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Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 16

No, you haven't missed any of the days between Day 7 and today.  I just haven't been on the computer that much.

Today I am very thankful for my husband.  He is always cheering me up and encouraging me in the faith.  My favorite thing about him is that he makes me laugh.  I am so thankful that he encourages me to serve the Lord.  I'm thankful that he is a hard-working man and because of that I was able to stay home while we raised our children.  Now that they are all out of the home, I am still able to stay home and spend more time in ministry.

I love you, Michael!!

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Day 7


I am so thankful that no matter what happens in our nation, no matter who is elected or not elected, that my King is still on the throne.  My hope is not in this world.  My hope is in Christ! God is in control; He still reigns!!

The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord; He directs it like a watercourse wherever He pleases. (Proverbs 21:1)

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Day 3

I am so thankful for the beautiful season of Autumn here in Virginia.  Last weekend Michael and I went to the western part of the state to visit some friends and to get away!  We stayed in a bed and breakfast that was really nice...as were the hosts.

On Saturday we were able to visit some nearby places and the above is Mabry Mill.  I took this picture with my phone!  We were about a week late for peak foliage but the colors were still gorgeous.

I'm thankful that we have four seasons here but my favorite is the fall.  God's creation at its best!

Day 2

I am a homebody.  There's no place that I would rather be than home.  Studying the Word. Working on projects.  Baking.  Cleaning.  Reading. Listening to music.

I am thankful for my home.  Our family moved to Virginia in 1990 and this house as been our home for 22 years.  Yes, some of the walls are crooked and the bathrooms need updating but that's ok. This house is full of memories and love.

Thank You, Lord, for providing this home and filling it with joy, laughter, sorrow and everything else good that You have given us.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

A Month of Thanksgiving


Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe.  (Hebrews 12:28)
I have much to be thankful for and want to spend the month in acknowledging that gratitude to the Lord for all He has done.
Today, on the first of November, I want to thank Him for saving me.  He gave me the free gift of eternal life.  He rescued me from my sin.  When I was running away from Him, He gave me the faith to believe.
Thank You, Lord, for your saving grace and for your great mercy!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Repost: Margin




I wrote this post in January 2007 but thought I would share it again now that school and other activities are starting up again. The concept of "margin" has been such a blessing to me and I hope it will be to you also.
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The first time I heard about “margin” was at a workshop given by a local homeschool speaker, Shelley Hendry, in 1998. She was giving a workshop on the Titus 2 woman and encouraged us to put margin in our lives. Like margins around the edge of a sheet of paper, we need to have margins around all the areas in our lives. 

The principle of margin is from the book, “Margin” by Dr. Richard Swenson. He has also published a book called “The Overload Syndrome”. I highly recommend both of these books if you wish to put the principle of margin in your life.

What is this margin and how do I create it? Margin is a “white space” around all you have to do during the day. It’s allowing time in your homeschool to work on character qualities when the need arises. It’s allowing time for the unexpected when you are heading out the door to church or on errands. It’s thinking “can I do this (activity, work, etc.) without relationships suffering or losing my sanctification?” It’s having enough time in our day that we can joyfully go about our duties as wives and mothers. It’s planning your life with a cushion for mistakes.

One practical way to do this is when running errands. If you have little ones, you know that nothing takes “ten minutes”. Allow extra time for things to go wrong. Remember that an errand involves stopping what everyone is doing, getting ready, getting everyone into the car, driving to the errand, doing the errand, loading everyone back into the car and driving home. Once you are home it takes a while to unload everyone (and things if you’ve gone shopping) and to unwind and get back to your daily routine. Allow time for this!

Allow margin for time to do important things. If you are so tightly scheduled that when your child asks you an important question you don’t have time to answer it, then you need margin. If you have outside activities so crammed together that you are in a panic when a child loses a shoe or there is a detour in the road, then you need margin.

