Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year

Just wishing any who stop by a very happy New Year.

May God's riches blessing be evident to you this year.

May we all learn to glorify him more in all we do.

Proverbs 31 - Measured Words

The seventh in the series on Becoming a True Woman. Sent out by revive our hearts.

This is the teaser sent in the email:
Measured Words

You can spend days cultivating a close relationship with someone, but it can all be destroyed by a few sinful words. Learn how to carefully measure your words.*

* Isn't it sad that we're so much more careful about the words we say outside our homes than we are about the words we say inside our homes?
* So often, we just say whatever we think, especially when we're with people we know really well. We just let down our hair, and we're not so conscious about what we're saying.
* If you humble yourself every time you sin with your mouth, you'll start to sin less frequently with your mouth. Stop and edit your words before your speak. (That may just mean saying less.)
Today Nancy's focus is on the words that this woman speaks. From Proverbs 31 we read:
10An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

Here is part of what Nancy has to say:

We come to verse 26 today where we’re told that this virtuous woman opens her mouth. Now, this is the first verse that says anything about this woman talking. That should tell us something. This is not a woman who talks too much. She’s not known for her talking.

There are other qualities that she’s known for—her servant’s heart, her compassion, her tenderness, her diligence—but when people think of this woman, it’s not what she talks about that’s the first thing that comes to mind. “She opens her mouth with wisdom, And on her tongue is the law of kindness.”

I love this verse. Well, maybe I shouldn’t say I love this verse. What I really mean is, I need this verse, and it’s a verse in Proverbs 31, probably more than any other, that I come back to over and over again. “She opens her mouth with wisdom, and on her tongue is the law [or the teaching] of kindness”—wisdom and kindness.

I have to admit, I appreciate how Nancy points out that we need a verse like this. A verse that reminds us of how we are to talk. To use the words that God gives us with wisdom and kindness. To not just shoot off what first comes out of our mouths. To stop and consider what we are saying, but not only the what...but the how.

It implies having some self-control. In James we are also told of the importance of controlling our tongues. See what James has to say:
With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. 10From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so.
I have to admit....controlling my tongue isn't always the easiest thing to do. :) I can wake up talking and go to bed talking. When I'm frustrated I tend to have a bit of an edge to my words (aka last night when Justin kept getting me up between 3-5) it's was like enough boy...GO TO BED! Ah... I dislike it when I get frustrated and stop thinking...should have just asked the lad if he was hungry... once he had a piece of bread he was fine. Would have saved two hours lack of sleep and frustration and words spoken that didn't need to be.

More wisdom, more kindness....less speaking. That would be better.

Then perhaps in a couple of years my boyo will "rise up and call (me) blessed".

Friday, December 26, 2008

Books the Buggy Likes

Justin is still recovering from illness.
We decided (as in I got fed up with tears when things didn't work well with his newest Thomas the tank engine set up) to read some books after a nice bath.

We discovered these books in our stack of books. We read about 20 books....these ones earned smiles and read it again mom! requests.

Little Owl's Favorite Uncle.


- just a very nice little book. Justin smiled and asked all kinds of why questions with this book. He even asked for it again at night...to be read BEFORE his very favorite thomas book! :) That tells yah something don't it? :)

A book called "1 is Red" by Western Publishing. It's an old book. It's part of the tell-a-tale book series. It's just a counting book, lots of things to look at on the different pages.

The King's numbers and The King's Alphabet


- lots of things to look at on all the pages. Lots of why questions being asked. The numbers book had all sorts of different number groupings on them. Made it easy to count over and over again.

Another old book "peppermint". Put out by Merrigold press
This is a book about a little white cat that turns blue by the end of the book. Earned a downright "guffaw" from a tired little lad. Read it again mommy, read it again! I wasn't going to as I was getting tired of lying on the floor...but a downcast face changed my mind. :)

I like to be little


- for a boy who oft says "I'm not going to be big. I'm staying little. Little and tiny!". :) This book fits so well. He smiled and cuddled closer when we read this book so of course when we finished we HAD to read it again.

We read lots of others as well...but these by farm were the favourites. Funny how it's the oldest books out there that he likes the most (next to his Thomas books of course). :)

Proverbs 31 - Working Joyfully

Wow...for having intentions to get through all the revive our hearts emails this month I haven't done so well...only on Day 6! It's been a sick month for this household.....

This what was sent to me on Day 6:

Working Joyfully

If you're a mom, it probably seems like your work is never done, but there is a way to make the work lighter. If you tackle your projects out of a sense of love, you'll experience new energy and motivation.*

  • The Proverbs 31 woman has a heart of virtue and excellence; a godly strength and character that is lived out in the context of her home.
  • This woman is not only a hard worker; she's cheerful about her work!
  • This woman has a different attitude about work because she sees the purpose, meaning, and motivation behind that work. It's love—love for others and love for God. Her love for God makes her willing to work with her hands in providing food, clothing, and cleanup around her house.
Hmm...working joyfully.....Do I do that in all the work that I have set before me? Nancy talks a bit on this here.

And here is the Scripture to accompany it, Proverbs 31. I left the work highlighting in because this lesson continues the theme on women and our work.

10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

Have to admit....I am seeing things in this passage that I haven't seen before though I've read and gone through this passage many times now. :) I've heard it preached on (not often), I've read it and had it hammered at me off and on throughout my life, but taking time to just through it slowly and steadily opens my eyes to new things. Good things can be found in just pondering on piece of scripture.

