Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Troublesome to the Enemies of the King of kings

On June 10, 1866 Charles Spurgeon said:
Christians, be troublesome to the world! O house of Israel, be like a burdensome stone to the world! You are not sent here to be recognized as honorable citizens of this world, to be petted and well-treated.

Even Christ himself, the peaceable One, said, "I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?"

What I mean is this, we are not to be quiet about our religion. The world says to us, "Hold your tongue about religion, or at least talk about it at fit times; but do not introduce it at all seasons so as to become a pest and a nuisance."

I say again, and you know in what sense I mean it, be a nuisance to the world; be such a man that worldlings will be compelled to feel that there is a Christian in their midst.

An officer was walking out of the royal presence on one occasion, when he tripped over his sword. The king said to him, "Your sword is rather a nuisance." "Yes," was the officer's reply, "your majesty's enemies have often said so."

May you be a nuisance to the world in that sense, troublesome to the enemies of the King of kings! While your conduct should be courteous, and everything that could be desired as between man and man, yet let your testimony for Christ be given without any flinching and without any mincing of the matter.

One of My Favorite Pics

This was taken on the 4th of July this year.  These 2 went for a ride on the pontoon boat and when the ride came back everyone got off except for them. (notice the arms--so cute!!)

Liddy and Daddy

Monday, September 28, 2009

Poll For a New Tune

As I mentioned earlier, I really like the words of Lord, With Glowing Heart I'd Praise Thee. I'm not, however, terribly excited about the tune that goes with it. So--I figure there are plenty of good tunes available, let's just sing it with a different one!

Just for fun, I thought we'd see what the readers have to say about a new tune. Lois and I picked out a few that fit the lyrics tonight. If you don't like any of ours--maybe you can think of a different one!

Lord, With Glowing Heart I’d Praise Thee

Most of us know that Francis Scott Key wrote our country’s national anthem, The Star Spangled Banner . However, I was completely unaware that he wrote something as theologically “loaded” as this hymn!

Lord, with glowing heart I'd praise thee
For the bliss thy love bestows,
For the pard'ning grace that saves me,
And the peace that from it flows;
Help, O God, my weak endeavor;
This dull soul to rapture raise;
Thou must light the flame, or never
Can my love be warmed to praise.

Praise, my soul, the God that sought thee,
Wretched wand'rer far astray;
Found thee lost, and kindly brought thee
From the paths of death away;
Praise, with love's devoutest feeling,
Him who saw thy guilt-born fear,
And, the light of hope revealing,
Bade the blood-stained cross appear.

Praise thy Saviour God that drew thee
To that cross, new life to give,
Held a blood-sealed pardon to thee,
Bade thee look to him and live;
Praise the grace whose threats alarmed thee,
Roused thee from thy fatal ease,
Praise the grace whose promise warmed thee,
Praise the grace that whispered peace.

Lord, this bosom's ardent feeling
Vainly would my lips express;
Low before thy footstool kneeling,
Deign thy suppliant's prayer to bless:
Let thy love, my soul's chief treasure,
Love's pure flame within me raise,
And, since words can never measure,
Let my life show forth thy praise.

I’m not all that excited about the tune that goes along with the hymn--but, I would like to sing it. Leave me a comment if you think of a hymn tune that fits these words.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Chloe’s 5th Birthday Party

Chloe’s birthday was the last Friday of Teen Camp, so we had a party for her when we got home.  We had all the girl cousins over and had a “Princess Dress-Up” party and nail-painting party.  After that we all went to Happy Joe’s to celebrate.  It’s hard to believe she is 5 already.  What a joy she is to us.






Saturday, September 26, 2009

Teen Camp

I didn’t take too many pictures at camp—but here are a few.  It’s always a lot of fun to be at camp and the kids especially like being there. 

Teen Camp

A Few Projects

I thought I’d post a few of the things that have kept us busy over the last few months.

We recently just starting finishing our basement. I am so proud of Jeremy—he has learned so much about construction lately and I am very impressed. He used to not do house projects because he “wasn’t skilled and/or didn’t know how to do it”. Well….now I know better, dear, and I have BIG plans. (j/k) I took this picture of the 2 cutest guys I know—Jeremy was installing an electrical box.


We switched the kids’ rooms and then redecorated them with a Dinosaur Theme and a “Flower” theme, for lack of a better word. I also finally got my flower beds in this spring as well. It’s fun to look out and see my flowers.



