Sunday, December 20, 2009

Merry Christmas!!

Most people celebrate Christmas with their own traditions in mind. Some people don't even celebrate Christmas; instead, a different holiday. Some traditions are placing the star on the Christmas tree at midnight, some kids (actually probably most kids, lol) stay up all night long, some sing carols in the dark with only the tree lighted, some just get together for family gatherings every year, and some even do like ten different Christmases in one year because of so much family coming in at different times!!! Tradition isn't neccessarily wrong, but making that the main goal of the season... feeling as thought "it just isn't Christmas" without our festive traditions............?
I heard a story of a family who made it their tradition to give Jesus a part of every Christmas with them. Even though he was not there in flesh, they set an empty chair at one end of the table - just for Him. They made a birthday cake, even though He did not eat any (lol). And they sang "Happy Birthday" to Jesus! Now you know He heard them singing. Ü One year a distant relative came for Christmas. When he asked the six year old girl of the family if she got everything she wanted for Christmas, she thought for a moment, and then replied, "No... but then, it isn't my birthday."

"Out of the mouth of babes..." Psalm 8:2

That little girl knew and understood the true meaning of Christmas, when most adults don't. She'll touch her generation. She has touched every generation, even though we don't know her name! This year, whether you celebrate Christmas or another holiday, if only once, remember Jesus and thank Him for His gift to us. Even if December 25th is your birthday, it's the time we remember Christ's. And no one would be here to celebrate this blessed day if He had not come on that glorious night. Born to die, Jesus my Saviour. Have a merry Christmas and God bless!!!

Monday, December 14, 2009

Once Saved Always Saved... With Proof

Okay y'all, I'm gonna tackle one thing about salvation before this year is over, and then start a series about it after 2010 hits. I want y'all to know that once you have asked Jesus into your heart to save you from eternal hell (which you got yourself doomed to with your sins) you cannot lose Him.

A very good friend of mine once told me she did not believe this because she read this verse out of Revelation 22: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

So, according to this verse, if any one who is saved, takes any information from the Bible's prophecy, he loses his salvation and he is once again doomed to meet all of hell some day. But I want to open a new thought to some of you... which may sound absolutely CRAZY... oh well... I think believing you can lose your salvation is absolutely crazy!!! lol...

Here's the thought: What if, with the understanding that we are all wanted and hoped for by God, everyone's names are written in the book of life from the beginning? Hold your horses - I'm getting somewhere with this!

Romans 8:29-30 says "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover, whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified."

What does that verse tell you? Answer for yourself. Has God EVER justified the wicked? No! He's a just God! You are justified when you get saved. God has called everyone to repentance. He has foreknown every person to ever be born - and unborn. He has predestinated everyone to be saved. But just because someone is destined, it doesn't mean they will fulfill that destiny - because we are all given a choice. God has crowned man with glory and honour from the beginning. He made us all upright, but we have sought many inventions. (Ecclesiastes 7:29) We have not sought after God, but after ourselves. I believe every person's name was, at one time, written in the book of life. So, what now?

There are two sins that get your name blotted out of the book of life: The one in Revelation 22 and denying the Lord Jesus Christ while on earth (Matthew 10:33). If on earth, and you do not accept Jesus's blood to cleanse you from all your sin, then after death your name is blotted out because you rejected - denied - His offer. A truly saved person will not deny Him anyway. A truly saved person won't take away from His Word!!! Even if you believe in God, believe in Jesus, believe in heaven and hell, your name will be wiped out of that precious book if you go your whole life without accepting your need of a Saviour. Think about it - Who goes to hell? Who is in hell? The dead which are unsaved - whether they refused to be saved or knew not of their need to be saved. Right up until that last breath, there was still a chance for them to accept Christ and be eternally secure. But once they deny Him - swipe. Once they change His Word - swipe. Is forgiveness possible? Always - this is the age of grace. But death is the happening that seals the deal - when we are either separated from, or brought into God's presence. Once that last breath is taken, it is too late.

Now, I cannot even commit to you that a saved person would actually do such terrible things. "What if I just try it out... ya know, see what happens?" you might say. You-are-a-fool. In fact, might wanna check your heart to see if it's genuine.

In 2 Timothy 1:12, Paul said, "For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have comitted unto him against that day." So, therefore, Christ is obligated to me, to keep my salvation. He promised. Our part is to trust, His part is to keep us.

Hebrews 10:23 "Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;)"

You can't argue on this point because then you'll be pushed to prove that you're right. How prideful.

Now - if you believe that this concept is too far to grasp, that's OK. By no means am I pushing you! But it is important to me that all know the truth. This is a subject that defines how a daughter or son of God views their Father in heaven. Remember, we were put under grace when Jesus came, and were freed from the law. So without further ado, here is your proof.

"Then he said, Lo, I come to do thy will, O God. He taketh away the first [law], that he may establish the second [grace]. By the which will we are sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices: But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God; From henceforth expecting till his enemies be made his footstool. For by one offering he hath perfected for ever them that are sanctified." Hebrews 10:9-14

I'm going to stop right here for a second and bring to light that those verses say "for ever" ... not "for ever, unless the sanctified defile themselves again." If you are a true child of God, why would you change or take away from His words? Why would you deny him? You wouldn't. So why even consider the possibility of losing one's salvation? It continues on in verses 15-18:

"Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us; for after that he had said before, This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more. Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin."

The debt that we owed (our sin debt, as seen in Romans 6:23) was paid in full by Jesus, once for all, from the beginning of our sinful lives, to the end of them. And God knew all the sins we would commit... don't you think He would make a way for us? Even for the most lost - the most wretched? The Lord says He will remember our evil no more! So what if someone takes from God's Word - or flat out rejects Him during their life before death? That's what atheists do. Is it possible for those souls to be saved before death? Hebrews tells: once for all. Of course it is possible. BUT, they have to accept Christ BEFORE they die. Remember, death seals the deal! John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."

...not an everlasting life that depends on one wrong choice. Works cannot save you (Ephesians 2:8,9), neither can works un-save you. Do you doubt? God is no respecter of persons (Acts 10:34). He saves anyone who will call on the name of His Son... for ever, because God is not partial. I really hope y'all see the truth presented right from God's Word - not with your eyes, but with your heart.

Jesus, Who is Faithful and True, said this in John 5:24, "Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life."

Saturday, December 12, 2009

'Bout Time

Hey y'all....
I think it is about time I told you about my brother's blog! He started it about a month ago, but wanted to wait til he had got everything all fixed up and ready. Here it is:

Go check it out - he'd LOVE some new followers!!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009


After recently editing my playlist, this head-bangin' metal song somehow wormed it's way onto my playlist. I took it off when I noticed it, but some of y'all may have heard it, since my playlist is set on shuffle. I want y'all to know I don't listen to that kind of music - it's from the devil. So, if any of y'all were so unfortunate as to hear that song while it was on my playlist, know that it was totally accidental and I'm sorry about that!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Charity Never Fails

"Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave herself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth..." from 1Corinthians 13

And what is charity?


