Wednesday, December 31, 2008
The new year is like a fresh start, though. People make resolutions. Kids determine to be better in school or a teensy bit nicer to their little siblings, and adults decide to lose weight or be better in their jobs. In only a little bit of time, all is forgotten and people don't abide by their resolution rules. Well, I've decided that this year is TOTALLY going to be different for me. I've made two resolutions that I'm going to keep. As a...motivation I'll post them on here so I won't forget.
1. Read the whole entire Bible in a year. (I've done it before, but I never really soaked it in. Hopefully I'll be able to do it this year!)
2. Finish my book, The Chosen (that's the working title as of now). I'm at the final climax as of now, but there's a LOT of editing to do.
So what is/are your resolution(s)? Are you determined to keep them this year?
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
"Jim Elliot, Ed McCully, Pete Fleming, Nate Saint, and Roger Youderian, the crew of N5156H, flew to Ecuador to take the gospel to the Waodani people. When they were killed, Elisabeth Elliot (Jim's widow) went back and led them to the Lord.
Steven Curtis Chapman wrote this song as a tribute to these events, and the man chanting at the end was responsible for the deaths of two of the men of the mission team. Proof that God's grace is more powerful than any sin!"
and here is a note from Steven Curtis Chapman about his song:
""Through Gates of Splendor by Elizabeth Elliot is a book that really impacted me and challenges me in any ways. It’s the story of Jim Elliott and Nate Saint and the five missionaries who went to Ecuador in the fifties and were martyred by the tribe known at the time as the Acuas. In the process of writing ‘No Greater Love’ some things happened that resurfaced this story again in my life. I found Steve Saint on the internet. He is the son of slain missionary Nate Saint. I found that he was writing some stories about working with the Waodanis (pronounced woo-donnie), the people who were formerly known as the Acuas. I discovered he was in America with a member of the Waodani tribe named Mincay (pronounced men-kai). Mincay is one of the six men who killed his father, Nate Saint. He was here in America speaking in his native tongue about the redeeming power of forgiveness and God’s love and God’s grace. I thought this is too good to be true. I couldn’t believe this was really happening. Steve Saint and Mincay came to my studio and he sang for me of God’s forgiveness and God’s mercy and God’s grace and of his journey of coming to know the maker and becoming a God follower. I had this idea and dream of actually having Mincay sing with me on this album. That dream became a reality. God let that happen. It’s an amazing thing. You hear him chanting at the end of 'No Greater Love.'"
Amazing, isn't it? I love the power of the music and the lyrics. At first, I didn't know what the chanting at the end was all about, so I looked into it further and found out that one of the very men who had killed these missionaries, Mincay, is the person who chants at the end. The translation is in the video.
A quick note, be sure to switch off the playlist on the right before watching this video. I just made that mistake *sheepish grin*
by Steven Curtis Chapman
Men of courage with your message of peace
What is that look in your eyes?
Why have you come to this faraway place?
What is this story you would lay down your live to tell?
What kind of love can this be?
There is no greater love than this
There is no greater gift that can ever be given
To be willing to die so another might live
There is no greater love than this
Broken hearted from all you have lost
How can you sing through your tears?
What is this music that can bear such a cost?
What is this fire that grows stronger against the wind?
What kind of flame can this be?
This is the love God showed the world
When he gave us His Son
So we can know his love forever
Beyond the Gates of Splendor
Monday, December 29, 2008
WARNING: THIS IS REALLY, REALLY RANDOM!!!
Now with all of the formalities out of the way, the only things I could think of were:
2008 was great, but 2009 is gonna rhyme! (Well, the "2008 is great" part rhymed, so there's not much point. Plus, how could a year rhyme? *shakes head*)
2008 was great, but 2009 is gonna be a lime! (Uhhhh, does this mean 2009 is going to be sour?)
2008 was great, but 2009 is gonna be a dime! (*blinks* What?)
2008 was great, but 2009 is going to be...going to be...sublime? (Uhhhh.....nope. Didn't rhyme!)
2008 was great, but 2009 is going to be...MINE! (MWAHAHAHA! *coughs* Nu-uh)
2008 was great, but 2009 is going to be divine! (Uh, I'm not sure)
Alright, I'm all out of ideas! Does anyone else have an idea?
It's so hard to believe that a new year is upon us! *screams and panics*
Well, I have a lot planned for 2009 including more book reviews, a monthly fiction article, and a monthly article about hot topics. But I will take this day to reminisce on all of the amazing things that have happened to me this great year.
1. I started this blog and became GoMC!!!! Awesomeness, yeah? Next June will be my first anniversary! *sniffs sentimentally* Can you believe it? I've been asked about this blog's title, A Girl of Many Colors. several times. Where'd it come from? Several theories include Joseph's coat of many colors and the horse of a different color (from the Wizard of Oz which I hadn't seen until this year). To tell ya'll the truth, I just randomly thought of it one day, and it stuck!
2. I joined the Dragons in Our Midst by Bryan Davis forum and became DoT! (Daughter of Thigocia) And yes, the whole "Dot" thing was planned. It was either Daughter of Thigocia or Daughter of Makaidos. DoM didn't sound as cool and DoT, so I became DoT! If you are on the forum, or are going to join, feel free to stop by and say hi!!!
3. I got a little sister!!! Though we won't meet her until next year, I feel like I'm already hers!
4. I got 100,000 words in my book! (Part one of a four book series) Though I am not completely sure when I started (Bad record keeping skills) I am 90% sure I started the book I have now in this year. (There were about 5 rough ideas until the final one showed through! Again, my bad record keeping skills kicked in and I threw most of the rough drafts away)
5. I got to ride a horse for real for the first time this year at a church picnic! And, if ya'll remember my post, it was REALLY a real ride for my sister and I! Thanks so much to the Phantom Stallion series (which I will be introducing to you in the near future) my mind flashed to one of the book's scenes and I hung on instead of jumping of the galloping horse. Thanks so much to the people at the church picnic who were fast thinkers and immediately started praying since they could do nothing else to stop the horse. And thanks so much to God for protecting my sister when she was thrown off of the horse and myself! God's amazing, and he is SO real!
