Sunday, August 31, 2008

Nooo.... Really?

While reading the news online, pretty much the only way I'm informed these days, I see this headline about flies, "They See It Coming". The short article is about how flies can see people coming at them and how quickly they react. Seriously, a study was needed to learn this? I thought that was common knowledge. How many times does it take you to kill a fly? I know I'm a pretty comical figure myself, chasing and swatting at the nasty things, occasionally muttering under my breath something that not's exactly spiritually uplifting. My mom was quite the ninja fly swatter, though. She could kill them with one swift swat. I did not inherit her skills, so I usually throw down my fly swatter after several minutes of frustration. I have to wait until the pesky things are stuck behind the window blinds and then I swat at them, blinds and all. Yes, I'm sure I will need to replace my window blinds fairly soon. But a scientific study was done to inform the world how quickly the little fly brain responds for survival take-off when it sees someone menacingly approaching. How 'bout that?

Monday, August 25, 2008

greener than thou

An article I read this morning made me chuckle. It's talking about hybrid cars and their owners seemingly feeling "greener than thou" towards us regular gas-guzzling car owners. Although, mine doesn't quite guzzle gas, but it is thirstier than a hybrid, I guess. Anyway, the whole "greener than thou" quote really cracks a smile on my face. I suppose it's because as a Christian, I've been accused of acting "holier than thou". That hasn't happened in a long time - is that a good thing, or a bad thing, I wonder? While I was googling the Prius (that sounds almost dirty, doesn't it - LOL!), I came across the blog site of Stuff White People Like. This site is the inspiriation for one of my favorite sites, Stuff Christians Like. Sorry, I got a little side tracked there. Well, I hope you were not disappointed in my short, nonimportant rambling today. I just thought I'd share with you something that made me chuckle (I've used "chuckle" twice already, and it really isn't THAT funny). Can you tell I missed out on some sleep last night and I need more coffee?

Monday, August 18, 2008

Go jump off a cliff!

Saturday our family went to the river. This is NOT my favorite thing to do. In fact, I strongly dislike the river, but I wanted to be with the family, so I went. My husband and my kids absolutely love the river and thrive on being there. We went to a particular spot they had found last year where they can jump off a cliff. Of course I wasn't very excited about the thought of watching my kids do something like this, but I went along with it, seeing as how I'm out-numbered and out-muscled. Haley jumped from the "high dive", but didn't like it, so she mainly stayed with the "low dive". Thankfully the day went without incident other than spotting a couple of snakes. One snake wasn't that big a deal, but two! Plus the second snake that was spotted appeared to be a water mocassin, so after that, the cliff jumping fun ended. Since the kids could no longer do that, we went off to have a bit of knee boarding fun. This I do enjoy - watching, that is. I was able to witness my son's first 360 on the kneeboard. He was quite pleased with himself. My daughter had done a 360 before, but this day she was able to perform three of them during one run! It was very fun to see the smiles on their faces. I did snap a few photos of the cliff jumping, but the knee boarding you'll just have to picture in your mind. My camera is not that good of a camera to capture distant action shots. Our dog also got into the water fun. She is so funny-looking when she gets wet (no she's not wet the picture). It was an overall beautiful day and God's creation was greatly appreciated by all (except for the snakes). More good family memories!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Tortured For Christ

I know I'm not going to do this blog justice, especially after letting you know that it's an important one to me, but I'll try anyway.

I am currently reading the book, Tortured for Christ, by Pastor Richard Wurmbrand. This book is written more like a journal or memoir, which to me makes it more intriguing and intimate. When I decided to read Tortured for Christ, I was prepared to endure descriptions of brutal physical and mental torture. What I wasn't prepared for was the extremely powerful challenge that has been made to my heart. Mr. Wurmbrand actually refrains from going into extreme detail on the physical/mental torture aspects, due to the fact that it would cause him to relive it all over again and cause him great distress. He doesn't hold back, though, on bringing to light the callousness that those of us in the West have toward our brothers and sisters who undergo such tremendous persecution. He says that he actually suffers more in the West than he ever did in a communist prison! How could that be? He states that one reason he suffers in the West is due to our complacency as compared to the Underground Church he was involved with in Russia. He says, "The Underground Church is a poor and suffering church, but it has few lukewarm members." He goes on to say, "Whoever has known the spiritual beauty of the Underground Church cannot be satisfied anymore with the emptiness of some Western churches. I suffer in the West more than I suffered in a Communist jail because now I see with my own eyes Western civilization dying." Mr. Wurmbrand uses the term "spiritual beauty" and "beautiful" to describe the Underground Church several times.

Another way he has challenged me is in the area of loving my enemies. After being stripped away from his family and years and years of brutal torture, Mr. Wurmbrand states that he loves those who tortured him because "Christ loves the Communists and other 'enemies of the faith'. They can and must be won for Christ." This started me thinking about my attitude towards those who inflict pain and death upon present day Christians. I have been wishing these people to be eradicated, but I have not been wishing them to be saved. I guess I've even thought it was impossible for such radicals to be saved, they're too far gone, right? No! Saul - later known as Paul, was a radical, wasn't he? He was doing exactly what people are doing today. But I haven't been loving them. I haven't had a heart for the lost - period. God has really been working on me in this area, though. It's a daily thing. I have to really meditate on what Christ says about loving the Lord with all my heart, all my soul, all my mind and all my strength. Love my neighbors as myself, and to love my enemies. Pray for those who persecute you. (Lev. 19:18, Mark 12:30-32, Matt. 5:43-44).

I really don't think I can put into words how much this book, Tortured for Christ has challenged my spiritual thought life and my prayer life. I strongly encourage you to read this book and subscribe to the Voice of the Martyrs magazine if you haven't already. I don't know about you but I'm tired of being complacent and lukewarm. I don't want to be persecuted like so many saints have, but I do want to be on fire for Christ like they are. I want to cherish each and every copy of the Bible that I have (and I have several) because there are so many who risk their lives just for a page or even a mere verse so that they can have God's holy word in their hands. There is so much that I've taken for granted and it shames me to admit it. I pray that after I finish reading this book that I won't just put it aside and forget the challenges, but that I will strive to run the race with more fervor and zeal than I ever have before.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

please stay tuned

I apologize for not having anything new of late to talk about. I actually do have something, it's just that I want it to be good. Since we've started school again (for those of you who don't know, we homeschool) I haven't had as much time to devote to my blog. Thanks for stopping in to check things out. Keep dropping in and hopefully in a day or so I will have my new post up for ya.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Vanity Sizing

Thank you, Gloria Vanderbilt, for vanity sizing your clothing line! Back to my shopping experience from the other day, I was really getting my feelings hurt every time I tried on a pair of capri pants. It just didn't seem right that my usual size wasn't working anymore. What's even worse is that when I would hold up a certain size (not gonna share that tidbit of info w/ ya) I would think, "those are huge for a size ___!", but when I would try them on (emphasis on "try"), well, let's just say they didn't quite make it all the way up. WHAT? That can't be right! Then Gloria comes along. She knows what I'm talking about! No going up a size or two for me, no sir! GV has it all worked out so that my pride can remain intact. Of course she has no control over my tripping over invisible bumps in the store aisles, but, oh well. I guess gracefullness isn't part of the capri package. I used to scoff at vanity sizing, but no more, nuh uh. Now it's just one more of those tiny little blessings that I can count.