Monday, November 29, 2010

Contest of the Week

Mama’s Holiday Wish List Meme

TodaysMama (link to: and GameStop (link to: are giving away a sleighful of gifts this holiday season and to enter I’m sharing this meme with you.

1. What is your holiday wish for your family?

This Christmas season feels different to me.

I'm usually slightly irritated all month because of the disruption to precious routine that the Christmas season is. It makes a mess, rearranges rooms and costs us money we shouldn't spend. But, every year, my husband's generosity and calm attitude has infected me a little more. The big shift this year has a lot to do with the reality that our next 2 Christmases will be spent in a foreign land where they don't have snow and don't celebrate Christmas as a nation. I realize that all these fun and heartwarming "disruptions" will be events I'll miss dearly while overseas.

So I'm finally relishing all the little things this year. The gift wrapping, the advent calendar, the decorating of the Christmas tree, and the lights on the house. But most all I'm relishing the reminders we have of it being all about His glory and grace since His declaration of Christ's coming in Genesis 3.

The reminder of Christ and His mercy are my wish for my family this year as we gear up to walk away from all we are familiar with in our culture. I want this Christmas to give my children confidence in the larger realities of why we celebrate Christmas. I want them to understand that it's not a mere cultural duty, but a deeply rooted example of all that we've received as sinners saved by His gracious hand.

So, pray for me that I not become a grinch, but at the same time, that I continue to be awed by the deep meaning of this month. May you see Him as most glorious!

2. What is your Christmas morning / Hanukkah Nightly tradition?

We go to the Christmas Eve service.

3. If you could ask Santa for one, completely decadent wish for yourself, what would it be?

I would ask for a working car with 10 years of free repairs.

4. How do you make the holidays special without spending any money?

We play in the snow and bake together.

5. What games did you play with your family growing up?

We loved Scrabble, Pictionary and Monopoly.

6. What holiday tradition have you carried on from your own childhood?

I've carried on the traditions of driving around to look at Christmas lights and opening one gift on Christmas Eve.

7. Where would you go for a Christmas/Hanukkah-away-from-home trip?

Billings, Montana

8. Check out GameStop (link to: and tell us, what are the three top items on your GameStop Wish List this year?

Super Mario Bros for Wii

Super Mario Galaxy 2 for Wii

Lego Harry Potter yrs. 1-4 for Wii

Monday, November 01, 2010

Quote of the Week

"The old idea was to treat adults as adults. They could do anything; if they did something wrong they were punished. Children were treated as children-to be protected from what is harmful and reared and reformed in what is right. They modern idea is to reverse this. We treat adults as children and reform them.

We treat children as adults and let them see and do anything and everything. If we say someone's background and education is responsible for his present need of reform, it is inconsistent to let children taste and see everything good or bad."

-John Wenham "The Goodness of God"

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Nice To Meat You

No, that's not a typo...that is a little view into my fall.

Both my husband and I are Montanans by birth and spent much of our childhood fall hunting with our dads. I have fond memories of singing along to the oldies with my dad in the garage. A dead deer hanging to the side and we companionably trimming the fat off each piece of meat. This background has blessed my husband because I'm thrilled to be a part of him bringing home the yearly meat supply.

For this reason, I am fervently hooked on wild meat. As an adult I've realized how healthy and economic it is. My kids love elk burgers, and balk at the taste of, ahem, beef. They are now at the point where they enjoy helping in the butchering process.

So, we've butchered one elk...deer season is in a week and a half. Then we have one more round of elk to go. Whew!

In other news, both the kids are playing soccer and I'm loving it. Granted, I hope they're enjoying it too, but I love the whole atmosphere: the crazy parents, the kiddy personalities, the goofy adolescent refs, and the ever different fall weather. My desire is that the kids will learn perseverance through playing out there. I also love them getting fun exercise.

Struggling with myself over whether it would be beneficial for me to try and get a part time job. I know it would be financially helpful, but is it eternally and family-wise helpful? Not sure yet.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Quote of the Evening

"Love is helping people toward the greatest beauty and the highest value and the deepest satisfaction and the most lasting joy and the biggest reward and the most wonderful friendship and most overwhelming worship- love is helping people toward God. We do this by pointing to the greatness of God. And God does it by pointing to the greatness of God."

-John Piper "Let the Nations Be Glad

This very eloquently and succinctly sums up what I've been learning the true definition of love to be over the last year. Beholding in bigger and broader ways the amazing sovereign glory of all that God does.

