Friday, April 27, 2012

From My Bookshelf or The Library's

I love missionary stories and lately I just can't seem to stop pulling them off the library shelves and bringing them home with me. I miss the old days when I could read a book in an afternoon. So I have to limit my choices at the Library. Sad huh? It's not like I have to have a budget to stick to at the library. Its free for goodness sakes! (well unless you have late fees....somehow I always get those :/) but I guess I am just budgeting my reading time...ugh..I shouldn't have to do that.

So I was really excited that I actually finished a book last night!!!

I read "We Signed Away Our Lives: How One Family Gave Everything for the Gospel" by Kari Torjesen Malcolm.

When I pulled it off the shelf at the church library the title intrigued me. How did this family give everything? How did God draw them to himself? What can I learn from this?

My expectations were met. As soon as I opened it I was pleasantly surprised that it was set in China. I don't know how I didn't see that little detail on the back cover but I apparently didn't!

The book followed the journey of the Torjesen family on their commitment to follow Christ no matter what the cost. It all started when Peter Torjesen the future father of three boys and a girl heard a mission sermon at his church and when the offering plate went around he not only put what money he had, he also put a piece of paper in the plate which read "And my life". It was the pivotal moment in his life. He never looked back. This commitment to took him and his wife Valborg to China where they served the people of China sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ. They were commited even through war, and harships. This commitment ultimately cost Peter his life, but was that really so much to lose?

"Afraid? Of what?
Afraid to see the Savior's face,
To hear His welcome, and to trace
The glory gleam from wounds of grace?
Afraid---of that?

Afraid? Of what?
A flash, a crash, a pierced heart;
Darkness light, O Heaven's art!
A wound of his counterpart!
Afraid---of that?

Afraid? Of what?
To do by death what life could not--
Baptize with blood a stony plot,
Till souls shall blossom from the spot?
Afraid--of that?"
~E.H. Hamilton

"I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies it remains only a single seed. But if it dies it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life in this world will lose it, while the man who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life." John 12: 24-25

"These all died in faith, not having recieved the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For people who speak thus make it clear that they are seeking a homeland. If they had been thinking of that land from which they had gone out they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is they desire a better country, that is a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city." Hebrews 11: 13-16

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Opal

Do you know that lovely fact about the opal? That, in the first place, it is made only of desert dust, sand, silica, and owes its beauty and preciousness to a defect. It is a stone with a broken heart. It is full of minute fissures which admit air, and the air refracts the light. Hence its lovely hues, and that sweet lamp of fire that ever burns at its heart, for the breath of the Lord God is in it.
   You are only conscious of the cracks and desert dust, but so He makes His precious opal. We must be broken in ourselves before we can give back the lovely hues of His light, and the lamp in the temple can burn in us and never go out. ~Ellice Hopkins


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Mirror Mirror

"Mirror Mirror on the wall".....

one of the most famous fairy tale lines isn't it?

I bet we can all finish the next line but do we really want to admit that we might not be "the fairest of them all?"

I stood in the bathroom tonight. Looking at my face in the mirror. My reflection stared back at me.

"Am I good enough?"

The thought burst into my head.

"Am I acceptable?"

Is that the heart's cry of every young person?

Cause it certainly has been the cry of my heart ever since I can remember.

But I have learned to try to answer my question, to talk to myself. Because I can never be acceptable. Never be good enough. There will always be another record to break, another goal to set, another person to please.

Then a thought pops into my head, "God has accepted you".

And I feel heartened. For this is not just a simple feel good statement. This is a truth that is built on the foundation of the Word of God. I was born a sinner. Unacceptable to God and hostile towards Him.

"For the wages of sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord". Romans 6:23
"For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved." Romans 10:13

Because of my sin I was unacceptable to God but because of Jesus Christ and what He did on the cross paying the penalty for me I am good enough. Not because of some great thing I have done but because Jesus lived a perfect life for me.

Now when God looks at me He sees not the sins I have commited but Jesus' righteousness.

 "For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God." 2 Corinthians 5:21

I can't always remember that though. I believe the lie that I must work to be acceptable. I look in the mirror and see all the flaws.

So I must speak truth to myself.

I must tell myself, "You are beautifully and wonderfully made" Psalm 139:14

I must remind myself, "Who can separate us from the love of Christ?" Romans 8:35

I must stand on the promise, "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus" Romans 8:1

Now for the challenge.....can I remember those verses when I stand in the mirror and think of all the mistakes I have made today?

"Lord please make it so!" unfaithful

I was standing at the counter at work today and thought..."wow I really need to update my blog."

This always happens to me. I get in a huge kick and blog regularly for quite awhile.......



I just stop.....

maybe its lack of planning. Probably because I am just plain lazy!!!!!

Anyway I decided to drop in and let you know that life has not stopped for me. I just haven't been able so slow down and actually blog...nothing has really hit me as "wow..that would make an awesome blog post"

or maybe my sensor is just broken.

Either way I am planning to have a brainstorming session....

Check in soon!!!!!


Thursday, April 5, 2012

Directs His Steps

"The heart of a man plans his way 
but the Lord directs his steps" 
Proverbs 16:9

Photography by Hannah Bretz