Saturday, March 31, 2012

Female Piety...

Source: google.com via Stefanie on Pinterest

The great source of consolation and protection to a young
woman far from home is true religion....If Providence calls you away from home, bear it with composure. Go out expecting to meet with privations, and make up your mind to endure them with fortitude. Make the best of your situation. You may be happy anywhere—with religion, good disposition, submission to your lot, and usefulness. If you determine to find out such pleasures as your present situation affords, instead of always looking back upon that which you have left; if you resolve, by God's grace, to please and be pleased; if you give up your mind to piety, industry, and usefulness—you will find that felicity is a flower that blooms, and a fruit that grows, away from home as well as at home. A cheerful spirit, like a lamp lighting any darkness into which it may be carried—lessens the discomfort of any situation, recommends you to your employer, and promotes your interest as well as your happiness.



What is to comfort her now? Only the balmy influence of religion—the consciousness that she is in the way of duty—and the testimony of her conscience that she is discharging her obligations with scrupulous fidelity. This can and this will do it. She whose heart is renewed by Divine grace; who has genuine faith in our Lord Jesus Christ; who walks with God as her divine, unchangeable, omnipotent Friend, and communes with him as her Heavenly Father; whose affections are set on things above; and who considers life as a probation for eternity—she will find in such a state of mind—a source of consolation—a means of endurance—an element of happiness—which will counterbalance all discomfort, disquietude, and distress.



With true dignity she will bow to the will of God, and consider her situation as his appointment. She will find satisfaction in submission. Her religion will impart much patience, and something of cheerfulness—it will control her disposition, and throw an air of loveliness over her character, which will give her an interest in the heart of her employer. She will always find companions in her Bible and other good books—in her closet of devotion and in communion with God, a sweet retreat from the coldness and unkindness of her fellow-creatures; and in meditation upon the everlasting rest above, a blessed substitute for the comforts of the home she has left on earth. Faith in God, in Christ, in Providence, in heaven—can comfort, has comforted, and will comfort in the dreariest situations of life, and in the bitterest agonies of death.

I am anxious all should set out in life with this lofty idea of true piety—that it can sweeten the bitterest cup of human woe—can soften the hardest lot—and can be a substitute for all other pleasures. It must be so; for it made Adam happy in paradise, and makes saints and angels happy in heaven. It has lighted, as with a lamp kindled in heaven, the confessor's dungeon, has sustained the Christian fugitive in his exile, and has enabled the martyrs to endure even the agonies of the stake.

Adopt religion, then, young women, as your companion, for it will not only comfort you, but also protect you. Yes, it will be a shield for your defense, as well as a cup of consolation amid your sorrows.




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Friday, March 30, 2012

The Lord's protection....


Over the next couple days I want to share some of my reading from Female Piety, from the chapter which is specifically written for young women who for whatever reason are not able to live at home. There was so much encouragement and comfort here that I had to share! I hope it blesses you all too....



"...but I remind you there is the orphan's unfailing friend still left. God lives, and he is the father of the fatherless. Be it yours, and it may be yours, to say, "When my father and my mother forsake me, the Lord will take me up." Should you be so wise and happy as to become truly pious, you will never be without a friend, and in the absence of an earthly father, will have an omnipotent one in heaven. You may then set out in life, and go through it, adopting as your motto, the reply of Abraham to Isaac, who, when the latter said, "Behold the fire and the wood, but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?" replied, "God will provide." Be that your motto, "God will provide." Fear God, and you may without scruple and with confidence adopt this assurance.


 Permit me now to suggest some topics which apply alike to all these different cases, and which it is important you should dwell upon, either in prospect of leaving home—or after you have left it. Consider it is in the order of Providence you should be thus situated. Your lot is fixed in heaven. It is God's will—and not chance. Is there nothing consolatory in this? Consider his wisdom, power, and goodness. He does all things well. He knows what is best for you. He may, in ways which you cannot imagine, be consulting your future and permanent good. You cannot see the end. When this is revealed, you may be compelled to exclaim, "He leads the blind by a way that they know not, and leads them in paths that they have not known. He makes darkness light before them, and crooked things straight." Submit, therefore, without envying others, and without murmuring. Would you contravene his purpose? Say, "It is the Lord, let him do what seems good in his sight. I am where he would have me be."



