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Dec 25, 2012

Merry CHRISTmas


Dec 15, 2012

Isaiah 55:8

Bradley and I were invited to hang out with a group of friends.  We wound up behind a VIP rope surrounded by dancers at The Abbey in West Hollywood. 

The male dancers weren't wearing much...if anything at all.

And obviously..... they were being paid to entertain.

They were beautiful.  Stunningly handsome. Strong.  Muscular. 

And young. I kept thinking of our sons and their friends.   No parent (gay or straight) in their right mind would be pleased or proud.



I was praying the entire time...and I could tell Bradley was too.  For the dancers...for the bar tenders....for the waiters...for the bouncers...for the patrons.

People have a hard time making eye contact in these situations.  But even a harder time holding eye contact.  I tried to look into the eyes of whomever the Lord placed before me.

A beautiful girl began to dance.  Dark hair.  Pretty smile.  My mind went directly to a friend of ours...a single mother.  She knows I don't like that she dances for a living cuz I've told her.  I want my friend to stop dancing.  To stop stripping.  I want her to see how beautiful she is.  How talented she is.  How amazing she is.  How fearfully made she is.  How wonderfully made she is.  How she is made in the image of God.  I do not want her to be used by other people.

I wondered about this girl in front of me.  Had anyone ever tried to reach her heart?

Places like this are so ridiculously and overtly sexual that they cease to be sexual. 

It was hands down right up there with every other non sexual experience one could ever imagine to encounter.

I do believe in supernatural protection.  And I do believe that the Lord equips the called.

We know precisely who the Lord had us at The Abbey for.  And I'm sure we were there for some others and we don't have any clue whatsoever about that.

For those of you who are concerned for us...

We felt led to leave before things got really weird.  When you are walking in obedience with the Lord...you are able to better discern his whispers and trust His timing in all circumstances.

On another note...if you are so led...please pray.  We have a friend who is coming out of the porn industry.  That's not easy to do.   The temptation to return to it is strong when bank accounts are squeezed into tight places.  When your identity is found in your sexuality.  In your work.  Idols fall hard.

We are contemplating where the Lord has placed us and how He might want to minister to others thru us.   






Dec 6, 2012

Days of Heaven

Days of Heaven

Linda Manz is amazing.  Pure talent.  I remember thinking the same thing about her when I first saw the movie in film school.  What an actress.



Best moment of the night...when Zion compared the fire destroying the wheat field scene to the lighting in Gone With The Wind.

Better yet....when she judged the fire destroying the wheat field scene to be too long.... and then compared it to every scene in "The Life Tree."

Bradley and I just about died.

She meant "The Tree of Life."

And she had no way of knowing Terrence Malick directed both.

Outward evidences of the film education she has received via osmosis.

And more evidences of a "family bent." 

Blew me away.


 





Nov 30, 2012

Thanksgiving


Nov 29, 2012

A pre- Thanksgiving Thanksgiving








Nov 8, 2012

Discernment

When the Lord gives me insight into any particular area...and I discern something contrary to what is being presented and applauded as "good" and "right" ...I often find myself needing to process through a time of deep grief and mourning...after my initial righteous anger settles.  (This does not mean I always express righteous anger in a sinless way...quite the contrary... lol)

Yesterday was not easy.  I felt an enormous burden for our nation.  The loss of so much... that so many do not even recognize as loss.  I wept for hours. 



Then, I began to communicate things to the kids like..."We will have opportunities now to minister to our hurting communities...in ways that we might not have if the Lord had not allowed this darkness to prevail."

And...

"If Rome could fall..."

And.....

"There will always be a remnant."

And...

"The Lord sees the big picture...we do not."

And...

"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.'

And...

"In this world you will have trouble...but do not fear...for HE has overcome the world."

And...

And...

And...

And...

And...

All the things believers remind themselves of when they are tempted to despair.  


The below letter was sent to me by a friend.  



I'm writing to you to explain why, even after a late and discouraging evening that stretched past 1:00 a.m. on the East Coast, I was back at the office before 8:00 a.m. this morning.

And why the sinking feeling I felt last night has already been replaced with a deep determination.

And why I'm going out to buy equipment for our new office this afternoon.

And why we are going to build, build, build -- despite a stunning and, for me, unexpected defeat.


+ + Let's Be Clear: We Just Got Pummeled

Before I go on, let's be clear: last night was a defeat, and I didn't see it coming. I expected a "Tea Party Wave" -- perhaps a 300+ electoral-vote victory for Romney. All the signs seemed to be there. The 2010 elections, the failed recall of Wisconsin governor Scott Walker and even the Chick-fil-A Day pointed to a re-shaped political landscape. The polls and crowds made it clear that there was more enthusiasm with Romney.

But that wave never came. The people did not rise up and reject Obama's statism. Quite the opposite -- 15 million fewer people voted, and Romney earned less votes than John McCain did four years ago.

