Sunday, November 18, 2012


When you hear or see the word "safe" what comes to mind? A locked box hidden in a wall that protects your valuables? An umpire in a baseball game as the player slides home? Safety takes many forms. What does it look like for you? What makes you feel safe?

I have become convinced in the past several years that safety is a fundamental need for most humans. We need to feel safe. We need to feel that, whatever happens, we are protected. We need physical safety. We need the assurance that our physical bodies are not going to be in danger from violence, disease, or disaster. We seek out protection and treatment and assistance, and when those fail, our world shifts. A perceived lack of physical safety can cause fear and despair, and can also bring strength and new resolve. Safety is important.

We need emotional safety. We need to feel that our friends are "safe places" for our hearts. We need our families and homes to safeguard us and make sure we are protected from a world that would destroy us. We need to feel safe in our relationships and when we don't, that can lead to fear and mistrust and pain. When we do not feel emotionally safe, we can become insecure, unstable, and our confidence can wane. Safety is important.

We need spiritual safety. We need to be able to trust our souls to our Creator. We need to give our hurts, our confusion, our bitterness, our anger and hate...all of the Lover of our souls. Spiritual safety only comes through complete surrender and confidence in the One who made us. When our confidence is in Jesus, we can trust Him for all of our physical and emotional in Christ is the full package!

I am so glad that I can trust everything in my life to Christ. I know that in my humanity, I need to feel physically and emotionally safe. I am learning that if I trust Him with ALL of that, He provides security, safety and protection beyond what I could have found anywhere else. Nothing surprises Him and He is not worried. I can trust that He will do all things for my good, and my trust is in Him.

Thursday, November 01, 2012


Thirty years ago today, a beautiful baby girl entered the world. I was nine years old, and I had been eagerly awaiting her arrival for months. I'll never forget my mom telling me that Eugene had taken Jean to the hospital  the night before (Halloween night) and that the baby would likely be born today.

I'll never forget hearing that she had a heart defect, and the long days waiting for her to come home. I'll never forget seeing her for the first time, and hearing my dad pray for her. God healed the hole in her heart, and I always knew that she was a very special girl with a very special purpose.

She immediately became MY baby. Everyone knew she was my baby...I took care of her every chance I got. I loved her deeply from the very start, and that love only grew with every passing day, month, year.

She grew into a lovely young lady, and she is beautiful and strong with a family of her own. She has been through a lot in her young life, but I still believe that God is going to fulfill His purpose in her. I love her more than she will ever know. She is, and always will be, my girl.

I love you, Valentina Eugenia Cody. <3 nbsp="nbsp" p="p">

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


Life doesn't always make sense. Storms happen and sometimes the lights go out. We can shout at the sky and shake our fist in anger at the clouds that are covering the sun. We can allow the darkness to overwhelm our soul until nothing is left but an empty shell. Or we can lift our soul to the pouring rain and surrender to the growth it brings. We can allow our faith to be pounded to bits because we know that the storm will not last forever. When the storm has ended, the clouds have parted, and the rain has stopped, we will know. When the sun is shining once again, we will know. As the warm rays of the sun reach our inner being, we will know that there has always been a purpose in the storm. We will see the growth, we will feel the strength, we will hear His still, small whisper. And we will know that He was with us all the time.

Friday, July 11, 2008


So what big things have been going on in your life recently?

Something huge that is happening for me right now is that I have started a Master's program at MNU. In April, I got accepted into their Master of Arts in Counseling (MAC) program. I am in the school counseling track, and I am loving it so much! I am meeting some very cool people and learning some amazing things and having a great time! This past Monday I had a big presentation due which I think went very well. My group of five people worked very well together, and hopefully we got a good grade! And then THIS Monday I will have my first test! I'm a little nervous, but it doesn't sound like it will be too hard...I do need to study though!

Another big thing is...I got a puppy! He is the cutest thing ever. His name is Reese because he looks like a peanut butter cup and he is very sweet. Just look at how cute this little guy is! He is growing fast and I know he won't be this little for long. Actually, this picture was taken about two weeks ago and he's already grown a lot! He is 8 weeks old. He's a doll and I absolutely love him already!

So I have some huge things going on right now...also some pretty big things "on my plate" so to speak that I am working on. Here's the general rundown:

- Working on putting together a skit/drama for the KCCBS service at HHYC. I think it is finally coming together...and we're only two weeks out! Not

- Working on getting the Crew stuff together for HHYC. And trying to figure out if I'm actually going to be able to miss my class(es) that week, or if I'm gonna try to drive back and forth. At this point, I'm thinking about trying to skip my Monday night class and come back for my Thursday night class. Anyway, the next couple of weeks are going to be very busy with trying to get all that together.

- Believe it or not, I've been trying to pick a drama for next spring! So that's very time-consuming, trying to read scripts, order scripts, and submit them for review. I am determined to not have a time crunch situation again next spring that keeps us from beginning rehearsals in a timely manner. We'll see.

