Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Revisiting Thrifty Modesty

It's been a couple of years since my original "Thrifty Modesty" post.  My, time has flown!

In the past two years, I've watched as the issue of dress has come more and more to the forefront of blogs, Facebook pages, and so on.  So many folks seem to worry about the clothing they wear, what accessories go best, if it passes the Facebook or Instagram muster.

Throughout all the posts, "selfies", blogs about clothing, articles from various sources, I've noticed a theme starting to take shape.

"Look at ME, I want to look good for God, what do you think?"

Now, don't take this the wrong way--modest dress is a wonderful thing, and we are admonished in Scripture to look our gender.  It is very nice to see women dressed as women and not mistake them as men, or mistake men as women (which unfortunately happens more and more).  I am very glad to see people desiring to dress modestly rather than showing as much skin as the world would love to see.

I truly am!

I do worry about the "look at me" aspect that is poking through in the movement toward modesty.  There's many areas on the net dedicated to showing off the latest, "hottest", modest fashions.  Who are we trying to impress?

Ladies, it's a wonderful thing to dress modestly!  Please, please take a quick check of your thoughts, your heart, and make sure that you're not diving in to pictures and "selfies" and the websites and so on and making the style of dress an idol.  It is so easy to do, when our circles are saturated with talk of skirts and dresses, flats and manicures, hair clips and so on.

Please, guard your hearts, keep it as modest and clean as the appearance on the outside.  God will love that so much more. :)

Lots of hugs, dear ladies...




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Monday, August 25, 2014

And Can It Be?

And can it be that I should gain
An interest in the Savior’s blood?
Died He for me, who caused His pain—
For me, who Him to death pursued?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?
Amazing love! How can it be,
That Thou, my God, shouldst die for me?

’Tis mystery all: th’Immortal dies:
Who can explore His strange design?
In vain the firstborn seraph tries
To sound the depths of love divine.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore,
Let angel minds inquire no more.
’Tis mercy all! Let earth adore;
Let angel minds inquire no more.

He left His Father’s throne above
So free, so infinite His grace—
Emptied Himself of all but love,
And bled for Adam’s helpless race:
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!
’Tis mercy all, immense and free,
For O my God, it found out me!

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quickening ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

Still the small inward voice I hear,
That whispers all my sins forgiven;
Still the atoning blood is near,
That quenched the wrath of hostile Heaven.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.
I feel the life His wounds impart;
I feel the Savior in my heart.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.
Bold I approach th’eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.


found here


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Saturday, August 23, 2014

Able To Keep (hymn)

Jesus, my Lord, my life, my all,
In Thee I trust, in Thee I hide;
I know Thou wilt not let me fall
If I stay by Thy side. 

Refrain:
In Thy dear hands of love I lay,
Fulfill Thy purposes in me;
Teach me to say from day to day,
Thy will be done in me. 

The storms of life are fierce and dark,
And hosts of Satan press me hard;
But still Thy strength can keep my bark,
Though broken and sin-marred. 

Though hard the cross, the burden great,
And I so weak, so poor, undone;
Yet on Thy side I'll stand and wait,
Till victory is won. 

The battle, Lord, is Thine, and we,
Though foe may kill us; yet I see
Thy blood sets poor dead captives free,
Though fierce the war may be. 

found here

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Friday, August 22, 2014

She Loved

This is something I have to share.  This song brings tears to my eyes, as this is my dear adoptive mom, my cousin Anna all wrapped up in a song.



Someone once asked
If only you knew
How short life would be
What would you do?
What would they say
When God called you home?
What would they engrave
Once you were gone?

I hope they would see
What I've done in my life
Who I've cared for
And how I survived
I hope they'd say

Chorus:
She loved more than anything else
She loved with all of her heart
She loved everyone she believed in
She loved...oh she loved

She loved the Lord
And served all her life
A sacrificial mother
And an honorable wife
She gave all she had
And through every trial
Made life much sweeter
Because of her smile

Everyone will see
What she's done in her life
Who she cared for
And how she survived
I'm sure they'd say

Chorus:
She loved more than anything else
She loved with all of her heart
She loved everyone she believed in
She loved...oh she loved


She loved...everyone she believed in
She loved..oh she loved
Oh...she loved


Lyrics


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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Who Is Your Role Model?


My role model was a homemaker.  A mom.  A wife of 53 years.  A Christian.  My "adoptive" mom who stepped into the empty spot my own had left when she walked away.

