Thursday, May 27, 2010

*sniff-sniff* Mmmmm......

I love perfume.
(this is my current favorite)



In fact, I love the scent of flowers, of fresh air, of summer, of bread baking, of fresh cookies, of chlorine and sun-screen lotion, of horses, of fresh-cut grass, of fish frying, of clothes just off the line, of cinnamon and vanilla tea, of peppermint soap... of lots of things, actually.

Which is funny, because I am a person who tends to not breathe through her nose. I just kind of like being the last person to know that the air I'm breathing smells bad. (When everyone else around me starts screaming "Skunk!" I just plug my nose.) ;)

Still, I somehow end up noticing how a lot of things around me smell - and I love it when they smell good.


Something that really annoys me about perfume, though, is how quickly my nose gets used to the scent. Pretty soon it doesn't register anymore, and I no longer get to enjoy it. Unless I go spray some more on. But then, after a while, everyone around you starts gagging and you have a headache.
The closest I got to that was a few years ago when I went straight from my job cleaning horse stalls to my volunteer work at a nursing home. I changed my clothes in the bathroom there, washed up as well as I could, and sprayed some perfume. Unfortunately, I had been using a lightly scented mist, but today I grabbed some strong perfume I had been given and brought it along, knowing I was going to have to change at the place. And of course, I unthinkingly used it as liberally as I had been using the mist, not realizing just how strong it was until too late. *chokes at the memory* I just about had to go around the rest of the night apologizing for making people's eyes water.


Most of the time, though, perfume works perfectly. :) And although a sense of smell is one of our more expendable senses (touch, sight, taste, hearing, smell - which one you pick if you had to lose one?) it is vital to how well we know what is going on around us, and affects our experiences in more ways than we realize.




Today I was praying (kind of praying about praying, actually) in front of my mirror, and I saw my perfume bottle out of the corner of my eye and absentmindedly reached for it. Spraying some on (and taking a deep breath, of course) :D I suddenly thought of this verse:

And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand. Revelations 8:3-4

Looking that verse up brought me to this one:

Let my prayer be set forth before thee as incense; and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice. Psalm 141:2

My prayers are to God like what perfume is to me. They are like incense before Him.

If you think about it, prayer, like perfume, is not necessary, in the sense that God already knows my every thought. But prayer, like our sense of smell, is vital to how much we know about our Lord, and it has consequences that we cannot imagine, both now and in eternity. Yet I find myself treating it like perfume in the sense that if I do it too much it will be overwhelming. And nothing could be further from reality! Praying is one of the most special privileges that God has granted us.

Talking to the Creator of the universe! Speaking with the One who conquered death and hell for me! Communicating with The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation.

Doesn't that make you want to immediately offer incense before His throne?


How good do you smell today? :)



Keep Seeking Him!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Literary Tag

A tag of Merriette's that I couldn't resist doing... If I did it again, I'd probably have different answers, but these are the ones I thought of immediately. :) Some of these books might be my special-edition edited version, just so you're aware. :D
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Top 3 authors:
1. Jane Porter
2. Deborah Alcock
3. And I'll either say Montgomery or Alcott, because I've read and liked many of their books. :)

Top 3 male characters:
way too hard, so here are just 3 I thought of and really like: :)
1. William Wallace (Scottish Chiefs)
2. Jefferson Davis Bussey (Rifles for Watie) :)
3. Huburt Bohun (Crushed Yet Conquering) even though I don't really like his name. :)

Top 3 female characters: For all the books I've read about girls, why is this so hard? For some reason I always seem to like the heroes better than the heroines...
1. Rose & Blanche Brier (The Shadow of the Bear)
2. Lucy Pevensie (The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe)
3. The Story Girl (book of that name) Not sure that I liked her so much, but I wanted to be able to tell stories like that...