+ + Far Worse Than 2008

Upon reflection, what happened last night was far worse than what happened in 2008. Our first "dance" with Obama was mostly about smoke and mirrors -- "hope and change" that was never really defined. For many Americans, Obama 2008 was more an idea, an idealized dream and a collective catharsis from our dark past.

But Obama 2012 was something altogether different because now we know the real Barack Obama. We watched him advance the most radical leftist agenda since at least FDR. We saw him rape and pillage the free market and impose a government takeover of industries. We witnessed him go to foreign nations and apologize for America and then leave our people alone to die in Benghazi.


This time we knew Barack Obama. Yet a majority of American voters said, "More!" The opposition to Obama's agenda never really showed up at the polls.

We can try to console ourselves by saying it was a close election ... that the leftist media gave Obama the election ... that we couldn't really expect a Northeastern liberal Republican to be our standard bearer ... that a bizarre hurricane swung the election.

All that may be true.

But it matters little now. And the less time we spend blaming each other or the trickery of the other guys the better.

So here's why I'm more determined ... why I'm building.


+ + A 2,500-Year-Old Letter Written for Today

I want to share with you a letter that, although 2,500 years old, it could have been written this morning. For us. For faithful patriots who feel like they just discovered they will have to live at least the next four years in exile.

This letter was written to Jewish exiles who had been pushed out of Jerusalem and forced to live under a tyrannical ruler named Nebuchadnezzar.

The exiles wanted one thing: they wanted to be re-established back in Israel. They even had a prophet named Hananiah come to them and tell them that their time of exile would only last two years.

You can read about it in Jeremiah 28.

Hananiah was a false prophet. He died.

And so Jeremiah wrote a letter to the exiles. You've probably heard a part of that letter recited many times. It's one of the most commonly quoted passages in the entire Bible. Unfortunately, this passage is mostly taken out of its proper context and delivered as a "feel good" word that everything is going to be O.K.

One of my friends was quoting this verse yesterday morning:

 "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."
Those words sound so good. The future is bright. God has a plan for prosperity, for a real hope and a real future. On the eve of the election, it must have meant a Romney win, the GOP takes the Senate and we start the rollback of the Obama regime, right?

Not exactly.

+ + The Plan Was Exile

Here's the shocking context of Jeremiah 29 (and I offer to you, the context for November 6, 2012): the plan was exile.

That was the "plan" Jeremiah's letter was talking about. I encourage you to go read all of Jeremiah 29. Here is the immediate context:

This is what the Lord says: "When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. For I know the plans I have for you ..."
The plan was 70 years of exile. Keep that in mind the next time someone quotes Jeremiah 29:11 to encourage you that your time of trouble will soon end. Not only was the exile going to last 70 years, the exile WAS the plan!

If you don't believe me, go back and read the beginning of the letter, from Jeremiah 29:4. Here you'll see the Lord (through Jeremiah) giving the Jewish exiles specific instructions on how to conduct themselves in exile:

--Build houses and settle down.

--Plan gardens and eat what they produce.

--Marry and have sons and daughters.

--Marry off your sons and daughters so they can have children.

--Increase in number; do not decrease
.
Again, remember the context. A false prophet had just come and said the time of exile would only last two years. That prophet died. The truth is, the people will be in exile for 70 years. And the directive is to build families, grow businesses, think trans-generationally and increase.

+ + Seek the Welfare of the Land

It gets better. Because Jeremiah's letter makes it clear that building and marrying is not enough. People in exile must do something else -- they must be a blessing to the land.

"Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper."
So let's review. First, the plan is exile. Second, build. Third, bless. Simple, clear instructions.

But why was this important? Why a "plan" for exile with specific instructions on how to act in exile?

Historians tell us it was during the Babylonian captivity that the Israelites moved from a Temple/Jerusalem focused society to a synagogue and community focused society. Simply put ...

It was the lessons learned during their time in exile which enabled the Jews to survive 2,500 years in exile. But not just survive -- but to thrive and become the most prosperous, most successful and most innovative people group in the history of civilization.

Exile was the plan.

So that's why, today, I'm going to build. And I'm going to plant. I'm going to bless. And I'm going to pray.

For that is the final piece to the puzzle ...

"Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart."
So let's get building. Let's get planting. And let's get praying. And let's bless this land. There are lessons to be learned in exile.

Steve Elliott, Grassfire

P.S. If this message is an encouragement to you, please share it with your friends.








Nov 7, 2012

Proverbs 22:6

"Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it."

Although this is not a promise...it is a Biblical principle and the truth it holds within it has brought me encouragement today.

I am so grateful for the calling on my life to home-educate.  I could not be more pleased with the Lord's dealings with me on this matter.

One of the sweetest memories I will take away from Election Night 2012 is the fact that 8 young Bible believing men showed up at our home last night...alongside our 5 kids...and white knuckled the results alongside us.  The ninth boy who came drives me up the wall with his "progressive" ideas...but I was happy to see him in between wanting to shake some sense into him. 