She took me under her wing when I was an awkward 12 year old.  My home life was a wreck, as my parents fought constantly, had separated, then gotten back together because of me.  Life was miserable.  We had moved around a bit, and landed in Missouri after leaving the only life I'd known in southern Oklahoma.  My dad moved us to the same town his sister (my aunt) and her husband lived in, and I met my cousin Anna.  That first summer in Missouri, she offered to have me come down for a week's visit at her house just outside a larger city in central Missouri.

Anna was just a little bit younger than my biological mom.  She and her husband had a beautiful old home on the outskirts of the city, a bit of acreage.  I can remember first walking into her home and being in awe of all the wonderful antiques and collectibles, and being so afraid to touch anything for fear I'd break them.  I was so nervous and awkward, never the social person then or now.  She made me feel so much at home then, as I was family, but she also made me feel loved.

The summer before I turned 13, she started having me come stay a week at her home.  She made me feel special.  I'd save up money and she'd take me to the mall, have my hair done, and for a short while let me get away from all the yelling and fighting and stress that was my home.  This tradition continued for a few years.  She and I wrote letters back and forth, she listened to my dreams of playing music, of being a writer, of doing so much, all written from a little farm house in northern Missouri.  She would encourage me through the letters she wrote in return, she breathed life into me that was lacking so much at home.  When I was abused and broken within my home, her kind words helped sew back the pieces and made me feel a little closer to whole.

Each summer I spent there, I watched and learned from her.  I took in how she kept a meticulously clean home, with dishes always done, beds made first thing, laundry going, floors kept nice and clean, and seldom a speck of dust.  I adored how she decorated in Victorian styles, with lots of laces and frills, how she and her husband did so much to make the house such a beautiful home.  She made many of her decorations, she painted and papered, she purchased fine antiques to decorate with, she worked hard to keep her home nice.  She worked outside, keeping beautiful beds of flowers, so many varieties one would lose count.  One year, she built her own water and rock garden to place her herbs in, complete with arbor covered in clematis.  It was such a pretty scene to see when arriving at her home.  She and her husband built a big greenhouse to supplement the starts for their overflowing garden, and they worked together in the garage-turned-workshop meticulously refinishing antiques and reupholstering furniture.

She worked hard, with her hands, with her love.

She was a homemaker, tending her husband and children, and when they were grown and on their own with families of their own, she still was close by to help.  She was there to make home cooked meals, always had time to brew a fresh cup of tea or hot chocolate, she made you feel at home no matter the time of day of what she was doing.  She always made you feel she was glad to have you even when she was dead tired.


She was there for ups and downs with her children and grandchildren and loved on them no matter what.

She did the same for me as I grew up, as "one of her kids".  I wanted her to be so proud of me, I wanted to show her I could make something out of myself.   It wasn't to my own mother that I ran to when I was in an abusive relationship with my son's father and had to leave it running with a special needs child in tow.  It was to her.  It was her strength and discipline that helped me get back on my own feet, stronger and a bit wiser, than what I'd been before.  She helped teach me to face my worst nightmares head on, no matter if it meant possible hurt, to do what was right before the law.  Her discipline in holding me accountable made me grow up from the scared single mom into a hard working determined to stand on my own feet mom willing to sacrifice my comforts for my son.

She was the mom I had needed, long after my own had left.

It was to her I look up to for homemaking skills, for learning sewing skills and the desire to make things to build my home.  It was to her that I asked advice on canning, cooking, gardening.  After I married, it was to her that I sought out the more home building aspects.  My husband appreciates the things she taught me via internet, as well as when I was younger and in her hands.

She also showed me the need for salvation.  I had no idea that I needed Christ, not until she and her daughter showed me as a 25 year old adult.  She and her daughter made sure those seeds were well planted, watered, cultivated, and they took root.

There's so much more I could say about my role model, but not near enough space inside a blog's allotted memory space to write it.

My role model, my cousin by blood but mom in so many ways, passed away this week.  I miss talking with her, with asking her how she's doing and how the garden's coming along.  I miss hearing her adventures in canning her yearly quarts of V8 juice for the winter.  I miss her encouraging words so much.

She fought a hard battle with cancer, but she fought with her head held high.  She didn't complain when the pain was more than she could bear.  Instead, she worried about others, all the way to the end.

She was married to her high school sweetheart for 53 (or 54, I forget) years, a loving wife, mom, and grandma.

And my adoptive mom..and role model.

Who is your role model?


Lovingly shared with:  The Modest Mom, Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth, What Joy Is Mine, A Proverbs 31 Wife, Time Warp Wife, Cornerstone Confessions



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Sunday, August 17, 2014

Slow Down!