Remember that one post when I said I'd be riding a horse at the one person's place who owned the horse at the picnic? Well, it didn't exactly work out due to bad weather. Hopefully, as soon as it gets warmer in the spring, I'll mount up.
6. I had a big birthday this year!
7. I got a black belt in Tae Kwon Do this year with a struggle involving an evil energy drink. Again, blogged on it if you want to read about my interesting encounter with (Du Du Dun!) The Blue Demon!
8. I got baptized by my dad this year!
9. I started exploring the world of writing for real this year, and I definitely DON'T regret it!
10. I've learned more about the computer than I ever did before! Tech savvy, I guess you could call it!
So, what amazing things happened to YOU (Yes, YOU!) in 2008?
(P.S. Like my new siggie???)
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Isn't she ADORABLE? This is a picture we took of my little cutie, Belle, in front of our Christmas tree.
I look back today at the wonderful Christmas we had this year. This year we kept it simple. Not overboard in presents, just enjoying the company of each other. We spent most of the day just talking and laughing. No hustle and bustle of rushing around to parties or cleaning up the toy packaging (If you've heard "Toy Packaging" by Sarah Groves you know what I mean ;D)
My dad and I were able to finish a 550 piece puzzle given to me by a friend with the every now and then assistance from my mom (Unfortunately, my sister wasn't feeling very well, and she has a cold now. Bummer, right? I feel so sorry for her)It was amazing. A puzzle? Amazing? Well, I don't VERY often get to just sit down and have some fun with my dad, so it was one of the best Christmas presents I could dream up. We just talked about the puzzle, and not much else. But he was talking about how much patience I had to do it and how good I was at puzzles, and if ya'll know, getting a compliment from someone makes one blush, but getting a compliment from a family member make one just glow, even if it was about something small like a puzzle.
Pretty much a non-materialistic Christmas. I've got to say that it was the best one I've ever had. Anyway, I have everything I need, right?
So, from our home to yours, have a very Merry Christmas. May your lives be filled with the peace and joy of our Savior's birth as you spend time with your family and friends.
May God Bless You This Wonderful Day,
Monday, December 22, 2008
So why am I doing this? Why is GoMC telling you about this new insane idea she has?
There are several reasons, actually. But I'll just state two.
~I'd like to get more experience writing. Limiting myself to a certain amount of words and making it meaningful yet compact is something I struggle with. I'm working on a full blown book (Now 98,000 or so words as of today) so I don't get much in the way of short stories except for school assignments and other miscellaneous reasons. If you give your consent to start doing this, I'll ask for you to comment on errors, both grammatical ones and theological ones.
~I find that I read fiction more than nonfiction, and it's generally the same with kids and teens. We read more fiction. Our eyes and ears are like the gateway to the brain and we like expanding our imaginations. So, reading clean stuff with a good message is hard to do nowadays since there aren't many clean books. (It's been sort of hard finding a completely clean book in the library and popular bookstores nowadays. Even some Christian bookstores have been displaying some inappropriate books that don't even mention Christianity, or true Christianity.)
So, clean fiction is something I would like to read, and I hope you would like it too.
Friday, December 19, 2008
Thank you, Lauren Ann for giving me this award! This is a blog award called THE LEMONADE REWARD. I never even know about these blog award thingies! Anyways,
"THE LEMONADE AWARD: The concept behind this award is that the blog creators have shown an uncanny knack for silver linings and making the best of bad situations (i.e., lemonade from lemons)."
Rules: Name blogs that reflect this silver linings philosophy.
Goshness! So many! Okay peoples, this is in no particular order. If I could, you all would be number one!
1. Bookworm4god (Bookie-kins)
I'll see you on Monday with a new post! Only FIVE days until Christmas! Can you believe it? This year has totally gone by really fast!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
She was driving last Friday on her way to Cincinnati
On a snow white Christmas Eve
Going home to see her Mama and her Daddy with the baby in the backseat
Fifty miles to go and she was running low on faith and gasoline
It'd been a long hard year
She had a lot on her mind and she didn't pay attention
she was going way too fast
Before she knew it she was spinning on a thin black sheet of glass
She saw both their lives flash before her eyes
She didn't even have time to cry
She was so scared
She threw her hands up in the air
Jesus take the wheel
Take it from my hands
Cause I can't do this on my own
I'm letting it go
So give me one more chance
To save me from this road I'm on
Jesus take the wheel
It was still getting colder when she made it to the shoulder
And the car came to a stop
She cried when she saw that baby in the backseat sleeping like a rock
And for the first time in a long time
She bowed her head to pray
She said I'm sorry for the way
I've been living my life
I know I've got to change
So from now on tonight
Jesus take the wheel
Take it from my hands
Cause I can't do this on my own
I'm letting go
So give me one more chance
To save me from this road I'm on
Oh, Jesus take the wheel
Oh, I'm letting go
So give me one more chance
Save me from this road I'm on
From this road I'm on
Jesus take the wheel
Oh, take it, take it from me
Oh, why, oh
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Though the longing to adopt a sibling began for me when the tsunami hit India and surrounding countries a while back, it started for my parents long before that. I can still recall going to a homeschool convention and getting a flier from an adoption agency. Soon it ended up in a box headed for the trash, but again and again I saved it to put in places where my parents could see it. On the living room table, near the computer, and sitting defiantly in different places for my parents to see. I remember vaguely one day my dad coming home from work and logging onto the computer. He showed us a story about a baby being abandoned in India. She had a beautiful face and big eyes. An orphan. The baby was an orphan at such a tender age. We fell in love with her. That night, I dreamed of holding her in my arms and singing songs to her as her big sister. My mom even called her relatives in India and some people who were taking care of her, to see if she was available for adoption. Unfortunately, she was not yet considered adoptable because they were looking for her relatives and if she were we could not adopt her because we are not Indian citizens, but that's what really sparked our interest in adopting.
Soon after that, we started seeing the word "adoption" everywhere! One day we were watching Gospel music channel, and it was a special about Steven Curtis Chapman. His daughter was the one who started their interest in adoption of girls from China, and when she did that, she was the around the age I was then! I remember turning to my mom and saying, "I'm not the only crazy one, mom!" Somehow we changed the channel to ABC. It was a commercial, but at the bottom right corner of the screen a little box appeared that said, "Log on to ABC for special about adoption" or something like that. Wow. That "A" word sure got around! And later, we were at church. A group of people came up and said that the church had started an adoption fund. They didn't know why exactly, but they felt called to help provide families with the resourced they needed to bring a child home. Around that time, the amazing journey began.
