Category Archives: Wisdom

As for Me and My House

Book, Chapter & Verse

Some of the last words from Joshua: “Now therefore, fear the Lord, serve Him in sincerity and in truth, and put away the gods which your fathers served on the other side of the River and in Egypt.  Serve the Lord!  And if it seems evil to you to serve the Lord, choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you dwell.  But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”  Joshua 24:14-15

If you are reading the Chronological plan, these are the words you will see today.  As I thought about them, it reminded me of how many “things” we let into our house.  Good and bad, these things affect our lives in ways we don’t often stop to…

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Book Chapter and Verse

This is our read through the bible blog page:  http://www.bookchapterandverse.wordpress.com . Several of us have been attempting to do this since the beginning of the year. We started with 13 and are down to only a few, just as all New Year’s resolutions seem to go. Did you know that statistics show all New Year’s Resolutions are broken by week #4?  Well, the good news is that reading the bible is always a good idea.  Whether it be started on January 1st, June 1st or December 1st, we can all benefit from learning more of God’s word!

Today, we are playing a little memory game. Feel free to join in and participate! Answers will be posted later this evening.

P.S. We’d love to have any of you join the group. Begin on any reading plan at any time! Just read the “Welcome” tab, then “Shake Hands” and join in. We’d love to have you 🙂

Book, Chapter & Verse

Don’t you remember your high school teacher saying those words just as you entered the room?! 

“Take everything off your desk.  You will only need this paper and a pen because today is QUIZ DAY!!” 

(At that point is when we all started to panic, lol!)  You then turn over the paper and begin to read the questions: 

During which book did Moses build the ark? 

On what day did the serpent eat the apple? 

Why did Abram’s wife turn to salt?

Hmmmm……something’s a little wrong here, don’t you think?!

We’ve been reading for 8 weeks now and though lately we’ve endured long descriptive details about the tabernacle and sacrifices, there have been many other details that may be getting lost!  I thought it would be fun to do a little review and see what we could remember.

The following statements have been scrambled.  If you choose to accept this…

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Filed under Bible, Bible Study, Commitment, Friends, God, Obedience, Priorities, Time, Wisdom, Worship

There are Rules

Entered into our life this week, courtesy of Disney Channel:

You can pick your friends,

You can pick your nose,

but

You canNOT pick your friend’s nose!”

 

Wisdom once shared by a friend:

“You can pick ’em,

You can flick ’em,

You can even lick ’em…

…just as long as you DON’T stick ’em, 

we’ll get along just fine!”

And now you know 🙂

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Life Altering Events and the Resulting Resolutions

Life has a way of molding and shaping both the good and the bad in a person.  For me, as I now am in the middle years of life, I look back and remember certain events, people, or things that have shaped Julie.  Each “lesson learned” listed below is the result of a specific battle or circumstance in my life thus far.  Now, I just have to figure out a way to convey them to my children in such a way that they will understand withOUT experiencing the events that led to the lessons…

…for as some say “Wisdom is best learned by heeding warnings from others, rather than learning from experience.

1.  Stay committed to my marriage, even when it is hardest.

2.  Never let a man hit me more than once.

3.  Never let my children be hit by a man….even once.

4.  Never leave my kids when they need me most.

5.  Don’t drink. Don’t smoke. Don’t do drugs.

6.  Say “I love you” as often as possible.

7.  Let my family know that I have a relationship with the Lord so that they don’t have to worry where I went when I go.

8.  Follow the speed limits — it’s not worth the risk.

9.  Don’t always believe everything I hear.

10.  Success is not measured in riches, big houses, titles or degrees.

11.  God is the Provider….It’s all His anyway.

12.  “Stuff” is just “stuff”.

13.  Sometimes I have to remove myself to gain perspective.

14.  The older I get, the less I know.

15.  The older I get, the more I realize I depend on God.

16.  The older I get, the more I realize how much God knows.

17.  A Christian eventually begins to view life through God’s eyes.  Priorities change dramatically when that happens.

18.  Kids need Grandparents.

19.  Kids need love.

20.  Kids need to play and be kids as long as possible.

21. Trust and honesty is really, really, really, really, really important.

22.  Sometimes I think too much.  It helps to just. not. think.

23.  Depression is best handled by laying it all in God’s hands.

24.  Plan a little, but live alot.

25.  Sometimes the “t’s” don’t have to be crossed, and the “i’s” don’t have to be dotted.  It’s ok to missspell a word occasionally too.

