Friday, December 30, 2011

Sale at!

Sorry to do two posts at once, but I wanted to share with my lady readers that is having a year-end sale! Everything is 15% off.  So, if you've had your eye on something, now is the time to get it!! :-)

Also, if you post about it, you get a free download.. ;-)

So, go check it out!



I don't know how many times I have heard a Christian complaining about how persecuted we have become in America.  The other day I was thinking this over and started looking at the things that we feel we are persecuted over.

1. The fact that we can't say a prayer in public school without getting in trouble, or praying in a public place and getting weird looks

2. The fact that Hollywood puts inappropriate things in movies

3. The fact that when checking out at Walmart, one must make sure to keep their focus straight ahead and not look at the magazine rack.

4. The fact that SOMETIMES we get made fun of for our faith. (like people making fun of our modest clothing, the fact that we aren't into the latest music, or how large our family is...)

5.  The fact that our faith can sometimes make situations awkward.

Yeah, that's about all I can come up with right now.  Seriously?

I think that we really over exagerate when we talk about being persecuted.  Honestly, we have tons of religious freedom compared to other countries.

In a video I saw, a guy tells his viewers, "It's clearly an inconvenience, but ah, nothing more...."   When we talk about being persecuted, we really mean that we have an inconvenience to deal with.  Having to close your eyes during scenes in a movie or watch where you eyes wander in the store or getting odd looks because you dress modestly does NOT mean you are being persecuted.  It is seriously an inconvenience and that's it. Nothing more.

My sister got a neat book for Christmas called "The Narrow Road: Stories of Those Who Walk This Road Together" by Brother Andrew. It's basically about Andrew's life as he served the Lord.

The Forward is written by one of the guys in the Jars of Clay group.  Here is just a section of what he wrote that I want to share.

"In the Spring of 2000 I read an article about reliegious persecution in the Sudan.  Many more articles followed, along with some television reports, research, and a divinely appointed meeting with an activist named Steve Haas, the U.S. director of the International Day of Prayer for the Persecuted Church.
     It became very clear to me that sleeping behind church walls would not satisfy a God who hates injustice.  I had seen the pictures of toture victims.I had read the reports of women and children sold into slavery.  I had been confronted with the tales of murder, rape, and starvation.  But all I knew were stories that seemed to fill that morbid curiousity that draws us to car wrecks and real-life TV shows.  These people were not real to me.  They were not brothers and sisters.
     I needed to know these people.  I needed to hear them tell their stories.  I wanted to see how God met them.  It was this need that drove me and Jars of Clay to China and Vietnam to meet and pray with leaders of the underground church.
    We were never the same.
We cried with these people.  We rejoiced with them.  We laughed with them.  They laughed a lot- more than we thought possible, given their lives of suffering.  But it was in their struggles that they found great joy.  They are truly a suffering people, blessed by God."

That is just a small excerpt of the intro, but what a profound section it is!  The Christian Church in other countries is truly going through persecution.

Imagine living with a daily/nightly fear that at any moment, the police could come bursting through your door to drag you all into jail because of your beliefs.  Imagine, as a young woman, the fear of walking the streets because someone might rape you simply because you believe in Jesus.  Or, the never dying knowledge that you could be killed for it... or worse.

THAT is what persecution is.  What we are "going through" (if I can even title it as such) is NOTHING compared to what they live with daily.  I mean, they have to meet in SECRET to even worship the Lord together.  At least we get the chance to dress up, stand out from the crowd, and worship as we please.

Sure, maybe America will come to the point where we, as Christian, are being persecuted, but right now we are far from it.... and yet, look at the way we deal with it.  We are grumpy, upset, frustrated, etc.  Yet those people in the Underground church are worshipping with JOY!  They are joyful in the Lord, and they are being persecuted.  We are inconvenienced, and we are grumpy and frustrated. 

Persecution in America? No. It is clearly an inconvenience but nothing more.  I think that if we spent more time focusing on serving the Lord instead of worrying about all those menial things, then maybe we, too, will learn how to turn these "inconveniences" into an opportunity to be truly joyful.

I really can't stress how much it has suddenly frustrated me that the Church here in America can't act better. Now that is annoying.

