Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Jesus is the ONLY Reason for the Season!

We are now entered into the Christmas season! My absolute favorite time of year! I just love all the lights and family gatherings and the warmth and love this season brings! But, most importantly, I truly love revisiting the Christmas Story with my children every year! This year, however, God has really been putting the role of Mary on my heart...

Join me at Women Walking Upright to hear the rest of the story!



Button Up

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Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. ~ Isaiah 7:14

Monday, November 21, 2011

Having Plenty

A time to pause and reflect on all that I have been given.

All the many blessings that have been bestowed upon my life!

God has been too good to me and I am forever grateful of His gifts and blessings!

Taking time today to say "thank you" to the One who has given me so much and to count a few of those blessings out here.

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:: Four tiny walls and a roof overhead
:: Warm clothes waiting in our closests to be worn once the coldness arrives
:: Winter coats, hats, and gloves
:: Socks and shoes
:: Clean, running, water
:: Fridge filled with food
:: Little arms wrapped tightly around me whispering "I Love You" in my ear
:: Christ's love for me displayed on the cross
:: Forgiveness
:: Love
:: A basket filled with yarn and inspiration
:: Warm bread, straight from the oven
:: Hot Chocolate with marshmallows
:: Wholesome, family, Christmas movies
:: Wet nose kisses from our furry friends
:: A little girls enthusiasm over just about anything
:: Friendship
:: This season that we are in
:: Quiet moments to sit and be thankful
:: My Bible-what a treasure

Praying you all have a blessed Thanksgiving week!

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And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:8

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Filling Shoeboxes With Love

It is National Collection Week {November 14-19} for the Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child Shoe Boxes!

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Our boxes are packed stuffed full of wonderful gifts in hopes to put a smile on a child's face this Christmas. A child who may only receive what I have placed in this small box. It is not much...and believe me, I wanted to stuff it with more that the box would allow...but the message-the gift- I am hoping to give to these children is that Jesus loves them and cares about them, no matter where they live in the world. He sees them and knows their hearts and He loves them! He loves ALL of us!

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I tried to explain to my children the meaning behind giving these gifts to two very special children. My daughter understands that the gifts she placed inside her shoe box are going to go to a little girl who may not have gotten any presents for Christmas otherwise. I explained to her that we are giving gifts to others because God gave us the greatest gift of all-His Son! I told her we want others to know of His amazing gift as well and that we need to pray for the little girl who is receiving this box, even though we may never know who she is!

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My son is only 2, so his understanding of the meaning and the reason behind putting toys in a shoe box for another little boy, is not quite there. However, I explained to him, as I did my daughter, that we are doing this out of our love for Jesus! And even though he wanted to play with the truck that lit up and made noise, it had to be placed inside the box for another little boy to enjoy!

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Through this process I thought to myself, "what if I was that mother, on Christmas day, struggling to feed my children, let alone give them a small gift. what a blessing it would be to receive gifts for my children from strangers, all across the world!" It is a humbling act that has taught my children, as well as myself, just how much we truly have to be thankful for.

One thing I really like about Operation Christmas Child is that you can track your shoe box to see when it arrives and where exactly it goes! They also have All About Me sheets that you can download and include in your box for the child receiving it to get to know you a little better. On these sheets is also a spot to place your name and address to become pen pals with the child(ren) receiving your shoe boxes! My prayer is that they will write to us so we can continue to share the love of Jesus with them!

It is not too late to join in and pack a shoe box full of love for a child in need. Collection week runs until the 19th, which is Saturday, so there is still plenty of time! You can find a list of collection sites in your area here!

Praying for God to speak to these children and that their hearts and lives may be changed, through a simple shoe box filled with love!

Linking up at:
Internet Cafe Devotions

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When he finished that talk, a Pharisee asked him to dinner. He entered his house and sat right down at the table. The Pharisee was shocked and somewhat offended when he saw that Jesus didn't wash up before the meal. But the Master said to him, "I know you Pharisees burnish the surface of your cups and plates so they sparkle in the sun, but I also know your insides are maggoty with greed and secret evil. Stupid Pharisees! Didn't the One who made the outside also make the inside? Turn both your pockets and your hearts inside out and give generously to the poor; then your lives will be clean, not just your dishes and your hands.  ~ Luke 11:41 {the message}

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Another Winner...

I almost forgot to announce the winner of the Our Blessed Life Designs Giveaway!


So...without further ado...the winner of the $15.00 Gift Card to Our Blessed Life Designs is Commenter #6...Sam! Congratulations! Look for an email from me soon!

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Thank you again to Aurie for blessing us with this wonderful giveaway! And a big thanks to all of you for entering!

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For His Future Wife

For His Future Wife ~

I've wanted to sit for sometime now and write to you, telling you all about the wonderful man you are about to marry.  Ever since his chubby, little, hand grabbed ahold of my fingers in the hospital after he was born and his smile stole away my heart, I knew he was going to be special and change me in ways I never knew needed changing!  We share a special bond-a mother and son bond-one that I hope you get to experience someday if you are to ever have a son.

At the time of this letter, he is only 2 1/2 years old, so he is still my little man; my buddy! Of course, this is hard for me to even imagine-the thought of him getting married-when I am still the only woman who holds the key to his heart. The only woman whom he whispers "I love you" to in the middle of the night. The only woman who melts when his blue eyes look into mine and say "I'm Sorry"! The only woman who wants to protect him and see the best for him and love him with all of her being!

But I know that once those same blue eyes meet the eyes of you, the one God has planned for his life since before he was born, this will all change. You will be the one hearing "I love you" in the middle of the night and melt when his blue eyes look into yours and say "I'm sorry" when he does something wrong...because he will-do something wrong-we all do! And I will no longer be the only woman wanting the best for his life and loving him with all that she has! I will be sharing all of this with you! And I am thrilled of this, for I have been praying for you! That God will protect you and that you will make Him the Lord of your life. That He guides your path and that you will follow and become the wife my son so deserves.

My promise to you is this-I am doing, and will continue doing, the best I can at raising a Godly, respectful, kind, caring, loving, young man. The kind of man that I am praying will grow into the husband that you deserve. The man I am hoping your parents are already praying for, for you!

I am looking forward to the day he brings you to our home, for us to meet. Oh the smile that just crept up on my face! That is going to be a wonderful day. However, until that day-until the day you two meet, many, many, years from now-I will continue to enjoy every single moment of being his mama. Playing trains with him while the laundry sits, waiting to be folded. Reading book after book on the couch, instead of tending to the mess in the kitchen. Scratching his back 'til he falls asleep. Telling him about Jesus and His love for us. And praying, everyday, for you, his future wife! All things that he needs, right now, while I'm still the only woman who holds the precious key to his little heart.

