Encore Provence by Peter Mayle gives some suggestions about how to enjoy it!
- the fragrance of it lives to an aromatic old age, and a small sachet of lavender left in a drawer or linen closet in July will retain its scent, faded but still distinctive until December or beyond
- a stalk or two in bottles of olive oil or vinegar is an infusion of summer that lasts the whole year
- lavender essence, the Provencal cure-all. use a few drops as a disinfectant on scratches or insect bites, as a gargle to soothe a sore throat, as an inhalant in a bowl of hot water to clear a thick head, as a scorpion repellent ( A Good Year ).
-finally, save a few bunches of dried lavender to put on the first fires of winter, and the house will smell like the purple patch cut from months ago
Saturday, January 31, 2009
Arizona State Capitol Building in Phoenix
Our children have an amazing opportunity to participate in a program called "Teen Pact" (http://www.teenpact.com/) this year. They will spend the week at the Arizona capitol building with other home schoolers learning about how our state government functions, praying for our leaders, writing and presenting bills...I am so excited for them! When we were first asked by friends if we wanted to do this, I thought, "Oh, I don't know if my children would like this!" They are pretty reserved. PLUS the boys have to wear ties and a jacket everyday. Well, I prayed and asked the Lord to open the doors if this was something we should do, to give my children the right attitudes about the homework we would have before the actual week of the program and about the dress code. He has answered in such a wonderful way! I don't know why I am continually surprised when He answers "above and beyond what I could hope". We have been shopping for a navy blazer, new button downs, ties, a nice modest outfit for Elle, the works, and the attitudes have been great! Sam came home the other night and tried his new clothes on. Mimicking a Ralph Lauren model, I could tell he felt good about this! As they wrote their bills, they were completely engaged, excited even! What a blessing it is to see Him working in their lives, preparing them for the future He has planned for them. We are looking so forward to this special week!
I Timothy 4:12 - Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
*please pause my playlist before viewing*
Bitterness, stay far from me
There can be no good in thee
Rushing in and stealing peace
I seek in search of some release
But plans are not as I would have
There is no healing balm or salve
Accept, accept with joy, you’ll see
This was His calling meant for me
Don’t run, don’t hide, don’t fly away
Just rest, abide, I hear Him say
It will be hard, this bitter place
But I designed it – seek My face
And once embraced, I began to see
Why He had chosen this path for me
The honor mine, to be used
I found that others wore like shoes
The path of bitterness He laid for me
I began to clearly see
Was a path of sweet bitterness of His design
My life no longer claimed as mine
Bitterness, come, flood over me
Sweet bitterness – a note of love to me...
Monday, January 26, 2009
*please pause my playlist...listen and enjoy!
Simple Gifts was written by Shaker Elder Joseph Brackett, Jr. in 1848. It was first published in The Gift to be Simple: Shaker Rituals and Songs. Simple Gifts was a work song sung by the United Society of Believers in Christ's Second Appearing (more commonly called the Shakers, an offshoot of the Quakers).
'Tis the gift to be simple,
'tis the gift to be free,
'tis the gift to come down where you ought to be,
And when we find ourselves in the place just right,
It will be in the valley of love and delight.
When true simplicity is gained,
To bow and to bend we shan't be ashamed.
To turn, turn will be our delight,
'Til by turning, turning we come round right
'Tis the gift to be loved and that love to return,
'Tis the gift to be taught and a richer gift to learn,
And when we expect of others what we try to live each day,
Then we'll all live together and we'll all learn to say,
'Tis the gift to have friends and a true friend to be,
'Tis the gift to think of others not to only think of "me",
And when we hear what others really think and really feel,
Then we'll all live together with a love that is real.
We attended a missions conference at our church a couple of weeks ago. Al Janssen (works with Brother Andrew, author of God's Smuggler) spoke to us on "Prayer Lessons From the Persecuted Church". This is a prayer he suggested to us:
Lord, May I see what You see
May I hear what You hear
May I love what You love
May I hate what You hate
May I feel what You feel
I Corinthians 2:16 - "for we have the mind of Christ"
He encouraged us to ask ourselves these questions:
1 - Have you prayed for Osama Bin Laden & other terrorists?
