Thursday, November 29, 2007

"that was so nice of God!"

I will be posting some recent pics in the next day or so...stay tuned!
...on other news, I'm at work making calls for a collection agency for libraries...and I just left a message for a lady named "Precious Unique Loving"....WHO names a kid that?! ...pretty funny, at least my job makes me laugh sometimes!
...only 40 mins left for the night, which ends my day of work from 7:40am till 11pm (disclaimer: had a 2 and a 1/2 hour break between my two jobs today to eat and rest a little--played with baby kate and talked with jenn and chandler-God's providence for me, to be refreshed with friends in the midst of a LONG day!)

...THANKFULLY, tomorrow (fri) I have off from work! Lord Willing, I will get to Enjoy Tomorrow by:

1. Clothes Closet (a mercy ministry through my church to provide clothes, lunch and the Gospel message, and great opportunity to meet people that I would not naturally get to meet, with hopes to share the good news of Christ by connecting with them in relationships and meeting some practical needs!)
2. Hopefully, time will allow--to visit our widow in our church who is in the hospital-Ms. Minnie, she is such a dear lady and a great example of perseverance of faith till the end. She is 94 years old and is proclaiming the Gospel to her family and asking them to believe before the Lord takes her home...apparently she has been soaking her pillow with tears at night as she prays for their salvation! What a godly example of a women who hopes and trust in God till the very end! Praise God! When we visited her last, we sang some hymns and had the nurses talking about our singing!!
2. Resting and Reading
3. Cleaning the kitchen
4. Meeting up with a friend for coffee in the later afternoon
5. Friends are going ice skating at night, which I plan to make an appearance for a little while...
6. and after that, Sleep-over with some ladies from my church! Great idea of getting some ladies together, from all season of life (some with children, married, and singles) to share a girlie night of fun and fellowship! (need make chocolate cookies to bring!) conclude this post: I LOVE looking forward to fun-filled day of resting and makes the days of work all the more worth it!

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven."

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

ONE more day to go!

It's hard to believe that this semester will be OVER by TOMORROW (wed)! God has been so gracious to me to carry me through! I have been in school since the age of 5, so almost 20 years!! Which is crazy to think about b/c school has never been "my thing"...for purposes unknown to me, God sees this the best fit way to sanctify me for His glory! Therefore, though it has had its hard patches...I see it has been for my good.

So, looking ahead to my J-term class (3 day class from 8am-8pm in January!) I got excited to see what books I would get to buy and read for it! I LOVE to read and I LOVE to collect books for my library, (so maybe that's why this school thing has been working for me for so long!?)

The class I'll take is called, Gender, Marriage, and Sexuality w/ my professor Dr. Scott(click on his name). Which I must say, I am very thankful for his teaching! He makes it so Christ-center and practical!

Anywho, here's my list of books I need for the class (click on the book if you want to check it out on amazon for yourself):

I have only 1 of those books already! So, looks like I've get to hit the bookstore soon! I better start this reading and planning for the class this coming week! We have some assignments that will be do at the start of the class (January 22nd)! ...I must say, I am thankful for this time the Lord has given...that He has called me to study and better understand Him and learn how to point myself and His people to Christ! I must praise God for this time He has sovereignly planned for me...don't you hate it when you start to forget that His purposes are Higher and Far better than mine!? I have to admit, eariler today I was forgetting this truth and being a little complainer!

Oh Father, Help my unbelief! Let me be thankful for every season you bring and find rest that you know what is best!

Here's a nice Hymn...May this be our Prayer:

"Guide Me, O thou Great Jehovah! Pilgrim through this barren land! Iam weak but thou art mighty. Hold me with thy pow'rful hand. Bread of heaven, Bread of heaven, Feed me till I want no more.
Open now the crystal fountain. Whence, the healing streams do flow. Let the firey, cloudy pillar. Lead me all my journey through. Strong Deliv'rer, strong Deliv'rer, Be thou still my strength and shield.
Feed me with the heavn'ly manna. In this barren wilderness. Be my sword and shield, and banner. Be my robe of righteousness. Fight and conquer; fight and conquer, All my foes by sov'reign grace.
When I pass through death's dark shadow. Bid my anxious fears subside. Death of deaths, and hell's destruction. Lead me safe on heaven's side. Songs of praises, songs of praises, I will ever give to thee."

Saturday, November 24, 2007

free rice

check out this site....a fun game, that is a little addicting, but expands your vocabulary!

(got it from my friend Jill's blog, thanks jill! it's a great game to play, if you have a job like mine!)

Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Turkey Day!

Happy Thanksgiving! May the Lord draw you to Himself and remind you of His Love and Grace because of Christ! We have TONS to be thankful for! We have a Sovereign God who cares for His people! And He will be exalted in all the Earth! May our hearts see it as joy to Praise Him!
Psalm 148
Praise the Name of the LORD

"Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens; praise him in the heights!
Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his hosts!
Praise him, sun and moon, praise him, all you shining stars!