In Christ's Service,

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Wishing You All a Very Merry Christmas!!

Hello all of my faithful readers!!!  I hope that all of you will be blessed with a very merry Christmas this season as we celebrate Jesus' birth!!

Below are two videos. Both are songs that I really like. (although, the first one does still give glory to santa, at least it is giving most of it to Jesus and definitely makes you think!)  So, please turn up your volume, make sure all other blogger playlists are turned off, and enjoy!  If I can get it to upload, I will share a video that my friend made.

Also, I put up a Christmas post at my Wordpress blog Here, so please go check it out!

Oh, and to those who want a White Christmas (Samantha!), I am praying you get one!!! :-) I think we may be snowed in, which I don't want to happen, so I will try my best to send it your way. ;-)

Keeping warm,

Monday, December 19, 2011

Thoroughly Blessed

I think I am one of the most blessed people in the world.  God has given me mercy SO many times.  He sent His only Son to save a sinner like me who deserved nothing but eternity in hell.
  He has blessed me with an AMAZING family.  I really don't know what I would do without them.
As I brought some presents I had just wrapped to put under the tree, Caleb spotted one for him.  He started teasing me, trying to get me to tell him what it was.  He tried shaking it, lifting it so see how much it weighed, etc. Just like a typical little boy. :-)
   Any how, I told him that I "hope you like it."  He looked at me and said, quite solemnly, "Of course I'll like it because you gave it to me."
  My heart was filled with joy.  He is such a sweet boy.  Really. One of the best things that happens around Christmastime is how he deals with all the gifts.  Often times, the little guys can lose focus of why we are celebrating Christmas with all those gifts under the tree.  Caleb, however, is more excited about what he got YOU than what you are giving HIM.  It is truly a joy to see that selfless joy and happiness in him.  His gifts are really special, too.  Typically it will be little things, like a picture, or an origami piece that he did all by himself, or some other little creation of his. And you know what?  I think those are the best gifts.  They come from the heart with love poured into each gift. His enthusiasm as we open his gift is really sweet to behold.
I have my other amazing family members that I just have to tell about.  First of all, my Daddy drove the icky weather this morning to get into town for a job interview.  I know he probably would have preferred to stay home and get some much needed tasks done on the ranch, but he went in town instead.  He is such an amazing provider, and the best midnight talker around! He's always willing to stay up until midnight to help me sort through my problems. :-)

Then I have my beautiful, selfless, beautiful, caring, beautiful, sweetest, and most wonderful Mama in the world! (did I mention that she's beautiful?) When going through some tough times in my walk with the Lord, she was right there praying for me.  She has been my best friend for as long as I can remember.  She was the one I always told my secrets to, the one who was there to offer advice when something happened, and the one who was always willing to listen to my problems, even if she's already in bed and ready to go to sleep.

My wonderful sister.  Wow, there's so much!!!!  For one thing, she just celebrated her 21st birthday!!!  Can you believe it??  (don't worry, there's a birthday post coming up!) I certainly can't.  We've had lots of transitioning in our relationship. Playmates, to young adults, to the best friends in the world.  She's probably one of the few people who can put up with me, and still love me.  Being able to share a room with her is a huge blessing in its self.  For one thing, I tend to be the messier of the pair.. and she's there to remind me, gently, to pick up my side of the room.  I think her organized living style is finally rubbing off on me, though!  Then, she's right there to talk, giggle, and cry long into the night with me.  She's got the wittiest sense of humor.  It doesn't matter how hard I try to say something back to her, she's always got one to top it... and you know what, I don't mind!  Besides, I probably wouldn't be able to get anything said any way because she usually has me doubled over in laughter with the things she says.

Joshua is a pretty great kid.  Ok, maybe not great.... Just kidding! And I don't think I could call him a kid any more.  16 years old sounds more like a young man, and since he acts more like a young man than a kid, I think he is entitled to that title. ;-)  He is SUCH a hard worker.  He would prefer to be out working than inside doing anything else.  He makes me laugh when I'm upset, and loves me for the crazy person that I am. He loves talking to me about guns, fight scenes in movies, and how to fix a car (most of it, I don't typically understand, but I enjoy listening to his enthusiasm on the subjects.).  He is my favorite Joshua in the whole wide world!

