Thursday, April 12, 2012

A full Cup and and Empty Tomb....

What a fun and blessed Easter we had!
      Last Easter we had come home with Kayleigh after her birth and our 9 day stay in the hospita,l on Saturday April 23rd ( by the way that is our Matt's birthday)  and Easter was the next morning Sunday the 24th.  My friend and wife of our pastor Jenni posted on my facebook page "Praise the Lord the tomb is empty and so is room 1207!"..LOL what a tue statment! 

This Easter was, well Awesome!
We had a great time with our family and close family friends that we call our "Choosen" family.
 It was so fun to watch Kayleigh smile and grin and find eggs and place them in her basket
and of course take them out...
           put them back...
                    take them out...
                          well you get the picture.. :)

Easter candy, 
pretty dresses and bows,
smiles and laughter,
prayers and thanks 
HOPE and Peace.. 

all because of LOVE and mecry...
a cross,
 the perfect LAMB,
selfless sacrifice,
 cleansing blood,
a victorious battle,
and a RISEN Savior....

And with an EMPTY tomb my cup in life can ALWAYS overflow!!!!! Praise Jesus!!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

A new Joy in this Holiday Season!!!

Well I must say my Holiday cup overflows with a new Joy this year! 
"A baby changes everything"..title of a christmas song, and a very true statment on every level!

Kayleigh Grace has changed everything!!!
More love,
 more faith,
 more joy and happiness. 
Yes more sleepless nights, and worry and sometimes fear but God has all that!

     Got to go home to Houston for Thanksgiving, Kayleigh's first one!  Thankful for her am I and all that know and love her!!! It was such a joy and felling of completeness to go home to Houston to celebrate with my family with my Jay and our baby! There were so many holidays spent with my family that were awesome, but with no husband I felt kind of left out, then there was my Jay! Ahhhh complete!! And having holiday and family celebrations with him and John, Matt, and Shelby warmed my heart in a way I never had experienced.  And now Kayleigh gives an even stronger feeling of complete!  Thank you Lord!!! It was so fun to visit and watch her love and play with everyone! All the Isbell women in the kitchen cooking dressing!! Kayleigh will have to learn the secret!  It was the first time in a while our whole family was together!
All the Isbell Ladies!!

4 generations!!!

What a great Tanksgiving!

"A baby changes everything"....
Moving into the Christmas season, it is the baby of this season that changes EVERTHING!
Baby Jesus,
Lamb of God,
Peace Maker,
Sin Forgiver,
Faithful, Living Lord
and Mighty Baby....

Thank you Lord you gave your Son to change the "everything" of our lives and our eternity!

So my cup overflows with thankfulness and joy as this season of celebration everything has changed!!!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

A Season of THankfulness....

A Season of Thanks and Praise Day 1....
Wow my cup overflows with thankfulness and praise....
      it really should EVERYDAY
           as on a dalily basis I am given a fresh start and new day!
Everyday shoulde be a season of thankfulness, however in this busy life, so glad to have a season to reflect...
I am thankful today for my Family!
crazy at times,
perserviring and faithful!
Not everyone is blessed to grow up in a family full of these qualities but I praise God i did and continue to be blessed with it now! As every family the Bradbury/Isbell folks have had ups and downs and hard times but its the characteristics I already described that see us through!
I am the Stewart woman I am today because
of my Bradbury/Isbell raising!!
So I am thankful for my Family!!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Fishies in my Cup!!!

No not real fish in my cup,
or gold fish crackers,
 but FISHIES ya know Freshmen!!!

    Today our Shelby began her first day of High School! 
When Jay and I meet in 2008 and began dating. When I first meet Shelby she was in the 5th grade, spring of her 5th grade year.
Now she is beginning her High School journey!!!
     Jay said he could not believe his lil girl was now in high school!! I know it is an emotional day for him and Shelby's mom, heck it is for me and I have only had the blessing of loving her since 2008!  However, love bridges gaps in time and I love her like my own, like I have always known her....her whole life....I think the Lord gives us that kind of love!
      I remember high school, all the peer pressure and the things that went on during and after school.  I was not perfect, but I was so blessed to have made my decision to follow Christ before I went to high school, had a wonderful home Church and awesome youth minister, and a great group of close friends that were Christians, you know the ones that lived out their faith!  So high school pressures and all the mess was not really a big deal for me, I wanted different things and more for my life than what all that offered.
 I pray the same for Shelby, Jesus lives in her heart, she has such a sweet spirit! 
     I know she is not perfect, non of us are, but I see in her all God has to offer her!!!

I see all she can be through Him!!!
SO as she begins this journey I pray she is not the "ordinary" high school girl! 
 I pray she will be extraordinary for Him!!!

     DO you get picked on or made fun of if ya live for Jesus...yip ya do..
          But OHHH it is soooooo worth it!!!
So if you read this blog, take some time out and remember our Shelby in your prayers!!!

