Sunday, November 10, 2013

Goodbye Christian Missus

Dear Readers,

For reasons I will leave unspecified, I have deactivated my Twitter account, and will no longer be posting updates to this blog.

However, I am leaving this blog open for the time being, as Christian Missus has regular visitors, as well as many new visitors.

On the off chance that this blog and it's posts can reach the lost or encourage/uplift other brothers and sisters in Christ, it is enough of a reason not to delete it. May the Lord's work be done through here, if He Wills.

Stay strong and unwavering in the faith, brothers and sisters. "...For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed." - James 1:6 (partial)

May the Lord bless and keep all His children.

With love in Christ,

Rennie

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary - Proverbs 14:1-17

Good [Lord's] day, everyone! I was on the lookout for a few quotes to tweet on Twitter today, notably quotes that pertain to wives and marriage. During my search, I came across Proverbs 14, and Matthew Henry's commentary on Proverbs 14 (verses 1-17). 

Now, I do want to make clear that I am very careful when reading commentaries, opinions, teachings, sermons and the like outside of the Bible. The modern church is just saturated with false teachings (and teachers, for that matter), so to find things "right on the money" is quite challenging. In light of this, I find that reviewing preachers' commentaries and teachings from the 1800's and earlier are usually not sugar-coated, scathingly true, and as close to the Truth as you can get. Of course, my husband vets these preachers as I find them! Of course, I'm not saying that I've read every single piece of Matthew Henry's works, but from what we've seen so far, what he writes can be of great value to every, and any, Christian.

In Scripture, we read:

The wise woman builds her house,
But the foolish pulls it down with her hands.
He who walks in his uprightness fears the Lord,
But he who is perverse in his ways despises Him.
In the mouth of a fool is a rod of pride,
But the lips of the wise will preserve them.
Where no oxen are, the trough is clean;
But much increase comes by the strength of an ox.
A faithful witness does not lie,
But a false witness will utter lies.
A scoffer seeks wisdom and does not find it,
But knowledge is easy to him who understands.
Go from the presence of a foolish man,
When you do not perceive in him the lips of knowledge.
The wisdom of the prudent is to understand his way,
But the folly of fools is deceit.
Fools mock at sin,
But among the upright there is favor.
10 The heart knows its own bitterness,
And a stranger does not share its joy.
11 The house of the wicked will be overthrown,
But the tent of the upright will flourish.
12 There is a way that seems right to a man,
But its end is the way of death.
13 Even in laughter the heart may sorrow,
And the end of mirth may be grief.
14 The backslider in heart will be filled with his own ways,
But a good man will be satisfied from above.[a]
15 The simple believes every word,
But the prudent considers well his steps.
16 A wise man fears and departs from evil,
But a fool rages and is self-confident.
17 A quick-tempered man acts foolishly,
And a man of wicked intentions is hated.

Please, take a moment to read what Matthew Henry has said along with this:

14:1 A woman who has no fear of God, who is wilful and wasteful, and indulges her ease, will as certainly ruin her family, as if she plucked her house down. 2. Here are grace and sin in their true colours. Those that despise God's precepts and promises, despise God and all his power and mercy. 3. Pride grows from that root of bitterness which is in the heart. The root must be plucked up, or we cannot conquer this branch. The prudent words of wise men get them out of difficulties. 4. There can be no advantage without something which, though of little moment, will affright the indolent. 5. A conscientious witness will not dare to represent anything otherwise than according to his knowledge. 6. A scorner treats Divine things with contempt. He that feels his ignorance and unworthiness will search the Scriptures in a humble spirit. 7. We discover a wicked man if there is no savour of piety in his discourse. 8. We are travellers, whose concern is, not to spy out wonders, but to get to their journey's end; to understand the rules we are to walk by, also the ends we are to walk toward. The bad man cheats himself, and goes on in his mistake. 9. Foolish and profane men consider sin a mere trifle, to be made light of rather than mourned over. Fools mock at the sin-offering; but those that make light of sin, make light of Christ. 10. We do not know what stings of conscience, or consuming passions, torment the prosperous sinner. Nor does the world know the peace of mind a serious Christian enjoys, even in poverty and sickness. 11. Sin ruins many great families; whilst righteousness often raises and strengthens even mean families. 12. The ways of carelessness, of worldliness, and of sensuality, seem right to those that walk in them; but self-deceivers prove self-destroyers. See the vanity of carnal mirth. 14. Of all sinners backsliders will have the most terror when they reflect on their own ways. 15. Eager readiness to believe what others say, has ever proved mischievous. The whole world was thus ruined at first. The man who is spiritually wise, depends on the Saviour alone for acceptance. He is watchful against the enemies of his salvation, by taking heed to God's word. 16. Holy fear guards against every thing unholy. 17. An angry man is to be pitied as well as blamed; but the revengeful is more hateful.    

