Saturday, December 29, 2012

Indicators That You Should Let a Friendship Die....

We all have that one friend that we're never quite sure about. Every time you see them you wonder "do they actually want to be my friend or do they hate me?" How can you be sure?

You might want to consider ending a relationship if any of the following situations occur.

  • You extend an invitation for them to join you for an all-expense-paid steak dinner and they turn you down because they have a pack of balogne at home that is about to expire. They simply can't stand to let it go to waste.
  • You see your friend on the side of the road and ask them if they need a ride to where they're going. They refuse saying that they need the exercise......even though it's raining......and they're on crutches.
  • You invite them for an evening gathering on April 16 and they can't come...because they want to get a head start on next year's taxes.
  • You ask your friend if a dress makes you look fat and they reply "Fat is an understatement."
  • In the event that you and your friend are the last two survivors of the "Zombie Apocalypse", your friend prefers the company of the zombies to yours.
  • You organize a trip to see "The Hobbit" for you and your friends but when you get there, you realize that the showing is sold out. Your friends have their tickets already so they see it without you and you are forced to see...a kiddie movie. You feel so rejected and unloved that you blog about it. ;)

Have any of these things happened to you? Do you have more awkward situations to add to the list? Please comment or send your additions to me at Your addition will be posted in order to help others.


New Additions!

Submitted by Sharon Rose:
  • "When you are together, your friend's favorite topic is the weather and everyone's health.
  •  "Your friend consistently calls you by a different name because she can't recall your real name.
"I liked your post it was very imaginative. : )
My sister once made a list of things that you could talk about with people you just met. The list included asking, 'Have you ever cleaned out a sewer?', 'Where did you hide your grandmother's dentures?', and 'Have you ever been sky diving?'" -Sharon of "Sharon Rose Books"

Some smart-alec—I mean—my dear adopted brother Luke emailed me this comment:

"1 just to be ridiculous) if the ship has run aground it may be more
profitable to let it die rather than try to salvage it, thusly saving
your friend from the hefty cost of freeing his or her ship.

"If the friend ship fires its canons at you it could be a pirate ship
and not a friend ship, you may want to let it die.

"But I would say if its your friend's ship you should probably not let
it die i think the friend would appreciate it:)
....I apologize for my smartalikey comments I couldn't resist :D" -Luke of "Eternal Adventures"

Thank you so much for your emails! They make my life worth living, and my blog worth writing on. They are like candy to my soul. Keep them coming and if you like the posts, buy the author some chocolate!


Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas!!!

Merry Christmas, friends! :)

I hope you're all enjoying your presents, but remember what's behind our celebrations. It's the reason that we now have true joy and not just the temporary happiness that presents bring. Our earthly gifts will grow old but the Gift that Jesus gave us on the cross will never loose it's power!

Luke Chapter 2:1-20

 1 And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed.  2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.  4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)  5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.  6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.  7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.  8 And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.  10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.  11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.  12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.  13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,  14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.  15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.  16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.  17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.  18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.  19 But Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.  20 And the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told unto them.

Please read this with your family today, if you haven't already and talk about what that baby grew up to sacrifice for us.

Thank you and I wish you many Christmas blessings!!!

Friday, December 7, 2012

A True Friend

I've always had a deep and sincere longing for a close friend, a desire which I believe I share with all of humanity. People have a natural need for a deep bond which was built into us from the the time of creation.

Up until recently, I have always sought to maintain a best friend outside my family. I was willing to sacrifice whatever it took to keep that one friendship alive, often at the cost of other relationships. In the past I've given up my art, my blog, and even some of who I was to make other people happy. Sometimes I found myself disappointed or even betrayed by those same people I had given so much to and I was left feeling empty, lonely, and broken.

I never seemed to understand what I was going through at the time, or why my heart needed to feel agony, but usually after a while I could see I had learned many lessons. Even though I had often been told these things before, I never would have understood them so well as I do now without going through heartache and emotional pain. Pain is a very effective teacher.

So far, the pain of broken relationships has taught me:

  1. Absolutely nothing and no one should come before God. My only goal in life should be to obey and pursue a closer friendship with God. God loves and forgives, no matter what. He is the only true, perfect friend I will have in this earthly life.
  2. God is all I need. "My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever." -Psalm 73: 26
  3. God will never fail me, even though people will. I would never have chosen to have some of the most important friends in my life disappoint me, but God knew that experiencing loss was the best way to draw me closer to Him.
  4. God always knows what is best. I'm learning to trust that God will place the right people in my life and remove those who will pull me away from Him.
  5. I shouldn't change who I am for anyone but God. If the Lord is happy with who I am, I don't have to worry about changing myself just so that others will like me.
  6. Being open and honest about problems is best. If I truly value my friends and family, I should go straight to them with concerns and problems.
  7. I have nothing to fear. I pray that God will keep me from yielding to fear and protect me from those who will try to manipulate me when I'm afraid.
    "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." -Philippians 4:6-7
  8. Reach out and make new friends. No one earthly friend can supply all my needs. Even if they could I still need to reach out and learn how to serve all my brothers and sisters in this world.
  9. Love cannot be selfish. "Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things." -1 Corinthians 13:4-7
  10. Be humble, always admit when you are wrong, and be quick to apologize. Being quick to apologize shows people that you value your friends above your ego.
  11. Forgive others who wrong you and learn to except apologies that are never given. Forgiveness is one of the hardest things to bestow, especially if the person who wronged you never said "I'm sorry". Our sinful hearts cling to bitterness, but God can free anyone from the burden of unforgiveness.