Now, as I have mentioned before, my family is adopting an adorable little girl from India. We have seen her video and are very thankful to be chosen as her forever family. So, here's an update on how it is going....
Just last week, we got an update that an official paper certifying that we were indeed the people to adopt her had been approved. We're hers!
Now, we have to wait for three things:
2 different court dates in India which we will not have to attend. The earliest we will be able to get those finished is early January because the court is on winter break.
And the receiving of her passport, which after that we will go pick her up!
Monday, December 15, 2008
1. Man and nature of the creation are made by one rational, loving, and orderly God.
2. God is the creator of matter, but He is not matter; He is a spirit. There is more to the universe than simply matter and energy.
3. Man was created in part to search out and discover the ways of God in creation. He is to subdue the earth and have dominion over it.
4. As man seeks to subdue the earth, he can gain an understanding of many of the secrets God has placed in creation for the benefit of mankind and the glory of God.
- From Biology: God's Living Creation Third Edition copyright A Beka Book 2007
Friday, December 12, 2008
After that, my teacher and my mom surprised my sister and I by saying that they're going to have lunch together. So my mom dropped us off at our home, and I went back to working on those pesky piles of paper. (Liked my alliteration???) After I finished that off, I made lunch. (Oodles of noodles!) I didn't exactly get around to making noodles for myself, but I did get some of the food my mom brought home. Lo mien noodles and sweet and sour chicken!
Anyways, back on subject. My mom brings up going to this local place's open house. The place is sort of like a community college, but not quite. It offers half a day of AP and pre-AP classes that a highschooler can take. There were two places like that. They taught different subjects and they had open houses on the same day, same time! I chose to go to the BioMedical academy, because I'm interested in the medial field. When we're on our way there, my dad tells me we're also going to pay a visit to the Engineering academy. So we rush into the BioMedical center, and I'm freezing, so we were led into a huge lecture hall type of thing. They gave a informative yet compact summary of what went on there, and then we hastily went on a tour of the place. It was amazing! Diagrams of things everywhere and a lot of cool technology. I even saw a cat that was going to be dissected. Surprisingly, I didn't get grossed out. I loved the tour and the campus!
Next, we hastily went to the Engineering place. (But we didn't speed, promise!) We got there and went on a tour. It was amazing, I have to admit. Amazing computer programs and the robots were something else. It was so cool, but a little bit intimidating. We spoke with several teachers and the counselor, who was really nice. Something that kind of freaked me out was that they were asking stuff like, "What type of engineer do you want to be?" or "What got you interested in engineering?" You see, I was prepared to answer those questions for the BioScience place, but not the engineering academy! I'm really not even too sure what I want to be when I'm older. I just know that I want it to be in the medical field, since I love learning how amazing God made the human body. One person there said that engineers are more likely to be picked to be accepted into my local medical college. That's what confused me. Is it true? I don't know. Hopefully I'll find out!
So now I have to choose where I'm going to go, the BioScience campus or the Engineering academy. I really like the BioScience a lot, but if engineering will help me get into med school...?
Please pray for me and my parents and we make our decision. The application for joining the academy should be given as soon as possible, so we're sort of rushed.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
I have been learning more about loving those who are doing something you don't like or people who are you enemies. You've heard about "turning the other cheek" and not hating those who oppress you ( a fancy word for harassing). So...what are you supposed to do when people throw you out like yesterday's trash?
Step #1: Forgive them.
Step #2: Pray for them.
Short, but unfortunately not always simple!
~Angelina has been wounded before by tongue-lashings and unthoughtful remarks. She has no idea where to turn or what to do.
~Many times Rachel is purposely ignored by those she thought loved her. She becomes bitter and angry with a "I hate everything" attitude.
~It's hard to get Jake's attitudes and emotions under control when his "friends" decide to get a good laugh over his mistakes or tiny blunders, even tripping in the hall.
~ Grant is so sick and tired of his classmates making fun at him for his beliefs about God and his decision to remain pure until marriage.
Sometimes they just want to pop the other person's bubble of superiority, want to punch them so hard that they'll see stars, or sit in a dark corner and have a pity party. It's really hard when someone rains on our parade. We just want to get rid of them no matter how.
The thing is, we should forgive them. Remember when Jesus was on the cross? People mocked and spat on him. They whipped him. Even his close friends denied him or ran away and didn't stick to him when they were needed the most. But what did Jesus pray? He prayed that God would forgive them! When I read the Bible and see what my Savior went through, my troubles seem so very tiny. I know how it feels. It's really hard to forgive. Trust me, I've been going through several situations like that lately. But if Jesus forgave those who did terrible things, should I not do the same?
Pray for them. That seems so hard, doesn't it? You'd rather see them hit by a lightning bolt than praying for them. But as I showed in the above paragraph, Jesus prayed for those who were doing a terrible act against him. He loved them, though they were cruel.
We should be polite and have a Christ-like attitude to those who offend us. Correct them in brotherly love if need be, but don't try to to pour more gasoline on a burning flame. Being mean right back never fixes anything. If whatever your situation is, gets worse, talk to your parent or a Christian adult that you trust and know will not lead you astray.
Just two steps.
Did you see that I was hurt?
Did you know that you had left me crying there?
Now I'm holding all you words close till you feel this pain too
But you live on so unaware
While I thought somehow this hate would heal me
But this hate is never ending and it's only killing me
Oh sweet revenge you've lied again
I find I can't get free till I release this vengeance that I seek
Forgive you the only thing I want to live I'm ready to be free
Maybe you've been wounded too
Maybe all this is your self protection
All the hurts you thought were hidden
Are the one now hurting me
So who will make the pattern end?
I find I can't get free till I release this vengeance that I seek
Forgive you, the only thing I want to live I'm ready to
Break these chains
Won't see this through
'Cause setting you free means my freedom too
I find I can't get free till I release this vengeance that I seek
Forgive you the only thing I want to live I'm ready to be free
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Cats, all the way
Reptiles and Amphibians, for sure
Fish, they're so cool!