This piece of Scripture is powerful, and should strike a chord of truth in even the most unbelieving of people. I wanted to share what Matthew Henry said here in particular, not only because what he said in response is so searing and true, but also because there are many people who walk the earth today (and all the times before today) that just fit that description. Even people who are close to me, I am sad to say.

All the information I copied and pasted here can be found at Bible Hub and Bible Gateway.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Book Review! "A Christmas Gift for Rose" by Tricia Goyer


Rose Yoder is a young Amish woman living in Berlin (Ohio) during the Great Depression. Her potential husband is on questionable circumstances with the rest of the Amish community, and Rose herself is unsure of her feelings of him. In the midst of her relationship woes, she unexpectedly finds out a very important detail about herself, concealed from her until now. Her life as she once knew it was no longer. Or was it?

This story was very short, only 144 pages, yet the entire storyline fit perfectly into the pages. To say the least, it was a quite a quick read, and proved to be uplifting and heartwarming all at once. The writer put a lot about God in the book, and naturally with Amish Fiction, examples of Godly living in it as well. Living in such a fallen world, it is quite inspiring and soul strengthening to read such a work.

Rose was only an “okay” character. I’m not trying to sound over-critical or picky, but sometimes her train of thought and her decision-making made me furious. Her head always seemed to be in the clouds, and she was so indecisive and didn’t know what she wanted. In the end, all was well, but to some extent, I believe the writer added in some extra stresses to make the story more entertaining, whereas I think it made it more drawn out and maybe even a tad annoying.

All in all, I would highly recommend this novel to others. It’s truly inspiring and very God-centered. Talk about uplifting! Beware, though, it is quite a short book.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze.com® <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Monday, October 21, 2013

Autumn, Pumpkins, and God's Creation



To me, autumn is the most picturesque, tranquil, most alluring time of year. Just witnessing the red, orange, and yellow leaves cascading down from a tree branch, and then landing onto a bed of their crunchy counterparts just makes my heart sing. What a creation! Whoever thinks that such a thing is a product of chance is beyond me.

Another thing I love about autumn is… drum roll please… PUMPKINS! No other woman gets more excited about pumpkins than THIS WOMAN! I’m telling you, I purchased a few small ones, orange and white, and even a bagful of mini ones, back in late September, very early October. I roasted pumpkin seeds, had a few McDonald’s pumpkin latte’s, made pumpkin snickerdoodle cookies, made pumpkin cheesecake - twice! I’ve been eyeing a few pumpkin pie recipes, and even a pumpkin ice cream recipe. I’ve even been debating a pumpkin facial, but that’s probably just the wonders of marketers and advertisers at work in my mind.

I could also tell you about my squash obsession, but I won’t, *wink*! But, pumpkins do make me more excited.

I also purchased a book from Christian Books for the kids called The Pumpkin Patch Parable by Liz Curtis Higgs. What a wonderful book to highlight the glory of God’s creation during the fall season, and instead glorify Him and His Word, rather than following the way of the worldly-minded and their primary focus at this time of year: everything Halloween.

(That is for another post closer to the day. I’m just getting all my research done beforehand.)

I just wanted to share something our family did on Thanksgiving weekend, something I think we will keep as a family tradition for the coming years. We went to a pumpkin patch! It was actually a farmers market, a really big one. There were animals, hayrides, a corn maze, games, and of course, a huge field of pumpkins. Not just orange pumpkins, but pink ones, white ones, bumpy ones, tall ones, and just plain weird ones. All of us went and just had the greatest time.

I highly recommend a trip to the pumpkin patch for a family looking for innocent, wholesome fun. It is so easy to glorify, praise, and thank our Creator for just everything at such a place. And of course, it’s perfect for you if you have a love and appreciation for fall, and a slight pumpkin fancy. But seriously, seeing as how much fun all of us had, I felt I had to share it with all of my dear readers, so that they too may have their own pumpkin patch experience!

