Saturday, December 1, 2012

Challenge.


What would happen if we thought for ourselves? What would happen if we compared everything we'd ever been taught (by the church or by the world) to the word of God? Would we change the way we do things? Would we change our approach on life? I challenge you. What would happen?


Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Last Words -- Part Two


"All my possessions for one moment in time." - Elizabeth I

"I am about to take my last voyage; a great leap into the dark." - Thomas Hobbs (Atheist author of "Leviathan.")
 

"O God, have pity on my soul. O God, have pity on my soul." - Anne Boleyn

"Tie a rope round my body, pull me out of bed, and lay me in ashes, that I may die with repentant prayers to an offended God. O! I in vain wish for that time I lost with you and others in vain recreations." - Henry, Prince of Wales

"Nobody will ever know I existed. Nothing to leave behind me. Nothing to pass on. Nobody to mourn me. That's the bitterest blow of all." - Tony Hancock

"What an account I shall have to give to God! How I should like to live otherwise than I have lived." - Phillip III, King of France


"I am abandoned by God and man! I will give you half of what I am worth if you will give me six months' life. Then I shall go to hell; and you will go with me. O Christ! O Jesus Christ!" - Voltaire

"My God. What's happened?" - Diana Princess of Wales

"My fun days are over." - James Dean

"I commend my soul into the hands of God my Creator, hoping and assuredly believing, though the only merits of Jesus Christ my Savior, to be made partaker of life everlasting; and my body to the earth, whereof it was made." - William Skakespeare

"Into Thy hands I commend my spirit! Thou hast redeemed me, O God of truth." - Martin Luther

"Death is the great key that opens the place of Eternity." - John Milton

"I commit my soul to the mercy of God, through our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and I exhort my dear children humbly to try and guide themselves by the teaching of the New Testament. - Charles Dickens







Taken from "One Heartbeat Away" by Mark Cahill

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Top Ten Bad Fruits of Youth Culture

1. Foolishness is cultivated and multiplied.
"Walk with the wise and become wise, for a companion of fools suffers harm." - Proverbs 13:20

2. Christian parental nurture is replaced by youth influence.
"Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. "Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise— "so that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth." Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord. - Eph. 6:1-4

3. Peer dependence is acquired.
"But Rehoboam rejected the advice the elders gave him and consulted the young men who had grown up with him and were serving him." - 1 Kings 12:8

4. Immaturity is made socially acceptable.
"Folly is bound up in the heart of a child, but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him." - Prov. 22:15

5. Dishonor of parents is provoked.
"The proverbs of Solomon: A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish son grief to his mother." - Prov. 10:1
"A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish man despises his mother." - Prov 15:20

6. Wasted time through "hanging out" is praised.
"making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil." - Eph. 5:16
"Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity." - Col. 4:5

7. Unprofitable conversations are multiplied.
"Set a guard over my mouth, O LORD; keep watch over the door of my lips." - Ps. 141:3
"But I tell you that everyone will have to give account on the day of judgment for every empty word they have spoken." - Matt. 12:36

8. Irresponsibility is modeled. "The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender." - Prov. 22:7
"Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life." - Gal. 6:7-8

9 Multiple guy/girl romances and breakups create patterns of mini-divorces. "Finish your outdoor work and get your fields ready; after that, build your house." - Prov. 24:27

10. Consciences are defiled through virtual and real fornication. "Instead we should write to them, telling them to abstain from food polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from the meat of strangled animals and from blood." - Acts 15:20
" Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body." - 1 Cor. 6:18



Via

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Last words - Part One


"I have provided in the course of my life for everything except death, and now alas, I am to die unprepared." - Cardinal Borgia

"All of the wisdom of this world is but a tiny raft upon which we must set sail when we leave this earth. If only there was a firmer foundation upon which to sail, perhaps some divine word." - Socrates





"It is a bit embarrassing to have been concerned with the human problem all one's life and find at the end that one has no more to offer by way of advice than: Try and be a little kinder." - Aldous Huxley

"I still live....The great mystery is Jesus Christ, the Gospel. What would the condition of any of us be if we had not the hope of immorality? ... Thank God, the Gospel of Jesus Christ brought life and immorality to light." - Daniel Webster

