About sarahdva

Not much to see here. :) I'm a mom of 3, (boy,girl,boy) a wife to a pretty great husband. I also work as a draftsmen at an architect firm. We belong to a good church family in Salina (WELS), but live in a small town just south of there. Life is good, and God is great. ;)

When is it time?

When we are small, we don’t think of time much. And often lose track of it. Submerging ourselves in such tasks as examining small flowers or ladybugs. Yet as time passes (as it must) and we grow and mature; we take closer notice of time. It becomes a nuisance and a task master. We either want it to speed up or wish it would slow down. It increasingly disobeys our wants while simultaneously becoming more and more precious and confusing.

We want to hold it in our hands so that our children stay as small as we once were. We question how right it is, or if we missed noticing it’s subtle nudges. How do we know when we are to stay or go? How do we know if it’s time to act or time to wait? I would wager that mostly we don’t.

That’s why its important to pray, and important to read. Not just educational reading, (though that certainly doesn’t hurt) but specifically reading God’s word. And more than on occasion.   That is how we prepare, how we can know our Father’s will. God does in fact speak. However, I think we misinterpret how these days. A prophet as is known in the bible, is literally one who speaks God’s word. So when we read the Bible this is what we are doing. Prophesying. When our pastors preach, (in sound doctrine) they prophesy. If we want to know when, we need only ask. But ask in the safety of God’s word. And pray that He sends His servants to speak His will to you.

 

 

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Alpha and Omega

“In the beginning . . .” some of most famous first words in literature.  Fittingly enough, these words are the start of the explanation of well . . . the first everything. The first light, the first water,  land, plant, star, creatures, and of course the first humans. And strange as it may seem to think of; the first creation of time itself was laid out as well. Because before God placed the stars in the sky there was eternity. An endless loop for an everlasting being.

However, we are not (in current state) Endless by any means. For us in this life everything has a beginning and must come to an end. From the very life within to the seasons and stages we experience. Time as a child, and student is limited. The season of parenting and nurturing your own children and of course as we age we come closer to realizing our mortality. Even nature has its seasons, it must obey the will of time also.

Yet, for believers, for our brothers and sisters in Christ, we have an escape. A great hope and certain comfort that our end here on earth (with our earthly bodies) is really a new beginning without end. Because  the fulfillment of God’s promise that he would send a Savior for His people; means that, as long as we believe in His Son Jesus Christ, we get to live with Him in heaven for eternity. Time no longer has a hold on us.

For as the last words of the Bible aptly states; ” . . . Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.” That is the Only way our end is not hopeless, but eagerly awaited. So be it.

Admonition

The origin of admonition is from the Latin word admonitio, which means (cautionary) reminder. Further the word Admonish means: to warn or reprimand someone firmly.
Why do I bring this up? Because a couple of the many ‘one another’ verses tells us to do just that. Admonish one another. Romans 15:14 and Colossians 3:16.
Still this word seems harsh to our modern ears. No one likes to be reprimanded, it feels like an insult to our ‘be true to yourself’ culture. We want the freedom to indulge in our vices and pleasures of this world. Much like a brooding teenager, we bristle at anyone who might dare tell us a thing is not good to do. And often an attempt to warn someone else (these days) will end in an argument or a one sided verbal lashing.
Why then do we read in Romans 15:14
“And I myself also am persuaded of you, my brethren, that ye also are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge, able also to admonish one another.”
How can we be ‘full of goodness’ and reprimand someone? Isn’t that just people wielding whatever power they might have over someone else? Like a boss or parent wagging their finger at us?  But why shouldn’t we want and welcome constructive criticism? Don’t we need to know our weakness if we are to improve, learn and grow? It appears we can’t have it both ways. If one doesn’t want to be admonished then they have that right; but they will then find themselves in a rut. No longer seeing what it is that may be keeping them from personal growth. Similarly if you accept admonition, you must also accept that a change in habit (or complete halt in activity) must take place.
As is said in Proverbs 9:8 “Don’t rebuke a mocker, or he will hate you; rebuke a wise man, and he will love you.”
Why? Because a wise man knows rebuke equals improvement. They also know that improvement makes us feel better. There is a huge difference between pleasure, and happiness. Everyone is capable of indulging  in some sort of pleasure, but pure, content, happiness eludes many.

Women are trash

I have your attention haven’t I. Now, before I get 12 million indignent comments . . . I, in fact, do not think women are trash. And I know no one else does either. Including, (maybe even especially) people who are not christian. So how then, did our society come to the point where it’s okay to say that men are trash? Why is okay to say that about men and not okay to say it about women? The answer should be obvious. It’s not okay at all.

Yet we have examples such as when Kavanaugh was being confirmed and T shirts sporting this phrase were worn with pride. And we were told in essence that equality meant no matter the circumstance women are to be believed over men. Really? What’s equal about that? Anyone with children (boy and a girl) knows that sisters are just as likely as brothers to fib on occasion.  It is the nature of Humans (Man-Kind) to have selfish tendencies. People everywhere throughout history are capable of great love and great hate. We are equally foul-able.

Yes, women should have the right to vote, and work, and have the same opportunity as men do. But if we as women get there by tearing men down; then we’ve achieved nothing more than turning back time and showing the world how hateful we can be.  Today’s women have hated everything about men, we’ve even come up with the term ‘mansplaining’. Let me reverse that as well. What if there were a term ‘womansplaining’? Wouldn’t we find it offensive and immediately accuse men of sexism and trying to hold women back? Again if it’s not okay for them to say, why is it okay for us? It’s not.

