Monday, March 29, 2010

Memorization Monday

This week is Holy Week. I've just read the conclusion to one of my
favorite bible stories ever! Its not so much the story, but what the
story means in the big picture of Christianity.
Joseph, one of twelve sons of Jacob, is sold to the Egyptians by his
brothers. This sets up the best story. In Egypt, after years in
service to the king then in prison, Joseph funds himself interpreting
the King's dreams and then overseeing a stockpile of food in
preparation for a famine. His family goes to Egypt to buy food. He
recognizes them. They all come out. Jacob dies. The family (12
brothers and wives and children who become the twelve tribes of
Israel) stays in Egypt. Then they become too big to the King and they
become slaves. Eventually God sends Moses to rescue them, but not
without a few plagues and hardening of Pharoh's heart first. The last
plague is the angel of death, which was avoided by sacrificing a lamb
and painting its blood on the doorposts. Thus was born the tradition
of the Passover lamb. A holiday that Jews take very seriously. Its
very meaningful. As it should be.
Thousands of years later Christ was crucified as our permanent Passover lamb.
I used to think that if the one little act by the brothers didn't
happen, the Jews never wouldve been slaves to Egypt. But we wouldn't
have our imagery and meaning of Christ as the Passover lamb and we
wouldn't understand or appreciate it. All of Jewish history would be
completely different. One small act by jealous boys and men set up
the greatest selfless act in all eternity!
Anyway ... At the end of the exodus story is the ten commandments.
Moses says, in Exodus 20:20,
Do not be afraid; for God has come in order to rest you, in order that
the fear of Him may remain with you, so that you may not sin.
The Jewish people didn't know who God was. He didn't speak to them
the way He spoke to Jacob and Isaac and Abraham. This was really
their first personal encounter with God. All they had were stories
before. Now its real and personal. And God wants the best for them,
so He gave them rules to live by and a guideline for life. So that
they wouldn't sin and He could remain with them.
I get chills thinking of the importance of this story. I love it.
And in Holy Week its very meaningful as we prepare to remember
Christ's humble entry on a donkey into Jerusalem (yesterday ... Palm
Sunday), and the Last Supper celebration of Passover, Good Friday, and
ultimately Easter or Resurrection Sunday!
Thank you Lord for your Son.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Psalm 47

Such a great and powerful Psalm describing God's greatness and what should be our response.

Sing praises to God, sing praises.
Sing praises to our King, sing praises.
For God is the King of the earth;
Sing praises with a skillful psalm.

We're not to just speak praises. We are to sing them. Singing takes more heart, more courage, more air. It involves breathing deeply and lifting our chests. You put your whole self into singing. Not just word, but with soul. Singing is louder than speaking. It cuts through the normal noises. Its enjoyable to listen to. Our praises aren't to be done halfway, they are to be sung skillfully for He is King over ALL the earth!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Memorization Monday

This week's memory verse came from the sermon on Sunday. Our sermon series is titled The Final 24 and is about the last 24 hours of Christ. This week's sermon was on Christ's suffering. Instead of following the suffering narrative in Luke, which has been the outline the last few weeks, the speaker read Isaiah and discussed how to help the suffering.

Isaiah 53:5 reads:
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
       he was crushed for our iniquities;
       the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
       and by his wounds we are healed.

I love the picture this verse creates. Its very descriptive.

We have peace. We are saved. We have eternal life. And we receive these things for free. God's grace. Christ's suffering. Our salvation and eternity!

Whenever I read this passage in Isaiah I am reminded of a song by Carmen. A boxing match between Jesus and Satan. Jesus takes a beating and is knocked down; He's down for 9 seconds and then rises, catching Satan off guard and defeating death.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Eternity Matters

Our current sermon series is titled, "The Final 24," and is focusing on Luke's account of Christ's 24 hours leading up to his crucifixion.  It has been very deep and thought-provoking.  When reading the passage on praying in the garden and how his sweat was like blood.  I was moved.  Just seeing these passages in a light that I haven't seen before.  Or maybe just a little deeper.  While we're reading this scripture I'm also playing The Passion of the Christ over and over again in my head.


We try to watch that movie every year during the Lenten and Easter season, but aren't always successful.  I hope we can this year.


This week's passage was Luke 23:1-25; when Jesus is on trial before the Sanhedrin, Pilate, Herod and Pilate again.  


Because the guilty verdict the religious leaders gave held no legal weight, they had to take Jesus to Pilate in order to have him sentenced.  They lied to Pilate, saying that Jesus said the people didn't have to pay taxes and that he claimed divine authority as only a King (Caesar) would have.  Pilate, however, saw no fault in Christ.  So he sent him to Herod.  Herod was looking for a magic show; wanting to be entertained.  Jesus refused to speak and be a part of Herod's game, so Herod mocked him and returned him to Pilate.  