"Go on, get out! Last words are for fools who haven't said enough!" - Karl Marx

"I marvel that where the ambitious dreams of myself and of Alexander and of Caesar should have vanished into thin air, a Judean peasant, Jesus, should be able to stretch his hands across the centuries, and control the destinies of men and nations." - Napoleon





"Doctor, I wish you to observe how real and beneficial the religion of Christ is to man about to die...." (In his will he wrote: "This is all the inheritance I give to my dear family: The religion of Christ which will give them one which will make them rich indeed.") - Patrick Henry

"Now comes the mystery." - Henry Ward Beecher

"My dear children, do not grieve for me... I am my God's. I belong to Him. I go but a short time before you, and...I hope and trust to meet you all in heaven." - Andrew Jackson

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

"Amazing love, how can it be
that You, my King, should die for me?
Amazing love and I know its true
and its my joy to honor you, in all I do to honor you."


geese

Flowers2

Flowers4

Flowers5

Flip Flops


leaf

flowers7

Bird

Flowers8


Goodbye, summer. You were beautiful.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Probably the only time you will hear me give you a three word description: 'Cause we're homeschooled.








Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Old songs

My mom asked me to organize all of her old songs for her. I found some good ones! Enjoy!





Tuesday, July 31, 2012

A quote, a question and a video

Am I afraid of the will of God? The dear saint whom I have already mentioned as having such an influence upon the course of my life, many times asked me the question: "Do you like the will of God?" It is a tremendous question. She did not ask, "Do you do the will of God?" she always asked, "do you like the will of God?" That question cuts deeper that anything else. I remember once she was having a controversy with the Lord over a certain matter. She knew what the Lord wanted, and in her heart she wanted it too. But it was difficult, and I heard her pray like this: "Lord, I confess I don't like it, but please do not give in to me. Just wait, Lord-and I will give in to thee." She did not want he Lord to yield to her and to reduce his demands upon her. She wanted nothing but to please him.
~watchmen Nee The Normal Christian Life



"How often do you take the time to think deeply about the cross, Christ's love, and all his death bought for you? Once a day? Once a week? Once a year?


Thursday, July 19, 2012

I heard this song for the first time when I was nine years old. It still gives me shivers. Dear soldiers, we're praying for you. Make it home--and make it safe.


Friday, July 13, 2012

Write a soldier


These are a few pictures from out last few "Write a Soldier" tables. The kids were so sweet. Coming home, I couldn't help laughing aloud at some of the things they'd put on their letters. It was a joy to work with them. Thanks for all your prayers and support! We hope to be doing this again sometime soon! If you would like to write a letter of your own, check out our Write a Soldier page or send us an email.



Enjoy!



Write a Soldier


Ella letters


Letter 1


Letter 2





Fight for our freedom


Your awesome


Jesus Loves you


Jesus in your heart


None



Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Die before I wake



"If we have nothing to die for, we have nothing to live for."

Today God showed me how precious the life is that He gives to us, and how we must make the most of every day to share the gospel, spread His love to others, and glorify Him. How we must let others know that we love them.

I have learned the lesson: do not take this life for granted.

I have loved and lost. I have lost a grandparent and several friends. I have known others who have loved and lost. One of my friends lost her father last year in an accident, and almost lost her mother and sister as well. Another woman I have befriended laid 2 of her grown children to rest before she was old.

I am sure that they, like I, thought that the time would be longer. I am sure my friend imagined that she would come home, have dinner with her family, and then be tucked into bed by her father that night. I am sure that when the woman's son went to war, she thought that he would return, safe and sound. I know she hoped it, prayed it. They, like I, did not know the time or the hour when death would overtake those close to them.

But then, I remembered (we all remembered) that these things are in God's hands.

I found a very good quote by Stonewall Jackson on this topic:

"..My religious belief teaches me to feel as safe in battle as I am in bed. God has fixed the time for my death. I do not concern myself about that, but to be always ready, no matter when it may overtake me. Captain, that is the way all men should live, and then all would be equally brave."

There have been countless times when, if it were not for God's intervention, I probably would have and should have died. But God knew it was not my time yet.

God fixed the times for man to live and die long before we were ever born. He knows the work that He has for us, and how long it will take for us to accomplish it. We are safe in His hands, because He has ordained our every day and will not take us home a moment too soon or too late.

* * *

"If we have nothing to die for, we have nothing to live for."