Other (please specify in comment)
The dogs have won! Congrats, you bone-chomping, drooly-kissing, absolutely loyal animals! My dog is very happy at the moment ;)
Now, as promised, the story I wrote! Hopefully it's not too lame. Not a true story (of course) but it came from an experience I had of letting my dog in the back yard and slamming into the screen door. Ah, good times. Good times.
This morning, I gave our elephant-sized dog, Tidbit, a bath. He ignored my two brothers squawking in his ear and rubber ducks surrounding him (courtesy of my four-year-old brother Mike). I looked down to see that his shampoo was empty! After scanning the bathroom for something to use to make Tidbit smell tolerable, I grabbed one of the shampoo bottles off our shelf.
“Silky Smooth Hair!” the words screamed.
It sounded good enough, so I lathered some onto Tidbit’s white fur. I left to get a towel to dry him. When I came back, I heard a queer noise.
I rushed to the bathroom. Tidbit’s expression was peculiar.
“Hic!” Bubbles streamed from his mouth.
“I give Tidbit treat!” Mike giggled.
What?! I looked around frantically for his “treat”. Soon I spotted an empty soap dish. Oh no! Tidbit had eaten a whole bar of soap! Yes siree, he was now a living, breathing bubble machine. I tried to navigate through the bubbles and, Splash!
I was suddenly in the water with Tidbit.
“Hic!” he sympathized.
I sputtered and reached up to heave myself out of the water. Swish! The shower came on! My helpful brothers were on the floor laughing like hyenas. I extracted the rubber duck that had nested in my hair. Tidbit decided that he was done with drama for the day, so he leaped out of the bathtub. I attempted to pull off my favorite football player’s Terrific Tackle, but Tidbit was bigger than your average run-of-the-mill quarterback. I latched onto Tidbit’s back, but he was strong.
“AIEEEEEE!” I was now living my dream of being a rodeo cowgirl, and my brothers were the rodeo clowns.
Tidbit thundered straight for the kitchen. Seeing the heavenly sight of our refrigerator, he stopped, hurling me over his back to…CRASH!…my mom’s valuable china. While I made sure no bones were broken, Tidbit was eating away. Followed by my brothers, he loped to the living room. I sprinted outside at full speed, and SLAM…ran into the glass door. After I recovered from the slight amnesia and pain from the impact, I opened the door and staggered outside.
We ran around for an hour trying to capture Tidbit. I noticed that he was shedding significantly. Finally, we caught him and rubbed him down.
“Tada!” I exclaimed, pulling the towel off.
To my dismay, I saw that Tidbit was bald! It looked like a blizzard hit my backyard and the “snow” had been dumped into our house from the upstairs bathroom to the backyard.
Well, here I am now raking up the “snow”. My brothers are cleaning-up the food and pieces of porcelain all over my mom’s new laminate floor. My parents informed me that the certain human shampoo I used caused poor Tidbit’s dilemma. Now if you will excuse me, I need to go to my room and finish up knitting sweaters for my humiliated hairless hound. Hopefully, he will not mind that the sleeves are a bit long!
*I do not support or endorse pyzam.com in any way. Though it's an awesome site of blog templates and blogger gadgets, there are some pretty offensive stuff on there.
Monday, December 1, 2008
Well, lately I've been thinking about music. Really it's just elongating your words, breathing in and exhaling more air, and hitting a certain tone with your vocal chords.*
Right? Yet, it has such an impact on us humans. It can change out mood in an instant, change our way of thinking, and it's a doorway to worship God.
For instance, I was in a sad mood yesterday because I had been disappointed about something. So I went over to the couch and turned on my Mp3 player. I had set in on shuffle the day before, so the first song I heard was "Something Beautiful" by the Newsboys. (It's on my playlist if you wanna hear it) Anyways, it's a happy song, and didn't agree much to my mood. So I continued scanning through until I found "Start With Me" by Beyond the Veil (Not on my playlist and a fairly new band. They're amazing!) It was a slow song about forgiveness, and it fit my mood. Suddenly, my ears were bombarded with "Dead Man (Carry Me)" by Jars of Clay. It's a song with an upbeat tune. I was reading, so I didn't bother to change it. I mean, I have to reach down and press the "next" button! Talk about a workout! Stangely, by the end of the song, I was happy.
A song? A song did that? Yep.
Sad? Usually people listen to a slow, emotional song. (Examples**: "Never Alone" by BarlowGirl, "God is God" by Steven Curtis Chapman, "I'm Not Who I Was" by Brandon Heath, and "Stand in the Rain" by Superchick...)
Angry? Usually people go for the harder more "concrete" songs with a loud, steady beat. (Examples**: "Rebirthing" and "The Last Night" by Skillet, "Stand and Scream" by Krystal Meyers, and "Ignition" by TobyMac...)
Happy? Usually people go to the light and cheery songs (Examples**: "Take You At Your Word" by Avalon, "Get Up" PureNRG, "Diverse City" by TobyMac, "Talk About It (Say So)" by Nicole C. Mullen)
There are many other moods, and many other songs to express those moods. Music is sort of like a friend that can sympathize with your circumstances. So, do you not agree with it? My theory doesn't prove true to you? You just listen to whatever's on and go with it? Well, this is most likely not going to apply to everyone. Just one of my little observations about myself and my friends. Feel free to post about your thoughts!
Another thing is what we do when we listen to music. I've noticed that kids sing it out and dance around when it comes to music. Their favorite song or artist is on, they're belting out the words. Teens? Why, we usually are seen listening to our music through earbuds, closing our eyes and melting into the song or bobbing our head to the beat. We can also belt it out like the kids since we really are still kids (though we detest to admit the horror of it). And the adults? They can do either.
Think about it.
Music really does have a deep impact on our little ol' lives!
*This is a simplified GoMC version of the definition of the words. No dictionary used.
**These are just songs that I found off of my MP3 player.
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Well, stuff of course! School, Friends, Computer, Writing, Reading, ect.
Well, this week's been a bit different!
1. Welcome to new member of YCF! Everyone, I'd like to introduce you to Lauren Ann. Her blog link is on "People To See, Places To Go."
