Thursday, November 10, 2011

Happy Veteran's Day!

Where would we be without them?

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Diary of An Unborn Child

I discovered this just today and even though I'm not even a mom yet it brought tears to my eyes.  I hope no heart is too hard that will not be touched by this repeatedly true story:

September 19:

Today my life began. My parents do not know it yet, but it is I already. And I am to be a girl. I shall have blond hair and blue eyes. Just about everything is settled though, even the fact that I shall love flowers.

October 3:

Some say that I am not a real person yet, that only my mother exists. But I am a real person, just as a small crumb of bread is yet truly bread. My mother is. And I am.

October 7:

My mouth is just beginning to open now. Just think, in a year or so I shall be laughing and later talking. I know what my first word will be: MAMA.

October 9:

My heart began to beat today all by itself. From now on it shall gently beat for the rest of my life without ever stopping to rest! And after many years it will tire. It will stop, and then I shall die.

October 17:

I am growing a bit every day. My arms and legs are beginning to take shape. But I have to wait a long time yet before those little legs will raise me to my mother's arms, before those little arms will be able to gather flowers and embrace my father.

October 27:

Tiny fingers are beginning to form on my hands. Funny how small they are! I'll be able to stroke my mother's hair with them.

November 4:

It wasn't until today that the doctor told mom that I am living here under her heart. Oh, how happy she must be! Are you happy, mom?

November 9:

My mom and dad are probably thinking about a name for me. But they don't even know that I am a little girl. I want to be called Kathy. I am getting so big already.

November 24:

My hair is growing. It is smooth and bright and shiny. I wonder what kind of hair mom has?

November 27:

I am just about able to see. It is dark around me. When mom brings me into the World it will be full of sunshine and flowers. But what I want more than anything is to see my mom. How do you look, mom!

December 8:

I wonder if mom hears the whispering of my heart? Some children come into the World a little sick. But my heart is strong and healthy. It beats so evenly: tup-tup, tup-tup. You'll have a healthy little daughter, mom!

December 12:

Today my mother killed me.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

When It's All Said and Done

Some of the most insightful words are spoken by those closest to death.  I'm not being morbid, I'm making an observation.  When you're looking back over your life, you'll be in the wisest state of mind ever possible this side of eternity.  I am most touched by the following quotes given by men who were not saved, because it appears that as they are dying, the truth is finally dawning on them.  However, there are many quotes below by men who were saved and those are especially encouraging.  Live your life with a view toward eternity!

I think I'll sleep now. -George Washington Carver

I go from a corruptible to an incorruptible Crown, where no disturbance can be, no disturbance in the world. Remember! -Charles I, King of England

I have tried so hard to do right. -Grover Cleveland

It's very beautiful over there. -Thomas Jefferson

This is absurd! This is absurd! -Sigmund Freud
Note: He is also reported to have said “The meager satisfaction that man can extract from reality leaves him starving.”

 I only regret that I have but one life to give for my country. -Nathan Hale

Let us cross over the river, and rest under the shade of the trees. -Thomas "Stonewall" Jackson

Solely by the merits of Jesus Christ, Our Saviour. -Johannes Kepler

The taste of death is upon my lips…I feel something, that is not of this earth. -Mozart

Take me home. I was born in the South and I wish to die and be buried in the South. -Booker T. Washington

I am ready. -Woodrow Wilson


Saturday, October 8, 2011

Look What I Found!

I found an online clipboard that I think is really cute.  I'm going to use it to post some wedding ideas, as well as other random things I find interesting.  You join by linking it to either your Twitter or Facebook account.  Visit Pinterest and follow me if you like

Saturday, October 1, 2011

So You Think You're Independent?

Getting sick at college is up there on the list of things you wouldn't wish on even your worst enemy.  Mommy isn't there to take care of you... and neither is anybody else.  Your R.A.'s, friends, and roommates are busy.  Your professors keep on piling on the homework without a clue whether you're dead or alive.  And then there's the sickness itself.  Your whole body hurts.  You can't move, and if you do, it's to run to the bathroom (which is entirely too far away!).  You can't keep anything down for more than twenty minutes.  You're so miserable, you want to die!

But that's not all you've faced in a week's time.  Just a few days ago while playing softball, you got popped square in the kneecap with the ball and got banished to crutches.  During this week you figure out that it's impossible to carry your book bag and purse while hobbling around on the wretched things.  Getting to ride the elevator is kind of cool, but mooching random people into carrying your stuff isn't.  Your fiance is getting tired of everyone commenting on how your purse matches his outfit every time he holds it.

Yes, this was me this week, and no, physical infirmities are no fun!  However, I did learn something through it that I never really thought about until now.  I'm a "get it done yourself" kind of person; you might call me independent.  Having to depend on someone else for almost anything kills me (or at least my pride).  Being on crutches and bedridden for a week has taught me that I'm NOT a one-person-show.  People were created for other people, and we all need each other.

