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Saturday, December 29, 2012

Introducing...Less is More - 31 Days towards living with less

Less is More.  31 Days towards living with less.

We just finished Christmas.  I clearly hear a collective sigh of relief.  At least until the bills come in!  Most of us probably received a lot of "stuff" that we don't need, "stuff" that purposes to derail our attempts to declutter our homes...and lives.  And many of us gave some stuff that creates the same chaos in someone else's home!

January is such a great time to focus our attention and energy on a new start.  Lose weight, exercise regularly, clean up messes, get organized.  These are good ideas but resolutions aren't what I have in mind for us this month.  Instead, let's look at specific ways to get rid of our excess (in lots of different areas) , loosen the stranglehold that materialism has on our hearts, and set the example of contentment with less instead of more. 

Each day, I will post an idea of living with less.  Getting rid of clutter.  Recipes.  Tips on money and time management.  Thoughts on encouraging contentment in our kids.  I hope this will be an exchange of ideas - in other words, please share yours with me! 

We probably won't solve world hunger by January 31.  We may not even solve the hunger for more in our own hearts.  But, maybe we'll take a step in the right direction.  Maybe February will see us with less.  Less of what isn't necessary.  And more of what makes life worthwhile!

Oh, and if you want to get these daily, you need to subscribe.  I won't be posting daily tips on facebook.

Notes to the Living Letters, sequel

I had a long shower today so I was able to ponder some more things I want to be sure to tell the children.  Maybe this will be exhaustive.  But I doubt it...I will have things to tell them until I die.  And even then, I will probably leave some written instructions!!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Come and drink

I was a nursing Mom.  Loved those sweet times.  Snuggling close.  Exclusive intimacy.  Meeting the need for nourishment.  Or comfort.  Lifeline.  A couple of my babies never even touched a bottle - it was all just Mommy. (My husband was amazingly supportive of breast-feeding.  Imagine that.)

Friday, December 21, 2012

The Spirit of Christmas

I know what some of you are anticipating.  A post about how Christmas no longer feels like Christmas.  How it has become so commercialized.  That this time of year is no longer about the One whose birthday we celebrate and rather about stress and spending and going and stuff.  I know.  You are right.  The Christmas season has a lot of trappings that I don't like.  And, to be perfectly honest, I heave a sigh of relief on December 26 when we are "done".  (I used to say "when things return to normal" but now I know that 'normal' is just a setting on my dryer).

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

God's Choices

I was thinking about Mary today.  Not MY Mary, the other famous one - you know, the one that birthed baby Jesus.  Thinking about how God choose a young girl (she was most likely 14 or 15 years old!).  From a not-famous-or wealthy-or influential family.  About to marry a young boy (Joseph might have been 16 or 17).  Also from a not-famous-or-wealthy-or-influential family.  From an insignificant little town.  Traipsing to an obscure little village.  9 months' pregnant.  (Moms, pause for just a moment and ponder riding on the back of a donkey on dirt and gravel roads for 69 miles.  Hours away from delivery.  Uh, right.  Lots of loving communication for "couple time", I am sure) Then birthing a baby, apparently without a midwife (certainly without an ob/gyn staff that she had months to become attached to and trust with her very life) in a stable.  With animals around.  So much for freaking out over dropping a pacifier on the floor and handing it to baby without first sterilizing it. Then He announced the World's Greatest News to a bunch of shepherds.  Dirty, smelly, uneducated shepherds. That came to look at Mary's newborn.  Most of us shudder.  (or maybe scream at poor Joseph.  surely this is all his fault??)

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

For Heaven's Sake

A few years ago, I wrote and taught  a Bible study about Heaven.  About God's glorious plan - from Eternity Past to Eternity Future.  I don't claim in any way to present an exhaustive exegesis on the place and purpose of God, but it's my attempt to help us live this life with an Eternal perspective.  I taught the study again earlier this year.  If you want to take a listen, follow the link to the right.  It will take you to the webpage of Watkinsville First Baptist Church and to the place where you can find 10 weeks of audio.  (If you do choose to listen and my Southern drawl drives you crazy, just be glad it's not a video feed - I wave my hands around like a wild woman and take my shoes off to teach!!!)  Also, I have included a file of the workbook I wrote to accompany the study.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on the study.  Preparing this study changed my life.  I hope you feel the same.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Response to Evil

Recent events inevitably evoke the question of "why".  How could this have happened.  Why did it happen.  Where was God?

