Monday, March 10, 2008

Weekend's Ways...

Happy Monday!
I hope y'all had a good weekend.
This weekend, we had a guest visit
and the children were excited.
Uncle Steven returned home from Iraq about a month ago
and he was able to stop by on Saturday!

Here were Beth, Will, and Daddy with him
as they were having a Rubik's Cube Race
(the Rubik's cube is a big thing in our home)...

Carolynne was being a bit shy while he visited...

So she spent most of her time in the dining room
with Ally, as she was sewing.

Ally was working on her first apron
(two of them, actually. One for her and a friend)...

After our visit, the children were found
doing miscellaneous things...

Carolynne was playing with puzzles.

Beth was copying the words from all of the cards
that belong to our Boggle Jr. game.

Will was working on his latest masterpiece...
An American flag on a sunny day with birds in the sky.

Ally enjoyed working with photos.

Here is a photo of a mourning dove that she had taken...

Here is photo of one that I took during one of the

blustery days we were having.
It was all puffed up and its feathers

were ruffled from the wind...

It was cute! God's creation always fascinates us!

Sunday was a wonderful day in the Lord's house.
In Sunday School, we were admonished to remember
that we tend to have false confidence in ourselves...
we plan our days, say we will do this or that, etc...
and how this is done in our pride
and that we really do not know what tomorrow will bring
and we need to trust Someone Who does.
I, also, appreciated a statement about
how we should be single-minded... on God...

"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness;
and all these things shall be added unto you."
~ Matthew 6:33
and our Heavenly Father will take care of the rest.

In the morning service,
Pastor spoke about why we should be striving for the mastery.
He only got to three points out of ten, so far,
but it was a real blessing!
He reminded how a Christian should not feel
that their life is meaningless because we DO have a purpose.
The three points he touched on about

why we should be striving for the mastery were...

1. God is real
How is our faith?
"But without faith it is impossible to please him:
for he that cometh to God must believe
that he is, and that he is a rewarder
of them that diligently seek him."
~ Hebrews 11:6
We were challenged to examine
whether or not our lives show that

we do believe God is real
or do just our lips profess it.
One day we will stand before
the Real God and face real judgement.

2. God's Word is real
"But have renounced the hidden things
of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness,
nor handling the word of God deceitfully;
but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves

to every man's conscience in the sight of God."
~ 2 Corinthians 4:2
God's Word isn't an option.
It is God speaking to us.
His Word IS our Authority.
He has the right to tell His creation what to do.
Can we say that we are doing EVERYTHING in His Word?

Of course not...
But are we striving to?

3. Salvation is real
"Blessed be the Lord, who daily loadeth us with benefits,
even the God of our salvation.
He that is our God is the God of salvation;
and unto GOD the Lord
belong the issues from death."
~ Psalm 68:19-20
He is the God of our salvation.
He gave me my salvation.
He IS my Savior.

The evening service was a blessing, as well!
And it went along with our "Striving for the Mastery" theme.
He began by telling us of certain monks in Japan that

take the challenge to run 1,000 marathons within 7 years!
(a total of almost 27,000 miles in rough, mountainous terrain)
He further explained some of the very difficult things
that these monks would have to do...
lack of food, water, sleep, exhaustion, fight off animals, etc...
praying 100,000 prayers in about a week of fasting,
among many other things.
He, also, mentioned how other religions
go through strict regimens of training
and sacrifice their time and, ultimately, their lives
to kill what they believe to be infidels...
Wicked and wrong, yes,
but they do it because of their faith in their religion.

Then Pastor led us to
Romans 12:1-2,
"I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God,
that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice,
holy, acceptable unto God,
which is your reasonable service.
And be not conformed to this world:
but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind,
that ye may prove what is that good,
and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."

What does our "religion" motivate us to do?
What sacrifices do we make?
What sacrifices are we willing to make for the One, True God?
What kind of living sacrifice before God are we?