Verse 13 mentions how she seeks for wool and flax, how she willingly does her work. Seeking is an active word...to me it implies an eagerness to find something. Not just a mere looking or keeping an eye out....but an active involved search. And she willingly does the tasks that she needs to accomplish.

Are we like that? Am I like that? Am I eager to do the tasks that God himself as laid out for me? Ah.....not always! But there are some things that hey...I like to get done. I like having them accomplished (aka laundry). There are other things that I'm happy enough to do though I'm not always happy to do them (aka cleaning up vomit). But somethings I have to admit... aren't always so high on list of want to's (aka the drudgery of daily cleaning). Perhaps what I need is a bit more of a mental shift....seeing more of what I do as a call from God at this particular point in my life as a thing to do cheerfully and not just as something that is a drudgery. it's not just my work...but a God given task. Puts a different perspective on things doesn't it?

I liked this part of Nancy's post:
If I want to be like Jesus, then I need to pray, “Oh Lord, give me a heart that delights to serve, that delights to work, that delights to be spent on the behalf of others. If this is Your will for my life, if these are tasks of Your appointing, then help me to do them with joy. Help me to work willingly with my hands.”

There’s a prayer at the end of Psalm 90 that I’ve made my prayer many times. Let’s offer up this prayer to the Lord: “O God, we pray that You would let Your work appear to Your servants and Your glory to their children. And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us and establish, direct, and determine the work of our hands for us. Yes, establish the work of our hands” (Psalm 90:16–17, paraphrased).

This needs to be my prayer as well. To just pray that God helps me to have that mental shift in attitude about the tasks that he has given me. Cheerfulness (not always) but willingness and eagerness to do them.... yes!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

well.. that was a job

That certainly got my heart pumping and my muscles working...

digging out a path through wet snow to get to the rabbit tent.

ha...I should take a pic!! :)

took me about 20 minutes with some back stretches included.
snow was deep and rather heavy.

Then I got the snow off the roof of the tent and needed to clear spots for it to slide off.

Fun fun! NOT! One aspect of winter that I could do without...shovelling HEAVY snow!

Proverbs 31 - A Godly Woman's Work

Continuing our discussion on a Proverbs 31 woman, this is what revive our hearts sent as a teaser for day five. The whole thing can be read here.

A Godly Woman's Work

Do you realize that the work you do today is important to God? Learn how you can glorify God in the way you work, and in where you work.*

  • It is a privilege and a high and holy calling to tend to the practical, physical affairs of your home.
  • Your good works ought to first be done at home, ministering to the needs of your family. Then as God gives you time, opportunity, available resources—or in a different season of life—take those gifts and abilities and expand them.
  • As you handle the practical details related to the care of your family, there is profit. Work is good!
And here is the Scripture to accompany it.
10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

In keeping with today's theme I decided to highlight how a woman lives out her spirituality in the home. How does she live out what God teaches her. Some of that is in a practical way.

Can you see how busy a Proverbs 31 woman is?
She doesn't sit around doing nothing. She keeps at it. She takes time for her husband and children, but she keeps working. She considers, she thinks, she acts. Not only does she work, but she thinks and imparts wisdom to others. She rises early, she works late.

I read this and I see a woman who works in the home and out of the the home. She buys fields, she takes things to market, she tends her household needs. Granted...she has help! (see v.14) She'd have too in order to get this all done. But she manages, she provides and through it all her husband is blessed, as well as her children.

This is a woman who lives out her faith. She spreads it around...so she doesn't ONLY work outside the home or only in the home, she doesn't only spend time with her children and/or husband, she doesn't devote herself to one aspect of her life.

This is the woman that we are called to be. Not lazy, not devoted to one thing only, but a woman who does all that she is able to, working hard at it. Living out her faith in practical means.

So Nancy asks us

Let’s just stop a moment and let me ask you as a woman: Have you embraced willingly and with joy . . . have you accepted the domain that God has given to you as a woman? Have you accepted the responsibility, the privilege of caring for the physical, practical needs of your family? Now, I don’t mean by that do you always love cooking three meals a day, washing clothes, cleaning toilets, mopping floors? I’m not saying in and of itself do you love those tasks?

I’m saying have you willingly accepted the calling and the privilege that it is to serve your family as a woman who reverences God? Is this the outworking of your love for God in terms of how you express it in your home? That’s God’s calling, and there’s blessing to be had when we embrace God’s calling and say, “Yes, Lord, I will accept that. I will work, and I will work out of my home. I’ll be a worker at home to make sure that the needs of my family are met.”

Have to admit...I'm not always there! There are so many other things I'd rather be doing...browsing the internet, playing games, walking around aimlessly enjoying the weather, chatting with friends, but GOD has called me to more...and that more I need to busy with. I need to more frequently get out and do more that isn't my focus centred...but rather family and work centered. This today,was a good reminder of that.

Monday, December 22, 2008

well...I pulled an all-nighter

Sick boy.

Head Cold.

Snow storm.

Guess our plans to go to London will need to be revamped.

Oh my....but I'm tired.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

How to Keep a child happy when struck with a head cold

Put on Frosty the Snowman.

Listen to chuckles from said boy child.

