Thursday, December 31, 2009

Glance Back

As the new year approaches I am reminded of where I was a year ago today; Some of you may remember my Not So Happy New Year post from last year. This past week I got to thinking about all that has occurred over the past few months (or, well, entire year) and everything the Lord has done in my life. Instead of feelings of regret, disappointment, and anxiety I stood in amazement and praise because of who He is.

This has been an amazing year!!!

It wasn't an easy year. And it wasn't pain free - gosh no. But the Lord set me free on so many levels and that's why it was a good year.

There were so many times when I was unsure - but He strengthened my faith. He showed me that when I don't have a clue, He does. When life feels out of control, He's still in control. When you make mistakes, He still provides ways.

Here are some of the moments that stick out for 2009 -

He brought me through college.
He carried me through graduation. And He comforted me there.
He lead me to my first job.
He opened doors for certification. Talk about second chances.
He set me free on an afternoon in July when I had been in chains for over a year. He set me free.... not me.
He helped me pass my test in September (the second time around). I'll never forget what He taught me the first time around.
He showed me what it meant to have JOY.
He answered prayers I'd been praying for years.

So I enter this evening and new year with thanks. And I personally thank everyone who prayed for me over the past year.

And I cannot thank You enough God. There are times when I let my pride get in the way of all that You want to do in my life, but I thank You for being patient and continuing to pursue. Please, continue despite what my flesh may say at times. I praise You for all that You have taught me this past year. Yeah, You've taught me a lot of things here on Earth, but most of all You've shown me who You are. That I can trust You when everything else seems shaky. That what the enemy meant for harm, You use for my good. You do have plans for me - and carry them out right before my eyes even when I don't recognize it as such. You are sovereign. You are love. And You can be trusted.... if we just let go. Once again, I can't thank You enough and I beg You to continue... in the coming year. I long for intimacy - to truly believe what You've layed on my heart the past few months. And I know that it's possible because You are God. I wait patiently for You and all that You have promised for me. I want to love You more in 2010.

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Few Favorites from 09

Just for fun let's take a look at some readers favorites over the past year! Starting from January to the present....

Thank you for reading! It wouldn't be half the fun with out you!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

How To Tie A Scarf - 101

I'm just gonna go ahead and admit that my new favorite thing to wear this year is a scarf. Most of you have probably noticed if you live in the same town as me and see me on a regular basis. A few of my fellow employees and church friends have even asked how to tie a scarf because they own some, received one for Christmas, or want to buy one. But the dilemma is they don't know how to wear them properly without feeling like a super nerd or looking like a dork.
My favorite way to wear a scarf is to fold it in half with one side slightly longer than the other (having them completely equal just looks too put together), then wrapping that across the back of your neck and sticking it back through the hole where you folded it in half. Then you pull it up and tada!! So simple! (In the picture below you can see where I pulled it back through.)
And now that I took the time to tell you all of that, I found this video of Big Mama explaining four ways to wear a scarf. Her personal favorite is also the one I mentioned above! So if you are equally excited about a scarf and want to know some ways to tie them - click here to view her video!
Happy Scarfing!!!
(PS - Walmart has super cute scarfs for like 5 bucks! The End.)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas from the Kilgore's!

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. For God so loved the world that He gave His only son, that whoever believeth in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.
Isaiah 9:6, John 3:16

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


It seemed like there were a lot of children at my dad's family Christmas this past weekend. We've reached the point where all the nieces/nephews (us) are beginning to have kids of their own. For so long it was just a bunch of teenagers and college-ers discussing the new beginning in their lives. Now it's marriage and babies; With the exception of Brandon, Casie, and I. We are the youngest family so we haven't joined in on the fun yet. :) One day, one day!

Here are some pictures of my precious family in Mississippi.

Samuel thoroughly enjoyed cracking pecans and eating them.

I finally got to meet Gracie Ann!

I already introduced you to Hannah...

Here she is waiting on her present.

Ash was super excited about exchanging gifts!

Carson was the very last child to get a present, but as you can see by the picture.... she waited oh so patiently! :)

Gracie huggin' her Mickey that she unwrapped.