Lord thank You that Shelby is yours, she is a princess in your Kingdom even now.  I ask for your protection over her, your physical protection to keep her healthy and out of harms way.  I ask for your protection spiritually over her, that as the enemy comes to make a mess in her life You will stop him in his tracks and shield her from his mess.  I ask for your protection over her mind!  May her thoughts reflect the love You have for her and how beautiful she is because she loves You! When she is tempted and the opportunity is in front of her to take part in all the world says is right and fun you will give her the courage and strength to choose to be in the world BUT NOT a part of it!!! Thank you for her friends that also love you, Surround them together with more brothers and sisters in Christ and knit them close so they can encourage each other and keep one another accountable to you! Give us wisdom and strength as we lead and guide her, and parent us to raise your standards, and not be worried about always being "cool" parents but instead parents that raise our girl to follow you!!! Help us to encourage her, praise her when she deserves it, be strong and disiplined when she needs it, and give her all the love she wants and more!!! In Your name I pray and hope....Amen

Spring 2008

May 2011

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Everything I needed to know.....

     Remember those posters that said "All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten"....
I was in college when they were popular, everyone had them in their dorm rooms.  Here it is in case you need a reminder:

All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten

by Robert Fulghum
Most of what I really need
To know about how to live
And what to do and how to be
I learned in kindergarten.
Wisdom was not at the top
Of the graduate school mountain,
But there in the sand pile at Sunday school.

These are the things I learned:

Share everything.
Play fair.
Don't hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don't take things that aren't yours.
Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
Live a balanced life -
Learn some and think some
And draw and paint and sing and dance
And play and work everyday some.
Take a nap every afternoon.
When you go out into the world,
Watch out for traffic,
Hold hands and stick together.
Be aware of wonder
Well that all is soooo true and good, but let me give you a NEW one...well actually it is not so is in the Book of Romans in the NEW testament.
Love must be sincere.
Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.
 Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.
 Honor one another above yourselves.
 Never be lacking in zeal,
but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord
. Be joyful in hope,
 patient in affliction,
 faithful in prayer.
 Share with God's people who are in need.
Practice hospitality.
Bless those who persecute you;
bless and do not curse.
 Rejoice with those who rejoice
 mourn with those who mourn
 Live in harmony with one another.
Do not be proud,
 but be willing to associate with people of low position.
 Do not be conceited.
 Do not repay anyone evil for evil.
Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.
If it is possible,
as far as it depends on you,
 live at peace with everyone.
 Romans 12: 9-18

Now that is cup full huh....
     seems I have failed at all of those things at one time or another.  
           Thank goodness each day is a new start! 
After all HIS mercies are new each day, shouldn't OURS be as well?

Thank you Lord Your Word gives us the guide to life.  Help us learn it and follow it and full our cup with it DAILY!!!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Pro 31 Cup

What is The "Pro 31" Cup you ask? 

      Well growing up and studding the word about being a christian
lady of course it was Proverbs 31 that was read and studied.

I remember thinking
      "Lord is it even possible to be all these things
rolled up into one woman"...
     "can my cup overflow with these qualities?" 
"Can I be her?" 
      "Has anyone been her?" 
    Well the answer is YES!! 

 I am blessed to have a living example of this right here in
my life, right at the top and center of my family!!!!!

Margie Nell Isbell...more affectionately known as "Granny" 
She is HER!!!
Granny is the matriarch of our family, the top Lady if you will.
Picture it with me if you can,
   like a fountain of glasses stacked up,
     the very top one stands alone
       with the others staggered beneath,
 what is poured out into the top glass (cup)
   overflows into the ones right below
      and they overflow into the ones below them
         and well you see it now?
 Over flowing filling the ones that come behind it.

That is Her up there!!!
My Granny the top Lady
 Her Love,Faith, and Wisdom
has overflown into her children
 into her grandchildren
even into her great grandchildren....

     She is who I desire to be like because she is a Pro 31!!!!!

She is my living example of God's word.

My whole life
she has overflown into my cup
her love and wisdome and faith.

     She and my Papaw always came to visit me growing up, It was her home we gathered at for holidays and family celebrations.  Her cooking was THE BEST!  She was a entrepreneur owning several businesses with my Papaw, the first of which was a dairy farm they owned and ran when they were first married.  It was not until she was in her 70s that she retired from her business as owner of several Merle Norman Studios.  She faithfully taught her children about Jesus, took them to church and lived out her faith.  She has prayed over me my whole life and continues to do so this day.  When I was in college she wrote me letters and sent me encouragement.  When my heart has been broken she has lovingly given me comfort.  On my wedding day My Jay slipped onto my hand Her wedding set.  She was married to my Papaw for 50 years when he passed into Heaven.  It was the one she wore when I was growing up, I remember looking at it on her hand admiring it.  Now it is on my hand placed with love.  To this day she makes the best Thanksgiving Dressing, her carrot cake is the best I have ever had!  I have a beautiful quilt that she made me ( she made all us Isbell girls one).  The sewing machine I learned on and that is here in my home was the one she used to make clothes for my momma.  She shares her faith boldly.  It was her faith and strength from God that allowed her to care for my Papaw the last years of his life in their home, what a wonderful nurse she was to just came natural for her to take care of him.

So you see she holds that Proverbs 31 cup,
 it has overflown into my mamma's cup
 and into mine and I pray from me it will continue
  to overflow into Shelby and Kayleigh and so on...