With much love and many prayers,

Your future mother-in-law

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For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. ~ Matthew 7:8

Friday, November 11, 2011

{this moment}

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment... A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. ~ Amanda Soule

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 For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him. ~ Genesis 18:19


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All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children. ~ Isaiah 54:13

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Our Blessed Life Designs {giveaway}

I would love to take some time today and share a little about my lovely friend Aurie with all of you!



Welcome to Our Good Life
 

Aurie and I met over a year ago through the wonderful world of blogging! We quickly became friends and realized just how much we had in common. Aurie loves to knit and sew and is also a new homeschooling mom. She has a heart for God and is on fire for Him and all that He is doing in her life!

Without ever having met, or even spoken on the phone, I already know what a sweet, loving, and caring person she is. I anticipate the day we can sit, with needles in hands clicking away, and chat, face-to-face!

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Aurie has a wonderful little etsy shop called Blessed Life Designs.


In her adorable shop you will find handmade items such as crayon rolls, knitted cell phone cozies, knitted hats, hair clips as well as hair clip holders, and cozy cuddies! She also offers custom items!

I had the pleasure of receiving one of Aurie's cute knitted beanies for my daughter, Emma. She knitted it using one of her favorite colors, purple! Emma loved it! She wore it the whole afternoon the day we received it in the mail.

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It even kept her warm for our first snow of the year!
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She has the beanie on under her hood!
Because of her sweetness, she has offered one of you the chance to win a $15.00 gift card to her shop! {sweet!}

To win:

Leave a comment on this post stating which item(s) from Blessed Life Designs you would choose if you were to win! {mandatory entry}

Additional Entries:
Leave a seperate comment for each additional entry!

Follow Aurie { @AurieGood } on Twitter
Like "Our Good Life" on Facebook
Become a follower of  Aurie's Blog
Follow me { @AFthfulJrney } on Twitter
Become a follower of A Faithful Journey

Giveaway open from Nov. 10th until Nov. 14th. Winner will be chosen via random.org! Please leave a valid email address for me to contact you at if you were to win!

Thank you, Aurie, not only for your kindness in offering up this giveaway, but for your friendship! I am excited to see what God has in store for us!

Linked up at:
Hip Homeschool Moms Giveaway Day
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As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. ~ Proverbs 27:17

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Her Birthday

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My sister, mum, and I ~ Christmas 2010
Grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged; parents are the pride of their children. ~ Proverbs 17:6

 She loves until it hurts. She gives selflessly. She is always willing to help, no matter when or how much notice is given. She is funny and smart. Strong in many ways.
She is Grandmother, Mother, Wife, Friend.
She is my mum and today is her birthday!

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Happy Birthday Mum! I am grateful beyond words for you! I thank God for you! Your generosity shines so brightly! Thank you for all you are willing to do for us! Emma and Caleb are so blessed to call you "Grandma"! I love you!
Happy Birthday!

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Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.  ~ Titus 2:3-5

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Wanna get a little Weird?

For my Women's Book Club, we've been reading the book Weirdby Craig Groeschel. It is a great book and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to get a little more Weird in their walk with Christ!


I've been reading this book along with the group for the past few weeks, as we meet every other week, but this past week I couldn't help but keep reading on past where we were supposed to stop for last nights meeting! It is getting so good and leaving me with that punched in the gut because this is so true and so me feeling! I have been highlighting like crazy!

A few points that I highlighted that have stuck with me I am going to share with you as I am feeling that God is wanting to use these words to speak to some of you as well!

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I was reading over the weekend the section on Money! Craig talks about how we are to use the money God has blessed us with, no matter how little or how much, to bless others in need. He says, "I'm convinced God doesn't bless us because we deserve it or because we earn it. He doesn't bless us to make us feel guilty and ashamed. He blesses us so we can be different."  {2 Corinthians 9:11.}

I prayed after reading this for God to ignite the fire in me to start giving more and doing it with a heart for Jesus. I prayed asking God to show ne how I was meant to be a blessing here on earth and how I was to spend my time here, other than a wife and mother, until I am called home. He wants to use me to enrich His kingdom. This I know is true! Nothing I have is mine...it all belongs to Him. May I begin using all that I have in whatever ways He deems fit!

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"Sure, it's weird to believe that it's more blessed to give than to receive. But it's also the most life-giving, eye-opening truth about money that we can ever learn. Do whatever you have to do to make your eyes generous. God will bless you, and you can be a blessing." God wants us to take a look around us and see where we can be a blessing to others. How can we help our neighbor, a friend at church, a family from afar? God wants to use us to bless others that need it more than we may ever know or experience. Can God do this on His own without our help? Of course! But, He has chosen us to help in Glorifying Him and His kingdom. Why wouldn't we want to be a part of that?

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"Remember, to get what you've never had, you must do what you've never done. But to get what you once had, you must do what you once did."  If we want to be a blessing to others and to God himself, it just may require us to do somethings we have never done before. We just may need to step out of our comfort zone and see where God takes us and where He wants to use us. It  may be somewhere in your church or in your community. Maybe at your childs school or homeschool co-op. Maybe it's volunteering at a local Senior Center or soup kitchen. Whatever it may be, if it is of God's will for you to be a blessing in that way...and it doesn't always require us to give money...then think of how amazing it will be to know you just Glorified the Kingdom of Heaven in Jesus' Name!

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God is amazing! He uses people and books and music in ways to speak to us and give to us exaclty what we need to hear! Reading these words the other night brought me so much peace that I am heading in the right direction, but that I have to do more and be more diligent and faithful when it comes to how I use our money to glorify God!

How will you let God use you to bless others and Glorify His Kingdom in Jesus' Name?

Amazon links are affiliate links

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You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:11

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Short Story {and a winner!}

Yesterday was a rough day. I went to bed exhausted and completely stressed out! I felt like all I did was yell scream at my kids all day long! I began to work on finishing up Emma's Quilt only to get more discouraged and stressed out. Something is wrong with the tension of my stitches and I cannot sew a straight line to save my life! *sigh*

All of a sudden, when the little red lights on my oven shine 5:30, the front door opens and he enters in. I hear the "Hallelujah Chorus" being sung and it is like "bam!" everything and everyone calms down and the rest of the evening is wonderful. The kids play nice the rest of the night and I don't think I had to yell once! We even may have laughed! My quilting was still a joke, but I decided to put it away for the night and try again today!

