Wednesday, February 27, 2013

So....It's been awhile.

Quite awhile in fact. Almost a whole year. In that time, well let's see, what have I been up to....

Um, yeah, I had a baby. That's right, number four arrived in December. Now that morning sickness and tiredness (for me) have gone away, and tiredness (for the baby at night time) has arrived, I am looking to make a bit of a blogging comeback.

SO........

Check out my new blog coming March 1st!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Are you "Already Amazing"? (Giveaway)

"No, no. Maybe somebody like Holley Gerth is already amazing, but not me." you say. "How could I possibly be amazing? I don't do anything! I have nothing to offer anybody."

I have no doubt that some of you would say things like this. I probably used to say things like this. But after encountering our all loving God and getting to know Him better I think it less and less.

In her new book You're Already Amazing: Embracing Who You Are, Becoming All God Created You to Be Holley Gerth lays out the biblical foundation for how God sees you and how He wants to help you develop your potential.

Written as if Holley was talking to a good friend the book offers practical tips on how to think in new ways and figure out God's plan for your life-the plan that will help you help the most people. The book walks women through many of their common insecurties and hag ups and how to overcome them.

I loved the style of the book with it's sections to pause and reflect on different things. I also enjoy the authors style of writing and sense of humor. It made the book very enjoyable.

We are all special. We all have talents and gifts. I highly recommend this book to help anyone who is struggling to figure out their next step in making the best use of theirs.

(As for my next step...it may no longer include writing this blog. Perhaps after one final post explaining some of the reasons why.)

And also I won't leave you hanging without one last giveaway. I have one copy of the book for a lucky reader who leaves a comment or sends me an e-mail at amysblog@pa.net. I will keep entries open until 8pm this Saturday.

Monday, March 19, 2012

And sometimes life is kind of like a basketball game...

The Bonnie men led the whole game only to lose by three points in the end. It looked like the women's team was going to lose only for them to be the ones to make a comeback. And I started thinking about how life is sometimes like basketball.

Life has it's back and forth, ups and downs. There are runs where everything is going great, just the way you planned and then everything comes crashing down.

That is kind of what has happened to our friends family recently. This is the family that, if something bad is bound to happen, it will for sure happen to them.

Just when it seemed like things where turning around for them, and that things were finally going to go their way (for once!) it has all come crashing down. I can't give details but please just keep them in prayer.

I'm angry because it seems like it's just not fair. They are trying so hard to do the right thing and they just keep getting hammered. People they have no control over are the ones doing the wrong thing or not doing their jobs and yet they get rewarded.

Life can be so unfair sometimes. The bad guys seem to win.

But I know God is bigger. I know there is a purpose in this that we just can't see yet. I have faith, because my friends have faith.

They are the ones helping me see that I can't be angry because I don't see the big picture. God knows the end of the story and they feel like He told them they will be astounded at His protection when this is all over.

Meanwhile I fight the urge to join St Teresa of Avila in saying "If this is how you treat your friends, no wonder you have so few of them."

So I ask, is it ok to get mad when things don't go your way? To even get angry with God?

Yes!

Our pastor was the chaplain at the hospital before he came to our parish and used to tell the patients they should be angry at God. I guess because it's only natural.

But again, are we any different in respect to God than my three little kids are to me? They don't see the big picture of what mommy sees when she is trying to protect them. They just get angry at the mean mommy who ruins all their fun!

Or when I make them do things (like clean up their toys which the eldest is avoiding right now-ahem) to make them grow in to responsible people.

I think it is much the same with us and God. We are the little kids down here having the tantrum, not seeing how the struggles are good for our own growth.

So I just have to sit back and wait to see how this all plays out and learn from it in the process. I am ever more learning how to trust God. I choose to trust even when I don't see the big picture.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

I've been infected...

No not by a computer virus. (Amen! My computer is fully operational again.)

Not even by the viruses that caused this family to be sick for the past month. (I am fine, hubby and eldest have quit coughing, youngest two on antibiotics-ear and swollen tonsils discovered at their 3yr/18 month "well" checks. And I just thought they had faucets for noses!)

Nope, none of those kinds of viruses. I have been infected (Along with large portions of the country) with MARCH MADNESS!!!!!!!!!!!!

My alum mater, little St. Bonaventure, from never heard of it, should be snowy now, Olean.NY has both the men's and women's teams in.

The men won the A-10 title (first time ever), just years after a scandal that caused us to be horrible for a better part of the last decade.

The women made it to the A-10 title game (which I was at, after an adventure at the Please Touch Museum in Philly where we briefly lost the middle child-he was found playing with what else but a giant dump truck-will now trust mothers instinct to yell ahead to children to wait for parents when they are approaching a maze!!!) but lost by three points.

Not to worry, we were ranked and gained a fifth seed. Incredible! Amazing for a school with only two thousand students.

This is going to be a great weekend for Bonnies basketball.

