Friday, January 30, 2009

How old sites make me feel

I have shown this pic before--but it was a good pic for what I wanted to post about. DON'T YOU ALL GET A STRANGE FEELING THAT COMES OVER YOU WHEN YOU GO TO AN OLD SITE??? WELL, I WAS reading in a book that Grandpa wanted me to get--just a fiction book by Phillis Whitney. She wrote something that describes just what I FEEEEEEL:

"In this place the sense of everything going on and on that I had felt before came again: a fleeting awareness that human pain mattered for less than a moment's breath in time--that others had suffered long before me, and would suffer long after. In a moment my universe would center around me again, as every man's must, but for this little while I was detached--part of a larger picture. There was something freeing about the experience."

That was just how I feel!!! at an old site I realize how connected I am with all of those who have gone before and those that will come after me. I realize how small one human is--a speck---or part of a much larger picture. ......and that is freeing. It also gives me a slightly different perspective on God's ways in history.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Love Dare Day 22

I have continued in the Love Dare book challenge ;-) . I loved day 22 which is where I am right now---this , to me, was very beautiful. It was called Love is Faithful....but it spoke about unfaithfulness.......BUT in a beautiful way.

It referred to the book of Hosea--which is a beautiful book. It spoke about how God told him to marry a prostitute---and the Love Dare book said this:

"He wanted Hosea's Marriage to show what Heaven's unconditional love looks like"
(his wife did not remain faithful)..."So Hosea was left to deal with a broken heart and the shame of abandonment...........God told him to go and reaffirm his love for this woman who had been repeatedly unfaithful. This time she had reached a new low and had to be bought off the slave block, but Hosea paid the price for her redemption and brought her home...

This is a true story and it was also used to portray God's love and favor that he showers on the believer without measure---we are challenged to love our spouse in this way---unreservedly---and undeservedly--repeatedly, enduringly!! I love this quote:

"Love is often expressed the most to those who deserve it the least" "Ask Him to fill you with the kind of love only He can provide, then purpose to give it to your mate in a way that reflects your gratefulness to God for loving you. That's the beauty of redeeming love. That's the power of faithfulness."

I think this is all very beautiful and what a challenge.---I love him as myself since he is part of me and we are one--if I hurt him, I hurt our relationship and myself. Now I am challenged to Love him as God loves me--no matter what---I am to illustrate this love in my loving of my husband----what a challenge.....but I know that God's Spirit does put this love in our hearts to be shed abroad---I know it!!!

woes and joys of dishwash (trite post)

DO NOT USE THE PALMOLIVE PURE AND CLEAR!! It cleans well, but wrecks havoc on my hands!! It dried my hands right up and gave me hangnails which I can not remember the last time I have had!!! (I literally can not remember having hangnails" for years and years" and years , as my youngest son used to say). Now DO USE THE SIMPLICITY --this is great for sensitive hands!!!!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Bonhoeffer AGAIN

I listened to a sermon by John Piper today, while exercising. He made a statement that hit home --He basically said

that a lot of us want the glory of Jesus but not the cross of Jesus.

I believe this is so true and true of me. Much of Scripture is not easy. There is a cross involved. Life is hard. ....and true discipleship is costly. It makes me think of the book by Bonhoeffer on the Cost of Discipleship--I keep going again and again to parts of this book!!

"Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of our Church. We are fighting today for costly grace....Cheap grace means grace sold on the market like cheapjacks’ wares. The sacraments, the forgiveness of sin, and the consolations of religion are thrown away at cut prices....In such a Church the world finds a cheap covering for its sins; no contrition is required, still less any real desire to be delivered from sin. Cheap grace therefore amounts to a denial of the living Word of God, in fact, a denial of the Incarnation of the Word of God. ......Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ, living and incarnate.”

The cross is costly and I suppose I am tempted to not want to bare the cross and I am tempted to want an easier road for fellow believers. This of course is wrong---grace is costly, because it comes at the expense of Christ’s death and as Bonhoeffer states , “Such grace is costly because it calls us to follow, and it is grace because it calls us to follow Jesus Christ. It is costly because it costs a man his life, and it is grace because it gives a man the only true life.”

Wednesday, January 21, 2009


"THERE ARE LIVING PEOPLE WHO ARE DEAD ON THE INSIDE AND DEAD PEOPLE WHO CONTINUE TO LIVE ON IN THE LIVES OF OTHERS....But the most lasting legacy is a passed-down life--replete with values, convictions, character,and love."