Say to yourself "ah...the child is happy, now I can put my feet up for a bit".

and then promptly do so rather than sit at your computer writing about it. :)


Saturday, December 20, 2008

Jesus is the Good News - Sunday Sermon

Isaiah 61

1 The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to bring good news to the poor;
he has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim liberty to the captives,
and the opening of the prison to those who are bound;
2 to proclaim the year of the LORD’s favor,
and the day of vengeance of our God;
to comfort all who mourn;
3to grant to those who mourn in Zion—
to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit;
that they may be called oaks of righteousness,
the planting of the LORD, that he may be glorified.
4 They shall build up the ancient ruins;
they shall raise up the former devastations;
they shall repair the ruined cities,
the devastations of many generations.

Isaiah 61:8-11

8 For I the LORD love justice;
I hate robbery and wrong;
I will faithfully give them their recompense,
and I will make an everlasting covenant with them.
9Their offspring shall be known among the nations,
and their descendants in the midst of the peoples;
all who see them shall acknowledge them,
that they are an offspring the LORD has blessed.

10 I will greatly rejoice in the LORD;
my soul shall exult in my God,
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation;
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself like a priest with a beautiful headdress,
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
11For as the earth brings forth its sprouts,
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to sprout up,
so the Lord GOD will cause righteousness and praise
to sprout up before all the nations.

So are read the words from this Sunday's message.

I have to admit...I'm having a hard time connecting the sermon title with the scripture passage this morning. I'm thinking I'm brain dead.....

It's just not there at all!

I see the promise of hope.
I see what we are called to do by the Spirit of God within us.
I see the salvation offered/given by God.
I see how God cares for his people. That justice is important to him.

I just this morning can't see more than that in this passage. I'll let it sit a spell and see if more comes to me. This is frustrating.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Contest Entry - Kingdom people

Kingdom People blog is running a contest to win 10 books. Rather cool eh?

From the blog regarding this contest. Don't the books sound interesting?

All of these books could be yours! Today, it is my pleasure to announce the first ever Kingdom People Christmas Giveaway.

For the next ten days (Dec. 15-25), you have the opportunity to register to win all ten of my favorite books this year. Plus, an ESV Study Bible. That’s $260 worth of books!

#1. THE REASON FOR GOD - Tim Keller
#2. CULTURE MAKING - Andy Crouch
#3. SURPRISED BY HOPE - N.T. Wright
#4. WHY WE’RE NOT EMERGENT - Kevin DeYoung & Ted Kluck
#5. HOW PEOPLE CHANGE - Timothy Lane & Paul David Tripp
#6. THE BIG PICTURE STORY BIBLE -David Helm & Gail Schoonmaker
#7. JESUS MADE IN AMERICA - Stephen Nichols
#8. RESIDENT ALIENS - Stanley Hauerwas & Will Willimon
#9. WORSHIP MATTERS - Bob Kauflin
#10. The Sermon on the Mount through the Centuries - Jeffrey Greenman, Timothy Larsen, and Stephen Spencer

22 words... a challenge

"I want to watch the grey diesel" cried he with tears in his eyes.
With a grin mommy clicked and Diesel surprised.

For more go here. :) Some of them are pretty good, and I expect much better than mine. :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Proverbs 31 - Commited to Marriage

I have time and the mental acuity to do my devotions today! YEAH!
Continuing on with the Revive our hearts devotions from the true woman conference I attended. Nancy starts us off with these words:

Committed to Marriage

Marriage is a covenant. Learn more about this life-long commitment.*

  • A wife has a permanent, unconditional commitment to act in a way that is according to her husband's best interests—not to serve herself, but to serve her husband.
  • A husband can trust a godly wife to speak well of him and to keep confidences. He can trust her in the way she speaks about him. He can trust her to protect his reputation.
  • A godly wife inspires a man to be worthy of her devotion. He rises to that because he knows he has a woman who is an asset, not a liability—a woman who supports, encourages, and helps him in every way possible.
This series, if you don't recall is based on Proverbs 31.Today the focus is on how this woman is a good wife. See all the words in bold.
10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

Do you see how her husband cherishes her?
She puts him right up there at the top of the list. God, and the fear of him comes first, but then comes her husband. She is an excellent wife to him. She does GOOD to him all her days. Not because he is good to her, not because she feels like it. This is her attitude. Let me fear the Lord, let me do good to my husband. She does good by her family as well, not being lazy, not being self-focused, but by working hard and seeing the needs that they have.

Do you see how he trusts her?
How because of her he lacks nothing?

Isn't that cool?
Imagine what we can be for our husbands if we strive to be this type of woman. What a way to shore up the men that we love!

Rather cool eh? :)
Not based on what he does...but all we do is to be based on our relationship with God. Puts a different spin on things doesn't it? How easy it is for me to say.....but my hubby failed me in this area therefore I won't do thus and such. Or today I'm tired so I won't make any effort to be busy about the house, or trying to make life more of a joy for him. My relationship with God should drive all that I do in my marriage, in my parenting, in everything that I do. THAT is how I will become more of the excellent wife as found in Proverbs 31.

Make God my focus, the rest will come as it comes. :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Christmas Program

So we had our Church Christmas program tonight.

It went well.

I designed a program that was mostly scripture and hymns. We had one poem. And Jim told his annual Christmas story.

We had a variety of readers, some who volunteered, some who were asked to be involved.

People said it was a simple but nice program that suited our church well.

My hope is that people took the time to ponder the wonder of what Christmas is really all about.

