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Women Living Well Blog: December 2008

Women Living Well Blog

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Setting Goals for 2009 - #3 Parenting

So today I am setting my third goal for 2009! Let's just say that I fell very short on this goal!!! Are you ready for this?

On January 1st, 2008, goal #3 for the year was "To never raise my voice at the children. There will be no yelling in our house. I will respect the children and they will respect me and each other. I will role model how I want them to behave and I will not use harsh words or looks."

I think this was an excellent goal - but I fell very short - so I face the agony of failure again today! What I needed for Christmas was a black and white striped shirt and a whistle - I feel confident that my football loving son would respond to that quite well! But truly, I desire to be a patient and self-controlled mommy and I will definately admit that I have raised my voice at the children and they have raised their voices at each other. It's humbling to see my own faults running around on two little legs! So we will continue to work on this in 2009.

But my third new goal for 2009 is: "To become my children's fun, creative, and interesting school teacher in the new year." I plan to homeschool kindergarten and preschool in the fall and I'm really looking forward to it. But I know it will not be an easy task to take on. I want to learn to be a more creative mother who takes the time to do interesting things with her children. I have a lot of room for growth in this area.

But my long term goals will always remain - to see my children walking in the truth (3 John 4). I read somewhere (sorry I don't know the reference but I wrote these thoughts on my dry erase board and look at them every day - but I don't know remember the source!) these goals for the preschool years:

1. Teach them the gospel everyday

2. Teach them obedience

3. Win their hearts

Then during the elementary years our goals should be:
1. Teach them to own their faith

2. Teach them to be aware of their sin

3. Disciple them

These are my long term goals with my children. Have you begun to make goals?

Walk with the King!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Setting Goals for 2009 - Goal #2

Yesterday I turned to page one in my prayer journal, from January 1st, 2008. There I have listed my 2008 goals. Yesterday I reviewed goal number one in regards to my walk with God. Today I am looking at goal number two - regarding my marriage.The way I list my goals each year is methodical. First, I make a goal in regards to how I can improve my walk with God, then my marriage, then my parenting, then my health, and then my ministry.

So goal #2 in 2008 was: "To show more interest in the things that interest my husband." So to get my evaluation on this goal - I went to the source and I asked my husband - "how did I do on this this year?" We both agreed that I still do not watch UFC fights with him because they are too gory for me - but that I take a serious interest in his work and his people at work, which is his passion. So I did so/so. I could stand to work on this more in 2009.

But it's time to make a new goal for 2009 in my marriage. There are so many facets and areas of our marriage I could zoom in on and work on - but some of them are not wise to share with the "world wide web".

But I'm going to share something that I do need to work on and I hope others relate to this so I don't look so hideous! Rarely do I disrespect my husband verbally. I have a high respect for him and I desire to obey God's word where it says in Ephesians 5:33 "the wife must respect her husband."

But I have noticed that at times, disrespectful thoughts creep into my mind and I will entertain the thought - maybe stew about it - get bitter about a situation. Then days later - it comes tumbling out of my mouth when I am under stress. This creates some ugly moments.

I have a wonderful husband who is forgiving and kind to me but I regret that I have even had such thoughts. Kay Arthur once said "We must frisk our thoughts at the door of our minds with Philippians 4:8 and ask "Is this true? Is this noble? Is this right? Is this pure? Is this lovely? Admirable? Excellent? Praiseworthy? Think about such things."

My prayer is that I would be highly sensitive and aware of the damage these thoughts can do to my marriage and that I would always entertain good, true, noble, right, pure, lovely and respectful thoughts of my husband no matter what the circumstances!

I know it's a tall order - but one day I will stand alone before God to answer for the way I have thought about my husband, lover and best friend and I want to hear "well done"! How about you? Are you making any goals for 2009?

Walk with the King!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Reflecting On 2008's Goals

This week I will be reflecting back on 2008. For at least 10 years, I have spent some time thinking and reflecting on the past year and writing goals on the first of January. I like to flip through my prayer journal from the past year and see the hand of God in my life and there on page one I always record my goals for the new year. (If you'd like to read more about prayer journaling just click on the link above.)

So today I turn to page one from January 1st, 2008. There I have listed my 2008 goals. The way I list my goals each year is methodical. First, I make a goal in regards to how I can improve my walk with God, then my marriage, then my parenting, then my health, and then my ministry. So today I will share with you about goal #1. Here comes the agony of failure.

Goal #1 was "To see God in the common things and praise Him for it. To spend more time literally on my knees."