I yelled a bit.  I screamed...kicked and carried on.  They got to see me in rare form.
I will never forget their disappointed faces.  The blank stares of some first time voters.

And sweet Zion...when she woke up this morning..she sat on the couch collecting her thoughts.  "Wait...was I dreaming or is Barack Obama still our president?"

"He is," I responded. 

A little while later I found an exhortation that she had posted on the refrigerator door. 








Stay Calm and Keep on Keepin' On

So it's the day after the election and you are feeling so sad for your nation when someone sends you a link to an article which puts a smile on your face. 

Oct 26, 2012

Children's Hunger Fund & Avenues

Children's Hunger Fund

We packed boxes of chips & bags of dried fruit intended for Guatemala's Zone 3.

And later that evening we attended a fundraiser.....

Avenues 

...where Michael Reagan was the keynote speaker.  Such a sweet testimony.




San Francisco

Mcabe booked a Men's Wearhouse job.  Rather than him fly up there alone and try to navigate different locations...hotels etc....the girls and I decided to hop in the car and join him for a few days.


Aside from me being sick with what I thought was food poisoning while we were there....it was a fun trip.  Short and sweet.

We did the typical things tourists do...travel Lombard Street... hit Fisherman's Wharf for Clam Chowder bread bowls...viewed Alcatraz and the Golden Gate Bridge from a distance.....

The two highlights of the trip were seeing Renee & Keane and finding in Japan Town....the BEST $1.50 Store in the entire world!


Oct 14, 2012

Stories I Only Tell My Friends

While Bradley and Mcabe were in London...I had some down time.  The girls and I were out and about...actually doing some early CHRISTmas shopping at Barnes & Noble when I came across this in the Reduced For Clearance bin.  $6.98!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I totally related to the story & enjoyed it thoroughly. 

I knew Rob in passing...and his brother, Chad.  I remember being at a Malibu Beach colony dance party of some sort with him and then again....there was this other time he was in my Calabasas living room for some reason?????? Chad...with his then girlfriend Hilary (such a sweet couple at the time) ...sat directly in front of us in the Mann Village theatre as we watched Prince rock the world in Purple Rain.

I have to admit...I always thought Rob was way too pretty to be manly but I did have a small...very small thing for Chad.

What a great read.  Especially if you grew up in or around Hollywood during this era.  Played on the same beaches...travelled to the same film festivals.  Knew Robert Wagner (who paid a visit to the same Calabasas living room??????)  ...C Thomas Howell ( a whole other story)....Charlie Sheen (who was also in my Calabasas living room for some reason????)...etc.

It was a surreal read.


My take away.

If this thing called ACTING is in your blood...

Don't leave before the miracle.

P.S.  In my humble estimation...the whole West Wing thing that went down...it's sad to say...but I think Martin Sheen might have had a role to play.  I hope not....but it's my gut instinct.

P.P.S. Rob seems to have grown into a very manly man :)



Oct 9, 2012

City of Angels

I have been processing some thoughts floating around in my head and heart with a friend.
I shared with her a few weeks ago something that seems sort of impossible to explain in a way that makes perfect sense...to not only her...but to myself. 

I love this city.

I love Los Angeles.



I love people in Scottsdale.  I love things about Scottsdale...but that's different than loving Scottsdale. 

I feel as if our family is supposed to live here.  I feel as if the Lord brought us to this place.  In His timing and for His purposes.

In Bible Study this morning, the conversation turned towards us girls wondering if we (other families as well) were doing the right thing by moving with our husbands and our respective clans to this place...away from family support systems...away from comfort...away from ....our preferences. 

Life here isn't stupendously wonderful.  In fact, things have not gone the way we had hoped.  Acting work for Bradley has been non-existent up to this point.  There are new stresses.  New temptations.  New struggles. 

There are also new blessings.  And new opportunities.  New convictions.  Lots of them.  

For me ....it has come down to obedience.  I believe we are being obedient by living in Los Angeles.  Leaving would feel like disobedience.

It's hard to explain...cuz as far as the world goes...it just doesn't make sense.  Not one bit of sense. 

Jeni, the friend I spoke of above gets me.  I'm the Ethel to her Lucy.  She blogged about us in LA here.


Oct 8, 2012

October Baby

October Baby is a MUST SEE film.

It was so sweet to be in the room with three young women (who happen to be adopted) while they were processing the truths presented in this story of forgiveness.


