Sunday, December 31, 2006

Late December B-days




Well, there have been a lot of b-days of important people in my life here in the latter days of 2006. Thought I would give them something here, not much and it doesn't cost a thing...
On the left as the bride - is Davia. Her b-day was Friday. She is now married and living up where she belongs, in the cold, almost where she grew up, outside the state of FL. This was taken at her wedding in September a couple of years ago. She has a little baby boy born this year. Davia - I hope this year is one of family, learning, and growth for you.
Next is Devan. She is one of my "girls" from my youth ministry days in St. Aug. I can't wait to go back to FL just to get to hang out with her more than once a year. God is doing so much in her life and I can't wait to see what God does this year. Dev - keep trusting, believing, and serving.
On the right is Michelle. She in one year, started dating her husband again, got engaged, moved back to NC, got married, and now is a crucial part of life here in NC for many people, but most importantly her hubby. This picture was taken at the rehearsal of the wedding of the century. Mg - I hope this year brings you additions to your family, love from your husband, and great cooking experiences as you bake and serve others with that. Sorry I am moving away from you - thank goodness for emails (if you ever check them).
Last, without a picture (b/c I don't have any on here from college), is Ame. She is the area director for Young Life Seminole County, FL. She loves youth - they are her passion, and she is very good at it and loved in return. She lived down the hall from me my freshman year of college, and we became friends. We've stayed friends and Ame - I'm looking forward to getting back within an hour of you so we can actually hang out! I wish you success in YL and in life as your pursue faithfulness and God.
Happy Birthday girls!


Friday, December 29, 2006

Saddam's Sadness

Following breaking news (since work is so boring), I have been reading about the impending hanging of Saddam. I don't remember much time in my life w/o Saddam being the "big story" - at least since the early 90s (when I really followed news reports).
Yes, what he did was grevious to say at least - definitely horrible against humanity - killing over 100 people just recently, not to mention all the war crimes that were committed by his command. But, I can only think one thing (and start to cry over it).
More than likely (since only God knows the hearts of man) - Saddam is less than 30 days (more than likely 1 day) away from spending an eternity in hell. He will meet His MAKER and He will say depart from me, I never knew you. What will Sadam say then - he won't be able to say anything.
As I look at pictures of him that are on Fox and CNN, I see a man that at any moment will spend the rest of time (which I can't even fathom) in a place of continual torture (beyond anything he ever made) by fire. That brings sadness to me.
He is evil - yes. So am I - and my only way out of hell is by the purchased blood of Jesus - for that I am eternally grateful and redeemed. Did anyone ever share with Saddam? I wonder? I wonder what it was like for Christians to hear of the death of Hitler? Were they saddened or glad? Bittersweet maybe?
Think about it - any thoughts?

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Florida in December





These pictures are in random order. Me and Jill - I've known her since she was 13. She is very special to me. I wouldn't have missed her wedding for anything (her reception yes, wedding no). Then it is my family (mom, dad, me, ty, and alan) in front of Vine's restaurant in Orlando. Then it is me and Phyllis and Billy - my mentors and some of my best friends in the world. Billy got to pray over Jill and Matty as Pastor Ron prayed aloud. Then this is a great full length shot. Congrats Matty and Jilly - I pray God allows you to spend some time on this side of the ocean (they will reside in Australia - from one beach to another).

Monday, December 18, 2006

The Incarnation

Surprises me every year...
Reading John 1 today...
He gave up everything to come bridge the gap that we caused by our sin. All according to God's plan. He didn't buck at the idea - he came and dwelt to show us God's glory.
When I don't desire things of God - which is right now, just not wanting, desiring, craving, to read the Word, anything...He does. He, on earth, desired to pray to His Father, commune with His Father.
Now we could say this is all because He was God - rightly so. But, Jesus was also completely human - that meant he had the same flesh we did, but was without sin. He chose to deny flesh - so can I.
He called me out of this world, out of the flesh, out of giving in to my desires - He called me out to follow Him (just like He did the disciples in John 1).
Let my flesh be weak - in grace and mercy alone. Give me right desires - from Stuff that fulfills - not filling life with fleeting things...

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Cravings...

I've been thinking about this the past couple of days.
The holidays are a time for food cravings: eggnog, gingerbread, cranberries, mint, etc. There are some tastes that only can be had when it is cold outside
But, there are other cravings too.
I had one filled the other night by having dinner at a home (not an apt), with a family (not by myself), that was a real meal (meat and potatoes type thing). It was delicious, company was great. Much needed and sad to have gone for so long without it. A family - Mom, Dad, kid...that was great. All church families need to hook up single people with them and "adopt them". Not just college kids!
I was reading an email from a pastor of a church plant in White Plains NY the other day. A lady in their new church had the church over for dinner. In a busy metro place like NY a woman filled a need and some cravings by having fellowship and community in her home: by practicing hospitality. I guarantee there were people there who hadn't sat down to a meal all week - always eating on the run or grabbing a bagel at the corner bakery. Oh, the power of homecooked meals and fellowship.
Last night I made mac and cheese - the blue box kind. It was good. I hadn't had it in so long, someone at work mentioned it, and I wanted it. So, I'm glad I had a box. My roommate helped me eat some of it. I also made some homemade popcorn - which is much better than out of a bag (thanks Vern).
But...there is a spiritual craving I've been lacking lately. I'll lay down to read the Word and there is no drive for me to read it. I go through periods like this. I hate it. Ps 84, Ps 37, Ps 27, Ps 86 - all these talk about portions, cravings, desires, one thing...that is what I want. Why can't it be satiated just like my "need" for mac and cheese. My need for the Word and for fellowship with my Jesus is much more important than having those "blue box blues".
Just thought - may you crave the Savior this holiday season. He won't add pounds to your hips either! :)

Saturday, December 02, 2006

GO SEC CHAMPS!

Great Saturday!
Cycling, hiking, cleaning, exercising.
Then - what a way to end the night!!!

GO GATORS - SEC CHAMPs - and all the defensive style points you need for any BCS championship game against OsU (becaue USC lost!)

Good night!

Sunday, November 26, 2006

End of Turkey day week


Good week - I liked not working very much at duke. do i really want to go back tomorrow?
This picture was taken on a random siting of Meredith at the mall. This was right in front of the big Christmas tree. Long day at work right before it was taken, but it was good to see her.
Bucs lost, Gators won, Notre Dame didn't do me any favors, Colts are winning, and the Gator bball team joined the ranks of the newly beaten - along with the heels, Dukies, LSU and Kansas (who beat us in OT). oh, well. Such is life.

Friday, November 24, 2006

What are you thankful for?

As I sat down with Ps 136 on this less hectic day after T-day: I found a lot to be thankful for:

My salvation - full and free
My parents - gracious and believing
My family - accepting
My friends - pushing, believing, edifying
The Word - hearing the very Word of God and in a world of lies knowing I can come to it and find unwavering Truth
Food - something I love to do and nourishment as God provides it.
Football - another fun thing (and something that brings my brother and I together more than not)
Possessions - they help make life easier
My education and brain - I love to think
Books - Helping insure the above
Creation - seeing a little bit of the God I serve when I walk outside

As you can see these aren't in any particular order after the first 5. I hope you have found things to be thankful for - and share it with the people you are thankful for! :)

Thursday, November 23, 2006

Tday food and friends


Well, this is T-day! What are you thankful for?

We had good food, unexpected but certainly welcome people - so glad they came. Watching football.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Christmas Party Video

Christmas party of the YEAR!!!


You gotta come - watch the video above! Dec 1! :)

Sunday, November 19, 2006

What a great Sunday!


What a bad week (with few bright spots) - but a glorious Sunday. What a way to end it - almost.

collegeLife was good. Brad spoke and Jason led worship. The verse that Jason used (Hebrew 9.11-12) is perfect for those people that think they can earn or even have any part in their salvation:

But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption.

Then I came home and cooked some
Then, Meredith and I went on a hike in Chapel Hill (with all the brown dead leaves on the ground) and ate a picnic lunch. That is one of the pictures we took

Then I came home to take a relaxing bath in a messy room (I gotta work on that after Christmas - when I have time).

Then I listened to the Bucs game - and they WON! Now I am watching the Colts game - they gotta beat the Boys - my least fave team (even though Emmitt played for them).

Cooking some chili and an apple scone cake. Doing a small Bible study with some girls tonight. Then maybe I'll work on my room some.

Perfect weather outside - about 50 degrees, beautifl sunset working now that I can see from my living room.

So, between football, cooking, the Word, and quietness, and the outside - great stuff!

Friday, November 17, 2006

My Chosen Evangelical Ghetto!