Top 30 fiction books in no particular order:
1. Wildlife Cameraman - Jim Kjelgaard
2. The Prisoner of Zenda - Anthony Hope
3. Not My Will - Francena Arnold
4. The Spanish Brothers - Deborah Alcock
5. Crushed Yet Conquering " "
6. Men Of Iron - Howard Pyle
7. The Shadow of the Bear - Regina Doman
8. The Deerslayer - James Fenimore Cooper
9. The Story Girl - L.M. Montgomery
10. Kilmenny of the Orchard " "
11. To Have and to Hold - Mary Johnson
12. An Old Fashioned Girl - Louisa May Alcott
13. Under the Lilacs ""
14. A Final Reckoning - G. A. Henty
15. Laddie - Gene Stratton-Porter
16. Lord of the Rings - J. R. R. Tolkien
17. The Chronicles of Narnia series - C. S. Lewis
18. The Pillar of Fire - J. H. Ingrahm
19. Baby Island - Carol R. Brink
20. By Far Euphrates - Deborah Alcock
21. The Viking Series - Lois Walfrid Johnson
22. The Black Stallion & the Black Stallion Returns - Walter Farley
23. Rifles for Watie - Harold Keith
24. Johnny Tremain - Esther Forbes
25. The Good Master - Kate Seredy
26. Battle for Black Rock - Ralph Conners
27. The Bronze Bow - Elizabeth Speare
28. Flight to Glory - Douglas Percy
29. The Ezekial Option - Joel C. Rosenburg
30. The Talisman - Sir Walter Scott


Top 3 books most recently read:
1. The Last Thing I Remember (Andrew Klaven) Ok, so it was weird... but I liked the fact that someone is making patriotic pro-America books for kids these days. And... it was hilariously far-fetched and exciting. :)
2. My Utmost for His Highest (Oswald Chambers) No, not fiction, and I'm still reading it, but I think you've all noticed that I really like it. :D
3. When God Writes Your Love Story (Eric & Leslie Ludy) Nope, not fiction either, but I really liked it... I'll have to write a review on here sometime soon.

Worst 3 books ever read
That's hard... I'm not sure these are the worst, but they stand out in my memory:
1. Ooooh! Ok, this one has be here: Abortion: My choice, God's Grace, Christian Women Tell their stories. I was pretty mad... how can you call yourself a Christian while saying abortion is good? How can you call evil good like that - wait.... Huh.
2. The Shepherd of the Hills - I just re-read this recently, remembering really enjoying it when I was younger. ICK. The whole 1907 (it's an old book) eugenics thing just makes me sick. The hero and heroine had to get married because they looked good together?!? The things I miss reading a story only once...
3. The only other one that comes to mind is War and Peace - 460,000 words of stupidity... actually I couldn't even make myself finish it. :P To tell the truth... I don't like most "classics." So I hope nobody really, really likes W&P here. :)


Top 5 scenes from any book:
1. Deerslayer bound to a tree and tortured by Indians - and when they start shooting at him he starts figuring out how close each bullet will come to his head. (The Deerslayer) That was just so cool. :D
2. Hubert walking up the hill to the mine where he and other Christians are going to be killed for their faith. (Crushed yet Conquering) I love the whole atmosphere and how he prepares himself.
3. When the maverick bear is coming up the ledge after Jase, and he decides he is going to get the picture of a life-time before he is killed. (Wildlife Cameraman) Something that just really impressed when I read it at age 8 or so. :D
4. Rose willingly offering up her life for someone she had met twice. (The Shadow of the Bear) That scene is soo cool...
5. And totally different, but Tristan turning around in Herriot's room and absolutely scaring him to death pretending to be some kind of a ghost or something. Hard to explain, but it was hilarious. :) (one of Herriot's books; I can't remember which one.)