Friday, January 16, 2009

Love Dare Day 11, Day 12 and Oneness too

I am sitting here in SC on a cold morning (the picture above, however was taken on a ferry in Seattle). Anyways, back to the subject....I am smiling with contentment---my fire is on and the birds are coming to my window feeder a yard from where I sit. One titmouse just kept staring at me.

I am learning a lot about relationship these days. I think one of the main things I have been reflecting on is the oneness of a marriage relationship. I have always known that God says we become one and let no one put this asunder etc. I felt that real oneness immediately when we celebrated our marriage night. But I never reflected more fully on some of the side issues involved. THE MAIN thing I have been thinking on the past few days is that this ONENESS means that if I hurt my spouse I am hurting myself. Whatever I do---positive or negative--it directly affects me. (to a broader extent it relates to the church and my relationship to it also). So If I am getting angry , for example, it is hurting me and it is as if I am angry at myself. It is like the whole body analogy. If my toe is hurting my whole body hurts and feels it and I need to fix it! The same with my spouse---I need to treat my spouse as part of me.

In day 11 we were challenged to cherish our spouse. I had a hard time of thinking of something practical to show this---but I think one main way is to pray daily, often, fervently, through-out the day for him and for his various needs. The book by Omartian--The Power of a Praying Wife-- has so many helpful prayers and ways to pray for our hubbies!! So that is what I will use through-out the day (often keep this in the bathroom since I go there through-out the day ;-)

Day 12 is about demonstrating love by giving in to your spouse in an area of disagreement. Well, right now there is nothing we are disagreeing on---usually with us, it is small petty things--so I will keep this in mind. I hate putting this down , because then It will providentially PROBABLY be tested soon ;-) .

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

The Love Dare Day 10

Day ten talks about TRUE LOVE. Our love can't be based on our spouse's qualities or looks because when they suddenly or gradually disappear your basis for love will be over.

So we have to have unconditional love. " is not determined by the one being loved but rather by the one choosing to love."

If we say we have fallen out of love , it means we did not --do not--love unconditionally!

"When your enjoyment of each other as best friends and lovers is based on unwavering commitment, you will experience an intimacy that cannot be achieved any other way."

Again we are told to do something out of the ordinary for our spouse--something that proves your love is based on your choice and nothing else ;0) . These are the hardest assignments to do---I will have to give it some thought. (Ok--what I did--I washed my car--it really bothers him if my car is dirty ; this is usually his job---so it was totally unexpected. I also remembered he liked the fruit cups we had at Eowyn's so I made him some tonight!! He was delighted ;-)

I love the idea of studying our husbands--and I need to do this---then I would be able to more readily figure out these out of the ordinary stuff!!!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Love Dare 8 and 9

Well....this Love Dare has really been helpful in making me aware of relationship stuff!!

On DAY 8 we had to burn or destroy the list of negative attributes of our spouse which we had made on Day 7 and to keep just the positive list. We were challenged to be our spouses biggest fan, to reject thoughts of jealousy, and focus on their achievements. THEY ASKED--HOW HARD WAS IT TO DESTROY the LIST. Well, I was very, very surprised......why??? because I did have a hard time destroying it!!! I actually was shocked!!!! But it was a great way of physically demonstrating to me that my heart and mind has to dwell in the appreciation room and not the depreciation room!!

DAY 9 made me laugh----because way back on day 2 I couldn't think of an unexpected gesture as an act of kindness---I couldn't think of something UNEXPECTED to do as far as creating a blessing. Later my husband said that he could think of something--and it dealt with how to greet him when he came home from work. SOOO THIS IS THE FUNNY thing because day 9 deals all about how we greet our husbands!! Day 9 says that the way you greet your spouse each day may seem inconsequential, but it carries surprising significance.

"You can tell a lot about the state of a couple's relationship from the way they greet one another"
It mentions things like the first thing you say in the morning, the look on your face, the energy in your voice when you talk to him on the phone, etc and whether you are really , really glad to see them and express this---talks about warmth, enthusiasm etc and how are greeting effects another.


