Sunday, June 30, 2013

30 Ways to Say "I Love You"

  1. Learn their Love Language ( and focus on loving them that way
  2. Spend time with them. Be available. Be there when they need it
  3. Know what they like/don’t like. Love what they love
  4. Admire them openly—you pursue what you admire
  5. Make a list of specific things you love about them. Share those reasons with them liberally
  6. Show up unexpectedly where they are. Call at random times to just say Hello.
  7. Complement them. You remind yourself why they are great when you tell them so
  8. Spread good gossip about them
  9. Impress and be kind to their family. Always
  10. Become an expert on them...ask about everything. And then listen. And remember
  11. Be completely honest with them. Share secrets
  12. Take their side
  13. Make them top priority. Invest in them
  14. Plan something special to do with them. Then do it
  15. Trust them. Believe in who they are and what they do
  16. Write them a really good love letter
  17. Do this literally: “I love you” in other languages:
  18. The traditional way: with flowers or chocolate
  19. Share five minutes of uninterrupted eye contact (
  20. Write it in nature: carve it in a tree, on the beach, outlined with leaves…
  21. Make them a homemade meal. Candles are good too
  22. Give them a massage
  23. Give a meaningful (homemade) present
  24. Dedicate/write a song for/to them
  25. Be their #1 fan
  26. Do something for them that they were stressing about
  27. Surprises
  28. Let them win
  29. Plan a really fun/sweet voice message to leave on their phone
  30. Make a coupon book of things you’ll do for them
  31. Ummm…

Friday, June 28, 2013

30 Chalkboard Quotations

30 Bart Simpson’s Chalkboard Quotations (teacher humor)

1.       I will not aim for the head.
2.       I will not barf unless I'm sick
3.       I will not expose the ignorance of the faculty.
4.       I will not conduct my own fire drills.
5.       Funny noises are not funny.
6.       My name is not Dr. Death.
7.       I will not prescribe medication.
8.       I will not teach others to fly.
9.       Coffee is not for kids.
10.   I will not eat things for money.
11.   I will not yell "She's Dead" at roll call.
12.   No one is interested in my underpants.
13.   I do not have diplomatic immunity.
14.   My homework was not stolen by a one-armed man.
15.   I will not go near the kindergarten turtle.
16.   I am not deliciously saucy.
17.   There are plenty of businesses like show business.
18.   Five days is not too long to wait for a gun.
19.   I will not instigate revolution.
20.   I will not get very far with this attitude.
21.   I will not grease the monkey bars.
22.   I will not do anything bad ever again.
23.   I will not sleep through my education.
24.   The Christmas Pageant does not stink.
25.   I will not torment the emotionally frail.
26.   I will not dissect things unless instructed.
27.   No one wants to hear my armpits.
28.   I do not have power of attorney over first graders.
29.   I will remember to take my medication.

30.   The First Amendment does not cover burping.

30 Rules to Live by

1.       Be me
2.       Let it go
3.       Do it now
4.       Enjoy the process
5.       Identify the problem
6.       Lighten up
7.       Talk to strangers
8.       Stay in touch
9.       Go outside
10.   Give thanks
11.   Create something that wasn’t there before
12.   Be the kind of woman I want my daughters to be
13.   This too shall pass
14.   Expect a miracle
15.   What do I really, really want?
16.   Be specific about my needs
17.   Only connect
18.   Do good, feel good
19.   No deposit, no return
20.   My body matters
21.   Exercise every day
22.   Say yes
23.   Choose the bigger life
24.   Don’t compare
25.   Make peace
26.   Smile
27.   Sleep is worth it
28.   Ask questions
29.   Tell the truth

