Monday, October 31, 2011

May You be Strengthened, Tim Tebow

"Learn to listen to Me even while you are listening to other people....Be a channel of My Love, Joy, and Peace by listening to Me as you listen to others." - Sarah Young, JESUS CALLING

19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own,  (1 Corinthians 6:19. ESV.)

I'm not sure I would quite qualify as a Tim Tebow fan.  I am, however a HUGE fan of God, His Son, and the FL Gators.  GO GATORS!  So, I suppose Tebow sort of falls in there somewhere, too. ;)

I am certain he has been flooded with encouragement from his true fans regarding negative press lately and I image the support of the body of Christ is refreshing right about now.  That is the band wagon on which I am about to jump...as a fellow member of "the body".

Tim,

I am positive you know God is still on His throne and He does ALL THINGS for the good of those who are called according to His purpose.

You have always appeared to be a strong man of faith and I thank you for being such a wonderful roll model for those who look up to you.  It is such a breath of fresh air to see an individual in your position glorifying God, behaving in a manner than is pleasing to Him, and being an example of all the bible teaches for young boys as they train in Way they should go.  I am grateful to God for you, His servant.

Please do not allow unkind words to weigh heavily on your heart but rather serve as helpful criticism by which to learn and rise above.  I am thankful you have a loving family to surround you (and offer you strength in Christ) and that you do not find refuge in man but rather trust in the Lord.  Please do not grow weary and lose heart.


9 And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, 10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God. 11 May you be strengthened with all power, according to his glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in light.  (Colossians 1:9-12. ESV.)

Christmas is Coming!

My favorite holiday has its own beverage! I did not grow up drinking eggnog. Infact, I never even tried it until I met my husband who loves the stuff, and for good reason! It may be the end of October but Christmas is coming and the eggnog is now available! Yay!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Your Tongue Plots Destruction Like a Sharp Razor

"Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one." - Albert Einstein

I am NOT a fan of the whole "perception is reality" bit.  One who suffers from schizophrenia sees things that are not there and hears voices that otherwise do not exist.  They feel those things are real but "feelings" are not facts and "facts" are verifiable reality.

“Perception is the lie that we convince ourselves exists”  ― Melissa Bradley

“ The question is not what you look at, but what you see. ” ― Henry David Thoreau

So, if what each person "perceives" can be considered "reality", then what defines truth?  ...That which can be proven by evidence?  Scripture has quite a bit to say regarding the matter:

12 Of a truth, God will not do wickedly,
   and the Almighty will not pervert justice.
 (Job 34:12. ESV.)

9 For there is no truth in their mouth;
   their inmost self is destruction;
 their throat is an open grave;
   they flatter with their tongue.
 (Psalm 5:9. ESV.)

Psalm 52:2: Your tongue plots destruction,
   like a sharp razor, you worker of deceit.


Psalm 12:2: Everyone utters lies to his neighbor;
   with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.

Whoever speaks the truth gives honest evidence, but a false witness utters deceit.  (Proverbs 12:17. ESV.)

Truthful lips endure forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment.  (Proverbs 12:19. ESV.)

Which one of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me?  (John 8:46. ESV.)

 6 [Love] does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth.  (1 Corinthians 13:6. ESV.)

Today's JESUS CALLING by Sarah Young devotional message says,
"Do not expect to be treated fairly in this life.  People will say and do harmful things to you, things you don't deserve....Don't be concerned about setting the record straight.  Instead of obsessing about other people's opinions of you, keep your focus on Me." (2004.  Nashville, TN.  Pg.315.)

Lead me in your truth and teach me, for you are the God of my salvation; for you I wait all the day long.  (Psalm 25:5. ESV.)