One of the things that Shelley said during the workshop that stuck with me all these years is “life is not a dot-to-dot”. It’s not about getting from one place to the next in the quickest way possible. We need to have time in our lives to worship the Lord, train our children, manage our households, and care for our husbands. If we are on a dot-to-dot journey, then those areas will be neglected and we “will malign the word of God” (Titus 2:5).

Do you have margin in your life? If so, can you share some of the ways you accomplish this? If not, will you prayerfully ask the Lord to help you in this area?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Washington, DC Trip

Michael had to go to Washington, DC this past Thursday through Sunday.  While he was there for business, I went with him to see some sights while he was in his meetings.  Although I didn't get to see him during the day we did have dinner together every night.  That was a blessing!

We took the train up on Thursday afternoon and had dinner at the hotel.

Friday I spent the day at the National Gallery of Art.  The whole day and I still didn't see everything.  I really enjoyed the George Bellows exhibition.  I had never heard of him so I first went to see a film about his life and then the exhibition.  I really enjoyed it and was glad to find a new artist.

One of my favorite things was all the mobiles from Alexander Calder.  They were in a room all by themselves and it was so peaceful to sit there gazing at all of them.

Saturday I did the touristy thing and rode the Double Decker bus around to see the sights.  The first stop was the Holocaust Museum where I spent about 2 hours.  The permanent exhibition is very moving and I couldn't get through it without crying.  There were some exhibits that I couldn't really look at for long.  I wouldn't say I enjoyed the visit but I found it very powerful and something I will never forget.  I hope the world never forgets either.

My second stop was the Jefferson Memorial which I had never seen before.  After that, I just rode the bus around town and enjoyed the view.  It was a beautiful day and the breeze at the top of the bus was refreshing!

We came back by train on Sunday and had dinner with some friends who picked us up.  It was a wonderful weekend!

Here's some pictures:


Inside the National Art Gallery lobby


Train Ride on the way home


I like the girl in this painting.  She looks so self-confident.

The Heritage Foundation

Our Hotel Lobby.  We stayed at the Hyatt in Capitol Hill.

Renoir

Michael at dinner

Our Room

Love, love, love this Monet painting.



Random pigeon walking through the Amtrak station!


We ran into a huge rainstorm coming home from dinner on Saturday night.  Thankfully there was a cab right at the door of our restaurant and we didn't get  too wet.

I really like this painting.  I just love the ease with which the man skates!



Van Gogh.  I like the colors here.  

This is the walkway between the East and West Buildings of the National Art Gallery.  Fun!


Wyeth.  Can't you just feel that breeze?  This is such a peaceful picture.

Monday, August 06, 2012

Dear Stay-at-Home Mom




Here's a letter of encouragement for all you stay-at-home moms. I've been home for 26 years now and I'm so thankful.  I'm thankful for my husband and his job that allows me to stay home. It hasn't been easy but it has been a blessing.  I'm thankful that I was home to see all the milestones.  I'm thankful, too, that I had the privilege of educating my children at home.

As you go about your day, remember that to be a wife and mother is a high and holy calling from the Lord.  The world doesn't really appreciate what you do but your work is important.  Living out the gospel is most important thing you can do!  Rest in Him and in His grace.

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Becoming God's True Woman

 "Becoming God's True Woman" is on sale now for the Kindle for only $2.99.  Good deal!  It' regularly $11.99!

Monday, July 30, 2012

July in Pictures

Fourth of July Fireworks!

Jessica and Anthony

Morgan and Julianne, Jessica

Michael and Me

Flowers by my mailbox

Beach Trip

Our new grill


Jared back from his 3-week trip to Colorado Springs.  He was training servers at the new Bonefish restaurant.

Mollie and Alex, friends of Juianne.  It was Mollie's singing debut!

I love this picture of Morgan and Julianne

I didn't take this but this is a picture of a huge storm cloud coming our way!  This was taken just up the road from us.

