Monday, October 31, 2011
I have a winner for the DaySpring giveaway on my blog…..
Since I only had 2 entries, I’ve decided that YOU BOTH WIN!!!!! That’s just how we roll! Congrats Kara and Kristen. Please send me your pick of any DaySpring recordable children’s book, and I’ll get them ordered for you! What can I say besides, I love you both so very much; Dayspring will pay for one book, and I’ll pay for the other! Fair enough?!?
Email me your selection of book and shipping address (just incase I can’t find your addresses). My mind is frazzled these days, but I will get this ordered and shipped ASAP J
Have a blessed day!
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Well, there you are...Wilderness. Seriously, what took you so long? I knew you would find me somehow, some way because my life had been going so well. And, you did... I was almost willing to retract being thankful for you on Thursday. You challenged my resolve to be content. When my grandpa died late Saturday evening, you swept into my family and turned it upside down. However, you didn't get me. I now know God is trying to draw me closer to Himself. You will not knock me off track. I've been given strength from the Lord God Almighty. You will not turn me toward Egypt. Got it?!? God has freed me from bondage, just as He freed the Israelites. I'm not looking back.
Alrighty then! Now that I've gotten that out of the way, I am turning my attention toward more important things--my Resolution for the week. All week I've been reading about submission and embracing the God given role I was created for.
Since Kyle has taken such a strong spiritual leadership role in our home, he has excelled at leading our family. We don't even have to talk about if we are going to church now, we all assume. I have to brag on him because he deserves it. He poured out every drop of alcohol in our home. He told me that it (the alcohol) was just sitting there waiting for him to drink it. So, he got rid of it. He also quit smoking! We've cleaned up our DVR record list. We are listening to ALL praise music. Life is still good despite the death of my grandpa. My proudest moment has been seeing him excited about the word of God. He's completing the Resolution for Men. He has embraced his ordained role in our family, and may I say he is doing quite well? (Of course I can! This is my blog! I can say anything
I want, right? In that case, Kyle's doing better than great! He's been an amazing husband and father!)
I'm...struggling. This new role I have been exploring all week talks of God expecting me to yield to my husband. It's a new concept, and God with his good humor has given me numerous opportunities to practice this week. I'm adjusting, I'll say that. There are some instances where I prefer to be the follower, but in my home isn't one of them. One area where I desire your prayers is yielding to what Kyle thinks is best for our kids. Sometimes, our opinions differ from the other. That's when our conversations begin looking like this:
Kyle: You aren't going to let me be the leader, are you?
Me: [To be read with lots of defensiveness] Just because you are the spiritual leader, doesn't make you the parental leader. On parenting, we are equal partners.
Kyle/Me: [lots of silence]
You know what I just discovered? He is the leader in every aspect of our family. I am to yield to him whether I agree or not. It doesn't mean I am a doormat for him to walk on. He is the leader. Not me.
Ugh. That's hard to swallow. I have to go tell him I was wrong. He needs to be patient with me. I'm learning to relinquish my authority to him. It isn't easy, but it is how God intended me to be whether I agree or disagree. It is what it is. I must do it.
So, by signing my name
I will champion God's model for womanhood in the face of
a post-feminist culture. I will teach it to my daughters
and will encourage it's support by my sons.
P.S. I'm expecting you all to hold me accountable to this one.
Friday, October 28, 2011
We went to the Pumpkin Patch last Saturday to pick out a pumpkin to carve. For those of you who live in my area, you probably know that by "pumpkin patch" I mean the church on the corner who sells pumpkins every year to support its youth group. Actually, Kyle and I tried to find a real pumpkin patch earlier in the day and failed miserably. We ended up taking a tour of the surrounding counties. It was a nice drive, but when in doubt, save your gas and go with what you know.
It was so pretty outside that I almost forgot it was fall. We've had the oddest weather here in NC lately. For instance Monday it was in the upper 70s. Today, the high was lower 50s. This is why fall isn't my favorite season. You never know how to dress comfortably.
I also thought I'd try to snap a few shots of Kohen. He will be ONE in less than two weeks. I can't believe how big you are getting Sweet Boy!
This next picture cracks me up. I asked Kade, "Who's in the bushes?" Bless him. He may get his eyesight from me.
