Sunday, October 26, 2008

Fall Foliage

Take a look at these pictures of the pretty fall leaves around the campus. We took a walk tonight and got these shots.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Hillcrest Halloween

On Hillcrest Avenue, just a few streets down from the seminary, there is an annual display of Halloween decorations. Almost every house on the street gets into the act. We walked down with our neighbors, Todd and Kim. We particularly enjoyed "Dante's Disco Inferno." The "Martha" house was also fun with it's tombstoned dedicated to Freddie Mac, 401K, and Enron.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Prayer Requests

Please keep us in your prayers during this especially hectic week. Ben is in the thick of his paper-writing time and is extremely busy from dawn to dusk. Both of our cars are giving us some trouble. Mine broke down this morning and is in the shop. Ben's will go in when we get mine out.
Also, this weekend we will be part of a marriage conference at a church in Indiana. Ben is leading two sessions and I will be leading one. The conference takes place on Friday evening and on Saturday. As this is a busy time for Ben, we need prayers for preparation time and for blessings on the conference itself.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Beginning and Ending Well

Everyone has those days when it is hard to face what waits for you. Many times I have had difficulty going into my day. God has blessed us with my job as it provides for us here, however a significant amount of stress accompanies the provision. Last semester I struggled with anxiety and fear when I woke up in the morning and when I went to bed at night. It's a long story, but suffice it to say that just the thought of going into my school was enough to make me despair. I know that God does not want those feelings for me. We should never despair in what He has ordained. So, I started doing some reading and I wanted to share some of the ways that I learned to change my thought processes.

Starting the day:

1) Begin by acknowledging that you really can't do anything - not without Christ! Remember and have faith in the fact that you need and are completely dependent upon Him.

2) Take your thoughts captive. (This was the hardest one for me.) Do not allow yourself to listen to your negative thoughts. Stop listening to yourself and talk to yourself about the goodness of God. Remember that you have faith for the future. He will bring his work in your life to completion for His glory and your good.

3) Use your commute or "getting ready" time to pray or memorize scripture. This also helps with #2! If you are busy memorizing or praying, you don't have time to think poisonous thoughts.

Ending the Day:

1) Thank God for the gift of sleep! (see blog below)

2) Thank Him for the blessings of the day and acknowledge that He is the source of all good things.

3) Seize this opportunity to express gratitude for the cross. There is no comparable gift.

These things have really worked for me. I am much less anxious and more positive as I begin my day. This has also helped me to have that invaluable reflection time before bed. Ending the day contemplating the blessings of God has a real affect on how you wake up.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Check out this blog...

Ben reads this blog pretty often. I recently commented on a post concerning the state of public schools. Check it out!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Savoring Sleep

After a 3 day weekend I am feeling particularly well-rested. One of the reasons for that feeling is the restful sleep that I have enjoyed. Reflecting on all of that sleep, I remembered a blog that I read a few months ago which hinted that naps may be a sinful thing. I disagree.
In his book, Humility, C.J. Mahaney charges Christians to praise God for sleep. It is certainly a gift like no other. Sleep did not have to be such a pleasant thing. God could have created another, less delightful (I do mean delightful) way for us to be rejuvenated. In addition to praising God for this gift, we can also praise Him for his sovereignty in a special way. What better example do we have for the all-sustaining sovereignty of God than sleep? Sleeping is a time when we have to admit to absolutely no control. He gives us every breath and every heartbeat. It is by His grace that we wake from our sleep. I am making it a habit to thank God for this gift every time I close my eyes to rest. I hope that you will do the same.