Lean on Me

"Lean On Me" by DC Talk is once again two of my absolute favorites rolled into one! Both have quite a bit of sentimental value to me as they were popular during my youth group years (which was one of the best times in my life). I actually listened to the "Free at Last" cassette tape so much I nearly broke it... And, now I play the songs for my kiddos. :)

Monday, October 24, 2011

His Invisible Attributes in the Things That Have Been Made

“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” ― Ralph Waldo Emerson

I was created in God's image and I love Him (and His Son) with all my heart, soul, mind, and body. There is nothing in this world that can change that...nothing that can pluck me from His hand (John 10:29).

“I am enough of an artist to draw freely upon my imagination. Imagination is more important than knowledge. Knowledge is limited. Imagination encircles the world.” ― Albert Einstein

I was blessed with certain talents (and/or "spiritual gifts") but one I love I do not possess is the art of drawing and painting.  Oh to be like Bob Ross on the PBS show "The Joy of Painting" and transform various strokes and dabs of color into amazing landscapes...lush forests, towering mountains, reflecting pools of water!

How amazing would it be to stand in an empty room with only my imagination and a canvas and be able to capture the breeze as if it was brushing the hair from neck...or the sun as though it was softly kissing my skin.

I want to sketch "The Road Not Taken" and depict the cold, depths of the vast, powerful ocean.  I desire to be able to portray the Skagway, Alaska wind that took my very breath away, tugged at my clothes, and forbade me to leave its presence.  ...Strawberries so sweet and juicy that stain my lips with their bold, red richness.  ...Sunflowers in Florence, Italy as tall as I am all swaying together in joyful harmony as though members of a gospel choir.

Can you see them?  I wish I could show you.

20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.  (Romans 1:20. ESV.)

VBS 2012 "Praise"

I am so excited about the 2012 Vacation Bible School (VBS) program, "Praise"! I hope a church near us will be using it! I LOVE this song!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Do All to the Glory of God

“You can only become truly accomplished at something you love. Don’t make money your goal. Instead pursue the things you love doing and then do them so well that people can’t take their eyes off of you.” ― Maya Angelou

Did I mention I am "Tweeting the Bible in a Year" over at Twitter?  I think I did but I'll say it again...just incase it was missed the first time (or two).

I passed the six month mark roughly 19 days ago and I am determined to make it into the homeward stretch --- the fourth and final quarter (starting at about day 274).  It can be a little challenging at times but I love doing PR for God --- not that He needs it or anything.  I simply do it because I want to and I adore it.

So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.  (1 Corinthians 10:31. ESV.)

So, if you have not already, please come follow along with me tweet by tweet, verse by verse.

The Obedience of Faith: Live as You Are Called

Only let each person lead the life that the Lord has assigned to him, and to which God has called him.  This is my rule in all the churches.  (1 Corinthians 7:17. ESV.)

Romans 12:3: For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.

When I roll "measure of faith" around in my mind, I compare it to "talent" in a sense. Each of us has a certain amount of talent (in something).  We just do.  I cannot control at what I am good or how well I accomplish it...like dance, volleyball, gymnastics.  My younger kiddos do well in swimming.  Some individuals are very athletic while others might be more academic or social.  Sure, one can train but natural ability still plays a key roll.  (I highly doubt I could ever pole vault.  I do not even dare to try it.)

I imagine faith to be similar on some levels.  Of course I can study the dickens out of my bible but without "the grace given to me" I am still not quite going to be able to wrap my head around it...(like me and algebra...or geometry.  All those postulates and theorems just made my head hurt instead of making sense.)

But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.  (Ephesians 4:7. ESV.)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Make a Joyful Noise to the Lord: Part Three

Today I came across two of my favorites rolled onto one: 1. A hymn and 2. "The Go Fish Guys"! Together, they make up "The Solid Rock"! Hope you enjoy!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

I'm A Soldier In The Army of the Lord by The Go Fish Guys

We (the kiddos and I) love this song but boy does it get stuck in a person's head...we end up singing it for hours after listening to it.