Even as recently as last week there was a story in the news about how masculinity is now seen as toxic. The American Psychological Association (APA) has informed us as a Nation that traditional masculinity is toxic. So now, to be in essence what defines men is harmful?? Really? Now simply to be born male you are wrong, harmful, toxic. How sad for our sons, for our brothers, and our fathers. How sad for the men serving and who have served in our military. What a slap in the face that is to our policemen, firemen, doctors, lawyers, mechanics, linemen, truckers . . . and more.

Let me reverse this now too. To be feminine is toxic. To be female is harmful and dangerous to society. Those statements are (of course) false and not okay. Therefore, it is not, and should not, be okay to say the same of men. To be born female means we have different hormones, varying anatomy and even, it seems, different thought processes and ways of handling emotions. To be feminine means the traditional nurturing and also the modern loving and strong. In the same way, to be masculine is to want to provide for loved ones, to protect and encourage.

I am not a “girly girl”. For me feeling pretty is when I have an awesome T-shirt and great looking jeans. Today men can enjoy a Mani-pedi and not be judged for it. We can be modern women and allow our men to be modern men without tearing them down. Isn’t equality expecting the same out of each other? Shouldn’t we equally encourage, support and love each other?

Genesis 2:18 The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.”

Ladies God put us (all) here to cooperate with each other. Today we call it team work. And when we do things right, it’s a beautiful thing.

Proverbs 3:14-16 . . . for she is more profitable than silver, and her gain is better than fine gold.  She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her. Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor.…

Here’s a call to be an honorable kind of woman that upholds goodness and shows grace. The kind of woman that loves without measure and keeps wisdom by her side. The kind of woman that teaches strength and holds firm in her virtues. The kind of woman that treats men as she would like to be treated.

 

The LORD is my shepherd

We all know the verse (Psalm 23). Over and over again God compares himself to a shepherd to give us a picture of how He loves us.

Yet we learn early on in the bible that this profession is not highly thought of.

Genesis 43:32 “They served him by himself, the brothers by themselves, and the Egyptians who ate with him by themselves, because Egyptians could not eat with Hebrews, for that is detestable to Egyptians.”

This was before Moses, before the long documented rivalry (sometimes brotherhood) of the two nations. This was before Israel was even a nation. So why did they refuse to eat with them? Hebrews were shepherds.

Genesis 46:33 & 34 “When Pharaoh calls you in and asks, ‘What is your occupation?’ you should answer, ‘Your servants have tended livestock from our boyhood on, just as our fathers did.’ Then you will be allowed to settle in the region of Goshen, for all shepherds are detestable to the Egyptians.”

There’s that word ‘detestable’ again. Why did the Egyptians think it was so bad? Lots of people have opinions on this, and not many agree on why. I think the Egyptians were simply grossed out. Anyone on a ranch or farm knows that tending to animals is dirty, smelly, laborious work. Joseph’s brothers probably smelled a bit. Think about it. Sweat, animal poo, the lack of indoor plumbing at thier disposal.

So knowing how Egyptians felt, Joseph wisely advises his family to tell the Pharaoh what they do for a living. And they are allowed to settle in a fertile land separately and quietly.

God knows we sheep are a lot of work. Still he meets us where we are. Smelly and unclean, and he takes us by still waters to freshen us up. Thank you God for serving in a less than glamorous way. And forgive us when we think we we’re above any similar task. Amen.

So be it.

Not many women (especially these days) would accept the title “Servant”. In fact most are offended by it and often say things like “I’m not your servant.” I can’t say that I’m not guilty of this mind you, but when I think of it; how can I refuse when my Lord and Savior kneeled to wash our feet and was obedient even in death.

At least one woman, long ago, had the fortitude to say:

“Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” (Luke 1:38)

She was willing to let God take over her body. Not just go get Him a drink or stay at her house. This woman (who had not known a man in the biblical sense) gave up her daily comfort for her God.

Any woman who has been pregnant knows exactly what I mean. And at time when epidurals were not a thing .

I’m not saying women today don’t serve. I’m a mom, I know we do. Still, I think many of us assume that we are the only ones who do.

To return, or . . . not to return.

Hosea 14:1-2

“Return, Israel, to the Lord your God.
    Your sins have been your downfall!
Take words with you
    and return to the Lord.”

When we sin, when we mess up and we really know we did . . . we want to do better. Most of us want to “fix” it. And maybe that can be okay if we keep our eyes on God in doing so. Because while work can never save us, wanting to try, to get up and do, or even the action of stopping a behavior because we know it’s wrong-is the beginning (action of) repentance.

“But someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works.” -James 2:18

In other words he has the desire to do good. To work, share, help, save, obey, because he has faith. Faith brought on by the hearing of God’s word which tells us we need to repent. We need to stop the bad that we do and return to our Father in heaven. Not only for our good but for the good of others.

Return with apologetic words and then words of encouragement, because the law meant to guard us. To keep us from certain death.

Galatians 3:24 “So the law was our guardian until Christ came that we might be justified by faith.”

If we ever wonder why we have a conscience, this would be the reason. It’s our flashing yellow light. When it goes off we have a choice to keep going, or return.