2. Remember my post about my interesting horse experience? If not, scroll down on the page to my archive of posts. Click on September and a list of posts I did in that month should show up. The post is entitled "A Ride of a Lifetime-God is our Protector" It's all about a "fun" (Haha!) horse ride at a church picnic that my little sister and I had. Well, the owner of the horse offered to teach me the proper way of riding (Because going all crazy about horses and acting like a dude, a crazy, inexperienced horse rider wannabe, is obviously not encouraged in the equestrian world) So in about two weeks I'm going to go on over to his ranch place and learn how to ride horses. Probably starting with tacking (saddling up) the horse and some.....other stuff (ya'll horselovers know what I mean ;D) I'm so very excited! Well, not about that, but you know what I mean.
3. I entered a short comedic story contest in this magazine that I used to, and my sister does now suscribe to. The contest was to submit a funny video or story, fiction or nonfiction. It took quite a while to get the results, but they came yesterday. I got an honorable mention. What I found interesting was that all of the winners were people who did videos. Hmmmmm....
*laughs* Just kidding. I had a lot of fun writing the story. Maybe one of these days I'll post it on here?
4. My book, The Chosen, is starting to draw to a close and I'm picking up all the stray threads and watching in amazement as they weave together. 89,454 words. 213 pages. It's been as if I've been on the journey with my characters, and I know many more adventures are to come. Maybe I'll try to find a publisher, hopefully who will be willing to see past the story plot holes and grammatical errors into the heart of it.
5. I have a new favorite song! It's a powerful song by Steven Curtis Chapman entitled "Magnificent Obsession." It's not a new song, but it's new to me and I love it. You can find it on my playlist
6. Thanksgiving is this Thursday! Awesomeful!
It all began with a group of adventurers and people after God's heart who sailed to the New World to inhabit a land of spiritual freedom. After a harsh first winter, the Pilgrims (who these travelers were called) befriended the local Indians including Squanto, an English speaking Indian, who taught them how to work the land. Soon, their colony, Plymouth, was flourishing. In thanksgiving to God the Pilgrims set aside a three day celebration and feast on December 13, 1621.
I can imagine the wonderful time they had with their new friends in the new land and celebrating what God had done for them. Guys, you'd be helping your father build a cabin for your family, hunting, fishing, and planting! Girls, we'd be planting corn, cooking food along, sewing clothing, and making things to make our home comfortable. What I find interesting is that the Pilgrims did not dress in the stiff black and white clothing that they are portrayed in. In fact, they often wore bright or colorful clothing! Isn't that a relief, gals? All of us would probably be getting used to the new and foreign food such as corn and squash.
Later in 1789, George Washington declared the first day of thanksgiving. It was the first Thursday of November and was celebrated by states and not as a national holiday. But how did that change to the day we celebrate now?
Mrs. Sarah Joseph Hale. She was a woman who promoted the annual, national Thanksgiving Day which we celebrate now. For over thirty years, she presented her idea to the passing presidents. Somehow her voice wasn't heard, until President Abraham Lincoln came along. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln set aside the last Thursday of November as Thanksgiving day, which we celebrate today.
Something that disheartens me is the TV ads and newspaper commercials that I see. The words "Turkey Day!" scream up at me in large, orange letters. Turkey Day? The day of the turkey, a bird? Whatever happened to being thankful for what we have?
You see, in our modern American culture we've strayed from being satisfied from what we have. Rather, we dwell on what we want, claiming that it's what we "need".
We need that new outfit
We need that latest electronic device
We need the latest fads
Do we really? I can't help but think of my parent's words when I grumbled about brussel sprouts and broccoli as a small child (or brat, as they might say :D).
"There are some people out there who are starving and dying, and you can't be content with what we have?"
It's hard to do, but truly being thankful is being content with what God gives to us.
Don't have that new iPod or computer?
Don't have that cute dress or the flashy purse?
You may consider your family poor. You may envy those around you as they show off their new car or expensive clothing.
But look around you. You have a home, a family who loves you, freedom to worship God, American conveniences as simple as air conditioning, and you have a Savior who loves you.
There are people in third world countries who don't have that latest thing. They don't even have food, clothes, a family, or a home to call their own.
I've seen it with my own eyes, and it's not pretty. On a trip to India to visit family we were going around, seeing the sites and enjoying the company of relatives. Yielding for a stoplight, I see a girl in ragged clothes come to the window of my family members' car. She looks at me and holds out her hand. Looking to my relatives, I see that they look ahead chatting about their day and maybe even purposely ignoring the girl. I stare back at the girl my age, heartbroken for I have no money to give to her. Our car slowly pulls away because of the green light. She says some words that I cannot understand, but her face says it all. Pain. Hunger. Sadness.
The realization hits me like cold water.
Wow. She doesn't have anything.
I was only about ten years old then, but the image of that girl is seared into my mind. And I thank God for that girl who walked up to the window. Because of her, I try to keep myself in check when I'm about to complain. Because of her, I have a burning compassion for those less privileged than me. Because of that girl, I have a burden for orphaned children which will most likely stay with me for the rest of my life.
So as you sit around the table this Thursday enjoying turkey and masked potatoes, keep in mind those around the world who don't have everything we do. Thank God for how privileged we truly are.
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Monday, November 17, 2008
Let the "huh?'s" begin!
Okay, I'm not sure if it's a word or not (My spell checker is going crazy over here!) , but take "phobia" ("fear of") and stick a Deo or Deus in front of it. (Deus, Deo means "God" in Latin) So, deophobia means "Fear of God". Voila! Abracadabra! A New Official GoMC word! But wait, what does the fear of God mean? Does it mean we should be afraid every time lightning strikes, wondering if He's mad at us and wants to strike us dead? Does it mean we should be superstitious people?
I was privileged to hear our pastor at my church speak about this as I've been writing this (It's taken several weeks!) and I learned a lot to apply in my little ole life. Most of this listed are my notes from the sermon and thoughts that I took from it.
Anyways, let's dig deeper into those Bibles and take a closer look, shall we?:
"You who fear the Lord, praise Him! All you descendants of Jacob, glorify Him, And fear Him, all you offspring of Israel!"
Ps 22: 23
"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction."
"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding."
Now what is the fear of the Lord?
The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.
