Why I haven't written

I get stuck. I can't complete my thoughts. I can't get myself to satisfactory answers. I don't know if it's because my mind is racing too fast with too much right now, or if it is one of the ebbs of life that I need to persevere through, or very likely both.

If I posted all the half-written thoughts I have started with good intentions of publishing, readers would be very amused indeed, but I don't even feel satisfied with those half-written thoughts.

I've been reading through Proverbs in a quest for wisdom, because I was suddenly struck one day with the thought of how much one needs wisdom to live life, and how very little I pursue it. Rather than gaining any wisdom though, I feel I've only learned how very unwise I am.

Circumstances in life have also brought me to my wit's end as to the right course to take. I've learned lately that there are some things that just simply are not black and white, and God actually made them that way on purpose, to teach us to trust Him.

Inadequacy overwhelms me too, at times. My own inability to complete things as I desire to, my own inability to do things as I know I should. My own inability to even know what to do.

And in short, how could I ever blog to encourage others when every day I'm clinging to the Word and God's promises to encourage myself just to keep moving forward.

O, I am not depressed. I am not down-trodden. I am blessed, and I thankful. And humbled.

So, when the Lord gives me thoughts to share again, I promise I'll be back. But until then, I'm getting lost in the Lord.


I have sorely neglected this blog, of late, but I certainly have excuses.

Christmas time has come and gone, and my last Christmas at home was the sweetest I will remember of my childhood.

My sister got married! View some pictures at your leisure here or here.

My wedding planning has officially begun. Did anyone know that the hardest thing to find in northeast Ohio would be a horse-drawn-carriage?

I have been trying to be diligent in pursuing as many titles off of my 101 Books to Read. For your interest or not, here they are. :)

Book List -  100 books for 2010
1.     Wuthering Heights, Emily Bronte
2.     Little Dorrit, Charles Dickens
3.     Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
4.     Crime and Punishment, Fydor Dostoyevsky
5.     The Brothers Karamovoz, Fydor Dostoyevsky
6.     A Practical View of Christianity, William Wilberforce
7.     The Lord of the Rings, the Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien
8.     The Two Towers, J.R.R. Tolkien
9.     Return of the King, J.R.R. Tolkien
10.  The Screwtape Letters, C.S Lewis
11. A Body of Divinity, Thomas Boston
12. Lex Rex, Samuel Rutherford
13. The Prince, Machiavelli
14.  The Inferno, Dante
15. Biography on John Newton
16.  Lady Susan, Jane Austen
17. Counterfeit Gods, Timothy Keller
18.  Prodigal God, Timothy Keller
19.  Alls Well That Ends Well, Shakespeare
20. As You Like It, Shakespeare
21. Othello, Shakespeare
22.  Hamlet, Shakespeare
23. On Man and the Universe, Aristotle
24.  The Republic, Plato
25.  I, Isaac, Take Thee Rebekah, Ravi Zacharias
26.  Les Miserable, Victor Hugo
27.  The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo
28.  Institutes of Christian Religion, John Calvin
29.  Bondage of the Will, Martin Luther
30.  Good Booklet of the True Christian Life, John Calvin
31.  Transforming Grace, Jerry Bridges
32.  Instruments in the Redeemers Hand, Paul Tripp
33. The Complete Works of Flannery O’Connor, Flannery O’Connor
34. Wulf the Saxon, G.A. Henty
35.  Agnes Grey, Anne Bronte
36.  Middlemarch, George Elliot
37.  The Iliad, Homer
38.  The Odyssey, Homer
39.  1776, David McCullough
40.  To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
41.  Reforming Marriage, Douglas Wilson
42.  The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinback
43. 1984, George Orwell
44. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
45. The Old Man in The Sea, Ernest Hemmingway
46. Julius Caesar, Shakespeare
47. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, Alexander
48.  The Masque fo the Red Death, Edgar Allen Poe
49. The Pit and the Pendulum, Edgar Allen Poe
50. The Oval Portrait, Edgar Allen Poe
51. The Tell-Tale Heart, Edgar Allen Poe
52. The Gold Bug, Edgar Allen Poe
53.  The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar, Edgar Allen Poe
54. The Aeneid, Virgil
55. The Mill on the Floss, George Eliot
56.  The Gathering Storm, Winston Churchill
57.  My Dearest Friend, Love Letters of Abigail and John Adams
58.  Speaking for Themselves: The Personal Letters of Winston and Clementine Churchill
59.  A History of the Modern World, R. R. Palmer
60.  The Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen
61.  Gone with the Wind, Mitchel
62.  A Place of Grace, Susan Hunt
63.  Feminine Appeal, Carolyn Mahaney
64.  The Westminster Confession of Faith
65.  The French Revolution and Napoleon, Gershoy
66. The Magician’s Nephew, C.S. Lewis
67.  The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis
68.  The Horse and His Boy, C.S. Lewis
69.  Prince Caspian, C.S. Lewis
70.  The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, C.S. Lewis
71.  Silver Chair, C.S. Lewis
72.  The Last Battle, C.S. Lewis
73.  Henry IV, Shakespeare
74.  The Invisible Man, Ralph Ellison
75.  Catch 22,
76.  The Diary of a Young Girl, Anne Frank
77. Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck
78. The Master of Ballantrae, Robert Louis Stevenson
79. The Jungle, Upton Sinclair
80. The Mustery of Edwin Drood, Charles Dickens
81. Utopia, Thomas More
82. Jacob Have I Love, Katherine Patterson
83. A Kiss for Cinderella, J.M. Barrie
84. King Arthur and His Knights, Sir James Knowles
85. Queen Victoria: Her Life and Reign, John A. Cooper
86. The Ultimate Gift, Jim Stovall
87. What Mrs. McGillicuddy Saw!, Agatha Christie
88. The Ivory Door, A.A. Milne
89.  The Hiding Place, Corrie Ten Boom
90. Hadassah: The Girl Who Became Queen, Tommy Tenney
91. Darwin’s Black Box, Michael Behe
92. Christy, Catherine Marshall
93. The Wedding Journey, Walter D. Edmonds
94. The Story of My Life, Hellen Keller
95. Boy Meets Girl, Joshua Harris
96. Catherine Called Birdie, Karen Cushman
97. Daniel Deronda, George Eliot
98.  Old Fashioned Girl, Louisa May Alcott
99.  The Difficulty of Getting Married, Serena Blandish
100. Paradise Lost, John Milton
101. Paradise Regained, John Milton
Please notice that the first title, Wuthering Heights, is crossed off. :) I would write up thoughts about it if I could only decide what to think about that terribly depressing, extremely engrossing, thoroughly complexing tale. 
And my fiance and I have been working on our story, which you may now read in parts via our new blog. 
 It may change a few times in the next couple weeks, as I am known for my indecisiveness, but with less than 140 days til the wedding, it's a little over due. :) Enjoy!