Mom hung out with Trevor because he's so dang cute.

Casie and Macy enjoyed the beautiful weather!

And the kids played football with an LSU cup. Talk about improvising!

Don't let Macy fool you. She's girly, but she can hold her ground.

I wish we lived closer to these people, but since we don't I settle for facebook.

And amazingly, we've been able to keep in touch because of it!

Journal Entries

Yesterday I got the chance to sit down with some very dear friends of ours and chat for a little while. The time or topic was not planned, but I do feel led to share.

The mom was sharing how she keeps a journal of prayers, devotions, and thoughts of her time with God. She caught herself flipping back through old pages and reading some of her thoughts/cries over the past year. It was amazing to see a prayer and then find the day that it was answered.... sometimes quicker and sometimes longer than we expect.

When I was in the youth group our women's leader encouraged us all the time to write down our prayers and keep a journal. I'm so glad that I took her advice during those years for the very same reason mentioned above.

I can never remember how in-depth I went on my situation at OBU so i'm going to share a little in this post because it is relevant. I met a guy the summer before my freshman year at OBU (and you'll even find that in my journal- ha) and we instantly started dating. Wise, probably my wisest decision ever. For what it's worth I really and truly thought it was from God and that's where I was supposed to be.

The two months of summer that were left before I moved off to college we spent traveling back and forth to visit each other. During one of those visits something happened that I never expected... and although most people do not know this - I broke up with him that same night. I told him that I was serious and ready to be where God wanted me, and with who ever He had for me. I was no longer interested in high school immature worldly-ness. If that was how our relationship was going to be then I wanted no part of it.

It is so interesting to see the strong independent person that I was in my journal before and going into that relationship, and then who I turned into as a result of that relationship. Somewhere deep inside that person is still there and she's starting to show herself... Praise the Lord! It's taken me quite some time to see how much the decision I made to stay in that relationship has effected me, but my God is good and so very patient.

After my talk with him that night he shared that he had the very same desire and it would never happen again. (Wishful thinking)

We met in June and (if you recall) my depression/break down started in about October, a few months later. What's odd is that when you flip back through the pages of my Journal there are entries in August of doubt and fear in my relationship with this guy. I don't remember it occurring that early, but you cannot deny what was written in ink.

There were doubts and questions of whether or not this is truly where God wanted me or if I had heard Him incorrectly. Something was obviously on my heart.

The entry that sticks out the most to me is one that I read the week my mother moved me home from OBU. I was hurting and lost. I was clingy and dependent. I was confused, depressed, and lonely. And although I never admitted it then.... I wanted to be rescued.

School had not ended yet, but she felt like it was no longer safe (for me or him) to be in the same town on the same campus. So she showed up without warning, loaded up the car, and moved me home. The next 2 weeks my parents drove back and forth (2 1/2 hours) every morning so that I could finish my semester.

I remember feeling guilt. Guilt that I hadn't tried hard enough - to make friends, to make our relationship work, to enjoy school away from home. But as I sat down to unpack my bags and get settled back into my room at home I found myself reading through the pages of my journal.

One of the first pages that I came to had this written on it - Megan, I chose these parents for you for a reason. I knew what I was doing and they are perfect for you.

I don't know that I could even find those words again in my journal today, but I will never forget that moment as I sat on my bedroom floor blown away. I was doubting their decision to bring me back to this place. I was having trouble trusting them to lead. But those words gave me a little bit of peace that day... and obviously more than I realized because I can't seem to forget it.

I haven't kept a journal since that time in my life. I tried, but the pain was so hard that I couldn't stand to take the time to write it out everyday. You remember and pay attention to more when you write it down, especially prayers. And I just couldn't do it during that time. Part of me wishes that I would have because it's so interesting to see a prayer and then see the answer on the devotional that you read the next day. We are so blind.... but He is so patient and continually there.

So today I am thankful for our Women's ministry leader during my time in the youth group and all that she taught me. I hadn't realized how much I learned and how stable my life was during those years because of that group... but thanks to my journal I can flip back and remember.

