Wednesday, April 17, 2013
I was sitting on my front patio listening to my kiddos chatter about their day at school and watching them twirl around the lawn as the first signs of spring had finally made their way to our Northern climate. I looked at the sky, put my sunglasses on and did a silent "thank you God for this beautiful day" as I soaked in the blessings of this life.
And then my phone beeped. It was a simple message from my sister who lives in Boston.
"Just heard that the Boston Marathon was bombed!"
I sat and stared at my kids as I immediately began the round of questions in my head...who would do this? What is happening to this world? Will my kids know what it's like to live in peace?
As I looked at my oldest son, who had now climbed up to the top of his favorite tree, I wondered...what does it feel like for God to look down upon his children and see all that we have become? If I feel such sadness as I try to get a grasp on how my children are growing up, what does our Heavenly Father feel when He sees the choices we've made and the ways that we've disregarded Him? How much must He ache when He looks down upon our fallen world?
I pulled my thoughts together and gave a half smile as my daughter came bouncing around the corner with sidewalk chalk...
And then I embraced one of the greatest treasures I've been given in this life. The treasure of being a mother. The treasure of loving something so dearly that I would give anything to make their world better...safer...happier.
If I can love something so much, how much more does our Daddy love us?
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
What would I say?
You see, my middle school and high school years were not the best years of my life. I know on some levels, we could ALL echo that sentiment. Who can really say that they love the years filled with horrible mood swings, zits the size of your head and the drama that can only be found when you pack hundreds of teenagers in one building...Lord have mercy.
My biggest problems in high school stemmed from the simple fact that sometime during my sixth grade year, I began to buy into the lie that the most important thing in life was to be popular. Everything I did revolved around this concept and over time my entire personality was shaped around this lie. I became someone I wasn't and in turn I became very self centered and bratty (just ask my mom). :)
Since moving back to Gloversville, I have asked myself many times, "what would you say?"
"What would you say, Cyndie, if you ran into that girl who you know you were not always kind to? You know, the one who was pretty mean herself and who always seemed to be alone. The one who didn't smell quite like you and looked like she was always angry. Sure, maybe she wasn't always the nicest person to be around, but what would you say if you ran into her today?"
All those times when I've thought about that question, I've pictured two girls particularly. I couldn't even remember their names, but their faces were etched in my memory forever. I'll be honest, on occasion, I've actually seen one of them walking down the street as I've been driving by. I've been tempted to stop but I've always faltered as I've thought about how weird it would be for me to swerve over to the side of the street to talk to a person I haven't seen in 20 years (and whose name I can't even remember)!
But over the past 3 years, I've known in my heart that 'one day' God would put me face to face with those ladies and I would finally find out what I would say...
That day finally came. On just my 4th day of working at C1, I did a 180 as I looked over my shoulder and saw a girl rushing past me as I stirred my coffee. Her head was down and she looked like she was avoiding all eye contact. Her clothes were worn and she looked as though she hadn't slept in ages. She headed straight into the ladies room and didn't come out for over 20 minutes.
I ran over to Donn and asked if he knew that lady. He said her name was Sue. That's right! It was Sue! He said she'd been coming into C1 for the past few months.
My head raced as I attempted to find something to do to keep busy in my strategic location by the coffee bar. I figured the minute she came out of the bathroom, she would head for coffee. I knew my time had come...
Finally, she emerged from the ladies room looking as though she had brushed her hair and maybe washed up her face. As she walked over to the coffee bar, I looked her in the eyes and said, "Sue, is that you? Do you remember me? I went to school with you."
She smiled a pleasant smile and said, "Hi Cyndie!"
We exchanged small talk for a bit and finally I said to her, "Sue, I need to apologize to you. When I was in school, I was a stuck up snob and I may have said or done things that were mean to you. I'm really sorry about that and hope you can forgive me."
She looked shocked. She then went on to tell me about how dark her school days were. She said that in some ways she was always relieved to arrive at school because when she was home she was beaten so badly that school was at least a place to escape to. But then, when she would get to school she was bullied so badly (not by me, don't worry) that she would become incredibly angry and start fights often. She thinks her last year of school was ninth grade. In her eyes, her school years were the worst years of her life.
