Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Hello, Morning! Week 6

Here we are in the middle of week six of the Hello Mornings Challenge over at Inspired to Action.   I am finding it hard to believe that we are in Week 6 already!  Yet, at the same time, it seems as if we are just getting started.  This week we are starting in to the second chapter of I Peter.   In my initial read of verses 1-12, the phrases "the LORD is gracious" and "his marvelous light" and "we have obtained mercy" jumped at me.   

As I am going through this week, the graciousness of God is my rejoicing.  His great riches poured on me.  As I heard defined last week: divine influence in the heart reflected in one's life.  God's grace.  

The pattern of this study is becoming very evident in the weekly approach to the passage of Scripture.  Reading for understanding or clarification of words and phrases the first day.  The the next three days reading the passage looking for truths, promises, and commands.  Finally, applying the passage to daily life.  The no nonsense approach that is easy to follow each week, is a great tool to learn.  Not only for use in study this current passage of I Peter, but to be taken and used in the study of any Scripture passage.  

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Hello, Morning! Week 5

Week five is drawing to a close, and it seems as if the time has flown this week.  Study has been more challenging, and I am slipping in my early morning study time.  It is more of a mid-day study time the last few days. I am continuing to rise early (for the most part), but my family is starting to make the adjustment to early mornings along with me, and so what has been a quiet time for me in the early hours is becoming more of a family time.   I love the transition for us all, we seem to be starting our days better because it, but I am missing the alone time before everyone else is up.  

The passage of study this week has been a challenge to read each day.  The sentence structure and flow of thoughts within thoughts has been difficult for me to wrap my brain around.  Prayer:  "Holy Spirit guide me and grant me understanding as I read."   Two truths that seemed to repeating jump at me as I read and reread the passage this week, has been from verse 18 & 19 and 23.   "Ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things,  . . . but with the precious blood of Christ" and " . .. . the word of God, which liveth and abideth forever."   It is not me, and anything in me, it is God and God alone that does the amazing work of salvation and that keeps us!  He abides forever! despite what I do or how I act or think.  He is the great I AM.  Now and forever.  

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Book Review: Survival for Busy Women

Survival For Busy Women:  Establishing Efficient Home Management by Emlie Barnes is a good resource of advice and ideas for helping any woman learn how to better manage her home and life.

Life can be very busy or stressful and the suggestions and guidelines through out this book are practical how to's for those seeking guidance and help for life management.   Lists and charts, project ideas, and organizational suggestions are scattered through out the book. 

I enjoyed the easy reading of Emlie's writing and the format of this book.  The ideas presented, though not new to me, where done simply and in some cases differently than I have seen previously. 

The edition of this book I read was published over twenty-five years ago and that fact could be seen in several of the tools she referenced.  The ideas are still applicable, though.  The concepts of life management do not change over time.   An update of to this book is available, and I am looking forward to reading it to see if and how the author incorporates the tools technology has made available.   I am curious to see if she has an new ideas or suggestions after twenty plus years.  

Survival for Busy Women is a good primer for those seeking to be more efficient in their home management.  Whether for a young person or a lady with much experience, I would recommend this book for the basic ideas, suggestions, and charts presented by the author.  

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hello, Morning!: Week 4

Wow!  This past week has been tough.  The holiday weekend at the beginning of the week, a sick child home for two days, and an explainable lack of focus have all contributed to making my study time much more of a discipline than a joy this week.  

My prayers as I have entered Bible Study this week, have been very much along the lines of, "Father, drive away the distractions and help me focus on Your Word! PLEASE!!!"  

God's gracious riches extended to me, so that I may obey and honor Him has been the thought that has been noticeable to me in the passage this week.   I am so grateful that even when I don't feel it, God is good and still is choosing to guide and bless me.  

As I enter this week, I had hoped to be moving on to a new habit to solidify. Not so -- my focus is going to be staying on track.  I sense I am at a crossroads in my study time and the development of this habit of everyday focus moments.  I will either continue on in the pursuit of something I know is good, or I will turn aside to something else.  The something else is not really what I want to do . . . so for this week - focus and perseverance!  

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Habit of the Month: Back to Routines

I have taken a break from writing and posting over the summer months.  Now, as my girls are headed back to school and our schedule needs are changing, it is time for a "back to routines" evaluation.  

Some times of the year just naturally lend themselves to changes in the routines of my day and a reevaluation of my time usage.  The start of the school year and beginning of the fall season are one of those times.  (Oh, how I love the fall!  Maybe more on that in a later post.)  The relaxed morning and evening duties/routines of summer do not assist in the smooth functioning of our family as a tighter schedule becomes necessary for school obligations.  

Mornings can be chaos and craziness if we don't have some sense of structure to them.  Getting my family up and started on their days with a pleasant attitude in our home, is a priority for me.  To help make this a reality, having a routine to our mornings is a must!  Once we get into it, even on the weekends it seems the routine is followed, though at a slightly more relaxed pace.  

Often repeated in organization and time management circles, is the concept that your morning really starts the evening before.  When I first heard the idea I agreed a routine the night before that considers the morning coming would be helpful, though I really did not think it was that important.  Well, I have been converted!  Considering the next morning and day as you go into the activities for the evening is cornerstone in helping me to make the coming morning pleasant. 

In addition to getting back to more structured morning and evening routines, evaluating my activities in the home, time spent out of the home, and where I am putting my energy is a big part of getting back to routines.  Big activities, jobs, and events all trickle down into the everyday tasks and commitments.   I need to be certain they are the priorities I should have and want.  If I don't things quickly spin out of control.  

So, this month's habit:  "Back to routines!"  I am looking forward to the structured organization and different sort of relaxed feeling it will bring to my life and our home.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Hello Morning!: Week 3

image from
What a fast week of study it has been.   Last week, those following the I Peter study read through the entire book - a chapter a day.  It was a great overview week, and it is wonderful how the Lord gives verses of encouragement and application through the book.   If you want to read what Katie at Inspired To Action says this week about the study, you can find her comments here.

This week, we look at the first passage (I Peter 1:1-2, 5:12-14).  Personally, I am curious as to why the writers of the study paired these verses.   Hopefully by the end of the week, it will be clear to me. Each day this week has a different focus as we read the passage.

Day 1:  Read the passage.
Day 2:  Look for specific truths.
Day 3:  Find the promises given.
Day 4:  Note commands.
Day 5:  Apply what I have learned to my life.

This week as we enter more of the in depth study of the passage, my focus will be spending time in prayer before each study.  I want to glean from this passage what I need to be learning, and I know that I need God's direction and help.