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Think On These Things

I got this idea from another blog that I follow and decided to share it with yall!

"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." Phillippians 4:8

The waves crashing on the sand

Horse hooves beating into the ground

Sharing a bowl of ice cream with Mom

The sweet, warm aroma of coffee

Snuggling with a puppy

Running through a big, wide, open field with my friends

Holding my little sister

The Texas sky

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Working On...

...a post that will be about salvation. Have been working on it for the past month!!! So.... I'll do a different post for the time being ...... tomorrow. Or perhaps next week! this week has been crazy.... I mean CRAZY! Nothing but hustle and bustle!!!! here's a little something I want to share with y'all:

"The Lord is good, a stronghold in the day of trouble; and he knoweth them that trust him." Nahum 1:7

The only 100% positive verse in Nahum! The rest is condemnation and prophesied destruction to a certain people. Thank God for his goodness - that amidst turmoil, he still reserves deliverance for those who serve him - for those who trust him. Ü

Friday, October 9, 2009

Breaking a Habit
"How shall I a habit break?"
As you did that habit make.
As you gathered, you must lose;
As you yielded, now refuse.
Thread by thread the strands we twist
Till they bind us neck and wrist;
Thread by thread the patient hand
Must untwine ere free we stand.
As we builded, stone by stone,
We must toil, unhelped, alone,
till the wall is overthrown.
But remember, as we try,
Lighter every test goes by;
Wading in, the stream goes deep
Toward the current's downward sweep;
Backward turn, each step toward shore
Shallower is than that before.
-John Boyle O'Reilly
Not all habits are redundant and not-so-big-a-deal. Someone could possess the habit of cursing, forgetfulness, gossip, procrastination, or lying. Even prejudgement can be a habit!
A habit could also be known as a tendency or a practice. If some practices are not stopped, they can lead to destruction. If a tendency - however slight - is not broken, it can tend to dishonor and penury. "In all labour there is profit: but the talk of the lips tendeth only to penury." Proverbs 14:23
We all have a will. No matter how sweet the heart, every single will is stubborn and strong. And I promise and guarantee we all have at least one tendency, one practice, one habit, that is not worth keeping. We must conquer our habits with our will, and when they are too binding to overcome, the Lord Most High is there to help us break those chains.
"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." Galatians 5:22-25

Saturday, September 26, 2009

My Life Verse

Well, y'all did pretty good on the most recent poll - "What's my life verse?". But, there is only one right answer. My life verse is 2Timothy 1:7 "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." Wow, that's powerful. Just sit down and think about every little phrase in there....... Ü My back-up life verse (haha, if you wanna call it that) is Ephesians 6:10-12. All the verses listed are on my blog and they have made tremendous impacts in my life. I think the greatest thing about Bible verses is that when you actually apply them to your life, then you see how much they really mean... how true they are. And you can see how serious and powerful God's Word is. Because it's alive! There's no word like it - no letter - no reading... no other book. I haven't read the whole Bible yet, so for now, that's my life verse. Just wanted to share that with y'all, in hopes that you'll find the promises... and power of the Lord through it.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Fun Stuff!

Well tonight when my brother and I, two other people from the youth group, and our youth pastor and his wife went out visiting our friends (which we never got to really do because we got lost twice and then another person wasn't even home) we got to talking about my trip I'm going on this weekend. They tried to get me convicted about not being there on Sunday (like they called me "a heathen child" and "an unfaithful wretch", "you sinner!".... but they were just kidding.... they're great. I love 'em!). Anyway, it did not convict me - just made me feel so loved and important (*snickers*)! They said "Ya know how you can't walk without your little toe? Well, you are like that toe - without you the church is disfunctional. We cannot operate without you. Even though you're little, you're a very vital part of the church." So I'm a very little person, yet so important! haha... They wanted to make me feel bad for leaving, and I kind of do feel bad.... I'm gonna miss ALL of them on Sunday!!!! We had fun tonight. They took my brother and I, and one of our friends to the donut shop...... yummmmmm.....

Actually, my friend and I had a show-down about Tech and Texas (the wretched Longhorns who are too bull-headed... haha... for their own good)! She tried the oldest attack in the book "You don't like Longhorns!? You're a sinner - you need to get right!" So I was classy and in such a sparkling way, replied, "Well, you know..... wisdom is justified of her children." Oh yeah - gotcha girl! (Check out Matthew 11:19 and you'll totally understand what I meant by this). Oh, I'm so proud of myself, I got her on that!

So, God bless all of you guys, (and gals), please pray for my trip with my missionary friend, that God will keep us safe. Ü Til next week!!!!

I'll be Gone This Weekend!

Where am I going? Somewhere far, far away......

No, just to Kansas. I'm going with my missionary friend on her excursions of deputation before she leaves for a wonderful place - the Ukraine! She has a ministry with the kids there at an orphanage..... oh how I WISH I could go too! So I'll be gone with her this Saturday through Monday. Please pray for our safety! I'm kind of nervous because I don't know what the church is like. Some churches are so warm and inviting, welcoming you right into the family (that's my church!) but some are cold and lifeless - God help us (if that's the kind of church we go to on Sunday!). But through it all she and I will have soooooooooooooooo much fun. She's an awesome girl and I'm crazy. Together we're both unstoppable and part-controllable...... don't worry, we'll behave. Maybe I'll have some pics to put up when I get back. I don't think I've ever been to Kansas before......

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ten Thousands of People!

"...Many there be which say of my soul, There is no help for him in God. Selah. But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head. I cried unto the LORD with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill. Selah. I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the LORD sustained me. I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about...Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people. Selah." Psalm 3:2-8

Dandelion Eater

So, last time I did a post on herbs, it was about ginger. I am so ashamed that I haven't done any more since then!!! 53 posts so far, and only 2 have been about herbs! I mean, here I am claiming to be very interested in herbs and I hardly ever talk about them. I think it's soooooooooooooo important that we use the natural (100% natural) resources that God gave us from day 1 to keep ourselves healthy. Our bodies are the Lord's temple, and I personally am passionate about feeding and nurturing this temple with things that come straight from the hand of God. So, without further ado.................

Dandelion. You probably know it as a pesky weed that grows ALL AROUND YOUR HOUSE (outside of course - haha). I think the flower is really pretty, but some mothers don't agree - especially when their two year old runs into the kitchen with a big smile and a handful of them. What those mothers don't know, is that while their toddler tottles back outside to pick some more, and they (loving mothers that they are) secretly throw the weedies away, they are actually throwing away tea, coffee, salad toppings - and the roots? - yummy stuff there. Actually, my Mom's herb book says that you can peel the roots (yes, dandelion roots!), slice them, and cook them in a pan, all smothered in butter, then serve them seasoned with salt and paprika...... I might try it with cayenne pepper and parsley. Anyway, I thought it sounded good. The roots can also be used to make coffee.....somehow!

