Mission Statement

In classical sacrifices, the people get the good bits, and the gods get the refuse, the bits that would get thrown out otherwise.

Not our God. Leviticus (particularly Leviticus 3) describes the sacrifices that our LORD demanded from His people of Israel. God gets the kidneys, the tail, and all the fat. He gets the prime steak, He gets the best.

Today we do not literally give sacrifices of animals. For us the ultimate sacrifice has been made through our Lord, Christ Jesus. But should always be our ambition to do the same thing - to offer God the best of what we have, to offer Him the fat, and not the smoke and bones.

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Thoughts on Adoption

"Taking care of orphans is a command. In no translation I have ever read has it said, "Now, if you feel like it, and when your home is big enough, and when you have enough money, THEN you should take care of the orphans. Nope--my Bible says to take care of the orphans! Period. No questions asked. No if. No but. No maybe.


There is no excuse for the 147 million orphans around the globe. No excuse. Where are the Christians to take care of them? There sure are enough of us to take care of the problem. If only we would get it."

From this post on No Greater Joy Mom.

Reece's Rainbow writes:
"In the United States alone, 137 million people claim to be Christians of some denomination. If only 1% of the Christians in this country adopted just ONE CHILD, 1.37 MILLION CHILDREN from abroad would have loving, Christian families to grow up in."

I'm not in the US, and I've no idea what the statistics here in Australia would be. But that isn't really the point. We're commanded in Scripture to take care of those less fortunate, especially the widows and the fatherless.

I recently watched From Terror to Triumph, and one of the statements that really stood out to me was the statement that there were many Christians who didn't make it into Foxe's Book of Martyrs, but who are heroes in the eyes of God for doing what was right, taking in babies that had been abandoned to exposure and bringing them up as their own.

There is just so much to say here! People are so much more responsive to the Gospel when they are young. After all, Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it." (Mark 10:15). Adoption, especially of those who are deemed "special needs" (which can vary from simple and easily corrected problems to severe physical, emotional and social issues) shows the love that God has placed in our hearts.

But perhaps most of all, adoption is one way we can imitate our Lord - "For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship [also translated as adoption] And by him we cry, "Abba, Father". (Romans 8:15).

Monday, 14 December 2009

Audio Giveaway

At the moment, several of the blogs I regularly read have been mentioning the NCFIC "Sufficiency of Scripture Conference". Being out of the US means I can't even really consider going to a whole lot of these conferences, but I can (and often do) buy the audio afterward!

For those who weren't able to attend, you can purchase the audios here:

or visit their conference page...

And if you are interested in getting some audios for free then hop over to Life in A Shoe - which is hosting a giveaway for this event!

Monday, 7 December 2009

Saving Hailee

I've added a button. As many of you will know, I adore children, and adoption is an issue close to my heart. I recently learnt of this family who are aiming to adopt Hailee. Due to the changes in the policy of that country they need to get everything done as soon as they can, because at any point Hailee can be fostered out - in which case she is unlikely to survive.

Please consider donating, and please pray!


I met a traveller from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shatter'd visage lies, whose frown
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamp'd on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed.
And on the pedestal these words appear:
"My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!"
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
The lone and level sands stretch far away.

I re-read this poem recently, and was struck by how even the fallen know that their works will not last. Shelley was not exactly one of the great moralists of his era.

So many people work hard and build something. And yet, how soon these works fall. The only of the Wonders of the Ancient World that still remain are the pyramids, and they are (a still impressive) shadow of their former glory.

The thing is, without Christ, nothing will last. A building is only a day of extreme weather away from distruction. Paintings are stolen, neglected, distroyed. All that we make, God can unmake, and in a second, when we least expect it.

What are you building? Will it last more than a year? Beyond your lifetime? Into eternity? Or will it disappear in the sands of time?

Only one life, will soon be past; only what's done for Christ will last.

Monday, 23 November 2009

I Don't Understand

Psalm 131
My heart is not proud, O LORD,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.
But I have stilled and quieted my soul;
like a weaned child with its mother,
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, put your hope in the LORD
both now and forevermore.

This is my current memory work. I've been working on this passage for a while, as I'm having a bit more difficulty concentrating at the moment than I was a few weeks ago. I'm also reading "Faith on Trial: Studies in Psalm 73" by Martyn Lloyd-Jones.

And it really struck me about how I so often complain in my heart about the way things are going for me. I was pretty sick for two years (turns out it was undiagnosed allergies), always tired, stressed beyond belief from work, and single whilst a lot of my friends (Christian and non-Christian) are beginning relationships. It's all been hard for me.

The thing is, I so often whinge to myself about these facts. It's not fair. Why is all this happening to ME. I don't UNDERSTAND.

The thing is, I'm not always called to understand. Often we will, later down the track, but often we won't. Either way doesn't help us now. We are not called to understand everything. We are called to be obedient. We are called to do what God has asked us even though it would be so much easier to do things in a manner that doesn't reflect Christ.

God says in Isaiah, "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways," declares the LORD. "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." (Isaiah 55:8-9) God's ways are not always understandable for us. His purposes are not always clear. But we know that "All things work together for the good of those who love Him" (Romans 8:28a) even the things that we do not like or understand.

It remains for me to still and quiet my soul, and to trust more completely in the LORD.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Do Not Be Afraid

We are told many, many times throughout scripture to not be afraid. It doesn't mean we won't die, but it means that no matter what God is with us, and He is working out all things in our life according to His plan.

But many Christians are afraid.

I remember a conversation I had with a teenage girl from my church. She was very admiring of my desire to have lots of children. I'm used to that. People either think I'm loony or I'm a saint.

I told her why I believe that children are a blessing, and that that had made up my mind in the decision to have as many of them as God should choose to give me. She agreed with me. God said children were a blessing from God. We should not actively reject God's blessings.

And then she said it.

"I could never have more than two children. I mean, the great tribulation will come, and they'll probably be killed, and I'd be devestated."

I couldn't believe it. Seriously, I couldn't. Now, I don't have any particular view of end times. My philosophy is "God wins". I don't currently understand the book of Revelation, though I hope to with future readings and illumination from the Holy Spirit. But the thing is, IT DOESN'T MATTER.

We need to obey God regardless of external circumstances. Now, if I have 20 children, and every one of them gets killed in the great tribulation, then that is God's business. I need to be obedient to the Scriptures as I see them. And I can be confident that no matter what, God has all things under His control, and that all things are for His greater glory.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Are You Idle?

I have often thought that the best of Christians are found in the worst of times. And I have thought again that one reason why we are no better is because God purges us no more. Noah and Lot - who was as holy as they in the time of their afflictions? And yet who was so idle as they in the time of their prosperity?
- John Bunyan

So many of us are idle. I know that I frequently am. And there are few times when we are idle that we don't end up drifting into sin. After all, one of the deadly sins is SLOTH. But that's not the only one that being idle will lead to. An awful lot of sins would be avoided if we were not being so idle.

