Friday, May 26, 2006

I read this this morning, and it confirms alot that God is already teaching me. And though I can be weighed down with guilt, and sadness, I can also ask for forgivness, and look to God for his grace and mercy.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

EASY Strawberry Shortcake

Strawberries are in season here, yum, yum...
Last night we had a few families over for supper and I made a quick simple strawberry Shortcake.

Take a pound or two of strawberries, chop them up, add just a little sugar, place in refrigerator while you bake a yellow cake (box mix is easiest), let it cool. Then in a pretty glass bowl (it's all about presentation ;o) ) break the cake in large chunks, layer it alternating cake, cool whip and strawberries. Add a few sliced strawberries on top. Chill a couple of hours if possible. ENJOY! This is one of our favorite summer time treats!

A Teacher of Good Things
I FINALLY finished the small quilt I was working on for our piano teacher. I added her 5 favorite hymns to it, and used colors that would match her home. Titus 2 tells us that we women are to be teachers of good things, and she is one that spends alot of time teaching a good thing!

I need to tell how my husband blessed me beyond words the other day. I've really had a hard time with missing my son, and Thursday was just awful, I feel like this dark cloud is just hanging over me all the time and the sun may never shine I was pulling out of the driveway I saw Jeff was unloading his truck, and he was pulling off a full size see-saw!!! I just looked at him and said, "What are you going to do with that?" He said, "I thought I'd get this for the grandchildren." Oh my goodness! See he doesn't really talk that way, he is always so busy living in *today*. Our children are only 18, 15 and 11, so grandchildren are a bit in the future ya know... Well, it was like a beam of sunlight breaking through a storm cloud, a beam of hope, that there are brighter days ahead, there is hope, there is a future, I will feel like laughing again.
Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Reading from My Utmost for His Highest, August 18

2 sentences REALLY hit home to me.

"Are you more devoted to your idea of what Jesus wants than to Himself?"
***my confession:
I spend more time fretting over the do's and don'ts, and making sure everyone else is marching to the same drum, when my passion, my devotion should simply be set on Him.***

"Discouragement is disenchanted self-love..."
***now there is a deep and painful thought!***

Sunday, May 21, 2006

What are We Advertising?

Many years ago there was a family that I admired from a distance. They were a larger than 'normal' family (I think they have 10 or 11 now). When I saw them in public they were ALWAYS dressed neatly and modestly, the children were ALWAYS well behaved, but what I admired the most about them was that they were ALWAYS smiling and kind. My heart longed to be like that, not knowing that the key to it all was Jesus as Lord. I just knew I wanted to have what they had!!!

Since then God has given me the privilege to meet them and get to know them a little. They are not perfect, as none of us are, but they do strive to walk in obedience to God.

Whether we admit it or not, our actions, our words and our appearance are advertising. We are telling the world what we believe.

This morning I was thinking; What am I advertising about my role as a wife and mother? What am I saying with my attitude, my actions and my words towards my husband? Am I really honoring him? Am I walking the walk so that my daughters will honor their father and future husband? I tend to think I am so much more spiritual than he is, smarter than he is, second guessing his decisions (BOY! Pride is ugly!). According to God's word I am blaspheming GOD's Word (Titus 2). May God grant me forgiveness and mercy. I need to be 'advertisting' to others that marriage is wonderful!!! Not easy, but all the same, wonderful! I need to be 'advertisting' to others that my husband has my respect, not beacuse of us, but to bring glory to God.

This also goes into the areas of mothering. Am I 'advertising' to my children they are loved with the actions and words I use, or do I treat them like they are imposing on MY time? Am I 'advertising' to them that Motherhood is a high calling and to be desired? They are a gift from God!

What about appearance? Modesty is important. Do I dress in a way that is defrauding to others? Do I allow our daughters to look sensual just to be fashionable?

The list goes on and on. I don't intend for this to sound legalistic, at the same time Godliness is important. Let's *advertise* of Christ and ***His ways*** without even saying a word. Let's show a lost and dying world that God's ways are RIGHT, and GOOD! That HIS ways bring peace and joy, no matter what the circumstances. That God does bless obedience. Let's put our selfishness aside, SHOW our husbands honor and respect. SHOW our children love, even when it means putting aside all the things "we" want to do today.

