Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Television Wisdom Wednesday: Babies and their Momma's

From the show Bones:

Dr. Temperance 'Bones' Brennan -

"Just because I have breasts doesn't mean I have magical powers over infants!"

I feel like I can relate to this. Just because I am female and a mother doesn't mean a can calm any and every fussy baby. Babies need their own momma's. That is how God designed it. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Showing Compassionate Intolerance While Living in the Real World

It is no surprise that Easter is around the corner. The stores have been full of Easter 'stuff' that they wish us to buy for a while now. But instead of putting
so much focus on the fluffy fun of eggs and candy and pastel colored flowers, I want to take a moment to focus on Jonah. 
That guy in the bible that was swallowed by a large fish and then spit out. You see, God wanted Jonah to go to Ninevah to tell them His good message because they were so sinful and He wanted them to repent. But Jonah didn't want to because he despised them so much for their evil ways. But, after being swallowed by the fish and repenting for running away from what God called him to do, Jonah went and shared the message. The Ninevites repented from their sin and God saved them from the consequences of their sinful ways. This compassionate intolerance from the Lord made Jonah angry. All Jonah saw was that the Ninevites were very sinful people. What he wanted for them was justice for their actions not mercy or compassion. 
(Imagine it like this- Could you give mercy to and have compassion on [who many see as] the most vile of our culture like the serial killer, Jeffrey Dahmer, or would you only want justice? Learn more about how Dahmer became a Christian here.) 
But, as Jonah said, God is gracious, compassionate, slow to get angry, abounding in love and patient. Jonah, like us, was vindictive, heartless, impatient, barren of love and wished calamity for sinners. God could see that the Ninevites were so sinful, they couldn't tell their right from their left. They needed what only He can offer. It was their only hope to be saved from the consequences of their sin, death. 

Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

We like to think that the stories of the world depicted in the bible is so far off but it is not. It is the same sinful place that we live in. God has put us here and desires that we would be concerned with what He is. That we would have compassionate intolerance and save the lost and sinful from the evil one. 

John 17:15 - My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 

We live in a world, not too unlike Ninevah, that likes gray areas. It is too uncomfortable to stand up and say that things are black and white, right and wrong. But, if we say we are Christ followers, that we desire to follow His example, and that we are concerned with what He is concerned with, than we have to be willing to speak up against what is wrong no matter how uncomfortable. We have become too accepting, too tolerant of the grayness. We have become numb to all the poor choices we are making. We need to love each other enough to save each other from the 'wages of sin'. To God, there are no gray areas like we like to live in. There is no scale of bad sins to worst sins. For God, it is just repentant or not. And, no matter how far off we run in our sinfulness, away from Him, He is still within reach. Even when we are feeling swallowed up (like Jonah) by sin and that there is no light left, God can still hear our prayers, our cries out in repentance. 

Deuteronomy 31:6 - Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

Think about God's qualities and Jonah's. Where are you, on a scale of 1 to 10, in God's qualities compared to Jonah's? Where or with who is God calling you to show compassionate intolerance before they face the calamity of their own choices? 

*This is a write up of my notes on the Sunday morning sermon at my church, Summit View Church.

Friday, March 22, 2013

A Discontent Spirit


I hate days like today. 
Woke up this morning with a discontent spirit. This happens every once in a while. I just wake up discontent and I am frustrated all day. 

Discontent in my home. 
Discontent with where I am at in life. 
Frustrated that the desires of my heart are not met. 
Frustrated that I feel like I am doing things right and getting no where while others who are not doing things right get what they desire. 


Just so discontent and frustrated!
And while I am at it, I feel irritated at the fact that I am so discontent and frustrated about these worldly pursuits! 

You know better, Erika! 

That is why I hate days like today. I try to keep my mind and hands busy doing chores around the house and try to fit in something I enjoy like making cards. But the only thing that really helps on days like today 
(and, well, always) is praying to God about my discontent spirit and giving it over to Him. He is the only one that gives us true joy. On days like today, when I feel like I only have a single, little shred of joy left, I cling to it and my God with all I have! 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Television Wisdom Wednesday: Back to Basics

From the show Duck Dynasty:

Willie Robertson - 
"Change is a good thing but sometimes you gotta go back to the basics." 

When I read this quote, I think about the news lately on all the added junk in our food and water supplies and all the chemicals in our cleaning and beauty products. I think about all the tech devices our kids are using to learn with instead of a pencils and paper and hard cover books. I think about the fact we have buildings with exercise equipment and such called gyms where we go to get fit when God made us a big, wide world to explore and use for staying fit. This weeks television wisdom makes me think about a lot of stuff. I like it!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Thrifting Find!

Oh, do I love thrifting! Perusing the racks at thrift stores, searching garage sales in the warmer months and sometimes even sifting through bins of miscellaneous stuff, all trying to find that really great deal. Well, this weekend I found me a great deal! 

