Saturday, January 28, 2012

For Today (or tonight)...


FOR TONIGHT 
Outside my window… It's dark because it is 8:48 pm. 


I am thinking… that I could be using my time more wisely.
I am thankful…for small boys with small cars. Large boys who like to do "boy stuff". A boss who opens her heart and house to her staff and the mercy the Lord that continues to pour out on my life.
In the kitchen…is a big mess in the crock pot from the nacho cheese that was served at the Derby.
I am wearing…my favorite jammies with ducks on them and my robe.
I am creating…nothing at the moment.
I am going…to have a cup of tea and watch silly t.v. shows with my children.
I am wondering…what tomorrow's sermon will be about.
I am reading…currently nothing. 
I am hoping…for change at work.
I am looking forward to…visiting with my mommy tomorrow. 
I am hearing…the Disney Channel
Around the house…are two children and two cats, and clean laundry to fold (ha ha). 
I am pondering…why people can see the problems but not see that they are part of them
One of my favorite things…my bed! 
A few plans for the rest of the week…I plan on starting a new book and getting Amanda back to Wednesday night youth group. 

Thanks Tina and Jen for this fun idea.

*******************************************************************

I chose a book before I went to bed last night. It is a book that I have had for about five years. I have started it and put it down. I have started it again and put it down. This time, I will read it!


Pinewood Derby 2012




Daniel had to precisely line it up each time.


On your mark. Get set. Go!




NO WAY! 


Daniel received First Place for the Weblos 1 Den  (Ten boys)






There are five dens in the Pack. The Pack Finals consisted of three boys from each den. Daniel took Fourth out of the Pack. He will compete in April at the local mall. 
Congratulations Daniel and Daddy who together worked very hard on this car. 



Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Bedroom (Before and After)


You know I have been doing a Clutter Challenge with Glynnis. 

Oh how perspective has saved me from doing and saying so many regrettable things.  You see, our highest calling is to love God and love others.   Yes managing our homes and schedules is important.  Obviously I believe that strongly.  But maintaining a heart of love should always supersede our desire for a clutter-free home.  So when the interruptions come (and they will) … and when someone messes with your plans (and they will) … remember to keep perspective.  Keep first things first.  And  Jesus’ commands always come first.


Well on Wednesday, she gave us some tips and asked us to do some "before" and "after" pictures. Here are mine. (It's time to replace this carpet by the way!)

BEFORE!






AFTER!


Tucker likes it too!




And I made a change to my entry way. 


I love the key basket hanging on the wall and the antique table. But the cats started climbing on it. Reilly barely fits on it! But she managed to squeeze on it as much as possible almost knocking over the lamp. It was just a matter of time. So I moved the little table next to the bed. (See above)


It will take some getting use to. I had to remove the key basket because it was colliding with the lamp shade. In the basket's place I put a sign that I bought a couple of years ago (I think). It wasn't recent, I know that much.


I like signs. I have a friend who custom makes them, if you would like to place an order. She made a recent one for me. Can you guess which one?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Life Interrupted


Have I talked much about my Ladies Bible Study? (Scroll down to the next post for the explanation.)

Your Grace is Enough


I’m convinced  God is watching to see how we handle every responsibility He gives us.  He longs to give all of us more responsibility, but we must prove ourselves faithful with what we have – no matter how little or how much.  I apply this verse to my health, my finances and my home.  I can wish I had more all day long, but if I squander what I have, I’m simply not a good investment.
Having said all that hard stuff, I am SO THANKFUL FOR GRACE.  I’ve fallen short so many times.  At the end of the day, I’m just a dressed-up mess.  Instead of giving me what I deserve, God generously showers me with good things. He forgives my sin and sympathizes with my weaknesses.  And it’s in my weakness that His strength is revealed.  So if you are feeling weak today, please invite God to be your strength.  He is faithful.
Uh, yeah. I needed that this morning after yesterday's events.
This song was played on Sunday morning. I love Chris Tomlin. Really, can you say you don't? This song continued to go through my head on Sunday night as I was having chest pains.


The other song was by MercyMe. The one line is "to be still and know that you're in this place. Please let me stay and rest in your holiness". It just kept playing over and over in my mind. (My 2011 words in bold!)



