Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Your 100 Day Prayer ~ A Book Review

About the Author:
John I Snyder is a pastor, author and conference speaker. He is the founder of Community321.com, an online faith community.

About the Book:
This wonderful book is about taking your specific needs to God in prayer. This devotional type book has everything you need to have deep, focused prayer for your need. Everyday begins with a scripture, a short, easy to read devotion, and a prayer. There is even a place to record your progress and answers to your prayers.

My Thoughts:
I found this book very helpful, it helped to keep my prayer focused on my need at hand, as well as encouraged me through the devotionals. Using this book made my prayer time more meaningful, I was able to keep on track, record my progress and reflect on my prayer from beginning to pray until the answers came.

Favorite Quote:
When we wake up every morning and say, " Today, Lord, with your help, I'm going to put you first and seek your perfect will in everything I do," We'll find worry slowly beginning to fade as we stare down every situation,with trust in God's providence and goodwill.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Lessons From the Wilderness

The wilderness could be such a draining experience, but it is also a time for learning and self reflection. Through all of these ups and downs I have been learning a few things. The question that has been on my mind is... Is this world worth going to hell for? My answer is NO ! So my solution is to walk away and that is what I am going to do. My soul and the souls of my family are way too important to risk on a world that will one day soon be destroyed. The next thing I have found myself doing is storing treasures up here on earth. I have been cleaning out my home for the last few days and I realized I have a lot of nice things, but we don't enjoy them because I was afraid the kids would break them or mess them up. I realized that I can't take these things with me when I go, so instead of storing up earthly treasures and keeping them safe, I am going to focus on storing up Heavenly treasure that will last forever. Another thing I have learned is that until you learn the lesson that God is trying to teach you, you will stay in the wilderness until you do. My pastor shared a passage that really struck home with me last night. I could never understand why the world works the way it does sometimes and bitterness began to set in, but in 2 Thessalonians 2: 10-11 says And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie. I want my prosperity to come from God because my life reflects His glory. From this I choose to love the truth, to love the Word of my God and to burn it into my heart and mind. To obey Him and to live according to His Word no matter what the cost. This wilderness experience has been hard, and it is not over, but the wisdom I have gained and lessons I am learning have made it all worth it.

Isaiah 41:10 
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not desmayed; for I am thy God: I will Strengthen thee: yea, I will help thee: yea I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Jordan River

This is an actual picture of the Jordan River, I know this may not be the exact spot that Jesus was baptized at, but just to see this picture makes my heart leap.  I look at this picture and imagine my Savior standing in this river being baptized, to see the place that many years ago my God robed in flesh walked and imprinted His footprints in that soil. I know it may sound funny, but to see a real life picture of the Jordan River made my Jesus more real to me. No one will ever know what Jesus has done for me, the deep love I feel for him. I struggle day to day as everyone else, but I never want to walk my life's path alone without my God again.

Matthew 3:13-167(KJV)
Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbade him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him.And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Let Us Run

Hebrews 12:1-2 (KJV)
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Why Do I Homeschool ?

I have been asked often " why homeschool?"

I love the idea of teaching my children at home, I love watching them get excited about something they just learned or figured out a problem they have struggled with. I love to see their eyes light up when they read about something that interests them. I love the time we get to spend together, and the close bond that continues to grow year after year.
These are not my only reasons, but they are my top reasons. Some other reasons I choose to homeschool is they get to learn more than just math, reading , spelling and english. We are able to explore topics that they want to learn. While my children were in public school, homework time was horrible, it was a chore to get them to do it. There was no excitement, they didn't want to do the work and there was no drive to learn the material. Learning should be fun, and they should be excited about it, and now with homeschooling, learning and school has become fun to them.  We use curriculum, but we also take topics in their lessons and do unit studies on them, they are free to dig as deep as they want into subjects they want to learn about.  Through homeschooling I am learning with them, and that is something I enjoy as well. The most important reason I homeschool is because I want my children to learn the Word of God, Bible Study is a major part of our lessons.  Through Bible Studies we also get many of our history and science lessons. In my family, I have come to find that homeschooling is more than just school, it has brought my family closer, not only to each other but to other homeschooling families, and within those families we have made life long friends.  Through homeschooling I am able to watch my children learn and grow, I am able to be active in every part of their education and learn a few things along the way. My family's bond has grown stronger and we grow closer everyday, also I have watched my children grow spiritually, and that in it's self is reason to continue homeschooling. I am grateful to the people who encouraged me to homeschool my children and I hope to encourage families to homeschool as well. 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Llamas and the Coyote

Psalm 18:17
He delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them which hated me: for they were too strong for me.

In my travels, I notice llamas in the fields with other animals. " Those llamas keep coyotes away," my husband says.
Today, I read an interesting account of those funny-looking, afraid-of - nothing llamas. When they see something, said  the article, they put their head up and walk straight toward it. In the coyote's "language," that is aggression, and they want nothing to do with it. 
Coyotes are opportunists, and llamas call their bluff. Whatever is stalking your mind today, call its bluff. Face it and deal with it for what it is. Be a spiritual llama.