Well, half of that goal I have accomplished this year. When January of last year began, I had no plans to start this website. But as the year passed, through different ministry circumstances and home life needs, God laid on my heart the desire to start a website. As a result of this blog, I daily am watching for the hand of God in the common things so I have something to share with you.

My eyes are seeing life in a whole new way and my only desire is to point to Jesus with Elizabeth Elliot once told the story of the donkey that carried Jesus on Palm Sunday. All the people were shouting "Hosanna! Hosanna!" to Jesus and obviously the donkey did not think they were cheering for him. My heart's desire is to be that donkey - the one who brings Jesus to others so they can praise Him alone - because he is so worthy!

But the second half of that goal was "to spend more time literally on my knees." That has not happened. The pace of life I have kept, has kept me from extending my time on my knees and if I am truly honest I think I have spent less time in prayer simply because the website is eating up some of my "free time." Now one new area in my walk with God where I grew this year, was through prayer and fasting. I have done this more this past year than in all the years of my life previously - combined.

So, there's goal number 1 for 2009 - "To spend more time literally on my knees!" Have you begun to set goals for 2009? Join me as I work on these this week and pray and ask God what changes you need to make in your own life! It's time for a fresh start to live well!

Walk with the King!

Friday, December 26, 2008

My Family

Cousins - they acted out the birth of Jesus!

The Musical Ones!

Sisters - We Got Matching PJ's from Mom - Just like when we were little girls!

Joni Eareckson Tada helps us to remember:
"On this side of eternity, Christmas is still a promise. Yes, the Savior has come, and with him peace on earth, but the story is not finished. Yes, there is peace in our hearts, but we long for peace in our world. Every Christmas is still a 'turning of the page' until Jesus returns. Every December 25 marks another year that draws us closer to the fulfillment of the ages, that draws us closer to... home. When we realize that Jesus is the answer to our deepest longing, even Christmas longings, each Advent brings us closer to his glorious return to earth. When we see him as he is, King of kings and Lord of lords, that will be 'Christmas' indeed!'"
Walk with the King!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Morning!

Waiting to Come Down the Stairs!!!!

I'm taking a break from blogging for a few days and will just be posting pictures! I prayed for you all today! Merry Christmas and Walk with the King!

Merry Christmas

From My Family to Yours!

Merry Christmas!

Walk with the King!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

From the Stable to the Cross

Yesterday night we drove around looking at Christmas lights in a few neighborhoods. Before we left the house I had the children color a few Christmas pictures and then I wrote a little note on them. As we drove by the houses, we looked for nativity scenes. Each time we saw a baby Jesus we stopped and put our colored pictures in their mailbox that said "thank you for displaying our first love - Jesus!"

You should have heard the kids cheer and clap as they anticipated putting their pictures in the mailbox - it was really fun! But on the night that Jesus was born there were no loud cheers and claps - he was born in a humble stable. In a humble stable God became flesh.

Think about that word "flesh" - my children regularly have boo boos where they scrape their flesh - it's their flesh that bleeds. God really came in the flesh as John 1:14 says "The Word became flesh and made his dwelling amoung us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only."

If Jesus was not born of a virgin then he was just a special man - but it was the mix of the Holy Spirit and flesh that made him "Immanuel - God with us"(Matthew 1:23). God became one of us - human and divine. And the whole point of God being born a man was for him to reconcile man to God. He came to die - die on the cross for our sins - and then to rise again on the third day proving that he indeed is "Immanuel - God with us."

This is the real meaning of Christmas. It's not about the holiday ham and cookies, Santa and reindeer, or Barbies and transformers! It's about Jesus - coming in the flesh - he dwelt among us - that boggles my brain! And he went from the stable to the cross because of his love for you and me. Celebrate! Clap and cheer! Rejoice! And have a Merry Christmas!

Walk with the King!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Time - it's a wierd thing to explain. Sometimes it can be dreadfully long - like in the middle of the night with a sick baby. Sometimes it's too short - like time spent with good friends. Sometimes it's hard to manage - and there's just not enough of it. And sometimes you see others doing so much with their time that you wonder where all of yours has gone? Sometimes it flies when you realize your baby is now entering kindergarten and sometimes it is gone - when you lose a loved one.

Time. Luke 2 says "And while they were there the TIME came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger because there was no room for them in the inn."

