Saturday, March 28, 2009

So What Can We Do About It?

Well...we can begin to stand up for our principles...

1. America Is Good.

2. I believe in God and He is the Center of my Life. God “The propitious smiles of Heaven can never be expected on a nation that disregards the external rules of order and right which Heaven itself has ordained.” from George Washington’s first Inaugural address.

3. I must always try to be a more honest person than I was yesterday.
Honesty “I hope that I shall always possess firmness and virtue enough to maintain what I consider to be the most enviable of all titles, the character of an honest man.” George Washington

4. The family is sacred. My spouse and I are the ultimate authority, not the government.
Marriage/Family “It is in the love of one’s family only that heartfelt happiness is known. By a law of our nature, we cannot be happy without the endearing connections of a family.” Thomas Jefferson

5. If you break the law you pay the penalty. Justice is blind and no one is above it.
Justice “I deem one of the essential principles of our government… equal and exact justice to all men of whatever state or persuasion, religious or political.” Thomas Jefferson

6. I have a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but there is no guarantee of equal results.
Life, Liberty, & The Pursuit of Happiness “Everyone has a natural right to choose that vocation in life which he thinks most likely to give him comfortable subsistence.” Thomas Jefferson

7. I work hard for what I have and I will share it with who I want to. Government cannot force me to be charitable.
Charity “It is not everyone who asketh that deserveth charity; all however, are worth of the inquiry or the deserving may suffer.” George Washington

8. It is not un-American for me to disagree with authority or to share my personal opinion.
On your right to disagree “In a free and republican government, you cannot restrain the voice of the multitude; every man will speak as he thinks, or more properly without thinking.” George Washington

9. The government works for me. I do not answer to them, they answer to me.
Who works for whom? “I consider the people who constitute a society or a nation as the source of all authority in that nation.” Thomas Jefferson

We can fight to maintain our values in our homes, in our schools, in our families, in our workplaces, in our country, in our cities....Honesty, Reverence, Hope, Thrift, Humilityl Charity, Sincerity, Moderation, Hard Work, Courage, Personal Responsibility, and Gratitude

Another thing we can do in peaceful protest is send tea bags to all our city, state, and federal representatives in our government with a list of our values and principles. We have got to start opening our mouths, our nation is being stolen from us and our children and grandchildren will be the ones to pay.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Down with the Sickness

Okay, so for about a month I have been battling a sinus infection. I thought it was taken care of and this week it has snuck back up on me. I've been vomiting because of the mucus drainage, feverish, sore throat, ear aches, body achy, just everything has hit me. So I went to the docs today, and my severe sinus infection was only worsened by the previous doctors prescribing only amoxicilin and that irritating the infection instead of healing it. So now my sinus infection is spreading into my chest and has weakened me enough to cause a secondary infection----strep! Yeah!!! Good news, you may ask! I've lost 11 pounds since March 5th!

I have started a new round of antibiotics and Nadine and Rowan have started some too! Because they most likely have strep or will get sick in the next few days. So the doc is sanitizing the house. If Rob and Jourdyn begin to show signs than he will call them in prescriptions. But he thought that the little ones were a necessity since they spend all day with me, sharing drinks, giving kisses, and hugs, etc.

So pray that this leaves my house because I am NOT down with the sickness!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Christian living in this world

I was introduced this week to the works of St. Teresa of Avila, particularly her "The Interior Castle," which is a portrayal of the "seven mansions" of the soul's spiritual growth. For her spiritual growth was a process and I completely agree. And like St. Teresa, I've experienced these "mansions" within my spirit moving among them, in and out, like the wavering seas. That, however, is not God's intention. His intention is that we fall so in love with Him that we become unwavering spirits filled with His truth.

To often today we fall prey to what Teresa herself experienced and explained in her autobiography in 16th century.

"On the one hand God was calling me. On the other, I was following the world. All the things of God gave me pleasure, yet I was tied and bound to those of the world. It seemed as if I wanted to reconcile these two contradictory things...the life of the spirit and the pleasures and joys and pastimes of the senses...I spent nearly twenty years on that stormy sea, often falling in this way and each time rising again, but to little purpose as I would only fall once more."