The book(s) that made me cry the most:
1. Scottish Chiefs
2. Rilla of Ingleside
(Those are the first that come to mind. I don't know why, but not many books can make me cry. Making me almost cry is very sad!) :)

The book(s) that made me laugh the most:
1. Tales from the Old Squire's Farm - That is one of the most hilarious books we ever read as a family.
2. James Herriot's books - All Things Bright and Beautiful etc. My mom read them aloud to us... we nearly died laughing. (I love Tristan!) (note: I do believe they have a lot editorial issues... grrr.)3. 3.The Hardy Boys (get the 1950's/60's versions... Maybe it's just me, but I'd be reading them at midnight trying not to choke laughing while burying my face in my pillow when I was like 14.)



The book(s) that made me feel the best at the end:
I'm not sure really how I would choose this... so I'll just go with the Bible. :) That book, I could actually have used for many of these questions, but I decided to go with fiction and then a few others. The Bible, if you read it and study it, is really the most amazing book ever, ever, ever to be written. It's the only book that I can learn something new each time I read it... and it's the one that changes my life all the time. It's the inspired Word of God. I love it!

Contemporary or Historical?
I'd have to say historical because there is so little contemporary! :)


Science Fiction, Fantasy, or Horror?
Fantasy. I don't like science fiction and I won't read horror.


Hardback or Trade Paperback or Mass Market Paperback?
I'll read anything, come on. If I really really like it though... Give me a hardcover book illustrated by N. C. Wyeth. :D


Barnes & Noble or Amazon?Amazon, although I get most of my books for $1 or so at library book sales or garage sales. (There are ways you can fill your bookshelves to the point that the floor slants toward them!)


Bookmark or Dog-ear?
Bookmark. I don't like marking up my books. :)


Alphabetize by author, alphabetize by title, or organize not at all?
It depends... Somewhat by author, somewhat by favorites, somewhat by how they look on the shelf. :)


Keep, Throw Away, or Sell?
If it's really bad, it's garbage, if it's like a school textbook I'll sell it... Otherwise, yes, there must be another reason that every room in the house has a bookshelf in it besides the slanting library.


Keep dust-jacket or toss it?
Keep it unless it's really ugly or something.


Read with dustjacket or remove it?
Take if off - they're annoying. :)


Little Women or Anne of Green Gables?
Hmmmm.... I think I've read Anne more times. Laurie and Jo not getting married just made me too mad, even if it did make sense. :)


Short story or novel?
Novel! Short stories are too... short.


Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks?
Um.... how about either when the book falls on my face and wakes me up enough to turn off the light or when I finish it?


"It was a dark and stormy night” or “Once upon a time”?
Well, I don't like cliche writing, but either one could work, depending on the story and the author's skill. :)


Tear Jerker or Belly Laugh?
The ability to have both in one book is the mark of a good author. :)


Charlotte, Emily, or Anne Brontë?
I think I've only read one of Charlotte's books, so I can't pick.


Buy or Borrow?
Borrow until I know I love it, then buy it if I can afford it.


Buying choice: Book Reviews, Recommendation, or Browse?
I usually don't buy something I haven't read unless it costs like 10 cents - and then it's because of browsing.


Collection (short stories by the same author) or Anthology (short stories by different authors)?
Well, since I don't really like short stories (unless they're fairy tales or something) :) I'll say anthology.


Standalone or Series?
The trend in series annoys me, especially since you can't just read the book - you have to read one and then wait for the next one to come out. I'd prefer an author who could write it all at one time... but if it's really good, than I like the series because it's so long. :)


Tidy ending or Cliffhanger?
I hate cliffhangers!


Morning reading, afternoon reading, or nighttime reading?
Morning, noon, and night... well, ok, night seems to be the best. (as in all night...)


Favorite genre series?
Is "well-written and good" a genre?


New or used?
Used and looks new. :)


Favorite book of which nobody else has heard?
Um... strictly speaking, that would have to be a book I wrote, but even those I think a couple people have heard of. But... favorite book that almost no one else has heard of? I Am Louisa, which I hope I will someday be able to review here for you all as a real printed book!