I'm not saying be busy for the sake of business, but what are you doing with your time? Are you doing anything? Is what you are doing worthwhile?

The big problem for a lot of my generation is idleness. We don't need to work in order to survive - even for those who do nothing they are extremely unlikely to die from starvation, or general necessity. Indeed, most people have far more than they can ever use, and far more leisure time than they need. That time gets filled with idleness.

For many people this means rubbish entertainment. Bad TV, dodgy movies, violent computer games, and mindless internet surfing, which can easily lead to active sinful behaviours.

What is the alternative? As I said, don't just be busy. But DO be productive!

What can you do? Do it! There are lots of things that need doing - books need to be written, people need food that tastes good and is nutritious. Gardens are frequently neglected (I know mine is!). Read a book on a new topic. Learn a new skill. Help the needy. Craft. Clean. And remember Who we are ultimately working for:

Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.
Colossians 3:23-24

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Money and Missions

Did you know that the average Christian spends less than $1 in a thousand on foreign missions?

Now, I'm not denying that there are needs in the West, material and spiritual, and that there are no doubt people who would rather give money to help ease homelessness etc in Australia (or the US, or UK, or where-ever). There are those who literally need every dollar they can to survive. There are those who save in order to adopt the orphan literally into their own home - a process that is far from cheap.

But still - less than $1 in $1000! I honestly don't think that is more than what unbelievers give.

I would give just over 1.35%, not including one off donations. That's more than 10 times the general rate, and yet I look at that number and I am appalled. I have a LOT of stuff, I have plenty of food. I may save for a future adoption (I'm over 2/3 of the way there) but STILL.

If one of you says to him, "Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed," but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? (James 2:16) What kind of percent do you give to missions (or for my non-Christian friends, to charity), and is that really enough?

Monday, 21 September 2009

Jules Verne vs Edgar Allan Poe

I recently read Master of the World by Jules Verne. The book was interesting, but most interesting was the introduction. This stated:

"And the irony is that Edgar Allan Poe, a materialist, is best know (sic) for his tales of the supernatural; while Jules Verne, a convinced Catholic, has no supernatural elements in his stories. Verne believes in God, but expresses his belief in divine Providence through reason and explorations of the wonders of a logical and orderly universe, where science is the key to greater understanding of reality and of human progress." (Introduction by Robert A W Lowndes).

I don't think that this is ironic. Edgar Allan Poe was determined to deny the reality of God. In order to deny that reality he was willing to admit the supernatural. In contrast, Jules Verne (who was far from perfect in his view of God) believed that God had ordained laws, and that just as we can depend on God we can depend on His laws for a consistant reality. Gravity consistently applies, because God is who He is.

There are few things as reality-denying as a hardened atheist.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Psalm 1

1 Blessed is the man
who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

I've been thinking about this recently. You know, for many Christians it is enough to do the first verse. To not walk in the counsel of the wicked, or stand in the way of sinners, or sit in the seat of mockers. And these are important things. I'm not denying that - indeed, I wish more Christians would actually apply verse one of this Psalm.

But it isn't ENOUGH. We need to be meditating on the law of the LORD, day and night! Staying away from immorality is not enough, like Sodom did with Lot, it will draw us closer, bit by bit, until we are immersed in it, even if still repulsed by it.

No, we need to have God's word in our mind, contantly reminding us of His ways, so that we may not sin against God (I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you - psalm 119:11). That is what will keep us from being drawn into the counsel of the wicked.

The thing is, memorising Scripture is not easy. Especially if you want more than a verse here and there, but want passages, chapters, even whole books of the Bible to be in your heart.

It's something I'm working on. I don't have the level of passages memorised that I would like. Here are some ways that I use that help me.

1. Music
This is one of the easiest ways. Choose a passage and either find a song for it or make one up yourself. The main problem with this is that many Scripture songs are either very tacky or annoying (so you don't WANT to be meditating on them day and night) or they only have an isolated verse or two in them. Which if you want to be memorising passages is not great.
One group I like is Sons of Korah. They set entire psalms to music - pretty much word for word, usually NIV version - which is beautiful to listen to!

2. Write it out and Just Do It!
The other method I'm using sucessfully at the moment is to write out a passage on a piece of card and carry it around with me. Writing it out helps me to remember it a bit better. I then am able to look at it throughout the day. At the moment I spend two hours of my work day putting children to sleep - and this means I have time to bring out the card and read over it, slowly commiting it to memory. On one good day I memorised all of Psalm 1! Yay!

So, are you meditiating on the law of the LORD day and night? Do you even have enough Scripture memorised to be able to?

Monday, 14 September 2009

Just Finished!

This is a knitted plastic bag I've been working on. I finished it this morning. My fingers are just about blistered. Knitting with plastic is tricky.

Now I get to continue sewing my knitted cream and black lion! Pictures when I'm finished!

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

Single Women and the Picture of Christ and His Church

Like many (though far from all) conservative Christians, I believe that a Christian marriage should be a reflection of the relationship between Christ and His Church, and that this will mean that the wife will submit to the husband, and that the husband will lay down his life for his wife.

Except that at the moment, I'm not married, so it doesn't apply to me.

Or doesn't it?

The thing is, we're kinda without the Bridegroom at the moment. The church, that is. He's in Heaven, reigning there. And while we have Love Letters and His Spirit, the actualy physical presence isn't there.

And yet the church is called to be faithful to Him, to be His Spotless Bride, to remember her first love for Him, to follow Him even to the shedding of blood.

I'm not married - I'm not even courting anyone. But I can still be a picture of Christ and His Church. I can immerse myself in the cleansing power of the Word. I can keep myself spotless for my husband. I can work to prepare for the day when I will be married. I can model the patience the church has as we wait for our Bridegroom - and who is worth all the wait!

Saturday, 5 September 2009

Soap Balls - Christmas Gifts for Kids to Make

I'm one of those sickening people who likes to be ready for Christmas early. I used to do my Christmas shopping in the after Christmas sales. It was nice, because I could get the person to check that I was getting exactly what they wanted, and by Christmas time they would have forgotten.

Now that I am sick and working I'm much more disorganised. It's September, and I'm only beginning to get ready.

Here though is one of the easiest presents I know of. I made a type of these with the chickadees (my kinder students) and they LOVED it. Not only that, but it's SOAP. It's CLEAN! Wonderful!

All you need is some soap flakes, some oil, and some "additions". In the lot I just made I used lavender, along with some lavender oil and some olive oil. In the other version (made with the chickadees) we used cinnamon, poppy seeds and sesame seeds.

Mix the ingredients together. Add a small amount of water. Add less rather than more, because it's easy to add more as you go.

Squeeze the soap in your hands into small balls, and lay them out onto a tray or newspaper.

Beware! If they look nice someone will try to eat them! (One of my boys thought they looked like chocolate!)

Leave them to dry overnight. Then wrap them in little bags or cloth or tissue paper. And voila! Presents that almost everyone will love!