Lord Fill me with your word and let my cup overflow with these words just as my Granny's cup overflows!!!

Characteristics of the Proverbs 31 Woman
1. She works willingly and is a good steward over finances. (Proverbs 31:11-13)
2. She does chores diligently and makes sure that her family is well fed and groceries are stocked. (vv. 14-15)
3. She keeps herself physically fit. Works hard. Is not afraid of physical labor. Takes care of her home and family. (vv. 17, 18)
4. She is productive and wise in business dealings. Is always seeking ways to grow and learn. (v. 16)
5. She may not be a professional seamstress, but knows how to sew a button or repair a seam. (vv. 19, 21-22)
6. She has compassion for the poor and less privileged. Has a heart of charity and love. (v. 20)
7. She chooses quality over quantity. Is prepared for the winter (difficult times) and makes wise purchases. (vv. 21-22)
8. She respects and prays for her husband. She supports him publicly. (v. 23)
9. She has the ability to manage business and/or self-employment opportunities. (v. 24)
10. She has strength and dignity about herself. She is confident and trusts in God for all things. (v. 25)
11. She speaks words of wisdom. She is trusted by others to give sound advice. (v. 26)
12. She is aware of what is happening in her household. She is not lazy or slothful. (v. 27)
13. She is respected and trusted by her husband and her children. (vv. 28-29)
14. She is more concerned with integrity and inner beauty, than physical beauty. But, keeps herself well-maintained (v. 30)
15. Others compliment her on her character, talents, and integrity. (v. 31)

Virtue---Proverbs 31:10
Faithfulness---Proverbs 31:11
Reverence---Proverbs 31:12
Goodness---Proverbs 31:12
Willing Worker---Proverbs 31:13
Good Manager---Proverbs 31:14, 15
Industrious---Proverbs 31:16
Strength---Proverbs 31:17
Endurance---Proverbs 31:18
Well Rounded---Proverbs 31:19
Charitable---Proverbs 31:20
Provider---Proverbs 31:21
Well Groomed---Proverbs 31:22
Wife of a Good Husband---Proverbs 31:23
Good Business Woman---Proverbs 31:24
Honorable---Proverbs 31:25
Wise---Proverbs 31:26a
Kind---Proverbs 31:26b
Good Mother---Proverbs 31:27a
Praiseworthy---Proverbs 31:28
Attains or Excels---Proverbs 31:29
Fears the Lord---Proverbs 31:30
Fruit Bearing---Proverbs 31:31

Proverbs 31:10-31

New International Version (NIV)
Epilogue: The Wife of Noble Character

 10 [a]A wife of noble character who can find?
   She is worth far more than rubies.
11 Her husband has full confidence in her
   and lacks nothing of value.
12 She brings him good, not harm,
   all the days of her life.
13 She selects wool and flax
   and works with eager hands.
14 She is like the merchant ships,
   bringing her food from afar.
15 She gets up while it is still night;
   she provides food for her family
   and portions for her female servants.
16 She considers a field and buys it;
   out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
17 She sets about her work vigorously;
   her arms are strong for her tasks.
18 She sees that her trading is profitable,
   and her lamp does not go out at night.
19 In her hand she holds the distaff
   and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
20 She opens her arms to the poor
   and extends her hands to the needy.
21 When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
   for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
22 She makes coverings for her bed;
   she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
23 Her husband is respected at the city gate,
   where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
24 She makes linen garments and sells them,
   and supplies the merchants with sashes.
25 She is clothed with strength and dignity;
   she can laugh at the days to come.
26 She speaks with wisdom,
   and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
27 She watches over the affairs of her household
   and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
   her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
   but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
   but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31 Honor her for all that her hands have done,
   and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

A large cup of Tears, Fears, and Cheers....

Well today's cup was full of emotions, familiar to every one that says goodbye or actually see ya later to someone they love as they head off to college.
 It was the same cup I am sure my parents held
and overflowed with the same things theirs did.....


Tears....we you know it tugs at your heart to send your kids off on their way....actually kinda a really BIG tug...ok maybe a tear or rip would be a better get the point I am sure.  I know I am not Matthew's "real " mom but the love I have for him is very REAL have NO doubt!  As we held hands and prayed over him this morning before Jay, Shelby and Matt set out for Tulsa, Oklahoma it was all I could do to keep myself together as I asked (well really begged) the Lord to keep him safe and sound, successful and studious, standing close to him each day.

     Fears....lets face it, the world ain't all that nice at times!  After all the Devil lives here.  That is enough to strike fear in your heart and mind.... But most importantly the ones I love live here!!! As That fear begins to fill my cup I remind myself about one of the Lord's "I told ya so"s.....
7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.   
2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)

so when those fearful thoughts about our Matt being 6 hours away from home enter my mind, I remind myself that God loves Matt way more than anyone of us do and Matt is His child!
          Cheers.....Go Matt Go!!  " Ye Bo" as Matt would say!  Those that love him are his cheerleaders in this life.  I am rooting him on, supporting him, with smiles, hands raised high, voice loud and strong... "You can do it!!!!!!!!!!" So proud of you!!!!!!!!!!