Monday, October 10, 2016

This Christian's Worst Dilemma During the Presidential Election 2016

I think it's fair to say that most people in this country who can hear or read, or can receive information communicated to them in some form or fashion, are offended by statements made by Donald J. Trump, both his past and his present.

Almost an equal amount of people have voiced strong opinions about whether they distrust Hillary Clinton or are able to overlook, condone or justify her past actions.

Thinking through this whole fiasco reminds me of recent arguments regarding the Black Lives Matter movement.  Many of the statements I hear dismissing or defending Donald Trump's or Hillary Clinton's behavior remind me of statements like "well, what about white lives" or "what about all lives?"  

We can't dismiss a valid issue, by pointing to the importance of another.

The need to recognize, fight for a means of prevention, and render punishment for the injustices committed by law enforcement against black men -- is valid.

The need to acknowledge that there is violence in the black community committed by those within our race -- is valid.

The need to admit that there can be actions, taken by some individuals facing police questioning, which are disrespectful -- is valid.

Considering the dilemma many of us feel we face during this election - having to choose the "lesser of two evils" - I am challenged by some of the statements I saw posted on Facebook by Pastor Mike Hayes and by Franklin Graham (son of Billy Graham).  

Their statements bring into focus the need to step away from our gaze at the individual personalities and actions made by these two candidates who are before us.   Although it's unimaginable for some to think of Hillary leading our country, or Donald embarrassing the U.S., or respecting either of them as our leader, the statements by Hayes and Graham challenge us to ponder the holistic process of government and the power and influence given by a particular political party's platform.

Although I love how the statements of these two men challenged me, I can't say that hearing this will solve the toiling unrest in those who, like me, are experiencing a countless number of emotions, relative to issues on both sides of the fence.  It would be great if I could simply say, oh yeah, forget the temperaments and just vote for my convictions.  It feels weird and unsettling.

Now for those who merely lean toward support of a sole party, it has at times been a no-brainer to zoom in on the faults of the other party's rep.  Just as the Presidential debates and campaign messages are filled with jabs and stabs, these same sentiments overwhelm the social media commentary, water cooler, locker room and living room talk.

But what's the point of any of this, when every day and every year there are policies being made and battles being fought that truly matter to you and me?  Policies influenced by the "party in charge."

This whole muddle continues to remind me that we are in this worst dilemma.  Some may say, when solidifying their choice, "I can't stand him or her but at least I'll get what I want for the  next 4 years."

That brings me to the issues.

What seems even worse than the difficult task of choosing one person or the other, is that it's impossible for me, in clear conscience, to side with one set of players (platform of issues) --- for this team of which I fantasize.  If only I could customize and select everything that matters to me and not have to pick from what's been already assembled.  Like if I could choose Cap, Thor, Iron Man, Superman and Superwoman together, right?  All of my favs!

But that's not an option.

As my three older children have grown and become more curious, they've asked me to explain on many occasions, the difference between Republican and  Democrat, the difference between conservative and liberal.  In their attempt to summarize it, I've heard them repeat phrases they've heard from others.  Phrases such as: 

"Democrats are for black people right?" 

"Republicans fight for and protect the rich right?" 

"Democrats give to people in need right?"

"Republicans are Christians right?"

"Democrats are for letting people do whatever FEELS right to them -- right?"

"Republicans believe in God's definition of marriage and are against killing unborn  babies, right?"

I wish I could tell you that I've always been able to give a clear and confident answer to their questions.  

But that would be a lie.

I wish I could tell them that Mommy and Daddy have solidified our stance with ONE party and can wholeheartedly support a particular party's candidate (or list of candidates) in a given election. 

That would also be a lie.

There are a few things I CAN tell my children, though.  

I don't believe I will ever become a diehard member of any political party.

I don't believe I will ever vote for someone based solely on their promises, charisma, or character.

Focus on the issues and improving ones understanding of the political process is my recommendation to my children and to anyone, regardless of whether you lean toward the left or the right!  This understanding includes the makeup and roles of the Cabinet, Congress and the Legislature , the influence of the Supreme Court and other appointed positions, as well as State and local government.

In this process, as a Christian, there is this most apparent reality that must be considered.  Neither of the dominant political parties can claim the label of "the party for Christian people or Christian principles".  Period.   

Further, I don't believe either party has consistently kept promises made during an election season.  Whether these promises and hopes speak to your religious conviction, your plea for the poor, your need of support for your business, your appeal for a larger tax refund/credit, or your expectation of the advancement, restitution or acknowledgement for your race.