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Steiner Dolls

Last Tuesday, I went to a PD on making Steiner dolls.

First, we sewed up a tube, and stuffed it.

Then we divided it into two sections. In my later doll I used a rubber band, but for this one we used tapestry thread.

Then we cut a hole in the middle of a small piece of satin, and put it on the doll like a petticoat. We stitched it on the doll.

Then we cut a hole in a piece of muslin and put it also on the doll, then stictched it in place. We added another piece of muslin, doing the same thing, and arranging the top piece so that all of the petticoat is covered before stitching this second piece into place.

We chose a hair-piece, and stitched it to the middle of the head. We only need to cover the front of the head, as there will be a head-piece covering the back of the head.

Sew the hair to both sides of the head.

Fold up a smaller piece of muslin, and arrange into a head-piece shape that you want. It might be like a peaked cloak, or like a bonnet, or however you want. This doll has a peaked cloak hat, my next doll has more like a bonnet (picture later).

Decorate the head-piece as you like. This doll has lace flowers with sequins in the centre. Pretty! Decorate the neck band, and any other parts you want.

Draw or stitch on the eyes and mouth. Steiner dolls have no nose, a straight line for the mouth, and small stitches for eyes. The point is that children can project any kind of emotion onto the doll that they want. In order to get the eyes etc in the right spot, use pins as markers and check to see that you like the expression.

That's it!

Here's the doll I made today. I used the scraps from the holes in the middle of the muslin and satin pieces to make the flower..

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

On "Early" Marriage

I often find it strange being at work. I'm the only conservative Christian there, and rather ironically, I get along better with the other 'religious' people than most of the non-religious ones. The religious don't see life as one big me-fest, full of drugs of varying kinds, and spending every cent and then some on the all important ME.

But it often comes to the fore when I mention that my dream job is to get married and have children.

"Why? You're so young! Enjoy life!" is the typical response.

I am NOT young. I'm 25. Less than 100 years ago I would be considered an old maid. Old maid discussions aside (I don't think I'm quite over the hill yet), the idea that we should be waiting until we're older to get married is just plain silly.

Firstly, age does not determine readiness. Besides, who is ever "ready" for marriage, or children. No one feels, when getting married, or when having their first baby, that they are "up to it". That's because we aren't. We NEED God in order to do what He has called us to do - whether it be in marriage, child-rearing, or otherwise.

I also find it funny that the age in which you are "ready" keeps on getting pushed back. One of my work collegues said that she wanted to get married when she was "around 35." She then quickly revised her date, because it was only 3 years away, and she didn't think she would be "ready" by then. I thought that was sad.

Not only that, but it's easier to be ready earlier. The older you are, the more set in your ways you are. Sorry, but it's a fact. So I should wait until I'm nicely set in my ways, and then marry someone who's a few years older than me (and therefore slightly more set in his ways) and expect everything to be hunky-dory. I don't think so.

And finally, I find the above statement a bit degrading. It's like saying, "I've enjoyed life. Have the dregs." Great, I just WANT to marry you now. You've done all the good stuff, and now I get to be with you while you get fat and old and die. Yay. (I don't object to those things - indeed, in a marriage they are to be expected, but the idea that thats what to expect, and nothing more.)

Marriage isn't like that, or at least it shouldn't be. It's a partnership under God, to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to exercise dominion for the glory of God. And that can be achieved every bit as easily (indeed often more easily) when done "younger" than "older"

Monday, 20 July 2009


I'm often requested by one of the children. They want help, often for things that are not my favourite things to be doing. Today, George wanted his bottom wiped. He called out, "Sam, Sam, Sam, Sam," until, I heard him, all the way from upstairs, where I was having my break. I reminded George that I needed to have my cup of tea, and that he could do the job himself, he could get one of the other teachers to do it, or he could wait until I came back down stairs. George looked at me and said, "I want to wait for you Sam."

And that made me think. Am I willing to wait for God? I mean, I want a whole lot of things from God. Some of them are even pretty important. :P But seriously, when I want stuff, am I willing to wait? Not for the thing itself, but for the giver? Am I willing to wait until God gives it to me? Or am I determined to get what I want as fast as possible, even if I have to do the job myself or get it done by someone who doesn't care, who doesn't have that relationship with me?

Am I willing to wait for God?

From Matthew Henry

Regarding Genesis 1:14-19
How ungrateful and inexcusable are we, if, when God has set up these lights for us to work by, we sleep, or play, or trifle away the time of business, and neglect the great work we were sent into the world about!...

Those are most valuable that are most serviceable, and those are the greater lights, not that have the best gifts, but that humbly and faithfully do the most good with them... The best and most honourable way of ruling is by giving light and doing good: those command respect that live a useful life, and so shine as lights.

Sunday, 28 June 2009

Why Jesus is Better than a Boyfriend

Yes, the title isn't the most reverent perhaps. But I have been thinking about it now that several of my friends are in various stages of courtship. It is easy for me to feel lonely or left out, especially as I want so much to be married. So I thought I'd make this list. It has 25 items, because I'm 25 years old!

1. Jesus died for me. Most boyfriends won't.
2. Jesus loves me.
3. Jesus is always right.
4. He's paying for the wedding. (See the book of Revelation.) :P
5. He's also giving me a city to live in.
6. If Jesus keeps me awake all night talking, he'll give me energy to get through the next day... unlike some people's boyfriends.
7. Jesus thinks that I am most beautiful when I show a meek and quiet spirit.
8. He wrote me one massive love letter.
9. He has given me beautiful clothing... and this kind of white looks good on me.
10. He's always ready to listen to me.
11. He's actually interested in my problems.
12. He can solve my problems, and He'll do it whenever I ask.
13. He provides for me.
14. He loves kids even more than me!
15. He counts even the hairs on my head.
16. He likes me to talk to total strangers about Him.
17. Other people are able to listen to me wax eloquent about Jesus and not be completely (but politely) bored. (Unless they're not Christian).
18. I can talk about how wonderful Jesus is in front of the whole church. Boyfriends can only be talked about in front of the whole church when you get engaged, married, have a baby, or if it's Valentine's day.
19. When I start looking like Him, it's a good thing.
20. He think's grey hair is a crown. Well, it's not neccessary now, but I like to think ahead.
21. He makes sure that everything works together for my good.
22. He has promised to never leave me, nor forsake me. Boyfriends and husbands leave, even if it's just to go to work.
23. I ignored Him for years, and He STILL loves me!
24. He literally keeps me alive.
25. He gave me the entire world to enjoy and to take dominion of for Him!

Was there ever anyone to compare, with this, my Jesus!

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Protest Lives

I was at the Portarlington Celtic festival on the long weekend, and it was incredible. Amongst other things, I found a harp teacher, which is good, because then I might actually practise.

She played, amongst other things, her "protest song" - which being on the harp was this lovely soft lyrical piece. She explained it as being a statement against all the ugliness of the world.

