Monday, December 28, 2015

Life Changes

It has been a really long time since I wrote a blog. The other night I was changing some information on my Facebook, and came across my old blog. So much has changed since then. The most recent change occurred back in April of this year when Josh called me up letting me know that he had been offered a job in Greenville, South Carolina. To be honest, I never saw myself anywhere else but Mobile, but here we are. I have to admit that it has been a a good move for us, but there is still so much that is unsettled. The thing that has unsettled us the most is our journey of trying to get pregnant. For a large portion of our marriage (approximately 3 of the 3 1/2 years) we have been trying.  Nothing has worked, not even the fertility specialist was able to help us. When we decided to make the move to Greenville, we gave things a rest, hoping that it would happen naturally. We have been here 6 months and there still has not been much change. A couple of months ago we began discussing the possibility of adoption. For me, I am realizing that I want to be a mother more than I want to be pregnant. But fear likes to creep its ugly little head into the situation. Can we afford this? What happens if we wait? Will we be chosen? Will we be able to love a child with a parent's love even though it is not our own flesh and blood? I am embarrassed to even say that we share these fears. Is this normal? Will God give Josh and I the same peace? On January 7th, Josh and I will meet with a lady from our church that should be able to answer some of these questions. I pray that God will give us both clarity.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

This is the stuff

There is a song that says "This is the stuff that drives me crazy. This is the stuff that's getting to me lately. In the middle of my little mess I forget how big I'm blessed. This is the stuff that gets under my skin, but I gotta trust you know exactly what You're doing. It might not be what I would choose, but this is the stuff You use. So break me of my impatience. Conquer my frustrations. I've got a new appreciation. It's not the end of the world."

I love these words. I feel like I am constantly wondering why things are not happening when I want them to happen, but God has a plan for me, and I have to remember that he knows what is best.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

A Heart Like His

Why does it take visitng a foriegn country to be reminded of my amazing need for having a heart like His? I have been up since 8 am and I can not help but read journal entries and look at pictures from Casa Aleluya. It reminds me that no matter where I am we all serve the same God. The God who is Lord over Mobile, Alabama is the same God who is Lord over San Bartolame, Guatemala. It constantly humbles me when I think about how Casa Aleluya was started by a man whose heart was impacted by seeing children all over the streets of Guatemala without a home. It is almost impossible for me to comprehend what it feels like to be left in a dumpster to die or to be so severely abused by a family member that you need a pedeatric calostomy bag to go to the bathroom. This was my fifth year at Casa, and the stories, no matter how many times I have heard them, always affect me the same.

I am humbled by the Americans that have sold everything they have ever had and given up a culture that is all they have ever known to move to a third world country and truly live out the gospel by loving on kids that desperately need to be loved by a heart like His. The amazing thing about these missionaries is that they do not look at this experience as giving up everything, but as gaining everything. If you talk to them, they will tell you that no matter the financial stressess that they have left back in the states that still consumes their minds, they have no intentions of ever going back there. They have completely put their turst in Lord, and that even though they have worries back home, they know that as long as they are following what He has asked of them, they will be provided for.

This week, I was able to spend time with Adriana, my favorite child from Casa. I have been sponsoring Adriana from the last three years. When I first met her she was 8 years old. She is 17 now, and will be 18 in a month. That is a crazy thought. She has grown up so much. It is amazing how God took this child who was one of the biggest trouble makers when I first met her, and has turned her into a tool for Him. It is a neat concept how God works in the lives of these children. It makes me reflect on my relationship with Him. I can not help but to ask myself if I am allowing Him into every part of my heart, and if I was how would I look differently?

"Lord, give me a heart like yours. Help me to love those around me the way you love the kids of Casa. Remind me to be grateful for what I have. Give me a passion to love the kids I work with on a daily basis, and to not dread going in to work every morning, but fill me with a passion to make You known even if it means only through my actions. It is so easy to say these words, but Monday reality will hit when I walk back through those doors. Give me new eyes. Give me your heart. For the remainder of this school year give me a heart like yours. "

Monday, October 19, 2009

I am marathoner!

