Tuesday, December 22, 2009

A Check-up before Christmas

So much has gone on that I don't know where to start.  Here is a check-up on what has been going on.
  1. First week I was away: All of us, well, most of us took sick with nasty colds.  We just had to get the worst of it.  No mildness that week!
  2. Second week I was away: I was very busy trying to finish all the gifts I was making.  Now I am finally done!...I hope.
 We are now in the third week.  School has let out for Christmas holiday!  Let me tell you, we are very excited about that.  Finally, Christmas is just three days away.  Only. three. days.  Wow.  I cannot begin to describe how astonished I am.  I knew that December would d...r...a...g by, I just knew.  Apparently I was wrong.  However, I am quite glad to be proven wrong.  The time has flew by and I am completely ready for Christmas.

Then, the Sunday after Christmas some friends are driving down from Indiana to stay awhile with us!  We are also excited about that.  We haven't seen this family in a year and a half.  I know there will be a lot of excitement the week after Christmas.  Of course, there is a lot of excitement right now.  My little siblings can't wait until Christmas.  As a matter of fact, we all can't wait.  (Surely everybody is excited around Christmastime.  Who isn't?)  Although presents are lots of fun, Christmas is about the most precious Gift ever given - Jesus Christ.  That should never be forgotten.  Even in the hustle and bustle of the season, remind those around you of the greatest Gift of all.  His name should be glorified throughout the land.  All hail to the King of kings!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Random Rambling

I am in the process of helping teach Clara, my five-year-old sister, how to read.  Being home schooled, we get all kinds of opportunities that we would never have had if we went to government schools.  Thank the Lord, we have never had to deal with issues of government schools.  (PRAISE THE LORD!)  I could go into all kinds of terrible issues I'm glad we don't have to deal with, but that is something for another day.

Anyway, Clara is learning how to read.  I have already helped teach Maggie how to read a year or so ago.   Of course, it takes a whole lot of patience, (you try it sometime) but in the end, it the best reward to know you helped that child learn to read.  You opened a whole new world for them - the world of books. (who doesn't love books? If you don't, there must be some major problems. Just kidding! But seriously, I love adore books. Reading is one of my passions. Give me a good book, I'll be more content than a.....well.....there goes my analogy.  Clara has been coming along a lot slower than I thought she would, but at least she is learning something.  She usually picks up on things very quickly, and boy has a whole host of questions for each little thing!  That reminds me...everybody is growing up too fast.  Why, it was only yesterday that Clara was Liberty's age.  Now Liberty is already going to turn 4 months this month.  Where does time go?  Out the window?  Why doesn't it at least wave?  All I want is a wave...

Sometimes time seems to go by s...o s...l...o...w...l...y, while other times it is gone faster than you can blink.  I've stopped trying to figure it out.  God knows what He is doing.  However, we still need to make the most of the time He does allow us.  Every moment counts.  Don't waste it.  I myself have wasted a lot of my time - I don't want to any more.  Live life to the most you possibly can!  It will be gone before you know it. (Ecclesiastes 12:1)

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Dashing of Hopes

Yesterday morning, my sister Katie came running into mine and Grace's room, before we had even risen, and yelled excitedly, "it snowed last night!"  What! Grace and I both peeked out the window.  My face crumbled.  I was quite disappointed at what I saw. "Katie! That is frost!" Our hopes were dashed to pieces.  I really have been hoping for some snow this year.  However, the LORD hasn't sent any just yet.  Maybe He won't at all.  I have just been hoping.  In Georgia we don't get hardly any snow, if any at all.  When we lived in Indiana we had snow in abundance.  Then we moved to Georgia and didn't have any at all.  As a matter of fact, the last two Christmas's were in the latter 70's.  I was quite happy.  Now I wish for some snow.  Will we get any this year or is it to be warm?  I will be sure to update y'all on anything that happens.  You can be sure of that.  This year I can really sing "let it snow, let it snow!"

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sunday Meditations

"What? Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?  For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's."  -1 Corinthians 6:19,20

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Hidden Heroine of the Bible

Thursday, while during school, I was reading in the book of Esther.  I'm sure y'all remember that story from the Bible.  Esther was the one written about as "fair and beautiful", and was pampered for 12 months!  A whole year!  I'm sure many girls would love to have beauty treatments for a whole year.  You know how girls are.

However, today I am not wanting to talk about Esther, although she was an amazing woman used of God.  That is for another time and place.  Today, there is a hidden hero, or I should say, heroine, in the story of Esther: Queen Vashti.  Surprised?  Not many people know anything about her.  Honestly, I don't either.  That is why I want to want to try and uncover somethings that have came to my attention. (Oh, by the way, since this is Saturday, I also have a book review mixed in.  The book is Secret Keeper, written by Dannah Gresh.)

In the book Secret Keeper, Dannah Gresh also recognizes Queen Vashti as a hidden heroine of the Bible.  Listen to what she says:  "Queen Vashti, Esther's predecessor, is the Bible's hidden hero.  The king called her to flaunt herself.  He and his friends were drunk, and she knew it was inappropriate for a woman in her culture to flaunt her beauty in front of a man, let alone a room full of drunken men.  She lost her crown but not her honor.  She oozed with inner confidence!  Queen Vasthi understood that the power of her allure was protected not only by what she wore but also by where she went, when she went, and how she acted.  She held the power of inner modesty in the palm of her hand.  She wasn't about to forfeit that power...not even at the command of the king."  Pretty strong statements, what?  I believe we have found a hidden hero in the Bible - one we would have never though of.

Women do have a certain kind of power.  You may not think so?  Guys are visual. (Sound corny the way I put that?)  They go by what they see.  Why do you think magazines always have the picture of a woman on the cover (although indecent most of the time)?  It is because most people are attracted to the sight of a woman, particularly a beautiful one.  Especially guys.  Women do have power - but do we want to flaunt ourselves at every guy we see, or do we want to be modest, chaste, discreet, and wait for the one that will ultimately love us for who we are?  I'll take the latter.

That is why Queen Vashti should be a Biblical role model for us as Christian ladies.  She knew it was wrong and inappropriate for her to be on display in front of a room full of drunken men.  In the end, she behaved in the appropriate manner, although it cost her her position.

Esther1:10-11 say, "On the seventh day, when the heart of the king was merry with wine, (drunk, perhaps?) he commanded...the seven chamberlains that served in the presence of Ahasuerus the king, to bring Vashti the queen before the king with the crown royal, to shew the people and the princes her beauty, for she was fair to look upon."

