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Fi mum23

Royalty, Wife, Mummy, friend, teacher, student & fitness blogger

Month

August 2015

Fi’s ‘War Room’ Review… spoiler alert… IT’S AWESOME !!

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After 6wks of waiting(Yes, I truly purchased my tickets that long ago)… Aug 29 finally rolled around and our group of 14 were off to see ‘War Room’.  I’m still under the weather a tad so that made the outing not quite as exciting as I would have liked, but I could have been half dead… I was not going to miss this movie!!

I will admit that I went with very high expectation, as I have loved the Kendrick brothers movies for years.  We have their triple play of Flywheel, Facing the Giants and Fireproof, as well as Courageous, on DVD and watch them regularly as a family.  They are just fantastic wholesome movies with great messages to ponder, no matter how many time you watch them.  So, going along to War Room with this high standard in mind, I was not surprised, but also very pleased to come away thinking that God had once again used these two men to produce a 1st class message.

The atmosphere within the cinemas was fantastic from the moment you walked in.  The crowd was clearly expectant for the message they were about to sit under.  The ages varied.. even within our own group, we had a Nanna, 2 Dads, 4 Mums, 3 kids and 2 young adults.  and so… we settled in with our movie snacks and prepared to just soak in all that God had for us in the next 2hrs.

Now, I LOVE Priscilla Shirer.. I have for a few years now.  I love her heart for the Word of God, I love her style of teaching … I love that she is REAL !!  I love that her teaching challengers me and encouragers me to get into the scriptures.  So, with this respect for Priscilla already in play, I was keen to see how she portrayed the character of Elizabeth Jordan in War Room.  Let’s just say she did not disappoint.  Seriously, you would never know she hadn’t formerly acted before, but I guess her public speaking for many years would have certainly given her the confidence to take on such a role.

War Room certainly is one of those movies where you really did know all that is was going to be about prior to going… well, that’s if you’re a crazy researcher like I am.  I knew it was predominantly about spiritual warfare.  Fighting the REAL enemy in our situations.  Getting ourselves, and our plans out of the way so that we leave God the room to fight for us, in the way that HE knows is best.  We all know that can be hard at times, to hand it all over and say ‘Lord, it’s yours, do what you want with it, I can’t do it on my own strength.’

The humility it requires is also huge.  There’s a particular scene in the movie where Elizabeth has received a txt from a friend saying that she’s just seen Tony (Elizabeth’s husband) at a restaurant with another woman.   Her reaction shows her to be tortured by this information..  feelings of hurt, frustration, disbelief, fear, anger would surely have been present.  The humility it takes to get in your War Room and hand over that situation to The Lord. .. to fight for your marriage, for your husband, for your family.  Believe me, I’ve been right there… as in basically right there…  I’ve known that my DH was in a tempting situation and that his heart was not right with The Lord, and it wasn’t right with me either.  I remember my first thoughts were to make phonecalls, to somehow interfere with the situation to prevent anything bad happening…. to use whatever power I had to intervene.  But Praise God, I had reached a point in my walk with The Lord where I knew my fighting had to be done in my War Room..  I had to hand it over to God and leave HIM in control.

I had to learn to pray for my DH, even when I felt hurt, angry, unloved and unappreciated.  It’s amazing what God can do with these situations.  Years back, when I was first learning these skills, I used to wonder ‘will I have to always do this, will it get easier?’ etc etc, but God has done amazing work within my DH.  Is he 100% walking with The Lord?  No.  but I have had no reason to feel insecure, question his actions when it comes to the respect of our relationship, or feel unloved for quite a long time now.

So, while I still need to be in my War Room and fight for my husband on a daily basis, it’s not over those topics that tear at my heart and cause hurt and insecurity.  I’m fighting for him because I know that who he is today is just one of the stages along the road to becoming the man that God created him to be.  I no longer whine and gripe about what he isn’t, or ask God why he chose a non-believer for me 21yrs ago, but pray into his POTENTIAL.  He has done nothing but flourish under this prayer method.

I can see that many women may not warm to the movie storyline… the submissive role as a wife that Elizabeth took on when she handed it all over to God.  I think a lot of that stems from the misunderstanding that many people have of being a submissive wife.  I proudly tell people I am a submissive wife….  sometimes just to get the reaction out of them so that I then have the opportunity to clarify it for them.  & once again, I’m submitting to the man God created my DH to be, not so much to the man he is right now.  I make it a daily choice to always see him through that lens… God’s lens… rather than society’s lens, who would probably label him with all sorts of unpleasantness.