For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things! Romans 11:36

Monday, August 23, 2010

Foreign Living Anyone?

Yes, the rumblings you've been hearing are true.

God willing, we will be moving to a foreign country in the next 6 or so months. We were accepted to a company that does a couple of different things in the region. Our tasks will include: learning the language, leading a short term foreign group around the country in the summer, and my hubby may be teaching in a K-12 school for foreigners.

We're all extremely excited, me mostly about learning another language and putting used TP in a trash instead of the toilet (kidding about the 2nd part). The kids are looking forward to the strangeness of it all, though I know that will wear off fast. The hubby is looking forward to doing something that will stimulate his soul instead of killing it (and his vertebrae) like the airport is.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Good Ending

I thoroughly enjoyed watching the World Cup Final with our friends which included a Thai and a Nicaraguan. There's no other sports event that unites the world so heartily for a month than this game of futbol.

I'm in awe of God causing there to be such a sport to display the amazing ways He has spheres move. He's made bodies to endure 90 minutes of running exhaustion and gives men this venue to display to the world their emotions and character.

In our short married time we've seen the power of this sport in giving camaraderie between us and whatever culture we're visiting. When my husband gets on the field (or street) with Nicaraguans, Thais , Turks, or Chinese they all speak the same language with their feet.

I can't wait to watch again in four years.

Saturday, June 26, 2010


After a miracle win last round the US soccer team decided it wasn't important to show up for 2/3 of the game against Ghana today.

Very frustrating to watch.

On the upside, go Argentina and Spain! Woot!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

World Cup Month

I love the World Cup. Every year I understand the game a little better and that makes it so much more enjoyable. Plus, it's something that Jason and I love to watch together and this year the kids are even getting interested.

Best game so far: Brazil and N. Korea...the first goal Brazil scored the ball curved, curved I tell you! I didn't even know it could do that!

Disappointing moments: While I'm glad the US is still in, they got lucky. So there win is disappointing. Also, Spain's loss to the Swiss today was just sad.

I know I still haven't shared the possible big change. The reason being the people we are talking to on the other side of this change are still gathering info on us and no decision has been made.

I will keep you posted though.

Sunday, May 30, 2010


Much in the realm of good books, profound thoughts and God moving have happened recently.

I resolve I will blog about it soon.

Hint: It may involve another part of the world.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Reforming Marriage

The title of this post is the title of a very good book that I read last week.
I say toss most of your silly marriage self-help books and get more marriage books with the Scriptures as its base!
With that in mind, here are some quotes from the book:

"John Bunyan once exhorted husbands to be 'such a believing husband to your believing wife that she may say, "God has not only given me a husband, but such a husband as preaches to me every day the way of Christ to His church."'" pg. 10

"God will not patch His grace onto some humanistic psychological nonsense-even if that nonsense is couched and buried in Christian terminology. It proceeds from an obedient heart, and the greatest desire of an obedient heart is the glory of God, not the happiness of the household. If we might paraphrase the words of the catechism, the chief end of marriage is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. The reaon we are miserable in our marriages is because we have idolized them. But the glory of God is more important that our domestic happiness." pg. 11-12

"In the verses (he's speaking of Ephesians 5) following we find a very basic imperative indeed-husbands are commanded to love their wives as Christ loved the church. But nowhere is the husband commanded to be a head to his wife. This is because he already is the head of his wife, by the very nature of marriage. If he does not love her, he is a poor head, but a head nonetheless." pg. 24

"A man may not be a vocational theologian, but in his home he must be the resident theologian." pg. 40

"Romantic love, as it is commonly understood, is a modern idol of the mind, emotions, and heart...Idolatry occurs whenever we look to a created thing with the expectation that it be and do what only the living God can be and do. " pg. 63

All quotes from "Reforming Marriage" by Douglas Wilson

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Quotes of the Week

I'm reading an amazing book "The Protestant Reformation" by Lewis's a compilation of writings during the time of the Reformation. Here are some that really struck me.

"Faith is a living and unshakeable confidence, a belief in the grace of God so assured that a man would die a thousand deaths for its sake. This kind of confidence in God's grace, this sort of knowledge of it, makes us joyful, high-spirited and eager in our relations with God and with all mankind." -Martin Luther "Preface to Romans"

-I desire so much that faith would cause this high-spiritedness in God to be seen in me.

