Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Walk by the Spirit

Galatians 5:16-26 (ESV)

16 But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.

17 For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.

Lord, I pour out my fleshly desires, habits and hangups and I pray that You fill those places up with Your Spirit, so they are replaced with the fruit of the Spirit. Let Your light shine out of me so that others may know You. Take any glory and praise for my works and words, Lord, for they are all Yours. Without You, I am nothing but a fleshy desire waiting to happen. Fill me with You, Lord, so I won't seek approval and affirmation from others because desiring others affirmation keeps me in the flesh and not in the Spirit. Praise You for setting this captive free. I'm so grateful you do not tire of my coming to your throne and asking the same thing over and over and over. You are Faithful and True. I love you Lord and I praise You for You are worthy to be praised. ~Amen

Monday, April 27, 2009

What's this 5:16 thing about?

Go to Like a warm cup of coffee: The List Grows... and find out....

I found it through Holley. She started it by sharing a beautiful story, which I'm going to share too:

The crowd is thick--joyful, busy, full of life. But she is alone, afraid, wondering if she should even be there. For years no one has touched her. The elbows jostling, arms bumping, and shoulders brushing feel welcome and uncomfortable.

Then she sees the one she has been waiting for during twelve long years of suffering. Perhaps she had been in the crowd many times. But today she slips through the people, tentatively at first, and then using her elbows, voice, and hands until she stands within a foot or so of him. Fear grips her, taunting thoughts run through her mind, but she has come too far to turn away now.

One trembling hand reaches out and touches the edge of His cloak. In an instant she feels the pain stop and then a sudden, inexplicable surge of joy. She knows she has found healing, hope, life--everything that has been missing for so long.

He turns and asks, "Who touched me?"

She hadn't expected this. Her plan had been to remain unnoticed. But Jesus asks, and trembling, she finally answers.

He looks at her with eyes of love, eyes that seem to really know, and says, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace" (Luke 8:48).

Like Holley, I never seem to take that one last step. I take baby steps but I never seem to go all the way. Darn me and my lack of self-control! After reading her post and then visiting the 5:16 post, I went ahead and did it. I signed up for the 5:16 club (Gal. 5:16). It's a group of women who are committed to spending time with God each morning. You can read more about how it started here. You can choose whatever time you'd like but I picked 5:00.

Dear Lord, I pray for Your presence to wake me up and welcome me in to time with you. On my own, I will not do it. Amen!

“I earnestly recommend that it be in the early morning, unless there are some extenuating circumstances. Entering the day without a serious meeting with God, over his Word and in prayer, is like entering the battle without tending to your weapons. The human heart does not replenish itself with sleep. The body does, but not the heart. We replenish our hearts not with sleep, but with the Word of God and prayer.”
John Piper

The Noticer - Book Review

The Noticer

Sometimes, all a person needs is a little perspective.
Jacketed Hardcover
A new story of common wisdom from the bestselling author of The Traveler's Gift

Orange Beach, Alabama is a simple town filled with simple people. But like all humans on the planet, the good folks of Orange Beach have their share of problems - marriages teetering on the brink of divorce, young adults giving up on life, business people on the verge of bankruptcy, as well as the many other obstacles that life seems to dish out to the masses.

Fortunately, when things look the darkest - a mysterious man named Jones has a miraculous way of showing up. An elderly man with white hair, of indiscriminate age and race, wearing blue jeans, a white T-shirt and leather flip flops carrying a battered old suitcase, Jones is a unique soul. Communicating what he calls "a little perspective," Jones explains that he has been given a gift of noticing things that others miss. "Your time on this earth is a gift to be used wisely," he says. "Don't squander your words or your thoughts. Consider even the simplest action you take, for your lives matter beyond
measure…and they matter forever."

Jones speaks to that part in everyone that is yearning to understand why things happen and what we can do about it.

Like The Traveler's Gift, The Noticer is a unique narrative is a blend of fiction, allegory, and inspiration. Gifted storyteller Andy Andrews helps us see how becoming a "noticer" just might change a person's life forever.

My review:
This was my first time to read anything by Andy Andrews. I was tickled to see he is from Orange Beach. I like seeing local Alabama folk in print! Plus, I've spent a good bit of time at Orange Beach and it allowed me to visualize the scenes.

I think the publisher gives enough information about this book without my adding to it. It's another gem of a book filled with useful information about how to live life. All you need is a little perspective and Mr. Andrews shows, through a story, how to get that little bit of perspective.

