Monday, February 2, 2015

I've moved!

Hi! If your checking me out here, I've moved. I am now located at "" see you there!

Saturday, February 8, 2014


by matt dalrymple

5 Minute Friday:


I've been sitting her ethinking about ....oh the things that darkness tells you. Lies, fears, things that are not of God. And the counter feeling is "read" "write" the holy spirit is telling me. "REad." "Write." My prayers are letters to God, in some ways, it's kind of like having a pen pal. Someone I love dearly, have developed a relationship with, but I cannot see. That's the way blogging is. And just as in my blogging, has been my prayer life, sporadic, uneven, unkempt. I just want to pray but I don't know what to pray, and I don't know how to get out of this cloud that has settled upon me, except for to Read. Write. My communication with the Lord. I read his word, I write Him Letters, I write to the cyber world that MAY read my blog at some point in time. It's a diaglogue I have with the Lord, writing in my journaling bible, writing letters, reading. Listening, waiting. I'm kind of sick of waiting to be honest. I want to KNOW. And I know that does not teach me faith, I keep thinking that if I LEARN to have faith, possibly God will let me know sooner, but God has not called us to know the future. He calls us to settle into his peace, and to trust in his loving hands, and his perfect plans.


Five Minute Friday

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Imagine

Imagine. Oh the great things to imagine...I feel like Dr. Seuss. I'm a very goal driven person. I usually accomplish the goals I set out to accomplish, and then I get bored and and have to create new goals...and....

But the Lord placed His purpose on my heart. If only I could imagine the things He has imagined FOR me. If I KNEW what goal he has in place for me next. If I looked to Him in all things instead of trying to force His hand and do things my way, on my timeline.

But God has plans bigger than anything I could possibly imagine. His purpose is greater than the length of my life. The greatest thing I can imagine, he is forming something even more magnificent and better for me.

To be honest, I don't trust it. I don't allow myself to love God enough to be vulnerable to Him. To allow Him to hurt me, to disappoint me, not that he ever would.

Can I imagine being loved like that? Imagine being loved that perfectly? Imagine putting every part of my being into someones hands that I have no reason to doubt.

Oh! I am more like Eve and Sarah than I want to admit. Can I allow myself to imagine great things and then put them in Gods hands?


Five Minute Friday

No "Plan B"

by Dawn Lamper

 In our "encouragement" group we began reading Elisabeth Elliot's "Let Me Be a Woman" and we are going to be going through the women of the bible alongside of our reading other texts.

Elliot, in chapter one states, "We are not for one moment of our lives at the mercy of chance."

Romans 8:28 And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. (ESV)

Psalm 73:26
My flesh and my heart may fail,
    but God is the strength[a] of my heart and my portion forever.

 Proverbs 16:9 The heart of man plans his way,
    but the Lord establishes his steps.

I wonder sometimes on God's timing. Whether or not I'm doing the will of the Lord or my own will.

When God created the garden, did he have me in mind as well? 

When the entire bible repeats the story of the Gospel over and over and over again, when His mercies are new every morning, when he expects perfection, receives failure, loves us despite it all, and gave us His Son to be slaughtered on the cross so that instead of our failure, He sees His own perfection.

That wasn't a plan B.

These are the hard questions:

Why did God allow sin into our world?
Why did God give us the choice to eat from the tree?
Why didn't God leave us to die outside of the Garden?
Why did God make Adam first and then make Eve?

If you force someone to choose only you, do they really love you?

If God gave us no option but to only love Him, then does that not defeat the whole purpose of love? Is not love being vulnerable enough to allow someone to hurt us? They may leave us, die, sin against us, deny us...but it only hurts when you truly love someone.

When we commit adultery, we hurt God, we leave Him-we find out what it is like to be separate from Him.

But we desire Him. Our very hearts seek Him out in all things, and we don't even realize it.

As Adam was lonely, so are we lonely. As Man needed not only God, but woman as well. We are created for a triune relationship, just as God is. A relationship with God, a relationship with Man.

But Man would never know how much he needed woman had he always been with woman, just as man would never know how much he needed God if God were the only choice.

Eve wasn't a "Plan B". Christ wasn't a "Plan B". It was all "Plan A.".

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Just a Chair

Yesterday I mentioned I wanted a chair for my bedroom which I'm trying to convert into my "prayer space"

I love it when God answers my stupid little prayers. The ones that really don't carry much weight, the conversations I have with the Lord that include things I don't really need...I can make do without.

And then he answers my prayer unexpectedly, with the perfect gift.