The king had been feasting and drinking; drinking quite a lot by the sound of it.  Then a bright idea popped into his head: why not bring forth Vashti, his beauteous queen, before the province so she might flaunt her beauty before his subjects?  So he commanded Vashti to come before him in the feasting room.  However, Vashti would not come.  She knew better than to appear before intoxicated men.  LORD only knows what might have happened!

Vashti knew the power that women possessed, and still possess today.  Unfortunately, many women today don't care - they only want the attention their beauty and bodies bring.  You can tell by the way a woman dresses if she wants to please God, or gain the attention of man.  Skintight jeans, low-cut shirts, miniskirts spaghetti straps, etc.  All those are made to be attention grabbers.  In this day in which we live in, it is very hard to find modest attire.  Very hard indeed.  But that doesn't mean we Christian girls give in to the pressure and start behaving as the girls of the world - NO! On the contrary, we should strive harder to be light in a darkened world, like Vashti was!  She is a very good example to follow.

Although the Bible doesn't say much about Vashti, I believe what is said is to serve a purpose.  In spite of what the king commanded, Vashti still held her ground by doing what was right.  A great lesson can and should be learned from her example.  "We ought to obey God rather than men." (Acts 5:29)   Even in face of loss, torment, persecution, and contrary to popular belief, we are to stand our ground and boldly proclaim we will uphold what it right!  Queen Vashti did just this.  She must have known consequences would follow, yet she still held her ground.  Praise God for such an encouraging story!  We should "do right until the stars fall." -Charles Spurgeon.

O God, give us more women today that will stand up like Vashti and do Your will and law!

The book I highly recommend today is Secret Keeper, written by Dannah Gresh.  A very good little book on modesty and how girls and women are to use their power.  I encourage every woman  and girl to read it.  Although the book is small, perhaps your eyes will be opened to some things.

To conclude, who would you rather be like?  Queen Vashti, who stood her ground to do right, even in the face of consequences, or one of the "fashionable models and actresses" that cover every magazine, those that are weak and have given up everything of themselves?  Do you want to be weak, or strong?

Friday, December 4, 2009

The Reason for the Season

Exactly three weeks until Christmas.  Yes, I'm still counting down the days.  Actually, all of us Brown kids are.  We just had a discussion about it today. (not worthwhile mentioning, I must say.)  I would list all the things I'm making for Christmas gifts, but I don't want to let the cat out of the bag for those who read my blog that don't need to know.  Those of you know who I'm talking about.  Sorry, y'all will just have to wait for Christmas day.  But here I am getting ahead of myself. (or is it behind myself?)

Nowadays people have lost the true meaning of Christmas. (example: Santa Clause, too much emphasis on gifts, etc.)  It is ok to give and receive gifts (everybody admit it...we all like that part) but Christmas is really about that one Gift that was given to the world two thousand years ago.  Jesus Christ, the Son of God, was the greatest gift the world has ever known.  If he had not came to be born as a baby, live as a man, be crucified, buried, then rise the third day, we would be without hope. (John 3:16)  But now, if we as wicked, miserable sinners confess our sins, repent, accept Him as LORD and Savior, we will be saved. (Acts 16:30,31; Ephesians 2:4,5,8,9; John 3:3,36)

Thank the LORD for providing a way for those who would believe and praise Him for the greatest gift of all - Jesus Christ, God's only Son.

This Christmas, let us celebrate the real reason for Christmas - the birth of Jesus.  May He dwell in our hearts forever as we strive to serve Him in this time and place He has placed us.  Glory to Him forevermore be!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

What Advent Is

Ok, here is the promised explanation of Advent.

First of all, what does Advent mean?  Simply defined it means "coming."  Celebrating Advent is celebrating the coming of Jesus Christ.  Yes, He already came one to this earth, the time when He was born as a baby, lived as a man, (but was still God) was crucified, buried, then rose the third day.  But one day He will come again - His second coming - when He will destroy all wickedness, judge the whole earth, and when "the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever." (Revelation 11:15)  No one knows when that day will come - only He does.

To make one thing very clear, Advent is not some religious ritual or ceremony that is supposed to find favor in God's sight or make Him look down upon us with praise.  No, it is counting down the days until Christmas. 

There are five candles:  Four are for the proceeding weeks, then the last one (the middle) is to be lighted on Christmas day.  Although, each candle does have a meaning.  As I have already posted, last week was Hope.

Of course, in all this there is a lot more than I can explain. (You could always Google Advent.  What are computers for?)  I just wanted to give a little bit of an explanation.

Advent is to be celebrated with joy.  It is not something to mourn or fast about. (Leave that to the Catholics.)   Instead, we are to rejoice in Christ's first coming, which has already happened, and look forward to His second coming that will come one day.  "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will to men!" 

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

A Wednesday pick-up

Monday night we put up our tree and decorated it!  Exciting!  Christmas is just around the corner!  That reminds me - I really do need to get busy and finish the Christmas gifts I'm making.  I'd like to have everything done a week before Christmas so I can feel like I have some "spare time" before the big day.  Yeah right.  Just like every year, I'll probably have at least one thing I'm still trying to get finished in that week.  But maybe I'll make a new world record!  ...I highly doubt it.

Pretty, "ain't" it? =D

Now that we have started back to school this week, I find that I don't have as much time as I had during our break.  There.  It took a lot of thinking to arrive at that point.  Seriously, if I want to be organized and get everything done, I need to stay on my schedule.  Then I know I'm not wasting any precious time that could be used for something.

Also, I have a couple of links I want y'all to check out.  My dad has been writing some recent articles on Baptist Vision and I tell you, wow! He has outdone himself.  Please go read this article and this one, and then this one too!  Awesome job, Daddy!

Then, I just can't get enough of Jasmine Bauchums' blog.  I read it everyday!  Her latest is this one.  Check it out! She is one amazing young woman with a true heart for God!

Now that the Christmas season is approaching I have changed my blog background again.  I like this one a lot!  Old-fashioned, yet a little bit of Christmas in it.  Couldn't be better! 