Dr. Reid always warned us about living, working, breathing in an evangelical ghetto while in seminary. Well, I wish I could choose mine now. There is something about sweet fellowship with fellow reformed people. It is something in graced views and humility and then just fun (not that I have these, but I like being around people with these). This little boy would definitely be in my neighborhood. But, his mommy and daddy (and soon to be brother or sister) are taking him away to Southern in KY. But, Lord willing I'll get to see all of them in August.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Exact truth in the It Is Finished

This is it for me:
6a start (that is nothing out of the ordinary)
7a - 2 hour dentist appt - boy, those are fun. The funnest part is finding out your dental coverage by Duke is only paying 1/8th of it.
945a - finally get to work, had desk full of stuff, and finally caught up by lunch at 12.45a (right now).
Power bills and leases - they are not fun either as they have been thrown into the mix today.
5p - get off work and running to the leasing office and eat dinner before going to W-S to work and stand on my feet till at least 10p tonight.
Come home, read some in The Innocent Man by John Grisham (a great piece of Nonfiction if you want any). Get to bed by 1130p probably - what a long day!

Today is a hard day to say "This is the day that the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it." But, the truths of Scripture are not based on what kind of day we are having - is it? Praise God it isn't. As Luke 1.4 says: it is Exact TRUTH!

As I am reading in Valley of Vision right now, I started thinking that even though I know that my works can not influence God's Thoughts toward me - they are eternally based on grace and mercy - how often do I live in the thought that I am a: disappointment, horrible handler of money, a sinner. Help me to live in:
"The 'It Is Finished!'
Increase my faith in the clear knowledge of atonement achieved, expiation completed, satisfaction made, guilt done away, my debt paid, my sins forgiven, my person redeemed, my soul saved, hell vanquished (much worse then the dentist and Duke Power), heaven opened, eternity made mine."

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Season of Prophecy

Well, now that we are in November and I'm working my seasonal job - it is just about Christmas time. I read Luke 1 yesterday and came across this prophecy by Zechariah that I don't think I'd really "seen" before. It is amazing:

Luke 1.74-79
"That we, being delivered from the hand of our enemies, might serve him without fear, in holiness and righteousness before him all our days. And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High;for you will go before the Lord to prepare his ways, to give knowledge of salvation to his people in the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the sunrise shall visit us from on high, to give light to those who sit in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace."

The key part there is that He does all this (even giving John to Z & E) - because of His great mercies. It is not because of anything we do. Z & E were righteous and holy people, set apart for the work of the gospel, God visited them, gave them a child, all because of His mercy and grace.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Sounds and Sites of the Beach



I went to a genealogy conference in Indiatlantic Beach this weekend. And watched the Gators play and other mess ups in the Top 10. Each night we slept with the sliding door open overlooking the beach. The sounds of the waves are wonderful. If I could just rent a balcony on that hotel I would be happy. I sleep much better and wake up to the sounds of the waves and the views of the sunrise - God is so good. Ps 79!

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

A (sad for me) Shout OUT!

Just wanted to let everyone in blogland know that my friend, Mr. Bradley Weldy, got into the SBTS (Southern in KY) PhD program. He will start in January. Him, Lindsay, and little Shep will be leaving this area in December. True, I am leaving in February - but it isn't the same! :)
I know they will do great and I look forward to buying all of Brad's books (Prof Weldy I mean).
God is going to use you 3+ mightily for HIS GLORY!

Ps 119 applied

As I was looking through blogs and other sites last night and today, I found this one. To my knowledge, one of the designers of this program goes to SEBTS (lots of good things come of that school).
I've always wanted to memorize Scripture, but get so overwhelmed at time and then quit. Accountability hasn't worked. I've tried figuring out how Piper and Davis (FBCDurham Pastor) do it. I've tried it many ways.
This is one of those ways. Figure 8 is a system. After reading it, it sounds great, hard work (but what worth having and doing isn't?) and they have created 3 different levels of intensity. Check it out - let me know what you think.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The Weight of Sin

I would have to say the tangible sin I struggle with the most is my addiction to food - its real player that it is in my life. (the non-tangible ones are pride and idolatry - those I deal with everyday).
I was reading in Piper's new book today about repentance. Some of the verses he uses are "come unto me, all you who are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." "I am the living water, drink from me and you will never thirst again." "Hunger and thirst for righteousness." I immediately was convicted and overwhelmed with the weight of sin - literally.
I struggle with weight, losing it, gaining it, knowing why I eat, what drives me to work out, why I don't work out, clothes, the appearance, the judging of others either thinner or heavier than I am (that's everyone by the way).
But, God grants rest from that in His grace. Under the burden and weight of the cross is freedom. Freedom from the struggle of weight.
I want to come to the realization of that freedom in this area. It is tough - but Christ is bigger.
Whatever sin that may be heavy to you - let go of it - you don't have to carry it any further. God's freedom is Christ.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Ruth and Football

Boy, when you wake up late in the morning, and you are not even in your own house (housesitting) - it doesn't make for a very calming, healthy morning. But, all is well, I am at work...
But...the weekend was very successful.
The Women's Conference went very well. Between 15-20 ladies there, good fellowship. My prayer was that I could relate to them and my stories of how God had rescued me from idolatry and bitterness even in the last few months and weeks seemed to work. Thank you God for allowing me to relate to these women.
Did some good clearance shopping at some Kohl's this weekend and got some great deals by adding at 15% coupon to it.
Charlie did a great job in collegeLife on 1 Kings. It was great! some people have that gift of cramming it all in in 25 minutes. Great job on application as well.
Went to the 2nd best Chinese place in the state of NC. Charlie's is my fave place in Chapel Hill. But, Maggie and I went to the place I found before Charlies - Chens. It is in Franklinton out north of Youngsville. People from Faith and I would go there after church in seminary. I took my Mom there once and we got the General Tso's chicken - my fave (but not healthiest). Yesterday I didn't get the Tso's - I got broccoli with garlic sauce and white rice - yummy! :) It was good - not as hot as Charlie's which I would have liked, but it was good. I'll get to Charlie's my last week in the state with my friend Mollie.
Football was good this weekend too. Gators won, Michigan and OSU both had a run for their money, Tenn lost so we get to play Dec 2. Thanks LSU! Bucs lost - but at least they showed up for about 5 minutes, but that of course isn't long enough. Miami beat the previously unbeaten Bears - go fins and Jason Taylor on a pick. Then, the Colts finished the weekend off with a win in the game of the weekend - they beat the Patriots. now, most will say the Patriots didn't really play their game, but the fact remains is P.Manning won and the Colts are the only still unbeaten team! :)

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Week in review: weekend in anticipation


Well, it has definitely in an Indian summer this week as we have had the time change here in NC. It has been in the mid-high 70s all week but due to be not even out of the 50s for the weekend. Oh, well.
It has been a great week. Ok at work - but what is new.
Great time cooking with my girls on Tuesday for Reformation Day (ok, Halloween for most of the world). Have you seen Luther (the movie)? Do you know what the staples of the Reformation are? You need to - they are very important. We baked very good things - check out the food blog.
Went to lunch with a friend of mine - Claudia. Lucky 32 - you can check out my review on the food blog as well. Then I house sat for a lady - very relaxful - watched the Gators win, but they didn't look great against a very poor offensive UGA team. But, we won. We are still in the hunt against the BCS. All of us 1-loss teams gotta hang together!
The Bucs did horrible - they lost. But, they are still my team. Some changes are going to have to be made for them to start winning decidedly - don't know what those changes are. I really like Monte Kiffen - Jon Grudem not so much. Maybe they need to take some offensive pointers from the boys of old FL. Defensive from the veterans at Miami Dolphins. The Colts won though - they looked pretty good. Do they ever play Chicago - I think I know who would win. That would be the first time I've pulled for a UT guy over a FL guy - just love Peyton in every area (except college alma mater) over Rex Grossman.
Personal Worship time has been great. Praying for many things for people - but I love praying Scripture for other people: friends and family. Wisdom, marriages, boldness, patience, purity...all these things can be found in Scripture. The nearness of God is my good - help me to remember that statement from the psalmist in 73. It is one of my fave psalms. Valley of Vision and Oswald have said some very good things this week.
Getting prepared to speak to a group of ladies at Faith Baptist in Apex where Frank and Kasey serve. Speaking this weekend on Ruth: God kindness in the midst of trials. I love studying the Word - going in depth through it - how many little wonders come out and I get to pass it on. This is my favorite thing I do: maybe not - cooking with my girls is awesome too!
Go Gators this weekend: Vanderbilt. Go Bucs and Colts! Gators bb won tonight - they play again Sunday. I get to go the Duke game on Saturday night. Good weekend - plus housesitting.
Oh, this picture was taken in my friend Claudia's driveway in south Durham - this is one thing I will miss about this state when I leave - but that is what vacations are for!
Over and out

Friday, October 27, 2006

Withered Hands

Reading in Mark this morning - chapter 3.
The first part tells of Jesus healing a man with a withered hand on the Sabbath. The Pharisees of course didn't like it very much. But...He did anyway...then He went away with His disciples. Why didn't He stay and heal the rest of the sick in the synagogue? Then I came immediately to "I came to do the will of the One who sent Me." Why didn't my heart break for the other ones who had withered hands, broken hearts, sick tummies...I just came immediately to theology - b/c it was not God's will the Jesus heal all of the sick that day. Lord...pray I always come to theology and the Word - but don't let me have a callous heart to the hurt, sick, lonely, and dying.