Within ten seconds of getting hit by a softball, I realized that I couldn't walk off the field by myself.  After two ladies helped me off the field, I began wondering how I was going to make it up the hill to my dorm.  Thankfully, another friend took me for a ride in her Jeep.

The school nurse told me to use the crutches in her office, but how could I use them if I couldn't even walk to her office?  Tim agreed to bring them to me.  Then I had to figure out how to tote all of my stuff around campus!  Asking people to carry your lame is that??  Talk about humbling!

Someone took me to the hospital, where I got an x-ray on my knee (no broken bones, by the way... yay!).  The wait in the ER took so long my friend had to miss a church activity.  I felt so bad!!  Am I the trouble-maker or what?

Within a few days I was off the crutches, much to my excitement.  But don't get too excited, because then I woke up with a stomach virus.  I was banished from polite society, accompanied only by my pillow and a trashcan!  At college, even though you may slow down due to illness, the rest of life does not!  

My roommates did what they could and donated water bottles and crackers to my aid.  Tim brought me Gatorade.  Another friend brought me a Route 44 cup of ice from Sonic (aaaah-mazing!).  Mom might not have been there, but she would have been proud of the hard work everyone put into keeping me alive!

I am back in the land of the living now, but still feel the effects of the past week.  I am also convinced that we aren't as independent as we think we are; we rely heavily upon others whether we know it or not.  It took me a week of weakness to realize it, but I won't quickly forget it.  Don't live like you don't need anybody.  Wanting to accomplish something big on your own is admirable, but if someone wants to help you, let them.  We are not self-reliant beings; God created us to relate to and help each other.

Let me encourage you to be sensitive to others who need a hand.  Also, don't be so controlling that you won't let someone assist you.  Quite a few people went out of their way to help me this week, and it changed the way I think about life; have you stepped outside of your "bubble" to help someone today?

Friday, September 16, 2011

How to Cheer Yourself Up

I just read on an email about a lady who started random acts of kindness and started a movement of niceness.  It is a rare thing to encounter a kind-hearted person, but it is also extremely contagious!  If you're having a bad day, why not get your mind off of yourself by doing something unexpected.  Here are some "college-student-safe" ideas to get your creative juices flowing...

  • Invite a friend who lives in a different dorm to come over and just talk.  If you're really fancy and have pop corn or ice cream, share!
  • Branch out of the usual Easy Mac or Ramen Noodle routine and get a couple of friends to help you cook a full course meal.  Yes, you can make amazing food without a full kitchen!  Ask around to borrow a crock pot, rice cooker or griddle.
  • Go get WiFi with a friend and laugh at YouTube videos.
  • Go for a Sonic run and surprise your professors with their favorite soda.  If you don't already know their preference, text someone who knows them well or check their Facebook (people like to put random facts about themselves on the internet!).
  • Stop by Walmart and get a bunch of flowers, then put one in each of your best buddies' mailboxes.
  • Most campuses have a bookstore that's loaded with what students really want: candy.  You know someone on campus is having a worse day than you, so give them a sweet treat.
  • Go into town with a friend and get your mind off your troubles by taking advantage of an attraction your city has to offer.  One of my friends took me kayaking on the Oklahoma River this week, and we had the time of our lives!
  • Read a good book.  I'm not talking about the romance novels that make you depressed because you'll never meet your Mr. Darcy... I mean wholesome, meaningful reading like Passion and Purity, Lady in Waiting, and Preparing to be His Help Meet.  Go to the "May I Recommend" page for a list of my favorites!
If you can think of any others, please leave a comment!  These are some that are accessible to me as a college student, but surely you have some ideas that are appropriate to your stage in life.  I know life can be discouraging, but it doesn't have to stay that way!  Start a movement of kindness on your campus (or wherever you live!).  It will cheer up others and you!

Monday, September 12, 2011


There is not a single life this day did not touch.  Everyone old enough to comprehend the fear and uncertainty this day brought can recall exactly where they were when they got the news.  I was twelve years old, and my mom, little sister and I were at Staples when Dad alerted us of the attack and encouraged us to head home where it was safer.  Being just a few hours from Washington DC, we started getting really nervous when the news broadcasted the attack on the Pentagon.

Let's turn this into a discussion... Where were YOU on September 11, 2001?  How old were you?  After you learned about the terrorist attack, what did you do for the rest of the day?

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Long Awaited Post on Wedding Blog!

A few of you seem interested in following up on my wedding blog post concerning how to order a wedding dress from China.  Just to make everyone aware, the post is up and ready! =) I had to think for a minute about how I could integrate biblical principles into this one, but the point is simple: We must be careful stewards of the Lord's money!