With Love in Christ

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Diamonds Aren't Forever


If you live in the West, you are probably aware of what makes the world go round: money, money, money. Stuff, stuff, stuff, and more stuff. Everywhere you look, there’s money and STUFF. If someone has a lot of money, they might have a big house, maybe a nice car, perhaps a thing of jewelry or two, and possibly plenty of stamps on their passports. Also known as: stuff. If someone has not as much money, well, their list of possessions (or "things") might not be as extensive or as expensive. Of course, this is a broad generalization and I do not mean to sound stereotypical or judgmental!

It’s quite obvious that a lot of people in our Western culture are looking for the next “thing”, like the newest version of the iPhone, the highest-end TV, that cute lampshade at Homesense (even though the one at home is just fine). I’ll admit openly to everyone reading this that I have these inner urges! ... Especially the Homesense thing.

Why are we so compelled to go after the next “thing”?

Regardless of why, there is a bigger picture here. It doesn’t matter how many “things” we waste our money on. It doesn’t matter how many “things” we fill our houses (another “thing”) up with. It doesn’t matter how much these “things” cost. (Well, it kind of does matter, but this post isn’t about debt and why it’s against Scripture. And why it’s just plain smart not to be in any kind of debt at all. Anyhow, I’ll save that for another day.) After all is said and done, it really doesn’t matter if or when we end up having all these “things”. When we look past this life and turn our focal point to the end-all bottom line: no matter how much we spend, no matter how much we buy, no matter how much we have material wise, we can’t bring it with us where we’re going. These “things” just do not matter, plain and simple.

Why store up our treasures here? We know the earth is going to pass away (Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, Luke 21:33 - That’s written in three Gospels!). We know we are going to die. (The reason behind this can be found in the very beginning, in the book of Genesis.) We [should] know that storing up treasures on earth is foolish (1 Timothy 6:17-19). (A good example of what is written there can be found in Matthew 19 and Luke 18.)

Perhaps it is time, if you feel as if your focus is not where it should be, to persevere in the faith and shift the attitude of your heart. It’s time to think about our priorities, and think about the long term of things. Keeping our minds and hearts focused on God and living a life pleasing to Him will make everything fall into place (Colossians 3:2, Matthew 6:33, 2 Timothy 2:15). 

And one more thing! Something simple to say in our minds or even out loud, on the spot, when we have that urge to buy some useless or unneeded"thing". Just remember, diamonds really aren't forever - neither is that "thing" we're about to buy - we can't take these "things" with us where we're going!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Congregation Conundrum


I wrote everyone a small update yesterday, and included a little sneak-peak about what I was going to post today. The main part I’m referring to was the part where I said, “It’s about finding a church”. Now, what I really meant to say was congregation. All true believers of Jesus Christ are part of His body - the church - and we usually meet in a church building and henceforth become a congregation (Romans 12:5, Colossians 1:24). When we’re looking for a church, really, we’re looking for a congregation to meet with - and what a difficult feat it is.

Let me explain.

We are actively trying to become a member of a congregation, and finding one has been our one of our main priorities for a while. Our Sunday gatherings currently involve my husband and I (as well as another believer), meeting in our home. Unfortunately this brother in Christ can no longer meet with us at this time, so we are on the hunt for a group of true believers to meet with once a week. The purpose of such a meeting is to uplift, encourage, learn of the Word of God, pray, break bread, and worship the Lord. Of course, there are other reasons why Christians meet together besides the fact that it is commanded in Scripture to do so regularly (Hebrews 3:13, Hebrews 10:25).

So far, the hunt has been disappointing and downright saddening. Out of all the congregations in and around the area, there are very few that adhere to the Word of God, as written in the Bible, by itself. Meaning, no manmade doctrines added. It’s astonishing how far some people are off the mark! I said in an earlier post, I think it was yesterday, about liberal Christians creating wiggle room with Scripture. It’s like this, in a nutshell: Satan says, in response to what God has said: “Did God really say?” And we say, “I guess He didn’t!” And go about things our own way, the way we think things should be done, based on our human opinion and our feelings. This really rings true when you read a few different statements of beliefs. That, or when you look at how Eve took a bite of the forbidden fruit! (Genesis 3:1).