Mark 4 - Worries and desires for other things (besides Jesus) choke the Word. The Word says do not be anxious about anything...not moving to FL, not money, not husband, not job, nothing...
Do not let my concerns over pithy things in this world choke the Word from my life and heart.

May I have the confidence in God that Jesus had in his Father when He said "Hush, be still".

Confidence in God - Let God arise, his enemies be scattered - may He be praised!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Recent themes in personal Worship

I've been reading in a couple things for my personal worship times:
My Utmost For His Highest
A Year with CS Lewis
Valley of Vision
Praying the Names of Jesus
The Psalms

I'm also keeping a prayer journal which helps me stay focused in prayer b/c I tend to wander...in my mind that is. So, writing it down helps me focus and be more articulate in my prayers.
Satisfaction
Complete Surrender
Bearer of Image
Complete Satisfaction

I read this this morning in Utmost: (and I thought of how Billy and Phyllis reacted to it when they read it together in a much warmer St. Augustine)
we are here to exhibit one thing - the absolute captivity of our lives to Jesus Christ

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Terah's b-day at Maggiano's

Happy Birthday Terah! You are so special to me and I am so thankful for you and that God has blessed me by your friendship. Even when you "fake" blowing out a b-day candle just for me! Thank you!
This next picture is me, Jess (welcome back to NC), Terah, Nicole, and Maggie. I sometimes think I just don't fit in b/c I'm not nearly as stylish as you guys - but oh well. Maybe you can rub off on me before I head back to the good state.
Then the picture is half of the Hohman's - I think there are 8 total - but this is just 4 of them.
Then we have Camden - my biggest fan - I wish he was just 30 years older - oh, well. He is Terah's nephew. His birthday is only 2 days after mine - see we were just meant to be friends!
Terah - many blessings - thanks for letting me share it with you today and for ruining your surprise lunch! :)


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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Tomlin and the Fair

Well, this will be my last time - at least as a NC resident - going to the NC State Fair. It is the annual fun with fried foods and country music in Raleigh. I love it. Thankfully it was cold for the first night at the fair and free parking b/c there was nothing at Carter Finley that night. Whoohoo.
This wasn't even supposed to be a picture of Terah - but it turned out pretty cool. The next is of the fair food queen herself - Maggie. She loves it. Last year she says she spent 75$ just on fair food and she looks great! :) This is funnel cake - I had one piece - it was yummy. This was us eating roasted corn - the best thing at the fair by far!

Tomlin was better than I thought. I liked his new stuff. I was convicted at the outset at how I judge other worshippers. People clapping or hooting and hollering. What are they doing all that for - Tomlin or God? But, you know - its not my place to know - God knows my heart - that is all I have to worry about - my heart and my standing before God.

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Pumpkin White Chocolate Chip Scones

These were very yummy. I made them twice. Not planning on it, but ended up doing them twice.

2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp each cinnamon, ginger
1 tsp baking powder
2 pinches each of salt, baking soda
1 stick unsalted butter, pieced
1/3 cup white chocolate chips
1/3 cup pecans
1/3 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup canned pumpkin
1 tsp vanilla
sugar (for sprinkling on top).

Heat oven to 350. Lightly spray scone pan with baking spray. Mix together dry ingredients, cut in butter till gravely mix. Create well in center, and mix in wet ingredients. Fold in chips and nuts. Spoon into pan, sprinkle with sugar, bake for about 20 minutes.

I put in more pumpkin and buttermilk and they turned out more like muffins - so depending on how you like your scones - add wet ingredients accordingly. Definitely a keeper! Posted by Picasa

Friday, October 13, 2006

do my actions oppose grace?

tomlin concert tonight at the State Fair (along with some roasted corn and friends) so I'm using this morning to listen to some Tomlin stuff on my iTunes. I love iTunes cause it just plays and plays - you never have to put another CD in - good technology stuff!

Ps 59
Did you know that the evil burp in the Bible - I love all these little oddities found in Scripture.
"My God - in his lovingkindness - will meet me" I love the thought of God's lovingkindness - it is covenantal love - He can't go against it. It's the love He shows Abraham and Moses and David and me when Jesus was on the cross. He will meet me with perfect everlasting faithful love.

VofV
The heavens declare your glory - even now as the Tomlin song says "star creator, mountain maker, wind breather, you made it all." The very earth will cry out to be reunited with its Creater. Even the rocks will cry out.
"Give me to feel a need of his continual saviorhood" - This goes with what I was blogging yesterday - I can't put any good forth apart from the work of Jesus in my life - what makes me think I'm better than Job, Peter, and the Publican - I'm no better than they - I am just as vile, and perishing, and a sinner.
"Often knowingly opposing thy authority" - I sin so much while knowing it. Whether it is sleeping past the snooze alarm when I know I have to get up, or evil thoughts (sin working in me while I sleep), anger and impatience, pride, gossip, etc. It never ends.

Boy - this little pamphlet Phyllis gave - describes me to a "t".
"a Stubborn unteachable spirit, sarcastic expressions, driving commanding spirit." I know God has worked in me to still my Spirit some over the years, but God is still at work because I am still sinning in this life - all for me." These things listed are a sign of living for myself - not letting Christ live in me."

JP - "The biblical role of past grace - especially the cross - is to guarantee the certainty of future grace - Rom 8.32). That is what I live on every day. Praise God for infinite grace!

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Dying to self by grace

Nailed my glory to his cross - that is a perfect way to start a quiet time. That is a line from a Caedmon's Call song "I Boast No More". We die - we are dead - Christ died and now lives again. We boast in the cross and Him crucified - Gal 6.14

From the little pamplet Phyllis gave "The stirrings of anger or impatience". That is so me, in my car, in my house, at work especially, in church even...when will this living for self cease?

Enduring pain - what do we learn from it. There have been two painful relationships in my time in NC and I've learned one truth from them, "Above all else, guard your heart for out of it flows the spring of life." That is a wise saying from the preacher in Prov 4.23. Both times I did not heed this sound advice, I was hurt. Those pains stay with me, having learned from them - I know it is now harder to give my heart away. Some people call it mistrust, I call it heading warning. There is a difference. "It is well, with my soul" by the Shanes is playing right now. God - you have used obstacles of pain in my life to teach me more about You. Thank you for bringing me through it and you more glory.

VofV
If I believe wholeheartedly in the complete work of salvation in Christ's death on the cross (which I do), why do I put myself in the mix in sanctification? That is the entire work of the Spirit - I have no imput apart from grace. 1 Cor 15.10 - even the good I do - that is grace. Grace is a free gift - nothing that I can earn (Eph 2.8-10). Make yourself all in my life.

Ps 58
"Surely there is reward for the righteous". May I count on God to vindicate my works (see above). May I not seek the praise of men - because that would be pride, not put myself out there - wait on God for His purposes in my life. Not want to seek the harm of the wicked - but knowing His glory will come from it. He is all - He will reign.

The call of the gospel is to die to self. you think I would have it down by now - of leaving self and clinging to Christ - but daily I seek my own gain. When will I die to myself. When will I let the Spirit kill me. When will the release happen of pride, selfish gain, anger, hypocrisy, worldliness, etc. I want you more than these things - what steps do I need to take in my life (grace) to reconcile that want to my actions

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

a craving for your renown - only Jesus

Silence - a very hard discipline for me to work on (in grace), but also one that I don't like a lot when God gives it in answer to prayer. This is what OC talks about today. Intimacy with Christ sometimes comes with silence. So, why do I fall away so quickly when He is being silent?

Words for the wind - JP talks about the passage in Job about reproving words. Taking from that - how often do we speak words mades for the wind. Words that aren't true, evident of a passionate life for Jesus. Words that aren't edifcation for those who hear them. Words that don't speak the truth of the WORD. May we speak less, think more, and know our words matter - hopefully our's aren't made for the wind.

