Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Week In Review - A Day Early

I've been having quite a busy week so far! It's all good though.

Since the beginning of the school year in September, I haven't had a whole lot of work. I have been lucky to get a day, maybe two a week - mostly it would be one day. It hasn't been easy, that's for sure.

Well, this week has been excellent for work. I had a full day of work on Monday at a middle school, a half day at another middle school on Tuesday, a full day at an elementary school yesterday, and tomorrow I am scheduled to work until noon (another half day) at another elementary school. Tomorrow's class I'm supposed to be in is the one I supplied in last week and enjoyed. Those kids were awesome, good, and I had no problems with them. I am looking forward to teaching them again tomorrow.

One teacher I know (he goes to my church, and I often supply in his classroom) said I'm probably getting a lot of work this week due to the fact the flu is going around, and it is report card time (so some teachers are taking some time off - or at least working elsewhere in the school - to get them done on time). In all honesty, I don't care why they are taking the time off...I'm just glad I'm getting some work! Not sure if it will continue between now and the end of the year (which I hope it does). That remains to be seen.

And, I have been thanking God for the amount of work this week. He definitely deserves thanks!

Aside from work, I haven't been doing too much because I've been tired most days because I'm not used to working every day for a long time. I've managed to get some knitting and crocheting done on some items I'm sending to a friend in Australia for her first baby. I need to sew on a few buttons and then I can get things sent off. Hoping to do that this weekend. I'd do it tomorrow, but unfortuately we are getting what I hope is our last snow storm this winter. They are calling for 15-20 cm of snow starting around noon tomorrow, and I won't be going out in that!

What have you been up to this week?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Hi, My Name Is...

When I was little, I hated my name. The other kids would rhyme my name with other words and laugh; they thought it was hilarious. It's one thing that contributed to my low self-esteem, mostly because I always felt like they were laughing at me, and not the little rhymes they created. In all honesty, I do think they were laughing at me - I was never popular and was always teased and whatnot, and we all know that kids can be cruel.

Occasionally, as an adult, I will still get someone rhyming my name. And while I don't think they're laughing at me or calling me names, I still don't like it - probably because it reminds me of my childhood.

I remember finding out (probably early in my teens, or a little earlier than that age), that adults can legally change their names - for a fee. I used to think that when I was old enough, I was going to legally change my name - to what, I don't know, but I was going to change it.

In the Bible, names reflected authority and character. Abram (exalted father) had his name changed by God, to Abraham (father of a multitude). His wife Sarai's name was changed to Sarah (princess). Jacob had his name changed to Israel, and even in the new Testament we see Simon becomes Peter (Cephas) and Saul was to be known as Paul. Name changes often happened when a person grew older and his or her character was more developed (though I am sure there were other reasons as well).

My parents used to have a baby book (from when I was born) which had lists of boys and girls names listed, along with their meanings. According to this book, my name meant "musical" (I am sooo not musical). However, going to one of the many websites on the internet, I have found that they all seem to agree that my name means "meadow on a ledge"...  I think, though, that my parents chose my name because they liked it, not because of what it means.

As an adult, I'm still not musical, and I definitely am not any type of meadow - whether on a ledge or not. If I lived back in Biblical times and my name was to be changed, I really don't know what it would be changed to. I'm also curious what Jesus would change my name to, if that is something He would do (not everyone had their name changed).

Will I change my name now that I'm an adult (and have been for a long time)? Probably not. It's much cheaper to keep it as is. And besides, I'm kind of used to it now.

If you could change your name, what would you change it to, and why?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Open To Suggestions...

I've been struggling lately with this blog - with the direction I want to take. I've been seeing so many links on Twitter to posts about how to get followers (which, doesn't seem to be happening for me...probably largely due to content), how to get people to comment or start conversations, how you should write your posts, what type of blog you should have, your writing style in blogging...and the list goes on and on.

I've visited lots of blogs (and left comments), and many of them are daily reads for me. I've seen some great ones that I'd like to "copy" their style, and I've also been told, and read, to just be myself in my blog. And that's hard, because it seems like just being myself isn't working...

I've read lots of awesome posts that deal with kids. In other words, the authors of those blogs use things their kids have said or done, or lessons they've taught their kids, and couple those with Bible passages. This produces great posts. I, however, have no kids. I'm also not married. I can't create posts about either of those things.

I've written posts that I thought were great, that I thought would get some comments, get some conversations generated, but mostly I get the big ol' goose egg beside the comment indicator. Though to be honest, I do get a few comments now and then.

I've thought about having guest bloggers, but then I wonder if anyone would want to post something on a blog which gets little to no comments, and little to no conversations happening. That's still up in the air though, so I might ask some people if they would mind doing a guest post...

So, I guess I'm open to suggestions...what I can do generate more conversations and comments (I think I have some readers according to my stats, but then I don't know if they are drive-bys or actually reading my blog). What types of posts I can write, topics, etc. Keep in mind that contests are out for now, as I'm not getting a lot of work and don't have much money to get prizes or even send them (though I would be open to that in the future at some point).

Let me know what you think, or even if you are willing to guest post!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

You Know You're A Child Of God's When...

You accept Jesus Christ as your Saviour.

I hear so many people (those who believe and those who don't) say that we are all God's children. That is a lie the devil wants you to believe.

We are not all God's children; but we are all God's creation.

"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh, nor the will of man, but of God." (John 1:12-13)
Of course, the Him being referred to is Jesus. Right before this, in verse 11, it tells us that He came to His own - the Jewish people - but they refused to believe that Jesus is the long-promised Messiah, and rejected Him.