The flowers can be plucked off the stem and put in a salad - *edible flowers*! And while you're at it, go ahead and throw some leaves in there with the lettuce - or just do an all-out dandelion salad! A lemon-dill dressing or Greek dressing would be great - it would bring out the yummy flavors of dandelion. Yes, there are some bad flavors - actually mostly bad. haha!

Let's try this salad: be a little daring and use dandelion leaves in place of lettuce, and layer your salad with feta cheese (or any other cheese), sliced purple onion, chunks of tomato, and purple grapes. Then do this 3-2-1 Dressing. It has 3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon honey, and then add a minced garlic clove, about 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and then blend this all together. Pour your dressing on and top your salad with a few dandelion flowers. OK, at least ONE of y'all better do this!
You can boil the roots or the leaves and make a tea - just a plain dandelion tea! The tea (I will be honest) is very, very bitter, so you would of course only want to use it for medicinal purposes. Add a sweetener like Stevia or agave nectar, and it's bearable.
Now for the medicinal examples.........
The tea helps your liver to be stable. Got liver problems? Dandelion will help tremendously with that - just be tough and get over the taste. It is known as one of the best liver cleansers. The coffee, I'm pretty sure, is only for pleasure with healthiness involved (though I don't know who drinks coffee for pleasure - blah!). If you do drink coffee because you like it, you're probably gonna like dandelion coffee, too, is my guess. The leaves are good for the liver, also. If you're really crazy and want to be really daring, blend up some dandelion leaves in a fruit smoothie some time! It's pretty good! Next, dandelion is also one of the best blood purifiers. Low blood pressure, high blood pressure, "bad blood" (wow, that's a little 17th century), dandelion has got ya covered. It has in it all the nutritive salts for the blood, so all the deficiencies in blood salts that cause anemia are taken away! It's also good for your spleen, pancreas, good for treating kidney stones (which my youth pastor has right now, please pray for him), gall stones, indigestion, diabetes, even Alzheimer's disease!!!!! It's rich in many nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Calcium is one of the main minerals. When used externally, it helps skin diseases such as eczema, acne, age spots.... What you do is crush the fresh leaves, boil them for 10 minutes, strain and apply. You could probably even add that to a face scrub -I don't know, just some thoughts. If you take the stem, squeeze all of the milky juice out of it, and then apply that to a wart every day, about 3X a day, it will be gone very soon (less than a week), depending on how big the wart is. So you can drink to your health, eat to your health, and apply to your health! There are sooooooo many different things you can do with dandelion and none of these remedies are designed to fail! But I would suggest, that if you're really interested, you should try to teach yourself. I won't stop sharing herb stuff with y'all, but there is so much, I can't fit it all into my blog. We people of America would be so much more able and healthy if we gave herbs a chance. In other countries, herbs is all the medicine they have over there! No side-effects, no counter-reactions (unless you're allergic!) But most likely not. So next time you're about to mow the lawn, pick your dandelion first. Enjoy!
*If you are on any medication, always talk to your doctor before using herbs- the medication and herbs may interact in a negative way.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Proverbs 17:17

"A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity."

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Once Upon a Time...

...a little girl with dark, soft curls was born to a young father and his bride on August 20th, 1992. It was Sunday morning and the sun did indeed shine brightly. No wonder this girl was called Sunshine throughout her life! You know, of course, that was not her real name. The girl was adored by her whole family and grew up always being taught about the love of God and the story of Calvary and what Jesus did for her there. Until about 1 1/2 years ago, she did not fully understand that story - the significance of it. She made some mistakes along the way, and wandered from the good path that her parents had set for her to follow, a narrow road it was. But her loving Lord showed her all the sins she had committed, how sad she had made Him, and with shocking horror, she discovered that those sins - those mistakes - were what nailed Him to the cross of Calvary. The young girl let the Lord lead her back to the right path on which she finally accepted His gift of salvation and is now living a life blood-bought and saved by grace. She is living blessed and ever-sincere on following Him. If you ask her why she loves her Lord so much, she will reply with passion, "He's the one who freed me from bondage. He paid a debt I was not able to pay - though it caused Him great pain. He won a victory I could never win. He did it all for me." This young girl knows she does not love Him as much as she ought, she may never be able to love Him that much. His love for her puts her love for Him to shame. But she will never forget the price He paid for her - and she will never stop being greatful. She is greatful for another year of life - as today is her 17th birthday!

(Drum roll please...............) It's my birthday! The Maiden of the South was born today, August 20th to two wonderful parents. Ü I am indeed greatful for another year of life and am looking foward to all that's going to happen today..... and in the upcoming year.

So far, I've been called by 5 people - one of whom is my friend from Illinois. She called me at 8:37 AM - the exact time I was born 17 years ago! And when she finally got me on the phone (she called right when 2 other people called - haha) she put her phone on speaker and played me Happy Birthday on the guitar, while singing! What a talented friend I have... that was one of my favorite parts of the day so far. I've never had someone who's half way across the country sing me Happy Birthday! Then I went over to a friend's house and rode her horse - yes, I wanted to ride on my birthday! So it was just me and Savvy (the horse) running across the countryside, and the dog, who tagged along!
Later today I'll begin traveling to a far, far away place..... (lol, still in Texas) with a bunch of my family members to a restaurant that I've never been before, but my grandparents say it's really good..... so I'm takin' their word for it! It's a Texas Grill house....... now, I don't know if y'all have Montana Grills, or Ohio Grills, supposidly not a New York Grill, but a Texas Grill house is strictly superb!!!!!!!!!!!!! We're talking steak, chicken fried steak, chicken friend chicken, ribs, you name it (in the meats, of course). haha!! And while there, I'll get to open *presents*!!!! I'm also expecting a little surprise at the end.... but nobody's suppose to know that! :> Maybe I'll get a surprise chocolate cake 'n ice cream deal (because everyone knows how much I adore chocolate!).

Earlier, the best daddy in the world (*ahem* my Daddy!) came in from a hard day's work and handed me a bouquet of yellow daisies! They're gorgeous!!! And they smell sweet and mellow..... like a summer day. Well, there may be more later, but if not, "Happy birthday to me, happy birthday to me!...."

Thank You Lord for giving me life, for allowing me to be born a free girl in the best place on earth - America! And in the best, most sovereign state - Texas...... And thank You for letting me be born to two parents who will never quit their stations as followers of the King of kings and Lord of lords. Thank you for every breath of life that I take for granted, for every sunrise and sunset I've ever seen, every loved-one, every friend, every blessing.......

Monday, August 10, 2009

What Happens in God's Time

Lately, God has been testing our faith as a family. I won't go into deep details but I will give you one instance where our faith has been tried, and God has done a work soooooooo great!! (I was planning on posting this like, four days ago..... yeah.) Here's the story.

