Friday, May 29, 2009

A New Post ... Finally!

I am sitting sipping my double, tall, nonfat, toffee nut latte and I am thinking over the past year. Since my last post God has pour rich blessing on me, mostly in the form of a soon to be husband, Paul. Paul and I have been going through premarital counseling for almost 3 months and I have loved it. I wanted to shout out some major points we have been told about marriage and see if anybody has anymore insight for Paul and me.

  1. Christ and His salvific work is the only thing that will bring complete joy and fulfillment.
  2. The Scripture brings solutions to problems, clarity to disagreements, and humility to your heart.
  3. Love is a daily choice to prefer the other, to be unselfish, and to align your emotions with the truth of scripture.
  4. Marriage takes work, lots of work.
  5. Marriage is a blessing. It can come as a surprise out of the blue. But to reap continual fruit in abundance you have to work hard to keep the dead branches, dries leaves, and rotten fruit from deadening your joy. Work, through the grace God has given, to keep your marriage in the place where it can bear the most fruit so as to reap the most blessing.
Please pray that we will be humble lovers of Christ and joyful worshipers of God and that we will be obedient to love.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008


I was talking to a friend recently. For our purposes, we will call him BOB. We were talking about funny awkward things we say and do. He told me about a question he asked a man who came into church Sunday.

BOB said,
A homeless man came to church Sunday, and I was reaching out trying to make him feel wanted and loved. In an attempt to get to know him I asked him what his profession was. He looked at me and said well I haven't been working in a while. WOW! AWKWARD! OK, what do I say now?!

OK, I know I have times when things just POP out, so it is easy to feel bad for BOB. I know that feeling, but how funny!

Thursday, March 6, 2008


Conflict Can Cultivate Conformity to Christ: Part I
(I am going to skip some chapters because the other chapter posts are on my laptop which is not happy as of late.)

James 4:1-10
I. Why do we have conflict in relationships?

James explains that conflict arises because of the war that goes on within. Our hedonistic desires for ungodly pleasures, fleshly lusts, and worldly enjoyments rise up against the new spirit we have in Christ. Our desires, which on the surface are not sinful, morph into SIN.

6 digressive steps of DESIRE:
1. DESIRE- says I would like... (acknowledging God's sovereign plan)
2. DEMAND- says I must ...
3. DETERMINATION- says I will ...
4. DESERVE- says you should .. (your "rights")
5. DISAPPOINTMENT- says you didn't ...(false expectations)
6. DEFENSE- says because you didn't, I will ...

Ok, by this time in the sermon I was ready for it to be over! My heart was so convicted. I thought about that day and so many, if not the majority, of the frustrations I felt stemmed from not seeking the will of God in relationships. If you are already convicted hold on to your seat here comes round 2.

6 categories your desires morph into:

1. COMFORT-fear of hardwork
2. PLEASURE-fear of pain
3. RECOGNITION-fear of being overlooked
4. POWER-fear of being told what to do
5. CONTROL-fear of unpredictability *ok my heart almost exploded
6. ACCEPTANCE-fear of rejection

Oh, my heart hurts to remember the times that day I sought my own comfort instead of God's will or I became frustrated when things did not conform to my comfort. I went down the list. When you simplify (I guess I mean break down) your emotions and responses to the point where you can see the reality of you sin it is overwhelming! I felt like an area of skin that had been itched and itched and itched, RAW. But, the sermon did not end there!

II. What is more important to me than my relationships with God?

-perhaps love of the world? James uses two situations to explain the seriousness of our love of flesh.

First, it is like an adulterous relationship. The implication is that we are covenanted to God and the friendship with the world is betrayal of that intimate relationship (the impact of sin). Wow! If you have not personnally experienced this hurt you know others who have. Whether or not you have speficially experienced this or not we all know it is painful. Apply that to the relationship with God. We are causing pain to our Heavenly Husband by "sleeping with the world", so to speak.

The second illustration is that of war; enemies of God. The implication is that we are friends of God, which hold great comfort but also great consequence when that relationship is broken. Think of the famous analogy of two brothers fighting on opposite during the civil war. One brother has the other in his sights ready to sqeeze the trigger. (I know a bit dramatic!)

I have to begin to see my sin for what it is, as well as its effects on my relationship with Christ and others.

There are two other points and major applications that I will continue in the next post. Thanks for sticking with me!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

No Options!

“We know we are less than human when we are alone.”