I can't change the past and I wouldn't want to. The lessons I have learned have been invaluable.


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Fox News: How Young is too Young to Get Married?

I had this link sent to me a while ago and thought it was interesting.

I'm a supporter of early marriage, because I believe young people who want to get married sooner have an incentive to mature more quickly, work harder, and reach a true adulthood. This is especially true for young men, who are encouraged to become financially stable earlier on by the desire to support a wife and family.

If you agree (or disagree) I would love to hear about it. You can comment or reach me through my email:

Thank you!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Why Everlasting Imagination?

When I was a little girl in Virginia, I noticed that my parents didn't seem to have much fun and rarely ever used their imaginations. I always wondered why this was, but try as I might I could never come up with a reason. On further inquiry, I was informed by one of my parents that "when you get to be my age you start to lose your imagination." Lose your imagination??? Was such a thing even possible? All those poor grown-ups I knew had no imagination. I considered the depressing existence they must be forced to endure without it. What kind of miserable life must they lead?

The more I thought about it, the more I began to grow worried. Did all adults lose their imagination? If so, did that mean that I too would inevitably experience such a dreaded loss? I knew I couldn't keep from growing up but I resolved that no matter what it took, even if it killed me, I would be the only adult with an imagination.

From then on, when my imagination was not in use, I regularly felt the perimeters of my consciousness to make sure it was still intact, as a man afraid of dying at any moment might check his pulse.

At 12, the miserable age between childhood and becoming a young adult, my hypochondriac imagination became even more convinced that it would soon be severed from the rest of my psyche. From then on I used it more then ever. This was sometimes a good thing and sometimes not so good. Many of the inanimate things around me benefited, as I gifted them with names and personalities of their own. Undesirable consequences were relatively few, but present none the less. I slowly found new outlets like art, writing, and music composition. In August of 2011, at the age of fifteen-and-a-half, I started this blog as an incentive to use my imagination.

I had a new blog, GarageBand, a Photoshop program, a new bamboo tablet, and several available computers. There was only one thing preventing me from moving forward with the things I wanted to do. I was absolutely terrified of showing my work to anyone.

At the time I felt myself brave. I did hundreds of things most girls are afraid to do. I was almost never afraid of physical danger, but I had other fears. I was afraid of embarrassment, being unwanted, and unloved; being rejected by those I cared for most. It's the reason I wrote one of my first posts, entitled Fear, something I wrote solely for myself and no one else.

Hesitantly, I shared it with a few trusted friends, afraid of what they would think of my writing.   My blog has helped me with the fear of displaying my work, but it has taught an even more important lesson: Failure is a good thing. It's the way God strengthens us and pushes us in the right direction. Each time I fail or face rejection I learn from it and I come closer to success. I am using my imagination to do things I love, and even if no one appreciates it at first, I am honing my skills and outlets in the hopes that I will someday have something good.

I know that even if I face failure now, God can help me get past it and with a little imagination, I can hopefully work around it. I chose a name that I thought would adequately portray my lifelong quest for all things imaginative, as well as remind me of The Everlasting Creator.

So here I am rambling about nothing, on "Everlasting Imagination".


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Click those little boxes!!!

See these boxes at the bottom of all my posts?
v  v  v  v  v  v  v  v  v

Click those. Go ahead. Try one. Right now. Just do it.

Now, was that so hard? All it takes is one click. Not only did you just make the little number change, but you exponentially increased my happiness. :) Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!
 You didn't even have to follow the blog or sign in. It's the lazy, easy way to show you care. 

So please, please click those little boxes when you read my posts. 
I really want to know what you think! :)
Thank you!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Heaven: My Home

Sometimes, when I’m out in the cool air under the fall sky, I imagine what it must be like in heaven. My imagination falls so short, but I close my eyes, letting my fancies fly, painting brilliant pictures of things my earthly eyes will never see...

I know there will be great beautiful mansions and a great city with streets of gold, but I imagine that I will spend most of my time outside, under the light of the sky. There I will glorify God by observing and marveling at some of His most magnificent creations made new, as no one on earth has yet seen them, untouched by sin or by flaw.

On the hills of Heaven will be hundreds of glistening flowers. Roses, lilies, sweet-smelling hyacinths of every shade and variation, each perfectly formed by the hand of the Creator, reflecting the light of His glory.

They will have no need of the sun, for night will never touch them and cold will never wither their petals. God will shine far brighter, warmer, and more life giving than the earthly sun. His radiance will replace the sun and His Breath will stir the leaves and blossoms like a soft, tender breeze.

