Monday, November 23, 2009

14 Days of Thankfulness

Many apologies for not having kept up with the 14 Days of Thankfulness. I find that it is very difficult for me to write something everyday. Unfortunately, the gift of writing well is something that went to all my sisters and seems to have passed me up almost entirely. While I do enjoy journaling and writing letters for the most part writing is something that I have a very hard time with.
Anyway, today I want to say how thankful I am for people who can write. I love to read and am always looking for something new to add to my library. I have been very blessed by the talents that God has given others in this area, especially since I myself can not do it. Some of my favorite authors being: C.S. Lewis, J.R.R. Tolkien, George MacDonald, Charles Dickens, Jane Austen, L.M Montgomery, David McCullough, Madeleine L'Engle, Voddie Bauchum, John Piper, Charles Spurgeon, Charles Bridges... and many more.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

14 Days of Thankfulness: Day 3

Although unfortunately I had to stay home from church this morning (still am not quite back to 100%). I just wanted to write about how thankful I am for the church we are at right now. My family has been in a lot of churches here in Montana and when we lived in California. It has always been difficult to find a place where we were welcomed and that had a true desire to follow after Christ and serve Him according to the Bible, not any man's ideas. While I know that certainly our family is not perfect and definitely does not have everything together as far as the best way to go about our lives and truly know what the church is to be more than anyone one else, it has been our desire to follow by the Word that He has given us. But this has not seemed to be the desire of many churches out there, many of them seek to be appealing to the world thinking that this will draw others to Christ, they want it to be attractive to the world so in many ways have become just like the world, after all we wouldn't want anybody to be uncomfortable with Christ, would we? (sarcasm)
My father from pretty much the beginning of his walk with Christ had a tendency to be a boat rocker(well wasn't Christ one too). And so churches that sought to make things comfortable for themselves and the world were not the place for him. We went through quite a few churches when we lived in CA, and I remember sometimes being rather upset with my parents for taking us away from places just when I start to actually get to know the place and make friends. As I got older I started to understand a bit more and began seeing myself what was going in many different places. When I was 11 I left the Sunday School at the particular church we were going to because I felt like I wasn't learning anything, we simply went through the same Bible stories over and over again. I joined to adult Sunday School class, which rather upset some of the adults.
We ended up leaving that church just a few months later. (And not because of me=).
Since we first moved to Montana in 2001, we have been to 8 churches, and that doesn't include all the ones we just visited once or twice. They lasted from almost 2 years to as little as 4 months. Inevitably something would come up, a couple times resulting in church splits.
Christ's Covenant Fellowship is one we actually attended before, though under a different title and with a bit different grouping of people. At the time we left, about 4 years ago, we were very upset and disappointed, it had been the first church in a long time where we had actually felt like part of a family. But there were some doctrinal issues. A little over a year ago the elders of Christ Covenant asked us to return. Asked us! Never before had someone actually wanted our boat rocking, flow disrupting family to come to a church. Especially one that had had some difficulty's with us in the past. So we started attending, and it has really been wonderful, we are with people that we have known for some time(and they don't hate us yet... I think). Have had wonderful fellowship, and right now my father is doing the teaching. So far it has been one of the best church experiences I have ever had and I hope and pray that it will continue for many years yet.

O, church arise and put your armor on
Hear the call of Christ our Captain
For now the weak can say that they are strong
In the strength, that God has given
With shield of faith and belt of truth
We'll stand against the devil's lies
An army bold whose battle cry is love
Reaching out to those in darkness.

Our call to war, to love the captive soul
But to rage against to captor
And with the sword that makes the wounded whole
We will fight with faith and valor
When faced with trials on every side
We know the outcome is secure
And Christ will have the prize for which He died
An inheritance of nations.

Come see the cross where love and mercy meet
As the Son of God is stricken
Then see His foes lie crushed beneath His feet
For the conqueror has risen
And as the stone is rolled away
And Christ emerges from the grave
This victory march continues till the day
Every eye and heart shall see Him.

So Spirit come, put strength in every stride
Give grace for every hurdle
That we may run with faith to win the prize
Of a servant good and faithful
As saints of old still line the way
Retelling triumphs of His grace
We hear the calls and hunger for the day
When with Christ we stand in glory.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

14 Days of Thankfulness: Day 2

My friends! (Even they do make me look rather small in this picture=). They are all so lovely and I love the fact that we all can dress up and do stuff like this together.
I have been very blessed in having friendships with girls who love the Lord and seek to walk with Him. Although we weren't always close as our families went through some different phases I'm so glad we're together at the same church now and can grow closer as we learn more and more of our Lord. Love all you gals!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Day 1: 14 Days of Thankfulness

Well, this is going to be short as I'm really not feeling good right now. But I just want to say that I am so thankful for insurance to pay for my doctor visits, x-rays, and physical therapy. I know without it I'd be in a lot worse shape than I am.
And for the knowledge these people have to be able to help me to get back to normal, I just pray that it will be soon.

Monday, November 9, 2009

A Sunny Autumn Day, New Music and Pumpkin Pie!

