Tuesday, August 25, 2009

With Your Whole Heart

I am often amazed and yet saddened by some of the comments I hear so called believers make. I do not intend to stand in judgment of any ones walk of faith. We all must "work out our on salvation with fear and trembling". Each of us must determine what we will believe and in who we will place our trust.

The question of whether or not we believed that we trusted God with our whole heart was presented myself and a group of believers. Out of the group of 20 or so I was the only one to eagerly answer "I do!"

It felt awkward to look around and see my classmates ponder the question as if they had only considered the question for the first time at that very moment.

It had seemed all to obvious an answer to me...but what if it weren't obvious?

How do you know if you trust God with your whole heart?

Trusting God means relying on His integrity, strength, ability, commandments and promises.

When things go right in your life do you give God the praise?

When things go wrong in your life do you seek Gods direction?

Before you make decisions do you commune with the Lord?

Are you focused on pleasing God above all else?

All of these and many more are indications of a person who trusts God with their whole heart. Trusting the Lord with your whole heart is not determined by finding the difference between the number of times that you have listened to the Lord and the number of times that you didn't.

Trusting the Lord with your whole heart is making a decision to follow the Lord no matter what.

While you are trusting the Lord you will still mess up and make wrong decisions. You will think you heard God say do this and you did that. Nevertheless, continue to trust Him. Be strong and courageous and TRUST HIM. Be bold in your faith. Stand fast upon his word and TRUST HIM.

Be encouraged!

Monday, August 24, 2009

Taking the Leap

I am a huge fan of Blogger.com and many of the other free sites available. I have been using blogger for over two years now. However, I realize that in order for my two blogs to have the capability to offer my readers the functionality that I am looking for, I will need to switch to a website hosting company.

Some hosting companies offer very basic services such as standard web hosting where you don't get any technical help, and others offer everything from web design to dedicated server hosting.

I really do not know much about the html. and template codes so I will need a reliable host to be able to offer easy to use templates at a reasonable price. There are many site who offer referrals to some of the best web hosting services but I really like the functionality of WebHostingGeeks.com

The list that the site provides is very informative. Each of the listings include information such as the name of the host company, their ranking and pricing. I never expected for my blog to become a resource for information but now that it is I'd like to make sure that the information is stored somewhere other than blogger and my hard drive.

Many of the pricing plans are very reasonable. Prices range from $1.99 up to $12.95 for web hosting. These are price ranges for hosts who were ranked in the top ten. I would like to merge this blog with A Proverbs Wife sometime down the line, but in order to do so I will need much more functionality that what is offered for FREE through blogger.

I am prayerfully considering the direction that God wants to take both of my blogs and patiently waiting to see how it all come together in a final package.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

The Christian Wife

She has a responsibility...

To Submit to Her Husbands Authority
  • Ephesians 5:22
  • Colossians 3:18
**This includes unsaved or unbelieving husbands
  • I Peter 3:1
To love her husband
  • Titus 2:4

Submission is not...

...obedience like a child obeys a parent.

I Peter 3:7~ Dwell with your wife with understanding, grant her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of Jesus Christ.

The way that the husband treats the wife is how he treats himself, because they are one in the eyes of God through marriage.
Gen 2:23-24

...is not something to be feared.

A man of God has a responsibility to love his wife the way that he loves himself which includes his actions toward her.
Ephesians 5:28-29

...is not her losing her personality or uniqueness in place of her husbands.

Submission is...

...supporting your husband by accepting his leadership.

...seeking to listen to his direction concerning the family and direction for the family.
I Peter 3:6

...assisting him in carrying out the vision for the family.

...becoming his "helpmeet". Genesis 2:18

Condiment Coupon

The next time I go shopping I am going to look for NAKANO Seasoned Rice Vinegar on the condiment isle.

My family has recently become non-meat eaters and are slowly transitioning to removing animal based dairy products from our diets as well. As we do so, I found that we are eating more salads, grains and pastas. With the lack of meat I have had to become more creative in my seasoning techniques.

I've recently purchased Terryaki and Tamari sauce to use in Asian recipes and was very pleased with the flavor. I am excited about trying NAKANO Seasoned Rice Vinegar on some salad recipes I have planned for the future.

To learn more about the NAKANO brand of products visit their site. While you are there you can also sign up for the Splash Recipe Club after which you will receive a FREE recipe booklet, coupons and more. While you are waiting to receive your coupons in the mail, print a coupon to save $1 off Nakano Rice Wine Vinegar.

This is a great coupon especially for those of us who are trying to eat healthy. Many companies are now recognizing that and are offering discount coupons as an incentive to buy their products. The coupon is good until 12/2009.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Return Unto the Lord

In a misguided quest to be the perfect wife and mother, we have become blindsided to the true purpose of our calling. We are called to demonstrate a Christ-likeness in our behavior and speech.

Our ability to be perfect is unrealistic and unobtainable.

We cannot be perfect but we can be loving, kind, patient, faithful and obedient to God. What do people see in you?

Do they see you as loving, honest, patient and forgiving person? Do they see fairness in your stern judgment?

Perhaps they see hypocrisy and bitterness.

Are we demostrating a true image of who Christ is? In order to be a true example of Christ we must have a true relationship with God. Our end goal cannot be worldly ideals of perfection.

A true relationship begins with time spent daily in the presence of the Lord. Our relationship with God is unlike any other we will ever experience. We need to spend time with God to become better people. There is no other relationship that is able to refresh, strengthen, direct and encourage us like our relationship with God.

