Saturday, March 20, 2010


This is the second time I've welcomed spring this year. And I'm just as excited this time as I was last time. Flipflops, blooming yellow lilies, an old beautiful clover-filled garden to weed so it can be replanted, lots of basketball, a big yard to walk (or run) around, gentle and not-so-gentle breezes, earthworms and other funny little animals, a crazy cat, a brother home from school, sitting outside to crochet. . . . These are just a few of the things I've been enjoying this spring.

I want to share some of an interesting sermon I heard this past winter. This is the text: "While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease" (Genesis 8:22).

God has promised to keep the world going in this beautiful way until the end of the world. And everyone believes this so much that even atheists plan and plant gardens, and even they would scorn anyone who did not believe this promise of God. Even an atheist acts in faith on this promise.

But if this promise is true, why are not all the other promises also true? Why not trust and act in faith on everything else God has ever said? This is the thrust of a parallel passage in Jeremiah.

"And the word of the LORD came unto Jeremiah, saying, 'Thus saith the LORD; If ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers.' . . . .

"Thus saith the LORD; 'If my covenant be not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth; Then will I cast away the seed of Jacob, and David my servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: for I will cause their captivity to return, and have mercy on them." (Jeremiah 33:19-23, 25-26).

Friday, March 12, 2010

My New Favorite Chapter

Isaiah 61

The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me;

because the LORD hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek;

he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,

to proclaim liberty to the captives,

and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;

to proclaim the acceptable year of the LORD,

and the day of vengeance of our God;

to comfort all that mourn;

to appoint unto them that mourn in Zion,

to give unto them beauty for ashes,

the oil of joy for mourning,

the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness;

that they might be called trees of righteousness,

the planting of the LORD,

that he might be glorified.

The parellel passage in Luke 4 is just as beautiful!

And [Jesus] came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up: and, as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the sabbath day, and stood up for to read. And there was delivered unto Him the book of the prophet Isaiah.

And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written,

"The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,

because He hath anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor;

He hath sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,

to preach deliverance to the captives,

and recovering of sight to the blind,

to set at liberty them that are bruised,

To preach the acceptable year of the Lord."

And He closed the book, and Hhe gave it again to the minister, and sat down. And the eyes of all them that were in the synagogue were fastened on Him. And He began to say unto them, "This day is this Scripture fulfilled in your ears."

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

"Is That Cultural?"

It seems like that's a big question for a lot of people. I often get trapped by another version: "What will people think?" But that concern has a name in the Bible. It's called the fear of man. And "the fear of man bringeth a snare" (Proverbs 29:25). If I'm focused on how people think of me, how well I fit into my culture, and whether those people will still be my friends, where is ther room in my mind for thoughts of God?

That verse in Proverbs ends like this: "Whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe."

"If God be for us, who can be against us?" (Romans 8:31).

Instead of "Is that cultural?" and "What will people think?" let's ask "Is that biblical?" and "Would my Savior like that?"

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Music You Want to Hear

There are plenty of secular radio stations, but who wants to listen to them when there is more edifying music? So that leaves us with religious rock and rap (which can eventually give a bit of a headache), southern and bluegrass Gospel (which are not my radio favorite), and classical (which is great for three minutes but then gets a little boring). With youtube you can only hear the songs you specifically ask for.

Here's to, your online radio station with the music you like! =)

You enter the name of a song you like (for instance,  I might type "He Is Good" by Steve Green or "Easter Song" by Keith Green), and Pandora will create a radio station with similar artists and musical styles. You can like a song, ban a song, or ban a song for a month. You might not want to "like" too many songs, though, because they try to give you totally new songs that you've never heard before; and they tend to play your favorites first.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Living Without a Refrigerator

My family has recently been considering some major lifestyle changes. Due to present political and economic developments, we have decided to gradually switch to a simpler lifestyle - one that would not require electricity. As the kitchen is the heart of the home, it seemed like the best place to start. So the first big appliance to go was our refrigerator.

Or NOT. :-D

I think everyone in our family has actually considered living that way at some point in our lives (except Caleb; he's our cell phone/mp3/laptop guy). Right now Jedidiah is thinking seriously about living like the Amish. But not the rest of us.

We are living without a refrigerator right now, but that's just because when we moved into our new house last weekend we found out that our fridge doesn't work anymore. Time for a new one! While we wait for it to come, we're having fun with different kinds of food. :-)

Mom bought a dozen eggs for me to make into various bready foods, as they will last longer. But then I realized we only had a little white flour left. Whole-wheat flour is healthy, so we can overlook the taste. I googled the proper substitution amounts: 7/8 cup whole-wheat flour for one cup white. Then I made eight batches of pancakes, carefully stirring the batter so it wouldn't slosh over the sides, and one batch of zucchini muffins. Mmm!

We've had lots of frozen pot pies, frozen salisbury steak, prepackaged mashed potatoes, ice cream, and plenty of other yummy foods that we rarely get to eat when the refrigerator is running! Plus granola and cereal and extra syrup on our whole-wheat pancakes to cover the dry taste. Maybe this green thing isn't so bad after all. . . .

But after eating lots of Little Ceasar's pizza, Walmart donuts, potato chips, Ale8s, and other junk food for a few days while we were moving and then eating a lot more this past week, I think we were all ready for a salad tonight. It was delicious!

Caleb's bringing his little refrigerator home from college tomorrow, so normalness will soon be restored! Sorry, enviromentalists. I like modern comforts too much right now. Maybe someday you can convert me. . . .