Candace Cameron Bure’s book ‘Balancing it all’ opened up lots of debate about being a submissive wife.  I think Candace did a fantastic job in many many interviews when asked about this topic.  Feel free to YouTube search some of those.

Back to the movie…. the music was also fantastic… so good in fact that I bought the soundtrack on PlayStore on the way home.  :0)

The atmosphere that I spoke of when we first walked into the cinema only increased throughout the showing.  There’s something pretty downright cool about hearing an ‘Amen’ or a ‘Hallelujah’ called out in the middle of a cinema.  Add to that rounds of applause throughout the movie, but particularly at the close of the final scene.

Heading out into the foyer of the cinemas, we were met by the HUGE and I mean HUGE crowd heading into the next War Room session.  We knew so many people waiting to go in, from our church family, the young adults group, old neighbours, friends from way back…  it was just so encouraging after having seen the fantastic movie, to then come out and see so many that mean so much to us going along to see it too.

As part of our movie going plans, we had offered to others to go out for dinner with us after the movie.  I thought it would be the type of movie you’d want to chat about after.  While most had to get home to their families, one family who we actually haven’t seen for years took us up on the offer.  It was  great time of fellowship, blessed conversation and yummy food.  (I had pesto chicken on a bed of mashed potato, served with Brocolini and a creamy pesto sauce…  not exactly the healthiest meal ever… but it was to die for… and heck, it’s Saturday night… that’s splurge night.)

And so now it’s Sunday, the memories of the movie are still fresh, I’d go again in a heartbeat, but what’s been going around my head today is that I don’t want it to simply speak to people (me included) and us all SAY that this is how we need to live and fight our battles, but not actually put it into effect.  One of the first things Ms Clara talks about in the movie is putting a strategy in place.  Soldiers don’t just head out and wing it.  They study the enemy, examine their tactics and preferred weapons, and then plan accordingly.

This makes me think of Sun Tzu and his quote ;

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

It also reminds me of the other thing we need to know.. the Word of God… sharper than a two edged sword.  Our best weapon in any battle… and that leads me into what I LOVE to talk about… Bible Study.  I LOVE to do them, LOVE to tell people about them, LOVE to recommend them to others, LOVE to research them… well, you get the idea.  It’s fine and dandy to have scripture up in your prayer close/War Room walls as Ms Clara does and as Elizabeth did in the movie (& I do too), but it’s also invaluable to KNOW your bible so well that you can pull on a scripture when needed, no matter where you are.

Personally, I find Bible Study the best way to do this, so below I’ll fill you in on the following which describes my Bible Study plan… and yes, it’s a Priscilla Shirer plan, so I’m taking no credit for it, but I’m more than happy to lap up God’s Word using her methods.  I know you will be blessed by it also.

5 Ps of bible study

Position yourself to hear from God (War Room/Prayer Closet)

I will stand at my watch and station myself on the ramparts; I will look to see what he will say to me, and what answer I am to give to this complaint. Habakkuk 2;1

Pour over the passage and paraphrase the major principals.  Mediate on them.  Put yourself in the scenario .  

Pull out the spiritual principals within that scripture.  Is there a command or a promise that you are ignoring?  Is there a character trait or attribute of God that he is trying to show you?

Pose the question.  Turn the spiritual principals back on yourself.  Am I heeding these commands or claiming these promises.

Plan obedience and pin down a date to obey. Strategise how you are going to obey.

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Remember, The Bible is ALIVE .. it’s not just black print on a white page.  The Holy Spirit causes it to jump off the page and speak right into our own situations.   Let’s You & I dive into it today and every day.   Let’s get strategising.

Blessings xox

The terribly sad unwell homeschool Mum

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So, sadly, this is how I feel today.  :0(

But don’t worry….  I’m gonna kick this thing to the kerb by days end….  I sound optimistic right?  Disgusting hot drinks & loads of drugs are in order me thinks.

BIG DAY TOMORROW so optimism is greatly needed.  Not only are we taking a group of 14 to the movie ‘War Room’ (Super excited!!), but DH is having his new aeroplane delivered and he will have his maiden flight.

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Healing prayers would be great appreciated peeps

Blessings Peeps  xox

HS Day 340 – Character trait training – Obedience vs. Willfullness

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Freedom to be creative under the protection of divinely appointed authority.  [for an older child or an adult]

OR

Quickly and cheerfully carrying out the direction of those who are responsible for me. [for a younger child].