And anyone who follows me and wants this tag, take it away! :D

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Because someone was interested in reading it...

Here is another of the papers that I wrote for English class this spring. Now, I hate in old books when the author (think Horatio Alger) uses ____ instead of actually naming a town, but for privacy I decided to take out the actual names of people and places. :) I hope it isn’t too annoying! I also left off my reference page, but since different areas have different rules, it probably wouldn’t have been a lot of help anyway. While researching for this paper, I found out that the Target in our area actually has an application process for people who want grants – and the criteria for grants exactly matches up with the center’s work! I let the center know, and I hope they take advantage of it at some point. :) So, as far as presenting this proposal to Target… unnecessary. The idea behind the paper, however, should work for any store – people just need to ask! The point of this paper is to get people thinking about bigger ways that they can help the pro-life places in their town (bigger than donating a few hundred dollars, say). Depending on what stores and what the needs at the pro-life orginization in your area are, your proposal could look quite different. Let me know what you think…

Needed: Diapers!

What do all of the following have in common: Disposable, Newborn, Snug ‘N’ Dry, Pull-Up, Pure & Natural, Little Mover, Extra Protection, Preemie, Cruiser, and OverNite? They are all types of diapers? True, but more importantly, they are all needed by the [pro-life] Center in ____. The motto of the ____ center, and that of all of the ten centers in the ____ area, is Serving Women, Caring for Life. [these pro-life] Centers provide information, counseling, and help to mothers in need. Sometimes the only place willing to help, these centers strive to care for those women who have no one else. Among their services, they provide necessary supplies such as cribs, car seats, and baby clothes to those mothers who will take parenting courses (center’s website, 2010, para. 3, 4, 16). They also provide diapers for babies up to two years of age. In order to do this, however, they need diapers.
The need for diapers creates a serious problem. As the economy worsens and people have less money to donate, the [pro-life] Centers in the _____ [all over America, I’m sure] need help. According to the executive director (personal communication, January 26, 2010), this non-profit organization gives out an estimated 22,500 diapers every month, 270,000 every year. They receive many of these diapers as donations from volunteers, friends, church groups, and others. Even with this help, the center in _____ alone spends $500 every month at Target for whatever diapers they can get on sale (personal communication, March 25, 2010). Up this point, sporadic donations have been the only help that they have received. No one has yet explored the idea of uniting with a local store that sells diapers in order to provide this essential service to those who need it. Given the volume of diapers used, a partnership between a store, such as Target, and the [pro-life] Centers could be of help to both parties.
If a store was willing to donate 22,500 diapers each month to the centers, this would free up the money the centers previously spent on diapers and enable them to spend it on other things such as housing. An extra $500 a month for the center in ____ could rent an inexpensive apartment – a much better option than the car one eight-month-pregnant woman was living in last winter! Combined with the money the _____ Centers’ supporters spend on diapers each month, the amount saved would enable them to provide better services and help more people. Some of these women need clothes, some need car seats, and some need expensive medical procedures. By eliminating the need to look for, pay for, and think about diapers, the store could facilitate the centers’ concentration on these other pressing issues.
One local store that the volunteers at the centers already frequent is Target. Target’s website states, “It’s part of our commitment to give 5% of our income to communities,” so this idea would be in no way a new concept for Target. It would be a perfect way of making a difference in the lives of community members who will later be local customers shopping at Target. The Target website also says that they help organizations in the ______ area. There are ten ___ Centers well distributed across this same area, including one in ______, _______, _______, _______, ________, and _______, as well as two in ______ - all of them close to Target stores.
A different way Target could help these people is by simply matching the number of diapers that people buy from Target to donate to the ______ Centers, or even selling them at a discounted rate directly to the centers. This approach would cut in half the amount of money the centers have to spend, and it would also provide an incentive for their supporters to buy diapers from Target. Of course, since buying only one thing in a store is something that seldom happens, each time people stopped to buy diapers for the centers, it is very probable that other purchases would also be made, bringing in additional income for Target. A similar plan would be to set up a program through which participating shoppers could earn points for the _____ Centers by buying goods at Target, thereby helping the centers simply by doing all of their shopping at one store. This could be something like a frequent shopper punch-card, where every third package of diapers purchased for the centers is free. Alternatively, vouchers could be given to the ____ Centers and, in turn, distributed to those being served by the centers.
These methods would require planning and perhaps seem as if they would require much time and effort for Target to put into practice. However, considering how many similar programs are used every week in stores all over the country (buy one - get one free sales, gas-card coupons, all manner of promotions and discounts for holidays and special occasion sales), it would not be prohibitively complicated. Nor would it be an expensive undertaking for the store. Besides the fact that Target is already dedicated to helping the community, money donated to the centers would be offset by the benefits. The _____ Centers are local charities directly involved with people who shop at Target and those who would if they had a little more incentive.
Although any of these programs could be implemented and any of them would be beneficial to the centers, the most helpful and the simplest to put into practice would be an outright donation of the diapers to the _____ Centers in the _____ area. Without adding as much paperwork or recordkeeping as the discounted diaper programs would, such a donation would still be a reason for the _____ Center’s clients, workers, volunteers, and supporters to shop at Target. It would still be an incentive for new customer loyalty, and of all possible solutions, it would help the centers the most. If donating supplies is not standard procedure, Target could accomplish the same thing by arranging for a grant to be given to the _____ Centers for the purpose of purchasing diapers. As Target often gives grants to programs benefiting the community, this would easily fit with their stated policy (Target). By giving a grant specifically for diapers, Target would know that the money was going where it was definitely needed and for something extremely necessary.
By donating diapers to the _____ Centers, Target would be benefiting the young mothers in the community. Investing in these mothers, often young and without support, will help their babies, who are the next generation, grow up with what they need. By using a small amount of the $3 million that Target donates every week and giving it to the ____ Centers, Target will be easing the burden on these centers as they seek to help individuals in need (Target). It is something so easy to give – yet something so helpful to the recipient. Something so simple – yet something so important: diapers.

