Wednesday, December 31, 2008

2008...

in no particular order and not an exhaustive list, but here are a few memories...

  • went to isreal; walked where jesus walked…will never read God’s word the same again...
  • went on my first date in almost 20 yrs…
  • hired a personal trainer…
  • saddened by the loss of certain friendships…surprised by unexpected change in another…other friendships grew stronger…made new friends…reacquainted with old friends…still best friends with childhood friend of 30 yrs…
  • challenged by the responsibility of raising 2 teenage daughters as a single mom...
  • mother survived breast cancer...
  • father developed parkinsins disease...
  • took a couple of group ballroom dance lessons...
  • went to china…climbed the great wall…floated down the yellow river…helped distribute over 50,000 bibles…
  • i love my job...
  • was sometimes overwhelmed and emotional trying to “find myself” and my purpose…
  • cried a lot…
  • reaffirmed that I work best behind the scenes…planning, directing and taking care of event details…
  • ended the year 7 lbs heavier than I began…am ok with it...
  • hate being alone but love my privacy; trying to find the balance...
  • daughter got her drivers permit...
  • still $ broke...
  • filmed travis barkers last performance on video before his plane crashed the same night…
  • feel like I am missing something in my life…
  • gave myself bangs! trying to grow them out again…
  • favorite memories all involve water, or a boat and always friends...and shadow hand puppets!!
  • had to get reading glasses..
  • shot a handgun for the first time in 20 years...
  • there's this jeep incident and a golf cart adventure; no details...
  • laughed a lot...
  • there's soooo much more i am leaving out, but...
2009...coming soon

Saturday, December 20, 2008

my escape day...

         video

this day God reminded me to relax and live in the moment...one day at a time. he reminded me that he loves me and he takes care of all my needs (can you believe i needed to be reminded of that??!!) 

Friday, October 31, 2008

more china...

back row: left to right - brother drung (a church volunteer and our driver...for another blog!), pastor greg, and ben (our interpreter). front row: left to right - sister li, cristi, kathleen (our team leader from california), me, and sister shung.

this was my distribution team. after traveling hundreds of miles together in a van for hours and days to places 99% of foreigners will never go, it is no wonder why it was an emotional goodbye. two different languages were never a barrier to complete the task given to us. these chinese church leaders watched over us, prayed for us, led us, inspired us and modeled for us what true servanthood looks like. i look forward to seeing these brothers and sisters again...one day.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

mission not so impossible...

thanks to you who contributed either financially or prayerfully to the china mission trip. the trip was so successful in so many ways. for me personally, i was moved by the chinese christian's genuine love for jesus, god's word and their commitment to share it. they soak it up like they are starving…they are attentive to every word and they are living it out with honest, simple passion. the need for bibles is great. my team distributed 6000 bibles in 5 days in rural mountain areas (the total distribution between 6 teams was 50,000...there are 1.3 billion people living in china). we endured rough, tough, and exhaustive travel but the reward was beyond great with every stop…whether it was a pit stop (literally...our "bathrooms" were literally pits or holes in the ground) or a distribution stop. we were so deep into the mountains that most people in these villages had never seen a foreigner. they saw us as miracles from god because they had been praying intensely for more bibles to put into the hands of the people. the fact that we traveled from another country to see that these bibles were delivered just blew their minds. they were truly grateful while praising and thanking god for his answered prayers. i can't describe how humbled i was and thankful that i participated in this miracle. what i witnessed stirred emotion that i didn't know i had in me. i have tears in my eyes as i write this to you. it made me realize how much i take god and his word for granted. i can only pray my desire and thirst for god's word becomes half of what theirs is. i am very enthusiastic to make this a continuing ministry of mine. please continue praying for the word to spread throughout China and what your role will be to see that it happens. in '09 i will participate in two trips with friend church (march and oct) as well as together sending $1500 to purchase bibles. well, if all we did was distribute bibles it would've been enough but we were blessed to see another side of china. we flew into shanghai...this place is massive! i don't think there is another place like it in the world. it was overwhelming, overbearing, over the top BIG. from there we drove to nanjing for training and to meet the other teams. it was there that we had dinner with government officials and it was there that we realized we were already tired of chinese food...we had 10 more days of it ahead of us. the teams parted from nanjing and went to 6 different distribution points all over china. after 5 days we all met again in beijing. we weren't in the airport 10 minutes when we learned there was a mcdonald's and a starbucks inside the airport. we were ordering big mac combos 11 minutes after we landed! we devoured them! we still had 4 days of chinese food left to endure. by the way, when i say chinese food, it is not the chinese food as you know it here. honestly, we didn't recognize much of the food and what we did recognize made most of us gag. however, we ate it and were thankful for god's provision. we all stayed healthy and full! in beijing we toured the forbidden city, tien a men square, saw an acrobatic show, climbed the great wall, and so much more. we have so much video and so many pictures...look for some in my next blog...