One day we decided to get a new used van. So we went to the dealership and bought a blue Dodge-mini. But..... we didn't pray over our choice. We did not include God in our search. And we've been paying for it ever since! We had this blue Dodge mini-van for over 5 years, and the thing gave us problems all along. Around the beginning of this year is when all the big problems started. It began with an oil leak, to the transmission being totally shot - worthless - useless. (*big, sarcastic smile*) Dad took it to the shop time and time again.... still, the piece of junk wouldn't get better! We were spending a lot of money, with added gas expenses, topped with other things we were still trying to pay off. Until then, I was the encourager, aiding everybody on to believe and have faith in God. My faith was now being tested. We prayed for a long time, and twice, we actually considered two different vehicles! Once it was a Honda mini, next a Honda Pilot. Ahhhhhhh..... I loved, loved, *loved* the Pilot!!! But neither of those worked out. Besides, a Pilot was a rather insensible choice for this family of six - so we thought! I know we could have managed, but anyway... Mom and Dad looked and looked and looked (!) on the internet for another vehicle that wasn't gonna break down on us, but it seemed like they'd have to travel half way across the country for a good used one. And with gas expenses like they are - yeah right! So, eventually, we gave up. Well, not really. But we gave it all to God. We decided to stand still and let God move. Then one normal day, as my Mom was just wishfully checking out vehicles, she found a black Honda Pilot in the town right next to us! No way, it's just a fluke. Dad and Mom decided to take us kids and go check it out anyway. So they did, and they thought it was a pretty good deal. Until..... a car salesman-friend of my Dad's told him that it was really worth $4,000 less, and that his dealership could find us one for the lesser amount. Oh no! You gotta be kidding me!!! We gotta wait!? Until... the dealership we had started with, called and offered to lower the price exactly $4,000. They had some how found out what my Dad's friend was planning to do for us. Oh yeah, we're getting this Pilot!!! Until... we found out that there was an oil leak. Dad was going to call it off if the problem couldn't be fixed. We all agreed that we weren't going to take anything that had a problem. We wanted it whole. So, Dad took it to the shop..... v`oila! It was fixed, stayed fixed, and.......... we got a new vehicle! We got this totally awesome Honda Pilot, that God just set in our lap! We gave the whole situation to Him, and He worked without any effort. It makes me think - maybe He was just waiting for us to let Him have it. Through those five years we have learned as a family to include God in everything we do - not just in our choice of a new vehicle. This is just one situation of many where God has answered our prayers. Maybe God's just waiting around for you to give Him a situation in your life so He can fix it. And he doesn't just want your faith in Him - He wants the whole, entire situation. Just sit back, be still, maybe even close your eyes, and let God move!

*Thanks to Mom for making sure I got all the information correct! (haha)

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Reach The World
It all starts with just one voice

That takes a stand, that makes a choice

To live for God and not hesitate

To tell the world about amazing grace
One day that seed somehow breaks through

Where there was one, there now stands two

And soon another takes his hand

A ray of hope that spreads across the land.
Across the mountains.

Across the sea.

Soon other's join in harmony.

They've found the cross still standing strong.

And soon a mighty chorus sings along.
Go reach the world, touch one more soul

Bring one more lamb back to the fold.

Each soul another flag unfurled.

Each voice another chance to reach the world.
Don't let me pray, Lord, for wealth or fame.

A spark that sets the world aflame.

But help me reach the lost and alone

Tell of joy and hope where hope was gone.
-Mark Bishop

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


Yeah! I got 21 votes on that first poll! More than I was aiming for..... that's soooo cool!

Your Skill

I play the piano Wednesday nights at my church for the worship service. Until about 3 months ago I wasn't that great at improvising hymns, and so it was basically a banging of every note to the ear! I listened to the piano player on Sunday mornings and Sunday evenings, and it discouraged me because she was so GREAT and I was so NOT GREAT!!! Of course, my Mom would encourage me, "Honey, she's been playing piano since she was little, through college, and you've only been playing for three years." I well understood, not to mention that Karen is the most amazing piano player I've ever seen in my life (she's better than Bach or Liszt - TRULY!) And, I'll say it, I am not a practical person! Impractical people don't often think practically. I was thinking impatiently and hastily. So, even though I was getting the best training, and slowly improving, I still didn't look forward to banging every Wednesday night. While Karen was teaching me how to improvise, and I was being self-pityish ("I'll never get it!"), I read a verse out of Psalm 33.

"Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright...Sing unto him a new song; play skilfully with a loud noise." Ps. 33:1 & 3

Doesn't say anything about piano in there, but it spoke to my heart, telling me to keep on going. Keep trying and have fun doing it! Why? Because it says to play skilfully, with a loud noise!!! Well, I had the loud part down, but skilfully? Oh yeah, aren't we supposed to give our best to God? I hadn't reached my full potential at that time, and I'm still improving on some things, but while sitting there, sulking about my sorry state, I could have been challenging myself to move up! When I read that verse, I thought, "Shame on you! get up there and practice!" So I did. And now, I won't lie (haha), I'm not that bad on the piano!

So I want to encourage y'all to give of your very best to the Master, and to put forth all your skill for His glory. Our potential is never complete - we'll never arrive, so keep giving and aim high! Don't wallow in self-pity, because it's a sorry state, and believe me - you'll regret it!
It doesn't matter whether it's piano, singing, archery, drawing, or another talent you may possess... even learning to talk to people. Give the Lord your best, and He'll bless you. What was my blessing? Enjoying every second! Now I'm working on the guitar...

Saturday, July 18, 2009

The Southern Summer

Well, while I don't have anything else to write about, I'll share what's going on in my Southern life. I recently got new batteries for my digital camera (ahhhhhhhh... yes!!!) and I've been practicing my photographic skills (which are getting better every day, but anyway)... I've been on the blog a lot lately, watching the polls get more and more votes!!! Will I reach 20? Thanks to all of you who are helping me reach my small goal!!! And I'm so glad that NONE of you have said you don't even listen to music.... Ü

Other things going on are: working on scrap-booking, calligraphy (I need more ink!!) and other arts (*ahem* drawing, sewing, decorating)..... There's so much to do, but when I finish everything, it'll be time to find something else to occupy this little mind with. There's always a "hangin' around" feel down here. That's life in the South for ya - lazy summer days. I love that phrase - "lazy summer days..." In a picture, it would be a hazy blue sky, with a hammock under a canopy-like tree. My family and I watched Toy Story earlier tonight, and I forgot how hilarious it is!!! It must have taken a long time for the actors to stop laughing their way through the script (at least that's what the case with me would have been). If you're looking for a laugh-out-loud movie, you should watch Toy Story. Ü I haven't been to the beach this summer.... :( But I've been training a horse to do barrels..... ahhhhh... exhilarating!!! And it's so worth it....

Another thing that's been going on is stories..... I've dreamed up so many good stories that would make excellent books..... I just can't seem to put them on paper. But I draw them out!!! There's probably close to 200 sheets of paper in the box under my bed, but hey! it keeps the stories coming, and helps to increase my drawing skills. Those stories would probably make better movies than books, now that I think of it. What I'm saying is I would be better at script-writing than book-writing!!! If only I could make everything fit together... Maybe there's just not enough thought put to a pen and paper when they're in my grasp. So I go from a busy activity-based girl, to a haze of summer, to a barrel trainer, to a wishful wanna-be writer. I hate to use the term "wanna-be" but a better word couldn't be thought of at the moment! There's more coming to my summer, and I maybe I'll have pictures next time!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

How to Beat Your Wicked Flesh (You Can't!)-Part2

Sorry it took so terribly long to get back to this. Y'all probably forgot all about it! You can go back to "Keep Yourselves From Every Wicked Thing" (part 1) to review this series if you want.


