Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Miss Corinne, if you see any bad guys, I'LL GET THEM!" The two year-old informed me of this while I was washing paint off his hands in the kitchen sink.

Monday, January 27, 2014

winter struggles

The struggle is always real. Do I stay standing by the warm fire or do climb in bed under the feather comforter in my freezing room?

what i've been reading


afraid to be girly

I enjoy shopping.

There I said it. 

I didn't want to admit to it because it seemed like such a girly thing to like. And you know what? It is! It is girly. And that's *okay*. Because I am a girl. 

I pretend I am not a girl most of the time. I am not sure what I attempt to be when I am being "not a girl", but it certainly isn't based in reality. 

I am so afraid of being needy that I have gone to the other extreme. I am aloof. I am above people. I don't need them. I can get along just fine without others. 

That is a lie. 

I do need people.

I do have emotions. 

I am a girl.

God made me to be a woman. A warm, generous, loving, genuine woman. 

I need to embrace that and give thanks to Him who created me. 

eighty-five days

Not sure if I should be telling you this or not, but it's had been 85 days since I had shaved. I shaved on Saturday and it was perfect timing because it was 70 degrees on Sunday.  

I shaved October 31st because we were leaving the next day to visit a friend for the weekend in Fayetteville. I didn't want to be bothered by shaving. We got back and I didn't ever get around to shaving. When I realized I hadn't, it was about the 10th of the month. I figured I'd made it about 1/3 or the month, I could continue and participate in No Shave November. At the end of November, not shaving had become more convenient than shaving. No one could tell I hadn't shaved, I wore jeans or when I wore skirts, I had on black hose (which I would have worn anyway) so I wasn't bothering anyone. 

On Saturday I had gotten tired of my hairy legs. So I shaved. Because I could. I had only not been shaving because I didn't want to. When I wanted to, I shaved. 

So now you know more about me then you probably ever cared to know. 


P.S. I probably will never not shave for the winter again. I think this was a one time deal. 

Thursday, January 23, 2014

understated

I want a quiet love. 

Not smothering. Or gushy. 

Not boisterous. Or sickeningly sweet.

But instead undemanding.

Let's stand next to each other, close enough that our shirt-sleeves brush, but that is all.

A hand brushed across a back as they pass. 

A gentle kiss on the forehead or neck. 

Let's sit so close that our whole bodies touch without holding one another.

I simply stated, I like you, that holds all the feelings in the world.

An arm laid across the back of their chair. 

A hand rested on a thigh. 

Me holding your arm as we walk.

An arm loosely around my waist.

A smile across the room.

A hand momentarily resting on a shoulder.

Let's be comfortable together. Just being. 

A love that's mutually understood. 

An understated love. 

Friday, January 17, 2014

an open letter

I respect you. That's saying a lot. I don't respect most boys your age. Because they are just that, boys. You are a man. Albeit a young one, but still a man.

I love your passion for learning. Your drive to master something new. 

Your dreams make me dream. They make me excited. 

I am fascinated by the way you think about things. I don't understand it. I want you to explain it to me. 

You make me laugh. And I like that a lot.

You love Jesus a lot and want to see Him glorified. 

We share common interests. 

I love how your eyes sparkle when you are talking about your latest idea. I want to help you make it happen. 

You except things as they come. Searching for a solution and calmly responding. 

I have never met someone who charms me like you do.

I wish we were friends. And then more than friends. I wish I could capture your interest. I wish we could be together. 

I am praying for you. 


selfie

I took this the other day. Instead of folding laundry. Oops. I don't take self portraits much these days, but I recently heard that it was important for socia media, to occasionally post photos of yourself, because it was a way our generation connections with one another. Don't know if that is true or not, but I dutifully took and posted this photo. Here you go internet world, happy now?

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

"...she had known that she could help him win, but must help him in every way except in words." -Atlas Shrugged

being a girl

It's time for me to be a girl.

I was born as one. But I've been resisting that truth my whole life. 

I don't know what it means to be a woman. Instead, I focus on stuffing emotions, not being needy, and disassociating myself with other females. 