Those who received Jesus were the Gentiles (non-Jewish people), though there were some Jewish people who did believe this (most didn't). Because of Jesus' own people rejecting Him, God allowed those of out outside their faith to be born into His family - to be adopted, so to speak.  By inviting Jesus into your heart, asking Him to be  your Saviour, you are spiritually born into God's family. You become one of His children! It's the only way.

Simply being a human being does not automatically make you a child of God, a part of His family. If that was the case, there would have been no reason for Him to send Jesus to be the attonment for our sins. There would have been no reason for Jesus to suffer on the cross, die and be risen from the dead three days later.

If you want to be included in God's family, you MUST ask Jesus into your heart (honestly), ask Him to forgive your sins and to be your Saviour. If you don't, then you aren't one of God's children, and your future is at stake, and in all honesty, you are on your way to Hell.

Are you one of God's children? If not I would love to talk more with you about Jesus, and help you secure your future in Christ and help you to know that you will be saved.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

It Might Be Something Right Under Your Nose

Today we began a new series at church, which is to help lead us to seeking God for the direction He wants us to take as a church this summer (it kind of falls on the heels of the series we just finished).

The sermon was on the passage of Mary and Martha, where Jesus and his disciples were invited to Martha's house. Martha was busy at work preparing for the guests, while Mary was sitting at the feet of Jesus and listening to Him. Martha was ticked off (no doubt) and pointed out Mary's actions, or lack of, to Jesus. She wanted Him to tell her sister, Mary, to help her with the preparations. Jesus told Martha that Mary was actually doing the better thing.

Part of the new series is to have some people in the congregation become Marthas in which they (a deacon and pastor will also be there with the host) invite 12 or 13 people into their homes for "fireside chats"...which, I think will include Scripture, discussions, prayer and listening to Jesus guiding us in our lives, and the direction for the church to take. Pastor J didn't go too much into that just yet, as that is coming up in a few weeks and he will explain in better detail then.  Pastor J also encouraged us to be Marys at this time,  in that we sit at the feet of Jesus and listen to what He has to say.

Anyway, Pastor J encouraged people to linger after the service and pray and take a few minutes (how ever long they wanted) to just listen to Jesus, to listen for His voice.

I was waiting for a friend of mine (and not actually praying), who was talking to someone else, and Pastor J came over and sat down beside me - after talking and praying with several others. He asked me how I was doing, and offered to pray for me. He asked what  I wanted to pray about.

I told him how I'd been praying about a couple of things (which I won't mention here), and he is aware of at least one of the things. I said that it seemed like I've been asking for so long, but I wasn't receiving - you know the verse, "ask and you shall receive". Pastor J said something that I had never thought of before. He said that maybe I wasn't "receiving" because God had something for me (or something for me to do) that is right under my nose, but because I've been focused on what I think it is God wants me to do, that I'm just not noticing what it is God actually wants me to do. His suggestion actually opened my mind, my thoughts - maybe he's right.

So, that is one of the things we prayed about, and it's something I'm going to continue to pray about. I would also appreciate if you could pray for this for me too - that I listen for God's voice, for what He wants me to do, what might be right under my nose that I'm failing to see. :o)

What can I pray about for you today?

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Ash Wednesday/Lent

I looked at the calendar the other day. I had just finished writing down the location, time, etc. for a half day of work. I noticed something was printed on the 9th, and glanced at it. It said "Ash Wednesday".

To be honest, I never really gave any thought to the meaning behind Ash Wednesday. Today, I decided to look it up (after reading this post from Pete Wilson) to learn more about it.

Ash Wednesday is the first day that marks a 40 day period, aka Lent, (not including Sundays) until Easter.  Not all Christian denominations observe Lent, but for those that do, this period of time is when they will abstain from something (a certain food, habit, etc.) for the 40 days.

Lent is a time for fasting, using moderation, repenting, and observing spiritual discipline. I can remember growing up that it seemed to me only Catholics took part in Lent. That is because all of my friends who were Catholic would talk about what they were giving up for Lent. None of my other friends (who were not Catholic) ever talked about it. I know now, that Lent is not just for Catholics. In the past several years, I have become more aware (probably from reading different Christian blogs) of people in other denominations taking part in Lent.

I've never taken part in Lent (because I had always thought it was for Catholics, and I'm not a Catholic), and in all honesty, don't know if I will this year or not. It will have to be something I pray about today/tonight and figure out what I should abstain from for the next 40 days, beginning tomorrow. I am sure there are a lot of things I could give up (fast from) for Lent - computer time, watching TV, certain foods, bad habits...and when I'm craving those thing, use the time to pray and focus on Jesus instead.

I'm sure it would be a good thing to participate in Lent...but I don't know if I will.

Are you taking part in Lent? What are you giving up for this 40 day period before Easter?

Saturday, March 05, 2011

In the Field

Irises in a Field

The grass withers, the flower fades,
But the word of our God stands forever.
         Isaiah 40:8

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

They Say Spring Is Coming

We have oh so much snow.

They say spring is coming, but I think the snow will be around for a little while. I'm not overly fond of snow - kind of odd for living in a country (or part of the country) that gets snow every winter...and in a case like this year, a little too much - OK, a LOT too much.

The Back Yard

Looking towards the front yard from the driveway
 On a positive note, I am thankful that I do live in a country that has four seasons (including a snowy one). I am also thankful that I can count on God's promise:

While the earth remains,
Seedtime and harvest,
And cold and heat,
And summer and winter,
And day and night
Shall not cease.
       (Genesis 8:22)

So, even though I'm not a big fan of winter, I can count on the fact that as long as this earth remains, the season of cold and fluffy white stuff will come about once a year. You'd think after spending my life in a country that has snow (there was even a little snow in South Korea when I lived there), I'd be used to it. And, I guess I am. But still...

They say spring is coming...and I'm really looking forward it!

What is your favourite season?