Saturday, February 27, 2010

Focus on Marriage Simulcast

Mr. Steady and I were SO utterly blessed to attend the Focus on Marriage simulcast today. I have so much swirling around in my head I want to share with you over the coming days but this can't wait.

Francis Chan said something that impacted me so deeply I want to share it with you. Do you remember playing Simon Says? Simon says jump on one foot and you jump on one foot? Why don't we do what Jesus says? We memorize His words and study them but we don't DO them. Chan's illustration (he used his daughter, I'll use my son): If I ask my [son] to go clean his room, he comes back and I say "Is your room clean?" "Um, no Mom, but I memorized what you said and I can even say it in Greek," is that going to fly? What if he says "I called five of my friends over and we studied what you said and we came up with a plan of action."? No! You told him to clean his room, you expect his to clean his room!

Jesus said GO and MAKE disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. He didn't ask us to pray about it, study it, form a focus group, discuss it, memorize it. Go. That's it. Why is that so hard?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Why Teach Your Children With King James Version?

As I mentioned, Mr. Steady and I are planning on homeschooling again next year. If you are a new reader here is the reader's digest version: homeschooled our oldest in Kindergarten, sent him to public school in first grade, God is calling us back to homeschooling. I'm looking for curriculum and I'd love to have you weigh in on the curriculum you use.

I was perusing Ambleside Online's website and came across a link to an article titled Why the KJV? by Lynn Bruce. I was not raised reading the KJV and I'm going to be honest with you, it is quite difficult for me to read and comprehend. I don't doubt that KJV is the most accurate version, although I am very fond of the Amplified Bible. When it came time to buy bibles for The Thinker and The Reader Mr. Steady stood firm on needing KJV for the boys.

After reading this article I wholeheartedly agree that KJV is best for teaching your children with. And if you, like me, struggle with KJV or have ceased teaching your children from KJV the author includes some tips for the transition:

Some ideas to choose from to help you ease the transition . . .
~Begin to choose memory verses from the KJV. Studies have shown that it is
more easily memorized than other versions, due to its rhythm and meter - that
"fine roll" to which Miss Mason referred.
~Continue for a time with your current version for daily Bible study, and
add a brief oral reading of the KJV Psalms each day. Read passages such as the
Ten Commandments, the 23rd Psalm, the 100th Psalm, the birth of Christ in Luke,
the Beatitudes, the various parables, the Sermon on the Mount, "The Lord's
Prayer," and others such as John 3:16, Galations 5:22, and Philippians 4:8.
Later, you may wish to journey into Isaiah, which flows with lyrical and poetic
language.
~Consider "weaning off" by using the KJV along with the version your
children are accustomed to, reading the same passage from both so they can
compare and pick up unfamiliar phrases.
~Have morning readings of familiar Bible stories from the KJV, followed by
a bedtime reading of the same passage from a good, literary story Bible, like
the one by Catherine Vos. In this manner, the story Bible essentially provides a
narration of the daily Bible reading.
~Many children have benefitted greatly from listening to audio recordings
of the KJV by seasoned professional readers like Alexander Scourby. "The World's
Greatest Stories from the World's Greatest Book" is a series of recordings by
storyteller George Sarris, reading word-for-word from the King James text. These amazingly vivid readings are widely available from various homeschool vendors
and Christian bookstores. My children have enjoyed them for years.
~Although most difficulties with King James language can be overcome with
context clues, it's helpful to keep a good (and preferably old) dictionary at
hand, such as Webster's 1828 Dictionary. Definitions from Webster's 1828 may be
searched online at
http//www.christiantech.com/. Another
good choice is the Oxford Dictionary, which is unique in that it gives word
histories, and thus can often helpfully illuminate what a word meant in the
early 1600's.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Swap Party

Remember when I invited you to my swap party? Well, it finally happened and I am SO thrilled I put my issues of not being good or clean enough aside (or maybe not?) and worked it out. Seven ladies and fourteen (I think? How sad is that!) children came over and we had a lot of fun. I took most of my cues from The Nester's Swap although there was recently an article in one of the home magazines with tips for your own swap. We chatted in the living room while waiting for all the guests to show up.

The children all played and had a great time.
Because my dining room table only seats 10 comfortably we ate in shifts, feeding the children first. I can't believe 14 little bodies were scrunched in around my table. How fun would that be to do this everyday with 14 of your own children!

We set up the swap items in our master bedroom. We had two tables, one for $5 and below items (I asked each guest to bring two $5 items).


And one table for $10-$15 items (I asked guests to bring one $10-$15 item).

Once the children were all fed and happy the ladies sat down to eat, while we ate we drew numbers for the swap. Then we went in pairs to choose our item. I gave the ladies the option of redrawing numbers for the second and third swap and they all wanted the opportunity to go first so we put the numbers back in and drew again.
I had a lot of fun and I think the other girls did too. We talked about doing it again on a large scale. Jill blogged about what she took home here. Janice - so sorry I didn't get a picture of you. The party started once you got here and I guess I was just having too much fun! Thank you all for coming, you'll never know how much it meant to me to be able to spend an afternoon with my friends!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I am ever so grateful

holy experience


#11 Time spent with my poppa, just the two of us

#12 Spotting a cardinal

#13 Our new Plate O' Praise

#14 A husband who says "yes"

#15 Children who forgive without question

#16 The Focus on Marriage Simulcast

***BUZZ*** Wrong Answer!

Over two years ago I felt God leading me into missions. Soon after Mr. Steady confirmed he felt called as well.