A Chair. The exact perfect brown to match the brown in my room. The perfect little size. The exact price I was willing to pay for a chair $30 at a clean little Christian based thrift store where I splurge $10 a pay check on buying books.

Thank you Lord for showing me you even grant the little things.

O Lord, you have searched me and known me! Psalm 139:1

Wednesday, April 24, 2013


I've been MIA for awhile...I know.

I've been distracted with myself -starting a new job, becoming more active in the church, moving into a home with 3 women and 5 teen aged girls.

I'm used to the estrogen.

I'm not used to working evenings- which leaves me sleeping in in the morning. I've been having troubles keeping up with my personal devotionals...mostly because I really haven't found a space, other than my bed- that I can be alone.

I really need that chair.

I haven't been able to finish a book, or read through a chapter in the bible. I'm constantly in a state of business vs. exhaustion and wondering if God is just calling me to rest right now.

I can't hear him.

I also haven't spent my time with him.

I've anesthetized myself again, dreaming of things that aren't...quite yet...may never be...

            and then God calls

From devotionals. From the pulpit. From his scriptures. From the used books my hands have found in thrift stores. From group bible studies and single ladies bible studies...

and I don't know what He is saying.

and I want to know what is going to happen next.

and I want to know why the seminary thinks I'd be better in educational ministry and/or theological studies than in counseling...and why didn't God bring that to my attention in the first place?

No wonder I've's the only way I feel some sort of control.

"Rest in the stillness of my presence....wait on Me in confident trust. Be still and know that I am God...Your fear often manifests itself in excessive planning. Your mind is so accustomed to this pattern of thinking that you are only now becoming aware of how pervasive it is and how much it hinders your intimacy with me." (Jesus Calling by Sarah Young April 24)

God seemed to have my everyday in mind when he asked Sarah to write that book.

16 Your eyes saw my unformed substance;
in your book were written, every one of them,
the days that were formed for me,
when as yet there was none of them.

17 How precious to me are your thoughts, O God!
How vast is the sum of them! (Psalm 139:16-17, ESV)
What is it to live your purpose in this world? How much effort do we have to put in to know and do the will of God? It can't just be shooting in the dark. Or can it?

Saturday, March 30, 2013

An Old Old Story: Pride and Prejudice

Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice

I'm reposting this because, despite all of my good intentions, I am still trying to figure out my new life, and my schedule. I am going to shoot for starting this in the beginning of April so that I can finish up the books I'm currently reading, finish up the Esther Bible study...and feel a little more caught up with life.

We will begin reading Pride and Prejudice this week. I have never read Pride and Prejudice before as I generally hate British novels. I am really excited to read with you.

This rich social commentary—Pride and Prejudice—is sometimes considered to be Jane Austen's finest novel*. It is certainly among her more famous ones. Austen sets her entertaining study of manners and misconceptions against the backdrop of a class-conscious society in 18th-century England.
Spirited, intelligent Elizabeth Bennet is alternately enchanted and affronted by Mr. Darcy. She is quick to suspend her usual, more rational judgment when it comes to him. She also is quick to believe the worst gossip about this haughty, opinionated man, who soon manages to alienate Elizabeth and her family. But is the condescending air that Mr. Darcy wars an indication of his real character? Or has Elizabeth's pride gotten in the way of her chance for true romance? (From Norton Critical Editions .)

"... It is perhaps worth emphasizing what may be called the hardness - at least the firmness - of Jane Austen's thought exhibited in all these undeceptions. The great abstract nouns of the classical English Moralists are unblushingly and uncompromisingly used; good sense, courage, contentment, fortitude, 'some duty neglected, some failing indulged', impropriety, indelicacy, generous candor, blamable trust, just humiliation, vanity, folly, ignorance, reason. These are the concepts by which Jane Austen grasps the world. ... All is hard, clear, definable; by some modern standards, even naively so. The hardness is, of course, for oneself, not for one's neighbors. ... Contrasted with the world of modern fiction, Jane Austen's is at once less soft and less cruel. ... It remains to defend what I have been saying against a possible charge. Have I been treating the novels as though I had forgotten that they are, after all, comedies? I trust not. The hard core of morality and even of religion seems to me to be just what makes good comedy possible. 'Principles' or 'seriousness' are essential to Jane Austen's art. Where there is no norm, nothing can be ridiculous, except for a brief moment of unbalanced provincialism in which we may laugh at the merely unfamiliar. Unless there is something about which the author is never ironical, there can be no true irony in the work. 'Total irony' - irony about everything - frustrates itself and becomes insipid. ... If charity is the poetry of conduct and honor the rhetoric of conduct, then Jane Austen's 'principles' might be described as the grammar of conduct. Now grammar is something that anyone can learn; it is also something that everyone must learn. ... She is described by someone in Kipling's worst story as the mother of Henry James. I feel much more sure that she is the daughter of Dr. Johnson: she inherits his common sense, his morality, even much of his style. ..."
C.S. Lewis 
A Note On Jane AustenIn Essays in Criticism (Oct. 1954)

Book Club will begin next week. 