Of course, I said a few things about Caleb, but besides his selfless attitude during Christmas, he is one of the funniest guys around.  Somehow, turning 11 made him into this very witty person.  He and Becca could almost compete in a 'witty' competition. He comes pretty close to hers.  He is super creative.  He will bring out his clay creations and totally amaze me.  One time he made all the characters from a Wii game called Mario Kart.  The accuracy and detail totally stunned us.  He's a great artist, loves his chickens, enjoys being outside, and has enough energy to run a steam boat across the Atlantic.

I know I've done these family posts before, but I think it's great to spend time telling about their good qualities.  I mean, let's face it.  Everyone as their 'bad side', and too often we can focus on just that instead of all the wonderful things about them.  So, you will probably be seeing these in the future!

Are you feeling blessed this Christmas season?  If so, how?

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas filled with the Lord's blessings! And, for those who want it, lots of snow!  It has been snowing all day here.  Just that lovely, soft falling, snow.  Looks like a ranch-like winter wonderland!

In Christ's Service,

Friday, December 16, 2011

A brother who can stay sane even after his sister has lost it

Not lost it as in anger, but lost it totally in her sanity.  This evening, I was going around the house humming, "Oh Danny Boy". This is really a very pretty song, though a sad one.  I had recently taken an interest in it and had looked up the lyrics, chords, etc. Well, while I was fixing supper, I guess I began humming it.  After about ten minutes, Josh finally stands up from where he was sitting on the couch and said, "Sarah, can you PLEASE stop singing that?!" 
I looked at him innocently.  "Stop singing what?"
He looked at me. "That song."
"You mean, 'Oh Danny Boy'?" I asked, slightly confused.
He looked at me and smiled slightly, "Or at least finish it."
Now it was my turn to look at him suddenly. "Finish it?"
"Yeah, all evening you have been singing just the first part....Hummm, humm.." and he commenced to showing me what I was doing.  Yes, I was only humming the first part of the song and never got any further.  Don't know how it happened, but when Josh started imitating me, I immediately started laughing.  The thought of me walking about the house humming just one part of a song struck me as being rather silly, wouldn't you agree?  We laughed about it for a little while, then I continued doing dinner and Josh continued in his fire making. (don't worry, he was just lighting a fire in the wood stove)

A few minutes later, he jumps up again, "Sarah!...."

Hope y'all are having a wonderful Christmas season! Keep up the joy in your house and have a couple of good laughs. It's good medicine. ;-)

In Christ's Service,

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Test Blog

Hey all!

I thought I'd drop a line and say that I have started a 'test' blog.  I've been getting rather frustrated with blogger, so I decided to take for s test drive.  I started up a new wordpress blog called "No Greater Thing". I just wanted to see if I preferred it to blogger.  I will also be sharing my thoughts, tips, etc over there on writing.  So, if you would like, hop on over and check it out! 

No Greater Thing

We will see how it goes.  I might stick with blogger (because you know me, I gotta have my different templates! haha!), but if it continues to give me frustrating problems, I might end up using wordpress for my main blog.  Don't worry, though.  I won't be leaving here for a while. :-)

In Christ's Service,

P.S. So sorry for the delay in getting up the pictures! I am going to try to get those done by next week.  This weekend is a bit crazy... Thank you for your patience!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Help please?

Ok, I'm trying to get a picture video to load, but it won't work.  How do you bloggers do it?? ;-)  I put together some pictures into a video using Windows Movie Maker and Vegas Platinum 7.0 (two different videos to see which program worked), but alas, it didn't work.  I was able to get it to 'upload', but then it said some error happened during the upload and it wouldn't play back.  I don't know if it is because our Internet wasn't working or what. So, does any one else have this problem?

I'd dearly love to put together some  pictures videos for you (for one, they upload faster than hundreds of pictures, and I can put music to them!).