The world is watching...what are we advertising?

Titus 2: 4-5so that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, so that the word of God will not be dishonored.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

From: "Toward a Christian

Our children are God's gift to us. If we are Christians, they are
God's; and it is our responsibility to hide them in Christ. It is our
responsibility to say 'No' to the world, which in every subtle way
would put it's stamps upon their minds and hearts. Our children are
given to us to raise for God. They are not given to us for our own
comfort, our joy-although we get comfort and joy from them; but they
are given to us by God to raise for Him. God has set fathers and,
under them, mothers to rule over their own families well, having their
"children in subjection with all gravity," with all godliness.

Cleaning, Quilting and Children

Last night was our daughters' piano recital.

They did so well and we are so proud of their hours and hours of hard work to learn their music. We also catered the reception after the recital. Jeff and I had a late night the night before, he is a volunteer fireman and they had a structure fire, so we didn't get to sleep until after 3 am. Between being exhausted, and so much to do as far getting food ready for the recital, the housework was greatly neglected. When we got in from the recital about 10 pm I was too tired to do anything.

I woke up to my oldest daughter (15) washing the dishes...*what a blessing.* Both girls had plans today with Grandma, and as much as I hated to move from the recliner, I knew the dirty, cluttered house needed to be tackled. After putting on my sneakers, pulling my hair back, tying on an apron, and popping in some 'happy' music, I started my work. I spent several hours tackling one 'hot spot' (as Flylady would call them), then another. While I worked I prayed, sang, thought through some things, etc.. As I finished up mopping the floor and putting a flower on the kitchen table, I stood back and just enjoyed the finish product. Isn't a clean house so satisfying? Now if I wanted to put on my 'critical glasses', I could point out all that still needs to be done and go around feeling defeated all day, because it's never going to be done perfectly nor completely, there are always 'hot spots' that need to be taken care of. But I just want to enjoy the fruit of my labor and smile at a mopped floor before someone comes tracking in, which I'm sure will be dear ol' hubby :o)

I just love being a homemaker, I am NOT a house wife, nor am I a housekeeper, but a ***homemaker***. It is so satisfying when I have done my job and done it well. Feminist may think little of homemaking, that orderliness, clean floors, matching socks, a full meal on the table for supper, and so on, is not that big of a deal, that we *homemakers* are wasting our lives away doing things that no one notices, that we are not effecting the world, that we are not adding to the family income, etc... Well... my husband notices and it blesses him for me to be his helper (Gen. 'helpmeet'), he tells me this all the time. There is no dollar amount that anyone could pay me that would equal a "thank you" from my husband. Also, my Lord notices. He notices when I have a grateful, obedient attitude. According to His written word, He created me to be my husband's helper, and then to be a mother. There is so much peace in that, so much satisfaction. No, it is not always easy, most days are busy, tirering, and some are down right hard. But that is why I am here. To work, and rejoice in why God made me.

Cleaning is kind of like quilting. First you have to have the resolve to 'just do it'! Then start working your plan. I love the 'idea' of a quilt, I look at them and ooo and aww at them. I loooove to get under one when I am cold, but I don't necessarily enjoy all the cutting, measuring, sewing (fighting with thread, bobbins, ect...) RIPPING out seams, getting stuck by pins, and so on... but OOOOH! How I love the finished project. I find great accomplishment in knowing that *I* made that quilt. There is something so satisfying about creating something. And I think it is the same feeling I get when I clean house. I like the 'idea' of a nice clean house, but I really don't enjoy scrubbing the toilet, or the dust bunnies, or the stack of dirty clothes, but OOOOOH! how I love the finished product. I love to step back and look at my kitchen when it is clean. I love not having to jump and hide clutter if someone were to come to the!

And I guess it is the same for child training or most any other thing in life. No one really enjoys the task of spanking a child, or giving the same instruction 100 times, but we love the finished product of a well-behaved, skilled, kind, Godly, young adult.

Life is not easy, the majority of it is work, in one form or another. So we must resolve to do our work, with confidence that this is the will of the Father, with perseverance, purpose and joy. Seeking to glorify God...after all...THIS IS WHY WE ARE HERE!

Isaiah 40:31
but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.