That certainly isn't the answer. Biblical womanhood is a beautiful thing. It's time I understood what it was, embraced it, and began working toward it. 

Hopefully I will have a post in the new future on my thoughts on what being a girl looks like according to the Bible. 

Meanwhile, I will be over here not crying, appearing not interested in things women talk about, and trying to be someone I wasn't created to be. 

Friday, January 10, 2014

they were longing for a better country

That is a title of a wonderful Zach Winters cd, but it is also from Hebrews 11.

I quoted quite a bit of Hebrews 11 in a prayer journal, which I have copied below.

"...faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. ...And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him...By faith, Abraham, when he was called, obeyed by going out of a place which he was to receive an inheritance; and he went out, not knowing where he was going...he lived as an alien in the land of promise, as in a foreign land..for he was looking for the city which has foundations, whose architect and builder is God...she (Sarah) considered Him faithful who had promised...All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on earth. For those that say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them...Moses...choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin, considering the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward." -Selections from Hebrews 11:1-26

This is not our home. We are to live as aliens on this earth. Instead, we are to have a heavenly outlook.
Just as they looked to their Reward,who is God, we too are to be looking to a Him, because He is faithful.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

the gospel and our liberty in Christ

We have liberty in Christ. It is a beautiful thing. We don't have to follow a set of man-made rules, shun the secular, participating only in the "Christian", instead we are free to serve God and bring Him glory. Only sometimes it is harder that way. I want someone to just tell me what to do and what not to do. What to wear, watch, drink, listen to, eat, and laugh at. But it's not that easy.

Lately, I have been asking myself a few questions about choices I make; Is indulging in this worth it? Does this glorify God? Why do I want to do that? Am I using the short time I'm given here on earth wisely?

Christians enjoy speaking of their liberties quite loudly and proudly. 

Did God save you from your life of sin so you could indulge in this world once again, under the guise of liberty? 

Are your liberties pulling you closer to Christ or pushing you farther away? 

Is your lifestyle a testimony to the radical change the gospel has wrought in your life?

We have to be humble enough to admit when some of our liberties are making us slaves. Because, they do, way more often then I care to admit.

I know what you want to say this. I say it to myself all the time as I way to justify my decision. Yes, we have liberty in Christ. And yes, there is definitely a danger of falling into legalism. 

Legalism is doing or not doing things that the Bible doesn't explicitly tell us what our stance should be and then projecting our beliefs onto others. 

But I am not addressing legalism in this post. I am address our liberties and the commandment to "Set your mind on things above, not on the things that are on earth." Colossians 3:2

The world we live in is a cess pool. Do we think of the world as it really is? Why would we want to wade in it, even just a little? 

What is our goal here on earth? To indulge in our liberties and boast about them? Or is it to glorify and serve our Saviour? 

"....showing all good faith so that they will adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in every respect. For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us to redeem us from every lawless deed, and to purify for Himself a people for His own possession, zealous for good deeds." Titus 2:10b-14

We are to live sensibly, righeously, and godly, zealous for good deeds. I wasn't saved so I could spend my life pleasing self.

"For many walk, of whom I often told you, and now tell you even weeping, that they are enemies of the cross of Christ, whose end is destruction, whose god is their appetite, and whose glory is their shame, who set their minds in earthly things. For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ...." Philippians 3:18-20

Am I using my liberties to set my mind on earthly things? 

The only way to view the world correctly is to gaze at our Saviour. Our salvation should necessarily effect the way we live. We are no longer slaves to sin. Why would we want to return? Even just for a little bit? It's easy to justify things, "It's not as bad as something I used to do." "I know Christians who do things that are way more borderline than this."  "All is lawful." "God has called us to live in this world." 

"...we were once foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another. But when the kindness of God our Saviour and His love for mankind appeared, He saved us not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Saviour, so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life." Titus 3:3-7 

How great a salvation! What a Saviour!

"Only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that.... I will hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit...." Philippians 1:27

"....work out your salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who is at work in you, both to will and to work for His good pleasure. Do all things without grumbling or disputing; so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I will have reason to glory because I did not run in vain nor toil in vain." Philippians 2:12c-16

Our purity speaks much more loudly, than a group of people that say they are different, that the gospel has changed them, but they act the same as the world. Our goal as Christians isn't to look like everyone else. It's to be fruitful and ready to do good deeds. 