"I can officially say that I am a marathoner." That is what this girl on my team kept saying after our race. This past weekend has been one of the best in my life. I arrived in Mobile about two hours ago, and although I am glad to home, I am sad it is over. It is funny how you anticipate something for so long, and then it is over, just like that. For the past 6 months, I have been training for the Women's Nike Marathon in San Francisco. This weekend I finally did it. My Team-in-Training group that I have been training with for the past several months met up at the airport at 5 am on Friday morning to complete our amazing journey together. It was an experience like no other. Friday and Saturday were days of hanging out, touring the city, and bonding, then Sunday was the day of the race. Sunday morning started at 5 am when we got out of bed. All runners had to meet up at 5:50 am and check in our bags and meet with our team so we could walk to the starting line. The race began at 7 am. There were over 20,000 people at the starting line. The first half of the marathon was easy. I ran with a friend that I had been training with for the last 6 months. We had a great pace and did our best to keep to our schedules intervals. At mile 12, I said good-bye to my running partner as she headed off to complete the half. From that point on I was alone, well unless you count the 10,000 others that surrounded me. I found myself in a zone. I was feeling the best that I had ever felt on a long run day, until mile 17. That was when I hit my first wall. At that my moment, I began to ask myself, how am I going to finish this race. There is still such a long way to go. The next three miles were slow and dreadful. At mile 20 I hit the runner's high that I have heard others talk about, but have never experienced. That gave me a little extra kick, but only lasted until mile 22. At mile 22 everything hurt. My hips and knees hurt so bad that I was worried that I would not be able to finish. I just kept pushing and praying that I would see someone I knew to cheer me in. At mile 24 my ipod quit working, and I realized at that moment that I was on my own and the only person that could complete this task for me was me. I prayed hard. That is when I picked up the pace, stopped the intervals, and just focused on finishing. At mile 25, my running partner jumped the barricades and began running me in. About a half a mile later my running coaches joined in. I was surrounded by a group of people that I loved and I knew would make sure that I would make it to the finish line. There were thousands of people behind the barricades shouting my name and going crazy for me to finish. My coaches kept yelling, "This is Sara and this is her first marathon." That got the crowd even louder. About a hundred yards away, VV (my coach) looked at me and said, "The finish line is all yours, take it! Finish strong!" At that moment, I ran with everything that I had inside of me until I crossed the finish line at 6 hours and 6 seconds. My goal was to finish the race in 6 hours, and I did exactly that. It was amazing feeling to know that I had finally reached a goal that I have been talking about for years. I have to admit that it was a very emotional experience. This race was one that raced money for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. All throughout the race there were reminders of this, whether it be a survivor or signs saying thank you for saving my son. Every time I read a sign I had to fight back the emotions and remind myself to breathe. What an amazing event serving an amazing cause. I can not wait to do this again!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Why I love to teach!

The last few days reminded me why I love teaching, especially middle school....

I have this student, in which I will name him Matt, that is angry at the world right now. He recently found out that he would be repeating the eighth grade. Ever since he found out, he has become very difficult to deal with. Not only is he a pain to me, but he has even been treating his friends bad. Today, I had had enough.

Currently, my class is working in teams on a huge project. Matt's team is nearly done; yet Matt has not contributed much. The boys on his team got in an argument over Matt's lack of effort during class, which led to me finally having to ask Matt to step outside. Matt stepped outside, alright, tight lipped and arms crossed. He was on the defense, ready to take whatever I was about to dish out. I think he was taken off guard with our conversation.

I said, "Matt, I know why you are acting the way you are. You are mad about being held back. And because you are mad, you are taking it out on everyone around you. Well, you know what? I can handle it, but you are going to end up losing your friends if something does not change." He responded with, "Well, they wanted me to do the Math part of that project, and I can not do Math. " Later I discovered that he had a fear of Math. He was told (in Math) he was stupid. He told me that he would never amount to anything but a shrimpper because that is what his father was. He also told me that he wanted drop out of school because he would never be able to learn. He and I went back and forth about 5 times with me telling him that he is not stupid and him responding with, 'yes I am.' After a lot of talking ,I discovered that not only had his parents told him he was stupid, but a teacher had told him that, as well. He had grown to believe this statement as true. After a lot of talking, the last piece of advice I gave him was: "Matt, you have a choice. Either you can believe what your teacher told you was true, and accept it as fact. She wins. Or you can use her statement as fuel to your fire, and prove her wrong. You win! It is your choice." He said nothing, just walked back in the room.

