Sunday, January 13, 2013

Good Reads.

In a sermon based on 2 Peter 3:18 (But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.) today, our pastor focused on growing in our relationship with Christ.

To listen to the sermon, click here!

Brian spoke about pleading for growth, growing in grace, and growing in knowledge. In the last section, he described three ways in which we can grow in our knowledge of Christ (therefore growing in grace as well):

1. Read good books such as:

  1. The Holy Bible by God (we use the ESV version) 
  2. Systematic Theology by Wayne Grudem
  3. Holiness by J.C. Ryle
  4. Knowing God by J.I. Packer
  5. Slave: The Hidden Truth About Your Identity In Christ by John MacArthur
  6. Simple Church by Thomas Rainer & Eric Geiger
  7. Why We Love the Church by Kevin DeYoung & Ted Kluck
  8. King's Cross by Timothy Keller
  9. Humility by C.J Mahaney
  10. The Pursuit of God by A.W. Tozer

2. Read good blogs: I have added links to three blogs that Brian suggested on the right hand side of my blog (under Favorite Blogs)--Al Mohler, Justin Taylor, and Tim Challies. Check them out!

3. Read the Bible: Google a Bible reading plan, get the YouVersion app on your iPhone, open the Word every day. 

Brian compared growing in the Word with working out. Can you get in shape by going to the gym 10 minutes a year or perhaps even thirty minutes every Sunday? We all know that's ridiculous. Growing in Christ takes time and dedication. 

One way to start is with these good reads. Enjoy! 

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Bleach Pen Bonanza

This Christmas boasted quite a bunch of bleach pen t-shirts. I decided to make a few for my cousins' little ones (whom I just happen to adore).

This wasn't my first go around with the craft. I've written about my experiences here. I quite enjoy my own bleach pen T, so I hoped the little ones would as well. I picked out relevant verses for each one of them and got to work.

I found it interesting that the different fabrics took the bleach in such different ways, but I think they all turned out fairly interesting.

What do you think? Be sure to click on the link above for directions on how to make your own bleach pen t-shirt!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Top 12 of 2012!

Last year I created a Top 11 of 2011 list, so I thought I should carry on the tradition. As I sat pondering my year last night, the first things that came to mind were the low lows, the struggles, the valleys--and isn't that usually the case? It was a nice wake-up call to search back through my calendar and the blog to compile a top 12 list. Although 2012 was filled with some quite difficult times, it also held some amazing highs. Here is the list (in the order in which the events occurred):

1. Scotty and Polly got engaged! I am so excited to welcome Polly into our family. I couldn't ask for a better sister-in-law. March 9th is just around the corner! Read about their engagement here!

2. Hot air balloon ride in Temecula. Mama and I got to take a hot air balloon ride for her birthday. It was incredible. Read about it and see the pictures here!

3. Segs on the beach! The same weekend of the hot air balloon adventure, Mama and I got to ride segways on the beach in Huntington. AWESOME! Read about that craziness here! 

4. Romania. I got to go back after six years; I met some of the most incredible people; I grew very close to those people in a very short time (read about them here!); and I got to love on and experience some of the most precious children that God has placed on this earth. Here is a poem that I wrote after my return. 

5. Washington D.C.--how can I even put this trip into words? I absolutely loved it--the history, the beauty, the people, the cupcakes. You can read about about my DC adventures HERE, HERE, and HERE!!!!

6. New York--be still my heart. At first, I wasn't a fan of NY (mainly because I loved DC so much), but it grew on me, and I LOVED it. How can you not love staying in the heart of Times Square, seeing four amazing shows, sightseeing for days, and incredible food? Yes, please. Read more about those adventures HERE and HERE

7. The OLYMPICS!!!! I'm obsessed. Seriously. You can read about my obsession here. I LOVED every minute of it. And yes, I watched just about every minute of it. That's what happens when you're stuck on the couch after foot surgery. The women's gymnasts did a phenomenal job. LOVE! I'm just bummed I have to wait four more years for the next round of summer games. 

8. Moving to 8th Grade! I taught 7th and 8th grade at Thompson, and I LOVED 8th grade. I was a bit bummed to be moved to Warren with only 7th graders. BUT, this year I got to move up to 8th grade, and it has been AWESOME. I love the curriculum, I love the "maturity" (in comparison to 7th grade) of the kids, and I absolutely adore the ladies I work with. It's been a great move. 

9. Winning tickets to the CIRCUS! I had always wanted to go to the circus. I never went as a child, and each year it's come into town as an adult I have put my fake whiny voice on and begged my Mommy to take me. It never happened. UNTIL, I WON tickets to the circus. Seriously, I had never won anything in my life. I was SHOCKED! I still wasn't walking, so I wheeled myself into the handicap area and enjoyed myself some circus. It was AWESOME. Read more about it here! 

10. Walking again. If you've been following the blog at all, you've read about my adventures in not walking, thinking I may not walk again, and then learning how to walk again. Praise the Lord! It hasn't been an easy process, but He's brought me SO far! Read about the start of my walking again here. 

11. Spending time with James and Faith. My two college roommates, who happen to also be the dearest of friends, both had babies in 2012. I can't even describe how proud I am of them and how much I love their precious babies (and them of course). 

12. Winning Disneyland tickets/Burfday Extravaganza! Remember how I said I never won anything? Apparently this year changed all that. I also won Dland tickets! Talk about being SHOCKED! So, we went for my birthday weekend. It was AMAZING. My mama also surprised me on my actual birthday by inviting the Gruebers to have birthday dinner with us. It was super special. Read all about that weekend here! 

So, 2012 certainly was a memorable year. Here's to hoping 2013 will be as well!