I'm sorry if this post was depressing. I just wanted to encourage you that God is there. In the midst of your pain and confusion... when You can't seem to find Him anywhere.... you will find Him on the pages of your journal. Answers and evidence are written all over it.

If you get a chance over the holidays, take some time to read back through your old journals and prayers. You'll be amazed at what you find. You'll be reminded of where You use to be, where He has brought you, and for those of you who may be going through a dry time - you'll be reminded of your first Love.

Thank You, God, for reminders. Reminders of where we use to be with You. Thank You for youth leaders who encourage and challenge us. Thank You for a church family. And thank You most importantly, for You... how You are constant, faithful, soveriegn, and ever so patient. When I can't seem to find it in my life, it's evident in the pages of my journal. Thank You. I love You.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

How It Has Been

It seems like I can only keep this thing up to date when i'm home for the holidays. There have been many things that have happened these past few months that i've thought 'I need to blog about that' but there just hasn't been the time. Hopefully this post will get you up to date on a few things in our household.

Mom and I were asked to provide entertainment (by singing) at our work Christmas party two weeks ago. We sang When Love Came Down by Point of Grace and I don't think i've ever been more nervous in my life. I've sang in many different places for many different faces, but I've never had to sing for my fellow employees who were sitting approximately 5 inches away from my microphone. You don't think about the little things - like being on a stage a good distance away from your observers, or having bright lights in your eyes so that you can't see the blank stares people give you while you're singing. It was different than any other place i've had to sing. But it went well!

Friday was early-release for the schools and Christmas break officially began. It was at that moment that I realized Christmas was 7 days away and I had yet to purchase anything. Where did the time stinkin' go?

We spent this past weekend in Mississippi with my dad's side of the family and it was so much fun! Facebook has brought us closer than you'd ever expect. We Texans are able to communicate and keep up to date with what's going on in our cousins/aunts/uncles lives all the way over in Mississippi. For shy people like me it's helped to break the ice a little. In an odd way, i'm so very thankful for facebook. Never thought i'd say that. (Pictured above is precious Hannah Bear - is she not cute)

Brandon was not able to make the trip with us this year because he is a manager at Sears now. I don't think i've made that announcement yet. Yay Brother! He is absolutely thrilled and seems to be enjoying what he's doing. He is suppose to get into town on Christmas Eve and spend Christmas day with us here at home. It'll be so good to spend time with him!

Two of my childhood friends are engaged to be married this summer (2010) and it so doesn't seem right. Erin won some kind of contest where her and her bridesmaids got make-overs. We did that today and it wasn't as bad as I expected. The last time someone else applied make-up to my face I felt like I had ten layers of cake icing on my skin and wanted to wash it off immediately. Thankfully that was not the case today.

The lady was trying so very hard to get me into black eye-shadow and red lipstick. Apparently I have the hair, eyes, and skin color to pull it off. I did not give in..... aren't we all glad.

Although, I did come away with the knowledge that I have an oval face, hooded eye-lids, and medium lips. Red lipstick is so bold and so not in. And my name is Megan Kilgore.

Casie and I managed to get all of our Christmas shopping done this afternoon (along with everyone else in East Texas) and now we will spend the evening wrapping presents. Mom and I had to make a trip to the store tonight for some last minute grocery items and while we were out it started to sprinkle. She got her hair done today so she pulled out her umbrella and exclaimed, "I can't mess up my pretty hair!" I told her if she really wanted to show it off she just needed to go to Walmart because half of the town was there. But what's really funny is what happened 10 seconds later...

... Not sure that umbrella's gonna do you much good. But good try.

My kindergarten language is starting to show up in every area of my life. My poor sister has to put up with it the most. Enjoy our video!! I got bored on the car ride home - Just decided to turn on the camera to see what would happen.

Megan: "What are you readin' Casie?"
Casie: "Leave me alone"
Megan: "That is not kind. Those are not kind words coming out of your mouth."

I love you all and hope you have a very merry Christmas with your family!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

It's been a while since i've written an update on how work is going. Words cannot express how much I enjoy what i'm doing. Never in a million years did I think I would end up in a public school working with children, but I really and truly love it. Thank You, Lord, for guiding my footsteps even when I felt like I had no idea where I was going. You are soveriegn and You never let me down.

