Archive for February, 2008

Left or Right?

February 28, 2008

I’m working on an article for Heart of the Matter magazine (March 8th) about the differences in ‘left brain’ and ‘right brain’ learners. Check out the lists to decide which side of your brain works the hardest and which side is the slacker!

LEFT BRAINIACS

Seeks structure

Memorizes best by repetition

Likes to know the plan ahead of time

Works well independently

Likes to make lists and check them off

Thinks over much evidence before making decisions

Good at math AND loves it

Likes predictability

Is self disciplined and self paced

 

RIGHT BRAINIACS

Prefers spontaneous vs. planned events

Memorizes best using meaning, color and emotion

Does not plan ahead regularly

Prefers to work with someone rather than alone

Does not need to work sequentially – skips around

Figures things out with minimum evidence

Finds math repetitive and boring

 

I am 100% left brain – Hubby is 100% right brain. Son #1 just walked in to check his ‘brain orientation’. Seems he’s completely comfortable on either side of the fence. (I already knew that). Has his Mother’s organizational skills and self discipline, but is much more laid back (non-neurotic) about it – like his Dad. Oh Man, God is funny!

 

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I’m out of control

February 21, 2008

So, Claire mentioned that she “spoke” with a friend this morning (instant msg.) in Beijing, China. Mandy is studying at Beijing University and will be there until August. Her goal is to become fluent in Chinese so that God could send her back later as a missionary. Go Mandy!!!

Anyway, I began to discuss with Claire about how amazing it is to me that when this country was being formed a couple of centuries ago, communicating with someone across the Atlantic meant “mailing” a letter and waiting for a response that could take upwards of 4-5 months! Now we just chat with buddies in Beijing everyday like ladies over the backyard fence.

Then it happened . . .

“Geeze, Mom! Do you have to be a teacher all of the time?!?”

Sorry Honey. I just can’t help it. I’m out of control, I tell ya!

(The answer, by the way . . . is No. I can quit anytime I want!)

Life in the back yard

February 18, 2008

I read a book recently entitled “Straight from Hell” by Donna Frank. The book tells her story of being born into Godlessness and despair and abuse and confusion and fear. It tells of her maturing into a lifestyle that would guarantee her more of the same.

Then . . . God showed up . . .
To read the rest of this post, follow me to CWO’S Internet Cafe

Sovereign

February 13, 2008

sovereign: possessed of supreme power; unlimited in extent.

“. . . until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all the kingdoms of men” (Daniel 4:32)


Sovereign. Not a word we use much today, but in the above verse from the book of Daniel, it spoke volumes. Before modern times, people had a better grasp of the term I think. Jog back a couple of centuries and remember that most every political boundary was governed by a king. If you lived in a kingdom, you understood the power and authority of the king. It was undisputed. The king (or queen for that matter) could, quite literally, do whatever he/she wanted to do, anytime they chose to do it. Absolute power and control – No questions asked (at least not out loud!) But today, we are accustomed to having our ‘rights’ protected (a good thing most of the time). So, as adults, we are a bit unfamiliar with someone having any type of complete and total control over our lives. And yet, that is what “sovereign” implies.

When it comes to the sovereignty of God, I think most of us run back and forth between two schools of thought:

1 – God is good, but not totally sovereign.

2 – God is sovereign, but not totally good.

In the first camp we find those who believe that although God is mostly “good” in nature, He is limited in power. The belief is that even though He created the universe, He then set it in motion and it now runs its own course. He may know what will happen in our futures, but He is basically limited in His ability to affect change. He is wise, He means well, He loves us, but creation is now just out of His hands.

In the second group are those who believe that God is all powerful but not completely good. He is seen as mostly indifferent concerning the details of our lives. He is completely able to do any and all things, but seems unwilling. He carries a big stick while waiting for His subjects to stumble – subjects who fear Him and do their best to fly under the radar.

Which is truth? Neither! God is both sovereign AND good!

His power is absolute, total, unlimited, unrestricted, fixed, infallible, precise, undeniable, unquestionable, total – sovereign. He is able to move any mountain, correct any situation, change any decision, touch any life.

He is also absolutely good, merciful, faithful, just, holy, true, loving, peaceful, patient, generous, forgiving and completely willing.

Consider this: A small child toddles innocently into a street where an oncoming semi can’t see him. Mom runs to the rescue and in the nick of time, saves her son. His safety is secure again and all is well. Except for one thing. Now Junior is angry at Mom. In order to rescue him in time, she scooped him up quickly from the street and hurt his arm a bit. Mom is mean! For no reason at all, she’s hurt his innocent little arm. All of this time he thought she was so loving, and sweet and protective, but it turns out she’s just mean and uncaring, and unloving and indifferent to his pain. And to make matters worse, she offers no explanation! He’s considering not trusting her anymore!