26.  Friends can be family.

27.  I love to be loved too.

28.  Some things are for me NOT to know.

29.  Don’t have high expectations of others.  Sometimes it’s best not to have any expectations at all.

30.  To be continued as life goes on….

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Once upon a time…

Once upon a time, long long ago…(ok, well not TOO long ago), there was a fair maiden named Juliet.  She married a handsome prince and had four wonderful children.  Two of her children grew up and married handsome princes of their own.  These two men were valiant and brave members of the knighthood, serving a country who stood on the premise of freedom for all.  All peoples in the kingdom of this wonderful land lived together in peace and harmony…

…until one day their castles fell. 

Two beautiful castles as high as the sky it seemed came crashing to the ground, bringing all those inside to certain death.  Down came the Mommies and Daddies.  Down came the children.  Down came 3,000 + people who lived in the kingdom of the free and the brave.

How could this be?  How could anyone disturb this serene land?  Who would ever think of devising such a plan as to bring down the beautiful castles and break the hearts of the kingdom?

A very wicked bad man…yes, an unconscionable evil character who proclaimed that the free and the brave should not be free any longer.  His awful scheme to control the world for his “god” became the battle cry as he declared this a “holy” war against all those who are from this great land.  He was out to wage war against all the good and fair peoples of the world…

…and wage war he did.

“Hostility toward America is a religious duty, and we hope to be rewarded for it by God . . . . I am confident that Muslims will be able to end the legend of the so-called superpower that is America.”  Osama bin Laden to Time Magazine

Bringing down the two castles killed the 3,000.  Brick by falling brick, their families were suddenly faced with insurmountable futures.  Dust by particle of dust falling from the sky, the people in the great land began to realize that they were not safe and happy any longer.

Doubts, fears, mistrust, among other perilous plights surfaced daily, weekly, monthly, and during the next decade.  No longer did the people feel safe.  No longer did they roam freely upon the great land.

‎”We will not tire.  We will not falter.  We will not fail.” George W. Bush, 10/26/01

Efforts were made by the land’s government to find the wicked man and his ranks.  Search parties were sent out among the world, seeking the hide-out of this evil leader.  Vast wealth and riches from the governmental storehouses were spent to fund this effort, but to no avail…

…until 10 years later…

“Tonight, I can report to the American people and to the world, the United States has conducted an operation that killed Osama bin Laden…”  President Barak Obama, May 1, 2011

…when a group of soldiers like the valiant princes in Juliet’s family boarded four helicopters and landed upon the evil fortress taking down the wicked mastermind of the castle destruction.

Oh the people rejoiced!  Oh how happy they were! With raised hands, dancing and clapping, they shouted the name of the great land into the night as word spread of the evil man’s fall!

“The wicked end has come!”, they shouted.  “Our battle is won!”  “Praises to the One and True God of the land who has promised peace and tranquility to all who follow Him!”, they thought.

Now the valiant princes can come home!  Now the princesses will spend their “happily ever after” with the man they love!  Now there will be love, such love, and happiness among all the world!

No fear.  No tears.  No mistrust.  No inappropriate pat-downs at the royal airport.

All is well again in the great and free land!

…but then the fair maiden began to stir.  Tossing her covers aside, and waking from her deep sleep, she faced a harsh reality…

…the reality that all is NOT well.  The great land is still NOT safe, and the evil conqueror may be dead, but has many loyal followers who would just as soon kill again.

The people rejoice too vibrantly.  They appear across news stations smiling and jumping up and down not even fully understanding the true war that continues to rage.

The valiant princes remain military soldiers in an even more dangerous battle now that the “pot has been stirred”.  They will not be coming home today.  Peace will not come.  Not now…..maybe not ever.

