A Decade Today!

As with each birthday, the day starts watching the sunrise and praying together (Dad and child)...

then on to breakfast at Cracker Barrel...what's breakfast without a hot fudge sundae???

Acts of kindness throughout the day - gifts of love - dinner later with cake and gifts.  More celebrations in the upcoming days with family and friends...

This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24

Rejoicing in this day as we celebrate the life given 10 years ago!

Victorian Scrapbook Sneak Peek...

Just a little peak of what is to come...Victorian Scrapbook Follow-up Class of the Young Lady in Me Class we attended in December.  Those in attendance will have an opportunity to complete an album of the 2-day class they attended, while being able to add to their beautiful keepsake as future "teas" and "young lady events" are scheduled.

Pattern of 6"x6" album fabric (has a clear plastic slip cover - but I removed it to take a close up without the glare from the slipcover)...a few color choices to select from.

Title page with teapot...a sample of several different embellishments we will use in our class:  die-cut, 3-D stickers, ribbon, rhinestones, punched tags and more...

Part of their scrapbook will contain a two page layout of the mom & daughter together (each individual young lady with their mom - no peeks - just Alyssa & me)...with heirloom and victorian buttons, 3-D sticker, gold matted title header and Scripture...

A little glimpse of what I have been preparing lately and looking forward to hosting soon! 

Because of Him ~

Florida Snow...Say It Ain't So...

You betcha!  Okay, our snow may not be inches deep or falling with fury BUT it's snow none-the-less!  The kids were thrilled to gather enough to make snowballs.  This is a January they won't soon forget.  Enjoy!

One very happy girl...

Getting ready for a "SINGLE" snowball fight...just some simple morning fun while it lasts.

Joshua Harris Is...

eaten by a beanbag?  The following You Tube video is a great illustration (IMO) of getting too close to sin.  This short video from Joshua Harris gives a good visual of the effects of sin...so many Scriptures speak of this (Psalm 1; Proverbs 6:27-28; Proverbs 14:16...more in the clip...many more in His word...)

I first saw this on Your Sacred Calling and found it to be a great visual reminder...would be a good one to show the children (or even do as a family night discussion with the children). 

Speaking of which (family night discussion)...I would love to hear any similar lessons that you have done in your family to teach a Bible topic.  Feel free to share by posting a comment ~ so that we may glean from one another and encourage each other to teach our children the Truth of God.

Blessings ~

Life is but a vapor...

The Infinite and the Finite
(A Puritan Prayer taken from The Valley of Vision)


Fill my mind with elevation and grandeur at
the thought of a Being
with whom one day is as a thousand years,
and a thousand years as one day,
A mighty God, who, amidst the lapse of worlds,
and the revolutions of empires,
feels no variableness,
but is glorious in immortality.
May I rejoice that, while men die, the Lord lives;
that, while all creatures are broken reeds,
empty cisterns,
fading flowers,
withering grass,
he is the Rock of Ages, the Fountain
of living waters.
Turn my heart from vanity,
from dissatisfactions,
from uncertainties of the present state,
to an eternal interest in Christ.
Let me remember that life is short and
and is only an opportunity for usefulness;
Give me a holy avarice to redeem the time,
to awake at every call to charity and piety,
so that I may feed the hungry,
clothe the naked,
instruct the ignorant,
reclaim the vicious,
forgive the offender,
diffuse the gospel,
show neighbourly love to all.
Let me live a life of self-distrust,
dependence on thyself,

These recent days have been a whirr of emotions and will continue to be in the days to come.  So many times I have used Psalm 139:16 as part of birthday prayers..."Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there were none of them."  Of late, this verse carries the end of its meaning...not only the days of birth ("unformed substance"), but also of death (He knows every one of our days, even our day of death ~ "in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me".)  Even my own blog title, which is derived from Ecclesiastes speaks of this in verse two...

"For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die..."  Ecclesiastes 3:1-2a

John Piper's devotional titled, Life as a Vapor, emphasizes that life is but a vapor.  Every moment we have breath  we should focus on our purpose for existance...to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.  With the sudden (to my finite mind and understanding of time) recent events in our family, it has caused me great contimplation of how short life truly is and how quickly it could end - the blink of an eye.  Just over a week ago, I found out my mother is very sick and her days are short, outside of a miracle of God.  I do not know what tomorrow holds ~ my Lord does.  My prayers for her have been salvation, comfort and His peace.  No man knows another's heart ~ only the Lord. 

I am ever-so-grateful to the Sustainer of my faith.  His word is a balm, a comfort, an encouragement each day.  I am thankful for His peace, which surpasses all understanding, which guards my heart and mind in Him.  I am thankful for knowing that He will use this for His glory and my good.  I know that God is rich in mercy and an ever-present help in times of trouble.  He is gracious and righteous and merciful in all He does.  I am thankful for His abundant grace...life is but a vapor and this world is temporary ~ keeping my mind fixed on things above and a future hope in Christ Jesus.

To Resolve...Jonathan Edwards' Maxims

January 1st in our day marks a time of setting goals and making 'resolutions', if you will. Common resolutions we hear about are: "to exercise more", "to eat healthier", "spend more time with family", "to save more money", "to learn a new skill", etc. I encourage you to read the resolutions and draw from them as you set about this upcoming year.
Jonathan Edwards' Resolutions give us a glimpse of the seriousness of faith in the 1700's ~ one could read them today and come to this conclusion.  My conclusion is how far we, as a Christian people, have drifted away from such understanding of our sinfulness before a Holy God...our utter need for a Savior...and what our purpose is to be in life ~ "To glorify God and enjoy Him forever."

Edwards read his list (compiled in 1722 & 1723) once each week as he pursued a "reformation of life".  I think Edwards' pursuit of reforming his life (through Truth) is one all Chrisitans should heartily pursue...always referring to Scripture for instruction on what to pursue ~

  • "So then let us pursue what makes for peace and for mutual upbuilding." (Romans 14:19)

  • "Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.  Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace.  In all circumstances take up the shield fo faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication.  To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I may declare it boldly, as I ought to speak." (Ephesians 6:13-20)

  • "But one thing I do:  forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 3:13-14)

  • "Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassion, kindness, humility, meekness and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive." (Colossians 3:12-13)
  • "But as for you, O man of God, flee these things.  Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness.  Fight the good fight of the faith.  Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called and about which you made the good confession in the presence of may witnesses." (1 Timothy 6:11-12)

  • "So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart." (2 Timothy 2:22)
My emphasis of bold italic words is meant to show ACTION...ACTION to actively DO something.  May this coming year be one in which we look to Scripture and actively pursue what the Lord instructs us to do. 

A blessed and prosperous New Year to you!