What ought our living sacrifice to be?
... DOING the will of God
(see the above verse),
pushing everything out of the way
that hinders us from doing the will of God.
We cannot do the will of God
if we are tied to this world and the things in it,
which is why he tells us
"... be not conformed to this world...".

So many people sacrifice SO much for their FALSE religion...
when I think of all they sacrifice, their disciplined lives,
and how they are so devoted to their religion,
I am ashamed at how little I do
for my Savior, my One, True, and Only God.
The Holy Spirit dealt strongly with me
and I am so thankful for it.

What a blessing it is to have a church home,
where a pastor does not just "tickle our ears",
but he preaches, boldly, the True Word of God.

"For the time will come when they
will not endure sound doctrine;
but after their own lusts shall they heap
to themselves teachers, having itching ears;
And they shall turn away their ears from the truth,
and shall be turned unto fables."
~ 2 Timothy 4:3-4

Before I go, I'll share a few pics from our Sunday afternoon...

The girls relaxing with me on the chair
(Beth was starting to make a face at the camera).

Carolynne doing Daddy's hair as he rested.

Beth doing Daddy's hair, too.
(Her smile in this pic reminds me so much of her baby pics!)

Will practicing the techniques of the Rubik's cube
that Daddy taught him.

The lil' girls doing a piano duet together.

I hope y'all had a good weekend, too,
and that your day in the Lord's house was a blessed one.
May the Lord revive our hearts.

"Let us search and try our ways,
and turn again to the LORD."
~ Lamentations 3:40

"It is the spirit that quickeneth;
the flesh profiteth nothing:
the words that I speak unto you,
they are spirit, and they are life."
~ John 6:63


Anonymous said...

Do you know how much "peace and tranquility" I find at your blog, Sis? :-) Each time I visit, I am filled with joy!! What a precious family you have and what glory you bring to the Lord in the way you two are raising them!!

I love the photos! Any chance I could use them on my blogs? I absolutely love them! Of course, I would give you and your daughter the credit :-)

Mrs. Taft said...

Thank you for all your encouraging thoughts in your last few posts. :) And always fun to see and hear what you all are up to!

Kelli said...

I love seeing all the things that you and your family are busy with. It looks like lots of lovely times spent together.

Kristy Jo said...

what a blessing this entry was.

We had a wonderful Lords day as well, We had a deaf Pastor preach both our services... It was such a blessing. And some eye opening things.

I as always enjoyed your pictures...

Nikki said...

Love the birds. I'm enjoying having them back around my house too.

Thanks for the offer to help me out again with my blog. I'll email you personally if thats okay.


Jennifer said...

Reading your blog about your family just blesses me so much! Your such a good christian family!!God Bless you all!!

Happymama said...

Wonderful sermons! I was touched by them, especially the second. Thank you for sharing them.

I'm glad you had fun with Uncle Steven.


MrsMelody said...

Thank you for sharing not only your family, but your sermon notes as well. Great food for thought.


Jeannie said...

Thank you for sharing with us the sermon, this touched my heart and already today Mathew 6:33 has been laid at my feet, I am most assured the Lord is speaking to my heart about all that is now happening in the household. Thank you again!!, PS the pictures are just great and love that one of the ruffled feathers and the lil ones brushing their dads

Madeleine said...

great post! Going through this spiritual struggle for the past almost 3 years has been so hard, but our Lord seems to give is rays of light in the most unusual places.

Like here. :)

Also, the picture of you resting with your little girls is beautiful.

Have a great day!!

Tori said...

Great post Christina,
I loved all the photos of the kids, especially of your daughter brushing dad's "hair". :0)

Mel's Mom said...

Some of this sounds so familiar! My daughter, Mel, sewed an apron. My younger ones enjoyed doing similar activities. I have to admit, as I get older, I cherish a good Sunday afternoon nap. The sermon notes were very good- challenging. Ally's dove photo is VERY nice! Will's American flag is encouraging. Have a good day!

Lisa said...

Thank you for sharing the wonderful sermons. The pictures of the birds were so good! I just love those restful Sunday's after church.I miss my girl's being little to cuddle with :( God Bless you and your family.


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