Saturday, December 20, 2008

A long overdue hello and some updates!

A warm hello to all my dear readers! I've missed you all greatly; thoughts of you all often fill my mind throughout the day.



Before I give you all updates, I just wanted to thank you all so much for the caring and concerned e-mails and comments I've received from you all. The outpouring of love and sympathy has been simply overwhelming, and I'm so thankful to know that I'm in your prayers!



As for my hand/wrist, we have now, by God's grace discovered what was ailing me. We had pretty much determined that it wasn't CTS. My grandmother who had carpal tunnel syndrome in both wrists gave me a wrist test for CTS and I failed it. Our suspicion then was that it was more than likely not CTS, but we still didn't know what it was. My mass pretty much completely disappeared and my pain also went away due to the fact that most of my normal activities that would overwork my wrist (i.e. writing for my blog, crocheting, kneading bread, spending time on the computer, etc.) were eliminated from my weekly schedule. I then had an appointment with a local hand and wrist specialist on Tuesday, December 16th. We were very pleased with this doctor-he was very kind, quiet and seemed very knowledgeable(I'm very thankful to the Lord for directing me to this particular doctor; it also was a blessing to learn that he attends a local conservative Presbyterian church in the downtown Chattanooga area). After doing 3 x-rays and working my hand and wrist around a lot(with my wrist popping a lot for some reason), he determined that I had been suffering from a ganglion cyst that had just gone away(which they often do when they cease to be irritated). He said that I'm free to go back to my daily activities (praise the Lord-I had really been missing all my domestic work, and I had gotten behind on my article and devotional writing for this blog, not to mention the fact that I haven't been able to visit my favorite blogs in weeks!). Dr. Jemison wants to see me back in 4-6 weeks(after I've returned to my regular activites and have been doing them again for a while) to see how things are going, as ganglion cysts can and often do return(for when they reduce in size, they do just simply that-reduce-but don't go away completely-the cyst wall, etc. is still intact in my hand/wrist area). If, after returning to my regular duties my cyst comes back, then I may have to have surgery to remove it. However, ganglion cysts are pesky little things, and after surgery, another one could form. So, please continue to pray for me, that the Lord's will would be done first and foremost, and that, if He wills, my wrist would be healed for good. Thank you all so much for your faithful prayers and loving concern!

I don't feel that I can apologize enough for the article and devotional delays. I know you are all very patient and understanding, but I almost feel as if I've failed you all. I know this whole wrist thing couldn't be helped, but I feel terrible for making you wait so long for blog posts. Thank you all so much for bearing with me! You are all such a God-send, and I pray that He blesses richly each and every one of you!!

If there's one thing I've learned throughout this whole ordeal, it's that I must not plan things of my own accord and leave the words Deo Volente(God willing) out! So often I've published posts promising that certain articles, etc. would be published in a certain time frame. And each time I've left those precious words out. And guess what? Each time, the Lord has postponed my plans, teaching me the very gracious lesson that I'm NOT in control-HE is! I'm so thankful that He's taught me this; I only regret that through this time of learning, you've all had to wait so long. The following passage has been one of great conviction for me lately: " Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to such and such a city, spend a year there, buy and sell, and make a profit”; whereas you do not know what will happen tomorrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and do this or that.” ~James 4:13-15(emphasis added!). Therefore, I will not be promising a certain time for when my stay-at-home daughterhood article series, etc. will be posted. But I will say this: I will begin posting the articles(once they're completed) included therein very soon Lord willing! :)

Thank you all again so much for your goodness to me!

May you have a very blessed Lord's Day tomorrow!

Monday, October 20, 2008

New Development: Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

It appears that all my computer time, writing for school and this blog, crocheting, bread dough kneading, etc., has led to my having carpal tunnel syndrome. A couple months ago, I was noticing that as I would write or knead bread dough, my right wrist would seem really weak and would hurt at times. I didn't think anything of it, as I thought it would go away. When I was in Indiana, however, I made a batch of my wheat bread, and after kneading it for 24 minutes!!(due to the weather and atmosphere, I suppose), I looked down and noticed that there was a bump on my hand, just above the left side of my wrist. I felt it and noticed it felt fleshy. Later that night however, it felt hard. I then knew something was up! I have since been doing research on the computer(I'm very thankful for Google, I must say! :)), and have come to the conclusion that I'm now suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome. I read that when someone has carpal tunnel, they always suffer from swollen soft tissue in the wrist or hand near the wrist. I also have most of the symptoms and there is also a history of carpal tunnel in my extended family. I didn't even know teens could suffer from carpal tunnel(I always thought adults were the only ones who got it), but discovered I was wrong when my dear friend Jasmine did a blog post about her CTS. I also read online that CTS can be caused by a previous wrist injury(such as a fracture) followed by a whole lot of activity with that hand. About 5 years ago while I was in Indiana, I was pushed down by the daughter of one of my mom's childhood friends, and this resulted in my falling on my right wrist. It hurt pretty badly, but I thought it was probably just a sprain or strain. It turns out that may have indeed been all it was, or it could have been a minor fracture. Either way, we're pretty sure I have CTS. We bought a wrist brace while in Indiana, but it's not one specifically for CTS, so we'll be purchasing a new one soon. In the mean time, I will be taking a break(about a week long unless I notify you otherwise) from the computer and my blog. This will be really hard for me to do, but it's important that I take care of my wrist at this time, to prevent it from getting worse(I don't fancy the idea of wrist surjury at all, but especially seeing as how I'm right handed!). Therefore, adieu for this week, dear readers!!

I'll miss you all greatly.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Safe Return from Indiana!

We arrived home safely yesterday evening from our wonderful, wonderful trip to Indiana to visit my great-grandparents. I've never had such a special time, nor such a fun one either! I didn't even want to leave to return home. I can't wait to post for you pics and commentary from the trip! I've missed you all terribly. I hope all is well with each of my dear readers.

Blessings,
Miss Rebekah

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Back Safely! :)

This will, regretfully, be a very short post! :/

We arrived home safely from our wonderful trip last night at around 12:30 am. We were delayed in our arriving home by the fact that my dear little brother got sick about 3 hours after eating a hamburger at McDonald's! That may be just a coincidence, and he may actually have a bug, or he may really have food poisening. Either way, by God's grace, he's doing much better this morning.

Our vacation was wonderful! It was so great to visit with family, meet my new little 7 week old cousin, and visit Voddie Baucham's church(and meet my dear friend Jasmine! :)). More info about our trip as well as pics from it will be posted asap.

A huge thank you to all who commented on my blog during my vacation. It's a joy to know that my dear readers follow my blog just as much when I'm here as when I'm not. There are many comments I received that I must respond to, but cannot at the present, for we are unpacking, trying to get our house back in order, do school, etc. etc. All comments will be responded to asap, though! There are also many posts that will soon be published on the subject of Gov. Palin and women in leadership positions. While on vacation, I received the extremely common question, "What about Deborah??" I will be addressing this subject as well asap. Please be patient! :)

Many blessings to all!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Update on the Progress of Upcoming Stay-at-home Daughterhood Article Series

I've received numerous e-mails and comments about my upcoming stay-at-home daugherhood article series, and I'm so thankful! The Lord has been so gracious to generate such an interest in this important series. I'm so happy that the word has spread and that so many families are excitedly anticipating this series.

One of the most popular questions I'm receiving right now is: "When will the series be posted??", so I feel that I need to give you all an update on the series' progress! :) I've completed the introduction to the series and am editing the "Biblical Case for Stay-at-home Daugherhood" article. I'm currently preparing for the second full-length article which will be on the subject of why stay-at-home daugherhood is so important to God and why feminism thus so adamantly attempts to destroy it. During our trip(driving to Arkansas, then driving to Texas, and finally driving back up to Tennessee), I will be reading a book that will prove, I'm sure, to be most helpful in my endeavors. The book is entitled Karl Marx on Education, Women and Children, and I'm sure will help much in my mission to uncover the hand Mr. Marx had in the Women's Rights movement, and ultimately, in feminism.

