Monday, June 29, 2009

Who am I?

Do you want to know a secret?  Guess what it is?  

I am not flawless and neither are you!  Not that it is a secret to us or to those around us.  So, if it's not a secret why do we pretend to be flawless?

I have found tremendous freedom in accepting the fact that I am an earthen vessel.  I am not flaw proof, shatter proof, unbreakable, or indestructible.  I can't do it all on my own.  I don't have all the answers.  I can't do all things.  BUT, I do have Him in whom I can do all things!  He is Almighty, Omniscient, Omnipotent, Omnipresent!  

I used to have a picture in my head of the flawless Christian woman.  And every time I fell short of "her" (and it was a lot), the devil would come and bring condemnation.  Why did I say that? Why did I say that like that?  Why can't you do that?  Why don't you want to do that?  Those were just some of the enemy's accusations.

As I spoke to my husband about "her", he wanted to know who "she" was. Where had I seen her? Could I describe her?  I answered him, "Well, I have never really met someone like that, but she would look like this..."  I then proceeded to list the qualities of my sisters in Christ that are worth imitation (1 Corinthians 11:1).  Then the Lord spoke to me, "She is the Bride!"  

The Bible tells us in 1 Corinthians 12 that we are a part in the body of Christ.  So, I don't have to be every woman; I have to be the part that God designed for me to be.  

No more comparing!  No more condemnation!  No more falling short!  
We are different.  We are unique.  We are the Bride!  

Friday, June 26, 2009

Count Your Blessings

Picture 19
1.  Spent such a wonderful time in the presence of the Lord along with my sisters at church this Saturday...He is ALL I need!!!!!!
2.  Sunday's service was a blessing, enjoyed fellowship, and good food
3.  My BIC brought me some Applebees...(fett. alfredo...my favorite)
4.  Got great savings at CVS
5.  My tween got to go to her cousin's graduation and celebrate with her a new stage in her life
6.  We are in full remodeling swing
7.  I get to enjoy my husband's company this week since he's on vacation:)
8.  My SIL gave me her delicious spaghetti recipe...looking forward to doing that one!
9.  My other SIL gave me lots of hs goodies (I have the BEST SILs for God's glory)
10.  There is miracle working power through the blood of Jesus!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Fitting Words

This week, we are working on some small remodeling projects around the house.  We have set goals as to what we would like to get done in each day so as to help us stay focused and on track.  Yesterday, however, we got a little derailed.  I could feel that both my husband and I were both feeling a little discouraged at the day's events.  I was tempted to start rethinking what we should have or could have done so that indeed we would have reached our goal.  As I began walking, I was right about to say something, when the Holy Spirit quickly told me to stay quiet.  I obeyed. Almost immediately, my husband started telling me how he could look at the day and become disappointed but instead was going to rejoice that the Lord's will did get done and he learned a bit more about communication.  I was so happy that he choose fitting words. He was right; we had indeed accomplished our goal--doing the Father's will.  Amen!  

We make the choice of what comes out of our mouths.  We can choose fitting words for the situation.  My husband could have chosen to voice his regrets or disappointments (if indeed he had them), but instead, he chose to use words that fit the situation.  At that moment, I wanted words of encouragement, and he allowed himself to be used of the Lord to give them.  Thank you Jesus!

God is so good that we ended up reaching our goal.  And while we were doing it my husband continued to provide those fitting words.  Are you allowing the Lord to use you to provide those fitting words?

The lips of the righteous know what is fitting, 
       but the mouth of the wicked only what is perverse.
Proverbs 10:32

Monday, June 22, 2009

Recipe: Manicotti

What You'll Use:



What You'll Do:
1.  Boil noodles with oil and smashed garlic
2.  Chop broccoli in food processor
3.  Chop Spinach in food processor
4.  Mix ricotta cheese with shredded cheese (I use the Mexican blend) and grated parmesan cheese (you can also add an egg...optional)
5.  Add chopped broccoli and spinach
6.  Stuff noodles and place into a greased pan (add some sauce to pan optional)
7.  Pour tomato sauce on top of noodles
8.  Place covered dish into preheated oven at about 350 degrees for about 30 minutes
9.  Take out of oven and sprinkle some shredded and parmesan cheese and place back into oven uncovered for about 15 minutes at 250 degrees
10.  Enjoy:)  You can serve with spinach salad, hence the tomatoes:)