 I had the pleasure of watching the delightful, funny, and heart-wrenching movie, October Baby.  This is by far the best Christian film out there.  I was really surprised by how good the story-line is.  I learned a lot of things during the film, but what really spoke to my heart was the forgiveness aspect of the movie.  The main character, Hannah had to learn to forgive her birth mom, her adoptive family, and herself.  Throughout the movie you watch Hannah face her battles and have struggles until she hits a brick wall.  She finally learns that God forgave her for all of her sins and she is able to forgive others.  This tells me that I can forgive anyone who comes my way, no matter our history.  God extended grace to Hannah...so how dare she hold a grudge against anyone, even herself.  Shari Rigby, a family friend, plays the birth mom in the film.  She struggled with forgiving herself after murdering her own child through abortion.  October Baby is a must see film.  I highly recommend it to anyone who wants a tear-jerker movie. - Jemima Gregg


Oh how I love October Baby! It is a tear-jerker.When I began watching the movie, anger built up inside me. What was I angry about? Who was I angry at? Hannah! I was angry about how disrespectful Hannah was to her family when she learned that she was adopted. I didn't understand Hannah's anger towards her father. I was adopted at the age of three and have been so thankful that my parents welcomed me into their home. After watching the movie, I realized where Hannah is coming from. She lived 19 years without her parents telling her about her birth. So Hannah believed she was lied to this entire time. Now she has questions with no answers to them. As to me, I've know my whole life that I was adopted. Thinking about it though, I can understand and might be angry and hurt if I didn't know. At the end Hannah learns that her parents wanted the best for her. She learns to forgive them and their friendship begins to grow. Hannah also exchanges bitterness for forgiveness in regards to her biological mother. Lastly, Hannah learns to not dwell on the things of the past but to look to the future. This is why I love the movie so dearly! - Cassandra Wilde  

October Baby is a Christian movie that is life changing. The film has heartache, resentment, hatred, grief, pain, love, and forgiveness. The main character, Hannah finds out that she is adopted. Because she is a survivor of a failed abortion she has depression, and other health problems. Hannah is determined to find her birth mother on a road trip with her best friend, Jason. After learning from the nurse who helped the abortion doctor that Hannah had a twin brother who also survived with an arm torn off and brain damage... but sadly died 4 months later...Hannah felt heart broken and guilty that she pulled through and he didn't. Hannah finds her birth mother, Cindy, who can't face the truth, doesn't want her, and pretends to be clueless or have any recollection of her. Hannah needs to learn to forgive her birth mother for not wanting her, and trying to kill her and for killing her brother. She needs forgive her parents for hiding the horrible news of her early childhood. On her journey, she realizes that she has been forgiven therefore she should forgive others. Convicted, Hannah places a note, saying "I forgive you" on Cindy's desk and is relieved as she is ready to walk into new life. Upon reading the note, Cindy cries because she knows it is time to face the truth. I about just died when I saw Cindy have her break through and accept forgiveness. I loved seeing the love Hannah's family shows her. She herself learns to love and forgive. This movie is about a girl finding out who she really is and learning to accept it. I love this film October Baby! - Galilee Gregg

Shari Rigby...the film's birth mother is a dear friend.  I had the privilege of attending a fundraiser for East Los Angeles Pregnancy Center where she was the keynote speaker.


Shari's testimony is one of healing and forgiveness found in Christ.  Post abortive herself, she shares authentically about her journey out of shame...and delivers a message of hope.

Shari's story.

and More here.


One of our daughters got up the nerve ask a very serious question last night.  It's been a season of intense ponderings lately...but this inquiry went very, very deep.  "Mom, could I be the survivor of a failed abortion?"

long pause

"It's possible because of your low birth weight...but we do not have that information."  

"Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhh...........so maybe?"

"Probably not..... but maybe."


I cannot think of a more redeeming and life affirming way for the girls to spend their time than volunteering at our very own local Crisis Pregnancy Center.


Psalm 139:14 

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;your works are wonderful, I know that full well.















Oct 7, 2012

Brownie


Brownie died.

It was a very sad afternoon...the one where Zion was confronted with saying "goodbye" and the very real possibility that he would not recover or be returning home.

A few days later ...after a valiant effort on the bunny loving volunteer Pet Hospital staff's part...he was indeed "gone" and Mcabe and I had to deal with the issues of picking up and disposing of the body.

Mcabe is a hunter.  He has killed many a rabbit...countless numbers of rabbits over the years.  The name of the production company he runs with his Braverijah is Dead Rabbit Pictures.

Nothing sweeter than seeing a big bad hunter who hunts big things like elk and Asian water buffalo...picking up the remains of a frozen dead bunny in a brown paper bag and trying to figure out what to do with it...so that his heart broken little sister doesn't have to deal with the trauma. 

Brownie wound up in the dumpster behind a Starbucks in Burbank. 

There will probably be someone out there who is outraged by this.  If so...I hope it leads deeper ponderings.



 

Oct 5, 2012

Jane Eyre

ummmmmm....

..................Zion as a Valley Girl/Mean Girl Jane Eyre.


I am dying.  She had zero direction from anyone.

Sep 30, 2012

Anatomomy & Physiology

Galilee & Jemima are taking a Human Anatomy & Physiology class.

How awesome is it that a Master's professor has such a heart for home-education that he offers a class geared towards high schoolers! 


Dissecting a sheep heart.


Argo


UPDATE:  Article published today. 




SUCH a good film!  I am completely stressed and I'm not sure I will be able to sleep tonight.