Today was an absolutely gorgeous one for the Flathead Valley! Beautiful blue skies, with a few wisps of clouds, and a crisp, cool breeze. Part of the reason I love fall so much is the opportunity to wear more sweaters and jackets when going out. I love God's creation throughout all seasons, but especially in fall, when the trees out on their jackets of red, gold, and purple... sorry, I can't seem to find the right word's to describe the wonder and awe it fills me with, when I behold the power, glory and beauty of the Lord!
This morning was spent in catching things up around the house after everyone coming and trashing the house last night(no, people are actually pretty good about keeping things neat), getting laundry started, physical therapy for me. At which I found out that the reason I've been in so much pain the past couple days is that I pulled a muscle in my back, and got my spine slightly out of place, they were able to work things back in somewhat better but it's still quite uncomfortable. Then Mother and I went out to lunch, and a lovely one on one time(too short though, as always=).
Once home I did some downloading of music onto the computer and got a new CD off Itunes!
This is Keith and Krysten Getty's newest album and so far I am loving it! Hopefully will have the words memorized soon so I can sing along. That's one thing I don't like about getting CD's off itunes, you don't get lyrics with it.:-(
Did find a couple of the songs though online:

Come People of the Risen King!
Come, people of the risen king
Who delight to bring Him praise,
Come all and tune your hearts to sing
To the Morning Star of grace.
From the shifting shadows of the earth
We will lift our eyes to Him
Where steady arms of mercy reach
To gather children in.

Rejoice, rejoice let every tongue rejoice!
One heart, one voice, O, Church of Christ rejoice!

Come those whose joy is morning sun
And those weeping through the night;
Come those who tell of battles won
And those struggling in the fight.
For His perfect love will never change
And His mercies never cease,
But follow us through all our days,
With the certain hope of peace.

Rejoice, rejoice let every tongue rejoice!
One heart, one voice, O, Church of Christ rejoice!

Come young and old from every land-
Men and women of the faith
Come those with full or empty hands-
Find the riches of His grace.
Over all the world His people sing-
Shore to shore we hear then call
The truth that cries through every age-
"Our God is all in all!"

Rejoice, rejoice let every tongue rejoice!
One heart, one voice, O, Church of Christ rejoice!

When Trials Come

When trials come no longer fear
For in the pain our God draws near
To fire a faith worth more than gold
And there His faithfulness is told
And there His faithfulness is told

Within the night I know Your peace
The breath of God brings strength to me
And new each morning mercy flows
As treasures of the darkness grow
As treasures of the darkness grow

I turn to Wisdom not my own
For every battle You have known
My confidence will rest in You
Your love endures Your ways are good
Your love endures Your ways are good

When I am weary with the cost
I see the triumph of the cross
So in it’s shadow I shall run
Till He completes the work begun
Till He completes the work begun

One day all things will be made new
I’ll see the hope You called me to
And in your kingdom paved with gold
I’ll praise your faithfulness of old
I’ll praise your faithfulness of old

Also made a pumpkin pie! Simply because we had pumpkin left over from doing bread the other day. Desserts that are made for no specific reason, or special occasion are always the best ones. (As long as it doesn't happen too often). I am not very big on pies, don't care for apple or cherry(sorry, Abba!). But I do really like pumpkin, it seems to really get all the flavors of fall in it!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

The Power of Prayer

Prayer is an amazing tool that God has given us that we very often neglect in our daily lives. What a wonderful privilege we have that we can go before the throne of the King of kings at any time! Yet so often we pass it by and don't even give it a moments thought. Either we don't really do it hardly at all, or it becomes just habit, we do it as part of a routine.
This is an area that I have much difficulty with, I find that even when I do set aside a time to pray my mind often wanders to other things, I am so easily distracted by the things of this world, whether it is my plans for the day and all the things that I need to get on, or what went on the evening before with my family or at work. It is so easy to get lost on "bunny trails" and forget what it is that I set out to do.
Yet as I think about it I could use this kind of wandering in my prayer, as I consider what I need to do that day I could ask for grace that I would do it well and do for the glory of God. As I consider who I was with the night before, I could pray for those people and any needs that I might know of. Alas, it is very easy to think of and write about these things put applying them can be a very different matter.
This morning in our family Bible time, during which we've been going through Charles Spurgeon's Morning and Evening, we read about prayer and when we really need it. It is easy to pray when we are in difficult situations and feel that we need someone elses help and God's grace to get ourselves through trials, but when things are easy, how often do we come before the Lord in prayer and supplication? Although, if you really think about it, are we ever truly in no need of any kind? I think not. We are sinful human beings, so how can we ever be in anything other than a state of need and incompletness. But there are phases in our lives that are better than others. And we may not feel the need of prayer quite as much. At this time the best thing is to pray for others, there is always someone in need of prayer, whether they are believers or not. And I often find that when I start praying for others needs I remember many of my own that need much grace. God is so wonderful to give us this means of coming before Him, whether in joyful worship or humble repentance. May we never lose sight of the awesome God we serve, nor ever grow at all distant in our communion with Him.