Sunday, January 11, 2009

Alden Baptism/ papa Birthday/ love dare 7

This was a very sweet weekend. We celebrated a baptism, birthday, and of course Love Dare number 7. Here is Alden waiting for church to start--he always wants to stand (and he is only 5 months!)

He is wearing an old baptimal dress in which his dad and grandad were baptised.

He loves his sister and she was being a sweetie.

He loves his Daddy.

The family was sitting waiting for church to start. Uncle Averett was here, too.

There were a total of three boys being baptized. Alden's name means wise protector.

Here is Rhi with grandpa.

Just being her sweet self.

She was excited to be sitting on the steps that go up to the pulpit, after the service!

Here is Grandmama Ruth enjoying the day.

We had some great pea soup and fruitcups and homemade bread and tea (and some had chicken salad as well!!)

Alden loved all of the people--he was very happy!!

It was Wally's Mom's Dad 's(the greatgrandpa of Alden) birthday--he was 88 today!!

The greatgrandma cut the cake. She gave everyone huge pieces, but she cut herself a tiny piece. There was lots of joking about that!

Rhi said the chocolate was WONDERFUL---as you can tell by her expression. Family is such a blessing and times of special occasions are so delightful. It is wonderful to see many generations who love the Lord and to look foward to many more generations that will enjoy God.
Today was also LOVE DARE number 7. (I haven't seen the Fireproof movie--but this Love Dare book is GREAT). Today spoke of 2 rooms in our hearts. The appreciation room where thoughts go when you encounter positive and encouraging things about your spouse. A second room is the Depreciation Room--on its walls are written things that bother and irritate you about your spouse. This chapter talks about love choosing to dwell in the appreciation room . Our assignment today was to get two sheets of paper. On one we had to write the postive things about our spouse and on the other the negative things. (We will use these in the future on other assignments) . Today we had to pick one of the positive things and let our spouse know we appreciated this in them. Also we were asked which list was easier to make and what did it reveal about your thoughts.
I love the practicalness (is that a word?) --of the assignments!!

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Power of a Praying wife/Also Love Dare 6

Love Dare 6 is choosing to react to each circumstances in your marriage in loving ways instead of with irritation---beginning by making a list of areas where you need to add margin to your schedule (to lessen stress which can cause irritation). Then list any wrong motivations that you need to release from your life etc This tied in well with another book I am reading--the Power of a Praying wife.
Stormie Omartian books on prayer are so helpful. I have noticed that all of the books I am reading on Marriage and relationships deal with working on me, myself and I. I love how Stormie has prayers at the end of each chapter. So in this book there are 30 --ie one for each day of the month. I think I will share some if not all of the first prayer (This one ties in so well with not responding in irritation) Paragraphs are not working so I will color them:
"Lord, Help me to be a good wife. I fully realize that I don't have what it takes to be one without Your help. Take my selfishness, impatience, and irritability and turn them into kindness, long-suffering, and the willingness to bear all things. Take my old emotional habits, mindsets, automatic reactions, rude assumptions, and self-protective stance, and make me patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self-controlled. Take the hardness of my heart and break down the walls with Your battering ram of revelation. Give me a new heart and work in me Your love, peace, and Joy (Galatians 5:22,23). I am not able to rise above who I am at this moment. Only You can transform me.
Show me where there is sin in my heart, especially with regard to my husband. I confess the times I've been unloving, critical, angry, resentful, disrespectful, or unforgiving toward him. Help me to put aside any hurt, anger, or disappointment I feel and forgive him the way You do---totally and completely, no looking back. Make me a tool of reconciliation, peace, and healing to this marriage. Enable us to communicate well and rescue us from the threshold of separation where the realities of divorce begin.
Make me my husband's helpmate companion, champion, friend, and support. Help me to create a peaceful, restful, safe place for him to come home to. Teach me how to take care of myself and stay attractive to him. Grow me into a creative and confident woman who is rich in mind, soul, and spirit. Make me the kind of woman he can be proud to say is his wife.
I lay all my expectations at your cross. I release my husband from the burden of fulfilling me in areas where I should be looking to You. Help me to accept him the way he is and not try to change him. I realize that in some ways he may never change, but at the same time, I release him to change in ways I never thought he could. I leave any changing that needs to be done in Your hands fully accepting that neither of us is perfect and never will be. Only You, Lord are perfect and I look to You to perfect us.
Teach me how to pray for my husband and make my prayers a true language of love. Where love has died, create new love between us. Show me what unconditional love really is and how to communicate it in a way he can clearly perceive. Bring unity between us so that we can be in agreement about everything (Amos 3:3). May the God of patience and comfort grant us to be like-minded toward one another, according to Christ Jesus (Romans15:5). Make us a team, not pursuing separate, competitive, or independent lives, but working together, over looking each other's faults and weaknesses for the greater good of the marriage. Help us to pursue the things which make for peace and the things by which one may edify anther (Romans 14:19). May we be 'perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment' (I Corinthians 1:10).
I pray that our commitment to You and to one another will grow stronger and more passionate every day. Enable him to be the head of the home as You made him to be, and show me how to support and respect him as he rises to that place of leadership. Help me to understand his dreams and see things from his perspective. Reveal to me what he wants and needs and show me potential problems before they arise. Breathe Your life into this marriage.
Make me a new person, Lord. Give me a fresh perspective, a positive outlook, and a renewed relationship with the man You've given me. Help me see him with new eyes, new appreciation, new love, new compassion, and new acceptance. Give my husband a new wife, and let it be me."