I had not been feeling well on Sunday but kind of was ignoring it. But around 6:45 pm it felt like someone had stabbed me just above my left breast. The pain went down my left arm and my shoulder blade. I called Mom and she said that I should definitely get to the ER. I called one of my bestest buddies to drive me. 
In the ER, we talked, laughed, she drew pictures, sang hymns and prayed together for THREE hours. Finally at 11:30 pm, I was told I would be admitted for further testing to rule out a blood clot. We bid farewell. It was the most time we have spent together since September. I needed her but I believe she needed me as well. 
I received the results just before 1 am. NO BLOOD CLOT. Then I was off to a lovely room with a view of the ocean. (Ha ha). 




I put ear plugs in and off to La La Land I went for two hours. Yesterday was comprised of much poking and prodding. My final enzyme test was completed in the afternoon and I was released by 4 pm.
What an adventure! But God had prepared the way for me. Pastor Paul gave a wonderful sermon entitled "Are you in a storm?". I thought, no. Then he said, "well you soon will be!" Great. And he was right! 
However, throughout the storm, I was able to hang on to Acts 27, which is where we were on Sunday morning. I truly was at piece. I had dumped all of the cargo, even the wheat, and clung to God, because that's all we have. 
I was surrounded by lovely ladies...my friend, my neighbor (she was my ER nurse) and my cardiac nurse (who got me a Bible and engaged in lovely conversation about God). It turned out that she knows of Pastor Paul and her sister went to church with him when he was the youth pastor. Small world!
Today I am laying low, having tea and 600 mg of ibuprofen. Later, I will work on a piece called "Reflections from Jonah: The Interrupted Life". The timing couldn't be any better, could it?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

We Won!

Back in December Laura was having a give away. These were the items that were being raffled off. I chose (what else), but the hand made glass beaded panda bear key chain. Thank you to the Munck family. You guys always make us smile.






Saturday, January 21, 2012

My Email was HACKED!

Someone who I know through work emailed me last night. She said she believes that my email was hacked judging by the content of the link sent. It was "porn". Fabulous!

It's now 2:53 am. I just finished emailing everyone in my address book before deleting all contacts. I don't know if it went out to EVERYONE or just a select view. My guess is that it went out to EVERYONE.

Soooo, now what?

(BTW, I went to bed at 8 pm so I have been awake since 1 am. I finally decided to get up. I think I might go back to bed. I did just hear Curtis up. We are so wacky. I am glad I married someone like me. Is that a good thing or bad?)

I have decided to be DONE with FB. I would love to just be DONE with social media in general. What is the best way to contact me? United States Postal Service! Leave a message and I will send you my address. If you want to speak to me, I will give you my phone number.

“Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.” Galatians 6:7-8 NIV

Meals and such

Well the making dinner thing is going pretty well. I spend a lot of time in the kitchen. I think the strike has been a good thing in our lives over the last two weeks. I have not had the added pressure of homework. (Yes, the bane of my existence.) Now I am in to a good routine. I have passed that 21 mark. I have heard that if you do (or don't do) something for 21 days, you set a habit (or break one).

I have not been making little trips to the grocery store for that "one" item which always turns out costing me $35. I have been sticking with my list.

For example, in the middle of the week (Wednesday most likely), we ran out of tall kitchen bags for the garbage can. I just used Redners bags until Friday afternoon. It was a little bit of a pain, but nothing that is going to make or break my day.

My Friday's grocery bill came to $95.23. I am not sure what I thought my goal was going to be but I am certain that I can keep it within $100.00 each week.

I do believe because I have SIMPLIFIED my life, I have more time to spend making the meals. I spend less time cleaning up clutter, because the house has less clutter.

If there is a pile of paper, I deal with it then...once and done!

I have been doing a challenge through Glynnis. Yesterday's blog was titled "Does Your Front Entrance Say Welcome". You tell me:



I like baskets. The round basket has ONLY sneakers and slippers. Everything else is kept in bedrooms. The square basket has hats, gloves and scarves. Hanging on the wall is the key basket.

I also have a Tuesday Night basket. This basket contains Cub Scout stuff and Voice Lessons stuff.



Daniel has two other baskets in his bedroom. One is filled with baseball stuff and the other is filled with soccer. I had one with both sports in the living room but it was ridiculously full and not really needed in the living room.

I love our little house. It's cozy. I have an antique desk given to me by my Dad. The little table by the door was Curtis' grandmother. I have another antique table given to me by my mother's neighbor (no photo yet). I guess my style is on the "old" side. I like lacey things, antiquity photos and silver frames.





When the rest of the living room is finished (yes, I do have more de-cluttering to do), I will add those photos. 

So how is your word working for you?

