Saturday, March 31, 2007

Observation

Just a quick post. This past week I had two of the four days of observation for my TESL course. Whe have to have 10 hours of observation and 10 hours of teaching to get the certificate.

I've attended an intermediate to advanced intermediate class, as well as a beginner class. I really enjoyed both classes. The intermediate/adv. inter. class is easier to teach because they have a better grasp on the language. And even though the beginner class is a lot harder (most of them are doing well, but one of them is just learning and doesn't know very much at all yet and another one is a little further ahead of her), it was a lot more fun because the students were very interested in learning and were making jokes and what not...a lot of laughter in the class.

I'm going to the local multicultural center for the practicum, and they have a wide variety of countries represented. There were people from Costa Rica, Columbia, Afghanistan, Kosovo, Russia (or one of the former Russian states), Congo, Ethiopia...interesting to see how well they get along and how much they want to learn the language (though some had more enthusiasm than others, which is normal).

I have my last two days of observation this coming week, and then move on to the teaching aspect of it...that is scary! I'll be observed some by my teacher, and that is what makes me the most nervous. I'm not sure off hand when that starts...it might start the week after next, and it might not. Exams come up starting April 19th so I won't be doing any teaching during that time.

Anyway, just wanted to post a little update since it's been awhile. I am hoping to get something written for CWO's In Other Words this week as I haven't for the last couple of them for one reason or another. But, until then, have a Christ filled day!

Oh, and if any of you are knitters, I am having a little contest over on my knitting blog, Kitten Knits Yarn - come on over and enter!

Friday, March 16, 2007

Being Fed

At our house, we have a couple of bird feeders. We've been feeding the birds for several years now, and plan to continue as long as possible. It's relaxing to be able to sit and watch the birds eating, and listen to them sing their songs. Typically, we see blue jays, sparrows, golden finches, chickadees, junkos (I think that is what they are called) and mourning doves around the feeders. In the past, there has even been a cardinal visit. Mind you, we get robins too, but they don't come to the feeders.

Often, I've noticed that when there is only one or two birds at the feeders, they will look up often, turning their head this way and that as they search for possible approaching enemies, then turn back for another seed or two before repeating the process. When there are several of our feathered friends feasting, they get to eat more because they don't have to look up as often for enemies (they can take turns watching, I suppose).

I remember my dad saying one time that he had been talking with one of the men he worked with (my dad is since retired), and they were discussing feeding the birds (I have no idea how or why they got onto this topic). This man said that he felt it was a waste of time and money to feed the birds - why should he waste his hard earned money on buying bird seed. My dad said that it didn't really cost too much, and besides, he was helping to take care of some of God's little creatures.

Obviously birds also get their food from other sources, other than bird feeders set up by people. There are flowers, bugs, and worms (and who knows what else they will eat)...things that people can't provide; however, God cares enough for the birds of the air that He makes sure they have something to eat.

And just like the birds, God provides food for us. I'm not talking about the food we need to eat for our physical self; I'm talking about the food we need for our spiritual self. Yes, God does meet our needs (and one of our needs is food to nourish our bodies) physically; but, God also meets our needs spiritually. Our spiritual nourishment is the Bible - the Word of God.

"Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they?" (Matthew 6:26, NASB)

If we don't eat often enough, or if we don't eat right, we will get sick. Our bodies depend on food for vitamins, minerals and nourishment. Our spiritual body is the same way - it needs to be fed or it, too, will get sick. Staying away from daily readings and meditations from the Bible will cause our spirits to grow weak and sick. Have you ever spent a great deal of time away from reading the Bible, only to find that you felt miserable and/or out of touch with God? That is because your spirit was feeling sick. I know I've been guilty of this myself, and it is not a very pleasant feeling.