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Love Dare ----day 5-daring to be delightful

Well, well, well, day 4 I really wasn't "allowed" to do the action---which was to contact your spouse sometime during the business day and ask how they are doing and if there was anything you could do for them---but I could do it later.

I like day five's reading--LOVE IS NOT RUDE--it is true that we are sometimes rude to each other or do things that make it unpleasant for the other person.--the bottom line--"genuine love minds its manners".----when we apply this it helps to " restore an atmosphere of honor to your relationship. People who practice good etiquette tend to raise the respect level of the environment around them"---so this is the dare not to be rude, but to be delightful.

I thought that was and is a great challenge--to be delightful, not rude. 3 principles the book gives: 1.Guard the Golden Rule. Treat your mate the same way you want to be treated (Luke 6:31)
2. No double standards. Be as considerate to your spouse as you are to strangers and coworkers. 3. Honor requests. Consider what your husband or wife already asked you to do or not do . If in doubt, then ask.

THe challenge or assignment today: "Ask your spouse to tell you three things that cause him or her to be uncomfortable or irritated with you. You must do so without attacking them or justifying your behavior. This is from their perspective only."

Great advice and I think I know some of the answers I will get, we will see ;-)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Day two and three of the Love Dare

Well, what the love dare book has demonstrated to me so far is that a marriage is like a garden and you have to tend it. Weeds can creep in --and we need to add fertilizer etc.

On day one the assignment was fairly easy--do not say anything negative to the other person. Prevention-or not doing something is easier for me than doing something!

On Day 2 we were supposed to create a blessing---do at least one unexpected gesture as an act of kindness. ........the unexpected part I couldn't come up I am cheating and combining it with day 3--Day 3 says buy your spouse something that says, "I was thinking of you today"--so that is easier and it is an unexpected gesture that is kind.

The little talks before the dare are quite good so far toooooooooooo!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

The Love Dare etc

(my paragraph setting is not working tonight!) Both of these books are very helpful and convicting. The Love Dare, I thought would be simplistic, and really it is simple.....BUT the hard part is practicing it. For example on day one it tells you ....."For the next day, resolve to demonstrate patience and to say nothing negative to your spouse at all. If the temptation arises, chose not to say anything." On Day TWO it says "In addition to saying nothing negative to your spouse again today, do at least one unexpected gesture as an act of kindness."
Well you may think, I don't have a problem with negative sayings. However when you resolve to focus on all you are saying in the become aware....much more aware then normal on what you are saying and how you are communicating negative things. So I like this Dare book--it puts in in a fun way, since it dares you to try such an such today!!
The second book has been very helpful too---both make me aware of my shortcomings (sin) and areas I need work on. They both demonstrate the need to work on me, myself, and I. They are good to read and think on together.
Other books I have recently read focus on the mentoring of an older adult with a younger adult. I have read 2 that dealt with this and am reading a third. One was an audio book (I think it was called Father John). Then the book called, I'm Proud of You, my friendship with Fred Rogers, by Tim Madigan. The third one is called - Over Salad and Hot Bread, by Mary Jenson. All of these books focus on how one older adult helped a younger adult. These are inspiring.....I love to see the wisdom and examples of older adults.