Christmas song

Friday, December 12, 2008

Take Comfort, God Is Coming

Sunday's Sermon is from Isaiah 40:1-11. Hear the word of the Lord.
1 Comfort, comfort my people, says your God. 2 Speak tenderly to Jerusalem,
and cry to her
that her warfare is ended,
that her iniquity is pardoned,
that she has received from the LORD’s hand
double for all her sins.

3 A voice cries: "In the wilderness prepare the way of the LORD;
make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
4 Every valley shall be lifted up,
and every mountain and hill be made low;
the uneven ground shall become level,
and the rough places a plain.
5 And the glory of the LORD shall be revealed,
and all flesh shall see it together,
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken."
The Word of God Stands Forever
6A voice says, "Cry!"
And I said, "What shall I cry?"
All flesh is grass,
and all its beauty is like the flower of the field.
7The grass withers, the flower fades
when the breath of the LORD blows on it;
surely the people are grass.
8 The grass withers, the flower fades,
but the word of our God will stand forever.
The Greatness of God
9Get you up to a high mountain,
O Zion, herald of good news;
lift up your voice with strength,
O Jerusalem, herald of good news;
lift it up, fear not;
say to the cities of Judah,
"Behold your God!"
10 Behold, the Lord GOD comes with might,
and his arm rules for him;
behold, his reward is with him,
and his recompense before him.
11 He will tend his flock like a shepherd;
he will gather the lambs in his arms;
he will carry them in his bosom,
and gently lead those that are with young.
I read these words and my very first thought is...is my heart prepared for the Lord? have I prepared a way for him? Do I let him work in my life?

Am I prepared to be carried by my Lord as a shepherd gently carries a lamb?

I have to admit...too often I want to do my own thing. Carry my own weight. Not be beholden to anyone for anything. And that's not what God calls me too...he calls me to be lead by him, to be carried by him. For my heart to be prepared and waiting for his action in my life.

Tis a hard thing sometimes for me to be. But a thing none-the-less that I am called to.

"Oh my Lord" is all I can cry. "Make me more of a sheep!"
And he listens. When I truly call out to him, my life is changed, my heart is touched, and God carries me long...or sometimes leads me by the hand as I do my toddler when he's unsure the way to go. Thanks be to my God for this.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My Village

If I can, I'll add a short video of my train moving. Tried last night but now I need my browser. :)





Monday, December 08, 2008

Going through Emails

Okay...going through my emails again. Here are links to some different things you might, or might not be interested in.

So you think you know Canada eh?

The cat, the dog and the rat. (picture laden for those on dial up)

The GMAC annual driver's test.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

A different book meme

Kim thought to tag me in this meme. I am happy to take part in it.

Take ten books, and transcribe the fifth sentence from page fifty six.

In keeping with the 5, 56 thing, Make sure that at least five books are fiction, provide five hints, and pass the meme on to six other bloggers.

Ten books, with the fifth lines found on page 56:

Five fiction books:
  1. "Wolves were interesting, and made terribly good allies and worse enemies, but they were not terribly complex"
  2. "Clisser wondered, though, as he and Bethany made their sedate way to the stage, if Jemmy might not breach the wall of her virginity".
  3. "He smelled the frying ham and bacon of breakfast cooking downstairs, and his stomach rumbled again, insistently."
  4. "Rude and brave was a wonderful combination."
  5. "The crew members were met at the other end by technicians who helped them through and gave them sneakers with stiff Velcro "hooks" on the soles."
Hints, who...boy...that won't be easy.
  1. This author loves the very animals she writes the most about. Particularly in the series that this book is from.
  2. A prolific fantasy/sci fi author. Dragons and people and more. :)
  3. This author considers her job to be that of a storyteller.
    "I'm a storyteller; that's what I see as `my job.' My stories come out of my characters; how those characters would react to the given situation.
  4. Christian fiction author. He writes books for adults as well as children.
  5. Military adventures abound! Has some 20 books to his credit. Can't say I like them all, but I do, for some reason, like his writing style. :)
Non-Fiction books: These are straight off my book pile of reading/to be read.
  1. "Actually, it outlasted the first shed it was in, which was metal."
  2. "Under his leadership the institution had grown from twelve students to almost five hundred full-time students, from diplomas to fully accredited bachelor's and master's degrees, from being housed at a downtown church to having its own spacious campus."
  3. "One thing is certain: the idea of someone thinking he can't cut it is humiliating - a feeling every man wants to avoid at all costs."
  4. "What if he is not glorifying the Lord?"
  5. ah...this one doesn't have a full page 56.... So we'll go back a page :) yes. I can... it's just a meme. :) So here from page 55 the fifth line "Fifth, God changed my life without changing anything about my circumstances."
So....am I to do hints with these as well?
  1. Highly recommended book for people doing my side-business.
  2. Devotions for something that I am. :)
  3. I picked up this book at the women's conference I went to.
  4. Someone recently posted a series of blogposts on this book.
  5. A book with a selection of true life stories, published in 1993.
Anyways, if you take a shot at guessing...go for it. :)

oh....who to tag.

1. my hubby
2. Jen (only if you have time dear)
3. Holly
4. they've all been tagged already! :)
If you join in...let me know. :)

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Proverbs 31 - Modeling Humility

The first few devotions for this advent season are based on Proverbs 31. Continuing on from yesterday where we talked about being a virtuous woman, today we will talk about modeling humility.