Finally we were ready to pick out our pumpkin. We told Kade he could pick any one that he wanted so we could go home and carve it. Okay, I admit...I was a little shocked at the inflation of pumpkin prices. The patch had pumpkins priced up to $40. So, I was so glad that he chose this pumpkin...
It only cost $1.50 :)
Resolution for Women: It’s Good to be a Girl
Choose one of the many roles you currently play in your life, and record for each how you are 1)good for it, 2)necessary to it, 3)an important component of it, 4) worthy to be a part of it, and 5)trustworthy to fulfill.
I will pick my role as an employee to explore, since this is often an object of my discontentment. I am a good employee in the respect of being on time every day and rarely missing work. I am necessary to my department because I’ve been delegated some of the work load. I’m an important component of my company because I’ve been loyal for 13 years, and I am familiar with most of the jobs in my department. I am worthy to be a part of the company because of the loyalty I’ve shown even in times of disappointment, most recently with a job promotion I felt I deserved. I am (mostly) trustworthy to fulfill my role as employee because I’m a hard worker. However, there are times that I am easily distracted from giving 100% of my attention to my work.
In what situations and around which people do you find the biblical value of womanhood most challenged and questioned?
I feel women self impose some of the challenges or questions concerning womanhood by allowing certain ideas to corrupt,challenge, or take out of contexts the God-given role for women. We “are worth neither less nor more than (our) male counterparts. We are different, obviously, but only in function, not in value.” (page 38) I think sometimes we feel that women need/deserve special treatment because we are gentle, delicate creatures. I also feel as if womanhood is often questioned and/or challenged by the absence of the male counterpart in our lives. In essence, many women feel the need to compensate for their missing partner.
How do you raise daughters to be ambitious, educated, and sure of them selves while at the same time help them appreciate the rewards and blessings of submission? How do you raise boys to view women with a similarly high regard? Discuss with friends some creative approaches.
I’ll save the first part of this question for my girlfriends with daughters. (Feel free to comment below.) I hope that I teach my sons to value and treasure women. I want them to be respectful that women are ordained by God to be “treasured, prized, and cherished by the Creator.” (page 39) I feel all too often women are too hard on themselves. (Can I get an Amen to that?!?) We have enough stress beating our selves up for all that we fail to accomplish. I hope I can teach my sons to help build up the women in their lives, whether it be an aunt, cousin, grandmother, or wife (WAY DOWN THE ROAD!). Their daddy is already teaching them the way a woman should be treated by the small things he does for me. He still opens the doors for me. He still shows me affection. He believes in me, and that’s what I want my sons to do for other women in their lives: believe in them.
So, how about it ya’ll?!? Since we women are so hard on ourselves, how do we raise our daughters to be ambitious, educated, and sure of themselves while at the same time help them appreciate the rewards and blessings of submission?
I also welcome any advice you have for raising sons with a similarly high regard.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
I’ve decided to join in on Thankful Thursdays again. As the Thanksgiving Season is upon us all, my heart is overflowing with thankfulness. So here we go:
1. I am thankful for my salvation.
2. I am thankful for how rededicating our lives to serving God have changed the entire dynamic of our home. We listen to praise music while getting ready for and getting out of bed. Kyle and I discuss biblical teachings. We talk to our kids about God. It has influenced our days to be more positive.
3. I am thankful for my Mom who watched my boys so I could go to bible study.
4. I am thankful for MY BIBLE STUDY! It has opened my eyes and renewed the fire in my heart to serve God.
5. I am thankful for the….wilderness…. Okay, I’ll say it. The Wildnerness. Also known as all the stuff which make life not so pleasant? I wouldn’t say I “love it” per se, but I do have a new found respect for it. (Terri, I pray this specifically for you today. I know you are in the wilderness period and your many prayer warriors are praying you through it!)
6. I am thankful for my husband whom I can see God doing wonderful works through. I am thankful God chose me to be his helper.
7. I am thankful for all of the new friendships I am making.
8. I am thankful for Jan’s encouragement and holding me accountable.
9. I am thankful for Paula who I have been talking about the Resolution for Women with. I am so thankful she is doing it with me.