Friday, January 20, 2012

Prayer Requests

And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Titus 2:7 NLT 
Today is the first day back for Amanda and Daniel since January 6th when the teachers announced a strike. The teachers have been on my mind all night and morning. My heart is heavy. This is going to be a very difficult day for everyone. But God knows (or as Dad would say "God know"). This is the verse on Klove today. It seems just so appropriate. God knows our minds before we even think. God knows our hearts before we even speak. He knew I would be having so many doubts and "whys" of my own teaching ability that He provided this verse to calm my spirit today. Nobody knows me like my God!
Anyway, keep the prayers coming for Mr. S, Mrs. R, Mr. H, Mrs. G, Mrs B., Mrs. M and Daniel's teacher Mrs. B.
Keep the prayers coming for me. I think my heart has been on "strike" since September. Going through the Jonah study has opened my eyes to my disobedience. I realized that I have the heart of Jonah. And the Good Physician is working on me. My clay is hard and he is pounding it to soften me up. (And boy did I get a beating yesterday!)
The Lord will work out his plans for my life - for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don't abandon me, for you made me. Psalm 138:8 NLT

And today's verse from Bible Gateway:

“[Trials and Temptations] Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” James 1:2-3 NIV

I will share more about my Jonah Journey at a later day.
Oh and one more prayer request, Amanda is sick. Tomorrow she will try out for the County Choir. There are approximately 500 kids trying out. They take 30. Last year she was selected. Since she has not been in school for two weeks, she has not practiced the piece. AND she is so congested. So pray for her to feel better. We are praying that God's will be done whether that means trying out tomorrow or not. We are trusting His plan (or at least trying to).
UPDATE:
Amanda came home at 8:30 (I was thankful Curtis was still at home to pick her up).
BUT THEN, Daniel came home at 10:30 (he threw up in front of the nurse's office). 
I cleaned, did laundry and grocery shopped. Then I laid down for close to an hour and had quiet time, but never really fell asleep. 
Counties has been postponed until Feb. 6th due to the threat of some nasty weather. 
So James 1:2-3 was for me and my children not me and the Wee Ones. 

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Why I hate religion, but love Jesus

I heard about  this on KLove yesterday. I am guilty of a lot of what he says. And boy is this "boy" taking a lot of heat for speaking truth.

Rule-keeping does not naturally evolve into living by faith, but only perpetuates itself in more and more rule-keeping, a fact observed in Scripture: "The one who does these things [rule-keeping]continues to live by them." Galatians 3:12


A poem I wrote to highlight the difference between Jesus and false religion. In the scriptures Jesus received the most opposition from the most religious people of his day. At it's core Jesus' gospel and the good news of the Cross is in pure opposition to self-righteousness/self-justification. Religion is man centered, Jesus is God-centered. This poem highlights my journey to discover this truth. Religion either ends in pride or despair. Pride because you make a list and can do it and act better than everyone, or despair because you can't do your own list of rules and feel "not good enough" for God. With Jesus though you have humble confident joy because He represents you, you don't represent yourself and His sacrifice is perfect putting us in perfect standing with God! 


Jefferson Bethke



Friday, January 13, 2012

Faithful Friday, I'm so glad to see you!


Do you need this reminder? I do! Yesterday's verse for the two classrooms I worked in was Romans 12:9.
(Twos are the Good Grapes and threes are the Loving Lemons). 


Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.


I actually received this from Amanda's teacher. It came at the right time. Thank you God. You are never late. (Have I told you about my feelings on the subject of punctuality? Maybe another time. I just think that it is physically impossible for me to be late. Yesterday I was 40 minutes early for work. FORTY!) Amanda said her teacher is a big Christian. I laughed and said "yeah" (can you hear me drag the word out and the fluctuation of my voice?) Yeeaahh! Why would you want to be anything else for Christ? Who wants a little Christian in their life? Be big. Be bold!


Romans 12
* A Living Sacrifice
1 Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. 2 Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. 

* Humble Service in the Body of Christ
3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you. 4 For just as each of us has one body with many members, and these members do not all have the same function, 5 so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. 6 We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; 7 if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; 8 if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.

* Love in Action
9 Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. 10 Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 11 Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 13 Share with the Lord’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. 

14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.[c] Do not be conceited. 

17 Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. 18 If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. 19 Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,”[d] says the Lord. 20 On the contrary: 
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him; 
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. 
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”[e] 

21 Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Five things in my head

I am doing a Clutter Free Challenge with Glynnis Whitwer. After the third day, we have homework already. I have to make a list of everything that I need to get done. EVERYTHING. One thing that has recently been added to my list of responsibilities is that I am the Hygiene Police. Do you have this issue as well? I need to be present during the showers, teeth brushing and face washing or they don't get done. It's rather exhausting.