For St. Teresa prayer was the key to entering and remaining in these "mansions" she described. With each level our prayer life becomes deeper and more focused on the things of God. To me, these mansions are about levels of discipleship, prayer as well, but with each level comes a bigger heart for the things of God and for learning more about Him. Each level is characterized by our level of outward expression of the inward gift of love that Christ has given us.

Happy 12th Birthday Jourdyn!

March 23rd is a special day for me! It is the anniversary of the birth of my first baby, Jourdyn! On March 22nd, 12 years ago I spent the entire day in labor, experiencing what was the most painful day of my life, all because of the hope and new life that was promised to me. What a blessing Jourdyn was those two days (she held out until the 23rd). In the moment if you had asked me if I thought that pain was a blessing, I probably would have thrown something at you. It wasn't until it was over, until that new hope and new life was placed in my arms that I was able to praise God for what he had walked me through, to thank Him for holding my hand through the pain and blessing me in ways that I never thought imaginable through the gift of new life. God's faithfulness has overcome the pain that I felt that day.

God has just given me a beautiful picture of what he does for us in our lives daily and even for what he has done for my church. Romans 8:28 says, "We know that in ALL things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." The promise is that ALL things, even the pain, even the sorrow, the sunny days and the gloomiest of days - God is there and He is using those moments for his glory. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

I worked really hard this year at planning Jourdyn's Birthday. This is the first year that her party was strictly a friends party! And because March weekends are just jam-packed with fun! Her party had to be on her birthday after school! We invited 11 friends plus her which made 12 for her 12th birthday. However, only 7 were able to go! So we had 8 girls! None of them, including Jourdyn had any clue where we were going for the party! They guessed bowling or skating, and then I told them we were going over the border, so they moved onto guessing gambling. Everything we drove by Rob and I made fun. We drove past the mall, and said, "hey, here's a clue, we're close." We drove past a pet groomers, slowed down and told them "We're here, I thought you guys would like to work with pets and learn how to groom them." We drove past a golf course, again slowed down and said "No really we arranged private golf lessons for each one of you." They protested a bit. They wanted to just drive golf carts and skip the lessons. But hey, they had no clue! And we ended up at Paint Your Masterpiece.

It was a total shocker! And they all loved it! Only a couple had ever done this before and it had been on vacation, not something for a birthday party! I had asked Jourdyn if I had planned it right and if she had fun and she said that she couldn't think of anything better to do! So I guess I did! We dropped all the girls off at either their homes or their volleyball game and then headed home where she opened her gift from us and grandpa and played the Wii with daddy until bedtime!

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Sunday, March 22, 2009

Change is-a comin'

Over the past several months my church has been pastorless. God has been moving and working in the life of our congregation and I know that this journey, while it could have occurred in a better way, has in the end been a blessing from God. He is faithful and He promises us that He will use all things to His glory!

Last week our church had a shot of hope penetrate it deeply when a Pastor was presented to our congregation for consideration for a call. I have been praying for a Pastor that would take our church to "the next level" so to speak, to take us from an inward focus on ourselves to an outwardly focus of discipleship and love. Over the week, I have been praying that God make His will for our church abundantly clear, that he would shine through all of the negativity and our selfishness and just be glorified today as we voted! That we would walk away today from church knowing that God's will was done and have no doubt that He is working in our church.

And I have to tell you that God showed up! And boy did he show off! One hundred and nineteen members voted today and the vote was 115 to 4 in favor of calling this Pastor to be our new Senior Pastor. So now we begin praying that God speak to this Pastor in the same way that He has spoken to us. And if it is God's will, we will have this new pastor within a month or so.

I'm excited! I'm excited about this change! I'm trusting that God is going to use us to be a light to this community, that we will have leadership that will focus on equipping us for moving forward.

On another note, I have finally after nearly three years I have been connected with the appropriate people in the district and will be going in April to meet with the Ministerial Studies Board to interview for my district license. The ball is rolling and I am in awe of what God is doing in my life! I still have no clue where he is taking me but I am strapped in for the ride and holding on tight to His grace and love! With God all things are possible!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

WooHoo Jourdyn!

