About kateclem

My father is the pastor at St. Paul's Free Lutheran church in Leitersburg, MD. I currently live with my husband in Myrtle Beach, SC and work as a realtor for Century 21 Boling.

My Temple

1 Corinthians 6:19-20
19 Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, 20 for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.

Pregnancy has changed many things for me, specifically in regards to what I put in my body. Of course, the usual suspects, alcohol and cigarettes, had to be immediately removed. But other things became very important as well. I find myself constantly researching the specifics of what to do to stay healthy during pregnancy. How much calcium do I need, how much iron?? Am I eating enough fruits and vegetables? Are the medicines that I take or the products that I am using safe for my new little baby?

How funny it is that this comes so easily when I have a little human inside of me. Isn’t this something I should have been doing for myself as well? Instead of measuring my health by numbers on the scale, shouldn’t I have been focused on what nutrients my body was taking in? And while I would never think of subjecting my baby to the harmful affects of cigarette smoke, why was I willing to subject my own body to this? It occurs to me that if we could only love our own bodies like we love those of our children we would certainly be better off.

It may help us to remember that our bodies are not our own. We were created in his image and it is our duty to care for and protect that which he has made. Easier said than done for sure, but it is certainly something I think is worth working on. It is my goal to try to consider my own health moving forward in the same way that I do when carrying my new little life. So stay healthy ladies!!!

 

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Mercy

Matthew 7:1-2

Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.

For the past few weeks, my husband and I have been dealing with terrible flooding in our area. After seven days of being trapped in the house and surrounded by water, my husband took a boat out to pick up some groceries. When he returned, he remarked on how strange it felt being in public after such a long period of worry and isolation. He said that someone made a joke to him as they walked by, and he was so unused to conversation that he did not reply to them in time and they walked away with no response. Now, anyone who knows my husband knows how unusual this is for him. Nick loves to talk to people, and is one of those guys that typically ends up in some gas station for an hour telling stories to strangers. I bet the stranger in that grocery store left thinking that Nick was perhaps rude, or at the very least not very friendly. When in fact, that is not him at all!!

So quickly we judge others in society. One conversation, one look towards someone, one action can completely shape our view of another person. I have always thought that I held the spiritual gift of mercy. I have always tried to consider another person’s situation or point of view before jumping to conclusions about them. How easy it is though to lapse on this, and to make snap judgements about someone. This story from my husband reminded me that we often have no idea what is going on in another person’s life. Our friends, our coworkers, and even people that we pass by in the grocery store may be struggling with some terrible situation or event. We can all remember a time when perhaps we did not put our best foot forward, or were preoccupied with our own worries instead of thinking about those around us. As such, it is our Christian duty to always behave towards others with compassion and mercy, even when we feel like it is not being returned to us. It is not always an easy thing to do every day, but sometimes these little reminders help us to continue to try.

New Month/New Theme

The topic for this month is Spiritual Gifts. We speak about them fairly often in conversation in the church, but do we really understand what spiritual gifts are and how to use them?

According to the “Fanning the Flame” workbook, spiritual gifts are special abilities given to us by the Holy Spirit when we receive Jesus Christ as our Savior and Lord. They include many different abilities, such as Service, Teaching, Hospitality, Mercy, Leadership, and more. Every believer is endowed with one or more of these gifts, and it is our duty to use these gifts for the edification of and service to the Body of Christ.

What spiritual gifts have you seen in those around you and in what ways have they used these gifts in service to God? Does anyone have recommendations for those seeking to find their spiritual gifts? And, once they find their gift, how should they use them in the community? I am hoping that this month might be an avenue to discuss how different gifts can be used effectively in the world, and maybe give us some ideas on how to be most productive in our attempts to give glory to the Lord.

Happy Blogging Ladies!!!

 

Henny Penny and Hurricane Florence

My husband and I received a call from my father-in-law today, who is out of town and worried to death about the upcoming hurricane in South Carolina. Despite explaining to him that it is much too early to worry about the storm, he is already is full panic mode. Get the cars out of the driveway! Load up my important treasures! Rent a Uhaul!! All of this worry over a storm that might not even come near us. I jokingly call him Henny Penny, and promise to watch out for his house and belongings.

We all do this. Worry, prepare, plan. With a new baby on the way, I spend a lot of time worrying about the future. Do I have everything I need for the baby? Do I know how to properly care for her? Will I be a good mother? What if?? What if??

Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Mathew 24:44

Funny how we spend so much time worrying about the future of our little lives, our belongings, our homes. But how worried are we about our souls? Are we working daily to be the best Christians that we can be, so that we are ready for the second coming of Christ? Sometimes it helps to take a step back from our day-to-day worries, in order to reflect on God’s word and what he wants us to be doing. After all, the sky might not really be falling, but the second coming of Christ is absolutely imminent and well worth preparing for!

Obey Your Husband

The other day, my mother-in-law tried to give me a new cat. After consulting with my husband, it was clear that he felt an extra animal was just too much to take on right now. When I broke the news to her, she replied that it didn’t matter if Nick said no. I should just bring it home anyway- lol. My response was that we are instructed in the bible to obey our husbands:

Ephesians 5:22-24

“Wives, obey your husbands as you obey the Lord.The husband is the head of the wife, just as Christ is the head of the church people. The church is his body and he saved it.Wives should obey their husbands in everything, just as the church people obey Christ.”

A lot of people take this quote and say that it is “backwards” or “outdated”. If I read this quote only, I might be inclined to agree. However, further in the text it states:

Ephesians 5:25-33: “Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word, so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, …

So while the bible does instruct us to obey our husbands, it also states that a husband should love his wife as equally as his own body, so that any decision he makes would have her best interest at heart. Most decisions in a relationship are joint decisions, but inevitably there will be times when husband and wife cannot agree. In those times, I listen to this text and respect my husband’s decisions as much as I would my own. Interested to hear what everyone else’s thoughts/interpretations of this text are?

 

Free Time

When I worked for the school district, they had a weekly column in which employees were interviewed. It was kind of a “get to know you” segment where each employee shared some information about their personal life, such as who was in their family and what their hobbies and interests were. Well, eventually it became time to do my column. What I wrote was that I enjoy gardening and cooking and spending time with friends and family. That seemed better than admitting the truth. What I really did for a hobby was come home exhausted from work and lay on the couch watching Netflix until I fell asleep.

Does anyone else struggle to find creativity in their life? Sometimes it seems like we get so caught up in the daily activities of chores, work, and errands that there does not seem like time for anything else. Any free time seems better spent catching up on rest and vegetating in front of the television. However, while those activities might be needed sometimes to rejuvenate ourselves, they are used far more than is needed.

First Timothy 4:14-15 “Do not neglect the gift you have, which was given you by prophecy when the council of elders laid their hands on you.  Practice these things, immerse yourself in them, so that all may see your progress.”

My goal for this month is to make better use of my free time. I am not exactly sure what gifts I have, but it seems worthwhile to reflect on what they are and how I can better use them. Does anyone have any feedback on how they have found their gifts and what they are doing with them? I am open to suggestions!!

To My Mom…

Of course, being that it is Mother’s Day, I wanted to write something about my mother. For some reason, when I was pondering what to write, this is the story that popped into my head:

One day when I was quite young, my mom took me out of daycare to go to the doctor’s office. She decided to make a fun day out of it, taking me shopping afterwards and for ice cream. For a working mom with two kids, this was definitely meant to be a special day for just me and her. Well, on the way home she said that I started crying and told her that she had ruined my whole day!! I had plans to play with a friend at daycare and she had just ruined it!! As adults, we laugh over this story, but I know that at the time it certainly hurt my mother’s feelings.

Wow. Not my best moment- lol. While there are many more endearing and sweet stories that I could tell, this one seems important to me because it reminds me of how great a mother’s love is. Mothers love us through the good, the bad, and the ugly. No matter what happens or how badly I may behave, I always have that love from my mom. There are few other people in the world that I could say that about. This verse from Corinthians seems to be the most fitting:

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. – 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

The love that I have from my mom is one of those things that makes me feel safe and secure in life, even as an adult. I consider my mom to be one of my closest friends and confidantes, and know that I can always call her about anything. And yes, even as an adult, I still eagerly await the cards and care packages that my mom sends me. It is nice to know that in a sometimes scary and confusing world, there is always someone in your corner, quietly rooting you on in your life. I am so blessed and grateful to have such a great mom. So to all moms of adult children and especially to my mom, thank you so much. You are so loved and appreciated for everything that you do!!! Happy Mother’s Day 🙂