So it's painful to see how many will rally behind a party or individual, clinching to the feelings of hope that "this time he/she/they will affect the lasting change I've been waiting for."  Or the number of people who will merely feel good that this person achieved the accomplishment of serving in the role or can excite audiences or genders in a speech or on a photo.

Perhaps there is a more balanced approach to assessing elections and viewing the entire process.

As with the earnest and honest pleas of those who are so passionate on either side of the Black Lives Matter debate, each valid plea must be viewed in its own context and then as a whole.  Just as in a marriage, it is senseless to listen to the needs of only one spouse and the impact of the hurts they've sustained, while blatantly ignoring, consistently downplaying and intentionally attacking the other spouse -- preventing any relevance of their concerns.  

I must do the same when it comes to politics.

There are countless sides and dimensions to this complicated coin.  It's only through a better understanding of the entire process, not jumping to conclusions based my view through a portion of a lens that may be in fact be fogged, that I can ever make informed choices of how to cast my vote.

Until then I continue pondering This Christian's Worst Dilemma.  I could choose to remain frozen and paralyzed or I could choose to act out of emotion or narrow-mindedness.

My prayer is that, instead of freezing or settling, I will keep my mind open.  Not open to my own thoughts or the influence of those around me, but open to the voice of God as He leads me step by step.

I believe there is wisdom in seeking God's will in every season, every election, every issue, every ballot.  No party's record and no candidate's  profile is so stable or trustworthy that I can allow it to prevent me from considering how God is leading me to choose in the present.

So for now - for me - it still feels like the worst Presidential election dilemma ever (at least the worst in my lifetime), but believe me when the time comes to choose an each individual spot on any ballot, I plan to be led by the Lord.  It is my prayer that we will equip our children with the wisdom to do the same.

And no I won't tell you all the individuals I chose! :-)

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Gut Check! Questions for Mommies in All Seasons of Life!

Is it time for a gut check?  Check out this video and join in the discussion with me!

(It's in 3 parts for now but I will come back and edit it at some point and add them all into ONE.)

Part 1

Part 2

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

40th Birthday!

When I was 10 I searched for significance. 

For the next 10 years, I struggled to determine exactly to whom  I was valuable. 

At the age of 20 that search was over.  My savior rather emphatically revealed to me, that it was only his attention and affection that mattered. 
For the next 10 years (or so) I sought after Him.  He showed me what joy there was to be found in him, and him alone.  Not easy but extraordinarily worth it!   

When I turned 30 the real "woman's work" (in my eyes) began.  I cried (and I cry) so many times as I press through.  Ever thankful that He is always there --- spiritual spinach to
supernaturally strengthen my spirit!! 

Over the next 10 years, it was the only thing that kept me going....that kept me sane.

Here I am at 40, now what? 

My value comes from Him alone - still.

His affection and His unspeakable joy is what makes me smile - still.   

Gotta put the hard work in - still. 

And even moreso, boy do I need that spiritual spinach!!! 

For the next 10 plus ten plus ten (and so on) years, I vow to remain thankful for this life He's given me to live.

I take nothing for granted, but remain connected to Him.  For without him, I am nothing.  We are nothing.

Thank you Lord for FORTY YEARS!!

"Such confidence we have through Christ before God.  Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.  He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant —not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.".
II Corinthians 3:4-6

Sunday, April 22, 2012

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Wednesday, April 11, 2012

EOE Update 2 - New Treatment Plan

We visited Healthy Kids Pediatrics today and talked to Dr. Nadoo (who also consulted Dr. Osborne, the naturopath).  Over the past few years, we've visited Healthy Kids Pediatrics for other reasons but hadn't been there since our son's condition developed.

We were so thankful for Dr. Nadoo's care and recommendations. 

Here's the plan of care we received (5 items listed below), to help heal our son's gut and hopefully get rid of the EOE!

That is our prayer!!

1.   Pro Omega Fish Oil    1 – 1 ½ tsp once a day

Benefits: "Provides exceptionally high levels of the omega-3 fats EPA and DHA."  Dr. Nadoo suggested Fish oil vs. Flax Oil. 

Each 5ml contains 3202mg of Essential Fatty acids.  1 standard fish oil capsule contains 300mg of EFA’s. This means that 1 tsp on Nordic Naturals ProOmega is equivalent to 11 standard capsules.

2.   Vita-Zymes Chewable     2 tablets before each meal

Benefits: Helps settle the gut and prevent reflux.  This was recommended vs. Prevacid which was prescribed by the GI doctor.

