Sunday, February 28, 2010

Welcome Selah

Baby Selah

My last post was about Selah's room & I closed it by saying that we were now ready for Selah to come see us!  I had no idea at the time that she would in fact make her appearance in just 2 short days!

My water broke Sunday evening (that was a bit of a shock) and after a night of labor Selah came into the world Monday morning at 7:24am!  I will write a blog at another time about my time in labor, but all I know is that like I've heard every mother say at one time or another - with one look my heart was captured!

She is absolutely amazing.  My mother-in-law said it was holy awe...I think that is fitting.

I am in awe that I had anything to do with bringing this miracle into the world.
I am in awe that previous accomplishments and priorities are suddenly dim in comparison to her.
I am in awe that the instincts have kicked in - I actually seem to know a little bit about what to do (shocking)
I am in awe of her tiny hands...tiny nose...tiny fingers...tiny toes
I am in awe every time her eyes search my face
I am in awe & thankful - for I know my life is changed

My small Selah is sleeping peacefully - can't wait until I get to hold her tiny hand!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

A Room for Selah

Josh and I are excited to welcome Selah & to prove it we finished her room this weekend!!!

I wanted it to basically be a peaceful place & found some amazing things over the course of the last few months that are not only peaceful but have special meaning for our special little girl...

A HUGE thanks to Missy Hall for helping me with the Scripture over Selah's Crib
It is Psalm 67:1 in the ESV Version

And an even bigger thanks to the greatness that is my mom...
She made me all of the bedding & curtains - LOVE them!

Here are some other shots of the room!!!

Okay, we are ready...or at least are giving the appearance of it!
Come on little girl ~ we'll be meeting you sometime this next week

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ash Wednesday & Mating Cats

So, it is Ash Wednesday (I told you that I would share parts of my journey this season of Lent)…and this morning the Lord led me to the most beautiful scripture, which speaks volumes to me about the entire purpose for this day of ashes.

I was reading Colossians 3 in The Message & was moved by these words:

So if you’re serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. Don’t shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ—that’s where the action is. See things from his perspective.

Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life—even though invisible to spectators—is with Christ in God. He is your life. When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you’ll show up, too—the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ.

I read these words over and over this morning and was reminded by the Lord that this is not only a time for discipline & fasting but it is also a time to add something…or “pursue the things over which Christ presides.” I am guilty of shuffling along & easily becoming absorbed in the things that are most imminent in my life – I’ve gotten too easily shaken or upset by the things I see this year & I want to remember…I want to be reminded that my real life – the life Christ intends for me to live can be seen…can be LIVED when I begin to live in Him & see from His perspective.

To me, this is what Ash Wednesday is all about – realizing that it is not I who lives…I am but ashes…it is He that lives in me. And for today it is okay to live in obscurity…to be reminded that He sees what I do not see…and to celebrate living a life that is hidden in Him.

On a completely different (well, somewhat different) and irreverent note…

I’m starting to think that I might also be forced to fast a bit of sleep at this stage in my life. I have a week & a half to go in this pregnancy, and the sleep that I so desperately cherish seems to be slipping from my reach. Most nights for the last month have found me wide awake feeling the pitter patter of feet inside my belly.

Last night was no different. After tossing and turning for half an hour I retreated to the couch around 2am where I did some reading and surfing online. Around 3:30am, Selah had calmed down and I felt my eyelids get heavy. I turned out the lamp…got comfortable on the couch and waited for sweet sleep to come. After about 5 minutes as I was drifting off to never land, I heard one of the most disturbing and horrific noises…the sounds of cats mating.

Have you ever heard or witnessed cats mating?

It is gruesome…it is scary…it is disturbing…and yes, it was happening literally right outside the floor to ceiling windows that overlook our backyard. Words cannot describe my feelings at that moment – horror…despair…and a bit of amazement. At one time the cats literally hit the windows…and although I’m sure they wanted to continue making babies…I hit the windows too – screamed at them to stop!

And my dream of sleep was lost – at least for another half hour as I attempted to erase the sight that had scarred me…perhaps for life. So, although it was not a poignant or beautiful moment with Jesus on this Ash Wednesday…the mating cats did end up making me laugh with God.