10. I am thankful for God revealing His presence to me when I am mindful to be watchful, still, silent, and fearless. I’ve seen Him several times this week that otherwise I would have missed.
What are you thankful for? Want to link up?
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Sin. We all know what it is. That ugly, little three letter word which haunts us and hangs a dark cloud over our heads. We’ve all been guilty of sinning in our lives. We confess our sins and God is good enough to forgive us. Sin to me is black/white. I don’t think there is a grey area which says, “Well, this sin is worse than that sin.” I believe God looks at us all, no matter what we’ve done displeasing to Him, and He sees sin the same. So, why do we rank our sin? “This sin isn’t so bad.” “This is the worst sin of all.” “This sin is bad, but not as bad as…”
Last night a terrible tragedy occurred. While I was in bible study, there was a terrible, terrible accident near our church. A woman who was high on drugs senselessly chose to drive. Her decision had fatal consequences when she drove into a motorcycle killing a father and son. A decision that will change her life forever.
On my way to church last night, I saw this father and son driving the motorcycle in an empty parking area. I remember casually glancing over and seeing two cars in this parking lot and a motorcycle driving. Today, I was told this was the family who died. The son, who was 19, was practicing to take his motorcycle license test. After practice, he decided to make the short trip home riding with his dad, a licensed rider. A decision that changed both of their lives forever. They leave behind a wife/mother who lost her entire family by an irresponsible driver. Her life is changed forever.
Today, I have felt the overwhelming presence of God teaching me a very important lesson. No matter if I use his name in vain or fall into temptation, He sees my sin the same as he sees the young woman’s sin. I am not to be judge and jury for her. I will choose to pray that God will use this wilderness to draw her closer to Him. I will pray for her children who are losing their mother to “bad decisions.” I will pray for the family who lost loved ones. I will pray for God to use this terrible tragedy to bring honor and glory to His name. He is faithful. He is good. The decision to trust Him in heartache and happiness is a decision that changed my life forever.
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
Resolution for Women: Pretty in Print
(What it means to have biblically based femininity in a post feminist culture)
The answer at the heart of the next resolution is found by answering, “What kind of woman are you going to be?” (page 35)
How have you seen feminist ideals affect women in the way they dress? Act? Make Decisions?
Women’s attire, or lack there of, has certainly been on the forefront of many feministic ideals. For some reason unbeknownst to us, we seem to think “less” is better. I realize I am generalizing here by saying “we,” because contrary to what seems to be the trend, I’ve seen women personally take a stand against dressing provocatively—so much so that they refuse to buy their own daughters toys who are dressed inappropriately. To those women, I say “Good for you!” Sometime ago, I joined the ranks of your thinking by cleaning out my closet and disposing of everything that was less than modest. Its hard to find clothes which aren’t so skimpy, but it is possible.
I do agree in women rights, and I feel as if some of the wrong has been corrected in history. I am so grateful that I have the right to vote and can expect equal rights in some retrospect’s of life. However, women sometimes overstep their need to be equal by trying to be something that God hasn’t ordained. I’ll save some of my opinions to myself, but if we are truly trying to be as God created us to be, then we can’t neglect our own God given roles—which I think we can lose sight of by our own obsession to be equal. In my opinion, it is this same obsession which affects our decision making skills when we lose sight of our unique, wonderful, secure purpose which God created us to fulfill.
What are some of the most noticeable ways you see young women turning away from biblical womanhood?
Most obvious to me would be women taking on the role of spiritual leader in the home because the man in her life won’t. I have mixed emotions about this because I do feel it is better to have a leader, woman or not, than not to have any leader. I’m honestly not sure what would be the right solution to this dilemma we see too often in our society. I also feel as if women are neglecting their “helper” role to their spouse by being preoccupied by other obligations or responsibilities, myself included.
What biblical principles of womanhood strike you as stifling or repressive? Why do you think you feel that way?
The need to be submissive (and you all know what I’m talking about!). I struggle most in being able to meet the needs of my husband and often challenge his biblical authority over me as his wife. Read the fine print here: Being submissive doesn’t always mean I allow Kyle to control me. I am learning more and more everyday to trust his judgment and give him the opportunity to be who God has biblical called him to be. I also am becoming more conscience over the fact that I am his helper, and I am to be submissive to him in the ways he needs me to be. I don’t think that by being submissive that I am allowing him to belittle me.
