Thursday, September 20, 2012

2012 September Day Book

Outside my window...
...Is my Lazarus rose bush quickly climbing in the middle of my window.

I am thinking...
...that I am a VERY blessed woman to be married to Dear:  a man who WANTS to help me!

I am thankful for... Lord Jesus Christ, who has saved me, and wants to perfect me!

In the kitchen... cleanliness and orderliness, which creates much peace for me.

I am wearing... work blouse and jumper.

I am creating...
...ideas in my head for future yard projects.

I am going... ask Dear if we can run some errands when he gets home.

I am wondering...
...why I am the way I am.

I am reading...
...the book of Exodus, slowly.

I am hoping... be a blessing, not a burden; to be a Godly influence, not an ungodly one.

I am learning...
...that I cannot talk God's ear off.

Around the house... the desire to learn, to grow, to mature in the Lord; is the desire to become well-rounded people;
is love.

I am pondering... understandings.

A favorite quote of the day:
"Do not judge your relationship with Christ based upon your circumstances; judge your relationship with Christ based upon His Word." (Can't remember who said it.)

One of my favorite things...
...Is to be useful in the ways of the Lord:  encouraging Godliness, edifying the saints, praying to God, living a Godly life, provoking unto love and good works, etc.

A few plans:
  1. Prepare Sunday's teaching lesson for the young people.
  2. Find a way to thank Dear's stepdad for being willing and able to fix our car.
  3. Find a person willing to feed/water our ducks when we go to visit my sister-in-law and her family up north.
  4. Pray, pray, and pray some more about my burdens.
  5. Study, study, and study some more about what God's answers are to those burdens.
A peek into my day:
My miniature roses and Forget-Me-Nots growing fabulously, after a dear friend sprinkled some organic fertilizer on them!  I think once we get an arbor, that I will train those roses to grow on it...Since they seem to be wanting to come out of their pot.  :)
Copyright I Am The Clay


Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Keeping At Home And Sharing Christ

