Sunday, February 22, 2009

A Tool that is new to me!

I am a reader. 

I love learning: all topics practical for life as a wife, 
mother, grandmother, Spiritual growth, hobbies, you name it. 

At one point in my life as I was picking out some new very good 
books at our church library I had a thought 
'when will you study My book?'. 


That stopped me cold. 

Now, I want to tell you that I read good books, good authors, 
many well known,well balanced authors. . . 
but I didn't regularly read much less study the Bible itself.

 I decided then and there to seek a means to study the Bible 
so I could know God myself, 
to know what He considered important. 
That began my quest for a way to understand how to do that. 
Over time I found the inductive study method through 
Precept Ministries Bible studies. 

I chose that method of Bible study after trying 
innumerable study materials. 
I had a neighbor who understood her Bible better 
than a group of 10 other neighbors 
and we were amazed at her clear understanding 
and recall of what she studied. 
I knew then that I would try her Bible study course 
when my kids got into school. 
When they did, I did! 

The study method filled a void in my spiritual growth 
such that I have studied the Bible seriously since then 
attending Precept Bible studies and later leading them. 
I've been challenged and changed by this exposure. 

Always a learner, this past month 
I became aware of a new magazine 
that is focused upon Bible study. 

That peaked my interest!

I checked their website at Bible Study Magazine 
and was able to get a trial copy to preview. 
Upon receiving it we immediately subscribed. 
The issue had great articles on how to compare various 
Bible translations, study methods, the value of study, etc. 
If you are wanting to learn how to study the Bible for yourself, 
to get to know God through His Word, 
to allow His Holy Spirit to give you understanding,
this would be a perfect tool to help you in that learning process. 

As you allow God's Word to be your primary reading material 
you will find God and His ways becoming the influence 
in your life and view of life.  
You will develop discernment 
which is lacking in American Christianity today.

Someday I hope to own Logos Bible study software 
produced by the same company that publishes this new magazine.  
I use an Apple computer and they just released the software 
in the Mac format this year. I have it on my wish list. . . 
perhaps in time I'll have it to use 
as I study God's Word for myself and for my Precept class. 
There are so many variations in the packages of software 
so I'm slowly looking at the differences 
in order to discern what I'd use most.

So, as you read your Bible and come upon things you find 
confusing, know that there are tools to help you 
understand the times in which it was written, 
the people who wrote it 
and to whom it was written, 
so that you can honorably/accurately translate 
it into what applies 
and how it applies to us today. 

Understanding your Bible is something that we Christians 
should surely pursue so our lives are transformed 
into Christ's image not our own idea of Christ's image. 
In the process our faith will be increased to believe in Him 
such that it is actually seen in our lives. 

You can view the editor as he shows you the insides 
of the issue we received. 
There are three issues out now. . . can't wait to get our next one!

Truths or Life
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path
Psalm 119:105

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Happy birthday dear husband!

Born and raised in Tokyo, Japan. . . 
moved to the U.S. of A in his mid-teens. . . . 
lived in Florida then Oklahoma, attended high school, 
then college (met me!), married, 
law school, started family. . . . 
nest emptied. . . the fun continues!

Celebrating many years of happiness and bliss! 
I'm one of the few who can say 
they love, love, love the guy they married. 
Best friends, life shared, travel buddies, and all. 
Ahhhh, I am so incredibly blessed!

This week I've done several things as we work 
up to his day on Sunday. Cards, flowers, meals out, 
meals in, favorite to-do's, favorite snacks, 
favorite activities, and compliments on mirrors, 
car steering wheels, tucked into his 
iPhone carrying case, etc. 

Flowers that remind him of his childhood -
mums in his favorite family vase, 
cherished like he is to me.

I love you!

Truth For Life
Only be strong and very courageous; be careful to do according to the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go. This book of the law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it; for then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have success."
Joshua 1:7, 8

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Be My Valentine!

Visit this site to read a good devotional using the ever popular 
Conversation Heart Candies by Necco. 
Then come back, and visit!

Welcome into my home, on the front door you are greeted with this:

I know some of your readers will be very surprised to read that I am once again mentioning knitting! My, oh, my! Yes, I got out the yarn and needles!

On my needles is an attempt to make a Heart shaped cloth, to be used as a hotpad or trivet. I got the pattern at Lion Brand yarn. I started it last weekend, got a few rows going and then left it somewhere and got it back today. So, it won't be a gift for someone for Valentines as I had planned - but when it is done, it will be a good gift for another occasion. Take a peek to see the pattern, it is very much like the Grandmother's Favorite dishcloth pattern in the way the edges are formed. 

Besides the above very tiny knit project, I have a fan and feather scarf on the needle in the green yarn I bought in Parma, Italy in October. I am also looking for the most fitting 'bug' applique to make for a small pillow for my Granddaughter. She has new bedding for her home in Nairobi, Kenya and she 'needs' a cute pillow for cuddling and comfort. So, this grandmother is deeeeelighted to have a project that requires thought, planning, and the dusting off of my sewing machine. If you know of any good websites with cute updated looking sweet bugs I might use as a place to give me some creative direction, I'd appreciate you sharing those with me.

I'm studying Matthew this semester and wow, what a book it is! Today we discussed how we are to live out God's righteousness, a lifestyle that surpasses those of the religious experts of the time in which Christ lives. Not surprisingly, it requires total dependance upon God and the guidance, power, and presence of His Spirit. (Matthew chapters 7 & 8) How I give to the poor, how I pray, how I fast, what I treasure - the motivation behind such actions is what makes the difference in self-focus or God-focus. It is sobering. And yet, it gives me a better idea of how to live as a Christian. When I visit the homebound, care for the feeble, assist the ill how I do what I do matters. It is privilege to serve these people, and it shapes my character in the process. 

As you celebrate Valentine's the week, consider how the greatest lover, the One who can love us most perfectly, who has demonstrated His love for us by giving His life, is the one who also created us and welcomes us all to be close to Him, to live with Him forever, and ever, and ever. He is perfect love - and He offers it to us every day, not just Valentines. 
And as we receive His love, He gives us direction for our lives, to pass His love along:

Truths For Life
Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?
Jesus replied:
Love the Lord your God with all your heart
and with all your soul and with all your mind.
This is the first and greatest commandment.

And the second is like it:
Love your neighbor as yourself.

All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.

Matthew 10:36-40