So for all of my wedding enthusiasts out there, the long awaited success story has finally been written!  Click here to read about how I got the dress of my dreams for $195.  (No, it's not a typo.)

Don't take this post the wrong way; there's nothing wrong with buying your wedding dress from a bridal salon.  However, the specifications of modesty I needed could not be fulfilled in a typical strapless gown.  If you're like me and need a completely custom-made dress, this route is practical in every way.  But don't just do it without looking into it... let me give you some pointers!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Our Wedding Blog

With the help of my mom, there is a new blog peeking over the horizon.  It brings hope (of an affordable wedding), peace (in the midst of a whirlwind of planning), and joy (when we find stuff on sale!) to all who cast their weary eyes thereupon.  It speaks of shopping, catering, and hiding in a trailer to surprise an unsuspecting fiance!  It welcomes all with blog posts, pictures, a love story, and a guest book.  

Contrary to all wedding planners who predict clients spending thousands on the dress, food, and flowers -- this blog stands in assertive rebellion.  It will not close down until it sees every to-do list checked off and each decoration perfectly put in place.  And when it's all said and done, the bouquet is tossed and the cake is gobbled up, it might just stick around a while longer, just for the fun of it!

Anyways... Tim and I have a wedding blog now and I've been itching to share it with you all!  Have fun visiting and we hope you will stop by often to stay updated on all the planning! =)

Tim and Suzette's Wedding Blog

Monday, August 8, 2011

Wedding Planning!

I am having quite the time trying to squeeze all the wedding planning I can into one short summer!  In the past three months my family and I have bought the dress, a few silk flowers, the bridesmaids' shoes, some wedding favors, lots of wedding planning books, and an off-the-beaten-path "guest book" in the form of a scrapbook!  Tim and I have started our registries, bought some Starbucks coffee mugs to put in our home, and discussed many ideas and plans.  Before he left for the summer, Mom and Dad hosted our engagement party at my house and took pictures of us at the place Tim proposed to me, the Japanese Gardens at Maymont Park.  On top of that, I've had work, traveling all over the East Cost for various family trips (and they were NOT for leisure), and trying to get some senior year "stuff" figured out.

So yeah... I've been kind of busy!

Sorry if I've been strangely quiet the past few months; I have a lot on my mind and would appreciate your prayers.  Also, one of my room mates from my freshman year told me that her mom has breast cancer, so please keep her in your prayers also.  GloryBound has had a safe summer so far, so we are very thankful for that.  

So basically everything is fine except my sanity!  I never knew planning a wedding involved so many details, and I am definitely NOT a detail person!  In my mind, a wedding was buying a dress, getting the lady at your church who's really good at baking to bake your cake, hiring a photographer, inviting your friends, walking down the aisle, eating the cake, and leaving.  

Oh no, my friend.  

First you have to figure out what style wedding dress looks best on you, then try several of them on at the bridal salon, only to come to the conclusion that there are WAY to many choices.  After you finally pick out your dress, you do a fundraiser to be able to afford the thing.  

As for the cake, you begin thinking about saving money by just doing sheet cakes, but think about how cool it would be to hire a culinary student at VCU for super cheap, but don't want to make your church baker feel left out either.  

Wait.  Cake... that means you'll need plates, napkins, tables, chairs... where is all of this coming from, anyway?!  Should you rent round tables, or use the awkward rectangle ones your venue already has for no extra charge?  Venue.  Oh my goodness -- where are we having this thing?  The church?  The park?  My parent's backyard?  A plantation?  The space museum??

And hiring a photographer.  Don't even get me started.

I have a bunch of friends from Oklahoma (hi guys!) who want to make it to our big day, but what hotel would be the nicest for them, but still reasonably priced, especially after paying for half-way-across-the-continent airfare?  Should the in-laws invite all of the out-of-town guests to the rehearsal dinner?  That's a lot of food, you know.  Food?  Hey, are we having a full-course meal or just cake and coffee at the reception?

And the little sparkly stuff people put on the tables at receptions... what do we do about that?  Should we use candy?  A centerpiece filled with flowers and bows?  Confetti?  And what should the guests throw at us when we leave?  Rice?  Bubbles?  Silly String?  Rocks?  What do we ride away in?  Limos are so expensive.  Maybe my grandpa's old truck... it's kind of "vintage."  It could be my "something old."  But wait, if it breaks down on the way to the hotel, that could be really bad...

See?  So many DETAILS!  So pray that my head doesn't explode anytime in the next year. =)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Live Without These Regrets

These two quotes I found made me think about having the right perspective on life.  Sometimes famous last words force us to us consider just how "off" our point of view is until we reach the end of our life, and begin to see it all in perspective.  In the words of Issac Newton and Leonardo da Vinci, let's see how these two very successful men would have lived differently if they could have done it all over:

Isaac Newton, 
"I don't know what I may seem to the world. But as to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the seashore and diverting myself now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than the ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me."

