welcome friends.....thanks for popping in my world....
I'd love to know you've stopped by, so please note that the comment section is now found at the title of each post.

Extreme Makeover

So this morning I woke up early and sprinted over to my incubator. Oh, wait, I did go to the bathroom, wash my hands and brushed my teeth first. I feel the need to share that as my personal hygiene habits might be in question after Monday's post.

OK, focus Michelle....... incubator.

You see......today is "Day 21" which is "hatching day" in egg-to-chicken world. So I am hoping that these little guys/gals will be making their debut throughout the day. They say that if 80-85% of your eggs hatch, that is considered successful. (who are "they" anyway?) I guess you always have to allow for a few "duds" or eggs that don't fertilize properly. Lord knows I can relate to that. *little eye roll with a hint of sarcasm*

So as I am scrutinizing every egg through the window of the incubator.....I hear my crazy roosters outside and then I hear our new family of goats making a racket so they can be fed. I started to think about how my life has done such a turn in the past 20 years.

And when I say turn......it really should be put into the extreme sport of a 180 degree HeelClickin' Superman seat grab backflip category. Oh sorry....being a mom of motocross kids does something to your choice of words over the years.

So let's compare......20 years ago and now

Then: I was going to New York City to check out the latest fashions for a little rock and roll boutique that I owned.
Now: I am going to country fairs and farming shows checking out goat and chicken breeds and the latest John Deere tractors.

Then: Josh and I would only head out at 11PM to go to nightclubs......it wasn't cool to show up any earlier than midnight
Now: If anything is scheduled after 8pm, I usually pass as I like to be in "jammie mode" by then and winding down.

Then: coloring my hair every possible intense color to draw attention to myself
Now: coloring every intense gray hair so as to not draw attention to myself

Then: Josh is investing in and building Marshall Amp stacks, guitar rigs, effect pedal boards, etc
Now: Josh is building goat milking stands, mangers and chicken coops.

Then: playing drinking games til I pass out or slamming shots during poker games
Now: drinking hot chocolate while beating the booger outta my kids at Scrabble or our new favorite.......Apples to Apples.

Then: Heading banging, heavy metal fists flying in a crowd.....OzzFest and Lollapalooza Tours
Now: Dancing with arms raised high praising God with worship music.....still rocking but praisin' at The Soulfest

Then: cool '78 Camaro with jacked up rear, huge monster tires.....loud exhaust.
Now: not-so-cool '01 Dodge Caravan with lots of dents.....also a loud exhaust, but not in a cool way. In a "this needs fixing but I am not bothering" kinda way.

My life might not seem as "exciting" as it was before......but that all depends on what how you define exciting. As far as I am concerned.....living your life for Jesus can bring things to a whole new radical level. Extreme devotion is what it's all about. I feel like I am finally LIVING!

When I look back.....of course I have regrets of alot of stupid decisions I made during those times. But I am not beating myself up over it. I am where I am today because of my past. I love that I am living proof of God's grace. I think I appreciate it so much because I have something (living life without Him) to compare it to (living a full life with/for Him).

Occasionally we run into old friends from the "old days" who first cannot believe that A: Josh and I are still together (19+ years, baby!) and have four kids. B: the different direction we've taken on. Most notice the change in us and although they don't come out and ask....we think it's pretty obvious that we have God in our lives and are ready/willing/able to share His Good News if they are open to listen. We make sure God gets all the glory and credit for the blessings in our lives and are not afraid to preach it when the opportunity arises.

Sometimes it is well received......sometimes they listen politely, but it falls on deaf ears......sometimes it turns people off and our conversation is cut short. And that's OK. I am sure there were plenty of "Michelle and Josh's" that tried to plant a seed with me and my rocky hardened soil many years ago. Sometimes it causes people to think we are whacked out Jesus Freaks.....again. That's OK!


I think about these lyrics from dcTalk's song Jesus Freak

"What will people think when they hear that I'm a Jesus Freak?
What will people do when they find that it's true?
I don't really care if they label me a Jesus Freak.
There ain't no disguising the truth."

I am who I am/have become......We are who we are/have become.


Another thought.......

(and I will again apologize for once again, being all over the place with the way I express myself with my blog.....feel bad for me.....be happy you are not inside my brain!)

.....I used proclaim I was a Jesus chaser, but really.....I stand corrected. Looking back, it was God who kept chasing after me during those lost years. I am so thankful that He is faithful......and more stubborn than me. Because I was on a road to destruction, whether I knew it or not. I was just one late night party away from over doing it, taking stupid chances and risks....I felt immortal. I never thought about consequences for my actions. I never felt I needed to be held accountable. Why should I? I was living for myself.

