Thursday, November 30, 2006

It's a struggle

Topper is the big white one in the middle, Timeron is the smaller one.

I have guinea pigs...five of them actually. Two boys (timeron and topper) and three girls (tansy, tasha and itch). Timeron and Tansy are the oldest...getting old for piggies. Piggies live generally speaking 4-7 years. They are hitting 4.5 years. Tanse is aging well. Timeron is struggling.

I'm a firm believer that small animal are cheap to purchase, give lots of pleasure, but aren't worth $50 or more vet visits. I won't do surgery on them, I won't pay to have them put down, I just won't do it. Seems to me a waste of good hard-earned money with little potential for improved life span.

And regardless of what we do for Timeron...he won't last us out another year. Timeron is developing older male piggie issues. He's thin, he's getting "horny old pig" syndrome, he's having trouble eating properly and eliminating properly... he's an OLD pig.

So the question of course comes, how long do we allow him to be an old piggie? How long do I allow him to drive his cage-mate batty? How long do I deal with elimination issues? I don't want to undually shorten his lifespan...but at the same time... I don't want to make living hard for his cage mate...and hence me as I listen to continual squeaking of "Would you just leave me alone old man!!!!!" It's a hard one to balance out.

I know my parents would say...just get rid of him already. :) They are rather practical minded folks. :) But Timeron is a pig that I really, really like. Has a good personality. Good size. Knew how to take care of himself. And now he's old and crotchety and if he were on his own, I'd be more content to just leave him to do his thing. BUT.... his roommate can't escape him, Timeron makes life miserable at times for Topper and we have no other place to put him (Topper). I am duty-bound to care for Topper in a good manner too, and what is happening now, is not a good way to care for a piggie.

I must I think, make a decision before the snow flies. For you believing/praying folks out could pray hard that he dies a natural death before I feel compelled to take matters into my own hands.... :) Thanks! :(

Christmas greetings... intolerance???

So I find it odd that people get so bent out of shape over the greeting "wish you a merry Christmas".

my hubbie found this blog which states ever so clearly the silliness of whole thing.

anyways, go check him out....Stand to Reason.

1 Peter 5

It looks like we are coming to the end of 1 Peter.

Peter is so concerned that his believing audience continue in their faith. He wants, GOD wants, them to have good leaders among them.

Have you ever noticed that leaders can really influence a congregation or followers for good or ill? God knows that this is true, we are indeed like sheep, we follow.

So Peter exhorts the leaders, the elders, among these exiled Christians to
2shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight,
Why are they to do this?
not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; 3not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock.
The result?
4And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.
Those of us who follow have a duty as well.
5Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for "God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble."
God wants good leaders. He also wants good followers. Good followers and Good leaders are both filled with humility. Part of humility is casting our cares on God. Did you know that "to cast" means "to violently throw"? So when we cast our cares upon God we are violently throwing something away from ourselves that we don't need.

I have to admit...I like that imagery. That I'm all worried and stressed out by something, and instead of continuing in that worry and stress I"m taking it (just as I would a lure) and throwing it as far as possible from me. Just as when I"m fishing I want to get it out as far as possible and hopefully have it land where I want it to as well... when I'm stressed and worried...I want to throw the cause of that far away from me and have it land where I want it to. In this case...into the capable and caring hands of God.

What other habits should I cultivate as a believer?
1. humble myself - when the time is right God will exalt me
2. cast all my cares on God - God cares for me, what a perfect reason!
3. sober-minded - aware that not all is fun and games
4. watchful, alert - the devil seeks us out, he wants to destroy us
5. resisting of the devil - don't give into him, we are not alone in our sufferings
6. be firm in my faith - God will restore, confirm, strengthen and establish you
7. willing to suffer for a while - God will call us to eternal glory and rest.

It's such an important thing to remember -- that we are a group of people that love God. That we are not alone in our faith, even if at times it feels that way. That God holds us close to his heart. That we can give him all the stresses and worries of life.

Peter closes this book with greetings. This is the normal way that folks wrote to others in bible times. He gives a couple of extra teachings - to stand firm in the true faith in God, and to greet each other with a kiss of love. He also sends peace to all who are believers.

You know...this chapter came to me again at just the perfect time in my life. For the last two years I've put together a Christmas program for our church. I'm expected to do it again this year. I feel like I haven't had a solid nights sleep in like forever. Time changed, son sick, me sick, hubbie sick, busy of life, son sick... no solid 8 hours of sleep for me except I think 2 nights in almost 6 weeks. I'm feeling stressed and tired and NOT WANTING TO HAVE ANYTHING to do with Christmas or Christmas preparations. All I want is a quiet week of sleep, rest, play whatever. No external demands. I think it's time for me to just throw this all violently at God (just to give away to him and let him work his magic like he always does). :) I's not magic, but sometimes it feels that way, because when I do get this stressed within myself ... when I do cast it all upon him, somehow, it's like overnight wonders of snowfalls.... life just becomes so much better. Timely message for this stressed mom. Ah come quickly Lord Jesus...come quickly. :)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

1 Peter 4

Todays reading is the fourth chapter of 1 Peter.

Did you know that the more we live like Christ, the less impact sin has on our lives? The more that we suffer, as Christ suffered, the less we want to do things that we know will displease him, and the more we want to do things that shows our affliation with him? Rather neat how that works. :)

Peter reminds his audience that the time is past for living however we choose, that we used to live in sin, but now we live as Christ wants us to. We are now willing to suffer for Christ's sake. This surprises the folks who live around us, and therefore they want to treat us poorly, because we don't live like they do. Peter reminds us all that they have to answer to God for their actions, just as we do.

THEREFORE Peter reminds us, we need to be
self-controlled and sober-minded for the sake of your prayers. 8Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. 9Show hospitality to one another without grumbling. 10As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: 11whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies--in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
We need to act differently than the world around us. As we do that, God is glorified!

As Christians we should not be surprised when bad things happen to us. Bad things test our faith. They show what we are made of as Christians. Do we rely on ourselves OR do we rely on God? As we rely on God, his glory is revealed. This is something we should rejoice in. We really should!
13But rejoice insofar as you share Christ's sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is revealed. 14If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.
We should not be ashamed that we suffer for Christ, but should rather glorify God for what he is doing. God's glory is revealed in our suffering.

Did you know that when judgment comes, it begins in the church? New to me too! It shows how much we need to rely on God for our salvation. If we are scarcely saved, and we know God, imagine the impossibility for people who don't know God. It's hard, it's scary to think of the eternal significance of that. How much more important it is for me NOW then to show God's glory in all that I do, so that even one more person can be spared the wrath of God. I need to live my life in such a way that it draws people into God, so that they too can obey "the gospel of God". So as I suffer for Christ, I must entrust my soul to him for safe-keeping. His glory will be shown.

thankfulness to the World Wide Study Bible for posting commentaries on line to help me understand this chapter of God's Written Word.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

a cat hmm....

What breed of cat are you?
Your Result: Devon Rex

You are the ADHD of cats. You resemble a furry demon, in appearance and behavior. Still, you are awfully charming and offer a great wealth of fun with your quirky looks and antics. With you around, your owners will no longer have to drop acid for amusement.

Exotic Longhair
British Shorthair
Scottish Fold
What breed of cat are you?
Take More Quizzes

Grammar anyone?

Your Language Arts Grade: 98%

Way to go! You know not to trust the MS Grammar Check and you know "no" from "know." Now, go forth and spread the good word (or at least, the proper use of apostrophes).

Are You Gooder at Grammar?
Make a Quiz

1 Peter 3

Today's reading comes from 1 Peter 3.

Wives and Husbands.

First Peter addresses the wives in this chapter. This chapter follows a passage on how employees should act in relation to their employers. Giving respect and honour, even if it seems that none is due. Also on how we live, shows people around us what Christians are really all about, and can be positively affected for Christ's sake.

LIKEWISE says Peter, wives are to be subject to their own husband. Not to everyone else's husband, but to their own. So just because someone else's husband wants me to always have shoes on my feet in church, MY husband doesn't care... so it's a non-issue for me. :) If he did care then it would be a different story. I'd have to find a way to work with it. But fortunately I don't have to. :)

Just as an employee's good conduct can be helpful in teaching an employer, a wife, especially one who's husband does not believe, by her respectful and good conduct, can win him over to the word of God.

