Thursday, September 27, 2007

Sing while you work... FREE DOWNLOAD!

Head over to Solo Feminity to read about (and be directed to) a free song download (All I Really Need).

I am listening to it while I work during my conference period.

Thanks, Carolyn McCulley and Sovereign Grace!

Some may place their hope in feeble man,
I can't do that again,
For only You are strong.
I will pray to God who lifts my head,
To You who came and shed,
Your blood for all my wrongs,
For when I am weak,
I find that You are strong
And all I really need is Your grace,
All I need to know is You are near me.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Professional Face

It's that time of year again... parent-teacher conferences. And when you work at a school where the parent pays, the parents show up and usually have a lot to say and ask. It is usually a good and sanctifying experience for me, where I have to learn to fight the tendency to people-please or flatter, and I have to learn how to speak the truth in love. There are also ways to encourage the parents in their support of the child at home. It is really tricky sometimes, so I would definitely appreciate your prayer today (just ask for wisdom). I have had a few really great conferences so far this morning, so we're off to a great start. I definitely get kind of nervous, and I have to remind myself to speak slowly and not say "like" too much (they already think I'm young), and listen carefully. Some of these parents are BRIGHT, and some are very well-versed or well-opinionated in their educational philosophies of choice. ("This test was completely unreasonable, because of this, this and this...")

Anyway, I have about 12 more today, but here's the good news. The kids are gone, so that leaves a few gaps to work on grading and catch up. AND... Noah's Mom brought me this amazing HUGE piece of BUTTERSCOTCH PIE. Yummy. If I can scrounge up 50 cents to go grab a Dr. Pepper, my day just got much brighter.

I think that this is always a good experience for me overall. It just feels weird. You have your high heels (okay, not really... still have my flats on), and your professional garb, and you feel like such a career woman. It feels out of character for simple me (whose heart is homebound). I fit in with the kids much better... (probably even better at a camp or babysitting setting, then a school one) oh well.

Back to the pie...

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Good Dialogue

(From our church's blog, emphasis mine)

The part I made bold is the part I wanted to pass on, but the broader context is helpful. I've been made to think lately about seeing the needs of your church and other similar thoughts. This discussion was helpful. I hope it will encourage you today, whatever church you may belong to...

A distinctive of the kingdom-mustard
By Keith GoadSeptember 24, 2007

Greg gave a very clear and accurate exposition of the mustard seed parable. The kingdom may look small now, but it will be awesome and finally victorious. One need not be anxious about the kingdom or the microcosm of the kingdom–the church–appearing small or insignificant. Some seem to be afraid of the smallness of the church and try to change aspects of the church’s culture in order to grow it so it looks successful by worldly standards.
I think a principle we should gather from the parable of the mustard seed is that kingdom growth is not always easily measurable. The kingdom of God expands as God desires and the grand appearance of its largeness, greatness, awesomeness will not arrive until Christ establishes his kingdom on earth. One’s church need not look great and mighty today to be an active agent in the kingdom. We do not need to change the culture of the church to make it great, we simply need to proclaim the Word so that members live like citizens of the kingdom. What if God is not growing you numerically now, he is simply building up the body so that it can be mature enough to care for new converts when he decides to bless you with them. How does one measure kingdom growth? I think Greg’s first sermon on the Kingdom Life gives a pretty good starting point. Is your church humble, loving, merciful, peaceful, etc? These changes take great pain and time.Third Avenue, we should not pat ourselves on the backs for being small because that is not the point. We should consider how well our life together reflects the kingdom. Are you committed to the growth of our little body by being committed to Christ and his kingdom? Are you more concerned with how committed people are to you rather than how you are committed to them?
RE: Living the Kingdom
By Greg GilbertSeptember 25, 2007

It would not be right to let this sentence languish in the middle of Keith’s post without being plucked out and put on display. It’s one of those questions that cuts to one’s heart and deserves to be meditated on at length:

“Are you more concerned about how committed people are to you, than about how committed you are to them?”