So, that's where I am right now in my preparation and writing of this series! :) As soon as the Biblical Case article and the article mentioned above are completed, then I will begin posting the series, with the introduction on a Friday and one article on each of the following Fridays. During these first 3 weeks when the introduction and first 2 parts of the series are being posted, I will continue to write the other installments of this series, and post 1 on each following Friday, until all has been posted.

During this writing and preparation time, I ask that you would all please pray for me, that the Lord would give me the words He wants me to write and that His hand would be on this series, blessing it and making it fruitful.

It is my humble prayer that the Lord would use this series in amazing ways to reform our families, churches and nations, and take all Christians back to the "old paths, wherin there is life".

Monday, September 1, 2008

Question Received on the Subject of Modesty

I recently received the following question:

I had a question for you about your sewing. Last summer I bought several dresses before I understood about dressing modestly. I still love the style and fabric of the dresses but would like to add length and make them not so low cut. Do you have any ideas to do that to dresses (or other articles of clothing so I'm not getting rid of much loved clothing and not spending tons of money for a new wardrobe but can make them modest. )
~Anonymous

Anonymous,

First of all, what a great question! I'm so glad you asked it! Secondly, praise God for His working in your life, to bring you to the joys and blessings of modesty! That's so wonderful. I also must say that I really admire your desire to be frugal-that's a great and very helpful
characteristic for a woman to have!

I'm not the most skilled sewer by any means, but I'd be happy to share with you some tips I have. First off all, I often wear a tank top or cami of some sort with tops and dresses that are cut low. Layering like this is really cute and fun, and adds some unique detailing to your outfit. You can also go to a fabric store to search for some fabric that will match your dress and then possibly sew that to the top of the dress front. You could also buy some lace and sew that to the front if the article of clothing is just an inch or two too low. Also, with some patterns, you can, when cutting the fabric out, lengthen the bottom of the article of clothing, or make it higher in the front. You can't do this with all patterns though, so be careful! If you have a pattern that this can be done with, then do not cut along the line of the pattern piece where you want to add length-instead, cut a few inches above it.

As to adding length to the bottom of skirts or dresses, I would suggest adding some lace or detailing to the end of the skirt or dress. You could also purchase some fabric to match and make your skirt a multi-fabric skirt, which are really cute!

Also, if you're in need of modest clothing but don't want to spend much, I encourage you to check out thrift stores and resell shops. You can find some really cute, like-new dresses and skirts for low prices.
My dear friend Allison gave some great ideas in the comment section of this post:

"**Anonymous: My sister and I have added pieces to make sleep-shirts not so low-cut, so it's kind of the same idea. I'm not an expert seamstress at all, and it might depend on the kind of dress it is, but if you simply find a material that matches, you can sew it on the inside of the dress to make it higher-cut. My sister also added length to her sleep-shirt, but she ended up not liking it because she couldn't take very far steps or sit down well. Keep that in mind--unless you add a material that's stretchy or have a dress that flares quite a bit, you might have some trouble doing stuff in it! However, my sister's was a sleep-shirt, so it's not quite the same thing. :) Also, with some shirts or dresses I layer them with a tanktop to make them more modest. Hope this helps a little! In Christ, Allison"
Thanks so much for your help and great advice, Allison!

I hope her tips and mine prove helpful to you, anonymous!

**Input requested: do you have any tips for this lady? If so, please write about them in the comment section.


*this is scheduled post #1-I'm currently on vacation.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Should Women Vote?



In light of the fact that this is the anniversary week of Women's Suffrage, I issue forth a question that I hope all my readers will take the time to answer:

In your opinion, should women have ever been given the right to vote? Why or why not?

When I return from vacation, I will weigh in with my own opinion on this subject and the reasons behind my beliefs in this area.

Thank you very much for your input, everyone!

*P.S. I will be leaving for vacation tomorrow morning, Sat. Augu. 29th. I'm currently writing up numerous posts which will be scheduled to be published while I' m gone. I will have brief computer access while on vacation, so I will be moderating comments and may publish an unscheduled post while on vacation! :) Have a blessed weekend everyone, and a great Labor Day!

Sen. John S. McCain's VP pick: Alaskan Gov. Sarah Palin



Just when we thought America was going to be able to go through another election year without the possibility of a woman in the White House(as either Pres. or VP), our hopes were dashed with the news of today.



Sen. John S. McCain has chosen Alaskan Gov. Sarah Palin to be his VP, which means that we may very well have a female Vice President-for the first time in American history. Gov. Palin is the first Republican woman in history to ever be on a Presidential ticket. It's dicouraging that even that political party which has always been more conservative is now ok with picking a woman to be on the ticket. Secondly, it was saddening to hear Sarah Palin's speech where she said, "It's such an honor to be chosen VP on a day so close to the anniversary of women's suffrage." It's a sad time in our nation's history, as even more and more, America falling under the curse found in Isaiah 3:12:



"As for My people, children are their oppressors and women rule over them."


America has, for too long, been apostate in its beliefs, actions, laws, disrespect for God, etc., and God is not willing to just sit back any longer. If we do not begin, as a country, to return to the "old paths wherein there is life", we will face the judgment and wrath of God on our nation. It is time that we fall on our knees and repent of our unfaithfulness to God and His Word. Only then will there be hope of reformation.



In light of this news, I will be posting(when I return from vacation) an updated and expanded version of my article, "The Curse of Women Rulers", which is an article based on Is. 3:12 and which was originally written when Hillary Clinton was running for President. I pray that this updated version will be a blessing and will be used by God to help turn our nation back Him.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New Dress! :)

A few weeks ago, McCalls patterns at one of our local fabric stores were on sale for $1 each. I really need work on my sewing(a very important skill for a young woman to have!), so we bought a few of the patterns. I found one in particular that I really loved, so I decided to begin with that one. We found some fabric we liked and began the dress making process. My mom was a huge help to me (such as with explaining what the pattern was telling me to do! :)) as I did the sewing. I did the majority of the sewing myself, but my mom was a huge help in the areas I wasn't comfortable with doing yet(such as the hem, etc). I'm so pleased with the finished product.

Though the pattern was found in the regular dress section of the McCall's book, it is a Pride and Prejudice/ Regency era dress. I had been really wanting to have a more casual dress like this(my dear mother made me a fancy one for the Father Daughter retreat in April), and am so pleased with the outcome. I wore it to church this past Sunday and received numerous compliments. It's so pretty, comfortable and gloriously feminine! :)

Here are pics of it:


What do you think?

Monday, August 25, 2008

Please understand.........

A couple weeks ago, I received an e-mail that, in part, read as follows:

"This shall be my last mail. I left a comment on your blog but unfortnately it never showed up. I also sent you an email in which I told you all about my blog and asked you to help me out in terms of the Christian outlook towards life ( as I believed your blog to be a very good example of one) but unfortunately I never recieved a reply. As you had mentioned in your blog that you are "very eager" to recieve replies and comments, I would have thought that as a fellow human being you would have considered sending a short reply to my mail concerning what I have undertaken to achieve and my desire for help. But unfortunately it was very disappointing for me to realise that apparantly you only allow the posts which are along you "own" mentality and any posts (even though in the most respectable format) not in accordance are never acceptable. I was very much looking for a comprehensive dialogue but to my dismay found only an irritating silence."