Visit to make your own!
Well, today was District Quiz. Jourdyn and I headed down early this morning to St. Mary's for the District Quiz Meet. She did a fantastic job! She took 5th place and has qualified for Regionals in May and World in June. Regionals are in Mt. Vernon and World is in Orlando. She can go to both or she can just go to one. We have put an additional requirement on her, however. If she wants to go to World she is going to have to go to Regionals and do her best. She must place there or we are not going to spend the money to go to World. If we make it to World than it will be most likely just Jourdyn and I. But we'll see what happens!

While Jourdyn and I were gone, Rob and dad took Rowan and Nadine to the Shriner's Circus at the Seagate Centre. They had fun! Rowan fell asleep after the first act. He saw the lions and all the pre-circus hoopla and that was it!

Friday, March 20, 2009

When is enough enough????

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Cabin Fever

WOW! Have the kids begun to really get stir crazy! The sun has been shining for the past couple of days but it has just not been warm enough or dry enough for them to be out in the backyard. Today we reached 72 degrees. So I decided to take an impromtu afternoon trip to the Toledo Zoo. We went for about an hour and just visited the polar bears, seals and giraffes. It was nice and the kids got to run!

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Happy St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Pat's Day
Myspace 2.0 layouts

Jourdyn had a band concert last night! It was one of those "Hey mom I have a band concert tomorrow night" events. It went well. I have one issue as a alto sax player she is not up front so without stadium seating there is no seeing her. And she is also the only girl in her section. (I think this might play into why she so often wants to switch to flute.)

She is going to hopefully be taking summer lessons with her band teacher on top of her lessons with Miss Youngblood. I am going to be looking for a music camp that she can go to either this summer or next. I have no clue where to begin looking but I think that she would enjoy it.
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Nadine is very excited about St. Patrick's day! I was told this morning to quick get her clothes that must be all green because she's gonna see a leprechaun!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Youth-2-Youth Lock-in

Last I chaperoned Jourdyn's Youth-2-Youth Lock-in at her school. This was one event at the beginning of the school year that I knew I was signing up for. America's Pride was going to be there. And when I was in 7th grade I attended the same thing at my junior high school. I remember it fondly and was excited to see what they were doing today.

There were very few parents that braved the whole night! Mostly over-protective 6th grade moms and dads! But I was one of them and although I was tired, I really enjoyed going! Some of the skits were the same and just as powerful and relevant! I was blown away by some of the talent that exists on this generations America's Pride.

It was a fun time and Jourdyn didn't ignore me all night long!

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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Birthday Number 5

Today was Nadine's 5th birthday! She began her day with going to school. She took cupcakes for all her classmates. They made her a beautiful crown that she didn't take off all day!

For lunch, Nadine accompanied me to Applebee's to meet up with an old friend, Lee. We hadn't seen each other since shortly after Rob and I got married. It was great to see her and catch up with her life. And I believe that God has brought her back into my life for a very specific reason that I am slowly catching onto. I'll explain more at a later date when I'm able to express my thoughts in a more complete way. But God is doing something big in my life right now, so pray that I will follow his lead and not try to take a short cut!

After lunch, we returned home for dinner and shortly after Nadine and I headed out for Caravans and Bible Study. Nadine was very excited to wear her birthday hat at Caravans! She felt very special. Jourdyn had a choir concert tonight. I would have been there and I really missed not being there, but I had to lead the Bible study. Rob and Rowan took her to the concert! And I heard she did very well! Next time, I hope to get more than a one day notice before a concert then I would be able to make other arrangements to get there.

I arrived home from Bible Study at about 8:40. We sang happy birthday to Nadine again with cake and candles this time! The kids all had cake and headed off to bed! And I headed to Ohio Skate to skate with Amy and Laura.

We had a phenomenal time! It was a blast! I fell on my keester once in the middle trying to backward-skate. And I ran into a wall trying to take pictures of Laura. The wall was apparently a lot closer than I thought! Don't laugh! Amy fell too a couple of times!!!