The book is also launching a website, The Noticer Project. It's a worldwide movement to "notice" the five most influential people in your life. The site says:
The important thing is that by noticing those who have made a difference for you, you not only acknowledge their contribution, but you may gain a new perspective on your own life.
Who will you notice? What area of your life do you need perspective? Maybe you're a parent and you want to make sure your child(ren) have perspective. This is a good book to read and pass along or buy for other people. It's a book you can either devour and take your time to read so you don't miss the treasures of wisdom hidden. I started out devouring the book and then I slowed down because I wanted to savor the words I was reading.

Check out the book and check out the website. You'll be glad you did.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

His Name is Jesus - Book Review

His Name is Jesus
The Promise of God's Love Fulfilled
By Max Lucado

Book Description

Max Lucado's first book that journeys from the birth of Christ to His resurrection.

Drawing from his classic writing on Jesus combined with new reflections and breathtaking art, Max Lucado again opens our eyes—and hearts—to the life and work of the Savior in a way that will change lives forever. “Jesus was, at once, common and not; alternately normal and heroic. One minute blending in with the domino players in the park, the next commanding the hell out of madmen, disease out of the dying, and death out of the dead.” Who was this man who spoke as easily with kids and fishermen as widows and waves? It is the question that has echoed down through the centuries to us today, and here is a visually stunning book that answers aspects of that question.

My review:

I'm not sure what more I can add to the description from the publisher. This is a beautifully crafted and designed book. I enjoyed reading bits and pieces of Max Lucado's books as they relate to the life of Jesus. The pictures were well crafted and related well to the written word. This would be a great book to give as a gift to someone who has everything; someone who loves books; someone who loves Jesus; someone who needs to know Jesus; in other words - anyone.

This is a wonderful addition to any Christian library. People of all ages will enjoy it. I recommend it for anyone.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

What You Don't Say To Your Wife

Thanks to SanDe for today's funny!
So To Speak: What You Don't Say To Your Wife
Friday, April 24, 2009

A Bunch of Random Things!

Hello my dear bloggy peeps! Oh how I have missed you. I can't believe how long it's been since I posted a blog.

James was home for a week and we were busy doing stuff (nothing really just not being on the computer). We did run up to Memphis to visit McShane & Mike and go to the Super Chevy Show. We went to Beale Street Friday evening and that was pretty neat. There were street performers and live music and LOTS of food (and even more alcohol with the biggest drinks I've ever seen - one size came with a strap! I kid you not)! The racing part of the Super Chevy Show got rained out, but not before I got a nice sunburned red neck (just my neck, thank you irony) and blisters on my feet. BUT, I tried really hard not to complain because the boys were having fun.
We had a neat prayer & worship gathering at church last weekend, where we kicked off a 90 Day period of seeking God as His Church with this question: What area of Birmingham are you leading us to adopt for 25 years? My oldest daughter was part of the worship team and she knocked my socks off. My youngest daughter sat with me and I enjoyed some sweet fellowship time with her. Does your church have prayer gatherings? I love them!
Here are my thoughts on cuticle care (here's the really random part of the post)...I work with paper and I type, so I have dry fingers and I can't grow my nails. I don't use nail polish because it seems to make my nails peel and break. Over the last several months, I started having a problem with hangnails, extremely dry nail beds and nails that split. It was gross (and painful). I bought a cuticle oil stick and started using it several times a day at work. At home, I have a container of cuticle oil stuff that I use. Oh my goodness, let me tell you my nails have never looked better! There's truth in the statement "The best way to make sure your nails are healthy is to moisturize them daily, and care for your cuticles." I have had to cut my nails back because they started growing too long, I haven't had one single hang nail nor have my nails broken. It's amazing, I tell you. If you have problems with your nails, try this remedy!
Work has been hectic and busy. Oh, I bought myself a Nintendo DS and I've been mastering my Diner Dash skills, which might also explain why I haven't been around...We just finished our study on To Live is Christ, the life & ministry of Paul (WOW). We'll be starting Esther, It's Tough Being a Woman the end of next month. We're going through Measureless Love which God is using to really speak to me about looking to other people for affirmation and adoration. Do you think He gets tired of having to repeat the same message over and over? I'm so glad He loves me!
What's going on with all of you? I have missed you!!
Saturday, April 11, 2009

The Scoop - Glade Sense & Spray

About a month ago, a fellow blogger posted a link to being a BzzAgent, a/k/a reviewer. (If you want to review things, go on and give BzzAgent a try.) My first campaign was to test drive the new Glade Sense & Spray Automatic Spray.

The site says:

Motion-activated freshness conserves refill.

Get the freshness you want only when you need it with the first air freshener with a motion sensor. The innovative Glade® Sense & Spray™ Automatic Spray smart unit automatically detects motion and releases a concentrated burst of fresh fragrance. The unit will then go into a lock-out mode for 30 minutes. You can customize your fragrance level at any time by pushing the Boost Button for an extra burst, even if your unit is in lock-out mode. Refills last for up to 30 days. Great for bathrooms.