Brooke and Richard, who came to the 4th of July baseball game with us

Monday, July 02, 2012

Derecho

Until Friday night I had never heard of a "derecho".  According to Wikepedia:  derecho (Spanishderecho "straight", pronounced [de̞ˈɾe̞tʃo̞][1]), is a widespread and long-lived, violent convectively induced straight-line windstorm that is associated with a fast-moving band of severe thunderstorms in the form of a squall line usually taking the form of abow echo. Derechos blow in the direction of movement of their associated storms, similar to a gust front, except that the wind is sustained and generally increases in strength behind the "gust" front. A warm weather phenomenon, derechos occur mostly in summer, especially June and July in the Northern Hemisphere. They can occur at any time of the year and occur as frequently at night as in the daylight hours.


One of these blew through our area Friday night causing lots of damage and power outages.  Thankfully, we only had some large branches down and no damage to our home.  We did lose electricity around midnight and were restored in the early evening.  With 100 degree heat, I wasn't looking forward to days without electricity as when we had Irene and Isabel.  


Saturday night we had another big storm blow through that had a tornado associated with it!  Thankfully we didn't lose power or have any damage other than more branches down.  We have been quiet since them but temps are still in the high 90's.  What was different about this storm is that it was full of lightning that lasted for about 2 or 3 hours.  On TV they kept showing all the lightning bolts over our county and it was just lit up.  Nothing quite like this storm, but it was a good one!


Hopefully this week will be much more quiet!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Home!

I arrived back home on Monday evening and have been trying to catch up on everything around the house.  I had errands to run today and yesterday so I am still behind.  Tomorrow I am home until 8 pm.  Whoo Hoo!  Lord willing, I will get most of my to-do list accomplished.

The conference was great and I am still taking it all in.  I hope to post about it next week when I have more free time.

Our weather has been gorgeous the last two days with low temps and low humidity.  All that is changing tomorrow and the weekend promises triple digits!

That's all from here today!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Road Trip!


Trish and I will be heading to Florida on Thursday to attend the 2012 Women's Conference put on by The Gospel Coalition. We're so excited!  I am praying that the Lord will use this time to strengthen our faith in Him, draw us closer to Him, and to learn more about Him so that we can share with other women.

This conference comes at a perfect time in my life.  (Of course, God's timing is always perfect!).  I have been a former homeschooling mom for a year now.  This year has been one of transition and I'm not sure where the Lord is leading me.  While homeschooling my days had focus and purpose.  I miss that!  I don't want to work outside of the home so I am resting in the Lord and waiting to see His direction in my life.

I have had the time to be involved in more of what I call my "encouragement ministry", for lack of a better name.  I am now able to have lunch with ladies one-on-one to get to know them better and discuss things of the Lord...and other things, of course!  I'm also able to have a time of Bible study with them or just spend time together.  I'm thankful that the Lord has provided me with that time and the freedom to do so.

I taught a workshop on prayer a month or so ago and realized that teaching is not really my gift.  Haha!  I am much better with one or a very small group.  My desire is really to help ladies, especially young women, see that being a wife and mother is a high and holy calling.  I want to be able to help them live out the gospel in their home and to have a grace-filled home.  That is truly the desire of my heart and I am trusting the Lord to lead me to those women He would like me to serve!

I'm not taking my laptop with me but will post when I return.  See you soon!


Monday, May 21, 2012

The Radical Question


I recently listed to The Radical Question by David Platt.  This book starts out with a story of what believers in East Asia go through just to meet and read the Word of God (read by narrator Lloyd James, who I enjoyed very much).  They meet in secret; if they are found out their tongues could be cut out or they may lose their lives.  David Platt says they have shown by their sacrifices how much Jesus means to them.

He then asks the question:  What is Jesus worth to us?  By us, he means Americans.   He then goes on tell us what it means to sacrifice for Jesus.  He tells us to sacrifice it all.  All=the American dream, our stuff, our priorities.  We have a choice and should choose to die to ourselves and sacrifice our lives, gifts, skills, family and resources to make Christ known.

While I was convicted of having too much stuff and not living enough for the Lord, the author didn't really explain how I go about sacrificing all.  Do I just sell everything to go into missions?  I wish he would have given some practical ideas on what it means to sacrifice all.