Now we all know that it wouldn’t do Mom any good to try to explain to Junior that she did what was necessary to save his life – because she loves him. She could spend the rest of the day trying to explain the dynamics of standing in the path of an oncoming vehicle to him, but she doesn’t because his limited understanding can not grasp it. Instead, she holds him, sheds tears of relief, and ignores the fact that he is angry with her. “One day . . .” she thinks, “One day, he’ll understand my great love for him.” And for now, it is enough for her. She endures his anger and confusion, because she knows – better than he – the danger and the risks. She sees what he can not see . . . yet.

I suppose because we’re “all grown up” it’s a little difficult to believe that we don’t always know what’s best for us. When God doesn’t allow something in our lives that we want so desperately, or when He allows situations that are difficult, it seems logical to distrust His motives.
After all, if He CAN do it, then why doesn’t he? Because He knows better.

If He is able to deliver me from ________, then why doesn’t He? Because He’s working out a plan.

If He does love me, then why doesn’t he remove all difficulty? Because He loves me.

If there is a reason behind the madness, why doesn’t He explain? Because He knows.

And because He has a plan. And because His plan involves training us in righteousness and holiness and faith. And because He knows of what we are truly made and what really needs to happen in the secret place of our hearts . . .

“. . . until you acknowledge that the Most High is sovereign over all the kingdoms of men” (Daniel 4:32)

And because He is truly, both sovereign and good.


It’s about Time

February 11, 2008

I finally updated my blogroll. Lots of friends from Christian Women Online’s Internet Cafe’ as well as from The Heart of the Matter ezine. Sooooo. . . start clickin’ and meet my friends! (and when I say “I” updated my blogroll, of course I mean CLAIRE updated my blogroll)

A question. . .

February 8, 2008

What happens when your #4 kid gets a little photoshop under her belt? Mom gets a new blog header! I knew having lots of offspring would come in handy . . .

Thank you

C L A I R E! ! !

Don’t forget . . .

February 7, 2008

Just a reminder . . . the latest issue of The Heart of the Matter home school magazine is out today! Get yours free . . . HERE!

1 Thessalonians 5:17

February 5, 2008

“Pray without ceasing.”

I pray when I see someone on the side of the road with car trouble. (Then I call roadside assistance) . I prayed, Oh Lord did I pray, when Sam was found in his family’s pool. I pray when I see my children struggle with life . . . and people. I pray for wisdom. I pray when my husband or son drive out of the driveway – every morning. I prayed when my parents divorced. I pray when I think of children sold into sexual slavery. Then I cry.

“Pray without ceasing.”

I prayed when I saw a giant man walk out of a convenience store with a bottle of Jack Daniels in one hand and a stack of “magazines” in the other. I pray for wisdom. I pray when I think that I have disappointed God. I pray when I talk to someone who is so confused about the Father’s love that they begin to believe the enemy’s lies. I pray as I witness sweet, godly friends crumble under the weight of a family member’s choices. I prayed when people I love experienced all the hell a divorce can deliver – I still pray for their children.

“Pray without ceasing.”

I pray for a neighbor who is a single parent of 4 teens. I pray for wisdom. I pray when I hear about someone struggling with deep depression. I pray for people I’ve met who are bound by anger, fear, confusion, loneliness and mountains of doubt. I prayed for a neighbor whose daughter was murdered. Then we cried on my porch. I prayed when the planes hit the towers. When the towers fell, I was speechless – but He heard me.

“Pray without ceasing.”

I pray for two little boys whose mom is Brittany Spears. I pray for Brittany and others like her. I pray when I see another commercial for “America’s Next Top Model” as they feed young men and women lies about modesty and womanhood. I pray for “Madame ________” who is a fortune teller working a few miles from where I live.

“Pray without ceasing.”

I pray when I see my children lift their hands in worship. I pray when I see children of divorce forgive and thrive. I pray when I hear about Sam learning to walk and talk again because thousands of people talked to God about him. I pray when my son and husband drive up. I pray when I read the testimony of a former “magazine” addict who now loves Jesus. I pray when a homeless man shows up at church because someone in our church served him in the street.

“Pray without ceasing.”

I prayed when my parents reconciled. I pray because I’ve been set free – really free. I pray for a small church whose members adopted over 60 special needs foster kids. I pray when I begin to see my children walk in their Kingdom purpose. I pray for wisdom. I pray for Christians who have made it their life’s work to rescue children in foreign nations from slavery. I pray for organizations that feed the hungry. I pray as a team of humble musicians usher in the presence of God and transform the atmosphere of the building! I pray for those who know that is isn’t about comfort, but service . . . and then they serve. I pray for those people whom God has raised up for such a time as this – and for those He will raise up. I pray as I realize that it may very well be that time – now – that Peter spoke of in Acts 2:16-17:

“But this is what was spoken through the prophet Joel: And it shall come to pass in the last days, God declares, that I will pour out of My Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy and your young men shall see visions and your old men shall dream dreams.”

I pray when God reminds me that everything is in His very capable hands.

“Pray without ceasing.”



Also posted at CWO’s Internet Cafe’


New Magazine for Girls

February 1, 2008

Those of you with pre-teen and teenage daughters might want to check out the new e-magazine called Growing in Grace – a Christian magazine launching its debut issue today! The girls in your life will thank you.