The one's I love most, my family and friends, are surrounding me. The ones I lost, the one's who had abandoned or forgotten me are all there. With joy I realize, we'll never, ever be parted again!

But above all these beauties, these ecstasies of joy will be the absence of pain and heartache. God's warming light will cleanse the scars that my past heartbreaks have left on my soul. I don't have to fight anymore. I'm free from my sinful mind. Free from my earthly temptations.  There is no sorrow because He is my joy, no worry because He will provide, no loss because He is my everything, and no fear because He will protect me. All that is not joy will be, as tears, wiped away by the touch of his gentle fingers.


My imagination flies so free and my heart's longing carries me so far that I almost believe I'm there...

...but I open my eyes and I'm back again. My vision of what lies around me is clouded by tears and heartache. Longing comes back, like the flood of droplets that are now rolling down my cheeks. I feel alone, afraid and hurt again, but now I realize...

...I'm still His child. He's still my joy, my provision, my protection, my hope, my peace, my strength, my Everything and though I can't see or feel Him, He is here. I know that the longing I feel is no different from that of my fellow believers, so I put on a brave face and keep going, sometimes for nothing else other than the hope that one day He'll rescue me. For now, I am blind to Him, but one day I'll see Him clearly. He'll guide my steps closer and closer, until the day I reach the end of my earthly journey and begin something new.


"The fact that our heart yearns for something Earth can't supply is proof that Heaven must be our home."--C. S. Lewis

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Illustration: Tori's Blog Post

Check out Tori Wallace's new post, Sticky Note Forest a very well-written and creative piece which she wrote for her blog, (Thoughts from Hazel).
She requested help, so I did this illustration for her:

She requested a simple, black-and-white, anime-style sketch. It was fun to do! :) You can also find it on the Art, Logos and Design page on this blog.


Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Happy Reformation Day!

     On this day, October 31st, almost 450 years ago, something absolutely terrifying occurred... Well, terrifying for the Roman-Catholic church at least. You see, today is the day that Martin Luther nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of Castle Church.

     Martin Luther was born November 10th in 1483 in Germany to Hans and Margarethe Luther. He was their oldest son, with 3 brothers and 4 sisters following after. Of his siblings, he was particularly close to Jacob who died before reaching adulthood. Only one of his three brothers, James Luther, lived past childhood.
     When Martin Luther was a young man, his father wanted him to become lawyer. He went to school around the age of seven (he later compared attending the school to being trapped in purgatory or hell).
     Later on, he went to law school, but when a thunderstorm struck while he was on the road, his life took a different turn. Without shelter and nearly petrified with fear by the lightning, he cried out, making a vow to Saint Anna that he would become a monk if he was spared from death. Obviously he did live and he was true to his word. He sold his law books and became an Augustinian friar.
     He was a very devout monk, frequently fasting and praying, though soon he began to fall into a spiritual despair. His superior ordered him into academic career, hoping that more work would distract his troubled mind. Luther became a priest and taught at the University of Wittenberg in 1508.
     In 1516 he encountered John Tetzel, who had been sent to Germany to collect indulgences--money they paid to the pope so that he would grant forgiveness for their sins. Luther was disgusted by this practice of selling indulgences and on October 31st (the Catholic All-Saints Day Eve), 1517, he had had enough. He wrote his Bishop, Albert of Mainz sending him a copy of his Ninety-Five Theses in protest of indulgence-selling (as well as many other practices of the Roman-Catholic Church). The same day, he nailed his Ninety-Five Theses to the door of Castle Church or the Church of All Saints. So began the long battle between the protestant reformers and Roman-Catholicism. His actions sparked the beginning of the great Reformation and the Protestant church.
     During his life, Luther translated the Bible into German, and wrote many hymns. He was married to Katherine Von Bora (an escaped nun) in 1523 and together they had six children.  Thanks to Luther, people learned of God's grace and were freed from the guilt that drove them to buy indulgences as "payment" for sins.
     Luther died in February of 1546, but the Protestant church lives on.

For fun...

Here is a scene from the movie Luther, where the Catholic church calls him to recant (take back) what he had written.

Friday, October 26, 2012

The Power of Poetry: Thank You, Mysterious Person!

At Last!

If you have read my blog at all, you have probably read my poem The Midnight Snack at some point, and know that I ended it with a mournful plea for chocolate.
Well, finally, someone has responded. Today, when checking the mail, my mother discovered one white envelope containing a Hershey's milk chocolate bar. I checked with everyone in my family and none of them sent it.
I have absolutely no idea where in the world it came from. This is a true story! No lie.
So, everyone in the neighborhood watch out for suspicious characters and keep your mailboxes open. We obviously have a drive-by chocolater in the vicinity.

You Don't Believe My Story?

I have pictures.

If you, my mysterious chocolate-giving benefactor, are reading this, please come forward. Also, to you sir or ma'am, I say thank you! (and please send more!)


