Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Quite a New Year

 I have started blogging again!!

*applause, applause, applause*

  I have two reasons for stopping (one is really good). The first is because we didn’t have internet from July until early November. So, yes, that is the good reason. Why didn’t I post anything in the meantime you ask? Hehe, well that’s because I’m a terribly habitual procrastinator and 24 hours for me isn’t enough time to come up with the gumption to sit down and write after being unable for so long. After a while, by the time I remembered it was Tuesday, it was Wednesday. Frankly this blog isn’t Wonderful Wednesday J

 However, I’ve had time to rethink Tweedia Tuesdays. I’m hoping to include a lot of different features from now on

 Anyway…I hope everyone had a good Forth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year (just to cover all the bases). I know we did. Like most people, we tried out a few seasonal specials. My favorite was the Pumpkin Spice coffee creamer.


 I couldn’t get enough of that stuff. Seriously. It was probably really scary now that I think about it from an outsider looking in. You know, like that random mad woman that shows up in movies perhaps? Well, maybe not that bad J God blessed me greatly last year and continues to refine me in 2014. I’ll admit, it is a little nerve racking to think ahead a whole year.

 What could happen in that amount of time? What if it’s something bad? What will I be doing at this time next year? You know, the whole worry-thing. It’s a very silly thing to even think about, much less get in an all-out worry. But, I’ve come to terms with one very reassuring thing. I don’t have to worry!! So, you can go ahead and shoot off some confetti, trumpets and maybe even fireworks.

 Matthew 6:31-34 says: “Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.”

 I think that is probably the best verse to ring in the New year, don’t you?


Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Tuesday Testimonies

May these quotes lighten up your week (and, seriously, some might really put things in perspective!)...

“I wasn't God's first choice for what I've done for China…I don't know who it was…It must have been a man…a well-educated man. I don't know what  happened. Perhaps he died. Perhaps he wasn't willing…and God looked down…and saw Gladys Aylward…And God said - "Well, she's willing."
           - Gladys Aylward

"Brother, if you would enter that Province, you must go forward on your knees."
           - J. Hudson Taylor

"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come."
           - Jesus

"Christians don't tell lies they just go to church and sing them"
           - A.W. Tozer


"We talk of the second coming, half the world has never heard of the first."
           - Oswald J. Smith

"Missions is not the ultimate goal of the church. Worship is. Missions exists because worship doesn't."
           - John Piper

"Answering a student's question, 'Will the heathen who have not heard the Gospel be saved?' thus, 'It is more a question with me whether we who have the Gospel and fail to give it to those who have not, can be saved.'"
           - C.H. Spurgeon.

“It may be hard for an egg to turn into a bird: but it would be a jolly sight harder for a bird to learn to fly while remaining an egg. We are like eggs at present and you cannot go on indefinitely being just an ordinary, decent egg. We must be hatched or go rotten.”    

       ~C.S Lewis

"God's work done in God's way will never lack God's supplies."
J. Hudson Taylor

"If Jesus Christ be God and died for me, then no sacrifice can be too great for me to make for Him."
C.T. Studd

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Actually "Doing"

 Here is a problem I have: self-motivation. Sound familiar? Have any of these sentences crossed your mind or said them out loud?

 “Oooh! I’m going to bake that!”

 “I’m going to read my Bible for at least fifteen minutes a day.”

 “No computer for a week!”

 “I’m going to write a novel.”

 “I’m starting a lemonade stand right now.”

   All of these things are great, but have I honestly achieved any of them (except for the baking; and the Bible reading only lasted a week a couple of days)? Oh, and by the way Pinterest doesn’t help the situation AT ALL! So what is the “secret ingredient"? Is it hopeless? Do you just have to be born with that awe-inspiring will to do?

  Before I go into detail, I also have another confession (this is really killing me), I struggle greatly with procrastination. Along with dreaming of things I want to do, I also put them off. “I’ll do it later, tomorrow, and, now that I think about it, it doesn’t sound very fun anyway.” I read a quote once that said:

“I will overcome procrastination, just wait.”