3.   GI Revive  (powder)    1 tsp    2 x / day

Benefits: "Slippery elm, chamomile and okra will sooth and coat inflamed bowels.
Cat’s claw supplement will decrease inflammation. Amino acids will support that smooth intestinal muscle.  Cat’s claw, quercitin, and mucin for comprehensive support of optimal gastrointestinal health. Prunus and citrus pectin are included to aid regularity.   If you have food sensitivities, this product will support your gut."

4.   Intrakid         1 oz      2 x / day for 2 weeks, then ½ oz     2 x / day, break on Sunday (ongoing)

Benefits: "100% organic liquid multi-vitamin and nutritional supplement specifically designed for children aged 4-12. Containing over 215 vitamins, minerals and other nutrients, IntraKID™ is formulated to support the healthy development of our children, as well as provide a defense against disease and illness.  The finest and most comprehensive nutritional supplement available for children.  Low Glycemic.  No Synthetics.  No Preservatives.  No Additives.  Hypoallergenic.  Vegetarian. Fresh Raspberry Taste."

Contains: 71+ trace minerals, 115 antioxidants, 10 essential fatty acids, 39 amino acids, 10 digestive enzymes, 35 green foods, 8 essential sugars, 62 vitamins and nutrients, 34 herbs, 16 macro minerals, 14 vegetables, 65 electrolytes, 7 optimum seeds and sprouts, aloe vera, 25 fruits, 10 probiotics, silver, noni, 12 carotenoids, 22 fibers, 86 bioflavanoids

Does not contain any: Preservatives, colloids, fat, cholesterol, wheat, gluten, caffeine, corn, yeast, rice flour, peanuts, nuts, soy, dairy, fish or fish oil, animal products, artificial additives, artificial colors, artificial flavors, fillers, pesticides, herbicides, antibiotics (drugs), chemicals, starch, binders, coatings, excipients, or flow agents.

5.   Black Walnut Herbal Supplement 9 drops in water    3 x / day

Gastrointestinal: The juglone in black walnuts may be behind the plant's ability to normalize intestinal tissue and may explain why black walnut drops are often used for nausea, constipation, diarrhea and the treatment of colic. Chinese researchers also studied juglone's effects on three key enzymes from Helicobacter pylori, the bacteria that causes ulcers, and found that it was effective at inhibiting growth of the bacteria.

Black walnut drops have been used to treat worms and other parasites and even poison oak rashes. It's the juglone in black walnut drops that targets tapeworms, while the tannins work as an astringent and help to reduce secretions and irritation and shrink and disinfect the top layer of skin to help relieve symptoms of ringworm.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

EOE Update 1

I haven't written an update here, on my blog in months!!!!  Since the experience we've been having with my 8 year old has been so significant, I thought I would document as much of it as possible until we get through it.

The name of the allergic condition he has, is eosinophilic esophagitis (EOE).

He started out, in October, at about 67 pounds (his normal weight), having trouble swallowing solid foods.

This progressed over the next couple of months and one of the biggest alerts we received was at Granny's birthday dinner, at the end of December, when he had a very hard time. We thought it was routine allergy problems. Over the next few weeks the problem got progressively worse.

In February he was down to only eating things like tomato soup, yogurt, ice cream, pudding. He couldn't even eat mashed potatoes.

I found out about EOE when I posted a question on a Facebook group (Essentially Healthy) asking if anyone had a child with difficulty swallowing. Our next step was to visit an ENT and have them perform a scope and see if they could find anything. They could not.

He sent us to the GI doctor, whom we visited later that week. After the office visit, he scheduled an in-patient surgery to look further. It was through that test (upper GI endoscopy or esophagogastro duodenoscopy), we were able to diagnose the EOE.

After that point we were told to try swallowed (vs. inhaled) steroid medicine - flonase, along with Prevacid and Nasonex.  After several weeks, there was no change.

We decided to further research and try to figure out if there was a natural way to treat the condition.

Several sources suggested that we could try either a) an elemental diet or b) an elimination diet.

We tried the elemental diet first (with Neocate formula and fruit drinks only) and he was just not getting enough calories.

With both elemental and elimination, he was sad that he could no longer have the yogurt, pudding, and chocolate that he had been enjoying before.  We had to remove those due to the milk content.  We also had to remove the yummy tomato soup he had been eating, due to the acidic content in the tomatoes.

So now we're trying the elimination diet, removing all of the high-allergenic foods such as soy, milk, fish, nuts, wheat, citrus, etc.  He can have soups and juices (still looking for a smoothie recipe that he will LOVE) and we also supplement with the Neocate fruit drinks.  Each little "juice box" contains 210 calories of great nutrients!