Beth Moore says "The time. The time toward which all "time" had been ticking since the kingdom clock struck one. All of Scripture unfolds from the words, "In the beginning, God created..." Since eternity has no beginning, to what did the beginning refer if not to "time."? The words in Luke 2:6 refer to the most important segment of time since the first tick of the clock. The second hand circled tens of thousands of times for thousands of years, then finally, miraculously, majestically - the time came. God's voice broke through the barrier of the natural realm through the cries of an infant, startled by life on the outside. The Son of God had come to earth, wrapped in a tiny cloak of human flesh."

This week we will celebrate the time coming and the birth of our Savior who changed all of time forever. There is no one in history who has shaped time more than he has - the calendar revolves around his birth.

It's time today, that we took the time, to spend time, with the one who created time and who entered time to save our souls. But you say "I don't have the time today - my to do list is so long." Remember what Jesus said two chapters later in Luke 4:4 - "Man does not live by bread alone."

Walk with the King,

Monday, December 22, 2008

Church Bloopers

Today I thought I'd take a light hearted approach to blogging. In the midst of Christmas stress - sometimes we just need a good laugh! Proverbs 17:22 says, "A cheerful heart is good medicine". I found this funny list of actual church bulletin bloopers and they made me laugh out loud - so I thought I'd share them.

Church Bloopers

Don't let worry kill you -- let the church help.

The rosebud on the altar this morning is to announce the birth of David Alan Belzer, the sin of Rev. and Mrs. Julius Belzer.

This afternoon there will be a meeting in the South and North ends of the church. Children will be baptized at both ends.

Tuesday at 4:00 p.m. there will be an ice cream social. All ladies giving milk will please come early.

This being Easter Sunday, we will ask Mrs. Lewis to come forward and lay an egg on the altar

The ladies of the church have cast off clothing of every kind. They can be seen in the church basement Saturday.

Thursday night--Potluck supper. Prayer and medication to follow.

The senior choir invites any member of the congregation who enjoys sinning to join the choir.

The 1991 Spring Council Retreat will be hell May 10 and 11th.

Scouts are saving aluminum cans, bottles and other items to be recycled. Proceeds will be used to cripple children.

At the evening service tonight, the sermon topic will be "What is Hell?" Come early and listen to our choir practice.

Weight Watchers will meet at 7 p.m. at the First Presbyterian Church. Please use large double door at the side entrance.

Bertha Belch, a missionary from Africa will be speaking tonight at Calvary Memorial Church in Racine. Come tonight and hear Bertha Belch all the way from Africa.

Next Sunday is the family hay ride and bonfire at the Fowlers'. Bring your own hot dogs and guns. Friends are welcome!

Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Don't forget your husbands.

For those of you who have children and don't know it, we have a nursery downstairs.

Have a cheerful and merry heart today as you serve your family. Enjoy your little ones who are home on school break, take time to sip some hot chocolate and read from Luke the Christmas story. If you are working - it's just a few days til' Christmas break! Press on ladies and have a great day!

Walk with the King!

Friday, December 19, 2008

My Other December Beast - FOOD!

Okay - yesterday I talked a little about my struggles with the December to-do list which I nicknamed a "Beast". But my other December Beast is FOOD!

December is the worst month of the year for me in the food area. I eat a cookie here, a nibble off a child's plate there, a sample at the store, a taste while I'm cooking, try one of everything at a party and then of course - three full meals a day and a snack or two!

We should not eat right to be skinny but to be healthy. Eating right gives us more energy to serve our families, teaches our children how to make good choices, and helps us stay healthy. So my brain knows these facts - but for some reason my cravings are not cooperating - especially at this time of the year where all my favorites seem to be looming around every corner!
I honestly don't have a great solution to share today! I guess I'm just being honest that this is a struggle for me. I put on a pair of my favorite jeans last Saturday and they did not fit! Argh! That can only mean one thing - I'm pregnant (which NO I am not) or it's December! Yep - it's December and I'm facing my Beast - Food!
If you struggle with this too - I could suggest - drink more water, sleep more or go for a walk. But instead I just want to share a verse with you that speaks to my soul's struggles. In I Samuel 16:7 God is telling Samuel to choose David as the next King of Israel and he says "Do not consider his appearance or his height, for... The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart."
It is important that we take care of our bodies and eat right and rest but remember we have an audience of One to please - God - And he does not look at the outward appearance but at the heart. Now, I'm off to bake cut-out cookies with the kids - time to pull out my secret weapon that keeps me from nibbling - gum!
Walk with the King!