So, if you have some help for me, I appreciate it VERY much!!! :-)

As for an update, our family is now home and "enjoying" this freezing cold weather! haha!  The wind is blowing something awful and the snow is swirling around and around.  It's actually funny to look outside right now because we have two foot drifts there, and then hardly anything on the ground here.  It's all splotched everywhere like that!  The wind just swirls the snow into drifts instead of a nice even coat (which I MUCH prefer!).  It's frustrating because this wind is 'drying out' the snow, per se. I know that sounds odd, but it wicks the moisture out and back into the air instead of letting the ground soak it up to store away for spring.  Argh.  Hopefully we will get some wet snow so that our cows will have something to eat in the spring/summer.....  How is the weather at your place?

Thanks for your help on the computer predicament.... ;-)

Keeping warm, (well, trying to any how, but not succeeding very well... my fingers are frozen anyhow and it's a miracle I can keep typing!)

Friday, December 2, 2011

So Sorry for the delay!

To all the wonderful people who entered my photography contest:  I am terribly sorry for the delay of posting the winners!  My sister and I have been working on judging them.  This has been an EXTREMELY difficult task because so many wonderful photos were entered! I'm having a hard time picking the winners. :-)  Any how, I will try to post them before Christmas.  Unfortunately our family's schedule has been a whirlwind of activities.  I haven't had much time for computers and whatnot.  (Thus, why I haven't posted in a while!)  And actually, if I am on the computer, I am working really hard on my book so that I can get it finished before the end of this year.  Yes, big goal, but I am determined. :-)  This, however, means that I need to be writing about 20-35 pages a day.  If you are a writer yourself, you know that this is pretty difficult on some days when you are out of ideas.

Ok, sorry, that was a sidetrack.  In any case, I am working on judging and will get those up as soon as I am able!   Then, I've got some picture posts coming up (yeah!) of our drama performances, and a fun time with a special friend. ;-)  And MAYBE I'll be able to put in a few fun Christmas posts as well... oh, and do the second part of the "Romantic movies" post... hehehe... yikes.  Looks like I've got lots on my plate.  Well, at least I've got a chance to sit down and write this up.  I am currently not in my home, but spending the weekend with some friends.  Don't worry, I'm not being rude because the daughter is out with my sister for the moment, the mother's are visiting, and the guys are working.. so yeah. ;-)  I feel rather distant from my blogging friends, though!  Thank you for your sporadic comments.  They really made my day! It's fun to get comments even on posts that are pretty old... =D

Alright, I guess that is about it for my ramblings.  Oh yeah, has any one gotten any snow??  Supposedly we are going to get about 6 inches. And where are we?  away from home, of course! Argh! I hate missing the first snow.  Oh well!

Any one got their Christmas decorations up yet?  We would have had ours done by now on our 'normal' schedules, but haven't had time yet!  I'm looking forward to getting everything out and making the house look festive.  We live so far away from civilization that we don't put any lights around the outside of the house.  Ok, ok, so we're 7 miles away from the nearest town.  So, Dad doesn't think we should put any lights up.  Quite personally I don't care either way.  I like the outside ones, but don't go outside at night enough to really enjoy them (on our house). At least the inside is pretty!

Ok, so I have one more question for you.  Do you put a Star or an Angel on the top of your tree (if you have a tree)?

Alright. I'm signing off now, for real. ;-)  Thank you for your comments! I love hearing from you.

Have a blessed weekend full of joy, family, and the Love of Christ's in your hearts.
In Christ's service,

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thankful post #2

I'm afraid I haven't been on the ball with my thanksgiving posts! So sorry about that.  Life got just a little crazy around here..... :-)

I'm thankful for:

~Understanding Mothers
~The comforting hug from your mommy (Yes, I still appreciate those!!)
~A wonderful sister who loves to make me laugh
~A daddy who makes me laugh
~Life lessons (yes, they're painful, but I know I'll look back later and be glad I learned 'em!)
~A "wonderful" conscience that will prick me when I've done something I shouldn't.  Easier to mend your ways when you got a good one working!
~The busy week ahead
~A fun planned Thanksgiving day with family
~The blue sky up above
~Adorable puppies!!!
~A loving God who cares about me
~Inspirations and ideas for books
~Lovely letters from friends far and near
~All of the lovely comments I receive! You have no idea how much they make my day! :-)

Do you have something you are thankful for that you want to share?  Leave a comment! I'm glad to hear from you. :-)

In Christ's Service,

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Showers of Blessings and Walking with God