     I truly enjoy doing my duty here at home.  Sure, sometimes I allow myself to become overwhelmed:  due to emotions going haywire; allowing things to get piled up so that I am catching up rather than keeping up; not focusing on the Lord, but on people; not keeping a better schedule; etc.  However, when I do what I am supposed to do, there are the sweet feelings of true accomplishment and happiness.
     It is nice to know that God is training me how to better care for my family.  Granted, it is just Dear, Meow, Bubba, Jail Break, Jade, Ruby, and Yours Truly, but that is enough creatures to keep active.  (Meow & Bubba are our two cats; Jail Break, Jade, and Ruby are our ducks.)  There are always needs to be met, that I am called to do.
     I have been learning how to clean, prepare meals, and overall, live healthier.  I have been learning how to keep at the sometimes rigorous, sometimes monotonous, always repetitive routine of keeping at home.  I get to delight in having my own schedule, having a good "boss," having a good home, having a great "workplace," having great "suppliers," and so forth.  All these things give me great pleasure that the world never offered, nor could it:  the source of my joy in all these things is Christ.
     You see, doing all these things, day in and day out, would easily wear down any person.  It gets boring; not sometimes, but a lot of times.  You do not receive a paycheck validating your time spent:  washing the dishes over and over in one day; washing the laundry; preparing the meals; cleaning the home; tending the animals; tending the yard; scheduling appointments; etc.  There are usually no thrills in folding t-shirts just so.
     There is no "value" in a woman who stays home; at least, not much anymore.  I have found it rare to hear of anyone praising God for women who stay home, with/without children, to care for the family they have.  I have found it rare for anyone to see the worth of fulfilling God's command that a woman keep at home:  loving the Lord, loving her husband, loving her children, etc.
     Yet, the Lord finds it valuable.  Dear finds it valuable.  Having the Lord value it, is enough reason for me. Having Dear value it, even more so.
     Though I am a keeper at home, I have another command from Him:  to share with others His Gospel. As I write, I seek to glorify Him.  Since I need to be at home, taking care of this place, preparing for Dear, I am not out working a job that gives me opportunity to share it with others.  So, I write. I realize many who read my blog are already saved, at least I hope so.  Maybe there are others who are not.
     I do have opportunities to share with others the Good News of Jesus Christ.  I can do it when I am running my errands.  If I am behaving myself as His ambassador, folks will recognize that I am not a citizen here.  :)  If I speak up for my King, and tell folks of Him, (not being so proud in heart that I care more of their opinion of me than of their eternal destination), I can share the Gospel.
     Since I am a woman, I am not called to preach.  I am not called to teach in the church.  I am called to go out and be a witness for Jesus Christ, though!  Being a witness for Him is no small matter!  I get to testify the truth!
     Would I be negligent to testify at a trial, as a witness to an event that would put an evildoer in prison?  Just as I pray I would not be negligent in such a duty, so I, too, must not be negligent to testify of Christ.  Though I be a woman, I can do it!
     Were not the first testifiers to Christ's resurrection women?  What a precious gift!  I get to testify of it, too. :)
     Time is only shortening, not lengthening.  Ladies, I beg you, find ways to tell of your Saviour.  If you have been born again, do not be neglect to speak up for Him!  There are many ways to share:  Gospel tracts, your own salvation testimony, your lifestyle...But you must speak!  Yes, people will be "offended."  Yes, people will be "mean."  Yes, people will not want to hear.  Should that stop your mouth?
     One day, we who have been redeemed by Christ will be caught up in the air with Him.  Whether we are still alive on this earth, or raised from the grave, we will meet Him and be transformed!  Do you not want to see as many people as possible have that blessed opportunity as well?  Or, do you wish to see them suffer eternal torment in the lake of fire?
     We do not know the hour in which He will come for us.  Do we want to be content with "living a nice life," while not telling others why we have such a "nice life?"  I used to be afraid to tell folks I was a Christian, for they teased me, were rude, scoffed, etc.  Now, by God's grace, their soul is worth more than my feelings.
     Yes, we are still sinners.  But we are sinners saved by grace.  That same Author of grace gives us grace to overcome sin.
     Yes, lost sinners will see us sin.  They will also see God pick us back up and set us on the right way, again.  They will see our hearts towards God as we live in thanksgiving for our salvation.
     Yes, they will think living the Bible way extreme.  The longer we wait for the Lord, the more "extreme" we become, for evil will wax worse and worse.  Keep living faithfully for the Lord.
     Yes, life can become, or maybe already is, or has been, rough.  I know that being in the U.S.A. has its advantages for the Christian.  There are many, many, many other places that do not allow the liberties we have to share of Jesus Christ, and not be killed...By the government, neighbors, family, etc.  Still live faithfully.
     Keep being a Godly wife, a Godly mother, a Godly woman.  How you care for your family is important.  If you have children, they are a great place to start evangelizing.  They watch, and listen, always observing.  They learn from you about God the most.
     There are people praying that someone would talk to their lost loved one.  There are people praying for workers for the fields.  I know, for at our church and in our private lives, we pray in such ways.
     Are you that lady that needs to talk to that person's sister, who happens to be your neighbor/local grocery store clerk/librarian/coffee barista/friend/enemy?  Are you the woman that needs to talk to the grumpy old man down the street?  Are you the lady who needs to tell their family member who is vitriolic towards Godly things about Christ?  Are you the lady who needs to tell the wondrous story of her marriage to those whose marriage/marriages are not heavenly?
     Look to the Bible.  Find out how God wants women to testify of Him.  Pray for courage.  Pray for protection.  Pray for boldness.  Pray for wisdom.  All the while you are praying, speak for Him.

2Co 5:1  For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 
2Co 5:2  For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: 
2Co 5:3  If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. 
2Co 5:4  For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. 
2Co 5:5  Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. 
2Co 5:6  Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: 
2Co 5:7  (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) 
2Co 5:8  We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord. 
2Co 5:9  Wherefore we labour, that, whether present or absent, we may be accepted of him. 
2Co 5:10  For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. 
2Co 5:11  Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences. 
2Co 5:12  For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart. 
2Co 5:13  For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause. 
2Co 5:14  For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: 
2Co 5:15  And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again. 
2Co 5:16  Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh: yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we him no more. 
2Co 5:17  Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 
2Co 5:18  And all things are of God, who hath reconciled us to himself by Jesus Christ, and hath given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 
2Co 5:19  To wit, that God was in Christ, reconciling the world unto himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and hath committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 
2Co 5:20  Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ's stead, be ye reconciled to God. 
2Co 5:21  For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. 

