“Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road;
make me a fork
, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.” - Jim Elliot

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Celebrate With Great Joy!

 Sneak Peek!
Preparing to celebrate the completion of our Nehemiah study.

Last Thursday I had a little garden party.  I invited the ladies from the Nehemiah Bible study over to my home to celebrate our completion of this study.  A couple years ago I began to realize that it is important to recognize that our study is complete, but we are NOT finished!  See this post if you want more details.

I can get anxious about having people over my home.  Especially if I plan for it way in advance.  So, I try to not think about it until the last minute.  Not always the best idea for decorating, but it is good for my nerves.  I did try to make some fun decorations to hang outside to make the space more cozy since it was a gray day (and to draw the eye to the colors and not any of the unfinished yard work).   I just used some crepe paper and tied it on to some heavy thread.  Thanks Pinterest!  (Note the hammer on the table?)  The hummingbirds loved the red crepe paper which makes me think I need more red in my garden.

Another little trick I did right before the gals arrived was to wet down the mulch and concrete.   It hides a multitude of imperfections.  I've seen this done on television and movies so much that I thought it might work for me.  And it did!

Caren, Sherrie, Sarah, Penny, Penny and Susan
(Missing from the party - Barb, Barbara, Bernie, Crystal, Jan, 
Jennifer, Joan, Lisa, Roxanne, Sheila, Tanyadene, Tessa)

Have you ever done a Kelly Minter study?  Well, she includes recipes in her studies.  So the gals made a couple of the dishes from the study to share with us.  Delicious!  We had the Tasty Quinoa, Capri's Pasta and Billie's Banana Pudding.

The JOY of the LORD is my strength.
Nehemiah 8:10

Susan made the favors and the centerpiece.  She choose the color of the paper for the favors to be like Jerusalem stone.  Sorry that you can't see the details.  Inside were some yummy chocolates.  She is totally gifted in making a piece of paper look like a million bucks!  Then she painted this clay pot to look like the wall Nehemiah built!!!  What a thoughtful keepsake for me.  Just like building an altar to remember what God has done.  (More details about my thoughts on memory stones or altars see these posts.)

I am so blessed to have these precious sisters in my life.  We are kindred spirits and I love each and every one!  I know they think I am pretty special, too.  But the secret is... I wouldn't be who I am today without them in my life. 

Looking ahead, we are starting Lysa TerKeurst's study "What Happens When Women Say Yes To God."  If you are in the Portland, Oregon area on Tuesday mornings, JOIN US!  We meet from 9:30-11:30am at Portland Christian Center.

Then all the people went away to eat and drink, 
to send portions of food and to celebrate with great joy
because they now understood the words 
that had been made known to them.  
Nehemiah 8:12


Susan said...

Loved celebrating with you! I love your idea of memorials! You are a true treasure

Sherrie said...

I sit here this morning remembering the day we shared. I loved ALL the details...on and around our table that day. I especially loved your garden, your hammock, and the raspberries in the glasses of water. I am amazed at how God strategically placed each of us together in this study. Thank you for your special touches you made and make in each of our lives.
Love you sista!

rooney said...

your patio looks amazing! i had seen the little snippets of color when you posted this pic on FB and loved them! thanks for the tip on how they were made. i will definitely try that one!
Blessings to you, Siesta!

Patti said...

I've heard wonderful things about Susan's decorating skills....hoping she can share them with us in women's ministry. :) Beautiful garden party. You are so cute. You remind me how much people DON'T care about imperfections in other peoples houses. I sat here reading and chuckling, thinking, I am sure I would have gone to the party and just been so grateful to be there, not inspecting for unfinished yard work. That is a good reminder for myself though. I always assume people are going to come over and judge my carpet that needs to be replaced. :)

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

What a beautiful gathering of sisters! I know you are blessed by the time you spend together. Would you come to NC and lead our fall study? Really. I think it would be awesome to sit around a table with you.

Love you so very much, Sheri. You are a blessing to me.