As you read offer your concerns about this issue to the Lord in prayer. Ask Him to use this time to answer your concerns and reaffirm His priorities for you in this area.
Lord, I can tell this is going to be a challenging area for me—perhaps the most challenging. Yes, you created me with a unique purpose, so you already know you created me a stubborn (okay, very stubborn) control freak! Lord help me to understand that my role as a woman is very specific. While I am so worried about being who I think I should be, I neglect my God given role. Help me be mindful of my biblical role in my family and society. Amen.
I saw God last nigh! He was in my bed, right smack-dab between Kyle and I as I worked on my bible study. For the first time in our entire marriage, we sat in bed and discussed what God was doing in our lives and the things He was showing us. The entire dynamic of our marriage has changed as we have embraced our biblical God-given roles in our family. God was right there, in the very center of our discussion as we discussed what we were learning, and we both surmised this: The more we learn, the more we want to know. The more we want to know, the more we find that we don’t know.
We’ve both decided to adopt a new motto in our household. We’ve done many things which have made God unhappy with us, but we have asked forgiveness and we know that God and his abundant grace has forgiven us. Like the movie Courageous, we may not have started out well. We know we didn’t. But, it’s not how you start that matters. It’s how you finish!
Have a blessed day!
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Hello All! I hope you have had a blessed week. Yesterday's devotion was on "The Balancing Point." It was the final piece of the puzzel in becomeing satisfied and content with my circumstances. It concluded by giving me a resolution to commit to.
What's a resolution, really?
1. the act of resolving or determining upon an action or course of action, method, procedure, etc
2. the mental state or quality of being resolved or resolute, firmness of purpose
I have completed the first of thirteen sections in the study, and I would like to publically announce my resoltions here so that I can be held accountable to the committment I am making for myself and family. I will also add a text section on the right side ------> to keep track of all the resolutions I am willing to make.
Without further ado, by signing my name at the bottom,
I do solumnly resolve to embrace my current season of life
and will maximize my time in it. I will resist the urge
to hurry through or circumvent any portion of my journey
but will live with a spirt of contentment.
This is a resolution I make of myself to my family and my Lord.
October 23, 2011
Elaine M. Killian
Saturday, October 22, 2011
Resolutions for Women: Overflowing Blessing
When you consider your level of willingness to give of yourself, does it reveal more contentment or discontentment residing in your heart? In what way?
My level of willlingness has never been an issue for my level of contentment. If I can, I will on most occassions. However, I've also found myself discontented with my circumstances or situations because I consistently take on more than I can handle. (Anyone else guilty of that?!?) When I begin to feel overwhelmed, I find that my contentment level plumments to record levels. I feel compelled to only "finish" whatever I am giving of myself, and sometimes this entails a half-hearted effort.
Based on God's provisions that you listed at the end of the last chapter, what is one thing you can close this book and go do for someone else out of that resource?
One of my needs was to be loved and supported. I noted that God's provision in this aspect of my life was to surround me with very supportive and encouraging family and friends. One way I can do something for someone else who feels similar is by dropping notes or cards of encouragement in the mail. I try to do this often with my sisters who are suffering through Infertility. I think emails are wonderful, but there is something that is more personal by sending a hand written note. I hope in the future that I will be more mindful of people I see suffering in the areas that I listed as "my needs," and I hope that God will compel me to take action as He advises.
Record your thoughts regarding this statement: "Sometimes the best, most empowering word you can learn to utter is "no."
This is one of the biggest stress contributors in my life. I'm one of those people who hardly says no to anything, and as a result, I often stress myself (and my family) out trying not to let others down. I succeed more often than not, but there are times when I also let everyone down. I'm doing better as saying "no" to committments which I don't have extra time for.
Hey Everybody! I was contacted a few weeks ago from the fabulous people at DaySprings to host a review of the Recordable Story books found at their website.