So... what do you think?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

We Walk

Went for a walk with my pretty horsey this week...

(I have to take some new pictures of her! She's cute in the winter (at least to me... I've heard others call her - almost ugly. ::choke/gasp/cough/recover::), but no one denies that she's a beautiful horse in the summer.) :D

Speaking of her, guess what I discovered last week? Rio is Spanish for river, right? Yes, but it's the masculine form. Properly speaking, since Rio (my horse) is a filly (not a mare yet! I still have some time to train her! :P) she should be called Ria. Properly speaking, Rio sounds a whole lot prettier to me, and we're used to it. Besides, I call her GoodGirl and BabyDoll more often than not anyways. (Well, that last only when she's being super good... which is most of the time I guess. Saddles sure are a lot heavier than doll clothes for hauling around, though!)

Anyway, that was not what I planned on writing. :D


As I was saying, I went for a walk with Rio.
As in, a brisk 30-minute hike on the trails I hope to someday ride. (Not until I can gallop her in circles in the area, though. :D)
When I got back someone said, "Wow, you look like you walked the whole way." I did, and I looked it. (Felt it too- 30 minutes in cowboy boots, and you'll know it.) :)

But despite that, it was a really fun walk. I've led other horses, and each one is a little different. Some pull ahead, tugging on the lead rope until your arm aches with constantly reminding them to slow down. Some drag back, freezing at each new sight and having to be coaxed to approach every corner - even when they've been by it 100 times.
But Rio just stayed right beside me, sometimes a little fast, sometimes a little slow, but she was listening to me. One time she had to stop and investigate a fallen tree before she'd walk by it, but she was attentive to me, seeing how I reacted to it. She looked at me when she saw something strange, and I got the feeling that she trusted me. Walking along with her, I suddenly thought of what a privilege I have.