Remember the text we started out with? Deuteronomy 23:9&14 "When the host goeth forth against thine enemies, then keep thee from every wicked thing...For the Lord thy God walketh in the midst of thy camp, to deliver thee, and to give up thine enemies before thee; therefore shall thy camp be holy: that he see no unclean thing in thee, and turn away from thee."

Well, hehe, I know I haven't posted on this series I started for at least 2 months, but.......... Have you kept yourselves from every wicked thing!? If you've come back from any lost battles lately, I hope you've returned with a resolve to conquer this weak flesh that envelopes our willing spirits. I hope you'll join me. Let's take a look at these verses -

"Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak." Matthew 26:41

The same words are echoed here: "Watch ye and pray, lest ye enter into temptation. The spirit truly is ready, but the flesh is weak." Mark 14:38

So to avoid wickedness, what must we do, according to the Bible? Watch and pray. Be watchful and alert, because every time you feel that life is going smooth, the devil is just around the corner with a fiery dart. Pray - seek the Lord and his face. Seek his guidance and ask for protection. You will be in dangerous battles throughout this walk of faith, but that doesn't mean God can't put his Hand upon you to protect you from the enemy's blows. Also, notice that he says to watch and pray to avoid giving into temptation. A blow from the enemy that could always get some one is temptation. Something that looks so good - something we will desire. Like inappropriate TV shows or websites that our flesh can feed off of. But it will destroy us if we give in. And it will be very hard to fight temptation if we aren't watching and praying.

"There is a way that seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." Proverbs 16:25

This is a good verse to describe the way of temptation. We could follow the tempter's path, thinking it will lead to good fortune. Only to find the bitter end - death. Giving into temptation can be deadly. Alcohol or drugs, greed, intimate relationships outside of holy matrimony.... and we are supposed to be holy. Think of rebellion. "For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry..." 1Samuel 15:23. I am a stubborn person, and sometimes I act upon stubborn pride and plain self-ish-ness. It doesn't matter if your parents tell you to do the "dumb dishes" every day of your life, you need to do it with a willing heart and not a bitter or rebellious heart! Have you ever thought "One of these days, I'll get outta here and never have to do anything for them again!" That is wicked rebellion, my friend. Devastatingly wicked. Or maybe your parents won't let you date this awesome person.... so what? They love you - they don't make a pact to keep you in your room til you're 30 (and parents, don't ever joke about that around your kids - just a hint Ü ). Besides, if this awesome person is as awesome as you say and really does love you just sooooooooo much, they'll WAIT until you're allowed to see people. They'll wait for you. This brings to mind another verse!!!

"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5,6

If you feel life is unfair, trust in the Lord and listen to him. Read his Word and don't listen to your heart. Yeah - don't listen to your heart. Wow, isn't that just totally opposite from what the movies tell us to do? And the books, and the famous people - the whole world, in fact? Do not trust your heart. Trust in the Lord. Obey his word and get rid of all the junk that's keeping you from being happy, healthy and holy. I know it's hard - I fought it for a while! Trusting your own heart sounds so wistful and good. I learned from harsh experience, friend, that it doesn't work out. OK, back to the point (I got pretty far from it, didn't I?) How can we beat our wicked flesh??? Here's the answer:


If we can't save our own souls from hell, what would make us think we can save ourselves from ourselves? "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" Jeremiah 17:9. WHO can know it? "...God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things." 1John 3:20. Isn't that just amazing??? But there's still a problem. God does know all things, but we still don't know how to beat our flesh - it's impossible....

"But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26

So it is possible after all!

There are battles to be fought, and battles to be won, but it won't happen if we aren't holy. It's not easy to be holy, but it is possible. We can beat our flesh - with God as our help.

"...God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble." Psalm 46:1

Sunday, June 28, 2009

The Highest Goal

What are you doing with your life?

Are you using it to help or support someone in need?

Are you just waiting around for adventure to come to you?

What are you doing with your life?

I've been noticing lately, that my life hasn't been much of a story... yet. I haven't let it be. I know a few of you who read my blog are younger than me - let this be a lesson to you - do something NOW. Go and change someone's life by the way you live. Go, without fear, into the world and speak your convictions. Give your whole heart to the Lord and let Him work in a miraculous way in your life NOW. I've only been saved for a year (May 1st, 2008 - YEAH!!!) and I'm just now realizing that life is not about what the world has to offer you, it's about what you give to it. 2 Corinthians 12:15 says "For I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved."

There is so much to occupy ourselves with - talents, searching for the "one", pampering ourselves (manicures, plastic surgery.... yeah right), world wide fame - but that's what just about everyone seeks. And you know what they all find? It's not worth it. What about a higher goal? Honour, dignity, service, strength. Strength sounds pretty basic, but are you strong? Do you stand for what you believe? Do you love it enough to die for it? "I will very gladly spend and be spent for you." Would we serve a cause greater than us? There IS a cause greater than us. The cause of Christ. Would you give yourself to a people - devote yourself to them - even if they hated you for it? Jesus did that. He gave himself abundantly to us, above and beyond, and we nailed Him to the cross. So, the bottom line is are you serving yourself, or somehting greater than you?

I ask again, what are your goals? What are you aiming for? An average spot in the game of life? A reasonable pay, good food, nice house and car, football games, a beautiful wife and 1 or 2 kids? Maybe your'e aiming higher - trying out for the Nobel Peace Prize? Gimme a break. Global warming won't happen til the tribulation - and you can't help!! Aim high, but not for yourself. I've said it again and again and you still haven't gotten it!!! (haha)

But, maybe your'e a Christian, trying to be all you can be for the Lord, yet you feel you don't deserve the best God can offer? Let me put it this way - do you feel that you don't deserve the best husband/wife God has planned for you? Like maybe you don't deserve them... Or that you aren't good enough to be called into the ministry? Again - the best God can offer... He saved you, and made you perfectly whole, white as snow. He did His best on renewing yor soul - to perfection through Jesus Christ, and now you say you don't deserve God's best? God's best is something He wants to give you, but you need to give Him your best. Don't be stubborn or prideful (yeah, it's pride). Humble yourself and aim higher than you ever have in expectations and prayer. There was a reason God wrote Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." That is your promise to claim if you are a child of God, who never changes, who is merciful to the end. Stop beating yourself up and claim it! Don't settle for anything average. Expect the best - the very best. But give the Lord your best, also. The highest goal. The hardest to reach, but so worth it. Don't give your life to average things - God wants to give you, His child, the best. Because He loves you.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

My Hero

"There be three things which go well, yea, four are comely in going: A lion which is strongest among beasts, and turneth not away for any; A greyhound; an he goat also; and a king, against whom there is no rising up." Proverbs 30:29-31

Well, my hero is Jesus Christ!!! No hard thinking to do on that point. But I also have an earthly hero. It's my Dad. Do you know anyone who reminds you of a king? My Dad reminds me of a king. He's wise and humble, meek and understanding, but he also rules his home well and demands the respect due to him. Mom is his "queen" and my siblings and I are the princes/princesses - though we don't act exactly noble sometimes. And we "princesses" are NOT like the pink-on-everything, whiny, "Daddy please this" or "Daddy please that", spoiled little girls. My Dad teaches us to conduct ourselves with dignity and to hold ourselves to the highest standard possible - to God's standards.