That is all for now, I guess.  Oh yeah! I still have to write about Advent.  Coming soon, I promise.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

First Sunday of Advent: Hope

"Comfort ye, comfort ye My people, saith your God.  Speak ye comfortably to (to the heart) Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD's hand double for all her sins.  The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.  Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low: and the crooked shall be made straight, and the rough places plain: and the glory of the LORD shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together: for the mouth of the LORD hath spoken it.  The Voice said, Cry.  And he said, What shall I cry?  All flesh is grass, and the goodliness thereof is as the flower of the field:  The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the LORD bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass.  The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever.  O Zion, that bringest good tidings, get thee up into the high mountain; O Jerusalem, that bringest good tidings, lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up,be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!  Behold,the LORD God will come with strong hand, and His arm shall rule for Him: behold, his reward is with Him, and His work before Him.  He shall feed His flock like a shepherd: He shall gather the lambs with His arm, and carry them in His bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young."   - Isaiah 40:1-11

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Random Rambling

Today I'm afraid I don't have a book review.  Sad.  But this week I haven't so much as touched a book except for my Bible.  I know, I guess I've been pretty lazy this week.  I have been working on my Christmas gifts I'm making though.  Give me a little bit of credit.  So today I'll just do a little bit of Random Rambling. 

I haven't talked about Liberty in awhile.  The latest update is that she is "20 lbs of pure baby fat", Mom says. And only 3 months!  Well, as I've said before, I like chubby babies the best.  Liberty just keeps getting more cute every day!  Don't you think so as well?

I think she is the most adorable baby!  I tell Mom that in different faces she makes, her little cheeks remind me of puppy cheeks.  I love that though.

So now Christmas is only 27 more days.  I'm afraid that from now on I'll be counting down the days.  I'm sure no one will mind.  Everybody has to be ready for Christmas.  I know I am!  Actually, although we live in Georgia, it has started to turn a little chilly.  I don't mind though.  When we first moved down to Georgia from Indiana I was quite glad of the warmer weather in winter, as well as the "no snow" thing.  But now, alas!  I would love to have a White Christmas this year!  I have actually been praying for one.  Don't tell my mom though - I don't think she really would like any snow.  But perhaps she has changed her mind too.

Yesterday we kids went outside for awhile, and although is was a little chilly, I know others in the "Northern" states probably have it a lot worse. (I really feel sorry for all you Northern people - in more ways than one.)  But I like the chilly weather sometimes.  At night I can snuggle under the blankets, keeping warm and happy.  I love that about chilly weather.  Besides, the chilly weather really tells me Christmas is coming!  Yay!

I guess that is enough Random Rambling for now.  Maybe some more later?  Depends.  Right now I need to get ready to head out to the store with Mom.  This Sunday we start Advent and we need some candles.  So off we go! (I'll talk more about Advent later if I get the chance.  Anyway, I'll tell you sometime.)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thanksgiving is over...now comes Christmas!

Well, Thanksgiving is over.  I for one had a very blessed Thanksgiving day.  I hope everyone else did too.

 Yesterday we had so much food!  I just had to take a picture of our turkey.  Look delicious?


I didn't take a picture of all the food...that would've been too too much.  But I did take another picture - of Grace's peach cobbler!  It sure was yummy!  But everything was.  I had no complaints.

 Now I am especially ready for Christmas.  Actually, we have started listening to Christmas music today.  What fun!  Now I need to get very busy and finish all my Christmas gifts I'm making.  Only 28 more days!  Christmas, here we come!

I hope everyone had an amazing Thanksgiving, one they will never forget!  This was our first Thanksgiving in Barnesville, GA, and I know I will never forget it! 

Here are a couple pictures I have taken recently. Fall 09.

      Mommy's Little Eskimo

Fall Sisters!

Mom's Decoration. No, it isn't fake! These are real right off a tree!

Cousins! Both very sweet!

Yep, it's fall time!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving, anyone?

I am ready for tomorrow.  Are holidays ever busy at your house?  Thanksgiving - nah, (well, we'll see tomorrow) but Christmas - YES.  As much as I can recall, Christmas at our house has always been pretty busy.  But that is beside the point.  Thanksgiving is one of my second favorite holidays.  Thanksgiving and Christmas pretty much tie together for me.

Thanksgiving is special.  We all are thankful for the many blessings which God has given us.  Yes, I agree we should all be thankful, but we should be thankful every day, not just on Thanksgiving.  Whether rich or poor, sick or in health, we can still be thankful for everything God has done for us.  Truly, if we started counting our blessings, we wouldn't be able to stop!  There is so much!  As for whether some may be poor, we can always be rich in God's love and mercy.  That is something to think about.

I won't go through every single thing I'm thankful for (I'm afraid I wouldn't have enough room for that) but I would like to list the five top things that God has given me.  Of course, every blessing is very important, but like I said, there isn't enough space for everything.

  1. The love of Jesus Christ wherewith He loved me so much that He died for me.  I think that kind of love is amazing!  It is the only true kind of love. If we all had that kind of love, nothing could hinder us.  But, we are not perfect - only He is.  I am so thankful form salvation.  Sometimes my sins and doubts get me down, but He is always there to lift me up.  That You, LORD God almighty!
  2. I am also very grateful for my wonderful parents and siblings.  Even though all families have their own share of troubles, we are under the law of God - He is always leading us through fire and through water, through peace and through war.  We as a family have a responsibility to shine forth Christ in this crazy world.  Although it may be hard a lot, we still have that duty.  Besides, families are great!  Even though we go through our own share of difficulty, we still have lots of fun!  We can be ourselves, (which is hard to do in this day and age) act goofy, giggle, laugh all the time, joke around, just having a good ole time!  As for a big family...we can build our own baseball, kickball, football, etc. teams.  Everybody has at least one person around all the time, most times no one is left out - it is so good to have so many family members around all the time!  We need never be lonely.
  3. Friends are also very important.  Many a person would be very unhappy indeed if there was not a friend to help them through.  Whether Jesus Christ, the ultimate Friend, or a friend on earth that God has placed us in our lives.  Without Jesus Christ my Saviour, my oh-so-wonderful family, and true loving friends, I would be nothing.  Absolutely n.o.t.h.i.n.g.
  4. Who doesn't love food?  I could roll my eyes.  Unfortunately some of us love it too much...just kidding!  Thanksgiving is one of the times where so much good food! is torturing us with the delicious aromas. Plus, without food and nourishment, we would die.  Thankfully God supplies us with everything we need.
  5. To sum it all up, I am so thankful for every blessing God has bestowed upon me.  Although I don't deserve anything, He has still richly blessed me with so much more than I deserve.  Hallelujah!

Just in case I don't get to write a post tomorrow, HAPPY THANKSGIVING!  May this Thanksgiving be more bountiful and blessed more than any other on your life.  God bless!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sabbath Meditations

"Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth."  -2 Timothy 2:15

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Saturday Book Review: The Real Lincoln

Everyone knows about Abraham Lincoln. No doubt about that. He is considered one of the greatest American Presidents and the favorite of many.