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

china...

so i am on the other side of the world...i have so much to say but until my mind can process all that i have witnessed and experienced i will just describe it like this:

  • vast
  • overwhelming, yet
  • simple
  • innocent
  • strong
  • emotional
  • true
  • selfless
  • committed
  • honest
  • genuine
  • power

the desire for god's word is great. the commitment to spread the love of jesus greatly surpasses anything i have ever experienced in my lifetime. i am humbled, inspired, and empowered....i am speechless.

Monday, August 25, 2008

i want to be a rock star...

i've recently taken up a new obsession; the electric guitar. just this past weekend i learned some of the old classics by the rolling stones, alice cooper, kiss and even some recent hits by the killers. my experience didn't start out very glamorous though; i was boo..d off the stage the first few times. (evidently the electric guitar is very important to rock music because when i miss a few notes everyone freaks and the song does not sound good at all.) anyway, i kept practicing until i eventually got my first gig and two new sponsors. although it was a paying gig i actually only got paid $75...something about the hotel room being trashed?...idk. i've played several more gigs since then and i finally earned enough money to buy new clothes (i bought this grunge/riot looking school girl outfit...it's bad!) and a new guitar. being on the stage is exciting! i totally feed off the cheers from the crowd! i've done backyard bashes, played in the prison and even went to europe! the lifestyle is draining though. i play well into the night after practicing all day. my fingers hurt, my back aches, my head hurts. i am probably too old to be having this much fun this kind of way. and i think i embarrass my girls too. they told me they did not want any of their friends to watch me perform. what's up with that? i suggested they join me and we start our own rock band. i am not kidding you guys...and no, i am not dreaming. okay...maybe it is just a game...in my living room...but while i am rock'n, it's real..i am a star...i am famous...i am the guitar hero!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

no shoes, no shirt, no problems...

that pretty much sums up my vacation. on vacation i spend 90% of my day in a bathing suit and bare feet; the other 10% in a tank top and flip flops. i stay outdoors as much as i can; as long as i can. mornings are mostly spent on the beach. i love looking out at the ocean. i could stare at it for hours. it is my heaven on earth. i will walk the beach for miles. i never wear earphones. i love to hear the sound of the waves and wind. it is my music. i love to feel the warmth of the sun on my face. i feel close to god. i love to listen to the children laughing as the waves wash up on their little toes. it makes me smile. i feel their joy. i love the smell of sunscreen. i love riding the waves with my kids. i even love the sand. i spend a lot of the afternoon napping under the gazebo at the pool. the sound of kids playing and water splashing grows fainter with every blink of my eyes; every blink taking me further into dreamland. the ocean air clears my head and i never feel so relaxed. after dinner i walk the beach one more time; breathing it in slowly. i end every evening sitting on the dock overlooking the inlet reading, watching the sunset and talking to god. i love our long conversations. i hear him clearly. i have peace.
vacation is over. time to go home. time to get dressed. it's back to life as i know it. back to the stresses. back to work. back to the distractions. but i come back rested, refreshed and ready. ready to face the problems that await. ready to move forward on the path god has for me. ready for the choices i have to make. i am ready to embrace whatever the future holds...