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Thursday, December 18, 2008

Time Management and My December Beast

C.J. Mahaney says "Busyness does not mean I am diligent; busyness does not mean I am faithful; busyness does not mean I am fruitful."

Well that's not a very encouraging quote is it???? But it can be true. We may be up early and up late and exhausted yet still be buried under a to-do list that is a replica of yesterday's because whatever was on the list did not get done. This is my case. I don't know if I procrastinated or have been too busy doing other important things - but for some reason I am living the movie "Ground Hogs Day" everyday! Every day I think - "I still need to get those cards in the mail. I still need to bake cookies. I still need to wrap presents." and everyday those items stay on the to-do list while I do laundry, go to concerts, parties, school plays, grocery shop and clean!
The December schedule has been a beast and in 7 short days I will have conquered it. Vince Lombardi once said "I never lost a game, I just ran out of time.”
Time is of the essence now and the to-do list has to be checked off; therefore, I can see late nights looming in my future unless I buckle down and get serious about time management for the next week.
All of my time is God's time. My life is his and yet he has given me this time to manage. We all have equal hours in a day and though we feel free to use them freely as we wish - one day we will give an account for how we spent our time.
Psalm 39:4 and 5 read "Show me, O Lord, my life's end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you. Each man's life is but a breath."

Remember - life is fleeting. It's easy for us women to get bent out of shape over clutter and undone to-do lists. But we must remember "our life is but a breath". Use every minute for God's glory. Do not become impatient and grumpy with your family members over an undone to-do list.
Does anyone else still feel like they have a beast to conquer? Let's pray for each other and remember to walk in the Spirit as we work diligently to complete our to-do lists!

"Work is love made visible."

Walk with the King!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Peace on Earth in the Midst of Noise Noise Noise

Yesterday, as my alarm woke me with the radio, I headed to my computer and as I blogged, I listened to music from Youtube (Casting Crowns), then I checked my text messages, facebook and email. As I drove my kids to preschool, I listened to a kids praise and worship CD. Driving home I talked on the cell phone to my sister. When I arrived home I turned on Christmas music while I checked my email for any missed messages while I was gone. I again drove in my car to my next activity with music going where my cell phone chimed in with text messages. Then I proceeded to have dinner with my parents, while my children interrupted our conversation with loud noises. Later, I put the kids to bed with a CD playing in their rooms and proceeded to my basement to run on the treadmill, while I listened to my iPod and watched television simultaneously. Then I returned upstairs to check my email and turn on the television to watch something I had DVR'd while listening to a voicemail. I finished my day by answering one last phone call and checking facebook.
When I type that all out I see how loud my world is - but I know that it really is not that unusual for women my age to have all this technology noise.
What do you hear right now? Is there any silence or peace where you are at? The saying "silence is golden" is true. And in order to find peace in the midst of this very noisy and technology addicted world we must have the discipline to turn it all off and simply sit alone and meet with God.

Mark Driscoll says : "I began to ponder what Jesus’ life might be like if He lived today. Would He be available to all of His followers twenty-four hours a day on His BlackBerry? Would He have left His phone on at the Last Supper and been continually interrupted by needless calls? Would He have failed to stop and speak to needy people because their weeping was not loud enough for Him to hear over His iPod as He hurried past them on His way to a meeting He was already late for?"

Moreover, the Bible says in Luke 5:16 that “Jesus OFTEN withdrew to lonely places.” Jesus spent considerable time alone in silence to pray, rest, and focus on what priorities He should be devoting His time and energy to. This helps to explain why, in just three short years of ministry, Jesus had a greater impact on history than anyone else who has ever lived.

The Bible also describes multiple benefits of purposeful silence, including:

  • hearing from God - I Kings 19:11-13
  • waiting patiently for the Lord to act - Lamentations 3:25-28
  • worshiping God - Habakkuk 2:20
  • knowing God better - Psalm 46:10
  • praying effectively - Luke 5:16

So today - allow yourself a break to just be silent - get alone with God. It is in this silence that we will hear loudly the truth that the choir of angels sang to the shepherds in Luke 2 "Peace on earth, goodwill to men."

Walk with the King!

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Christmas Pride

This morning I am preparing for a devotional that I will be giving at a local Christian School's staff meeting. I'm a little nervous. I remember many moons ago when I sat down to lead a Bible study filled with over 30 women older than myself. Before I began my lesson I said out loud -"I'm so nervous." I'll never forget what one lady did. She pointed her finger right at me and said "That's Pride!"