Have you ever felt like that beautiful Hymn was coming true in your life?  It is so wonderful when God heaps blessing after blessing upon you.  It's wonderful, yet I know I don't deserve one bit of it.  God just constantly puts me in Awe of Him.  Every day I will see something and just wonder at how creative, majestic, or loving God can be!  Don't believe me?  Just take a peek outside your window.  See that wonderful blue sky?  Maybe it's filled with billowing clouds-but those are a miracle, too!  I used to always wonder how those things used to stay afloat up there in the big blue.   Or, perhaps you'd prefer something a little closer to the ground.  Look at the trees! The flowers, the grass, even the dirt upon which you walk every single day, yet probably don't even think about for a second.

Isn't it amazing how God just blesses us with those little things in life?  Think of a little girl playing in a field.  Imagine her joy when she finds a pretty wildflower.  She eagerly plucks it from the ground, running to show it to her mother.  The girl finds such simple joy in the little flower she knows nearly nothing about.  She doesn't know that it takes millions upon millions of little atoms and molecules to form that budding beauty.  Yet, she just takes delight in the color of it, the look of it, the beauty of it!  To her, it is a wonderful thing to find.  Why should she worry over how many little cells are at work?

I sometimes wonder why we can't just take pleasure in those simple things ourselves?  That saying, "stop and smell the roses.." is one we really ought to take into heart!

Have you ever heard of some famous painter?  You've never met him, but you vaguely know who he is.  Someone mentions him often, so you decide to learn more.  You get a book from the library to read up on the guy, find out who he is.  Perhaps after reading it, you could care less.  Or, perhaps you read about him, and decide that he seems like a nice enough fellow.  Pretty soon, just out of interest, you've read every book about him and know just about everything there is to know.  It suddenly hits you that you've never seen any of his paintings... or perhaps you did, but you didn't pay much attention.  You go to a museum.  You find his work and stare at it in awe.  He was a wonderful painter!  He captures the onlookers attention with his colors and vibrancy in his life-like painting.  You are drawn even more to this fellow.  Suddenly, you have a small connection with him.  Not only have you read all about him, but now you've have seen his work and feel, almost, as if you really knew him.  It's a link from your world to his.

I think it's the same with God.  We read the Bible and find out all about Him.  How He saved His people from this disaster or from this enemy.  Yet, do we truly know Him?  Have you ever really studied those little flowers in the field and just marveled at His amazing Grace?  At His artistic work?  Or marveled at the fact that He took the time to make those simple flowers, to bring that little girl joy?

Although you might have read the Bible a hundred times through, I really don't think you will have the pleasure of KNOWING Him until you have really spent time with Him out in His fields, enjoying His flowers and nature that He has created. 

It may sound crazy to you, my readers. But I will say that I have never felt closer to God than when I am taking a quiet walk down the road, watching the Glorious sunset, and just thanking Him for the day He's given me.  It's then that I feel like I'm walking right beside my Abba.

I hope you can share in one of those walks, too.  Your day might be busy, and you might feel like kicking back and just relaxing, but really think about taking the time to spend with God. 

We should Never be too busy for Him.

In Christ's Service,

Friday, November 18, 2011

Tonight's the night!

As some of you know, tonight is the night that the ABC (a Bunch of Characters) Drama club presents their second play, Last Gasp in the Last Gulp.  It's a western mystery whodunit.

What most of you don't know is that I am VERY NERVOUS!!!  So nervous I could throw up.  I don't know why, though.  Last performance I was feeling just fine. This time I'm nervous as anything.  Maybe it's because I hope I can talk in just ONE old lady voice instead of changing into 15 different voice throughout the play..  or that I can remember those lines I was having trouble with.. or that people will enjoy the play.  Who knows.  In any case, I'm nervous.

Tonight we have a performance and tomorrow afternoon we have the second and last.  Would y'all mind praying for us?  For everyone over there that we will speak loudly, remember our lines, and remember everything we are supposed to do... and not get nervous?  I'd appreciate it!

Hopefully after the performances I can put together a video of pictures for y'all to view.  Would you like that?

Alright, off to make myself look nice and old! :-) And believe me, I can do it! It looks real, too.