Again and again I say, commit yourselves by true faith in Christ into the hands of God for protection and consolation. How many beautiful passages and examples of holy Scripture, in addition to those already quoted, could be adduced, which apply with peculiar force to your case. Look at poor Hagar, who was much to be pitied as well as much to be blamed, alone in the wilderness, "when the angel of the Lord found her by the fountain of water, and she called the name of the Lord that spoke unto her—God, You see me." If, when God found her there, notwithstanding some past misconduct and self-reproach, she comforted herself in that desolate place with the consideration that she was compassed about with the presence of the Lord; with how much greater confidence and peace may you cheer your heart with the thought of an ever-present God, you who have not been driven out as she was by misconduct from your home, but have been led out from it by Providence.




Yes, God is in every place, he is with you, "he encompasses your path, he knows your down-sitting and up-rising, and is acquainted with all your ways." You have left your earthly father, but your heavenly one is with you. You are far from your earthly home, but if you are a Christian, you are as near as ever to your heavenly one. The eyes that lately beamed affection upon you, do not see you now, and you do not see them; but lifting your voice to God, you can say, "God, You see me!" His eye is upon you, his heart yearns over you, his arms are underneath you.

Also, what promises are on record for you. Do you fear the lack of adequate provision? "Trust in the Lord, and do good—so shall you dwell in the land, and verily you shall be fed." Do you need protection? "He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High, shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. He shall cover you with his feathers, and under his wings shall you trust; his truth shall be your defense and shield." Do you need direction? "Your ears shall hear a voice behind you, saying—This is the way, walk in it." Do you dread the forlorn circumstances that await you away from home? "None who trust in him shall be desolate." Are you trembling with apprehension at the absence of all who were dear to you, and the unknown difficulties of your new situation on earth? "Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God! I will strengthen you; yes, I will help you! Yes, I will uphold you with the right hand of my righteousness." "My presence shall go with you and give you rest." Do you ever dread the idea of being forgotten by the friends you are leaving? "Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yes she may forget, yet will I not forget you." "I will never leave you, nor forsake you." Can anything be more consolatory than such assurances?

 Need you be afraid to leave home and go out into the world with such promises? What, when omnipotence, omnipresence, omniscience, all-sufficiency, and boundless love, go with you?




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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Vineyard laboring....


Source: google.com via Stefanie on Pinterest

"The church is God's vineyard; it is of his planting, watering, and fencing; and the fruits of it must be to his honour and praise..... We are all called upon to be labourers in this vineyard. The work of religion is vineyard-work, pruning, dressing, digging, watering, fencing, weeding. We have each of us our own vineyard to keep, our own soul; and it is God's and to be kept and dressed for him. In this work we must not be slothful, not loiterers, but labourers, working, and working out our own salvation. Work for God will not admit of trifling. A man may go idle to hell; but he that will go to heaven, must be busy."  
Matthew Henry 


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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

A lost lamb......

"How think ye? if a man have a hundred sheep, and one of them be gone astray, doth he not leave the ninety and nine, and goeth into the mountains, and seeketh that which is gone astray?  And if so be that he find it, verily I say unto you, he rejoiceth more of that sheep, than of the ninety and nine which went not astray."
Matthew 18:12-13



"God is graciously concerned, not only for his flock in general, but for every lamb, or sheep, that belongs to it.....He is a great Shepherd, and he is a good Shepherd, and takes a more particular cognizance of his flock than ever any did; for he calls his own sheep by name."
Matthew Henry


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Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Stepping Heavenward....

Below I shared a section from the book Stepping Heavenward that I enjoyed reading recently. In it Katy, the main character is giving advice to the young woman her brother wishes to marry -


"Well, then, setting aside the fact that you are both lovable and loving, I will say this: Happiness, in other words love, in married life is not a mere accident....