2 Cor 10-5. We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,

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When delving into my ‘Believers Bible Commentary’, this is what we found…

This verse tell us what it meant by ‘strongholds’ in verse 4. 

Paul saw himself as a soldier warring against the proud reasoning of man, arguments which oppose the truth.  The true character of these arguments is described in the expression against the knowledge of God.  It could be aplied today to the reasoning of scientists, evolutionists, philosophers, and religionists who have no room for God in their scheme of things. The apostle was in no mood to sign a truce with these.  Rather he felt committed to bring every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.  All men’s teaching and speculations must be judged in the light of the teachings of The Lord Jesus Christ. Paul  would not condemn human reasoning as such, but would warm that we must not allow our intellects to be exercised in defiance of The Lord and in disobedience to Him.  

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I thought of a particular friend [who may or may not be celebrating a birthday today  xox] when coming across the above quote.  She feels she needs to be ridiculously smart in order to take on some of the more ‘technical’ [for want of a better word] teaching that God has for us, when in fact, it’s not that AT ALL !!  It’s the OBEDIENCE that is the key !!!  I have proved over and over again to myself that all information we seek is like seed that drops down into the ‘soil’ of us.  So, so so many times I’ve been doing a bible study or sitting under a particular teaching, feeling that there is too much information being taken in for me to be processing it.  I used to worry about this a lot… until enough time passed that I realised when that teaching was needed, it was there for me to draw on.  I may not have fully processed it at the time of receiving it, but it’s sits in my ‘bank’ until I need it and then God will re-teach it to me through a particular set of circumstances or situation.

My level of obedience around these particular times and the duration it may have taken to process something has shown that the above teaching is accurate.  If I’m slacking off in my obedience to God, it will take me longer to learn something… and to my own detriment indeed.

Wilfulness is such a relevant topic for our society today.  The media basically TELLS us to be wilful, to ‘Just do it’ [sorry Nike but that just screams WILFULNESS…. and yes, I completely realise how they intended it…. get off your butt already and exercise…. that’s fine, but it’s such a well known slogan now that the attitude of it is used for all sorts of things], Sprite tells us to ‘Obey our Thirst’… well, they’re kinda right, but our thirst shouldn’t be for Lemonade, but for the spiritual ‘food’ only God can provide.  

It’s in a child’s DNA [not technically obviously] to be wilful.  They need to be taught to respect authority and to be obedient.

Proverbs 22:6 (NKJV)  Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it.

The taking thoughts captive area though is a concept not fully understood until a little later.  Master 10 does have an understanding of the concept and does do his best, but add some wilful 10yr boy in there at times and it doesn’t always go smoothly.  Same goes for Master 13 and Miss 14…  they grasp the concept and have the attitude of living in that way, but teenage ‘issues’ sometimes can overshadow common sense and good teaching.  Hence why, as a parent, I don’t think this particular teaching stops for quite a long while yet.

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I am extremely grateful for the solid biblical teaching I received on this topic at our previous church.  I would highly recommend the spiritual warfare podcasts by David Thomas.  You can find them on iTunes.  I’d share the link but I can’t seem to work out how to. [clearly I’m not that tech savvy after all.. whoops]  Just search up Life-House spiritual warfare podcast and you’ll get it.

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Blessings xox

We’re plowing an oval field and our triangle is wonky.

So today’s blog is coming at the end of an emotional day of struggle within me …  struggles that wouldn’t have been noticeable to anyone around me at any time today…   Many emotions.. frustration, sadness, confusion, fear, …..however I don’t like admitting to that one as it is a struggle in itself for me as I know that fear is the opposite of faith,…. impatience, guilt over wanting to control things, craving the man that God created my Husband to be… and well, so much more.

I’ve been doing some reading up on the topic of being married to an unbeliever.  I’ve done this many times over the years, but it is a tough one as we don’t fit ‘the mould’ of most diagrams on the topic.  My husband doesn’t have an issue with me going to church.. in fact he quite likes to attend, he has no issue with me tithing and quite often he will give, he has no issue with my Christian friends, he not only has no issue with me attending bible studies etc, but attends one himself with other men once a fortnight.   So it’s here where wives with a, shall we say, completely non-believing husband, would tell me to maybe pull my head in and get over it.

Don’t get me wrong, I know that in many ways I AM blessed with the Husband God chose for me.  We’ve travelled a very long and rocky road to get to where we are today, and even as hard as a day like today was, believe me, there has been far worse, days with far far less hope in them…. actually some days that appeared to have NO hope in them.  I can very clearly see how far God has worked in me,  in our marriage, in our family and in my DH, and I am beyond thankful for that.  I just need to remember to ALWAYS focus on that… especially in tough times like today.