Leonardo da Vinci,
"I have offended God and mankind because my work did not reach the quality it should have."

We don't have to wait until the end of our lives to realize how very short of a time we have to live each day for all it's worth.  While it's true that this world is so vast that we could never explore it all in one lifetime, Newton's regret suggests that we ought not to be so tunnel-visioned that we forget about everything outside our immediate interests.  Just take time to let things soak in.  So what if you're not a biologist, take an hour and study what makes grass green!  God made this great big world in such a manner that we can enjoy it... pause and discover something new.

If you've ever studied Leonardo da Vinci, you know that his work is anything but ordinary.  He put his very best on canvas, time and time again.  Yet at the end of his life, he regrets not reaching the quality he felt God deserves.  Is our work half-done or blown through without regard to excellence?  Do we brand high-quality workers as "OCD" and laugh them off as nerds?  If so, imagine the regrets WE will have at the end of our lives.  

I'm sure these quotes could have been picked apart far better than I ever could, and if you have any suggestions regarding their interpretation, please leave a comment.  God wants us to enjoy life!  Let's live in a way that won't leave room for regrets like these.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Dayspring E-Cards

A great way to celebrate a special occasion across the miles is to send an e-card.  One advantage is that you know for sure when it will be delivered to the recipient's inbox, because you can hand-pick the date!  Not so with letters and packages (as I discovered last week by sending Tim a package and hearing that it took an extra three days to get there)!

I like Dayspring e-cards because they are Christian and often show a Scripture verse at the end of each message. Click here to visit their site.  

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Memorial Day

Only two defining forces have ever offered to die for you:
Jesus Christ and the American Soldier.
One died for your salvation;
The other will die for your freedom.

Have you thanked a soldier this weekend?

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

A Life Lesson from Kids

I did nursery for the Graduation Preaching Conference at Heartland Baptist Bible College and got to see some cute kids!!  One of them, who we'll call Mark, found great pleasure in constantly trying to escape the "Walkers' Room" and explore bigger and better places.  We couldn't turn our backs for more than five seconds, or he would be gone!  I started thinking about how adults are the same way, but on a much larger scale.

Mark thought his greatest sense of fulfillment could be found "out there."  He disregarded the many toys and friends within the walls and focused all of his time and energy on somehow getting "out there."  He wanted to be free.  There was so much to see and do if he could only escape.  What he didn't know about the great beyond, however, was that there was uncovered outlets, hard floors, and dangerous objects laying around that could harm him if swallowed.

Does this sound familiar?  So many young people are obsessed with pushing the limits, climbing the fence, and living on the edge, but don't realize that what lies beyond will hurt them.  Looking outside his small room, Mark saw a huge playroom with lots of space to roll around.  Being a nursery worker, I saw more than that -- I looked past the fun and saw a floor he could easily trip and break a tooth on and a nail that Maintenance had accidentally dropped on the floor, which any two year old would swallow without giving it a second thought.  As an adult, I saw many dangers Mark didn't... but he didn't seem to appreciate my forethought and wisdom.

As a young person, you will discover boundaries set around you that you might not completely understand.  You might wonder why your youth pastor advises against dating in high school or why your mom won't let you drive around with friends past midnight.  Like Mark, you might be peeking through the door thinking, "But it looks like so much fun!" and fighting to be free.  You might grow aggravated when your authorities keep pulling you back into your "cage" and not telling you why you can't go out there.  You become convinced that your greatest sense of fulfillment is outside of these boundaries.

Just a word of advice: don't go out there.  There are things in the typical young person's world that your parents, pastor and youth pastor don't want you to have to experience in order to know about.  To let Mark eat a nail to teach him how much pain it would inflict upon him would have been ludicrous; instead I kept him as far away from it as possible.  That is exactly what your authorities are doing for you by putting up boundaries.  Like Mark, you might not understand why you're not allowed to do certain things, but someday you will, and you will be grateful for authorities who protected you from being hurt.

Your greatest sense of fulfillment is not found in sneaking out late at night to go to a party, stealing the keys to the car to visit a "friend," or putting junk music on a CD and labeling it "Bro. Jones' Preaching."  It looks like so much fun... until your friends pressure you into doing something dumb, your "friend" turns out to be a jerk, and you accidentally leave your CD in the player the day mom uses the car.  These are uncovered outlets and sharp objects that older folks know about through experience, and would do anything to spare you this kind of pain and regret.