Ok…I’m not sure what happened other than I got really busy and stopped blogging and then never started it back up.  Thankfully my dear husband keeps posting so we don’t lose our faithful readers. (Well it’s actually just a few of you :-)  Anyway, I have some pics to post to catch you up on our WHOLE summer.  I will probably do it over the next few days.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Got To's and Get To's

Tim Challies writes:
Last night, a good hour after I put my daughter to bed, and as I settled into the couch to spend some time reading, I heard a cry of “Daddy!” I went to the bottom of the stairs and asked what she wanted. “Will you come and cuddle me?” she called out. I thought about it for a moment and eventually told her that she should already be asleep and that I was not going to come up and cuddle her. Thankfully she soon drifted off and slept well.

As I thought about it a little bit more I realized that I did not want to cuddle her, at least in part, because I had to. I was looking at it as a “got to” situation: “I’ve got to cuddle her.” And I rebelled. It didn’t take me long to regret my decision. She is going to be with us for so few years and for many of those she will no doubt have no desire to cuddle me. And is it so bad for a six-year old to want a cuddle (or another cuddle) before bed? The more I thought about it, the more this seemed like a “get to” situation: “I get to cuddle her.”

It’s funny the difference made by that one little letter. Throughout my life I’ve struggled with the got to’s and the get to’s. Church can seem like a “got to” obligation, but it is so much sweeter when I face it as if it is a “get to” privilege. My morning devotions can often feel like a “got to” but I enjoy them so much more when I treat them like a “get to.” Rather than having to face the Bible and prayer in the morning, I see them as an enjoyable privilege. It often makes all the difference in a mind as feeble and sinful as mine.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Love Is...

Commenting on 1 Corinthians 13:5-6, G.B. Williamson writes in Holiness for Every Day:
Love is not blind but it is fair. It is quick to see wrong, but it does not withdraw mercy for the wrongdoer. Love inspires automatic reaction against rumor and gossip. It will have no part in "spreading evil surmises injurious to the good name of others." Love thinketh no evil.

The Christian in whose heart the love of God is shed abroad will base no conclusions upon his unfounded misgivings. He will argue against his mistrust until proof is established. He accepts the principle that all are innocent until proved guilty. When guilt is established, he grieves that he must admit the evidence is sufficient.

Jesus knew well the long record of rejection of God and willful transgression of His law by the people of Jerusalem. But His pronouncement of judgment was spoken in a heartbreaking lament. Love rejoiceth not in iniquity. It forbids repeating a damaging story even if regrettably true, except to protect an innocent person from being misled.

Can love render judgment upon the guilty? Yes, because justice administered in love can be redemptive. It leads to repentance. Love allows final condemnation only on the finally impenitent.

Love rejoices in the truth. A mind enlightened by the Spirit, whose fruit is love, accepts the truth with its implications even if its sharp, cutting edge brings self-condemnation. Such a Spirit-guided person will not defend himself by clever rationalization. He will admit he is wrong and amend his ways. The truth makes men free and whole.
Devotions are supposed to be an encouraging thing right? But, truth be told, I found myself more convicted than encouraged after reading this.

I am guilty of withdrawing mercy from the wrongdoer. I have argued in favor of my mistrust-- even occasionally when proof has been established otherwise. I have (yes, even in my Christian walk) repeated a true-but-damaging story.

Please pray for me for a mind enlightened by the Spirit that is bearing fruit of love. Pray that having admitted my wrong, I will amend my ways. I do love the truth--and I want to be free and whole!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Courtesy and Determination

Commenting on Galatians 2:1-10, William Barclay writes of Paul:
He was a man who gave authority its due respect. He did not go his own way. He went and talked with the leaders of the Church however much he might differ from them. It is a great and neglected law of life that however right we happen to be there is nothing to be gained by rudeness. There is never any reason why courtesy and determination should not go hand in hand.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Maybe I'm a Nerd...

...but I think this is so cool. The movie shows different colored bars based on the various instruments playing during Beethoven's 5th Symphony.

Here's a chart showing which colors are shown based on what instrument is playing.

If classical music is not your thing--here's Sousa's most famous march--The Stars and Stripes Forever.


Here's an old bluegrass classic:

If you have friends in Gloryland,
Who left because of pain
Thank God up there, they'll die no more
They'll suffer not again.