Although funny, it is sadly true. Once I realized I was a devout procrastinator I was going to conquer it. But, as you may have guessed I waited on that too! You know, “Ah, I’ll work on it later.”

How terrible can it get?!

 Anyway, back to that special ingredient. What does it take to do the things we set out to do and/or battle procrastination? Take fasting for example. Whenever you turn your thoughts on hunger you redirect them to prayer.

 Think about this. Every time you want to do something but “don’t have time”, evaluate the situation. Here are five things to ask yourself when wanting to do something but keep putting it off:

·        What am I doing instead?

·        Is what I’m doing really worth my time?

·        Is what I’m doing instead pleasing to God?

·        Am I glorifying him in the thing that I want/am doing?

·        What will bring me closer to my family and God instead of separating me?


        Trust me, these help! But, we have to pose another thought. How do you remember to think about these questions?

 Every time you pin a must-do craft or cooking idea or see it in a magazine etc. the first time the “I’m gonna do that!” thought pops into your head, catch yourself and think. You’ll end up with a whole pile of brownies and cookies, that unfinished masterpiece will be painted, and the dog shall be fed! And also, since you will be busy, other distraction won’t be as distractive!

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Corrie ten Boom's Story On Forgiveness

It was in a church in Munich that I saw him—a balding, heavyset man in a gray overcoat, a brown felt hat clutched between his hands. People were filing out of the basement room where I had just spoken, moving along the rows of wooden chairs to the door at the rear. It was 1947 and I had come from Holland to defeated Germany with the message that God forgives.
 “It was the truth they needed most to hear in that bitter, bombed-out land, and I gave them my favorite mental picture. Maybe because the sea is never far from a Hollander’s mind, I liked to think that that’s where forgiven sins were thrown. ‘When we confess our sins,’ I said, ‘God casts them into the deepest ocean, gone forever. …’ “The solemn faces stared back at me, not quite daring to believe. There were never questions after a talk in Germany in 1947. People stood up in silence, in silence collected their wraps, in silence left the room.
 “And that’s when I saw him, working his way forward against the others. One moment I saw the overcoat and the brown hat; the next, a blue uniform and a visored cap with its skull and crossbones. It came back with a rush: the huge room with its harsh overhead lights; the pathetic pile of dresses and shoes in the center of the floor; the shame of walking naked past this man.
 I could see my sister’s frail form ahead of me, ribs sharp beneath the parchment skin. Betsie, how thin you were! [Betsie and I had been arrested for concealing Jews in our home during the Nazi occupation of Holland; this man had been a guard at Ravensbruck concentration camp where we were sent.]
 “Now he was in front of me, hand thrust out: ‘A fine message, Fräulein! How good it is to know that, as you say, all our sins are at the bottom of the sea!’ “And I, who had spoken so glibly of forgiveness, fumbled in my pocketbook rather than take that hand. He would not remember me, of course—how could he remember one prisoner among those thousands of women?
 “But I remembered him and the leather crop swinging from his belt. I was face-to-face with one of my captors and my blood seemed to freeze.
 “ ‘You mentioned Ravensbruck in your talk,’ he was saying, ‘I was a guard there.’ No, he did not remember me.
  “ ‘But since that time,’ he went on, ‘I have become a Christian. I know that God has forgiven me for the cruel things I did there, but I would like to hear it from your lips as well. Fräulein,’ again the hand came out—’will you forgive me?’
 “And I stood there—I whose sins had again and again to be forgiven—and could not forgive. Betsie had died in that place—could he erase her slow terrible death simply for the asking?
 “It could not have been many seconds that he stood there—hand held out—but to me it seemed hours as I wrestled with the most difficult thing I had ever had to do. “For I had to do it—I knew that. The message that God forgives has a prior condition: that we forgive those who have injured us. ‘If you do not forgive men their trespasses,’ Jesus says, ‘neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.’ “I knew it not only as a commandment of God, but as a daily experience. Since the end of the war I had had a home in Holland for victims of Nazi brutality.
 Those who were able to forgive their former enemies were able also to return to the outside world and rebuild their lives, no matter what the physical scars. Those who nursed their bitterness remained invalids. It was as simple and as horrible as that.
 “And still I stood there with the coldness clutching my heart. But forgiveness is not an emotion—I knew that too. Forgiveness is an act of the will, and the will can function regardless of the temperature of the heart. ‘… Help!’ I prayed silently. ‘I can lift my hand. I can do that much. You supply the feeling.’
 “And so woodenly, mechanically, I thrust my hand into the one stretched out to me. And as I did, an incredible thing took place. The current started in my shoulder, raced down my arm, sprang into our joined hands. And then this healing warmth seemed to flood my whole being, bringing tears to my eyes.
  “ ‘I forgive you, brother!’ I cried. ‘With all my heart!’ “For a long moment we grasped each other’s hands, the former guard and the former prisoner. I had never known God’s love so intensely, as I did then”

