Monthly Archives: February 2011

day by day

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Thursday is BSF day and I usually share my notes from the lecture .. I may still do that, but not tonight.  It’s been a long day (week) and I’d rather share a great excerpt from a great book Jon and I have been reading by Paul David Tripp, “What Did You Expect?”

If you’re familiar with the musical Godspell, you’ll recognize the song ‘Day by Day’.  Tripp opens chapter four describing the evening when he and his wife saw this musical and the impact  this song had on them.

 

 

Day by day

Day by day

Oh Dear Lord

Three things I pray

To see thee more clearly

Love thee more dearly

Follow thee more nearly

Day by day

“I don’t think it would be possible to have a more appropriate mission statement for a marriage.  I am deeply convinced from Scripture, my own experience, and the stories of others that you fix a marriage vertically before you ever fix it horizontally.  Before you can really gain significant ground in your relationship with your spouse, ground where real, lasting change takes place, you have to be willing to accept and deal with what God says about you, your spouse, your world, and God himself, his purpose, and his grace.  These things aren’t just the focus of super-spiritual people who want a marriage plus a whole lot of spirituality.  No, dealing with these things in a way that forms a day-by-day lifestyle is the foundation of a marriage that is what God designed it to be and does what God intended it to do.  You cannot avoid dealing with these things any more than you can avoid removing trees from the wooded lot where your new home is going to be located.

“What we so joyously sang that night was much more than a song, although most of the crowd didn’t know it.  It is rather a radical paradigm for a way of living that fills every day with honesty and hope.  The things that the lyrics call you to are not one-time decisions; they are meant to be daily commitments that become regular ways of living.  When the commitments and actions that follow are applied to a marriage, something very simple but quite revolutionary happens, and once it does, you’ll never want to go back again!”

 

 

Paul Tripp is the president of Paul Tripp Ministries, a nonprofit organization, whose mission statement is ‘Connecting the transforming power of Jesus Christ to everyday life.   http://paultrippministries.blogspot.com/

when I dont’ feel like it

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sharing a great post from the girltalk blog today …
2011 at 1:39 pm   |   by Nicole Whitacre
Sometimes I struggle with feeling guilty that I don’t feel like doing the next thing. Even though I have repented from fear and anxiety (and will keep repenting and talking to myself) the feelings of fear still linger. But aren’t we supposed to do our work with joy and gladness as unto the Lord? How can I glorify God in my work if I still feel anxious? I wonder. So just as I pull one foot out of the ditch of fear, the other one falls into the pothole of condemnation. 

But there is a firm and level path for us in God’s Word, which John Piper points out in this meditation on Psalm 126:5-6 called “Talking to Your Tears.” He’s counseling people who are sad and suffering, but I think it also applies to those of us who feel anxious:

So here’s the lesson: When there are simple, straightforward jobs to be done, and you are full of sadness, and tears are flowing easily, go ahead and do the jobs with tears. Be realistic. Say to your tears: ‘Tears, I feel you. You make me want to quit life. But there is a field to be sown (dishes to be washed, car to be fixed, sermon to be written). I know you will wet my face several times today, but I have work to do and you will just have to go with me. I intend to take the bag of seeds and sow. If you come along then you will just have to wet the rows.”

Even if we sow in tears (or fears) we will one day reap with joy. Read the entire meditation and then do the next thing–whether you feel like it or not.

Isaiah 42-44

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Today in BSF we covered a lot of ground … instead of sharing all my notes, I will just share a few highlights and truths that especially impacted me today.

The passage opens with “behold my servant, whom I uphold”

-God is presenting Jesus, his servant.

-Jesus is the alternative to idols.

PRINCIPLE:  Only God’s light removes his people’s blindness to the truth.

-His servant Jesus is that light.

-Only Jesus can show us God.

-He will lead us AND deliver us through great struggles

-He wants us to know him.

Have you experienced God’s care for you when you’re blind?  Have you cried out to Him? Do you hold on and trust that He will not forsake you?

43:18-22

[18] “Remember not the former things, nor consider the things of old.  [19] Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert.  [20] The wild beasts will honor me, the jackals and the ostriches, for I give water in the wilderness, rivers in the desert, to give drink to my chosen people,  [21] the people whom I formed for myself that they might declare my praise.  [22] “Yet you did not call upon me, O Jacob; but you have been weary of me, O Israel! (Isaiah 43:18-22 ESV)

God wanted to unburden his people as they worshiped Him … they didn’t worship Him

v. 22  “You did not call upon me, O Jacob; but you have been weary of me O Israel!”

-we have an inborn tendency to resist God because He is alive.

-He wants us to be living proof that He alone is the living Savior.