I was shocked in the moment as the woman so quickly judged me for what I felt was a natural human response to a situation that was a little nerve wracking. I laughed and ignored her but later those words played over and over in my head. They struck me so hard that the words are still playing in my head even though it was nearly 7 years ago!

Pride. Pride is a high opinion of one's own self. I think naturally we think highly of our own views or our own ways to do things. Pride was the downfall of Satan - Ezekiel 28:17 says of Satan "Your heart became proud on account of your beauty, and you corrupted your wisdom because or your splendor. So I threw you to the earth."

Now how do pride and Christmas relate. We as women have mounds of work to do - but you can tell who is the most organized simply by who is done with their "stuff". Some women are done Christmas shopping, decorating, baking and mailing out their cards. And one woman I talked to recently was bragging that all her presents were wrapped under the tree! Ugh! It made me feel so awful.

Pride is revealed in many ways - for me it's revealed this morning as I think about speaking at this school staff meeting. I naturally want them to think well of me - that's pride! As we prepare for Christmas remember this is not a competition where we have to out do each other. We each shine in our different elements - some of us are excellent at finding bargain basement prices, others are great at home making their gifts and cards, while others will be excellent at cookie baking or decorating their house. Do not think that you have to be great at everything or do it all. That is how you will ruin Christmas for yourself and your family - you will be stressed out and your pride will ruin you. Proverbs 16:18 "Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall."

Remember today our humble Savior born in a stable. All he wants for Christmas is for you to humbly seek him first.

Walk with the King!

Monday, December 15, 2008


Okay - I'm officially feeling the Christmas stress. I was doing good up until now. I managed to complete all my Christmas shopping and decorating last week. Thus far in December I've traveled out of the state to a Christmas party, attended a church Christmas party and had a Christmas party this past Saturday at my house for 26 people. Three parties down - two left to attend. All of this I have accomplished with a smile on my face.
Then Sunday happened. This mama was tuckered out and tired and so are my children. But in a tense moment one of my children did something that upset me and my mouth began... I said stuff I wish I had not said, the typical mom stuff - like (please forgive me - but I'm being a little honest here)... "maybe I should return your Christmas presents since you are not behaving". LOVELY! Oops! That wasn't loving, kind, patient, joyful, gentle or self-controlled!
Just a couple hours later I was sitting at a church choir concert being totally convicted of the way I had spoken earlier to my child! ARGH! So of course I apologized and was forgiven - phew. But I have to ask myself - what is going on in my heart. Matthew 12:34 says "For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks."
I could try to excuse my behavior as simply an exhausted mom who is at the height of Christmas stress - but I don't see that exception given in God's word!
If you bump a mug full of coffee - what spills out? Coffee. If you bump a tea cup what spills out? Tea. If you bump a bottle of water, what spills out? Water. You see whatever is in our hearts - when it gets bumped - that is what is going to spill out!
I spent my weekend a little crazy - working hard on Christmas stuff - and very little time in God's word and guess what - when my child "bumped" me - what spilled out? Anger and frustration- UGLINESS!
I need God - in this Christmas season more than ever! If you are with me - and feeling high stress - get on your knees and surrender your day to Christ and do not walk in the flesh but in the Spirit. Galatians 5:22 says "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control." This needs to be my standard for my behavior today! Lord - help me!!!!!
Walk with the King!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Can You Relate to Mary?

What did people think of Mary? She appeared to be a young girl pregnant out of wedlock - I wonder how many people believed her angel story? Then she had a son who was amazingly perfectly behaved (which sounds nice!) but you know it would be hard to be her next door neighbor if your children were a little wild!

Mary enters the scene in the Bible at Jesus' conception and then she is only mentioned a few times throughout Jesus' life. She is there at the foot of the cross on the day that he is crucified. Her son and her savior - in agony and hated by the crowds. What did people think of her - the mother of this hated man? The mother of this perfect man?

This must have been a hardship yet we never see her asserting herself - trying to control Jesus so people will think better of them. She understood that Jesus was here on a mission and she was just the vessel that God used to bring this God/Man to earth. How her heart must have ached to watch her beloved son suffer on the cross.

Can you relate to Mary? Though she could not possibly understand all that God was doing - she was open to God's plan for her life. She offered all of herself - her pride, her plans, her time and talents to be a servant to God. She understood that her life was not her own - but that she was bought at a price and it was by precious blood.

I Corinthians 6:20 says "You are not your own. You were bought at a price, therefore, honor God with your body." This baby Jesus who we are about to celebrate the birth of, was born to pay the price for your sins and the price was his blood shed on the cross. You are not your own, therefore, be like Mary, and honor God by living your life completely surrendered to him!