I feel for women who are married to men who aren't believers. Being a believer encompasses so much of my life, not being able to really share that with my hubbie would be a very hard thing. So I sometimes wonder how women manage who can't share this part of their life with their hubbie. It must be hard. And to think that some women walk into it with their eyes wide open, while others are fooled. Either way, it's hard. We have a couple of women in our church in that situation, and it's hard with their children too. Do they follow mom in her beliefs, or do they follow dad? Both are good folks so does it really matter (this is what the children think)?

But I do find it neat that Peter points out that how these women reach their men is not by putting on a good show outwardly, but by putting on the things of Christ. They dress their inner person with a gentle and quiet spirit. They submit to their husbands, they give him respect, they do what is good and right. This is "in God's sight is very precious."

LIKEWISE Peter reminds the husbands also that they need to "live with your wives in an understanding way." They need to show honour to their wives.

Both wives and husbands are heirs of the grace of life. So when husbands treat their wives properly, their "prayers may not be hindered".

The Believers.

After addressing husbands and wives, Peter moves on to the whole body of the church. He reminds them
8Finally, all of you, have unity of mind, sympathy, brotherly love, a tender heart, and a humble mind. 9Do not repay evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary, bless, for to this you were called, that you may obtain a blessing.
We need to be tender, united in mind, sympathetic, loving, humble, and blessors. We need to be zealous for doing good. We need to remember that there is no harm in doing what is right and good. But that even if we have to suffer for it, it is a thing of blessing.

We should not be afraid of suffering, but always hold Christ the Lord as holy. We should always be prepared to give an answer for why we have this hope within us. Our answer should always been given in a gentle and respectful way. We need to have a good conscience. If we do this, then when we are slandered and reviled, those who do so will be shamed for it.

This is why we should not be afraid of suffering:
17For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God's will, than for doing evil. 18For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit, .... 21Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not as a removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22who has gone into heaven and is at the right hand of God, with angels, authorities, and powers having been subjected to him.
Christ suffered for us, to bring us to God, we suffer for Christ, that our lives might win others for Christ. :) May all the glory be to him!

Basic Bible Study Principles

Check out what Pastor Ed wrote on this.

Monday, November 27, 2006

1 Peter 2 - part two

Okay, the rest of this chapter. :)

The first half of this chapter contains these words:
So put away all malice and all deceit and hypocrisy and envy and all slander. 2Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up to salvation-- 3if indeed you have tasted that the Lord is good.

4As you come to him, a living stone rejected by men but in the sight of God chosen and precious, 5you yourselves like living stones are being built up as a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 6For it stands in Scripture:

"Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone,
a cornerstone chosen and precious,
and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame."

7So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe,

"The stone that the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone,"
"A stone of stumbling,
and a rock of offense."

They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.
As believers we are to long to know God more. The more we know God, is to lead us to want to know even more of God. Just as a wee baby cries out for milk, we are to cry out to God for more food. :) These words lead me to ask myself.. do I cry out to God to know him more? Oh I do want to be a believer who does this. I want to know God more. The more I know him, the more I am able to put off behaviours such as malice, deceit, hypocrisy, envy and slander.

Did you know that Jesus is both the cornerstone and the capstone of the "church". This are building terms. A capstone is the topmost stone. It is "The high point; crowning achievement". The cornerstone is the bottom-most stone. It is the stone that everything rests on. It is the "stone forming a part of a corner or angle in a wall". Without a good cornerstone or capstone the whole building will, over time, fall apart. So without Jesus, we have no church.

No wonder then that Jesus is such a bone of contention for so many folks eh? Consider it... more people reject Jesus for some really odd reasons, than those that just accept him. We know that Jesus lived and walked upon earth. We know that Jesus died. We know that he rose again from the dead. These are historical facts. And yet people try time and again to deny the truth of it. If people are able to reject Jesus the Christ, they are able to reject God because only through Jesus does one know God and only through Jesus is the church of God built.

The last half of this chapter deals with our behaviour towards others.

verses 11-12 tells us that we need to be careful about how we live so that those around us can see that we live good and blameless lives. That their words against us will fail because we are an honourable people. This will help them to glorify God... and that my friends is a main reason why we are God's people. That we may show HIS glory to the world. So watch how you live. Be honourable and decent and self-controlled. It's important.

verses 13-17 tell us that we are subject to different authorities. We need to be obedient to them, insofar as they don't violate God's will. We need to submit to the police, and to the judges and lawyers and leaders and so forth. We are to
Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. 17Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God.

The rest of the chapter reminds us to treat our employers with respect and honour, regardless of how they treat us. If we are treated poorly, and still do good, it is to our credit. Christ suffered for us, we can suffer as well. As God tells us
But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God

So as you can see, there is just SO much in this chapter to think about and mull over. Can you see why I just so like this book of the bible? :) Enjoy reading it! It'd be lovely if you shared your thoughts on it with me. I'd love to know what you are learning too.

1 Peter 2 - part one

Hmmm..... did you know that 1 Peter 2 has more in it than my favourite verses? I know, seems a silly thing to notice this morning. But most of the time, when I think of this passage, I only think of verses 9 and 10 which in many ways have become "MY" verses of the bible.
9But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.
I just love these verses. They always remind me of who I am, whose I am, and what I am to be.
  • a chosen race - I am a person who is chosen by God, I am part of a chosen people. That means I am NOT alone in life. That God has a purpose for me. I, being a person, who is often befret by worries that I make no difference in the world. That what I do really doesn't matter to anyone, and that what I do is usually wrong anyways. But in God's eyes, he chose me! That means that I do make a difference. :)
  • a royal priesthood - Not only that but I am a royal priestess. I have a job! I have something to do for God. Man, that always lifts my spirits.
  • a holy nation - I am a holy person. God sees me as part of a holy nation. That means I'm not a complete scuz-bucket. There is hope for me, in God, because only through him can I live out WHAT I am... a holy person, part of a holy nation. (see once again, I'm not alone in this). I belong to God.
  • a people for his own possession - I belong to God. I am HIS possession. That means I have merit. You don't possess things that mean nothing to you. If you have something that means nothing to you, you get rid of it. But I am a person that God possesses. :)
  • that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light - Why? So that I can proclaim God. That I can proclaim all the great and wonderful and marvellous things of the God that I work for, belong to, am possessed by, the one who makes me holy. God took me out of this dark nasty place, and brought me into his light. This clean bright place of hope, and mercy, and peace. He gave me reason to be, to live, to just have a purpose. :) God gave me purpose!
  • Once you were not a people, but now you are God's people - Once, I was not part of a people group. Once, I was all alone, having no one, but then God called me out of what I was, of where I was, and made me part of his people. I am part of the family of God. That means that somewhere, regardless of where I am, there I am always with a people that I belong. God has called people to him from every race and tribe (okay, well there I might not be totally accurate, I know that mission work still continues among tribes and peoples who have not heard yet of God, and there is MUCH mission work that needs to continue so that the Lord might one day return). But generally speaking....I will not stop being part of a larger family....the family of God. It's just TOO cool.
  • once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy - At one point in life no mercy was shown to me. I was stuck in this dark place. But then God showed me mercy. he called me to himself. He showed me how all those lessons I had learned as a child belonged to me. That was called to be his, and his alone. WooHoo!!!! God's mercy found me. Life is good. My prayer is that others will be called to find this mercy as well. know what? I started this entry thinking I'd talk about more than my favourite verses, but then I got stuck on them. :) I'll post all the rest of this chapter in another post.

People who read this....if you don't know God, take a moment to really read these verses. See the potential in them for YOU. Know God. Know his mercy. Life will be changed for you in ways that you can't even imagine right now. And I'll be able to call you family...and that will be SO cool.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

He's becoming a fine helper

My boyo still just loves watching the fish. he thinks they are just so cool. He climb up to visit them. Sit and watch them for minutes at a time. So to keep him out of the fish tank, we've given him a new job. he feeds the fish. every other day at night. That way we can say, "Justin, it's not time to feed the fish, we'll feed them later". It works! he's learning to keep his hands OUT of the aquariums. :) He helps to clean them out too! :)

This picture shows him cleaning the fish out.