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When your husband focuses so much on negative things in the world, and let’s face it, there’s plenty to focus on, while chosing to place no trust in God’s hand in ALL things, it’s TOUGH !!!  When your husband tells you that your faith in God is not enough to solve the particular problems that he tends to focus on, it’s TOUGH !!  It’s tough because I KNOW that I KNOW that I KNOW that God’s is so much more than enough to handle all that is going on in the world today.  I lean on the scripture that tells me that Jesus came that we may have life, and have it to the full !! and Jeremiah 29, 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

I am greatly comforted … but if I’m honest, sometimes struggle with….  the knowledge that I don’t have to be stuck in useless struggle when it comes to getting my husband to fully share/join me in my walk with The Lord.  I know that all I need to do is fulfil my biblical role in my marriage, and God will do the rest.  My responsibility toward my Husband remains just what it has always been: to love and cherish in every circumstance. The Bible says, “However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” (Ephesians 5:33)

I can be at peace because I already have the Lord working for me. He is much more powerful than anything I could say to convert my husband, working through the mystical union in one flesh that the Bible teaches. “For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery – but I am talking about Christ and the church.” (Ephesians 5:31,32) That is why Paul could speak of the husband and wife sanctifying, of making holy, one another: “For the unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her husband .” (1 Corinthians 7:14)

In other words, I can stop trying to change DH, which causes strife in our home, and start believing for a miracle instead. God is working to convert DH through me, but by my actions much more than by my words. God may even prefer to do the work without my words. “Wives, in the same way be submissive to your husbands so that, if any of them do not believe the word, they may be won over without words by the behavior of their wives, when they see the purity and reverence of your lives.” (1 Peter 3:1.2)

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God has sent the Holy Spirit to change DH. I can’t convert him. No one else but the Holy Spirit can, because matters of faith are unreasonable to the natural mind: “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, and they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.” (1 Corinthians 2:14)

It takes God Himself to convince people to believe. So I chose to release DH to God and allow the Holy Spirit to work. My responsibility is to be a faithful witness, not just sharing the truth but living it. Letting the life of Christ in me minister that love which will bring me and DH into that holy union that God has ordained for our marriage.

For me as a wife, being a faithful witness means respecting my husband’s role as the head of the family by being submissive to his authority. “Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.” (Ephesians 5:22-24)

Is that a tough one at times?  HECK YES when what I think he’s wanting to teach our children is nothing by Negative Ned Caboose !! BUT I lean on God’s amazing plan for DH and chose to focus on that, rather than the reality of the right now.

My title talks about an oval field..  I came up with that title after reading a story about a tennessee farmer who hitched a mule and an ox together to plow a field.  The story is an illustration of being unequally yoked.  When someone later asked him how it worked, he said, “well, it would have been all right if my field had been round instead of square, because we sure spent most of the time going in circles.”  It got me thinking of my own situation with DH and I had no choice but to come to the conclusion that we don’t have EXACTLY this problem, as quite often there will be periods of ‘straight plowing’ in our lives together.  It’s when we have some ‘curved’ plowing  periods that we kinda end up with an oval shaped plowed field.

The 2nd part of my title mentions a wonky triangle.  Now, this speaks to an illustration that I think of on a daily basis… I’m sure you all know it… that if a husband and a wife are walking towards God on seperate sides of a triangle, with God position at the point, then logic alone tells us that as they walk closer to God, they also walk closer to each other.

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We all know this first diagram… the way I wish my marriage was, but in reality, it’s more like the second diagram, but in reverse… I could only find this image to make my point, but you get the idea of my wonky triangle.  If you wanna get technical, I think that makes it a scalene triangle .  I don’t know if this diagram tells it correctly though for our situation though, as I wouldn’t say that DH and I are far from each other in general… not at all in fact. We have a very good relationship…  we are each other’s best friend.

More great encouragement for me comes from the fantastic Sisters in Christ that I do life with.  How I would go through life without them, I have no idea.  As far as I’m concerned, it’s just yet another thing that speaks to God providing for us in EVERY situation.

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Blessings peeps !!  xox

Respecting the temple # 2

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Two years ago, I came to the realisation that I was not respecting the temple …  my body…  the home of The Holy Spirit.  I began a journey that saw me lose 10kgs.  I felt fantastic, looked fantastic and was extremely proud of myself for having gotten healthy.  However, I let ‘life’ get in the way of this and have back-slidden…  to further back than where I started last time.  To say I am disappointed in myself is an understatement. but I am not going to be beaten by this. … I’m taking responsibility for my health !!!