Slow down, dear friend--you're dashing to and fro!
Slow down, dear friend, you're missing out you know.
The flowers outside await you, the chores will still be there,
Step outdoors and breathe some fresh air.

Slow down dear friend, catch a deep breath,
Slow down dear friend, wind down and rest,
For your days are so busy, the little details by you race
You miss the good things in life, slow down your pace!

Slow down dear friend, your little ones call,
Slow down dear friend, toss Johnny the ball.
Slow down dear friend, and laugh at little things,
Slow down dear friend, and enjoy what God bring. :)


(original by me)


Shared at:  The Modest Mom, Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth, What Joy Is Mine, Yes They Are All Ours, Time Warp Wife, Cornerstone Confessions, A Wise Woman Builds Her Home



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Thursday, August 14, 2014

What Does It Take For You?

“There is no joy in this world like union with Christ. The more we can feel it, the happier we are.” --Charles Spurgeon


What does it take for you to tell someone about Jesus?

A tragedy?

A joyous occasion?

Do you want arguments for soul winning? Look up to Heaven, and ask yourself how sinners can ever reach those harps of gold and learn their everlasting song, unless they have someone to tell them of Jesus, who is mighty to save. But the best argument of all is to be found in the wounds of Jesus. You want to honor Him, you desire to put many crowns upon His head, and this you can best do by winning souls for Him. These are the spoils that He covets, these are the trophies for which He fights, these are the jewels that shall be His best adornment. --Charles Spurgeon


“If sinners will be damned, at least let them leap to Hell over our bodies. And if they will perish, let them perish with our arms about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, at least let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go there unwarned and unprayed for.” -- Charles Spurgeon 


Any time is a good time to tell about Jesus!


Quotes found here.


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Saturday, August 9, 2014

Taking a Stand When It's Not Popular

Do you believe in and stand with a position that is not popular in today's world?

If you're a Bible believing Christian, you most definitely do!

Today's society stands against so much of what the Bible says is good and right in the eyes of the Lord.  Our world thumbs its collective nose at God's Word, and those who believe and follow God's Word.

Lately, it seems if a Christian opposes, either by witness or deed, a certain agenda, they lose their livelihood (job) and face a judge.  On the other side of the world, Christians are being hacked to death and their heads hung on spikes in the name of Allah.  In our own country, we as Christians are prosecuted for turning down a customer of our choosing when it comes to following faith or popular opinion.  We are told we cannot pray in public (but many of us do anyway).  We are told we cannot have a Bible in public as it might offend someone.

Christ in His Word told us these days would come, and would get worse before He returns for His Bride.  When we start to see these happenings unfold we are to look up for Him.

During our time remaining here, we as Christians are at a point where we must choose--do we stand on the Bible's Word, what God says about different issues that are so prominent in our world and how we are to live and behave, or do we follow the wind direction of the day?  That choice is yours individually, one you must make on your own.  We are each accountable to Jesus and how we lived our lives, and if we are ashamed of Him, He says in Scripture that He will be ashamed of us, if we deny Him, He will deny us.

There's nothing this side of heaven worth Jesus denying me to my Father.

Yes, the days will get harder, the winds have turned against Christians and continues to blow harder...but continue reading the Bible--in the end, Jesus reigns as King of King and Lord of Lords!

Keep looking up--Jesus is coming!



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Thursday, August 7, 2014

Reflecting on What Is Good

It's been a rather busy summer here in our home, with children going to and fro, multiple Bible camps, and so on.  The day that school released for the summer break our life has been hectic, with little time to just breathe.

This isn't necessarily how God wants us to live.  He doesn't want us so busy we catch ourselves coming and going with no time set aside for Him.  We owe Him a goodly portion of our time!

Soon, if not already, children will be heading back to school buildings and homeschoolers will begin their new school year.  Busy hours ahead will be a lot to tackle.  We still must keep a mind of what we are doing, how busy we choose to let ourselves be, and keep a balance.

Don't forget throughout your day to slow down, and reflect on what is Good and Holy, talk with Him, and slow down to listen to what He tells you in His Word, the Bible.




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Wednesday, August 6, 2014

What Will You Do If They Make It Mandatory For All Americans To Take An Ebola Vaccine?

Something to think about......from Worldview Weekend.




What Will You Do If They Make It Mandatory For All Americans To Take An Ebola Vaccine?





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Seasons of Change

It is now August, and soon summer will slide into fall.  The marigolds in bright and blazing oranges and yellows are in full bloom, sunflowers are bending over under the weight of their seeds, and soon the fall mums will be in full glory.