A little orientation for newbies before we begin

A few guidelines while participating in this book club
How to participate in a discussion
1. Watch your language! Try to avoid words like "awful" or "idiotic"—even "like" and "dislike." They don't help move discussions forward and can put others on the defensive. Instead, talk about your experience—how you felt as you read the book.

2. Don't be dismissive. If you disagree with someone else, don't refer to her as an ignoramus. Just say, "I'm not sure I see it that way. Here's what I think." Much, much nicer. 

3. Support your views. Use specific passages from the book as evidence for your ideas. This is a literary analysis technique called "close reading." (LitCourse 3has a good discussion of close reading.)

4. Read with a pencil. Takes notes or mark passages that strike you—as signficant or funny or insightful. Talk about why you marked the passages you did. 

5. Use LitLovers for help. Check out our Litlovers Resources above. They'll help you get more out of what your read and help you talk about books with greater ease.
(Discussion tips by LitLovers. Please feel free to use them, online of off, with attribution. Thanks!)

Also, it will be easier to work through questions and respond to each other if we join 

 Join the club: 'reEducation of the Feminine Soul'.!

You can of course still comment on this page but if you join the book club we can be a little more fluid in our conversation. 

I hope to see you there next week with chapters 1 and 2 read and ready for discussion Saturday April 6th!

Friday, March 29, 2013

Freebie Friday

Free Financial Printables

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Single on a Sunday: Changing the Conversation on Singleness

by Graeme Weatherston

Today I'm so excited to introduce you to Jessica Bufkin!! She is guest posting for us from Single Roots. I just love how she reminds me to entrust the details of my life to the Lord and how to look at God's provision in each and everyone of our lives.

A former junior high English teacher, Jessica Bufkin currently serves as Editor for
SingleRoots, a website that encourages Christian singles to be intentional with their lives
and offers many resources to assist them, including a review of Christian dating sites and
a free eBook, “When Will I Get Married? (and 7 Other Questions that Plague Singles).”

Changing the Conversation on Singleness

by Jessica Bufkin

Can we all just stop for a minute? Stop with the hollow clich├ęs about dating. Stop with
the far-reaching explanations of why we’re still single. Stop with the pep talks of how
we’ll find someone, some day.

I know it doesn’t fit the stereotype of the Christian single, but I’m not perpetually
sad about my unmarried state.

I don’t wake up every morning and reluctantly convince myself that today is going to be
a good day even though I don’t roll over and see the love of my life on the pillow next to

And just because I’m not sad about my singleness doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be
married—because I do. It’s one of the deepest longings of my heart.

I guess having been single for longer than I ever thought I would be, I feel like I’ve heard
it all, from both sides. There are days when I get frustrated with people for acting as if
I’ve not fully arrived because I’m in my thirties and not married. But there are also days
I get frustrated with singles who believe those lies and allow them to steal their joy and
zest for living.

I don’t have life and singleness all figured out. I don’t. But can I just tell you, despite
what others think about poor, pitiful singles, there is not an undercurrent of sadness
beneath everything I do.

I wish we could change the singleness conversation from one of consolation to one of
celebration—and that people would really mean it.

Because I mean it when I say I have been immeasurably blessed.

Do you know how much traveling I’ve been able to do on a whim in the past decade?

Or how many times I’ve been able to meet needs for my family, at the drop of a hat, that
others with spouses and kids weren’t able to do?

Or how many times I’ve been able to take a spontaneous road trip to check on a friend
who I could sense wasn’t doing well spiritually?

Or the jobs I’ve been able to take because I was mobile?

Or how much I’m able to hang out with youth and college students and enter fully into
their stories because I don’t have someone waiting on me at home?

None of those things are consolation prizes! They are my life, and I have loved, loved,
loved every moment of it.

Sure, there are moments of wistfulness and hope and prayers that one day I will
know the love that is found in marriage.

And if that ever happens, I pray that I have lived this lot in my life, this singleness, so
fully that I am left with little regret of how it might have been lived differently. Like
everything I’ve been entrusted, I pray I bless the Lord with it and steward it well—
regardless of my marital status.