Now, I live for Him. I live with a new perspective. Jesus owns my life now.....He paid for it. I am thankful and relieved to know that He has the right to direct it. I see how He has blessed me with my husband, my children,.....my life. I owe this all to Him and I feel privileged to devote my life to Him.

And He knows just how to be the most effective in building relationships with each of His children. Everyone is different. With me.....when I walked into that church that afternoon, I knew this was the path I was searching for. I started to gravitate towards situations, people and environments that brought me closer to knowing Him better. God also revealed Himself and His awesome ways more and more throughout the years. These testimonies built the solid foundation that I stand on today. It wasn't an overnight explosion that could have fizzled out quickly.......it was a slow but steady burn that has now become a constant flame.

Now don't get me wrong...... and I have needed to tend to this fire constantly to keep it burning. I have had my times where I have gotten luke warm and put Jesus on the back burner. When I reflect on those times........those were the times where I got cocky, thought I had it all together and could take over controlling my life.

Those also were the times that I fell flat on my face.

Thankfully, we serve a loving, forgiving Father who helped helps me up, dusted dusts me off and set sets me back on His path.

So yes.....I still am a sinner, but now I am a sinner saved by God's grace.

So I think I will close with this:

Romans 6:4

We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

translated into Michelle lingo (it might not even be close in translation, but I like it):

Jesus loves the sinners. He also is into extreme stuff. He's into extreme makeovers. He took a wild partying 80's city livin' girl, complete with big hair and spandex......and turned her into to a Jesus loving' tie dye wearing, dready hair goat farmin' country gal.


(pssssssssst, um, that would be me)

Not "The End"......it's just The Beginning.


Peace and love~
*~Michelle~*



31 comments:

Mich said...

Loved this post and how once again you shared YOU! I like the makeover friend! God has done an awesome job in you His masterpiece!

Alix said...

I feel honored to leave (what I think is) the first comment.

Woman - you knocked me off my feet with that post. I was just grasping inefficiently to these very thoughts this morning as I was speaking to my adult son (who just got in after 5 am) about change.

I gotta figure out how to get him to read this post. It is brilliance. it is God speaking through you.

Thank you.

Alix said...

PS: Coincidentally.... my son is a production assistant for the television show Extreme Makeover Home Edition. For real!

Kendra Lee said...

I LOVE reading this! God is so good!! And to think, He's not finished yet! :-)

Now, go watch your chickens and play some Apples to Apples!!

5forjesus said...

Oh by the grace of God, what a marvelous change in your life. I love what God has done with you and look forward to continuing to watch Him work in your life. I love you my Jesus lovin', country farm gal, hippie friend. Keep being real. JOY JOY JOY!

christy rose said...

Oh Michelle! I am so glad that you are who you are today! God knows exactly what He is doing! Yes, He was chasing you every step of the way! I love how you said that it seems like you are just beginning to live.
Every day seems like a new beginning to me too. As He continues to chase my heart, the part that I have yet to surrender to Him, I see more and more how much He loves and adores me and will never stop until I am all His. He is relentless and it makes me love Him so.
This was so wonderful to read today!
Christy

Shark Bait said...

Great post.

Sassy Granny ... said...

Isn't it His way!? Our journeys are often so different, yet so much alike in the "afterwards". We were lost; we are found. Who wouldn't sing? Who's feet refuse to dance when such incredible goodness infuses our very lives? Now that's the good life! You go girl!

I enjoyed your meandering. I got to visit some fun things from my own past with you.

Kathleen

Kim said...

Isn't it funny how He changes us?

Speaking of change, I posted the pic on the blog that you had requested.

Heart2Heart said...

Michelle,

I love the part that God is into Extreme Makeovers!

Thanks for stopping by and leaving a much needed comment. It's so nice to wake up to them in my email over coffee in the morning.

Love and Hugs ~ Kat

Karen said...

Some people may think your lifestyle is boring with the early to bed and the farming and all that. But some of us dream of living that kind of life! I'm glad you recognize it as a blessing you've arrived at instead of how you "ended up."

~*Michelle*~ said...

"I'm glad you recognize it as a blessing you've arrived at instead of how you "ended up."

me too! It's all God...all God!

Thanks everyone for your kind words, inspiration and just lovin' and celebratin' Jesus with me! :)

Sarah said...