However, nobody knows him for what he really was.  Did you know that Lincoln didn't really free the slaves, contrary to popular belief?   Did you also that the real reason for the War of Southern Independence wasn't slavery? Although these things defy the modern perception, they are true.

  Lincoln was not the man everybody makes him out to be today.  Let's take a look at what Mr. Thomas Dilorenzo writes in his book The Real Lincoln.  If you read the book you will uncover many facts history books do not tell us today.

Have you ever wondered why slavery took a war to "supposedly" end it?  What if I told you it didn't take a war to end it?  No, slavery wasn't the cause of the War for Southern Independence. (By the way, that war is most commonly known as the "Civil War."  But a civil war is a war for control of a single government.  The Confederate states didn't want to rule the North - they wanted to be separate from them, to gain independence.  It was the Union that wanted to subject the seceded states to accept northern/federal government rule.)

This is the first thing I want to talk about: Slavery.  Lincoln was all for the "freeing of the slaves", right?  Humph.  Another "mixed-up" myth in modern revisionism.  No, he was not!  He wasn't for racial equality, he was opposed to it!  He didn't believe that "all men are created equal."  Instead, he referred to African Americans, Mexicans, and probably all colored people, as "inferiors." (Same mindset as Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany that started the great Holocaust.)

Lincoln actually defended the rights of slave owners to own their "property."  He said, "when they remind us of their constitutional rights [to own slaves], I acknowledge them, not grudgingly, but fully and fairly; and I would give them any legislation for the reclaiming of their fugitives."

Lincoln had no intention whatsoever of doing anything about slavery, particularly Southern slavery.  In his first Inaugural Address, Lincoln said, "I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so."  A man who is considered to have upheld the rights of all men?  This couldn't be the same man, could it?  Yes, the very same.    Lincoln was and is known as "Honest Abe", but he should be known as "Dishonest Abe."  He was a politician after all.  Aren't all politicians, or at least most all, liars, sneaks, frauds, and cheaters?  He, Abraham Lincoln, was one of them.

Now let's take a look at the Emancipation Proclamation.  Everybody knows about that as well.  The document that "freed" the slaves.  But Lincoln (a politician and lawyer) crafted the proclamation in such a way so that slaves would really not be emancipated.  When the Emancipation Proclamation was proclaimed, it applied only to rebel territory, although the federal armies occupied most of the South.  Then those places were exempted by name in the proclamation.    The slaves were really not freed.  Here is what the London Spectator said about the Emancipation Proclamation: "The principle is not that a human being cannot justly own another, but that he cannot own him unless he is loyal to the United States."  Lincoln was pretty crafty.  He knew he gave no guarantee for the emancipation of the slaves.

What about the War?  If slavery wasn't the issue, what was?  It was simply, States rights.  The Southern states still believed in Freedom and Liberty.  They still believed in maintaining their rights.  The federal government really didn't have power over them - if anything, the states had more power over the federal government.  After all, it was the people that created the federal government and gave it the powers specified in the Constitution.  But, of course, the federal government couldn't be satisfied.  They wanted all the power and control.

When the Southern states seceded from the Union, Lincoln sent soldiers to force them back.  But the Southerners were not going to give up that easily.  They also rounded up an army, one of the greatest, in my opinion.  With General Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson, along with many other great men, the Confederates won some great military battles.  But alas!  How devastating the War was!  Unfortunately, the South didn't have everything the North did - factories, guns, cannons, supplies, shoes, clothes, blankets, food, gun powder, and not near as many soldiers.   However, even against such odds, the Southern army still took a great stand, one that should go down in history forever.

In the end, the South lost.  Because of that, we are still reaping the benefits of Lincoln's agenda and all the corruption he brought in.  All that just added to the Supreme Court's and the whole federal government's lust for more power.  Even today we are having to continue in our fight for Freedom and Liberty.  Today we need more people like Robert E. Lee, Stonewall Jackson, and a lot less men like Abraham Lincoln.  This just goes to show how much wrong and chaos totalitarian governments cause.  I'm not saying that the U.S. has become like any of the other countries with dictators, communists, fascists, and socialists at the head.  But then again, maybe we have in a way.  I'm afraid so much more than I know is really what I don't want to know.

Because of a majorly Unnecessary War, things have only become worse.  Slavery was eventually ended, but it didn't take a war to accomplish that.  It has all been based upon power.  The federal government wants to be in control of all the states.  But it was the states that created the federal government!  Washington has only a certain amount of power - 17 different ones in fact.  But they have overstepped their boundaries by far!  Hundreds upon thousands of different ways have they crossed the line!  What really bugs me is that they are not being stopped!  What is wrong with the people?  Are we all so yellow bellied that we can't take a stand?  Are we so cowardly that we won't take back our freedoms that are rightfully ours?  They are God-given rights.  Then if they are God-given, why, oh WHY have we allowed the federal government and corrupt leaders to take them away?  I for one think it is high time we do a little fighting.  I don't want to end up like Russia, Germany, Iran, Iraq, and all the different countries that have had their freedoms taken away by tyrants. 

For a true look at Abraham Lincoln, I highly suggest you read the book The Real Lincoln, written by Thomas J. Dilorenzo.  Ever since I was little I had always know that Abraham Lincoln was a "bad man."  But now my eyes have been opened by so much more! Of course, I know I don't understand as much as some people do about some things, and I could never debate against someone. (I don't have that gift)  But I have high hopes that you have still gained something out of my ramblings.  The history books today portray Abraham Lincoln as a hero, so everybody else in America does the same.  Those people need their eyes opened by the truth, instead of being blinded by lies.  I wish everybody would read this book.  It could do a lot of changing in lives.  For the good.

I know I didn't even cover half of the book - there is so much importance that needs to be read.  I only wrote a wee bit of my personal opinion, as well as a portion of what I learned.  I really you have made something out of this.  We need to know the truth!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Quotes to ponder...

I've found a few quotes I like in a little book called A Treasury of Bible Verses, Inspirational Quotations and Essays About Friendship. Yeah, just the title gives it away. There are some quotes that are ok, while others are great! I thought I'd like to share a few by some great people in history. First one is by Charles Spurgeon:

"Friendship is one of the sweetest joys of life. Many might have failed beneath the bitterness of their trial had they not found a friend."

Isn't that an awesome quote? The book is pretty small, only with 160 pages. :) There are a lot of people with sayings I don't know. So I chose some quotes from some people that I did know.

