Reflecting some of my family's interests: God's wonderful creation (especially mountains and hills!), music, and language...
Psalm 121:1-2 (NASB)
From where shall my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.
30 December 2008
24 December 2008
Read more of the story here, here, and here.
18 December 2008
17 December 2008
16 December 2008
Our pastor has been encouraging us and working with us as a church on memorizing the following passage from the prophecy of Habakkuk:
11 December 2008
(And now I must get back to the "vacation recovery program" – cleaning house, putting things away, etc., ETC!)
10 December 2008
There was a time in the not-too-distant past, when I seriously doubted whether I would ever have the joy of hand-made school projects and decorations. Looking at the precious Thanksgiving projects, brought home from K-2 and propped up on our desk as decorations, has literally brought tears – of unspeakable joy – to this Mommy's eyes!
22 November 2008
As we approach Thanksgiving Day, I am thankful for the following divinely revealed truths:
Christ died for sins once for all, the just for the unjust, so that He might bring us to God...
(1 Peter 3:18)
God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.
He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy...
By grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.
If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.
For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed."
(Scripture quotes from the New American Standard Bible.)
15 November 2008
(For those of you overseas reading this... Yes, I'll miss the couponing game! I must admit that I thrive on this kind of challenge. But I know that God will always provide – I can trust HIM to be more than enough. He is faithful!)
The latest, greatest couponing experience for me occurred at Walgreens today. Here's a snapshot of the loot...
This seemed to be "holiday baking" week at Walgreens. Here's how it all played out with the help of coupons in the weekly store flier, stacked with manufacturers coupons, plus the $5 off a $20 purchase coupon Walgreens emailed to me. I went to two stores – the first was out of two desired items, and I wanted to use a second coupon on the Carnation evaporated milk deal anyway. According to my receipts, the totals were:
Total "out of pocket" – $15.05
WG coupon savings: $10.51
WG advertised savings: $4.00
Manufacturers coupon savings: $2.55
Total savings: $17.06
Total out of pocket – $6.45
WG coupon savings: $4.11
Manufacturers coupon savings: $3.50
Total savings: $7.61
Notice please that both times my total "out of pocket" was less than the total I saved! But the best part is that it was all FREE because I used my Walgreens gift card – thanks to their EasySaver catalog deals (where they refund the price of certain items each month and add a 10% bonus if you decide to get the rebate on a Walgreens gift card)!
Now I can hardly wait to get started on holiday baking!
A special thanks to my friend Andrea (here) who introduced me to her two favorite blogs – Crystal at "moneysavingmom" (here) and Sarah at "Fiddledeedee" (here) – which in turn caused me to enroll in the "Walgreens 101" and "Publix Super Saver Deals" online courses. Thanks, ladies!
While concentrating anew on frugality, recent sermon applications have repeatedly brought me to focus on generosity and biblical good works as well. (See an earlier post on those topics here.)
To see my new blog, inspired by couponing, click here.
12 November 2008
Our little fan of letters – big and small, English or Spanish – named all the letters correctly in Spanish, except for the S in exóticos which in the actual font on the poster looked very much like a capital G. She also commented that one of the O’s had a little stick – ¡Tiene un palo! – as she pointed out the accent mark!
We will always remember. We will always be proud.
We will always be prepared, so we may always be free.
~ Ronald Reagan on the 40th Anniversary of D-Day
06 November 2008
05 November 2008
Headline: God is on the throne of the universe! (See Psalm 2.)
My dear husband read an encouraging passage to me last night before we knew the definite outcome of the presidential election.
The Holy Spirit used the Apostle Paul to write the following words to Titus, the pastor of the church in Crete:
(John Mark prefaced the passage by pointing out the description of the Cretans, the people Titus was pastoring, in chapter 1. We couldn't help but notice a parallel to our modern society...)
"Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."
The instructions to Christians in Crete in the first century apply to me, an American Christian in the twenty-first century. (Let's not forget the mercy of God in saving us!)
Remind them to be subject to rulers, to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good deed,
to malign no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing every consideration for all men.
For we also once were foolish ourselves, disobedient, deceived, enslaved to various lusts and pleasures, spending our life in malice and envy, hateful, hating one another.
But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared,
He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,
whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior,
so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.
This is a trustworthy statement; and concerning these things I want you to speak confidently, so that those who have believed God will be careful to engage in good deeds. These things are good and profitable for men.
I'd also like to share a link to an encouraging article I just read; Pastor Chris Anderson in Ohio outlines a biblical response I, as a Christian, ought to have...
Christians and the Obama Administration
28 October 2008
Note however, (before you get too excited) that she also wanted to make the title “My name is...” say “Steel” – so we’ve since made that addition.
19 October 2008
Definitely and delightfully ALL girl, Elizabeth also is (like her Mommy before her!) interested in what are typically considered boy's toys. She loves anything with wheels and is very interested in learning specific names of vehicles, etc. She came up with this train, using wheeled parts from three different sets of blocks...
She also loves to build, combining larger blocks with smaller, at times fitting all of them snugly into spaces. She'll even use books as building materials, too...
She obliged me and exhibited some of her handiwork...
18 October 2008
I heard and my inward parts trembled,
At the sound my lips quivered;
Decay enters my bones,
And in my place I tremble
Because I must wait quietly for the day of distress,
For the people to arise who will invade us.
Though the fig tree should not blossom
And there be no fruit on the vines,
Though the yield of the olive should fail
And the fields produce no food,
Though the flock should be cut off from the fold
And there be no cattle in the stalls,
Yet I will exult in the LORD,
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation.
The Lord GOD is my strength,
And He has made my feet like hinds' feet,
And makes me walk on my high places.
07 October 2008
How sweet and awful is the place
with Christ within the doors,
While everlasting love displays
the choicest of her stores.
While all our hearts and all our songs
join to admire the feast,
Each of us cries, with thankful tongues,
"Lord, why was I a guest?"
Why was I made to hear Thy voice,
and enter while there's room,
When thousands make a wretched choice,
and rather starve than come?
'Twas the same love that spread the feast
that sweetly forced us in;
Else we had still refused to taste,
and perished in our sin.
Pity the nations, O our God,
constrain the earth to come;
Send Thy victorious word abroad,
and bring the strangers home.
by Isaac Watts
02 October 2008
27 September 2008
18 September 2008
What should be my response under pressure?
Trust in the LORD and do good;
Dwell in the land and feed on His faithfulness.
God is our refuge and strength,
Abundantly available for help in tight places.