Transformation must take place in a believer. If you don't allow God to change your heart, you are necessarily denying Him. We should see a difference between you and the world. When we are transformed, we show off the beauty of our Saviour and His gospel.

How important is my pleasure? I should be eager to give up my liberties for the sake of the gospel. 

Let us not forget the weaker brother spoken about in Romans 14. Your liberties could cause him to stumble. We should be careful about how often we speak of our liberties. 

It grieves me when I spend time with other Christians and their only topic of conversation is their liberties, as though that is the best thing their salvation has given them. What about Jesus? What about our Saviour? How is He changing your heart?

"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." Philippians 1:21

"But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him...." Philippians 3:7-9a

I don't want my life to marked by my liberties but by my service to my Saviour. Life is so short. Is my comfort that important to me? It shouldn't be. My pleasure should be caught up in God, not this world.

"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice!" Philippians 4:4

Thursday, January 2, 2014

decisions

If I had a fireplace next to my bed, my room would be the perfect place to be. As it is, I am always torn between staying up and sitting extremely close to the fire, or showering and crawling under my cloud and staying there forever.


                

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

nye

How was my New Year's Eve? Heavy on The Brady Bunch. 

I reluctantly stayed over with four girls last night.

Currently I am sitting at the counter munching breakfast sausage, listening to Balmorhea, while I keep an eye on the toast so I don't burn it. (I doubt the girls will eat slightly scraped toast.) A few large pillow forts are behind me. Every blanket in the house is currently being used. It's 10am and only the youngest has roused. I hope it stays that way for a while.

I showed up to their house hoping again all hope that I could get the girls in bed early and then go to bed myself. It was 5pm and I was already yawning like crazy. Within a few minutes of being there, I knew it wasn't going to happen. Everyone wanted to stay up. I consented, ordered a pizza, helped the twelve-year-old make brownies, staked my claim on the couch, and encouraged everyone to begin their forts. 

Arguing ensued, new boundaries were formed, and threats of being sent to bed early were uttered. 

The pizza arrived and the tv went on. Thus began the six hours of countless Brady Bunch episodes. 

I managed to fit a shower in and laid on the couch, sopping wet hair, and the six-year-old sprawled on top of me. Justine and I texted. Naturally, she sent me a ton of screen shots. That's practically the only way she communicates these days

Around 9:30, I roused everyone, had them get ready for bed, and locked the house up. After that, the arguing ceased, everyone was too tired to continue. 

I watched the Call the Midwife Christmas Special on my iPad, while the girls watched Little House on the Prairie, at 11:30 the six-year-old fell asleep on me and right before 12:00 the nine-year-old fell asleep on the floor. At midnight, there was a tired acknowledgement of the new year by those still awake, then they finished up the last two minutes of the Brady Bunch, the eleven-year-old went upstairs to sleep, the twelve-year-old crawled into her fort, I moved the six-year-old onto the ottoman, and cuddled down on the couch under a blanket with big holes in it, where the rabbit has chewed on it. 

I woke up at 8:30 and laid there for half an hour. I was surprised that the cat hadn't woken me in the night, by pacing around and yowling, or that the six-year-old hadn't crawled onto the couch with me in the night. Instead, she woke up at the same time as me and climbed onto the couch with me and got out her new reader books and began to read aloud while I read the book I had brought with me. After that I got up and began making breakfast, first the sausage into the oven, then a cup of coffee, followed by cinnamon toast munched quietly at the table, then the girls breakfast of eggs and toast. The eleven and nine-year old are still sleeping. The nine-year-old went to her own bed in the night, and I suspect it's because she peed on the floor were she was sleeping. Goody for me.

The nine-year-old has been awake for three minutes, and already there is screaming and crying. The six-year-old is yelling, "Stop looking at me!" I think that's my cue to finish up this post and ask the Lord for grace and patience dealing with these girls for the next few hours.