....but we are imperfect creatures, wayward and foolish as little children, horribly unreasonable, selfish and willful. We are not capable of enduring the shock of finding at every turn that our idol is made of clay, and that it is prone to tumble off its pedestal and lie in the dust, till we pick it up and set it in its place again. I was struck with Ernest's asking in the very first prayer he offered in my presence, after our marriage, that God would help us love each other. I felt that love was the very foundation on which I was built, and that there was no danger that I should ever fall short in giving to my husband all he wanted, in full measure. But as he went on day after day repeating this prayer, and I naturally made it with him, I came to see that this most precious of earthly blessings had been and must be God's gift, and that while we both looked at it in that light, and felt our dependence on Him for it, we might safely encounter together all the assaults made upon us by the world, the flesh, and the devil. I believe we owe it to this constant prayer that we have loved each other so uniformly and with such growing comfort in each other; so that our little discords always have ended in fresh accord, and our love has felt conscious of resting on a rock and that that rock was the will of God."
Elizabeth Prentiss


Sharing with Modest MondaysEmotions on TuesdaysHomemaker By ChoiceHandful of Heart Monday Proverbs 31 Thursdays,  Women Living Well, Raising Homemakers, Titus 2sdays,Wise Woman link up,  Growing Home  Far Above Rubies, My Inspiration Friday , Heavenly Homemakers, Making A Home,   A Holy Experience Women of Noble Character,  Encouraging One Another Thought Provoking Thursday,, Serenity NowBest Post of the weekWord Filled Wednesday, A Handful of HeartThe Better MomPainting Prose, Welcome HomeGracefulOn Your heart Tuesday,Beautiful Mommy FeetSoli Deo Gloria Just Write, Our Simple Country Life, YLFC March of Books,  Thankful Homemaker, and Good Morning Girls.   


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Monday, March 26, 2012

Maturity and Consolation....

Today I wanted to share a couple sermons that have blessed me recently. Now that we've finished going through Luke, we've begun Philippians which has been great, and on Wednesday nights we're working on a series through the Song of Solomon. I've never studied this book before and am enjoying it very much - it's very encouraging and helpful to see the Lord's love for His people. I hope you all can listen and be helped as I have been.








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Sunday, March 25, 2012

Psalm 104


"Bless the LORD, O my soul. O LORD my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.
 Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:
 Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind:
 Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:
 Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever.
 Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the waters stood above the mountains.
 At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away.
 They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them.
 Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.
 He sendeth the springs into the valleys, which run among the hills.
 They give drink to every beast of the field: the wild asses quench their thirst.
 By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, which sing among the branches.
 He watereth the hills from his chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works.
 He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;
 And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man's heart.
 The trees of the LORD are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted;
 Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.
 The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats; and the rocks for the conies.
 He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down.
 Thou makest darkness, and it is night: wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth.
 The young lions roar after their prey, and seek their meat from God.
 The sun ariseth, they gather themselves together, and lay them down in their dens.
 Man goeth forth unto his work and to his labour until the evening.
 O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.
So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great beasts.
 There go the ships: there is that leviathan, whom thou hast made to play therein.
 These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.
 That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good.
Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust.
Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth.
 The glory of the LORD shall endure for ever: the LORD shall rejoice in his works.
He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth: he toucheth the hills, and they smoke.
I will sing unto the LORD as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
 My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the LORD.
 Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the LORD, O my soul. Praise ye the LORD."


Stop by and visit my friend Jenny's blog, A Mother's Heritage, where she also shares a beautiful Psalm each Lord's day.

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Saturday, March 24, 2012

Homemade wine....

Today was the annual digging up of the homemade wine that Mr E makes, which happens to be the best wine ever :-). This was my third year of joining in on the process. It's become a tradition I look forward to,  and it brought to mind these verses.





Friends and family gather round to watch the jars being brought up out of the ground....



Tasting grapes out of the jar - they were strong and made you feel very warm inside!


Our Pastor got the first taste, "It's excellent!"


Pastor and Mr E each trying a glass...


Father and son. Along with the wine, we were also celebrating Will's 13th birthday!


My first taste....

.....it's good...very good!




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A beautiful quote.....



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Friday, March 23, 2012

Thoughts....



 ♥   ♥     ♥    


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Thursday, March 22, 2012

Happy news....


Those of you who have been reading my blog for awhile may have noticed I've been very quiet about what's going on in my life over the past month or so.....but today I have some happy news to share with ya'll! I've been keeping this quiet, sharing at first with all my loved ones. But now I'm free to share with you too that I'm being courted by a godly man who has become a very dear friend. We've known each other on facebook for a couple years, but have recently gotten to know one another better and feel very blessed and happy as we are seeking to honor and glorify the Lord in our courtship. If you're unfamiliar with courtship and are interested in learning more you may want to check out my friend's and my sister in law's stories. I think you'll find them to be an encouragement as I have. It truly is a blessing to do things the Lord's way and as time goes on I hope to share more of our story with you :-) Your prayers for us in this happy time would be much appreciated. Thank you so much and I hope you all have a blessed day!