Is it like this in your home? Your day was a complete disaster and when your husband comes home it is like the twilight zone and you are wondering, while scratching your head, "what just happened here?". I do not know what he does or how he does it, but all he has to do is walk. in. the. front. door. and peace is restored!

I was able to breath a sigh of relief. And even though I still went to bed exhausted, I also went to bed happy and thankful for this man that has been such a wonderful husband and father to us!

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I have a winner to announce! The winner of the Fun with Felt Giveaway is commenter #9! 

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You will be receiving an email from me shortly!

Thank you to all who entered! And thank you, again, Betty Lukens for providing me with the Fun With Felt sets to enjoy and also for hosting the giveaway!

Don't want to miss an exciting post or giveaway? Subscribe here to have posts slipped quietly into your inbox!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Giving Gifts to Jesus

Last week during our Bible devotions from My ABC Bible Verses, we were discussing John 3:16. The devotion on this particular day was about Christmas and how God gave His only son, for us. Jesus was a gift to us! The devotion tells the story about a brother and sister who were singing in their church choir for Christmas. Since it was Christmas and Jesus' birthday, they wanted to give him something, as a gift. They decided that singing in the choir was going to be their gift to Jesus. However, they also learned that by helping out a fellow member of the church was also giving a gift to Jesus!

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This then prompted Emma with the question, "Mama, what can I give Jesus for His birthday?" I began to explain how by her sharing with her brother and other children at church and by not lying and obeying her mother and father, that those were all gifts she was giving to Jesus. Then, a light bulb went off in my head!

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Help a Child In Need

I began to explain that by praying for our World Vision Sponsor Child and by filling up our shoebox, that we were actually giving gifts to Jesus by putting a smile on the faces of these children. We are "giving unto the least of these" and in return, we are "giving to Him" {Matthew 25:40}

This quickly put a huge smile on her face!
"So you mean, mama, that by us putting that doll, and bracelet, and truck, and puzzle, and toothbrush and toothpaste, and hairbrush, and crayons, and socks into those boxes, we are giving gifts to Jesus for His birthday?"
"Yes, that is right!"
"And by me saying a prayer for 'B' everyday, that is giving a gift to Jesus?"
"Yep! You got it!"
"Wow! Jesus doesn't ask for much!"

It took me, oh, 29 years to fully understand what God asks of us and it took my 4 year old daughter all of 5 minutes to grasp that same understanding! Out of the mouth of babes!

Linking up with:
Internet Cafe Devotions
Women Living Well
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And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me. ~ Matthew 18:5

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Giving Thanks Turkey Cards {free printable}

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of year! However, more often than not, it's importance often gets overlooked. This year, I am going to change all that in my home.
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For the whole month of November, I am going to ask my children what they are thankful for each day. I will write what they say down on one of our Turkey Cards and then place the card inside our Giving Thanks Jar. On Thanksgiving Day, I will share what they were thankful for everyday leading up to Thanksgiving with our family around the table! It will be a wonderful way to reflect and remember all that they were thankful for over the past 24 days. On the back of each card, I will record the dates so in the upcoming years we can look back and see how their "thankfulness" has changed!
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Being that they are only 4 and 2 years old, I am anticipating this to be a very sweet and amusing time of Thankful memories being made!

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If you would like to download your own Giving Thanks Jar Turkey Cards, I provided the link, for free, below! Enjoy!


Linking up at:
Hip Homeschool Hop

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Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever. ~ Psalm 107:1

Monday, October 31, 2011

Honesty About Halloween

{re-post from the archives}

{Before I start, I just want to say that my honesty in this post is to inform you of the reasons why my family does not participate, or has never particiapted, in Halloween. It is not meant to raise me up as "holier than thou"! I hope some of the information in this post will be of good use to you and your family.}

Halloween is the one holiday I have never participated in. {and the one that I have never missed participating in either.}

Being raised in a strong, Christian, home, my parents felt that celebrating something that represents nothing good, only evil, was just not for our family. If we are called to be more like Christ, shouldn't we want to only represent that which is good? {Colossians 3:1-11}

Over the years when I have been asked why I didn't celebrate Halloween by my Christian and non-christian friends, my answer has always been the same, "I just don't believe in celebrating evil". Oh sure, I got laughed at and the famous rolling of the eyes. Some people thought my parents were "so strict" and "kind of crazy". Others said, "we don't dress as witches or ghosts, so how can it really be that bad?". Or, "I don't participate in any witchcraft or devilish sacrifices. I am only in it for the fun of dressing up and getting free candy." Others have said that I have been "deprived" because I was never allowed to Trick-or-Treat and now I am "depriving my kids of that same privilege".

Yes, I have heard them all and have received a lot of criticism over the years, from christians and non-christians. Do I wish my parents would have let my sister and I trick-or-treat when we were little? Honestly, no! Do my husband and I ever feel that we are being "too strict" or "going over-the-top" with our decision to not let our children trick-or-treat? No Way! Over the past 29 years of my life Halloween has come and gone and I am still the same person and am in no way harmed by the fact that my parents stood up for what they believed in and what they felt was right!

It is so very easy to give into the ways of this world. To follow the crowd. To try to make ourselves feel better by trying to find some good in doing what we know is not right.

Are we not told by Christ to not conform to the ways of this world? {Romans 12:2}

I want my life to be a life filled with Christ. I don't want anything that this world has to offer. My GOD gives me everything I will ever need!

I came across this book, HALLOWEEN Should Christians Celebrate It? by Kristina M. Rhoades, at my local Christian Bookstore. In it, the author goes through and identifies the true meaning behind all the Halloween traditions. I am going to go through and share some of those with you.

Haunted Houses

"Realizing that haunted houses are only a place to scare as many people as possible, instilling as much fear as possible, should be enough to make a church not participate." "That which represents Satan and his domain should never be handled or emulated "for fun". Such participation places you in enemy and forbidden territory and that is dangerous ground."

Skeletons, Skulls, Corpses

These are symbols of death and the Bible states in Deuteronomy 18:11 that "we are not to call upon the dead because it is an abomination to God."



Jack O'Lantern

"Pumpkins themselves are not bad; it's what is done with them that makes them evil. Pumpkins were cut with faces representing demons and were originally intended to frighten away evil spirits. They are a representation, on Halloween, of the dead. "Jack" was once believed to be a drunkard and a prankster. He tried to "trick" the devil which only resulted in him not being able to enter Heaven or Hell. Carving of pumpkins are said to also be a way to "remember" him."