Thomas and Allan...two friends of ours...invited me to a pre screening of Argo.  It is an amazing film.  A MUST SEE!!!!!!!

Ben Affleck did an incredible job directing.  It is Oscar worthy. 

Thought # 1...Thomas very wisely....made us aware of our surroundings....locating the nearest theatre EXIT just in case some random...you know.....guy with a beef showed up on on a mission to do some damage.  He didn't say this...but I sure thought it...."He's right....there could be some Hollywood secret cell wackadoodle scenario ...........etc.  The EXIT was directly behind us to the right.

Thought #2...If a crappy obscure short film/trailer You Tube video is the cause of so much middle eastern / North American / intercontinental hoopla...this film could possibly trigger another World War. Lord...let it not be so.

Go and see this film.  Spend your $$$$$ to see it in a theater.  (Locate EXITS)

Do not wait for DVD.  It is that good.

Sep 29, 2012

Women in Pursuit

This is my dear friend, Kelley.  She spoke on marriage at a Women in Pursuit event recently...and something she said was life changing.

Do we realize in the moments when we are having difficulties with our husbands...that our marriages are but temporary?  

That we are called first and foremost to respond to our husbands as brothers in Christ.  With the same amount of grace we would extend to another brother.  After all, they will be our spiritual siblings for all of eternity.

 I had never heard the idea presented so clearly before.  What a concept!

It changes....a lot.



Sep 28, 2012

Politics

So recently....I was made aware of the fact that while over here at our home....2 children...other than my own (alongside 3 of my own) partook in a activity that was not so lovely.  Led by Jemima...the kids had printed out photos of  President Obama...and added in magic marker...not so "nice" comments about his policies.  One or two of the comments moved into personal areas. 

When I first became aware of the fact....I reminded the kids that .......even though we think this or that about his choices.......he is still our  President...our Commander in Chief and that his office...requires our respect.

2 of them were convicted.  They hesitated.

My 3 were not in that group.  

A few weeks ago...I posted something on facebook that crossed a line.  I knew that it did when I posted it...but I posted it anyway.   Darn it....cuz at it's core it HAD A POINT!

A friend of mine from college...a white house political speechwriter (liberal) ...called me out on it.  She was right.  I was wrong.  I was convicted.  I told her so and I took my post down.

Well...here we are a few weeks later...a few weeks closer to the elections....and DARN IT!!!!!!!!  I am doing it again!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!




The Shulamite Woman

Even before we moved in, I was invited by a friend to a Bible Study.  One of the first things I did after unpacking was attend.  Good decision on my part.   I am surrounded by a group of gals pursuing the Lord who first pursued them.  They are wanting to glorify Jesus in their relationships.  In their choices.  And...with their time, treasure,  and talents.  Everyone who shows up is in the industry to one degree or another.  They speak my language.   It's so funny how you forget to speak your language when it is not put to daily use.  And how...you are able to pick it up again...when fully immersed.  

This week...we laughed and cried while Natalie...the beautiful lady above...led a discussion on the Shulamite Woman.  She approached the study with the idea of the Shulamite Woman being any believer...and the husband being the Lord Himself.   What a passion she has for the Word! 

When I got home...I did some more study...and found this....

 .....by John MacArthur-

The Song of Solomon: A Look at God-Designed Marriage
While authority and submission is to exist in the home, our relationships should be bathed in love so that they melt together with mutual love and respect. This is illustrated in the Song of Solomon, where we will see a beautiful picture of a right marriage relationship. It is a beautiful example of how leadership is to work.
1. The perspective
In 2:13-15, the Shulamite women acknowledges her husband as the head of the home. She saw him as her protector (v. 3), her provider (v. 4), her sustainer (v. 5), her security (v. 6), and her leader and initiator (v. 10-15). There is no oppression or dictatorial spirit in this passage. She desired his leadership, and he took the role that God had given him. Now, even though authority and submission are present, verse 10 describes a beautiful mutuality: "My beloved is mine, and I am his" (cf. 7:10).
2. The portrait
In 5:10-16, we see a marvelous portrait of the Shulamite woman's husband through her eyes of love. She saw him as handsome (v. 10) and bronzed (v. 11), with soft, tender, misty eyes (v. 12). There was color in his cheeks (v. 13), his lips were fragrant (v. 13), his hands were bronzed (v. 14), and his stomach and legs were muscular and strong (vv. 14-15). She saw him as a strong, handsome, rugged character. In verse 16, when he opens his mouth, he isn't crass or rude. Then at the end of verse 16 she says, "This is my beloved, and this is my friend." She didn't see him as a dictator; she saw him a beloved friend. The mutuality and the spirit of love fits beautifully with authority and submission when love bathes the relationship.
3. The problem
Now you may say, "If my husband or wife was like that, we'd never have a problem." But in chapter 5, we find that this couple did have a problem---the wife would not submit to her husband. In verse 1 the husband comes home late at night, after his wife is already in bed. He was full of love for her, and he knocked on the door, asking that she let him in (v. 2). Her response to him, however, was basically, "Don't bother me now; I'm asleep. I'm not interested" (v. 3). But when she heard his hand on the door, love welled up in her heart, and she felt sorry for her lack of submissiveness (v. 4). So, she got up, put her robe on, and opened the door (v. 5). Unfortunately, it was too late---he had already gone (v. 6). Note that he was submissive to her, in that he didn't force himself on her. She panicked and ran all over the city trying to find him (vv. 6-9; 6:1). Finally, she decided he was in the garden (v. 2) and found him there (v. 4). When she found him, he didn't say, "Where have you been? Why didn't you let me in?" Instead, he said some of the same things he had said to her on their wedding night (vv. 5-7; cf. 4:1-3). In confirming his love for her, he told her that even though she had rejected him, he still loved her as much as he did the night he married her. The problem was solved, and they had a wonderful time renewing their relationship (chap. 7).