When People are Big and God is Small

I'm always humbly reminded I serve a sovereign God when things like this happen.

I was pondering over thoughts from Ed Welch's book When People are Big and God is Small, today. My fiance and I read this book at the beginning of this year, and were both thoroughly enriched by the biblical truths within its pages. It provided some convicting and lightening conversations. We learned more about our own sinful hearts, and about each other.Today, however, the extent of my thoughts would not go very far, as I seemed to get stuck somewhere in the process of sorting out the mess my head created of itself today, but I knew I was not loving God rightly, and I had a hint of a feeling that it was because I was loving people incorrectly. 

I became rather frustrated with my own inability to sort out what I was thinking and feeling, so I turned to my iTunes library for some sermons resources. Sadly, it's very small, and none of the Keller sermons were what I was looking for, as great as they may have been. Normally, my next option would have been to find something online, usually at http://www.marshillchurch.org. But I wasn't looking for some urban, contextualized hype about how wretched the immorality in America is (as much as I love listening to Driscoll yell at his Seattle congregation). So, rather randomly, I went to my church's website-- something I've only done about twice (what I mean to say is I don't know why I went there) and came across this sermon. The title of it, Welch's own book title. God is good. Since Rev. Walicord expresses truthfully what I was trying to sort out in my thoughts and heart, I'll leave the rest of this post blank. Listening to this sermon would be 32 minutes well spent.

Redeemed for a Purpose

Forgetfulness is inherent in my nature. There are dozens upon dozens of stories of me forgetting something. Whether it was locking my keys in the car 4 times in less than a year, or even once completely forgetting to shut the car OFF before I went grocery shopping, I have stopped keeping track of my forgetfulness. One time my mom sent me into town with the express purpose of purchasing a bed rail for the then-2-year old who loved to throw herself about the bed in dangerous ways. Mom also gave another small list of household necessities. All items could be purchased at the same store, and she even had me call beforehand to make certain the rail we wanted was available. I arrived home an hour later without the bed rail. My forgetfulness cost us only an extra trip out the following day, and a sacrifice of pillows for the baby's bed that night. But it has been worse: When I forgot to open the garage door before backing our suburban out, Dad spent 2 long days, and several hundred dollars in repair... **ouch** Needless to say, I am slowly learning. And after some tears, and prayers, and complaints from family and friends (my forgetfulness quickly outgrew its "cute" stage) it is becoming difficult for me to forget to be more mindful.

