joining together

"Speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love"  -Ephesians 4:15-16 (NASB)

I just love these verses.

The body of Christ grows due to love, due to the working together of the individual parts.  The parts must be working properly, playing each individual role, but it is not so much each part that is vital, but the joining of the parts...each part matters, but what matters most is the fitting together of the parts.

The church is meant to be unified...to work together...to love.  And in doing these things, the church grows.  We become more like Christ.

How beautiful.


blessed on my birthday

First of all, I need to give a big THANK-YOU shout-out to my friends and family, especially my amazing husband, who made my birthday on Thursday so absolutely amazing!
I am incredibly blessed!

Birthday breakdown:

1.  Mikey stayed home from work in the morning, so we got to make breakfast together and watch a cute movie before meeting some friends for lunch!  (And I got flowers from Mikey delivered during the morning...gorgeous pink tulips, my faves!)

2.  I met up with two of my favorite people, Sarah and Melissa, to get pedicures, and then we stopped by Gloria Jeans for a little pick-me-up treat! :)

3.  Went on an absolutely yummy and fun dinner date with my absolute favorite person, Mikey, at Virginia's on King in downtown Charleston!! :)

4.  On Friday, we went with some of our best friends to Cafe Medley on Sullivans Island for gourmet ice cream and absolutely delicious pastries...very cute. And very fun!

5.  After the Cafe, we went to the beach for a nice walk and to just hang out...it was the perfect celebration! Very laid-back, but also special and fun!

Thanks again to everyone who helped make my birthday so special!
It was a truly amazing day(s) :)



This week, Mikey and I have been dog-sitting my parents' dog, Oskar, who is a 70 lb greyhound.  All of the pups have been getting along really well, and although our house feels a bit like a zoo for the week, it is fun having another dog to keep Berkeley in line as she is learning her dog-manners :)

Oliver is not afraid to take on his 40lb heavier sister...
this afternoon he was beating her up in his own terrier way :)

Oskar loves his dog bed, which inspired me to make one for Berkely and Oliver.
I made this bed out of an old sheet tied around two old king-sized pillows.
Unfortunately, Oskar is the only one really interested in the bed :)

Here is a pic of all the pups hanging out together in the backyard.
(I took all of these on my phone, so I sadly cannot enlarge them without making them super blurry)


book plug

I just finished Rob Bell's new(ish) book Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived, and I really enjoyed reading it.  *gasp*

I have heard from a lot of people, most of whom have not read the book, all about how subversive and heretical it is, and while I cannot say I am quite on the same page as good ole Robbie Bell on every point he makes, I really do like a lot of what he is saying.  Things about God's kingdom coming, about living for heaven, like heaven, here on earth...loving people, helping others, taking care of the earth, doing good...and doing these things not because they are rules we are meant to follow, but because we are passionate about what God is about, in the future and the present.

God is good.
God is love.

I believe these two truths wholeheartedly.  I also agree that even when we don't believe the same things, whether we are in different denominations or different religions, we should love one another.  We should take care of one another.

Bell raises a lot of good questions that I think we all should be asking, or at least considering.  I am deep in thought.  And I think you should be too.  Pick up this book.  Yell at it, get frustrated by it, refuse to agree with some of what it says...I did.  But also consider it. Ponder it.  Let the claims it makes and the questions it raises grow you, challenge you, and strengthen you.  I did that too.

Seriously, give it a shot.  I am also looking forward to reading Francis Chan's apparent rebuttal to this book...Erasing Hell:  What God Said About Eternity and the Things We Make Up.  I'll keep you posted!


an interesting idea

(Fuhrman's Food Pyramid...centered around vegetables, unlike the usual USDA Food Pyramid)

This afternoon, I watched a documentary entitled "Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead."  This documentary is all about the benefits of micronutrients, which wikipedia describes as "nutrients required by humans and other living things throughout life in small quantities to orchestrate a whole range of physiological functions, but which the organism itself cannot produce." The documentary centers around two men who, when we meet them, are obese and sick, and both decide to start juicing to get more fruits and vegetables in their diets.  These are the foods that contain high quantities of micronutrients.  For 60 days, they go on a juice fast, which is meant to help them get healthier...losing weight, lowering blood pressure, triglycerides, and cholesterol, getting off numerous medications.  The fast also is meant to "reprogram" their taste buds to start enjoying the taste of fruits and vegetables above less healthy and more processed foods, so when they get off of the juice fast, it is easier to stay disciplined and eat healthy.  And for both of these men, it works!