Next time you venture to ask your parent another "border line" question and once again you run into a wall, pause before you show any sign of disappointment.  Think, "Enough of me assuming they're just trying to make my life miserable... What could be the REAL reason they're saying no?"  It just might be to protect you, and for that you could at least smile and say, "OK."  Your greatest sense of fulfillment is found smack dab in the middle of God's will, deep within all the boundaries that have already been set up for you.  If you accept these rules with a cheerful heart, you will be the happiest you've ever been in your whole life.  


Here it is!!  Isn't it beautiful?  Yesterday Tim and I went to Maymont Park in Richmond and he proposed to me in the Japanese Gardens by a beautiful waterfall.  Our engagement pictures will also be taken there!  I'll share more pics later, but I just figured everyone would want to know. =)  Now I have to get used to calling him my fiance!!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Be Flexible!

Recently I communicated with my boss about coming back to work at Chick-Fil-A once again.  I am blessed to have a summer job that I can depend on with desirable hours.  My boss briefly mentioned that the more flexible I am, the more hours he can give me.  No asking for weekends off, a certain number of hours per week, or a $5 raise.  Once you think about it, the work place isn't the only time this holds true.

God asks each of us to serve Him with our lives.  For some, this means surrendering to the mission field thousands of miles away from home.  For others, it could be to raise children to be faithful to the things of God.  He calls us to service of varying degrees, but we are all asked to do something.  

But there is something standing in the way of God using us as vastly as He desires.  It's the only thing that you can give to Him that isn't His already: your will.  Surrendering this to God makes us totally open to whatever He wants for us, whether it be what we always dreamed of doing or something even better.  How flexible are you for the Lord?

I've caught myself thinking things like:
  • I'd love to go to ________ as a missionary, but never _________!
  • I can't miss work to be a camp counselor... doesn't God know I have a school bill to pay?
  • If I served God in ________ I would never see my family!
  • I sure hope God doesn't ask me to _________.
Know what I mean?  We have the tendency to put conditions on everything we do, and unfortunately this affects how we think of God and His will for us.  The simple statement my boss made rings true in our spiritual lives: the more flexible you are, the more God can use you!

The vice president of Heartland Baptist Bible College often says to the students, "God wants to use you more than you could ever imagine."  I can imagine a lot, but I know it's true.  However, if you put limits, conditions and lists on what you'll let God do with you, He will never be able to use you to the fullest.  Don't limit God... just be flexible, and He will take you on the greatest adventure of your life.

How much is God using you now?  Are you living the life you've always dreamed of?  I am!  By God's grace, I have learned that the smack-dab-center of God's will is where I find fulfillment in life.  I promise you, as soon as you let go of your will, God will start to do something incredible.  He will give you "plenty of hours" in His service!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

4 Blogs to Visit

I decided to update my list of four blogs, just because I constantly keep finding great ones!  The original four are still here, further down.  Enjoy!

1. Atheist Central
Ray Comfort's blog, specifically targeted to the seeking atheist.

2. Steve Boots Photography
One of our church member's blog on beautiful pictures of nature, his adorable family, and even goats!

3. Blessed Femina
Musings on this beautiful life and the blessing of being a lady.

The Bishop's Wife
Life, laughter and lessons from the goldfish bowl.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Previous Entries:

1. Fruit of Her Hands
 My mom's blog on homeschooling, photography, music, and recipes!

2. Modesty Is Next to Beauty
A site dedicated to the importance of modesty to the Christian.

3. True Femininity
One young lady's journey to beautiful, biblical womanhood.

4. Girls to Grow
An encouraging blog for mothers and daughters.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Quotes on Forgiveness

To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover the prisoner was you.     -Unknown

He who cannot forgive breaks the bridge over which he himself must pass.     -George Herbert

Resentment is like a glass of poison that a man drinks; then he sits down and waits for his enemy to die.                  -Unknown

Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heal that has crushed it.
     -Mark Twain

Friday, April 22, 2011

Why Courtship?

I just read an excellent post on courtship and would like to share it with all of my readers.  "Courtship? Are You Crazy?" answers questions such as:

~ How do I explain courtship to a friend who thinks I'm crazy for wanting parental involvement in my relationship?

~ What's the big deal about "waiting?"

~ How do I deal with the guilt of my past if I've already screwed up?

~ What are some of the ramifications of impurity before marriage?

~ Does how we act in a relationship before I get married affect how I relate to my husband after we're married?

This post is designed for ladies who are old enough to be in a serious relationship, but if mothers see fit to share it with younger teens, that is completely up to their discretion.  Personally, I appreciate it more now as a 20-something adult than I would have as a teenager.  I learned a lot about the "why" of courtship just from reading this post, and I guarantee that you will, too!

Thursday, April 7, 2011

The Key to Finishing Well

No one can deny that Solomon struck gold when he asked God for wisdom.  I Kings 3:5-15 tells the story of Solomon starting out extremely well; God not only gave him wisdom, but riches and honor.  What a great start to his reign!  God even said if he kept the ways of his father, King David, he would get a long life, too!