He also helps his mommy feed the guinea pigs. He loves holding that carrot and bringing to the piggies.

He "helps" mommy make suppers too. Though I must admit, it does make getting the meals a bit harder since I have to watch out for little hands.

He helps mommy to water the plants. This is teaching him to leave them alone except when he holds the pots still so the plants don't run away while mommy waters them. :) what can I say...parenthood is teaching me creative thinking. :)

He's learning to clean up his toys (but that's hard!).

He helps mommy get the mail. His favourite part of the mail is peering diligently into the slot to see if mommy left anything behind. I must admit, Sassy dislikes him helping as it means she doesn't get too!

He helps mommy to go to the library almost every week as well. :)

he helps mommy to walk the dogs in the afternoon. he is starting now to hold Sassy's leash. he finds Riley's is just TOO heavy for him.

He's a great little helper.

1 Peter 1

I have to admit, I enjoy reading the books of Peter. They contain some of my favourite verses. :) When I saw that I was to read from 1 Peter today it was like my heart smiled. :) Kinda like when you've been away from home for a while and are tired and walk in the door to a nice clean home.

Peter wrote this book to a bunch of Christian exiles "To those who are elect exiles of the dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia". People probably driven out of their homes due to persecution for their faith. I can read these verses as though they belong to me though. In a way, I too am an exile. yes, I am born and bred Canadian, but I am not just Canadian. I am also a believer, and as such, my true home is elsewhere.

Read this verse, isn't it wonderful?
3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5who by God's power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.
Wow...isn't it just filled with hope and wonder? God's mercy is the only reason by which we are saved. He send this son to die AND THEN be raised from the dead. This is our hope, it is alive. We are saved to an inheritance which will NEVER disappear, that will never become less than it is now, and will never diminish in any way. Isn't that just so cool. Lifts my spirit every time I read it. And not only that...imagine that this salvation, and our faith, is guarded by the one and only TRUE GOD? Yes, my fellow believers, our faith is secure, our hope is true, and God protects us and it for all time.

Wow, it just does my heart good. I don't have to do it all on my own. I have God on my side. Isn't it comforting to know that?

So of course Peter can continue with this words
6In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, 7so that the tested genuineness of your faith--more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire--may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.
It is a matter of rejoicing to know that God is on your side. It means that in times of persecution you know deep inside of yourself that it's going to be okay, regardless of what happens.

I know in Canada we don't face life or death persecution as believers yet. I do believe that a time is coming though when being Christian in Canada will be something that is highly discouraged. It's already becoming that way. Sometimes I fear for my boy, wondering what will await him in his adult years if God calls him to himself as a believer. I wonder what I can do now to prepare his heart and his mind for the trials that I am sure will come his way. I do know that God will stand by him, and hold him in his power, but I still sometimes wonder. Makes me want to really parent him well in the Lord.

It's no wonder, since I know and feel God's power in my life, that I can agree with Peter's next verses
8Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, 9obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
I haven't seen Jesus, I didn't walk the earth when he did. And knowing Jesus you know God. But still, I believe and acknowledge his existence. I know and love God my Father. Even though I haven't seen him, I know that he is real. And I love him dearly. :) What about you? Do you know that God is real? Do you love him?

I have to admit, I really don't quite get these next couple of verses.
10Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied about the grace that was to be yours searched and inquired carefully, 11inquiring what person or time the Spirit of Christ in them was indicating when he predicted the sufferings of Christ and the subsequent glories. 12It was revealed to them that they were serving not themselves but you, in the things that have now been announced to you through those who preached the good news to you by the Holy Spirit sent from heaven, things into which angels long to look.
All I really understand from them is that The prophets worked for our knowledge and understanding. They didn't work for themselves but for us so that we might know God better and know what to look for. If anyone out there has a better understanding of these verses, please share.

These next verses are a call to action.
3Therefore, preparing your minds for action, and being sober-minded, set your hope fully on the grace that will be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14As obedient children, do not be conformed to the passions of your former ignorance, 15but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, 16since it is written, "You shall be holy, for I am holy." 17And if you call on him as Father who judges impartially according to each one's deeds, conduct yourselves with fear throughout the time of your exile, 18knowing that you were ransomed from the futile ways inherited from your forefathers, not with perishable things such as silver or gold, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, like that of a lamb without blemish or spot. 20He was foreknown before the foundation of the world but was made manifest in the last times for your sake, 21who through him are believers in God, who raised him from the dead and gave him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
Knowing what we know, believing as we believe. WE MUST ACT. We, as believers, have been called away from living as our bodies might desire. We don't have to stay stuck in our sin. BUT it takes action and will power and desire and choice on our part. That requires us being sober-minded so that we can think through our actions. We need to prepare our minds for what we are about to do. That means, setting our mind on Christ and the things of Christ. Of knowing that God calls us to be like him. he is holy, we are to be holy. In fact, he declares us to be holy already. that means living like holy people, not living like sin-bound, sin-filled ones that have no holiness attached to them. I must live what I am and what I am to be: HOLY.

And living a life of holiness means that I want to be obedient to Christ and his call on my life.
22Having purified your souls by your obedience to the truth for a sincere brotherly love, love one another earnestly from a pure heart, 23since you have been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God; 24for
"All flesh is like grass
and all its glory like the flower of grass.
The grass withers,
and the flower falls,
25but the word of the Lord remains forever."
And this word is the good news that was preached to you.
So I must love my fellow believers with a sincere heart. With a heart that follows after God's imperishable word. This is what is taught to us by our pastors and preachers. We must heed it.

Ah....isn't Peter just grand? Reminds me of who I am, reminds of what I am to be, and calls me to further and better action. Imagine it .... me a believer in God, called to be holy? :) Just too cool....

Now to get on with it........

Friday, November 24, 2006

Things to be Thankful for

Rebecca is keeping track of different things that people are thankful for.

Since our household has been ill with things for a while now and now isn't! Woohoo! I am thankful for health. For little boys who are well enough to get into all types of trouble while they explore their way thru the day. :)

I'm thankful that my sister who I haven't seen in a dogs age, has a hubbie who said... go visit your family and paid the ticket for her flight here. And I got to see her yesterday AND introduce her to my son. :)

I'm thankful for a hubbie, who even while he was ill, kept trying to do the stuff he really needed to get done.

So, that I guess I what I am thankful for on this wonderful sunny day. :)

Reading from 2 Timothy 4

Today's reading came from 2 Timothy 4.
These verses caught my attention: 1I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: 2preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching. 3For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, 4and will turn away from listening to the truth and wander off into myths. 5As for you, always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.

6For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure has come. 7I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 8Henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will award to me on that Day, and not only to me but also to all who have loved his appearing.
We are to always be ready to preach God's word, and that readiness is to "in season and out of season". So that means ALL THE TIME. Not just when we think the time is right, but all the time.

What does readiness entail? Knowing God's word, trusting God's word, reliance upon God for the ability to preach (teach) his word, etc.

We know from earlier in 2 Timothy 3 that God's word is:
16All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.
Because of that we can use it to reprove, rebuke and exhort people to live the way that God wants them too. But we are not to do it with the attitude of "get on with it already". We are to be patient. We are to teach. Teaching means showing and explaining what God's word means.

Why do we do this? Why must we be ready to do this?

Because a time is coming when people won't want to hear sound doctrine taught. They will want to follow their own ears and thoughts. They will be itchy to learn, but not to learn the right stuff. They will follow their own interests and pursue myths and dreams.

This is not to change how we do things. We must remain the evangelists that God has called us to be. A sober minded people, willing to endure suffering for the sake of the gospel. We must have the heart to fulfill our mission and ministry.

I want to be able to say with Paul "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith." This is why these words are so important.

I live (and you as well) in a day when these words are so true. People make up their own religions all the time. They really don't want to hear what God has to say, especially since it doesn't 'fit' with what is important to them. Things like "gay rights" within the church even are becoming so paramount.