Praise him, you highest heavens, and you waters above the heavens!
Let them praise the name of the LORD! For he commanded and they were created.

And he established them forever and ever; he gave a decree, and it shall not pass away.
Praise the LORD from the earth, you great sea creatures and all deeps,
fire and hail, snow and mist, stormy wind fulfilling his word!
Mountains and all hills, fruit trees and all cedars!

Beasts and all livestock, creeping things and flying birds!
Kings of the earth and all peoples, princes and all rulers of the earth!

Young men and maidens together, old men and children!
Let them praise the name of the LORD, for his name alone is exalted; his majesty is above earth and heaven. He has raised up a horn for his people, praise for all his saints, for the people of Israel who are near to him. Praise the LORD!"

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

when painful surprises, turn me to the Lord....grace upon grace

Today has been hard. Perhaps what I'm about to share is too honest for the blog-world...yet I will share my little story...the purpose being that it shows God's grace and providence all over in the events of this day! And, that brings true encouragement to my heart in the midst of frustration! So, in all asked the question--Do I really believe that God is fully in control, my provider and support...and is faithful to make me into the image of Christ? What I wrote on yesterday's post...Will I believe and take heart in Christ, in the midst of my own frustrations and limitations? And smile at the future?

So here it goes my little story:

I took my room-mate, Chandler to the airport at 3:45am (after going to bed at 1am!) she was headed home to Delware for Thanksgiving. this is a picture of Chandler---isn't she cute!? I'm blessed that God has placed her in my life! This pic is her loving me, by doing some dishes...

After the airport trip, I feel straight back to bed till my boss called me at 7:45am, saying she was running a little late and would meet me in 15 minutes! (for those who don't know, my second job is cleaning houses for a lady who owns her own cleaning company.) Needless to say, I ran out the door in a huge hurry and made it! We cleaned a million dollar home for about 3 hours...

Then I headed to the bank to deposit some long over due paychecks (3 to be exact). This is where it gets interesting...the reciept the teller gave me said my current balance was -$68 dollars!!! I freaked out and of course there was tears...went back inside to the teller to get some clarifications about the matter! She said I was over-drafting my bank account since November 12th! A whole 10 days I have gone without even knowing that I was in the hole! I got no notifications from the bank and was left with fat charges over $400 dollars worth! Now its freak out time! The tears began to roll and wouldn't stop...the lady said they could waive 50% of the charges (total gracious of God) and then i closed my savings account by adding the amount in my checking!! As you can tell, this was A COMPLETE SHOCK to me!

I immediatly felt frustration to anger to shame and then to self-pity!

This resulted in talking to my dad and he is gracious to help me in this trickyness once more (confession: this isn't the first time i've over-drawn, but to my credit it's been over a year, since my last time...I am a slow learner!) He said he would pay next months rent for me, so I won't be in trouble with other finances that come up! Praise the Lord for loving, supported parents! Thanks Dad and Mom, for always being a picture of grace to me--pointing me to our Great God who has lavished us in mercy and grace through His Son!

Learned THREE things:
1. I tend to put my trust in how much I have in my bank account and not in God, who ultimately is my Provider.
2. I must trust the Lord's providence, even in the details of life! I had some immediate questions of how I was going to make ends meet. The Lord is the answer, He used my parents to provide some immediate help, my savings account (though only 100 dollars, that's better than nothing), even down to the sillyst thought i had, "i need to buy another noise stud b/c my fake dimand fail out of it, how am going to do that?" Well, later in the day I found another nose stud on my bathroom floor! I know that sounds silly, but that's something I asked the Lord to take care of. There are other questions that come to mind. What about Christmas gifts, getting my hair-cut, other thoughts...if God can take care of providing a little nose stud for me and next months rent, then how could He not provide grace for what He sees fit in the future?
3. Practically speaking, I've got to cultivate discipline in my finances and learn a way in keeping up with money. Anyone have any suggestions? I'm open! I desire to do so for the glory of God. I desire to be a good steward of what He has given me. I must continue on the pursuit of cultivating more Biblical disciplines in my life! May His grace enable me to do so! I do feel motivated and ever more knowing, how dependent I must be on His grace!

but ultimately...the heart questions is: Who do I trust? Is my hope in myself, or in God?

Thankfully, we are all a work in progress...He is preparing us for glory. Why am i surprised when I see myself fail? My problem is that I don't really understand the grace He has given me in Christ. Therefore, this may skew how I can give grace to others. If you are like me, be encouraged...Christ kept a perfect checkbook and never bounced a check! He came for sinners alike, that His life might count for ours! THIS IS MY HOPE! Praise God, for not giving up on me, but for using this to draw me to Himself and see my need for a Savior!