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The Law of Love - My Final for Philosophical Foundations for Ministry

In his Letter from Birmingham Jail, Martin Luther King, Jr. wrote “I am cognizant of the inter-relatedness of all communities and states. I cannot sit idly by in Atlanta and not be concerned about what happens in Birmingham. Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
King’s thoughts are the essence of what it means to live in community. When living in community together we understand that others exist and how they choose to live out their reality can affect our reality and vice versa. King’s plea was for justice throughout the community for all, not just a few, through equality and love. He argues “was not Jesus an extremist for love?” King was in a position in which he felt that Christian love had failed. He was left asking the question was not the law of love enough to provide justice and equality for a community? Should not the law of love be the basis for justice?
The law of love, presented by Christ’s love for humanity in His sacrifice, was supplied and given so humanity would learn to live their lives as a reflection of that love. This paper will first discuss how it is that Christians can live their lives as a reflection of Christ’s love through a movement towards Christ-likeness. We will then look at how our movement can be unrealized or even set aside causing injustice.
Being a Christian means that we have acknowledged and accepted Christ’s love sacrifice for our sins and salvation. Christ’s love can then be conveyed on our lives. John taught “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.” (1) Through Christ’s love we know what love is and that we are even able to truly love at all. It is Christ loving others through us, it is not of ourselves. Aristotle’s “view that existence is the movement from potential to actual” (2) (teleology) is a sound approach to form a foundation of Christ-likeness in ethical judgment. Moving towards something greater is a Christian principle. John explains, “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known. But we know that when he appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure.” (3) Paul relates the same message in Philippians 3:12-14: “I'm not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don't get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I've got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus. I'm off and running, and I'm not turning back.”
The Christian walk is given its life and motivated by Christ’s love. It is a movement from what we are to what we will be in Christ. It is moving from potential to actuality in Christ. “Anything that facilitates this movement is good and anything that frustrates that movement is evil…For Christians the actual is Jesus. Hence, in this form of Christian ethics, the believer should act to facilitate the movement to Christ-likeness in oneself and in others.” (4)
Unfortunately, there is a certain reality that many Christians live today. That reality is one that is without an understanding of the purpose and potential that exists in their lives because of Christ’s sacrificial love. Paul explains in one of his letters that there “will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves…having a form of godliness but denying its power.” (5) When we don’t realize our purpose of becoming like Christ (holy, full of love and grace) it is impossible for us to love as Christ first loved us – sacrificially, unconditionally, etc. Our ethical judgment becomes skewed because we become as Paul reports: “lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient…ungrateful, unholy, without love.” (6) Without Christ’s love in us, we are left to injustice and evil become the norm.
If injustice and evil are everything that comes from the lack of Christ’s love, than equality and justice flow from the Law of love. They are a natural consequence of our movement towards Christ-likeness. Ultimate justice, the justice of God flows from His love. “The Almighty is beyond our reach and exalted in power; in his justice and great righteousness, he does not oppress.” (7) God’s justice is done in His righteousness and power. As Christians we should “try to be true to God’s idea of justice” (8) through living a holy life that has its foundation in Christ’s love.
Martin Luther King, Jr. beseeched his colleagues to comprehend his theology of the love of Christ. He implored them to discover the need to move towards Christ-likeness in our ethical judgments concerning equality and justice for all humanity. He asked should not the love of law be enough to provide this equality and justice. And he was right. The law of love as laid forth in Christ and provided only through Him is enough to provide equality and justice for all once we acknowledge that love and allow it to move us forward towards holiness, purity and Christ-likeness.

1. I John 3:16 (NIV)
2. Lecture, Section 3, Tuesday
3. I John 3:2-3 (NIV)
4. Lecture, Section 3, Tuesday
5. 2 Timothy 3:1-5
6. Ibid.
7. Job 37:23
8. John Grant, Critical response, 3/05/09, 12:44 pm.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Aging too quickly

Well, as stated before and even last year...March is one of our birthday months around here! Yesterday, we celebrated Rowan's 3rd and Nadine's 5th birthday with our friends. I have a friend at work that makes the most phenomenal to-die-for cupcakes and they were a hit! The kids had a ball! It was a rainy and we had a tornado warning, but we all survived and now have great memories of it all!

Nadine was a little amazed that tornadoes are actually real, not just in the Wizard of Oz. But she wasn't scared! And thankfully, no tornado touched down! It was just some major blowing and rain.

Here are the pics from the party! Also for those of you out of town watch the background. You may remember what my house used to look like. If not click here and you can see the before. I've made some big color changes since the beginning of the year.