What an enormous blessing this group is.
Where God guides God provides.









Zion Style

What to wear when one is chopping onions?  Ski goggles of course. 

Zion Evangeline has been cooking lots lately.  I figure since she's asking to make meals...I might as well let her.

So like Mcabe was at her age.  

Sep 17, 2012

Dangerous Times

UPDATE:

Because some of you might not know me well enough to know this about me...I'll make myself very clear.  I do not think all Muslims hate America...thinking we are the great satan.  I do not think all Muslims want to see us go to hell.  And I do not think that all Muslims want to see Israel obliterated.  I do... however think that many Muslims do.

More than we realize in our slumber.
 __________________________

Try to follow the train of thoughts percolating in my head for the past few days. 

We are navigating dangerous times.  I know it's not original...but I really really mean it.

Dan Cathy...the CEO of an American fast food chain is attacked for defending the traditional/orthodox Biblical definition of marriage.  3 American mayors...none of whom expressed an intent to forbid Muslim businesses from being in their cities btw....threaten Chic-fil-A with said action.  American Universities are pressured to kick restaurants off their campuses.

Note to self:  check into Islam's teachings on same sex marriage...also...the Farrakhan / Chicago connection.

Shortly thereafter...in fact on the 11th Anniversary of 911...there is a well organized attack on our US Embassy in Libya.  4 US citizens are killed.  Islamic terrorists and this administration claim the attack and ongoing protests throughout the region and beyond...come in response to an obscure film posted on YouTube.

Apologies are made to our Islamic attackers and mobs.  

Apparently their feelings are hurt.

A presidential candidate speaks his mind on the issue...

Note to self:   check the time lines.

....and is smeared by our biased mainstream media...who is obviously in bed with the current administration.

Facts emerge.  Conflicting stories.  First hand accounts from those on the ground.

The administration is looking more foolish with every passing hour.

Why do we have a problem with calling this attack on our US Embassy a TERRORIST ATTACK?

Does it have anything to do with UN resolution 1618?


Side note....ARTISTS/ FILMMAKERS/MUSICIANS/WRITERS...where is your outrage?????   Are you not going to to find fault with a government that asks google to review a film.....

RED FLAG RED FLAG RED FLAG!!!!!!!!!!!
PRESSURE TACTIC BY GVT!!!!!!!!!!!) 

...with the hopes of them taking it down so that their own problem is whitewashed into oblivion...never to be heard of again... after all the spin is said and done...not even mentioned in future History text books? 

JayZ...some administration somewhere might not take kindly to lyrics of  yours in some future world.  Just sayin'

What if the next administration has a problem with a film which resembles The Last Temptation of Christ?  Or challenges Lady Gaga's... Judas.  Or....let's say...takes issue with The Book of Mormon.

What if they don't want to hurt the feelings of Muslims and think Journey to Jemima has crossed a line?  We do pray for open doors in a Muslim culture...in the film.  We do sing Jesus Love You to  Muslim orphans...in the film.

Or Remnant.....what if we as Americans...are prohibited from making the films we are led to make because some one's feelings might get hurt?  Or, their pride might be wounded.  Or their religious ideals are challenged? 

We won't have to lose our Freedom of Speech if we hand it over, people.

Note to self:   Check into Utah's  banning of The New Normal.

And then there is the whole Israel issue. Huge issue.  Very important issue. 

We are navigating dangerous times.  I really really really meant it.

And, yes the Lord knows all about it and REIGNS on HIGH.

And...Happy Constitution Day.




Sep 11, 2012

Mary of Magdala

Today Zion joined our Tuesday Morning group.  She was in and out as we discussed topics such as prostitution...mental illness...demon possession...sexual temptation...repentance...healing...forgiveness...unforgiveness...idol worship...premarital sex...promiscuity...marriage bed dry spells...depression...suicidal thoughts.

She probably knows more about this stunningly beautiful, redeemed, humble, servant of the Lord...Mary of Magdala... than many kids her age.  Some might not even know what the word "prostitution" means. 