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

As You Go Through Your Week...

Reflect on these beautiful words, perhaps they will light up your week J


All the Way My Savior Leads Me

By Fanny Crosby

All the way my Savior leads me;
What have I to ask beside?
Can I doubt His tender mercy,
Who through life has been my guide?
Heavenly peace, divinest comfort,
Here by faith in Him to dwell;
For I know whate'er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well;
For I know whate'er befall me,
Jesus doeth all things well.

All the way my Savior leads me;
Cheers each winding path I tread;
Gives me grace for every trial,
Feeds me with the living bread;
Though my weary steps may falter,
And my soul athirst may be,
Gushing from the Rock before me,
Lo, a spring of joy I see;
Gushing from the Rock before me,
Lo, a spring of joy I see.

All the way my Savior leads me;
O the fullness of His love!
Perfect rest to me is promised
In my Father's house above;
When I wake to life immortal,
Wing my flight to realms of day,
This my song through endless ages,
Jesus led me all the way;
This my song through endless ages,
Jesus led me all the way.



Tuesday, May 28, 2013

On Being Made New

Who doesn’t love Goodwill? I mean, really. Whether you’re poor or go around with a million dollars in your pocket there’s just something about getting a particular item at an amazing price that’s exciting. Seriously, a name brand outfit for five bucks? Nowhere but consignment!

  But…to be brutally honest, I like new stuff better. Goodwill or Wal-Mart? Wal-Mart is a different atmosphere and things just are new. Personally, I like walking into a brightly lit, good-smelling place rather than a cigarette-stinking Goodwill that has shoes in a completely unkempt order and books that look like they’re about to fall apart (not to say that some are really nice, don’t get me wrong I love Goodwill!).

 To hold a dazzling new pair of sneakers in your hand is a little more pleasant than trying to hold recycled flip-flops away from your body until you can spray some Pledge into them.

 In life, have you noticed that we make that “unkempt appearance” acceptable? In the church today, many Christians liberate themselves to make so many allowances it is de-resurrected from a new building and slowly decays into one of those run-down Goodwill’s.  

 For example, America. How can the Pilgrims go from brave, God fearing, God seeking, men and women fleeing tyranny to little fuddy-duddies running away from government with their tail between their legs? The same for our founding fathers becoming a warped image of deists and completely ignorant politicians. Do you see where I’m going with this? We can say the same thing about the schooling system, marriage, and a moral standard.

   But, there is a loophole in this thrift-store lifestyle! God can rebuild shaky foundations or even ruined ones into the holy dwelling place it was meant to be. Imagine rebuilding a stinky Goodwill and turning it into a beautiful new store (rather than consignment shop).

 Repentance is the first step, and probably the hardest. Realizing that I’ve gone astray is really annoying to be honest. The enemy can be very deceptive in this area, giving excuses for being right and tricking your mind into thinking nothing is wrong. But simple, true, faith can clear those deadly thoughts and bring new life.

 With repentance comes forgiveness. The best part. Forgiveness is such a relief and very freeing. Being released from grief and sin is like loosening a choke collar that’s been strangling you for who-knows-how-long!