Walk with the King!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Mary - The Lord's Servant

I remember the day that I left my son alone to play in his room while I fixed my hair to take him to his two year check up. While he was playing in his room he opened the can of vaseline and proceeded to smear it all over his face, clothes and hair. When I walked into his room I was horrified to find him in such a mess!

It was time to leave and not only did he need his clothes changed but the vaseline would not wash out of his hair! I got a little frantic as I thought about what the Dr. would say - I knew in this moment I was not going to receive a "mother of the year" award! The Dr. was gentle with me and suggested I give him a buzz cut and I did.

I was so humiliated as I left that day. I wonder about Mary, the mother of Jesus. She was so young. Did she struggle as she raised - Jesus - God of the universe? She held the King of Kings in her young arms. God entrusted her with the care of this precious baby boy.

Max Lucado writes in "God Came Near" some questions he wishes he could ask Mary:
"Did you feel awkward teaching him how he created the world?
When he saw a rainbow, did he ever mention a flood?
Did it occur to you that the God to whom you were praying was asleep under your own roof?
How did he act at funerals?
Did you ever think, That's God eating my soup!"

These questions make us consider Jesus' humanity yet deity. And though Mary was given an extraordinary baby to care for she had to do the ordinary daily tasks that all moms do. She cared for her husband Joseph, she cooked, she cleaned, she did laundry and taught her children God's word. Motherhood has been the most humbling experience of my life and also the one that has taught me the most dependence on God. Mary had already learned humility and dependence on God at a young age as she very willingly said in Luke 2:38 to the angel "I am the Lord's servant. May it be to me as you have said."

If you are a mother God has given you a gift - may we follow in Mary's spirit as the Lord's servant and do the ordinary tasks that God has called us to with a willing heart.

Walk with the King!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Never Tire of Doing What is Right - Part 2

Yesterday I looked at 2 Thessalonians 3:13. It reads - “Never tire of doing what is right.” This verse goes hand in hand with my life verse which is Galatians 6:9 "Do not grow weary in doing good for in due season you will reap a harvest IF you do not give up."

Life has its moments where we feel beaten down, tired, distracted and discouraged and these verses remind me to not give up. Kent Keith has written an interesting thought with this same theme titled:

The Paradoxical Commandments

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered... Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives... Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies... Succeed anyway.

Honesty and frankness will make you vulnerable... Be honest and frank anyway.

The right you do today will be forgotten tomorrow...Do right anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds...Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs...Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight... Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them...Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you may get kicked in the teeth...Give the world the best you have anyway.

Remember today what your Savior has said - "Do not tire of doing what is right!"

Walk with the King!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Never Tire of Doing What is Right!

Recently my Sr.High youth pastor, Craig Peters, began his own blog at If you know him - you too may want to check out his blog!

Craig was my youth pastor at a pivotal time in my life. During my teen years God grabbed a hold of my heart and lit it on fire for Him. God drew me everyday with a hunger and thirst for his word. Back in highschool, I loved to lay on my bed and read my "Rainbow Bible." I carried my Bible with me everyday to school and anytime a friend asked me about Jesus I was prepared to share the gospel. It was during that time that my convictions became concrete and my devotion to God unswerving.

Craig took some of the Sr. Highers on a trip to Chicago to visit the Moody Bible Institute and again God stirred my heart through the use of Craig, and and I found Chicago to be my first home away from home. I learned so much during those four years and am forever grateful to God for the opportunity I had to sit under such amazing men and women of God in my classes!

It's been 11 years since I graduated from college and my faith is still just as unswerving but I have found a strange weariness that is new. A weariness in serving at church. A weariness in my quiet time. A weariness in sharing the gospel. It's not a daily weariness but one that sneaks up on me periodically and takes me by surprise. It will last for a week or so and then leave as quickly as it came.

And so when I read Craig's most recent blog entry there was a verse that spoke volumes to my soul - he quoted 2 Thessalonians 3:13. It says "Never tire of doing what is right!"

Is that not powerful??! This word hit my soul in a fresh way and I feel armed once again with the mighty word of God to press on and not tire of doing what is right! And so I say the same to you today - if you feel weary - Do not tire of doing what is right! I'd rather burn out than rust out! So press on with me!

Walk with the King!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Whose Business Are You In?