In Christ's Service,

Monday, November 14, 2011

Thankful List #1

Ok, so here is my list of a few things I am thankful for.

1. The amazing love of my Redeemer and Saviour.  What He did for me continues to make me just wonder in awe.

2. My family and friends.  They are so supportive of me and my interests. I don't know what I do without them!

3. My amazing Daddy who works hard to provide for us and who is such a great counselor and gives such wonderful advice.  A true man of God!  He strives to follow Jesus more and more. And I love how he doesn't mind staying up till midnight to talk about all of my 'girlish' woes (though sometimes those woes are pretty important and not so girlish!)

4. The fact that God continues to provide for us every day.  He has truly taught me to just follow Him step by step, and not worry about the path up ahead.

5. New computers that WORK!

6. My wonderful sister who doesn't mind me yakking her ear off when I need to get a load off my chest (she is a great listener!! And has lots of wise advice from her years experience.. makes it handy to visit about certain things! hehe!)

7. Thankful for being in a Drama group and having a wonderful role and meeting tons of wonderful people.  And making new friends... :-)

What are you thankful for right now?

In Christ's Service,

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Authentic People {A blog party}

Hello!  I am participating in a blog party hosted by Abigail over at Rear Window.  It's called "Authentic People".  I'm going to answer a couple of random, fun questions about myself so y'all can get to know me and all my quirky 'glory'. ;-) Just kidding.

Ok, so as all of you know, I'm Sarah.  I'm a young lady who loves the Lord and strives daily to be more like Him.  It's a tough job, but the best one ever.  I'm almost graduated from high school (very excited about that), love playing fiddle, piano, guitar, and enjoy spending time with my family.

Probably the weirdest thing about me is that I like to eat all the tiny chip pieces first, then the larger ones, then the whole ones... yeah.

My Favorite household chore would be organizing little things here and there.  But, I have to be 'in the mood' to want to do it! hehe!  It also has to be things that need to be organized, but haven't been done yet (because they are the little things that don't interfere with your day to day life)

I like sausage, Canadian Bacon, Bell Peppers, onions, olives, and pineapple on my pizza. (definitely pineapple!!)

I enjoy waffles and pancakes both. :-)  (and I've got the secret to making really fluffy pancakes/waffles... hehe!)

I definitely like hardwood floors all around. :-)  I always loved hard wood floors.... and then a lovely fire place!!! (that burns REAL wood.....)

The last time I laughed was today.. I enjoy laughing.. a lot! But, the last time I laughed really hard was probably last week. :-)

The first song that pops into my head is........ "Amazing Grace".  I was playing it on my fiddle today. :-)

Click HERE to find out more on participating! It's pretty fun. :-)

I am also participating in my lovely friend's "Thankfulness Challenge".  Once a week starting tomorrow (though the challenge technically starts yesterday) until the 24th, I will be posting a list of list of things I am thankful for in preparation for Thanksgiving.  Sounds like a great idea, right?  It is always wonderful to be reminded of the blessings in your life.  So, click HERE to check it out!

In Christ's Service,

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Autumn Glory Photography Contest Ends Today!

Ok, I meant to get this posted sooner than past midnight.  However, just a reminder to everyone that the photography contest ends today at Midnight- Mountain Standard time.

Thank you to those who have entered so far!  I am very excited about your entries and can't wait to start judging them. :-)  There are also some prizes, so be sure to keep an eye out for those!!

Hope you all are having a wonderful time... sleeping?   I guess that is what most people would be doing at this hour. ;-) haha!  In any case, I'll probably have to give y'all a post on WHY I am up so late.  Trust me, it's good.  If you are a girl, you'll love it.  If you are a guy... well, you might like it since it kind of has to do with hunting....  confusing?  Yeah, you're right. I should go to bed. =D

In Christ's Service,

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Romance movies: Are they bad? How do they affect us?

As my sister, Mom, and I were watching a cute romance comedy, I began 'swooning' over the main actor. If it could be called swooning.. Perhaps that is a rather strong word. Still, I sat there wishing I could find a guy like that.  Cute, romantic, selfless, gentlemanly, a Manly man, etc.  Am I the only girl that has done this? I don't think so.  In fact, I know so.

I'll tell you why....