I wrote the following in response(this is a portion of what I wrote):

"Please forgive me, dear one, for not yet responding to you. Yes, I did read your sweet and loving comment and your e-mail. That's all I've been able to do so far- I haven't been able to respond to the comment of yours on my blog yet. And I don't like to post comments on my blog if I can't immediately respond to them(if they're ones that really require a response, that is!), because that makes the readers of my blog and the one leaving the comments feel like their input is useless and like they won't ever get a response back. Therefore, I thought the wise thing to do would be then to read all my comments, post the ones I can at that moment, and asap get back to the ones I can't, then responding to them asap. However, I see that wasn't the wise way to handle it, as I see how you're hurt. And I fully understandI can't tell you how very sorry I am, and how burdened I am knowing that I hurt you. This is a very busy season in my family's life right now-we're trying to get everything prepared for starting up our homeschool stuff again here in a couple weeks, we have various activities, we've got two trips coming up, I'm preparing a baby blanket for my brand new little cousin who we will be visiting for the first time during our first trip coming up, etc. etc. I'm not saying all this to try to justify myself, or excuse my foolish folly away. I'm simply trying to give you a glimpse into my life, so that you can know without a shadow of a doubt that I'm NOT ignoring you, or wanting to somehow post only comments that are to my liking, etc. Nothing could be further from the truth, and so I'm trying to help you see that. I ask you to please look further on my blog-I post MANY comments that I disagree with(not that I was disagreeing with yours-I wasn't!). I partake in Christian debate often. But I have to choose what's most important in these busy times. And that's my family. If I'm going to have a blog speaking out on how we young ladies should serve our families, then I have to live that out-not just talk about it on my blog and then not actually practice what I preach! There have been times where I've felt so obligated to all the numerous people on my blog, that I have let family responsibilities go by the way side. And I can't do that! That's not pleasing to the Lord! He doesn't want me on the computer all day, but of course, neither does He want me ignoring my dear, treasured readers. And trust me, there have been times where I've felt like breaking down, because I feel so overwhelmed! I feel like I have huge obligations to everybody, and wonder how in the world I can fit them all in. This has warn me thin at times. Therefore, I'm trying to go about these issues in a wiser manner. However, I see from your hurting e-mail that I failed. I'm sorry. I never meant to hurt you or anyone else. I still have other numerous comments I still must get to and respond to. I'm just trying to find the time to without letting anything slip through the cracks! I want to serve my family like I am Biblically commanded to, and yet I also have a calling from the Lord to minister to my readers. I understand that I should have sent at least a short e-mail to you, to assure you that I was interested. It was very, very unwise for me to not do that. I see that now(I should have seen it then!!!) and I'm terribly sorry. I pray that this e-mail has patched things up. I truly am so sorry. I can't apologize enough. If there's anything I can do, let me know. I look forward to hearing from you in the future, dear. I would like more information about the vision you have for your project, and what it would be about!! Once again, I am sorry. Please accept my humble apology. And please pray for me, that I would be more skilled in time management in the future!"

By God's grace alone, everything between me and this dear woman has been patched up. She is one of the most gracious, understanding women I've ever met, and the Lord has seen fit to patch everything completely up between us. My purpose in posting this was to attempt to help my readers understand why I haven't responded to every comment or e-mail I've received lately, and why I haven't even posted every comment. I have around 21 comments currently in moderation for the above mentioned reason. I see that this was not the wise way to go about things at all, but at the time I seemed to think that it was. I see now how wrong I was.

The past couple months have been crazy for me and my family. My mother hasn't been feeling well at all lately(off and on since April actually-she's suffering from low blood sugar type symptoms), we're preparing for 2 trips coming up, we've had to begin our homeschooling things about 3 weeks earlier than we usually do due to these trips, we've had to prepare for this school year, etc. etc. This is why I haven't been posting regularly or getting back with everyone in the amount of time that I should. I pray that you will all please understand and be as gracious as the dear lady mentioned above. I'm sorry for the delay in responding to all the questions, comments, e-mails, etc. that I've received. Please know that I'm trying my best to get back with all of them asap. But, please don't let this keep you from sending more! In a short time(Lord willing) everything will be back to normal, and I will be getting back with everyone much, much quicker. Please know that I believe the more e-mails and comments, the merrier! :) I LOVE hearing from my readers. Every comment and e-mail(whether I agree with the thoughts therein or not) is highly treasured. So, please comment, ask questions and e-mail as much as you'd like. EVERYTHING will be responded to. That is my promise to you, my dear readers!

So, thank you for standing by me in this busy time, and for being so patient and understanding. You are all such a God-send. May He richly bless you all-each and every one of you!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Blog Updates Scheduled for this weekend!

If you visit my blog tomorrow and or Sunday, please don't be disturbed by the look of my blog's sidebar! :) This weekend, it will be under construction. I'll be moving things around, adding features, and getting everything into the order I want. By Monday, my sidebar will be new and vastly improved(Lord willing!).

I pray that all of you, dear readers, have a blessed weekend and special Lord's Day.

Coming Monday will be a couple very informative posts that none of you will want to miss, so be sure to be on the lookout for those! :)

Have a blessed day, everyone!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

1 Year Anniversary! Praise God!

Yesterday, August 12th, 2008, was By HIS Grace and for HIS glory's 1 year blog anniversary! I simply cannot believe that one year has passed already since I began this blog in the hopes of reaching out to the young women of the world. The Lord has been so merciful this past year and has blessed this ministry beyond words. When I began the blog, I had sincerely hoped that word about it would spead, but I didn't know how popular(in # of readers, that is) it would become or how the Lord would work. I stand in absolute awe of the Lord! He has spread the word about this blog ministry of mine in such a manner that is beyond my wildest dreams. I'm so thankful to the Lord for His grace and abundant mercy. I would not have this blog were it not for HIS grace, and the reason I do have this blog is to bring HIM glory. My sole mission is to bring my merciful Savior glory and honor. I have a heart that is burdened by the way our culture is these days. I'm severely saddened when I see young ladies in the world today without hope and without direction in their lives. They've just bought into the lies of feminism, humanism, etc. that their cultures have sold them. The Lord has placed this burden on my heart, just as He has also placed there the desire to see things turn around. My desire is that this blog would be used by the Lord to impact the women of this world and would encourage them to turn back to "the old paths wherein there is life" (and joy and fulfillment, I might add! ;)).


1 year and 321 posts later, the vision and mission behind this blog remains the same as it was the day I created it. Here is what I posted the day my blog's history began:

Hi, everyone! Welcome to my blog! I'm so glad that each and every one of you is here to visit and hope you will come back quite often, as well as tell your friends and family about it! This blog is dedicated to encouraging, strengthening, and edifying girls and young women as they seek to return to the beauties of home and family, Biblical femininity, modesty, discreetness, chasteness, humility, and Biblical daughterhood and womanhood.

I hope that this blog will be a breath of fresh air to you, and be a haven where you can be girded, strengthened, encouraged, and prepared for the battle before us in the savagely humanistic, feministic culture in which we live. I pray this blog and its posts will encourage you as you grasp the Biblical vision of returning to the glorious and noble missions of Biblical femininity and womanhood in the midst of a culture that is disgusted with and belittles anything or anyone who is distinctly feminine and ladylike: a homemaker, a submissive wife/daughter, one who loves and enjoys the noble titles of virtuous daughterhood, submissive wifehood, blessed motherhood, or someone who enjoys and takes great joy from being a helpmeet (or helpmeet in training). This world desperately needs more young girls who will embrace this vision now, and who will grow into noble, virtuous, God-fearing women. We need girls and young ladies who will grow up to be godly and virtuous women who love and are not afraid to have the precious titles of wife, mother, and homemaker (titles that were lovingly God-ordained exclusively for women). Girls who have no concern or desire to look "cool" in the world's eyes or to please them, but rather desire to bring glory and honor to and please their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ who has bought them with a price.