(a special thanks goes out to Jenn and Nick for encouraging me today by edifying me through my tears of frustration and pointing me back to Christ! And, for Patti Withers for encouraging me with words of truth too! And, for my family who sees all my faults and still loves me! Thank God for the Body...He is gracious to take care of us through the edification of Believers!)

At Prayer tonight, we read Psalm describes David's depression and how He turns to the Living God for releif! May this be my response, all the days of my life (no matter what tomorrow holds, for we know "He had dealt bountifully with me", by Redeeming me through His Son):

1 "How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?

3 Consider and answer me, O Lord my God;
light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,
4 lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,”
lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.

5 But I have trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
6 I will sing to the Lord,
because he has dealt bountifully with me."

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

new seasons, new beginnings...

Thanksgiving is in TWO days and it's hard to believe that it's already this time of the year again...before we know it, it will be Christmas!

I love this time of year because it reminds me of the new beginnings that are approaching, along with new mercies. Makes me excited to see what the Lord has instore this upcoming year! Trusting His providence!

Things I'm looking forward to(Lord willing) apporaching the New Year:
1. A friend is visiting me! My dear friend, Susian Walker is coming--December 8-11th...she was in my bible study and she became so dear to me, we met for several years weekly and was challenged and encouraged by her friendship!
2. Visit my family--December 23rd-30th in dallas and ft.worth area! Lots of time with family...which is long-over due!
3. Visit Lubbock (college) friends--Decemeber 30th-Jan.2nd! I'm in Marla Lees's Wedding (one of my college room-mates)! So I get to celebrate the New Year with old fun!
4. Completing my First YEAR of living in Louisville, come January!
5. Completing 23 credits(almost half done) towards by Masters in Biblical Counseling, by end of January!
6. My sister April's 2nd baby boy due at the end of February!
7. I turn half a century (25 years old!), come the last day of March!
8. Training for my 1/2 marathon...this spring I want complete this goal! keep me accountable to this!

And knowing that the Future is the Lord's! I want to laugh at the future, like the Proverbs 31 woman, knowing confidently God holds it! Therefore, whatever He see's best fit for me (come joy, pain, struggle), I pray that I'd have grace to believe that it's because of His love for me in Why. Nothing more I need to know! in Habakkuk 3:17-19!

For His glory, let this be my prayer and heart too:

"Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
God, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer's;
he makes me tread on my high places."

Monday, November 19, 2007

Can Women be Theologians?

I was challenged by Carolyn Custis James (author).
She spoke at the CCEF conference I went to begining of November, and was totally blessed! I know this looks long, but READ the interview below, it's really challenging and true! Tell me your thoughts on this!

We are called to be thinker's of God's Word. And can NOT leave it for the "experts" to handle it. This is a picture of Carolyn James up-coming book...which I plan on reading once school slows down!

Check out her interview:

"The following is an candid conversation between author and speaker, Carolyn Custis James and President of New Growth Press, Karen Jacklin Teears:

: In your work with the Whitby Forum, you state that part of your mission is to encourage women in their pursuit of a deeper relationship with God. You also state that "theologian is simply another word for Christian." For the everyday woman, why is the word theologian, as it applies to our everyday lives, necessary? Don't we have enough buzzwords around our faith? Isn't it enough to just be a Christian?

: Using a strong term like "theologian" jars us out of our complacency and compels us to consider what I believe is one of the most serious issues facing women today. We live theological lives. We're called to live by faith in a God we can't see, in a fallen world where our heartaches, losses, and tragedies make no sense to us. Trouble brings out the theologian in us. As I wrote in When Life and Beliefs Collide, "The moment the word 'why' crosses your lips, you're doing theology." There's no way to avoid it.

J.I. Packer describes the person who neglects the study of God as "stumbling and blundering through life with no sense of direction and no understanding of what surrounds you." I don't want to do that myself and I don't want to sit back while my sisters in Christ try to survive on fluff.
We need a wake-up call. We need to get serious about getting to know our God. By self-consciously pursuing a deeper understanding of God, we fortify ourselves for the challenges and difficulties that will inevitably come our way.

Karen: Your teachings on women and gender roles have ignited substantial levels of debate amongst theologians. Did that come as a surprise to you? How have you dealt with the seeming backlash of criticism from many in evangelical circles?

Carolyn: I have three brothers, so I can't say I'm surprised by criticism. However, I will say, there's a big difference in the criticism that comes from people who love and want the best for you and the criticism that comes from those who don't.

It's flattering to think my work has "ignited substantial levels of debate." If that were true, I'm sure it would be good for book sales. To be honest, I think that's overstating things. Yes, my work has been criticized, but actually the biggest surprise has been the wonderful support I have received.

Many Christian leaders have written on the theme of the importance of theology for Christians. But no one has taken up the importance of theology for women."

*Taken from The Gospel of Ruth by Carolyn Custis James. Copyright 2008. Used by permission of Zondervan