From the email these words:

Modeling Humility

Does being a true woman mean you're perfect? Hardly! A true woman is simply different from most, but it's those differences that are the secret of her great influence.*

  • It's more important that you model humility than that you model perfection.
  • As you allow yourself to be made and molded into the image of God's kind of woman, you will function at peace and at rest-not without problems-but with joy.
  • Do you want your husband to be a man of virtue, a noble man, a man of spiritual strength and character? Then set out not to change him, but to be the kind of woman with the kind of character that you want him to have.
Once again, here is that passage in Proverbs 31, yes...read it again! :)
10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

Can you see how busy she is?
Can you see how she lives out her fear of the Lord, her love for her husband and family?

I find it interesting how the world portrays a godly woman and how a godly woman is portrayed here. The world would have us think that a godly woman is this wimpy thing who runs around only doing what her hubby would allow her to do, who has no mind of her own. But this passage shows us how UNTRUE that portrayal is.

Look at this woman! This is what GOD calls us to.
This woman runs her household, she's a business woman, she helps the poor, she uses her wisdom intelligently when speaking to others, she does so much. She is not a wimpy woman!

This woman fears the Lord and it governs her life. As Nancy says here,

A woman who has godly character is a strong woman. ........

She’s able. She’s valiant. She’s a woman of valor.

Now the New King James Version that I just read says this is a virtuous wife, but the word translated wife there, in some of your translations reads “woman,” and that’s also an acceptable translation.

.... But whether married or single, you and I can be excellent, virtuous women.

....You’ll notice what’s absent from this description largely, and that is physical traits. Now we’ll talk later in the series about why that may be absent, but we don’t know that she was a woman of wealth. We don’t know what kind of background she came from. We’re seeing the priority here in selecting a mate—and you need to be teaching this to your sons—is to look for a woman who has a heart for God..

Take that love you have for God, that fear of the Lord that you have within and use it...use it to be changed by God. Pray to him to continue his process within to make you into a Proverbs 31 woman. Know that "you aren't all there yet", but be willing to be changed by the one you should be loving the most. It's the heart that matters most, the rest will follow. Love God more.

This is what I'm learning.... to love God more.
It's hard. It means making choices sometimes. But I need to love God more, love myself less and show that love to others.

This is how I will be transformed to be more like this Proverbs 31 woman who seems so unattainable most days...but I will be.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Sassy 2001-2008




Today the end result of a heart-wrenching decision was achieved.
Our lovely, little girl was put to sleep.

Bad leg + pain + toddler = some frightening situations and one rather scared mom and dad.

This little dog who could make me so very very proud of her.
So willing to learn and do and be just about anything I asked of her.
Want to do agility? "Sure mom! I'm game!"
Want to learn some canine freestyle? "Huh? Okay mom...I'll try".
Want to learn to let a little boy throw you a ball? "Umm.....not sure mom...but okay..See I caught it! BUT NO!!!! I"m not bringing it back to him." (can't win them all) :).

Loved agility that little dog did. And we achieved our starters title...even getting TEAM!?!?!!? BUT we never did get our snooker...that was our nemesis...more mine than Sassy's...she'd get on a snooker field and just do her own thing. Not sure why...but she ALWAYS did that with snooker. Good little gamble dog, liked jumpers and standard but not a speed demon by any means. Would have liked to have taken her further but injury prevented that.

She learned to weave through my legs, wiggle, can-can, and all sorts of canine freestyle moves. Would even heel on both sides though she hated to.

Fishing, fishing, fishing...I'll always remember her bark of excitement when the hook and lure would sail through the air. And if we CAUGHT SOMETHING>>> WOW!!!! over the top excitement.

SQUIRRELS!!!!! ah the joy of the hunt, the thrill of the chase, the wonder of keeping one up in our backyard tree for four hours non-stop! She finally managed to catch it after 7 years of trying! :) Just this summer too. It didn't survive being caught...I didn't mind.

She had the best recall of any dog I knew. All the basics of obedience and more. Good dog!

She was a good dog.

She did have her issues.
  • Space and the need for LOTS of it around her. Hated to be pounced on by anything...dog, cat, boy child...pouncing just not a good thing. NOW...that was a good thing in some ways...she taught many a golden retriever better dog manners, to the appreciation of said golden retrievers neighbours.
  • Hated Tinker (a buck rabbit we used to have) - only a problem if Tink escaped. Sharing the ball with the boy!
  • Sharing ME with the boy. Sharing anything with the boy..though she did learn that treats from the boy was acceptable. Small pets from the boy were okay. But everything was a long uphill battle. And after three years with the boy it was becoming more and more apparent that she was getting rather fed up with the boy.
  • Had a bum leg which caused her oodles of troubles. Curtailed some of her long walks. Even short walks after a while would set it off...and that would make her grumpy. But not going for walks would make her grumpy too....so it was a bit of a catch-22.
But take all that away and I'd have her back in a flash. We looked into fostering, adoption rescues and such like. I talked with people who knew her and her potential in agility and her personality. I tried to find alternatives. But this was over-all the best one for her. As difficult and as heart-wrenching as it is.... I still know it was the best one over all for her.

I miss my girlie. This smart little dog who the Kitchener humane society told me was going to be a big dog! she turned out to be a medium size spit fire of a dog who loved to be out and about doing stuff with me and the family. head of spaniel, chest of a bull-dog and the attitude of an aussie... great little dog and now we mourn her loss.