I was looking at some literature the other day for a women's conference for our demonination....It bothered me. The topics that people will be listening to: the christian arguement for gay marriage, dreams, artistic expression in understanding the Old Testament, meditation and so forth. These are topics for a Christian women's conference? Hosted by our denomination? It makes me so sad and yet so infuriated that people don't stop and think about what it means to teach this stuff. It's like, but it's what we're interested in!

I want to say... so? What does this have to do with knowing and following after God and the things of God? Where does the interest of your heart truly lie?

Let us keep the faith.

What does it really mean to glorify God?

I woke up at 430 to a boy who cried yet again in his sleep. Since I went to bed at 830, that woke me up for good. :)

As I lay there, hoping that I would sleep some more I started ruminating over various thoughts I"ve been having lately. What is the role of submission in my life as married woman, what role does submission play in worship, what is "chief end of man", what does it really mean to glorify God in all that I do and such forth.

This is what the Westminster Catechism says:

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,[1] and to enjoy him forever.[2]

The support scripture comes from: [1]Psalm 86 and [2]Psalm 16:5-11.

So just how do I glorify God in all that I do?

I have to admit that I think actions speak louder than words. They speak louder than thoughts. What a person does means more than what they think or feel. For instance, the child who says no to a request but then quietly ends up doing it, is an obedient child in the end.

BUT God's words says that what a person has in their heart comes out of their mouth, so that shows the importance of what we think and feel...and how we must hold that captive as well.

So glorifying God I think also means we need to seriously watch what we think and feel as well. But how do I do that? If I stopped and asked God for repentance for every time I thought a selfish thought, then I would never get anything done in the course of a day. Seriously, sometimes I am such a self-centered woman it's ridiculous! It really is! It is a constant battle.

I can admit that most of the time, I don't act on my thoughts. I get frustrated by something, or resentful, or "argh!", but I let it go (quickly 97% of the time) and I do something OTHER than what I was thinking. BUT is that really glorifying God - the fact that I act differently then I think? God knows what the true state of my heart is so my actions don't fool him. :) OR is he pleased that I don't act like I think?

Just how do I glorify God?

I am learning more and more that truly worshipping God and Truly glorifying him is to submit everything to him. To not be self-centred but God-centred. It's hard though. It is just SO easy to get frustrated by stuff in life, to think but that's not how I want it done, or that's not how I would do things or why can't that person be more like me in this area? It's stupid. It shows just how pervasive sin is.

I so want to be person who sees the joy of the Lord in my life. I want to be able to glorify God in all that I a Sunday School teacher, as a wife, as a mom, as a daughter.... Sometimes though I think ARGH!!!!! I will never be able to hold all my thoughts captive, I will never change my first thoughts in thinking and so forth.

I don't know folks.....what do YOU think about all this?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

What to avoid

Have you ever noticed in Scripture how we are told to avoid meaningless quarrels and controversies? We see this in 1 Timothy 1
you may charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine, nor to devote themselves to myths and endless genealogies"
, and in 2 Timothy
Have nothing to do with foolish, ignorant controversies; you know that they breed quarrels.
" Titus 3:
But avoid foolish controversies and genealogies and arguments and quarrels about the law, because these are unprofitable and useless."
Why? because they are unprofitable and useless, they detract from what we are really to be doing.

Have you ever noticed how often we are told what to really focus on? Our focus is always to be on God, not on ourselves. Micah 6 tells us "
He has showed you, O man, what is good.
And what does the LORD require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.
Our focus needs to be on God and his love. We need to know him, preach him and Christ's resurrection.
And the Lord's servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, 25correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, 26and they may escape from the snare of the devil, after being captured by him to do his will.

We need to see the larger picture in what we say and do. We can't be a people so focused on ourselves that all we do is complain when things don't go our way. Kim talks about that abit here. Can you see what it does to people looking in at us? To see us caught up in our own dissatisfaction? Our focus as God's people, NEEDS to be on our Lord and Saviour. No ifs, ands or buts.

We can't be caught up in the "my church does this well", "my denomination is good for this" and "man, I wish my denomination would do this" and then fighting about with others. What is our focus really?

In my denomination it often seems the focus in "the 10 year plan" but first we have to figure out if Gays and Lesbians can be "equal" in our denomination. Equal meaning, having all the same positions in life that everyone else has, regardless of what their lives are showing about what they believe. Not meaning, equal as in being welcome the same as any other person struggling with the sin in their lives. It's wrong to do this folks. It takes us away from our real focus... God and HIS glory. Showing HIS love to those around us.

Sometimes I feel like I'm beating my head against a wall....

A Word Picture

Go here for a word picture of God's relationship with Israel. I read it and was shocked. Okay, not shocked perhaps, just oh .... I'm not sure what the right word is. An accurate portrayal in words I didn't expect that left me feeling... unsettled a bit.

God loved a people that had no reason to be loved. He cared for her, provided for her, watched over her and yet.... she turned. I won't give away the whole story so you'll have to go and read it for yourself.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Ever Get caught in this trap?

Have you as a blogger ever gotten caught in the trap of wanting people to read and comment on your much so that you find yourself doing stuff that you wouldn't ordinarily do, just to get people to read or comment? Do you want to be popular?

Not saying there is anything wrong with being popular, but why do you blog? Seriously. Why does anyone blog other than just to chat about life and the things there-in?

I blog because it gives me a place to do my devotions ... not that I'm this huge in-depth person in my devotions, but I think best when I write. I blog because I like to chat about things going on in my life. And yes, I will admit, I love it when people say they read my blog. :) Makes me smile inside, particularly if they say that they like what I write. :) My response to them is usually along the lines of....well...write a comment then! Let me know that you were there and if you agreed or not. :) I know....comment hound!!!!!

But I really don't want to get caught in a popularity trap. Puts a lot of pressure on a person. And I don't know if I want that pressure. I do want accountability. Like if I don't blog on my devotions of a couple of days, I'd love it if someone said, hey...what's up? Have you been too busy for God lately or what's up?

Was over visiting Windows to My Soul today, and she blogged on this. I thought she did a better of job or talking about this than I just did. Feel free to go over and check her out.

New Recipe

I like to cook.

And with the recipe planner from Formulazone, I like to try new recipes that I design.

Tonight I made a simple dish that I call Chicken, Potato and Squash. What can I say, I'm not good at coming up with fancy names for simple dishes. :)

First take two large potatoes (red skinned ones are better for you). and slice them up in small slices (like for french fries but MUCH smaller). Cook them in water in sauce pan until almost done.
Take 12 oz of chicken (basically 1.5 large chicken breasts). Cut that up into small pieces (a bit less than bite size). Season it however you want. I did seasoning salt as it's easy and today is Sunday.
Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in pan, add chicken AND one finely sliced up leek. Cook until done.
When done, add the potatoes and cook until completely done.
In the meantime, dice up 3 cups of squash (for this recipe I used butternut) and set on to cook. When it is done, add 3 tbsp of maple syrup and mash it up nicely. I whipped mine up as I was also giving it to our son. (he LOVES squash apparently, at least today he does) :)

Serve up! You end up with a serving size of about 1.75 cups of food (dish divided into 3). My hubbie liked it and he wasn't even hungry! The boy liked it, well, not the chicken but he's not into meat today (at 16 months he's odd in his eating habits). and I liked it and I'm not really into squash at all...but this was good.

H eMakes Me Laugh

Last night we were at a dinner for a couple from our church. It was his 90th birthday and the whole family and some friends gathered to give hearty congratulations.

Our boyo had a blast. There were kids his age and some a bit older. He played, he laughed, he followed, and he learned new tricks.

We have a couple of stairs from one short landing to the next. A couple of 3 and 5 year old boys discovered how much fun it was to run and jump down them. The 3 year old would often fake falling when he landed, and would just howl with delight. An older boy supervised them, and kept our boyo out of their way.

After they left, our boyo just had a hoot! He would climb up the stairs, turn in a circle, and then climb down as quickly as he could, and then throw himself onto the floor and just laugh away to beat the band. It was so funny to watch him. Not old enough to jump, but certainly old enough to try! :)

Ah...he's becoming such a rough and tumble boy already......

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Whales in the Artic

I woke up at 5 this morning, wide awake so thought, hmm.... i can do my devotions early and go walk the dogs. Devotions haven't arrived yet, so read the paper instead.