I asked her what she was doing now and where she was living. She looked down at the table and said that she was living on the streets. She had been living with a man who beat her so she grabbed her purse and left. She had slept for the past two nights on a bench in the 20 degree weather and snow.
My heart broke as I thought of how blessed I am to do what I do. For 3 1/2 years, I have been back in Gloversville and I've not run into this girl. But in 4 days of being at C1 full time, God brought her back into my life. She's rough around the edges and she still doesn't smell like me or act like me, but He loves her just as much as He loves me.
And I can now say that I have a new friend, whom I knew years ago, but never knew. Her name is Sue. Where are the "Sue's" in your life? And what would you say??
Wednesday, March 13, 2013
Thanks to my wonderful little sister who has a passion for making videos, we now have a new 3 minute introduction that can be used when we present the 150/40 challenge to churches and individuals! It's nice having talented family members! :)
Tuesday, March 12, 2013
"MVH Last Day"
For the past 3 and a half years, I could have only dreamed that God would allow us the opportunity to serve alongside of one another in ministry. To be honest, in many ways, I doubted that God would ever open up that door again for me. It seemed that ministry may be a part of my past life that had now been replaced with the full throttle business world. I had many ups and downs over the past years as I've grieved the loss of ministry, but I had finally come to terms with the life that God had called us to. I accepted that He had given me the job I had as a blessing for my family.
And then He turned our world upside down again...
And so, here I now sit. In my "new" office with the sounds of 10 or 15 men in the other room drinking coffee, shooting pool and talking about God. It's a sweet sound that I could have only dreamt about a few months ago.
And I feel grateful....overwhelmed...and completely humbled.
This will not be an easy road. It has already had many ups and downs and our faith is being tested on a moment to moment basis, but we are certain of the calling and excited to see how God moves!
And so we wait on Him and we pray that as we wait, He will reveal more of Himself to us!
Thursday, February 28, 2013
I could hardly believe it. After all the months that we’d prayed those prayers, I had never realized that God was calling me to fill those roles! As I sat at my desk that day, I knew our world was about to shift again.
For more information, please call 518-725-6058 or visit www.changeof1.com
Thursday, September 6, 2012
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
I have a sickness.
On most days, I like to think that it's a gift, but the simple fact is that it's probably more of a sickness than a gift.
I heart decorating.
Wow, that hardly does it justice...
I HEART DECORATING!
I love ALL things decorating! I spend hours during summer break pouring through potterybarn, storage solutions, better homes and gardens or any other thing that remotely resembles a decorating magazine. I dream of the day when my little universe will one day again collide with
However, when my decorating OCD collides with my Organizing OCD, you're all in for a real treat!
And so, today, in honor of 'Back To School', I present you with our tested and approved homework organization center!
Let me first take you in my time machine to visit my lovely kitchen 2 years ago when we moved in...
*Warning* The following image may be harmful to some viewers...
And here you have the catalyst for our homework system that has revolutionized organization amongst my crazy little crew. For the sale price of $22 at Target, I packed two of these puppies in my minivan and drove off. I had a mission and I could feel the thrill!
Of course, a little assembly by the studly hubby and I watched as the shelves slid perfectly underneath my countertop...LIKE A GLOVE! (You can barely even see them in there)! You can also NOT see the gorgeous unpainted wall behind!!
However, this would not do...we needed more organization and I needed aesthetically pleasing vibes.
I waited until Target had a sale on their large milk crates and then I scored 6 of them for $10 each. A little pricey for my taste, but SO worth the expense. And then we were at this point...
SO CLOSE NOW!! Can you feel it? Of course; each child needed to know which cubby was theirs so I picked up a few adorable tags from- where else, (Target of course...small town you know...options are limited).
and then I made name labels from the templates over here at Better Homes and Gardens...
I simply taped the name labels to the back of the storebought tags and tied them onto the baskets. With the extra two baskets, I used my templates again to create a 'junk' label and a 'school lunch' label to help with some overflow in those areas.
And, so was born our organizational bliss!
Each day, I make sure the labels are switched to the side with the child's name on it.
When I get home from work, all I have to do is look at each bin to see if any names are showing.