I do have to say it’s a good thing that the majority of these places have websites that include their statement of beliefs. Otherwise, there would be many Sunday morning trial and error church trips. (Aka, a lot of stress!)

Of course, the one foolproof way to find a congregation is to measure it up with the Bible, preferably the King James Version. If the pastor of your congregation teaches that it’s okay to live in unrepentant sin all week long, as long as you ask for forgiveness on Sundays, it does not measure up to the Word of God (Hebrews 10:26-31***, Luke 13:3, Revelation 3:19, etc., etc., etc.). If your pastor is a woman (1 Timothy 2:12, Titus 2:5) or condones and/or encourages homosexuality (Romans 1:26-27, 1 Corinthians 6:9), your congregation ultimately does not measure up to the Word of God. Does your pastor say, “God is love, you do not need to obey these old writings. It’s all cultural,” or something along those lines, RUN AWAY! (John 14:15, John 15:10, 1 John 2:3, etc.) There are a lot of different scenarios I can write down here. Bottom line, plain and simple: measure absolutely everything against the Word of God! Nothing added or subtracted.

That being said, if you cannot find a church that teaches what is written in the Bible (and trust me, this seems to be extremely hard to find!) there is absolutely nothing wrong with meeting in your home, with your husband or wife, children, and/or other believers that are spot-on with what God has commanded. A lot of times, this is what people used to do back in the day, and what people still do today, such as some Mennonite groups and Amish groups, or any other Christian looking to get away from mainstream “popular” Christianity.

I feel that there is more to write about when it comes to the congregation conundrum - perhaps at a later time. Until then, I urge all my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ to take a look at the congregation they’re in! Are you part of a group or movement that goes against what God has said? Are you being taught false doctrines? My prayers are with you all.

With love in Christ

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Way Behind...

Hey Everyone!

Can you believe that I haven't updated Christian Missus since the 29th of July??? I can't!

Believe me when I say this: we have been busy, busy bees! Finally, now that things around here are calm again, I have the time and patience to come on here and write. I do apologize for not updating more often!

That being said, I'll just give a small update about what's been happening between the end of July and now. We are still strong in our faith, arguably stronger, as we have seen how richly the Lord has blessed us in every way possible. We see His fingerprint on our everyday lives. It's positively amazing.

Perseverance is something that my husband and I have come to know quite well, as living the Christian life according to the Bible can bring more raised eyebrows and trials more than, let's say, living as a liberal Christian who makes compromises and invents wiggle room with the Bible. As hard as some times may be, we are called to be separate from the world, and we've been doing just that. Not in a literal sense, as in, living in the middle of the woods, away from every living soul. Just carrying and presenting ourselves differently. Not participating in some of the worldly things that would not give God glory, or doing things that would not please God. And in this day and age, it's better to swing to the right than to the left when your a professing Christian. The bottom line is will I please God or please man?

Homeschooling is going very well with my little boy, even more so after this summer. My intention is not to brag or boast, but I have to say, he really has a strong, intelligent mind and genuinely likes to learn. We bought a cubby bookshelf and have half of it filled with school supplies, books, and the like. Everyday, a few times a day, we crack at those school books and get a good amount of learning time in. I've been honing in on his learning styles, and have been catering to them with a newfound pleasure. Why hasn't anyone told me that teaching your own children is so rewarding and just plain... GREAT?

Even my little girl hangs around while we're learning! That's a blessing in itself, just because she gets into everything the second my back is turned. The joys of homeschooling while a baby/toddler is crawling around. More on that in another post sometime soon. I have a few tips on how to keep little ones occupied and out of trouble during learning times with older kids!

In the meantime, I have another post in the works, and will probably get it up on here tomorrow. It's about finding a church. Really, if you're looking for solid, true to the word of God pastor who teaches alongside the Bible and nothing else, you can't just walk into any old church and expect to have anything other than false teachings spoon-fed to you! Anyhow, that's for tomorrow.

Again, please accept my apology and stick around for regular updates!

Monday, July 29, 2013

The Lord Provides


The Lord supplies our every need. Hence, we do not need to worry about anything, because He is always providing our needs. (Matthew 6:31-21Philippians 4:19)

Something happened to us today that really, truly, brought this fact to light.