I love it! It's funny how things change....

Alicia said...

Michelle.....I LOVED THIS POST!!!!!!!

It's so similar to me and my husband, and our life in the PAST!

We have been together since 1988, and we too just lived for ourselves. We weren't into drugs, but were definitely club go-ers, and just lived to fulfill our flesh!!

I know there are so many people in our past that are amazed that we are still together (totally the Lord), and we have kids who also love Jesus!

It's so amazing what the Lord will do in your life if you allow him!!

You're right..this is just the beginning!!!

Thank you for sharing this!! Awesome!

Martha said...

Aw, what an inspiring post!!! So many people fret about the Law that we forget all about Jesus and his blood that was shed for us. His grace is not an excuse for us to sin but it is the perfect opportunity to focus on our relationship with HIM!!

Psst, did you really own a boutique?? :o) Where's my freebies!?

<3 Luv ya girlie!

amanda said...

love it. and how you speak it. perfect.

munsure. that's my word veri. and i just think it's a funny word.

so. we're seriously coming out to visit you. i do not think that a bale of hay will fit in the van though. sorry!! ;0) i could help you feed the goats with YOUR OWN hay though. we need to hash out dates and details. and i started the 30 day shred today. so i'll be all shredded down when i meet your skinny self. ;0) i'm seriously stoked!

momof7 said...

I loved you then and love you now. You are my bestest friend. I thank God everyday for you. If it wasn't for those "spandex" years, we would have never met. P.S. please tell Alix that my house needs an Extreme Makeover Home Edition...LOL

Amy Deardon said...

what an inspiring post! Thank you for sharing it :-)

Denise @ Sunflowers, Chocolate and Little Boys said...

Hi Michelle...I loved this post. Hearing about your journey was great. And thanks for stopping by my blog....if you lived nearby I would bring you some zucchini bread.

So how many chicks hatched today??

~*Michelle*~ said...

You guys rock!!!

Denise.....can you believe that only ONE egg hatched outta two dozen??? Thankfully they were mostly duds (not fertilized) and they couldn't bring life regardless.

I was laughing with my best friend Lili about this whole ordeal. My original plan was to sell at least 20 of them for $2 each (to cover grain/feed/etc).....so now I am gonna try to sell this one for $40. HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAH!

.......whaddya think my odds are to recoup some money?

ahhhhh talk about having to "roll with it".....we named this little one "Uno" and she's gonna be our newest family member, I guess! :)

Tina said...

Michelle,

Love this post!! we have much in common. Love me some Apple to Apples!! I remember when I didn't even think of going out until after 11, I lol, because I recalled a night when hubby (navy man) was out to sea, I got the kids a happy meal, stopped by the store for some milk and picked up a Good House Keeping magazine. I was so excited to get the little ones down so I could enjoy some cookies and milk with my magazine. I laughed at myself because it was a Friday night and this was the highlight of my week! Oh what Jesus can do!
In Him,
Tina

Billy Coffey said...

Loved this post, Michelle. Isn't it wonderful what God can do? Me, I'd much rather have your current life than your old one. Shame you don't drive that Camaro anymore, though!

Helene said...

This was a beautifully written post, with so many excellent points!! If I had to think back to where I was 20 years ago and compare it to where I am today, it would look very similar to your list!!!

Found your blog through Karen's blog!!

Shorty said...

I must admit, Karen has referred me to your site. And it couldn't have had more perfect timing. My relationship with God has waned, only b/c I have let it. I've prayed to stop keeping Him at arm's length. I think her leading me to you has a touch of Divine intervention wrapped in it. Great post, and thanks for reminding me of the path I've wanted to take....

Larry said...

You certainly have an eclectic writing style, but your passion shines through it and so does your calling. God bless you.

chili pepper said...

Michelle,

I am so glad you stopped by Arts Chili to pay me a visit! This is a great post and I hope to pop back and get to know you better!

Kat

Deb ~ Frugal Living And Having Fun said...

Very nicely written! It is funny how time has separated us for awhile, and now we meet at the other end of 20 plus years both loving Jesus! "God is Good"!!

Webster World said...

God is good.

Christy said...

Praising GOD that he is a chaser, lover, and most of all far more determined than we could ever be, most of all that he forgives like we never could, yet should!

God Bless

Paula said...

I'm so glad He caught you!

Shyla said...

Brilliant, as in the light of Christ Brilliant.

 

Design in CSS by TemplateWorld and sponsored by SmashingMagazine
Blogger Template created by Deluxe Templates