I’m now on day 4 of my new healthy journey… one that I hope will have no end.  2yrs ago, I was amazed how much I came to LOVE exercise..  to the point where if I couldn’t go a day without a run, I’d get antsy.  I distinctly remember a time on the train, travelling to visit my cousin which is an hour and a half trip.  Having to sit still and not be active for this amount of time was frustrating…  I want that drive back again… and I’m going to get it !!!  I actually can already feel it returning even after these 4 days of exercise.

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I’m also motivated by the fact that I’ll be the big 4 0 next year !!  I actually can’t wait for that b’day, but I have heard so many people say that it’s so much harder to keep the weight off after turning 40, so I want to be ahead of the game.

I’m starting with healthy eating, lots of exercise & lots of water !!  My tummy is a problem area for me, so I’m doing lots of sit-ups and other ab exercises.  I’m also doing lots of weigh training as I’ve found in the past that you can achieve quite quick results of toning in upper arms etc.  It’s always encouraging to get some pleasing results quickly as it keeps you motivated to continue.

OK peeps….  Now that you’re in the loop…  come along for the ride.  Join in if you like.  I have a dear friend who has also decided to respect the temple, so that makes the journey even more enjoyable as it’s always great to have someone to motivate and to motivate you.

What is most important in this though is that I keep God at the centre … people can motivate me, fitting into clothes can motivate me, feeling healthy can motivate me, but my ultimate motivation needs to be to glorify God in everything that I do.  Whatever’s going on, whatever I’m achieving, I still need to be seeking HIS will for my life.

May the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.  Hebrews 13, 20-21.

Blessings peeps  xox

My heart is breaking for the Duggar family today.

So, here I am blogging about the Duggars again…  but I’m not really blogging abut the Duggars so much as sin itself, and the terrible consequences that can come from it.  Don’t get me wrong… I’m not feeling sorry for anyone today, but feeling for them in their brokenness.

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My heart breaks for Anna this morning.  She has only just a month ago given birth to her fourth child, and now after the scandal that hit earlier this year …which in fact she WAS aware of years before the world found out… she has been hit once again, but his time..  She was not in the know on this one.

I have seen this situation lived out in a friend, actually two friends..  and it hurts so much to watch, I can only imagine the agony of actually living it.

My thoughts go heavenward for Anna, Josh, their children and their entire extended family today as they go through this situation.  Of course the media has already begun to attack them in the most violent way, but I can only trust that they will be able to ignore that and lean into God like never before.

I know that as soon as we Christians talk about God’s forgiveness, the haters hit back with what a crutch that is, or that this sin is not forgivable, but we KNOW that it is, and in fact we need to KNOW that it is, or we would get bogged down in our own failings.

Psalm 103:12 (NIV)

as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

I also came across this in my limited research this morning, and thought it was quite a good reminder for all of us.

FIGHTING THE DAILY BATTLE

To overcome the temptations you will continually face, follow God’s simple plan:

  • Stand firm against temptation (James 4:7; 1 Pet. 5:6-9; 2 Tim. 2:22).
  • Confess your sins to a brother or sister in Christ and pray to be healed (James 5:16).
  • Hide God’s Word in your heart (Psalm 119:11), trusting in its strength (Heb. 4:12).
  • Minister to God with sacrifices of praise (Heb. 13:15) until you are filled with the peace and joy of the Lord (Isaiah 26:3).

Blessings !!! xox

I will Carry you !!

Good morning Peeps !!

So, I am nearly finished reading Angie Smith’s ‘I will Carry You’.  Now, I knew of this story quite some time ago as I am a big Selah fan (hymns ROCK) (Angie’s husband Todd is the lead singer) so had heard of this after it happening etc.  I had watched a few interviews with Todd & Angie but had simply never gotten around to ordering and then reading the book.

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I cannot even tell you how blessed I have been by reading this book, and on so many levels too.  The interesting thing though is that I don’t identify with Angie when it comes to the loss of a child, as I have never experienced it.. not even with a close family member as Angie’s family did with Todd’s sister losing her son Luke to SIDS only a month after their Audrey went to be with The Lord.  I have been blessed in other areas… my parenting, my walk with The Lord, my relationship with my husband and so much more.

You could easily, as I did, assume that you know what you’re going to get out of this book before you even read it.  The loss of a child, experiencing God’s peace in their terrible situation, and coming out the other side a stronger person experiencing a closer relationship with God.  Yes, that all happens… but OH MY GOODNESS so much more !!!