My kids and I went out for a little walk this morning. It was a beautiful sunny day when we left home, not even a cloud in the sky, as my little boy pointed out to me. He loves the outdoors, as does my daughter, who sits so quietly and happily in her stroller as I push her along.

We ended going a little distance and went shopping. We took our time, had a bite to eat, and relaxed at a coffee shop for a bit. My two darlings have the greatest relationship, even at their very young ages, always laughing and communicating with each other. So sitting down for a while was not an issue and proved to be quite relaxing and kinda fun for all of us.

When we were about to leave the shopping place, it was pouring rain. But we had to get going because it was time for my two little ones to have a nap, so I thought that if we walked really fast, we wouldn’t get that wet. When we left the building, the rain had slowed to a slight drizzle: nothing that would soak us.

So I continued across the parking lot, eager to get home, praying that the rain would not come down on us half-way home, seeing as none of us had a raincoat. That, and we were dressed for a summer day! Just as we were about exit the parking lot, a lady pulled up beside us in a mini-van. Curious, I looked over at her with a tentative smile.

“Do you need a ride?” She asked.

I stopped dead in my tracks, a little stunned. Never has a stranger offered me a ride.

“Well, we are only going down the street from here, about a five minute drive,” I replied, something along those lines. As I spoke to her, I was a bit hesitant. You need to be careful with who you trust these days.

“Well come on in! I’ll let you handle the logistics,” she said.

I decided to go for it (once I assessed the lady and her caravan) and determined it all safe. After thanking her profusely over and over again, we all piled into her van, and she drove us home safely. And of course, once we were home, we all thanked her again… and again. I offered her money, to which she responded, “I would not take that! I’m happy to know that you are all home safe, without pneumonia.”

There are a few bottom lines to this story.

One: there are still decent, generous, friendly, willing-to-help people left in this world. Thank the Lord for that!

Two: the Lord provides for us. I had not expected in a hundred years for someone to pull over and offer us a ride out of the goodness of their heart. I definitely was in need of a ride! With my son complaining of sore feet and the little rain drops on his face…

PS, About 10 minutes after walking in the door, the rain started to pour again.

God Bless!

Friday, July 26, 2013

What Would You Do For God? (Version for Women)



Would you stop swearing? Stop drinking excessively or altogether? Stop watching junk on TV? Stop listening to garbage music? Read the Bible everyday? Would you glorify God in all that you do?

Would you wear a head covering? Change your worldly wardrobe, and dress modestly? Embrace a chaste, discreet, loving demeanor? Accept and incorporate into your life God’s design for a woman, despite what western culture says about it? 

Would you submit to your husband? Change your daily duties from a full-time, high-paying career and work in your home instead? Be subjected to only your husband? Live joyously, separate from the world, and not look back?

Would you let your husband take the lead, and lovingly, willingly, gracefully follow him? Would you obey him, as long as his ways were not against Scripture? (It takes a real Godly woman to do so!)

Would you raise your children up in the Lord? Teach them about the Bible? Warn them against the wiles of Satan? Lift them up, encourage them, teach them, love them, mother them, discipline them, and show them the ways of the Lord?

Would you limit or completely cut the time you spend with old, secular, non-believer friends? Would you evangelize to them? Pray for them? Share the Gospel? Would you make Christian friends for you and your children?

Would you pray unceasingly? Constantly ask for the Lord’s guidance and help? Refer to His Word daily? Make daily changes in your life in order to strive for God’s standard? Meet and have fellowship with other Christians regularly? Spend some of your time doing the work of the Lord?

If you came across something you didn’t like, and didn’t want to obey in Scripture, what would you do? Do you make excuses as to why these “things” don’t need to be obeyed? Do you find a preacher that teaches the things you like to hear?

How far would you go for God? What would you do for Him? Would you obey Him, or not?

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Complete Self-Control (In Reference to Anger)


Everyone has their grouchy days. It just so happens that yesterday morning, I had a particularly grouchy one. When these nasty grouchy days arise, I can’t be told anything, especially if it’s something I don’t like. Most of the time, it has to do with correction. Despite my best efforts to be calm, cool, and collected, I sometimes lose it... like yesterday morning.