Friday, June 19, 2009

Count Your Blessings

Picture 19
1.  My MIL made a delicious dish of shrimp pasta for us...yummy!
2.  My SIC celebrated her earth-day this Saturday...many blessings
3.  A SIC went to visit and pray over my husband's uncle
4.  Marriage class was a blessing...Love overcomes!!!!!
5.  We got (part...majority of) our homeschooling curriculum.....YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
6.  I began reading a wonderful book Bad Influences and the Believer
7. My mom was sooooooooooo supportive, enthusiastic, and encouraging about us hs the girls!!!!!
(God has blessed me with a wonderful mami...Thank You Father!)
8.  I got to preach to my hubby's cousin...I declare him saved in the name of Jesus!
9.  The Lord confirmed a word that one of my students and I had discussed on Sunday
10.  The Holy Spirit is teaching me how to be and enjoy the Lord's presence!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Check All that Apply

Are you?

A.  Conformed
Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.
Romans 12:2

B.  Covetous
So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?'32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.
Matthew 6:31-32

C.  Content
6But godliness with contentment is great gain. 7For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. 8But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. 9People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. 10For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
1 Timothy 6:6-10

Monday, June 15, 2009

What's Your Vision?

Merriam-Webster's dictionary defines far sighted as seeing or able to see to a great distance whereas near sighted is  the ablilty to see near things more clearly than distant ones.  Which are you?

Jesus said in John 14: 27-29, "27Peace I leave with you; My [own] peace I now give and bequeath to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [Stop allowing yourselves to be agitated and disturbed; and do not permit yourselves to be fearful and intimidated and cowardly and unsettled.]

    28You heard Me tell you, I am going away and I am coming [back] to you. If you [really] loved Me, you would have been glad, because I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater and mightier than I am.

    29And now I have told you [this] before it occurs, so that when it does take place you may believe and have faith in and rely on Me."

Here Jesus is telling the disciples that He is giving them a peace unknown and unexperienced by them so that they may be able to endure and overcome the hard, the difficult, the challenging, and the painful.  Jesus has given us that same peace.

Jesus wanted his disciples to rejoice in the fact that He was about to fulfill the Father's will and return to the Father.  He tells them that if they really did love Him, they would be glad for His return to the Father.  He wanted them to be focused on the goal not the present.  And He too wants us to be far sighted and not near sighted.

Jesus understands that we are near-sighted; our physical eyes can see what is going on around us.  Yet, He provides His peace so that while we may see what's going on, we can remain far-sighted--focused on the goal.  Jesus goal was to do the Father's will here on earth and return to the Father.  That should be our goal too.  

Let us not let near sighted vision hinder our far sighted goal.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Count Your Blessings

Picture 19
1.  The wedding was beautiful...May God bless their marriage
2.  My SIL tried my recipe and enjoyed it...that's God's glory!
3.  I made a bloggy friend...Jasmine
4.  My family in Christ called to encourage me regarding the blog
5.  My husband's grandmother is out of the hospital and completely healed in the name of Jesus
6.  My tween won first place in a race during Field Day
7.  My tween got a beautiful present in the mail from her uncle...God is so amazing!
8.  My fam-in-Christ are having a baby....GLORY TO GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
9.  My hubby got praised in his job about his exceptional performance(Proverbs 22:29)...ALL the glory is God's forever and ever
10.  God never ceases to surprise me, He is so amazing, and thoughtful, and detailed...I am in awe



Thursday, June 11, 2009

Vocabulary

Yesterday, as my tot and I were studying the Word of God she told me, "I want my books over here because I want to be organized."  Where could she have gotten this idea or vocabulary?:) 

Anyone who knows me, knows that I try, with the Lord's help, to be organized, so there is no question where she got this from.

It made me reflect on the fact, that as my child, she says what she hears me saying.  Do you do the same?  Do you reflect your Father's vocabulary or your own?  When faced with a situation, are you confessing the Word of Your Father or your thoughts on the situation? 