LORD, you alone are my inheritance, my cup of blessing.
You guard all that is mine.
The land you have given me is a pleasant land.
What a wonderful inheritance!
I will bless the LORD who guides me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
I know the LORD is always with me.
I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.
[Psalm 16:5-8]

Have you posted about singleness lately?

Link up with us this week and let's share the encouragement. Please be sure to read and comment on the persons link before yours so we can share the single luv.

Rules for Link Up:
1. You must be a single woman.
2. Please list the NAME of your post. 
3. Please visit the 2 people who posted before you and offer them some encouragement.
4. Attach my button or link back to this page at the end of your post.

Non-Single Ladies I love you too and I'm sure Jessica would love any and all encouragement and comments from you!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Carving out a Space: A room for me and God

I've moved into a new house for my job.

I've really been spending some time thinking about my space.
It's kind of like a dorm room, but technically, no one is really allowed to enter it. So unless I need someone to do some maintenance my space is just shared between me and God.

So before I moved in my room it looked like this:

And then my House Mates cleaned up the room and it was a  lot neater and un-clutterd.

 After about 4 weeks it looked like this:

There are some non-negotiables about the room: the color...the giant clothing rack....what I'm really wanting is to create  a space that reminds me to pray, and that when I am in this space I feel like I am enfolded in a cocoon of peace, comfort and love. I'll keep you posted on updates!!!

Friday, March 22, 2013

Freebie Friday

                                   Inspirational Power Cards. I printed them out and posted them on my bulletin board in my new room. I'm lovin' her blog too!!! 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

When I Cook

By lemonade,

Cooking/Baking always seems to put things into perspective. When I'm angry, I can do something nice for the person I'm angry with-blow off steam-and kill 'em with kindness. I can also meditate in silence, watching sauces bubble and cupcakes rise. I can concentrate on taste and smell and thought.

Sometimes this is my secret quiet place. The place where God an I exist together. Like brother Lawrence in his kitchen, I find comfort in his presence. A space to meditate. Though we don't talk, I feel his peace.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


What do you really want more of in your life?
I'm considering this question prayerfully.

There are so many things in my life God has blessed me with, that I want more of.

I want more knowledge of Him and less fear of the world.
I want more local relationships, and less alone time.
I want more peace, and less struggle.
I want more love, and less loneliness
I want more time with God, and less time in the world.

I used to want less structure to my days and more freedom.
God has blessed me with that.

I used to want more of God's provision, and less self-sufficiency.
God has also blessed me with that.

I feel as though God has called me to a place of rest. He has answered so many prayers in such a short space of time, it would be difficult for me to even entertain the idea that He does not exist, or care about the little things in our lives. He has set me up to do what I do best.

I have been through all of my Seminary interviews. I am about to begin volunteering at my new church. I am working with at risk kids, and I want to always be sure that I am doing things because they are what God is asking me to do, not because they are things that I want to do.

I want more of Him, and less of me.

He must increase, but I must decrease.” (John 3:30 ESV)

Linking up With Holley Gerth

Monday, March 11, 2013

Sermon Reflection: Bobbleheads

Painting by Akiane Kramarik

Yesterday we talked about the second Commandment :
Graven images.

I think the pastor made a good distinction between the first commandment and the second commandment.

As opposed to the first commandment: having idols

God doesn't want us to try to create an image of Him, physically or mentally.

Once we create an image of God, we confine him to a 2-D or 3-D space. A frame. A box.

We do this to people as well. We label them. We put a box around them and expect them to be one dimensional. When people do that to us, it's frustrates us to know end!!!

God is not one dimensional. If you say "God is Love and that's all I need to know " you've confined God because your definition of love is finite. It's only influenced by your own personal understanding of love, which is very flat and uninspired compared to God's definition of Love. Some of his love doesn't even make sense to our human way of thinking.

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

(Ephesians 3:14-19 ESV)

The pastor made the point that its hard to have a relationship with something you cannot see, so God sent us his Son, as a physical vessel of God, so that we would have something tangible to relate to, but you can't stick Christ in a box and slap a label on it saying "Jesus is My Homeboy" any more than you can stick a label on God.

It's kind of like having a pen pal, they respond, but if you never see their face even in a snapshot, it's difficult to maintain a relationship. Though the more you get to know them, the more complex you discover they are. I think that's why we find comfort in artists depictions of Christ. Not that we believe the image IS Christ any more than you believe the snapshot of me to the right of this post actually IS me, but it is my likeness. You have a face you can place to a name, and we find comfort in that.

Grab button for reEducation of the Feminine Soul