Sunday, August 28, 2011

Nothing Withheld

"Our safety, joy, fulfillment, and wholeness are all found in allowing God to completely invade our through and through. Nothing withheld. Nothing off-limits. No part of our lives from birth to death. No part of our beings from conscious to sub-conscious. No part of our minds. No part of our emotions. Through and through.

I don't mean perfected. I just mean surrendered and under the safekeeping of God's dominion. Sanctification basically means set apart. Anything of our experiences, issues, or weaknesses that we don't deliberately set apart to the safekeeping of Christ's dominion sits like a wide-open target under the nose of the lion (the devil)."

 -Beth Moore (Taken from When Godly People Do Ungodly Things).

Thursday, August 25, 2011

My Musings

 This is sort of a mix and match catch up post of some of my favorite pictures I've taken this summer. Here is Lily pretending she is talking to Mommy.
 I took some pictures of some beautiful daisies and yellow roses that were in a garden at a wedding I sang at.

 I was so blessed when I was asked to sing "O Lord, Your Beautiful" accapella. It was a lovely, Christian event.
 Lily is in the process of potty-training. It has been quite easy so far. It has been all her idea. We went and got big-girl underwear and a toy that she gets to play with whenever she pees or poops in the toilet. If she has an accident, it gets taken away, but put in a well-viewed place. This is how I have managed to potty-train all my children with great success. It takes the stress out of it!
 We went to go see the Herman the Sturgeon at Bonneville Dam. They had a huge row of lavender that was stunning!
 Silly faces on a silly girl!
 Jacob and Lily and I.
The kids have been using their imaginations lately. Taking the summer off from school has left us a lot more down time. I think he was a "gunner" in a "tank". I just love it!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Camping With the Kids

 This summer I took my first ever camping trip without Steve. My brother and Dad really helped me a lot with setting up the tent and the heavy stuff. It was such a blessing!
 We spent three days basking in sunshine, riding 4-wheelers, playing in the creek, and just plain old talking and teasing one another. We are blessed to have a family who gets along and likes to spend time with each other.
 My brother-in-law and I gave the kids some lessons on shooting my old .22 and some gun safety. They had a BLAST!!!!
Isn't it just beautiful? I love the green grass and beautiful mountains behind the little cabin nestled in the valley.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Released From Bondage


Another excerpt from When Godly People Do Ungodly Things by Beth Moore.

"Satan tries to corrupt thoughts to manipulate feelings. He knows that the nature of humankind is to act out of how we feel rather than what we know. One of our most important defenses against satanic influence is learning to behave out of what we know is truth rather than what we feel. Satan's desire is to modify human behavior to accomplish his unholy purposes, 2 Timothy 2:26 states that Satan's objective is 'to take them captive to do his will.'

If we have received Christ as our Savior, Satan is forced to work from the outside rather than the inside. Thus, he manipulates outside influences to affect the inside decision-makers of the heart and mind."

But what happened in John 4 when the Bible talks about the woman at the well? We find that after being confronted with her sin, she was actually telling people what she did!!! She wasn't ashamed anymore. Do you know why?

Beth says, "Because when Christ takes authority over our pasts and we allow Him to confront them, treat them, and heal them, we exchange our shame for dignity! When Satan targets a believer who has wholehearted, sincere and pure devotion to Christ, he latches on to weakness more often than sin. You may be wondering, But what about the sins of our pasts? Beloved, one of the times when Satan pounced on me most ferociously and used my past sins against me, I had already repented of those sins. They could no longer be used as sins against me. But here's the catch: they were still weaknesses! Why? Because I had asked God to forgive me, but I had never asked God to heal me completely, redeem my past, restore my life, sanctify me entirely, and help me to forgive myself. Until I allowed God to take full authority over them in every way, my past sins-though turned from and forgiven-were still vulnerabilities where Satan could pray.

Thank goodness, my past sins aren't invitations to Satan anymore, and your don't have to be either. Trust Him with every inch of your past, present and future! Until you do, you are susceptible to seduction."


Thursday, August 18, 2011

The LORD is More Powerful!


I am doing a new study (well, new to me) by Beth Moore, called When Godly People Do Ungodly Things. It has been profound in many ways!

I can't wait to share bits of the study that have struck me to the very core of my being.

"Many believers have a wrong conception of Satan's power. They think he is somehow parallel to or as powerful as God. Satan is far more powerful, personal, and conniving than many of us thought. Let's be very careful, however, not to dream of giving Satan more credit than he is due. While he is tremendously potent, armed, and dangerous,  he is not the equal of the Most High God.

The Lord of hosts maintains authority over ALL powers and principalities. Satan is merely a created being. That doesn't mean the evil one is not a threat. At our strongest moments we are no match for him. Only the Almighty Three-in-One can overpower Satan. We walk in the victory Christ won for us only when we are "strong in the Lord and his mighty power (Ephesians 6:10).