More Fantastic Music

The Go Fish Guys
Seeds Family Ministry

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Shield of Faith

“Pride costs us more than hunger, thirst, and cold.” ― Thomas Jefferson

“All men make mistakes, but a good man yields when he knows his course is wrong, and repairs the evil. The only crime is pride.” ― Sophocles, Antigone

Instead of building a monument (of myself or anyone else), I am digging a well. Perhaps one day some (if even only one) will come to it and drink... or maybe none will. Either way, it will exist.

Bear One Another's Burdens

6:1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted. 2 Bear one another's burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. 3 For if anyone thinks he is something, when he is nothing, he deceives himself. 4 But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. 5 For each will have to bear his own load. (Galatians 6:1-5. ESV.)

In an effort for me to understand this better I have to break it down a bit.

James 5:19-20: My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, 20 let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.

Romans 15:1: We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves.

2 Timothy 2:25: correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth,

1 Thessalonians 5:14: And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.

1 John 4:21: And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.

2 Corinthians 13:5: Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!

Romans 14:12: So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.

That Burden is Not My Own!

Don't I have enough on my plate without carrying something that belongs to someone else? Besides, doesn't God give each of us only what we can handle---with His grace? Other individuals have some pretty heavy "baggage"! I do not think I am strong enough.

EXACTLY! Because "I" am not but Christ (within me) is! And, if another is drowning would I not throw a life preserver?

1 Corinthians 3:7: So neither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth.

I can be the concierge or bellman and help with the heavy lifting but ultimately it is God who does it all and the only one in whom anyone can boast. And yes, I do believe God would like for me to assist others just as I, at times, REALLY NEED aid myself!

"When you need comfort, I love to enfold you in My arms. I enable you not only to feel comforted but also to be a channel through whom I comfort others. Thus, you are doubly blessed, because a living channel absorbs some of whatever flows through it." (Young, Sarah. JESUS CALLING. 2004. Thomas Nelson. Nashville, TN. Pg. 303)

(Photo Information.)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

By Whom We Cry, "Abba! Father!"

A life apart from God is like a child continuously returning to an abusive home instead of thriving in a healthy household with a nurturing adoptive parent.

But that is just my opinion.  (And I hope it does not come across the wrong way.)

What does this world offer that attempts to draw me away from Him.  Temptation?  False hope?  Empty promises?  I do not even know anymore, really.  When I loose my focus from the cross what has distracted me?  Stress?  Anxiety? An inconsistency with my daily bible reading?

Why?

Children's Bible Study

In an effort to beef up the kiddos' bible study time each morning, I have added a music video first thing---(our favorites are "Not Ashamed of the Gospel" (posted below) and The Go Fish Guys)---and a bible movie last (whether it is from www.lifekids.tv or classics like "Superbook" and "Flying House").  In between is reading scripture (or features from their bibles like points of interest, "Life in Bible Times" blurbs, "People in Bible Times" information), memory verses, and a prayer.

Thankfully they each have love for God and this time we share together is enjoyable (instead of like pulling teeth).

I'm Not Ashamed Worship Song-August from Kids Quest on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

He Who Hates Reproof is Stupid

My relationships help me relate to the world and God.  Most of them are agnostic, a handful are followers of Christ (and a couple other beliefs i.e. Buddhism, Islam, etc.), and very few are atheist.

His Adopted Daughter

As a child advocate, one thing I firmly believed then (and now) is children just want to be loved.  That is their bottom line. But with love comes discipline, instruction, sometimes "tough love", etc.  All things a child might not desire especially coming from a guardian or adoptive, foster, and/or stepparent.

5 he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,  (Ephesians 1:5. ESV.)

Ephesians 1:11: In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, (ESV)

Romans 8:30: And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified. (ESV)

Romans 8:15: For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!" (ESV)

Luke 12:32: "Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.