“Seriously?” I asked God at 4am…”Is this what awaits me the next few months with this new baby?” (Not mating cats but the sleepless nights…the interruptions…the reminders that I need Him). And at that moment I felt Him smile and whisper, “Yep, you are in for a ride. It won’t be mating cats, but there will be sleepless nights & a whole new perspective from which you are about to see.”

Not sure what is in store, but whether it is walking through Lent or embracing a new season of motherhood…I’m definitely ready for something new…I’m ready to be new…

Until next time...Paige

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Why I Am Observing Lent This Year

Last year was my first venture into observing Lent. As a good “evangelical/charismatic” Christian I had mostly been taught to disdain or at least ignore most practices associated with the Liturgical Calendar. In my mind it was just religious nonsense…it was legalistic…and it must surely be empty…not really connecting people in relationship with God. So, you must imagine my surprise last year after graduating seminary and feeling that I had a good handle on this thing called the Christian faith when God whispered in my heart one morning to look into Lent.

Seriously, it made no sense to me…but I was at a dry place in my relationship with the Lord and was looking for a new way to connect with Him. I decided to study on the origins of Lent, and after some time of study and reflection I decided – “Why not?” I’ll give it a try!

All I can say is that those 40 days were perhaps the richest 40 days of my walk with the Lord last year. I’m not sure if it was because of the newness…because I was willing to simply obey…or because I had in fact made room for God in my heart – a heart that had become a Christian know it all…but for whatever reason – it was amazing. I entered into a time of fasting…I went and got my ashes from a Presbyterian Church…the whole nine yards & it was a refreshing experience in my relationship with the Lord. (You can read my blogs last year about Lent by clicking here: ).

I saw Him in a new light & I saw the Church in a new light…I realized that regardless of the method – when you make room for God – INTENTIONALLY – He will come…so often He is just waiting for the invitation…and I want to reinvite Him…I want to remember that I desperately need Him…that I am but ashes without Him…

I’m not expecting the same experience this year, but I am making a concerted effort before Easter to once again make room for the Lord. Since I’m pregnant and will be nursing I’ve decided that I don’t need to fast food…and really, food isn’t something that takes my focus from Him. I’ve been asking God what takes too much of my time from Him – that is what I want to give up. I’m somewhat embarrassed to admit that He made it clear that I need to give up facebook & twitter – I’ve gotten sucked into that universe & it’s time to say bye for an extended period of time.

I’ll still be around blogging – mostly because this is a place where I connect & discover as I share words with you about my relationship with Him. If you want more thoughts on Lent I would recommend a blog that a friend from college wrote – you can read Glen Packiam’s thoughts here:

I’m excited about this journey! I’ll share a few thoughts along the way!

Friday, February 12, 2010


Some days it's as if the Lord gives you a glimpse - a reminder of why you do just exactly what you do.  These reminders are different for everyone - I'm sure parents get these glimpses when they find their hands grasped by a child...or for my husband I know it happens occasionally when a client tears up upon entering their new home.  We all get those glimpses from time to time - but sometimes...I don't know about you...but sometimes it feels like the work is more overwhelming than the reminders that it is worth it.

I feel that way working at the church quite often - don't get me wrong - I LOVE my job - I would do it for is not a job but my passion...and a huge part of simply who I am.  There are many aspects to my work at the church - missions...teaching...administration...and plenty of listening.

But yesterday was a day full of glimpses in one specific area - zoe - a ministry to college students & young adults that Josh and I have overseen now for 7 years.  In all honesty we've had our ups and downs - I've had young people cuss me out...I've cried over giving counsel that was swiftly ignored only to see the pain in young women's eys...we've tried to quit at least 4 times (literally - gone in and said we would like to be done)...we've seen numbers fluctuate...and we've questioned why God keeps us there.

And yet, we've had some of our greatest joys from working with young people as well.  Performing weddings...countless talks over coffee...6am girls' groups that I've led for years...pre-marital counseling...lots of laughter...sharing tears...but mostly seeing these young men and women fall more in love with Jesus.  So there are moments when we love it...there are glimpses of why this is His purpose...