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Midnight Snack

When at night,
you go to bed,
what fancies fly on,
through your head?

Do you ever ask yourself,
or do you never wonder,
what in such a dreamy state,
your sleepy mind will ponder?

What is it you think about,
and what is it you contemplate?
Things that make you happy,
or things that only aggravate?

Like cactus needles, moldy bread,
broken nails and pencil lead.

But by far the worst vexation,
is to die a death by slow starvation.

To open up the pantry,
to look upon the wrack,
to find it full, yet empty
of all your favorite snacks!

How can this be?
No cookies? No candy? Nothing sweet?
Your hopes crumble at your feet,
And your tummy rumbles for a treat.

Neither chips nor pretzels do you see.
No visions of tastiness do your eyes bring.
No chocolate or yumminess,
Only healthy things!

You begin to think that you may die
When something good will catch your eye.


There they are upon the shelf
and you reach out to help yourself.

At last a bright hope of salvation!
Your heart is alive with palpitations.

Satisfying and life saving,
A fulfillment of unhealthy cravings.

You begin to bring one to your lips,
a cup of hope for your heart to sip.

Happily you take a bite.
Your tongue expects to taste delight...

Something is wrong!
You start to panic.
You read the package,
It's ORGANIC!!! ಠ_ಠ


Tasteless, oil less,
yucky and bland.
You spit it out.
It tastes like sand.

Potato chips?! The package lied.
This would never fill your tummy!
unsalted and unfried,
This is quite unyummy!!!

Alas, your hopes were raised for naught,
for with disappointments, life is fraught.

You eat a banana,
and go to bed,
with thoughts of sadness,
in your head.

Thus, I end my tale of woe...

So when you lie in bed tonight,
sympathize with my terrible plight.
Have some pity for my sorrow.


P.S. Illustrations for this poem are soon to come!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Mercy Me: The Hurt and the Healer

103:1 Bless the Lord, O my soul,and all that is within me,bless his holy name! 2 Bless the Lord, O my soul,and forget not all his benefits, 3 who forgives all your iniquity, who heals all your diseases,

Thank you God for being the Healer of our physical and emotional hurt. He has helped me through so many struggles.


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Artwork in Progress...

This was the beginning of the piece. I started out in Gimp because I didn't have photoshop at the time. I started out with the idea of doing feathers instead of tears. It looked pretty awful at this point.

When I got Photoshop I transferred the file over and did this. The smooth shading was accomplished with the color mixing tool.

The beginning of the tears...

...which became this...

...and eventually this!

Comments are appreciated. :D Thank you for coming to my blog!


Friday, October 12, 2012

In Christ Alone

One of my favorite modern hymns ever.

In Christ Alone by Owl City on Grooveshark

In Christ alone, my hope is found

He is my light, my strength, my song

This cornerstone, this solid ground

Firm through the fiercest drought and storm

What heights of love, what depths of peace

When fears are stilled, when strivings cease

My comforter, my all-in-all

Here in the love of Christ I stand

There in the ground His body lay

Light of the world by darkness slain

Then bursting forth in glorious day

Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory

Sin's curse has lost its grip on me

For I am His and He is mine

Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt in life, no fear in death

This is the power of Christ in me

From life's first cry to final breath

Jesus commands my destiny

No power of hell, no scheme of man

Can ever pluck me from His hand

Till He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I'll stand
Till He returns or calls me home

Here in the power of Christ I'll stand
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Something I Want to Share with My Young Adult Friends


Food for thought.

To the Young Ladies,
In every young woman there is a desire to be attractive. We struggle with a problem opposite from that of young men. Young men look with lust and young women want to be looked at.
Before our world was a fallen one, God put a desire in women to be pleasing to their husbands. The desire to be admired is not a sin in and of itself. It was meant for good, but like anything good in this fallen world, it can become twisted.
There are two extreme ways a girl can react to this video:  
  • A more tender-hearted, fearful woman can become terrified of men assuming that that all men are dangerous and that she should avoid them.
  • A woman with a stronger personality may use the weakness of men to her advantage. She may flirt or dress in an edgy way to get attention or to feel better about herself. 
Both extremes are wrong. The first girl gives in to the sin of fear and the second girl exploits the weakness of others for her own advantage. To be honest, I've struggled with swinging to both of these extremes, especially the first. I've been afraid to hang around guys and I was tempted by the lie that I had to dress a certain way.
Not all men give into their sinful desires. There are quality young men out there who are desperately trying to keep their thoughts pure. It's a battle against themselves. Don't make it even harder by choosing to dress in a way that is not Christ honoring. Your clothing needs to protect your brothers in Christ and give glory to God. Who you are in Christ and your desire to serve Him is the beautiful thing about you, not how much skin you show.
"Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments, but rather by means of good works, as is proper for women making a claim to godliness." 1 Timothy 2:9-10  
You don't need to listen to the culture. Someday the right man will come and realize your inner beauty.