I went shopping Saturday with my mom and friends for a girls day out. At one of the thrift stores we went to, I found this treasure hanging unassumingly with the other handbags. 

Proof I wasn't making up the
really great deal I got! : )
This beautiful robins egg blue leather handbag is a Cole Haan and I picked up for $3.49 plus tax. Yup, $3.49! Of course, when I held it up for my mom to see, (with a big grin of accomplishment on my face) she just looked at it and said, "That's cool."  I said, "That's cool!? It's a Cole Haan.... for $3.49!" Again, a shrug and look of  "that means what?" She does not pretend to know about name brands but does care about looking nice and getting a good deal like I do. (Well, to be honest, she is the one who taught me all about it! Oh, the many thrifting trips we went on when I was growing up!) So, while others pay full price for beautiful items like this, I wait. I wait until they have gotten their use out of it and they pass it on. And, hopefully, I will find it and get it for a ridiculously great price! 

Do you have any great thrifting finds? Share! I would love to hear about it. 

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Leprechaun's Gold or Real Treasures

Luke 16: 10 “If you are faithful in little things, you will be faithful in large ones. But if you are dishonest in little things, you won’t be honest with greater responsibilities. 11 And if you are untrustworthy about worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of heaven? 12 And if you are not faithful with other people’s things, why should you be trusted with things of your own?

As people celebrate St. Patrick's Day with corned beef and cabbage and images of leprechauns with pots of gold, I am thinking on what Jesus said about being faithful with what we are giving in this life. He said we can not serve two masters. Not God and Money or God and whatever else you think of as 'important' in your life. If we are faithful and serve the one, true God and give Him our life, He will be faithful and take care of us in this life. I challenge you to take a moment today and this next week to search your heart honestly and see if there is anything you are putting first in your life instead of God. 
Your job
Your marriage
Your kids
Your friends
Your screen time
Your abusive substances
Your lustful desires
Your money
Your ...........

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Kool-Aid cups and Memories

Last summer while visiting A Vintage Gathering*, I saw this Kool-Aid set for sale and oh man did it bring back memories. I can't remember if we even had the set but that doesn't matter. It brought back memories of mixing the Kool-Aid in the kitchen with my brother helping. It brought back memories of summer time, playing in the yard, laughing with friends. I seem to recall that the cups and pitcher changed color too. Oh, and those commercials of the big Kool-Aid man. Out of all the wonderful vintage treasures at the sale, this......

this set made me stop, remember simple moments in life and smile. This is why I love these sales, vintage and antique shops and such: 
For what they remind us of in the past so we know what to treasure in our present and future. 

*A Vintage Gathering, an outdoor event I attended last year, now is a store in Battle Ground, WA. Check out their Facebook page for more info.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Television Wisdom Wednesday

There are some that say there is nothing good that comes from television. Some others think it is just a mind numbing escape from reality. Well, I want to provide tid-bits of wisdom picked up from all my no good, mind numbing t.v. watching just to prove there is a little wisdom to be learned from it all. So, without further ado, from one of my favorite t.v. shows, the first Television Wisdom Wednesday quote. Enjoy! 

From the show Bones

Dr. Temperance 'Bones' Brennan - "I find very few people are scary once they've been poked in the eye."

Thursday, March 7, 2013

I am a Prepper. Wait, WHAT!?

  • I am always increasing my knowledge and skills in a wide variety of areas.
  • I am a gardener, ever learning new ways to grow and cook my own food. 
  • In case of an emergency, I have a plan for my family. We all know where to meet up and have an extra evacuation place to go to, if needed. 
  • I have stored away supplies around my house in case of an emergency situation. Extras like batteries, first aid kits, toilet paper, candles, matches, food, water and fuel.
  • I have personal protection and the know how to use it. 
  • I have cash on hand in case the bank is closed and we need gas, food or supplies quickly. 
  • I believe in planning ahead. 
  • I believe in being self-reliant or, if you like, self-sufficient.
  • I believe in helping those who are less fortunate.
  • I believe in God and putting to good use His provisions. 

I am a prepper. Yep. You read that correctly. I would call myself a prepper.

  • No, I am not a crazy person. (at least, that's what the voices in my head tell me)  hehehe  : )
  • No, I do not believe that zombies are going to attack us. 
  • Yes, I do believe that there is evil in this world. People, overcome by evil, do bad things and those bad things don't always happen to other evil people. 

In my opinion, we should all be preppers to a certain extent. I mean, look at the meaning of prepare: to put together; to get ready; to work out the details of; to make ready beforehand for some purpose, use or activity. Those are not crazy ideas or thoughts. Those are some pretty basic ideas. And, just because I choose to label myself a prepper, that doesn't mean I am a hoarder by any means or that I am not a philanthropist. I give as I feel I am lead to give and I prepare I as feel I am lead to prepare. So, where ever you are on the media's current sensationalized portrayal of prepping, this is where I am on prepping. Your thoughts?