30.   Live with arms wide open

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

30 Tips for Short Term Mission Trippers

1    1.    Things are going to change. A lot.
2.       Forget what you planned, but always have a plan to make the most of the moment.
3.       Take initiative. Tell us what you need. No one can tell what is inside your head.
4.       Make sure to take care of you. Make your needs known, but don’t complain—this isn’t about you.
5.       What do you do in another country? Basically the same things you do in your own country. But it is just different enough to throw everything off.
6.       You, your personality, your likes and dislikes will not magically change now that you are in a different country. That is ok.
7.       It is ok to be tired and to say no.
8.       Come to serve and be served. Let yourself receive as well.  
9.       You won’t understand most of what is going on, or the deep layers of culture around you. That is ok.
10.   You won’t understand half the things you learned until after you go back home and have time and space to sort out your brain. That is ok.
11.   You can’t control your health or the weather. It is what it is, so let it be.
12.   You are not going to change the world.
13.   You are going to make lasting impressions on the people around you (mostly when you think they are not looking) about who Christians are, who Americans are, and if Jesus is worth it.
14.   You do not know more than the people you are working with.
15.   You do not know more than the missionaries who have been living there for years.
16.   You can mess up the local ministries permanently by your misbehavior. Those who live there have to pick up your mess.
17.   Don’t make promises to the people you meet that you cannot personally keep.
18.   Dream big and let go.
19.   Read this honestly: and then pray about your motives and reasons.
20.   Read this honestly: and pray about what you can change.
21.   Realize that this trip is much more about you and what God wants to do in your life more than anything you could do for others. Be humbled and open.  
22.   Understand that you are worth the investment. Yes, you could send the money you spent to go to another country for many “better” things—but this is permanent construction in your own life and being open for whatever God decides to do with that.
23.   Food really is a big deal. It will be different than you expect. You will need to be flexible, and at times, hold your breath and swallow.
24.   DO study the language before you go—audio, with as close of an accent to your area as possible. It will never be “enough,” but you will be grateful for the small bit you know—and the people appreciate when you try.
25.   Always carry around a water bottle, sunscreen, and sunglasses. You are seven degrees from the equator.
26.   Have clothes ready for 90 degree plus weather. Or rain. Or normal. You never know.
27.   Wear a name tag. Sorta goofy, but a really great way to get to know people.
28.   The bigger your prayer/support circle is back home, the easier the trip/transitions will be. Invest in those people, and asking them to be a part of your team. To properly go, you need to be sent.
29.   Study culture shock and reverse culture shock: it hits you both directions. Be prepared.
30.   Go through these questions below with God. Have time alone with Him and be honest.
·         Name the top three reasons for this trip:
·         What do you want to accomplish on/because of this trip?
·         What has God done in your life that is worth telling the world (Your testimony)?
·         What will this trip cost you (don’t just think about money)?
·         What are your concerns/worries about this trip?
(During the trip)
·         Are you giving every moment your all? Why/why not?
·         What are you doing with your free time/when no one is watching?
·         What are three ways you can show love today?
·         How does God “recharge” you when you are tired/at your limit? (Find a way to do that today)
·         When people ask, what will you tell them that you learned from this time?
(After the trip)
·         How are you living out what you learned on the trip?
·         What was/happened that was better/worse/harder than you thought it would be?
·         What do you wish you could have done differently/changed?
·         What are 5 things you are glad/proud of that were accomplished during this trip?

·         How do you want to be different because of this trip (now, in a year, in 5 years…)?

30 Favorite Authors/Books

30 Favorite Books/Authors
1.       John Eldredge (Waking the Dead, Wild at Heart, Captivating, Sacred Romance…)
2.       Randy Alcorn (Heaven, Deadline, If God is good…)
3.       Eric and Leslie Ludy (Bravehearted Gospel, Meet Mr.Smith, Authentic Beauty…)
4.       C.S. Lewis (Narnia series, Till We Have Faces, The Great Divorce…)
5.       Oswald Chambers (My Utmost for His Highest)
6.       Donald Miller (Blue Like Jazz, Searching for God knows What…)
7.       Rob Bell (Velvet Elvis…some of his writing is controversial, so read with caution)
8.       Shane Claiborne (Irresistible Revolution)
9.       Henri Nouwen (The Genesis Diary, Clowning in Rome…)
10.   Ann Kiemel (I Love The Word Impossible…fun from the 80s)
11.   David Wilkerson (Cross and the Switchblade…)
12.   Scott Bessenecker (New Friars…)
13.   Andrew Marin (Love is an Orientation)
14.   Christopher Heuertz (Simple Spirituality, Friendship in the Margins…)
15.   John Piper (Desiring God…)
16.   Karen Mains (Tales of the Kingdom…)
17.   Max Lucado (Tell me the Story, Tell me the Secret…all his children’s books)
18.   Victor Hugo (Les Miserables…read the abridged version)
19.   Katie Davis (Kisses From Katie,
20.   Ann Voskamp (1000 Gifts, )
21.   Shel Silverstine (The Giving Tree, The Missing Piece, The Missing Piece meets the Big O…)
22.   J.M. Barry (Peter Pan and Wendy)
23.   Sabrina Ward Harrison (Spilling Open, My Messy Life…)
24.   Malcolm Gladwell (Tipping Point, Blink…)
25.   L.M. Montgomery (Anne of Green Gables series, Story Girl, The Blue Castle…)
26.   L.M. Alcott (Little Women, Eight Cousins, Old Fashioned Girl…)
27.   Gilbreths (Cheaper by the Dozen)
28.   Maira Kalman (The Principles of Uncertainty)
29.   David Benioff (City of Thieves)