Pilate tried to compromise and just have Jesus flogged, but the Pharisees would not oblige.  Pilate tried to release Jesus as part of their traditions to have a prisoner released during the passover.  But again, the Pharisees would not have any of that.  They wanted Christ dead and there was no convincing them otherwise.


Pilate finally gave in, but tried to convince himself that he was not committing this act, the Pharisees were.  He washed his hands of it.  This was done to prevent an uproar by the Pharisees and Jewish people.  There was much political turmoil and Pilate was trying to prevent losing his seat.


Jesus knew one thing through all of this.  What Pilate, Herod, the Pharisees, even the disciples did just didn't matter.  Only ETERNITY MATTERS.  Knowing that everything he was doing was for His and OUR eternity, He kept his mouth shut in front of Herod.  He did not argue to the Sanhedrin.  He didn't beg Pilate to stand up to the Pharisees.  He just did what God, His Father, was telling Him to do.


The full sermon can be heard here or found in itunes.  Search for Centerpointe Presbyterian Church in Pleasanton, CA.

Audrey plays the drums...



Open Mic Night

Last Friday night, our church hosted Open Mic Worship Night.  We all participated.  Andrew played his guitar, I played piano, Kymberly played a song she wrote, and Josh did a drum solo.


Here is Josh's drum solo.


Birthday Chocolate Dipped Strawberries


Another post telling all of a wonderful freebie I found.  Fruit Flowers gives you a half dozen chocolate covered strawberries on your birthday if you join their club.  Also when you join you get a free smile mug.



Fruit Fanatics

Monday, March 15, 2010

Memorization Monday

This week's verses are from my daily reading ... Although I really loved some passages from yesterday's sermon and had a hard time deciding what to memorize.

The passage is 3 verses long.

Psalm 36:10-12
O continue Your lovingkingness to those who know You,
And Your righteousness to the upright in heart.
Let not the foot of pride come upon me,
And let not the head of the wicked drive me away.
There the doers of iniquity have fallen;
They have been thrust down and cannot rise.

I especially like the verse about pride. I tend to be a very proud person, especially when in the middle of an argument. I'm actively working on my own pride issues and think this verse is a great reminder of the damages of pride and other sinfulness and wickedness.

The Birth of an addict



Audrey had her first girl scout cookie the other day, a thin mint. And boy did she love it.

I'm afraid we've created an addict - good thing the rest of the family is addicted to them too.




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Challenge Results


Well, I was successful in not using my phone or the computer this weekend.  It wasn't really that hard, I wasn't really going through withdrawal, but I did have those moments when I thought, "Oh this would make a GREAT FB update."  



I found myself reading when I had 20 minutes of downtime, instead of playing on my phone or checking forums.


I don't think my time with my family was any more special, simply because I put my phone away during family time anyway.


However, I had so many things to read this morning when I turned my computer on.  It will be awhile until I fully catch up.


So yes, I can go a weekend without my phone.  I could probably go a week, but would need to check email for bills and such.  But I don't want to.  I'm not addicted to it, it isn't interfering with my relationships or real life.  But I don't want to.


I like the relationships I've forged and rebuilt via the internet.  I like the photos I can post online.  I like the ease of communication.  I like having something to do when I find myself waiting unexpectedly when no one is around.  There you have it.


And all the things you missed while I was sans-phone this weekend:

  • A super cute photo of Audrey sleeping in the shopping cart
  • Knowing that Josh and I went on a lunch-date and had a great time
  • A reminder to set your clocks ahead
  • An admission that we almost forgot to set OUR clocks ahead
  • I didn't have any trouble losing my hour of sleep; if anything it was better because Audrey slept great.
  • Knowing that I was waiting for a St. Patrick's Day parade to start
  • My step-son drove me around for the first time - and it's fun to be the licensed driver in the car with someone with a permit because you not only are allowed to, but you HAVE to backseat drive.
  • hearing that Audrey went potty in her own potty on Sunday morning (Thank you Josh for tweeting that for me.....)
  • couldn't post the photos or videos from Open Mic night on Friday night - will have to work on those this week
  • An announcement of a great impromptu lunch with some good friends
I'm sure there's more I could've posted and done this weekend.  But in all reality, we were so busy I'm not sure I could've gotten much done on the computer.


Friday, March 12, 2010

Free Cookbook


Just saw this for a free LIGHT cookbook.  Since I know so many people who have an interest in cooking more light and lowfat and such but just don't know how or where to start, I thought I'd share with y'all.



Enjoy.


Free Light and Easy Cookbook Offer

Challenge....


Josh is of the opinion that I spend a lot of time on my phone.  He doesn't think I could go an entire weekend without using my phone.  



I've accepted this challenge.  So ... this weekend, I will be sans phone.  No facebook, no txting, no twitter, no email, no spontaneous Audrey photos to flickr.  Nothing.  No technology.  I will have my phone for phone calls only (I think that's fair since we'll be out of the house for much of the weekend).  All other updates will just have to wait until Monday.