Trick-Or-Treat

"Spirits of the dead were thought to come back from their graves and wander around trying to return to their former homes. Frightened villagers tried to appease these wandering spirits by offering them gifts of food such as fruit and nuts. This could be the origin of "trick-or-treating". Trick or treating might be considered as severe as blackmail to some or as simple as "just plain fun" to others, but either way, it is rooted in pagan traditions and should not be in the life of a Christian."

Witches and Wizards

"Leviticus 20:27 says, 'a medium or a wizard - whether man or woman - shall surely be stoned to death. They have caused their own doom.' Many places in the Bible state that dealing with sorcerers or witchcraft makes God angry and defiles us. Intimidation, manipulation, control, the fear of not upsetting someone because they might leave, are all common pratices that we participate in EVEN IN THE CHURCH! And these are all centered on controlling the will of another. Most people don't understand that these are all forms of witchcraft and we are all guilty of it one way or another! The apostle Paul said, 'The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.' Galations 5:19-21. If you notice, this list mentions things that are before our eyes every day or our lives. The Bible strictly forbids these sins and all forms of witchcraft and states that those who participate in it are doomes and will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

Kristina goes on to discuss the consequences of such actions as participating in Halloween.

The Consquences

"Some think that allowing trick-or-treating and masquerading as Bible characters, animals, or positive role models instead of demonic occult figures is okay. But actually this is a compromise. Where in the Bible does it say that we are to compromise our beliefs to be accepted? Nowhere! Some of you will say, 'I'm not doing this for any demonic reasons. I am just doing it for fun.' Well the Bible says in Deuteronomy 18:9, 'do not learn to imitate the detestabe ways in the nation...' and if we read further it says in verses 10-12, 'let no one be found among you...who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord.' Without turning from every evil way, and keeping God's laws, there can be no true godliness. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:31 'whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.' which infers to not glorify Satan in anyway. You have to admit that this celebration doesn't have one redeeming value nor does it glorify God in any way! 'judgement will come again for the righteous, and those who are upright will have a reward.' Psalm 94:15. In the "end" the righteous will receive a reward for their upright living, and those who spurned the Lord's discipline will be punished for their wickedness"

I wish I could send a copy of this book to all of my readers since it holds so much good, honest, information. I hope you find something in this post that you can take with you to share with others or that maybe has changed your views of Halloween just a little.

Why would we want to celebrate a holiday surrounded by death when God called us to celebrate life? {John 10:10}

Do you celebrate Halloween? Please leave me a comment stating why or why not.

{all quotations in this post are taken from Kristina M. Rhoades book, HALLOWEEN Should Christians Celebrate It?}


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"When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God." ~ Galations 19-21 NLT

“When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, be very careful not to imitate the detestable customs of the nations living there. For example, never sacrifice your son or daughter as a burnt offering. And do not let your people practice fortune-telling, or use sorcery, or interpret omens, or engage in witchcraft, or cast spells, or function as mediums or psychics, or call forth the spirits of the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord. It is because the other nations have done these detestable things that the Lord your God will drive them out ahead of you. But you must be blameless before the Lord your God." ~ Deuteronomy 18:9-13 NLT

Friday, October 28, 2011

Our Homeschool Week! {10/24/11~10/28/11}

We had a great week! This week started us on our 8th week of homeschooling {wow!} and our 4th week using Heart of Dakota's Little Hearts for His Glory! To say we are really enjoying it and learning a lot from it would be an understatement! I am so glad I did a little more research and took that step of faith and ordered this particular curriculum for Emma, even though it states it is geared for 5-7 year olds. She is doing really well with it and still, after 8 weeks, asks for school every morning!

This week, we finished up our lessons on Obedience and began discussing the importance of being a Peacemaker. We read about the story of Noah, Cain and Abel, and The Tower of Babel. We also discussed how the Bible is our "GPS", giving us the directions we need to lead a life focused on Christ and guiding us to our final destination: Heaven! This is the best part of the day for me. Sharing Jesus with my children!

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We made boats out of aluminum foil and discussed how things float and then sink by adding pennies to our boats. We went fishing for colors and numbers, played some number match games, enjoyed using our imaginations with our Fun with Felt boards {giveaway found here}, and contined writing out numbers 1-10! Emma struggles a bit with 3 and 6, but otherwise has really gotten the practice of writing all her numbers down.

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The letter of the week was "Ff"! Using picture flashcards from our All About Reading program set, we played "I Spy"! I taped the flashcards aroung the room and had Emma search for the cards with pictures of objects starting with the letter "F". This was a fun game; one that I am sure will be repeated over and over again throughout the coarse of the school year!

Our field trip this week was the library! We checked out six books about Thanksgiving and being Thankful! For anyone who may be interested, here are the ones we chose:

 This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story  Silly Tilly's Thanksgiving Dinner   Cranberry Thanksgiving
We Gather Together...Now Please Get Lost!  The Thanksgiving Bowl  Nate the Great Talks Turkey (Nate the Great)
                               
If anyone has any Thanksgiving themed books that they have read and enjoyed with their children, please let me know. I am wanting to have more on hand this whole month of November!

We finished off the week with a Pumpkin themed craft. I was wanting to take the kids on a walk to collect leaves for a leaf craft, however, the weather had been wet and cold here this week and it really wasn't the best time for leaf collecting. So, hopefully next week!

The thing we struggle with most in our day-to-day is playing! Sounds silly, I know, but my daughter will just not play...at least not by herself! Once we are done with "school", I usually tell my kids to go and play! This is their "free-time" to do whatever they want. My son goes and dumps out his cars and trucks and begins having fun. My daughter...she follows me around like a lost puppy! She will not play unless I am physically sitting there playing with her. And, let's be honest, I cannot always do that. So, I am asking for some advice. What do you to encourage playtime for your children? If you have a child like my daughter, what do you do to get them to play by themselves, using their imagination, or with their sibling(s)?

All in all, I am really enjoying our homeschool journey! I never thought I would, or could, enjoy it as much as I have! Just goes to show that my plans, my ways, are not my own. God is in complete control. Never in a million years did I think I would end up being a homeschool mom. But I am! And I love it!

Linking up today at:
Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers Weekly Wrap-UP
Heart of Dakota Weekly Check-In
Preschool Corner

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The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever. ~ 1 John 2:17

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Jesus is the ONLY Reason for the Season!

We are now entered into the Christmas season! My absolute favorite time of year! I just love all the lights and family gatherings and the warmth and love this season brings! But, most importantly, I truly love revisiting the Christmas Story with my children every year! This year, however, God has really been putting the role of Mary on my heart...