30.   Austin Kleon (Steal Like an Artist) 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Bubble Gum

Children hand me information
Like chewed up bubble gum
They don't know where to put it
It ends up in my hand

I look down
Wonder where my responsibility
Starts and ends

I ponder on what
I am willing to invest
But most of all I wonder
Where I am supposed to put it

They aren't old enough to know
They aren't supposed to say that
Half of them don't even know
The significance of their words

But I do

I feel sick and overwhelmed
With knowledge
It carries heavy burdens
Even after I deposit that chewed up bubble gum
Where it belongs

I still feel it sticky
On my fingers
I cannot forget

Under running water, frozen
It falls, thawing me out
The dirt of today, injustice of always
Pain I know is encased around me
I continue to wash my hands
But it doesn't go away


After nine years of living here and there, I'm thoroughly confused. You know you've learned another language when you talk it in your sleep. when you never know which languages your silent prayers to God will be in. When the 6pm Ave Marias become normal and you miss them when they aren't there.
But one thing I know, and it is that it isn't a place, it is about a people. And it isn't about a people, it is about a God. And as I follow Him with abandon, He leads me to the people, whatever place that may be. And this is what guides my life.

Now I've met a person and I am joining his journey, because it is the same center as mine: God. And the places may be different, and the people may be different, but it is the same course.
And this whole two becoming one thing is scary and requires more trust than anything I've ever done before. More investment than any other decision (other than giving my life away to God). And all this, without any vision of the future--of all the millions of situations that will come up and change the game entirely. Love makes powerful optimists.

Monday, June 24, 2013

30 Favorite TED Talks

1.      Derek Sivers. How to start a movement:
2.      Natalie Warne. Being young and making an impact:
3.      Jessica Jackley. Poverty, Money and Love:
4.      Andrew Stanton. Clues to a great story:
5.      Nancy Duarte. The secret structure of great talks:
6.      Hans Rosling. New insights on poverty: (you gotta see lots of his videos!!)
7.      Sarah Kay. How many lives can you live: (you gotta see lots of her videos!!)
8.      Imogem Heap. Wait it out:
9.      Phil Kaye. Why we tell stories:
10.  Taika Waititi. The Art of Creativity:
11.  Bryan Franklin - The Most Dangerous Question On Earth:
12.  Steve Jobs. How to live before you die:
13.  Brene Brown. Vulnerability:
14.  Cameron Russell. Looks aren't everything:
15.  Jenna McCarthy. What you don't know about marriage:
16.  Helen Fisher. Why we love, why we cheat:
17.  Esther Perel. The secret to desire in a long-term relationship:
18.  Malcolm Gladwell. Spagetti sause:
19.  Sir Ken Robinson. Do schools kill creativity?
20.  David Gallo. Underwater astonishments:
21.  Simon Sinek. How great leaders inspire action:
22.  Meg Jay. Why 30 is not the new 20:
23.  Amanda Palmer. The art of asking:
24.  Dan Pink. The puzzle of motivation:
25.  Rick Warren. A life of purpose:
26.  Shane Koyzan. To this day:
27.  Gary Wilson. The great porn experiment:
28.  Seth Godin. How to get your ideas to spread:
29.  Adam Leipzig. How to know your life purpose in five minutes:
30.  Rachel Winzeler. The TED talk I will do someday

30 Things To Do In Brazil

  1. Acerolandia—best juice in the world!
  2. Vicencia—hang glide or just hike up
  3. Timbauba and the church there
  4. Nazare da Mata—obelisk  
  5. Paudalho—the river, visit the kids in Belem, and the church there
  6. Picnic at Lago Orar with the family of girls
  7. Eat a tapioca popcicle, a corn popcicle
  8. Try Caldo de Cana (sugar cane juice)
  9. Drink a cold coconut, then cut it open and eat the inside
  10. Go to the Carpina feira and try all the new kinds of fruit and vegetables 
  11. Eat at Osamas—bean soup, try fejoiada and fuba
  12. Try all the different fruit juices at Amazonias Mix
  13. Take some Living Stones kids for their first milkshake at Mr. Mix
  14. Lagoa Iteanga and the church there
  15. Play basketball with the kids at the church in Carpina
  16. Teach an English class at the International school
  17. Have a donut at the bakery on the corner, fresh French/sweet bread
  18. Acai Na Tigela at the good place in Carpina or on the beach
  19. Tracunaem and the church there
  20. Guadalajara and the church there
  21. Amexias and the church there
  22. Porto de Galinhas—boat tour, scuba diving
  23. The view from Rio Mar, eat at a churrascaria
  24. Old Recife—the boat ride, old synagogue, museums, Marco Zero, bookstore
  25. Marcado Sao Jose—jewelry store, Casa de Cultura
  26. Olinda—try tapioca
  27. The castle museum
  28. Bring fun games to the trash dump in Carpina
  29. Living Stones in Cajueiro Claro—go jogging
  30. Living Stones in Mussurepe—visit homes, learn Vovo Bel’s story 