The other day at work we were discussing how you know when he's the one? And well, I don't know how you know when he's the one, but I would assume it would be a lot like this job experience that i'm currently going through. I didn't hear a voice that said - Megan, you should teach. I also didn't feel a big tug on my heart. I simply had an opportunity and walked through the door (very hesitantly might I add.... my mom might have pushed me in actually. ha!). The first day I subbed in the public schools I was almost at tears after 60 minutes. My mom came to check on me and I said, "I want to go home... I can't do this." For some reason I stuck with it - He was guiding my footsteps all along the way, even though I hadn't a clue. When I continued to take one step at a time I could look back and see a continual peace that never left. Sure, there were (and still are) days when I thought I do not know if I am capable of this, is this where i'm suppose to be? But underlying all of those thoughts (and even doubts) there was a peace that was sustaining me - it never left.

It's one of the most interesting things i've ever experienced.

First, I trust that this is where He wants me because the peace hasn't left and secondly, because there is growth in my life. It's one thing to see growth in yourself, but when you have others point it out as well - it takes it to a whole new level.

One of my weaknesses is relationships. Not just dating, but getting extremely close to people in general. I don't have a problem telling you my struggles or what's going on in my life, but if you want an ongoing relationship with me - it's hard for me to open up and get comfortable. The Lord has used my position to open my heart up to relationships. I have to let people in with my job - there's no going around it. I'm becoming a more confident individual and i've made some awesome friends!

It feels great to be excited about what i'm doing. Those two years in college when I forced myself to practice piano, memorize latin/greek/spanish/etc, and perform opera for some over-the-top happy music people were some of the hardest months of my life. I knew I was good at music so I figured that's where He wanted me... and even when I dropped my major in the back of my mind there was always this guilt that I hadn't tried hard enough. There is a difference in this job than when I tried to study music. I have a passion for understanding children, seeing them learn, helping them overcome problems, and just loving on them in general. There is something inside of me that doesn't want to stop at good enough. I want to keep them engaged and get them excited about learning! I want to find ways for each individual child to understand the concept we are learning.

Call me a nerd. Happy to accept it!

The Lord is even using the struggle I had with depression and mental issues (I don't know what else to call them) in this job. No one chooses to be a bad person, something happened or is happening that is triggering what's going on.... and I have a heart that understands. It brings tears to my eyes as students are brought to mind in this very moment.

I guess what i'm trying to say in this random, scattered post is that my God is a faithful, sovereign, powerful God. He will not leave you and He will not let you down. Even when you feel like you have NO stinkin' idea where you are headed - He is guiding and will use what you're going through. He has strengthened my faith in so many areas through this experience and I wouldn't trade it for anything. I wish I could find the words, but I don't even know how to explain it.

So for now.... I continue to learn, grow, and give my all where He has me. And if He decides to place me somewhere else - I'll take it one step at a time and trust Him along the way.

Praise You God.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Thanksgiving Thoughts

Do you ever feel like certain memories get tucked away in some sort of safe and you forget they exist? Sometimes something triggers it and you remember it all over again.

The Thanksgiving holidays have already come and gone, but mom reminded me of something very special that we did on this day that i'd forgotten about throughout the years.

My aunt came up with this very fun idea for our family and I really like it! On the morning of Thanksgiving we went out into the yard, as the men cooked the turkey, and found things to create a centerpiece. Leaves, Acorns, Branches, Pinecones... Anything was game and everyone was involved (especially the kids and their creative lil' minds). You can put it on a tray with some candles, place all your gathered items in a clear vase, or even just spread your findings along the center of the table on top of (or as) your table runner. And anything else that comes to your mind. I'm all about free, fun, creative ideas and this one involves the entire family!

I wish I had a picture to post from that time, but that was before I ever dreamed of owning a digital camera.

Do you have any creative ideas, decorations, memories, or traditions that you do with your family on Thanksgiving?

Check out the Nester's center piece!!! How unique and simple... and such an interesting way to make a statement.