Sassafras...you will be missed.

Proverbs 31 - A Virtuous Woman

The first few devotions are based on Proverbs 31. This is a continuation of the topic started yesterday, learning about what it means to be a godly woman.

This is what Nancy DeMoss had to say in her second email to me:

A Virtuous Woman

When you hear the phrase "a godly woman," does an actual woman come to mind? Better yet, do you think that could ever describe you?*

  • The Proverbs 31 woman deals with the same issues you do!
  • I can tell you this—she didn't get there overnight, and she hasn't yet arrived. She's a woman in process. She's a woman who, like most of us, often finds herself taking three steps forward and two steps back.
  • The world tells you that if you look out for yourself, then you'll be happy. But it's the woman who lives for God and others who is truly joyful.
You'll need to go here to read everything she has to stay about the Proverbs 31 passage today, but these words struck me:
Now as I read that passage, maybe you have these recurring thoughts of, “Oh, this is so hard. This is so impossible. Who can imagine a woman like this?” Well, actually that’s what the passage starts out by saying. “Who can find a woman like this?” She is indeed rare.
I have that. When I read Proverbs 31 I think...yeah right...like I could ever be this type of woman.
10 An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.
I don't see myself like this at all! All I see are my lackofs and wannabes. Nancy went on to say that this woman probably had the same stuff, seeing her lack-ofs and wannabes. BUT that what this virtuous woman was a woman in process.

She’s a woman in process. She’s a woman who’s growing. And she’s a woman who, like most of us, often finds herself taking three steps forward and two steps back. You see, spiritual maturity is not so much where you are as the direction in which you’re headed. And here’s a woman who’s in process; she’s in direction.

So being a virtuous woman doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have the same struggles and challenges that we all have as women.

She then made these two seemingly contradictory statements.

  • No woman can be like the woman that we read about in Proverbs 31.
  • Any woman who is a child of God can be like this woman.
The first means that we can't do it we just can't do it. Any striving we do under our own power won't cause us to be Proverbs 31 women.

The second means that if we choose to let God work through us, we can become a Proverbs 31 woman. We can set the right values and priorities in our lives.

1. she fears the Lord God
2. she loves her husband and children
3. she works hard at the tasks set to her

If we set our priorities in order...with God's help we can become our own version of a Proverbs 31 woman. Now isn't that encouraging? At least I found it to be so. :) Means I might have some challenging work ahead of me...but nothing wrong with being challenged is there? :)

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Proverbs 31 - introduction

Every year I do something different for the advent season. I thought and thought...do I do advent devotionals? Or do I think of something else.

As you know I went to a conference in the fall. Afterwards that conference sent me some devotionals. I thought hmm....what if I worked through those instead? So that's what I'm doing. Not advent devotionals, but something different. I may post what Justin and I do for the advent season as well...but not pressure there please! :)

Revive our hearts was a major sponser of the True Woman Conference that I attended. They are the ones that sent out the devotionals.

The first few devotions are based on Proverbs 31.

This is what Nancy DeMoss had to say in the first email to me
Where do you get your ideas about what it means to be a woman? Who has the most influence on your behavior and attitudes? Learn what the Bible has to say about being a woman!
  • We want to be women who, in every area of our lives, are controlled by the Word of God. That is what will make an impact on a world that desperately needs to see Christ incarnated and lived out through all of life.
  • As older women, we can hold up the hands of younger women. We can encourage them, and we can direct them to Scripture and help them flesh out what it looks like to be a woman after God's own heart.
  • In Proverbs 31, we get a picture of this woman's character, priorities, values, daily routine, marriage, and family life. All of this flows out of the fact that this woman has a reverence for God.
I was then referred here for further information. :) I know...lots of background stuff. But it means that for the next few days we'll be spending time in Proverbs 31, learning what it means to be a true woman of God as seen in Proverbs 31. Believe me...I know that being a woman after God's own heart is more than following Proverbs 31, but Proverbs 31 gives a good glimpse of what to aim for doesn't it?

10An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
12She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
13She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
14She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
15She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
16She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
17She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
18She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
19She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
20She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
21She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
22She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
23Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
24She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
25 Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
26She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
27She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
29"Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all."
30 Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
31Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.

One of the things that struck me as I was at this conference was how well the women's movement has invaded the church. How words have been twisted to mean something else, how there is a lot of anger at men in the world...and that even invades the church! It shouldn't! Our brothers in Christ deserve more than that! Made me stop and think about how do I talk about my hubby? How do I encourage others to talk about their men? How can I make a small difference in this? How can I make a difference in any of it? And all I can think of....be a better example of what it means to be a woman of God.

And though this Proverbs 31 woman seems WAY beyond me... I do think I can do better than what I am. That I can! :)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Sinners Who Want To See God

Jim's Sermon on Sunday is called "sinners who want to see God". His text is Isaiah 64:1-12, focusing on the first nine verses.
1 Oh that you would rend the heavens and come down,
that the mountains might quake at your presence—
2 as when fire kindles brushwood
and the fire causes water to boil—
to make your name known to your adversaries,
and that the nations might tremble at your presence!
3 When you did awesome things that we did not look for,
you came down, the mountains quaked at your presence.
4 From of old no one has heard
or perceived by the ear,
no eye has seen a God besides you,
who acts for those who wait for him.
5You meet him who joyfully works righteousness,
those who remember you in your ways.
Behold, you were angry, and we sinned;
in our sins we have been a long time, and shall we be saved?
6 We have all become like one who is unclean,
and all our righteous deeds are like a polluted garment.
We all fade like a leaf,
and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.
7 There is no one who calls upon your name,
who rouses himself to take hold of you;
for you have hidden your face from us,
and have made us melt in the hand of our iniquities.