- Obviously school work is keeping me very busy. Today I interviewed two school counselors for one of my classes. That was very enlightening and made me very excited about what I have chosen to do! One of the counselors is from an urban high school, and the other from a suburban grade school. Very different viewpoints, but both of them were very inspiring! Anyway, things like that, studying for tests, writing papers, and of course...reading! It never ends. But I am truly enjoying all of it. Last night I ordered my books for my next module, which begins the same week that we start school! Unbelievable.

- For the first part of the summer, I had a great time being a "nanny" to the Colburn kids. I'm not doing that anymore, and I really miss it, but it was an awesome time. I hope they had as great a time as I did! I love those kids, as everybody knows, and don't get to see them often enough! I completely understand the fact that their mom (my dear friend Gina) missed them too much to be able to continue working outside the home, so she worked it out to be able to work from home for the rest of the summer. Kudos to you, Gina. You rock!

- Of course, I do spend a lot of time socializing. What would life be without friends and family to spend time with? I do consider it an honor and privilege anytime any one of you lets me be a part of your life for an hour or two - an evening, a weekend, or whatever. The older I get (haha) the more I realize that relationships are TRULY the most important part of life. If I am too busy for my friends and family, then I am TOO BUSY!

Well, I am going to quit for now. I hope each of you has a wonderful weekend and that you don't forget to stop and relax for awhile. Take some time to let someone know how important they are to you. And take some time for yourself. Be yourself and others. And be blessed!

Congratulations tomorrow to:

Darren and Jamie, an amazing couple, who are joining their lives before God and others. May your lives be blessed as you continue to serve Him.

One of my former students, Bryan Smith, who is getting married as well. May God bless your marriage and your lives together and all that you do! You've always been special to me!

Much love to all!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Lately, my heart and mind have been so full that it's been hard to find the words. I'm not sure if that makes sense to you, but it does to me, and it's my blog, so deal. :) hah. Seriously though...

One thing I've been thinking alot about is passion. No, not THAT kinda passion. But the kind of passion that makes you love what you love. Ya know? For one thing, people are always asking me why I'm still single (I know, stupid question...and I'm sorry if you've ever asked me's still a stupid question...;) and I think I finally have an answer I can express! I've always known, but haven't had the words for it. But I think it's because if I were to ever sacrifice my independence for a relationship, it would have to be for someone who had similar passions to mine. And I have yet to meet someone like that. Which, by the way, is totally fine with me, because contrary to popular opinion, single people are not "faulty" or "broken"...we are just fine! And lest this begin to sound like some bitter diatribe against marriage or commitment, those who know me can testify that nothing could be further from the truth. I support marriage and I am incredibly happy and supportive of all my friends who have chosen that path. I do not, however, believe that is God's plan for everyone...and while I would not go so far as to say it's not God's plan for me EVER, I would say it's obviously not His plan YET! SO...all that to say that I've been thinking a lot about my passions lately. Those things in my life that are close to my heart. I guess you could say these last few months have included some major self-discovery. And it's been very interesting, to say the least. Take my word for it.

Another thing that I've been thinking about is change. How our lives are filled with such irony and transitions. I was reminded of this again tonight by a dear friend who is graduating this week. But the passages of life...they are so necessary and can be so heartbreaking! Over the past year and a half, I have realized more and more that life hurts. And the more I think about it, the more I really think that's how it's supposed to be. I don't think we were put on this earth to be comfortable. I don't think we were put here to be necessarily happy. I think it's great if we happen to be those things...but I certainly don't think that is God's main intention for our lives. And I think the changes and seasons of life come along to remind us of that. These are thoughts that I'm still processing, obviously, but God has been reminding me lately that I'm here for HIS purposes, not mine. If this life happens to bring me a measure of happiness and comfort, great. But if my life pleases Him and brings Him glory through the pain and discomfort, then I believe I will have lived my life to the fullest. At the judgment, I don't believe God is going to ask me, "Were you happy on earth? Did you have a comfortable, enjoyable life?" Don't get me wrong, I believe God wants to bring us joy because He loves us. But when He judges my life, I hope He sees that I served Him with abandon, holding nothing back, and allowing Him to mold and shape me through every circumstance of life.

My intention is to live my life in complete surrender to God. I know I will mess up at times, and I won't be the perfect example of His grace. Thankfully, God looks at the heart. He's sees my motives and my intentions. He knows I love Him with my entire being, and that's all that matters.

For all my friends and family, both near and far, I pray that God makes you a useful vessel for His use! May we all live lives that are dedicated to complete service to Him. I love you all.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Happy New Year! Even though the month of January is almost halfway over (hard to believe!) this is the first time I've had a chance to blog, so happy new year, everybody! I hope your 2008 is going great so far, and that it continues to be a wonderful year for you.

