Friday, March 24, 2006

Anna picked out a book at the library called The Spring Cleaning, by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It's about fairies who get spring ready for Primrose Day for a little girl named Bunch. On the page where you would expect to read the dedication there is a quote from Queen Crosspatch - the fairy who is the teller of the story.

" is a person to find time for stories when she works seventy-five hours a day. You may say that there are not seventy-five hours in a day, but I know better. I work seventy-five hours every day whether they are there or not."

Thursday, March 23, 2006

After the Wodehouse quote that came across my google desktop the other day (see March 17 post), I did go to the library that afternoon and borrowed The Girl in Blue, by PG Wodehouse.

It was an excellent weekend read.... a light, but intelligent mystery. There is an interesting cadence to Wodehouse's writing that has me wanting to read another book before I label myself definitely as a Wodehouse fan.

I've been reading The Helper, by Catherine Marshall as part of my Lenten routine. It's a forty day study about the Holy Spirit. While I don't necessarily agree with everything, I do recommend the book.

Yesterday I read the chapter entitled "He Convicts Me of Sin". I'm going to type in a large portion of the chapter, because to me it was a phenomenal re-revelation.

"...the Spirit showed me that every time I reject Jesus' ability to handle any problem or problem area of my life, I am rejecting Him as the Lord of Life as truly as did the three thousand on the Day of Pentecost. He claimed to be the Savior, to be able to save us from any sin, any bondage, any problem. By disclaiming that, with regard to any one of my problems, I am calling Jesus a liar and a charlatan - a fake prophet - as truly as did those who long ago howled for His death before Pilate and who drove in the nails.

At that point I am also back in the garden of Eden standing beside Adam and Eve giving heed to the serpent - 'Don't believe God. He's really trying to deceive you and take away your happiness. After all, you know your own situation best. Don't be afraid to follow you own best judgment.'

Whenever I follow the serpent's twisted, convoluted advice, instantly I reveal the root of my sin-nature. It has many tentacles, among them my rebellion against God, the self-will of my determination to have my own way, and my arrogance. How ridiculous we human beings are when we set the pathetic limitations of our finite minds and petty judgment over against the infinite wisdom of our Creator! We can see this in regard to our own children. We can simply judge better than they can... 'No, you may not ride your bike in the heavy traffic downtown.' ... 'Stop it, Johnny, you'll pull that chest over on yourself.'... 'Debbie, no! You cannot play with matches.' But how blind we are to the fact that we grownups are in an even more untenable position in relation to our Heavenly Father.

Even so, we hear our amazing Lord telling us, 'Neither do I condemn you.' Here too, His viewpoint is very different from ours. Even as we are inclined to center down on legalistic and fleshly sins, so we usually assume that we are in for massive doses of judgment and condemnation.

Not so!

'For God sent the Son into the world, not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.'

The difference here is that we think of sin as the breaking of laws, whereas Jesus thinks of sin as being bound. Why would anyone with goodwill condemn a poor man bound with chains or tied with a heavy rope? Would he not rather want to free him?

That, Scripture tells us, is the plight of us all before we meet Jesus because

'All have sinned... If we say we haveno sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. Everyone who commits sin is a slave to sin.'

And Jesus came to earth, He announced at the beginning of His public ministry, for the express purpose not of condemning us, but of releasing all of us sin-captives.

Therefore, until we see ourselves as bound in many specific areas and in need of freeing and saving, obviously we will have no need of the Savior. Our danger then will be that of approaching Jesus not as a Savior but as a Santa Claus for the good gifts He can give us.

The truth is that none of us can go anywhere in the Christian life so long as we are chained with unbelief. For in any area we look, until we believe that Jesus is the Savior of our life for whatever our problem is - health or sex or money or job or strained or severed human relationships or whatever - there is nothing He can do for us. ...."

Friday, March 17, 2006

"At the age of eleven or thereabouts women acquire a poise and an ability to handle difficult situations which a man, if he is lucky, manages to achieve somewhere in the later seventies." - PG Wodehouse

This is the quote of the day that came across my google today. Makes me think I need to get to the library and check out a Jeeves book.... my sister-in-law has been recommending Wodehouse for about two years.

It is funny to read this quote after a week with Caleb (over our evening dinner time) who has been really trying to understand where babies come from. All of a sudden 'when a mommy and a daddy love each other' doesn't answer his mechanical minded prying. "Did Sofia come out of your belly-button or what?"

I think it is really a measure of the maturity of the parents, not the children, when these questions come up. I think that I heard it from our family doctor first... just answer the question. No more, no less. Don't give more information than they ask for.

So over many prying glances between the 'mommy and daddy who love each other' we explained the beginning mechanics of child-birth over chicken drumsticks and rice.

After some thought, Caleb's eyes got really big. My mom did that!? "Did it hurt?" he asked. "Yes, Caleb, but mommy's and girls are made by God to be able to do this, so it is okay".

Then, he actually began to try to say why he couldn't do that but that he was stronger than mommy in other ways. (He really has a hard time seeing that mommy is physically stronger than him right now.) Marc cut it off really quickly "Caleb, stop. There is nothing you and I will ever do that compares to giving birth."

I'm not sure that Caleb believed him. Come to think of it, I'm not sure that he believed our explanation of child-birth either.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Marc participated in a Polar Bear Dip today. It was a fund-raiser for the Alfond Youth Center. There was a pool of water created in the midst of a snowmound, filled with water from a hydrant. And to top of the atmosphere, it snowed!

Here is the before and after picture of his splash.

To get the full story check out his blog

The anatomy of a LadyBug

We are celebrating Sofia's 1st birthday tomorrow. Today, I made an army of ladybug cupcakes for the celebration. I made cupcakes. Then I tinted vanilla frosting with all the red food coloring I could find in the cupboard. The eyes and spots are everyone's favorite - M&M's. And the stripes and antennas are made with Twisted Twizzlers.

Aside from the cupcakes and the presents that we've bought, this will be probably the lowest key first birthday that we've done for our kids. Ahh - the price of being the third child. Fortunately my parents and niece will come down tomorrow to sing and eat the ladybug army.
I'm not entirely sure how I have painted myself into the birthday party corner. I never intended to be a mom that threw a party for every birthday every year. So, I feel a bit liberated that I'm not pulling out all the stops this time, but feel a bit bummed that it's Sofia's 1st birthday is the one to meet my birthday party liberation.
But she is named as my Companion of Wisdom, so maybe more and more she and I will learn together about the important ways to celebrate the important things.