"The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our Lord stands forever. Isaiah 40:8

31 October 2005

A Peek Inside

My husband and I recently purchased our first home. It’s an older home with a lot of nice features, but it needs a fair amount of cosmetic work. I find that I am now very curious about what other people’s houses look like, inside and out.

Tonight we took the kids out for Halloween. As our neighbors opened up their doors to hand out candy I was quick to peek inside their home to see how the interior was set up and decorated. But as I met each of our neighbors, I found myself wondering more about them. I wished that I could peek inside their hearts and see if they were believers.

I haven’t always felt that way, but more and more I feel a burden for those around me. I wonder about the salvation of every person I meet and I’m so happy when I unexpectedly meet another believer. But there are so many lost sheep. I wish I could do more.

30 October 2005

How Shalt We Dress?

As I mentioned previously, we have moved to a new area and are looking or a new church home. In the past few weeks we have visited a variety of churches, some more traditional, some more contemporary. Today we visited a more contemporary church – the kind that plays contemporary music and has a laid back dress code. It’s different than what we are used to, but we’re mainly just looking for a sound, biblical church.

One thing I have noticed in these contemporary churches is that there are a lot of people in their late teens, early twenties. We actually attended a contemporary church for about a year a few years ago but soon found ourselves “lost”. But that’s another story for another day. Anyway, it’s been my experience that all these young people are attracted by the more contemporary worship which is great, but I consistently see what I consider to be in appropriate dress for Christians. It’s basically the current trend of low rise pants and short/tight shirts with basically a lot of skin showing. How has this become acceptable?

I don’t have all my passages lined up, but I did find 1 Timothy 2:9,

Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments,

Of course, here Paul is talking against ornate dressing that probably was the fashion of the time, but I think the idea of “modestly and discreetly” is still applicable. Wearing revealing clothing just isn’t appropriate for a Christian woman of any age. Can anyone argue that?

I guess this inappropriate dress by our young women has me very concerned about what we are teaching our children both as parents and as a church. In an attempt to bring people into the church, have we let too much of the “world” in? I hope not.

29 October 2005

Thinking Small...

We recently moved to a new state and are trying to find a new church home. Each Sunday we visit a different church and drop our kids off at the kid’s classroom and/or nursery before heading to the service. At one of the churches we visited a few weeks ago there was a much older woman (I would say in her early 70’s) working in the infant nursery. I almost felt bad handing her my 6 month old son as she looked quite frail and he’s quite heavy, but I handed him over nonetheless.

A few weeks have gone by, and I was feeling down about my service to the Lord. As a working mother of two young children, I don’t have much time on my hands nor have I found my calling. I was thinking of missionaries and how they devote their whole lives to the Lord and was feeling small in comparison.

Then I was reminded of that older woman at the nursery. For all I know she’s been doing that for the past 20 or more years. It may not seem like much, but as a mother of young children I can tell you that it is a huge blessing to have someone at the church nursery take care of my children so I can attend service and fully concentrate on the message. And how wonderful that someone so advanced in years is still willing to roll up her sleeves and do what she can. God bless her!

So, I guess I don’t need to have “delusions of grandeur” when it comes to serving the Lord. I am still trying to figure out where I need to be in my service of the Lord, but I know that as long as I’m willing to serve him, there is no task too small and none that isn’t important enough to him.

28 October 2005

Beating Back the Thorns

Isn’t it amazing that you can read the bible over and over and yet each time something new jumps out at you? I was reading the Gospel of Mark last night and came to Jesus’ parable of the sower (Mk 4:3-9), which I have read many times before. I think before I read it very simplistically as believers versus non-believers but this time I really noticed the difference between the last two groups of people in Jesus’ explanation (Mk 4:14-20):

"The sower sows the word. These are the ones who are beside the road where the word is sown; and when they hear, immediately Satan comes and takes away the word which has been sown in them. In a similar way these are the ones on whom seed was sown on the rocky places, who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy; and they have no firm root in themselves, but are only temporary; then, when affliction or persecution arises because of the word, immediately they fall away. And others are the ones on whom seed was sown among the thorns; these are the ones who have heard the word, but the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful. And those are the ones on whom seed was sown on the good soil; and they hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirty, sixty, and a hundredfold."

It really struck me as I read this last night that “the worries of the world” could make the word unfruitful. I myself am a worrier. I love the Lord with all my heart, but I still worry about the trivial things of life. It’s something I’ve been aware of for a while and have been working on, but ouch, I didn’t think of it affecting my “fruitfulness”.

When I’ve read this parable before I think I just automatically assumed I fell into the last category, and for the most part, I think I still do. But there are certainly days when the thorns overtake me and I lose my direction. Those are the days when I need to refocus and reset my compass. I think that’s why I love the words of the great hymn, “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus”:

His Word shall not fail you—He promised
Believe Him, and all will be well:
Then go to a world that is dying,
His perfect salvation to tell!

Turn your eyes upon Jesus,
Look full in His wonderful face,
And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,
In the light of His glory and grace.

So this is what I will continue to work at. Turning my eyes upon Jesus and letting the things of the world fall away.

27 October 2005

Who, What, and Why?

This is my first post to my blog so I thought I would introduce myself a bit. Blogging is all new to me and I have to say it seems a bit weird to be writing in this kind of a format as if someone is actually reading along when in all likelihood it may be months before I get my first reader. But I guess this blog is partly a way for me to get my thoughts out so if I’m just talking to myself, so be it.

Who am I? I’m a thirty-something wife and mother of two and a born-again Christian. About a year ago I left my full-time job to stay home with my daughter and started a website called The Christian Woman. A year later, I have a second child and am back working full-time. Don’t ask, long story. Overall, I’m happy to be back at work - staying home just wasn’t for me - but I miss being online and working on my website. So for now blogging is a happy medium to keep doing some “online” work since I don't have the time to devote to my website.

So, we’ll see what "evolves". Which reminds me, I am a biologist by training and being a Christian also, I have a lot to comment on outside of just my life as a Christian woman. But mostly I’m just opinionated. I’m not sure if that is a good quality or not as a Christian, but I’m hoping to keep my opinions tempered by scripture.

Well, that’s all I want to say about myself for now. I’ve felt like I’ve had a lot to say on a variety of topics for the last few months which is what caused me to start this blog. Hopefully I’ll continue to have something to say now that I actually have a venue.

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