So life continues to be an interesting blend of activity, frustration, enjoyment, laughter, sadness, tears, and blessing! Whew. What a ride!

The Christmas and New Year holidays seemed to go by in a quick hurry!! My last day of school was the 19th, so I had a few days "off" before actual Christmas arrived. That was nice because I could finish up last-minute shopping and get rested and prepared for the festivities! Hah. I actually was able to go down to the Springfield/Ava area and spend some time with my dear friend, Alissa, that weekend before Christmas. We had a lot of fun. The weather was not great, so we stayed inside and watched movies and hung out quite a bit. And took pictures...

On Christmas Eve, my parents and I drove down to Tulsa to celebrate Christmas with my dad's side of the family. We had a great time there with our family and came back the day after Christmas. It was great to see people that we hadn't seen in quite awhile.

My nephew, Alex, and I had planned to leave the next day for Colorado to visit my brother, Scott. Because of the weather, both here and in Colorado, our trip was postponed till Saturday. In the meantime, I got to spend a few hours with my friend Anthony on his birthday. For the third year in a row, we went to Applebees on his actual birthday...quickly becoming a tradition!

Early on Saturday morning, we got up and made our way down I-70 to Denver. We had a nice trip, and got there early in the evening on Saturday. We were blessed to be able to attend the Sunday morning service with the dear people at the Loveland church, and to eat dinner with their pastor. Alex and I stayed there at Scott's until the following Wednesday and had a lot of fun just hanging out and getting to spend time together. I also got to see my wonderful friend Cara, and her sweet baby Luke, while I was there! That was a treat and we had a great time together!

Alex and I came back to KC on Wednesday, arriving mid-afternoon, and school started for me on Thursday! So it was a quick vacation, but packed with lots of fun times, and sweet memories!
Since school has started, life has continued to be incredibly busy and full. I have gotten to spend time with good friends, as well as with my family. God is so good to me!

If there is anything I could say about the year 2007, it's that God is faithful! He has never been anything but faithful to me. I could not ask for anything more. As 2008 begins, I trust that it will be a year in which I will be increasingly faithful to HIM! I'm sure I join many of you in saying that I want my life to count for something eternal. I want to make a difference and I want to encourage others to join me on the journey!

For those of you who made my 2007 holidays extra-special, I thank you. For those of you who have been my friend through good and bad, I thank you. I wish all of you a happy and blessed 2008! May the warmth and peace of Christ's presence follow you throughout this year and always!

*For pictures, you can visit my Ringo, MySpace, or Facebook sites.* :)

Monday, December 17, 2007

letting go...

It's a hard concept for me. I'll admit that when I have an idea that gets passed over or an opinion that's not widely accepted, I'm pretty okay with that. I can usually let those types of things go.

What I have a hard time with is letting go of people. When people exit my life (or I exit theirs) it's very difficult for me. I tend to hold the people in my life very closely, and losing anyone is heartbreaking. I'm not just talking about losing people to death, although the finality of that kind of loss is obviously painful.

For most of my life, it was not hard for me to get close to people. In fact, some might say that it was too easy. I trusted easily and opened myself to friendship and love easily. Through circumstances of the last few years, that has changed somewhat. I do consider myself fortunate in the closeness of my friendships; however, I do not find myself easily opening up or as trusting as before. I am much more cautious and reserved when it comes to giving or receiving the gift of friendship.

It is perhaps that much harder, then, to lose those people who remain close to my heart. When I find them walking out of my life, perhaps through no fault of their own, but just because of circumstances, it's not easy to let go!

I have been praying for several weeks, maybe months, that God would work in a certain situation. I have found myself pleading with Him and trying to work things out on my own, by turns. Last week I felt very definitely that God told me to let it go - to trust Him. I don't know what that means. I don't know if He's going to work a miracle and allow things to remain as they are, or if He's going to allow the change, knowing that somehow it is best. It's still so hard for me to let it go and trust Him! I can't seem to leave it in His hands, even though I know that's what He wants, and it's what I should do. It's ripping my heart out a little more each day, knowing that most likely after Christmas, everything will be different. I can't shake the sadness and the feeling that it's not right, but it's out of my hands. There's absolutely nothing I can do. I know God is able and all-powerful, and that He knows and cares even more than I do. What's more, I know that even when people leave my realm of influence, they are still never out of God's care! He will follow and He will be faithful! So why can't I just leave it with Him - why do I keep worrying about it and wondering if everything will be okay?

Here are some questions I have. Maybe you, my faithful readers, can shed some light...

Why does "letting go" feel so much like "giving up"?
Is it sometimes okay to "give up"?
When does it become unhealthy (disobedient?) to keep holding on?
How do I know it's really God telling me to "let go" and not the devil telling me to "give up"?
Why does God allow people into our lives, and then remove them before it seems right?

I am really having a hard time with all this. I would appreciate your prayers as I struggle to sort it all out.

Thanks for reading!