I was pondering this statement, and I decided to write a personal mission statement. This is what the Christian life is about, and this is what I want my life to be about.

1. To glorify God in all areas and in everything that I do
2. To spread the gospel and proclaim God's word and invite the captives to be freed.
3. To be a godly example of Christ to those near me.
4. To love others as Christ loved.

Who are you living for? "Choose this day whom you will serve, but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD." ~Joshua 24:15~

Our bodies may die, but our souls are an eternal thing. If we are serving the LORD, someday when we die, we will stand before His presence and enter into His Kingdom where we will be with Him forever. If we deny Him, when we die we will descend into the lake of burning fire (commonly known as Hell), where we will be tortured forever. "Where you go" is not affected by your works, but whether or not you have accepted the grace of Jesus Christ and placed your faith in Him.

If we are serving the devil, we will quickly discover that what he promised is false, and our sins will be punished, as they deserve to be. But if we are serving the LORD, we have victory over sin and death, because God raised His only Son from the dead. During the 3 days when He lay in the tomb, Jesus descended into Hell, beat sin, beat death, and emerged victorious.

So can we be.

If you have not decided what to do with your life, (whom shall you serve?) please make up your mind. The choice is yours (but I’m rooting for you to choose Jesus.) Like Stonewall Jackson said, we ought to be ready. But we ought to live Victoriously, because we have the Spirit of God in us, making us brave. Death could not hold Him down.

If you have accepted Christ, please, don’t hesitate! Go out and do what he commanded. “Go, therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, the three in one, and surely I shall be with you until the very end of the age.” (the last chapter of Matthew). Don’t waste any time! You have only as much as God gives you. Live every moment to glorify Him!


Piper

Friday, June 8, 2012

Sermon Notes



-A Puzzling Picture


Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.

Now if the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body," it would not for that reason stop being part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body.

The eye cannot say to the hand, "I don’t need you!" And the head cannot say to the feet, "I don’t need you!" On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it. - 1 Corinthians 12:12-26 (NIV)


A few weeks ago, I was blessed to attend a youth group with some of the sweetest people I know. The pastor was going through one of my favorite passages in 1 Corinthians. As he read the words above, I began to see a picture. Not just one of a physical body with many different members, but a different one. In fact, I thought of this passage in a way I've never thought of it before. I thought I would share it with you...

"....The body: Its just like a puzzle. There are thousands upon thousands of different pieces of this puzzle. No two are alike, but although they have differences, their differences are what make them fit together. Its important that all of the pieces accept each other..no matter their color, size or shape. If one piece rejects another, there's a whole in the puzzle, and the full picture cannot be completed.

* Don't reject other believers

*Be content with the part God has given you

One pieces of the puzzle should not desire to be the shape of their neighboring piece. Then they will leave their own spot empty. Another hole. God has selected us--Hand picked us for the part we are to play. He's flawlessly molded us to fit right where we need to be--and when we're content with how we've been made, when we don't reject other believers who fit right along side of us, only then will our picture--God's picture--will be completed and perfect.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Baseball and the Gospel



Dressed and ready to go, we showed up at the gates of the baseball stadium 45 minutes before it was ready to begin. We had been selected to sing the National Anthem as a precursor to the game.

As with any event, we needed tickets to gain admission. Lizzie, the woman in charge, said that she would give us free tickets because we were singing. She told us to go to the Customer Service right outside the gates when we arrived and pick up the tickets right there.

When we arrived, we went to the Customer Service and asked for our tickets. The woman at the desk looked through several envelopes before declaring that she couldn’t find them. Mom suggested several different names to look under, but to no avail. “Do you think they’ll let us go through without tickets?” Mom asked. “It’s pretty obvious that we’re the singers.”

We walked up to the gate and asked if they would let us through. But the gatekeeper said that she could not let us in unless we had tickets, whether we were singers or not. There was nothing to do but to go back and wait. The woman in the Customer Service desk was able to track Lizzie down through the walkie talkie system and asked about tickets. Lizzie herself came down, bringing 9 tickets for our whole family. This time when we walked up to the gates of the stadium, the woman smiled and let us through.