Is that what we do? Do we, as Christians, make a statement against all that is ugly in the world, in our own small ways? Do we make our houses homes? Do we make our churches families? Do we make what we can of our lives beautiful - especially in opposition to all the darkness that surrounds us?

In many cases, it is the little things that make a difference - doing the washing up so that the kitchen looks nice for when you wake up in the morning, tidying things away, smiling rather than frowning, and above all, meditating on the person, the character, and the Word of Chirst?

Are we living our own "protest songs"?

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Kitchen Tip Tuesdays: Dish Space

Who doesn't have enough space for your dishes? Okay, maybe just me. But I never seem to have enough space for the washed-up dishes to drain, especially if I am wanting to do some more cooking.

I found a solution. Put the drainer over the sink. Hey Presto! More space!

I have a double sink, so I don't move the drainer away at other times, but the principle is the same.

Ignore the fact that I need to scrub my sink.

Monday, 1 June 2009

Making Your Home A Haven: Smaller Projects

Well, with this week half off, my morning routine is effectively not happening this week. But for other stuff, I have more time. Yay for time!

1. Set a timer for 15 minutes and work on cleaning or organizing in an area that you dread getting started on.
I worked on the kitchen. Washing up done, a few bits and pieces put away, and general tidying up done. No photos - the kitchen is still pretty hideous.

2. Do something you've been procrastinating about.
As I wasn't due into work until 11, this meant... da-da-da-duh! The banks were open! I had two cheques which I banked!

3. Clean up or organize a pile. A pile of dishes, a pile of laundry, a pile of papers... whatever needs your attention most urgently! :)
I went through my tax papers. Not quite all done, but 95%. Now, to get to the last 5%... This actually cleared 3 piles - the tax papers, the old financial papers, the newer ones... my bedroom floor is quite a good deal clearer, which I really, really love.

4. Spend some quality time with your family.
It's my birthday today, so this is going to be happening. I'm hanging with friends now - hey, I'm gen Y - and will be seeing my mum tomorrow and the rest over the long weekend (i.e. from this Friday onwards.)

Now to eat cake!

Saturday, 30 May 2009

A week of goodness

I have ten days of sleep-in! Nine now, I suppose, given I just slept in. I swapped shifts with one of my co-workers, meaning I am working only half days, from 11-3. Sleep in, home early. Lovely!

Me being me, I have a list of things I want to do for the week. I think I've gone slightly overboard.

- Read Cancer Ward
- Read The Rights of Man
- Read Requiem for a Nun
- Read The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Hat
- Read Ring of Bright Water
- Read Revolutions in Worldview
- Read The Feast of July

I'm also hoping to get through several art books, a few cook books, to snd a fair amount of time reading the Bible, and listen to all the audio sermons I have building up on my computer. Over 40 I haven't listened to.

I also hope to cook, to tidy through the house, run a few dozen errands, and clean. And blog about the books. They're a wide range, and I probably won't keep serveral of them - I don't know how I'm going to like Feast of July - it's by H.E. Bates, whose writing I love but whose themes I detest. I picked more 'heavier' books than I normally would, because I have so much more time. It'll be interesting.

On to my reading!

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Who's Greater Glory Are You Working For?

It amazes me how God uses things from our less-than-perfect past - even from before we become Christians - to speak to us today.

I recently was thinking about pride, and remembered watching Charmed. Not exactly a Biblical TV show. But God was able to use the memory of one episode to teach me.

You see, in this episode, the three sisters (and the husband of one of them) get infected with one of the seven deadly sins. One gets lust, one sloth, one gluttony, and one pride. They don't know that they have them, but they can get rid of them if they do one truly selfless act, in opposition to the vice they have been infected with.

The two sisters with lust and gluttony get free, as does the slothful husband. The girl with pride does not, and has to be rescued.

Later, they are analysing the events, and the girl with pride says, "I don't understand. You all did one selfless act and got free, but I did MANY selfless acts, and I didn't."

"Perhaps it was because it was all for the greater glory of Prue," another of the sisters says.

That's the real issue with pride. It's all about OUR greater glory. It isn't about God at all, even if we are 'serving' him. It's about US.

Who's greater glory are you working for?

Friday, 15 May 2009


I used to wonder about my friends. Seriously, we're all a bit loopy. Okay, a lot loopy. But we're all the kind of highly intelligent, highly educated young adults that most people wish their children would grow up to be. Most of us play musical instruments, speak a second langauge, and pretty much all go/went to uni.

My church friends are similar - loopy, but of the incredibly smart kind.

It used to get me thinking. Because in the past, changes usually came about through groups of friends. The Reformers were frequently in contact with each other. The literary 'giants' of the lat 19th and early 20th century all hung out together. The revolutionaries of France and Russia all knew each other long before they actually took over their respective countries. Why is this?

It's like Ecclesiastes 4:10, If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Friends achieve things together. They encourage each other when the other is down, they help each other in their work. When one is successful he often will use his influence to help the others.

Friends help each other - but not always in the right way. I mentioned earlier the literary 'giants' of the late 19th and 20th century. Sure, they produced some amazing novels and other works of literature. But they didn't exaclty help each other in many other ways. Let's just say that the moral life of those novelists wasn't exactly up to par.

Who are your friends? And do they encourage you in the faith? Or do they drag you away from it?

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Giveaway at Life In A Shoe

Kim C of Life in a Shoe is giving away a complete set of Reclaiming the Culture DVDs from Vision Forum.

Pretty exciting! Hop on over and enter. Though choose somethig other than Christianity and Science Fiction - I want that one ;p

Monday, 4 May 2009

Simon the Sorceror

I'm reading the book of Acts at the moment, and in chapter 8 (Acts 8:9-25) there is a character named Simon the Sorceror. He's usually held up as a hugely evil person, someone who tries to buy the Holy Spirit.

But he's not. Simon once had been a sorceror; he had had all the people of Samaria impressed with his powers. But he has turned away from his past sins and has become a Christian. He's even been baptized, which was not exactly the safest thing to do. He's probably given up a fair amount to become a Christian.

And yet his past holds him back. He sees the power of the Holy Spirit and he wants it. And he wants to be able to give it to others. He wants it so much he offers what he can in return for it. He offers money.

Think about it. Money is probably Simon's only material sercurity. Most early Christians gave up family and friends and worldly position - and given Simon's past life there is little doubt in my mined that he had to give up many of his. He's part of a religious group that will see you killed by several different people. He's given up his livlihood (sorcery). Money is all that Simon is likely to have. And he wants to give it up for the Holy Spirit.

Simon is heartily rebuked for this. Peter says, "You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin."

Simon is not completely hardened; he asks Peter to pray that none of this will happen to him.

Two thoughts:
1. How many others today have had more than slightly shady pasts that hinder their walks with God? I know my past gets in the way if I let it.

2. How many Christians try to 'buy' things from God - His Holy Spirit, His favour, even His grace - with things that are precious to them... revealing hearts that are not right before the LORD; hearts that value both what they are offering and what they hope to receive more than they do the sacrifice of Christ.