The following beautiful poem so clearly depicts this truth:


The Need of the Hour
by Ella Wheeler Wilcox


What does our country need? Not armies standing
With sabers gleaming ready for the fight;
Not increased navies, skillful and commanding,
To bound the waters with an iron might;
Not haughty men with glutted purses trying
To purchase souls, and keep the power of place:
Not jeweled dolls with one another vying
For palms of beauty, elegance and grace.


But we want women, strong of soul, yet lovely
With that rare meekness, born of gentleness;
Women whose lives are pure and clean and holy,
The women whom all little children bless:
Brave, earnest women, helpful to each other,
With finest scorn for all things low and mean:
Women who hold the names of wife and mother
Far nobler than the title of a queen.


Oh! These are they who mould the men of story,
These mothers, ofttime shorn of grace and youth,
Who, worn and weary, ask no greater glory
Than making some young soul the home of truth;
Who sow in hearts all fallow for the sowing
The seeds of virtue and scorn for sin,
And patient, watch the beauteous harvest growing
And weed out tares which crafty hands cast in.


Women who do not hold the gift of beauty
As some rare treasure to be bought and sold,
But guard it as a precious aid to duty-
The outer framing of the inner gold;
Women who, low above their cradles bending,
Let flattery's voice go by, and give no heed,
While their pure prayers like inscense ascending:
These are our country's pride, our country's need.


I pray that this beautiful poem was an encouragement to you to be godly young women to the glory of God in the middle of this world which scorns all things feminine and lovely.
May the Lord richly bless you and grant to you strength as you strive to glorify, please and honor Him through Biblical femininity, amidst a world and culture who belittles such ladies.


By His grace and for His glory,
Rebekah Ann Shadoin


*The above poem is an excerpt from the beautiful book entitled, Verses of Virtue: The Poetry and Prose of Christian Womanhood. It is compiled and edited by Elizabeth Beall Phillips, mother to 8 children, and wife of Doug W. Phillips, Esq., the President of Vision Forum, Inc. This book is available through
http://www.visionforum.com/, and I would very highly recommend it to each and every one of you young ladies out there who are seeking encouragement regarding your vision of noble daughterhood and womanhood.



This was the first post that I ever published, and my feelings on these subjects remain the same. My purpose and mission is the same. I praise God, from Whom all blessings flow, for blessing this first year so richly. I do not deserve His blessings, but He lavishly bestowed them upon me anyway. All glory goes to Him and Him alone! Through the past year, I have met the sweetest young ladies in the world. These dear girls have become my closest friends, and I thank the Lord for them. I have also been so blessed by the comments of many women(and a few men!) who have visited this blog and have given me encouragement and grace. To all of the people who have ever commented on my blog(whether you agreed with me or not): thank you. Thank you for leaving your comments. The wonderful comments and e-mails I receive are what makes blogging so wonderful. I'm so thankful that the Lord has spread the word about my little corner of the blogosphere, and by so doing, has allowed me to meet and converse with such wonderful people. I pray that He continues to spread the word and make my blog known to even more people in the coming year of ministry. Praise God for His goodness and grace!

I have such a big vision for the next year of this blog! There are so many, many articles and article series that I will be posting in the next year that I'm so excited about! I will be branching this ministry out(Lord willing) with many more posts, new blog features, and some new ministry ideas that I cannot disclose at the moment. :) Needless to say, I'm very excited! All glory and honor belongs to my wonderful Savior, Who I know has wonderful plans for this blog and its upcoming year.

In closing, I would like to issue forth another huge thank-you to all the readers of my blog. This blog is for YOU and each and every one of you make it a success. Thank you for your gracious comments, your faithful reading of this blog, and for your friendship and mentorship. May you all experience the Lord's richest blessings.

By HIS grace and for HIS glory,

Miss Rebekah Ann S.



*beautiful photo courtesy of http://www.allposters.com/

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Surprise Pics Installment 2! ;)

Here's installment number 2 of the surprise pics I promised you all. I had so much fun doing installment 1, because I thoroughly enjoyed your excited and sweet comments. :) I could tell that you were all having fun with this, and that was neat.

So, here is installment 2, with pics from 1994 and 1995. Remember-I was born in July 1992, so keep that in mind and you'll know approximately how old I am in these! :)

1994:
Dental hygiene is very important! :)


Don't you just love my curls? :) This is around the time of my second birthday. We went up to one of my very favorite places-the corn field and country area of Indiana to visit my great-grandparents for the first time! I've always had fun up here, but it wasn't until recently that I've really come to appreciate my great-grandparents so very much. This was my first croquet game!! :) Now I enjoy playing croquet at the Vision Forum father/daughter retreats!


Having a very important talk with my grandfather! :) This is my mom's dad. I think this is just such a sweet picture.

Already preparing to be a homemaker! :) I LOVED that little stove. It was definitely the best gift for me!


Christmas 1994. Believe it or not, I'm only 2 years and 5 months in this picture! Amazing, itsn't it? I've always looked much older than my actual age.


1995:

While living in Texas near my grandparents(where we lived until I was 12 1/2, when we moved up here to Tennessee), it became a tradition beginning in 1995 for my grandmother(my mom's mom) to take me to a great big field of bluebonnets and Indian paintbrushes for an annual photo. I have some sweet memories of these special and fun times. :)


July 12th, 1995-my 3rd birthday! :) Once again, I look much older than I really am.


Christmas morning, 1995. Preparing already to be a mommy. :) This was one of my first, if not my first, doll. I was SO happy to receive her and her special stroller. I named her Jessica, and took her with me wherever I went, to care for her and take care of her. :) I still have her to this day-she's tucked away in my room near my window seat, ready to be given to my(Lord willing) first born daughter. :)

I hope you enjoyed this little glimpse into my childhood. :) More pics(from 1996 and 1997) will be posted soon!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Summer Blowout Sale!

Have you been ministered to through Crystal Paine and her Biblical Womanhood site? Have you been wanting to purchase all of her Christ-exalting e-books, but never thought you had the money to?

Well, now you do! Only for today, Wednesday July 30th, Mrs. Paine is very generously offering up for sale all of her e-books for the amazing price of only $5.97!! This is an over $100 value!

This is an exceptionally great deal when you consider the fact that each of these e-books can be printed out if you prefer to read them as actual booklets! You don't have to read them on the computer if you rather not.

So, please go here to show this wonderful lady your support, while at the same time, getting your hands on some wonderful, Christ-honoring products.

:)

Friday, July 25, 2008

Surprise Pics Installment 1! :)

As I disclosed a couple days ago, the surprise "gift" I was going to be giving you all in honor of my 16th birthday was the ability to see various pictures from the first 16 years of my life. I thought you all might enjoy this, so I hope you have fun viewing the following glimpses into my life. :) This is installment 1, with more pics to follow on Monday.

Enjoy! ;)

1992:
Me and my dear Mother on July 12th 1992
What fun!
Me and my Daddy :)

Getting bigger! :)


1993:
Look how tall I am! (but still not as tall as Daddy!....)
Our family on Easter Sunday, 1993
1st Birthday!!!
Awww..... :)



Thursday, July 24, 2008

Only the Lord knows why things don't happen according to our plans. :)

I was going to post the pics on here last night while my father was at our church's Wednesday night men and sons meeting. He didn't end up attending it last night, though, and so in order to not steal away from family time, I didn't post the pictures.

The plan was then for me to post them today obviously! But we've been on the run all day and now that my father's home, I don't believe I should steal away from family time tonight either.

