Saturday, August 30, 2008

Then Sings My Soul Saturday - Stephen Curtis Chapman


If you are joining us for the first time this week for 
"Then Sings My Soul Saturdays"... 
Welcome! 

You may have jumped over from the announcements on the Christian Women Online site.  Just to let you know how "Then Sings My Soul" works,  click here to see the directions from the Inaugural Edition.

For the last two weeks, I've been promising to post the details of how to win some great music in an upcoming giveaway.  Well finally, here's the scoop you have been waiting for!

On September 13, 2008, I will be giving away several CD's. They include:
Awaken by Natalie Grant
Hiding Place by Selah
Hello Love by Chris Tomlin
and Stephen Curtis Chapman's Greatest Hits.
There will probably be more, I just need to check with Lifeway to see what is on sale! :-)

Here's how you can win some of this fabulous music. For each of the following things you do, your name will go in a hat. The more of these "assignments" you complete, the more chances you will have to win! 

1. Write a TSMS post and sign up on Mr. Linky. (You can sign up this week Aug. 30, next week Sept. 6, and the following week Sept. 13, and your name would go in the drawing 3 times.)

2. Post a comment on my TSMS post. (Again, you can do this today and for the next two weeks, which would include your name in the drawing 3 more times.)

3. Post the button for Then Sings My Soul on your sidebar. Be sure you send me an email to let me know you have it posted. This will also put your name in the drawing. You can find the html code under the button on my side bar.

4. Write a post about TSMS sometime during the next two weeks encouraging people to come participate. Be sure you send me an email with the link to your post too. This will put your name in the drawing also.

So, your name can go into the drawing a total of 8 times.
I will draw the names at
midnight on September 13, 2008, and post the winners then!

I will draw as many names as I have CD's to give away, which is at least four, but maybe more! So you have lots of chances to win.

I've been highlighting these artists for the last few weeks. To see the post on Natalie Grant, go here. For the Chris Tomlin post, go here.
 
This week, I'm featuring Stephen Curtis Chapman. He is probably one of my favorite artists of all time. Almost every one of his songs is awesome! And the lyrics are always so incredible.

This song by him is called Miracle of the Moment. I love it because it talks about wonders and miracles, two things I'm quite fond of here at Signs, Miracles and Wonders :-)

Here are the lyrics:

It's time for letting go
All of our if only's
'Cause we don't have a time machine and even if we did
Would we really want to use it?
Would we really want to go change everything?
'Cause we are who and where and what we are for now
And this is the only moment we can do anything about

Chorus:
So breathe it in and breathe it out
Listen to your heartbeat
There's a wonder in the here and now
It's right there in front of you
And I don't want you to miss
The miracle of the moment

There's only one who knows
What's really out there waiting
In all the moments yet to be
And all we need to know
Is He's out there waiting
To Him the future's history
And He has given us a treasure called right now
And this is the only moment we can do anything about
And if it brings you tears

Then taste them as they fall
And let them soften your heart
And if it brings you laughter
Then throw your head back 
And let it go, let it go
You gotta let it go
Listen to your heartbeat




Don't miss the wonders and miracles all around you this week!

Blessings to you,
Amy



Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Some of my favorite and not so favorite things

Well, I've not been around the blogosphere much this week but with good reason. It's been a complete roller coaster of a week.
Monday was awesome! I got do one of my favorite things - spend time with good friends in God's Word. I visited some great friends at my old church in Greenville, SC. Carol and I traveled down to see Lysa TerKeurst speak at their Ladies First Choice dinner program. I was so exited to see some of my family and my friends, Janet and Kimberly.

Janet, Carol, Lysa, Me, Kimberly

Lysa was awesome as usual. She always inspires and challenges. Her challenge is to say "yes" to God. I walked away refreshed and renewed. It seems though, that every time I commit to move forward in faith in some of the areas God is calling me to, I'm immediately pulled into a battle. The enemy knows my weak points and that is where he always hits first. And he hits hard.