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I did cry a lot when reading this book.. like a LOT !!!!  Like a really really LOT !  The Mother’s heart is soft and tender towards her children and the idea of having something so terrible happen to them is beyond comprehension for most people.  I mean, we could certainly try and put ourselves in Angie’s position as she takes us through each and every experience in her book (More crying), but what can easily overwhelm me is that reading about it, imagining it, feeling her pain through reading the words on the page, would not even come close to the pain you would feel to actually experience that type of loss yourself.

Now, THAT right there is where I can stumble.  I have to work VERY hard to not fall into fear at this point.  As I said, I’ve never lost a child, not even to miscarriage etc.  I did experience great sadness and guilt when finding out my boys were blind and had a difficult road ahead, but nothing was ever life threatening and when you get right down to it, it’s been a great outcome overall.  I don’t know why but I decided to torture myself last night by searching up a few YouTube tributes to babies lost in ways similar to Audrey.  They are, to say the very lease, heartbreaking.  I mean, seriously, the idea of holding you dead baby in your arms….  TORTURE !!!

It would have to test your faith.  I did love that Angie was so honest in her book.  She told us that she screamed at God in those times, she begged him to ‘re-think’ His plan, she got angry with Him… and don’t we all do that at times.  What is so fantastic though is that God is ok with that, as long as we take all that to HIM !!  He KNOWS Angie’s pain, He gave  His only son, He watched Him suffer, He watched Him tortured and treated in ways no human should ever be treated.  It hurt Him so much to see what was being done to His son.  Imagine what it would have taken for Him to not intervene when we all know He could have.  Jesus was so humble in His attitude in EVERY situation.  It blows me away to meditate on just how much he endured for US.  When we can focus on the blessings we have as a result of His sacrifice… a no-barrier relationship with God, the friend we have in The Holy Spirit, the protection we have in being armed with warfare tools, and the peace we have though Jesus Christ, as well as so much more.

I did particularly love a point in the book that spoke to parenting and how we need to gauge when our children are old/mature enough for certain knowledge.  Angie experienced this many times with 5yr old twins and a 2.5yr old.  How much info can they take in to their tender hearts?  What is ok for them to see?  A wonderful excerpt from Corrie Ten Boom’s ‘The Hiding Place’ was included.

“And so seated next to my father in the train compartment, I suddenly asked, “Father, what is sexsin?”
He turned to look at me, as he always did when answering a question, but to my surprise he said nothing. At last he stood up, lifted his traveling case off the floor and set it on the floor.
Will you carry it off the train, Corrie?” he said.
I stood up and tugged at it. It was crammed with the watches and spare parts he had purchased that morning.
It’s too heavy,” I said.
Yes,” he said, “and it would be a pretty poor father who would ask his little girl to carry such a load. It’s the same way, Corrie, with knowledge. Some knowledge is too heavy for children. When you are older and stronger, you can bear it. For now you must trust me to carry it for you.”

What is also very relevant here is the ‘Parenting inside the funnel’ teaching found in the Growing Kids God’s Way course by the Growing Families ministry .  DH & I have parented based on this diagram since doing the course in 2007.  I strongly believe that this is one BIG problem area in the world today.  An issue my children have been up against basically there whole lives is having friends who are allowed to watch/play things that DH & I believed at the time was beyond our children’s maturity level.  Even now when my children go to the movies with friends or have a movie night, more often than not, the choices are beyond what we would see as suitable for our children’s eyes, ears & heart.

If you aren’t aware of the Parenting within the funnel diagram, here it is.

Boundaries Lead-Article

We have found that this method works really well.  It’s not just about what they are ‘allowed’ to do either, it’s about what we as parents should expect of them.  We simply cannot expect the same level of maturity in a situation from our 10yr old as we do from our 14yr old.

Getting back to the book..  Angie went on to write a song for Audrey which was recorded by Selah.  I highly recommend you searching it up on YouTube and having a listen.  It’s simply beautiful.   The book itself was only $17.99 from The Book Depository.  I always find their stock range fantastic, as well as the prices themselves and the shipping is always FREE !!  Shipping time is always fab too.  I always have it in under a week.

As always… I feel I could type on for so much longer on this topic…  I think there may need to be a ‘part B’ of this blog when I actually finish the book later tonight.

Blessings Peeps !!  xox

Ekka – Where the country meets the city !!