This weekend my sister Kristen and I traveled a total of 13 hours in the car with her youngest son and my two children - ages 7, 5, and 3 - it was a long trip! We were headed to my husband's workplace for a Christmas event and the first thing we did when we arrived was to take the children on a tour of my husband's business. He runs a company that manufactures bucket trucks - so for little ones it is always fun to climb on the trucks.

I always knew when my son Alex was a baby, that one day he would be enamored with his Father's business. Well that time has come. For the past few years my husband has brought home trucks to give Alex a ride in. My husband regularly brings home the engineer drawings for Alex to color and regularly they have late night talks regarding how to build or sell a bucket truck.

My son is intrigued and drawn to his Father's business. How about you - are you intrigued and drawn to your Father's business? I don't mean your earthly Father - but your Heavenly Father?

Our heavenly Father is in the business of forgiving sins, redeeming souls, making old creatures new, restoring broken relationships, healing broken hearts and giving strength to the weary. In Luke 2, while Jesus was still a young boy - his parents could not find him. They searched for him everywhere and finally found him in the temple. Jesus said to his parents "Why were you searching for me? Didn't you know I had to be in my Father's house?"
Baby Jesus was born in Bethlehem to be about his Father's business. And while he lived here on earth he had to be in His Father's house. We are so blessed to have access to God right in our cozy homes - through prayer and the Bible. Enjoy a quiet time with your Father today and then today as you work - remember whose child you are - and be about your Father's business.

Walk with the King!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Peace in the midst of this Busy Season

It's Friday and it feels like life has gone into overdrive! Christmas seems to be coming at me at a fast pace and every year I feel organized in November and a little overwhelmed in December!

So I am thankful today for today's quiet time in Isaiah 9:6 which says ""For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

This week I've looked at Jesus being the "Wonderful Counselor", the "Mighty God" and the "Everlasting Father" and today I am pondering His name the "Prince of Peace."

As I have been reading out on the web world many blogs, I can see two common themes with women. One - we are stressed about the holidays ie. decorating, shopping, cookie baking, mailing Christmas cards, attending or hosting parties and on and on it goes. On top of our daily workload these are added and if we do not manage our time wisely this can be disastrous to the peace God wants us to have in our hearts.

Secondly, I see the financial burdens that women are carrying. There is a lot of talk on the web world about the recession America is in. Women are dealing with the layoffs of their husbands or their own cut hours. Some cannot sell their house and are desperate to get out from their mortgage payments while others are just wondering how they will pay the debt that they are creating with the holiday season.

I have one word I see - STRESS! But wait - it's Christmas - and in Isaiah 9:6 it says that Jesus is the Prince of Peace - so why is there so much turmoil in our souls? Are you experiencing the peace that only Jesus can give? As Christians, our lives should not look like the world's - it should be baffling at how much peace we have in the midst of chaos - but can that be said of us?

Peace can not go hand in hand with rushing, hurrying, tossing, and turning. It can only come from turning to our Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace and just being alone with him - as our "daddy". Pray and ask God to give you His peace in an area of your greatest need. Peace may be the best gift you can give your family this holiday season!

Walk with the King!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Baby Jesus is the "Everlasting Father"

Today I am continuing my study in one of my favorite verses for Christmas time, which is Isaiah 9:6 which says "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

I've already focused on the first two names that God calls baby Jesus - "Wonderful Counselor" and "Mighty God". Today I am pondering His name "Everlasting Father."

This is a verse that clearly points to the trinity - Jesus is the Everlasting Father! They are one! And then I think about the word "Everlasting" and how God never changes. We can experience his love for all time. Let that soak in. It’s hard for us to imagine because we live in a finite world. God the Son is not bound by time or space. In an ever changing world we can be totally secure in Christ - he is from everlasting and will continue on with us into eternity for forever!

My friend Aimee M. sent me an email yesterday morning. In it she was writing about how God is like our earthly father and it seemed appropriate to share as I am looking at Jesus being the "Everlasting Father." Here is what she wrote:

"I was thinking today about the access we have to God -- I compared it to my boys freely going to their daddy, running into his arms when he comes in from work, or crawling up on the couch with him to snuggle in his arms or on his chest, and the fact that he might be sleeping does not deter them; afterall he's their daddy, why shouldn't they crawl up into his arms even if it means waking him up. Now, I know that God never sleeps, but if someone else looked at a man sleeping, most would leave him alone -- not a good time to approach him, but children, with their daddies, in their innocence, go to him on a whim. That is how God wants us to be with him; come to him, crawl up into his arms and bear our hearts to him, on a whim, anytime, all the time. That is humbling."