The next day (today), he came into my room with his head held high and smile on his face. With excitement in his voice, he said, "Let's do this Math thing, Ms. Petty. I got this!" I guess I got through to him. He and I sat until after the bell rang, finishing his project together. It reminded me why I love what I am doing.

But shortly after, my day came crumbling down. About two hours later I found out that one of my students that had been recruited to play basketball at Faith did not get in because she failed her OLSAT for the second time. This was suppose to be her ticket out of the Bayou. It would have meant opportunity for her. The test was this morning, but the proctor already told her that she failed it. She returned to school with her head hanging low and her eyes puffy. My heart broke for her.

Directly after I had recieved a text saying she had failed her test, Macy sent me a text saying that her cancer was back, and she would need to start a new chemo today. What do you say to that?

I know the Lord is in all of this, but He feels so distant. I pray the Lord provide new opportunites for my student and health for my best friend.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Right now I am watching my dog sleep. I have to say she has a good life. We just got back from swimming at the Lightfoot's. She, along with three other dogs, swam for three hours straight. Now she is out! Ah, life just does not get any better than this.

Recently one of my favorite songs has become "The Climb" by Miley Cirus. The words say,

"I can almost see it,

That dream Im dreaming but

Theres a voice inside my head sayin,

You'll never reach it,

Every step Im taking,

Every move I make feels

Lost with no direction

My faith is shaking but I

Got to keep trying

Got to keep my head held high

There's always going to be another mountain

I'm always going to want to make it move

Always going to be an uphill battle,

Sometimes you going to have to lose,

Aint about how fast I get there,

Aint about whats waiting on the other side

Its the climb

The struggles Im facing,

The chances Im taking

Sometimes they knock me down but

No Im not breaking

The pain Im knowing

But these are the moments that

Im going to remember most yeah

Just got to keep going

And I, I got to be strong

Just keep pushing on,

Theres always going to be another mountain

Im always going to want to make it move

Always going to be an uphill battle,

Sometimes you going to have to lose,

Aint about how fast I get there,

Aint about whats waiting on the other side

Its the climb."

I feel as though these words ring so true to where I am in life. I have been really struggling with being single lately. I know the Lord is a good, and I have to trust Him, but I often find myself feeling alone. I trust that the Lord is still preparing me and my husband, and that is obviously why I have not met him. My prayer is that I enjoy the journey of singleness, and stop dreaming about what is on the other side.

Friday, April 17, 2009


John 10:10 says, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. "

For some reason, today, this verse has stood out in my mind. I think part of it is because I am realizing how often I allow Satan to steal my joy. I believe that God has come to bring me a fresh, new, and abundant life. When I first discovered Him, I experienced new and abundant life, but as time has gone on, I have fallen in to old routine, where I am sitting and waiting for life to happen to me.

No longer. Today is a new day. I have decided to set goals for myself. Goals that are obtainable, but will require me to not sit around. Amongst these goals, I will do my best to not waste money in the process, but be creative in how I pull all of it off. I will also invite friends on my journey. Here is what I hope to accomplish by May 2010:
  • Complete my Master's degree.
  • Maintain my teaching position in the same school.
  • Let the people closest know how much I care for them by loving them in their love language.
  • Serve others as often as I can, not just when asked.
  • Run a marathon. (Stop talking about it, and DO IT!")
  • Get involved in a Bible Study.
  • Rebuild my relationship with the Lord to one that is strong, and full of joy.
  • GET HEALTHY!!- Include veggies, fruit, water and exercise in my daily life.
  • Pay off credit card debt.
  • Plan outings with friends, and have friends over.
  • Make ateast 5 new friends.
  • Reconnect with 5 old friends.

For the fun stuff:

  • Go kayaking or canoeing
  • Go camping.
  • Go hiking, possibly in the mountains.
  • Get a group to go to Stix River.
  • Beach trips with friends.
  • Rock climbing.
  • Mountain biking (10 mile trip)
  • Boogie boarding/ surfing
  • Ride a wave runner
  • Go boating
  • Spend an entire day on the water with friends.
  • Get in touch with someone I have not talked to in a while, and meet up to hang out
  • Go to a concert
  • Plan 2 really good girl outings

Anyone want to come along for the journey?