Needless to say, after I had my spat/venting session, I felt embarrassed and instantly regretted how far I had gone. Not only about the volume and tone of my voice, but about the things I said and how quick I was to anger. Of course, my husband forgives my hot-tempered moments quickly, but that that doesn’t change the fact that I still need to find it within myself to gain complete self-control - no matter what kind of mood I might be in.

The Bible refers to self-control in many different ways, but the bottom line is, everyone has to have it (2 Timothy 1:7, Titus 1:8), and it’s also one of the fruits of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). Again, like many fruitful qualities to “acquire”, it does not happen overnight, it cannot be obtained by trying to be self-controlled on your own, and as always, prayer and constant reading of The Word are a must.

In heated moments, I try to take a few breaths, relax, remove myself from the situation altogether. I try to think that I am not of the world anymore, that I am a child of God. Children of God do not lose their composure, are loving and self-controlled (Titus 2:11-14). And as a woman, I work towards and want to be like the woman described in Proverbs 31. But still, we are all in a fallen state and all fall short of the glory of God (this, however, is not a ploy to set us up for further failures). Because of this reason and other reasons combined, I (and others like me) still sometimes lose that composure and self-control.

The point I’m trying to make here is that complete self-control is a spiritual trait/fruit that all Christians must possess. As difficult as it may be for some to obtain (like me, for example), it’s something that absolutely needs to be worked at. Self-control in itself is, especially for those striving for God’s standard, freeing and fruitful. Nothing good can happen in a situation where someone has no self-control (Proverbs 25:28). 

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Loving In All Circumstances


I love lots of people. I love the people close to me like my husband, my children, my family and friends. Then I love other people, like the stranger who walks past me on the street, condescendingly eyeing my head covering, the lady who cuts in front of me in line at the grocery store, the old man in the car in front of me going 20 clicks when the speed limit clearly states 60.

Yes, I do have difficulty loving some people. I would be lying if I said I didn’t!

That genuine, sincere love in my heart is not there for some as it is for others. It’s a work in constant progress, and I’m a thousand times better at loving people compared to a few years (even a few months) ago - glory be to God! “One does not simply” (I thought of that Boromir meme when I wrote that!) wake up one morning, and decide to love their neighbor as themselves. We can’t do it on our own. It’s impossible. It is a heart change that happens over time, with the help of the Holy Spirit.

If or when someone wrongs or disrespects you, how do you react? Out of anger? Out of hate? Out of means to hurt or disrespect? Out of impulse or misjudgment? Hopefully none of these things, if you are actively striving for God’s standard! Your actions should be out of love, as to clearly demonstrate and outwardly display what is right according to God (Romans 12:9-21). Even if you are wronged by someone who hates you - you should love them. (1 Corinthians 13:13) Do good to them, and pray for them (Luke 6:27-36).

The Gospel is clear: turn away from your sin, accept and believe Jesus Christ, get baptized, live a life in obedience to God. One of the major and most basic “rules” that are required to be a Christian is: to love. Love is the fulfillment of the law (Romans 13:8-10). Things done out of love, in love, with love (that is, the love as defined in the Bible, John 13:34) is the only way!

If we can remember one of the most important things in Christianity, “to love”, even when it’s difficult or seemingly impossible to, the rest easily falls into place. If we consistently pray for our hearts to be changed, to love in all circumstances and not just when it’s convenient or easy for us, how gloriously could we live out our Christian lives?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

God is Good


Today is a joyous day for our family! But really, let’s be honest here, everyday is joyous for our family, all because we know the Lord and see how good He is. We see the work that He has done in our lives. 

But today we are particularly joyous.

God’s plan for all of us is better than any plan than we may have ever had ourselves. (Jeremiah 29:11, Proverbs 20:24.) This was clearly evident to us over this last month, during which time our family underwent quite a bit of both family and work related stresses.

Thank the good Lord that He has alleviated these stresses!

I’m not going to go into much detail, but I will say that over time, every single piece of an intricate puzzle fell perfectly into place. The intricate puzzle, with tons of detail and different precision cuts, being the answer to our prayers.

At first we thought that certain things were not in the Lord’s Will. But after each piece started to fall in place, we came to the realization that yes: these certain things were in the Lord’s Will. It was the timing of these things that we were trying to take a hold of ourselves, with our own will.

So after much stress, prayer, trust in the Lord, patience, and hope, our prayers were answered. Answered like a slow release pill. And with that, another journey begins.