Join me at Women Walking Upright to hear the rest of the story!



Button Up

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Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. ~ Isaiah 7:14

Monday, November 21, 2011

Having Plenty

A time to pause and reflect on all that I have been given.

All the many blessings that have been bestowed upon my life!

God has been too good to me and I am forever grateful of His gifts and blessings!

Taking time today to say "thank you" to the One who has given me so much and to count a few of those blessings out here.

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:: Four tiny walls and a roof overhead
:: Warm clothes waiting in our closests to be worn once the coldness arrives
:: Winter coats, hats, and gloves
:: Socks and shoes
:: Clean, running, water
:: Fridge filled with food
:: Little arms wrapped tightly around me whispering "I Love You" in my ear
:: Christ's love for me displayed on the cross
:: Forgiveness
:: Love
:: A basket filled with yarn and inspiration
:: Warm bread, straight from the oven
:: Hot Chocolate with marshmallows
:: Wholesome, family, Christmas movies
:: Wet nose kisses from our furry friends
:: A little girls enthusiasm over just about anything
:: Friendship
:: This season that we are in
:: Quiet moments to sit and be thankful
:: My Bible-what a treasure

Praying you all have a blessed Thanksgiving week!

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And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:8

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Filling Shoeboxes With Love

It is National Collection Week {November 14-19} for the Samaritan's Purse Operation Christmas Child Shoe Boxes!

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Our boxes are packed stuffed full of wonderful gifts in hopes to put a smile on a child's face this Christmas. A child who may only receive what I have placed in this small box. It is not much...and believe me, I wanted to stuff it with more that the box would allow...but the message-the gift- I am hoping to give to these children is that Jesus loves them and cares about them, no matter where they live in the world. He sees them and knows their hearts and He loves them! He loves ALL of us!

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I tried to explain to my children the meaning behind giving these gifts to two very special children. My daughter understands that the gifts she placed inside her shoe box are going to go to a little girl who may not have gotten any presents for Christmas otherwise. I explained to her that we are giving gifts to others because God gave us the greatest gift of all-His Son! I told her we want others to know of His amazing gift as well and that we need to pray for the little girl who is receiving this box, even though we may never know who she is!

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My son is only 2, so his understanding of the meaning and the reason behind putting toys in a shoe box for another little boy, is not quite there. However, I explained to him, as I did my daughter, that we are doing this out of our love for Jesus! And even though he wanted to play with the truck that lit up and made noise, it had to be placed inside the box for another little boy to enjoy!

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Through this process I thought to myself, "what if I was that mother, on Christmas day, struggling to feed my children, let alone give them a small gift. what a blessing it would be to receive gifts for my children from strangers, all across the world!" It is a humbling act that has taught my children, as well as myself, just how much we truly have to be thankful for.

One thing I really like about Operation Christmas Child is that you can track your shoe box to see when it arrives and where exactly it goes! They also have All About Me sheets that you can download and include in your box for the child receiving it to get to know you a little better. On these sheets is also a spot to place your name and address to become pen pals with the child(ren) receiving your shoe boxes! My prayer is that they will write to us so we can continue to share the love of Jesus with them!

It is not too late to join in and pack a shoe box full of love for a child in need. Collection week runs until the 19th, which is Saturday, so there is still plenty of time! You can find a list of collection sites in your area here!

Praying for God to speak to these children and that their hearts and lives may be changed, through a simple shoe box filled with love!

Linking up at:
Internet Cafe Devotions

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When he finished that talk, a Pharisee asked him to dinner. He entered his house and sat right down at the table. The Pharisee was shocked and somewhat offended when he saw that Jesus didn't wash up before the meal. But the Master said to him, "I know you Pharisees burnish the surface of your cups and plates so they sparkle in the sun, but I also know your insides are maggoty with greed and secret evil. Stupid Pharisees! Didn't the One who made the outside also make the inside? Turn both your pockets and your hearts inside out and give generously to the poor; then your lives will be clean, not just your dishes and your hands.  ~ Luke 11:41 {the message}

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Another Winner...

I almost forgot to announce the winner of the Our Blessed Life Designs Giveaway!


So...without further ado...the winner of the $15.00 Gift Card to Our Blessed Life Designs is Commenter #6...Sam! Congratulations! Look for an email from me soon!

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Thank you again to Aurie for blessing us with this wonderful giveaway! And a big thanks to all of you for entering!

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For His Future Wife

For His Future Wife ~

I've wanted to sit for sometime now and write to you, telling you all about the wonderful man you are about to marry.  Ever since his chubby, little, hand grabbed ahold of my fingers in the hospital after he was born and his smile stole away my heart, I knew he was going to be special and change me in ways I never knew needed changing!  We share a special bond-a mother and son bond-one that I hope you get to experience someday if you are to ever have a son.

At the time of this letter, he is only 2 1/2 years old, so he is still my little man; my buddy! Of course, this is hard for me to even imagine-the thought of him getting married-when I am still the only woman who holds the key to his heart. The only woman whom he whispers "I love you" to in the middle of the night. The only woman who melts when his blue eyes look into mine and say "I'm Sorry"! The only woman who wants to protect him and see the best for him and love him with all of her being!

But I know that once those same blue eyes meet the eyes of you, the one God has planned for his life since before he was born, this will all change. You will be the one hearing "I love you" in the middle of the night and melt when his blue eyes look into yours and say "I'm sorry" when he does something wrong...because he will-do something wrong-we all do! And I will no longer be the only woman wanting the best for his life and loving him with all that she has! I will be sharing all of this with you! And I am thrilled of this, for I have been praying for you! That God will protect you and that you will make Him the Lord of your life. That He guides your path and that you will follow and become the wife my son so deserves.

My promise to you is this-I am doing, and will continue doing, the best I can at raising a Godly, respectful, kind, caring, loving, young man. The kind of man that I am praying will grow into the husband that you deserve. The man I am hoping your parents are already praying for, for you!

I am looking forward to the day he brings you to our home, for us to meet. Oh the smile that just crept up on my face! That is going to be a wonderful day. However, until that day-until the day you two meet, many, many, years from now-I will continue to enjoy every single moment of being his mama. Playing trains with him while the laundry sits, waiting to be folded. Reading book after book on the couch, instead of tending to the mess in the kitchen. Scratching his back 'til he falls asleep. Telling him about Jesus and His love for us. And praying, everyday, for you, his future wife! All things that he needs, right now, while I'm still the only woman who holds the precious key to his little heart.