But my forgetfulness was not so much a lack of memory, as it was an absence of mind. My brother liked to tease me that I was "physical here and mentally absent." As if I didn't realize who I was! Um... can I say he was often correct? I could become so absorbed in whatever was important in my thoughts at that moment, that the present soon had little consequence.

I say all this to make a point. Because, how easy is it for Christians in our inherent sinfulness to forget that we have been redeemed, purchased, saved, bought-- at a price. And that price was the blood and life of Jesus Christ.

When this is not at the forefront of our minds we forget, and we do things we would not otherwise do. We do things that do not show our minds are thinking upon the things of the Spirit.

Red Mountain Music, from Red Mountain PCA in Birmingham, AL came up with these lyrics as a timely reminder of who we are in Christ.

Come raise your thankful voice,
Ye saints redeemed with blood.
Leave earth and all its toys
And mix no more with mud.

O, goodness! Do we ever think of what it does to the name of Jesus when we mix our lives, justified and redeemed through his sacrifice, with the lowly mud of the world? The spotless robe he lays on us, we carelessly muddy because of absent-mindedness.

With heart, and soul, and mind
Exalt redeeming love.
Leave worldly cares behind,
and set your minds above.

Lift up your ravished eyes
And view the glory given.
All lower things despise
Ye citizens of heaven.

This verse pierces deeply, because it makes me think of what little regard I sometimes have for living excellently. This verse in the song reminds me of Philippians 4:8, "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." I thought this verse was over-used and had become redundant until my sister told me she was talking to a Christian friend of hers, quoted the verse and had her friend look at her baffled and then ask where in the Bible that was. Are we becoming so "safe," "accepting," and "accommodating" that we no longer teach, preach and share that our Lord God is holy and righteous, and wants us to be like him? We are citizens of a heaven, with the glory of the Lord to behold- do we live to show that?

Be to this world as dead,
Alive to that to come.
Our life in Christ is his,
Who soon shall call us home.

Dearly we're bought,
Highly esteemed
Redeemed with Jesus' blood


For my mom's birthday we had a girl's night out. Our grandma treated us to dinner, and then my sister, mom, grandma and I window shopped through the mall and admired pretty things. We ended the evening by seeing Julie and Julia. It was a blast. :) During the middle of our "shopping spree" we stopped at the Macy's clearance shoe selection. I set down the two dresses my sister and I had just purchases at the end of an aisle, and distracted my attention for a minute to a pair of adorable turquoise sandals. Then I saw a white pair... then a black... I really needed a black pair. Before much time had passed at all I had completely forgotten about the bag with our dresses, and was enjoying the great bargains and adorable shoes. It wasn't until my mom came up to me, grabbed my shoulder and asked where in the world I had put the dresses that my heart sank. I pointed to the end of the aisle. They weren't there. I pointed to another one, hoping my first choice had been mistaken. I quickly walked up and down everywhere, asked the cashier if anyone had turned in an Ann Taylor bag with two black dresses inside. Nothing. I finally sank into a chair beside my grandma in frustration and disappointment. (This is not the first time this has happened.) My mom, sister and grandma all looked at me with pity. "It was only for a minute! I just forgot." I cried. "Why would someone want to steal someone else's things?" My mom smiled a little, my grandmother's face was priceless, and my sister stifled giggles. Then, my mom revealed the bag, purposefully hidden from me. They had conspired to teach me a lesson. O, goodness was I a wreck. Mom handed the bag back to me, "Please, don't forget about it."

O, dear Christians! As trivial as it may seem now, we must realize, the righteousness of God is not to be taken lightly. We should not casually set it aside for things that seem to sparkle and glitter more brilliantly than it does. Heaven forbid it would take a steep backsliding-- falling deep into sin-- to realize the pricelessness of the treasure that is ours through and in Christ Jesus. We are not dearly bought to be left to fiddle ridiculously with the toys of the world. We are not highly esteemed through Jesus so that we can have freedom to live as we please, nor are we called citizens of heaven to live and accept the wickedness of a corrupt and perverse generation "in the name of Love." I am convinced God does not receive all the glory when we live as if His holiness is of no consequence to us.We were bought with a price, and we are to glorify God with our lives. Perhaps striking the balance, or finding that place that imitates Jesus,  speaks the truth in love, and still settles for nothing less than excellence is difficult. I know my life is evidence to the imperfectness of human flesh. Yet still... we are Saints redeemed. Can we remember that long enough to at least not defame the name of our Savior?

For, Dearly we're bought,
Highly esteemed.
Redeemed with Jesus' blood