Thursday, 23 April 2009

Pro-Life and Anti Abortion

I've been thinking recently about the positions on abortion. And I realised that the reason why there is so much confusion is because everyone thinks there are two positions - pro-life and pro-choice, and there are four.

There are those who are rabidly anti-child, who think that population control is the way to go, who sterilise themselves and others and who think that putting hormones in the water is a great idea. Seriously, there are people who think all of these things. Some of them are individual cranks who have no more impact on others than anyone else. But some are 'intellectuals' with the ears of politicians and other decision makers. I think of this position as the 'pro-death' position.

Then there are the pro-choice people. These are the mostly reasonable people who think that abortion is a terrible thing but that being 'forced' to have an unwanted baby is worse. Being a comparatively recent convert (I became a Christian 3 years ago) means that I know several people in this category. Most of them would never have an abotion themselves, but they believe that women get to choose. This group I call the pro-choice group. They are more open to discussion and influence than the pro-death group. They are also the largest group out of the four, at least from my impressions.

The third group I call the anti-abortion movement. They believe that life starts at conception (except for a few, who beleive that life starts at implantation) and that abortion is murder, or at the very least manslaughter. Sounds good so far. But they tend to be all for contraception, including the pill, which causes chemical abortions in a small but significant amount of cases - often without the mother's knowledge. This group does not always value children; it just doesn't want to kill them.

The final group I call the pro-life group. They don't just think that abortion is wrong, they think the whole attitude of not having/wanting children is wrong. That contraception is an attempt to control our own lives rather than submitting to God's will.

No wonder there is so much confusion! There are fours positions, not just two. The sooner we realise this the sooner the abortion debate can be clarified and we can show the world the sanctity of human life.

In the mean time, be fruitful yourself. Nothing shows abortion to be a lie as much as the blessing of children being openly enbraced!

Family Dynasties

I've been thinking a bit about family dynasties (and similar 'grouping' dynasties) recently. Yeah, I know, not exactly what most 24 year old singles think about.

But seriously, there are a whole LOT of family dynasties in the Bible. There are the obvious ones and the less obvious ones.

King David is a big one. Not just because he's the king and the ancestor of Jesus. Not even because his descendants are kings after him. Think purely about king David's own time. Many of the people who were close to him were related to him. I mean, his head-of-military is Joab - his nephew. His sons are mentioned as serving as officials. Now, King David didn't promote just anyone (even if they were related - he makes other people head of the army at various points, and then Joab has them killed). His family by and large share his vision. They don't always go about it in the best way (his sons for example) but they want a unified Israel. That's their vision.

The Rechabites (Jeremiah 35) are another such family. They are following the commands not merely from a few generations before, but from 200 years back! And the family are greatly blessed for their continued obedience to their forebears.

In the New Testament there are a great many family dynasties too. Timothy's mother and grandmother school him in the faith, even though his father is an unbeliever.

But I think the obviosu spiritual powerhouse family is that of Jesus. Seriously, what kind of family has Jesus, the virgin Mary, Zachariah and his wife Elizabeth, John the Baptist, James and Jude (apostles but not disciples, and half brothers to Jesus). And there are people who think that James and John are also related to Jesus (cousins - see John 19:25-27 - the mother of the beloved disciple, John, is the sister to Jesus' mother - though they have the same first name, which is seriously unoriginal of Jesus's grandparents if so). Seriously, spiritual POWERHOUSE.

History shows family dynasties too. Not just royal ones, but spiritual ones, sientific ones, and artistic ones. The Wesley brothers come to mind for a spiritual family. RC Sproul snr + jnr also spring to mind. Most people know about them (both sets), so I won't talk about them. But they are far from the only ones - especially now that many churches are seeing a revival in this area as fathers turn their hearts to their children and children to their fathers (Malachai 4).

In the non-spiritual realm there are familiy dynasties too. Charles Dickens' great granddaughter is an author, as is the great granddaughter of Anthony Trollope. The only Curie that most people know about nowdays is Marie Curie, but her husband Pierre was a scientist too (and they won Marie's first Noble prize together), as was one of their daughters, that daughter's husband, and both of their children.

Family dynasties happen ALL the time. The question is - what KIND of spiritual dynasty are we building and preparing to build...?

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Bus Drivers, Boyfriends, and Giving Glory to God

I catch the bus to and from work everyday. Now, most of the drivers regularly do my route, and so they know me and know where I get on and get off (which is very useful if I'm running a few minutes late - they stop even not at a bus stop!)

Anyway, because I moved on Tuesday, I didn't get off at my normal stop. I then didn't get off at my second common stop (the one near my parents and care groups). So the driver questioned me. So I told him I moved.

"With a boyfriend?"

I told him no, I was Christian, and consequently was not going to be living with a boy.

"But you have a boyfriend?"

I told him no.

"You need to be less into this Christian thing. A pretty girl like you should have a boyfriend, and out having fun."

I said I didn't think that that was a good thing for me to be doing as I was a Christian. And that I wasn't going to stop being a Christian just so I could get a boyfriend.

He then proceeded to say all the usual anti-Christian things - and ended with the question, "I mean, what are we here for?"

I said that the answer was to glorify God and enjoy him forever. I briefly (VERY briefly) explained, then it was my stop.

On the walk home I began thinking about giving glory to God. And I realised that my waiting (albeit very impatiently) for a boyfriend brings glory to God. Everyone who meets me knows within a few minutes that I love kids, that I can't wait to be married and taking care of my home. But by waiting I show to this bus driver and the world that God is better. That I value God more highly than a boyfriend, or fun times, or anything that the world has to offer.

Monday, 13 April 2009

Making Your Home A Haven: Evening Routine

Mostly I've been successful with going to bed on time - though not at church camp the past few days.

It does make a big difference in how I function the next day if I go to bed on time. And I much prefer functioning well ;)

This week's challenge is to create an evening routine.

1. Tidy living room
2. Make lunch for tomorrow
3. Tidy kitchen
4. Clean face, brush teeth etc
5. Bible reading
6. Lights out

Thursday, 9 April 2009

What Are Our Goals

I've been thinking a lot about goals recently. What ARE our goals? What are MY goals?

I've kind of come to a stand still here - my main goal was always to have children, but I can't exactly do that on my own here. And as there appear to be no prospects on THAT horizon, I often allow everything else to slip, especially when things get difficult.

The goals I have to marry and have children, to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the LORD, to vbe a helpmeet to my husband - they are noble goals. But if I only focus on them I'm not doing what I can now.

So what are my goals?
- To spend time in the Word every day, with the aim of reading about 10 chapters a day. This would mean that I'd read the Bible at least twice a year.
- To save a significant part of my income in order to prepare for the fees associated with an international adoption. (I have a dollar goal per pay packet, but for obvious reasons, I'm not posting that.)
- To reform my speech and thought patterns so that I more accurately reflect Christ. This isn't easy in the workplace I'm in - there is a lot of swearing when the kids are not around (and sometimes when they are - sometimes from the kids!) but I am making progress.
- To be bold in speaking about Christ. This is something I always need to work on.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

WFMW: Easter Egg Hunts

Easter Egg hunts are fun, but can easily lead to... well... chaos. Especially with multiple children, who differ in egg hunting qualities.