Well... then chapter eleven happened.  In I Kings 11:1-6 King Solomon starts doing the big no-no's: multiple wives!  Even worse, they influenced him for the worst (I Kings 11:7-8).  Notice verses 9-11:

9And the LORD was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the LORD God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice,
 10And had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the LORD commanded.
 11Wherefore the LORD said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant.

I'm no genius, but it looks to me like God was no longer impressed by Solomon's glorious beginning.  But he started out so well!  He asked God for wisdom when he could've asked for anything!  He was David's son and was surely destined for success.  He had received divine favor from God and a promising future in His service.

We are quick to scold King Solomon, yet when was the last time we started on a project but failed miserably?  Being a junior in college, I'm beginning to see why so many drop out, get dismissed, give up, don't come back, or play around with trouble one too many times.  College is not for the faint at heart!  Looking through my first yearbook, I can point to almost half of my freshman class and say, "They started out strong, but didn't even finish."

If you're up for a challenge, live a life of obedience to God.  I'm not even going to lie -- it is hard.  However, will that excuse really work when we stand before Christ after we die?  What do you think Solomon had to say when he met his Maker?  "Lord, I'm really sorry, but it was too hard.  I couldn't resist all those pretty Egyptians and Ammonites."  Do you think God told him, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant"?

Making sure we finish well starts with decisions we make today.  Solomon could've kept going strong by saying "no" to the first foreign woman who batted her eyes at him.  Every wrong decision we make takes us one step further away from God's will, until we're so far off the path we don't even know how we got there.  React to each unwise choice like Solomon should have reacted to each woman of the Moabites, Ammonites, and Hittites.

The old Solomon was never the same spiritually vibrant man he once was, and in his own words, "Vanity of vanities; all is vanity" (Ecclesiastes 1:2).  Every choice you make today affects your future.  In college, you cannot expect to get an A in a class if you never study for the tests.  In a car race, you cannot expect to finish if you never make pit stops.  If life, you cannot expect a "Well done" if you cut corners, mess with trouble, or don't finish what you start.

The key to finishing well is doing well today.  If we resolve to do that every day, we will live our whole lives in obedience to God's will.  "Waste not time; for time is the stuff that life is made of" (Benjamin Franklin).  Yes, daily dying to self can be hard, but it's so much easier than wasting many precious years and trying to pick up the pieces.  Find your strength in the Lord, and you will never lack the strength to finish well!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

A Word to Weary Bible College Students

It's that time of year again.  With the end of every semester comes lack of sleep, impossible exams, and unexpected hardships.  I reread and once again found encouragement in this post written by Cary Schmidt.  If you are in college, please read this... it may be exactly what you need.

A Word to Weary Bible College Students by Cary Schmidt

Monday, March 28, 2011

Calvary Answers for Me

"When Satan reminds me of things I regret, I bring up Calvary, lest he forget..."

Calvary Answers for Me is an awesome song about the victory over our past we can claim in Christ.

Friday, March 25, 2011

The Forgotten Man

Most amazing video EVER... What has President Obama done?  A picture really is worth a thousand words.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Modesty Survey

I found this just today and you all HAVE to see it!  Ever wondered what Christian guys think about our makeup, slits and posture?  I certainly have!  Multitudes of our brothers in Christ have contributed to this survey, responding to statements such as, "Wearing heavy makeup is a stumbling block," "Skirts with slits are immodest," and "The way a girl walks can be a stumbling block."  Explore the survey results... you may be surprised at what you find, as I was!

Although numbers never lie, the survey also includes short comments about each statement written by several of the gentlemen who assisted in completing the survey.  Their comments are written in love and honesty, and were a blessing for me to read.  The best part is the "Open Questions" page, of which I will share a portion here, just because I thought it was SO good.

One of the open-ended questions is, "If you could say one thing to your sisters in Christ about modesty, what would it be?"  The answers are enough to stir my heart, without even reading the rest of the survey (even though I did)!  Here are several that were a blessing to me:

1.  Sisters in Christ, you really have no concept of the struggles that guys face on a daily basis. Please, please, please take a higher standard in the ways you dress. True, we men are responsible for our thoughts and actions before the Lord, but it is such a blessing when we know that we can spend time with our sisters in Christ, enjoying their fellowship without having to constantly be on guard against ungodly thoughts brought about by the inappropriate ways they sometimes dress. In 1 Corinthians 12 the apostle Paul presents believers as the members of one body - we have to work together. Every Christian has a special role to play in the body of Christ. That goal is to bring glory to the Savior through an obedient, unified body of believers - please don't hurt that unity by dressing in ways that may tempt your brothers in Christ to stumble.