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Yesturday (Sunday), I began the day in the BEST way by heading to church.  It was a fantastic service, made even better by the fact that a dear friend was visiting our church.

Straight after church we took said dear friend, headed to collect another and then made our way by train into THE EKKA !!!!

For those blog readers outside of Australia, The Ekka is the affectionate name for The RNA show. (The Royal National Agricultural Industries of Queensland), also known as The Royal Queensland Show. …  where the country meets the city.

People come from far and wide to show their cattle, chickens, sheep, goats, horses, dogs, cats, fish (yes, I said fish), snakes, alpacas.. and basically any other animal you can think of.

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Here is a little bit of Ekka info….  Bowen Park was chosen in January 1876 as the site for the first Show. The park covered 6.8 hectares bordered by Bowen Bridge Road, Gregory Terrace and a creek which ran through the middle of what is now Main Arena.

The ‘Intercolonial Exhibition of 1876’ was held from 22 – 26 August. A public holiday was declared and on opening day 17,000 people attended – a colossal success, given that the total population of Brisbane at the time was only 22,000.

Men attended in their suits and ladies in their finest garments. Food was served on long tables and the first showbag – a bag of coal – was free for all visitors.

The first ‘Royal’ Show was held in 1921, when the Association was granted the prefix under warrant from His Majesty King George V.

Since then, the shortened name “Ekka” has replaced “Exhibition” in the Queensland vernacular, indicating locals’ affection for the Show.

Ekka has since been held every year with only two exceptions. In 1919, Brisbane suffered a Spanish influenza epidemic, and in 1942 during wartime the Showgrounds were used as a staging depot for troops moving north.

Today, Ekka runs for ten days and attracts about half a million visitors every August. Ekka is famous for its mix of entertainment, agriculture and education. From Champion Rooster of Show to the glamorous fashion parades, Ekka has always celebrated the rural and the urban; the traditional and the innovative, and it’s for this reason the event holds a special place in the hearts of Queenslanders – as it has for generations.

Another juicey bit of info about EKKA… it costs a LOT to take a family (hence why we took our kids to the smaller cheaper Pine Rivers Show last weekend and I just went with girlfriends to the Ekka…. but don’t worry…  I got them showbags.  LOL)

After getting off the train at Exhibition station, our first stop was to acquire a locker…  the lockers are like gold at the Ekka, and go very quickly.  It makes a huge difference to the comfort of your day if you can get one and not have to carry EVERYTHING around with you all day long.  However, we did learn when we came back for a drop off to your lockers that it cost $2 EVERY time you open the door.  What the??  Oh well, it’s not a huge amount, and definitely worth the cost.  Might just need to remember that for next time so we don’t get a locker until AFER visiting the showbag pavilion.

Our first major stop was the Woolworths Fresh Food Pavillion.  LOTS of taste testing opportunities (& some cheap lunch options too with a cheese toasty for only $2).  I however, decided to try a bagel.  It was called the B.R.A.T… Bacon, Rocket, Avocado & Tomato.  It was DEEEE-VINE !!!

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One of the BEST things about EKKA is the things to see in the Main Arena… both through each day and into the evening.  I LOVE the woodchop.. but sadly missed it this year, at both shows I went to.  :0(  The fireworks display is always amazing.. and last night did not disappoint.  They also had monster trucks, ATV display, as well as motocross, singing and dancing performers etc.

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Ekka is also great for the FOOD !!!  There are two Ekka staples as far as I’m concerned, and strangely enough, I didn’t have either yesturday.  First on the list is a strawberry and cream ice-cream .  DELISH !!!!

Second one is a dagwood dog, which one of my girlfriends kindly had on my behalf.. LOL.  I must say I don’t normally have one quite that large, but hey, it seemed like a good idea at the time.  It’s only fair that I mention that she didn’t consume this entire thing.

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Another rather expensive part of EKKA is sideshow alley, which we didn’t do at all yesturday.  I’m not a crazy ride person anyway, so it didn’t bother me in the slightest.   The exciting purchase I had been waiting all year to make was these gorgeous UGG boots !!  I’ve actually never owned REAL sheepskin UGG boots before, I’ve only had the cheaper ‘rip-offs’.  Even the rip-off versions lasted me 20yrs, so I think these boots may very well outlive me.  ha ha.  I got them for an absolute bargain of $130… they are $219 advertised on their website if bought outside the show.  I def had toasty warm feet while sitting in the main arena in the cold of last night.

