I'm in deep thinking mode... so I want to warn you before you dive into what I've got to say!


"My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness." - 2 Chronicles 12:9

I am absolutely humbled at the thought of God's grace. It is because of His grace, that I am saved from eternally receiving punishment for my sins. It is by His grace that I am loved, forgiven and redeemed. I don't know about ya'll... but that totally MOVES me.

I won't lie, 2009 has been an odd year so far in the mind and heart of Sarah Decker. But, I guess the only thing that keeps me going is the fact that absolutely nothing is done outside of God's Will. Nothing. And, that by His grace, I am loved and as it says in Psalm 23:3, "He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name's sake." Now, don't get worried, I'm totally fine. Just really eager to find out the direction of my next steps in this journey called life!

In the midst of deep thoughts by Sarah Decker, I was reminded, three different times, of God's wonderful grace and love... I needed these things... and the Lord provided them at the most perfect time... (of course, right?!)

1. I got another letter from my little Ethiopian girl, Wo! I was excited enough to get news from her, but I was totally overwhelmed with JOY when I read that she is now going to school! My prayer since I started sponsoring her was that she, at age 7, would have the opportunity to go to school. Her family needed her to carry water from a well to her house, so she wasn't able to attend school. So, obviously God has worked miracles in her family and helped them out enough for Wo to go to school! What a blessing!!!

2. My best friend, soul sista, kindred spirit, Mrs. Beth Rosamond Emerson called last week to tell me she is PREGNANT! I was moved to tears... I am so so so excited for the Emersons and already praying for this precious little baby! Please join me in praying for this little bundle... that God would nurture and keep the baby healthy... and Beth too!

3. I just finished the book Same Kind of Different as Me. This book gives a first hand account at how God truly is using people to bring others to Him. It is the perfect mix of serving, the softening of hardened hearts and God's grace and love! I could tell I was about to be moved to tears and warned Linda before the waterworks began!

I don't know why I felt compelled to write all of this down. I'm sure it didn't make sense, but I just needed to get it all out! Hopefully someone who reads this will be spurred to look deeper, pray harder or read a good book.

God is good... and let's just say that I'm officially following His lead... and enjoying His gifts of grace while I'm at it...


what is your nard?

I have an awesome Community Group. We meet every Tuesday night at my and Linda's apartment. I'm blessed to be friends with all of these people. We definitely have challenging conversations every week...

One of the questions that was posed during last night's discussion was "What is your nard?" Yes, this DOES have something to do with the Word!!! I'll refer to John 12:3-5...

"Then Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus' feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume. But one of his disciples, Judas Iscariot, who was later to betray him objected, 'Why wasn't this perfume sold and the money given to the poor? It was worth a year's wages.'"

In our discussion, we realized that this "nard" was probably the most valuable thing that she had. It was worth a year's wages... just let that soak in for a second. Think about a year's worth of your salary... how huge that is in your day-to-day. This could have been Mary's dowry, an inheritance from a loved one... she obviously had to work for it in some way. But whatever way she received this nard, it was something meaningful and important to her. When thinking about that... how moving to think that she was willing to pour it out on the feet of our Savior!

So... that lead us to wonder, "what is our nard?" What is the one thing that is the most important to us... and if asked, would we be willing to pour it out for Jesus? I'd love to say "ABSOLUTELY!", but even when I think about the question, I automatically start justifying the situation with "if this..." or "if that..."

I'm definitely going to ponder and pray over this question this week... and I want to encourage you all to do the same!


we'll let the mirror be the judge...

Some of the best times of my days are when people say funny things and they are made into permanent quotes. It seems like I'm always surrounded with a place to document quotes from folks. The "BertHouse Quote Book" from my and Bshaw's place in Dallas to the MPI Knowledge Team quote book to the IBAT quote door.

In order to make it into any quote hall of fame, you had to make someone laugh until they cried... most are inside jokes... but the best part is bringing a smile to someone's face!

Here are a few favs... most all coming from the BERThouse quote book...

"we'll let the mirror be the judge"
- Amber "Ber" Leatherwood when she and I were about to have a dance-off

"well heeelllllllllllllooooooo sunshine"
- when looking in the mirror at my fancy eye makeup

"Houston ain't no Kuwait"
- my first boss at MPI that was commenting on the fact that Houston was kinda "green"

Bshaw - "I'm gonna tithe for furniture"
me - "Girl, tithing is for God... that's called saving."