2.  Modest girls are always more pretty to me than immodest girls. An immodest girl might be really pretty but her actions are ugly and they cancel out her natural beauty, making her ugly. A modest girl is pretty not only in looks but in actions and deeds and that is the type of girl I like to be around.

3.  In high school, the place of greatest temptation toward lust was my church. Girls wore things to church that they thought were fashionable and dressy, but they would not have passed the dress code at my public high school. Church should NEVER be a guy's greatest source of temptation, in any way. Please, be especially careful when picking out your dress clothes for church, and make sure they are modest when sitting and kneeling (if you kneel in church), not just standing in front of the mirror.

4.  Please don’t take modesty lightly. As your brother in Christ I value the relationship that I will have with my wife someday. When I am tempted because of you I lose a part of myself that I am trying to save for her. When I’m tempted because of you I become that much more accepting of the perversions in the world. When you remain pure and modest, my life is made so much easier. Instead of watching to ensure that I don’t sin I can focus on you as a person and fellow follower of Christ. I appreciate modesty more than you’ll ever know. Please, show respect of yourself and of me and be modest.

5.  Dearest sister: God made you a thing of beauty. A thing to be admired and respected. When you dress or act in a way that draws attention to your body, you make it easy for the guys around you to reduce you to the level of a disgusting toy - using you to mentally satisfy their fantasies. They stop thinking about your Godly qualities and immerse themselves in sinful thought. By dressing and acting modestly, you draw attention to your face instead of your body. Your body may be alluring, but your face - those deep, mysterious eyes and smiling mouth - is infinitely more beautiful than any amount of revealing dress. Would you rather be the tool by which guys satisfy themselves or the beautiful thing God created you to be, pure for your husband? My flesh prefers the former, but my heart pleads for the latter.

6.  For those of you trying to be modest, thank you, thank you, thank you! I certainly notice it and am grateful for it. For those of you who aren't sure about modesty, it is hard enough for us guys as it is; please don't make it harder.

To read more open questions or satisfy your curiosity about whether bare feet are tempting for a guy, go to the Modesty Survey and click on "Survey Results."  To learn more about how to interpret the results, click on "Survey Overview."  I hope you'll enjoy it as much as I have!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

My Mom's New Site

My mom is starting an online business selling day planners for ladies, and I just wanted to share it with everybody.  She just started it, so it's not overflowing with thousands of brand new pages or anything...but I figured you all would enjoy looking at it!  Come visit the Fruitful Day.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Don't Trust in Horses and Chariots

According to Isaiah, not only is it a good idea to trust God, but it's the only way to go!  And you can trust God's prophets, because if anything they said wasn't true, they had to be put to death.  So you can pretty much count on this one: God is the One who should be trusted.
Once you're neck deep in a mess that's beyond your control, trusting Him is easier said than done.  We tend to rely on ourselves, because we figure we can handle it.  The fact is, we can't handle it and we know very little about ourselves if we believe we can.  Sometimes we cling to parents, peers or our pastor for strength, but these people cannot be spiritual enough to face our trials for us.  Each of us must learn to lean on God for ourselves.  Finally, there are those who resort to wordly things for comfort.  Again, wrong choice!  


Woe to them that go down to Egypt for help; and stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are many; and in horsemen, because they are very strong; but they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seek the LORD!


Yet he also is wise, and will bring evil, and will not call back his words: but will arise against the house of the evildoers, and against the help of them that work iniquity.


Now the Egyptians are men, and not God; and their horses flesh, and not spirit. When the LORD shall stretch out his hand, both he that helpeth shall fall, and he that is holpen shall fall down, and they all shall fail together.  -Isaiah 31:1-3

The worst thing you can do is "go back to Egypt" when the going gets rough.  Many of us have lived a wordly lifestyle of some degree before salvation, so returning to its ease and comfort seems like the natural thing to do.  Before Jesus rose again, the disciples were so distraught over His death that they went back to their old profession: fishing.  It's easy to slide into the old habit of "trusting in chariots" because they're familiar and visible; who wants to put their trust in Someone you can't even see?
The truth is, all the "horses and chariots" Egypt can give you aren't really that strong.  In the end, he that helpeth (the world) and the holpen (you) will fall.  Isaiah says, Woe to them that look not unto God, neither seek the Lord!  In the words of a great hymn, "I must tell Jesus; Jesus can help me, Jesus alone" (I Must Tell Jesus).  Life is not for the faint at heart.  Don't trust in whatever you left in Egypt; they're no match for God.  Trust in the One that wiped out the entire Egyptian army at the Red Sea Crossing; He will bring you safely through!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Ministry 127

Encouraging, equipping, and engaging ideas from local church leaders... Ministry 127 is a ministry resource from Pastor Paul Chappell and is based on Philippians 1:27.  It is a great place to find podcasts, illustrations, videos, sermon archives, and even book reviews!