The pics still have to be saved to the computer and then I will post them(unless the Lord has something else planned for me that I don't know about! ;)) tomorrow.

Thank you ladies, for being so gracious and understanding!

A man plans his ways, but the Lord directs his steps. ~Prov. 16:9!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Without Further Ado........

The surprise pictures will be:

drumroll please.......................

pictures from my first 16 years. :)

I thought it might be fun for all of you to enjoy a little glimpse into my life thus far. I thought you would enjoy seeing what I looked like as a little child, etc. I hope you enjoy the surprise pictures and that they bring a smile to your face! :) The first set of pics will be posted today!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Update Regarding Suprise Pics!! :)

Regretfully, my camera wasn't working and therefore I was unable to post the surprise pics when I wanted to. The camera is up and running again, praise the Lord, so the pics should be posted very soon!! ;)

Friday, July 11, 2008

Special Surprise! :)

As some of you know, my 16th birthday is tomorrow, July 12th. On one's birthday, the day is always centered on them and they are the ones who receive all the gifts. Well, I'm going to turn that around! Either tomorrow or Monday(hopefully tomorrow!!), I will be posting something special for all of you to enjoy. I can only give one hint: there will be special pics posted. :)
Just for fun, would any of you like to make a guess as to what the surprise is? If so, leave your guess in the comment section!

I'm excited about doing this special, fun little thing for all my treasured blog readers.

May the Lord richly bless you this day!

Friday, June 20, 2008

Oh, how I've missed you all!

Where do I begin?? :)

I've missed you all so much and have really missed posting on here and corresponding with you all these past few weeks!

First off, we had a WONDERFUL vacation to Indiana. I will be posting pics from that vacation shortly, and will fill you in on some really special, memorable happenings that took place while we were there! :) The Lord really blessed us during this vacation, to say the least!

We returned from vacation on Sunday night, June 1st, and since then have been trying to get back on track with everything, sort out our summer schedule, begin piano lessons(taught to me by my wonderful mother-more on that later ;)), etc. etc. Have you ever experienced a week or two in your life where you know pretty much what happened during that time, yet you wonder where the time went and whether or not you accomplished anything? Well, that's exactly how I've been feeling the past two weeks.

But, don't fear! This blog will very soon be up and running full swing ahead! :) The article series I mentioned a few posts ago will be begun here on my blog within the week. I will be getting to each and every comment and e-mail I've received in the past month or so(most of which have been on the subject of homemaking and that post I did a few weeks ago!!). Never fear-all your questions, comments, and input will be acknowledged and answered in full! :)

Thank you all so much for your patience. You are all such a God send! God bless you all.

Monday, May 26, 2008

Today's Bible Verse

"The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face to shine upon you, and be gracious to you; the Lord lift up His contenance upon you, and give you peace."

~Numbers 6:24-26(NKJV)

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Today's Bible Verse

Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, "I know Him," and does not keep His commandments, is a liar and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His Word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who abides in Him ought himself to walk just as He walked.

~1 John 2:3-6(NKJV)

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Dear readers,

I wanted to inform you all that while I'm in Indiana(this is a scheduled post!), I more than likely will not have computer access. Therefore, if you leave a comment or send me an e-mail and I do not respond to you for a week, or if you're comment doesn't show up on my blog for a week, it's not because I'm ignoring you! It's simply because I am void of internet access.

Thank you for understanding!

Before I close, I would like to ask all of you to please pray for safe travels for us.

Many blessings to you all!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Comments and E-mails

I have received MANY comments and e-mails today on the subject of homemaking, etc. I've posted and responded to as many as possible. I wanted to respond to all before I leave on my vacation early tomorrow morning, but I'm finding out that this simply isn't possible! Therefore, please understand that the reason your comments have not shown up yet/the reason I've not responded is because I've simply run out of time, with trying to respond to these, pack, clean the house, etc. etc. Thank you for understanding. I'm really very sorry for the wait, but please know that I will get to each and every one of your comments and e-mails when I get back from Indiana. Thank you so very much for your wonderful patience. :)

Many blessings,
Rebekah

Please Pray!

I just came across this heart-wrenching article on the tragedy that just struck the Stephen Curtis Chapman family.

I'm saddened beyond words, and my heart goes out to this poor family-especially the oldest son.

Please pray for this family, that the Lord would comfort them and give them the peace that passes all understanding. Thank you for praying for them! I'm sure they covet your loving prayers.

Trip Info

We will be leaving early tomorrow morning to travel up to Indiana to visit my precious great-grandparents. I'm so excited, and this family vacation is such a rich blessing every time we go on it. We will be returning on June 1st. I will be taking lots of pictures that I will post along with all the other pics that have not yet been posted.

I will be typing us some posts and will take advantage of Blogger's new feature, and will schedule them to be posted while I'm gone. Be sure to be on the lookout for those!

May you all have a blessed weekend, dear readers!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Introducing......

.......the new up and coming 6-part article series on the subject of Stay-at-Home Daughterhood!

The 6 articles you will be reading are:

1. Stay-at-Home Daughterhood: The Biblical Case

2. Why Stay-at-Home Daughterhood is So Important to God, and Why the Feminists Thus Want to Destroy it

3.Refuting the Myths: Answering the Nay-Sayers of Stay-at-Home Daughterhood

4. Dealing With Difficulties(subjects covered will be: what if my family's not supportive?, what if my family needs extra money?, etc.

5. What's a Girl to Do?(discussing how the stay-at-home daughter can fill her time to the glory of God)

6. The Top 50 Reasons Why it's Such a Blessing to be a Stay-at-Home Daughter

And possible bonus(if this series generates a lot of input and questions):

7. Answering the Questions Raised by the Doctrine of Stay-at-Home Daughterhood

I'm so excited about this new article series! It will take a lot of work, but I'm so ready for it. The first article is almost finished(I have 2 paragraphs left, and then I need to edit it), and it's been such an amazing article to write. As I set out to write it, I wasn't prepared for all the numerous Scripture passages the Lord would lead me to. It's really been a blessing to write this article and to discover just how important stay-at-home daughterhood is to the Lord. I pray that this series will be a tremendous blessing to you, and that the Lord would use it in a mighty way to change the convictions of many and to encourage stay-at-home daughters!

May the Lord richly bless you all!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

~The 12 Pillars of Biblical Womanhood~

The 12 Pillars of Biblical Womanhood
1. An Image Bearer ~Genesis 1:26-27

2. A Woman Not a Man ~Genesis 2:21-23

3. A Disciple ~Deuteronomy 6:7

4. A Member of the Church ~Acts 2:49

5. A Demonstration of Unfading Beauty ~1 Peter 3:4

6. A Helpmeet ~Genesis 2:18

7. A Trustful and Submissive Wife ~Ephesians 5:22

8. A Keeper at Home ~Titus 2:5

9. A Domestic Entrepreneur ~Proverbs 31:10-31

10. A Fruitful Bearer of Children ~Genesis 1:28

11. A Teacher of the Next Generation ~Ephesians 6:1-3

12. A Godly Mentor ~Titus 2:3-5

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Question and Answer Week: Response #8

I received the following question yesterday morning.

Rebekah, tell me where did the whole "stay-at-home daughter" thing come from? who introduced it to you? and can you back up this notion with scripture?

~Anonymous

Anonymous,
Hello! Thank you for your great question. Yes, I can indeed back it up with numerous Scripture passages-in fact, that's what I'm doing right now! I'm currently writing an article(the first in a 5part series on this very subject) entitled Stay-At-Home Daughterhood: A Biblical Case. It's a really long article, and I'm so excited about it! I pray that it will be a blessing to all who visit this blog.