Which brings me to Tuesday. Tuesday I got to do one of my not so favorite things... call EMS. Spencer had another status seizure. We happened to be out to dinner and running a few errands when it started. Lucia was with us and in hindsight, I feel she tried to alert us to the seizure before it happened. She was very agitated and unsettled at the restaurant. She was pacing and sniffing around Spencer. I really just thought she had to go out, or she was sniffing at food on the floor or something. That is not normal behavior for her in a restaurant though, so I should have realized something was up. She usually just lays under the table completely still and calm the entire time we eat. I guess I just have to get used to what her signals will be to alert us to a seizure.


Anyway, we ran to the store next to the restaurant to pick up some things, and as we were walking down the aisle, Spencer said, "Mom, I think I'm having a ..." He never finished his sentence because it hit him so hard. He could walk but not talk. It was pouring down rain, but rather than have him lie down on the floor in the store, I decided to try to make it to my car. I started a timer and headed out the door holding onto Spencer with Mary Lyndsey and Lucia in tow. We were getting drenched and about half way to the car, Spencer lost control of his legs and I had to catch him and carry him (all 65 pounds of him) to the car.


I finally got the doors of the van open (thank goodness for automatic doors) and everyone loaded into the van. I put him down in the backseat and checked the timer. Almost 8 minutes. I administered his rescue medicine and started the timer again. The seizure was not backing off. In fact, it was getting worse. So after about 8 more minutes, I called 911. It finally wore off as they were arriving in the parking lot.


They checked his vitals and he seemed fine. Only he couldn't speak for over an hour after the seizure. It was concentrated in his face and mouth and he was very postictal. He bit his tongue and cheek up pretty bad. We decided not to transport to the hospital and came home for him to sleep off the medicine. I knew if he seized again last night, we would end up in the hospital, because I can't administer more than one rescue med in a 24 hour period. Thank goodness he slept peacefully through the night.


Today he has been tired, but no more seizures. He is such a trooper. We hadn't finished homework yesterday before we left to go eat dinner, and obviously we didn't do it last night when we returned home. This morning before school, he insisted on finishing it before we left for school. I'm sure most kids would definitely use a seizure as an excuse to get out of homework. I'm so thankful he doesn't let his epilepsy stop him from doing things he wants to do or that he doesn't try to use it as a crutch. I hope it always remains so.


It's not lost on me that last week, I was drawn to 2 Corinthians 12:9. Our pastor even preached on this very verse on Sunday.


But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.


This particular passage of scripture comes right after Paul has said he was given a thorn in his flesh to torment him, a messenger of Satan, and that he had begged three times to have God take it away. Many commentators believe the "thorn" was epilepsy. Whatever it was, God's answer to him was "My grace is sufficient for you."

I have begged many, many times for Spencer's epilepsy to be taken away. For whatever reason, God has not chosen to do that. I'm not sure what His purposes are, but I know He is good and He only has good planned for Spencer. He uses everything, even things that might be meant to bring us harm for His good. His grace is sufficient for us so we will boast in our weakness to bring Him glory.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Wyatt for President

Wanted to inform you guys of this late breaking news :-)

Go here to check it out.

If you are wondering why I'm so busy... it's because I'm preparing for my new job as First Lady.

Amy



Saturday, August 23, 2008

Then Sings My Soul Saturday - Chris Tomlin


Chris Tomlin is one of my all time favorite artists. I love his music. He has some of the greatest praise and worship songs out there. His new CD Hello Love will be out on September 2.
I've pre-ordered a copy and it will be one of the CD's I give away on September 13, (Along with the Natalie Grant Awaken I highlighted last week.) I promise the details are coming on the giveaway... so stay tuned. Jesus Messiah is one of the songs from this new CD. Enjoy!





Thursday, August 21, 2008

Brotherly Love and other conversations with Mary Lyndsey


Mary Lyndsey is quite the talker. I wish I could record all my conversations with her because it would make for hours of entertainment when she gets older. But I never know when the next gem will come, so often I don't have a recorder ready. I guess the next best thing to remember them is to record them here.

Here's the latest installment of Conversations with Mary Lyndsey.

"Mom when I grow up I want to be what Spencer is when he grows up because I always want to be with him."

"Why do you want to be with your brother?"

"Because I love him so much. Maybe if he's a rock star, he will let me sing in his band."

"Maybe."

"But if he's a pirate or Superman, then I don't want to be what he is, because that would be too scary. If he's a pirate or Superman then I want to be what you are when you grow up."