Trinity - VofV starts out with a prayer for the Trinity. The author speaks of every part of the trinity. One is not without the other. We wouldn't know of God without Jesus and the Spirit, we wouldn't be able to be with God without the death and resurrection of Jesus and for the Spirit making us aware of our sin. We wouldn't be here at alll without the Father - speaking through the Son to create the world - us, in His image. How often do we downplay one of the triune Godhead. One is not more important than the other - they are all One GOD. All HOLY

Ps 57
v.2 - My God accomplishes all things for me. That is TRUTH. Now, it has to be heard with right hears and a motived heart for the glory of God. God wants to accomplish Jesus in us. He will do what it takes.
v.7 - My heart is steadfast (and he says it twice). How often do I despair, forget, leave behind, run ahead. Steadfast is not one of the words I would use to describe my heart toward God and not to the world. Sometimes I think I am more steadfast to the world than I am to the One who conquered the world. Create in me a steadfast heart o God. Only Jesus - the pearl of greatest price.

Today - dealing with sin at work, getting back in the swing of things with eating, putting aside self and doing things that need to be done - but working on having a non-prideful attitude while doing it. Loving yourself is easy - if we are to love others as ourselves it should be easy too. But, its not. Lord, work that in me as only your Hand can do. Pride - oh, the downfall. Seeking other's praise. The only praise I need to seek or even should CRAVE is God's. His is the only one that matters. The first song I recall hearing tonight - one of the lines is "give me a thirst for your glory". This is not for my glory, but for His - for His name will be praised in all the earth.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

a beautiful lighthouse

These are pictures of the St. Augustine Lighthouse. I love the ones with the trees.
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Pics from St. Aug

This is the front (or back) of the new 1200 seater Christian Life Center from Old Beach Road. It is 3 story, you can see it from the top of the lighthouse, it is a very nice building. The next is Devan. I got to know her in 7th grade Sunday School, then we started a one-on-one Bible study (of a Max Lucado book) at her house. I went over there on Tuesday nights, ate dinner with them (her mom, Dawn, is a great cook) and then we went to her room to study the Bible. The next is Billy and Phyllis. Next to my parents - the 2 greatest fans and two greatest impactors on me for the glory of God. The last is the view from the lighthouse.


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St. Aug wrap up (pictures)

What a perfect weekend. As you can see from these pictures - the weather in St. Aug was beautiful - picture perfect.
We went bike riding all the way around St. Augustine, my girl Devan (in pictures) helped lead worship for the Edge service, my Gators won...it was a blast to watch it with Billy and Phyllis, Jeremy and Katie - and to have little Eden running around! Church was good on Sunday, chilled with Devan and then chilled some more at the Robshaw house. Rode more and climbed this beautiful lighthouse on Monday - my first time doing it.
It was very peaceful to get from my mentors and my friends this weekend. Knowing I'm supposed to be back in FL. Who knows if I'll ever move back to St. Aug, but the food, family, friends, weather, beach, and church sure do make it sound great.
Thank you Jesus for a perfect weekend! :)
These pictures: the new Christian Life Center at Anastasia Baptist Church. The first girl God allowed in my life to disciple - Devan. She is now a student at Flagler, on the college ministry team, and leads worship. Phyllis, Billy, and me in their back yard with the plant behind us. This plant started out as a little potted thing I was given that I gave to them when I moved to a place I didn't have a yard. It now is huge! Then its the lighthouse (sorry you have to look sideways) and then the view looking out north toward Vilano, Ponte Vedra, and the Atlantic! :)

Tuesday reflections

Jamming in my head this morning to a DC Talk song "In the Light". OC said this morning that when we are in the light (walking in obedience) - sin is dead. Isn't that what the Word says: dwell in God, walk in Light, defeat sin on a daily basis...choose Right living. Love His righteousness, choose Life over death, be holy for He is holy.
Obedience, rejoicing, praying without ceasing, living peacefully, hating life and not clinging to it, loving others as ourselves - more importantly as Christ loved us...those are all choices. Will I walk in obedience today - through the Grace of God. Resting in God's life - in me. The Spirit will pursue me to obey and love God.
"Daily walking close to thee, I am weak but you are strong (I am dead without you), I'll be satisfied, just a closer walk with thee."
Do we plea to God for a stronger pursuit of Him. That was one of my prayer requests for the Robshaws this weekend - that I would pursue and thirst - more than anything. That I would hunger. Do we? do I? what other things do we pursue after?
An important, independent spirit? This came from the first paragraph in a littly pamphlet Phyllis gave me yesterday. Do I think of myself better than others, Christians or non-Christians? YES. I'll just answer the question rightly. With the unsaved who irritate me and do ungodly things, I know I'm better. Not always remembering I was the same way before Christ. With Christians I brag on what I do...not always remembering that the good work in me is grace as well. May have to read Humility by CJ Mahaney again coming up as everything I hear and think about reminds me of how prideful I am.
Ps 56.12
"Your vows are binding upon me, O God, I will render thank offerings to you."
His promises, truths, commands, words, are BINDING upon me. This is what I really admire in Phyllis. She is not a theologian by any means to know all the big words or discussions that are filling the seminary classrooms. But, she KNOWS the WORD - she believes, claims, trusts in the promises of God. They are binding upon her. She takes her very stance in them. But then the Psalmist immediately says he will praise. We don't often think of something binding and praiseworthy. But, the Word gives life.
As I come to this Tuesday at 6.35a - I have the chance to obey, praise, live in humilty and praise in the binding vows of God upon my life, today. Oh God let me do it.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Something to brag about?

Ok - I got this from a Dad (and former boss) at my church - his blog. I just got mad and sorry for them when I read this. Go be appalled (sp?) at it too.
Why in the world would you brag about killing a helpless, defenseless, baby? I just don't get it. I know some women who have had abortions and when they tell me they certainly aren't bragging about it - they are sorry, remorseful, guilt-ridden, if they have sought God's grace and forgiveness - then they are free and forgiven. But, never bragging.
What is our country coming to? When women in our country want to be single mothers, head of Fortune 500 companies, pastors of local churches, work outside the home but still head of the PTA, dress crappy for their husbands but dress up to see the cable guy or the co-worker the cubicle down from them?
I know we live in a sinful world - one dead and dying and going to hell - so let's go, people who are saved by the death of Christ on a tree...raise up, raise up your family to love God, most of all - brag on Jesus - not your sin.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Playing with bubbles

My roomie said that I picked such a depressing book to read tonight.
Vanity upon vanities...has that been part of my life in NC?
Anyway...I'm TIRED today. Not sleepy tired or physically worn out from exercising (although I am taking a break today), I'm just spiritually exhausted. It hit me all at once this afternoon.
I'm tired of striving to have people think better of me.
I'm tired of being hurt
I'm tired of being sinful
I'm tired of living in a sinful world where people kill each other for no apparant reason (other than the fact they probably don't know Jesus).
I'm tired, plain and simple.
So, I thought of this little acronym:
T - Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.
I - Incline my heart to fear Your Name
R - Restore unto me the joy of your salvation
E - Ecclesiastes (I actually thought of cease striving, end striving - and that brought me to Ecc)
D - Die to self - for to me to live is Christ and to die is gain.

Then, the youth pastor at my church in St. Aug preached on resting in Jesus yesterday. I haven't heard it yet, but Matt 11.28-30 is a great passage. Rest in Jesus - his yoke is light, his burden light to carry. Resting in Jesus is better than striving after vanity (bubbles that pop and leave nothing when they hit the ground). Resting in Jesus is better than anything. So, why do I do so little of it.
Vanity of vanities...maybe a depressing book. But, Solomon (or the preacher) thought he had it all too at one point - he found out later he didn't.
Do I really think that all these things are better for me...no. I know my worth is not equal to how much I weigh, how many people I know, what classes I teach, how many girls I disciple, how many women's conferences I lead, etc. But, why do I act on that sometimes - or strive after that?
Ecclesiastes: by The Preacher (or the Holy Spirit in another words)
1.3 What does man gain by all the toil at which he toils under the sun?
1.14-15 I have seen everything that is done under the sun, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind. What is crooked cannot be made straight,and what is lacking cannot be counted
2.11 Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.
2.23-23 What has a man from all the toil and striving of heart with which he toils beneath the sun? For all his days are full of sorrow, and his work is a vexation. Even in the night his heart does not rest. This also is vanity.
3.2b - a time to pluck up what is planted (have I quit planting, now am working on sowing and plucking up)?
3.11 - He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end
4.1-3 Again I saw all the oppressions that are done under the sun. And behold, the tears of the oppressed, and they had no one to comfort them! On the side of their oppressors there was power, and there was no one to comfort them. And I thought the dead who are already dead more fortunate than the living who are still alive. But better than both is he who has not yet been and has not seen the evil deeds that are done under the sun.
5.1-3 Guard your steps when you go to the house of God. To draw near to listen is better than to offer the sacrifice of fools, for they do not know that they are doing evil. Be not rash with your mouth, nor let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God, for God is in heaven and you are on earth. Therefore let your words be few. For a dream comes with much business, and a fool's voice with many words. (stuck right in the middle of this book is a reminder that God is God - He is just and holy - we are sinful man.)
10.5-7 - There is an evil that I have seen under the sun, as it were an error proceeding from the ruler: folly is set in many high places, and the rich sit in a low place. I have seen slaves on horses, and princes walking on the ground like slaves
12.8 - (key verse) Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher; all is vanity.
12.13 - A good note to end on for Solomon - Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. But oh, it is so hard. But for Grace