To the Young Men,
Before I watched this video, I was doubtful that there were any men who were fighting their sinful natures. It was a comfort for me to realize that there are warriors out there who are giving their all and fighting to protect themselves. 
You may wonder, why would women choose to dress that way? Being a young woman, I can tell you, it's hard not to follow the trends. The world around me says, "No one will love you for you. They only want you for your beauty." We are told that by not following the latest fashions, we are ugly, unattractive and worthless. That is a heavy load for anyone to bear. You, the men of this world, don't make it easy on us. I wonder if girls would dress in inappropriate clothing if they didn't get results from you. You send a message to the girls who are trying to honor God that they aren't making the cut. It's a huge discouragement to us. 
Brother in Christ, you are a warrior and the war you're called to fight isn't in the middle east. It isn't a political war or a physical war. The war you are fighting is a battle of the mind. It's not won by blows but by prayer, reliance on God and the aversion of your gaze. Keep trying. You can't do it in your own strength, but you don't need to. "I can do all thing through Christ who strengthens me" (Phil 4:13) is the verse that comes to my mind here. I don't know what your struggle is like, but I've had other thought struggles with different sins like fear. I would see something that would trigger a fear in my mind and I would have to force it out of my mind. 
It may seem like an uphill battle, but every effort you make is pleasing to the Lord. Seek after Him and He's not going to let you fail. Your wife will appreciate that you saved your God-given desires and admiration for her.

My questions for you:

Young Ladies:
  • Do you have your dad screen your wardrobe?
  • Are you careful of what you wear or are you using the weakness of men to make yourself feel better?

Young Men:
  • Are you trying as hard as the men in the video to keep your mind pure?
  • Is this the battle you fight, or the enemy you surrender to?

I liked what Jordan Taylor said in his most recent Blimey Cow video: "Modesty isn't a girl problem; it's an everybody problem."

Guard your heart. No matter what the world tells you, purity is worth it.


Related posts: The First Kiss

Friday, October 5, 2012

Jostie Flicks

Check out Jostie flicks! They were made by a homeschool family with eleven children. Definitely worth the watch! They are so funny and addicting.

Their newest video is hilarious!

Bedtime stories will never be the same for me...

This is what happens in our house when mom and dad leave!

I know guys who are like this!!! XD

     My blog now has about 12 followers, even though only ten are shown and I've had about 600 views this month! I am so excited :)

Thank you too all my readers! Remember, I love comments and emails!

Monday, October 1, 2012

The First Kiss: Why is It So Important to Save for Marriage?

The kiss is a beautiful symbol of love shared by a man and a woman. Everyone recognizes that it is something special, however, lot of Christians disagree on when it should be allowed. Humor me for a moment while I explain my view and why I hold it.

Do I believe that kissing before marriage is wrong? Well, yes and no. I feel that it would be wrong for me. When I was twelve-year-old girl, I prayed and made a vow to God that I would save my first kiss for my wedding. I told him I would not allow a man to touch me in any inappropriate way.

I have often been mocked and looked down upon for my strong convictions. The weird part is that I get judged more for having high standards than people with really low standards. I'm okay with that. It's worth it. If I ever get married, I will be able to look the love of my life in the eye and say "I waited for you. I saved my heart and my physical affection for you. You are my first true love." I hope that my husband will be able to do the same for me.

If a young woman holds convictions like these, it will probably be a turn-off to all the wrong sort of guys. I believe that if a man can't respect the convictions of a young woman, and demands more physical affection, he is in the relationship for the wrong reasons and is honestly not worth her time.

Don't get me wrong here...I don't think kissing is wrong for everyone. I look at it this way:
The Bible says lust is wrong, right? Jesus says in Matthew:

"Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman [or man] to lust after her [or him] hath committed adultery with her [or him] already in his heart."

Lust is a lot more serious than most people think it is. It's not just some little sin. It's something that has poisoned hearts and wrecked families. God takes a very serious view of it, to the point of equating it to the physical act of fornication. That's big.
If you think you can kiss someone without lusting after them, than you make that decision on your own. Maybe a harmless peck is fine for you, and is your way of
showing someone that their special to you. Only God can see what's in your mind, and your intentions are.

Whatever way you look at it, a kiss is different from most types of physical contact. You can hug a person of the same sex. Can you kiss a person of the same sex on the lips without people thinking there’s something wrong with you? Hopefully, the answer is no. Why? It would be taken as a sign of homosexual affection. Yikes!
The kiss has an obvious sexual connotation. It may not be on the same level with sex, but it is something deeply intimate.

Our culture tells us that “Hey, a kiss isn't a big deal!” Think about it. Our culture also tells us that promiscuous sex before (and sometime after) marriage is also fine. The world’s standards are already very low.
I’m not telling you what to believe and I am certainly not judging you. I’m just saying, be careful! The world is deceptive and sometimes moral compromise can seem a lot easier than standing up for your beliefs.

I am not a moral authority. In fact, don't listen to me! Read the Bible and form your own convictions.