"To repress these very sharp arguments of the laity by force alone, and not to resolve them by giving reasons, is to expose the church and the pope to ridicule of their enemies and to make Christians unhappy.
If, therefore, indulgences were preached according to the spirit and intention of the pope, all these doubts would be readily resolved. Indeed, they would not exist.
Away then with all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, 'Peace, peace,' and there is no peace! [Jer.6:14]
Blessed be all those prophets who say to the people of Christ, 'Cross, cross' and there is no cross!
Christians should be exhorted to be diligent in following Christ their Head through penalties, death, hell;
And thus be confident of entering into heaven through many tribulations rather than through the false security of peace. [Acts 14:22]"
Theses 90-95 of Martin Luther's 95 Theses

"Let us then consider it certain and firmly established that the soul can do without anything except the Word of God and that where the Word of God is missing there is no help at all for the soul. If it has the Word of God it is rich and lacks nothing since it is the Word of life, truth, light peace righteousness, salvation, joy, liberty, wisdom, power, grace, glory, and of every incalculable blessing. This is why the prophet in the entire Psalm 119 and in many other places yearns and sighs for the Word of God and uses so many names to describe it."
Martin Luther "Treatise on Christian Liberty"

There's more than just Luther in the book and I'll save other quotes for a future post.

Thoughts on Luther's interpretation of the Word?

Hopefully these encourage and exhort your week.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Happy Birthday to Me, Have Some Snow

We had a massive snow storm Tuesday night, which caused my birthday (yesterday) to be an enjoyable Snow Day for the kids and I. I really couldn't have thought of a more fun way to play than Just Dance on the Wii, building Snow Forts and sledding!

All the extra exertion has me once again (though not in a melancholy way) considering the frailty and impermanence of our physical beings. This seems to be something that Christ, Peter and especially Paul understood to its fullest degree.

"Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparision, while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal."
2 Corinthians 4:16-18

My outer woman is wasting away and yet I cling to the hope that my desire to taste and see the glory of God will be renewed day by day.

Oh God, may this be the thing that this temporal body strives for above all seen pleasures!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Cold for Cold, Ache for Ache

I got the pleasure this week of catching my sons cold, which came with all the fun aches, sore throat, fatigue and itchy nose that one could want....

"Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came among them to present himself before the Lord. The Lord said to Satan, 'Where have you come from?'
Then Satan answered the Lord and said, 'From roaming about on the earth and walking around on it.' The Lord said to Satan, 'Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man fearing God and turning away from evil. And he still holds fast his integrity, although you incited Me against him to ruin him without cause.'
Satan answered the Lord and said, 'Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life. However, put forth Your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh; he will curse You to Your face.'
So the Lord said to Satan, ' Behold, he is in your power, only spare his life.'
Then Satan went out fromt he presence of the Lord and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his food to the crown of his head." Job 2:1-7 (all excerpts from the NASB, italics added for emphasis)

In my current state of desiring to live a life that conforms to 1 Corinthians 10:31, I really thought that I would be fasting and dealing with more the food side of understanding doing everything for His glory.

But in the last couple of weeks, He continues to remind me of the obvious frailty and decline of my 27 year old body. Between chronic minor ailments (vision loss, hearing loss, issues of the female system) and now this cold I'm wrestling with my flesh which would like to go the non-glorifying route. By that I mean with my achiness and fatigue I chose the path of least resistance by laying on the couch and bed and completely checking out of reality by movies and TV. I could have spent that time reveling in an expository sermon or reading the Word, but I justified it to myself by saying my brain couldn't focus well.

Really? That little cold took your focus afield?

Yes, yes it did and that brought home to me the reality that I have to continue to fight to revel in Him above all these minor worldly escapes. My goodness, if a cold can derail my brain in my late 20s, I'm in big trouble the older I get!!

"Then his wife said to him, 'Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!'
But he said to her, 'You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God and not accept adversity?' In all this, Job did not sin with his lips." Job 2:9-10

So, should I accept good and not the adversity (minor as it is) which will bring about more of His savoriness to me? May it never be to my life, and dear sister, may it never be in yours.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Quote of the Week

"People talk of the sacrifice I have made in spending so much of my life in Africa...Away with the word in such a view, and with such a thought! It is emphatically no sacrifice. Say rather it is a privilege. Anxiety, sickness, suffering, or danger, now and then, with a foregoing of the common conveniences and charities of this life, may make us pause, and cause the spirit to waver, and the soul to sink; but let this only be for a moment. All these are nothing when compared with the glory which shall be revealed in and for us (Romans 8:18). I never made a sacrifice."