We can seek these benefits in our relationships with our spouses, or in the hours on the phone with our friends. We can imagine that we have grasped those benefits of time spent with God, in the time we spend staring into the eyes of our infant children. However, what we get from these experiences can never replace what we gain from time spent with God.

What are we seeking when we spend time with HIM?

1~Knowledge of who He is
2~Knowledge of who we are
3~Understanding of the purpose and plan for our life
4~A mirror in which to view our actions and thoughts
5~Direction for discipling our children

I remember when I used to nag my husband about not reading any books other than the Bible. I would read Christian self help books, devotionals, study guides and commentaries. I would read novels, literature, historical fiction and non-fiction alike. I thought that due to his lack of literary knowledge that my husband would grow old and not know a thing about the world.

But oh..that God was so mindful of me to bless me with such a wonderful and wise husband. I have come full circle only to learn that if there were only one book that I could have in the world, it would be my bible.

The holy text holds the answers to everything that we need. Therefore we must spend daily quiet time in Gods word. We must carry on a continual conversation with God.

It’s o.k. to talk to God while you do your homekeeping or while you are at work. We must store His word in our hearts by meditating on scripture. Finally, we must put away they busyness that keeps us from pursuing a relationship with God.

If you were to ask my children what is the most important relationship in my life they will tell you that “nobody comes before God”. There should be nothing more important than your time with God. It has to be a priority. I could never be an example of Christ without spending time with God.

No amount of time spent with God will make me a perfect Christian. What the time does do, is grants me to humbleness of mind to admit when I have sinned and fallen short of Gods glory. It reminds me that I am not my children’s Lord and savior. It reminds me that I am a joint heir to the throne of Christ with my children. It reminds me of my desperate need for a relationship with the Lord.

Make a commitment today to renew your relationship with Christ. Take the steps needed to clear your plate and re-prioritize your focus. Desire not be perfect but to be HIS.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

HOPE is in the LORD

Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance. Psalm 42:5

Do you know that the joy of the Lord can be your strength? Do you not recognize the power that comes from unfettered obedience to God?

He desires that we flourish, yet we sit trapped in the bondage of despair and depression. We fail to see the hope in dire situations because we have taken our eyes off of Him.

What is it that sets us apart from the unbelievers, but our hope that the fact that God's words are true. Why do we give up when the storms of life come, Knowing that "If God be for me, who an be against me?"

The storms are for your good. Do you not know that we ought to glory in our tribulations, knowing that tribulations bring about patience?

So how then should we react during the storms?

1~Stand firm on the word of the Lord knowing that everything that He has promised you shall come to pass. (Hebrews 10:23)

2~Continue to surround ourselves with other strong believers that will encourage us to think and to do good during this time.
(Hebrews 10:24-25)

3~Continue in prayer for strength and obedience during this storm.

4~Maintain a joyful countenance and mind frame. (James 1:2)

Do not despair when troubles come. Don't believe that you are the only one going through what you're going through. Trust God and know that he has already worked the situation out for your good. Take your eyes off the circumstance and place it on the only true solution which is God.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Children...A Gift from the Lord

As a mother I have a responsibility to teach my children to love the Lord with all of their heart, mind, body and soul. This love cannot be forced, but must be allowed be accepted willingly.

God does not force himself upon us and has given us the free will to decide whom we will serve.

In order for me to help my children choose wisely, I have to show them a true representation of who God is. There are a few things that we must remember when leading our children to the Lord.

We cannot make them follow God with their hearts. Just because our children follow our family rules whether they be our preferred way of doing things or our Biblical rules, we must endeavor that they learn to be obedient out of love.

They must see that our relationship with God is a priority.
They must see that spending time with God is of the utmost importance to us. Our children should know that we pray for them and their father. They must know where mother gets her strength, hope, peace and joy. Teach them that your relationship with God comes first, then husband, children, home and then the church (friends). Teach them that when the relationship with God is balanced all the rest will balance out as well.

Teach them to overcome the sin in their lives. Are we holy on Sunday and hellish Monday-Saturday? I am not referring to striving daily to grasp the patience to mother calmly and lovingly. What I am referring to is the evil that can fester in our hearts and minds. The thoughts of bitterness and anger towards our children can be seen in the way that we speak to them and interact with them.

In order to overcome the challenges of parenting we must be an open book. This takes humility, prayer and repentance. Do not be afraid to share with your children how much you need their help. Tell them how much it helps you when they, for example...do their chores the first time they are asked.

Let them know that you are working on the Fruit of the Spirit "patience". Tell them how they can help you. Ask them to pray that anger be taken far from you each morning. To hear a child pray for the salvation of mother is such a humbling sound. I have overheard my own children pray for me many times. I have been brought to tears over the sincerity of their desire that I be holy and acceptable in the sight of God.

We cannot be hypocrites. We cannot fool our children no matter how we try. They know who we are when we take off our public face. We cannot be a hypocrites, for if we do we will run the risk of misrepresenting God to our children. We must be the light of the world for our children. We must strive not to put on a show for friends, but should endeavor to be our best for our children. Let us restructure our loyalties. Let us concern ourselves more with the face that we put on for our children first and our face for other believers will follow suit. Let our behavior at home be that of which we profess to believe.

No one of us will ever be perfect, but we can seek the will of God in our daily lives that He may perfect those things in us which are imperfect.