My review:
With two dogs who love to be outside and don't always smell fresh, I was looking forward to giving the Sense & Spray a try. I was excited when it arrived! My Sense & Spray came with the Clean Linen scent (yippee!), which is good because food smells and dog smells don't always mesh, but I love Clean Linen smell. (So fresh & clean!) I've tried moving the Sense & Spray to different areas to find the best place for it. It needs movement for the "concentrated burst of fresh fragrance". I haven't found it yet.

I love the concept of the Sense & Spray, and it might work best in a bathroom (which is where they recommend using it so you have a good smelling bathroom, no matter what is going on in there). Using it to help combat my doggy smell isn't going to work. I'll have to stick with something that lets out a continuous smell!

I would recommend this product if you have a busy area where you want yummy smell good. I love the way the Clean Linen smells. The starter kit comes with either Clean Linen or Apple Cinnamon. The refill kit offers Clean Linen™, Apple Cinnamon, Country Garden® and Powder Fresh® scents.

If you'd like to try the Sense & Spray, please leave me a comment and I'll send you a $4 off coupon. (I received them with my BzzAgent kit!) I have five of them to give. If you have tried the Sense & Spray already, would you let me know how you liked it?

I hope you have a great weekend. Celebrating Easter and the fact that He is Risen (indeed!) is one of my favorite times of year!

Now you've gotten....the scoop!

From Latte With Me
Thursday, April 9, 2009

Oh if only I could always remember...

This sweet prayer was in a Crosswalk devotional that a co-worker sends me. The whole devotional was good and stressed remembering how your words influence others, but it was specifically aimed at spouses.

I don't want to forget the prayer, so I'm posting it (how sad is that?) here!

Dear Lord, help me to honor my husband with my words, my deeds and my thoughts. Help me to realize that my words matter. I can choose to build him up or tear him down. Help me to choose to build him up and give me the strength to do so. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Third Day on the 3rd Day: Comedy Edition

Third Day on the 3rd Day: Comedy Edition
I realize it's a little 4 days past the 3rd, but I had a somewhat amusing story about Third Day to share!

Every year Birmingham has a huge non-profit music showcase called City Stages. There are more than 40 acts during its three day run in June. There are multiple staging areas that feature similar bands. In 2007, we had bought tickets from The Basement, which is where my teen and her friends were enjoying a very contemporary and youthful worship experience. (It is a little loud for my aging ears, so I didn't attend as often. Also, I get a little antsy around big crowds and the crowd grew larger and larger each week at The Basement.)

SO, since we had tickets AND I didn't like crowds, my daughter's friend's mom offered to take my kids to support Matt Pitt and The Basement! I was very thankful! (Seriously, looking at all these clips of The Basement and I'm blown away again by Matt Pitt's testimony and ministry! Wow!)

When the girls got home, I asked who all they had seen. I was sort of new in the faith and I was just starting to listen to Christian music and know who the various artists were. So, when my 12 yo daughter told me she had seen some Three Days Grace. Well, of course, I thought she meant Third Day! I said something to the effect about how I liked their music and wished I had heard them. I think when I told my husband about it, he started laughing. Something to the effect of..."Honey, Three Days Grace isn't a Christian band. As a matter of fact, they are the opposite." :O:O:O Imagine my horror!

I would think that neither band would want to be confused with the other. I'm shuddering chuckling thinking about it. You can see how a newbie would get confused though!

Anyway, that's my Third Day story. It's funny, right?

The Scoop - The Six O'Clock Scramble

Here's the scoop on The Six O'Clock Scramble!
I was offered the opportunity to review The Six O'Clock Scramble for one month, as a member of twittermoms.com. I would much rather have a home cooked meal than go out to eat, but there's a problem with that...I don't really know how to plan meals or make grocery lists. Or, better said, when I've done this, it's taken me hours. And who am I kidding? I just don't want to do it! Suffice it to say when I read about The Six O'Clock Scramble, I knew this was something I had to try.

The Six O’Clock Scramble® is an online dinner planning service. From their website with my emphasis added:

  • A Weekly menu plan with five family-tested, healthy, delicious and quick DINNER RECIPES THAT TAKE 30 MINUTES OR LESS TO PREPARE

  • An ORGANIZED GROCERY LIST so you can grocery shop just once per week

  • A SEARCHABLE DATABASE where you can customize your weekly dinner plan

  • Your own personal RECIPE BOX where you can save your family's favorites 30 minute meals

  • A newsletter with USEFUL TIPS for easier mealtimes, snacks and lunches NUTRITIONAL INFORMATION for each family dinner recipe to help you take charge of your health
  • ELIMINATE THE STRESS OF FAMIILY MEAL PLANNING. Each week you will receive a weekly menu planner with recipes and simple instructions for balanced dinners complete with easy side dishes.