Lately, I've been distanced from the hands-on conversations with girls that normally give me the glimpses into why I love zoe.  Mostly because of my pregnancy & choosing to say no to things like my 6am small group & other commitments in this season.  I've missed it...and the distance was causing me to question once again..."Are you sure God?  You want us to continue to give our lives here?"

So yesterday was His ever-faithful reminder that although my life may be changing there is still so much to give.  My glimpses included coffee with a young woman who after drifting for a bit is renewing her deep relationship with the Lord...and then an unexpected email from a woman who was in our group 4 years ago & is now married & living in a different city.  Her short message included these words, "I had forgotten what sweet memories I have from my time spent with you and the girls. I started thinking back about how much I grew during that time, and I just wanted to thank you for all the time you poured into helped make me a better person, and my time in Zoe changed my life in so many ways!"

And then...perhaps my greatest glimpse of all occured at our weekly zoe service where we had a night of worship & communion.  At one point I just stopped singing & looked around the room.  Before me were over 80 young people - some standing...some kneeling...some sitting...some crying...some quiet...some singing...all worshipping...and giving adoration to Him.  In that moment, I quietly said thank you to the Lord.

Thank you for not allowing us to quit.
Thank you for giving me a place to share myself.
Thank you for giving me words or tears or laughter or empathy when I haven't known what to say.
Thank you for choosing me to love these people.
And Thank you for the love I've received from them.

It was a good day...and a good reminder that whatever He calls us to do - it is worth it.

And by the way, we had a "love" theme to our night of worship last night.  In the middle of singing Elizabeth Brown read a spoken word piece that she wrote that brought tears to my eyes.  You should read it...

And I pray that you feel His love this weekend and that you feel a renewed love for where He has you.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Loving Boyett's Rant

Loving Jason Boyett's Rant this should check it out.

Monday, February 8, 2010

One Thousand Gifts (Part 2)

Continuing to Count My Gifts...

14. The smell of banana bread baking in the oven

15. Hearing a random person describe Josh as gung-ho & remembering my own first descriptions of this fiery, passionate man…I wasn’t sure what to think of him…

16. Inside jokes with my family – like the 11 mile bike ride

17. The quiet and solitude of 4am

18. The creativity, wisdom, and beauty of my mother – her willingness to help me make a sweet haven for Selah

19. The discovery of The Apple Tree’s cinnamon rolls – and sharing it’s deliciousness with Kelsey

20. Feeling like I’m making new friends as I discover beautiful words through blogs

21. Volunteers who don’t just show up to work…but who come with ideas & the passion to make them happen – so blessed this week by Liz & Nathan who want people to PURSUE others around the globe

22. Warming my cold toes under the covers by tucking them under Josh’s warm feet

23. Teaching my class tonight – watching their eyes when they get it…

holy experience

Saturday, February 6, 2010

It's 4am...

It is 4:27am and I've been awake for almost an hour now...this seems to be a bit of a pattern in this last month of pregnancy.  I've been told that this is one of the ways God prepares me for wakefulness with my new little one...and as a girl who LOVES her sleep, I've actually been enjoying my middle of the night rendevous with the Lord.

Take tonight for example - I had the idea of rest and balance on my mind after attending a ladies meeting at our church tonight.  It was the topic of discussion and I had the most amazing epiphany as I sat listening to other ladies talk about saying no, finding balance, and making time for God's special gifts in their lives...

My Epiphany actually shocked me...

Because I realized after years of overcommitting, overperforming, and praying desperately for balance in my life...I'm actually doing okay!  No, I'm far from perfect & of course still have the tendency to over-do-it...but I realized tonight that I'm rested (yes, even as I sit here at 4am)...

God has walked me through an amazing journey the last couple of years of learning to say no...and more importantly showing me the power of my yes.  He has taught me that finding balance isn't saying no to everything in life but having the room to say yes when He speaks and prods. 