Jesus tells us, in the above verse, that we are worth more than the birds to God. When we have something of worth, we take care of it. Therefore, since we are worth so much to God, we need to take care of us - physically and spiritually. The next time you sit down to breakfast, why not pull out your Bible and read while you eat your cereal and toast, or drink your coffee. The next time you have a snack in the evening, pull out your Bible and meditate on a verse or two at the same time. So, just as God provides nourishment for the birds, He also provides nourishment for us.

Read your Bible - your spirit's health depends on it :o)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Source of Joy

"One of the secrets to a happy marriage is remembering the source of our joy, which is not one another. The source of our joy is the Lord. Yes, we share tons of joyous moments, but we don't expect, let alone demand, endless joy-filled moments from each other. "~ Liz Curtis Higgs ~from the devotional: Rise and Shine

When I first saw this quote over the weekend, over at CWO (click the pic above), I thought "Great, it's dealting with marriage. I can't take part in IOW this week, wonderful." And yes, at the time there was lots of eye rolling and such associated with my thoughts. That is because I wasn't in the right frame of mind when I read the quote.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again - I'm not married (and I have no kids). Sometimes I struggle and/or have problems with this issue. I also find that there are so many resources available for married women, and even mothers, but, try to find something for single women and you won't find much...or at least I don't see much in the Christian bookstores in my area. Oh sure, there might be the odd devotional or something, but a lot of the books/articles are geared towards single teens or women in their twenties - or they aren't Christian books and give worldly advice. That really needs to change. Anyway, enough rambling and onto my thoughts on this quote:

Yes, Jesus is the source of joy in a marriage, but He is also the source of joy in the life of a single woman (and men also). Do I always find joy as a single person? No. Plain and simple, I turn my eyes inward - to myself - and focus on me. I want to be married. I want to have children. And when I focus on this, I can become depressed and angry because at my age I have neither of these.

See, I don't feel called to be a single person forever. I do have the strongest desire for being married and having children (as I said above), but I don't want just "any" husband. I want the husband that God has picked out for me - my "perfect" mate; the one He wants me to be with. I know my husband wouldn't be perfect, for none of us is. What I mean by perfect, is simply the man that God wants me to marry, the one He has matched up for me. I don't want to rush into a marriage (or even relationship) with someone just because I am lonely, or just because I want to be married. But in all honesty, there are days when I just don't want to be single anymore and am somewhat willing to settle for someone just because I want to be married.

Every day isn't like that, though. Most days I am "sane" enough to know that things could be much worse than being single - like being in an abusive relationship. I don't want that. And, in all honesty, it isn't that I can't be alone or that I'm afraid to be alone. No, I have been single all my life and know that I can be alone. In fact, there are times when I want to be alone! I also know that I don't need a man to be happy or complete.

But, as a single woman, Jesus is the only one we need to be complete. Face it, without Him (whether we are single, married, widowed, or divorced), Jesus is the only one we need, the only piece of the puzzle that completes us. Jesus is the one true source of joy in the lives of mankind, and we won't find that joy anywhere else - not in a relationship, not in a bottle, not in a job, and not in any possession we could ever (or hope to ever) own.

So, I suppose, the secret to the single woman's life is, as Liz Curtis Higgs says about marriage, is also in remembering our source of joy - Jesus.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Recall Notice...

Well, the party is in full swing! Thanks to all the newcomers who've left comments. I've goten around to several new blogs I have never been to before, and it's fun getting to know new people.
This week I'm on March Break from school and plan on doing some major relaxing and getting (hopefully) tons of knitting done. I just finished a pair of kids socks this morning and will be posting about it (with a picture) on my knitting blog, Kitten Knits Yarn, as soon as I finish this post. If you're interested, please drop by and leave a comment there as well.
I've also got to do some work this week on my Maritime History paper, so I'll also be doing some reading for that. I'll probably have to get to the school library as well to get some other books for it...but I'm not worrying about that today.
Anyway, before I head off, I thought I'd share this email I received this morning, with everyone:
IMPORTANT- RECALL NOTICE
The Maker of all human beings is recalling all units manufactured, regardless of make or year, due to the serious defect in the primary and central component of the heart. This is due to a malfunction in the original prototype unit’s code name Adam and Eve, resulting in the reproduction of the same defect in all subsequent units. This defect has been technically termed, "Sub-sequential Internal Non-morality" - or more commonly known as SIN, as it is primarily expressed. Some other symptoms are as follows:

Loss of direction
Foul vocal emissions
Amnesia of origin
Lack of peace and joy
Selfish, or violent behavior
Depression or confusion in the mental component
Fearfulness
Idolatry
Rebellion

The Manufacturer, Who is neither liable nor at fault for this defect, is providing factory authorized repair and service free of charge to correct this SIN defect. The Repair technician, Jesus, has most generously offered to bear the entire burden of the staggering cost of these repairs. There is no additional fee required. The number to call for repair in all areas is: P-R-A-Y-E-R. Once connected, please upload your burden of SIN through the REPENTANCE procedure. Next, download ATONEMENT from the Repair Technician, Jesus, into the heart component. No matter how big or small the SIN defect is, the Jesus will replace it with:
Love
Joy
Peace
Patience
Kindness
Goodness
Faithfulness
Gentleness
Self-control

Please see the operating manual, HOLY BIBLE, for further details on the use of these fixes. As an added upgrade, the Manufacturer has made available to all repaired; units a facility enabling direct monitoring and assistance from a resident Maintenance technician, the Holy Ghost. Repaired units need only make Him welcome and He will take up permanent residence on the premises!

WARNING: Continuing to operate the human being unit without correction voids the Manufacturer's warranty, exposing the unit to dangers and problems too numerous to list and will result in the human unit being permanently impounded; For free emergency service, call on JESUS.

DANGER: The human being units not responding to this recall action will have to be scrapped in the furnace. The SIN defect will not be permitted to enter Heaven so as to prevent contamination of that facility.

Thank you for your attention. Please assist where possible by notifying others of this important recall notice.
P.S. The Blog Party is still going strong. See my post below to find out about me.

Friday, March 02, 2007

It's Party Time!

Over at 5 Minutes for Mom they are having a party - the link is on my sidebar.

I thought I'd just tell a bit about myself for those who venture this way via Party Central. First of all, welcome to Confirm the Work of Our Hands! My name is Shelley and I live on the east coast of Canada. I'm not a mom - shoot, I'm not even married! I'm a single gal in my late 30's (gasp!), but the party hosts said you don't have to be married, a mom, or even a woman to take part in this event; so, I signed up.

I'm currently going to university, although I graduated with my BA in Biblical Studies last April. This past year I've been taking a few "extra" courses as I concentrate on getting a certificate in the TESL program (which stands for Teaching English as a Second Language). I'm really enjoying it so far, but I know it won't be a piece of cake when I actually get out and teach! There will most definately be work involved - especially early on. My friend and I are thinking of going overseas somewhere (we haven't decided just where exactly yet) to teach. We thought it would be a good idea to go together because that way we'd know someone, and we wouldn't be totally alone in a foreign country.

I am a Christian, and rededicated my life to the Lord in 2000 (possibly the end of 1999). I say 'rededicated' because I honestly don't know if I had truely asked Jesus into my heart as a child or not. Anyway, since I didn't know for sure, I asked Jesus into my life after reading the Left Behind Series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. Ok, it was as I was reading the third book that I did this - I just didn't want to be left behind if such a scenerio were to happen. Oh, I do believe that Jesus is coming back again, but I (and everyone else) don't know just what is going to happen, other than it's not going to be so nice at that time...

I have two other blogs: Ink Scrawls, which is my writing blog, and Kitten Knits Yarn, which is my knitting blog. Feel free to check them out and leave a note there as well!

Anyway, thanks for stopping by. I look forward to meeting some new bloggers via this party (and reacquaint myself with others). Thanks for stopping by, and God bless!