8 But now, O LORD, you are our Father;
we are the clay, and you are our potter;
we are all the work of your hand.
9 Be not so terribly angry, O LORD,
and remember not iniquity forever.
Behold, please look, we are all your people.
10 Your holy cities have become a wilderness;
Zion has become a wilderness,
Jerusalem a desolation.
11 Our holy and beautiful house,
where our fathers praised you,
has been burned by fire,
and all our pleasant places have become ruins.
12 Will you restrain yourself at these things, O LORD?
Will you keep silent, and afflict us so terribly?

Wow...isn't that a neat read?

People, who know they are sinners, calling upon God to act in their lives. Asking God to act for them despite the fact that they people living in their sin.

The Israelites are calling upon God to act.... to show himself for who he is against their adversaries. That the nations around them might know that God is indeed God.

They acknowledge that God has done things that they didn't look for. Amazing works that they didn't really see or expect, but God did them for his people.

I just love these words:
4 From of old no one has heard
or perceived by the ear,
no eye has seen a God besides you,
who acts for those who wait for him.
5You meet him who joyfully works righteousness,
those who remember you in your ways.
Now isn't that the God we believe in? the one that no one ever really understands, but the one that we know will answer us in our time of need? God remembers his people, he meets with those who remember him, who wait for him. He acts for us. He remembers us. I just think this is so cool.

God knows me. He remembers me. Even when I sin or I am just a stupid stupid person.... God still does amazing things in my life. He will still meet with me when I remember him, when I work righteousness in joy, and ....ahh.... I don't deserve such a God as this. Sometimes his grace acting in my life just blows me away. Doesn't it do the same for you?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

22 words Contest

22 words is having a contest about why people appreciate their pastors. the winners get two tickets for their pastor to the desiring God pastor's conference, feb 2-4, 2009.

So...why do I appreciate my pastor?

1. faithful to God's word
2. expounds upon it as true to God's word as he knows/learns how
3. doesn't think he knows it all
4. doesn't try to run things like a one man show
5. works with the people that God has placed under his care
6. is patient
7. is open to change as long as it is biblically called for
8. he preaches well and in a clear manner that for the most part makes it easy to follow
9. if you have a biblical question, he tries to answer it OR to refer you to source if he doesn't know the answer
10. I'm married to him, which means I see up close his struggles, his questions, his love for God, for the people under his care, he's a preacher through and through. :)

Just who is Melchizadek?

We've had references in the past to Jesus and Melchizedek. Today in Hebrews 7 we learn a bit more about this. We won't do the whole chapter today, but we will look at a big chunk of it.
1For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2and to him Abraham apportioned a tenth part of everything. He is first, by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace. 3He is without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God he continues a priest forever.

4See how great this man was to whom Abraham the patriarch gave a tenth of the spoils! 5And those descendants of Levi who receive the priestly office have a commandment in the law to take tithes from the people, that is, from their brothers, though these also are descended from Abraham. 6But this man who does not have his descent from them received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises. 7It is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. 8In the one case tithes are received by mortal men, but in the other case, by one of whom it is testified that he lives. 9One might even say that Levi himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, 10for he was still in the loins of his ancestor when Melchizedek met him.

We learn the story of Melchizedek and Abraham in Genesis 14. Lot was captured and Abraham rescued him. Melchizedek who was king of Salem came out

18And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. (He was priest of God Most High.) 19And he blessed him and said,

"Blessed be Abram by God Most High,
Possessor of heaven and earth;
20and blessed be God Most High,
who has delivered your enemies into your hand!"

And Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
So we learn the Melchizedek was king and priest. He was a king of righteous (by translating his name) and King of peace (translating his position). He is a forever priest. And from this verse sounds like he was created by God.
3He is without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God he continues a priest forever.
At least I have no other explanation for it. We know that he isn't God so it's not like he's been around forever...but that he has no genealogy suggests to me that he was created by God like Adam and Eve were.

The next we hear of Melchizedek is in the Psalms were I think we find a foreshadowing of Christ. Parts of Psalm 110 seem to fit David, but parts of it seem to be more applicable to Christ. Here is verse four we read
4 The LORD has sworn
and will not change his mind,
"You are a priest forever
after the order of Melchizedek."
Christ was made to be in the order of Melchizedek. He is our high priest forever.

Looking at this passage in Hebrews is a wee bit of a challenge. The author talks about how Abraham gave a tribute - he gave him a tenth of everything. Then the author goes on to say how all priests (since they descend from Levi who descended from Abraham) gave tribute to Melchizedek as well...since they were still in the loins of Abraham (and therefore part of him). Therefore Melchizedek is greater than all other priests. His order is special.

but I don't get this section, the section in bold just causes me to be lost.
6But this man who does not have his descent from them received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises. 7It is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. 8In the one case tithes are received by mortal men, but in the other case, by one of whom it is testified that he lives.
If anyone has any insight I would be most pleased to hear it. Thanks!

I do know that the rest of this chapter is devoted to teaching us how just as Melchizedek is a special priesthood and better than other priesthoods, Christ is better/greater still. Won't that be interesting to read about tomorrow?