Proverbs 8:13 KJV
So, according to this verse, fear of the Lord is hating sin. But there's more.
The fear of the Lord is reverence, obedience, and awe due him as the King of Kings. He is our Friend, but he is also a just King. He is our Father. The fear of God is not like a deer's fear of being shot by the hunter, it is rather a fear of reverence, love, and hope such that a child has for their father or someone who would have lived in the times of old might have had for their king.
I looked up "Fear of the Lord" in wikipedia and here's what I got that was so beautifully put:
"The Problem of Pain and states that fear of [God] is not a fear that one feels for a tiger, or even a ghost. Rather, the fear of [God], as C.S. Lewis describes it, is one filled with awe, in which you "feel wonder and a certain shrinking" or "a sense of inadequacy to cope with such a visitant of or prostration before it". It is a fear that comes forth out of love for the Lord."
I'll give an illustration to give an example about it.
You walk down the halls of your school. You see two groups of people. A group of loud guys in football uniforms thundering down the hall and a group of giggling, gossiping girls fill the hall trampling stray candy wrappers and freshman. A teacher comes out of the teacher's lounge and starts up the hall, looking around with a raised eyebrow. Both groups quiet and slow down acting cool and totally innocent.
So they acknowledge that the teacher is the higher authority over them and know that they would be in trouble if the teacher saw them being loud and trampling others. As evil as some teachers may seem, they really want the best for you and only discipline for the good of the school and student body.
The fear of the LORD is acknowledging that He's always there. He is, and we don't always remember or realize. Think about it. Would you always do what you do if you were always aware that you are in God's presence?
"Well," you may ask, "How am I supposed to do that? How am I to fear the LORD?"
Do not fear, there are several things.
1. Fear the LORD by always keeping in mind WWJD (What Would Jesus Do?).
~Though, it's an overused phrase and is often used lightly, it is SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO true! What would Jesus do in the same situation that you are in? If you answered "The right thing" you are correct! It's hard, but just keep at it!
2. Fear the LORD by honoring the people he puts in authority over you.
~Another toughie, I'll admit. I myself have been struggling with respecting and dealing with those put above me. We need to recognize that God already knows who is above us. He is the one who appoints our leaders from our parents to our teachers even to the government. If we disrespect our leaders and insult them, we are then insulting and disrespecting God.
3. Fear the LORD by acknowledging his knowledge.
~Wow. This list of stuff looks as big as Mt. Everest, doesn't it? As a teen, I often find myself thinking only about me. My situations. My problems. My broken friendships. I forget that God has a plan in my life and knows what I did or ever will do. God's in control over my life, and yours too! Everything from when you were first conceived, to your death, and beyond! When you feel down, look back! Look back at all the things God has done and worked miracuously in your life!
4. Fear the LORD by acknowledging your weakness
~As much as we hate to admit, we don't know everything. Not all of us specialize in rocket science or brain surgery...or people. We are humans, inperfect beings created by a perfect God. As the old sunday school song goes, "We are weak, but He is STRONG!"
5. Fear the LORD by studying God's character.
~Look at the verse that I put in this post earlier (Proverbs 9:10) It is pretty straightforward, right? Learn more about God! He wants you to! Get into that favorite chair, crack open that Bible, get out a notepad and write what you learn! What you may find helpful is to highlight anything about God's character in a highlighter as you go through your reading of the Bible. It's hard to get quiet, get alone, and get focused on God and his Word. But, guess what? We can do it!
*starts playing "We Can Do It!" from Disney's "Cinderella".*
Well, I'd better run off to Latin class! Time to practice putting #2 into practice! :D
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Black Beauty by Anna Sewell is the story of a horse that experiences love and tenderness along with cruelty and hate.
In this story, Black Beauty starts out with a peaceful life with his mother. His first master is a kind owner. He provides good quality of food and living space. His kind master did not sell Black Beauty until he was four years old. He was soon broken in, but it was a pleasant experience for Beauty because his master was gentle with him. After Beauty gets used to all of the riding equipment, his master sells him to a man named Squire Gordon.
From there he had many up and downs, many cruel and hateful owners, but many kind and loving masters. He becomes a terribly treated cab horse and the ornament of a woman who wants to ride in style. Will Beauty ever find a home that will treat him with respect and gentleness that this amazing horse deserves?
The importance of the offensiveness of animal abuse is shown throughout the whole book. Though Black Beauty tries his hardest to please his cruel masters, they still beat him. He did not bite back to kick them, but took it with tolerance and love.
We can learn a lesson from this book, even though it points to animal abuse. What about people abuse? We often hurt each other with harsh words and sometimes even with harsh actions. I have learned from this book to turn the other cheek, not lose patience or fight back when I am wounded in my spirit. I also learned that if I abuse someone with my words or actions that I can hurt them, even if they don't seem to care.
Monday, November 10, 2008
Rebecca flung her threadbare blanket to the side and got up from bed, and was startled as she realized all of the other girls were already gone to eat. Would today be the day she would finally find a home?
As quickly as she could, she ran to the mirror and looked at herself. Frowning at her wild auburn hair, wide blue eyes, and sea of freckles across her face, she sighed in dismay. Absolutely nothing had changed since yesterday.
A soft knock came from her door and one of orphanage’s caretakers poked her head in.
Smiling, she greeted her. “Good morning, Becca. Today is the big day! Hurry and come down to breakfast.” Quickly, she shut the door and left.
Rebecca brushed her messy curls. “Big day? Is today a day to be ignored and pushed aside because I’m not pretty or perfect? Is today going to be a day to watch the others find a home to stay forever?” She quickly changed into the best clothing she had and wondered if she would ever find her forever family like all of her friends had. Would someone see what she was on the inside, and ignore her outer appearance?
After breakfast, Rebecca was led into a large room full of other children. Soon, they would be meeting couples or families looking for kids to adopt. She sat in a corner and shyly looked around.
There were kids of all ages milling around, excited about finding a home or frightened about leaving the only place they knew.
She straightened her dress and tried to listen as one of the adults were giving last-minute instructions on how to behave. Why act like someone you really aren’t?, she thought.
Yet Rebecca plastered on a smile, straightened her bright red bow, and pushed her hair behind her ears, ready to be on her best behavior.