I was very intrigued.  While I am not sure about personally participating in a juice fast (although I am not totally ruling out the idea of a shorter one), I do think it is a great solution for a lot of severely unhealthy people out there!  And really just a great idea in general.  I am going to try to eat more fruits and vegetables...make more smoothies, etc.  Has anyone out there heard anything about this micronutrient diet stuff?? Or maybe even tried it?? I would love to hear any opinions and ideas!


enlighten us

This morning, I read these verses from Ephesians 1:

18  I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,19  and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might20  which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,21  far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come.

This is truly my prayer this morning, for myself, for you, for everyone.  If this world were to truly understand the great hope...the hope of perfection, of perfect joy and love and peace...the hope of an inheritance that cannot be destroyed or taken from us unjustly...the hope of overcoming this life, with all of its pain and struggles...then, I truly believe we would already be in a better place.  God has saved us.  God has set us free.  The single mother working two or three jobs to make ends meet, the AIDS victim in Africa without access to the necessary drugs, the abused child scared of its own family...all of these victims of the cruelty of this life can take comfort in the beauty, glory, and power of God, given to us through Christ.  And we who claim this inheritance should be the hands and feet moving towards these people and so many others, offering that life, that hope during our time in this world, as much as we are able.  To love as Christ loved, to let the prisoner know he has been set free...this is our calling as Christians.  And we can answer the call because we know in whom we have believed.


pUpdate...and then some

So it has been a while since I have posted anything about our puppy's progress...I was a slack dog (cheesy pun intended), and didn't post anything after her last vet visit, which was about two weeks ago!  This was the first time we've taken Oliver to this new vet, and he and Berkeley behaved very well for their dad :)

Oliver weighed in at 12 lbs, and Berkeley was a mere 42 lbs, just shy of 4 months old. She is probably almost 50 lbs now!

We were given an A+ for both of their health and well-being.

Berkeley is currently going through her teenage puppy stage.  She has gotten a lot more energetic, and she tries to test her boundaries sometimes, which can be a bit frustrating when we KNOW she knows what she is or is not supposed to do.  So we are living by one main motto with her...consistency!  If she does not listen on her own when we give her a command, we make her listen.  But even in this difficult time with her, she is learning a lot, and she really is a great dog! In a couple of months we are probably going to get her spayed and then, once she's healed, enrolled in puppy obedience classes!  We are both looking forward to the helpful hints and dedicated training time inherent in these classes.

All in all, she is doing famously!  We took her to Mikey's parents' house for the 4th of July and she laid calmly in the shade most of the day, and she slept right through the fireworks show we attended later at night!  And she has gotten better and better and heeling while she walks on the leash.  We are such proud parents :) lol.

Here are some pictures over the past couple of weeks of Berkeley and Oliver (but mostly Berkeley...lol)!

Sleepy girl, taking a nap on the sofa.

Berkeley with my Dad when we went to their house for July 4th weekend.

She kept wanting to rest her head on Mikey and be right next to him during the ride to his parents' house on July 4th! It was so sweet!

We took both of the pups to play in a field by our church today.  They loved it!

 Oliver with the ball, being chased by Mikey, being chased by Berkeley :)

Tuckered out after too much fun in the sun :)


thumbs up for rock and roll

This is how awesome my husband is...
I was having a rough morning, feeling sick and a little pitiful, so my husband sent me this video in an email to cheer me up, since he has to be at work for most of the day:

And, let me tell you, dear blog readers, it worked! :)