Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Teacher Word Study

My dear friend Marcy with Ben & Me Blog invited me to participate in her "Blogging Through the Alphabet" series and the letter I accepted was "T". I have been wanting to do a word study on the word "Teacher" with a new school year starting up, so found it to be a very appropriate time to finally do that! Thank you Marcy for the privilege to be a guest on your blog!

To read my guest post, click here: Teacher Word Study. Enjoy what I learned through this Teacher Word Study and please share any insights you may have received through this study too. Enjoy!

Friday, February 14, 2014

Perfect Love

Today is Valentine's Day, so who can not reflect on the word “Love” today? This word is being seen everywhere right now and I wonder how many times it will also show up in newsfeeds, tweets, pins, etc. just today alone? I dare you to try and take a guess! Not sure if we could find out by the end of the day, but I am sure the number will be incredibly high!

For some reason though, I can't get this out of my head....”Perfect Love”. The Bible verse keeps coming to mind from 1 John 4:18 (KJV), “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear”. I feel as though the Holy Spirit is tugging at my heart, bringing this to memory for a reason, so here I write. And before I sat to write, God had already worked and prepared me in helping with this post, which you will see. There is a surprise and a gift at the end!

Searching in the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, the word “Love” is defined as:
LOVE, n.
1. An affection of the mind excited by beauty and worth of any kind, or by the qualities of an object which communicate pleasure, sensual or intellectual. It is opposed to hatred. Love between the sexes, is a compound affection, consisting of esteem, benevolence, and animal desire. Love is excited by pleasing qualities of any kind, as by kindness, benevolence, charity, and by the qualities which render social intercourse agreeable. In the latter case, love is ardent friendship, or a strong attachment springing from good will and esteem, and the pleasure derived from the company, civilities and kindness of others.
Between certain natural relatives, love seems to be in some cases instinctive. Such is the love of a mother for her child, which manifests itself toward an infant, before any particular qualities in the child are unfolded. This affection is apparently as strong in irrational animals as in human beings.

We speak of the love of amusements, the love of books, the love of money, and the love of whatever contributes to our pleasure or supposed profit.
The love of God is the first duty of man, and this springs from just views of his attributes or excellencies of character, which afford the highest delight to the sanctified heart. Esteem and reverence constitute ingredients in this affection, and a fear of offending him is its inseparable effect.

From that verse, the word love comes from the Greek word, agapē; which basically means affection, good will, love, benevolence, brotherly love.

Now to go beyond that, searching in the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, the word “Perfect” is defined as:

PER'FECT, a. [L. perfectus, perficio, to complete; per and facio, to do or make through, to carry to the end.]
1. Finished; complete; consummate; not defective; having all that is requisite to its nature and kind; as a perfect statue; a perfect likeness; a perfect work; a perfect system.
As full, as perfect in a hair as heart.

2. Fully informed; completely skilled; as men perfect in the use of arms; perfect in discipline.

3. Complete in moral excellencies.
Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father who is in heaven is perfect. Matt.5.

4. Manifesting perfection.
My strength is made perfect in weakness. 2 Cor.12.

Perfect in that verse comes from the Greek word, teleios, which basically means brought to its end, finished, wanting nothing necessary to completeness, that which is perfect.

I do recognize in verse 1 John 4:18 (KJV), “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear”, that fear is mentioned twice. I could keep going further and define fear as well but I think we all understand what fear is and how it can consume us. We can be assured that God tells us, “do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God” (Isaiah 41:10). Even when we are struggling and feel otherwise; this is a command and a promise from God to you and me.

Reasoning through all of this, I believe the Lord is sharing with me that we are meant to have a complete affection and highest delight to the sanctified heart with God who loves us unconditionally, without fail. When we are abiding with God in this Perfect Love, then it should manifest in others too as we trust Him in all things. Why do I believe this? Because He says so in the verses prior to 1 John 4:18:
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love. In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him. Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another. No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us.

Hereby know we that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he hath given us of his Spirit. And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. Whosoever shall confess that Jesus is the Son of God, God dwelleth in him, and he in God. And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us.

God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment: because as he is, so are we in this world.” (1 John 4:7-17)

Prior to writing this, God revealed His Providence and care for me. I want to share something neat so that you can see how He shares His Sovereignty and Perfect Love in the simplest and most meaningful ways, that only He can orchestrate. Sometimes it's just the little things like this He does that puts a smile on my face!