It is a great and fun thing. It has even made me want to start playing again as excersize. Fun times taking little boys to the park.

But soon I will get back to writing about more serious matters. I must say this has been a nice diversion but more pressing matters must be out there-somewhere. I just can't focus on them right now. Must prepare self to have to put up with listening to the Florida State tomahawk chop tomorrow. (I may go insane. I HATE that song, and the fact that they play it every five seconds, so much words cannot describe.)

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Technical Difficulties

Husband trying to change around things on computer. Can't get in and out easy. Keeps shutting me out. Who knows when I'll be back!

Monday, February 27, 2012

So what is "Biblical womanhood" anyway?

Truth be told (again), after some research, I'm still not exactly sure. You may be surprised, however, to find that I am much more "liberal" on this issue than my fundamentalist counter parts.

I don't think it means the woman does all the cooking, cleaning, and child rearing. (I can't cook to save my life so we would be starving right now if my husband didn't help!) What I take from Proverbs 31 is that the woman is to work hard for her family. Which is true, as wives and mothers we are asked to sacrifice for others. But men aren't magically off the hook in this. We are all called to sacrifice for the sake of others.

I think it is ideal for A parent to stay home (oh, the expose I could write as a former day care worker about the dangers of letting someone else raise your kids for you), but in some cases the dad may make the better choice. In others it may not be possible.

I do not think it means that the man dominates the woman: in harsh ways, in general; in physical ways, in particular. There is no excuse for that.

I don't even think it means that the man decides every thing. Husband and wife are to prayerfully make key decisions together.

All of these man over woman ideas come from one verse. (One verse! Such problems come when people do not read in context with a deep understanding of theology.) The verse that says wives are to submit to their husbands.

What people often over look is the verse right before that, which says husband and wife are to be subordinate to one another and a few verses after say that husbands are to love their wives as Christ loved the church. Male dominated Christian patriarchy just doesn't fit the bill.

So how does Christ love the church? Well, He gave up His life for it. That's right. A husband should love his wife so much that he's willing to die for her. Somehow I think someone who is just trying to be the boss isn't going to do that.

I always got the idea it was that the man was supposed to be more of a spiritual leader, not a tyrant. This would fit with what I have figured out about Catholic theology. The verses say how the man is the head of His wife as Christ is the head of the Church. The home is sometimes called the domestic church, so, I guess it needs a leader?

My husband seems to think it means that God will hold him more accounatble than me for our decisions. In essence, the buck stops with him.

Something else I came across in my brief research on this topic was by Mark Driscoll. (I get it: he's controversial, but I did learn from him. God uses even those who are somewhat flawed in their theology.)

It had to do with the woman being the man's helper. He said that God helps us. By saying the woman is to be the helper, Jesus is asking her to help in a mission to bring her husband closer to Himself. This sounded similar to the idea of redemptive suffering where we share in Christ's redemptive work.

(And I have no doubt there are wives out there who suffer trying to get their husbands to be more like Jesus! Marriage is difficult, but so worth it.)

Finally I thank Mr. Christopher West for resolving the issue for me. (I am loving his book Good News about Sex and Marriage-It's a must read!) The whole book points to the theology behind the meaning of sex. It all comes from John Paul II's theology of the body.

Sex was designed to teach us about God. We are in His image and two becoming one and sometimes begetting a third images the Trinity.

In the much debated passage from Ephesians, husbands represent Christ and the wife represents the Church. Wives submit to the mission of their husband, which is to love as Christ loved. (Again, He died for the church.)

"What, then, does it mean for a wife to submit to her husband? It means let your husband serve you. Put yourself under his mission to love you as Christ loved the Church. ....... What woman would not want to receive this kind of love from her husband? What woman would not want to be subject to her husband if he truly took his mission seriously to love her as Christ loved the church? So often it's husbands who want their wives to take this Scripture passage to heart. I think it's we men who need to take it to heart first." pg. 63 and 64

So there you have it. Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the Church. Wives get behind your husbands if this is what they do and encourage them to fulfill their mission if they could use some work in this area.

(Just be loving in return. I also learned from Mr. Driscoll that I still have much work to do in the area of being the respectful wife. Take it from me, one or both partners acting in an unChrist like manner is going to get you no where--fast.)

P.S.-Still sick (I'm even on meds for a bladder infection now) but everyone is napping because of it and I actually got this one done! After frequently drifting in and out of sleep all weekend it feels good to finally accomplish something.

Friday, February 24, 2012

We are sick.

As I just said in an e-mail "Functional, but sick." Still this is not fun and I am busy doing other things as well and just can't wrap my brain around a good Lenten reflection type blog post for today. I may also take next week off and start writing ahead and having my husband proofread again. I want to handle some tough things and need more time to prepare them.

(Our illness? Viral--according to the bumps on the back of my throat--makes us all cough and everyone else, including my husband got various forms of pink eye with it!!! Good times.)