"Don't you think I'm grown up now?

"No, I mean when you really grow up and move out of your house."

Later that same day...

"Mom, my friend said she had a dream there were monsters under her bed."
 
"Mary Lyndsey, you know there are no such thing as monsters. Besides there wouldn't be room under your bed for monsters. You have too many toys under your bed."

"Well Mom, there would be room for a little monster under there."

"Yeah, but you wouldn't be scared of a little monster would you?"

"No, you are right. I'd just step on him. Besides if there were a monster under my bed, I would just call out 'Spencer' and he would come running and save me from the monster. He would take his sword he got from Cinderella and use the sharp side and get that monster. And I would take my magic wand I got from Cinderella and make the monster go away. And if me and Spencer couldn't handle that monster together, then we'd just call 'Daddy' and he would come and defeat the monster for us because my daddy is the strongest ever." (Lots of spiritual application here guys...)

"You are right Mary Lyndsey."

Even later that day...

"Mom, can I have a penny to throw in the fountain to make a wish?"

"Yes."

"Can I have two pennies?"

"Why do you want two? You only get one wish in the fountain."

"I want to throw one in and make a wish for Spencer too." (side note... Spencer was at school.)

"OK, but no more than two... Did you make your wishes?"

"Yes, and you know what I wished for Spencer? I wished that he would never, ever, ever have any more seizures again."

Spencer was at school when all of these conversations happened.  Now if I could just get them to love each other this much when they are actually in the same room :-)


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Good Morning - Midweek Motivation

I'm over here today at Writer Interrupted, Midweek Motivation.

midweek_motivation_button.jpg
Come join me!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Faith Lifts - Leave It

My family and I attended a two-week training camp to learn to work with our new seizure response dog. The dogs were already trained and knew ninety commands. We were the ones who needed the training. 

To read the rest of this devotion, click here.

Have a blessed day!
Amy

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Then Sings My Soul Saturday - Natalie Grant

****Update to TSMS... So I am in a hotel with nothing to do but read all of your TSMS post and I was so excited to be able to actually have time to get to them all this week... but I don't have a strong enough connection to get many of the you tubes to play and I can't get the comments section to come up on most of them. Not sure if it's a blogger problem or my connection. Please forgive me! I will be traveling tomorrow so I will try to get to them on Monday! Have a great weekend.

One of my favorite artists is Natalie Grant. I love almost everything she has ever done. This week, I'm posting several of her songs to get you excited about my upcoming give away. Her CD Awaken will be one of the CD's I will be giving away on September 13. I will post the details about my contest next Saturday. I want to let your anticipation build. But... I will tell you that for the next four Saturdays I will be highlighting artists that I love and at the end of that four weeks, I will give away a CD from each one of them. So without further delay... enjoy some Natalie Grant.

Awaken by Natalie Grant


Something Beautiful by Natalie Grant

Live for Today by Natalie Grant

What are you waiting for by Natalie Grant

Held by Natalie Grant


All of these songs are on the Awaken CD which you will have a chance to win. Hope you enjoy them! Oh, and if you like Natalie Grant too, you can learn more about her here on her blog.

Have a great weekend!
Amy

PS. By the way, Spencer had a great first day at school. Please pray for us as we travel to Pennsylvania tomorrow to speak at an epilepsy camp. We are flying with Lucia for the first time. Pray for a smooth flight and no seizures. (and no accidents for Lucia either :-) )

****Please link your TSMS post to Mr.Linky. **** Be sure you link to your TSMS post and not just to your blog. Some people are still not doing this and when others go to look at their post, they are getting their most recent post and not the TSMS post. If you have questions about how to do this, just email me and I will help. 



Friday, August 15, 2008

I can't believe I have a Third Grader!

Wow! How time flies. It seems like I was just rocking this little baby boy singing "You are my Sunshine" and now he is almost as tall as me! I can't believe I have a THIRD GRADER!



Spencer was very excited about starting to school today. So excited in fact that we had two little seizures, one last night and one the night before. I think it was the anxiety and anticipation. He simply could not go to sleep. It could be the growth spurts too. I didn't realize how much he had grown over the summer until we went to Open House last night. He is taller now than some of the kids in his class that he was shorter than at the end of the school year in May.