Last night we were happy that he liked the black bean soup Jeoff made for him.  He'll get over 200 calories in one cup and there's lots of healthy veggies in the recipe.  Other than that, he's eating brocolli an organic brocolli soup we've been buying.  We tried sneak chicken into it but it must not have been the right proportion.  He didn't like it.

He had been eating chick and potato soup made with rice milk, but he started having what may be an allergic reaction to the rice milk so that's off the menu until we come up with another milk to use instead.  He can't do cow's milk, goat's milk, almond milk, or soy milk.  He didn't like flax milk or hemp milk.  I think next time we'll try coconut milk again.

Yesterday he weighed 64.8 pounds.  That's up 1.4 pounds from two days ago.   Praise the Lord.

Thursday, April 07, 2011

Memory Master 2011

My 3rd grader accomplished a HUGE GOAL this week, which she set for herself a year ago (and I didn't even know she had set the goal). She scored 100% Mastery of the grammar curriculum in our home school program,@Classical Conversations Inc. In CC each year, students learn over 500 pieces of information including history, science, math, English, Latin, and geography. See more here. She woke up Monday morning and said, "Would you review the Memory Master information with me? All of it? I really want to be a Memory Master." :-) I'm so proud of her and all of the students in our CC community and what they've accomplished this year. Learning together with mommies and daddies is such fun! It's all for God's glory! Whatever goals they accomplish. Sol de Gloria!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

With Arms Wide Open

Life consists of mixed emotions and subtle ironies. We’re overwhelmed with emotion on the day we’re married, received that new job, or looked into the bright future of life filled with wonderful children, a great place to live, or our dream car. Then comes the day to day grind we must face; the disagreements, unmet expectations, disgruntled co-workers, car repair bills, or back-talking offspring. Where’s the joy then? Can we find it, or is it hidden too deeply?

Take a look at this excerpt from a book my husband brought home the other day by Stephen C. Lundin. The book is titled, Fish Tales – Bite-sized Stories – Unlimited Possibilities
“We recently read about a little boy with a rare digestive disorder. He spent much of his time in the hospital, with needles in his arms. When a doctor or nurse approached him, he knew it was because they were probably going to have to put another needle in his arm. But instead of crying, he smiled and held out his arms for them.
Life can sometimes be painful when you greet it with arms extended. But there is no other way to fully embrace life.”

When he first read this to me, I thought it was a cute story. I could even find a few examples of how I could apply the principle to circumstances I had recently experienced. We talked about how we want to teach our four young children this principle and be prepared to face not only the joys of life but the struggles and disappointments – starting with their every day dealings with one another. Teaching others is fairly easy to do because you don’t have to get too dirty.
Over the next few weeks, however, this thing was ever present before me.

As I faced my daily responsibilities, I would remind myself that I enjoy this family of mine. Each small source of irritation would present itself in much larger magnification that it was in reality and I’d have to slap myself and say “with arms wide open,” …. smile, …. embrace it.

Entering my 7th week of pregnancy, two and a half months after miscarrying I had an ultrasound. After being told my baby’s heartbeat was much lower than normal, and the measurement was below the presumed gestational age, I had to tell myself, “with arms wide open,” …. smile, …. embrace it.
Nearing summer’s end (ending way too soon), and staring at the books I’ve purchased, wondering how to put some type of plan into place to pull this all together and teach my children successfully, I’d sometimes think about how incredibly hard this job really is. My toddler poops again and it’s the kind that puts a grown person to shame and I want to scream. But the Lord reminds me, “with arms wide open,” …. smile, …. embrace it.

It’s now the beginning of my 8th week of pregnancy and every morning I wake up waiting for nausea, hoping for morning sickness, praying to feel the worst pregnancy symptoms ever because I know that’s a signal of hope. It’s a sign that something is being stirred up with in. It’s not being stirred up for futility, but it’s for a purpose. There’s life destined to be birthed. So any day I felt these symptoms, “with arms wide open,” ….I smiled, …. I embraced it. I actually hoped for that same struggle the next day.
Even today, after having confirmed that our 6th baby’s heartbeat had stopped, the principle has not changed. I’ve repeated to others many times before and I hate sometimes, when I have to take this advice myself — the Lord’s principles remain unchanged. I can’t apply it to one circumstance and not another. God’s says in his word that “weeping may endure for a night but joy comes in the morning” (Psalm 30:5). The Word also says, “for the joy that was set before Him, He endured the cross.” (Hebrews 12:2) So today, Lord, I set that same joy before me.
I will arise and eat bread. “I shall go to him, but he shall not return to me.” (II Samuel 12:18-23)

I love you, Lord. I know you planned and fashioned our family well before I met any of these people living in this house with me. Well before you placed me in my own mother’s womb. So again, I say that I love you. I thank you. I will “Be Still and Know That You Are God”.
And “with arms wide open,” ….I will smile, …. I will embrace it.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Apple Cider Chicken

I love love love this one!! Thanks Sunny!