The whole "stay-at-home daughterhood thing" came directly from the Scriptures alone. In fact, that was normative prior to radical feminism! Feminism has changed the way we all think(even Christians have been drastically changed by it, sadly), and so now, when we're presented with a Biblical doctrine we tend to kick against it and claim that that surely couldn't be found in the Scriptures anywhere. We need a HUGE change in our thinking! It's high time we stopped conforming to this sinful, God-hating world, and instead transformed our minds!

I was first introduced with the concept of stay-at-home daughterhood through a book I read at the end of 2006/beginning of 2007. I was shocked when I read this part of the book, because I'm ashamed to say, I had no idea this was taught in the Scriptures! I was very feministic in my thinking(and thus, very anti-God and anti-Scripture), and so was so unfamiliar with the Scriptures that I had no idea this sort of idea was contained there. To make sure the authors of this book were actually right and knew what they were talking about, I set out on a deep study of the Word, to "see whether these things be so." I was determined to "rightly divide the Word of truth" and to "test all things; hold fast what is good." I was simply amazed at the end of my study! I had come across even more Scripture passages supporting this idea than the authors had even referenced! I repented before the Lord for not knowing His Word, and for going against what it so clearly teaches. It is now my goal in life to teach the Scriptures(especially on the subject of Biblical daughterhood, womanhood and femininity), to refute feminism by exposing its true history and foundations, etc.

May you have a blessed day, Anonymous! Thank you again for your question, and should you have anymore, please don't hesitate to let me know!

In Christ alone,
Rebekah

Monday, May 19, 2008

Question and Answer Week: Response #7

I received the following question for Q&A Week:



1)I would like to know what your views are on women working outside the home? Do you think it is a sin?

If your answer is it is not, it is something between the Lord and the individual, I have no more questions.

On the other hand, if your answer is yes, do you on principle refuse to go to female doctors, nurses, grocery store checkout ladies, bank tellers, and the 1000 different arenas women are working in today's world?

~AnneK

Hello, AnneK! Thank you for your great question. It's funny you should ask this right now, because I was just in a lengthy debate over on another blog on this very subject! :)

I'm afraid you're going to have to wait for my full answer and all the whys behind it, because I'm currently gathering all my thoughts and Scriptures for a lengthy article on this very subject, that I will be posting here on my blog in the near future. I hope you don't mind the wait; thank you for your patience!

I'll just provide you with my short answer now, and ask that you return for the rest of it, along with the Scriptures that back me up in my upcoming article. Basically, yes, I believe that it is a sin for Christian women to not be homemakers, for they are explicitly commanded to be so, and disobeying our Lord's commands is sin. I will be answering all the arguements I get from people who disagree with me, in my upcoming article, and will also be answering the question: what about single moms and older women?

No, I do not refuse to go to female nurses, etc. One thing we have to understand is that very sadly, the majority of women in the workforce are not Christians(simply because the plain truth and sad fact is that most people are not Christians). Therefore, it's not a sin for them to be in the workforce(although they would greatly benefit from following the Lord's commands that are issued to Christians). Also, going to female doctors, etc., provides us with a great mission field! If we were to refuse to go to female doctors and other females in the workforce, we would be shunning many non-Christians who need the Good News, and we would not have the mission field that we would be blessed with if we did go to these women.

Thank you so much for your question, AnneK! If you should have anymore questions, please don't hesitate to let me know-I love answering my reader's inquiries! :)

Have a blessed day,
Rebekah Ann

Friday, May 16, 2008

Question and Answer Week: Response #6(the first 5 were posted during last time's Q&A Week)

I recently received the following question for Q&A Week:

As you may know many christian families are against romance novels for their children because they might get children thinking about marriage and romance to soon. However, tell me what's the difference between a romance novel and a Disney movie? Disney movies promote romance and marriage so does that mean that we're no longer allowed to let children watch classic Disney movies?

~Anonymous

Hi, anonymous! That's a really great question, and I'm glad you asked it.

Well, for one thing, I don't think the main reason that Christian families are against romance novels is because they get their children thinking about marriage in and of itself too fast(although that may be the case for some, because the fact is that some parents, even Christian ones, don't believe that marriage is very good or something their children should be preparing for), but rather because these books get their children thinking about the physical and emotional aspects of marriage and romance far too early. These books breed impurity and discontentment and thus should not be read by any Christians, let alone children. These kinds of books get a child thinking that his/her spouse will be perfect, and they make adult readers wish that their spouses were more like the characters in the book. This is just one of the reasons why it is highly dangerous for people to read these oftentimes filthy books.

With Disney movies it's a little different. There are some Disney movies that I'm heavily against, because they make witchcraft look cute, teach children things that are heavily contrary to Scripture, etc. But the ones we have in focus now are ones such as Cinderella, Snow White, Beauty and the Beast, and Sleeping Beauty. I don't tend to find anything all that wrong with these particular movies. Some may disagree with me(and if my readers are among those, I encourage you to please leave me a comment explaining why-I may be missing something ;)), but this is my own personal opinion. In fact, I think there are some very good lessons taught in the above mentioned Disney children's movies. First of all, the young ladies in each of these movies is not pining away, waiting for Prince Charming to come. Rather, she's busy about some task, whether it be serving others, learning new things, etc. This is something that many young girls today need to learn. They should be preparing for and saving themselves for their future Prince Charmings, but should not be wasting their time pining away for him. Also, marriage is praised in these movies, and is seen as a good thing. The movie Cinderella teaches us selflessness. Also, Prince Charming comes and rescues his princess. Prince Charming is seen as a strong man who is the protector of his wife-he is the one out fighting for her, protecting her from those who would desire to hurt her, etc. These are very good, Biblical teachings.

In conclusion, one of the huge differences between the romance novels and Disney movies is that in the romance novels, impurity is praised and fills every page, whereas it isn't present in the Disney movies. Romance novels teach many bad things and are worthless, whereas the specific Disney movies mention above teach many good life lessons.

Thank you again so much for your great question, Anonymous! If you ever have anymore questions, please don't hesitate to let me know-I'd be happy to answer them for you!

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

The Return of Question and Answer Week

A few months ago, I came up with the idea to host Question and Answer Week, where my dear readers could contact me and ask me any question(s) they wanted-on anything from my favorite food, to what I think regarding different aspects of Biblical womanhood, Biblical daughterhood and Biblical femininity, to inquiries as to homemaking tips, advice on being a faithful daughter and sibling, etc. etc. I was amazed by the huge response and outpouring of inquiries, and was so thrilled to answer each and every one of the great questions I received. It is for this reason that I'm please to announce:

The Return of Question and Answer Week!

Please e-mail me(or leave me a comment) with any questions you may have. I will answer them in interview style, and will post the questions and answers here on my blog.

So, now without further ado, start the questions coming!! :)

Many pictures coming soon!!!

I wanted to let you all know that I will be posting my long-awaited pictures soon. Pics from the Vision Forum Father/Daughter Retreat, the Puritan Family Reformation Conference, recent random family pictures, and pictures that I will take tonight at our church fellowship will all be posted very soon, so please be on the lookout for those!

Also, I'm still currently working on many articles to post on here, and I'm looking into the possibility of making podcasts! I know you all are anxious to start reading those articles, so please pray that the Lord would be gracious and would provide me with the words He wants me to say. I'm also seeking the Lord's guidance over my idea of possibly having my devotionals published! I also have a couple other ministry ideas up my sleeve, that I can't wait to share with you all very, very shortly! :)

Much will be going on here at By His Grace and For His Glory(especially with summer just around the corner), so you won't want to miss a single thing!