Come visit Ministry 127... I know you will enjoy it!

Here are some great articles I found while exploring:
15 Tips for Missionary Wives
4 Ways to Invest in People
7 Myths of Single Life

Monday, February 28, 2011

Atheist Central

I came across Ray Comfort's blog just this week and I wanted to make everyone aware of this neat little spot on the web!  If you know any atheists with lots of questions, consider pointing them in the direction of this website.  It is entertaining, informative, and lighthearted.

Atheist Central: Ray Comfort's Blog

At the top of the page you will find a short introduction to the Gospel.  Several posts are on the main page, accompanied by an archive list on the sidebar.  Near the bottom of the page is a list of links, to whet your friend's appetite for more.

It's a rare thing to find a Christian blog written for the purpose of sharing the gospel to such a narrow field of unbelievers. Rarer still is finding a blog of this kind that is grammatically correct! (If you don't believe me, look around at some... it's really embarrassing.) If you know of any other sites like this, please leave a comment!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

The Fine Art of Waiting

Everyone I ask agrees: this semester has been a busy one.  The student teachers have material to study and classes to lecture; the staff is already stressed from the conferences we've hosted and the ones looming over the horizon; I'm taking more teaching classes than I've ever thought possible; and GloryBound has traveled almost every weekend!  Although life is continually busy, there are still those times when we feel like we're just sitting around waiting.

Last week Tim and the rest of GloryBound left Saturday at noon and didn't get back until Tuesday afternoon.  This weekend, he left yesterday around lunchtime, came back tonight, and is leaving again tomorrow morning!  Talk about busy.  Being on the other end of the deal, I have to keep myself occupied with activities to keep myself from missing him "too much."  Yes, there is such a thing!

Waiting is a fine art, and a lost one, if you ask me.  Nobody likes to wait, but it's gotten really bad with this "fast-food culture" generation.  Who enjoys waiting more than five minutes for lunch at McDonalds?  Who likes standing in line for two hours to ride the new tallest roller coaster?  Neither do we enjoy waiting long-term for graduation, marriage, or whatever else for which we dream.  There must be a way to wait without completely losing our minds!

Whenever Tim travels over the weekend, I occupy myself with something fun.  I've cut back on "retail therapy" (shopping!!) due to my status as "poor college student," but there are plenty of things to do that are cheaper than a new pair of shoes!  I go to my best friend's house and watch movies, I have lunch with a bunch of girls, or I do the unthinkable and finish some homework. =)  If you find yourself struggling to keep your sanity during your time of waiting, I recommend journaling, blogging, or cartooning your progress through this period of your life.  I've done all three, and they've benefited me beyond words!

I also recommend purposefully not thinking about it.  By choosing to not dwell upon your lot in life, you choose to reject discouragement.  Count your blessings.  Think about how good God has been to you, and you'll soon be on a mountain of blessings you forgot you had!  Most of the time we blow our circumstances way out of proportion, which can lead to a sin called complaining.  The children of Israelites got in trouble for this one on numerous occasions, so don't even go there!

Time flies when you're having fun, someone once said.  In the South, we make friends while waiting in line.  Soon we'll be talking about random things, laughing and carrying on, when all of a sudden it's our turn next and the quick friendship is sadly diminished.  I find that even the longest, loneliest weekends seem shorter when I'm enjoying myself.  When you're facing a long, boring wait in life, learn to enjoy the ride!  After all, getting there is half the fun!  You might not believe me -- but if life is what you make of it, a trial of your patience can transform into a party!  

Basically, the fine art of waiting boils down to these three things: 1) Document your progress -- you'll look back on it later and praise the Lord for everything He taught you.  2) Think happy thoughts and avoid complaining at all costs.  3) Find joy in the journey.  All of these are learned behaviors and do not come naturally, especially when we're so used to whining about every little thing (remember, we live in that fast food culture).  While the flesh tugs at us to murmur and despair, God has something better in mind for us.  Why not look back on this stage in life and think, "You know, at times that wasn't easy, but I really did enjoy it... in a weird kind of way!"  It does seem weird, because it's humanly impossible, but it's yours for the taking through God's goodness and wonderful plan for this part of your journey.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

God Will Provide - sung by GloryBound

This song reminds me of God's providential care, even in the most hopeless of circumstances.  God Will Provide

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Jim Elliot Quotes

Some of my favorite quotes in the whole world were spoken by Jim Elliot.  His resolve to not let anything get in the way of his passion for Christ is inspirational.  Here are eleven of his quotes that I found on  If you know of any other Jim Elliot quotes that aren't listed on this website, please leave a comment!

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