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? Micah 6:8

God is leading me. I actually get to walk with Him daily, following Him every moment. I can choose to be afraid, to refuse to go near the things that frighten me. I can choose to want my own pleasures and desires and to plunge ahead, ignoring His voice. Or I can walk with Him, allowing Him to take me on the paths He chooses, knowing that He is perfecting me, that He has a good plan for me. Even when I don't know where I'm going, even when I don't see what's ahead on the trail, or know why I'm heading for something as frightening to me as a tree stump is to Rio- I can trust Him. I can enjoy walking with Him, can speak to Him at any moment, can be in His presence, even while I follow Him into the unknown. And He is so good!
Praying... That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; Colossians 1:10 - and we can only do that when we're with Him.

Seeking His Kingdom,

Friday, May 14, 2010

Through a glass darkly...



I was just looking through a school cupboard and found an old... chunk of glass. I'm not sure what it is, but it looks like this:


The first picture is of flowers reflected upside-down inside it... it's really weird. We all used to have so much fun holding it up to our eyes and walking around. It distorts everything and going up and down stairs is positively hazardous. Looking through it makes you dizzy and liable to trip just walking down a long hallway. It's really fun. ;D


Looking through it again, I immediately thought of that verse in 1 Corinthians, "For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."

Recently I've been thinking about the future (yah, graduation and all that...) and darkly is exactly how I'd describe it. Very darkly tinted and distorted glass. The future is definitely not clear.

I seriously cannot even imagine where I will be in the next few years or what the world will be like. It's strange, but I can't picture it. For someone who tends to imagine a lot, it's weird.
Even something as silly as my wedding - our current church is the first one where I have not thought about what it would look like. Considering that this is the first one where would be easy it's odd. (We used to go to a church with no center aisle and then to one that met in a gym.)
Watching what is happening in America and around the world is confusing and disturbing. Where are we headed, as a family, church, nation, world, universe? What does the future hold?
Just saying "I know Who holds the future" seems somehow trite and unhelpful.

Because I think we do know.
People love to quote Mark 13:32, "But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father," and think the End Times are Far Away. They seem to forget, though, that when the disciples asked, "Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?" Jesus didn't just say no one would know. He also told them, "But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things."
He said, "Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors."

It is definitely true that we don't know the day and the hour, which is why I disagree with this:


But even if we don't know the date, we know what is going to happen. Knowing the signs of the times and preparing ourselves is so important!
What are the signs?
For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many. And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. Then shall they deliver you up to be afflicted, and shall kill you: and ye shall be hated of all nations for my name's sake. And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another. And many false prophets shall rise, and shall deceive many. And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. But he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.
These things are happening. Are we at "the beginning of sorrows"?
Be like the people in 1 Chronicles 12:32: "And of the children of Issachar, which were men that had understanding of the times, to know what Israel ought to do... and all their brethren were at their commandment."
Jesus told us what was coming. He also told us what to do.

Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch.

Are you watching? Do you know what is going on in the world right now?
Here are a few places to check out:

Even if I can't imagine it, I can know what is going on and what I need to do - it's all written out for me. Watch and work for Him. 1Corinthians 7:29says, "But this I say, brethren, the time is short." We don't know how short, but we don't need to - we know enough and we have our orders.
Just some things to think about...
Keep Seeking Him.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Again...

