Reader Beware: this is a recurring theme. :-D The more I pray and seek God's will, the more I pray that I can learn to be flexible (a dangerous prayer in its own right), the more I see the hand of God moving. And it blesses me to realize how very active our God truly is. You hear often that we need to stop and smell the roses...what about concentrating on the ever-present activity of the Lord?

See, I've known that God is working in my life, but I always had a detached sense about it. Now, I wonder if I ever truly believed it. Kinda like one of those things where you say, "sure, sure." so everyone will leave you alone. Ya know?

Now, today, I see him moving ever so gently and rearranging sooooooo many aspects of my life. Lisa Crayton of Spirit Led Writer told me last year that part of the reason God had been able to work in my life was because I had a pliable heart. I'm not sure she'll ever realize how much that affected me. Ever since , I've *actively* prayed that I would always have a pliable heart, that my heart and life would remain open to God's leading. (THANK YOU, LISA!!)

Sometimes, changes are powerful and life-altering like earthquakes. A death in the family. A huge disappointment. But more often than not, it's the subtle ones that catch us by surprise. Sometimes, we don't even notice it's happening--sometimes it takes another person to mention it. When I met up with some friends for a youth groupreunion, one of my friends commented, "You've really changed." I hadn't noticed. He did.

One signficant change in my life recently has been a wonderful prayer team. It shocked and humbled me that I was invited to participate, but it was such a brilliant and beautiful idea--and a need that I did not realize I had. We've been a team for a few weeks now and already my life has so dramatically changed. (Thank you, ladies!!)

Of course...admid the changes, are the rock-solid friendships that will never change. This last year or so, God placed a handful of friends in my life that I will forever be grateful for. Those are the beams that anchor us to the dock of life, the ones who save our rears when it's needed. I will forever be grateful to my very dear friends for all you've given and done for me this past year. My life is fuller, greater than ever before.

And one last change...has been in my marriage. I've always been committed to my mariage, but...I don't know. Maybe I became complacent about it. Not sure. It's been interesting as Brian tests out of the for FBI...God has moved on my heart three times to make changes that are require "energy" (not sure how else to say that LOL) of me. Things like getting up at oh-dark-thirty to work out with my hubby, going to the track with him to help him on his timed runs...and ya know, those little changes have brought a deepening to my marriage, tied the knot stronger or something. I'm so proud of my hubby. You rock my world, Dude!!

So, what's God doing in your life? Earthquake changes? Subtle ones? We're to share the burden, so share your heart...

In the Zone....the Midnight Zone!!

Well, I've delved into the into the zone...THE MIDNIGHT ZONE this weekend. for those who don't know, that's the title of my latest WIP. The seedgerm of this idea hit me last year while I was preparing for the 2005 ACFW conference. But I never really got terribly serious about it--until this last month. It's a rockin' story, set in the Deep Ocean--a layer called the Bathypelagic or Midnight Zone. I didn't get any writing done at all on Saturday, but on Sunday, I burrowed in and wrote from about 3pm until just before midnight (no pun intended)--and got a LOT done. I wrote over 12,000 words, bringing my word count to just below 75k, which was my goal for this weekend. WOO-HOO!!! (can you hear the star wars fighter pilot saying in monotone, stay on target...stay on target...almost there...) My goal of finishing this story by the end of the month doesn't feel so far out of reach now. I've already read through portions of what I wrote yesterday and was duly impressed, if I do say so myself. :-D Of course, I still hold my own personal record for writing Brand & Bound in roughly thirty days--and it was a fairly clean write (save typos and stuff like that). Yeah, that still tickles me. ;-)

On Saturday, I went wtih my hubby to the "spousal interview," which was very deceptively worded. LOL No, seriously--it was NOT an interview, but more of an information session in which the special agent made it VERY clear that being in that meeting did not guarantee the applicant (Brian) would be going to Quantico. All that, she said, was dependent on the polygraph results and the background investigation. It was quite fascinating though. We watched an hour-long documentary on the making of a G-man. One thing that became very clear to me--God creates each one of us very differently. I also saw that my husband, if he makes it to quantico, will need a very thick covering of prayer. That academy is GRUELING!!! Me, Ronie, I'd never make it. The agent asked when it was over (speaking to the applicants of course) asked if anyone was discouraged. I looked at Brian and said, "Well, I'm not going." :-D

I hope everyone has a great week and the blessings of God are made real to you!!