Recordable Storybooks from DaySpring feature exclusive voice-capture technology that enables a person to record each page of a book and have it played back over and over as the recipient turns the pages. The recording will not be lost, even when the batteries need to be replaced. Currently, Daysprings has four different books to choose from. I was sent the "I Love You Head to Toe" by Bonnie Rickner Jensen as featured below. I love this story and its simplicity of how much not only I love my kids head to toe, but how God loves us all from head to toe.
One of the best features about the storybook is that it comes with fool-proof instructions. For anyone who is technologically incompentent (like myself!), you can't mess up!
Incase you over think whose voice you want to record, you can re-record at any time! Once you've found that perfect someone, there is a safety lock found in the battery compartment to prevent you from erasing it! Pretty snazzy, huh? Books have come so far from when I was a kid!
Kade absolutely loved the book. He thought he was making it talk by pressing on the pictures! Ha! And, he even shared it with his brother, Kohen.
These books retail for $29.95, but I've been given the permission to award one of my lucky readers one for FREE! Daysprings will send me a promotional code to award one winner. They can't cover shipping and handling, so I will pay the shipping and handling charges for you! You'll get 1 recordable book of your choice from DaySprings for FREE!
1. Visit DaySprings website and tell me which of the books you would choose in a comment below. Please include the email address where I can notify you if selected.
2. Blog about this giveaway and leave me a comment to let me know you did so.
3. Become a follower or let me know you currently follow this blog.
There you have it! Three chances to win! These books are super cute. They are certain to make the child in your life feel special!
Winner will be drawn by random generator on 10/29/11!
Disclaimer: I was given the recordable story book free by Daysprings to review on my blog. All of the opinions expressed here are my own.
Thursday, October 20, 2011
A woman of contentment is aware of her needs and what God has already supplied to meet them. Begin your journey to contentment by making a list. Label one side “My Needs.” Label the other “God’s Provision.” Then match up your needs with the way God is currently meeting them. Place your list in a handy place for the times you are tempted to lean toward dissatisfaction.
My Needs -->God’s Provision
To have a career that matters-->He led me back to school to become a teacher
To have a support system -->Introduction of new friends and reconnect with old friends
To be loved and supported -->Given me a wonderful husband and family
To be challenged spiritually -->Re-kindled a fire in my soul to know God better
To have financial security--> Provided me and Kyle with stable working environments
What might God be trying to grow in your character or cement in your relationship with Him by keeping you separated from some of the things you want but don’t yet have?
I believe that God may be trying to grow my faith and dependency on Him. I believe He also wants to teach me that He is in control, and His ways are better than my ways. Whatever He is denying me, He will use it to bring glory and honor to His name. Because, He is a good God, even when He is saying “no” or “not now.
Please stay tuned. I have a review/giveaway that I will post this weekend from Daysprings!
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
I rushed out to buy the bible studies which accompany the video. There is The Resolution for Men and the Resolution for Women. I began my journey last night, and I’ll document here the progress I’m making. The RFW is written by Priscilla Shirer. She also wrote the bible study I am completing with other women in my church, One in a Million. I love, love, love her!
So, join me in my journey! I won’t list spoilers here, only questions and my answers.
1. What have you been hurrying through?
Life!!!!! We live in a society which seeks to have immediate gratification, and I certainly am not an exception to this mentality.
2. What have you been hurrying to get to?
I hurry to get everywhere. I savor last precious moments in bed until I’m rushed in the morning. I hurry to get to work and often walk briskly (if not running) in order to clock in on time at work. I also hurry to get home after work so I can relax. Basically, I hurry to get everywhere.
3. What are some of the good parts of your experience that you have missed in your attempt to rush through the more difficult ones?
I’ve missed out on living in and appreciating the “now” which I can never get back. When I am in difficult seasons of my life (which I want to hurry and get out of), I miss learning opportunities to draw me closer to God and what He wants to teach me.
4. What can you do differently today to gather up all the good things around you and begin enjoying the journey of your life?
Today, I can live life with a resolve to be conscience of the “now.” Life is so precious, and it often passes by much too quickly. I can live a life which the people in it will feel my love and appreciation for them, instead of what I oftentimes give them: too little of my time. I can pace myself to enjoy the present moment and let God handle tomorrow.
I eventually plan to do all of my posting here. Please feel free to follow along over at the right where you see my happy little group of readers.