My friends and I were visiting one day and started talking about movies we had seen.  I mentioned a certain movie, and off we went, admiring the wonderful hero of the tale.  How wonderful he was, etc, etc.

Alright, now that you don't think I'm crazy, I'll continue with my story.....

As I sat there watching, getting that warm feeling, and feeling 'gushy', it suddenly hit me.  Was I wrong in feeling that way?  I mean, here I was pining over this guy (who really doesn't exist.. he's just a character on the screen, and the actor who played him-well, you can throw him out the door...).  Wasn't that the same as giving my heart away to a real guy I actually knew?  I pondered over this for a while and came up with this thought.

Romance movies, while they are fun and sentimental, can be harmful to young ladies.  Your typical hero in a movie (or even a book!) is pretty perfect, isn't he?  He has all the wonderful characteristics. Everything you'd want in a guy.  He's handsome, tall, masculine, gentle, honorable, strong, protective, a wonderful leader, treats his love like a lady, etc.  You get the picture.  So, is it bad to want a guy like that?  Absolutely not! However, we have to be careful to make sure we aren't giving our hearts away to a character (I know it sounds odd, but I do believe it is possible.) 

We women want a guy like that.  Does he exist? Absolutely! But, he won't fit that picture perfectly. Do we flatter ourselves by thinking that WE fit the perfect lady criteria?  Who ever God has in mind for you will be the perfect one.  He will be your 'knight in shining armor'.

So, ladies, how do we keep our hearts pure when we are constantly surrounded by dating, boyfriend/girlfriend pressure, romance movies, etc?  Well, here are a few things that I have found to be helpful.

1. If you are praying daily that Jesus will help to keep your heart pure, then I promise He will help!

2. Have a good relationship with your Father in Heaven.  If you are on a one-on-one relationship with the Lord, then your heart is going to be completely His.  Once you have given Him your heart (and we aren't talking about when you invite Jesus to come into your heart) to hold until it is ready to be given to your husband, it will help a lot.  You just have to remember to not take it back from Him when you want to!

3. One thing to try, when you feel like taking your heart back, is to just stop, drop, and pray!  If you find yourself feeling attracted to a guy (let's face it, it's gonna happen!), just start praying that God will continue holding your heart, and He will help you keep it safe and pure.

Those are just a few tips from things I have learned throughout my years of struggling with this.

And here's another bit.  I have found that I tend to yearn to my guy most when my relationship with my Dad isn't in it's best shape.  Relationships do have to be tended to 24/7.  Its not like you become friends and voila! You're done.  Nope, gotta work on them constantly.  So, sometimes my relationship with my Dad is in tip top shape.  Other times it is lacking.  So, when my relationship isn't really great with my dad (this typically happens when I haven't had a good talk with him in a long time), I tend to start wanting a guy's friendship more and more. 

One of the many reasons we have Dads is to supply our girl hearts with guy love.  Our Dad's give us that 'Daddy love' and our hearts are satisfied.  Once we get older, we want more and more of it.  Our Dad's fill us up again.  So, we get our 'Man love' from our Dad's and then, once we are married, we get it from our husbands.  Got created us to yearn for that kind of love. But He also gave us something to give that to us until our husbands come along. Dads! :-)

So, are romance movies bad?  I don't think so.... just as long as we are focusing on not giving our hearts away to a character and reserving it for our Husbands instead.

Stay tuned for part 2!

In Christ's Service,

P.S. if you have something to add to this post, please share it in a comment! I'd love to hear your thoughts!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Giveaway closed and winner

The desktop and header giveaway is now closed!! 

And the winner is.......






ELLA!!!  Congratulations, Ella!  Please leave a comment with your email address. (I won't publish it). I will send it to Miss Sonja and Miss Ashley and they will send/get to work on your prizes!  Thank you so much for entering. :-)

Monday, October 17, 2011

Been wondering what's going on? (plus a prayer request!)

Ok, maybe I flatter myself by thinking that my readers even wonder if anything is up.  However, I thought that perhaps they might have noticed that I didn't post a recipe for two Fridays in a row, and that last week's posts were rather disoriented.