My father is like the king in Proverbs 30 - against whom there is no rising up. When his mind is made up, it's final and no one's going to change it. When his children act disrespectfully towards him or any other adult, we get due punishment (of course, I'm just a little angel - it never happens to me.... watch, I'm probably speaking too soon. But anyway...). Y'all know the main reason why my Dad is my hero? He watches out for me and even when I think he's being unfair, he's really being too fair. He shows me the right path to take instead of letting me learn the hard way. Sometimes I hurt him and my Mom in the mistakes I make, but they never turn me away - they welcome me into the safe circle of their counsel. My Dad serves God with all his being and tries to be all he can be for God. My Dad's not perfect, he knows it, and I think that makes him even more of a humble person, and he gains the respect of others because of it. He hasn't always had my respect, though he's always deserved it, and I haven't always had all his trust - but God has a hand in every decision of his, and it keeps us safe and able as a whole family. I'm so glad my father listens to God and obeys Him - even when he may be afraid. My Dad's obedience to the Lord is such a wonderful example to me and my siblings. We've been through so much as a family, but he's kept trusting the Lord through all of it. And the Lord has blessed us all by showing my Dad more and more though the Word.

I just wanted to encourage y'all to pray for your fathers - the ruler of your home. Does God rule him and his heart? Does he protect you and listen to you? My Dad and I haven't always been close, but as we both grow in the Lord, we grow closer to each other. It's a blessing and it's vital in times like these. Pray for your father. Support him and encourage him. But most of all, pray for him.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Lookin' Out for this Maiden

It amazes me how brothers and sisters are so cold towards each other these days. Then again, some siblings unite into so great a pact that they (if they were geniuses) could take over the world together! But they unite in mischief, of course. Not a good combination - unity w/ mischief in mind. (hehe - sounds like me and my brother...) But rarely do you see blood-brothers and sisters naturally united and close enough to share secrets and thoughts and to look out for one another. My brother and I share this kind of relationship. So many people see it as weird, but they do admit that it's cool to see... and I know it's what everyone would secretly want for themselves.

My brother and I are similar - we're both stubborn, we like to joke around, we love the country and can't stand the city (thank goodness we live in "town" and not a BIG bustling city), we like Celtic music, we both agree that Texas is the best state in America, and the best place in the world, we both love to be around friends and family in a big group and have a cook-out or fellowship at the church. But we have some differences, too - like he hates sandals (boots are his thing) and I like flip-flops, he can't wait to grow up and get out on his own but I could be content just staying with Mom and Dad for a few more years.... we have our differences. But we get along really well 98% of the time. The one thing I like a lot about our relationship is that we look out for each other. When a girl I don't like is flirting with my brother, she gets the boot - from me. And when a guy that my brother doesn't like flirts with me he gets the boot from Ian. Now, my brother is the quiet type, so when he speaks out like that, guys know he means business. I'm so grateful that we have that trust in our brother/sister relationship. We need to build trust-relationships with our siblings. If you're getting into any kind of relationship with someone outside your family, they could see things you can't, and know things you don't, just by being around the person for a few minutes. Or if you're framed for anything, they could bail you out. But best of all, girls, your brothers can protect you from guys who are not the best for you. And if you'll trust them, it will serve you well. You could do them a favour as well and make sure they don't fall for any silly, clamorous girls.

Girls, we are maidens - young, pure maidens. Don't let that be taken away because of your stubborn pride and unwillingness to listen to your brother's advice. Let them protect you, as well as your father. Build trust with one another, so that you can have some one to live with and learn from and have fun with while you're not married!!! It's definitely not a 21st century thought, but it is a good one!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

I'm Back!!!

I got back from camp Saturday evening.... and it started pouring down rain while we were unloading the trailer!!! Oh wow, I had such an amazing time!!! I made new friends, I saw and lived in a beautiful land for 5 days, and best of all, God worked in my life. Five people from my church got saved!!! (They accepted Jesus' saving power into their lives.) Ü I was so happy because of their salvation, and I was encouraged many times throughout the week. I learned a lot about myself, too. God opened up my eyes to many, many things about my heart that I needed to get right. I was able to encourage brothers and sisters in the faith, and they encouraged me too.

The best message was the last message. Bro. Bill Marshall preached from 2 Samuel 23 about David's mighty men. Eleazar was a man who fought in a battle for the Lord until he was weary, and kept going! It was explained that he had been so "lost in the battle" that in the end, his hands clave unto his sword, and they had to pry his fingers away from it. Talk about battle severity! I can imagine him, eyes wide and focused on a battle that had already ended, (maybe ready for more?) and friends helping him relax on the blood-stained field. Bro. Marshall also talked about how the Lord won the battle, as it says in the Bible. Not Eleazar - God won!!! I realized that until I surrendered everything in my whole being to the Lord, I couldn't fight and win anything because the battle wouldn't be God's anyway. I hadn't released it to Him. So I grabbed a sweet lady from my church and she prayed with me and encouraged me.... I feel much better now. Ü When I asked the people who got saved how they felt, they gave me a relaxed smile and sighed, "Better!" One of them knew that he knew it all in his head, but he did not know for sure in his heart. You can know Jesus in your head and not have Him in your heart, y'all. I know who the President is, but I don't know him personally. Do you know Jesus personally, and not just know who He is? Do you know him as you personal Saviour? There's more to say, like the scenery was beautiful!!! It was cold aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaallllll week, though. Except for a couple warm afternoons! There are huge, gigantic rocks that I and my friends from church climbed on every day, and sat and talked while eating ice cream. Other times, we hiked, ran around camp, played basketball (while I just watched - haha), or sat and listened to a sermon. There's more things I'm gonna be sharing with y'all, but not now....