Have you crawled up into the arms of your Everlasting Father yet today? He loves you - He desires to be close to you. Won't you take the time today and allow him to talk to you through His word, listen - allow him to speak to your soul. He is always watching, He is always listening and He cares for you!

Walk with the King!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

The Mighty God

One of my favorite verses to reflect on at Christmas time is Isaiah 9:6 which says "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."

Yesterday I focused on the first name that God calls baby Jesus - "Wonderful Counselor". Today I am pondering the second name - "Mighty God".

Jesus is the Mighty God! While Jesus was fully human he was not merely man. JI Packer says "The really staggering Christian claim is that Jesus of Nazareth was God made man... The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the incarnation."

Though many photos show Jesus looking soft with flowing hair and a white robe - we know that he was actually a construction worker with callused hands and muscles on his frame. Many people have claimed to be speaking for God such as Buddha, Muhammad and Gandhi - but very few claim to BE God. Jesus was not killed for telling stories and healing people but for claiming to be God.

Matthew 1:23 says "The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel which means "God with us." So who do you say that he is?

Our only appropriate response to Jesus is to worship him as God. If you saw Mel Gibson's movie "The Passion of Christ" you were moved by the reality of Jesus' humanity as you watched him be flogged and crucified. It was the portrayal of Jesus' humanity while maintaining his deity that made this movie a box office hit. Do not forget what this baby Jesus - the Mighty God - has done for you - and worship him during this holiday season. He is worthy!

Walk with the King!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Jesus is our Counselor

One of my favorite verses to reflect on at Christmas time is Isaiah 9:6 which says "For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Today I want to focus on the first name that God calls baby Jesus - "Wonderful Counselor". He is wonderful because he is both God and man.

Have you ever had a friend or relative whose opinion you highly valued. Maybe it seems like each time you've gone to them with your problems - they simply get it. They understand you and they can perceive what is best in your situation.

Maybe you have no one like that in your life??? Many people these days pay a lot of money to have a listening ear and wise counsel. What we need to remember is that this little baby born in a Bethlehem stable is not just a warm fuzzy story for our children - but this baby was born to be your Wonderful Counselor. His counsel comes straight from the throne room of heaven! Wow! Ponder that for a minute!

Jesus understands you when no one else does. Jesus is there for you when you are all alone. Right now as you sit and read this - He is with you - He knows your every thought and your innermost hurts and needs. He loves you so.

How often do we find ourselves talking over a problem with a friend for over an hour versus how often do we find ourselves alone with God reading scripture trying to solve a problem for over an hour? Do you consider Jesus to be your "Wonderful Counselor". That's who He is. Is your life a little tangled and you wish you could unravel some of the messes you have made? GO to Jesus - he is the Wonderful Counselor. DO what his word says and TRUST Him - and watch his word guide you through your darkest hours.

If you will allow him to be your Wonderful Counselor every single day of your life, in 10 years you will be in an entirely different place than if you hadn't.

Walk with the King!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Decorating for Christmas

Have you begun to decorate? I wrote an article similiar to this on the website regarding decorating for the fall. I have the same thoughts on decorating for Christmas...

I so desire to make my home warm and cozy for the family. Think for a moment about how God has surrounded us in the winter season with scenery that is just gorgeous! The fresh fallen snow and icicles display God's glory! Think about the crackle of ice and snow below your feet as you walk - the same crackle sound you heard when you were 5 you hear at 55. There is a continuity about the remembrance of the crisp air and the smell of pine that gives me peace.

Though heaven is our eternal home, God has given us gifts of beauty here on earth - there is beauty in the fields covered with snow, in the sunset over a chilled pond, the frost in the morning on the blades of grass and smoke rising from the chimneys.

Our homes are temporary but they are an opportunity to reflect God in a small measure. Genesis 1:26 says "Then God said, "Let us make man in our image, in our likeness."

We have been created in the image of God and some may be very talented in this area while others are like me but we all have the ability to create something special for our loved ones. Edith Shaefer says "For the Christian who is consciously in communication with the Creator, surely his home should reflect something of the artistry, the beauty and order of the One whom he is representing, and in whose image he has been made!"

God has given you a home whether it's an apartment you share, a farm house, a city home, or a home identical to all your neighbors - it is your home to reflect God's artistry in. So express yourself this Christmas season and take joy in being made in the image of God. Surround those you love with beauty, warmth and love.

Walk with the King!