My family have 4 kids, with 5 for a number of years when my cousin lived with us. There was over a ten year age range. And we FOUGHT over Easter Eggs. So and so STOLE my eggs! I can't FIND any! Whah whah whah!

Do you know what we did? Easter eggs in different colours.

Mum bought 5 sets of eggs, green, yellow, blue, red, and purple. Now you couldn't steal anyone else's without getting caught, which meant that there were no more accusations. The older kids got the harder colours to see (I was always green, and had to start a full minute after all the others - I was good) and the younger kids got colours that easily stood out.

It also meant that you didn't miss any eggs, only to find them in the garden three weeks later. (Although little brothers still are willing to eat them!)

Colour coded Easter Eggs. It Works for Me.

Friday, 3 April 2009

Frugal Friday: Clean Skin

I've never had 'perfect' skin. Now that I'm approaching a quarter of a century I'm not getting many pimples (thank goodness for THAT) but I still get a large number of blackheads. Yay.

Recently I learnt how to get rid of them. And it is CHEAP.

When I have a shower I cleanse my face, then take about a teaspoon of bicarb soda and mix it with a little warm water. I then scrub my face with it for about a minute. I rinse my face. I do this about every two days, and my skin is so much clearer now that I do.

- Bicarb tastes bad. Keep your mouth closed.
- Bicarb stings your eyes. Keep your eyes closed.
- Bicarb is very drying. Make sure you apply mosturiser afterwards.

Seriously, what kind of face mask can you buy for the price of bicarb? Now that's frugal.

Tuesday, 31 March 2009

Thoughts on Purity

Today I was thinking on purity. So often today we think of purity as a lack - someone who is pure is someone who hasn't had sex. This is appalling. Firstly, because it is taking our definition of an important term from the world. Secondly, because there are many people who are 'impure' by that definition who are nothing of the sort, and thirdly, because there are many who are 'pure' by that definition who are nothing of the sort.

Finally, and for me a very important aspect, the idea that purity is all over once you've had sex, means that for many there becomes no point to being pure; you're just trying to be something you can't. This was something I found dificult - I was just short of 22 when I became a Christian. I wasn't bad by the world's standards, but then, they're not exactly God's standards.

Purity is more than body. Purity comes across in our words, and it begins from our heart (like pretty much everything else). For those of us who have fallen before (and it's far more than those who are vigins) we need to regain purity.

In Ephesians 4:28 the thief is not only told that he must no longer steal, but that he must give to those in needs. Those who lack purity not only need to refrain from impure behaviour, words and thoughts, but they need to REPLACE those behaviours, words and thoughts with pure and godly ones.

Psalm 10

In his arrogance the wicked man hunts down the weak, who are caught in the schemes he devises... He lies in wait near the villages; from ambush he murders the innocent, watching in secret for his victims. He lies in wait like a lion in cover; he lies in wait to catch the helpless; he catches the helpless and drags them off in his net. His victims are crushed, they collapse; they fall under his strength.

He says to himself, "God has forgotten; he covers his face and never sees." Arise, LORD! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless. Why does the wicked man revile God? Why does he say to himself, "He won't call me to account"? But you, O God, do see trouble and grief; you consider it to take it in hand.

The victim commits himself to you; you are the helper of the fatherless.

verses 2, 8-14.

When I was reading this Psalm this morning on the bus it really hit me on how applicable this psalm is to the modern day abortion situation. The victims of abortion (primarily the babies, but the mothers as well) are caught in a trap, one deliberately laid for them. It comes out every now and then how Planned Parenthood etc actually add to their bottom line by encouraging behaviours that lead to abortions. Many girls are lied to, then make what they are told is "the best decision" only to have their babies killed and their own souls shredded.

The wording "crushed" really hit me. After all, that's what a live-birth (aka late term) abortion does. It crushes the baby, and chops him into bits. Horrific. These children are, for all extents and purposes, fatherless, just as the psalm says, and I have highlighted.

Sometimes it seems that God is not doing anything about this issue, one that I and many others care so deeply about. But we know that this is not true. God cares for every person - he counts the very hair on our heads.

But as the psalm goes on to state: The LORD is King for ever and ever; the nations will perish from his land. (verse 16). The LORD is doing a work here, one that we cannot even begin to understand. But one 'result' is the nations are perishing - the ungodly are literally killing themselves, whilst the godly embrace the blessing of children. Truly, the meek SHALL inherit the earth.

And no matter what, our God reigns from on high, even over such atrocities as murder of millions.

Monday, 30 March 2009

Making Your Home A Haven

This week's challenge is making a bedtime. I need to be up at 6AM, and I do need plenty of sleep, especially as winter is coming that for me that's going to mean meltdown. At the same time I have several things on during the evenings of the week, and there is a need to get bits and pieces done at home once I actually GET home.

Consequentally, my aim is to be in bed (lights out) by 10PM, with a cutoff time of 10:30PM - the only exception being Friday night, as I have Scots which doesn't even finish until 10:30.

ARRRGH! Less than 3 hours before bed!

Sunday, 29 March 2009

2 Chronicles 20:35-37:

"Later King Jehoshaphat of Judah made an alliance with King Ahaziah of Israel, who did evil.They agreed to make large seagoing merchant ships; they built the ships in Ezion Geber.Eliezer son of Dodavahu from Mareshah prophesied against Jehoshaphat, “Because you made an alliance with Ahaziah, the Lord will shatter what you have made.” The ships were wrecked and unable to go to sea."

This short passage really spoke to me when I read it last night. This was a mostly good king, who loved God and who cared for his people. But he made an alliance with a person who was known to be unrighteous, and as a result he suffered.

Today many people do the same thing as King Jehoshaphat. They make business alliances with people who are known to be ungodly. They spend their money at places that send a portion of that money for causes that are diametrically opposed to Biblical Principles. They see movies that use the name of our precious Lord as a swear word. And what's more, we PAY for the priviledge.

The thing is, we don't need to. There are alternatives. We can choose to shop at places that are run by Christians, and we can choose not to shop at places that support things like abortion or redefinitions of marriage, etc. We can choose NOT to see that movie that uses the name of Jesus as a swear word, or movies that promote ungodly behaviours like selfishness, lustfulness, and rebelliousness.

The thing is, most of us, to some extent, already do that. I deliberately avoid a lot of movies because I know they're a bit 'dodgy'. I get hot chocolates at Gloria Jeans over Starbucks because the owner of Gloria Jeans is a Christian who gives a large proportion of his money to Mercy Ministries, a crisis pregnancy organisation. Starbucks, on the other hand, has been known to support homosexual behaviours, etc.