Then weep not friends, I'm goin' home
Up there we'll die no more
No coffins will be made up there
No graves on that bright shore

The lame will walk in Gloryland
The blind up there will see
The deaf in Gloryland will hear
The dumb will talk to me

The doctor will not have to call
The undertaker, no
There'll be no pain up there to bear
Just walk the streets of gold

We'll need no sun in Gloryland
The moon and stars won?t shine
For Christ Himself is light up there
He reigns of love divine

Then weep not friends, I'm goin' home
Up there we'll die no more
No coffins will be made up there
No graves on that bright shore

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Home - Downhere

In the last several months, I've enjoyed listening to a band called Downhere. Their most recent album, Ending is Beginning, has quickly become one of my all-time favorites. (Maybe I'll write more about it another time.)

On the So Much for Substitutes album, there is a hidden track after the last song called Home. The song is a great reminder for all of us as believers--we're not home yet!

We want to focus on what we can't see
But this scene is just a fading beauty
In this life, when sorrow steals our joy
We want to walk beyond our circumstances
But our feet run to our own advances
Would you be our way and lead your people on

Oh, Remind us that we have not reached home
Remind us that we have not reached home

Pull apart our good intentions
Break the walls of these dimensions
Paint a picture of our eternity
And we'll sing the songs of Heaven
Be the chorus you have chosen
We need Your grace
To echo the saints and journey on

Oh, Remind us that we have not reached home
Oh, Remind us that we have not reached home

As the angels sing Your praises
Let us not forget Your graces
Which far outweigh a world of dreams

Would you remind us that we have not reached home
Oh, Remind us that we have not reached home

Saturday, September 12, 2009

God Is More Committed To Our Good Than We Are

Michael Kelly writes:
God is more committed to our good than we are. There are a thousand moments every day that should move us to both thankfulness and self-examination – thankfulness that as Christ-followers, we will never feel the brunt of the righteous judgment of God. Self-examination in that we never know which moment is going to be our last and that we aren’t promised tomorrow. In some cases we need to repent. In other cases we need to take hold of an opportunity in front of us. The point is that God is speaking in a myriad of ways. The question is whether we are listening. Few things remind us as much of our own mortality than natural disasters, and so few things present a great an opportunity for us to trust in Christ.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Happy Birthday, Lois


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

O God, Thou Faithful God

I've been reflecting this evening on the Lord's faithfulness thus far over the course of the chapel's building project.

I stumbled across this hymn tonight and found it encouraging and (hopefully) worth sharing. It is a little long--but definitely worth a complete read. Trust me--you won't be disappointed!

O God, Thou faithful God,
Thou fountain ever flowing,
Without whom nothing is,
All perfect gifts bestowing,
Grant me a healthy frame,
And give me, Lord, within,
A conscience free from blame,
A soul unhurt by gain.

And grant me, Lord, to do,
With ready heart and willing,
Whate’er Thou shalt command,
My calling here fulfilling;
And do it when I ought,
With zeal and joyfulness,
And bless the work I’ve wrought,
For Thou must give success.

Oh, let me never speak
What bounds of truth exceedeth;
Grant that no idle word
From out my mouth proceedeth;
And then, when in my place
I must and ought to speak,
My words grant power and grace
Lest I offend the weak.

If dangers gather round,
Still keep me calm and fearless;
Help me to bear the cross
When life is dark and cheerless,
To overcome my foe
With words and actions kind;
When counsel I would know,
Good counsel let me find.

And let me with all men,
As far as in me lieth,
In peace and friendship live,
And if Thy gift supplieth
Great wealth and honor fair,
Then this refuse me not,
That naught be mingled there
Of goods unjustly got.

If Thou a longer life
Hast here on earth decreed me;
If Thou through many ills
To age at length wilt lead me,
Thy patience on me shed.
Avert all sin and shame
And crown my hoary head
With honor free from blame.

Let me depart this life
Confiding in my Savior;
Do Thou my soul receive
That it may live forever;
And let my body have
A quiet resting place
Within a Christian grave;
And let it sleep in peace.

And on that solemn day
When all the dead are waking,
Stretch o’er my grave Thy hand,
Thyself my slumbers breaking.
Then let me hear Thy voice,
Change Thou this earthly frame,
And bid me aye rejoice
With those who love Thy Name.