2 - Have you prayed for suicide bombers?
3 - Have you prayed for churches in Islamic countries to be bold?
4 - Have you prayed for a harvest of Mualim souls to Christ?
5 - Are you willing to be part of the answer?
6 - If God chooses, will you go?
lost: no longer possessed or known; beyond reach; ruined emotionally, physically, or morally; lacking assurance of eternal salvation
Jesus said,"I came to seek and to save that which was lost."
Sunday, January 25, 2009
i decided to look around and appreciate some of the things we've collected over the years. maybe you could look around at the "everyday things" you pass by in your house...appreciate anew the things of beauty that surround you!
Friday, January 23, 2009
"it may be easier to forgive big sins, just because it is easier to see that we ought to do so, than to forgive the little irritating defects and blemishes in others we may live and work with. we tell ourselves that they ought to be willing to change those exasperating ways and habits, and that it is incumbent on us to help them to realize this, nay rather that it is our obvious duty to do so, for if they don't realize their faults by being told about them, they will feel no incentive to correct them...how greatly life is harassed and marred by this passion so many of us display, of trying to alter people and make them what we think they ought to be; all the more so if they happen to be fellow Chrisitans, and have therefore less right than the unsaved to be aggravating and obstructive! How greatly lessened, indeed sometimes altogether removed, is the wear and tear and nerve strain when we give up trying to alter people and concentrate on learning to adapt ourselves to them, realizing that ours is the privilege and joy of bearing the little minor frets, as well as the big wrongs, because of the nature of love." - Kingdom of Love, Hannah Hurnard
Monday, January 19, 2009
"There is no way from one person to another. However loving and sympathetic we try to be, however sound our psychology, however frank and open our behaviour, we cannot penetrate the incognito of the other man, for there are no direct relationships, not even between soul and soul. Christ stands between us, and we can only get into touch with our neighbours through him. That is why intercession is the most promising way to reach our neighbors, and corporate prayer, offered in the name of Christ, the purest form of fellowship." - Bonhoffer, The Cost of Discipleship
Philippians 2:1-4 - "Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose.
Don’t be selfish; don’t try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don’t look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too."
What a privilege it is to pray for other brothers and sisters in Christ!
1 Samuel 12:23 - ”God forbid that I should sin against the LORD in ceasing to pray for you."
Sunday, January 18, 2009
well, it's kind of scary making changes to your blog! i think though it's time for some changes! new challenges, new growth. this seems like a good place to start!
Christian maturity is tested by its willingness to go against the odds, to go against intellectual and practical fashions in the service of our King. It is easy enough to be a Christian when being a Christian merely requires us to be nice people. But love for Jesus, that love which is motivated by his great sacrifice, requires far more. It calls upon us to renounce what Scripture calls the "wisdom of the world," the fashionable ideas and practices of our society, and to count them as rubbish for the sake of Christ.
There are many Christians who think it sufficient to confess their faith, live as nice people in society and go to church. With the degree of religious freedom still available in this country, it is possible to profess Christ for many years without being forced to stand against the society. But the more you grow in Christ, the more you understand the radicalism of the Christian message, the more you feel the call of God to become subversive, to reject and condemn the standards of the world. The distinctively Christian life is not at all like the life of a non-Christian nice person. The distinctively Christian life is the life of a pilgrim, of one who doesn't belong here, but seeks a home in heaven above. We are citizens of another country. We cannot comfortably acquiesce in the philosophy and morals of this planet. Rather, we seek to undermine them; not violently, but, like the great saints of old, by the almighty power of God's word and Spirit.
This is true in our intellectual life, in our worship, our business, our recreation, our family life, our sexuality, indeed in everything: for Scripture says, "whether you eat, or drink, or whatsoever you do, do all to the glory of God." In all of these areas there must be a rejection of the world's standards and faithful obedience to God's word.
- Ministries of Mercy to the Unborn by John M. Frame
from psalm 139 -
for thou didst form my inward parts; thou didst weave me in my mother's womb. i will give thanks to thee, for i am fearfully and wonderfully made...and in thy book they were all written, the days that were ordained for me, when as yet there was not one of them. how precious also are thy thoughts to me, O God! how vast the sum of them!