"Yet you know me, LORD; you see me and test my thoughts about you."
Jeremiah 12:3


Daniel has futsal practice at 5 pm on Thursdays. Amanda has Irish Dance at 6 pm. The only way this is possible is that they are in close proximity. So I left the athletic club and in about 2.3 seconds I was totally LOST. For about eight minutes we drove around. I was freaking inside thinking that I had to get Amanda to her destination then get back to Daniel. I had panicked thoughts of my car breaking down and him sitting there unclaimed. I had to tell my inner man to  sit down! I cranked Amanda's new CD, which was playing another of my favorites, Big Daddy Weave.


“Be still, and know that I am God;" Psalm 46:10


The kitten digested? ingested? string of some sort. He passed it this morning before we left. I am talking minutes before we left. I had to take toilet paper and wipe his bottom like one of my two-year-olds. It was truly SICK. Do you know how thankful I was for being present? I am totally and completely serious! Can you imagine what would have happened if  no one was home. He would have lost his mind and drug it all over the house. Yikes. The thought of that is enough to send me to the closet to rock back and forth.


"Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever." 
Psalm 107:1


I am very attached to my ear plugs and dental floss. It's almost to the point where I can't live without them!


“Who dares despise the day of small things," Zechariah 4:10 (ok, I know I am reaching with this one).


Making dinner every night is very difficult. I applaud all of you ladies out there who is in a good routine.  Will it get easier? I've heard that if you do something for 21 days in a row, then it becomes a habit. OK, only ten more days to go.


"You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised." Hebrews 10:36

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Words of Wisdom Wednesday

This post is really written by nineteen year old, Elizabeth Munck. I pre-posted yesterday before work. I listened to the song and quoted the scripture to several of my co-workers. I told them that this was the verse of the day. It is truly what got me through the day. I had said to the other teacher, "it was a really good day". She disagreed with a laugh. As I laid in bed this morning, reflecting on yesterday's events, I realized that it wasn't really a good day. There were many things that would have sent people over the deep end. There were a couple of explosions between the boys. (We had ten boys and two girls yesterday). But my heart was calm. I know it was because I clung to this truth.


Thanks Elizabeth. I hope you write more about how God is working in your life!


**********************************************************************************************


Delight yourself also in the Lord, And He shall give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

By delighting in Him He gave me the desires of my heart. No...wait He gave me the desires of HIS heart. All of the desires I desired He slowly changed to His. The things I once desired so much, are not so bright and pretty after all. In fact I have no desire for them at all!
If He had have given me my desires and not His. I would still desire more and more, because only His can fill and give peace!
Not only am I satisfied and content but my relationship has grown with Jesus Christ!
Have I stopped delighting in Him? No way! I still need to be filled with His desires.
I started off using this verse for my selfish desires. To me I thought they were good desires...but they were MINE. Slowly those desires faded away and disappeared. New desires came and I found they were not mine but His He had given me!
I've heard all my life God has a sense of humor! But I didn't know He plays tricks on people?!? That's how he got me! Delighting in Him He gave me His desires.
I could not be more filled with joy, peace, and contentment than I am now!
It's like that song...Turn your eyes upon Jesus look full in His wonderful face and the things of this earth will grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace!
Elizabeth

Monday, January 9, 2012

Our Little World

There are two songs that have been in my head since early last week. The one is by Matthew West called My Own Little World. The other one is by Casting Crowns (our favorite group by the way).

Music motivates me. It calms me and comforts me. I have ZERO musical talent. So what else would the Good Lord do but give me a daughter as talented as Amanda. She sings, dances and plays the piano (a little). I know, I am boasting. But she is a gift and has my love for music.

Anyway, last week when I realized that the strike was really going to happen and not just a rumor, I started praying. God spoke several truths in to my aching heart. He is Sovereign was the most important one. God had given me the verse a week earlier (January 4th). Do you remember it? Hebrews 3:15. (Click here to read the application).

Then, Daniel had been asking me to go to "Eric's church". The irony in that is we are at "Eric's church" already. Because of our friends, we went to visit and decided to call it Home. Funny, then they decided to move on. But remember, God is Sovereign.