Growing Home

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

An Unmerited, Much Adored, Relationship

     It is so nice to be home.  :)  I enjoy waking up in my own bed, in our own house, surrounded by our own memories.  It all is very soothing.
     I enjoy being available to help in time of need.  I also enjoy being home, having everything ready for Dear's arrival.  I enjoy being able to commune with him:  talk of our day, search the news together, watch a documentary together, eat dinner together...Be together.  Such sweet pleasures!
     Every day there is a new pleasure to be found in being married to him.  Since we have been married, we have experienced much together.  There have not been too many times wherein we were separated for extended time periods.  I know that God may change our lives to where saying such a thing will be few and far between, so for now I soak up the precious time we get to have one with another.
     We did not start our relationship right.  Yet, God has transformed our marriage into a sacred entity that I never dreamed marriage to be.  Nothing/no one precedes it, save the Lord Jesus Himself.  I relish that sanctity.
     I have had many people tell me over the years that our spending all our time together is not wise.  However, is that not what the Lord told us to do?  Is not the church to be "attached to the hip" of the Lord Jesus Christ?  Are we not to be an example of Christ and His church?  No matter the naysayers, we enjoy each other's company, even in the bad times.
     There is no other person I can imagine sharing my innermost thoughts, feelings, desires, etc.  I think I have confessed much to him in the last few years, that prior only the Lord knew.  Dear knows many (if not all already) of my sins.  He sees blessings in me, that praise the Lord he can see!  Even when I am being me, and not yielding to Christ, he still loves me...What a man!
     I appreciate that I have a husband, though not perfect, who desires to see me walk with Christ unswervingly.  He wants me to be all Christ desires me to be.  He takes seriously his call of God to guide me in the same manner that Christ leads the church.  He takes seriously the Bible, period.  I know that he is this way because God has been making him this way, since being born again into God's family in 2006.  What a rare gift!
     I did not earn, merit, or work my way into, this gift of HOLY matrimony.  Some of my readers, who know me personally, know that Dear and I came together in an unholy manner.  Our marriage did not start out holy.  Yet now, by God's mercy and grace, it is holy.  We seek to keep our marriage under the guidance of God; because of which we can say we have a "heavenly" marriage.
     I used to be ignorant, and stubborn, to the ways of God pertaining to how I was to behave as Dear's wife.  Innumerable thanks go to God for softening my heart to how He wants me to be, as well as to those servants who were faithful to Christ in sharing head-on truth and wisdom about the matter.
     A great book that aided me much, and opened my eyes, was "Created To Be His Help Meet," by Mrs. Debi Pearl.  She told it straight as it is, and did no beating around the bush.  She shared the blessings of being a submissive, Godly wife, and the cursings of being the antithesis.  I have re-read that book many times, constantly gleaning. The Bible, and her book, have been the two greatest tools in my toolbox.
     I love that I have God and Dear seeking me to be a better wife.  It is all for Christ's glory!  Even when times are difficult, for one reason or another, I can choose to be a Godly wife.  I can choose to not do what my flesh knows to do well:  sin.  I can choose to submit myself to Christ, and see His glory abound.  I can choose to be that way, and be hidden in Him.  I can, because Christ lives in me.
     Because He lives in me, I can say I have a glorious marriage.  We still are learning the ropes, but we want to learn them.  We delight in one another, (I speak for myself, at least. ;D).  Humanly speaking, his is the face I seek in the crowd.  His are the arms I seek to comfort and protect me.  His is the mind I seek for counsel in the ways of the Lord.  He is the one I seek to be my prayer partner.  His company is the one I desire most.
     I am glad that God has worked so diligently, fervently, unwaveringly, to get me to this place of delight in Dear.  I used to find more delight in my girlfriends.  I used to find more comfort with my family (biological and church).  Yet, God fixed my perspective, by fixing my heart.  His word have I hid in my heart, that I might not sin against Him.  By so doing, Dear is number 2 in my life, not anyone/thing else.  :)
     So, what that means in my life these days is that except in rare times (in cases of emergencies, dire needs, etc.), nothing/no one takes away my time that is to be given to him.  First comes God, second comes marriage.  Dear does not impose on my Bible and prayer time.  He does not interfere with me walking with Christ.  He cannot tell me to sin against my God, and expect me to do it.  In the same way, Jane Doe cannot desire to have a shopping day with me, if that will hinder me from ministering to my husband.  She cannot persuade me to neglect my husband and his needs, to fulfill her wants.
     It means that Dear-time is sacred time.  It means that after he has worked all day, I excitedly wait for his return home!  It means that I do not wish to be away from home when he is here.  It means that "girl-time" can be when he is not here.  There are those rare times when I get together with friends in the evening, but it is not habitual.  Just as he gets together with his friends, and I do not wish to take that time away from him; but, it is not habitual.  Our togetherness is habitual.  :)
     I love God, and thank Him much.  I love him because He first loved me.  I love that He has blessed me with Dear, thanking Him that He has given us an unmerited marriage.

Growing Home
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