There are two extremes on the pendulum of relationship; isolation and immersion. The Isolationist says, “I want to be safe” and the immersionist says, “I need you in order to live (17).”
It is interesting how my views fall in the pendulum. For example, I definitely fear vulnerability with people. I cleave at times to self preservation instead of reaching out to the individual. Then, at other times, I think my life is pitiful because my dear friends from the past are not here and I overlook the dear friendships that are being built here.

They go on to explain relationship interactions between two types of people.

-the frustrated relationship; one isolationist, who feels smothered, and one immersionist, who feels rejected.

-the emeshed relationship, two immersionist;so dependent on each other, that they can be easily hurt when the other does not meet their needs

-the isolated relationship; two isolationist;complicated because their desires for safety and independence collides with the longing for relationship.

“While relationships are not inherently dangerous, the expectations we bring to them can be (19).” In the words of Miah (from Princess Diaries) “Shut up”! I am disappointed in relationships normally because the other person does not met the expectations I have imposed upon them. How silly, and yet I see this continually surfacing in my relationships. *hint prayer request

8 implications to enrich your community (relationships)

1. God is the only properly functioning community in the universe (21).
2. The Trinity is the only adequate model for human community (22)
3. People made in God's likeness were made for community (22).
4. God has a 2-fold purpose for human community: personal growth and witness to the world (23).
5. Sin's self-centeredness cuts us off from God and others(23).
6. True human community only arise out of communion with God (23).
7. Christ's resolve confirms the commitment made by the Father, Son, and Spirit before the creation of the world (24).
8. God will dwell in community with his people so that they can know community with one another

In conclusion, I don't want to give everything away in the chapter because there is rich truth found in the content of the above point.

“Only when human beings live in community do we fully reflect the likeness of God (26).”
not that this is the formula for perfection but the Holy Spirit sanctifies us through relationships.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Relationships:A Mess Worth Making

The young adult ministry at my church two weeks ago began a series on relationships. The book is Relationships: A Mess Worth Making. My impression of relationships is that they come with the territory. Some people you click with immediately, some you come to know over time, and some you might never befriend. This mentality in my thought process is wrong, especially when it comes to the body of Christ.

In the second chapter a statement is made first as a quotation of C.S. Lewis and continued throughout the chapter. “When first things are put first, second things are not suppressed but increased (8).” To an evangelical at first glance seems like a no brainer. Of course we are to put God first; that is what we are taught from womb to present. The kicker is do we do it, or do we value created things, such as people, above God?

There are eight foundations to build a relationship discussed in the chapter.
1. You were made for relationships
2. In some way, all relationships are difficult
3. Each of us is tempted to make relationships the end rather than the means
4. There are no secrets that guarantee problem-free relationships
5. At some point you will wonder whether relationships are worth it
6. God keeps us in messy relationships for his redemptive purposes
7. The fact that our relationships work as well as they do is a sure sign of grace
8. Scripture offers a clear hope for our relationships

just a few quotes that stood out to me as I was reading.

First, under the indicators that reveal our tendency to reverse the order of things and put 2nd things 1st(8) “Controlling relationships out of desire for security” If you know me, you know this is a constant minute by minute struggle of mine. *hint, pray for me*

The second quote, “A good relationship involves honestly identifying the sin patterns that tend to trouble it. It involves being humble and willing to guard yourself and the other person from these sin patterns (11).” How true! Some of the best relationships I have had are with people who come to me and correct me in an area of sin. Not during an argument but in a peaceful gentle way. Humility goes a long way!

“The most dangerous aspect of your relationships is not your weakness, but your delusions of strength (12).” No Comment Needed!

I know this post has turned into a book. I hope to continue to post about the book as we progress through it.

Lane, Tim and Paul Tripp. Relationships: A Mess Worth Making. New Growth Press. Glenside, PA. 2006

Friday, November 30, 2007

Merry Christmas!

As december first comes around I am looking back over the past year just to remember God's blessings. this year He has exceeded my expectations once again. The main thing I am thankful for in my life it the attitude of service I see in the people in my church. It encourages me to serve with a joyful heart.

Oh, come, all ye faithful,
Joyful and triumphant!
Oh, come ye, oh, come ye to Bethlehem;
Come and behold him
Born the king of angels:
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Oh, come, let us adore him,
Christ the Lord.

Let us rejoice!

Friday, July 20, 2007

Truth or Preference?

Recently I was engaged in a conversation regarding homeschooling verses other schooling (public, private, Classical Christian...) . The question was posed, "Do you think homeschooling is MORE biblical (hence holy) then other forms?" So I pose the question to you. Please use scripture. Remember the question is not what form is more effective, but is there a biblical perspective grounded in scripture alone.