Apple Cider Chicken by Sunny Anderson


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 2 pounds)
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 Vidalia onion, chopped
  • 1 Granny Smith apple, cored and sliced into 1/4-inch wedges
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups apple cider


Heat oil and 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet over medium-high heat. Season the chicken breasts with salt and pepper, add to pan and sear until golden, about 4 minutes each side. Remove chicken from pan, and set aside. Add remaining butter and onion, apple, garlic, thyme and bay leaves. Saute until apple begins to get color and onions soften, about 6 minutes. Add flour and stir 2 to 3 minutes. Nestle chicken back into pan, add cider, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover. Cook until chicken is cooked through, about 12 minutes.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

How He Loves!!

Thinking about the Father's Love for us, especially during this Valentine's Day season.

I love the lyrics to this song, by the David Crowder Band. Enjoy them below as well as the video at the bottom.


He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,

Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realise just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.

And oh, how He loves us so,
Oh how He loves us,
How He loves us all

Yeah, He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves.

We are His portion and He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes,
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.
And Heaven meets earth like an unforseen kiss,
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest,
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets,
When I think about, the way…

MomHeart Conference

I went to this last this year and it was really refreshing. Mrs. Clarkson was very sweet, and an inspiration to me in this season.

My friend Andrea and I had such a good time that we said we needed to tell lots of other moms next year.

The conference dates are February 26-27 at the Las Colinas Marriott.

Here's where you can find more information

Friday, February 05, 2010

What do Classical Conversations students learn in Cycle 2?

In Classical Conversations' Foundations Cycle 2, students learn.......

  • 160 events & people in a chronological timeline
  • 24 history sentences to "put some flesh" on our timeline (including Charlemagne, Reformation, Renaissance, World Wars…)
  • 44 U.S. presidents
  • 100 locations and geographic features in Europe, Asia and select parts of the world
  • 24 science facts (biomes, planets, laws of motion, laws of thermodynamics…)
  • Latin verbs – the first conjugation
  • English grammar facts (including pronouns, adverbs and adjectives…)
  • Multiplication tables up to 15x15, common squares and cubes, as well as basic geometry formulas and unit conversions
That's over 500 pieces of information!

Not to mention…
  • Exposure to drawing techniques
  • Music theory and tin whistle
  • Six great artists and related projects
  • Introduction to orchestra and three classical composers
  • Twelve science experiments and…
  • The practicing and refinement of oral presentation skills!
According to Proverbs 24:3-4, the stages of learning are knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Catechism for Young Children

An Introduction to the Shorter Catechism

Q. 1. Who made you?
A. God.

Q. 2. What else did God make?
A. God made all things.

Q. 3. Why did God make you and all things ?
A. For his own glory.

Q. 4. How can you glorify God?
A. By loving him and doing what he commands.

Q. 5. Why ought you to glorify God?
A. Because he made me and takes care of me.

Q. 6. Are there more gods than one?
A. There is only one God.

Q. 7. In how many persons does this one God exist?
A. In three persons.

Q. 8. What are they?
A. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost.

Q. 9. What is God?
A. God is a Spirit, and has not a body like men.

Q. 10. Where is God?
A. God is everywhere.

Q. 11. Can you see God?
A. No; I cannot see God, but he always sees me.

Q. 12. Does God know all things?
A. Yes; nothing can be hid from God.

Q. 13. Can God do all things?
A. Yes; God can do all his holy will.

Q. 14. Where do you learn how to love and obey God?
A. In the Bible alone.

Q. 15. Who wrote the Bible?
A. Holy men who were taught by the Holy Spirit.

Q. 16. Who were our first parents?
A. Adam and Eve.

Q. 17. Of what were our first parents made?
A. God made the body of Adam out of the ground, and formed Eve from the body of Adam.