I came across this article that was in the Globe and Mail. A similiar article is in the London Free Press.

There are hunters who are going up north to kill some whales that are trapped in a lake. There are 80 whales trapped. Apparently the plan is to kill ALL of the whales. Seems a bit of overkill to me, unless the concern is that the air hole is going to close and they will all die anyways.

I can understand the need to do this. They don't want all these whales to just die and be worthless. These whales can feed folks. What I don't like is it being portrayed merely as a mission of mercy.

As you read the article you can see some of the other concerns that people have.

The whales might eat too many of the fish that are in the lake.
The presence of the whales has weighed on the community in part because the Husky Lakes are a popular spot for spring fishing. With these whales having taken up residence there for months, there are concerns how many herring and trout residents can expect to find next year.

And why wait, waiting isn't good. These whales could feed families, so it is best to kill the ALL while they are still in good shape.
Killing the whales while they're still in good shape is better than leaving them to slowly freeze under the ice, said Voudrach.

So kill all the whales before they eat your fish. Bill it only as a mission of mercy, and feed your town folk all that fat whale meat.

I think I might be inadvertently portraying that I dislike hunting, I don't. I really understand the need to make the best use out of these whales. I guess what I dislike is the need to kill ALL of the whales without giving some of them a chance to survive. I dislike the billing of it only as a mission of mercy. Miracles could happen, some of the whales could make it through the winter, even if is seems impossible to us. God does amazing things sometimes. I just wish they'd give some of the whales a chance, but I might be missing something here. :)

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

What to do with this:

What does a person, in today's society, do when they read a passage like this?
1First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way.
The first part is understandable. Prayer is a vital part of our life in Christ. Without it, nothing happens. God works through our "supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings." And we need to make them for everyone we can think of and then some. We need to pray for our leadership, we need to pray for those in authority. We NEED to do this. Especially for our church leaders. If we don't pray for them, then how will they be sustained when temptations come their way? The failure of a mirade of church leaders is partially our fault as well if we don't pray diligently for them. Through prayer we can lead peaceful and quiet lives which are godly and dignified. Prayer does much.
3This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior, 4who desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. 5For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, 6who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.
Prayer pleases God. It leads us to live our lives in such a way that we are pleasing aroma to him. God is our Saviour. God wants everyone to know him in saving way. For this reason he sent his son, his very own son, to die for us. He wants us to know that truth. Truth is he is God, there is no other God, just the one, and HE gave his son for all as a ransom (he paid the price for us).
7For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.
For this reason, we are to evangelize to those around us. We need to teach them the truth that we know.

But what we do with this part?
8I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; 9likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire, 10but with what is proper for women who profess godliness--with good works. 11Let a woman learn quietly with all submissiveness. 12I do not permit a woman to teach or to exercise authority over a man; rather, she is to remain quiet. 13For Adam was formed first, then Eve; 14and Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and became a transgressor. 15Yet she will be saved through childbearing--if they continue in faith and love and holiness, with self-control.
In today's society women don't want to be silent or submissive or wear clothes that show a godly demeanor. Women don't want to admit that they were created second, and that they sinned. Women don't often want to admit the importance of family and of having children. They don't.

But then, men often don't want to pray. They don't want to "lift holy hands". They don't want to take a leadership role in church. They don't want to see the importance of their being created first. Is this the result of the feminization of the church or are men just being lascidasical about their relationship with God and just blaming it on women??

So do we ignore this passage or do we actually consider it seriously?

I'd prefer that latter to be frank. As hard as it can be at times, learning to be quiet and let the men talk is far more edifying than taking over the conversation (particularly when it comes to bible study). I am learning that submission has many forms...and that, when women learn to be more submissive, it allows men to be the men that GOD wants them to be. This edifies the church. It's amazing sometimes, when men stand up and be men, and women sit down and be women (as God wants them to be) the church is changed. It's remarkable.

Submission isn't me-centered. Submission is other-centered. By the grace of God this can be learned.

Women have to stop and consider what they are doing, and this passage points me and other women, to steps that we can take in order to be what God has called us to truly be. We are NOT the center of the universe. :)

I could really go on here, but I think this post is getting long enough. :) More another day perhaps.

Works for me Wednesday - Christmas

This is a Christmas thing. :)

Having for years seen people struggle with their Christmas decorations I decided as soon as I could afford it, to purchase bins for all my Christmas decorations.

I labelled them - tree, house, village and lights. Everything goes in the bin it is meant for. It means that it is SO easy to take out the box I need so I don't have to sort through everything trying to find...say... my Santa hat or stockings, I just now go to the house box and there they are.

Also when I put my lights away, I don't just throw them in the box all jumbled. I neatly wrap them in their own wire and put them in stacks in the box. So much easier and MUCH less frustrating for the next year.

Works for me.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Fun things I've run into this week

Oh we were at the doctor's today.
Our boy's ear is still perforated. She wants him to see a ENT to have his hearing checked out.
She also said, since I asked how long it might take for us all to get past this bug, and she said... "'s a nasty one that is going around. it could take you another week. You'll think you're getting better and it will hit you once or twice yet." Oh joy! my thought was! She also mentioned that we could give Kaopectate (half of what you give a 3 year old) to our boy to help his system settle down a bit since he has SO much gas.

I browse various websites in the hour after my boyo goes to bed. Just so you know, I don't just waste time at this time of night, but it is my time for just doing computer stuff, or working on church newsletter or researching home school stuff or just whatever. yes, I'll admit it... sometimes I totally waste time playing games! :)

Anyways, I'm browsing and I come across these sites.

Newton's Laws Revisited. This was courtesy of Homeschool Math Blog.

and it's the bible in Klingon! Can you imagine it? Just blows my mind that someone actually took the time to translate the bible into Klingon! Like who thinks of this stuff? Just trying to remember who linked to that... I think it was Riddleblog.

Then there is the dog video. Skidboot. This dog I thought was just way cool. And I've seen this dog on TV! Makes me wish I had the patience to train a dog to do this!

Then the horses from Holland. Nice to see them saved through people using their brains!

anyways, I think that's enough for tonight. As I find more I'll do this again sometime as it was fun! Off to go be productive now.

Our Aim

I was reading this today. This verse struck me: The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.

Our aim is love. and not just any love.

This love issues (comes out of)
a pure heart
a good conscience
a sincere heart.

Without this love it is easy to be led astray, to get caught up in things you don't need to. The church that Timothy was serving in was being led astray by silly discussions into genealogies, myths, different doctrines, legalism and so forth. ALl because....they forgot what their aim was truly to be. The aim of the Christian is love.

That doesn't mean that the law doesn't have it's place. The law teaches us important things. It teaches us where we are failing in meeting our aim. It teaches us whatever is contrary to sound doctrine.

Think about this for a moment. A person who's aim is love needs to have a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere heart. If you don't, you can't aim for love.

How do we get "a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere heart"?

We have to know God's word. We have to want to follow it. We have to be honest about wanting to live the life that God truly calls us to. We need to have a heart that longs after God.

A good conscience is one that knows it doing all that is supposed to. It doesn't hold reservations about things it did or didn't do. You're not saying..."shoot, I really should have held that door open for that lady", or "man, I wish I hadn't yelled at my child for doing that" or... you get the picture.

A pure heart. Ah... this one for me is hard. How do I have a pure heart? The only way I can think of, is if I continually turn to God and say me to know what to think about, what to care about, help me to see beyond me. Help me God to see what you want me to see.

A sincere heart... that's a heart that earnestly, completely longs to be of God in all things, in all ways. It's a heart that is true blue.

I know I fail miserably in these areas. I really do. It's a thing of repentance, and sorrow and turning back again to God. But I know that as I strive to have a pure heart, a good conscience, and a sincere's a whole lot easier for me to show the love that I am to aim for. It makes it a whole lot easier for me to witness to non-believing friends and neighbours, for me to extend grace to a fellow believer who is annoying the life out of me (and thereby learn a better way to be), and so forth.

it's a journey! it's a life aim. And I want to aim for love.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Biologically Appropriate Raw Foods (BARF)

Okay, so we've changed our dogs diet again. :) Yes I know...seems a pain, but easy enough to do.