"The glory of friendship is not the outstretched hand, or the kindly smile, of the joy of companionship. It is the spiritual inspiration that comes to one when he discovers that someone else believes in him and is willing to trust him with his friendship." -Corrie ten Boom

"A little kindly advice is better than a great deal of scolding." -Franny Crosby

"It may be that the day of judgment will dawn tomorrow; in that case, we shall gladly stop working for a better tomorrow. But not before." -Dietrich Bonhoeffer

"When we invite Jesus into our lives, we experience life in the fullest, most vital sense." -Catherine Marshall

"The future lies before us. Shall it only be a slight advance upon what we usually do? Ought it not be a bound, a leap forward to altitudes of endeavor and success undreamed of before?" -Annie Armstrong

"We must mirror God's love in the midst of a world full of hated. We are the mirrors of God's love, so we may show Jesus by our lives." -Corrie ten Boom
Just some different sayings to let you ponder. I'll ponder them myself. Especially this one that has been said: "Words. Do you fully understand their power? Can any of us really grasp the mighty force behind the things we say? Do we stop and think before we speak, considering the potency of the words we utter?" I know I haul off and say a lot of things I regret. A good reminder my mom always tells me is to think before I speak. A great reminder, yes, but most times I just blurt out what I was thinking. What does the Bible say about our words? Now a few verses to ponder:

Ecclesiastes 5:2: "Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few."

Proverbs 15:1: "A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous word stir up anger."

Proverbs 15:2: "The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of the fools poureth out foolishness."

We would be very wise to heed our tongues - they can only get us into trouble if we aren't careful. Believe me - I know. Follow Jesus' example. In face of His accusers He uttered not a word. He, above all else, is the wisest. In this, as well as everything else, He is the best example to follow.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

A Day full of Fun

Today my mother took all 8 of us kids to a homeschool get-together at the park here in Barnesville - the second one that has been put on. It is just a time for homeschooled families to get together, hang out, and get to know one another! I love it! I think homeschoolers need to get together now and then. It is always great. We have met some really nice people this way. Being in Barnesville only since the end of may, we don't know many people around here. Now we know quite a few and are working on getting to know them better! I love meeting new people...well, that is, some of the time. Sometimes I do get pretty shy and embarrassed. I used to be really bad around strangers, so my mom tells me. When I was little I would hide behind my mom's skirts! I'm afraid I can't do that anymore. I think I've pretty much grown out of that.

I already have some good friends - Allison and Abigail Heiney. We have become good friends in the short time we have known each other. Today Allison couldn't make it to the homeschool get-together because a little kitten that was given to her may not make it. The poor thing is only 1 pound! I was shocked at how little it is! Just a little skeleton! Allison is really worried about it. The helpless little thing needs force-fed, probably because it hasn't ate in forever! I'm praying for it, Allison!

A really good thing about the different homeschooled families around here getting together is that there is a whole mixture of ages. From mommies, even down to babies! No one is left out, and everybody has a good time!

Because not everybody made it today, some of us girls played The Lord of the Rings Trivial Pursuit. GOOD TIMES! We laughed and giggled (what do girls do better?) and had a great ole time! I can't wait till next time! I'm pretty sure they are every 2 weeks. (how is that for information?) It'll be fun again the next time!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Imitating Christ's example: The Fruit of the Spirit

Another week! Wow. Last week went by so fast! This just comes to show that time is nothing - each day is a gift from God and we had better use it as wisely as we can. We never know when it may be our last! Thankfully God is rich in grace and mercy and has blessed us with life so far. Thank You, LORD!

The verses I want to write about today is Galatians 5:22-26 which says: "But the Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Christ's have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another."

I want to go through each of the Fruit of the Spirit. Perhaps we'll find that each and every one of us find it difficult to display these in our lives. I know I have trouble. But we aren't perfect; therefore we can't live a perfect life. But, with the Spirit of God living in us, we should try to be better than the rest of the world. Only through His help can we better ourselves.

I'm sure everybody knows what love is. But how does the Bible define love? 1 John 3:16 says that "Hereby perceive we the love of God, because He laid down His life for us: and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren." I think that should explain it. Jesus Christ loved us so much that He died us. Isn't that amazing? Our love should be the same. We should love each other (yes, including our families) so much that we would be willing to die for them. That, in my opinion, is true love. Everyday, in our actions and words, we ought to try to show our love for those around us. I'm not meaning that we go around telling everybody we love them so much that we would die for them! No, that would probably seem absurd. But we still need to show our love. Simple & sweet should be our motto. A hug, a smile, a thoughtful gesture, even just doing little things for your loved ones shows that you really care. We should all have a loving spirit, even though I know sometimes it is hard. I go through it everyday. Most times I don't do what I should. That is why I am writing this. I am hoping that it will be beneficial to you, but I also need the encouragement. Writing sometimes helps me to get a better focus on things.

Are we as Christians to go around and mope all the time? Of course not! We are to be joyful - rejoicing in all the blessings God has given us! Webster's 1828 dictionary defines joy as "to gladden; to exhilarate. To enjoy..." We are to have joy in our hearts. God calls us to be ambassadors of Him; therefore we should try our best to show forth Him in the best way possible!

Also as Christians we are not to hold grudges or keep striving with others. Jesus himself had many a man throw anger in His face, yet He remained calm and cool in the midst of it all. He should be out #1 example to follow. In every conflict we go through we should try to imitate Him by having peace with our fellow man. Peace is very important. The opposite is strife, discontent, and unhappiness. No one in his/her right mind wants that.

is defined as "long endurance; patience of offense." We are to bear with our fellow man's imperfectness and mistakes. We are ourselves want everyone else to bear with us. We want everybody to overlook our faults and mistakes. I think the Golden Rule comes into play, doesn't it? We should think of everything in life that way, but especially in how we treat others. Treating others the way we want to be treated should be our motto in regard to others.

Meekness, calmness, sweetness, mildness of temper, softness of answer and reproof: all describe gentleness. I doubt we have to look this word up in a dictionary. We all know it; therefore we should follow it. In every moment that we feel like biting "that person's" head off, think of the Fruit of the Spirit. Would Jesus have done that? Would He have approved?

Everyone wants to be treated with kindness, with goodness. Everyone, also, needs the goodness of Jesus Christ in their lives. Only He can fill that void. No one on earth is "good." Isn't that what Jesus told the rich young ruler? Only God is good. But we can strive to be more like Him in every way. We will never be perfect, but with His help, we can overcome the low expectations of the world and try to be more like Him.