I still miss my cousins ...... :( But it's OK, I'll live (maybe) hehe! Yesterday we worked all day in our kitchen - painting. And today we'll do the same thing - paint. But then tonight my family and I are going to a BBQ with out church. It's soooooooooooo fun, I love get-togethers like that! There will be football, softball, FOOD and other things to do, plus fellowship... and that's the sweetest part of all!!!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Tomorrow - Joy and Sadness... Smiles and Tears

Yes, happiness and sadness will come tomorrow. I've never understood how the heart can hold so much joy, but sadness at the same time. We've all felt these feelings before, and tomorrow, I'll feel it again........ My cousins from North Carolina (NC's still the South, ya'll - we discussed that yesterday) have been here since late Wednesday night and my family has spent Thursday and Friday with them, will probably spend tonight with them, and then they'll come to our church tomorrow. We have had the most AMAZING time! We haven't gotten to see eachother for maybe...... 3 or 4 years??? We've already become so close - all of us - and I'm sittin' back thanking God every single day for such wonderful cousins! There's 7 of them, and then me and my sibings make 4, so 11 altogther!!! We've bonded so much over the past 2 days, and then tomorrow afternoon, there will be a tearful, sad good-bye to all of them as I simultaneously, and happily, get on the church van with my brother to go to camp. I feel like they're our real brothers and sisters! All of them! They'll be leaving Tuesday, so me and my brother won't get to see them again until the next time they come. But it won't be too long - either later this year, or half of next summer!!!!! So, there's one other thing to be happy about!!!! Count your blessings, Erica... Trust me, I am. I have a million!!!! My cousin Aubrey and I are so similar! A few differences here and there, but we're very alike! She's younger than me and taller - 2 or 3 inches taller!!!! It makes me feel like an elf, I mean, her two older brothers are taller than me, but they're also younger than me! So, just a fill-in for the week that's coming - I won't be posting til I get back. Ü Please pray for their journey back to NC and me and my brother's journey to and from camp with our church. Thanks y'all!!

My piano recital was Thursday - and to be honest, I had a wonderful, almost enchanting expirience! For the first time, I did the prelude music, then turned the pages for my piano teacher playing the flute and this guy playing the guitar (no big deal turning pages, but it was my first time!), and then played my piece Romance by Lizst, then my piano teacher played the flute and I played piano to Nocturne by Lovland (there's words to it, but we decided to leave that out), and then another student of hers and I played Fantasy (a duet) by Timothy Brown. The whole thing was like magic. Normally, I hate recitals, but this time.....

...................til next week!!!!!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Thoughts of......... Many Things

Y'all will have to forgive me for changing the blog so much. I'm just experimenting!!!!

I'm soooooooooooooooooo excited!!! Why? I'm going to camp!!! My church camp is in Colorado in the mountains...... oh man, I love it! I just love the mountains - almost as much as I love the beach. But Texas is "God's country" as we call it down here, and it is better than any place!!! I'm just so excited. Me and four of the girls in my youth group are going to be singing up there, a song called "I'm Still Amazed". It's a (sort of) fast, and definitely joyful song about how amazing it is that the Lord would do all he did for a horrible sinner like me. Y'all, if you knew my past, you'd be shocked at how I've changed - my speech, my thoughts, my actions - everything!!! Maybe I'll put my full-throttle testimony on here one of these days. I say full-throttle, because it's REALLY (well, maybe not REALLY) long!!! At camp, I get to give a devotion in our cabin, and I'm totally ready for that, but I'm nervous........ I've never given a devotion before. I'll post about it when I get back from camp. We're all going to leave after church, Sunday morning, and we'll be back Saturday. I think we're taking..... 58 kids approximately??? Truly, I'm not quite sure. But that's not counting adults or little kids. Up at camp, there's horse-back rides (but I might not do that, cuz it's just the little trail-riding thing and you have to wear helmets and the whole nine yards... so yeah) and there's a snack stand (which I won't be going to much, unless for water - I'm healthy! gotta stay healthy - no candy bars! well, maybe a Reese's or chocolate...), there's also a gift shop, a zip-line, hiking trips, sports, singing competitions, and a few other stuff. I'm going to get some disposable cameras and just use those up there - don't wanna chance my precious camera's existence! I can tell you one thing I won't be doing! I'm not going to meet anybody special (like some giddy girls who do go for that reason)! Anyway, I'm sooooooooooo excited!!!(have I mentioned that yet!?) I love camp, because you're surrounded by believers who just want to be with God on the mountain top. It truly is a wonderful feeling to be surrounded by God's awesome design of nature. The strong and jagged cliffs, and majestic trees that seem to whisper in the wind at night..... all this praises the Lord's name. Psalm 104 talks a lot about creation. Oh, I love it. Nature does praise the Lord. If nature, not able to talk or see, walk or shout, praises the Lord just because it's natural, wouldn't we also need to praise the Lord? He gave us mouths to praise him.... gave us eyes to see his miracles and read his Word.... our whole being, everything about our bodies ,was designed to praise the Lord in some way. It's so cool, and it makes God be shown all the more powerful!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Memorial Day weekend!!!! And everybody's at the lake, or out of town.... except my family and some others... we went to church today. Ü Hallelujah!!! haha..... anyway...

I just wanted to shout out a thanks to the soldiers who give their lives on the battle field every day for us and for their families. I can't express my gratitude for those few who are still willing to go straight to Irag after training, leaving their loved ones. I can only imagine how trying it is - probably a battle just getting on the airplane to leave! And the families who allow their sons (and daughters) to go fight...... it takes guts. Keep praying for our American soldiers, and pray for more to come. They need backup over there. Thank God for men of the past who believed in fighting for freedom - a godly and God-given freedom that they knew was a gift. Thank the Lord for men who have given their lives just so we could walk on free ground. I'm so glad I was BORN in a free country. I'm so thankful I was here to behold its days of glory and power. I'm greatful that I was allowed by God Almighty to live to see how great my America was before these days of darkness came. Thank you soldiers, and thank you God, especially, for giving me that.

Keep Yourselves From Every Wicked Thing - Part 1

"When the host goeth forth against thine enemies, then keep thee from every wicked thing.

For the LORD thy God walketh in the midst of thy camp, to deliver thee, and to give up thine enemies before thee; therefore shall thy camp be holy: that he see no unclean thing in thee, and turn away from thee." Deuteronomy 23:9 & 14