fully clothed and worry free.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

i will always have hope...

or hopey dopey as we call her at home. she's my baby daughter and she is turning 13! it's almost funny how prophetic we were when we decided on her name. i believe god put it in our hearts because it was fitting to the plan he has for her life. when she was very young i misunderstood her. i thought her name was god's way of reminding us that there was hope for her! i felt helpless so many times. i could never seem to figure out what she needed when she'd cry. she got frustrated with me, i got frustrated with her. i prayed and god spoke...one word...gentleness. in every way i need to be gentle with her; in the way i speak, in the way i touch, and in the way i love her. sometimes i forget. sometimes i make her cry.
hope is sensitive in every way. her heart hurts when mine hurts; it hurts when yours hurts. she loves to the fullest. she doesn't understand injustice. she truly cares for and sees the potential in everyone and every situation. she doesn't look down on others. she's ignorant of time. she's messy. although she is a brunette, we are convinced her roots ARE blonde. she's funny. she loves to laugh and make others laugh. she's witty, creative, rational. she's a counselor. she's insightful. she's a songwriter. she inspires me. she dances. she's disciplined. she slows me down. she helps me. she teaches me. she makes me proud. she knows jesus. she's shy. she's gifted. she's an encourager. she ministers. although she is never all of these things all of the time, she is hope. she doesn't know yet how much she has to offer. she doesn't understand her calling. she doesn't see that she is changing the world. god is all over her. he is shaping her, maturing her, guarding her, directing her, protecting her...she is in his hands. i love her...
she is my hope

Thursday, June 19, 2008

the F word...

no, not that one! i am talking about an F word that describes me...Flawed. that used to be an ugly word that i would never have chosen to describe myself. i have always been an idealist in the most negative way. i always thought everything could be perfect; the perfect marriage, the perfect family, the perfect house, the perfect life. to reach the goal of perfection i put unrealistic expectations on just about everyone and everything including myself. if i worked hard enough, said the right things, did the right things then dang it! it would be perfect. if it wasn't...well, i was a failure (another f word). i remember that day well; the day i failed. reality had slapped me in the face and the flaws were revealed. i wish that day on everyone. it was the most beautiful and perfect day of my life! although my marriage ended, god has given me a hope for the future; although i went to work full time and turned my children's world upside down (the words of my oldest child), i have a great relationship with them and they know i love them with all my heart; although i neglect the housework and yardwork to hang out with friends and play, i now have friendships that are healthy and strong. there is nothing ugly about my imperfections... they make me who i am. i am jealous, sometimes rude, selfish, make bad choices, pout when i don't get my way, yell at my kids, forget to call my friends, slam doors, curse at other drivers, forget to feed my cat, spend money on things i shouldn't, forget my dad's b-day, probably shouldn't have had that last drink.... better stop there. anyway, without them i wouldn't need jesus. without them you couldn't know me. without them i couldn't be free. today i don't want to be perfect. i want to be real. yep, what you see is what you get,
Flaws and all...



Tuesday, June 17, 2008

it's all about the experience...

i realized a couple years ago that i had been living much of my adult life in survival mode, just going through the motions, trying to do the right thing, trying to make it from day to day...but not really living. it took some unforeseen changes and some painful twists and turns before i could see my life for what it was, what it had become; apathetic, lonely, indifferent, hopeless, limited, disappointing, fatigued, emotionally detached, embarrassed, depressed, geez...i could go on and on! i hadn't given up, i kept the faith, but i was still only existing, not living. i found myself approaching 40 and "holy crap! how did i end up here?!" a do-over was out of the question so i decided through god's guidance, love and grace that it was time to start over. and i have. i am restoring my vision, reviving my passion, beginning to dream again. i am making minor adjustments daily. i am saying "yes" and taking risks. i am looking for everything good that i can get out of any experience; big or small. i am doing things just for the experience, just to say i did it. i am having fun. i am laughing again.
i am 41 and living...