David Livingstone December 4, 1857
Speech to students at Cambridge University

So hard to keep this reality at the fore of my brain in light of the daily "conveniences and charities" here in my land and my home. I'm catching glimpses of the absolute savoriness of His Words above all else and I envy people like Livingstone who seem to hold this truth so much tighter than I can currently.

May You continue to cause me to taste and see that You, and only You, are good!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Winter Camping

This is me at the end of our winter camping trip thawing the corners so we could take our tent down.

The glorious warming stove that didn't work the second night due to operator error.

The cooking stove that kept us warm the second morning when above stove couldn't be turned on.

Our home sweet home for three days and two it possible to fall in love with a tent?

On the ice and loving our family time!

Sunday, February 14, 2010

In the OT

Saw this on and it struck me as a good quote as I'm currently mining the OT in a Wednesday group (go Deuteronomy!) and in my reading through the Bible program:

"It's a quote from J. G. Millar about our need to know the Old Testament in order to know the gospel. He mentions Deuteronomy in particular, but what he says applies to the whole Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible):

'Much of the theological framework needed to understand the significance of Jesus' coming, life and death was put in place by Moses in his writing, and perhaps above all in Deuteronomy. For it is here that the theology of blessing and curse which lies at the heart of Jesus' sin-bearing work is first articulated. It is here that the hopelessness of humanity trapped in sin, even when chosen by God, is exposed. It is here that the prospect of a divine intervention so radical that it changes people at the very core of their being first appears. (New Dictionary of Biblical Theology, pp. 164-165)' " -Tyler Kenney

Sunday, January 31, 2010

When In Rome

February 6th will be our 9th anniversary. It seems when you start out that you'll never reach a number like 9, but it's truly been a blink of an eye.
I've had special cause this year to think over our last 9 years, since we've spent considerable time talking to and counseling a couple in their first year of marriage.
I look back at the first four years and marvel that God caused things to turn around. Between being pregnant twice, being seriously post-partum, Jason going to school and all the normal adjustments from self focus to focusing God's glorious design for marriage it was a little rough. Granted, we were spared so much serious heart ache that we see in those around. Regardless of the size of the martial issues, it was God causing us to dwell more fully on Him that caused us to revel in our married state.
Let me say, I've enjoyed Jason from the very first time we met at church camp. What's blossomed in me toward him has been a deep respect and trust in the way God leads us through Jason. Jason's driving passion to glorify God in all that he does has made this marriage something that seems to glorify God to those around us. Jason's constancy and commitment level to both his friends and his family is a character trait that I admire much. He's been wounded by friends and family and yet still is committed these individuals. I, by nature, am a more reticent person, so this character trait has been one that has been such an example to me.
The reason I wanted to write this today is because of how much I miss him. He left to encourage a friend in Turkey on Tuesday and was due to be home late tonight. By God's design, Jason wasn't able to be on that plane and won't be home until Monday night. Not a big deal really, but in our communication we both miss the other so much that we're aching to see the other. This aching abiding love is what I thank God for giving me in my husband. Love you honey, can't wait to see your face!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Untitled and Unglued

If wishes were fishes, mine would be a sturgeon!

The hubby flew off to Antakya, Turkey yesterday to visit a Turkish friend (Best is his name) who stayed with us 2 summers ago.

So far, things are trucking along here far.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


What is the priesthood of all believers or the "royal priesthood" (1 Peter 2:9)?

After you explain what it is, what is its function?

Saturday, January 09, 2010

And So...

...another shoe has dropped. I was asked to not to be a part of children's Sunday School anymore at our church. It hurts, I was really enjoying my time with the kids.

Also, in the same meeting, we were told it would be best if we left.
What if what they (the elders) think is best (or what would be so much less painful for us) isn't what God has us to do?

What happened to being a church family and working things out?

What about holding leadership to the same accountability as the congregation?

What about, "I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction."?????????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Why can you partner with other denominations and the city and yet ask us to go away????

We're not staying because we hate you or are out to get you or want to make you look bad (don't we all look awful when held up against Him??)
We're staying there because we love you and truly desire the glory of God to be the thing that causes your hearts to be joyful and that He would be the center of all that you do!

If any of you dear blog readers would like a more eloquent and God-centered update, you can read my hubby's post here:

I'd also love to hear your thoughts...there's not been a person out there so far who has thought it a "good idea" we stay.