Choosing where to shop is easy. It's important, but in the West we by and large have a choice and making that choice is easy. I mean, the ungodly do it! There is a reason that fair trade coffee and chocolate sells so well, and it isn't that it tastes good!

We need to TELL people the reasons we are shopping where we are. Fellow Christians, yes, of course. But the shop owners, the movie producers. Let THEM know why you are choosing not to frequent their stores or to see their movies. And just as importantly, let those that are doing good know that you appreciate what they are doing.

Friday, 27 March 2009

Women's Work

I am a 'working woman', someone who has to work outside of the home for my daily bread. I'm single, so no husband, and it wouldn't be suitable for me to live at home at this point. I very much long to be at home, and married, and having children. But at the same time, I need to make sure that I'm not wasting the time I have now.

For me, the most important thing regarding work was to always do something that will help me become a better helpmeet and mother. I paid my way through a lot of uni by cleaning for friends who needed extra help around the house. I was always a good cleaner, but that helped me improve. I can even clean just as well with a toddler following on 'helping' me. The skills I learnt there will be of immense use when I have a family of my own to take care of.

I studied education at uni. Not so much so that I could teach other children, or even so that I could teach my own children, but so that when the government ups the restrictions on homeschooling (which they attempt to do every ten or so years here in Victoria) I'm not likely to have any problems.

I currently work in childcare. And that is actually very useful for me. I can feed thirty hungry 3-4 year olds at once (which is highly unlikely to ever happen in a family situation). I can read stories brilliantly. I can take the temperatures of children by hand and tell if they have a fever. I can change nappies with a kid standing, lying on a change table (which I hate) or lying on the floor. I know how to be consistent even with kids who I can't apply most forms of discipline to (as I hope to go into foster care, this will be important) and who have no boundaries at home.

In current times many women do need to work. Far, far less than who claim they do (most married women do not need to), but there are single women, single mothers, and other women who need to earn a living themselves for various reasons. But even for them, they can do things that help them become better helpmeets to their husbands (future or current), better mothers to their children, and more homecentred people.

Making Your Home A Haven

Okay, I'm a little late with this one. But I have been meaning to do this, and here it is!

This week's task for making our home a haven is to come up with a morning routine of the same things that need to be done every day. Now, I used to have a great morning routine, but since getting sick again that's kind of disappeared.

So, my morning routine.

1. Exercise DVD (15 minutes)
2. Drink juice
3. Piano practise (10 minutes)
4. Harp practise (10 minutes)
5. Put away dry washing up
6. Check email (IF TIME)

Looking forwards to the next challenge for Making Your Home A Haven from Tammy's Recipes.

Sunday, 22 March 2009

Teaching and Training

Nowdays we neither teach nor train our children. Most people like it that way. We off-load the teaching onto someone else (school teachers, the media, even at a pinch teh church - though we don't like those 'religious' people having too much influence) and we ignore training altogether.

Teaching is important. It is vital that our children know truth, specifically the Truth. We need to teach our children that God's Word is the key to ALL of life, not just for two hours on Sunday. We need to teach them the Truths of Scripture, from Genesis to Revelation.

But how much more important is training?! Teaching refers to the mind, but training to the character. And the mind is important for living life as God intended it, but how much more so character! It has been said that if you teach a child to be the best accountant in existence, but neglect to give him morals, all you have done is create an embezzler who can never be caught.

And today no one bothers to train children. Obedience is not learnt, manners are not learnt, and above all, morals are not learnt.

And yet it is easier to feed the mind than to retrain character. I should know. I was nearly 22 when I became a Christian. And I can honestly say that overcoming the opinions of evolutionists, feminists, and other 'experts' was easy. Memorising Scripture is easy. But applying it - using it to shape my character, which had gone largely untended - THAT was hard.

How much easier it is to train a child! Proverbs 22:6 states: "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." How accurate! Children are wayward from their youth, but it is so much easier to root out the sins before they become ingrained habits. None of us are going to be perfect this side of paradise, but we make things easier or harder for ourselves and for our children.

Perhaps this is one of the most significant things about the homeschool movement. Not in the improved academics (though there certainly is that, and that is wonderful too) but in the abilitiy for the consistent work of parents towards a strong Christ-like character to be developed in our children.

Saturday, 14 March 2009

Bubonic Plague

I'm currently reading 1st Samuel. And in the 6th chapter I noticed the plague that visits the Philistines when they have captured the Ark of the Covenant seems remarkably like the plague. (I'm not the only person to think so.) There are the tumours and rats - the two big symptoms of the bubonic plague.

Which got me thinking about the plague. Now, I love history, and I always thought the plague was interesting. (Okay, I'm a little weird.) The main recorded outbreaks are the Black Death in Europe in the 1340s, and the outbreak in 1665-1666 in London, which ended with the Great Fire of London in 1666. In the Black Death between 30 and 60 percent of Europe's population died of the disease - and considering the high general mortality rate of the time, famine caused by lack of labourers, etc, it lead to massive social changes (including things like the death of Feudalism).

When did the Plague occur, and what else was happening at the time? Well, as I said, the biggest outbreak was in Europe in the 1340s. At that time the Roman Catholic Church was the only official church of Europe, with all churches and people that we would nowdays consider Protestant (though it wasn't a phrase in existence) were usually condemned as heretics and treated as such. The Great Schism had occured, seperating the Eastern church from the Western church, and the battle was primarily over Papal power (with Eastern churches seeing the Pope as a kind of first among equals and the Western Catholic churches seeing the Pope as essentially infallible) though other issues such as Iconoclasm (with the East worshipping icons, while the Catholics left that for a few centuries) and the marriages of parish priests (East allowed it, West didn't). The Crusades had begun, and had in the 4th Crusade resulted in Catholic Crusades sacking Constantinople, the centre of the Eastern Orthadox Church. The Popes were in battle with everyone (including each other - there was more than one) in a power-mad bid.

The Plague of London in 1666 was shortly after the overthrow of Puritan England (7 years before), a year after an act that prohibited dissenting Christians from meeting (unless all members of one family) and was in the same year of the Five Mile Act which prohibited Non-conformist ministers from going within 5 miles of their former parishes or in any towns, or to teach in any schools. The King of the time, Charles 2nd, was known for his lechery (he had 12 ACKNOWLEDGED illegitimate children) and for the hedonism of his court.

Notice anything about the religious lives here? The two best know examples of the plague took place in times where the true church was marginalised, outlawed, where many Christians lost their livings and their lives, whilst the ruling powers of church and state lived lives of debuchery.

So what does this say for today? The plague is no longer considered a worry - although it does appear, even in the medical Western world. Apparently there are an average of 13 reported cases in the US a year - with a 15% death rate. The plague is treated with antibiotics, but there have been cases of antibiotic-resistant strains. The death rates should those strains reach the Western world would be astromonical. About 30% of people who get the plague died historically. We would be looking at similar percentages. In addition, with the removal of so many diseases from our lives (a GOOD thing, believe me) we have lowered resistance. Very few non-Europeans have any genetic resistance, and so they are at even greater risk.