Q. 18. What did God give Adam and Eve besides bodies?
A. He gave them souls that could never die.

Q. 19. Have you a soul as well as a body?
A. Yes; I have a soul that can never die.

Q. 20. How do you know that you have a soul?
A. Because the Bible tells me so.

Q. 21. In what condition did God make Adam and Eve?
A. He made them holy and happy.

Q. 22. What is a covenant?
A. An agreement between two or more persons.

Q. 23. What covenant did God make with Adam?
A. The covenant of works.

Q. 24. What was Adam bound to do by the covenant of works?
A. To obey God perfectly.

Q. 25. What did God promise in the covenant of works?
A. To reward Adam with life if he obeyed him.

Q. 26. What did God threaten in the covenant of works?
A. To punish Adam with death if he disobeyed.

Q. 27. Did Adam keep the covenant of works?
A. No; he sinned against God.

Q. 28. What is Sin?
A. Sin is any want of conformity unto, or transgression of the law of God.

Q. 29. What is meant by want of conformity?
A. Not being or doing what God requires.

Q. 30. What is meant by transgression?
A. Doing what God forbids.

Q. 31. What was the sin of our first parents?
A. Eating the forbidden fruit.

Q. 32. Who tempted them to this sin?
A. The devil tempted Eve, and she gave the fruit to Adam.

Q. 33. What befell our first parents when they had sinned?
A. Instead of being holy and happy, they became sinful and miserable.

Q. 34. Did Adam act for himself alone in the covenant of works?
A. No; he represented all his posterity.

Q. 35. What effect had the sin of Adam on all mankind?
A. All mankind are born in a state of sin and misery.

Q. 36. What is that sinful nature which we inherit from Adam called?
A. Original sin.

Q. 37. What does every sin deserve?
A. The wrath and curse of God.

Q. 38. Can any one go to heaven with this sinful nature?
A. No; our hearts must be changed before we can be fit for heaven.

Q. 39. What is a change of heart called?
A. Regeneration.

Q. 40. Who can change a sinner's heart?
A. The Holy Spirit alone.

Q. 41. Can any one be saved through the covenant of works?
A. None can be saved through the covenant of works.

Q. 42. Why can none be saved through the covenant of works?
A. Because all have broken it, and are condemned by it

Q. 43. With whom did God the Father make the covenant of grace?
A. With Christ, his eternal Son.

Q. 44. Whom did Christ represent in the covenant of grace?
A. His elect people.

Q. 45. What did Christ undertake in the covenant of grace?
A. To keep the whole law for his people, and to suffer the punishment due to their sins.

Q. 46. Did our Lord Jesus Christ ever commit the least sin?
A. No; he was holy, harmless, and undefiled.

Q. 47. How could the Son of God suffer?
A. Christ, the Son of God, became man that he might obey and suffer in our nature.

Q. 48. What is meant by the Atonement?
A. Christ's satisfying divine justice, by his sufferings and death, in the place of sinners.

Q. 49. What did God the Father undertake in the covenant of grace?
A. To justify and sanctify those for whom Christ should die.

Q. 50. What justification?
A. It is God's forgiving sinners, and treating them as if they had never sinned.

Q. 51. What is sanctification?
A. It is God's making sinners holy in heart and conduct.

Q. 52. For whom did Christ obey and suffer?
A. For those whom the Father had given him.

Q. 53. What kind of life did Christ live on earth?
A. A life of poverty and suffering.

Q. 54. What kind of death did Christ die?
A. The painful and shameful death of the cross.

Q. 55. Who will be saved?
A. Only those who repent of sin, believe in Christ, and lead holy lives.

Q. 56. What is it to repent?
A. To be sorry for sin, and to hate and forsake it because it is displeasing to God.

Q. 57. What is it to believe or have faith in Christ?
A. To trust in Christ alone for salvation.

Q. 58. Can you repent and believe in Christ by your own power?
A. No; I can do nothing good without the help of God's Holy Spirit.