30 Bible Verses to Memorize

  1. 1 Corinthians 13:12 “For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.”
  2. 1 John 3:1 “Behold what manner of love the Father has given unto us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.”
  3. 1 Peter 5:7 “Casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.”
  4. 1 Thessalonians 5:18 “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.”
  5. 2 Corinthians 1:4 "Who consoles and comforts and encourages us in every trouble, so that we may also be able to console those who are in any kind of trouble or distress, with the consolation with which we ourselves are consoled and comforted and encouraged by God."
  6. 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”
  7. Ephesians 6: 10-18 “Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take until you the whole armor of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace. Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.”
  8. Galatians 2:20 “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
  9. Isaiah 40:31 “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”
  10. Isaiah 53:5 “But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.”
  11. John 10:10 “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”
  12. John 15:16 “Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”
  13. Lamentations 3:22-23 “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.”
  14. Luke 10:27 “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind, and thy neighbor as thyself.”
  15. Matthew 11:28 – 30 “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
  16. Matthew 5: 1-12 “And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came until him: and opened his mouth and taught them saying, Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God. Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.”
  17. Matthew 6:9-13 “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.
  18. Matthew 7:7 “Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.”
  19. Philippians 3:10 “That I may know Him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable until his death.”
  20. Philippians 4:6 -7 “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”
  21. Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”
  22. Psalm 121:1-2 “I lift my eyes to the hills—from whence comes my help? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth.”
  23. Psalm 34:8 “O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.”
  24. Psalm 37:4 “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”
  25. Psalm 46:10 “Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.”
  26. Psalm 51:10 “Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.”
  27. Psalms 139: 1,2, 13, 14, 23, 24 “O Lord, thou hast searched me, and known me. Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising, thou understandest my though afar off. For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works, and that my soul knoweth right well. Search me o God, and know my heart: try me and know my thoughts: and see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
  28. Psalms 19:14 “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, o Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.”
  29. Romans 12:1-2 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”
  30. Titus 2:13-14 “Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ: who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify until himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” 

30 Holiday Ideas

1.             Ask what old traditional food people remember having for that holiday and make some of it
2.             Cookie making contest. No recipes allowed. All from your head.
3.             Hang donuts from something and then have fun eating them with no hands
4.             Make jolly rancher lollypops—stick three on a pan together, put a stick on it and melt
5.             Are there any traditional songs for this holiday? Learn a new one.
6.             Make holiday cards/cookies and give them away to neighbors
7.             Read a book about the holiday (or just a good book) aloud
8.             Fire in the fire place (if cold), fire outside (if hot)
9.             Call people you won’t see on the holiday to connect. YEA SKYPE!
10.          Choose/create one “traditional” holiday movie to watch together, and do it every year
11.          Play gestures/charades
12.          Take time to reflect and write a letter to your past self (5 years ago) and future self (5 years in the future) of your ideas, what you like, don’t like, want…
13.          Share best memories/lessons learned of the year
14.          Share favorite memories of past holidays you’ve had
15.          Make a fort/sleep on the floor together
16.          Listen to radio theater
17.          Do a “black out poetry” contest where you write a poem circling words and black out the rest
18.          Sparklers! For any and all holidays
19.          Secret Stalker (pick names from a hat to leave love notes/messages for them all day without revealing who you are)
20.          Make a movie/video/skit something
21.          White elephant gift exchange
22.          Light a buncha candles
23.          No internet/video games/news watching! More family/real people time
24.          Spend 10 minutes on Pinterest or Google, getting good holiday ideas to do
25.          Joke telling contest
26.          Talent contest—everyone must do something!
27.          Brainstorm what family traditions you want to create for that holiday in the future
28.          Break out the board games
29.          Find a way to serve/include/bless others on that holiday

30.          Don’t waste this day being normal