Above all thing, Pray! Ask the Holy Spirit to guide and protect you and heed His promptings. If you follow where God is leading, you can't go wrong!


Thursday, September 20, 2012

Writing a Song...

I wrote these lyrics a few weeks ago and I've been trying to put them to music ever since. It's based on something that I think a lot of people have felt at least once in their life: hurt caused by a close friend.

I know life is hard when your heart is broken,
Another door slammed and not a word spoken.
I know you think it's the beginning of the end,
But God won't let you break, even though you bend.

This broken world is not your home,
Rest your hope in what is yet to come
Pain is just a reminder,
The fire is only your refiner, and you must,
Love without hope of return.

But don't give yourself away and never give up the fight!
In the end, the darkness is always overcome by the light.
Have you been betrayed yet again?
Stabbed in the back by another friend?

This broken world is not your home,
Rest your hope in what is yet to come
Pain is just a reminder,
The fire is only your refiner, yet we know,
Love can never be a waste.

When your heart has been shattered
and the pieces are scattered,
remain strong in what you know,
Never let your sorrow show.

This broken world is not your home,
Rest your hope in what is yet to come
Pain is just a reminder,
The fire is only your refiner, and we know,
Love can never be for naught.

It may seem like your true love will never be returned
Over and over, you're rejected and spurned.
God won't let you face the pain alone
No one can ever be too far gone.

This broken world is not your home,
Rest your hope in what is yet to come
Pain is just a reminder,
The fire is only your refiner, and we know,
Love will find us all some day.

The Stroke: Part 3

     It was the night of the Capital Christian Homeschool Bands spring concert and recital. All the students were positioned on stage, instruments in hand. The auditorium was filled with parents, siblings and friends of students and my grandmother was in the audience for the first time. There was only one person missing.
     The audience grew quiet as one of the band parents walked to the front of the auditorium to introduce the Wind Ensemble and it's director. I could see my dad as he stepped onto the stage and was handed the microphone. He stood with his back towards me.
     “Yesterday, my wife Jennifer was on her way to the dress rehearsal when she had what we thought was an attack of vertigo. She was taken to the hospital where she stayed overnight. We brought her back this morning only to receive a phone call from the hospital telling us she should go back to the hospital as soon as she could.
     A specialist diagnosed her with having had a double stroke. Blood was cut off to two areas of her brain.”
     It was hard to hear my dad recount the story. I couldn't see his face, but I could tell from his voice that he was not far from tears. I could feel a knot welling up in my throat and tried to blink the moistness from my eyes. When my dad finished speaking and turned to direct the band, his expression was one of sadness.
     After the concert was ended, my father dropped us off at home and went back to the hospital. 
     During the concert, my mother was alone in the hospital. She seemed to be doing well at the time, but she had no idea of the long road to recovery that lay ahead of her. The cerebellar stroke would effect the days to come in ways none of us expected. She discovered only later on that it had been caused by a neck trauma from her most recent chiropractic adjustment. She and my father were to spend another two nights in the hospital. My sisters and I were to spend another two and a half days at the house by ourselves.
     Thursday, March 8th rolled around. It was my sixteenth birthday and my aunt and grandmother had come to our house to visit and help out. We were all hoping that Mom would come home and were waiting for news. It was a long day for the whole family.
     In the past few days, my world had been shaken by the sudden absence of my mother's strong support. I was unsure of what to expect of her behavior when she came home. It was late in the afternoon, almost evening, when my parents came home at last.
     My mother was on medicine for intense, debilitating migraines and headaches for two weeks. During that time, Jenae and I were in charge of homeschooling and running the house. It would have been nearly impossible but for the help of our church family and friends. They brought us three meals a day, every day. The kindness and care of our friends was the best encouragement we had. It was a reminder of the love and bond between brothers and sisters in Christ.
     Over the next several months my mother struggled with intense anxiety and deep sadness. There was always the fear in our minds that she would never recover fully. We all wondered if she would always struggle with emotional turmoil. Her graciousness and Godly spirit were amazing to me. Even through the fear, she trusted in God. She constantly relied Psalms and prayer to alleviate her fears and calm her heart. She knew her recovery would be a long process, but neither of us understood how long it would take.

     I remember being in the car with my dad as we drove home one night, a few weeks later. We were alone and we had been talking about mom.
     "Don't tell your mother this..." He began, "but I think it's going to take her a lot longer to recover than we thought. The doctor thinks it will take at least six months for her to function normally again and a year to be completely normal."

     I never doubted the existence of God, nor that He was the God of the Bible. I knew He was omnipotent, omnipresent and omniscient. In that sense, my belief remained unshaken, but when I saw bad things happen to others and myself, I began to wonder if He really cared about us. I labored to understand what good He was working through this.
     If you don't hold a solid understanding of the purpose of trials and suffering, it's easy to be taken down. Through everything you must remind yourself that God loves you no matter what happens and He your ultimate best in mind, through everything. If you don't believe that God allows bad things to happen for a reason than you won't learn from your trials, and every death, hurt or trial will be for nothing. Your faith in God will decrease and not increase as He intends. These were all things my mother and I have had to learn, are still learning now and we will probably continue to learn them throughout our lives. They are lessons that everyone (whether they realize it or not) must learn, though some choose not to.
     The realization that God has total control of your life can be either the most frightening or the most reassuring and comforting thing you'll ever discover. For us, His children, that means we have the powerful, knowledgeable and loving eternal God on our side.