In mere minutes, many people poured in and began looking around. The first people to come up to her were dressed up richly. The man wore a big black suit and the woman wore jewels the size of Rebecca’s fist.
They were both smiling broadly, as if they didn’t have a care in the world.
The woman smiled and looked at her. “Hello there! Thomas and I were looking for a girl your age! What is your name?”
“Rebecca,” she said softly.
“Well, Rebecca, how would you like to come with us? We’d give you a huge room and whatever you want!”
Rebecca lit up at the idea, then look at them both. “Things would be wonderful, but can you give me something more?”
The man, still smiling, asked, “Whatever do you mean?”
“Can you give me love?”
The couple’s smiles dropped and they quickly walked away.
“She was not pretty, anyways,” the woman whispered to her husband.
Next, a stout couple with a teenaged boy came to talk with her.
“Hello, my name is Rebecca,” she said shyly.
The husband looked at his wife for a moment then turned back to her. “Are you willing to work?”
Rebecca was confused. “Work for what?”
The woman snorted, “Work for your food and board of course! We own a farm, and food doesn’t come cheap these days! It requires work!”
Rebecca bit her trembling lip and bravely sat up straight. “Can you give me love?”
Their son laughed loudly and the family walked away.
The man crossed his arms and they moved on to a girl with finely-toned muscles. “She wouldn’t be able to do much anyway, Martha. She is much too skinny.”
Rebecca was almost on the point of crying. Her eyes clouded with tears and she looked around, hopeless, as the crowd of people and children dwindled immensely.
A hand touched her shoulder and she looked up into the face of a man with kind, understanding eyes.
“Is something wrong?” he asked.
“No one wanted me!” she blurted out bitterly.
He kneeled next to her and smiled. “That is not correct. I would like to adopt you, my child.”
Rebecca sniffed and looked up at him. “You?”
“Certainly. You would have many brothers and sisters and unconditional, never-ending, and boundless love.”
"But I am not perfect!"
"Of course you are not. No one is perfect. Everyone makes mistakes and has to be discipline. However, that doesn't mean I'll ever not love you, right?"
She looked up at him. Was he telling the truth? Looking into his sincere, loving eyes she smiled.
They walked out together, and she stopped to point back at the office. “What about them? Don’t you have to fill out some forms to let you adopt me?”
He shook his head. “My son has already done what was needed.”
One of the workers spotted them both and walked to them.
“Hello Becca! I see you found a father!”
She smiled and shook her head. “He found me!”
The caretaker squeezed Rebecca’s hand. “You are very privileged, child, to have such a wonderful father!” She nodded to Rebecca’s new father. “I hope to see you again soon, sir.”
As Rebecca left the orphanage, she gazed at its familiar structure. Never again would she have to wake up cold and afraid. Never again would she have to feel lonely and unwanted. Grinning for the first time in a long time, she was joyous.
Rebecca had found her forever family.
Thursday, November 6, 2008
Finding a good pet depends on the owner’s time, money, and preference. There are many kinds of pets, and each one has different needs that the owner has to be able to take care of. The most common pets are dogs, cats, birds, rodents, reptiles, and amphibians.
The first category of pets is dogs. Dogs come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They can be loyal and loving, and they can also be kept at the same time as a tough guard dog. There are indoor dogs that require a lot of time, care, and food with the veterinarian check-ups, which require money. Outdoor dogs do not require as much time or care, but usually need more food and about the same number of vet visits. Of course, there is always cleanup. Indoor dogs shed more, but outdoor dogs generally require more of the undesirable picking up after. All in all, dogs are great pets for people who are home a lot and tend to get lonely, or families with kids who are looking for a pet that is tolerant of pushing and tugging from the kids.
Another popular pet is the cat. They can be cuddly and cute or be kept wild to keep the mice or rats away. Cats do not require as much time as dogs because they are generally quite independent. They do require care, varying from the length of their fur and on their breed. Of course, the owner has to pay for food, medical care, and kitty litter. Cats are easier to clean up than dogs, for the owner would know where to go to empty and fill the litter box periodically to make their cat happy along with their sense of smell. Cats are also ideal for people who cannot spend much time at home, or families with older children, since babies and toddlers love to pull on the cat, which the felines are not especially fond of.
Thirdly, birds are good pets that are famous for their colorful plumage, and, at times, for speaking, though they are more of a repeating machine than something to carry a conversation with. They are fun companions that can cheer a person up after a hard day of work of school. Though birds do not require too much time, they can get lonely. Many people purchase birds in pairs of two, but that usually means double the effort and cost. They only require a cage, some toys, and food. Cleanup does need to take place, and it is usually just cleaning the bottom of the cage and putting in more newspaper at the bottom or some other material. Birds can also be noisy, but at most times it can be solved by putting a dark cloth over the cage for a short period of time. Birds are compatible for almost any pet seeker.
Rodents are generally kept as cute companions. They require a cage, food, and some extra playthings. They do not require much time, and therefore are ideal for kids learning the responsibility of having a pet and want a good alternative to the ever-popular pet rock.
Fish are also good pets for someone who is always busy. In the beginning, they may cost more money because of the initial setup of the tank. The fish themselves may be pretty pricey also, but once the tank is established, they are very enjoyable and do not require much.
Lastly, reptiles and amphibians are scaly or slimy creatures that people of all ages and preferences keep. They require about the same amount of care and time as rodents do, but it depends on the money. Some reptiles eat vegetables, while some eat small, live animals or insects.
All in all, there are many pets to choose from, and many owners for pets. Dogs are loyal and loving. Cats are mysterious and affectionate. Birds are fun and amusing. Rodents are cute and small. Reptiles and amphibians are cool and fun to watch. Fish are colorful and pretty. All animals kept as pets have different needs and temperances, but are all great pets for anyone to keep.
So now, this presents a question. What is your favorite pet? I've started a poll, so feel free to vote!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
God is still in control!
No matter what happens, no matter what the circumstances, and no matter the president, God is still the King of our earthly kings (or presidents). There will never be the perfect president, but we do always have our God. Before the election, He knew what was going to happen. Sure, there will be things we do not like and things that we do like about a president. Many people I know and love as brothers and sisters and freaking out about our new president. What they do not know, or are not thinking of, is God. He is ever-present and all-knowing, and He had the perfect plan. Remember the age of old, around Martin Luther's time where many people were martyring "heretics"? The Christian faith blossomed in adversity and strengthened in numbers and faith. For an example today, take China or another Communist country. People go into hiding and pray in the depths of the forest or deep underground to praise their Lord and Savior for bringing then through another day and they pray for the freedom to worship.