In the words of Chris Rice..."weak and wounded sinner, lost and left to die"..."come, cry to Jesus". And I'll add... Rest in Jesus

Saturday, September 30, 2006

Saturdays are partly made for music and sports

Why can't every day be a Saturday? Or even a Friday night. They are soon becoming my favorite days. Its the first job in a while that I've had where I haven't been on call. So, I'm not worried about being called into work. Its very nice. I know it will change when I start working at W-S again for the holidays, but that will only be for a short period of time.
I woke up this morning, ate some breakfast, listening to music, checked email, chilling before cleaning and cooking for my girls at a brunch later this morning. Then I'll go exercise, then watch my GATORS play against Alabama - they better air that game up here and not some dinky UNC or NCSU game, certainly they wouldn't air the Duke/Navy game.
But, reading the Word this morning too.
Ps 55
The art of casting. Why do I always take my burdens to somewhere else (or someone else literally) before I take it to God. He's the only One who can really help anyway. But, I tend to find comfort and sympathy from earthly things that are fleeting.
"Whisper peace to me" - an FFH song I'm listening to right now - Tired of my reflection, blinded by my own perception - need to see you clearer,
1 Tim 2 - I could see how that passage could be taken wrong - but not if you see Scripture clearly and rightly. God's intention and will from the beginning in Gen 1 - we ruined fellowship. But, we need to be seen as women of God with good works - not adornment.
"Gifted Response" - Matt Redman. That says it all - we can't come to by our own merit. We can only do any good work (Eph 2.10) by the work of Jesus on the cross. We can't do any good on our own. We'll sing the glory of your name, the glories of your grace, we will worship you, we'll make your praise all glorious, sing songs of everlasting praise - we will worship (what we deem worth praise) you.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Tigers, Fighting, Reading, Striving

Yesterday - just b/c I didn't want to blog right before going to bed b/c it was late.
Auburn got a run for their money down in Cock land. It came down to the last play - sorry Steve, try harder next time. We'll hopefully tame the Tigers in a couple weeks for ya.
Time in the Word was good. It had been a battled day at work yesterday with a co-worker. Gave in - but should have just ignored her, answered kindly, God against my foes. Ps 53. He is my salvation and my deliverer. Let Him do it. I don't need to fight. Most of the time I fight wrong anyway.
I fight for my interests and not theirs (Phil 2).
1 Tim 2 - the beginning of the chapter is bookended with commands to pray. I haven't been doing that much lately. We are commanded to because God's glory and for the salvation of the world - therefore, we should pray.
Then I read the Christ-hymns and started reading again in Piper's Seeing and Savoring Jesus Christ I read that back in 2001 and now I'm reading it again. I can't believe its been that long ago that I read it. My second year of seminary, 2 years of being in NC. Now that all that may be coming to a close - I'm reading it again. I read it on SEBTS's grounds - looking around, striving, when I should just be thirsting and seeking the only thing that will satisfy me and never let me down - GOD and HIS GLORY.
Anyway...today is Friday - praise God! Work, Yoga, eating at Carolina Cafe with one of my girls - Go Maggie, finally, Harris Teeter to pick up a few things for brunch tomorrow, then home to read and go to bed so I can get up early for cycle and brunch.
HAppy Friday

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

United States, North Korea, and Religion

I found this article today on my yahoo site. Good article. I agree with them some. Read the article - then hear me out before judging.
Yes - there is an absolute that GOD is God and Jesus is the only way to get to God and have eternal life (John 14.6, many places in Isaiah - God will not give His glory to another - He is a jealous God).
No - we shouldn't go around killing Muslims just because they (some radical ones) kill other people. (I am not saying I disagree with the war in Iraq - I support it). But, just like we shouldn't kill abortion doctors just because they kill - we shouldn't kill Muslims just because they kill. We should let God be the "religion judge" (as the article says that we are).
Why not - evangelize them, love them, offer them grace, words of Truth, forgive them?
Remember - before grace - we were just like them - guilty and DEAD. We got grace! All to the praise of HIS GLORY!

Olive Trees and Controversies

In Ps 52, he describes a contrast so clear. Evil - productivitiy from being in God's presence. Which one am I right now and which one do I want to be. What is in it for me to be the first one? Life is so meaningless, unsatisifying with Christ and putting Him first. That is why we have grace - so that we may taste the all-satisfyingness of Christ and not want to go back. Then, we can be like an olive tree.
But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God. I trust in the steadfast love of God forever and ever. I will thank you forever, because you have done it. I will wait for your name, for it is good, in the presence of the godly.
I trust in the God's love.
I am thanksful because of God's actions
I am patient for God's name.

Starting to read in 1 Timothy, too.
3-11
So many times in the church we see controversies (half of which aren't worth their weight in salt) but how many of them don't follow this pattern that we see written to a young pastor. Paul tells him he is going to face them - but he also tells him how to address them: pure heart, good conscience, sincere faith. Most of the time when we are facing controversies we come pridefully, arrogantly, thinking all about ourselves and our cause. I saw this especially at the SBC this past summer and all the things surrounding it. Guarantee some of those men did not speak out of a pure heart - but one of vendetta, revenge, pride, just to hear themselves speak, on a soapbox, etc.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Sleep>Christ

Now, I'm not saying we should go without sleep. But, take me for example. I do my QT in the morning b/c that is when I'm fresh without the cares of the day and the boringness of work to cloud my judgment. Focusing on the Word in the morning also helps me dwell on it all day. But, if I stay up too late at night, or just crave that extra 2 hours of fitful sleep that comes after hitting the snooze button a couple of times...those QTs don't happen.
So, move the alarm clock. I put mine tonight in the bathroom so I'm right near the sink to wash my face and clear across the room so I actually have to get out of bed to shut it off (don't wanna make the neighbors mad when they hear it at 5.15a).
Now, God does create us to be whole people in His image, but He also wants us to prioritize HIM. Focus on Him. Shut the alarm clock off and not just press snooze. God wants us to get sleep - but if that means leaving Him out then something else must go.
We tithe our money - but do we spend 2 hrs and 24 minutes of our day with Him. I know I don't...but I spend that amount of time doing other things.
Good morning - this is your wake up call!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Productive weekends

Weekend was pretty productive.
Friday night I hung out in Raleigh with Terah and Nicole. We had great conversation, food, and shopping at Crabtree, Ruby Tuesdays (with their great pumpernickel croutons), and JCrew.
Saturday was great with a cycle class, Wal-Mart, eating at City Beverage in Durham (a great new find if a little expensive) with Claudia. Talked to the waiter about FL football (he went to high school with Chris Leak). Then came home to clean my room (goodness I can see the floor) and talk with my roomie, and then watch the GATORS WIN!!! They are 3-0. Unfortunately so are the 4 teams above them in the polls. But, hopefully we'll take care of Auburn in a few weeks. Tebow is a great guy - freshman from Nease High School. He ran for 62 yards in three plays. Wow! At one point the crowd started booing the Heisman candidate - Leak when they brought him back in. Good gracious! But, then they started cheering for him again. That is good.
Sunday was good - meeting new students at College Life at Cole Mill. Then church and out to eat with a friend from seminary. The came home to cook for Bible study on Ruth tonight, watch the Bucs lose to Carolina (but no wonder - Chris Simms had a ruptured spleen afterwards).
The Bible study went well. About 5 girls for discussion on Ruth. We ate dinner, talked, got to know each other - then studied the word together. We're going to do it next month too over White Chicken Chili. YUM!
Anyway - now I gotta go back to work tomorrow...whooohoooo!

Random wedding picture

This is Sarah and Jonathan Welch. I found this picture on my camera. Its the only one I got in before my camera died. She looked beautiful and he was so happy.
They are both in Durham - she teaches school and he is working at the church and going to Southeastern.
Congrats you two! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Consider Their Ways...