Our faith needs to rest only in Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God. Without Him we are nothing. Our faith needs to rest in Him. His grace is all-sufficient. He has bestowed so many things upon us. Shouldn't we give Him the glory, praise, and honor He deserves?

Instead of pride, let us have humbleness. Instead of arrogance, let us have gentleness. Instead of anger, let us have forbearance. That is the way Jesus would have us to be, just as He was. A lot of times I let myself get blown away by the moment and get very angry with "someone." That, of course, isn't right. But I am very impatient. Impatience is my middle name. =) That, along with many other areas, is something I need to work on. Meekness should be my goal. What about you?

means moderation, restraint, patience, etc. I know I really need to work on this one. It has patience in it. As with all the Fruit of the Spirit, this is very important. We shouldn't go overboard by getting angry, not restraining ourselves, and losing our tempers. After all, we are young ladies. That sure doesn't become us. We should imitate Christ in all He did. The best way is to read the Scriptures - to find out for ourselves how He behaved in every situation. We sure could learn a lot!

By the way, I've changed my blog colors and template. Since there are so many different styles, I've decided to change them about every now and then. Make a little bit of change once in awhile! :D

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

The Church is Established!

Sunday was a really great Sunday! Wanna know why? We constituted Covenant Baptist Church ! To those of you who don't know, 'cuz I'm not sure if I've ever mentioned this, when we moved to Barnesville Ga from Sylvania, we were trying to start a church. Long process. Finally, God opened the door for my Uncle Devin Maddox, Aunt Lucy, and their three little ones to move down here. My uncle is now able to help Daddy more, which is great! Anyway, after all this time, we were able to actually establish Covenant Baptist Church! God be praised! Now He will bring the increase in His time, but in the meantime, we are to keep working.

How about I give everybody a quick summary of our lives, so nothing will be confused. ;)

We were all born in Indiana... Ok, I know what you are thinking. NORTHERNERS! AAAHHH! Not really. Thank God, we are Southerners by His grace, but also by lineage! My Grandpa Brown originally came from Mississippi. (See? What did I tell you!) He came to Indiana, got married, and started a church! Then my dad was born, grew up, went into the Marine Corps, after the Marines married my mom (who also grew up in Indiana. But. I don't think her family came from down South.) then had all first of us 7 kids! God then called us to Georgia for my dad to pastor a church. We have moved several times, all in God's will for us. Then, we moved to Barnesville, and were in the process of starting a church. Now, we have established it! We have been in Barnesville ever since the end of May/first of June. Liberty was then born!

There were times when everything seemed dismal, at different curves in the road, but God always brought us through and now here we are! To Him be all glory and praise! I am so thankful that the church has now been constituted and the charter members all present. We took a picture of everybody and I'm posting it along. Aren't we a great looking bunch? =)

So there is a little bit of history, although a lot in between I didn't cover. That would take way too much time. Perhaps you are confused? I know...I'm not a very good writer. Most people could do a lot better job. I tried though, didn't I? Right now I am so glad that God always is faithful. What could we do without Him? Nothing! is the only answer.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Issue of Modesty, pt.2

Just what would be considered modest? That can be a major problem. But, there isn't any specific verse that tells just what is considered modest. After all, times change anyway. But that isn't an excuse to wear whatever is fashionable at the time. Let's try to figure this thing out.

When Adam and Eve were first made, they were without sin. They were naked, but they knew no shame. They were innocent. But, after they sinned, their eyes were opened and then did they know that they were without clothes. Funny thing now, don't you think? Not knowing you had any clothes on. Anyway, they then made themselves coverings. But God in His grace and mercy made them coats of animal skins to cover their whole bodies, not just their private parts. That should give us a little bit of an understanding of what kind of clothes we're supposed to wear; clothes that cover us. Of course, there are parts that are to be hidden at all times, but that doesn't mean we should all wear big trash bags to hide ourselves in. We are to be covered, though not necessarily from head to toe. There is a big difference between modesty and hiding ourselves. Although, don't you agree that most girls should probably be wearing trash bags instead of the indecent clothes they are wearing today? But, as I have said, there is a big difference. Modesty should be something we study out on our own. If the certain garment is to showy, loud, bold, revealing, tight, or anything that isn't godly, that should be enough about it. It needs to be rid of. Or maybe you are the crafty type. Make it into something that would be modest! That would be a bonus.

Modesty is really a heart issue. If your heart isn't right, you won't wear the right kind of clothes that show you as a Christian lady. Your heart has to be right first and foremost before you can change your wardrobe. After you settle your heart problem, then you can go on to change your wardrobe. A girl can be wearing "modest" clothing, but if her heart isn't in the right spot, you can tell by watching her that she really isn't modest. Just because clothes may cover you fully doesn't mean you are being modest. You have to have the right heart attitude.

Something that is really offensive to a lot of people, even Christians, is the bathing suit. For crying out loud! EVEN to Christians! Do you know just how revealing and immodest those things are? That is just the whole bathing suit. "But, one needs to have something to swim in!" Some people say. "One needs to have garments with room to swim in." My goodness! There is plenty of room, that's for sure! What about a two piece? I'd hate to find out what people would say about those things! Those pieces of trash show off more than anything. Would you step outside in only your undergarments? OF COURSE NOT! But, even those would cover you more than a bikini. I'm shocked at how even Christians tolerate these things! SHOCKED! How can they? We are ambassadors of Christ. We are the Salt and Light. How can one truly be salt and light while at the beach with a bikini on? There is a little bit of a mix-up here! Back in the Bible days, if someone was caught without their outer coat on, they were considered naked and indecent! Their underneath clothes were even more decent than all of the clothes today! There is a MAJOR problem today!

Modesty is something we need to make a comeback to. Only the right heart attitudes will change that.

The Issue of Modesty

"In like manner also, that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh woman professing godliness) with good works." -1 Timothy 2:9&10

I want to talk a little about modesty - a very delicate issue to most women and girls. Here in 1 Timothy chapter 2, Paul is writing to Timothy about how women should be attired. He said the women should adorn themselves in modest apparel. (clothing) The women shouldn't be concerned about their hair, their jewelry, or expensive clothes. Of course, the LORD wants us to look nice, and present ourselves as imitators of Christ, but He wants us to me modestly attired. True godly women are supposed to be concerned about the work of Christ and the furthering of His kingdom. We are to profess ourselves Christian ladies through our works, not by how "good" we look. When we dress, we are to do it with shamefacedness and sobriety. But, if we don't know that meaning of those words, how can we? Let's see what the definition is.