I am not saying it will ever be like that here in the United States of America, and I pray it will never come to that, but if they have it that bad, who are we to be scared and question God's sovereignty? I do not mean that we need to be carefree, not caring about who we elect into office. We do need to vote. As people in God's kingdom we must help elect who we think should be in office.
So, when you are going through a tough time, or just don't get why, just remember:
God is in control.
This is no time for fear
This is a time for faith and determination
Don't lose the vision here
Carried away by emotion
Hold on to all that you hide in your heart
There is one thing that has always been true
It holds the world together
God is in control
We believe that His children will not be forsaken
God is in control
We will choose to remember and never be shaken
There is no power above or beside Him, we know
God is in control, oh God is in control
History marches on
There is a bottom line drawn across the ages
Culture can make its plan
Oh, but the line never changes
No matter how the deception may fly
There is one thing that has always been true
It will be true forever
He has never let you down
Why start to worry now?
He is still the Lord of all we see
And He is still the loving Father
Watching over you and me
Friday, October 31, 2008
But few know of or celebrate Reformation Day.
October 31st is shared by to events, Halloween and Reformation Day, on completely opposite sides of the spiritual spectrum. An interesting theory I have heard was that people made up Halloween to counter-attack, so to say, Reformation Day and turn it into a day of celebrating ghosts, ghouls, gross things, grotesque creatures, and basically all things related to dark magic. Or that Reformation Day occurred to counter-attack Halloween.
But what is Reformation Day exactly?
Reformation Day is the day Martin Luther nailed his ninety-five theses to the doors of the Castle Church (also known as the All Saints' Church or Schlosskirche) in Wittenberg, Germany, proposing reformation in the Catholic church because of the pardons, indulgences, the hierarchy of church positions, and doctrines.
What is so important about this occurrence?
This act basically sparked the pillar of flame known as the Protestant Reformation. It encouraged people to focus on God and the Bible, believe in justification by faith, and the priesthood of all believers.
So tonight, whether go do something for Halloween or not. Think about Reformation Day and the impact it had on Christianity today.
Thursday, October 30, 2008
We have finally gotten a referral for a little two year old. She is adorable, with big, expressive eyes and a wonderful smile.
It may take several months until she can come into our home, but she is already in our hearts and prayers. As of now, some paperwork and things to do from India need to take place before we go.
Please pray that we will be ready to be the best family for our little girl and the process goes quickly!
Book reviews, both negative and positive-8
More about you, and your life (including adoption process)-8
Poems and other cool literature-4
Cool Youtube videos-7
Cool Photos you find-5
All of the Above?-7
Total Votes: 15
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Anyways, one more day to vote! Yahoo! Thank you to all who voted! I'm working on some new stuff now to post in the future, incorporating what you want to see on my blog!
Today is Wednesday, so for me it is P.E. day! Since I'm homeschooled, I don't have a gym in my house (well, unless you count the rarely used treadmill and stationary bicycle) so every Wednesday I go to a church in my area that has a wonderful gym with other homeschooled students. And boy, is it tiring!
Today we did started out as we usually do, 5 laps around, then we stretch out, and after that we run 3 more laps (though sometimes we lose count and we do more or less)
So we took a water break and came back to find that we were going to toss beanbags to see who would be the two team captains. So the gym is lined with different colored lines and about six or seven feet from the middle line was a blue line, and we had to get our beanbags on or really close to it. 3 people got really close to the line, me included. Since most of the time we have one guy captain and one girl captain, the guy who got closest to the line was automatically a captain, and another girl and I went for a tiebreaker. We were both indifferent to being captain, since you have to pick people and your friends or whoever gets picked towards the end don't get really happy.
So we couldn't decide who would throw first, so finally we decided to throw at the same time, and I threw closest so I was captain. We picked out teams, took another water break, and then began.
The first race was fairly easy and was definitely the most safest. It was just a baton race, going through the course and passing it to the next person. The other team won, but not by much. Our team actually won first, because the rules were that whoever's team all sit down first and complete everything, wins. But the other team wasn't too clear on the rules, and maybe our teacher didn't make it too clear, so the point was given to them.
The second race was using scooters. The scooters we used were low to the ground, have four wheels, and were square. They are basically big, bulky skateboards. So someone sat on the scooter, and the other people on the team would pull or push them. It was quite an adventure for some! Some fell off, some thrown, and some got their arms bent in weird ways as they were pulled along. I had the privilege of smashing into a wall, but it was padded and all. Thank goodness, no one got their fingers run over, and no one got hurt other than the slight pain that accompanies being thrown off a scooter. The other team was really fast, and the won again.
The fourth race was, in my opinion, the most dangerous. But thankfully, there was a lot of precocious people who went slowly, so there were no injuries. Again, someone was sitting on the scooter and someone either pushed or pulled, but this time the person who was pushing or pulling was blindfolded! The person who was on the scooter was to lead them verbally. My team decided to pick the smallest persons on the team, and I was one of them. Somehow, though, I was put through several turns resulting in someone knocking my headband off, falling off the scooter twice, going in circles, and utterly confusing the person I was leading. Fun, huh? Yet again, the other team was triumphant.
The last and final relay was the blanket race. Each person was required to sit on the sheet while the others pulled him or her around the course. That race required the most endurance and strength. Our whole team grabbed some of the blanket and got ready to go with one of our teammates. The first couple of runs were fun and exhilarating as we saw that we were beating the other team, but they soon caught on and were doing our technique. Soon, our whole team was gasping and our feet felt heavy, but we plodded on. Then, it came to the last person. They quickly hopped in and we took off, trying to think of running and pulling as hard as we could. The other team was ahead, but not by much. We kept on going, and soon the end was near. The other team slipped and the person on the blanket fell off! We dragged our team member to the finish line and all sat down. Our team had won!
After we were done, I was still panting and felt weak. I cannot wait for tomorrow. I'm sure I'll be really sore!