Q. 59. How can you get the help of the Holy Spirit?
A. God has told us that we must pray to him for the Holy Spirit.

Q. 60. How long ago is it since Christ died?
A. More than two thousand years.

Q. 61. How were pious persons saved before the coming of Christ?
A. By believing in a Savior to come.

Q. 62. How did they show their faith?
A. By offering sacrifices on God's altar.

Q. 63. What did these sacrifices represent?
A. Christ, the Lamb of God, who was to die for sinners.

Q. 64. What offices has Christ?
A. Christ has three offices.

Q. 65. What are they?
A. The offices of a prophet, of a priest, and of a king.

Q. 66. How is Christ a prophet?
A. Because he teaches us the will of God.

Q. 67. How is Christ a priest?
A. Because he died for our sins and pleads with God for us.

Q. 68. How is Christ a king?
A. Because he rules over us and defends us.

Q. 69. Why do you need Christ as a prophet?
A. Because I am ignorant.

Q. 70. Why do you need Christ as a priest?
A. Because I am guilty.

Q. 71. Why do you need Christ as a king?
A. Because I am weak and helpless.

Q. 72. How many commandments did God give on Mount Sinai?
A. Ten commandments.

Q. 73. What are the ten commandments sometimes called?
A. The Decalogue.

Q. 74. What do the first four commandments teach?
A. Our duty to God.

Q. 75. What do the last six commandments teach?
A. Our duty to our fellow men.

Q. 76. What is the sum of the ten commandments?
A. To love God with all my heart, and my neighbor as myself.

Q. 77. Who is your neighbor?A. All my fellow men are my neighbors.

Q. 78. Is God pleased with those who love and obey him?
A. Yes; he says, "I love them that love me."

Q. 79. Is God displeased with those who do not love and obey him?
A. Yes; "God is angry with the wicked every day."

Q. 80. What is the first commandment?
A. The first commandment is, Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

Q. 81. What does the first commandment teach us?
A. To worship God alone.

Q. 82. What is the second commandment?
A. The second commandment is, Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any things that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.

Q. 83. What does the second commandment teach us?
A. To worship God in a proper manner, and to avoid idolatry.

Q. 84. What is the third commandment?
A. The third commandment is, Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

Q. 85. What does the third commandment teach me?
A. To reverence God's name, word, and works.

Q. 86. What is the fourth commandment?
A. The fourth commandment is, Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. Six days shalt thou labor, and do all thy work, but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the Lord thy God; in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, nor thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates: for in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day; wherefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath Day, and hallowed it.

Q. 87. What does the fourth commandment teach us?
A. To keep the Sabbath holy.

Q. 88. What day of the week is the Christian Sabbath?
A. The first day of the week, called the Lord's day.

Q. 89. Why is it called the Lord's day?
A. Because on that day Christ rose from the dead.

Q. 90. How should the Sabbath be spent?
A. In prayer and praise, in hearing and reading God's Word, and in doing good to our fellow men.

Q. 91. What is the fifth commandment?
A. The fifth commandment is, Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.

Q. 92. What does the fifth commandment teach me?
A. To love and obey our parents and teachers.

Q. 93. What is the sixth commandment?
A. The sixth commandment is, Thou shalt not kill.

Q. 94. What does the sixth commandment teach us?
A. To avoid angry passions.

Q. 95. What is the seventh commandment?
A. The seventh commandment is, Thou shalt not commit adultery.

Q. 96. What does the seventh commandment teach us?
A. To be pure in heart, language, and conduct.

Q. 97. What is the eighth commandment?
A. The eighth commandment is, Thou shalt not steal.

Q. 98. What does the eighth commandment teach us?
A. To be honest and industrious.

Q. 99. What is the ninth commandment?
A. The ninth commandment is, Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.

Q. 100. What does the ninth commandment teach us?
A. To tell the truth.

Q. 101. What is the tenth commandment?
A. The tenth commandment is, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidservant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor any thing that is thy neighbor's.

Q. 102. What does the tenth commandment teach us?
A. To be content with our lot.

Q. 103. Can any man keep these ten commandments perfectly?
A. No mere man, since the fall of Adam, ever did or can keep the ten commandments perfectly.

Q. 104. Of what use are the ten commandments to us?
A. They teach us our duty, and show our need of a Savior.

Q. 105. What is prayer?
A. Prayer is asking God for things which he has promised to give.

Q. 106. In whose name should we pray?
A. Only in the name of Christ.

Q. 107. What has Christ given us to teach us how to pray?
A. The Lord's Prayer.

Q. 108. Repeat the Lord's Prayer.
A. Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Q. 109. How many petitions are there in The Lord's Prayer?
A. Six.

Q. 110. What is the first petition?
A. "Hallowed be thy name."

Q. 111. What do we pray for in the first petition?
A. That God's name may be honored by us and all men.

Q. 112. What is the second petition?
A. "Thy kingdom come."

Q. 113. What do we pray for in the second petition?
A. That the gospel may be preached in all the world, and believed and obeyed by us and all men.

Q. 114. What is the third petition?
A. "Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven."

Q. 115. What do we pray for in the third petition?
A. That men on earth may serve God as the angels do in heaven.

Q. 116. What is the fourth petition?
A. "Give us this day our daily bread."

Q. 117. What do we pray for in the fourth petition?
A. That God would give us all things needful for our bodies and souls.

Q. 118. What is the fifth petition?
A. "And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors."

Q. 119. What do we pray for in the fifth petition?
A. That God would pardon our sins for Christ's sake, and enable us to forgive those who have injured us.

Q. 120. What is the sixth petition?
A. "And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil."

Q. 121. What do we pray for in the sixth petition?
A. That God would keep us from sin.

Q. 122. How many sacraments are there?
A. Two.

Q. 123. What are they?
A. Baptism and the Lord's Supper.

Q. 124. Who appointed these sacraments?
A. The Lord Jesus Christ.

Q. 125. Why did Christ appoint these sacraments?
A. To distinguish his disciples from the world, and to comfort and strengthen them.