With much love and many prayers,

Your future mother-in-law

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For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. ~ Matthew 7:8

Friday, November 11, 2011

{this moment}

A single photo - no words - capturing a moment... A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. ~ Amanda Soule

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 For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing righteousness and justice, so that the LORD may bring to Abraham what he has promised him. ~ Genesis 18:19


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All your children shall be taught by the LORD, and great shall be the peace of your children. ~ Isaiah 54:13

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Our Blessed Life Designs {giveaway}

I would love to take some time today and share a little about my lovely friend Aurie with all of you!



Welcome to Our Good Life
 

Aurie and I met over a year ago through the wonderful world of blogging! We quickly became friends and realized just how much we had in common. Aurie loves to knit and sew and is also a new homeschooling mom. She has a heart for God and is on fire for Him and all that He is doing in her life!

Without ever having met, or even spoken on the phone, I already know what a sweet, loving, and caring person she is. I anticipate the day we can sit, with needles in hands clicking away, and chat, face-to-face!

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Aurie has a wonderful little etsy shop called Blessed Life Designs.


In her adorable shop you will find handmade items such as crayon rolls, knitted cell phone cozies, knitted hats, hair clips as well as hair clip holders, and cozy cuddies! She also offers custom items!

I had the pleasure of receiving one of Aurie's cute knitted beanies for my daughter, Emma. She knitted it using one of her favorite colors, purple! Emma loved it! She wore it the whole afternoon the day we received it in the mail.

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It even kept her warm for our first snow of the year!
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She has the beanie on under her hood!
Because of her sweetness, she has offered one of you the chance to win a $15.00 gift card to her shop! {sweet!}

To win:

Leave a comment on this post stating which item(s) from Blessed Life Designs you would choose if you were to win! {mandatory entry}

Additional Entries:
Leave a seperate comment for each additional entry!

Follow Aurie { @AurieGood } on Twitter
Like "Our Good Life" on Facebook
Become a follower of  Aurie's Blog
Follow me { @AFthfulJrney } on Twitter
Become a follower of A Faithful Journey

Giveaway open from Nov. 10th until Nov. 14th. Winner will be chosen via random.org! Please leave a valid email address for me to contact you at if you were to win!

Thank you, Aurie, not only for your kindness in offering up this giveaway, but for your friendship! I am excited to see what God has in store for us!

Linked up at:
Hip Homeschool Moms Giveaway Day
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As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. ~ Proverbs 27:17

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Her Birthday

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My sister, mum, and I ~ Christmas 2010
Grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged; parents are the pride of their children. ~ Proverbs 17:6

 She loves until it hurts. She gives selflessly. She is always willing to help, no matter when or how much notice is given. She is funny and smart. Strong in many ways.
She is Grandmother, Mother, Wife, Friend.
She is my mum and today is her birthday!

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Happy Birthday Mum! I am grateful beyond words for you! I thank God for you! Your generosity shines so brightly! Thank you for all you are willing to do for us! Emma and Caleb are so blessed to call you "Grandma"! I love you!
Happy Birthday!

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Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.  ~ Titus 2:3-5

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Wanna get a little Weird?

For my Women's Book Club, we've been reading the book Weirdby Craig Groeschel. It is a great book and I highly recommend it for anyone who wants to get a little more Weird in their walk with Christ!


I've been reading this book along with the group for the past few weeks, as we meet every other week, but this past week I couldn't help but keep reading on past where we were supposed to stop for last nights meeting! It is getting so good and leaving me with that punched in the gut because this is so true and so me feeling! I have been highlighting like crazy!

A few points that I highlighted that have stuck with me I am going to share with you as I am feeling that God is wanting to use these words to speak to some of you as well!

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I was reading over the weekend the section on Money! Craig talks about how we are to use the money God has blessed us with, no matter how little or how much, to bless others in need. He says, "I'm convinced God doesn't bless us because we deserve it or because we earn it. He doesn't bless us to make us feel guilty and ashamed. He blesses us so we can be different."  {2 Corinthians 9:11.}

I prayed after reading this for God to ignite the fire in me to start giving more and doing it with a heart for Jesus. I prayed asking God to show ne how I was meant to be a blessing here on earth and how I was to spend my time here, other than a wife and mother, until I am called home. He wants to use me to enrich His kingdom. This I know is true! Nothing I have is mine...it all belongs to Him. May I begin using all that I have in whatever ways He deems fit!

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"Sure, it's weird to believe that it's more blessed to give than to receive. But it's also the most life-giving, eye-opening truth about money that we can ever learn. Do whatever you have to do to make your eyes generous. God will bless you, and you can be a blessing." God wants us to take a look around us and see where we can be a blessing to others. How can we help our neighbor, a friend at church, a family from afar? God wants to use us to bless others that need it more than we may ever know or experience. Can God do this on His own without our help? Of course! But, He has chosen us to help in Glorifying Him and His kingdom. Why wouldn't we want to be a part of that?

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"Remember, to get what you've never had, you must do what you've never done. But to get what you once had, you must do what you once did."  If we want to be a blessing to others and to God himself, it just may require us to do somethings we have never done before. We just may need to step out of our comfort zone and see where God takes us and where He wants to use us. It  may be somewhere in your church or in your community. Maybe at your childs school or homeschool co-op. Maybe it's volunteering at a local Senior Center or soup kitchen. Whatever it may be, if it is of God's will for you to be a blessing in that way...and it doesn't always require us to give money...then think of how amazing it will be to know you just Glorified the Kingdom of Heaven in Jesus' Name!

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God is amazing! He uses people and books and music in ways to speak to us and give to us exaclty what we need to hear! Reading these words the other night brought me so much peace that I am heading in the right direction, but that I have to do more and be more diligent and faithful when it comes to how I use our money to glorify God!

How will you let God use you to bless others and Glorify His Kingdom in Jesus' Name?

Amazon links are affiliate links

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You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:11

Friday, November 4, 2011

A Short Story {and a winner!}

Yesterday was a rough day. I went to bed exhausted and completely stressed out! I felt like all I did was yell scream at my kids all day long! I began to work on finishing up Emma's Quilt only to get more discouraged and stressed out. Something is wrong with the tension of my stitches and I cannot sew a straight line to save my life! *sigh*

All of a sudden, when the little red lights on my oven shine 5:30, the front door opens and he enters in. I hear the "Hallelujah Chorus" being sung and it is like "bam!" everything and everyone calms down and the rest of the evening is wonderful. The kids play nice the rest of the night and I don't think I had to yell once! We even may have laughed! My quilting was still a joke, but I decided to put it away for the night and try again today!