My Dad writes a column every few months in our Church's newspaper that gets mailed to others all over the US on a weekly basis. It came in the mail yesterday (2/13/14) and I saw that one he had written was printed in there. It's called, “A Transcending Peace”...if you want to go read it later, please do! So, I was in the mood to read and just felt like reading some of his past articles as well. I did a web search and opened an older article he had written called, “Searching for Perfection”. Keep in mind, this is when I was already having the words “Perfect Love” in my mind and was considering on writing something about it for today. As I was reading through it, the words that had already been in my heart, my Dad had written those exact words in this article. They popped out of the screen at me, just about! To top it off, it was dated one year ago exactly (2/13/13)! I don't know if it doesn't take much to amuse me, but I just think that is the neatest thing and I couldn't help but go and write this post...even if it was late at night going into wee hours of the morning!

God continues to keep me in awe of His Providence and Perfect Love for me. I am far from perfect here on earth but to know that He see's me as perfect and continues to want to reveal Himself to me in so many ways, big and small, I can't help but be in love. He see's you as perfect too. He created you. He loves you for who you are; with a Perfect Love that really no one else can give as He can. He gave us the best gift we could ever have that shows His absolute Perfect Love for us and that is Jesus Christ. One who gives us Salvation and Eternal Life just by believing in Him. There is nothing we have to do but just trust and believe, it's a free gift. Perfect Love...the best gift for all Eternity that we all must share!

"And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more..."
Philippians 1:9

Enjoy this song...

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Go to the Ant!

I woke up this morning and went downstairs to find hundreds of ants in the kitchen. I was immediately annoyed and overwhelmed with what to do with them. Thankfully, my husband had already sprinkled more food grade Diatomaceous Earth everywhere before he left for work.

As I'm posting my aggravation on Facebook and reading my friend's comments on what to do to get rid of them, I walk back in and find a whole new trail of MORE ants on the floor. These guys were really freaking me out because they were just coming out of nowhere!

I spent some time sucking the ants and Diatomaceous Earth up with the Shop Vac to just try to get them under control and out of my sight...for the most part anyways! Amazing how strong these tiny little guys are because they sure fought hard to not get sucked up!
Being a Principle Approach® Mom, it occurred to me that I should do a word study on "Ant". I brought it up with my mentoring Mom, Gina Glenn with A Cherished Keeper and she encouraged me with the Bible Verse from Proverbs 6:6...
"Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise"
In the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, the word "Ant" is defined as:
ANT, n. [Sax. œmet, emmet, contracted into ant; Germ. ameise.]
An emmet; a pismire. Ants constitute a genus of insects of the hymenopteral order, of which the characteristics are; a small scale between the breast and belly, with a joint so deep that the animal appears as if almost cut in two. The females, and the neuter or working ants, which have no sexual characteristics, are furnished with a hidden sting; and both males and females have wings, but the neuters have none. These insects meet together in companies, and maintain a sort of republic. They raise hillocks of earth, in which they live. In these there are paths, leading to the repositories of their provisions. The large black ants, in the warm climates of America, to avoid the effects of great rains, build large nests on trees, of light earth, roundish and plastered smooth.
The first few meanings of "Work" are:
1. In a general sense, to move, or to move one way and the other; to perform; as in popular language it is said, a mill or machine works well.
2. To labor; to be occupied in performing manual labor, whether severe or moderate. One man works better than another; one man works hard; another works lazily.
3. To be in action or motion; as the working of the heart.

Searching for the words ant and wise in my Logos software, the Scripture my friend shared came up along with Proverbs 30:24-25:
"There be four things which are little upon the earth, but they are exceeding wise: The ants are a people not strong, yet they prepare their meat in the summer"
What a perfect picture of God's Principle of Individuality and Self-Government being portrayed even in the smallest of His creatures! We can look at them to just be aggravating and purely just an annoyance but that just takes away from God's splendor. His nature is revealed in ALL things and we can allow even the littlest creature to teach us something big. God has a plan and a purpose for all things. I never thought that God can use even a tiny little ant to convict me!
Ants are organized, they are wise and they are cooperative. Ants are also hard-workers, preparers and leaders.  When I compare myself to an ant, it shows me what I am lacking in my character and that I need to depend on God more in becoming the wise woman that He intends me to be. Also shows me what I need to be instilling in my children as I want them to grow up to be self-governed in all that they do. To do all things without complaining and with a heart to glorify Him!

My dear friend Gina also shared this lovely song with me from Judy Rogers Music to play for my girls. I am blessed with these words in this song:

 (Fast-forward to #1 for the song "Go To The Ant")

So, to sum all this up, God turned a nuisance into a lesson in self-government for me today!

