Thursday, January 24, 2008

Technology Free Week

This next week, from Sunday, January 27- Saturday, February 2 I am taking a technology free week. Yes, that means no computer, T.V., radio, i-pod, video games, etc. I am not going completely electronic free, but I am taking a break to hopefully put my time into some more productive things. Anyone who would like to join me is welcome! :) Because I rarely use certain electronic items such as the phone, I am not “banning” myself from it, although others may choose to if they wish. Now I have made a couple exceptions. For instance, if the computer is need for a school project (i.e. a writing assignment) it may be used. But for that reason only. No “pleasure” activities while I'm on. I will return after this break. Here’s a small list of some things you could do in place of the time you spend on these electronic devices:

· Clean and organize! Whether your room, or other places in the house to be a blessing

· Extra chores…. Suggestions could be cleaning and vacuuming the family van, mopping, vacuuming the blinds, cleaning the windows, or anything else that you can think of!

· Improving in a skill you have started

· Read some character building books, or books on a skill you are learning

· Cook, bake, experiment! Try out that new recipe you’ve been wanting, or bake some cookies… any baking or cooking is fun!

· Serve! What could you do to serve your family and/or others?

· Write a letter…Yes, you can take the time to send a handwritten letter this week… everyone loves to receive mail!

· School… Of course, many of us have school in the midst of this. You can’t slack on it during this week! Some don’t spend much time on electronic things in the first place, but my point is to give some ideas so you aren’t unproductive if you choose to do a technology free week. And if this week is not a good one for you, choose another! You will reap the blessings of the productive things you choose to do instead…

I’ll tell you what I was able to do during this week… I don’t know, maybe I’ll make this a pattern to do every couple months! :)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Summary of Maxwell Conference

Monday evening, January 7, we had the great pleasure of attending a conference by the Maxwell family. We had never been to one, and it was quite encouraging, inspiring, and convicting. For the first session, the young ladies attended a talk by the Maxwells’ oldest daughter, Sarah. Sarah spoke on joy, giving explaining various things such as what we need to experience joy, and hindrances to joy. She also spoke on how discontentment and worry can rob us of joy. Practical areas of joyful young womanhood she included were: dress, guarding our hearts, and marriage. One of the main things she encouraged girls to do was invest in their siblings and build and strengthen their family relationships. Reminding that we have an influence over our siblings, Sarah exhorted us to evaluate our thoughts and actions. Ultimately, for young women, our joy should come primarily from our relationship with our Lord, and in serving and helping our family. “You make known to me the path of life; in Your presence there is fullness of joy.” Psalm 16:11

The second session was by Christopher and Sarah, for all the young adults. It was geared towards practical advice on starting an in-home business. We learned that in order to have an in-home business, it is essential that you have a good relationship with God and your parents. Tithing is an essential part of having a business, because we are merely God’s stewards and we should joyfully honor Him in that way. In starting a home business, even before we’ve graduated from high school, we are learning business and life skills. We should be honoring God through it, and using the gifts God has given us. Our focus should not be on money, but to ultimately and completely honor God. There are three types of businesses: learning businesses, ministry businesses, and profitable businesses. The goal in learning businesses is simple to learn a great skill and be productive. In ministry businesses you do not get paid, but serve others. Ministry business examples they gave for young ladies included sewing modest clothes, making Scripture greeting cards, cake decorating, and writing children’s stories. Profitable businesses may start out as a learning or ministry business, and someday grow into a way to make money as God blesses. Profitable businesses often have a good balance of time invested and profit earned. Of course, you don’t have to have a degree to have an in-home business, but there are some prerequisites. You must have a desire to work, and it will be inevitable that you will have to work hard. Dealing with all kinds of people, and being able to talk and carry on conversations with adults is important. Even though you don’t have to hold a degree in a particular field, you still can’t begin without knowing anything. Computer and typing skills, book keeping and financial skills, and basic tax knowledge can be of great help when starting a business. Overall, both of these sessions were fantastic. It was encouraging, inspiring, and a blessing to be able to go.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Poem on Honoring Parents

Douglas W. Phillips

“Honor thy father, Honor thy mother,”
Shouts the prophet from the grave.
It’s the first command with promise
That Jesus ever made.

You may never fully realize
You may never fully know,
The way this honor transforms
You and all who follow so.

Go to Mom and give you heart.
Go to Dad and give your praise.
Rise up and call them blessed
Who gave to you their days.

There’s a power in this adage,
Present from the dawn of time.
For the promise God has given
Is yours to claim and mine.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Short post! :)

*Sorry, this is a short post for now. Once I have some more time, I'll try to get some other longer ones up. :)

Living Wisely

For Christians, it is vital that we are careful in the way we live, and how we spend our time. Ephesians 5:15-17 “Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord's will is.” We only have one life to live, and if we choose to waste it irresponsibly, it will have an impact on us as well as others around us.

Once again, I leave you with a couple quotes:
"Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that's the stuff life is made of."
Benjamin Franklin
"Nine-tenths of wisdom is being wise in time."
Theodore Roosevelt

Saturday, January 12, 2008

"For I will proclaim the name of the LORD;
ascribe greatness to our God! The Rock, His work is perfect,
for all His ways are justice.
A God of faithfulness and without iniquity,
just and upright is He."
Deuteronomy 32:3-4

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Year's Eve Party

Many people gather together to celebrate and bring in the New Year. Likewise, we invited our whole church family over for a New Year’s Eve party! I think everyone had an enjoyable time. We played games, including a family game of “I never…”, and cup stacked! We also “braved” the nippy mid 40 degree weather to shoot fireworks. (Yes, Houstonians are not accustomed to cold weather at all) :) We also gathered together to pray as a body of believers. And the first thing we did after the stroke of midnight??? Cup stacked! We also played the cup game for a while.

Ultimately, it was a terrific time of fun and fellowship. Now friends, what did you do for New Year’s Eve?

(image from Photo Explosion software)