Forgive my vagueness; I do not want to go into any personal details on here. I just wanted to make this one very important thing known…

a God is good  a
(1 Chronicles 16:34, Psalm 100:5 - and lots of other Psalms) 

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Flexing My Designer Skills!

(Or lack thereof)...

Lately I have been working on the aesthetics of my blog. You may or may not have noticed. I'd like to point out that I don't have a whole lot of graphic design or HTML coding background. Though I am working on building that knowledge base everyday. And, with all the new things I'm learning, well - I use my blog as my guinea pig.

At a point in the near future, I would like to share my learning spots (which are a wide array of other blogs, books, and places) so that if you would like to delve into the graphic design/HTML code bag of tricks, it's readily available to you... on Christian Missus!

So! With my newfound knowledge, I'm tweaking things here and there, and will continue to tweak until I have my artistic vision in place.

So please, bear with all the changes that are happening here. That, and my newbie graphic design skills. I'm getting there! Sort of.

Thank you, dear friends!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Beginner's Bible Review


When tackling Bible teaching, I don’t always use the family Bible as my sole teaching resource. After a few attempts of using the Bible alone for Bible class, I found that I needed the entire learning experience to be more fun, interactive, and easier for my tot. I tried a few different things, but my favourite external resource is a line of kids Bible books called “The Beginner’s Bible”.

I should thank my mother-in-law again for giving my son a book from her church called, “David and Goliath” which introduced me to The Beginner’s Bible series. This was my son’s first Bible-oriented book, and he loved it! Even to this day, almost two years later, he still wants us to read it to him.
           
Since then, I’ve purchased (and made lots of use out of) the Beginner’s Bible Kid-sized Devotions, Toddler Bible, The Very First Easter, The Very First Christmas, and the iPad App. After visiting their website, I found that there are lots of different products to choose from, and other free resources on there, like printable colouring and activity pages. Bonus! 
           
David and Goliath”, though not as in-depth as the version written in the Bible, is basic, easy to understand, simply illustrated, and age-appropriate for toddlers.
           
The Beginner’s Bible for Toddlers” is an amazing introduction to the Bible for small children. My son has heard it over and over again, and wants to hear it still - and we’ve had it for over a year! Although it may not have all the stories that some parents may want in an introduction story Bible, I feel it is beyond sufficient. And I think you can choose the difference between getting cardboard pages or paper pages. I chose the block pages and the book is in still great condition for my next baby.
           
Kid-Sized Devotionals” is a cute little book with 384 pages, filled with thought provoking messages and scripture to read out loud. The book has lots of pictures to keep kids interested, and is enjoyable to open and get into each day. In my house, we try to make devotion time right before bed, as a part of bedtime routine.
           
The Very First Easter” proves to be an outstanding selection for, in my opinion, toddlers, early readers, and children younger than ten years of age - perhaps even older. It demonstrates the true meaning and underlying message of Easter with ease and clarity, all the while providing the Bible references, should the parent/reader feel they needed to expand on a subject. In fact, Bible references are quoted everywhere throughout the Beginner’s Bible series, so that helps a lot.
           
The Very First Christmas” is also a great selection for early readers and toddlers. It is a great tool for teaching the birth of Christ simply and effectively. And the book itself is cheap! From Christian Book this book, and The Very First Easter, are $1.50 each. With that kind of price they prove to be fantastic little gifts and/or handouts.
           
Last and definitely not least, “The Beginner’s Bible App for iPad” is impressive, and well worth the money! You get the first few chapters in Genesis for free, but after that you need to pay. Check out the App store for prices, as I can’t remember the total cost, but I do know it wasn’t expensive. The app is very interactive and kid-friendly, and includes animations, puzzles, games, and coloring pages throughout. You can choose to have the app read out loud, or you can mute it and read yourself. My munchkin adores this App! He always asks to learn about Jesus. I highly recommend it to all.

Overall Review

- Illustrations are simple, catchy, and fun. The characters are illustrated the same throughout all the books, making it easier to remember who’s who.
- Perfect beginners Bible learning tool for the early childhood years.
- Some stories may be vague.
- Highly recommended for homeschoolers or parents who are teaching Biblical things at home.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Setting Out to Accomplish


Category 1: The Natural Worker Bee
These women are natural worker bees who wake up early, get the day going with ease, and just work, work, work, all day long, until the second they go to bed. Either with or without caffeine, they just work and get their jobs done. They seem to have no need for pre-planning or scheduling; they already know everything that is about to happen, and work accordingly.