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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Simple pleasures....




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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Welcome spring....


‎"Do you not know that day follows night, that flood comes after ebb, that spring and summer succeed winter? Have hope then! Always have hope! God fails you not."
Charles Spurgeon 



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Monday, March 19, 2012

Answered prayers....

Gratitude for God's providence is on my mind today. How wonderful it is when we see the answer to a long awaited prayer....Yesterday I had the blessing of seeing, for the first time, the adopted daughter of some church friends of mine. We've seen,  prayed, and cried with them through hard times, then have been praying with them for months and months through all the stages of the adoption. Now she is a part of the family and it was such an encouraging blessing for me to see her sitting with her parents and sister in church, to see her making friends with the other little girls in her new church family....to see how God answered prayers. He is good to those who wait for Him and I'm reminded that His timing is perfect and He does all things well.


"For ever blessed be the Lord, 
for graciously he heard
The voice of my petitions,
and prayers did regard.

The Lord's my strength and shield; my heart

upon him did rely;

And I am helped: hence my heart
doth joy exceedingly."
Psalm 28:6-7 






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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Psalm 103


 "Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.
 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:
 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;
 Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;
 Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's.
 The LORD executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed.
 He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel.
 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.
 He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger for ever.
 He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.
 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.
 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
 Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.
 For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.
 As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.
 For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.
 But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children's children;
 To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.
 The LORD hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all.
 Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.
 Bless ye the LORD, all ye his hosts; ye ministers of his, that do his pleasure.
 Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul."



Stop by and visit my friend Jenny's blog, A Mother's Heritage, where she also shares a beautiful Psalm each Lord's day.



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Saturday, March 17, 2012

A question......

 "He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?  And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God."
Matthew 16:15-16

This is a question we should every one of us be frequently putting to ourselves, "Who do we say, what kind of one do we say, that the Lord Jesus is? Is he precious to us? Is he in our eyes the chief of ten thousand? Is he the Beloved of our souls?" It is well or ill with us, according as our thoughts are right or wrong concerning Jesus Christ.
Matthew Henry 



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Friday, March 16, 2012

Babysitting, baking, and memories.....

This weekend I'm babysitting the E children while their parents are attending The Teach Diligently Homeschool Conference......along with getting the normal work done I thought we could do something fun so decided to bake cookies, Cookies and chocolate invariably are going to produce smiles from children :-) Maybe me too....


We used dark and white chocolate.



Delicious!

Baking with them reminded me of a blog post I shared a little over two years ago in January of 2010 when I baked bread with the children while babysitting them. Looking back at the pictures I decided to share them again  along with the thoughts I shared back then - wow are they all growing up quickly. Too quickly I think sometimes.....


I have been doing a lot of babysitting lately. It's fun taking care of the children...it reminds me of being home with all my younger siblings....Often we just do routine stuff, schoolwork, housework, playing, but on Saturday I decided to do something fun with them and we baked bread - they had a wonderful time - and had sandwiches on some of their rolls for lunch. They ate every crumb:-)

The two younger ones having fun! 

Hannah.

Daniel.


Emily concentrating on her kneading.

Beka hard at work.

Hannah "helped" me shape the dough into rolls and loaves of bread.

All done!

"......And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." 
Matthew 25:40





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Thursday, March 15, 2012

"A quotation is a handy thing to have about, saving one the trouble of thinking for oneself......

Some cute quotes by A A Milne thatI came across on pinterest recently....

"We'll be Friends Forever, won't we, Pooh?' asked Piglet.
Even longer,' Pooh answered."




"How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard."






"Some people care too much. I think it's called love."



"Sometimes,' said Pooh, "the smallest things take up the most room in your heart."


"The things that make me different are the things that make me."


"Well," said Pooh, "what I like best," and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn't know what it was called."


"How do you spell 'love'?" - Piglet
"You don't spell it...you feel it." - Pooh"


"Friendship," said Christopher Robin, "is a very comforting thing to have."



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"Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater: So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it."
Isaiah 55:6,8-1