Because she hasn't grown up attending  Children's Sunday School classes or participating in  AWANA...she's a bit out of the loop as far as the more obvious /  "age appropriate"  Bible Stories are concerned.  What?  churched her entire life and she doesn't know this or that?  Yeah........no.......

.....she doesn't.

Maybe we have failed her (and our other children as well) in that area...Bradley and I.  I am sure we have to a certain degree. 

Still we've been led how we've been led in the place where we were ...during the season we were there...and feel as if it has been good and correct for our family.

Pray for Zion as she begins a new adventure.  Recently she began attending a Sunday School class and soon she will try AWANA.  To say she feels like a fish out of water is an understatement.  She is learning to navigate the Christian Church Culture amongst a group of peers her own age.  She has had much home-schooling co-op experience in this area...but almost none in regards to "church" settings.

Also...Galilee and Jemima will have their first high school group experience.  

We'll see how it goes.

Aug 21, 2012

Teaching Multi Grade Levels?

First of all....we don't really keep track of "grade levels" in our Home-School.   Second of all...older kids can glean what they can from younger level work and visa versa.

Always.

Obviously.

Galilee and Jemima are starting an Anatomy/Physiology Course in a few weeks.  It will be taught by a Master's College Prof.  Until then...they are joining in on the youngers Apologia Astronomy Class.


 Maybe they will stay with it....even after their olders class begins???   I think so.

Today in History.....we discussed Eric the Red and Leif the Lucky.  The older girls will need to delve a bit deeper.  For Zion...an introduction is adequate.   Same topic...varying ages/grade levels.   The same Time-Line for all will be assembled and hung on the wall.

While the older kids work on their Teaching Textbooks Algebra 2 lesson in the front yard....Zion works on her Saxon Grade 3 lesson in the living room.




I oversee things.  It's my job to make my kids correct their work until they master the concepts presented. 

That's how it's done. 

Aug 20, 2012

Alliance Defending Freedom

Oh my goodness...same convo going on over here.  But wait...if I say "no" to one thing ...do I say "no" to another?  For instance....a believer marrying a non-believer....or two heterosexual non believers who are currently living together while fornicating....taking the leap into marriage....or a believer walking in open sin marrying another believer walking in open sin (fornicating or any ####### of other sins)...or a man wanting to marry his 5th wife...or ...or.....or.....or..............................BIG questions.

And the immediate answers one might respond with bring up bigger questions.

Bradley, the kids, and I...went round and round just last week regarding this very topic. 

I am so happy I am a wife and a mother and a home-educating one at that...who says "yes" and "no" to photography shoots...depending on my schedule.

And I am thankful for the hard questions as they keep me grounded in the Word...seeking out Godly counsel... and on my toes.  And I am thankful for the Alliance Defending Freedom. 

If you were a vegan Peta supporting photographer and you were asked to shoot a dream African Safari Wedding (all expenses paid  :)  ...or document a Deep Sea Tuna Fishing Expedition/Bachelor Party...would you do it?  Or the Thanksgiving cover for Food & Wine...complete with a crisp skinned perfectly browned delicious moist meat turkey as the star??????  Could you?  Would you?

If you were a photographer who had personal objections to nudity on film and a client came to you wanting a Nude Sitting w/ her newborn?  Nothing scandalous would be exposed...just a beautiful art shot. Would you feel differently about shooting nudity if you were in a different setting...let's say....in Africa where tribal nudity was the norm?  What if the model was a cancer survivor who wanted to document the loss of her breasts and her victory over the disease?

Why?  Why not?  

See what I mean!?!!!!!?????!!!!!???



Aug 19, 2012

Apathy Is The Enemy

Last week Zion and I were confronted by a homeless man who made us feel as if we were in danger.

We are in close proximity to many homeless individuals...and interact with them on a daily basis...usually offering what we can (hardly ever $$$$) and a kind word.

In Scottsdale...we would run to the nearest fast food place and buy the rare person asking for help a meal.  But here...the need is far too great.  Not only would we be penniless...but we would have no time to do anything else.
 
It has been an eye opening experience...living life once again (and a new experience for the kids) surrounded by such obvious poverty and despair.

I pray that the normalcy of seeing people sleeping in doorways, under freeway passes,  and on bus stop benches does not create an apathy in my heart or in the hearts of anyone in our family.   Apathy is the enemy (scroll down to view.)

This one guy was a problem.  After offering him a granola bar he began to hiss and bark at us.  Bearing his teeth...as if he were an animal.  For a good 3 minutes.  He did not back down.  A passerby walking his dogs became a target as well.  For another few tense minutes.  And then...attentions were turned towards a UPS delivery man. 

Obviously, this homeless man was mentally ill.  There was a discernable spiritual darkness that was present during the confrontation as well.

Zion and I were shaken. 


We did not take a Self Defense Course because of the incident...but the timing could not have been more perfect.