Websters 1828 dictionary defines them as:
Shamefacedness: Bashfulness; excess of modesty.
Sobriety: Temperance or calmness.
Temperance means moderation, as in excess.

So there are the definitions. In dressing modestly we are not to be bold, but bashful, shy. We are to be moderate, not to excess in our dress. We are not supposed to look for attention to ourselves, but rather, to draw attention to Christ, and the godly woman He has designed us to be.

But, there is something I'd like to point out in these verses. When Paul is talking about braided hair, jewelry, and nice clothes, he is not saying that women are not allowed to wear nice clothes, jewelry, or even makeup. What he wants stressed is that those things are to be used in moderation and shamefacedness - not to go overboard. Jesus Christ Himself wants us to be imitators of Him, and He sure doesn't want us to be slobs. Therefore, we can look nice, dress up a little, wear a moderate amount of makeup to highlight our natural beauty - not cover it up. That is something all women struggle with. The outside looks. If something is wrong, oh man! We are devastated! How we wish we could change that certain thing. But, if we were able to change that one thing, wouldn't there be other things we would want to change as well? Of course. We are human and are filled with flaws. But God made us exactly how He wanted us to be. No changes can be made. Therefore, praise Him for that! He made us beautiful, each of us in our own way. Short, tall, skinny, full, small, big. All are loved by Him. Because of that, shouldn't we give Him the honor by dressing modestly? By wearing things that won't give us glory, but give Him glory? By loving ourselves for who we really are, and not covering our true selves up? I think we should. I myself have struggled with so many things, but by God's grace, I am trying to get on the right track. It isn't easy, especially in this day and age we live in where everything is based on how we look. But in God's word we can find help and comfort. Let us make a new statement today, instead of following the crowd, let's start our own trend, a trend that will make a difference! One that will give God all the honor and show forth the Christian ladies we are supposed to be! To God be all glory and praise forever and ever!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

A Family Outing

Last Wednesday we went to High Falls, a gorgeous park. We had an absolutely fantastic time! What is better than getting the whole family together and going for an outing? Nothing better! Because there are 8 kids in the Brown family, which makes 10 people all together, we have fabulous times together! That particular Wednesday we had decided to visit the park, kinda as a field trip, but mostly as a family tour. That day turned out to be a beautiful day! Terrific weather! We couldn't have asked for better! So, here are a few pictures of our time at High Falls...only a few out of the 342 that I took. =)

On the trails!

Isn't she adorable?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

"Before You Meet Prince Charming"

"Before You Meet Prince Charming" written by Sarah Mally.

"Before you meet Prince Charming." A book title like that would probably catch the eye of most girls. After all, don't we all wait for the day when we will meet our prince? Of course we do. We all wish for the day when our romantic dreams come true and we fall "head over heels in love."

I have news for you - this book, Before You Meet Prince Charming, is not what one might think. Some girls might think, "Oh boy! A guide to tell me what to do while I'm waiting on my prince!" They go on to imagine the things they will have to do to "catch" that prince. Sorry girls! That isn't the point of this book.

Tell you what, I'm going to go through this slowly, chapter by chapter. So hang on here with me. There is a lot to cover.

Chapter 1: Desire the very best marriage. The Best. Everybody wants the best of everything, don't they? We all do. This is what Sarah Mally talks about in the first chapter of her book. Now, I'm not listing her exact words, you'll have to read her book yourself to find that out, but instead I'm writing from my heart - my own feelings and thoughts - although a summarization of what Sarah talks about. So back to the subject. The best. Later on in life we will want the very best marriage.  Sarah asks a very interesting question, one we should all ponder: "Are we willing to wait, and truly desire the best that God can give us?" We all want the best; therefore, we should live like it. We should save ourselves, guard ourselves, wait for the best! Instead, most girls today don't save themselves for the best. Countless boyfriend after boyfriend. If they truly wanted the best they would save everything for their future husband. Think of it this way: every guy that a girl goes out with is really some other girls' future husband. Scary. As Sarah points out, this time now, the time of singleness, when we are young and before marriage, is the "time to prepare." So if we want the very best marriage, we should start preparing RIGHT NOW!

As I end each chapter I'm going to use the verses that Sarah Mally uses at the beginning of her chapters. I think they are very appropriate. "Let us be glad and rejoice, and give honor to Him: for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready." -Revelation 19:7

Chapter 2: Dangers within the dating system. Dating. Just about everybody knows what that entails. A boyfriend, and time spent with him. Now my own added truths: the giving away of yourself, while in the relationship with him you lose the relationships with family members and friends, not saving yourself for the best up ahead, and finally, a broken heart. What dating relationships don't end in a broken heart? Hardly any. Most relationships are broken up. Hardly any last till marriage. Sad, isn't it? Then, even if they do last until marriage, the couples usually aren't "happily married." Most marriages today are in ruin and chaos. (for a good book to read about dating you can read Joshua Harris' book I Kissed Dating Goodbye. Very good read.)

Dating, to most people, is to have fun. Guy goes out with girl, they have some fun, on come more dates! Then, even if they didn't mean for anything to come about, BANG! They are in deeper than they thought. Soon enough, it is not what had been planned in the beginning. Along comes the breakup and scars from past hurts. "Dating is thinking about fun now rather than loyalty to your one lifelong partner and the joy of the best marriage later," Sarah Mally points out. How right she is! In dating, people are only thinking about themselves at the moment - what they want. But that is the wrong attitude. We should be thinking about our future, and using the time now to prepare for that. "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh." -Galatians 5:16

Chapter 3: Guard your heart. Guarding our hearts can be pretty tough. So what are we supposed to do to keep them pure? How are we supposed to guard our hearts concerning guys? Here are some "important cautions" that Sarah Mally sets forth.
1. Keep the friendship casual. Don't get too friendly with a guy. Keep it at a friendly, casual acquaintance. Being too friendly will give off the wrong signal. Remember, we are guarding our hearts - saving it for later in life.
2. Avoid situations that will breed emotional bonds. We are not to give our hearts away until the right time - God's time. Therefore we should stay away from doing things that could lead into something bigger.
3. Don't seek attention for yourself. True, we all like attention. We're girls. "But think about it - it's purely selfish!" Sarah says. The kind of attention we want isn't right. So don't seek to draw attention to yourself. Instead, we should seek to draw attention to Jesus Christ.
4. Ask your parents for specific guidance. Learn to talk to your parents. They have more wisdom than we give them credit for. They've been through our years - they will understand! We just need to open up to them.
5. Guard your words when you are with friends. A lot of girls are "boy-crazy." Can't even stop talking about "them" for 5 minutes! Be willing to be different. Take a stand. You don't have to follow the crowd. Watch what you say.
6. Avoid influences that pollute your thoughts. Things like movies and television, the Internet, music, books and magazines, all can pollute you. Watch what you read, look at, watch on TV. All can be negative influences. Be careful. Don't do anything that could have the wrong affect on you. "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life." -Proverbs 4:23