Later I found myself thinking what a great analogy this is of the gospel. I know that on A Time to Dance we try to focus more on giving helpful advice in the lives of believers, but if you are not a believer, or maybe if you think that you are but you haven’t quite understood it, I believe that you need to hear this. I’ll lay it out, point by point, below:

When God created the world, and when He created man, his original design was that man would live in Paradise (the garden of Eden) in close relationship with God, and man would be the caretaker of the earth. Sin had not entered the world yet, and the world was perfect.

One of the gifts that God gave man was freedom of choice. Scripture makes it very clear that the way that God wants us to love him is by obeying his commands. But love is not love if obedience is mandatory. There had to be choice. Man (or rather woman) listened to the lies of the devil and the first sin was committed. Man fell from relationship with God, because God’s eyes cannot look on sin.

But God still cared about man, so He devised a plan to save Him from ultimate destruction and wrath in hell. Romans tells us that the wages of sin are death. Instead of punishing the guilty, God sent his own son, Jesus Christ, to die on the cross and take our punishment for us so that we could be purified and live in relationship with Him again.

God has extended His grace to us... but it is only ours if we choose to take it. The way to be saved is to confess with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus is Lord and that He died to save us from our sin.

We need to note that we are not saved through anything that we can do, but through what Christ can do. Even if you think that you have never sinned, the truth of the matter is, you have, and you need forgiveness. You may have spent millions of dollars digging wells in Africa, feeding starving children, never broken a rule at school, or done whatever your parents told you. But have you always done that? Have you always obeyed your parents with a joyful heart attitude? Have you kept all the rules in your heart, or have you sometimes hated the kid who pushed you in your heart, even though you never pushed him back? If you have, you are guilty of sin and you need a Savior. Because someday, God will judge the world and all the inhabitants of it, and when you stand before Him, not even your best deeds can save you. You won’t be good enough.

And now back to my story and how it compares to all this. If the baseball stadium were heaven, we would be those standing outside it on Judgment Day. Without our ticket-- the blood of Jesus Christ-- we could do nothing. We would not be able to get in, not even though we were singing the National Anthem. However, when Lizzie brought us our tickets, she was being sort of like Christ, coming down and extending to us grace. Then, she could hold the tickets out, but they would not be ours unless we took them from her hands. When we did, we were able to show the tickets at the gates and pass through them to the other side.

That is the gospel as clearly as I can put it for you. I pray that you will take these words to heart and that you will decide to place your trust in Jesus Christ, if you have not done so already. If you aren’t sure quite exactly how to do that, you can contact any one of us here at A Time To Dance and we would be glad to give you any counsel or encouragement that you might need.

And on a side note, singing the National Anthem at a game of some sort has always been one of my dreams, and it was as much fun as I thought it would be. That is what Heaven will be like someday.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
 Between the crosses, row on row,
 That mark our place; and in the sky
 The larks, still bravely singing, fly
 Scarce heard amid the guns below.


 We are the Dead. Short days ago
 We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
 Loved and were loved, and now we lie
 In Flanders fields. 


Take up our quarrel with the foe: 
To you from failing hands we throw
 The torch; be yours to hold it high.
 If ye break faith with us who die 
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
 In Flanders fields.



Remember...


Flanders Field
{via}

  Why are poppy flowers so significant? During World War I, the disruption of battlefields during warfare caused the lovely poppy flowers to sprout and grow. You see, poppy seeds embed themselves in the ground, and only grow when disrupted...The fighting disrupted them. After the war ended, there were too many casualties for the grave sites, so people began to bury them in poppy fields...Such as Flanders Field, the field Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae based his poem on. The poppies have since been recognized as the official VFW memorial flower.


Don't forget the ones who have paid the ultimate sacrifice...

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Memorize
I have a semi photographic memory. I also have a very fast auditory memory. I can read something in a textbook and remember it close to word for word. I may watch a movie and be able to quote several scenes after the first time. I can hear a song once and have the lyrics memorized by the time it is over.
Therefore, it is constantly a marvel to me how many songs and poems and other things I have buried in my brain. There must be thousands of them! I was thinking the other day, how wonderful it would be if I had as many Bible verses in my head as I have songs.
I admit, I do have a hard time memorizing Bible verses. Why does my brain seem to pick up so many things of little import when I cannot make the things that are worth remembering stick in my head?!
Here are a few tacks which I use for memorization of things which do not come so easily to me.
1. Flash cards-- make flash cards with the verses on them. If you wish, you can write the verses in fragments and practice putting them in order, or you can write the verses on one side of the verses and the reference on the other. NOTE: Don’t forget the references! They’re incredibly important.
2. Repetition-- Go through the verses several times a day. Repeat them over and over again, get them in your head. When you have drive time between appointments or rest time or a few spare moments between classes or even are sitting on the john, practice these flash cards.
3. Say it out loud. When practicing or memorizing your verses, say it out loud. If you are hearing it as well as speaking it and reading it, it will give you added efficiency.
Here below are a few more unique ways to memorize verses......

1. Write it on a piece of paper or on a white board. Each time you say it, cover up or erase one or more words, but continue to speak the verse all the way through.
2. If you are memorizing a verse with a group of people, try standing in a line or sitting in a circle and having each person say one word of the verse in order. Keep the words spoken at the pace that a single person would speak it in. It will feel fast but will keep your brain engaged.
3. Something I do that is unique is walking to a rhythm while saying the verses. Pick a rhythm and step on the beat while reciting. I did this yesterday with Ezekiel 36:26. Here is how I broke it down (with stepping on the capitalized and emphasized words) “I will TAKE away the STONY heart and GIVE you a heart of FLESH; EZEKiel THIRTY six TWENTY six.”

Really, it all comes down to hiding the word in your heart. Bible verses may seem difficult or daunting to memorize, but they are one of the most important things that you can ever learn because they are truth. They are God’s truth, and His truth will always remain.
piper

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Write a Soldier

  Welcome all! 


 Recently, the four of us have been interested/involved in the ministry of writing letters to American Soldiers overseas. We would like to encourage you to do this as well! Writing letters to our brave young men overseas can not only be a great way to show our gratitude for all they do for us...it can also be a way to share the gospel with them. If you are interested in writing a letter to a soldier by yourself, or if you would like to gather a group together to write letters and send them off in bulk, you can find more information about that here. 


 Carolyn, Ella, Piper and I have found that places such as school gatherings, book sales, or fair grounds are great places to set up a table and get young people to write letters. Below is some information that you may find helpful if you would like to set up a table yourself. 


 Here is a list of things you may need: 
* A clipboard (to keep track of how many people have written letters) 
* Some signs 
* Lined paper, colored paper, or cardstock 
* Pens, pencils and markers 
* Scissors 
* Stickers for the young writers ;) 
* Glue sticks 
* Baskets (to keep everything in) 
* A tablecloth 
* Some cut out bible verses (for people to glue on letters) 
* Rule sheets 


 Making signs: If you are planning on setting up a table to write letters, it would be beneficial for you to have some signs and writing guidelines for people who may have questions about what to write. Here is what we used on our signs... 


 What should I write?
Do—Thank them for their service 
Do—Be positive 
Do—Share the gospel 
Do—Glorify God in all you write 
Don’t—Focus on killing and/or death 
Don’t—use hateful words 
Don’t—Share personal information 


 *All letters are subject to censorship 




 Happy writing!!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Matt Redman -- 10,000 Reasons


"Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me.... let me be singing when the evening comes."




  "For all your goodness I will keep on singing.... 10,000 reasons for my heart to find."

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Sermon Notes

  A Hunger for Righteousness
  By Ella
  Key Verse: Matthew 5:6 
Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness.


desperate hunger for righteousness is… 
 * Not just a Sunday hunger.
 * Cannot be generated from the outside. 


A hunger for God can only be given by God Himself. If you take a small bite or a sip of something that is absolutely delectable, you can’t help but want to eat/drink more of it, right? This is how we should hunger for God. If we listen to our hunger, it can become our motivation. 
 Motivation to…. 


 * Be not only hearers, but doers as well.


 God blesses those who are hungry. 


 Important point: Christians should be defined by their hunger. 


However, there is no hunger in a Christian when that Christian is comfortable. “Comfort zones” don’t help us. We need to break free and step out into the open. We should be on our toes ready for anything that could come at us. Ready to serve God, ready to get into His word, ready to help another struggling. But will we do that if we’re stuck in a comfort zone? 


 3 things that keeps us from hungering for God. 


 1. We put greater effort into riding the brakes than slamming on the accelerator. People think in terms of “I would have to quit smoking, drinking, cussing…ect to be good enough for God…and I don’t know if I can do that.” We get frustrated because we think we have to be something in order for God to except us. We have everything backwards! First, we must seek first God’s kingdom, and then in time, the rest will follow.


“But seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:22 ESV)


With what shall I come before the Lord and bow down before the exalted God? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God…” (Micah 6:6-8 NIV) 


 Our problem: We won’t seek God until we’re starving. 


We need to be do-ers and not don’t-ers. It’s not about what we don’t do, it’s about what we start doing. When we strive to find God more and more he cleanses us of what we shouldn’t do and fills us with the desire to do what we need to do. God always cleans his fish after he catches them. 


 Consider this example of displacement… You have a nice metal bucket full of water. As an experiment, you start dropping golf balls into the bucket along with the water. What happens? Obviously, the water is going to leak out of the bucket… As you keep adding golf balls, you realize that now there is very little water left in the bucket. Instead, it is filled with golf balls. The water couldn’t drain out of the bucket by itself. Until the golf balls were brought into the picture, the water would have stayed right there. We try to drain everything bad out of our lives so that we can fill ourselves with God. It doesn’t work that way. If we except God and strive to find Him, He will cleans us and fill us with Himself. 


 Don’t ride the brake when trying to follow God. Instead, accelerate. 


 2. Living distantly from God. Isaiah 29:13 discusses how people can “draw near” with their mouths, but in their hearts they are far from Him. Important point: If God seems distant to you, guess who was the one that moved? We need to stay desperate for God. We are not going to be filled once and then constantly longing for Him afterwards. It is a process of being continually filled with His Holy Spirit. Important point: Jesus is all we need because he is all there is. 


“As the deer pants for the stream of water so my soul pants for you, O God.” (Psalm 42:1 NIV) 


“I said to the Lord, ‘you are my Lord; apart from you I have no good thing’” (Psalm 16:2) 


We need to have a one track mind for God. We need should be so hungry for God we cling to him. 3. We are more focused on comfort than on eternal perspective. Important point: When we have an excessive hunger for God everything else of the world will lose it allure. In the light of his glory and praise all other things will grow dim. 


“Worth are you, our Lord our God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” (Revelation 4:11) “So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed in him, ‘if you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, and you will know the truth and the truth will set you free.’” (John 8: 31-32) “The lord had taken away the judgments against you; he has cleared away your enemies. The kind of Israel, the Lord. Is in your midst; you shall never again fear evil.” (Zephaniah 3:15) 


 Important point: We can rest in God’s love. 


 Are you hungry for God? Will you answer that hunger? Behold, The old will fall away and the new will come. Praise God!

Friday, April 27, 2012

Modest Fashion
Today seemed like a good day to post about Fashion. So, we're girls, we like fashion, right? But these days if you're striving to be modest... fashion can be a tricky subject. It’s certainly not impossible to be modest and fashionable at the same time, it’s just harder. Finding those loose skinny jeans (I prefer to call them oxymoron jeans), long shorts, and high cami’s can be a struggle. Personally, I wear a lot of skirts. A very knowledgeable person I once knew said “A person’s talent is measured merely by their ability to run up and down stairs in an ankle-length skirt.” (But that’s a story for another time) My point is that many types of skirts and dresses are modest, cute, and feminine. (They also make you look like a homeschooler or German Baptist, but hey, I consider both of those a compliment to some degree. I’m in this world, but I’m not of it. I’d much rather look like a homeschooler or German Baptist than the rest of the world.) Anyway, this week I dug up a few feminine, modest, yet fashionable dresses that I thought I would post to give you guys some inspiration. We all need it, don’t we? I must say, some of these are really cute. It’s probably a good thing that I’m broke right now. If you would like to see where the dresses came from, feel free to click the number links below. I also added in a few simple and feminine hairstyles as well. And of course, a question at the bottom. I’m praying this is an inspiration and blessing to you all! And don’t forget, every time you struggle with being modest, remember that it glorifies God. He sees you as precious—and that’s all that matters




. Modest Fashion 1


Modest Fashion 2

  1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8


Hair 1
Via


Hair 3
Via


Nails 1
Via


A question......
  "Have you ever considered how what you wear represents the gospel?" (Hannah Farver Uncompromising)

  And a quote......
The world is full of darkness, as well as immature people who need to grow in grace: rude people, boy-crazy people, panicky people, problematic people, and people who just make mistakes. what the world needs most isn't girls to point them out-- it needs girls who will illuminate the darkness with God's light. It doesn't need young women who will give others more reason to worry, fret, accuse, talk, fear, or burn innocent people at the stake, but young women who "let [their] light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven" (Matt. 5:16) ~ Anna Sofia & Elizabeth Botkin ( It's Not That Complicated)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Blowin' like a Dandelion

Sometimes I take so many pictures its overwhelming. You might call filling up a 1 GB card in a few hours a slight obsession. (If you can do better, I salute you). Earlier today, I was granted with the pleasure of being able to take a walk outside and snap a few pictures (something I've been unable to do for a while). Whilst on my journey down our long driveway, I spotted some dandelions  and my brain began to spin. As I gazed silently at the dandelions snow white frames, Matthew 6:30 came to my mind.

  "And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't he more surely   care for you?"
(NLT)


 Dandelion image


  Think about that for a moment... God cares for the flowers! Isn't that beautiful? He made them and shaped their delicate petals with His own hands, and he didn't just leave them there to be destroyed. He cares for them...And He cares for you even more! If you fall, He knows it--and He's watching out for you. He's ready to pick you back up. 


 Now, think about a dandelion. It has a crispy brown stem that leads up to its head of pure, blossoming seeds. For me, a dandelion seems to hold a since of elegance. Its free, its smooth and dainty, and it seems to flow and fill the world with a joyous spirit. 


 Now, the question. Get ready for it... What happens when the wind blows upon a lively dandelion? Simple. Its delicate seeds begin to drift. They float in the wind ever so gracefully and even sometimes seem as if they're dancing. Its a beautiful thing. However, although it seems pretty, there's a catch. For the entire time these seeds have existed, they have been attached to the flower. They have been with numerous other seeds holding them up side by side. They've never been alone. 


 Now, they have to go off on their own. 


 Think about if that was you. You were being held up with your church, with your school, with your best friends, and then suddenly...the wind blows and you drift. Sometimes it causes heartache, it causes pain. You're alone just like that graceful little dandelion seed. Floating. Drifting. You don't know where in the world you may end up next. Depending on the wind, it may be miles away, and it may be a few feet--but you're alone. 


 Don't you hate that drifting feeling? Its like you don't belong anymore. You're no longer attached to that stronghold of the flower, and you don't know what to do. You feel awkward and lonely. You're by yourself...And its scary. Now lets go back to the verse I had above:

  "And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't he more surely care for you?" NLT)

  Read it again. Want to know what I see through that verse? I see a picture of God's eyes on every single one of those drifting dandelion seeds. Every single one. I see Him watching them, caring for them, giving them an extra push, or breath of air, and nurturing, feeding and watering them when they finally land on the ground.


 He knows each dandelion seed just like He knows the amount of hairs on your head. (Luke 12:7) He never neglects a single seed, and He never neglects you. Never.


So if you feel just like a dandelion seed, know that God will never leave you or forsake you. No matter how long you're in the air. He knows when you're going to land and He's getting ready to nurture you. 


 You know what happens after that dandelion seed is planted? It sprouts. It grows wings (figuratively, not literally), and it soars. The seed reaches new heights that its never been to before! Yes, it took the pain and heartache of drifting before it could get there, but once it does, the seed realizes that it really was all for its own good!


 So now, another question... Is that you? Are you drifting like that seed and questioning whether you really will ever land and begin to grow?

  "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

  He's working it out all for your good. He really is. You just have to believe it. And one day, your seed is going to plant itself, you're going to grow, you're going to blossom...
and you're going to soar.




  Sofia

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong doing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.



LOVE


  Love never ends.


  (ESV)

Saturday, April 14, 2012

-A quote, question, and some music to brighten your day

"Disturb us, O Lord, when we are too pleased with ourselves; when our dreams come true because we dreamed too little; when we have arrived in safety because we have sailed too close to the shore. Disturb us, O Lord, when with the abundance of the things we possess, we have lost our thirst for the water of life; when having fallen in love with time, we have ceased to dream of eternity: and in our efforts to build the new earth, have allowed our vision of the new heaven to grow dim. Stir us, O Lord, to dare more boldly, to venture on wider seas where storms shall show thy mystery and, where losing sight of the land, we shall find the stars. In the name of Him who pushed back the horizons of our hopes and invited the brave to follow, even the name of Christ Jesus Our Lord."
Sir Francis Drake






Here is our thought provoking question for the day. If you have any thoughts, feel free to share them in a comment below.

How important is it for us to dwell in God's love on a daily basis, if we expect to grow in our Christian walk? Why? How does it affect and change us? Would you agree or disagree with the statement that "the love of God is the soul of the gospel"?

--Question taken from Uncompromising by Hannah Farver [page 253]. To view Ella's review on Hannah Farvers book, click here.

Have a delightful day,


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Recently Sofia and I wrote letters to the newspaper USA Today, protesting the legality of America’s abortion laws.

Letters

Sofia’s letter:
I am not writing this letter to tell you how immoral abortion is, or lecture you on the fact that abortion kills children. Many Americans have already heard this argument and are still stone hearted in their opinions regarding the subject. Instead, in this letter, I would like to discuss dreams.
You cannot deny that dreams are what America is supposed to be about. Ellis Island was abundant with immigrants who came here because they wanted their life dreams to be fulfilled. Today, we see phrases such as "Follow the American dream" or "live your dream" written boldly across billboards, or blinking furiously on fluorescent signs.
What about you? Can you remember sitting in a high school classroom staring blankly at the whiteboard and thinking about what you were going to do with your life? What were your own personal dreams? Maybe as a high school student the only dream you had was for that cute boyfriend of yours to ask you to marry him.
Whatever the case may be, the reality is that you had Dreams. Now here is my question for you—the dreamer: Are you willing to let other people live their American dream?
Many of you believe that aborted babies are merely fetuses--not actually human beings. But who can deny that if left in the womb as a healthy baby, these "fetuses" will one day turn into humans? We see that happen every day as new children are brought into this world and it has happened since the beginning of time. There is absolutely no denying it. It’s a fact of life.
Every "fetus" that has been killed would have otherwise turned into a child, who would have grown into a young adult and one day that young adult would have had dreams of their own. Every time a child is aborted, those dreams are lost forever. Can you deny this fact?
So, America, I want to ask you: Are you killing dreams?


Letters


Ella’s letter

To whom it may concern at USA Today

Look at our society today, we see a large amount of exchange students and foreigners that come to America just so that they can work and take money out of our country. There are no longer enough Americans willing to work and produce the necessary things for America to be a prospering country. Why does our country not have the needed amount of people? Because there is a constant massacre going on right under our very noses.

If a pregnant woman has one child but does not want to have two would she kill the already born child. No. That would be murder but so is killing a fetus that is still in the womb. A women’s body is her own but she is responsible for position that she puts herself into. If someone had a mass of caner cells growing in their body, they would say "that is not part of my body remove it!" Sadly Americans are doing this same thing to their own offspring. We are acting as if our children are deadly disease that are going to kill us; we are acting as if we have a right to remove them. The truth is that a deadly disease is not part of our body it is something that against our will started growing inside our body and a fetus is not part of our body but it is the coincidence of our actions. The way God design the development of man’s offspring is a beautiful thing. We don’t leave our children as egg in a nest, we don’t merely teach them to swim or fly but a human mother has the blessing of being with her child from the moment the fetus’s heart starts to beat inside the womb (which is 3 weeks after the conception.)




Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Today I thought I would post something a bit creative, fun, and well...Girly!

I really enjoy trying new and different hairstyles. The same thing everyday gets boring after a while. Its so much fun to get creative!

I dug up a few simple, but fun hair tutorials (pintrest is a life saver)and thought some of you might like to try them!

Feel free to leave a comment about which ones you like best, or some tricks you've learned to make things easier.

Hope you all enjoy!


Hairstyle 1

{via}


Hairstyle 2
{Via}


Hairstyle 3
{Via}

To make this blog a little more exciting, I've decided to add some thought-provoking questions to some of our posts. Here's my question for tonight...

"Why do we as Christians waste our time debating over our differences, when instead we could be using that time to come together with our similarities, and using those similarities to make a difference, to do something, and to further the Kingdom of God?"

What's your opinion?

Blessings!