I remember vividly laying in bed one night, tears flowing like the Nile, arguing with God that I am not ready, not equipped, not prepared, not good enough, not holy enough, just not. He is the great I Am and I'm the great I Am Not. I tried convincing Him he had it all wrong and then I tried convincing myself I had been duped and had not been called at all.

Because of some circumstances in our life we knew we wouldn't be going anywhere for several years at the minimum and because we knew God works all things together for those that love Him we gave it to God to work out the details.

This week I was in that ugly place again. Maybe you've been there, the one where self-pity and loathing threaten to strangle you until you cry "uncle". I feel like our church should just put "Please pray for Mr. Steady's family because they are one messed up group of people." in our prayer concerns on the bulletin.

I was washing the dishes this morning and listening to In Touch. Dr. Stanley's teaser as the show went to commercial was "Do you ever feel like your umbrella can't withstand any more rain?" (my paraphrase). And I said "Yes, Lord! I do! Enough is enough! I don't know why you are allowing all this in my life but I'm obviously not going to be a better person for it and I'm obviously not learning anything so you can just turn it off now."

God allowed me to continue to listen after the commercial break. And God used Dr. Stanley to speak to me"You said you weren't strong enough, I'm giving you things to make you stronger. You said you weren't compassionate enough, so I'm giving you opportunities to reach out to others with empathy and love them because you love me. You said this so I did that. You will never be enough, but I am. I will give you my strength and my grace the moment you need and not a mite before."

In essence I heard God say "***BUZZ*** wrong answer, dear daughter of mine. You don't get to retreat and sign out. You become pliable, you become teachable. QUIT RUNNING AWAY!"

And through my tears that seem to be my constant companion these days I nod and agree with Him. Knowing that running away from the Master Creator is not going to make me who I want to be. And who I want to be is the daughter He already knows I'll be in the end.

Monday, February 22, 2010

I am ever so grateful

holy experience


#1 Family nights

#2 A warm house

#3 A God who collects all my tears (Psalm 56:8)

#4 A God who knows who I really am and loves me anyway

#5 A God who knows every thought I have and forgives me when I ask

#6 My beloved husband who loves me even when I am unlovely

#7 The Thinker who is becoming a very responsible young man

#8 The Reader who never fails to amaze me with his capabilities

#9 The Entertainer who is growing and changing everyday

#10 An earthly father who is trying to find a new normal and includes me in it

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Unredeemed

"We live in the shadow of the fall, but the cross says these are all places where grace is soon to be so amazing. It may be unfulfilled, it may be unrestored, but when anything that is shattered is laid before the Lord, just watch and see, it will not be unredeemed."



"My lips will shout for joy when I sing praise to you— I, whom you have redeemed." Psalm 71:23 (NIV)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. I wrote my thoughts on it last year and am increasingly burdened to turn towards God with each Lenten season that passes. Ann has some wonderful suggestions and if you follow the links in her post you will find even more ideas and explanation.


Mark 8:34 And Jesus
called [to Him] the throng with His disciples and said to them, If anyone
intends to come after Me, let him deny himself [
forget, ignore, disown, and
lose sight of himself and his own interests
] and take up his cross, and
[joining Me as a disciple and siding with My party] follow with Me
[continually, cleaving steadfastly to Me].

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Winner!

UPDATE: I just found out that my local library has this study, I can't tell if it has the DVDs with it or not. Most of you who live close to me can borrow this through the interlibrary loan. Email me privately if you want more information.

Dawn is the winner of the Beth Moore Esther Study! Dawn, I sent you an email so as soon as I hear back from you I will slip this in the mail to you. I pray that you are as blessed by it as I was.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Beth Moore Esther Bible Study Giveaway


"You will never be more vulnerable than when God has pulled you out of where you have been but has not yet placed you where you are going" Beth Moore, Esther
Have you ever felt overshadowed, underrated, over wrought, under qualified, under attack, over anxious, over responsible? It's tough being a woman, but trust reverses the detours of adversity into the highways of destiny.
Are you ready to be vulnerable?
Are you ready to allow God to move in your life?
Are you ready to have your toes stepped on?
If so, then you need Beth Moore's Esther Bible Study. I am giving away my copy of the Member Guide, which is used and possibly tear stained but not written in at all, to ONE of my you! You can do this without the video that goes along or you can buy each session on Lifeway's website. I finished the last four weeks without the video and didn't have any trouble following along at all.
I honestly wish I could give a copy to each of you. And better still I wish I could invite you all over to my house for a steaming cup of chai and we could open and study God's holy, precious love letter together.

video

If you've never done a Beth Moore study before, let me tell you, you are in for a real treat. You will laugh, you will cry, you will meet your Heavenly Father and learn more about his Word in ten weeks than you ever thought possible. God has anointed Beth Moore to take a 10 chapter book out of the Bible and make it shake you to your very core. You can see a sample lesson here.

Want a chance to win? Just leave a comment here by February 13 at midnight. You can leave an anonymous comment but you need to make sure I know who you are. If you don't have a Google account you need to leave a way for me to contact you. If you want to enter twice, just post about the giveaway on your blog or Facebook page and then come back to tell me that you did so. Winner will be announced February 14 - my Valentine to you.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Another Way to Help Haiti


Breezy is painting a new series and will offer the originals only in her Etsy shop when they are completed. All proceeds will be donated to Rescue Haiti's Children. Keep an eye on her blog for more details and availability. She has the first painting posted but will not offer it in her shop until the whole series is done. It is stunning, as her work always is.