Hebrews 13.7
Remember your leaders, those who spoke to you the word of God. Consider the outcome of their way of life, and imitate their faith.
There is another verse I was looking for for this post, somewhere in Paul's letters - something about imitate me as I follow after Christ - but I couldn't find the reference. Not all of these women are my leaders, but in all of them I want to consideer their way of life and imitate their faith. This list isn't finished - but these are the ones I am thinking of today...
Who do you want to be like? Of course - we want to be like Christ...but who on earth do you want to be like. I want the girls that I disciple to see things in me that makes them want to be more like Christ. Most times I fail miserably - but other times, hopefully by the grace of God, I show them Christ.
As I was thinking about this yesterday, I wanted to give you some women that I want to be like - all for different reasons...
Here they are:

Mom - I want to have her selfLESSness and do-for-others-ness. That is so unlike me and the part of my life and discipline where I struggle the most.

Phyllis - Her knowledge of the Word, living it out, and love for her family. The way she actively pursues the Word, time with God, praying for her family, etc. She has taught me that the most (even above all the good recipes) over the past 12 years.

Laura - http://www.loloschpadora.blogspot.com/ - her creativity, both with her art and the way she is raising her son. She has got to be the most creative person I know - so talented at everything she puts her hands on. If I had one pinky full of the creativity that Laura has - just think of how much I could do...

Kimmie - I have known this woman since I was about 10 - she is only I think 2 years older than me. But, as I was thinking about her yesterday (she is what sparked this whole blog), I know that everytime I think of her I think of Christ. In her pictures, at her wedding, at summer camp all those years ago, with her family, doing ministry at (yuck) FSU, in everything for her - CHRIST. Her eyes, smile, posture, demeanor - everything CHRIST. I'm not exaggerating this at all. It is all by GRACE. She is amazing. I haven't seen her now probably since her wedding which was 10 years ago, but I have kept up with her somewhat through family friends and email. But, just to watch her life from a distance is an encouragement. Thank you Kimmie.

Now, here's my charge to me and to you (whoever is reading this). What am I doing right now to take after these women? Am I memorizing Scripture and praying for others like Phyllis? Am I living for others and serving them like my Mom? Am I doing anything with creativity like Laura? Am I living my whole life for Christ and showing Him to others like Kimmie?

Who do you want to be like? Women - who are you imitating as they imitate Christ? Men - do you have older/younger men in your life that you want to imitate as they follow hard after Christ? What are you doing to get there?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

thinking rightly

Went to a singles' Bible study at Sovereign Grace Apex last night. It was good - a little younger than I thought it was going to be, mostly college students, but the study and thought are worth the trip to Apex once a month.
This year the study is on the Doctrine of God and how that affects our daily lives (careers, gender roles, relationships, schooling, etc). Last night we read some out of the NT and Ps 50 - which I had just read for my QT. But, also we read out of the intro and first chapter in Tozer's book - The Knowledge of the Holy. Great book by the way - on the "easy but meaty" list for doctrine of God studies.
He was talking about thinking rightly about God. What does that mean? If we answer that than what is idolatry? A couple of things stood out to me...
1. Idolatry is when we don't think rightly about God. Because if we think wrongly about God then we are putting that god in God's place. Get my drift?
2. Churches start to go astray when they don't think or study or preach rightly about God. Most of you probably know the churches I am talking about, but even seemingly more conservative churches about God. If they don't preach and live the RIGHT thinking about God and preach ALL of who God is - then they are going astray. This is why preaching expositorally is necessary. The Bible is how we know how to think rightly about God and in turn "love God with all our minds" - Matt 22.37

Of course - the only way we know how to think rightly about God or can even think about God at all is Grace! That is underlying everything we do. Praise God for it!

On a side note - may not post now till Sunday. Got a busy night tonight, tomorrow is Cortnee and Jeremy's wedding, then hanging with Melissa, then cooking, new friends, Gator football, Church...

Monday, September 11, 2006

MUST MUST MUST READ!!

Well, I am using the latter part of this evening "dating" my computer. No, not online dating - just spending quality time with my computer. Listening to the Shanes right now, looking for a couple of songs to download this weekend, scrolling through blogs, typing out emails...Good quality evening.
Here is a MUST READ BLOG, and subsequent links you must read in the somewhat near future.

http://girltalk.blogs.com/girltalk/2006/09/where.html (even if you aren't a girl - this post has nothing to do with being a girl, but about serving a sovereign God).

Also, I wanted to post the words to one of the songs I heard last night...

Arise - by the Shanes (sorry for the format below, I just cut and paste)

arise and awaken He is king He is king arise, my soul awaken all flesh is grass surely fading (fast) oh soon, it's all gone, we'll fly away oh soon, it's gone, it's gone
You are the maker, life sustainer everything comes and everything goes when you give the word of mercy, oh lord satisfy, You and i arise my soul awaken that i might see and be happy all my day show
long will there be mourning? return to us return to us teach me to number my days at the most 80 years who cares about meaningless things? i do i care about R-2and i care about yahoo things that are fleeting, fading away awaken my soul awaken my soul

5 years, Shanes, Football, Baking

I'm not going to make all of this blog emotional, being that this is the 5th anniversary of Sept 11. But, I think some things need mentioning:
1. God is still on his throne.
or the lives of the families that did the attacks and suffered in the attacks. Many moms, dads, brother, sisters, daughters, sons, etc were lost in that day.
3. Thank God that we do live in a free country.
4. Remember throughout the history of our country - the lives that have been lost to preserve that freedom.
I do remember where I was. I was in my dorm room, then at the bank watching the news, then I spent the day at Randy's just watching it over and over again. That is all I could do. There is only one other event in my life that I remember what I was doing. January 1986 - I was on the soccer field at LCS when the Challenger exploded. You do remember.

Now, onto the rest of the weekend.
GATORS won, all ACC Carolina teams lost.
Bucs got killed - they should have just gone home, but they were playing at home. It was miserable for them.
But, the Colts won last night and Carolina lost - that does make for a 66% great day in football!

The Shanes was amazing last night. They played a couple of new songs:
Arise - which is on their live album which I don't have, so that was great.
Jesus Come - "may the vision of you be the death of me"
A song based on Gal 3.13ff, "Embracing Accusation" We are dead - then JESUS! What a phenom song - sorry if you missed it because you didn't want to go to a "bluegrass" concert. You really missed out. Came by myself but randomly found these girls that I had met a few weeks ago in Wal-mart, a YP that goes to Grace Church in CH, and Jenn and Ben. Good night - long concert - but well worth it.

Baked this weekend
1. A Paula Deen pound cake which was delicious. Had a small bite while it was warm then took it to college on Sun am. It was gone - so at least I didn't eat it. But, I used my great new pan and that made it turn out great!
2. Baked cookies yesterday for a meeting tonight. Double chunk peanut butter blossoms. Had a bite of one, threw some out so I wouldn't eat them, brought the rest to work and to the meeting tonight.
Even though I love to bake, I've learned not to eat as much either! :)

"Restore to me the joy of your salvation"

Thursday, September 07, 2006

thoughts on class tonight

As I sat in class tonight - I realized this is the first time one of Dr. Coley's classes is actually having an adverse effect on me. Not to take anything away from the class at all - and I really like Dr. Littlejohn's perspective on thing (Trinity Academy, Raleigh).
But, I sit there, especially if we talk about our current vocation. This is what I get. Mothers or teachers (or administrators). Then I say, oh, I push papers at Duke. Who cares that I already have a degree and I teach Bible studies to women and college girls (yes, I love doing that and I don't mean to downplay that at all) - but do I get paid for it? NO!
So, his class is actually depressing me because I can talk about this all day long and it never seemingly takes me anywhere except to some dead-end low ender job. Will I ever get to do what I love to do and get paid for it? Or be a Mom (but that is a different story).
Anyway...I know, God's plan and His timing is perfect. I just wish sometimes he would let me in on it. But then where would faith be? God I need that gift of faith right now - and yes, faith is a gift (Eph 2.8-9) and I think it applies even outside the realm of salvation.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