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Do you ever feel...

like doors keep being shut in your face? or that things just aren't lining up how they are supposed to? It's tough! To know that you're on the right track but not see all the pieces come together and to have pieces that just seem to not fit is excruciatingly annoying. And I'm left asking the question, is it the right track at all or maybe it's the right track but the wrong locomotive? Maybe I'm too much like Thomas the Tank engine, over-eager to do the things that are best left to bigger and better engines, or maybe I'm more like Sir Handel, generally knowing-it-all and sometimes throwing my tantrums when it just doesn't go as I've planned. I see a lot of myself in Skarloey though too. Being dedicated to the track I'm on and always eager to help out when needed. And of course, there's always Stanley - the one that everyone loves.

Sir Topham Hatt, he's the man though, literally. He's not a locomotive, he's the director. He's the one that keeps everyone on track making sure that all the locomotives are right on time and really useful. While I can be like Sir Topham Hatt in many ways, in my home, with my children, at work, etc. I can't be Sir Topham Hatt for myself - that's God. It is God that keeps me on track and makes sure that I'm right on time and without Him I'm not very useful at all. And thankfully, no matter which locomotive I'm sporting today, if I'm focused on Him, I will always be on the right track. It's when I'm focused on Sir Topham Hatt (God) that I can find out exactly which locomotive I am on the track that he's set and be rest assured that I will always be right on time with him and even more important - I'll always be really useful in His train yard.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

A lot going on today...

as you can see the McQueary's had ALOT going on today!

Jourdyn had her zone quiz meet today. She took fourth place and qualified for District! If she does good at District, she wins a spot at Regionals and World! Her goal is World competition. It is in Orlando this year! So of course, she wants to make it there! Her friend, Katie took home first place - thus the frowning in the picture! She was just posing though!

A Birthday Tea

Nadine was invited to celebrate her birthday with our friend Betty from church, who happens to share the same birthday (just a few years earlier!) All the women and young little ladies in the church with March birthdays were also invited to share in the High Noon tea. Being mom of the little birthday girl, I was able to tag along!

This was Nadine's first tea and boy, was she excited about it! She was able to wear a pretty dress and even a hat. Shh! Don't tell but they even made her punch since she doesn't care much for tea! It was served in her own teapot and cup. She felt very special! And she was able to eat "Rich Lady's Chocolate Squares" a.k.a brownies!!!

Visit to make your own!

Thanking God for answered prayer!

Three years ago today, my baby, Rowan James was born. It's hard to believe that it has already been three years. I still remember vividly sitting beside him, longing to hold him as he lay in his incubator, not knowing what was wrong or even if he would make it. Wishing that he would just begin to eat and begin to function as he should and praying that God not take him from us. Praise God that he didn't and praise God that He has constantly held my little man in His arms of safety through all that we have been through in his short life. I remember the friends and family that gathered around him and I. They prayed with us, they cried with us and they comforted us. I thank God daily for those friends and for answering our prayers.

He told us this morning that it wasn't his birthday because he didn't have a birthday hat or a cake. So just to prove to him that it is indeed his birthday, we got him a hat and a cake!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


I have been since this past weekend pretty much voiceless! I don't really feel sick. My throat doesn't hurt. I just have no voice and a cough. Today is the fifth day. I think I may call my doc this morning and see what he wants me to do.

Besides that there hasn't been much going on. I had a meeting with Jourdyn's GT teacher on Monday to discuss why it is that my above average kid is only operating at a below average rate! We didn't really come to any conclusions but it was nice to talk to her about it and realize that Jourdyn isn't the only one going through it.

Yesterday, Charlene started her new tattoo, so I went and sat with her a bit while she got it done. It's a tribute to her mom. You can find pics on her blog.

The kids are anxious for the birthday's to begin. And begin they do on Saturday! We are having a small party for Nadine and Rowan on Sunday with just a few people. Jourdyn is not having a family party this year. She opted for the friends party. So on her birthday she will be having a party, to which she has no clue what will be happening, only that she is having one. It has been fun planning that surprise! She has 20 days until the party and already can't stand that she doesn't know something!

We've told her that it's Chuck E Cheeses, the Zoo, the library, she just can't stand the fact that she doesn't know! :)

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