Evilness continues to reign freely in the ranks of the fallen dictator.  Many more tyrants and terrorists will most likely commit their life to dying for the wicked cause.

Peace will not come this day because it has been foretold and proven to be a world of unrest until the one day when our true and glorious rescue will come.

” Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself.  He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of God.  And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written:  KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.”  Revelation 19: 11-16

Upon a white stallion, amidst abundant light, THE Light, Jesus Christ, will return to end the battle!  He will strike evil between the eyes, crushing the darkness with His very fingertip.  

Juliet knows that this “dream” of the wicked ruler and his fall was only a dream….a fairytale.

Reality sets in when she stops to contemplate that the battles of this world are only because of man’s depravity and sinful nature.  The enemy is satan and ourself.  We pretend to be “kings” and “queens” who deserve a life of happiness and comfort, when in actuality, our pride and selfishness lead to others falling into jealousy, rage, contempt, and war….a holy war.  Maybe even to be described as our “holier than thou” war for that is the way it is perceived to those outside of the Lord’s wisdom.

No, the princes will not come home today.  The war is not over.  They will continue to fight for freedom, putting their lives on the line daily.

No, peace will not reign today. 

No, the people of the great land, who misunderstand the will of God, continue to jubilantly rejoice totally unaware of what is to come.

God never promised us a “rose garden”.  He never said we will reign in peace without despair and tribulation.  On the contrary, He made very clear that the enemy of this world will fight unto death to destroy the works created by the Creator.

Fortunately for those who believe, we can rest on a happy ending.  As we continue to face these trials and chaos, we can know that God is still God.  There’s not a day’s event that surprises Him.  He knows already.

 So, if there must be jubilant rejoicing, let it be for Him! 

If there must be smiles upon the death of a raging tyrant, let it be proclaimed as a victory for the Lord!

If there must be more fighting, more security, more risk, let it be because we as Americans have founded our nation upon godly principles and understand that freedom and liberty is worth fighting for!

Osama bin Laden is dead.  Hussein is dead.  Hitler is dead.  So many evil dictators are dead, their works destroyed and their life worthless because they are D.E.A.D.

On the contrary, Jesus is ALIVE! 

I can only think of one death that brought the world peace and we celebrated His resurrection a week ago!” as posted on FB by Mike, who borrowed from J. Riddle, who apparently borrowed from her sister 🙂

Our God is greater!  Our God is stronger!

God, You are higher than any other!

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A Life-Worth of Loving

Life is so short.

I was recently blessed to spend 20 minutes with a complete stranger…an 81 year old woman who stopped to shop at our garage sale.

 Taking her purchases to her car, she walked slowly, bent over from osteoporosis but still full of life and so much wisdom. We continued talking out in the road by her car for about 20 minutes, and I was honored to be shown pictures of her family!

Proudly and with love she told of her children, their spouses, and grandchildren, all of who have faced varying degrees and difficulties in life. Each obviously held different values, priorities, and goals but were still loved unconditionally by this sweet lady. She was now alone, after being married to her husband for 61 years, but not alone because her family was still family.

I find myself wishing to be her. Hoping that as time goes by, our family will be strong, feel loved, and free of divisive trials.

Time is short.

We are all imperfect….especially me, but I love them all, and hope that love will be returned just as strong when I am 81.

It became obvious to me that this precious lady had committed to live her life, loving

Not just loving life itself, but living to love…each day, each moment, each family member…through trials and adversity, through good times and bad, through hardships and pain.  Making a concentrated effort to let loved ones know she cares.  Purposefully looking for the “little things” that need attention as well as the big things.  She has pushed through all those things and is coming out on the “other side” happy and in receipt of the fruit of her many years. 

To “Live Loving” is what it takes. 

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To my children, their spouses, my grandchildren, and friends…you are a gift I gratefully receive. I will try not to judge, burden, misunderstand, etc as we proceed through this one life together. Yet when I fail (as I often do), know that your forgiveness and love is appreciated and cherished just as much. Starting over and given the chance to “Live Loving” again will plant a legacy no one can destroy. Thank you for that chance, each time it’s needed.

We are going to “Love Living” through each generation of 81 year old men and women! 