Why is he so furious? Because he knows his time is short. Because his ultimate fury is at God, nothing gives Satan greater unholy pleasure than assaulting God's children. Hence, our present conflict." -Beth Moore

This just proves to me why it is so important to be filled with the Spirit. I can't fight this battle on my own! It is impossible to win without the Lord. He is my defender, my protecter, my warrior, my love.

Thank you, LORD!!!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Homeschooling Article by "The Village Idiot" Jim Mullen

I read this column in my local newspaper and was pleasantly surprised to see that homeschooling is even proving itself in the secular world. People ARE seeing a difference. This article cracked me up!

http://www.hanfordsentinel.com/news/opinion/todays_opinions/article_95297d2a-bde5-11e0-a392-001cc4c002e0.html

Because of copyrights, I couldn't reprint it, but you can check it out if you click on the link above.

I also have to share that when my sister and I's families went on an outing to Ritter Hot Springs, a lady came up to my sister and asked if we homeschooled. When Jackie said "yes", the lady said, "Do you want to know how I knew that?" She said, "The older children were treating the younger children with kindness and respect." WOW!!!! People notice these things! They are seeing a difference! Praise the Lord and praise God for the freedom to homeschool.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Rest

I felt an urgency to share this message that the Lord is teaching me. I'm still on my blogging break, but couldn't resist leaving you with this.
*****************
Dear Mothers,


When you think of the word "rest", what is conjured up in your mind? Is it lying under an umbrella on a sunny beach with a book in your hand? Is it a quiet retreat to the mountains with just you and your Bible? Is it losing yourself in a good movie? Or is it fantasizing about a maid to give you a plain old break from the blessed laundry pit?

According to my dictionary, "rest" means “freedom from activity or labor; peace of mind or spirit, to take relief or respite.

Doesn’t that just sound heavenly? Most days I find I am rushing around trying to get everything done quickly and efficiently. It has become a bad habit though, because I am constantly breaking things, stubbing my toes, smacking things, dropping things and generally making more of a mess for myself to clean up! Seriously, I am so busy trying to juggle four things in the air at once, while not doing any of them well. What is the result? The balls fall to the floor. I am accomplishing little.

In the Bible, Psalm 62:1 says, “My soul finds rest in God alone.” The Lord began speaking into my heart about rushing. “Slow down, Stacie,” I kept hearing Him say to my spirit. In between making the bread, homeschooling, cooking from scratch, laundry, disciplining, bills, errands, gardening and serving my family, I felt like there was no room for rest. I was so wrong.

God is now waking me up very early (usually via a two-year old). After getting her settled back down, I start my day with my Beth Moore Bible study and prayer. Armed with my cup of coffee and the Word of God, I get filled up and encouraged until my next “rest” time. Mid-morning, I try to force myself to sit down and read an encouraging article from a Christian magazine or book. In the afternoon I try to take enough time to debrief with my spiritual accountability partner (my sister). We pray, exhort and sometimes sympathize with each other. I am so blessed to have someone who is available to do this. And finally, in the evening before bed I go to bed I try to read a little bit of a good Christian book and pray again.

Filling my mind with the things of God all day long is huge for me. I don’t have to take a huge vacation (hey, vacations are a lot of work with kids) to rest. I need to be more deliberate and let God bring rest to me in the midst of the responsibilities He has given me.

Even a nursing mom can “rest”. When I was nursing I would read the Word or an encouraging article on godly parenting. Proverbs and Psalms were short and packed full of encouragement. Nursing was also my excuse to sit down. I could relax and just enjoy cuddling my baby who I knew was going to grow up way too fast.

Jeremiah 6:16 proves that God longs for us to have rest. He said we are the ones that won’t do it! Listen to this…“This is what the Lord says: Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘I will not.’”

So why would we not want rest? May I suggest that our old habits and patterns are so comfortable, so familiar, that change threatens our very security. But, ladies, He is doing a NEW thing! Stress is literally killing this nation. Our calendars and day planners are proof of that. We want our children to be afforded every opportunity under the sun or we don’t think they will be complete and well-rounded.

What our children need are parents who are relaxed and rested. Children need to see you making room for God in your life. For example, I have always homeschool all year long. I loved doing it this way. I could take time off during the school year without feeling guilty. This is my sixth year in homeschooling and I am now up to four students. I felt the Lord leading me to take a break. The minute I obeyed, I felt such a sense of relief. This summer has been exceptionally busy and the Lord knew the children and I would need to rest. It was a decision based on obedience. God is blessing me and restoring me every day so that when September comes I will be strengthened and renewed to start my educating with a passionate vigor instead of just trudging through each day.

Make the decision to rest today and see how the Lord blesses you.

From One Mom to Another,
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