Riley ran into a spell where he kept having the runs. Beer was somewhat controlling that, but I kept thinking, something isn't right about this.

Found this group on-line. It's a yahoo group specifically for people who feed BARF diets to their four-legged friends. It's called Barf-lite.

Anyways, I asked what they thought the problem was. Got a variety of answers, some I thought were a bit "off the wall". But one knowledgeable person replied...change the percentages that you are feeding them AND referred me to a helpful site. She basically told me the percentages I was using were old school and they've done the studies to find that this works better. I did. It's been two days, Riley is doing MUCH better. :)

So... what am I know doing? What percentages am I know using?

50% raw meaty bones. should be a one-to-one ratio of meat to bone. SO turkey necks, chicken necks, wings, etc fit the bill.
20% muscle meat - hamburg, heart, gizzards, legs, breasts, etc.
10% organs - internal organs other than heart and gizzards.
20% other stuff - veggie mix, leftovers, eggs, milk etc.

It doesn't have to be balanced every day, but should be balanced over the course of a week.

Since I love keeping things simple, I will be giving them necks for supper and their goulash for breakfast. I can get turkey necks for 80 cents/lb in Listowel and chicken necks for 99 cents/lb in Kitchener. I don't want to fuss around changing this and that and trying to work out if I'm giving all the right percentages and so forth. If I mix it, I know it's balanced for them.

This means that a couple or three times a month I will be making up their goulash which will be the muscle meat, organs and other stuff. It will be bagged and frozen into portion sizes. We'll use ground meat whatever we can find cheap. Right now that's hamburg for 97 cents/lb. We get the organ/floor meat mix from Metzger's in Hensall (50 cents/lb), and the veggies and leftovers are easy to come by. We have a boyo who often doesn't finish his meals and Food Basics is just a town away. :) I can still add eggs and yogurt to their diet. I can still 'starve' them one meal a week (usually Sundays) and life will continue to be in the easy department for feeding them.

What I am hoping for is that
1. Riley's digestive system will no longer have days or weeks of upset.
2. Riley won't lose any more weight but will maintain exactly where he is. Seems perfect for him. He's more alert and walks (most days) really nicely.
3. Sassy will also do well on this change. I would like her to lose just a couple more pounds, but she's good where she is too.
4. My hubbie to learn the new system and to be able to feed the dogs when I'm otherwise occupied. :)

Things I'm working on
1. storing leftovers well. I don't like tossing them (seems a huge waste of food). And I like the trace nutrients found in them that I think are good for the dogs too. I want a good overall diet for them. Keeping them seems "ick" somehow. What if they go bad? Should I freeze them until I make more goulash? Just keep them in the fridge? Storing on counter not a good idea I think. Not sure. Ideas would be appreciated.
2. storage. Bags are MUCH messier to clean doing this. Trying really cheap bags so I won't feel guilty if I just toss them. BUT then I still need to rinse them or it will get stinky around here quickly. Don't want that either. Not a problem in winter, but in summer...ICK!
3. a freezer. If my bro gets me a free (or next to free) freezer I will have no problem just purchasing dedicated to dog food containers for the goulash (garage/auction sales here we come!) . They'll be easy to wash and I won't have to worry about taking up valuable freezer space with containers.

Our day today

So my hubbie is still sick. He was up most of the night visiting our local bathroom. He is NOT a happy man.

Our boy on the other hand is HAPPY, HAPPY, HAPPY! :) Good to have a happy boy in the house again. He's eating well, sleeping well, and doing well and NEEDED to get out of the house this morning.

SO>>> off we went to church. We attended this church this morning. A friend is the pastor there.

It was Friendship Sunday. This is a Sunday where people who are involved with Friendship Groups have a special service that they participate in. I have to admit, I enjoyed the enthusiasm of these special needs adults in singing the songs and presenting a story for the children. It was fun.

Our boy was just fascinated by all the people and ALL THE KIDS!!!! Wow... they have lots of children at this church. :) This wee boyo kept looking and pointing and talking to his mommy about all the people. Twisting and turning. I"m glad we got there a bit early. I had LOTS of people tell me they had a nursery, but they didn't seem against me keeping him in for as long as I could either which was cool. FULL CHURCH! Just packed, they had to set up extra seats. When our boy started to get antsy before the sermon, I asked him to let me know when he wanted out to go play with toys. Didn't expect him to do that, BUT>>> he did! :) So that was nice too.

So Harry had a good sermon. He preached on Mark 12:35-40. Sermon entitled "Finding yourself by finding the Christ". He did a good job of presenting the message so that everyone there could understand it. It was really cool to see that. It was funny hearing comments from the audience when he made different points, you could tell that people were listening.

We got home, our boy had a light lunch and then off to bed for a nap. Busy morning going to a new church. And daddy had a good chance to rest too so that was nice for daddy.

My goal for the afternoon is simple. I am scrapbooking. It's nice and relaxing and needs to be done too! :) When the boyo gets up we'll have a snack and then take the dogs for a nice walk.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Family or Group?

I watched Survivor last night. No I am NOT a fan. Nothing else seemed to be on, I was too tired to read, and it was too early to go to I watched Survivor in between watching Grey's Anatomy. I don't recommend either. All that melodrama can't be good for a person. :) Anyways, one of the comments made on the losing team about a new member was that Jonathan wanted to be a leader, and they just didn't like that on their team. People weren't to lead, the group wouldn't countenance it, so this Jonathan had best be very careful about what he does.

I thought that an interesting comment. It's like....what wrong with having a leader? Maybe it's just my mind set, but I've never really known a group that doesn't have a leader of some sort or other. Leaders help groups focus, get things done, make good choices, and so forth. I'm not saying a leader always has to be "THE" leader, but leaders aren't bad. Sometimes I wonder in today's world if people are being taught that leadership isn't good. That one must always follow the group consensus.

I hear children talk about in school how they do this group project or that group project, and college students having all this group work, and parents talking about how their children HAVE to learn how to work as part of group and follow the consensus, and I just kinda wonder, what's the point of it? Where's the focus on being able to work independently? Are we being "taught" that teamwork is most important? In many school, individual science fairs are being removed lest someone "lose". Some of these are being replaced with "group" science projects because apparently it's easier to lose with a group of other people than on your own.

I don't know, just strikes me as wrong somehow. To be so group focused. I think to a certain extent we lose a bit of what God has really planned for us. I'm not saying that groups are wrong, but God doesn't call us to be part of a group...he calls us to be family. We need to be family oriented, not group oriented. Families that stand together, watch over each other, celebrate joys and victories, extend sympathy when needed and so forth. Not that groups and teams can't do that....but there's a difference between the groups/teams and families that is real.

So what got me thinking about this? I was reading Titus this morning. This part:
5This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you-- 6if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. 7For an overseer, as God's steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, 8but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. 9He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

10For there are many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision party. 11They must be silenced, since they are upsetting whole families by teaching for shameful gain what they ought not to teach. 12One of the Cretans, a prophet of their own, said, "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."13This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14not devoting themselves to Jewish myths and the commands of people who turn away from the truth. 15To the pure, all things are pure, but to the defiled and unbelieving, nothing is pure; but both their minds and their consciences are defiled. 16They profess to know God, but they deny him by their works. They are detestable, disobedient, unfit for any good work.

Titus has a job. Put things in order. He wasn't given a team to do it, he was given God's word. Find good men to lead. One leader for each town. These are the qualifications. This is their duty. Encourage the Cretans NOT to be what their larger "group" picture says that they are. Encourage them to be sound in their faith, not defiled. Seems less "group" focused then it does to be family focused.

I don't know, I just wonder sometimes....