Grow Where You Are Planted

If you take your children to fundraisers which raise $$$$$$$$ and awareness to combat human trafficking and they attend a weekly Bible Study with you where one of the actresses there plays an abducted girl forced into prostitution in a film about human trafficking...and you teach them from the Bible about the story of Mary the prostitute who's life was turned around by Jesus....and you see prostitutes on local street corners.....you will most likely get questions like sweet little  Zion Evangeline's tonight...

Zion:  Is there such a thing as men prostitution for women?



If you have gay family members, or gay friends in your circle of friends or gay acquaintances....

...or visit frequently an area of town in Hollywood off of Sycamore and Santa Monica where some of the people who hang out on the street corners are obviously men dressed up as women looking for a john....something similar to this might be the follow up...

Zion:  Wait, is there such a thing as gay prostitution?

She is not yet ready for the whole transgender/transsexual conversation.  Her mind and heart are processing.  Men want to buy women and girls for sex?  Women want to buy men for sex?  Men want to buy men and boys for sex? ( I'm sure I am missing some other possible scenarios...)

She knows some of the things sex has to do with because she doesn't live under a rock...and she's been taught what she needs to know in order to be safe.  But not really.  Not yet.  

It is a lot.

Parenting in a fallen world is not for the faint of heart.

Living life as we are called to live it ...brings new life experiences...which brings new opportunities.  New discussions. 

For those of you who know me well...my life's motto has been...Grow where you are planted.

Grow deeper with the Lord and others in the spot where He has placed you...for He has placed you there in this season for a reason.  

It probably should be the name of my blog.

For now...it remains my motto.  

How do you change the name of your blog?  Jemima??????????




Aug 17, 2012

Mcabearoooni



Photo Credit:  Dino May

Laguna Tide Pools


Aug 7, 2012

Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust

We have been twice now to the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust.  This time... it was to hear a lecture on the proliferation of memorials to the Holocaust being dedicated in Germany.

 Although there's no way you can leave this place without feeling an overwhelming sense of sadness...it is a wonderful field trip. Admission is free. 

Aug 1, 2012

Chick-fil-A

Breakfast



Lunch



Dinner

11.6 round trip miles.... three times today.

To be 100% honest...Mcabe had an audition right near there so we went for lunch...but even if there were no reason to be over the hill....we would've gone out of our way.

The staff was awesome!  Super busy and super accommodating.  They genuinely appreciated the support and encouragement. 

The protesters were fine during the day...civil and orderly. 

Things in Hollywood were getting a little funky as the sun was setting though.  Patrons were being harassed by some who were obviously passionate and wanting to argue.  It was hard to hear them over their combativeness.  Security asked that diners not engage.

Much of what they were shouting were things similar to a facebook post I saw on a friend of a friend's wall...things like...

"I, too, stand with Chic-fil-A in supporting the Bible. That’s why I believe in slavery, think women are sinful by nature and that adulterers should be stoned to death."

My response on facebook....

"What many fail to understand is that slavery in biblical times was very different from the slavery that was practiced in the past few centuries in many parts of the world. The slavery in the Bible was not based exclusively on race. People were not enslaved because of their nationality or the color of their skin. In Bible times, slavery was more a matter of social status. People sold themselves as slaves when they could not pay their debts or provide for their families. In New Testament times, sometimes doctors, lawyers, and even politicians were slaves of someone else. Some people actually chose to be slaves so as to have all their needs provided for by their masters.

The slavery of the past few centuries was often based exclusively on skin color. In the United States, many black people were considered slaves because of their nationality; many slave owners truly believed black people to be inferior human beings. The Bible most definitely does condemn race-based slavery. Consider the slavery the Hebrews experienced when they were in Egypt. The Hebrews were slaves, not by choice, but because they were Hebrews (Exodus 13:14). The plagues God poured out on Egypt demonstrate how God feels about racial slavery (Exodus 7-11). So, yes, the Bible does condemn some forms of slavery. At the same time, the Bible does seem to allow for other forms. The key issue is that the slavery the Bible allowed for in no way resembled the racial slavery that plagued our world in the past few centuries. "

Women are sinful.  Romans 3:23

And...

.....regarding the whole stoning issue.... I linked those interested to this.

I added.....

All this...so you can understand better the mindsets of those who hold to an orthodox understanding of the Bible's teachings. I hope to God that those who have a problem with this info...realize that they have a problem with the Bible first and foremost...before they have a problem with those who believe what it says and attempt to live their lives in light of it's teachings. Failed and flawed as we obviously are.

Then, there was a reporter who asked me a few questions

He seemed like a nice guy and appeared to be genuinely interested.  


The bottom line is...I think people want to be understood.  I know I do.  

Listening is important.  And discussion is a good thing.

Mark 12
28One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.e 30Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’f 31The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’g There is no commandment greater than these.”
32“Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
34When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions. 

I think we would agree that we need the Lord's constant help to even attempt coming anywhere near to following the above instructions.

And....for all you health nuts out there who are horrified that we ate fast food three times yesterday....we made wise menu choices and YOLO :)