Monday, November 24, 2008

We have a sure and steady anchor - part two

A continuation from a couple days ago. Justin is still sleeping so I have a chance to read this further this morning.

When God makes a promise, we can be certain he will keep it. This we read in Hebrews 6.
13For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, 14saying, "Surely I will bless you and multiply you." 15And thus Abraham, having patiently waited, obtained the promise. 16For people swear by something greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. 17So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, 18so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. 19We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, 20where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
Last time I was here I was thinking on how God swears by himself because there is no one, no thing greater than he is, and how if we must swear by something it must be by God. Somewhere in the gospels there is a passage that says..."let your yes be yes and your no be no". So if you say you are going to do something...then by the grace of God DO IT. In James 5:12 we read "
12But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your "yes" be yes and your "no" be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation."
and in Matthew 5:33-37 "
33"Again you have heard that it was said to those of old, 'You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.' 34But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, 35or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. 36And do not take an oath by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. 37Let what you say be simply 'Yes' or 'No'; anything more than this comes from evil."
Just do what you say you are going to do.

Abraham knew that God would keep his promise. He waited for it. He received it. He became a great nation! This from one old man and one old woman...patiently waiting for God to do what he'd said he would do. :)

I find these next verses so interesting:
7So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, 18so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. 19We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, 20where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
God can't lie.
God swore by the greatest thing he could...himself.
These two truths guaranteed that what he said would be, would definitely be.

This does indeed make God our sure and steady anchor.
We can trust that what he says is, is.
We can trust that what he says will be, will be.
We can just trust him.

It is our hope.

I just find that to be SO VERY COOL. Don't you?

Saturday, November 22, 2008

The Surprising Dividing Line - Sunday's Sermon

Jim has picked out Matthew 25:1-46 Text: Matthew 25:31-46 for this weeks' message. Here's the text:
31 "When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. 32Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. 34Then the King will say to those on his right, 'Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.' 37Then the righteous will answer him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?' 40And the King will answer them, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.'

41"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42For I was hungry and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me no drink, 43I was a stranger and you did not welcome me, naked and you did not clothe me, sick and in prison and you did not visit me.' 44Then they also will answer, saying, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to you?' 45Then he will answer them, saying, 'Truly, I say to you, as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.' 46And these will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life."

First...whenever I read this passage I think...what makes goats so bad? I never quite get that. Not sure if it's a relevant question anyways. I do wonder though....

BUT God divides up the nations of the world. The sheep on the right, the goats on the left.

The sheep genuinely cared for the needy of the world. The goats provided care as they saw fit. (at least that's my interpretation of their comments... but God we cared really we did .. but God saying...but you didn't provide it for the least of the needy so therefore you didn't really provide it for me).

I suppose when I stop to think about it I have to see the differences. Goats for instance are highly individualistic. They like doing their own thing, they don't much care what's going on around them if it doesn't directly affect them. They take care of themselves thank you very much. Sheep on the other hand tend to be "let's stick together type animals". They rely on others to protect and care for them. One sheep alone will either have other sheep rush to join it OR it will rush to join them. Stick together please.

And God wants us to be like sheep. The references to sheep in the bible is riddled throughout scripture. We are referred to as sheep countless times. In Micah: I will surely assemble all of you, O Jacob; I will gather the remnant of Israel;I will set them togetherlike sheep in a fold, like a flock in its pasture,a noisy multitude of men. In Psalms: I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek your servant,for I do not forget your commandments. In Matthew: I have gone astray like a lost sheep; seek your servant,for I do not forget your commandments.

We need to be sheep, gathered in by our shepherd. Safe and protected. Being herd animals, watching out for each other.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Mammas Don't Let Your Babies Grow up to be Pastors

this made me laugh. :)

Don't believe it all...but it is funny. :)

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Bible or Bard?


The Bible or The Bard?



Score: 60% (6 out of 10)


found this at biblical christianity.

We have a sure and steady anchor

When God makes a promise, we can be certain he will keep it. This we read in Hebrews 6.
13For when God made a promise to Abraham, since he had no one greater by whom to swear, he swore by himself, 14saying, "Surely I will bless you and multiply you." 15And thus Abraham, having patiently waited, obtained the promise. 16For people swear by something greater than themselves, and in all their disputes an oath is final for confirmation. 17So when God desired to show more convincingly to the heirs of the promise the unchangeable character of his purpose, he guaranteed it with an oath, 18so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. 19We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, 20where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest forever after the order of Melchizedek.
Hmmmpf.... have to admit when God said "surely I will bless you and multiply you" I didn't think of it as him swearing by himself. I just thought he was saying he'd do something. Makes me think of how I phrase things. I often say "I will do thus and such". I've never thought of it as me swearing by myself....perhaps I've just never thought deeply enough about it. It would be more appropriate if I said "the Lord willing, thus and such will happen". Hmmm....need to consider that more often.

But God made a promise...and it happened. Abraham had to be patient and wait for it, but it happened none-the-less. :)

I do think it's interesting though..God swears by himself - as there is nothing greater than himself. He can legitimately say "I" will do thus and such. But when we make a promise we need to promise it by something greater than ourselves. NOTHING is greater than God. God is greater than us and so it only makes sense that we swear by him.

And Justin's up now and being busy so I need to keep him quiet until his dad gets up, so hopefull we'll be able to look at this more later today. :)