People far greater than I have addressed that question.  Some have answered it well.  Others have not, in my opinion.  I certainly do not have answers that are sufficient to heal the pain being felt in Connecticut.  Or Aurora.  Or Virginia Tech.  Or Columbine.  Or any of those other places where senseless tragedy has occurred.  But I have some thoughts to share in hopes that I can offer some hope and peace to us.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Word became flesh

The Gospel of John tells us that THE WORD became flesh and dwelt among us.  THE WORD.  In the beginning, THE WORD was with God.  And THE WORD was God. THE WORD that spoke the universe into existence.  THE WORD that breathed life into man.  THE WORD that was and is and always shall be.  THE  INFINITE WORD poured itself into a finite mold and became human. 

Wow.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Happy Birthday, Katie!

Twenty-four years ago tomorrow, I pushed my way into the sacred land of Motherhood.  Literally.  Water broke at midnight and 12 looooooooong hours later - including 4 hours of pushing (given the malpractice landscape of obstetrics today, that would no longer be an option!) - the world became a better place.Katie Alice Chambers was born.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

January blog-theme....

Merry Christmas!!  I hope you are having some wonderful times, celebrating this holiday!  I pray that you have times when you can reflect on the reason for the season, times to enjoy family and friends, time to worship and celebrate and love!

I'll bet your family is like mine and you have busy schedules.  Colds and maybe flu.  (Oh, I hope not!) Meals to plan.  Gifts to buy.  Events to attend.  Gifts to buy.  Schedules to coordinate.  Gifts to buy.  People to visit.  Gifts to buy.  Needs to meet.  Gifts to buy.  Get my drift?  All this gift-buying!!  Whew!!  Now, don't write me off as Scrooge.  I LOVE to give gifts!  But, honestly, I think we in America have fallen off our own fiscal cliff - that of gift-buying.  We buy things we can't afford to give to folks that don't need them.  So that we can feel like we are celebrating Christmas!!  I wish there were a way to unplug this Christmas machine!!  Well, maybe we'll tackle that next year.  Say, in July.  But for January, we are going to look at 31 ways to have less. Ways to reduce our expenses.  Ways to increase our contentment!  Ways to make do with less.   And I believe "less" will bring "more".  More health, more peace, more sanity, more fiscal responsibility.  31 ideas of recipes, de-cluttering, meaningful gifts, family times, etc.  I have a few ideas and I'd like you to share yours.  Beginning January 1.  31 days of Less is more.

Get your ideas ready to share!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Ebe- who?

I love hymns.  The tunes are beautiful (especially the re-mixes that are vogue now).  But mostly I love the truths that are imparted through the rhyming lines.  Deep insight. Doctrine of the faith.  Meaningful encouragment.  Frankly, few songs of today can do the same.  Love those hymns.

I was listening to one of my favorites the other day and pondered a line that I thought you might wonder about, too.  Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing sung by David Crowder band.  I think I favor it because it's one of the few hymns I can still bang out on the piano!  But this time I began to pay close attention to the words.  "Ebenezer" caught my ear.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Wednesday's Word coming tomorrow

Just a reminder to sign up to receive Wednesday's Word.  A short devotional thought to get our hearts and minds focused on The Living Word.  You can sign up by the link on the right.  Hope to meet with you tomorrow morning!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Helping Mommy....or whistle-blower?

One of my dear "young Mom -friends" asked me for some advice on the tattling issue.  Although I am far from a parenting expert, just by virtue of having walked this path a few steps sooner than my friend, I did have some stuff to share.  Some other folks asked me to repost it so I am getting it out via this blog instead of my timeline.  I'd love to hear your input, too.  What are some ways you have handled the tattle game?

Here's pretty much what I said....