"Go to the Ant! Observe her - see how she works all day

And she doesn't even have a captain to tell her what to do, but she works hard anyway"

Don't take irritating situations for granted because God can use them for good to teach you and draw you and your children closer to Him. Turn your eyes to Him and ask the Holy Spirit to teach and guide you in all things...even if it's just pesky little ants causing you more work and grievance than you desire. 
I praise you Lord for these annoying little ants today...Now I pray that they will stay away!






Friday, May 3, 2013

Source & Purpose of God's Principle of Individuality

In the Principle Approach® 4-R'ing the Seven Priniciples Training Series from Foundation for American Christian Education (FACE), Connie Moody explains how "words convey ideas and ideas have consequences". The internal operations of the mind defines ideas while consequences are the external and outward effects. In order for us to understand and use words rightly with authority, it's important to be aware of the source and purpose behind our ideas.

In the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, Source is defined as:
First cause; original; that which gives rise to any thing. The first producer; he or that which originates.
In the beginning, God created the heaven and the earth. And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.” ~Genesis 1:1-2
That they may see, and know, and consider, and understand together, that the hand of the LORD hath done this, and the Holy One of Israel hath created it. Produce your cause, saith the LORD; bring forth your strong reasons, saith the King of Jacob. Let them bring them forth, and shew us what shall happen: let them shew the former things, what they be, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them; or declare us things for to come. Shew the things that are to come hereafter, that we may know that ye are gods: yea, do good, or do evil, that we may be dismayed, and behold it together.Behold, ye are of nothing, and your work of nought: an abomination is he that chooseth you.” ~Isaiah 41:20-24
The meaning of Purpose is:
That which a person sets before himself as an object to be reached or accomplished; the end or aim to which the view is directed in any plan, measure or exertion. Intention, design with the end in view; effect; consequence, good or bad.
“And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance for ever." ~Isaiah 32:17
“For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect. For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.” ~1 Corinthians 1:17-18

God created everything and allows to use all things for a purpose. For every cause, there is an effect, whether good or bad. What comes from within will be produced and shown externally. Where there is a beginning, there is an end. God is the only Source where we can find purpose and we need Him to live within us so that we can have the heart and mind of Christ to do that which is right. Through His power, we can bring others to the salvation of Christ so that they too can have the hope of eternal life.

Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.” ~1 Corinthians 2:12-16
"Teaching and Learning America's Christian History"
Page 64
Knowing our source and purpose, we can rightly understand God's Principle of Individuality. Upon defining those terms in the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, the following are what I reasoned from them.

God is the highest and greatest existence in authority. He is an unchangeable God that will always remain as the Supreme Being; Jehovah. He is eternal and His spirit breathes and moves in and through all things He has created. He is supreme in power, possessing dominion of the universe. He is superior over all and is the sovereign good of all who love and obey Him.

Principle is the cause which produces an effect. It is the foundation that supports any thing that stands giving light to truth, fact and reality as it confirms to fix firmly in our mind that which is good.

Of is that which proceeds from to set or place that which follows.

Individuality is separate and distinct existence that makes something different and not confounded with any other thing. We are given life that has essence and unity with God. We are one with our creator yet separate in mind and body from any other thing He has created.

In essence, God's Principle of Individuality tells us that through an eternal and living God, we have a foundation that proceeds from a separate and distinct existence that He has given us and in His creation for a purpose. And, as my friend Ranae simply put it in relation to us as individuals..."Each of His human creations, if full of Jesus, reflects a different facet of His infinite individuality!" 
Let us remember and reflect on the truth of God's Principle of Individuality in our studies and all that we teach and learn!

Click on image to purchase DVD to learn more about
God's Principle of Individuality

Sunday, April 14, 2013

From Juicing to Muffins

I'll be honest and say that my diet hasn't been the healthiest lately, so I've really been feeling the need to juice. After following my friend over at Juicing Momma and seeing pictures of all the beautiful juices she makes through her journeyI'm even more motivated!  I finally decided to go get some organic beet, apples, cabbage, carrots and parsley to make one for myself yesterday.
This leads to...
The juice turned out to be a beautiful red color. It had more of a kick to it than I expected; from the cabbage, I assume. Besides the spiciness of it, it turned out to have a pretty good beet flavor, which I love! I ended up having the juice all to myself, considering that my family were not fans! I personally will rate it a 7 out of 10 and will use less cabbage next time.

...this, which leads to...

I was left with all of this pulp afterwards and just couldn't get myself to throw it away. I ended up just putting it in a baggie and placing it in the fridge for the meantime.
...this, which leads to...
I did a search tonight about how to use leftover pulp in recipes and came across a muffin one that sounded good. With some tweaks of my own, I gave it a try and was really impressed with how these turned out. They were a hit and everyone approved this time! So, if you have some leftover pulp and would like a healthier muffin recipe, this one is worth making! Feel free to tweak as you like too.

