to know them personally. They just need to know that someone cares about them.

3. Instead of writing George complaining about the wording on the cards his staff sent out this year, why don't you write and tell him that you'll be praying for him and his family this year. Then follow up. It will be nice hearing from you again.

4. Instead of giving your children a lot of gifts you can't afford and they don't need, spend time with them. Tell them the story of My birth and why I came to live with you down here. Hold them in your arms, and remind them that I love them.

5. Pick someone that has hurt you in the past, and forgive him or her.

6. Did you know that someone in your town will attempt to take their own life this season because they feel so alone and hopeless? Since you don't know who that person is, try giving everyone you meet a warm smile. It could make the difference. Also you might consider supporting the local Hot-Line. They talk with people like that every day.

7. Instead of nitpicking about what the retailer in your town calls the holiday, be patient with the people who work there. Give them a warm smile and a kind word. Even if they aren't allowed to wish you a "Merry Christmas," that doesn't keep you from wishing them one. Then stop shopping there on Sunday. If the store didn't make so much money on that day, they'd close and let their employees spend the day at home with their families.

8. If you really want to make a difference, support a missionary, especially one who takes My love and Good News to those who have never heard My name. You may already know someone like that.

9. Here's a good one. There are individuals and whole families in your town who not only will have no "Christmas" tree, but neither will they have any presents to give or receive. If you don't know them (and I suspect you don't), buy some food and a few gifts, and give them to the Marines, the Salvation Army, or some other charity that believes in Me. They will make the delivery for you.

10. Finally if you want to make a statement about your belief in and loyalty to Me, then behave like a Christian. Don't do things in secret that you wouldn't do in My presence. Let people know by your actions that you are one of Mine.

P. S. Don't forget: I am God and can take care of Myself. Just love Me, and do what I have told you to do. I'll take care of all the rest. Check out the list above, and get to work. Time is short. I'll help you, but the ball is now in your court. And do have a most blessed Christmas with all those whom you love and remember: I LOVE YOU.

Let the Light In

Whatever we do, however we share, we mark the time,
the season, the feast as a place of light and love. And
in so doing, the gift of the Baby under the star has a
chance to transform our world into a bright oasis of
grace and mercy.

So as you gather today, whether with friends or even
by yourself, mark the time. Mark the day. Mark the
feast. And let the light of Christ come into the world.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Blessed are the cracked! Thats us. (author unknown)

Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it is the cracks and flaws we have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding. Just take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.

Remember, blessed are the cracked for it is they who let in the light.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas is.....

Christmas is not just a season,
Christmas is not just a day,
Christmas is more than a reason
For parties, presents and play.
Christmas is truly the essence
Of joy that the Saviour brings;
Christmas is surely the presence
Of Jesus, the King of Kings!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

We're number 1

Last night the Richmond football team played Montana in the National Championships (Division 1AA) and won. I am so happy for our players who have worked so hard and so pleased for our coach. He is such a wonderful human being, family man, Christian and coach.

This is the first time in the Universities history that we have had a national championship. Happy holidays guys. This was a great gift to our Institution and to all of our constituents.

Go Spiders!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

A Prayer from Billy Graham concerning the values of today

> 'Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to
> seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, 'Woe to those who
> call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our
> spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values. We have exploited
> the poor and called
> it the lottery. We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare. We have
> killed our unborn and called it choice. We have shot abortionists
> and called it
> justifiable. We ha ve neglected to discipline our children and called it
> building self esteem. We have abused power and called it politics. We have
> coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition. We have
> polluted the air
> with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression. We have
> ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it
> enlightenment. Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today;
> cleanse us from every sin
> and Set us free. Amen!'