Category 2: The Non-Natural Worker Bee
These women are just not natural worker bees. It’s hard to get going in the morning, and hard to keep going during the day. Sometimes, if not all the time, they need caffeine and some motivation and/or incentive, pre-planning, and even strict scheduling. It’s hard to stay focused and hard to get things accomplished. Extra prayer on this matter may also be required.



I admit that I am in Category number 2. I am fully aware that I need to take extra steps each day to make myself into more like Category number 1. How I pray and pray that I be more like a natural worker bee.

I find myself a little out of focus and in the habit of procrastinating. Ugh! I’m the kind of person who thinks, “What a beautiful day out today; I wonder what Heaven will be like; what’s going to happen tomorrow; what’s for dinner next week…” When I catch myself in those dreamy thoughts, I say to myself, “Focus!”

So, I’m going to share some of the ways that I try to make myself into an efficient worker woman, how I force my mind to “set out to accomplish” first thing in the morning, and not laze around in bed fighting the urge to stay in my PJ’s. If you categorize yourself as Category number 2 as well, you might want to try what I try at home, maybe you’ll find that my strategies work for you too!


The Schedule
Scheduling what needs to be done in a day, I find, is a fantastic way to lay everything out on the table. Some people make a schedule fit into a monthly format, whereas I make mine to fit into a daily format. What I mean by this is I make my schedule to fit into a “what needs to be done per day” list.

I start it off with “Monday”, or whatever day it is, and make a list of things that are going to happen, going from the most basic things like, “Wake Up, Get Dressed, Personal Hygiene” to more specific things like, “Review Shapes and Patterns, Marinate Chicken, Windex Windows”. I do sometimes find myself making a big list, with basic things, homemaking things, and homeschooling things. Or I make separate lists for each.

Depending on how energetic I feel, I’ll either make a few daily schedules at once, or I’ll make it the night before, or on the morning of. I like to use Microsoft Word to draft them, that way I can save them and re-use the existing format. But I’ve heard of ladies using dry-erase boards or chalkboards to draw up their schedules. Whatever works best for you!



The Journal
I keep a daily journal, and a prayer journal (or list). I don’t use my computer for either of these things - I use my computer enough, without having to add journal entries and such.

I love stationary. Things like cute notebooks, fancy pens, stickers and colorful paperclips. And so having a handwritten journal and prayer list feels more personal and almost in-depth when I use my pretty books and pens. It sounds a bit dorky, but it’s true.

I take the time to write out what I accomplished, what I could have done better, what I did great, where I slacked off, my feelings and thoughts, what could have happened, etc. I find it keeps my mind on track for the next day, and my thoughts in order.



The Hop
I don’t wake up to an alarm clock, at least not an electric one that sits on my nightstand. My kids are my alarm clock. The second I hear one of their voices, I hop out of bed, and get into my daily routine. The schedule I draw out helps me keep my daily tasks in check, because it’s all too easy for me to say, “Nah, I don’t need to do this today”. Like working out, for example!

When I see my kiddos first thing in the morning, I have a visual reminder of one of the reasons why I stay at home. Besides the fact that the Bible says I should work at home, seeing my darlings puts extra meaning into why I do what I do.

Why should I waste their childhood by sitting around and letting the day go by without accomplishing anything useful? Why turn the TV on for them when I could be spending my time with them? I’m here to teach them, to raise them up, to demonstrate to them how a Christian home works, to school them, to give their lives a Christian foundation. If I am not motivated enough to get things done around my home, how will they ever find it within themselves to be motivated later in their lives? With all these things in mind, I put my inhibitions aside and hop to it.



So, as much as I may not be a natural worker bee, I try my hardest to be a worker bee in general. I work towards being that busy woman, getting all these different things done with ease.

Outside of these three things I utilize to help me almost on a daily basis, I ask God to help me. I pray a lot about my natural tendencies, that they may be influenced and made to mirror the Proverbs 31 woman. That I may be all that God has made me to be, according to His Will. That I may set out to accomplish what needs to be accomplished in a day, and even more still.