"For all the promises of God in Him are yea, and in Him Amen."
"Jesus told the parable of the talents recorded in Mt 25 as a warning that it is possible for us to misjudge our capacity. This has not to do with natural gifts, but with the Pentecostal gift of the Holy Ghost. We must not measure our spiritual capacity by education or by intellect; our capacity in spiritual things is measure by the promises of God. If we get less than God wants us to have, before long we will slander Him as the servant slandered his master: "You expect more than You give me power to do; You demand too much of me, I cannot stand true to You where I am placed." When it is a question of God's Almighty Spirit, never say "I can't." Never let the limitation of natural ability come in. If we have received the Holy Spirit, God expects the Holy Spirit to be manifested in us.
The servant justified himself in everything he did and condemned his lord on every point - "Your demand is out of all proportion to what you give." Have we been slandering God by daring to worry when He said: "Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you"? Worrying means exactly what this servant implied- "I haven't a decent chance,and the one who is lazy spiritually is captions with God. Lazy people always strike out on an independent line.
Never forget that our capacity in spiritual matters is measure by the promises of God. Is God able to fulfill His promises? Our answer depends on whether we have received the Holy Spirit." ~Oswald Chambers

Monday, May 3, 2010

On new life, best laid plans, and other random thoughts

So...
yeah.
I was sooo excited last week.
I got permission from the hospital and clinic to shadow two doctors and spend time up in OB.
And I was thinking ahead about what it would be like to observe a birth and thinking how I'd find something brilliant to say about it and then I'd blog about it and....
:D
Anyway, the doctor shadowing was good. You know, besides getting married and having a dozen children, being a doctor has been the only thing suggested to me that actually interested me? I enjoy shadowing doctors, and this last time I got a good picture of rural practice around where I live. The person in charge of recruiting doctors for the clinic even told me think about doing my residency there! Which I think would be really cool, since I've already lived here for a year and kind of know the area and everything, besides the fact that I'd get to live with my grandparents again. Maybe, if they wanted me. I'd pay them rent at that point, though. :D My first choice would still be an overseas mission residency, but that's so far down the road I'm not thinking about it yet. :D
But the hospital... Very poorly organized, unhelpful, and loooong. I was there allllll day and was absolutely exhausted by the time I got home. No one really explained anything or even knew why I was there. (I was just following directions, and Yes, I did get permission!) The really sad part was, one baby was born ~30 minutes before I got there. I did my volunteer job and then waited in the nursery, rocking the babies all afternoon. Finally someone else was ready to have a baby, but it was born before they thought it would be, and they hadn't allowed me into the room yet. So I waited like 3 more hours for the next baby... and then there were complications and the woman had to go have a c-section. (I was pretty unhappy with how my afternoon had gone, but thinking about how hers had gone, I kinda figured I should get over it.) :P
Holding the babies (even if they weren't crying - hey, I figured it was better for them to be held than to sleep in those plastic aquarium bins) was fun, and seeing a baby the instant after birth was very interesting. Even though it definitely did not decide me one way or the other on whether or not I want to do OB with family practice, it wasn't like I learned nothing. It just wasn't... how I expected it to go.
So, several things.
I think I know what's going on, I get my plans laid out, everything is going wonderfully... but I can't forget that God's plans are always better and greater than I can imagine. It was not how I thought it would be, but I'm sure there was a reason. I do tend to get ahead of myself, even though I try not to. It was a reminder that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.
And, thinking how one baby came so quickly, and the other so slowly, plus thinking about the c-section, I was reminded of
Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. & Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
I've wondered why it is that some people's addictions, tempers, problems, disappear the moment they are saved. Everyone has probably heard at least one such story from a person they know. Doesn't it make you wonder? I've heard of other people who had serious addictions and had to struggle for years as they tried to overcome them, even though they were saved, too.
Why the difference?
It's birth.
Each child of God is different, and each one has a different story. Every person alive was born in some way, but for some people it takes thirty minutes and for others it takes surgery and for others it takes all day and then surgery. (I still feel bad for that lady and her baby!)
We can't compare the length of time that it takes different people to reach certain places in their spiritual life nor how they got there. Know what? Once babies are born, they don't all grow at the same rate or all respond similarly to life. And sometimes the effects of their normal or traumatic birth will continue on through their whole life. The more you think about it, the more you really understand what Jesus was telling Nicodemus. And you realize how incredibly good God is at explaining Himself, if you only take the time to listen!

Keep Seeking Him!


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