Ask the Holy Spirit to search your heart and reveal to you whose vocabulary do you use. Remember Luke 6:45 teaches us, The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks."

Bible Reading


Picture this:  a Sunday school teacher stands before his students and asks them whether they have read their Bibles during the week.  You're standing there gazing at the children when you notice the confused looks on their faces and one of them belongs to your daughter. 

Well, this happened to me back in January!  After speaking to my daughter about it, I realized that although she had a Bible reading plan, she was very backed up on her reading.  So led by the Holy Spirit, I gave her a new Bible reading plan and a calendar ($1.00 @ Target) and explained to her that she would read the day's selection then write a verse that ministered her on the calendar.  It has been working ever since.  I don't have to ask whether she read or not, I can just look at the calendar. No more guessing, the evidence is there.  

She has become more responsible with her reading and is learning that we are held accountable to God for our own spiritual lives.  The Holy Spirit also led me to have her read the Bible when she got home from school before doing anything else.  This way demonstrating the importance and significance of God's Word in our lives.  

So, if you have run into the same situation with your child, you may want to try it out.  I will advise, however, that the best way children learn to love the Word of God is through your example.  So make sure that if necessary, you are getting two sets of Bible reading plans and two calendars.  Although the year is already in the sixth month, it's never too late to start. There are many websites that allow you to start at different times.   Click on this link to get started and enjoy!  http://www.ewordtoday.com/year/

Father, I thank you for Your Word and pray that we would all love Your Word. Help us to be examples to our children, that Your Word is the ultimate authority in our lives.  Help us to demonstrate the importance of reading and meditating on Your Word through new and creative ways guided by Your Holy Spirit, in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bible Curriculum

bible Pictures, Images and Photos

Although I believe we are going to continue with DiscipleLand for next year for our tot, I did come across Positive Action which seems well done as well.  We are sticking with DiscipleLand because sequentially I want to her to finish the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus before we begin with the Old Testament.  

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Our Ministry

Paul charges Timothy in 1 Timothy 4:5 "As for you, be calm and cool and steady, accept and suffer unflinchingly every hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fully perform all the duties of your ministry."

And we are challenged to do the same in the ministry the Lord has called us unto.  Our first ministry is the home-as daughters of God, wives, mothers, and all that each role entails.  

As ministers in the home,  we are directed to:
1.  Be calm, cool, and steady
This is something to strive for.  How are we handling situations? What's our reaction to the unexpected?  Can our spouses and children come and speak to us about ANYTHING knowing we will listen before responding?

2.  Accept and suffer unflinchingly every hardship
What is our attitude?  Are we complainers or praisers?  Do we exhibit self-pity in the face of trials or are we as bold as lions?  Are we trusting in Jesus or our abilities?  

3.  Do the work of an evangelist
Are we preaching to our neighbors, employees at the stores we frequent, people on the train/bus?  Are we taking time to teach our children the Word daily and living it out for them as well?

4.  Fully perform all the duties of your ministry
God expects us to perform all our duties in all He has given us, in all areas of our lives, at all times with His help!

Monday, June 8, 2009

Thank You Rewards



My sister-in-law reminded me yesterday of Thank You Rewards from Citibank.  Basically, they reward you for using their services.  The more you use, the more points.  So, if you use them for banking (savings, checking, mortgages, etc), you could start earning points quickly.  Rewards range from actual products to gift cards.  Call a representative to get started @ 1-888- Citibank.

5 Tips for HS Paperwork

1.  Make copies
Keep a hard copy of all the paperwork you submit to the district office along with saving it on your computer under a separate folder.  Physically file it in a folder clearly labeled with year and children's names.  I would keep my personal reports/records separate.

2.  Send all mail certified and return receipt
Cover all bases and make sure to use certified mail.  Staple your receipts to the folder of your hard copy.

3.  Do not include your phone number
NYHEN Yahoo Group recommends to keep all contact via mail that way you have "evidence" of all communication with the homeschooling office.  Including an email address is optional.