This post is gonna be (kinda) about the battle field and soldiers on it, but it's also about our spiritual battle field and us soldiers on it. If you've been washed in the blood of the Lamb (Jesus Christ) and you've been ransomed and freed from guilt, sin, death and hell, you are a soldier and whether you like it or not, you're on the battle field. The moment you asked Jesus to save you, you "signed up" to fight the invisible (and sometimes undetectable) battles of the soul. You will be fighting a battle for the rest of your life. Yep. But not to worry - the Lord will go before you, to fight for you. You just trust in Him and His strength and you'll win those battles. In Deuteronomy 23 it shows how God would have us behave in the battle camp. God says for us to keep ourselves from every wicked thing. So, in our camp, God wants us to have pure hearts, pure minds, totally separated from every wicked thing! It's hard to follow when it says every wicked thing. When you think of something that's wicked, you'll find just about every time that what God thinks is wicked is totally different from what you thought was wicked! There's no room for compromise when you are determined to live God's way. And if you don't live God's way, it tells you in verse 14 up there what will happen if you don't follow God's command. It says "...the Lord walketh in the midst of thy camp, to deliver thee, and to give up thine enemies before thee..." God's ready to give your enemies over to you so you can win the battle! But think it out "...therefore shall thy camp be holy..." Holy? Yep. It's hard to be holy. Let me tell you, when you think of holiness - when I think of holiness - more than likely, you'll find that what we think is holy and what God thinks is holy are two different things. God knows more about holiness than we do. He's always had it. He IS holiness. We have not mastered it - will never master it - if we've even attempted to gain it at all. Yet God says to keep our camp holy. Keep your heart holy before the Lord. That is something that is going to be sooooooooooooooooo hard to do. I want to be holy before the Lord. My parents want to be holy before the Lord. Oh man, holiness is so beautiful! I've learned that being holy isn't boring or stuck-up or down-cast looking. It's free and pure! It's wonderful!!!! I'm praying so hard for God to help me be holy. I WANT him walking in the midst of my camp. Look at this: "...therefore shall thy camp be holy; that he see no unclean thing in thee, and turn away from thee." When we are unclean and when we've turned away from God, maybe have some unconfessed sins that we're aware of, or have this sin that we just can't seem to let go of, God's not gonna fight for us, because we are at enmity with him. God wants your whole heart, ya'll. He wants everything - and he wants the battle! If you have some sin that you never knew was sin (just like we don't always understand wickedness or holiness the way God understands it), you need to ask him to reveal it to you so that you can get right and gain more power for the battle! Sin is like a burden before you're saved. When Jesus saves you, he washes all your sins away with his perfect blood. But when you discover something wrong in your heart that you never knew was there and you just refuse to get rid of it, it acts as a burden that you've given yourself, and it hinders you from fighting all those battles successfully. You'll tire out too quickly! You can't win the battle when God's not helping you, and he SAYS that if you have unconfessed sin in your life (uncleanness, wickedness, etc.) and you're not letting him take control, you won't have his help! It's like Jonah. (Read about him in the book of Jonah, in the Bible - haha) So, Jonah heard the call from God to go and tell a town called Nineveh about God's coming judgement for their evil works. Jonah didn't like the Ninevites, and he was afraid of them, so he ran away from God. The battle inside him raged and fought against his desire to obey God, and the fearful spirit took over. He deliberately disobeyed God, and God punished him for it. In the end, Jonah surrenders and he does go to the Ninevites and they ask God to forgive them, which God does forgive! But while Jonah was running before that, God allowed him to get thrown off a ship and swallowed by a gigantic fish. He stays there for three days and nights, praying to be delivered. He gave into the enemy in that first battle, and now he was in a worse scrape than he probably would have ever been in if he would have only obeyed the Lord! The Lord did deliver him from the fish's belly - he got thrown up onto the shore!!!! SICK!!!! Hey, that's what ya get for refusing to keep yourself from every wicked thing. Jonah let fear of the Ninevites control him. So, in this story, fear was a sin - a wicked thing. Yep. Something as simple as fear can be wicked. See how serious this is? What happened to trusting in the Lord and leaning not on thy own understanding? What happened to not being afraid of sudden fear? Keep yourselves from every wicked thing. Please. It's not going to be easy - it never has been for anyone! But it's possible. Do you want to win the battles or not?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Get Wisdom

Here's the Proverbs post! Lately I've been asking God to give me wisdom and understanding. His Word says that wisdom is a gift, and there's also the verse that says "Ask and it shall be given unto you..." Well, I asked, I've sought, and the Lord is helping me to understand his Word much more! My Mom's been reading us the Bible in the mornings, we started with Proverbs, and she has a keen understanding of the Bible - she's studied a lot. My Dad still does devotions with us at night, and we're studying the Ark of the Covenant - maybe I should post about that too. It's amazing!!!

But anyway (haha)...... How many of y'all have wanted wisdom? How many of you have dug for it as if it was precious gold? Psalms 37:4 says "Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart." To delight in God is to delight in his Word. I'm here to tell y'all that when you have wisdom, you can choose either to live by it or turn from it, as Solomon did. Wisdom is the principal thing. You need it first before you can be discerning, understanding or even truthful, because wisdom is all these things! This is God letting wisdom speak: "The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was. When there were no depths, I was brought forth; when there were no fountains abounding with water. Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth: While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world ... Then I was by him, as one brought up with him: and I was daily his delight, rejoicing always before him; Rejoicing in the habitable part of his earth; and my delights were with the sons of men." Think I'm crazy??? You should read the whole chapter of Proverbs 8!!!! God possessed wisdom before the earth was ever thought of. God IS wisdom! He gives it and it is his to give. I'll tell you what - I WANT wisdom!!!! Here's some amazing verses about wisdom.

Get wisdom, get understanding: forget it not; neither decline from the words of my mouth. Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all thy getting get understanding. Pro. 4:5, 7

How much better is it to get wisdom than gold! and to get understanding rather to be chosen than silver! Pro. 16:16

For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of his mouth cometh knowledge and understanding. Pro. 2:6

Say unto wisdom, Thou art my sister; and call understanding thy kinswoman... Pro. 7:4

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding. Pro. 9:10

For wisdom is better than rubies; and all the things that may be desired are not to be compared to it. Pro. 8:11

Isn't that awesome??? God says wisdom is no to be compared to ANYTHING. That's right - ANYTHING!!!! See how much wisdom is worth? Now, I am not professing to be anything close to wise - I'm a fool and a sinner saved by grace.... but someday, I want to be called wise. I desire to be an understanding, wise young woman. It's a hope and a desire of my heart! And I hope you will desire wisdom as much as I do... oh, it's so precious - its what God has!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Still Obsessed

Well, not obsessed - just thinking about it a lot! My friend Karen is getting married in June and I've just been thinking a lot about weddings...................

This is a wedding DRESS!!! The girl is spinning in this pic... so gorgeous!
(come on guys, you gotta admit this is cool!)

Okay, done! Now I'm going to post something from Proverbs later. Ü

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Hey Gals - What about Weddings!!!!!!!!

Sorry guys...... this one probably won't interest y'all one bit!!!!! Recently I've been almost, I guess, obsessed with weddings! Maybe it's because my friend is getting married in June and that's almost ALL she talks about (haha)! But honestly, I've always loved to watch weddings, go to weddings, be in weddings... I just think they're so beautiful..... Especially when the couple has kept themselves pure as pure can be. Oh - it just grips me!!!! And to think "For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh." That's an adventure right there. So anyway, here's some pics that I think are awesome!!!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

We're All an Abomination to Something!

I was reading in Proverbs 29 the other day and verse 27 says,
"An unjust man is an abomination to the just: and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked."
A funny thought struck me - either way, we're all an abomination to something! You can be dishonest, vile and wicked, and be a corruptible sight to the righteous, but the righteous are abhorred by the wicked!!! And even though it struck me as funny, it's really a serious thing to ponder. These days, people trying to serve God and be good are disliked and trodden upon by the wicked and called "haters", while we that follow God sit back and are disgusted by the sins of the world. Abomination to abomination - I'd rather be an ugly, abominable thing in the wicked man's eyes than in God's!