Isaiah 26:4
4Trust ye in the LORD for ever: for in the LORD JEHOVAH is everlasting strength:

John 10:27-3027My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: 28And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. 29My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand. 30I and my Father are one.

James 1:2-4 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

James 1:12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him.

Previous posts: The Stroke: Part 1The Stroke: Part 2,
Related Posts: Fear"Well, Actually, I'm Taller Than I Look": Spiritual Growth

Saturday, September 8, 2012

"Well, Actually, I'm Taller Than I Look..."


A Piece on Spiritual Growth

     When I was a little girl I was always the tallest in my Sunday school class. I had a good inch or too on both boys and girls alike and was very proud of it, almost as if it were a natural talent. I could literally 'look down on' all those who I did not like. I enjoyed this small advantage for some time, but at the age of eleven or twelve, things began to change.
     I remained the same height, while all my other friends continued to grow. I had stopped growing. True, 5' 3" might seem tall for an eleven-year-old, but it's short for a full-grown girl.
     To my youthful mind, this sudden change was a devastating tragedy. I had always thought I would be tall (I should have looked at both of my short parents and known that genetics were not in my favor!) I wasted much time lamenting my small physical stature before it hit me: I can't do anything to make myself grow physically, but I can do something about my spiritual growth. If I quit worrying about my physical height and started focusing on growing taller in terms of spiritual wisdom and good character, I could still be tall.
     I've just been through a period of time during which I lost my true focus. My spiritual growth had become sadly stunted. I might have even been shrinking! I had experienced some hurt and instead of turning to God to establish my value I turned to other people and their opinions of me. I was focused on how I could control my life and future and I forgot I really don't have to. I can't control anything anyways!
     The truth is, I am utterly helpless and powerless to control are you. Does that frighten you? It scares me too, but I know it shouldn't. Actually, it should be a comfort. We don't have to worry, because everything belongs to God. If you're a Christian, you should take comfort in the fact that you have an omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent God on your side. On top of that, He loves you more than anyone on this earth could ever love you! He loves you with a perfect unconditional love. If you focus on Him and on your spiritual growth, everything else will be taken care of. Focus on following and glorifying God and He will grow you to new heights.

Matthew 6:27-34
  27  Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?   28  And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin:   29  And yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.   30  Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?   31  Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed? 32  (For after all these things do the Gentiles seek:) for your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.   33  But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.   34  Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof.

Monday, September 3, 2012

The Stroke: Part 2

     I sat rigid up on stage, clutching the cold instrument in my hand while the music droned on and on. I didn't want to be in that rehearsal. I kept thinking, mom should be here.... But she wasn't. The entire practice was a constant reminder that something wasn't right. I began to remember...

     The policeman who had called the ambulance asked me if anyone was coming for me and I told him I had called my dad. He spoke to the stranger who wanted to help us earlier and said it was fine for him to leave because 'the father' was on his way and everything was taken care of. Even in a state of shock I remember noting how strange it was that he referred to my dad as 'the father'.
     Waiting for my dad at the intersection, I had glimpsed what seemed to be a familiar white van, crossing the intersection ahead. When the van turned our way and slowed to a stop alongside us, I saw it was our friends, the Fieldses. Mrs. Fields rolled the window down and leaned out. "Are y'all okay?" She looked at the suburban. "Where's your mom?"
     Speechless, I pointed to the EMS truck.
     The policeman came up, interrupting her questions and asked Mrs. Fields to move out of the road. She left to go park in a lot over a nearby hill, saying she would back soon.
     Not long after, my dad came walking over the same hill. He said almost nothing to me, but spoke to the officer and paramedics. He soon climbed into the back of the ambulance to see my mom.
     Everything in me wanted to go to the hospital with my parents, but I knew that wouldn't help. My father knew that too, and so I was sent on, along with my four sisters. We rode with the Fieldses to the Baptist church in which we normally held our concerts.
     I suffered through every moment, fighting tears and wishing I was at the hospital. When rehearsal ended, I was very ready to leave. The Fieldses dropped us off at our house and Mrs. Fields made sure we had everything we needed for dinner and even a few things for breakfast before leaving us.
     Up until then, we had little contact with my father. Maybe a phone call or two, but little information was known. Everyone was continuing to operate under the assumption that she was suffering only from severe vertigo.
      My sister, Jenae (who was then twelve years old), helped me feed the three little ones and put them to bed. We both waited up for a long time, but neither my father nor mother could come home. Finally, at two o'clock in the morning my dad called. Mom was about to have a C.T. scan and they were going to stay at the hospital. We would be alone in the house for the rest of the night.
     Exhausted and burdened by a heavy heart, I collapsed on the couch and fell asleep.