It hasn't been easy...and I still have a ways to go...but here are a few things I've done to make room to say Yes to Him

1.  I rediscovered vision for my life.  I looked at everything on my plate & compared them to the overall vision I know God has given me for this stage of life.  As I compared these things I realized that a few things had to go.  They were good things, but not a part of His plan for me
  • For example, at work the Lord showed me that my calling is in 3 primary areas: teaching, missions, and young adults.  As much as I loved working with special events or communications - these were areas that caused the most stress and stole time from the areas where He has called me to put my energy today.  I was able to share this with those who lead me & we came up with a plan for me to hand off some responsibilities to others so that the areas where I am called could grow and become more effective.
  • Perhaps one of the greatest joys was discovering that as I let something go, God was faithful to bring the right person to do that job much better than I could do it!
2.  I got rid of guilt - too often I realized I only say yes because of guilt...
  • I also got rid of my desire to prove myself.  After a few years of desperately trying to show people that I was enough...the Lord revealed to me that so long as I try to "prove" myself I am actually showing that I don't believe that I am is when I was able to truly rest in Him and His approval of me that the longing to prove myself stopped.
3.  I chose to protect my Sabbath.
  • I have made Fridays my Sabbath and I made a conscious decision to protect these days.  I only schedule things on these days that refresh my soul or add to my life.  And if I feel like I need to do something on that day, I make sure to find other Sabbath times throughout the week.
As I said before, I have not "arrived" in this area of rest, but I am thankful that at least I'm sitting here in the 4am hour at peace because what awaits me tomorrow is a day of sipping coffee with my husband, adding finishing touches to my baby's room, going to church...and simply saying yes to anything else God has for me.  Two years ago - there was rarely a Saturday that was comprised of such!

A couple of books that have helped me along this journey are:
Life of the Beloved by Henri Nouwen
rest: Living in Sabbath Simplicity by Keri Wyatt Kent
Fresh Brewed Life by Nicole Johnson

What things has God showed you on your own journey towards rest?  Have you learned to
say no?  Have you seen the power of a yes to Him?  Would love to hear your thoughts on this area...

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Stuff Christians Like

So, I thought I would share a blog that I enjoy reading from time to time & let you all know that a book is coming out soon...  It's called  and it is a refreshing take on the craziness that is our reality as Christians so often.  As someone who grew up going to every possible church service & being the typical Christian cliche - I'm basically laughing at myself & thinking that in deed we must look so ridiculous to the world at times.

If you go to the blog some of my favorite posts are:

#8 Singing Friends are Friends Forever at Camp
#9 Comparing Braveheart to Christianity (in honor of my father)
#106 The Side Hug
#151 Francine Rivers, the Thoenes and other books with windswept people on the cover
#178 Overusing your one "seminary word" (sorry, I know I'm guilty of this...)

Here are two images from the upcoming book:

Monday, February 1, 2010

One Thousand Gifts

So, I've decided to join The Gratitude Community at  I found this blog via - I've loved reading Sarah's list of a Thousand Gifts...and as I've been reading today I felt like the Holy Spirit whispered in my heart that I have more gifts surrounding me than I realize...and that He wants to open my eyes to them!  So, I'm excited - I'm going to count one thousand gifts in the next few months...and I'll share the ones that I discover each Monday!

I was in the process of writing about my pregnancy...and was actually focusing on the things that are I think it is appropriate that I start here - that I share a few gifts from this season rather than just my laments...

I am thankful for these gifts:

1. the consistent pokes and prods within my buldging abdomen that remind me at the most unexpected moments that there is life teeming inside of me...

2.  the stolen moments I take - dreaming about who she will be...what she will look she will dance...if she will have her daddy's energy

3.  The words of my doctor today - "you are the picture of health"

4.  My husband's feet & back massages

5.  Learning to take advice from my younger sisters...for they are experienced ones & I am the pupil

6.  Strangers who truly believe pregnant women are the most beautiful women...especially the lady who called yelled across a parking lot - "you are the most gorgeous woman!"  She swiftly got in her car and pulled away...

7.  Josh's talking to Selah at night - telling her that she is loved...seeing the hope he has in his eys

8.  Receiving a "Dixie Bear" today - my dad's secretary hand-made a bear for Selah & shared with me the prayers she prayed as she made this special gift

9.  Friends who listen to my complaints and concerns

10.  Finding the right name for our sweet girl...while in India

11.  Finding joy in my imperfect figure

12.  Eating that cinnamon roll...or Taco Villa without a concern

13.  Discovering that tea is ALMOST as delightful as coffee

holy experience
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