  • YOUR FAMILY WILL EAT MORE HEALTHY, FRESH AND SEASONAL FOODS. The Scramble emphasizes whole grains, lean proteins and lots of fruits and vegetables, so your family will enjoy a variety of flavors and cuisines while still enjoying 30 minute meals.

  • QUICK, EASY MEALS WITHOUT PROCESSED FOODS OR EXPENSIVE TAKE-OUT. Other convenience meals cut prep time by relying on processed ingredients. Scramble recipes simplify cooking by using fewer than ten nutritious ingredients and easy-to-follow directions.

  • THE SCRAMBLE IS FAMILY TESTED. All recipes go through a careful process to be Scramble certified as healthy, delicious and family friendly dinners.

  • CUSTOMIZE YOUR WEEKLY PLAN FOR YOUR FAMILY’S TASTES AND NEEDS. Picky eaters? Vegetarian? Dietary restrictions? Need Kosher recipes? Swap out any meal with a selection from our large Scramble recipe database. The grocery list is automatically updated with your choices!

  • SHOP ONLY ONCE A WEEK. The grocery list is organized by store section. You’ll also waste less food and save money by buying only what you need.

  • THE SCRAMBLE CARES about family mealtime, healthy meals for children, supporting local farmers and the environment. We listen to our subscribers and give back to the communities we live in.
Do you see what all is offered? Someone else plans? Makes out my organized grocery list? YES! I enjoyed my trial of this product so much that I became a subscriber! While we're not always home at the same time or we don't get home until late, the times we are home we have enjoyed an easy to make, home cooked meal. I even have some food in the freezer from the leftovers.
I'm going to see if I can share a newsletter sample below...please hold.

V = Vegetarian or Veg-friendly alternative
M = Make ahead EX = Scramble Express (30 minutes or less total)
S = Side Dish Only

Here's a shot of your grocery list - just look at that detail! (Let me know if you'd like a better view of this.)

If you're interested in checking out this site and the service they offer, I would start with the sample meal plan and grocery list, shown above. Honestly, it's helped make my shopping time and supper time a lot less stressful.

So now you have The Scoop...

(This scoop is about the cutest thing I've seen in coffee stuff! I might have to order (at least 18) one!)

Monday, April 6, 2009

Monday - Changing One Heart for Many and Memory Monday!


For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16

Father God, we come to You today - many believers, one voice - to stand for life. Lord, it is mind-boggling to us that the worth of a human life has deteriorated to the point that its determining factor is convenience. If that life is wanted, we call it a baby and rally as a people behind the mother carrying it, to defend it at all costs. But if it is the result of an "accident", a "mistake", and inconvenient result of a "night gone wrong", it is given the cold name "fetus" and should be just as easy to discard as Friday's trash. Father, You love human life so much that You were willing to sacrifice Your own child so that it wouldn't perish. You've made it quite clear through that one cataclysmic event during this Holy Week over 2000 years ago, that there was NOTHING that You valued MORE than the lives of humans. It's something we can't even understand, but for which we are so grateful. We join together in prayer for our president, Father, that he would be moved this week by the Easter story in a way that perhaps he never has. Help him to see the value that YOU have placed on life and stir his heart to be in accord with YOURS. Believing that You will change one heart for many, we pray in the MIGHTY, LIFE-GIVING NAME OF JESUS CHRIST. Amen.

Checking in for Memory Monday:

So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love... Eph. 3:17 NIV
Up next - Eph. 3:18 NIV
...may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ...
On Saturday, James & I went to Podunk Cluster Springs, FL for his family reunion. We drove past this church sign:
Thank GOD I'm Forgiven!
Can I get an AMEN???

I present to you - #100!

It's my 100th post! How quickly the time flies (not really it's taken almost a year and a half to get to this #!!)!!

I started this blog soon after I discovered the Living Proof Ministries blog. I wanted to be connected and be able to respond! While I probably could've commented without a blog, I just wanted to blog too! I had a blog at Yahoo 360, but they stopped really doing anything with the site and it became slow as molasses to navigate through. Plus, during my bloggy time, I had a rebirth and I lost most of my "friends" and commenters when my posts changed from whatever to posts with more of a Christianity feel to them.

So, here I am - 100 posts later! My little reading list of blogs has grown from a small handful to almost 100! (Is anyone noticing the extreme overuse of !!!?)

Thank you for sticking around with me. I hope to be around for several hundred more posts! (I posted backwards and now this is my 101st post ;).)