Thursday, November 09, 2006


So I've been reading from Lamentations for the last couple of days. Today's reading is found here. I was having a hard time getting a good grip on Lamentations so I checked it out in a couple of places. This site, gave me a good introduction to what Lamentations is all about.
The book of Lamentations has been badly served by the title it carries in our English versions. For it is not a collection of breast-beating self-pitying poems, a mere lamenting of the sorry state of Jerusalem and its inhabitants. It is rather the record of a Hebrew poet's coping with crisis, a deeply reflected proposal for the handling of grief.
Its theological position is quite subtle: it does not take just one perspective and it does not recommend a single solution. It begins with the reality of disaster and it concludes neither with cheap grace nor with easy hope but with the bitter possibility that the people of God may now have become the ex-people of God, that God may indeed have this time finally rejected Israel (5:22). And yet, despite its unwillingness to affirm blandly that all manner of thing will be well, at its end it does not leave its readers at the same point of despair with which it opened; for at its very midpoint (3:22-33) it has expressed the confidence that the mercies of Yahweh never come to an end, they are new every morning.
Lamentations isn't just a sad weepy book! Cool eh! :)

In Lamentations we find confidence:
19Remember my affliction and my wanderings,
the wormwood and the gall!
20My soul continually remembers it
and is bowed down within me.
21But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
22The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
23they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24"The LORD is my portion," says my soul,
"therefore I will hope in him."
25The LORD is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
26It is good that one should wait quietly
for the salvation of the LORD.
27It is good for a man that he bear
the yoke in his youth.
The authour of Lamentations has such hope and confidence in the Lord. It is just SO neat to read. Israel has been SUCH a big disappointment to God. God should surely leave her desolate for all the evil that she has done. And yet.... he doesn't. The authour knows that God is better than that. That God, even in his holiness, still shows mercy. God will not hide from those who seek him.
31For the Lord will not
cast off forever,
32but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion
according to the abundance of his steadfast love;
33for he does not willingly afflict
or grieve the children of men.
So what should our response to such a God as this?
40Let us test and examine our ways,
and return to the LORD!
41Let us lift up our hearts and hands
to God in heaven:
42"We have transgressed and rebelled,
and you have not forgiven. ...
55"I called on your name, O LORD,
from the depths of the pit;
56you heard my plea, 'Do not close
your ear to my cry for help!'
57You came near when I called on you;
you said, 'Do not fear!'
This is indeed what we must do when God chastises and disciplines us. We must examine what we are doing. We must repent. We must call upon him for our salvation, for our help. He is the only one who can do anything to make it better again. We do not have to fear him. God will answer our call to him.

The authour finishes his poem with these words:
19But you, O LORD, reign forever;
your throne endures to all generations.
20Why do you forget us forever,
why do you forsake us for so many days?
21Restore us to yourself, O LORD, that we may be restored!
Renew our days as of old--
22unless you have utterly rejected us,
and you remain exceedingly angry with us.

He calls to God. He knows that it all hangs on what God wants to do. God can restore his people, or he can remain angry at them and continue to see them disciplined. But his trust in God remains. He truly knows the the Lord God reigns forever, and that God can restore his people.

I find that comforting in a way. Granted, I have NEVER been put through the pain and sorrow that the whole nation of Israel had to go through. I have though, felt the Lord's discipline on my life. I've had things go badly where I knew that I just HAD to turn to God for things to get even remotely better. And sometimes it took time and dedication on my part to truly keep calling to God and truly keep repenting of the nastiness that I do. It's good to read poems like Lamentations. I know that even in the midst of can still trust that God knows what he is doing. That God still does reign supreme and that he can restore us to himself again. That is comforting.

Hungry, and well, not

So my hubbie is sort of on the mend. :) Tired, wanting to eat, and yet doesn't really.

Our boy...well....HUNGRY!!!!! 700 a.m. Mommy... I want food! He's even trying to say the word food. :) It will I think be hard to feed him enough, and yet feed him good for his tummy and larger intestines food, on this Thursday. Went for a shorter walk with the dogs this morning, he had rice and apples to keep him busy and a bottle of ginger ale. CRYING on the way home. Discovered....that wasn't enough.

Cheeries and applesauce came next. He picked away at that for the next hour while having 8 oz of fluids. Then CRYING. ... tired and wanting to go to bed but still wanting something to eat... so laid down with a watered apple juice. Silence. Boy sleeping. Mommy not feeling slightly frazzled. woohoo! At this rate he'll be just fine for mommy and daddy to have a day trip away tomorrow for an actual vacation day during vacation! YEAH!!! :)

Ah...time for this mommy to have her devotional time and then later take the dogs for a decent walk. :) But first things first! :)

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

They arrived

I filled in a survey.

By doing so I entered a contest.

I won! Yes, me, who rarely wins anything. I won! It's my big news for the week!

They are Northwestern Golf 835 TS Ladies Graphite Club Set. 11 clubs, came in a box with no bag.

Set Includes:

* 8 irons (PW-3)
* 3 woods (1, 3 & 5)

* Woods feature forgiving clubhead which allow you to easily get the ball down the middle of the fairway
* Irons have forgiving cavity back clubhead that make even your miss-hits land on the green
* Comes fitted with the Ultimate ProFlex 88 Ladies Flex low torque graphite shaft

Kinda cool huh?

Now to sell them since I don't golf. Anyone want them? I will sell them to someone who wants to give me what they are worth. They originally retailed for $350 in an Ontario on-line store. That doesn't mean I want $350, but I'd take it, but give me a reasonable offer and they will be yours complete with a happy smile. :)

Me boyo

So it's 800 a.m. The boy got up one hour earlier than normal. CRYING! unstoppable. Tried a variety of things. Eventually stuffed a piece of jello in his mouth and it stopped! YEAH! he was just too hungry for words. Ate three pieces of jello, three very small pieces of banana and then wanted a bubba.

He helped mommy feed the guinea pigs their carrots and now he's toddling around after his gramma "helping" her. :) ah.... I do think he just might be on the mend. :)

Discipline is a Form of Love

I have to admit, I never really thought of it this way before.
That parents who don't discipline their children, are treating them as if they don't really belong to their families. As if they are illegitimate.

So discipline is a form of true love for one's own family. It's a sign of caring for the one that you are correcting. From Hebrews 12:8
"If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons."
Quite frankly, this I think is needed in more families, and quite frankly, if it shows that I belong, truly belong to a body, I'll take that discipline which is offered in love and belonging, over not having it at all.

I have to admit, I HATE being told that I am wrong. I hate it. Almost as much as I hate being told what to do (which in some ways to me implies that I am doing something wrong). STUPID yes, I know. AND a tendency within myself I fear that I will have to fight 'til the day I die. :( BUT hear what God has to say
For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he (that is God) disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. 11For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. (i added the italics)
It's not fun to be disciplined (which is probably why I hate it) BUT it is necessary. It helps me to grow and become more the person that God wants me to be.
12Therefore lift your drooping hands and strengthen your weak knees, 13and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be put out of joint but rather be healed.
Do you see it? Because discipline is for my own good, I am to lift up my sadness and droopiness over being disciplined, I am to strengthen myself, I am to get myself going on a straight path so that I can be healed and not be put out. Isn't that cool? Discipline really should be seen as a good thing. (now if only I can really convince myself of that.) :) I am on my way. Sometimes I just wish it could be a little easier to take.

How do you all handle discipline? Is it something that you fight? How do you keep yourself receptive to it?

If you want to know more about discipline, check out this passage for yourself. Feel free to leave me your thoughts.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

We came home from T.O.

Since our boyo seemed to be on the mend, we headed out late Monday to start our vacation in Toronto. Grandma stayed with our boyo.

Then...I got sick. Starting at 700 p.m. I thought perhaps it was an over-indulgence in some white buns that hubbie had brought for me... but turned out NOT! Having things coming out rapidly from both ends is NOT appealing.

Hubbie got sick....starting at 200 a.m.

Figured..ah well, we'll spend a quiet day just lounging around the house since apparently the boy is doing well. Called this morning, boyo is NOT doing well. He is fussy and has bad diarrhea.

I called the doc to see what to do. Clear fluids, jello, popsicles, flat gingerale were okayed. VERY reduced fruit drinks. Give it 24 hours before feeding anything else. So no milk, no food, no formula at all. Give the bowel time to rest I was told.

We packed up and came home. This mamma just couldn't stand being away from her boyo when he's not well. Boyo was VERY happy that mamma came home.

Daddy's is running a fever. Mommy feels like her legs have been kicked out from under her. So blessed to have a MIL who will stick the course with us. Praying that she won't catch this at all.