Devotional by LaJoyce Martin

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

My Daily Prayer

Lord, help me to not render evil for evil; but ever follow that which is good both among you, and all men. Help me Lord in Jesus name to rejoice evermore, to pray without ceasing, and to always give thanks; for this is your will in Christ Jesus. Help me Lord in Jesus name that I will quench not the Spirit, that I will despise not prophesying, that I will prove all things; hold fast that which is good, and that I will abstain from all appearance of evil. In Jesus Mighty Name, Amen

Taken from 1 Thess. 5:15-22

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Do I Have Time To Teach My Children About God ?

Deuteronomy 6:7 (KJV)
And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

I love this devotion by LaJoyce Martin.

" Jewish parents taught their children diligently: when sitting, when walking, when lying down, when getting up.  But I don't have time to teach my child about God ! Really ? How about when they are eating pizza? or blowing out birthday candles? or making snow ice cream ? Uh-huh. When we're on the way to the mall? to school? to the dentist? to church? Uh-huh. When we're tucking them into bed, telling bedtime stories, turning on he nightlight? Uh-huh. When we're feeding them fruity pebbles, tying their shoes, strapping on their book bags? Uh-huh.
Talking. Walking. Resting. Rising. Those are the times to teach God's laws to our future generations." ~ LaJoyce Martin

The Proverbs 31 Woman

Proverbs 31: 10-31 (KJV)

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.
The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.
She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.
She seeketh wool, and flax, and worketh willingly with her hands.
She is like the merchant's ships; she bringeth her food from afar.
She riseth also while it is yet night, and giveth meat to her household, and a portion to her maidens.
She considereth a field, and buyeth it: with the fruit of her hands she planteth a vineyard.
She girdeth her loins with strength, and strengtheneth her arms.
She perceiveth that her merchandise is good: her candle goeth not out by night.
She layeth her hands to the spindle, and her hands hold the distaff.
She stretcheth out her hand to the poor; yea, she reacheth forth her hands to the needy.
She is not afraid of the snow for her household: for all her household are clothed with scarlet.
She maketh herself coverings of tapestry; her clothing is silk and purple.
Her husband is known in the gates, when he sitteth among the elders of the land.
She maketh fine linen, and selleth it; and delivereth girdles unto the merchant.
Strength and honour are her clothing; and she shall rejoice in time to come.
She openeth her mouth with wisdom;and her tongue is the law of kindness.
She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness. 
Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.
Many daughters have done virtuously, but thou excellest them all.
Favour is deceitful, and beauty is vain: but a woman that feareth the Lord, she shall be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands; and let her own works praise her in the gates.

These verses describe the ideal wife and mother. Her whole life is centered around a reverent fear of God, and compassion for those in need, and faithfulness and love toward her family. To have the traits of this woman is my heart's deepest desire. I long to be like her, Lord, instill in me the traits of the virtuous women that is spoke of in Your Word. In Jesus Mighty Name, Amen

Monday, August 1, 2011

I have not always been a good mom, as hard as it is to admit, it is true.  I had 3 children under 4 by the time I was 21, and years of bad choices and struggling as a single mom made it really hard to enjoy being a mom.  I married in 2004, and my children adored my husband to be, and it seemed our lives were falling into place.  My husband and I struggled, arguments began to be on going in our home, our finacial situation seemed to generate more arguments, we were a mess. We carried on many years like this, on and off, everytime something was going right my husband would get laid off or something else would come along to mess it up.  In 2010, right after the birth of our fifth child we were seperating, it was over.  One day, the children were watching a movie, and a song came on, " Oh Lord, I want you to help me, help me on this journey, help me on my way. Oh Lord I want you to help me."  My husband and I were not talking, but he came to me and said " we need to go to church, I want you to find a church." I called a local church here, and spoke with a lady and made an appointment for the Pastor to visit our home. I don't know what happened that day in me, but I began to feel a need, a need that I have never felt before.  I prayed that day, something broke in me, I felt renewed, lighter, not so hard and bitter.  My husband was going through some changes as well, accepting Jesus was the best decision we have ever made. Things slowly began to come together, God was putting a broken family back together.  My husband and I still struggle from time to time, but we are together, we rely on each other and most of all our Lord Jesus Christ.  This is not the relaunch post I want to make, but this morning I had the feeling that I needed to share this.  Giving my life, my children , husband and all of our situations to God was the turning point in my life,  it is not an overnight fix, but it makes things alot easier, God will give you strength to make it through whatever it is that you are going through, and you can find comfort in knowing that you are His child and a father cares for His children.  I hope someone finds comfort in my words today, I don't share my story much and I don't even know why I felt I should share today, but I hope and pray if someone is going through some of the things I did, that you turn to Jesus, it will be the best decision you could make.  If you have any prayer request, feel free to leave them in the comments below, and know that my husband and I will be praying for you.