...this! Yumm!

Review: The Principle Approach® Primer

"Today can be the first day of the journey towards a Biblical worldview and the mastering of an educational philosophy and methodology that is founded on the Truth of God's Word and sure to "set you free!"
Are you feeling trapped and overwhelmed with everything that needs to be covered based on your choice of curriculum and ready to be set free from the bondage it can bring? Do you want to begin a new season of learning at the feet of Jesus to bring purpose and liberty back into home education?  Is it your desire to instill a Biblical worldview in your children? Do I have an excellent resource for you!

Gina Glenn with A Cherished Keeper is a veteran homeschool mom who loves the Lord and Liberty. She has written a short and easy to read e-book entitled The Principle Approach® Primer  to introduce homeschool educators with the words, terms, philosophy, methodology and general ideas of the Principle Approach® method of education that can bring life and liberty back into your home. She has successfully educated her four children with this method of education and continues to grow and learn with excitement; not resistance or frustration that can be so common with home educating. Due to Gina's passion in sharing the Principle Approach® with others, she is offering this e-book for free on Kindle until Thursday, April 18th!

I have read through this e-book three times now and will definitely go back to read again &'s that good! Each time I have read through it, I gain more understanding and a heightened love for the Principle Approach® method of education. Gina did an amazing job putting this e-book together in such an easy to read and understand format. I love how she shares her story in the beginning and then goes on to helping you understand the lingo and terms used within this approach. She concludes it by sharing how important it is to teach and learn the principles of Christ using God's Word as the primary textbook and reclaiming our American Christian history for the next generation. I highly recommend this resource for every parent and home educator...familiar or not with the Principle Approach® method of education. Everyone will benefit by reading it!
Initially, The Principle Approach® Primer could be used as a quick read to learn more about this methodology and then become a resource to come back to and glean from as you continue your homeschool journey. You will be encouraged every time you pick this resource up because it will help carry you through as you learn and grow while sitting at Jesus' Feet to raise your children for Him!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Steadfast Spirit

In the beginning of the year, my dear friends and accountability group partners went on a wonderful retreat that was much-needed for all of us. Each of us lead a devotion time and they were all spirit-filled. Marcy with Ben and Me had a special activity for us to do during her devotion. We were to create a heart map to help us reflect on people, things and ideas that we want our hearts to focus on this year.

The key verse she had chosen just happened to be the same as what I had shared in my devotion; these were individually planned prior to our retreat. I would say that's God's Providence working!

"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me."
Psalm 51:10
In the 1828 Noah Webster Dictionary, renew means "to revive, to make fresh/new; to implant holy affections in the heart; to regenerate". Steadfast means "firmly fixed or established; constant; steady". While steady is defined as "not easily moved or persuaded; to support; to hold or keep from shaking or falling".
This verse has been placed on my heart several times since the retreat. The interesting thing is I am just now realizing it! Reflecting back on the past few months, I now see that the Lord has really been tugging at my heart. I believe that He knows how much more I needed renewal than I dare to admit.  
Lately, I've been also meditating on the extension of that verse which reads:

"Do not cast me from your presence or take your Holy Spirit from me.
Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me."
Psalm 51:11-12

Restore means "to replace; to return; as a person or thing to a former place; to repair, to revive; to bring back after absence; to bring to a sense of sin and amendment of life; to renew or re-establish after interruption; as, peace is restored." Sustain is defined as "to bear; to uphold; to support; to maintain; to keep alive; to endure without failing or yielding".

I am thankful for the Lord's patience and persistence. I am so glad that He never gives up on me and how he lovingly convicts me for my own good! His forgiveness sets me free from my guilt and shame of so much time spent on other things that I felt were so important. Maybe I needed that time to open my eyes and bring me back to what's really important; learning at my Father's feet and spending time with Him so that His Spirit can work in me to the hearts of my children. I will continue to meditate on these verses and pray through them so that my joy may be complete in Him and not what this world has to offer.

Thank you Lord for working in my heart and renewing a Spirit within me that will not be easily shaken and reviving my soul with your joy and fulfillment that You alone can give!

If you are curious to read more about our retreat, R is for Renew, Refresh, Reflect, Rest, Read . . . Retreat! is an excellent post from Marcy! I encourage you to create a heart map of your own and include a life verse for you to meditate on. 

While you're here, enjoy the song below and be blessed!