He ends the book with the same radical question:  What is Jesus worth to me?  He then exhorts the reader to "...stop living as if this world is our home."  All well and good but how is that done?  What does it look like?  I think I would have enjoyed the book more if it didn't leave me hanging on a question that wasn't answered.


Please Note: This audiobook was gifted as a part of the christianaudio Reviewers Program in exchange for my unbiased review of this work. This has in no way influenced my opinion or review of this work. More information can be found about this and other Christian audiobooks at christianaudio.com.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Celebrating!


The past few days have been very rainy.  It is so hard for me to get motivated on days like this!  We needed the rain, though, so I am very thankful for it.  Perhaps the sun will come out later today!

Tuesday night our whole family went out to celebrate the engagement of Jessica and Anthony!  Here we are all together:


We had a wonderful time.  Now that everyone is working and/or going to school it is hard to get us all together in the same place.  Thankfully everyone's schedules worked out and we were able to celebrate.  

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Deep Running Veins of Sin

I read this article by Tim Challies this morning and it really spoke to me.  It is so easy (for me) to not dig too deep into those areas of my life where I am harboring sin.  But I need to dig!  And thankfully the Lord puts me in situations or brings people into my path that show me where my sin lies.  Other times it is when reading His word that I will be convicted of something that needs to be changed.
 

I pray that my heart will always be open to what the Lord is teaching me; that I will not harden it but accept it as a blessing from Him.

Friday, April 06, 2012

By His Wounds

A song for Good Friday...


Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Invasion of the Inch Worms


In the past week our area has been under attack from inchworms.  They are everywhere...on the door, windows and deck of the house.  Floating through the air on their wispy threads.  The one in the picture above looks cute.  That is until there are hundreds of them wherever you go.  A friend just posted on FB that she found one in her freezer.  

I heard on the news today that the infestation should be over in a week or so.  I hope it's sooner!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Hello!


I am ready to get back into the blogging world!  I took a much- needed break but now hope to be back on a more regular basis!

Monday, January 09, 2012

A Good Soldier


Some Bible study notes from studying 2 Timothy 2:3-4:  Endure hardship with us like a good solider of Christ Jesus.  No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs--he wants to please his commanding officer.


When I trusted the Lord as my Savior, I also took Him on as Lord—as my Commanding Officer.  As my C.O., the Lord has the right to do with me as He pleases.

My life should be totally committed to Him.  Although these verses may be talking about a pastor, the same principles are true for me.  I am not to become entangled in worldly pursuits.  I am to have singleness of purpose:  pleasing the Lord.  If I am to be a good soldier then my affections, time and talents are to be used in godly pursuits that would further the gospel.  Spending time on worldly pursuits can cause my heart to stray from Him and those things can become my treasure.  (Matthew 6:21; also Colossians 3:1-2)
Jesus tells us that we are to love the Lord with ALL our heart, soul, mind and strength.  That doesn’t leave room for much else.  That doesn’t mean that we’re to not do things that are church-related but that in ALL we do, the Lord should be first. 

Another thing about a soldier’s life was that hardship was expected.  John tells us “not to be surprised, my brothers, if the world hates us” and Peter says “do not be surprised at the painful trial you are suffering, as though something strange were happening to you”.  But Paul tells Timothy to “Endure hardship with us”.  We are not alone in these trials; we have a body of believers who can come alongside to help and comfort.  The Lord Himself said that we have a Comforter.  We can go to the throne of God and receive mercy and find grace in our time of need.

To live a life that is pleasing to the Lord is one of total commitment and hard work; it is one that involves suffering and trials.  We need to rely on the Lord for strength and endurance to be a good soldier; to follow orders from our Commanding Officer whether they are easy or hard.  If we have a singleness of purpose as a soldier does, then the Lord will give courage and perseverance to accept the assignment He gives us (Psalm 16:5).

If we persevere and please our Lord, then we will hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant!  You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things.  Come and share your Master’s happiness!”




Tuesday, January 03, 2012