I said yes to a visit so yesterday we went at 9:30 for Sunday School and Service. The topic for the adult class is "Daniel". Well, of course it is. That was the first formal Bible study I did with my friend back in 2006 at "her church". A lot of what was said, I had already studied. The book of Daniel is what gives the Bible its credibility. You see, Daniel was a prophet. He predicted Christ's coming TO THE DAY. He predicted a lot of things. You should check it out. But the Bible isn't just a book of fiction. It is an actual history book.

OK...enough about that. That's not why I am writing this. (Sorry, another rabbit trail for another time).

After the class, Pastor Joe spoke. The topic of his sermon was "If God is Sovereign..." NO WAY. What are the chances of that? Earlier in the morning, I woke and did my Jonah study.  One of the verses tied right in as well. Everything that has happened in the last six days fit together like pieces of a puzzle. It's amazing when that happens.

The conclusion of Joe's sermon was "When God's timing and purpose are accounted for, every detail of our life is orchestrated perfectly." 


So for the teachers to go on strike this year is not by accident. Nothing in life is. God knew that Amanda would be having a fantastic year. God knew that these six teachers would be guiding her and teaching her daily. God knew that my heart would soften. (If you want to see a hard heart, just look at anything I wrote during seventh grade).

But now I have a request to you: Please pray for her teachers as well as Daniel's teacher. She is wonderful also. We love them all. The children wish they were at school. That's how awesome they are! Pray for resolution. Pray for those who know God to come to Him for strength. Pray for those who don't know God to be drawn to Him. In Jesus' name, AMEN.

Mr. S. - Social Studies
Mrs. R. - Math (Amanda's favorite subject for the 1st time in EIGHT years).
Mrs. G. - English
Mrs. H. - Science
Mrs. M. - assistant in Math and English
Mrs. B. - assistant in Science

Mrs. B - teachers Daniel

These are not just teacher's striking. These are real people with families. Not every person is for a strike. Not everyone agrees with the issues. People are so easy to look at the negative. I hear it every day.

Soft hearts. Lord, give me a soft heart.

I was looking for a verse this morning because I was in the most challenging room. The Threes! (Sometime I honestly just hold the Bible under my arm for strength.) This is what I found:

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me." Psalm 51:10


Now that's a prayer for everyone! 


Thank you. (I have to admit that this is not affecting my own little world. The children can go to work with me. It's a blessing. Please pray for those families who are struggling to find care for their children, as well.)



Saturday, January 7, 2012

Week One in Review

This was my first week making dinner each night. It was also my first week back to work after being off since December 20th. Let me tell you it was ROUGH. I was refreshed and renewed. And it was so necessary. I think it should be mandatory for everyone to talk off a week whether they can afford it or not.

But I am encouraged. Leaving yesterday, I was asked if I had a lovely day. The weather was perfect and it was Friday at 2:30. Yes, lovely describes my week I said. The office person behind the desk said "you are the only person who ever says that." How sad. I can't change the situation or what's going on. But I can change my attitude. For several months, I have been "one of the crowd". And I don't want to be like that. Just because I live (or work) in this world, doesn't mean I have to be "of" this world.

However, it will take some adjusting. I am human. I get tired and cranky too. So by Wednesday, I was totally exhausted and ready for a melt-down. And I had a headache each day.

But one thing that has changed for the better is that we have sat down as a family to eat. That is something we had only been doing on occasion.  It was really nice.

I think I only went to the grocery store once. I spent $1.00 on spaghetti sauce. Other than that, we have been doing just fine with what I bought.

I did my weekly shopping last night. The total was $77.91 but there was a $10.00 coupon when you spent $50. I think I am hoping to spend about $50 a week but I will take $67.

Tonight I went to Redners to buy a dust pan. For some reason, I cannot find mine. It is somewhere but I just can't find it. Which is really unusual because there are not too many places it could be. Our house is pretty small. Anyway...you had to buy the brush with the dustpan. I don't need a brush and didn't want to pay $4.99 for the set. So I bought vanilla bean and mint chocolate chip ice-cream for $5.58. THEN, went to the dollar store and bought TWO dustpans for $2.12. I should have left Redners empty handed and saved the $5.58 but I really wanted to blog and eat ice-cream on this Saturday night. And listen to Klove.

My teenage daughter is going to the mall soon and my son is at baseball work-outs. So it just seemed fitting to eat ice-cream.

Now, if you remember from the earlier posts, my word is SIMPLIFY and my verse is 1 Peter 5:7. Well, I have been given another verse and several words to marinade in.