I guess having to buy a size 12 shorts when we wore an 8 last year should have given me a clue. But I suppose I just don't want to admit he is growing up. I told him he looks very smart and much older in his new glasses. 

Please keep him in your prayers if you think of it, that he will not have any seizures at school this year. He's excited to have some old friends in his class again and we are thrilled with his new teacher. I'm off to pick him up! I can't wait to see how his first day of Third Grade was.
 
See you tomorrow for Then Sings My Soul.
Blessings to you,
Amy

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Bloggy Break/Upcoming Prizes

I'm taking a bloggy break this week before school starts back on Friday. We are trying to enjoy the last few days of summer and freedom. I just have a few updates and pictures to share.

I promised pictures from the Splash Pad and our limited time at the beach. Here are a few.


We are back home and Spencer is doing well. Thanks for all of your prayers and encouragement during his last seizure and hospital incident.

I will be back on Friday with First Day of School pictures, on Saturday with Then Sings My Soul and on Monday at Faith Lifts.

Oh, and keep checking back... I have some upcoming prizes and a contest with Then Sings My Soul that I am planning. You could win some cool music!

Hope you all have a great week!

Amy

Friday, August 8, 2008

Then Sings My Soul Saturday - Downhere


I heard this song on the way to the beach and I can't get the tune out of my head. I had never heard it. I'm not sure how old it is and I'm not familiar with this group, but I liked this song very much when I heard it. If anyone out there knows anything else great by them, please share! This one has a great video too.

Can't wait to hear all this week's selections. Don't forget to link to your TSMS post and not to your blog so that when we go to your site we get your TSMS post and not your most current post. Several people look at the songs all through the weekend! If you have questions about how to do this, just email me and I'll help you!






Thanks for the prayers

Well, I had full intentions of posting splash pad pictures and beach pictures but several things happened to detain me. First, I left for the beach with the computer, but no power cord. Hence, no blogging. Plus even if I had wanted to blog (and believe me I did) as you could tell from my husband's previous post, we didn't quite have the trip to the beach we had planned.

We spent all night Wednesday night in the hospital and then slept most of the day on Thursday. We had to leave the beach today and are still at my Grandmother's house visiting. We will return to Georgia tomorrow. Spencer is doing much better but is still a little groggy and cranky from all the medicine.

Thanks for all of your prayers and notes of encouragement this past week for Spencer during his seizure and for my speaking event. Tuesday night went well and Spencer even spoke. I appreciate all of my bloggy world friends and am so thankful that I have all of you lifting us in prayer when we need it. I'll post pictures on Monday from our trip.

See you tomorrow at Then Sings My Soul. I'll try to get the post up a little later tonight. Keep checking back!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Guest Blogger: Amy's Husband, Spencer and Mary Lyndsey's Father

The entries below are text messages between me (Greg, Amy's husband) and Amy on Wednesday, August 6, 2008.

3:48 pm - Amy: "On the Beach - Aahhh"

4:38 pm - Greg: "Love you all, on my way home"

8:25 pm - Amy: "Call me 911"
"Still Seizing"
"Giving More Valium in Ambulance"

8:47 pm - Greg: "I have been praying. What is going on now?"

Amy: "It's backed off some we are almost to the Hospital"

Greg: "Is he responsive at all?"

Amy: "No eyes are open but won't respond"

Greg: "Can he grip and release your hand?"

9:00 pm - Amy: "No we're at the hospital. He's totally non-responsive
they gave 5 more Valium in the ambulance."

9:15 pm - Greg: "Anything new."
"Can u update me me every 15 mintues."

Amy: "Dr is here now will let you know soon."

"Signal is coming and going. Still nonresponsive."
"Dr. left without saying anything. Not a good hospital."

Greg: "Can u call dr. Philbrook?"

Amy: "I'll let you know if anythiung changes still
nonresponsive but starting to to try to focus
his eyes can't squeeze, pupils not dilated anymore."
Still very drugged we are in the hall, no rooms."

9:30 pm - Amy: "No signal"

"He's a little more awake, very post dictal.

Greg: "What does no signal mean."