There’s a sermon for you to preach to yourself. I recognize that being and feeling loved are important needs for any human being. That’s how we’re made. But it’s worth noticing that the Bible’s command is to “love one another,” not “to be loved by one another.” The language is active, not passive.

That ought to set our priorities, and our expectations. It seems to me that the default position of too many Christians, when it comes to love, is passive rather than active. The switch is set on “intake” rather than “output,” meaning that people spend alot more time analyzing whether they feel cared for, than they do strategizing about how they can care for others. You can see the problem with that: If every switch in the church is set on “intake,” most everyone starts to feel like they’re “not being cared for.” But flip all those switches to “output”—change the priority from “being cared for” to “caring”—and see what happens: Love abounds.
I hope and pray that kind of active love is, or perhaps increasingly becomes, one of Third Avenue’s distinctives.

Monday, September 24, 2007


I've been meditating on this passage today because I read it this morning. Love it.
Happy Monday.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Happy Saturday!

It's great when both spouses are teachers. Dustin and I are perfectly content spending Saturday mornings or Sunday afternoons, or even date nights, getting some grading out of the way. This morning takes us to an Old Louisville Coffee Shop, where we are grading, grading, and grading some more. We are also having not a few laughs as we use our red pens.

For example, I'm grading Bible Tests, as we continue our study through Acts/Life of Paul. Some of my kids clearly didn't study, but tried to come up with answers from memory.

1. What were the men called who were chosen to care for the needy?
Some of the wrong answers: deatons, demons, dicoons
2. Who was the man guarding the coats, giving approval to Stephen's death?
Saul of Tartar, Saul of Turtle, Saul of Tar


Friday, September 21, 2007


As I said in my last post, I'm totally re-vamping my sidebar. It gets on my nerves, and I've already stated my rationale. However, in case I forget where you are or others are really wanting to drop by, I am going to save this link on my sidebar.

  • Our Church

  • 5A Website

  • Preach the Gospel to Yourself

  • Bebees

  • Blake

  • Mr. Cozart

  • Mrs. Cozart

  • Dawsons

  • Mrs. Dodson

  • Gerlts

  • Jay Scott

  • Joey in Israel

  • Mindy Loo

  • My Husband

  • Pastor Phillip

  • Peeks

  • More Peeks

  • Mr. Plevan

  • Mrs. Plevan

  • Rebekah

  • Mr. Stone

  • Mrs. Stone

  • Trav

  • Will and Vanessa

  • Vivian Risse

  • Helwigs

  • Jewels

  • Solo Femininity

  • Girl Talk

  • Mary McCulloch

  • Samantha Bartlett

  • My Symphony

  • Purple Cellar

  • Something Booked

  • Vincents
  • Can't sleep

    ...and when you can't sleep, sometimes you do weird things. I'm going to take 5 minutes to clean my sidebar. That's about the last thing ever on any kind of list of priorities, but it's mindless.

    I just have to have a shorter sidebar list. It's out of control. And only half-way joking, I really don't want to be in charge of adding to anyone else's blog-addictions. It's fun to check up on people, but I don't want to be a one-stop-shopping place helping you spend hours each day on the Internet. I'd like to limit my time online more as it is.

    I cut you out, IF...
    *you are not immediate family
    *you are not a resource link of some sort

    Don't lose any sleep over it. I'll still be stopping by to visit many of you often. All of the original links are, in fact, still there. Go to LOTS OF LINKS.

    Tuesday, September 18, 2007

    Guess Who?

    Girl Talk is doing another wonderful interview. I really love biographies. So, I guess that's why I always enjoy their interviews so much. I am always curious about people's stories. I have been to this woman's house two times and can attest to the fact that she is a wise, godly, down-to-earth woman who is a caring wife, careful homemaker and gracious hostess, among other things (sports-savvy?)...

    I was actually going to hear her talk tonight on the topic of WORRY, but I'm recovering from being sick. (Such is the teacher's life, I think.) If you are close by, you should try to head over to campus tonight.

    Surely you know who she is by now...

    Anyway, head here for more of her story.