Is it like this in your home? Your day was a complete disaster and when your husband comes home it is like the twilight zone and you are wondering, while scratching your head, "what just happened here?". I do not know what he does or how he does it, but all he has to do is walk. in. the. front. door. and peace is restored!

I was able to breath a sigh of relief. And even though I still went to bed exhausted, I also went to bed happy and thankful for this man that has been such a wonderful husband and father to us!

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I have a winner to announce! The winner of the Fun with Felt Giveaway is commenter #9! 

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You will be receiving an email from me shortly!

Thank you to all who entered! And thank you, again, Betty Lukens for providing me with the Fun With Felt sets to enjoy and also for hosting the giveaway!

Don't want to miss an exciting post or giveaway? Subscribe here to have posts slipped quietly into your inbox!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Giving Gifts to Jesus

Last week during our Bible devotions from My ABC Bible Verses, we were discussing John 3:16. The devotion on this particular day was about Christmas and how God gave His only son, for us. Jesus was a gift to us! The devotion tells the story about a brother and sister who were singing in their church choir for Christmas. Since it was Christmas and Jesus' birthday, they wanted to give him something, as a gift. They decided that singing in the choir was going to be their gift to Jesus. However, they also learned that by helping out a fellow member of the church was also giving a gift to Jesus!

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This then prompted Emma with the question, "Mama, what can I give Jesus for His birthday?" I began to explain how by her sharing with her brother and other children at church and by not lying and obeying her mother and father, that those were all gifts she was giving to Jesus. Then, a light bulb went off in my head!

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Help a Child In Need

I began to explain that by praying for our World Vision Sponsor Child and by filling up our shoebox, that we were actually giving gifts to Jesus by putting a smile on the faces of these children. We are "giving unto the least of these" and in return, we are "giving to Him" {Matthew 25:40}

This quickly put a huge smile on her face!
"So you mean, mama, that by us putting that doll, and bracelet, and truck, and puzzle, and toothbrush and toothpaste, and hairbrush, and crayons, and socks into those boxes, we are giving gifts to Jesus for His birthday?"
"Yes, that is right!"
"And by me saying a prayer for 'B' everyday, that is giving a gift to Jesus?"
"Yep! You got it!"
"Wow! Jesus doesn't ask for much!"

It took me, oh, 29 years to fully understand what God asks of us and it took my 4 year old daughter all of 5 minutes to grasp that same understanding! Out of the mouth of babes!

Linking up with:
Internet Cafe Devotions
Women Living Well
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And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me. ~ Matthew 18:5

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Giving Thanks Turkey Cards {free printable}

Thanksgiving is a wonderful time of year! However, more often than not, it's importance often gets overlooked. This year, I am going to change all that in my home.
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For the whole month of November, I am going to ask my children what they are thankful for each day. I will write what they say down on one of our Turkey Cards and then place the card inside our Giving Thanks Jar. On Thanksgiving Day, I will share what they were thankful for everyday leading up to Thanksgiving with our family around the table! It will be a wonderful way to reflect and remember all that they were thankful for over the past 24 days. On the back of each card, I will record the dates so in the upcoming years we can look back and see how their "thankfulness" has changed!
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Being that they are only 4 and 2 years old, I am anticipating this to be a very sweet and amusing time of Thankful memories being made!

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If you would like to download your own Giving Thanks Jar Turkey Cards, I provided the link, for free, below! Enjoy!


Linking up at:
Hip Homeschool Hop

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Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever. ~ Psalm 107:1

Monday, October 31, 2011

Honesty About Halloween

{re-post from the archives}

{Before I start, I just want to say that my honesty in this post is to inform you of the reasons why my family does not participate, or has never particiapted, in Halloween. It is not meant to raise me up as "holier than thou"! I hope some of the information in this post will be of good use to you and your family.}

Halloween is the one holiday I have never participated in. {and the one that I have never missed participating in either.}

Being raised in a strong, Christian, home, my parents felt that celebrating something that represents nothing good, only evil, was just not for our family. If we are called to be more like Christ, shouldn't we want to only represent that which is good? {Colossians 3:1-11}

Over the years when I have been asked why I didn't celebrate Halloween by my Christian and non-christian friends, my answer has always been the same, "I just don't believe in celebrating evil". Oh sure, I got laughed at and the famous rolling of the eyes. Some people thought my parents were "so strict" and "kind of crazy". Others said, "we don't dress as witches or ghosts, so how can it really be that bad?". Or, "I don't participate in any witchcraft or devilish sacrifices. I am only in it for the fun of dressing up and getting free candy." Others have said that I have been "deprived" because I was never allowed to Trick-or-Treat and now I am "depriving my kids of that same privilege".

Yes, I have heard them all and have received a lot of criticism over the years, from christians and non-christians. Do I wish my parents would have let my sister and I trick-or-treat when we were little? Honestly, no! Do my husband and I ever feel that we are being "too strict" or "going over-the-top" with our decision to not let our children trick-or-treat? No Way! Over the past 29 years of my life Halloween has come and gone and I am still the same person and am in no way harmed by the fact that my parents stood up for what they believed in and what they felt was right!

It is so very easy to give into the ways of this world. To follow the crowd. To try to make ourselves feel better by trying to find some good in doing what we know is not right.

Are we not told by Christ to not conform to the ways of this world? {Romans 12:2}

I want my life to be a life filled with Christ. I don't want anything that this world has to offer. My GOD gives me everything I will ever need!

I came across this book, HALLOWEEN Should Christians Celebrate It? by Kristina M. Rhoades, at my local Christian Bookstore. In it, the author goes through and identifies the true meaning behind all the Halloween traditions. I am going to go through and share some of those with you.

Haunted Houses

"Realizing that haunted houses are only a place to scare as many people as possible, instilling as much fear as possible, should be enough to make a church not participate." "That which represents Satan and his domain should never be handled or emulated "for fun". Such participation places you in enemy and forbidden territory and that is dangerous ground."

Skeletons, Skulls, Corpses

These are symbols of death and the Bible states in Deuteronomy 18:11 that "we are not to call upon the dead because it is an abomination to God."



Jack O'Lantern

"Pumpkins themselves are not bad; it's what is done with them that makes them evil. Pumpkins were cut with faces representing demons and were originally intended to frighten away evil spirits. They are a representation, on Halloween, of the dead. "Jack" was once believed to be a drunkard and a prankster. He tried to "trick" the devil which only resulted in him not being able to enter Heaven or Hell. Carving of pumpkins are said to also be a way to "remember" him."