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Yesturday was the first time I had been to the Ekka ‘kid free’ in a VERY long time, so it was very nice to spend this lovely day with girlfriends.  The only sad part of the day is that until a couple of years ago, you could walk right through the cattle pavilion… right past all the stalls and see all the cattle (well, mostly their butts really).  I’d say maybe they thought it was too dangerous to have the public walking through there.  Very sad though as it was my favourite part. Some of those cattle are just sooooooo big.

And now, on the following day, I realise just how much walking I did as my feet are sooooooo sore… not to mention my shoulder from carrying the backpack.  Totally worth it though for the great day I had with 2 treasured girlfriends.

OK… I hope you enjoyed my little Ekka synopsis.

Blessings Peeps !! xox

Character trait training – Attentiveness vs. Unconcern.

Attentiveness vs. Unconcern

Showing the worth of a person by giving undivided attention to his words & emotions.

Hebrews 2:1 -So we must listen very carefully to the truth we have heard, or we may drift away from it.

This is a very good one to pull us up on a DAILY basis.  Unconcern seems like such a harsh word doesn’t it.  One might say that just because I’m giving no attention to that person, it doesn’t mean I have no concern for them.  (I know I would have said that to myself before.).. When in fact it is that cut & dry.  If we are not being attentive to someone, then we are not acknowledging their worth as a person.

When asked to give an example, Miss 14 explained a scenario where she shows attentiveness towards someone she values, showing them how much that person is worth TO HER.  I corrected her on that way of thinking, pointing out that everyone has WORTH… and it doesn’t come from us.. whether we think they deserve it or not… it comes from God.

Put another way, every person deserves our attentiveness, and is of GREAT WORTH, no matter whether they are of great or little value to us personally.

You could use an example like this – You are entering the supermarket and you notice that someone leaving has had their bag tear, and there are apples rolling all over the floor.  Most people would hurry to the person’s aid.  Usually this is done for two reasons… to help out the person who’s apples are now all over the floor, but also for general public safety for those around.  Someone could trip etc.  In a situation like this, the helper is recognising the worth of both the person who lost the apples, and those around the incident also.  You would most likely not know a single one personally, so there so no personal worth of these people to you.  By recognising the person’s emotions… possibly embarrassment, unhappiness, annoyance… the helper is showing the person that they are of worth… that their feelings MATTER.

To tie something else very important into this type of scenario…  showing attentiveness to others is a WITNESS of Jesus within us.  In the above situation, someone else may have also seen the dropped apples, but chose to see no worth in the person, so passed by without helping.  There could be a couple of reactions within this particular type of person. 1.  They notice that someone helped out and think that maybe they should have helped too. (& might next time)  or 2.  Have no care at all.  (A seed will still have been planted in that person though.)

On the topic of worth, these scriptures are great to mediate on….. it really speaks to the amazing worth that God saw in us (& place in us) from the very beginning.

For you formed my inward parts; you knitted me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Psalm 139:13-15

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? And not one of them is forgotten before God. Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7

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Recognising the worth of others also comes under the greatest commandment…

The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”  Mark 12:31

I heard a great quote the other day while listening to a Ps Shane Willard message.  He was more talking about churches today, but is also relevant to people in general.

He said the following : People care more about being RIGHT then being KIND.

This really resonated with me as I recognise it in so many situations.  The Bible does not say that if so & so (church or individual) believe every single doctrine that you do, then and only then do you apply the greatest commandment.  It says You shall love your neighbour as yourself.  It does not say, if your neighbour stands on the same beliefs as you, that you should love him as yourself.

This all comes back to WORTH !!  We are all so good at placing different worth values on people…. I, personally am not a celebrity loving type person… I have put some thought into this and am quite confident that if Julia Roberts or Robert Downey Jnr (I chose them as I do particularly like them) turned up at my door, I wouldn’t treat them any different to others… I don’t think I have that ‘awe-struck’ trait that so many do.  I don’t place any greater value or worth on these ‘famous’ people than on any other.  This isn’t the ‘norm’ though.

My point is that we can be very good at ‘judging’ a persons worth… whether they deserve a little, a lot, somewhere in between, or none at all.  But this is not how GOD sees it, and it’s not how we should see it.  We shouldn’t just mediate on those verses in order to recognise our OWN worth, but also to see the worth of others.  If we can reach a point where we can be confident in the worth of ourselves and others, than we would not struggle with this particular character trait.  We would not show unconcern for others if we were firm in our belief of other’s WORTH !!

I feel I have nowhere near even scratched the surface on what I could say on this topic, so here’s just a snippet for you.  :0)

Blessings Peeps !!  xox

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