Fall is a beautiful time here in southern Kansas.  The winds are not too chilly and the temperatures remain stable and warm for most of the season.  In our rural area, it's a regular sight to see haystacks decorated as a jack-o-lantern, scarecrows in the garden or on the side of a house.  The trees turn from the green (and burned brown) of summer into bright beautiful colors, and the Lord provides a few extra layers of compostable leaves to rake up.

As we start preparing for the seasonal changes here, it is also nearing time for school to start.  It's still in the mid 90's for day time highs, so looking forward to fall is a bit of a whimsy for now, a small dream of feeling a cool breeze and having the windows open once again.  Soon the school bus will whisk away children to the schools, and we'll again see children walking past our house to the very near school buildings.  Sports practices will again commence, soon we'll hear the high school band practicing outside on nice days.  The children will have again their daily routines of school and activities, library time, church, and a day or relaxing.
Here in our home, we are slowly making way for the cooler weather to come.  Hand stitched quilts are under way, machine pieced and quilted by hand, to help dash away the coming chill.  Soon it will be time to bring back out the sweatshirts and coats, blankets and comforters of cooler weather.  It will be soon time to plant the bulbs for spring growing that must winter under cold earth, and to prepare the fall garden spot for one last round of lettuce and spinach before the hard freezes of late October or early November.

This is one of my favorite times, preparing and getting ready to snuggle down for the coming months.  There's so much to do, such as preserve as much of the fresh vegetables and fruits as possible for enjoying in the hardest coldest months when nothing grows outside.  There's preparing for warmer clothing, plenty of blankets and covers, making the home more cozy for more indoor use that will come with the cooler weather.

Alas, it is only August now, but soon, seasons will change.

How do you prepare for the seasonal change from summer to fall?





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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Dip in the Floor

If you've ever lived in an older home, you know the slightly uneven floors, the dips, the creaks, the small imperfections that come with age.  I like the charm and fun of starting a little ball at the top of the floor and letting it roll down the incline and watching the cats and kids chase after it, with laughter and skittering claws playing chase together.  You learn by trial and error which way to mop in order to avoid pooling, and you get used to the odds and ends of the home.

We moved into this home almost a year ago now, and so far I've adjusted to the little quirks that come along with a 100 plus year old home.  Sure, the floors slant a little, there's steps that took only once to remember their presence, but there's one place that caught my attention after a while.  It didn't dawn on me until not too long ago as to why it was there...what caused that flaw.

And I think we need more of that particular flaw....

There's a dip in the floor.

 It's located in front of the old fashioned gas stove.

It's one that came about from years of feet standing in front of that old stove.  Those old boards have over the years slowly compacted as the weight of the woman of the house stood over it, creating  countless meals in that one place.  Oh how many hours the women before me must have stood there, stirring soups and stews, frying meats, cooking vegetables, using the canner to put up the season's surplus.

I can picture in my mind's eye women from eras past in their aprons, moving to and fro between the old stove and the old white sink, dashing about as they worked to prepare the family's meals.  I can smell the fried chicken of Sunday dinner after church, with mashed potatoes and gravy and all the fixings.  I can see the meatloaf fresh out of the old oven and sizzling hot, and a pan of gravy up on the burner staying warm and waiting.  I can see a flat griddle in the early morning hours patiently frying pancakes for bleary eyed children.  I can smell the coffee percolating on the back burner for the caffeine needs of cook and husband.

At first, upon moving in, I saw this dip as a small nuisance, mainly due to drying time and the puddle that sits an extra hour or two longer, especially in winter.  As I've discovered a reason for that dip, I've come to appreciate it.  I can handle the extra drying time.

Today in a lot of homes, there's no one there to stand at the stove and stir a pot of soup, to make a goulash, mash potatoes, stir some gravy.  No one is home to pull a loaf of bread from the hot oven.  The stove top becomes dusty, the floor gets no use.  While life was harder back in the years past, with older ways of doing things, less to work with, and so on...one thing could be counted on--mom at home with a hot meal or a batch of cookies, or something freshly made.  When at all possible she was home, tending to home and family, nourishing her husband and children with home cooked meals.

And slowly, one meal, one loaf of bread at a time, one cookie sheet at a time...creating a dip in the floor.



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Shared at:  The Modest Mom, Strangers and Pilgrims on Earth, What Joy Is Mine, Yes They Are All Ours, A Proverbs 31 Wife, Time Warp Wife, Cornerstone Confessions A Wise Woman Builds Her Home So Much At Home



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