Chapter 4: Could he be the one? What are your qualifications for your future husband? I've already started on a list and have 26 qualifications! I know I'll keep adding more. I'm putting down everything I can think of - from the smallest to the biggest of things. I have already determined to desire the best. What about you? We shouldn't back down and be content with the first one that seems "good." We should only be willing to go for the best. "Be ye not unequally yoked with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?" -2 Corinthians 6:14

Chapter 5: Romantic dreams. Every girl dreams of her knight in shining armor that will one day rescue her. But too much dreaming distracts us, then we loose sight of a lot of things. Right now we are use our time for Christ and preparing for that one day when we will be married, but if all we do is dream of knights in shining armor, our time will be wasted. This verse is very appropriate: "Finally brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsoever things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are of GOOD REPORT, if there be any VIRTUE, and if there be any PRAISE, think on these things." -Philippians 4:8 (emphasis added)

Chapter 6: When God says wait. Waiting is very hard. Everybody struggles with impatience. But in everything, including marriage, God has a plan for us. If he says wait, then we'll have to wait! In that waiting period we can be learning many things: how to become a homemaker, learning what it takes to become a mother, (your mother and other mothers are the only and best help there is) cooking, maybe even sewing! Whatever gifts God has given us is what we should be developing over the waiting period. There is a lot we could be doing instead of moping around, reading romantic novels, and waiting for our prince to HURRY UP AND GET HERE! When God says wait, we had better learn to wait. After all, don't we want the best? "For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will He withhold from them that walk uprightly. O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in Thee." -Psalm 84:11-12

Chapter 7: How parents can help. Parents are truly gifts, whether we realize it or not. Our parents have already lived through a lot that we go through. Thus, shouldn't we turn to them for help and guidance? They can help us. God gave us parents for a reason. He knew we would need their help. See, doesn't He supply our every need? "My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways." -Proverbs 23:26

Chapter 8: Have a life purpose bigger than marriage.
This isn't saying that you won't get married. Only God knows what the purpose is for every persons life. He will work everything out to do what He had planned from the beginning. But while we are young, and single, we should spend our time wisely, for the work of Christ and for His glory. After we get married we will have a lot of responsibilities. But before that, we should work diligently for the cause of Christ. Our goal in life is to glorify God. At least, it should be. "What is the chief end of man? Man's chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever." (Question number one in Spurgeon's catechism) We aren't here to make ourselves happy. God set us on this earth for His purpose and to glorify Him. "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you." -Matthew 6:33

Chapter 9: Dreams must die. We hold onto our dreams, hoping that one day they will come true. But rather than holding onto our dreams, we need to surrender them to the Lord.   He is the Maker of heaven and earth, He is all-powerful, He knows down to our very depths. But we still need to talk to Him, to tell Him of our dreams and hopes for the future, then surrender them all to Him. He holds everything in the palm of His hand anyway. We should, and need to desire His will, rather than follow our own desires. "For whosoever will save his life will shall lose it: and whosoever shall lose his life for my sake shall find it." -Matthew 6:25

Chapter 10: Reserves for one. We are to have one husband, right? Therefore, we should act that way. As Sarah Mally says, we are to save our "firsts" for that one. Save everything about us, emotionally and physically, for our one and only future husband. We all have a gift - ourselves - to give away or keep until the right time. Will we save our "firsts" for the one, treasure that gift until we can give it whole and pure to our future husband, or do we want to have nothing to give? I for one want to save and cherish that gift, to be able to give it to my husband. "For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication: that every one of you should know how to posses his vessel in sanctification and honor." -1 Thessalonians 4:3-4

Chapter 11: Delighting in the LORD. We all want love, but do all of us know that we already have it? Jesus Christ gave Himself for us. He died upon the cross for our sins. He loves us "deeply with an everlasting love." "Few understand that our greatest joy in life will come from fulfilling that purpose for which we were created: having fellowship with our Creator and glorifying Him." Sarah says. Before we can truly be ready for marriage, we have to know the real understanding of delighting in the Lord.   We have to first fall in love with Him. "Delight thyself also in the LORD; and He will give thee the desires of thine heart." -Psalm 37:4

Chapter 12: Know that God arranges marriages. God has a plan for every person! Isn't that wonderful? That alone should give us assurance. We don't have to worry then. All we have to do is "trust in the Lord."  He will give us the desires of our hearts. So, if God has a plan for each of us won't He make that plan come to pass? Doesn't that make you think He cares for us? I certainly think that. Wait upon the Lord.  He loves us. He knows what is going to happen tomorrow as well as 5 years from now. Just be patient - everything that God has willed will come to pass. So right now, we are to prepare. Preparing for those days in the future, that only God knows about. Now is the time to prepare. "Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, unto Him be glory in the Church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen." -Ephesians 3: 20-21

So there it is. I don't know if you lasted throughout all that with me or not, but I'm hoping. To get a better understanding, you'll have to read the book. I just did a little bit of summarizing. Even then, I didn't cover half of what is talked about in the book. I'd really encourage the reading of Before You Meet Prince Charming, by Sarah Mally. It will be very beneficial, as well as fun to read. A book can't get better than that, can it?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Recent Happenings...

Little Levi!

My little sister!

Cute lil Abigail

Sweet lil Annabel

Abigail takes the picture!

Now some pictures of the fun with our family from Ohio - the Maddox's.

Grace took this one. (and the one below) *rolls eyes* Do I look silly or what? :D

Allison Heiney. She is like me - she usually doesn't like her picture taken. ;)

The flaoat the little ones rode on for the John Birch Society.

First some pics from Buggy days. I didn't get to take any of the parade - In the middle of the parade it started raining though! Sure did make everything more fun! *sarcastically grins* Like I just said, we've made some new friends. The Heiney family, who have 4 kids. They are a great blessing to come upon! They also have some other families that will be great to get to know! God is always faithful, remember? *smile*