I must sign off for now, but before I go, I wanted to let you know that I would love to hear from you! Please feel free to e-mail me (living_for_my_Lords_glory@hotmail.com) or leave me a comment at any time! Another thing I am currently in the process of doing is answering all the many questions, comments and e-mails I've received! If you are one of the people who has sent me an e-mail/question/comment that I have not yet responded to, please be patient. You are all on my mind, and I'm striving to get to each and every e-mail and question as time permits. :)

May you all have a blessed day!

~Numbers 6:24-26

Monday, May 12, 2008

Home Safely! :)

I just wanted to quickly post, to let you all know that we're home safely from the wonderful Puritan Family Reformation Conference!! :) We were so blessed by this outstanding weekend. More info to come soon!

I have to sign off for now, as we're very busy with unpacking, finishing up school for this school year, etc., but I'll fill all of you in asap! :)

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Puritan Family Reformation Conference!!!

We're really busy right now, trying to do school work, pack, and get everything situated for our mini-trip this weekend. I'm SO excited and pleased to announce that we will be attending the Puritan Family Reformation Conference this weekend, presented by Vision Forum and Scott Brown. The conference will be held from Friday, May 9th through Sunday, May 11th in Wake Forest, North Carolina. Please click the above link for more information about this great conference(also be sure to take a peak at the titles of the messages that we will be blessed with this weekend). Also, please click here to watch a video promo for the conference! I'm so excited about this conference, and feel so very, very blessed by the Lord to be able to attend it. It will be so refreshing and encouraging to be around likeminded families, and will be so wonderful to be edified and exhorted in the Word. I'm also really looking forward to learning the history of the family life of many of the puritans, such as Matthew Henry. This weekend will be such a rich blessing. I will be taking pictures that will be posted(along with photos from the father/daughter retreat and the baby shower I mentioned a couple weeks ago) this coming week.

We will be leaving early tomorrow afternoon(as soon as Daddy gets off work) to drive(for about 7 1/2 hours) to Wake Forest, North Carolina. Please pray for safe travel, that the Lord would have His hand on the conference attendees to bless them and keep them safe, that the Lord would teach us all what He wants us to learn and live out, and that we would all come away with a renewed, invigorated Biblical vision for victorious Christian family life. We will be driving back on Sunday afternoon(and will not get home until very late at night!), so please pray that we will have safe travels on the way back, as well. Thank you for your prayers, and I will let you know all about the conference when we return. :)

By the way, Blogger has a new feature that allows blog authors to write up posts that can be scheduled to be posted at a time in the future. If I have time(I'll try my hardest), I will write up a special post for you all that will be posted sometime this weekend while I'm gone, so be on the lookout for that! :)

May the Lord richly bless you this coming weekend, and may all you mothers have a blessed and joyous Mother's Day with your little blessings! :)

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Daily Bible Verse

My lips shall utter praise, for You teach me Your statutes. My tongue shall speak of Your word,for all Your commandments are righteousness.

~Psalm 119:171-172(NKJV)

Monday, May 5, 2008

Please refer to the new blog schedule, so that you can know what to expect here on this blog!

1st Devotional!

I'm trying to get back on track with my blogging, while at the same time, write, edit and rewrite many, many articles for this site. Therefore, I find that it would be most convenient for me to (for the next few days) post(on devotional days) some of my old devotionals. That way, those of you that didn't get to read those when they were first posted can read them now, and doing this will provide me with much more needed time to write my long articles! :) Thank you for understanding! So, without further adeiu, I want to present to you the first ever devotional that I wrote for this blog. I pray that it blesses, convicts, edifies, and encourages you in your walk with our wonderful Lord!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Yay!

I don't have much time at the moment, but wanted to sign in real quick and leave you all with some updates. Praise be to the Lord-I am feeling so much better! I'm on antibiotics right now, and for the first time in a week, I'm actually enjoying more of what is actually a good night's sleep! I'm by no means completely 100% yet, but how wonderful the Lord is! I'm getting more sleep and am not dreading the time when night comes anymore, because I'm actually able to fall asleep and stay asleep longer. Due to my sinus infection and all it brings with it, I had been unable to fall asleep for about an hour, and would then only sleep about 2 hours at a time, with numerous breaks in between my sleep. It was horrible! But the Lord is so merciful, and I'm feeling a lot better. I hope to be fully fine within the next couple days.

Our second living room is still being "refurnished". More pics and updates about that soon!

I'm writing up a daily schedule for myself, where I'll actually be able to get up really early, get everything done, have plenty of time for writing for my blog, be able to dedicate much time to my education, etc. Due to my lack of schedule, I had found myself getting up around 9, drifting from this subject in my homeschooling to that subject, never really feeling like I got a whole, whole lot done, do to the fact that my blog/ministry time was almost nonexistant lately. So, I will be beginning this new schedule on Monday, and this blog will have a LOT of more time and work dedicated to it, while still allowing me to accomplish all the other tons of things I need to do in a day. :) Having this schedule will be so wonderful. I'm really excited! More info on my schedule, etc. will be coming soon!

I must get off now, but will be on either tomorrow or Saturday. And on Monday, this blog will be able to abide by the blog schedule I posted about a month or 2 ago! :)

Have a blessed night, dear readers,
Rebekah

Monday, April 28, 2008

Updates

Oh, dear readers, so much has happened lately that I've been unable to do much of anything on the computer(i.e. I haven't been able to post on my blog, views other people's blogs, etc). I've had a sinus infection for the past week resulting in headaches, etc. etc., Mama hasn't been feeling well, I've had so much school work, I'm preparing for a conference coming up at our church by coordinating different resources we'll be buying for the resource table, sending lots of e-mails to members of our church and companies we'll be purchasing resources from, etc. Also, we're(as I type) having a family from our church install laminate(hardwood look-a-like) flooring in our second living room. We had to move out all the furniture(including the computer), books, carpet, carpet padding, etc. etc. out from the room in order to prepare for today-the day the new flooring is being laid. This is what has been keeping me away from the blog. Thank you all so, so much for understanding, for asking about me, for worrying about me( but remember-the Bible says don't worry!! ;)), and for sticking by me even though it seems that I've been abandoning you this past week. I'm really looking forward to the very(Lord willing) near future when everything will get back to normal. I have SO many article and devotional ideas running in my head that I'm SO thankful to God for and so excited about. Unless the Lord wills that something else happen, I should be getting back to my normal(only more involved with many more posts) blog schedule very, very soon.

Thank you all for sticking by me and for being so interested in my blog and me even though I've been bobarded with many things lately. :)

The Lord is good and His will is good, and everything that happens is planned by Him-including this sickness, etc. :) So, I'm excited about getting everything back to normal soon, but am also excited that everything's going according to His perfect plan. :)
May the Lord richly bless you all until I post again(which should be tomorrow, Wednesday or Thursday for sure).

Friday, April 18, 2008

Just Checking In.......

No, I've not forgotten about you all, nor have I forgotten to post about the wonderful retreat. :) I've been very busy with my schoolwork and with finishing up a crocheted baby blanket I'm working on for a baby shower I'm going to tomorrow. Pictures from the retreat will probably be posted today or tomorrow; Monday at the very, very latest!! Keep on looking out for those and for my coverage of the wonderful 2008 Vision Forum Father and Daughter Descipleship Retreat! :)

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Hello!

Hello, all! I just have a few minutes to check in with you all, but I wanted to let you know that we returned home safely from the retreat. It was wonderful!!!!

I'm looking forward to sharing with all of you the pictures I took, as well as sharing with you how the retreat was, and what a blessing it was. I must go tackle some of my school work right now, but will come back on here with coverage of the retreat as soon as possible! :)

Friday, April 11, 2008

I'll be leaving for the retreat in just a few minutes. It'll take us 3 hours to drive down there to where it's held in Georgia. Please pray for our safety, that the fathers and daughters would grow closer together, and that the Lord would teach us all want He wants us to learn.