Only Your Love, Please

With God as my adoptive Heavenly Father, how easy is it for me to only acknowledge His love and rebel, ignore, or resent His teachings and correction?  Does not a parent (any parent...biological or not) love unconditionally?  In many (if not most) cases, Yes!  (There is a passion to provide "a better life" than the adult himself/herself had.)  However, there are also (house) rules set; morals, integrity, gratefulness, etc. instilled; and repercussions for wrong doing.

17"Behold, blessed is the one whom God reproves;
   therefore despise not the discipline of the Almighty.
 (Job 5:17. ESV.)

Psalm 94:12: Blessed is the man whom you discipline, O LORD,
   and whom you teach out of your law,
(ESV)

James 1:12:  Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. (ESV)
 
Hebrews 12:5: And have you forgotten the exhortation that addresses you as sons?

"My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
   nor be weary when reproved by him."
(ESV)

Revelation 3:19: Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. (ESV)

Proverbs 12:1: Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge,
   but he who hates reproof is stupid.


Proverbs 13:24: Whoever spares the rod hates his son,
   but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him.
(ESV)

Proverbs 29:19: By mere words a servant is not disciplined,
   for though he understands, he will not respond.
(ESV)

Monday, October 10, 2011

The Best Free Antivirus Software

Whether you are a techno-junkie like me or just a dabbler, having antivirus protection software on your desktop or laptop is generally a good idea...(in my opinion, a MUST). But, if you are limited on funds (as am I), FREE antivirus might be the only (or #1 option). But what (if any) free antivirus software works similar to the expensive ones? PC Mag has a list that might interest you of "The Best Free Antivirus Software". Happy reading!

Thursday, October 06, 2011

An Evil Man Seeks Only Rebellion

17:1 Better is a dry morsel with quiet
   than a house full of feasting with strife....
3 The crucible is for silver, and the furnace is for gold,
   and the LORD tests hearts.
4 An evildoer listens to wicked lips,
   and a liar gives ear to a mischievous tongue.
5 Whoever mocks the poor insults his Maker;
   he who is glad at calamity will not go unpunished.
6 Grandchildren are the crown of the aged,
   and the glory of children is their fathers....
9 Whoever covers an offense seeks love,
   but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.
10 A rebuke goes deeper into a man of understanding
   than a hundred blows into a fool.
11 An evil man seeks only rebellion,
   and a cruel messenger will be sent against him.
12 Let a man meet a she-bear robbed of her cubs
   rather than a fool in his folly.
13 If anyone returns evil for good,
   evil will not depart from his house.
14 The beginning of strife is like letting out water,
   so quit before the quarrel breaks out.
15 He who justifies the wicked and he who condemns the righteous
are both alike an abomination to the LORD.
16 Why should a fool have money in his hand to buy wisdom
   when he has no sense?
17 A friend loves at all times,
   and a brother is born for adversity....
19 Whoever loves transgression loves strife;
   he who makes his door high seeks destruction.
20 A man of crooked heart does not discover good,
   and one with a dishonest tongue falls into calamity.
21 He who sires a fool gets himself sorrow,
   and the father of a fool has no joy.
22 A joyful heart is good medicine,
but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.
23 The wicked accepts a bribe in secret
   to pervert the ways of justice.
24 The discerning sets his face toward wisdom,
   but the eyes of a fool are on the ends of the earth.
25 A foolish son is a grief to his father
   and bitterness to her who bore him....
27 Whoever restrains his words has knowledge,
   and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.
28 Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise;
   when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.
 (Proverbs 17:1, 3-6, 9-17, 19-25, 27-28. ESV.)

Monday, October 03, 2011

Words of Encouragement

My Sheep Hear My Voice and I Know Them
26 but you do not believe because you are not part of my flock. 27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”  (John 10:26-30. ESV.)

The Desires of the Flesh are Against the Spirit
16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.... 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.
 (Galatians 5:16, 17, & 24. ESV.)

Born Again to a Living Hope
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. (1 Peter 1:3-5. ESV.)

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