    Sunday, September 16, 2007

    Pumpkin Pancakes

    Following our wedding in July of 06, our first stop on our honeymoon was a wonderful Bed and Breakfast in Waco. We enjoyed the Pumpkin Pancakes at breakfast so much that I asked for the recipe from the friendly lady who ran the place. I decided to make them a tradition in our new family and want to make them each Christmas Eve Breakfast (started last Christmas). While it's only September, Fall is fast upon us and pumpkin-tasting anything is pretty fun. Enjoy!


    2 cups flour
    2 tablespoons brown sugar
    1 tablespoon baking powder
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
    1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
    1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
    1 and 1/2 cup milk
    1/2 cup cooked pumpkin (I think I just used can pumpkin and it was great)
    1 large egg
    2 tablespoons vegetable oil

    In large bowl, combine dry ingredients. In small bowl, combine milk, pumpkin, egg and oil. Stir liquid mixture into flour mixture until dry ingredients are moistened. Batter will be thick. For each pancake, pour 1/4 cup batter onto hot griddle; using a spatula, spread the batter into a 4 inch circle before mixture sets. Cook until surface appears dry. Turn; cook another 2-3 minutes.

    Tuesday, September 11, 2007

    Food for Thought: Work Heartily

    While women are to be primarily workers at home, we may find ourselves in a season where we are working outside of the home as well. Here's a quote that I think is a good reminder for a woman in that season as well (preaching to myself here)as well as women working hard at home. (Obviously, it's good for men too!)

    Work heartily, not lazily. Proverbs 6:6-11 tells us that most ants are more productive than most people! Every time a Christian is lazy in his work, every time he is not pursuing excellence, he becomes a thief. Does God really mean, “Thou shalt not steal?” Yes. Stealing in laziness is just as offensive as a pickpocket. Laziness in your vocation is stealing from those who are paying you for your labor, and it brings a reproach to God. If God commands us to pursue excellence, if he commands us to work heartily, if he commands us to serve Christ, less than this would be sin.

    Always remember that to pursue excellence in your work, is to rely on the grace of God’s hand in all you do. Prayer is an important part of pursing excellence – you cannot do it on your own. Excellence cannot be achieved by personal merit, but only through divine grace. His divine power has granted this to us, but we must come to Him in prayer.

    HT: A Puritan's Mind

    Sunday, September 09, 2007


    A friend sent this to me today. I was happy. Go to the site and get free food.

    Saturday, September 08, 2007

    Third Avenue Going Away Party

    While this isn't the entire group, this is most of our church family. Being at a church that is so transitional, with many students (both seminary and U of L), there are a lot of goodbyes in store. How exciting, though, that the Lord is raising up godly men (and families) from our church to be sent out to places like Florida, Oregon, China, Indonesia. But, it is never easy to say goodbye.

    Josh, Cari, Benjamin, and the little one on the way will soon be headed to Clewiston, Florida, where Josh will be an associate pastor of a baptist church. They were some of the 1st people we met at Third. I remember Dustin and I meeting Josh on a Wednesday night. He was extremely welcoming, and he talked as fast as I did. He and his wife had a quick engagement story, like we do, and they just seemed really great. Likely, their love towards us as visitors was part of what kept us coming back. What an evident love for God and for people! Our church will miss them, but we send them really looking forward to what God has in store for them.

    Cari was part of our women's book study. She led the first one. Our first study was through Feminine Appeal, and I was so encouraged by how Cari would facilitate the group in her gentle, humble way that spoke volumes of her deep desires to love her husband and son more that the Gospel might be adorned.
    Here's a picture of Ben and Josh and one of Cari and me.

    While I haven't been at Third THAT long, I am very grateful to have known the Vincents.

    Thanks for all you taught us in book study, Cari, and for teaching me how to prepare guacamole and helping me save the Mexican Rice. :) Remember that? Dustin and I love you guys!

    As for me, I'm just really bad at this getting attached to people and then moving thing, but this seems to be a big part of life. How nice to know that God ordains such sweet seasons and gives you such rich memories... and that this life is just a vapor and one day there will be no goodbyes. :)

    And thank you to the Rambos for inviting the entire church over to their house. Wow!