4.  Include your child's school id #
That is, if your child has one.  This lessens the probability of having to provide proof of address. You may also want to get a copy of your child's school transcripts if applicable.

5.  Keep it simple
Provide the information required and that's it recommends Angela.  She has a section on the right side of her blog exclusively with paperwork examples.  NYHEN Yahoo Group does as well in their file section (only viewable by it's members).

Friday, June 5, 2009

Count Your Blessings

Picture 19

1.  My mother invited my sister and her family and mine out to dinner...yummy
2.  My mother-in-law bought the hair clips for the girls to wear for the wedding
3.  My tween enjoyed 2 days off from school
4.  My Co-Pastor celebrated his earthday yesterday...One year closer to God (his words)!!!
5.  We ordered the majority of our homeschool curriculum
6.  I got to listen to some informative news from Brannon Howse
7.  My tween has been extra helpful this week...thank you Jesus!
8.  A little brother in Christ sang in the Children's Service and it was soooo anointed
9.  My cousin-in-law found the shoes for the wedding for the girls...AMEN!
10.  I want more and more of His presence!!!!!!


Thursday, June 4, 2009

What Makes Daddy Special?

There are so many things that I can answer to that question regarding my husband as a father and much more about my Heavenly Father!
Since the day we take to honor fathers (as a holiday b/c it should be done everyday) approaches, I want to take time to reflect on my Daddy.

My Daddy:
1.  loves me unconditionally
2. has promised never to leave me or forsake me
3.  shows me great mercy and grace
4.  His patience is AMAZING
5.  sustains, fortifies, and strengthens me
6.  wants to hear everything that is in my heart, no matter the time!!!!
7.  in His presence there is such joy
8.  has made me a new creature in Christ!
9.  His power is made perfect in weakness
10.  His faithfulness is so incredible!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My husband as Papi:
1.  prays with the girls in such a way that it amazes me
2.  takes time to teach them the Word of God
3.  plays games with them I would never think of
4.  listens attentively when they speak
5.  comes up with the cutest names for them
6.  reflects the love of our Heavenly Father
7.  demonstrates the character of Jesus
8.  is a worshiper 
9.  loves me thus exemplifying the relationship between Jesus and His bride (he's an example of a Godly husband for God's glory!)
10.  humbles himself in their presence

For these and so many other reasons, I celebrate and seek to honor my Daddy and our Papi everyday.  Therefore, I will attempt to demonstrate my thankfulness to God for such a great father to our children by helping my husband more.  It doesn't have to be planning four course meals.  It can be simple yet meaningful gestures like charging his cell, leaving him a note,  giving him alone time, or uploading his ipod.  What are you going to do to show Daddy and Papi they are indeed special? 

Homeschooling Important Info Links

Here are some useful homeschooling links regarding NYS and NYC regulations and online group:

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Almost There

Tonight, we ordered our partial curriculum for 2009-2010 for our eldest and we are very excited.  After reviewing plenty of curriculums, we have been led by the Lord to Rod and Staff.  They seem to have a sound Biblical curriculum which was the most important factor for us in choosing any curriculum.  

We still haven't finished ordering our complete curriculum but this was the bulk of the program. We hope to have all our materials soon so as to begin planning for the upcoming school year.  

Tips on how to choose a curriculum:
1.  Make a list of what is important for your family for your children to learn
2.  Choose a style of teaching
3.  Read reviews of possible curriculums
4.  Narrow your choices
5.  Most important-PRAY!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Creating a Monthly Menu

How to create a monthly menu:
1.  List meals your family already likes
2.  List the ingredients you use (thus making your shopping list)
3.  Try to make variations of the meals you make
4.  Look for new menu ideas and/or new ingredients to use
5.  Have fun...menu planning should reduce not create work for you!

What are the benefits of monthly menu planning:
1.  Answers the question, "What are we going to eat for dinner tonight?"
2.  Avoids eating out 
3.  Avoids wasting time and money to get last minute ingredients you forgot
4.   Reduces prep time if you are using the same ingredient/dish in multiple meals
(cooking rice for two days instead of one and storing the rest for tomorrow)
5.  Keeps you interested in finding new and healthy recipes for your families