I get to use my real camera, but no computer, so I can't update photos until Monday.


I guess this means today I better get all my surfing done and my photos posted.


As of midnight tonight, I will be unreachable.


I'll check back in on Monday and let you know how it went.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Mmm .... Food!!!!






Audrey LOVES her finger food. She loves all food, really. But finger foods are extra fun for her. We get to church early so that Josh can warm up with the worship team. So Audrey and I sit in the youth room waiting for the first service to end. I bring toys for her and she digs through the diaper bag for entertainment. I also bring a small tupperware of finger foods for her. One Sunday she was digging through the diaper bag and found the tupperware of food. She went crazy when she realized what it was. She was trying very hard to open it.

Big brother Andrew saved the day and fed her a few pieces.

A few minutes later Andrew wandered off to go do something and Audrey was left alone again with her puffs. She started trying very hard to open the tupperware again. Finally she popped the top off and there were little Gerber Puffs all over the floor. Mommy quickly ran over to clean them up, but Aud Ball is fast. She saw them all over the floor and her eyes got very wide. She slammed her hands on the floor and tried to grab as many as she could get before Mommy cleaned them up. It was like a video game ... who can get the most. She had two tiny hands very full of Gerber Puffs. She stuffed them in her mouth before I could take them out of her hand.

I was reminded of myself as a young child with dad's popcorn. Quick ... grab a huge handful and put it in my mouth before he gets back from the bathroom.


Monday, March 8, 2010

Memory Verse Monday


This week's memory verse comes from my daily bible reading.  




Acts 3:19 
Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.

I just really liked what this had to say.
No special story behind it.  Just really encouraging. Repent from my sins and get refreshed from God's presence in my life.

Friday, March 5, 2010

My New to me Glider - and YAY Freecycle

I received today on freecycle a glider rocking chair. I'm so excited. I've been wanting a rocking chair since I was pregnant, and we just couldn't afford it. I've made do with the seating that we have, but still secretly wanted one and was going to put it on my Mother's Day list. Then earlier this week I saw a posting for a glider on freecycle. I jumped on that opportunity. I picked it up today. It's gently used, but perfectly stable, clean, and doesn't smell. No animals or smoke. No stains. Just some minor scratches on the wood and a creaky joint. Nothing a little WD-40 can't fix.







If you aren't a member of your local freecycle group, I highly recommend you find it and join. It's a yahoo group. I LOVE them. I delete abotu 90% of the incoming emails, but every now and then I get a great find. I've also gotten rid of a lot of things that were just sitting around the house.

In the last year or so I've received
  • Maternity Clothes
  • A HUGE corner desk for work
  • Toys for Audrey
  • Baby Clothes
  • and this Glider

I'd say about $500 worth of things that I've gotten free.




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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Memorization Tuesday

My ducks were far from being in a row yesterday and I was unable to
put together this week's Memorization Monday post.

But I've aligned them into an arc and found my verse for the week.

2 Corinthians 5:21
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might
become the righteousness of God.

This verse came from out sermon on Sunday. Our current series is on
Jesus' last 24 hours and is taught out of Luke 22. This verse was
used in reference to verse 42. Jesus took on the burden, or cup, of
our sins so that we could spend eternity with God and be righteous.

The verse in 2 Corinthians is a very powerful reminder of what Christ
did and what it means for us.

--
Sent from my mobile device

~Christine
http://christinescontemplations.blogspot.com/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/biochemtine/

http://captured-by-christine.blogspot.com/

Triplet's Mommy


Despite my best attempts, I realized one day that there was a real possibility I would not be able to exclusively breast feed my daughter for a full year and would have to start supplementing with formula. But the only formula we had, my daughter didn't like.

Formula is expensive. And we just don't have the money to go out and buy a bunch of different types to try with her, only to waste an entire can if she didn't like it.

I had a mission. To find coupons and samples online. In the course of my searching, I came across a great website and immediately subscribed. It's Triplet's Mommy. It's a site all for saving money. Postings of free things. Coupons. Samples. Etc. I am hooked.

The best thing so far that I got was a free Juicy Juice sippy cup. We've tried so many sippy cups for Audrey, but she just hasn't figured them out. The Juicy Juice cup was perfect for her. The day it arrived in the mail I filled it with water and put it in her hand. She had it at her mouth and had water dribbling out her mouth in no time. It was the first sippy cup she learned to use.

I've also signed up for free formula coupons (the whole reason I ventured out onto the web that day). Just today I was notified of the Children's Place Birthday Club. Hey ... Audrey's going to be a year old in less than 3 months (AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!), coupons are a GOOD thing.

I encourage you to check them out. Great coupon and sample postings daily. Subscribe via an RSS feeder or get the weekly emails.

free samples