Q. 126. What sign is used in baptism?
A. The washing with water.

Q. 127. What does this signify?
A. That we are cleansed from sin by the blood of Christ.

Q. 128. In whose name are we baptized?
A. In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.

Q. 129. Who are to be baptized?
A. Believers and their children.

Q. 130. Why should infants be baptized?
A. Because they have a sinful nature and need a Savior.

Q. 131. Does Christ care for little children?
A. Yes; for he says, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God."

Q. 132. To what does your baptism bind you?
A. To be a true follower of Christ.

Q. 133. What is the Lord's Supper?
A. The eating of bread and drinking of wine in remembrance of the sufferings and death of Christ.

Q. 134. What does the bread represent?
A. The body of Christ, broken for our sins.

Q. 135. What does the wine represent?
A. The blood of Christ, shed for our salvation.

Q. 136. Who should partake of the Lord's Supper?
A. Only those who repent of their sins, believe in Christ for salvation, and love their fellow men.

Q. 137. Did Christ remain in the tomb after his crucifixion?
A. No; he rose from the tomb on the third day after his death.

Q. 138. Where is Christ now?
A. In heaven, interceding for sinners.

Q. 139. Will he come again?
A. Yes; at the last day Christ will come to judge the world.

Q. 140. What becomes of men at death?
A. The body returns to dust, and the soul goes into the world of spirits.

Q. 141. Will the bodies of the dead be raised to life again?
A. Yes; "The trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised."

Q. 142. What will become of the wicked in the day of judgment?
A. They shall he cast into hell.

Q. 143. What is hell?
A. A place of dreadful and endless torment.

Q. 144. What will become of the righteous?
A. They shall be taken to heaven.

Q. 145. What is heaven?
A. A glorious and happy place, where the righteous shall be forever with the Lord.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Just a Mom?

My mom forwarded this to me today. Very cute!!

A woman, renewing her driver's license at the Coun ty Clerk 's office,

Was asked by the woman recorder to state her occupation.

She hesitated, uncertain how to classify herself.

"What I mean is, " explained the recorder,

"do you have a job or are you just a ....?"

"Of course I have a job," snapped the woman.

"I'm a Mom."

"We don't list 'Mom' as an occupation,

'housewife' covers it,"

Said the recorder emphatically.

I forgot all about her story until one day I found myself

In the same situation, this time at our own Town Hall.

The Clerk was obviously a career woman, poised,

Efficient, and possessed of a high sounding title like,

"Official Interrogator" or "Town Registrar."

"What is your occupation?" she probed.

What made me say it? I do not know.

The words simply popped out.

"I'm a Research Associate in the field of

Child Development and Human Relations."

The clerk paused, ball-point pen frozen in midair and

Looked up as though she had not heard right.

I repeated the title slowly emphasizing the most significant words.

Then I stared with wonder as my pronouncement was written,

In bold, black ink on the official questionnaire.

"Might I ask," said the clerk with new interest,

"just what you do in your field?"

Coolly, without any trace of fluster in my voice,

I heard myself reply,

"I have a continuing program of research,

(what mother doesn't)

In the laboratory and in the field,

(normally I would have said indoors and out).

I'm working for my Masters, (first the Lord and then the whole family)

And already have four credits (all daughters).

Of course, the job is one of the most demanding in the humanities,

(any mother care to disagree?)

And I often work 14 hours a day, (24 is more like it).

But the job is more challenging than most run-of-the-mill careers

And the rewards are more of a satisfaction rather than just money."

There was an increasing note of respect in the clerk's voice as she

Completed the form, stood up, and personally ushered me to the door.

As I drove into our driveway, buoyed up by my glamorous new career,

I was greeted by my lab assistants -- ages 13, 7, and 3.

Upstairs I could hear our new experimental model,

(a 6 month old baby) in the child development p rogram,

Testing out a new vocal pattern.

I felt I had scored a beat on bureaucracy!

And I had gone on the official records as someone more

Distinguished and indispensable to mankind than "just another Mom."


What a glorious career!

Especially when there's a title on the door.


Does this make grandmothers

"Senior Research associates in the field of Child Development and Human Relations"

And great grandmothers

"Executive Senior Research Associates?"

I think so!!!

I also think it makes Aunts"Associate Research Assistants."


Please send this to another Mom,



And other friends you know.

May your troubles be less,

Your blessing be more,

And nothing but happiness come through your door!