9:45 pm - Greg: "Is he getting stronger"

Amy: "My phone signal is coming and going.
He just thew up and almost choked. They suctioned him
and finally moved us to an ER room. He's still not responsive.

11:12 pm - Greg: "Anything new?"

Amy: "Still not resting well but a little better than b4 still
moaning and trying to get comfortable."

Greg: "I love you and continue to pray"

Amy: "Just turned on his side and got in the poisiton he in. We
don't even have chairs to sit in so we've been standing for
3 hours. I love u and will call or text if anything changes.

11:32 pm - Greg: "My battery is dying. Call home number when you want to update."

"Just saw your email."

Amy: "My battery is dying too so I'll stay off the phone. He's sleeping
better now keeps trying to pull out the IV and will call you later.
I love you."

Greg: "Love you"

August 7
2:44 am - Amy: "He just roused a little and said Hey"

3:14 am - Amy: "He's hit a temp of 101.9

6:33 am - Amy: "On the way back to hotel."


I am often asked by those that are aware that my son has Epilepsy the following question, "How can you and Amy hold it together when Spencer is having a seizure?" or "What do you do when you are not with your family and Spencer has a seizure?"

First, I begin to pray to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. I lift Spencer up, I lift Amy up, and I pray for those attending to them to have wisdom, knowledge, and understanding. The important thing is for me to have faith and not fear that God is in control and that his promises in the Bible apply in a very personal way to my family even when I am not with them. I pray for God's perfect will to be served because I know that this is the best way to pray for the best possible outcome.

Next, I remember that I am married to a strong, faith filled, God Fearing, woman and mother that is prepared to fight and protect her children. I remember that she is smarter and wiser than I am and will use her own faith and unity with the word of God to make sure that Spencer is well cared for by his nurses and physicians.

I believe that Spencer and Amy are amazing. I believe that they grow stronger with each challenge and obstacle Spencer faces. The testimony they are building and the faith they both demonstrate each time they walk out of an Emergency Room less than 12 hours after riding into the ER is astounding. They are warriors - Warriors for God. I applaud them and stand in awe as I see the way God works in their lives and builds their faith and makes them stronger.

It is not easy to be 6-7 hours away when they are in the ER and in the midst of another significant seizure but when you believe what I believe about my Savior Jesus Christ. I try to rest in the thought that God is in control.

Today, Amy was helping Spencer get out of the shower and she looked at him and said, I am so proud of you, how did get so strong and brave?"

His response, Mom, the secret is just 3 little things: Believe, Trust, and NEVER doubt!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Your Prayers Needed

Just thought I'd send out a request for prayer tonight. I am speaking at my home church, the church I grew up in. I attended this church basically from the time I was born until I got married and moved to Indiana 15 years ago. I was married in this church. I was baptized in this church. I sang in children's choir in this church. I attended Vacation Bible School every summer in this church where I drank red Kool-Aid and ate butter cookies with the holes in them (you know the ones you put your finger through) and tried to out sing the boys on Hallelujah, Praise Ye the Lord. Anyone else remember those days? Some of the ladies who will be there have known me my entire life.
Nothing like a little pressure right? Anyway, prayers would be much appreciated.

And, I'm taking my kids to the splash pad today. I'll hopefully post pictures tomorrow so you can see what a splash pad is.

Have a great day!

Monday, August 4, 2008

Fait Lifts - God Cares About the Details

I'm over at Faith Lifts today. Please come join me.


Ever had those days when you felt you were throwing up emergency prayers that seemed unimportant in the big scheme of things? You know the ones. "Lord, please let me find my car keys or I'm going to be late, again." "Lord, please let me find a parking place close to the door, because I have to get these children and all this stuff in that store quickly in the rain." "Lord, please let her poop in the potty this time." "Lord, please let my child sleep through the night, because I have to get some sleep." If you are a mom, I'm sure you've prayed one or more of these prayers on some occasion.

To read the rest of this devotion, click here.

Friday, August 1, 2008

TSMS Saturday - Canine Assistants Graduation

I wanted to share the video from the Canine Assistants Graduation Ceremony with you all. The program is truly amazing. To find out more them, go here.

Hearing this song when we watched the video made my heart and soul sing.

video