     It was around seven or so the next morning when I heard the sound of my dad's car pulling into the driveway. I rushed to the door in time to greet my parents. My dad was visibly tired, but my mom looked like she could pass out at any moment. The only thing that the doctors said was that it had to be vertigo.
My parents tried to settle down to rest and my mom was about to go to bed. That's when the phone call came.
     A specialist had looked at mom's scans. They had found something serious and wanted her to come back to the hospital as soon as possible.

Post to be continued...

Previous Posts: The Stroke: Part 1
Next Nost: The Stroke: Part 3

Monday, August 27, 2012

The Stroke: Part 1

     Six months ago, my mother had a double stroke.
     One day mom woke up with a sharp pain in her neck, thinking it was just stiff from sleeping wrong, but it never went away. The aches and constant exhaustion from the daily cares of homeschooling, running a house and teaching band twice a week were wearing her thin. She had been experiencing physical weakness and pain for a while, with little relief. The pain was growing steadily worse.
     The day was March 5th, 2012. It was a busy day for all of us. We had a dress rehearsal that afternoon and my mom was due for a third chiropractic appointment and hair appointment. I knew something was wrong when she left, but when she returned, she seemed utterly drained. Her movement was slow, devoid of energy and she spoke with a quiet voice. She needed to rest, but what could she do? She had to be at a dress rehearsal in which she was conducting.
     We hadn't gotten far from the house when mom suddenly slammed on the brakes. We were thrown forward as the car came to an abrupt halt.
     Fear seized my heart as I realized something was horribly wrong. "What's going on?"
     "Put the car..." my mom slumped forward against the steering wheel, breathing heavily, "...put the car in...neutral!"
     I swiftly pulled the lever to park. "What's wrong?" I leaned towards her, trying to see her face. "Are you ok?"
     "No...I'm dizzy..."
     She had vertigo before and it usually passed. This episode only seemed to get worse I began fumbling in my purse, trying to find my cell phone.  Not sure who to call I dialed the first number that entered my frantic mind.
     The phone seemed to ring far too long. Silently, I pleaded with God to let my dad answer. I glanced at the confused and concerned faces of my four sisters who sat quietly in the back seat.  Finally I heard my dad say "Hello?"
     Relief washed over me at the sound of his voice and I told him what was happening.
     "You need to get out of the road." He told me.
     I got out of the car looking to see if any cars were speeding by on the busy rode. Thank goodness we had stopped in one of two left turning lanes, so we weren't in anyone's way. I went around to the driver's side and opened the door. "You need to move so I can drive."
     ", I can't..."
     "You have to try!" I tried to help her move.
She didn't budge, clinging to the steering wheel like a last hope. "You don't understand! If I move...I'll throw up..."
     I tried to coax her from the seat, but finally gave up when she refused even to move an inch. Near to tears, I returned to the passenger's side to call my dad again. I pleaded with him to come get us. With my dad on his way, we had nothing to do but wait.
     My mom was looking  worse every moment.
     "Are you sure you can't move?" I asked her again.
     "I can't! I can't!"
     I circled around to her side again and tried to move her, but it was no use. She kept saying that everything was moving and I remember her asking me if the car was shaking. Please God... I prayed, please let her be okay! Almost hopeless, I was about to head back to my seat when a strange car pulled up along side our suburban. A man rolled down the window from the inside and called to us. "You all right?"
     Unsure of this stranger's intent towards us I told him "My mom is sick, but we're fine. My dad's on his way."
     The man pulled his car off to the side of the road and got out. "What's wrong with her?"
     "I think it's just a severe attack of Vertigo." I kept my distance from the man watching him closely. "She's had it before."
     "Do you need to call someone?" he asked.
     "I called my dad. He's on his way now." I repeated.
     "Do you need to move the car off the road?"
     "I tried moving her but she can't stand up." I said. "I know how to drive but I can't get her out of the driver's seat."
     He stepped up to the open door. "Ma'am," he addressed my mom. "We have to get you out of the seat. Do you need help?"
     "No..." She answered faintly. "I can't..."
     I saw a police car out of the corner of my eye, coming up the road towards us. It slowed to a stop and the policeman got out. It didn't take long for him to call an ambulance.
     The paramedics had to help my mom from the car. She was far too weak and disoriented even to move on her own. The first time they tried to move her, she threw up almost immediately. The extreme dizziness she felt made her sick to her stomach. She swayed to and fro when she tried to stand upright.
     You can't understand what it's like to watch as a parent is carried to an emergency vehicle. The helplessness, the fear, the desperate pleading with God to "please let her be alright!" are things that you will never empathize with unless it happens to you. I pray that it will never happen to me again.
     She was my best friend and she had always been there for me.
     I stood there alone, shocked, knowing that my little sisters were weeping in the car. I watched through tear-filled eyes as she disappeared from my view and the door to the ambulance was shut.

Post to be continued...

Next Post: The Stroke: Part 2