Trick-Or-Treat

"Spirits of the dead were thought to come back from their graves and wander around trying to return to their former homes. Frightened villagers tried to appease these wandering spirits by offering them gifts of food such as fruit and nuts. This could be the origin of "trick-or-treating". Trick or treating might be considered as severe as blackmail to some or as simple as "just plain fun" to others, but either way, it is rooted in pagan traditions and should not be in the life of a Christian."

Witches and Wizards

"Leviticus 20:27 says, 'a medium or a wizard - whether man or woman - shall surely be stoned to death. They have caused their own doom.' Many places in the Bible state that dealing with sorcerers or witchcraft makes God angry and defiles us. Intimidation, manipulation, control, the fear of not upsetting someone because they might leave, are all common pratices that we participate in EVEN IN THE CHURCH! And these are all centered on controlling the will of another. Most people don't understand that these are all forms of witchcraft and we are all guilty of it one way or another! The apostle Paul said, 'The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.' Galations 5:19-21. If you notice, this list mentions things that are before our eyes every day or our lives. The Bible strictly forbids these sins and all forms of witchcraft and states that those who participate in it are doomes and will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven.

Kristina goes on to discuss the consequences of such actions as participating in Halloween.

The Consquences

"Some think that allowing trick-or-treating and masquerading as Bible characters, animals, or positive role models instead of demonic occult figures is okay. But actually this is a compromise. Where in the Bible does it say that we are to compromise our beliefs to be accepted? Nowhere! Some of you will say, 'I'm not doing this for any demonic reasons. I am just doing it for fun.' Well the Bible says in Deuteronomy 18:9, 'do not learn to imitate the detestabe ways in the nation...' and if we read further it says in verses 10-12, 'let no one be found among you...who practices divination or sorcery, interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord.' Without turning from every evil way, and keeping God's laws, there can be no true godliness. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 10:31 'whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.' which infers to not glorify Satan in anyway. You have to admit that this celebration doesn't have one redeeming value nor does it glorify God in any way! 'judgement will come again for the righteous, and those who are upright will have a reward.' Psalm 94:15. In the "end" the righteous will receive a reward for their upright living, and those who spurned the Lord's discipline will be punished for their wickedness"

I wish I could send a copy of this book to all of my readers since it holds so much good, honest, information. I hope you find something in this post that you can take with you to share with others or that maybe has changed your views of Halloween just a little.

Why would we want to celebrate a holiday surrounded by death when God called us to celebrate life? {John 10:10}

Do you celebrate Halloween? Please leave me a comment stating why or why not.

{all quotations in this post are taken from Kristina M. Rhoades book, HALLOWEEN Should Christians Celebrate It?}


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"When you follow the desires of your sinful nature, the results are very clear: sexual immorality, impurity, lustful pleasures, idolatry, sorcery, hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division, envy, drunkenness, wild parties, and other sins like these. Let me tell you again, as I have before, that anyone living that sort of life will not inherit the Kingdom of God." ~ Galations 19-21 NLT

“When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, be very careful not to imitate the detestable customs of the nations living there. For example, never sacrifice your son or daughter as a burnt offering. And do not let your people practice fortune-telling, or use sorcery, or interpret omens, or engage in witchcraft, or cast spells, or function as mediums or psychics, or call forth the spirits of the dead. Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord. It is because the other nations have done these detestable things that the Lord your God will drive them out ahead of you. But you must be blameless before the Lord your God." ~ Deuteronomy 18:9-13 NLT

Friday, October 28, 2011

Our Homeschool Week! {10/24/11~10/28/11}

We had a great week! This week started us on our 8th week of homeschooling {wow!} and our 4th week using Heart of Dakota's Little Hearts for His Glory! To say we are really enjoying it and learning a lot from it would be an understatement! I am so glad I did a little more research and took that step of faith and ordered this particular curriculum for Emma, even though it states it is geared for 5-7 year olds. She is doing really well with it and still, after 8 weeks, asks for school every morning!

This week, we finished up our lessons on Obedience and began discussing the importance of being a Peacemaker. We read about the story of Noah, Cain and Abel, and The Tower of Babel. We also discussed how the Bible is our "GPS", giving us the directions we need to lead a life focused on Christ and guiding us to our final destination: Heaven! This is the best part of the day for me. Sharing Jesus with my children!

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We made boats out of aluminum foil and discussed how things float and then sink by adding pennies to our boats. We went fishing for colors and numbers, played some number match games, enjoyed using our imaginations with our Fun with Felt boards {giveaway found here}, and contined writing out numbers 1-10! Emma struggles a bit with 3 and 6, but otherwise has really gotten the practice of writing all her numbers down.

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The letter of the week was "Ff"! Using picture flashcards from our All About Reading program set, we played "I Spy"! I taped the flashcards aroung the room and had Emma search for the cards with pictures of objects starting with the letter "F". This was a fun game; one that I am sure will be repeated over and over again throughout the coarse of the school year!

Our field trip this week was the library! We checked out six books about Thanksgiving and being Thankful! For anyone who may be interested, here are the ones we chose:

 This First Thanksgiving Day: A Counting Story  Silly Tilly's Thanksgiving Dinner   Cranberry Thanksgiving
We Gather Together...Now Please Get Lost!  The Thanksgiving Bowl  Nate the Great Talks Turkey (Nate the Great)
                               
If anyone has any Thanksgiving themed books that they have read and enjoyed with their children, please let me know. I am wanting to have more on hand this whole month of November!

We finished off the week with a Pumpkin themed craft. I was wanting to take the kids on a walk to collect leaves for a leaf craft, however, the weather had been wet and cold here this week and it really wasn't the best time for leaf collecting. So, hopefully next week!

The thing we struggle with most in our day-to-day is playing! Sounds silly, I know, but my daughter will just not play...at least not by herself! Once we are done with "school", I usually tell my kids to go and play! This is their "free-time" to do whatever they want. My son goes and dumps out his cars and trucks and begins having fun. My daughter...she follows me around like a lost puppy! She will not play unless I am physically sitting there playing with her. And, let's be honest, I cannot always do that. So, I am asking for some advice. What do you to encourage playtime for your children? If you have a child like my daughter, what do you do to get them to play by themselves, using their imagination, or with their sibling(s)?

All in all, I am really enjoying our homeschool journey! I never thought I would, or could, enjoy it as much as I have! Just goes to show that my plans, my ways, are not my own. God is in complete control. Never in a million years did I think I would end up being a homeschool mom. But I am! And I love it!

Linking up today at:
Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers Weekly Wrap-UP
Heart of Dakota Weekly Check-In
Preschool Corner

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The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever. ~ 1 John 2:17
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