The Perfection of Beauty

I completely have been a slacker. As I said in a comment on Jenn's blog we strive in grace - even grace is needed for us to strive. I haven't even been doing that. I've been receiving grace - but not using that grace wisely - (if I can even do that?)
Ps 50 starts out with a very real and often-lesser view of God (for most of the world):
The Mighty One, God the Lord, speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to its setting. Out of Zion, the perfection of beauty, God shines forth. Our God comes; he does not keep silence; before him is a devouring fire...
We often like to think of God as a Giver, Lover, Friend (which He is all graciously all those things), but we don't like to look to Him as a devouring fire, mighty tempest, shining light, mighty one, perfect. That often isn't appealing to us.
The perfection of beauty. Man, how I would like to take that class Dr. Little teaches at SEBTS now on aethetics and philosophy. Can we even fathom the perfection of beauty. We say there is a beauty in the eye of the beholder - but God is the perfection of beauty - everything else is in relation to that.
Another phrase in this psalm I like:
But to the wicked God says:“What right have you to recite my statutes or take my covenant on your lips? For you hate discipline,and you cast my words behind you.
God would consider my actions the past few weeks wicked. He wouldn't consider me wicked b/c I've been purchased and redeemed by the Blood of Christ - but I have put so many things above HIM the past few weeks. I have hated discipline in spiritual things and have constantly put His words behind me. Oh, God - give me grace, not to say that arrived (thanks Jenn for the reminder) but to press into the wonderful grace and face of Jesus.
This is who I want to be - the end of the psalm:
The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me; to one who orders his way rightly I will show the salvation of God!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Paid Holidays, House, and cookbooks

Ah, how I do love paid vacation! This weekend has been great in terms of missing work! :)
Got back from Boston yesterday, had to do some shopping before coming home. Then two of my girls are here. We have already done so much.
We have watched 4 episodes of House - with more to come today.
We have made oh my goodness delicious snickerdoodles - they are great - and I even had just one. They were from a recipe, tweaked a little from Taste of Home Complete Guide to Baking - what a great baking cookbook for all you bakers out there.
We made homemade popcorn - Veronica style.
Today we are eating some good food and watching more House.
I love spending time with Becky and Cat, hanging out, watching House, chilling. And I get paid to do it today!
Two great cookbooks we picked up while in Boston. Of course, my Mom gets them first.
Alton Brown's - I'm Just Here for the Food - fun book just like his show Good Eats
Legal SeaFoods = cookbook with great seafood recipes - hopefully I can find out how to cook their tuna. It was wonderful. Best tuna I've ever had!
Still can't find a recipe for Apple Mousse - so if anyone has one, let me know.

Saturday, September 02, 2006

memoirs of Bean Town




Many different things have taken place in Boston. Jan now made me an "official" name tag that states "Kim, I'm Alvie Davidson's Daughter" That was the big joke from last year's FGS conference in Sacremento.
When I flew in to Boston on Thursday night it was gorgeous. I just prayed that God would someday direct me back to living on the water. I love it - it is a clear sign of God's creative aspects and character. It was wonderful.
The time to get to the airport was traumatic. I thought I would die coming in the van - the dude was rude, spoke little English, and didn't know how to drive.
Had some great tuna for dinner. Parents had gotten Legal Seafood and had brought me some tuna home.
Went on a tour of Bean Town on Friday. We didn't get to see any place, but really saw everything. So, Dad and I went back to Trinity church this morning after getting some breakfast at The Pour House - it was good, even though there was this one rude customer.
Mom and I got our nails done and she got her hair cut.
So...we are going shopping tonight, out to dinner at No Name Restaurant...
Oh, speaking of food...two great things about this trip. Mom and I ate at Brown Sugar Cafe yesterday - a Thai restaurant near Fenway park. Phenom! Then our taxi driver on the way back was from Phuket and Bangkok - so I got to talk a little about my trip there earlier this year. Our dessert, pictured here, was brown sugar sticky rice in banana leaves - oh my goodness. Mom loved her Thai food experience. Then the dessert we had last night at the conference meal was an apple mouse in an almond brittle bowl - oh my goodness. Top 3 desserts I have ever had in my life...#1 was the cheesecake in NYC in this little cafe. Anyway, I've eaten well, shopped well, exercised well, back is so hurting this morning...but...oh, and for Laura there are cows everywhere! :) They sell them for charity - after they are painted - like the swans in Lakeland.
Anyway, one more day then home to watch House.

Thursday, August 31, 2006

1 year, Ernesto, Boston, and babies!


Well, it has now been one year. Yesterday was the one year anniversary of my blog. It has been helpful to me and I hope it has also been helpful, fun, and an encouragement to each of you!

Ernesto is the big news on this coast. It will probably delay my flight some today b/c it is supposed to take off when we are getting another band of rain and wind. I love hurricanes - they fascinate me and they are so fun to walk in, sit through in a rocking chair, watch, etc. I know who makes them and He is in control of them. Isn't that a comforting thought! I'm not saying we shouldn't be prepared for them, there is always stupidity that plays a factor into that. But, they shouldn't be "feared" either. We should only fear the one who makes them.

Boston - here I come. I'm scheduled to get up there around 7p, so I'm chilling at work here today for the last few hours. Will get adjusted before I go and pick mom up some medicine, then head to the airport. I think this is definitely the trip I have the most shoes on - but they have to go with certain outfits. And this time I didn't plan my outfit by my shoes and how I could only bring one pair. They are all in my carry-on since shoes aren't liquid - I can carry them on board.

I'll be posting pictures as the weekend progresses and give my general synopsis of the city and all its glory when I return.

And the last thing...my friends in TX had a baby! That is Joe and Jana up top there. Their new addition is Erin - she will be three weeks old this weekend. I met Joe in seminary and we've stayed friends. Jana is great and I know will be a great Mom. They are serving at a church in TX so I definitely don't get to see them as much. Congrats!

Prov 22.6 - my prayer for you guys!

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Happy Problems and Golf in the rain

That is what happened today...
Packed out first college service at Cole Mill. We had somewhere in the vicinity of 260 - but know we have put about 300 in there before for prayer meeting - so we will just have to cram more next week (or the following since it Labor Day next week). Brad brought it on the spoken Word of God and the plurality of Elohim in the first 2 chapters in Genesis. Jason did great as he lead us in worship in that God is the Divine Creator and not the Divine Manipulator (Heb 11.3). It was good to see a majority of my girls again, there are a few I still haven't seen and some have graduated now and serve elsewhere in the church.
The 11a service is definitely the PACKED HOUSE. There was no room. We brought in extra chairs, some sat in the choir loft, and some sat on the floor. That is the problem. Some new people may not come back b/c there was no room for them to sit - or they had to sit up front - oh, the happy problems of a growing church with no "home".
3 more days till I leave for Boston - whoohooo!
I wouldn't say I'm not a Tiger fan, but I just don't usually play into all the hype of players. He is a fantabulous golfer - but is he the best golfer in the world of all times - um, don't know. But, him and Cink went at it today even finishing in the rain. It didn't seem like either one of them really wanted to win - because they were hitting it in the trees, bunkers, sand, missing puts, etc. Finally - Tiger prevailed. nice little pocket change he got - more than I'll have in my lifetime he got from playing 4 days of hitting a little white ball with a big numbered metal stick...oh, the life...

Saturday, August 26, 2006

thoughts on "singles" ministry

This is the debate I had today...
I said at lunch I would rather go to a women's event at a church than a singles' event. This is my reasoning. Being single in the church culture is negative. Like it or not. Being a woman for most people in the world (unless they are sexist) is not negative. I'm perfectly content with my singleness (1 Cor 7 is very real to me).
But, I think lumping all singles into the same category just because of their marital status is hurting the ministry - or not utilizing it to the best it could be.
If you are trying to reach all singles with one singles event a week or whatever and never breaking them up into their respective "categories" - than it will never be the fullest it can be.
There are singles of every age (newborns are singles). But, the ones most singles ministries reach are 18-death who don't have a ring on their finger. But, if you were able to break up college, younger singles, divorced singles, always single older adults, then you can be more productive. But, then you lose the cross-generational effect that has to happen in a church.
But...why do we have to be segrated in the church at all. Married people aren't segragated - they are the church. So are we - we just don't wear a ring on our finger.
Thoughts?

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Anticipating Chapter 4

Ok - I've been tempting my mother with this all day - she has no clue what chapter 4 is. But...she is about to find out.
Ruth. I'm studying it in preparation for a women's conference I'm speaking at in November. It is already being used mightily in my life by the Spirit.
Starts out with famine and death...ends with hope and life. OK - so I'd like to get to chapter 4. It goes very well with Rom 8.32 which I really love. I'm in a bitter and un-content time in my life right now - just where Naomi was. And I'm sure deep down Ruth was too (she wasn't perfect). But men and jobs have done their number on me today. Why do we have to have either one of them. Both are necessary though but both are highly frustrating. Why?
But - that is where chapter 4 comes in - HOPE in a BABY. Not Obed - necessarily - but in his future...JESUS - the BABY of all BABIES!
So, you will be hearing a lot more from Ruth in the next 2 months as I prepare. As always - I learn more when i do the teaching/speaking than I ever do if I'm just sitting. (Unless it is someone like Nelson or Piper or someone like the caliber of them).