    Thursday, September 06, 2007

    Meet SOME of My Women's Group

    We had a small women's group due to Labor Day. We usually have about 9. So, after taking this picture, we headed to Java and had coffee and hung out there. Next time, we'll pick up where we left off in The Disciplines of Grace by Jerry Bridges. These (and the ones not showing) are a few of the local Titus 2 women in my life (although there are certainly others). I praise God for providing these sweet friendships here in Louisville.

    Meet 5A... The New Class

    Sister, Sister...

    I just have a minute, but I wanted to tell you a little about what my sisters are up to these days and give you a plug for Joey's Blog. Joey will be in Israel for the entire semester, taking Masters College classes, learning a ton about the Bible and WALKING where much of it took place!

    I highly recommend that you pop over to her site and keep up with her journeys. I think she plans on posting once a week. She writes in such a way that will let you share in what she's learning and see some of what she's seeing. It won't be a time- waster, but it should be really informative and interesting. Dustin and I were fascinated as she was telling us all about the wonderful IBEX program through her college. Go here or here.

    I'm proud of her, too. She's learning things like this:
    If Medo-Persia had not become powerful enough to overtake Babylon, or if it had not had the ideology and policies that it did, Cyrus would have never issued the decree in 538 B.C. allowing the Jews to come back to Israel from captivity. They'd still be scattered all over the world, and I would not be here today.
    (I had to read that a few times to get it... ha!)

    Needless to say, she's really excited to be there. It's a full load, but she should have a great time learning Hebrew (while reviewing her Greek, Spanish, Italian, etc) and learning about Biblical History. Most of all, she aims to grow closer to the Lord with unshakable joy. She's learning a lot about women's roles, and praying through her desires to possibly assist in Scripture translation, if God wills.

    Mel update (with a longer one later):
    Merdie is now in nursing school.
    (Merdie is her nicknamed earned by how fast I said Melodie as a child... Don't worry, I talk really slowly now. :P)
    She's doing great. She aces her classes, and she loves to learn about the human body, medicine, and how to help people! She recently went to Spain to see Marcel (her novio) and then he came to the USA to visit her. Mel works at Lowe's and loves to find great recipes for meatless meals. She loves her dog MANCHITA. We're trying to get her up here for Derby. While we can't afford tickets to take her, she would have fun being in town for the festivities. Hurry up, Melodie. Come to Louisville for a visit.

    Love you, sisters.

    Monday, September 03, 2007

    Fun Neighbors, Large Pumpkins, and Answered Prayer

    On Saturday, we got to take a study break with our new neighbors. As I mentioned recently, we are loving having neighbors that we actually chill with. (We are sure the others are wonderful too, and hope to hang out with them soon.) So, my friend Leslie knocks on the door and asks if we want to take a quick break and go look at huge pumpkins. I was watching the 4th of 6 ACSI Christian Philosophy videos for school on a borrowed TV, and Dustin was reading about the Crusades, so we were ready for a break. Off we went, and you can read all about it here. Massive pumpkins. We may go back and buy one, clean off our doorway, hang a Fall wreath and plop the huge pumpkin near our door to welcome in my favorite season. Anyway, we love our new neighbors. We're having Leslie's famous tacos tonight!
    On other news, we are THRILLED and praising God constantly for the gift of a pastor. After much prayer and waiting, God has brought a shepherd to the church we love so very much. We were so encouraged by his sermon and by visiting with him at a social on Saturday evening. He is humble, and he loves the Lord. We are sooooo thankful!!!! You can read about it here. Reflecting on God's provision, our dear friend and elder Aaron said this among other noteworthy things:
    One of the things I’m thankful for most about Third Avenue is the way I’m regularly challenged to share the Gospel and, thinking of a message recently by a dear brother, not just to share the Gospel, but see the lost know God’s Word. There is in Kurt a desire to speak to non-Christians in a matter-of-fact way about the Gospel. I see that and appreciate that in his preaching, and I think that throughout the course of a lifetime of preaching, we can trust that Third Avenue will be a place where non-Christians can be thoughtfully and lovingly provoked to take the claims of Christ seriously.