Are we in the same position as the 13th century and Enlgand in the 1660s? I would say we aren't far off it. The church is marginalised, with the church held up to ridicule and laws being slowly put into place that prohibit the free exercise of religion ('hate speech' laws against Muslims and homosexuals immediately spring to mind). The leaders of church and state are generally in states of appostacy and live lives of unrivalled luxury and licence. Think of all the politicians who are connected with sex scandals in recent times. Shades of Charles the 2nd, anyone?

Like the Philistines, like the people of Europe and of London in the past, we are all guilty of turning away from God, of thinking Him a joke, of something that we can have serve ourselves, to make ourselves more powerful. We, like them, are ripe for judgement.

Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Domestic Warriors

I'm in the book of Judges at the moment, and one of the things that struck me was how women were instrumental in the defeat of the enemy. Everyone knows about Deborah, but less people are familiar with Jael or with the unnamed woman who dropped a millstone on the head of an attacking warrior.

The thing is, Jael and the unnamed warrior defeated their enemies using domestic implements. Jael used a tent-peg, the unnamed woman a millstone used in the kitchen to grind grain into flour.

It really struck me how the most powerful ways we can take on the enemies of God is with domestic implements - with cooking, cleaning, bringing up our children. It isn't in taking part in the 'mans world' or in having our own careers. It is in being women who work hard, in their own homes, looking after them, and using the tools at hand to defend them if necessary.

LORD, help me to be such a woman!

Monday, 9 March 2009


For those of you who don't know me, I fall into an odd theological category. As in I think I'm the only one. Literally.

You see, I'm a Pentacostal Quiverfull. I.e. I believe that the Holy Spirit is active in the world and still gives spiritual gifts such as healing, prophecy, etc, etc, as well as the more traditionally accepted gifts such as joy and evangalism. In addition I believe that it is the duty of all Christians to be fruitful and multiply and exercise dominion all over the earth.

Well, most Pentacostals are not coming on board with the babies bit. I got to a strictly two babies church. (Though I'm working on that with all of my friends, who are only beginning to 'pair off', so maybe that'll change.) But Pentacostals are beginning to realise that while our mission involves the saving of souls, it is not limited to that. We are to go out and change every aspect of society, giving glory to God in every sphere of life. (The recent book Dominion! is an example of the turn-around us Pentacostals are experiencing.)

In all honesty, this is one of the things that has been lacking in much of the church, especially in the Western world. We allowed the God-haters (mostly 'liberals' though certainly not only) to take over everything. Seriously, those people know dominion. And if you want to know how much dominion they've got, just think about the state of politics, education, media, and entertainment in your country. Do you really think God-haters aren't running them all? Have you not seen the media endorsement of various 'green' parties and their ridiculing of all right-wing parties, Christian ones especially? (In Australia, the media portrays the Family First party as a joke.) Have you not heard anything about the advocation of abortion, family planning and all forms of 'birth control' in public (and many private) schools? Did you not notice the Oscar given to Sean Penn for his portrayal of a gay politican in Milk? Seriously, liberals UNDERSTAND dominion. And more than that, they exercise it.

It's time for Christians of all denominations to take dominion back. To take over the arts (as we've all seen can happen through films shown at the SAICFF). To educate our children in a way that teaches them God's ways, and simultaneously shows that us poor, uneducated stay-at-home-mums can do a far better job at academics than the politically correct teachers at the local state school.

And, sorry to say this Pentacostals, but the most effective way of achieving dominion is to do what God said just before He told us to take dominion - to be fruitful and multiply - having and raising children for the glory of God. Children who will go on and go further than we ourselves can, exercising dominon over more and more of society for Christ.

Thursday, 5 March 2009


I always find it interesting to find out what people do with their spare time. So many people claim to find various things important, yet they give little or no time over to it. I find this a lot, mostly because I read so much. I read around a book a day, though depending on what I'm reading I may read more or less. Most weeks I read between five and ten books.

Whenever people find this out they immediately say, "I wish I could read that much, but I'm just so busy, I don't have time."

Ah ha. Sure you don't.

Everyone has 24 hours in their day. These people have as much time as I do. They choose to do something different.

Interestingly, it's rarely people who I'd say were actually busy who say that. People with several children rarely say things like that. People who work two jobs never say things like that to me.

I find a lot of people who "don't have time" for books have plenty of time for aggressive computer games. They have seen all the most recent movies (including ones with dubious themes) and they see all of the hip TV shows. They'll go out every Friday night and Saturday night.

Now, TV and movies are not usually bad in and of themselves, at least not in small amounts, and there isn't anything wrong with meeting up with friends at any time, Friday night or otherwise. It's the fact that people will fritter their time away on these things. They will throw their time away on things that not only fail to really build themselves up, but frequently tear themselves down.

A wise woman builds her house, but a foolish tears it down with her own hands. (Proverbs 14:1) This applies to men too in many ways, but especially to women who are in command over a home. We all need to be doing things that build us up, that encourage us to grow in faith and knowledge of Christ. That means 'sacrificing' things we may like, such as some movies, TV, and computer games for things that are better for us, such as uplifting books, deep thoughts, and most importantly, the Word of God.

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Be Fruitful And Multiply!

I'm making my way through the Bible, something I hope to do entirely by Easter, and again later this year whilst reading Matthew Henry's commentary. One thing that strikes me is reading my notes from my reading from last year. I thought I'd share this interesting thought with you.

God took the Levites in place of each first-born of Israel (see Numbers 3:12-13, among other references). If you think about it, that means he's taking approximately 1 out of every twelve people to be devoted to serving Him in ministry. Think about it. Does that seem proportionate? Not if you live nowdays. It seems like God is taking far, far less than His due.

The thing is, the Levite males made up only 22,273 people. A number that "seems too small for a population in excess of 2,000,000, and is used as an argument for attempting to find a means of reducing the total number of people" as my study Bible notes. However, it is far more fitting with large families... ones that God had blessed abundantly with children!


Sacrifices are a big part of worship, all the world round, all the religions of the world.

In classical mythology, the gods demand sacrifices. Indeed, they cannot live without these sacrifices. But the sacrifice itself is interesting... the people eat the meat and the fat, while the 'gods' get the bones, the smoke of the cooking, all covered in skin. In classical sacrifices, the people get the good bits, and the gods get the refuse, the bits that would get thrown out otherwise.

Not our God. Leviticus (particularly Leviticus 3) describes the sacrifices, the burnt offerings, the fellowship offerings, that our LORD demanded from His people of Israel. God gets the kidneys, the tail, and all the fat. He gets the prime steak, He gets the best.

Today we do not literally give sacrifices of animals. For us the ultimate sacrifice has been made through our Lord, Christ Jesus. But should always be our ambition to do the same thing - to offer God the best of what we have, to offer Him the fat, and not the smoke and bones.