I'm here to tell you that I have been rather busy.  Ok, that is a lame excuse, I suppose...  When I decided to do this whole shebang, I forgot that it would land right in the middle of cattle season! Whoops!  So, my family and I have been a bit busy working cows, doing regular chores, and trying to do a decent amount of school work in our spare time.  Yeah.

Just so you know, I won't be doing any of the "regular" posts this week.  So, in other words- no giveaways, recipes, etc.  I might do some of the interviews, but I'm still getting that all worked out.  My sister and I realized that it would be a whole lot more fun if we had prizes for the winners of the photography contest.  So, I've been trying to organize what I have on the list so far (of items to giveaway) and deciding which items to do as giveaways and which items to do as prizes.  Doesn't help any when you come up a few short!  Oh well, it will work out eventually, I guess!  Sorry, I'm rambling.....

What you might see this week-maybe-would be a couple of posts that I've had laid on my heart to write up.  If you don't see anything this week, then just come back next week as I get back into the swing of things for the LAST WEEK in our Photography contest.  Remember that you've only got 16 more days-SIXTEEN- to get your entries in and spread the word!  Thank you to those who have entered so far.  It looks like it is going to be a pretty tough choice to pick winners! :-)

Alright, I guess I don't have a whole lot more to say.  Off to 'hold down the fort' (it can literally become one with two brothers playing soldiers... ha, at least I get to be the General!). 

Oh, please be praying for a dear friend of ours, Mrs. H.  She just recently had her third little boy by C-section due to the fact that the baby just didn't want to come out.  However, while the doctors were trying to get her baby out, they ended up cutting through her bladder (which had been flattened during pregnancy), pulled a baby through it, then had to do a 3 1/2 hour surgery on the bladder.  So, needless to say, she's had quite the experience.  She has two other little boys (aged 6 and 3). Both have missed their Momma.  The youngest LOVES to snuggle, so he doesn't quite understand why Mommy can't hold him right now.  Oh, and not to mention that while all of this is going on, she still has to take care of a little newborn.  So, please keep them in your prayers. Thanks!

Ok, now I really will "Officially" sign off. ;-)

In Christ's Service,

Friday, October 14, 2011

Winner of the Bath Tea and Soap bar!

I am so sorry I didn't get on yesterday to announce who our winner was for the previous giveaway. Things got a tad busy.  Any how, I am here to announce that the winner of our giveaway is.................






Miss SARAH!!!  Congratulations, Sarah!

Thank you, everyone, for entering in this giveaway! We got quite a response. ;-)  Please come back again for future giveaways!

In Christ's Service,

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Giveaway #3- Desktop background and Designed Blog Header

Alright, our bath tea and soap giveaway is now closed!  All entries posted now will not be accepted.

For our second giveaway, I mentioned in the last post that I would be combining two contributors.  This one will be a tad different. You (the winner) will be talking to 2 different people while getting your prize. Confusing? Well, maybe the info below will make more sense.

Miss Sonja has graciously donated a lovely Desktop Background.  You will get to choose 1 of 3 designs she has.  I will be posted just one picture of one of the desktops. I ask you to be honest, though, and do not take this picture.  Whoever wins this giveaway will be sent a larger picture (that will fit your desktop). If you use the one below, it won't look very nice on your screen.


Miss Ashley is going to make the winner a free blog header design! Trust me, she does some lovely work!  This is definitely a nice gift to win, especially if you want your blog to have that 'certain touch'. ;-)

Ok, rules of entry:

Mandatory Entry:

Visit Miss Sonja's blog and leave a comment (link)
Visit Miss Ashley's Etsy shop and tell me what your favorite item is on there (link)

Extra Entries:

Go to Miss Sonja's Blog and follow (if you already follow, just put that in the comment) ~2 entries
Go to Miss Ashley's Blog and follow (Same as above) ~ 2 entries
Go Follow my Sister's Blog (same as above) ~4 entries
Add the photography contest button to your side bar (if you already have it, still counts, just let me know) ~ 5 entries! 
Blog about this giveaway AND the photography contest ~ 5 entries
Email five (5) friends about this giveaway/photography contest ~3 entries

Alright, this giveaway ends Next Wednesday, so be sure to enter quickly and spread the word about it!!
Winner of our previous giveaway will be posted tomorrow.

In Christ's Service,