Who besides me cringes when they hear, "It's all in God's timing." Well, I used to cringe BIG time--cuz God's timing felt light years away. And don' t get me wrong--I still flinch when I hear that sometimes, but! I am so excited to see what is going to come of all the little nuggets God has been planting in my life. He's stripped me bare of superficial and external affirmations, both things I had made the mistake of allowing to carry me through, from one to the next. God has made it plain that ONLY HIM is where I need to get what I need for each day. And you know, I can honestly say I've grown LEAPS in the last two months in that area. It's such a beautiful place. Yeah, I have moments, but God's right there for me. I'm so at peace. No, no, there aren't any promises of publication or agenting looming on the horizon that now enable me to "suddenly" have hope. Nope. I know what God has said to me, and that's it. I cried out the other night to him and said, I want to have hope. And as steady and fast as a heartbeat, he said "I am your hope." Then I realized the words filtering through my headphones was Kutless' "I Lift My Eyes Up":

where does my help come from?
My help comes from you,
maker of heaven,
creator of the earth,
oh how I need you Lord,
You are my only hope,
You are my only prayer,
So I will wait for you,
to come and rescue me,
come and give me life

I marveled right then at GOD'S TIMING. I even asked a friend, How DOES He do that!!??!! It was a small event, but it spoke to me--a little moment where I was feeling down, and He was RIGHT THERE. He spoke to me, then confrimed it to me in a song that was already playing through my headphones. Coinkydink?? I think not!

My family is in transition. Chaotic, mind-wrending transition. Brian has passed phase II of testing out for the FBI. Now, we're in the "processing" stage--polygraph, doctor's physical, physical fitness test, and...spousal interview. I know. I can hear you, now. Oh, there goes that. LOL I can't tell you how many times I've thought it myself. *grins* If God makes the way for this to happen for my husband, then it means...more change.

I know I've said it before, but God wasn't kidding about this being a year of change. My family will move yet again--possibly twice in the next six months. At first, I dug my heels in, shaking my head saying, "God, you forgot--this chick doesn't do change." I'm sure he would've blasted an IM to me saying, "ROTFL." (He does have an uncanny sense of humor, does he not? Just look in the mirror. :-D ) But then He showed me that I was focusing on the negative, on teh things I didn't like rather than rejoicing that His will was being effected in my life--that I should be experiencing JOY in what He was DOING. **OUCH** Did I correct my ways? Oh, you betcha. Real quick, I might add. I greived that I'd lost sight of what I'd been praying for these past four years.

The last two weeks, I've been pretty good. Sure, there are days when this oppressive voice assaults...why are you writing? you're getting nowhere! what's the point? give up...and almost simultaneously, God bathes me in his TRUTH. He called me. He gave me the story. Who am I to argue?

Then really kewl things happen--like someone emailing me and asking to read my space opera. (where's the gaping-mouth emoticon from yahoo when you need it??). This person read it and LOVED Brand & Bound. Of course, with the...ahem...mildly tragic ending, they did call me a gigantic loser and nearly put me into a coronary. and while I don't have an editor or agent knocking down my door (YET!), it's been so kewl to have so many people e-mailing ME asking ME to read this book that isn't even published yet. WOW! (Okay, thanks for letting me brag. LOL)

Things are working out very interestingly for my last two semesters of college. This summer, I'll be taking Abnormal Psychology (hehehe...just wait Robin & Camy...LOL) and Creation Studies. Those two classes will be a typical 16-week courses. No worries there. Then, in the fall-and this is SUCH an answer to prayer--I'll be taking Physiological Psychology and Criminology, both as 8-week/fast-track courses. The kewl thing is that I won't have to take them simultaneously. I'll take one and finish it, then start the other one. By taking them this way, my last semester, I will be able to concentrate on one class at a time, which will most likely also be the time I'll be winging it as a single mom while hunky hubby is off in Quantico learning how to nail the bad guys (yeah, yeah, Robin, I know...).

So, how's that for Ronie's ramblings this time? Nothing spectacular except the incredible love of an amazing God.

I'm doing really well, cradled safe in the arms of a very loving God. What are y'all up to? Please drop me a note--I really love hearing from y'all!

Safe Place

Promise of a Lifetime, by Kutless
I have fallen to my knees
As I sing a lullaby of pain
I'm feeling broken in my melody
As I sing to help the tears go away
Then I remember the pledge you made to me
I know You're always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I'm clinging to the Promise of a lifetime
I hear the words you say
to never walk away from me and leave behind
the promise of a lifetime
Will you help me fall apart
Pick me up, take me in your arms
Find my way back from the storm
and you show me how to grow
Through the change
I still remember the pledge you made to me
I am holding on to the hope I have inside
With you I will stay through every day
Putting my understanding aside
and I am comforted
A bit melodramatic? Mayhap. But it's the best/safest thing to say right now.
I want to do a shout out to one of my bestest buds: NEEN!! She finaled with her powerful new story, MANNA REIGN, in the RWA Daphne Contest. WAY TO GO GIRL!!! YOU SO ROCK!!