Tuesday, June 28, 2011

provocation of thought during prayer (personal journal entry transcribed on whether or not God is good)

These questions have weighed heavily on my mind since Levi Masalin's death and were furthered by a recent sermon by Thomas Wong, pastor at Point Community Church in North Brunswick, NJ.

Lord, I trust you. I know you do not forget us. Isaiah 40:27-28. You are living and active and intentional. I do not claim to understand you. Isaiah 55:8. And I do fear you. Psalm 40:3. Do I trust you because I have to? Because I fear the wrath of not trusting you? Because I was taught to? Because I am humbled by lack of understanding? Because I know you are good and worth trusting? Yes. How do I know you are good? Has my life been easy enough thus far for me to just think you are good because I have not personally experienced enough bad to think otherwise? Has the Bible shown me through examples that you do good for people who trust you? Romans 8:28. I almost wrote "you do good for most of the people who trust you" because many... scratch that... most of them were persecuted because they trusted you. How can you have done good for them if the good you did was not, well, good? Either you are not who you say you are or I have misconceived what "good" is.
America thinks "good" is success, health, good relationships and general well-being in our current circumstance. Is that what good is, God? Disciples and prophets were stoned, beheaded, speared and crucified because they loved you. Yet you say all things come together for the good of those who love you. That certainly does not fit into America's conception of "good." Philippians 4:11-13. Rather, you give peace beyond understanding Philippians 4:7, grace Romans 3:23-24, strength to endure trials Philippians 4:13, hope that will never disappoint Romans 5:3-5, assurance of love that never fades Romans 8:38-39 and joy abounding Psalm 28:7. Obviously, your definition of "good" is different from man's definition. Both definitions cannot be true, so which one is true or as westerners would says it, which truth do I choose to believe? I choose to believe that your good is "gooder" than our "good." If I do not choose you over concern for my circumstance, I will neither receive the "good" that I seek (for it is unattainable and unsatisfying) nor the good that you offer.
Yet many Christians go on thinking they trust you when really they only trust themselves and their pocketbooks. How many of us will only "trust" you until our American dream collapses? That is false trust. Test me God. When you permit trials and suffering, do I see it as a fulfillment of your promise to me or as an obstacle to your promise to me? Again Isaiah 40:27-28. I must demonstrate my trust in you through my actions and perspective and not fall back into a false trust. Lord, Grant me your perspective and teach me to fear you rather than fear fearing you.

Might I add that I have learned more about trusting the Lord by watching Levi Masalin's family this month than I have from any Bible story. Even after losing their son, they chose to rely on God and to trust Him and you know what? God has proven trustworthy in an undeniable way. I will never be the same. http://ledyard.patch.com/articles/their-lives-have-called-us-together#c
And truth about the good that God offers in no way negates the truth I wrote about in a prev. post: http://heatherpaiges.blogspot.com/2011/05/i-have-something-to-say.html

Friday, June 24, 2011

NYC with dear friends

Last year we had a reunion in Maine, where I lived at the time: http://heatherpaiges.blogspot.com/2010/02/lovely-friends.html. This year we selected NYC, so I wrote the itinerary. Rachel observed,
"Heather has two criteria: history and pretty" and I confess that that is quite accurate.
I picked Rachel, Laura and Dana up from the airport and drove due south to Princeton Township and campus then to a nearby orchard, all of which are historically significant and quite pretty.
We spent the afternoon exploring campus from chapel to library, wandering passed enchanting old shops, hiking an 18th century canal, hand-picking asparagus and indulging in cider doughnuts.

Day 2, we took our time site-seeing in Manhattan: Wall Street, the Met, the middle of Central Park in the rain, Grand Central Station, H&M, John's Brick Oven Pizzeria in an old church, Times Square, Neal Simon Theater for a free viewing (thank you US military) of the new musical comedy, and we concluded our evening with New York Cheese Cake before taking the Staten Island Ferry back to crash.

We traveled out to Long Island on Day 3 to visit Old Westbury Estate, the most beautiful gardens I have ever seen. And, of course, they surround a historic Georgian mansion.
From there, we made our way to seaside village of Seacliff and its beach.

Beautiful trip with beautiful ladies!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Wedding Anniversary Flag

A few months ago, Chris informed me that he wanted our baby to be born in Texas. I, in turn, informed him that that would involve a 9 months pregnant woman flying 2,000 miles then flying back with a week old infant... No. My dad came up with an answer.
He requested that a new state flag be flown over the Texas capitol building on the day of our wedding anniversary, June 12, then shipped to or address in New Jersey thereafter. We will take the flag with us to the local hospital so that our baby can be born under the Texas flag. Oh yes. I know you are mad-impressed! So am I.

More on our anniversary: I craved salmon, so we dressed pretty and went to a pretty restaurant together to celebrate. I really like being married to my husband. This morning, after Chris said our morning prayer and kissed me goodbye on the forehead, I laid there and thought to myself, I don't think it could get any better than this. I have the lovingest of husbands and his baby boy in my belly. I'm almost too happy. :)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


If you don't know my husband, this will tell you a little about him.
The ultrasound tech asked, "And what does that look like right there?"
With little hesitation and no reserve, Chris answered, "Bawls!"
"Well, yes. The appropriate term is 'testicles,' but yes" replied the tech.

In other words, it's a boy! Chris' facebook profile status reads, "Heather's got a little baby boy growin' in her gut."

I'm going to grant the little guy some privacy, so I wont show you all the pictures, but I will show you his little foot and his little nose and mouth.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The move

Stayed up until 3am with dear friends in Connecticut then rose at 6am to get to church in New Jersey on time. There, we found that 10 men planned to help move us from Staten Island to our new apt in NJ! And they did it in 4 hours flat and in only one trip of trucks, SUVs and trailer. What a blessing!
Funny- most ppl switch from a 1-br apt to a 2-br house after they get pregnant. But we are doing it the other way around. Our apt complex is so homy and cozy- a community of brick buildings with red doors and black shutters surrounded by squirrel-populated trees and "the green grass grows all around and around." The unit is newly renovated, which, aside from being pleasant, will require less scrubbing when I go into nesting mode. Plus the place is walking distance to church, friends' homes, and local businesses (including Barnes and Noble Oh yes). We are so excited!

Hebrews 3:4 "For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything."