Also, here is a link to some other miscellaneous pics:
Enjoy and thanks for the prayers!
Also, here is a link to some other miscellaneous pics:
Enjoy and thanks for the prayers!
"For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks." - Matt 12:34 (ESV)
I don't know that I actually said anything sinful (maybe my husband would remember otherwise). However, I do know that I was thinking many sinful thoughts.
Anger. Idolatry. What is an idol? Anything that I'm willing to substitute and worship instead of God.
"Why didn't she eat like she should have last night?"
"Can't I just lay here and let her fall back to sleep?"
"All I want to do is get some sleep! Is that so much to ask?"
"And the rest of it he makes into a god, his idol, and falls down to it and worships it." - Isaiah 44:17What was my idol? Sleep. Oh how I struggle in this area! Sleep is a gift from God. It reminds us that we are human and need rest to rejuvinate us. However, like any good gift, we can obsess over it and substitute it for God.
"Love not sleep, lest you come to poverty" - Prov 20:13 (ESV)
"How long will you lie there, O sluggard? When will you arise from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest, and poverty will come upon you like a robber, and want like an armed man." - Prov 6:9-11 (ESV)
I chose to sin. Even as I got angry over my disrupted sleep, I knew it was wrong. Yet, I chose to sin. How evil our hearts can truly be! I need to remember that nobody else causes me to sin. The circumstances only bring out what is already in my heart. I praise God for His great forgiveness and new mercies each day! May I draw nearer to Him in my struggles.
Whoa. Before anyone accuses me of heresy, remember that I often use bold titles to accent a point. :) Please read the entire blog before you start thinking too hard of how you will confront me of my great error.
Some of my favorite Christmas memories involve spending Christmas Eve with my Mom’s family, surrounded by loved ones and food galore. Christmas Day would be spent waking up early with my sister and brother, tearing into gifts and then having a huge Christmas breakfast with my cousins. As a matter of fact, my most miserable Christmas was in 2005 when Kentucky got enough snow and ice to keep me from seeing my extended family at all. All that being said, Christmas is not about family.
I stumbled upon the following couple of statements regarding what Christmas is supposed to be about:
If taken conser-vatively, none of these statements are inherently bad. There are aspects about Christmas in which we should remember to give, love our family, share the wonder with our kids and assist the poor. However, as Christians, we must remember that Christmas is first and foremost about Christ.
Though we cannot be sure as to the exact date that Christ was born, we do know that this day has been set aside every year for us to more specifically remember that birth.
And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with fear. And the angel said to them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of a great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger." And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying,
"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!"
As Christmas continues to become more and more commercialized and the debate between “Happy Holidays” and “Merry Christmas” rages, let us slow down and think about the true meaning of Christmas. Jesus Christ, the son of God, born of a virgin, came to seek and save the lost. By His incarnation and later crucifixion and resurrection, we actually have something to celebrate about. Share that with those who don’t know Christ!
When the angels went away from them into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, "Let us go over to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has made known to us." And they went with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby lying in a manger. And when they saw it, they made known the saying that had been told them concerning this child. And all who heard it wondered at what the shepherds told them. But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart. And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all they had heard and seen, as it had been told them.
- Luke 2:8-20 (ESV)
In honor of my friend Jennifer Hsin preparing for her December 15th wedding, I post the following. These were my thoughts a few months before my own wedding. This, aside from the day of my salvation, was the happiest day of my life. I hope you are blessed.
The Bride of Christ
“and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you” - Isaiah 62:5 (ESV)
For weeks I’ve been putting off altering my wedding dress. It seemed like a daunting task and one I was not yet ready to take. Why didn’t I get it done professionally? Because I have better things to do with my money and I was pretty sure I could do it myself anyway. Little did I know what a joyous time I would have…
As I placed each stitch in its necessary place, I began to pray. I prayed that I would put one-thousand times the effort and more into the marriage itself than the wedding. I prayed that my family would seek and serve God in every way possible. I prayed for the kids I hope to have. Then my mind started leaning towards even greater thoughts…
Revelation 19:6-8 says: “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns. Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready; it was granted her to clothe herself with fine linen, bright and pure.” (my italics)
I started thinking about the bright white color of my dress. How pure…how unstained…how perfect. Then I thought of how undeserving I am to wear such a dress. Apart from God, I can do no good. I’m undeserving of every good thing I’ve ever been given. I’ve trampled over top of the beauty of such purity with muddy feet.
“…though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow;” - Isaiah
How very blessed I am! God is good and He chose to make me white as snow. While I was stitching my dress, I managed to prick my finger a few times. Twice it drew blood. I suddenly remembered that it was because of the blood of Christ that I was white in the first place!!! Jesus Christ died on the cross, rising again on the third day to save someone like me! How do I thank him?
“Can a virgin forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet my people have forgotten me days without number” - Jer 2:32 (ESV, my italics)
All to often, it’s as if I’ve forgotten Him. Sometimes I may look like I have everything together and people will call me a “really religious person.” Yet in my heart, I struggle to love like I should. I’m ungrateful. I’m disobedient to the Lord. I shy away from proclaiming Christ as I should. It’s as if I’ve forgotten Him.
The New Testament refers to Christians as the bride of Christ. In John 3:29, John the Baptist calls Jesus the Bridegroom: “The one who has the bride is the bridegroom. The friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly at the bridegroom's voice. Therefore this joy of mine is now complete.”
As I prepare for my wedding in September, I think about how I’ll prepare myself the day of. I’m sure it’ll be something like this. I’ll begin with a shower, then makeup and hair. We’ll go to the church and get dressed. I’ll put on that beautiful, white gown and veil. People will help me look as beautiful as is possible - after all, it’s a special day! After all the preliminaries, the wedding will begin. James will be waiting for me at the end of the aisle. I am convinced he’ll be smiling and joyful when he sees me walking toward him. Have I prepared myself in such a way for my ultimate Groom, Jesus Christ? Oh how I pray I’ll learn how!
“…and as the bridegroom rejoices over the bride, so shall your God rejoice over you.” - Isaiah 62:5 (ESV)
As blessed as I’ll be to have James as my husband, in the end, only one marriage will matter. Help me to be the best bride I can be…
“Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, "Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” - Rev 21:1-4 (ESV, my italics)
I’m not completely finished with my dress alterations but the most troublesome parts are complete. I hope to finish the other small adjustments tomorrow. Isn’t that how our lives with Christ is? He’s not finished with me yet, but the most troublesome part is complete - my salvation. I praise God for His great love!
By Terra (Rogers) Santos
July 24, 2006
20s: Be trendy and have fun; virtually anything goes (i.e. short skirts, daring necklines); take fashion to it's edge.
30s: Try a sophisticated look; you want to look more adult, tailored and sophisticated; pay more for higher end clothing.
40s: Look smart and refined; never a need to dress like a granny; wear uncluttered, clean lines and classic cuts
*There’s a women coming down this church aisle in a long, white, formal dress. What would you say was the occasion? Probably a wedding, right? Clothing communicates.Alternatively, the MSN video suggested that a lady will only look “sl*tty” if she is too old to be wearing what she has on. So a woman can’t look this way if she is young?! I disagree vehemently here. I regretfully say that early in college, I thought dressing this way made me more attractive. According to MSN, I would have been “age appropriate” in my clothing choices.
*There’s a teenager bundled up in a snowsuit, mittens, a wool hat and a scarf. Probably not going to a picnic! Clothing communicates.
“I’ve been too busy.” (Really? Any busier than usual?)
“I haven’t thought of any topics. (Yeah right, I’m never at a loss for topics.)
“I’ve been tired.” (Yes but could lazy be a better word?)