 Once we receive that forgiveness we have to decide what to do with it. Do we say “Awesome, I got forgiveness! Now…I think I’ll go back to what I was doing before” or do we say “Okay God, what now?”

 I know all about being a toppling Goodwill and have had to be remodeled tons of times. Yet, I still go back to being an old dump and the Carpenter has to keep coming back to renovate. A never-ending process. But that’s okay! As you go through your week, don’t be “good enough for a good deal” but steadfast with a solid foundation!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Me, the Sinner


Here is an interesting picture, look at it very closely…


As you may notice, Rembrandt depicts himself in his own painting. Why is that? Because he understands that he was the one who hung Jesus on the cross. We should all make our own painting in our minds, but in place of Rembrandt it’s us. It’s a little morbid to think about but you, me and everyone hung Jesus on that same cross. I’m sure you, as well as I, have heard that before but it doesn’t mean a single thing until we get this image in mind:




This enemy, he came with a pompous air. Self-righteous was he. He preached on the streets, to every beggar, cripple and even the worst of adulterers. A disgrace, I thought.

 But, really, he did nothing wrong. I was gave a sigh of relief when Pilate announced him guilty. Now I take the crude whip in my hand, the hilt fitting smoothly in my palm. The criminal lay in a helpless fetal position, his back already in ribbons.


  I almost cringed at the sight, but ignored the thought. He was guilty. He deserved his lot. I raised my arm and struck his back three more times. Jesus cried out a mournful song. He whispered something of a prayer, sparking my anger on the inside. I cracked my vise once more with all the power I could muster.

 Jesus groaned in agony, his pain bringing me pleasure. I watched with a smirk as that crown was shoved on his forehead. I saw the blood trickle down his temple, but He never uttered a retort or blasphemed his God.


 I walked next to him while he carried his own cross on his back that was already terribly mangled. But He seemed to carry a different weight than the worldly one in his arms. I watched Him like a shadow, not ready to be seen. I hated this crafty master of disguise.


 Did he think he was better than we gentiles? If he was so sovereign, why not call for assistance? Surely this God would come. I now held a hammer in my fist. I had never been this close to Jesus.

 I lifted my hand, the nail in place when I glanced at Him. He looked at me with eyes full of grieving. Yet it was not sorrow for himself. Some supernatural love and caring pooled in those eyes, like a simmering glow underneath sunlight. I turned away and carried out my blow. I heard the muscles ripping and tearing apart as nail met wood. Jesus’ hand arched and his fingers curled, blood seeping through the puncture wound. He moaned in utter torture, but I cared not.

  We raised the cross into a hole we dug. We pushed the bottom plank into the hole, the sudden jolt racking His body. I thought the nails would tear through his hands and feet, but they stayed firm. I took one last look at this Jesus and, without looking back and steeling my jaw, turned my back and walked away.




 Pretty gory, eh? Newsflash: that is you talking. That is me talking. Those are the words from every person whether they be Atheists, agnostic, Buddhist, Muslim and yes, Christian. Isn’t that heart wrenching? I couldn’t imagine doing that to anyone, much less the Christ, the holy Son of God for Pete’s sake! But…there is always hope.

 What is amazing is that even though we did all of those terrible things, God forgives us! This is really fantastic because if someone hung my son on a cross (for doing nothing wrong) I would have a rather difficult time doing so. The grace of God is something that you cannot hold in your hand, keep in a box, or describe with words.

 It’s almost a knowing deep within that you are forgiven and grace-filled. Doesn’t that bring tears to your eyes?? Even though we tortured the Messiah, he loves us. There is also a part 2 of the story. He rose again and made all things new. Even me and you.

 He, by rising again, made it possible for us to love him also (of course, that love is unmatchable to His). Now we have the great opportunity to be his bondservant, casting off the old garments of hate and disability and putting on the robes of grace and freedom.

 I don’t know about you, but that’s a breath of fresh air. So, keeping this in mind, enjoy the rest of the week knowing how much Jesus has done for you.