If I can see a name, I promptly scream and yell (just kidding) to find out why said child has not yet done their homework and left it for me to correct. I can then go through the rest of their papers at my leisure (still wondering when that day will come)!
And there you have it! Bliss in a basket! And it makes my OCD heart VERY happy :)
Wednesday, August 29, 2012
|The exact spot where we had met "Prince" (Asher) 2 years earlier|
|Brothers from Day 1|
|The very moment the plane landed on US soil|
|The first time we ALL met|
We celebrate that for exactly one year we have journeyed together and made memories we used to long to make.
We celebrate that for one year we have learned to read together, write together, play soccer together and put-hotsauce-on-everything-we-eat together! (Yes, I believe I just made that a verb of some sort)
We celebrate a little boy who has shot up 3 inches and grown out of two pairs of sneakers (well, maybe we don't celebrate that as much)!
And We celebrate that we no longer have to look to the sky and wonder if our little boy is safe...
But, above all else, we celebrate that we serve a God who is still in the business of miracles.
A God who led us on a missions trip that changed our world and broke our hearts.
A God who kept our little guy safe during terrifying raids and famines that I can't even begin to comprehend...
A God who broke down political barriers that were keeping us from being with our son...
And A God who knew at the beginning of time that our family would not be complete without the four precious gifts He has given us.
Wednesday, August 1, 2012
Sometimes I feel like I've lost it...
Like it's a part of my being that I said goodbye to so long ago.
The things that used to come so easily to me, now seem buried so deep inside my soul that I'm not sure where to look to even dust them off.
The truth is...I think I'm just scared to begin.
I used to have a simple life that I took for granted. I spent my mornings at story hour with my kiddos or leading women's ministry at my church. I created peanut butter and jelly lunch masterpieces and tucked my little ones away to nap land while I retreated to the world I had grown to love.
The world where I could express my soul.
The world where my words seemed to make sense of life and
The world where I felt like me.
I'm amazed when I look at the last time I wrote on this blog...over a year and a half ago.
Life has changed so much since the days of PB&J and blog posts that seemed to make sense...
Our home has moved
Our ministry life has taken on mach 5 speed
Our family has grown
Our roles have changed.
The days of playdates and new recipes were replaced with budget meetings, conference calls, PTA leading and fitting in the ministry that I loved around everything else. The more my life took on this new role, the more the old Cyndie screamed to make sense of it.
Where am I? Where is the crazy, stupid writer and speaker who made light of life's disappointments and took pictures of God's amazing provisions?
Well, it's time for some changes to take place.
I may not be able to control our circumstances or the way in which God has chosen to provide for our family so that we can serve Him in ministry...
I may not be able to control the way it feels to miss one of my precious kiddo's school events because I have a meeting I can't reschedule...
And, I may not be able to sneak away mid-afternoon to sip a coffee and script a bit of my heart on a page...
BUT, I can do something.
I can shed the fears and embrace the fact that life is no longer what it was.
In all honesty, life is better.
It's harder, It's chaotic, It's much more messy, It's tear filled, It's not always exactly how I would have planned it;
BUT, it's the center of God's Will.
And so, I am shedding the fears. I will no longer give into the fear that God has taken away my gift of writing. I will no longer worry if I can't post thoughts every day. I will no longer allow Satan to deprive me of who God has made me to be.
I am Cyndie. I am a Wife. I am a Mommy. I am a Business Woman. I am a Christ Follower and I am a Writer.
Today, I am allowing God to reinvent me. No fears...both feet jumping right in...
It may not be the way it used to be...
It will be even better!
Saturday, February 26, 2011
I think that thought daily when I see my children (who live with me) find new independence, or when I catch of a glimpse of them and realize how mature they are beginning to look...but this is different...
When I watch you grow; it is through pictures...
Pictures that are often taken months apart and arrive in my inbox, taken by some sweet person who was able to visit you and capture a smile from you. Pictures that I find myself studying with great detail; in hopes of seeing your heart through the film.
My sweet boy...you are looking so grown up...you are looking so handsome...and I am forever grateful that you are looking happy.
If I were with you right now, I would hug your sweet smile and tell you to stop growing...stop getting bigger...stop becoming a little man! And then we would laugh...knowing full well that we can't stop the years from passing...
I only wish I was passing the years by with you.