video

Monday, June 9, 2008

beer, boats and best friends...

this is what i love about summer time! to me, being on or near water with my best friends laughing, having good talks, admiring God's creation (especially the sunsets), and making fun memories together...add some live music, and well, it just doesn't get much better than that! jesus feels the same way, you know. i am convinced of this after spending a couple weeks in israel a few months ago on a jesus tour; we "walked where jesus walked." (that's another blog for another time) anyway, one of the most unexpected of my experiences came when i visited the sea of galilee, more specifically capernaum. to sum it up and not give it due justice, capernaum is a fishing village, home of at least 5 of the 12 disciples and the base of jesus' ministry. ok, so, i am in a town where jesus performed many miracles, was standing at the steps of peter's house (where jesus stayed when he was in town) and as our tour guide is explaining all of this along with tons of other historical facts, i look to my right and can see the beautiful shoreline of the sea. all the noise and busyness and talking around me faded and all i could think was, "wow, i love the water as much as jesus must've for him to have spent so much time here. this place is awesome!" jesus and i had a very intimate connection at that moment. it wasn't spiritual, it was personal. i could see him and his best friends sitting on the steps laughing and playing around. i could see him on the boat with his friends turning the sails to hit the wind just right and riding the waves (the waves can get up to 5-7 ft!). i could see one of them flipping out of the boat and all of them laughing so hard their stomach hurt! i could see them hanging out on the outside patios at the seaside restaurants having some cold drinks (ok, maybe not beer as we know it!), but telling stories and watching the sunset together admiring the beauty of it all. i could see a very real, fun side of jesus that i will never forget. i could see jesus in ME!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

idk...

more often than not, i really don't have a clue what i am doing. (some of you aren't surprised, i know) now, don't get me wrong, i am not selling myself short by confessing that to you, but it is true. everyday i seem to find myself in unchartered waters. maybe it's because i am a single mom of two teenage daughters. (that may just say it all!) maybe it's because i am dating again for the first time in 18 years (i know, right)!!! maybe it's because i work FULL time at a fast growing and one of the most exciting churches in our area (constantly taking me to a whole 'nother level!). maybe it's all of the above. but still, everyday finds me a new challenge, a new adventure, a new attitude, a new distraction, and a new appreciation for the unknown. it keeps me humble. it keeps me wondering. it keeps me learning. it keeps me expectant. but best of all, it keeps me dependant. so, the truth is, i don't know..........He does.
that's all i really need to know

Friday, May 16, 2008

i am woman...

  • at least once a day, i feel lonely
  • i want to be appreciated, but not get the glory
  • i know i am loved
  • i feel fat
  • i love to see you smile
  • i have a love-hate relationship with myself
  • i am never finished
  • i love to laugh with my kids
  • i count my blessings everyday
  • i have a wild side
  • i feel stronger and wiser with everyday
  • i want to go away, far far away, but what would they do without me?
  • i am overdramatic
  • i can't imagine life without you

just being honest.....

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Change....

If there is anything I know, it's change. It's scary and uncomfortable yet fun and exciting all at the same time. Take this "blogging" thing for example. I was so excited to get started, had a lot of fun creating my page and coming up with my page title, and love that I am a part of the latest trend in communicating my life to others. On the other hand, as soon as I sat down to type the "thoughts and opinions of Linda Roberts" who's "roots aren't really blonde", I felt this overwelming pressure to speak insightful or meaningful words. Words to encourage those of you (all 3 of you) who decide to read it. I froze. I felt vulnerable; and that made me feel uncomfortable. Ok, so maybe I am being a little dramatic over a seemingly simple thing like blogging, especially considering the big turns my life has taken over the recent years. But my point is....ok, i don't really have a point, but i am blogging and that's a change for me.
Change....God continues throwing it at me, continues to excite me, and continues to scare the "me" out of me everytime.

Be alert, be present. I'm about to do something brand-new. It's bursting out! Don't you see it? Isaiah 43:19