On Wednesday (my almost melt-down day) someone asked me about "harden not your heart". She asked if that was a verse. I said yes, but had no idea where to even look to find that. I asked three other people who I thought might know. Each of them said it sounded familiar but didn't know. I told her I would google it and get back to her. Well, let me tell you something. I leave work and that is the last time I think about work! I am totally on to the next thing. Which this week, the next thing has been dinner every night, remember.

So, I came home. I started the oven, baked the mexican lasagna, set out all the other sides and set the table, and ate dinner. Then I cleaned up the kitchen, loaded and started the dish washer, made three lunches (I don't make one for me) and tackled the kitty boxes. Now that there are two cats, I need to scoop every other day. I would love to do it every day but that is really ambitious for me.

I decided to sit down and look at a magazine or maybe read something. On the table was a SEND International mailing. I donated to two of my co-workers who are missionaries. So I received their mailing. The very first article was about "The Potter". I love the analogy of God being the potter and we are the clay. I have a favorite song by Caedmon's Call. It's called Hands of the Potter. So I am to about the second paragraph and the author says that our hearts can become hard like clay. Then there in print is the verse (Hebrews 3:15):


As has just been said:
   “Today, if you hear his voice, 
   do not harden your hearts 
   as you did in the rebellion.


I said "No Way!" Not only did God remind me (because we are people created to forget), He gave me the application for the verse. How cool is my God?

There is an Old Testament verse about hardening your heart as well. It is Psalm 95:8:

Do not harden your hearts as you did
 at Meribah, as you did that day at 
Massah in the wilderness,


OK, I am going to HEAR his voice, which requires me to LISTEN


The article said that when the clay becomes hard, the Potter has to pour water on it.

Water = Living Water (Jesus)

The Potter also has to pound on that clay.

Pounding = trials and afflictions 


So did you pick that word yet?












Monday, January 2, 2012

Forget Not all His Benefits

I have been off since December 20th. I have spent a lot of time on Facebook and on the blog. Tomorrow I am back to work and the children are back to school. We will have voice lessons, cub scouts, soccer, dance, baseball, youth group and AWANA. Not to mention the important stuff like homework, housework and time with my love. So if you don't hear from me, you can imagine where I am.

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Yesterday the New Year's Day sermon was about remembering. Pastor Paul read some headlines from 2011. A lot of the things I didn't even know had happened. I am so out of touch with the media. Things were happening in my own little world. Funny, I couldn't remember much however. I thought 2011 was pretty good. At least it was better than 2010.

"Human beings forget easily. God is always telling His people to REMEMBER. Could we possibly forget  the greatest demonstration of love that has ever been given? Could we forget Him? That is why we have communion: Do this in remembrance of ME! 

Then Paul handed out a paper with several questions on it. Soft music was playing. The regular group that I am always surrounded with decided to worship at home. I sat with my dear friend in silence as we filled out our assignment. I was so thankful to have brought my journal. I was also relieved to hear that God has created us in this "forgetful" fashion. He has given us His Word to remind us when we forget. 

Paul asked people to share their answers. Even though there was a fraction of the congregation there (only about 65 instead of about 150), I did not share.

So, I'll share with you.

First you must read Psalm 103. 

I truly was thankful to have my journal with me. I haven't been faithful over the past months but what I did journal was all I needed.

1. What sin has the Lord forgiven you of this year?

I realized that "DISAPPOINTMENT" is a sin. It is still present in my life. I ask God to help me recognize those thoughts in my life and capture them before they lead to more.

2. How has He healed you this year?

Looking back, God has gently broken me and revealed Truth about "disappointment" and my lack of trust.

3. In what ways this year, that you're aware of, has He protected you?

April 30th - God gave me 1 Peter 5:7 to protect me! (Wow, I wrote this on Friday).

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.

In September The Nineveh Study began. I recognized the disappointment creeping up again.

4. Thinking back over the year, how have you felt His love and compassion?

My year verse was Matthew 11:28: 

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

My "One Word" was REST. (But you know that already if you read what I wrote on Friday). Then my word was "weary" because that is what I had become! Galatians 6:9 and His constant love and compassion helped me to the end of the year!

5. How has the Lord satisfied your desire for good things this year?

God has "RELEASED" me from many burdens on my heart. For His yoke is easy and His burden is light! Matthew 11:30 

6. How have you seen the Lord work righteousness and justice for the oppressed?

Oppressed? I don't know. But I have seen a husband's heart soften.

PRAISE THE LORD: Now that you've taken time to remember and not forget all His benefits, what would you like to say to Him?

Thank you for not growing disappointed in me. Help me to obey your law!