This mommy trying hard NOT to worry and to just trust that God will see my boyo through this. Trust! Pray!

Monday, November 06, 2006

What is Faith?

Aren't these two verses neat?
1Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. 2For by it the people of old received their commendation.
Faith. One of those nebulous elements that people wonder...what is faith really?

Well, here it is all spelled out.

Faith is the assurance (A statement or indication that inspires confidence; a guarantee or pledge, Freedom from doubt; certainty) of things hoped (the general feeling that some desire will be fulfilled) for, the conviction (an unshakable belief in something without need for proof or evidence) of things not seen.

By faith all kinds of things happen. Read Hebrews 11 to learn more. :)

I'll give a list:
Faith teaches us how the world began (v3)
Faith helps us offer the right thing to God (v4)
Faith prevented a man from dying. He was taken straight to be with God.(v5)
Faith makes it possible for us to please God. (v6) For if we can't believe that God exists, we can't seek him. God rewards those who seek him.
Faith saved a remnant of God's people. (v7)
Faith caused a man to leave his home and travel a long way away. He went not knowing what would happen, and received an inheritance. Faith causes us to look to God for all the answers.
Faith causes things to happen that are not expected. Sarah, in her old age, got pregnant! A whole nation was born because of faith. (v.10)
Faith causes you to contemplate things unacceptable ONLY because you know that God will make it all right. (v.17)

Having faith...that unshakable conviction about who God is, that God is real, that he created all that is around us, that firmness of belief that Christ will come again. That is what we as Christians hold to.

So Stand Firm in Your Faith!

Update on my boyo

He slept all night long! I think that's a good sign.

He also went poop and pee before bed so I know everything is working at the other end just fine.

He ate three small bites of a white bun that he INSISTED he had to steal from his mommy. :) Not that I fought him that hard...he's hard can one fight a sick boy?? I learned he can't handle pedialyte. ( poor hubbie learned that lesson first, I just came home to the aftereffects...)

He drank 4 oz of peach juice. THANKS Holly for that suggestion.

I'll tell you more when he's actually up. I really hope he's all better again. For his sake and well as my hubbie (he really wants to just go on vacation). OH sorry, I didn't mean that the way it sounded... he (my hubbie) wants our boy to be better, but also wants to get away and his wonderful wife (that would be me) who mothers this boy won't leave him (the boyo) if he's still sick even if his mom would take really good care of her grandson. :) Did that sound better? :)

Funny though, you would think if my boyo slept well that I would too. NOT! I kept waking up listening to see if he was okay. And he just kept sleeping. :) YEAH!

a 930 morning update

he got up with a VERY loose bowel movement. AND he had voided again. :)

This made little boy very sad because mommy can't abide poop on stuffies. NO way, no how. So into the bath for ALL the stuffies. :( little boy VERY unhappy.

He ate 1 inch of banana for breakfast and a dime's worth of muffin (from daddy's weekend away). He drank one bottle of milk and had another peach juice. So...he's on the mend.

He went down again for a nap at 900 a.m. Very early for him, but he's tired so... rest he must do. :)

We will get a later than planned start for our holidays this week which means changing some plans but that's okay. God sometimes revamps our best laid plans right?

Cheers all! :) my boyo's on the mend!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Life Stinks When a Little Boy is Sick

Life really stinks when a little boy is sick, and shocky and scared because he's never had a tummy ache before and has NEVER thrown up before.

He was so scared and sick last night. My poor little boy.

And then....he got sick on his favourite Collie dog and col-col had to be washed. For the next hour...col-col, col-col, toss his cookies, cry, and then col-col, col-col. It about broke me heart listening to that plaintive cry.

BUT the absolute delight in holding a clean (but wet) col-col again. Ah...That I loved. :) He just loves that col-col of his.

This morning he has a fever which I"m treating with Advil, and extended crib time (to encourage him to sleep it off). I'm hoping he gets better soon. We're planning holidays next week, but if he's still not well...I ain't leaving him behind...and not taking him with so... time will tell right?

Have to wait and see what God has in store for us this coming week.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

I"ve heard from my hubbie

So my man has called me a few times now.

1. To let me know he arrived safely.
2. To let me know that he's having a lot of fun and that Sassy (our dog) ate her supper and that she doesn't like the resident fox AND something there is spooking her (a scent of some animal).
3. To let me know he's having some really good conversations with people. Oh I pray that some of those conversations might help people to think more about God and his relevance to our lives.
4. To let me know that the van sleeps really warm and that Sassy was too worried to eat breakfast. BUT that she loved the attention from all the other men there. :)
5. To let me know that she FINALLY ate her breakfast and was liking being there. She was going for lots of short walks and seemed quite content.
6. To call me good night and that he was burned out from talking so much and therefore was going to bed early. But life was fun and he wants to go again next year. :)

MY MAN IS HAVING FUN! Praise the Lord for that. I was so hoping it would be a good weekend for him. And it is! :)

Between a Rock and Hard Place

Here is the scene. Zedekiah, king of of Judah, was in a difficult spot. On the one side he has the Chaldeans waiting to attack, and on the other side he has the Babylonians. One way or the other he knows that he is in BIG trouble. He doesn't know what to do. One of the reasons for his is that he "nor his servants nor the people of the land listened to the words of the LORD that he spoke through Jeremiah the prophet". They didn't listen to God, they just did their own thing. And now they are in a spot of confusion.

BUT THEN!!!! what they think is rescue arrives. The army from Egypt shows up. HA! Rescue they think.

They don't like what God has to say about that through Jeremiah
"'Behold, Pharaoh's army that came to help you is about to return to Egypt, to its own land. 8And the Chaldeans shall come back and fight against this city. They shall capture it and burn it with fire. 9Thus says the LORD, Do not deceive yourselves, saying, "The Chaldeans will surely go away from us," for they will not go away. 10For even if you should defeat the whole army of Chaldeans who are fighting against you, and there remained of them only wounded men, every man in his tent, they would rise up and burn this city with fire.'"
Jeremiah ends up getting arrested by an overzealous sentry who is afraid that Jeremiah is deserting to the Chaldeans. This despite the fact that Jeremiah denied the charge. He was brought to the house of Jonathan which had been turned into a prison.
16When Jeremiah had come to the dungeon cells and remained there many days, 17King Zedekiah sent for him and received him. The king questioned him secretly in his house and said, "Is there any word from the LORD?" Jeremiah said, "There is." Then he said, "You shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon."
I wonder why the king questioned him in secret. He does that throughout this passage. Jeremiah tells him the truth despite his imprisonment, and then asks not to go to the prison house. He ends up being keep in the court of guards where he is fed.

While there Jeremiah continues preaching his message
2"Thus says the LORD: He who stays in this city shall die by the sword, by famine, and by pestilence, but he who goes out to the Chaldeans shall live. He shall have his life as a prize of war, and live. 3Thus says the LORD: This city shall surely be given into the hand of the army of the king of Babylon and be taken."
Not the most uplifting message and makes some people made. My guess is the desertion from the city continued to grow. Jeremiah ended up in a cistern (a well - this one without water). He would have died there except for Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, a eunuch who intervened on his behalf.

Once again Jeremiah is secretly questioned by King Zedekiah and responds
"Thus says the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of Israel: If you will surrender to the officials of the king of Babylon, then your life shall be spared, and this city shall not be burned with fire, and you and your house shall live. 18But if you do not surrender to the officials of the king of Babylon, then this city shall be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire, and you shall not escape from their hand."

ah... now I think we find out why the King questioned Jeremiah secretly for "King Zedekiah said to Jeremiah, "I am afraid of the Judeans who have deserted to the Chaldeans, lest I be handed over to them and they deal cruelly with me." Jeremiah reassures him this will not happen "Obey now the voice of the LORD in what I say to you, and it shall be well with you, and your life shall be spared."

Do you see it? Do you see what obedience to God gets you? It can take you from a worse situation into one that is somewhat better. It might not make everything "okay" but it can and does make things better. Zedekiah would not lose his life as long as he obeyed the Lord God. Life would still not be great (he would be a captive)....but at least he would still have it.

Obedience to God is always the best thing to do.