Thank you for your prayers!

I'll be taking pics that I'll post on either Monday or Tuesday.

Have a blessed weekend, dear readers!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Thank you!!

Dear readers,

I want to thank you all so much for the sweet words of comfort you left me in regards to losing my sweet little Cocoa. Your kindness blessed me so much, and helped me to get through this time of sadness. You are all such wonderful friends, and I want you to know what a blessing your sweet comments were to me! I thank the Lord for all of you; each one of you is so dear to me, and your loving words of sympathy really cheered me up quite a bit. Thank you all so, so much!!

In Christian love,

Rebekah Ann
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I published a post the other day on the subject of the upcoming Vision Forum Father/Daugther Retreat. In case some of you had not seen it, please check out that link. And, for those of you who may not have seen my question on that other post, here it is again: are any of you going? If so, maybe we could meet! :) Have you ever been before?

Daily Bible Verse

Hear, my son, and be wise; and guide your heart in the way. Listen to your father who begot you, and do not despise your mother when she is old. My son, give me your heart, and let your eyes observe my ways.

~Proverbs 23:19,22,26(NKJV)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Tribute to my precious little Cocoa

There are some outside cats that we feed. One of them, Reese's (named so because of her chocolate and peanut butter coloring) had her first litter of kittens last year at the end of May. One of her babies, Cocoa(named because she looks exactly like her Mama, and was predominately brown with some orange markings and an absolutely adorable orange foot and leg) was found by us yesterday in the road. She had gotten run over and was obviously instantly killed. I cried and cried in my room last night as I watched out my window as Mama and Daddy buried her in our backyard. Needless to say, yesterday was a horrible day for me. Little Cocoa had been brought to us from the woods by her Mama at a time in her young life when she was already scared of people. It took a lot of patience and a great deal of time, but I finally got her tamed, and after working with her for so long, we had developed a very special bond. Whenever I would open the door to step outside, she would back away a bit because she was still a little timid. But once she discovered that it was me, and I called her to me, she would immediately walk over. I would pick her up and she would start purring profusely; she'd always gaze up into my eyes or give me a little kiss on the cheek. She was a really sweet little girl. The following is a tribute to my sweet little baby, Cocoa, who will be in my heart forever and ever.
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Cocoa

May 2007 to April 6th or 7th, 2008

In our eyes, your life was far too short, my sweet girl. But in the Lord's eyes, everything in your little life went according to His perfect will and plan. At times, I feel like screaming out to God, "Why did you take her so soon?! She was such a joy to me!". But then I have to step back and look on the bright side-you brought such joy to us, you had a happy little life, and you suffered from no pain or fright when you died. For that, I will be eternally thankful to my merciful Father.

Your life was so short-only 10 1/2 months-but those were such joyous months! :) I so enjoyed the time I spent with you. You were so recognizable by your little orange leg, sweet girl. :) Your cute little perfectly circular eyes used to look up at me with a look of love as I held you. You brought me such joy, and you will be in my heart forever and ever! I miss you terribly, and wish you were still here with us. A part of me almost believes that as soon as I open the front door, you'll come running. I know that isn't the case, though, and I know that I'll never be able to hold my little sweetie again. Just know how much I love you! I'm crying as I type this, sweetie, because I just love and miss you so much. I would give anything to be able to hold you again just once. I miss being able to cuddle you. A part of you will always live on in your Mama-whenever I look at her, your look-alike, I'll think of you with fond and joyous memories, but also with a heavy heart. I love you so, so much, sweet baby, and I will always carry a picture of you in my mind forever and ever. Thank you for blessing my life so richly like you did while you were here with us. Thank you, God, for those few short months that I had with her.

I miss you, sweet girl, but will never forget you!! Everyday, I'll look in our back yard at your little burial spot and will remember all the joy you brought to me. I love you, little Cocoa.

"The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; blessed be the name of the Lord."

~Job 1:21b

Daily Bible Verse

Lord, You have been our dwelling place in all generations. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God.

~Psalm 90:1-2(NKJV)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Great Devotional by the late Mr. Charles Haddon Spurgeon

I was planning on posting one of my own devotionals today, but when I came across this devotional in this book written by Charles Haddon Spurgeon, I just had to share it with all of you.

"Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and will all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

~Mark 12:30
Suggested further reading: 2 John 1-6

We are bound to love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Thus, we deduce that we are to love God supremely. Thou art to love thy wife, O husband. Those canst not love her too much except in one case, if thou shouldst love her before God, and prefer her pleasure to the pleasure of the Most High. Then wouldst thou be an idolater. Child! Thou art to love thy parents; thou canst not love him too much who begot thee, not her too much who brought thee forth; but remember, there is one law that doth override that. Thou art to love thy God more than they father or thy mother. He demands thy first and thy highest affection: thou art to love him "with all they heart". We are allowed to love our relatives:we are taught to do so. He that does not love his own family is worse than a heathen man and a publican. But we are not to lovethe dearest object of our hearts so much as we love God. You may erect little thrones for those whom you rightly love; but God's throne must be a glorious high throne; you may set them upon the steps, but God must sit on the very seat itself. He is to be enthroned, the royal One within your heart, the king of your affections. Have you kept this commandment? I know I have not; I must plead guilty before God; I must cast myself before him, and acknowledge my transgression. But nevertheless, there standeth the commandment-"Thou shalt love God with all thy heart" that is, thou shalt love Him supremely.

For meditation: The Lord Jesus Christ practiced what He preached(Matthew 10:37,38). His Heavenly Father's house came first, but he was obedient in His earthly parents' house(Luke 2:48-51); His Heavenly Father's will came first(Matthew 26:39), but even while He was carrying it out, His earthly mother's wellbeing was upon His heart(John 19:26-27). We love our families, our fellow-believers and the lost ones best, when we love and obey God first.

Friday, April 4, 2008

2008 Vision Forum Father and Daughter Discipleship Retreat!!



I attended the Vision Forum Father and Daughter Retreat with my father for the first time last year. It was a weekend filled with life-changing, convicting, edifying, encouraging messages, walks in the beautiful Callaway Gardens, a Victorian high tea, games and a picnic on a large, beautiful field, an ice-cream social, and blessed fellowship with likeminded fathers and daughters. Needless to say, it was one of the best weekends of my life! The Lord used it to bring my father and me even closer together, and we had such a wonderful, wonderful time together learning from God's Word, making new friends, and enjoying the beauty of nature.

Well, the time of year for the retreat is here again already!! That's so hard to believe. It seems like just a few months ago we were preparing for last year's retreat. I'm so excited about this year's retreat!! :) I can't wait to meet with the dear Botkin sisters, Mr. Phillips, Mr. Botkin, and Mr. Brown again. I'm looking forward to hopefully seeing my friends from last year there, and I can't wait to make new friends! I'm so looking forward to soaking in the wisdom and truth from the great speeches, I'm looking forward to dressing as a Victorian lady for the high tea, and I'm so excited that my dear friend from church, Kelsey, will be attending this year with her father. As you can tell, I'm just really looking forward to the retreat! :) I think I'm looking forward to it even more this year than I was last year, if that's possible. :)
The retreat this year will be held at the beautiful Callaway Gardens in Pine Mountain, Georgia again, from Friday, April 11th thru Sunday, April 13th. For more info, please click here!

So, dear ladies, are any of you attending this great retreat this year? If so, maybe we can meet up!!! :) Have you or someone you know attended this retreat? If you won't be attending this year I highly encourage you to attend next year! :)