Monday, August 21, 2006

I hate pain!

Ok - that is the scream of my day today and yesterday, and the day before.
I can't stand, sit, lay down, sleep, walk, (or exercise on orders from my chiro) without pain. Sitting is the worst I think. Getting up is awful movement - I act like I'm pregnant because I have to use my arms to get me up or down. NO I'M NOT PREGNANT.
I was just doing something that I should NOT have been doing on Friday night and ended up doing some damage to my already compacted lower disks in my back. But...such is life. Now I live off aleve (because they are anti-inflammatories), ice packs (or frozen beans, broccoli, edamame), and a pillow in between my legs to sleep. This is insane.
Anyway...the Israelites went through pain because of their sin. But, as I see in Ps 44, God saw them through it. He will see me through this (with the help of Dr. Adams - man, he's great) and He will get the greater glory from this.
My summer is bookended with pain: gallbladder surgery and disk issues. Good gracious. I hope the fall is less painful! :)
Have a great, and pain-free night blogland!

kd

Sunday, August 20, 2006

A Sunday afternoon

Church was good but painful today. It was great to have the college students back today - most of the ones I know, and to see some unexpected faces of graduates. JD preached a good sermon on being the body - especially with all this junk in the SBC about church membership and accountability b/c of that. Church discipline is a needed thing in our churches.
This is a great verse to live by for people like me who don't really like where they are in life:
Ps 43.5
Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.
I usually put my trust in my abilities, or things I own, or people I know - but my Hope lies only in God - my only true hope that is.
Back still hurts, went grocery shopping, had lunch with Gray, cleaned some and did some laundry, cooked a chicken. It was a good Sunday afternoon - very calming even though I spent the morning sitting in a chair in an auditorium hurting - oh, well. This too shall pass!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Instruments of Praise!

Instruments of praise:
Sorry for so long of a time between blogs. This is a new thing for me - not blogging daily, but I was housesitting so my schedule was a little off.
But, I was reading in Psalms this week and there are many things to be thankful for. I have done a lot of complaining lately and that doesn't bode well. But there are some good things:
1. The Hope of Scripture
2. This day too shall pass (especially when my back hurts so bad I hardly stand up without screaming out in pain).
3. A deacon that will drive across town at 9p to try to jump my battery and then drive me to another house when the battery won't start.
4. A cheap but honest mechanic that will work on my car within a few hours.
5. Co-workers who will pick me up and loan me their cars to drive to pick up mine.
6. Class with Dr. Coley at the seminary that makes my degree something worth while even if I work at a job I don't like that doesn't mean squat to my degree or passion.
7. Fun e-cards you can send to people.
8. Saturday nights not to do anything but having to miss out on really cool parties because you pulled you back out moving the Heel Mobile.

Thankful for instruments of praise! :)

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Random things


Three things to blog about today (ok, maybe more)
1. Finally found the cake pan I've been looking for since a long time. A straight-side one piece pound cake pan. I make a brown sugar pound cake - and now I can make many more. And my mom doesn't need to bring me hers! And it wasn't that expensive (definitely cheaper than I would have paid at W-S had they had one).
2. It is Annie's birthday. I work with Anne and she puts up with me, she trained me, she loves people. That is her in the picture above in the suit. The picture was taken the day of the bridal brunch for MGs wedding. Anne also works at a dept store at night - otherwise we would be dressed more like this next person...
3. I get to go housesit. I'm housesitting for another lady I work with (also in the picture), Marcey. She is going to the beach (I'd rather be there). But...it'll be a change of pace.
4. Talked to Dad and he said he heard a sermon on one of my fave verses last night that I had known for a long time - Ps 37 - what did I talk about last night.

So, that is what is going on for this Saturday...

Friday, August 11, 2006

Am I missing something?

Now, I want to preface this whole blog (probably my most personal yet and maybe never this personal again) by saying that I believe wholeheartedly in the Sovereignty of God - the fact that God is God, He is above all things, and He answers to no one, least of all me.
Have I missed something? Do I not know how to listen to God? Do I not hear Him when He speaks? Do I not know what blessings are - or have I missed them all?
This has been a rough day...a day full of sin of horrible attitudes, spiteful attitudes - not one of Paul's thoughts in Romans when he said he would rather be accursed than to see any of his countrymen (the Jews) go to hell. It wouldn't have come out of my mouth today. I get mad b/c someone won't give me the time of day even when asked a direct question and ignores me and thinks she is better than me. But, I won't even go out of my way to be nice to her (b/c I'm too prideful) so that she could see someone who is a Christian and maybe come to know Jesus. My pride is more important than her eternal salvation. Who am I?
THen I read Ps 37 - be not envious of evil doers. Here this person has a higher job than I do, has a fiance' - although it is not a godly relationship whatsoever, wears great clothes, is thinner than me and can seem to eat anything she wants.
Then right after that God says (since He breathed Scripture) dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness. How long? When do you leave the land and cultivate faithfulness somewhere else? Will that faithfulness be rewarded ever?
Then keep on going...delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart...commit your way to the Lord and He will bring it to pass. I've been knowing and trying to live this verse since early high school. Desires are Christ - or they need to be. But are we to expect earthly blessings - no, we aren't to be expectant of anything b/c everything we get is grace. I think I'm too good. I think that because I am trying to live my life according to the Word (even though it is so hard) I deserve something. I don't. But - we want to deserve something. Should life be so unlike we ever thought it would be. High school friends are married and are living the life they always thought they would. College friends are doing the same. Seminary friends are thriving in marriages and churches and ministries and having babies. And I'm still stuck in this life...not being able to do what I want to do, living day to day wanting to do something else, never being satisfied with anything, trying tonight to eat my way to when I feel better. I know that isn't going to help anything. I just want something different from life. That life has to have God as the Center...but why can't I have some other things as well. Christ is enough...He's enough for all those people that have great ministries and families too. But, they have other great gifts of God as well. I don't. What am I missing?

Those are my thoughts tonight

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Colts and Laura


Happy Birthday Laura!!!

Ahh - the life. I've worked a long day, took a good cycle class, ate a healthy dinner, enjoyed a frozen strawberry pop, and now I'm watching PRESEASON FOOTBALL. And not just any PSF - the COLTS!! WHOOHOO - go Peyton. Not only a great college football player and pro football player, but also an outspoken Christian who loves Jesus. And not just Peyton - but also Tony Dungy. Who had a rough end of the season last year - but good gracious - the man loves God! :) Oh, the joys of football. Can't wait for the real games to start. These are only fun for about the first 10 minutes, because that is how long the "real" players play, then the second and third string and the water boys come in - sometimes they even bring in the crowd.
But, now onto someone who holds a personal stake in my life. Today is the birthday of Miss Laura Robinson. I've known her for about 2 years now. She has been in my Bible study (and Veronica's) for the 4 semesters that we taught. She is an amazing chick who loves Jesus. She is real, loves to teach, is about to start 3rd grade teaching in a week or so, just graduated Carolina, teaches 10th grade girls at the Summit, dates a guy named Chris who just got a job in SC, her parents live close by, her car is great but it has been giving her problems, loves taking trips to DC with me, and as you can tell by the picture - loves baking sugar cookies. For her birthday, we are going to the Wake Forest Tea Room - sometime - a Saturday that we can head over there. I'm glad she likes me - cause I get to know her and love her - and she doesn't get too tired of me. Laura - Happy Birthday - hope you had a wonderful day. Consider this your card till we go to WF. Keep pressing into the presence of God - even when you are tired of kids or of painting your room or sewing pillows.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Waiting Expectantly

This has been a hard day - when is it ever going to be the day that I work at a job that I LOVE - doing what I love, am called to, and what I'm educated to do? I don't know. I don't like being low end of the totum pole and knowing it b/c you are told that. It is hard - humbling, but hard. It was a good day other than that. Cycle class was good this morning.
A letter Mom rec'd today reminded me of a great psalm that is great - I will be praying this every morning. It will be on my mirror. Praying the Word - believing the Word - waiting expectantly...Ps 5.3
(and this is in NIV - I know, not the most reliable - ESV says sacrifices and not prayers)
In the morning, O LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.
Watch closely or intently is the word in Hebrew for expectation. How do you watch closely the Lord and what He is doing - you stay in prayer and reading the Word.
Today (this morning, lunch, and now)...I've read Ps 35. First this morning I read it in light of a co-worker I am praying for - for doors to be opened. But, by the time I read it at lunch, I needed it.
Say to my soul,“I am your salvation!” David is saying this to myself. He is pleading for God - HIS LORD and PROTECTION to do just that.