-We instead like gods that are like us.

-we make them .. manipulate them .. we decide whether they show wrath.

-we want to handle things ourselves .. we don’t want to ‘unburden’ ourselves

-we want to obligate God to us

-we want to make deals

God wants His worship to unburden his people .. to pour out our hearts to Him and He wants to set us free.

-to show us the Truth

-In His light the darkness goes away, He alone gives redemption and life.

Two key verses for me:

42:16

And I will lead the blind in a way that they do not know, in paths that they have not known I will guide them.  I will turn the darkness before them into light, the rough places into level ground.  These are the things I do, and I do not forsake them.

I take great comfort in this verse .. I am blind before God and I’m desperate for Him to lead me in the path that I don’t know .. left to my own ‘feeling my way’, I will make more than a few wrong turns.  I’m equally desperate for Him to turn the darkness into the light and make the rough places smooth.  And what comfort to know He will not forsake me.

finally,

44:21-22

Remember these things, O Jacob, and Israel, for you are my servant; I formed you; you are my servant; O Israel, you will not be forgotten by me.  I have blotted out your transgressions like a cloud and your sins like mist; return to me, for I have redeemed you.

I was struck today by the ways I burden myself with my own sins .. I must remember that God has redeemed me .. He calls me to return to Him, to worship Him.

Emma’s Birthday

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This past week we celebrated Emma’s 8th Birthday!

I wanted to share a few photos . . .

This was a ‘non-party’ year … finding that with three kids, we can handle friend parties every other year.  So, we invited our friend Jordan to join us for the day.

We enjoyed an afternoon of sledding as the weather was great and still had plenty of snow on the ground from our most recent blizzard.

I personally had a blast sledding with the girls .. and even got some real praise from a nearby dad .. as Emma and I raced down the ‘big hill’ hit a bump .. went airborn .. and landed safely ON our sled and cruised down the remainder of the hill, un-injured!  The impact of the bump was so great that I lost my hat (and some of my dignity), midway down the hill.  This kind dad retrieved my hat for me.  Upon returning my hat, he  praised my sledding ‘skills’ and gave me ‘mom of the year’ recommendations.  He also referenced a current ad campaign that uses the slogan “mom got air”!

“You definitely got air on that run!” were his parting words to me 🙂

Emma and Jordan getting ready for their first run!

 

Evangeline enjoyed being pulled around on the sled most of the time

 

these signs were posted all around the sledding hill .. funny thing is, none of the 100+ sledders and their parents seemed to notice them.  More points for the ‘mom of the year’ award!

Hope for Your Dark Night of the Soul

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a great article from Justin Taylor’s blog today . . .

Hope for Your Dark Night of the Soul.

 

” . . . That was the beginning of the way out. And I remember saying to myself literally hundreds of times—every time these feelings of hopelessness and panic and a desire to ball up in a fetal position would come on me—“I feel completely hopeless because I am hopeless, but Jesus Christ died for hopeless people, and I’m one of them.”

Over time I began to believe that. And today when I tell people that Jesus is a great Savior, I believe it, because I know that he saved me. That’s where my joy comes from. My joy comes from knowing that at the very bottom, at the very pit of who I am, it is blackness and sin, but the love and grace of Jesus goes deeper.”


AMEN.

I am New

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I recently discovered a new song by Jason Gray.  I’ve enjoyed listening to him share what the song means to him.  I relate.  I’m sharing a video of him here .. talking of his own journey and a live version of the song.  (not the best live recording, but I could not say what he says better than he does).

I find encouragement in his words here and the lyrics to his song.  Knowing that I am made new in Christ .. right thinking leads to right action.  I desire to live as a the new creation in Christ that He says I am.

 

Now I won’t deny the worst you could say about me
But I’m not defined by mistakes that I’ve made because God says of me

I am not who I was, I am being remade, I am new
I am chosen and holy and I’m dearly loved, I am new, I am new

Who I thought I was and who I thought I had to be
I had to give them both up cause neither were willing to ever believe

Too long I have lived in the shadows of shame
Believing that there was no way I could change
But the one who is making everything new doesn’t see me the way that I do
He doesn’t see me the way that I do

I am not who I was, I am being remade, I am new
Dead to the old man, I’m coming alive, I am new, I am new

Forgiven beloved, hidden in Christ
Made in the image of the Giver of Life
Righteous and holy, reborn and remade
Accepted and worthy, this is our new name
This is who we are now

 


scripture memory #4

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This is the first part of a passage I would like to memorize in
Second Peter.

2 Peter 1:3-4 (ESV)

3 His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to [3] his own glory and excellence, [4] 4 by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.

http://blog.lproof.org/