"PSY789 - TXDot's evil plot to make my license plate sound like a former chatroom name"

"Come over here Ashley, I need to put my arms around you"
- my friend, Cody, addressing Bshaw, whose name is, in fact, not Ashley

"do we need to caulk something?"
- Bshaw, when holding a caulk gun that we had randomly found

"butterfly guts on a windshield... now that can't be a good sign"
- following a conversation about how butterflies reminded Bshaw of someone that was once special to her...

"you guys can open lots of accounts in my name with all of the NSF (non-sufficient fund) fees you've gotten from me!"
- to the new accounts lady at the bank when asked to give her money to open up a checking account for our class reunion...

"it's like going to hell every two years"
- my friend at work that doesn't like working with another company every-other-year

Bshaw - "What happened to your arm?!"
Linda - "oh... faulty bend and snap."

"she does have flute lips"
- Tyler O'Brien commenting to someone on the fact that I played the flute

"negative ghostwriter"
- my response when asked if I thought a certain guy had potential... Julz laughed a lot

"his pride is as big as alabama... wait alabama's not that big..."

"anybody that wants to rub on me for cheap... I'm all about that"
- implying I'm always up for a massage that is less expensive than normal

"i love you so much, i wouldn't just super glue your arm back on if it fell off, i'd sew it."
- Bshaw... expressing her love.

If you have any others you'd like to share... please do so! I'm always in need of a good laugh!

**A special thanks to Kristen "BShaw" Bradshaw for her contributions to this blog posting.


cross my heart, hope to die, stick a needle in my eye...

You all remember the chant of all little girls when they were promising to keep a secret... "cross my heart, hope to die, stick a needle in my eye"?? I don't really know what it all means, but all I do know is that sticking a needle in my eye doesn't sound so fun... or appealing... that is, until I got a stye.

It all started on Tuesday night, after the last second shot Aggie win (Josh Carter is my boy!) against Nebraska. I was at Beth and Jordan's house for the night in Houston... starting my whirl-wind trip around Texas for the week. I went to bed, just thinking that the Houston allergies weren't liking me. Needless to say, that by the time I got to Henderson on Wednesday night, my right eye was really bothering me. Not red, but just uncomfortable. On Thursday, I spent the day in Dallas... and as the day wore on, my eye got progressively bigger, redder and uglier. It was Thursday late afternoon when I finally determined that I had a stye... and then the fun began...

Friday morning, I'm back in Henderson... about to start out my busy day of Reunion planning with the girls... and I look in the mirror to find that the whole right side of my face is swollen! It looks like someone had punched me during the middle of the night. So, I put on the glasses, go to the doctor and get some drops. I'm thinking that it'll all be better by the next day...

Wrong. Saturday morning, I woke up to even more swelling! And this time, it looked like my face was discolored. As if I were literally bruising from being punched in the face! Awesome. I spent all day on the couch, with a hot pad on my eye... and nothing was happening. The good thing about the day was that Aggies won again! I ended up calling Dr. Mike again that night and told him that he had to help me out. That my eye was going ca-ra-zy. I got some antibiotics that night (I'm pretty sure I'm going to butter up a doctor to give me a lifetime supply of amoxicillian, because that's all they ever give me... but the scary part was that he said he wanted to see me before I hit the road on Sunday to see if we would need to drain the stye with a needle. Ummm... como? Literally sticking a needle in my eye?! Errrr.... I don't-think-so. My dad was so grossed out by the thought, that he just refused to even talk or joke about it.

Sunday morning. It's still swollen, even more red than the previous days. Go see Dr. Mike. Good news... I now have what looks like a pimple on the stye... which means "it's ready to pop at any time" Yeepee... I guess. No needles needed... which kinda made me sad... would've made for a much better story. However, he does tell me, "no eye make-up for 2 to 3 weeks... and don't wear contacts." Oh... I'm sorry? I'm not really a girly-girl all the time, but the one thing I am girly about is mascara. No mascara? That's the one thing I don't go without... Sorry doc... that's not gonna happen!

Monday morn. Still have the stye. Still have the pimple... "that's ready to pop"... but that sucker won't pop. This is just crazy. I've never seen a stye go "a-rye" like this before. Needless to say, nothing is ready to pop... nothing is ready to go away and let me wear my contacts again.

Dear stupid, crazy stye,

Go away.

With no love,