“…but the greatest of these is love.”  1 Corinthians 13:13

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Life’s Work – Is it Working? (Part 2)

Continuing from the last “Life’s Work – Is It Working?” post, I want to explore the “norm”.  What is the normal, average, Christian family unit in America today?  What are the “normal” goals for families in this century?  What do we, as a whole, teach our children?  What should be their goal and steps into adulthood once they reach “the” age?  What exactly is “the age” that kids morph into adulthood?

The answers to all these questions, unchallenged, seem to be unstated – a “given” answer that we all “just know”…

As good parents, we teach them wrong from right, expect them to behave, give them vision for a future, an education to see them through, and it all has to be done by the time they’re 18! (?)

 We think that the “magic number” of 18 is when they should all understand and accept the maturity and responsibilities of adulthood.  Once they graduate high school, the world makes the big proclamation….

…Da Ta Da Daaaaaaaaaa!….

You Are An Adult NOW!!!!

Then, we send them off and expect them to suddenly do the things “adults” do?

They “suddenly” get up on time, clean their room, read their bible, go to college, make good grades, discern between good and bad teaching, flee from wrongful relationships, set goals, get a job, pay taxes, marriage, family, go to church, come back to see us occasionally, and be an overall good citizen.

Huh?  Is someone talking about TODAY’s kids?

Even in the best of Christian homes, there seems to be such the opposite.

Not just your “normal” mistakes or maturity issues, but the recent high school graduates that I know are failing.  Failing to recognize that their family is still an important part of life after high school.  Failing to see that there are more pressing and important things than immediate independence.  Failing to notice that good, healthy relationships are not ones that are found on social networking websites.  Failing to appropriate time to God on a regular basis.  Falling into thinking that a state-of-the-art cell phone with unlimited texting and data packages is a necessity. 

Christian parents all over the world are raising children who end up graduating high school with such little personal maturity that they end up crashing during their first semester of college.  

Colleges all over the world, whether they want to admit it or not, also contribute to the bombardment of failure these kids experience by choosing to ignore their need for continual direction and guidance as they adjust to life after high school.

We all assume that the “kids” are now “adults”.  We all assume that they are ready for such responsibility and we have to cut strings in order to let them make their own decisions.  Rise or fall, they will learn from it, and become the great leaders this world will need for the next generation, right?

 Wrong.

While I will certainly not begin to say that I have all the answers, personal events in the last few years have led me to some parts of the conclusion equation.

One part is that even when we raise our children with all sorts of head knowledge, there is a greater need for heart knowledge.   This is a big piece of “education” that we are all failing at miserably.

All of our lessons, our lectures, our admonition during the first eighteen years of their life reaches a point where it must be practically applied in the world in order to amount to anything.

We cannot expect them to “know” it all without applying it in their daily life.

We tell them, “respect others”, “be responsible”, “live right”, “seek God”, but fail terribly at purposefully finding opportunities for them to practice doing that while they are still under our roof. 

When we fall into the thinking that we have to go along with certain “normal” teenage issues, we begin to shy away from active involvement in our teenager’s lives.  We want to be the “cool” Mom or Dad, or we shrug our shoulders and accept that our sons and daughters don’t want us to hug them in public, or hang out with their friends.

As if in some ignorant state, we say, “they’re teenagers…they don’t want us parents hanging around”.  So we back away, leaving our children to face the world alone.

As they continue the “morph” into young adult years, we convince ourselves that we have to let go.  So we, once again, back away and allow them to face the world alone.

Now I’m not saying that we should still control every aspect of their life, but it seems to me that they still need some direction and guidance from the ones who love them most.  Even when they think they are ready to be on their own, many times they find just the opposite.  Only then, it is at a high cost or perhaps too late for them to abruptly turn back toward home.

What I have learned so far is that parents of young adults just finishing their high school years need to be more involved in their life than ever before.

Allow them freedom to make choices, but gently guide the direction of their decision, and still do whatever it takes to help them choose the appropriate steps down life’s road.

It is a rare young adult who can successfully face the world alone. 

Which leads me to the next post of the series…

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