Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Have We Trampled on Jesus?

You know how we read scriptures many times over & sometimes it really speaks to us? Well, I found this scripture a few weeks ago that really spoke to me. I believe it will also speak to you.

Hebrews 10: 26 For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,

Hebrews 10:29 Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?

Wow…what powerful words….have we insulted the Spirit of grace by our willingness to partake in things that are not holy? Have we trampled the Son of God underfoot by the words we speak? The things that we do? What we participate in or allow? Do we excuse things that deep down we know are not God-like and don’t bring about His glory in our lives? When we do, are we honestly realizing that at some point there no longer remains a sacrifice for those sins, & that we’ve trampled Jesus & insulted what He did on the cross? Will we be thought worthy? Or will like verse 27 says that there will be “a certain fearful expectation of judgment & fiery indignation”?

Upon reading that living Word, I prayed God do not allow me to be guilty of that. Let your Holy Spirit convict me & bring me to a life of holiness before You every day. A life that doesn’t insult what You did for me on the cross. One that doesn’t excuse that time-altering event as a common thing to be trampled underfoot like dirt or mud or trash. Lord help me to live a life of holiness that He requires to see Him (Hebrews 12:14).

So I ask you today…..are you pursuing a life of holiness? A life that doesn’t insult Jesus or trample the Spirit of grace? We must do that for ourselves. No one can do it for us. His Spirit will help us but we must make that conscious decision to either be for him or against him.

As Christians no matter if we're new ones or if we've been around a while, our growth in holiness is a daily process. That's why Paul said, "I die daily." (I Cor 15:31). None of us have completely arrived. We all have places in our lives we can work on to be more like Christ. As a Christian we must guard against allowing sinful opportunities in our lives. We must use the benefits of our relationship with Christ, put on the armor of God (Ephesians 6:10-18) & watch because our enemy seeks to devour & destroy us (1 Peter 5:8-9). Because we have been crucified in & with Christ (Galatians 2:20) & we have been raise up with him (Col 3:1-3) we have a promise that we can live a holy, sanctified life by depending on Jesus. Jesus' grace allows us to live a holy, sanctified life. How can we lose if we are for Him…..but how much can we lose including our lives if we are not?

Father, may your Holy Spirit speak & convict us of the areas in our lives where we are not being all that we can be in You. Help us to live a holy life before you. One that doesn't insult you & one that constantly informs & reforms until it is fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Swimming


I wanted to get a picture of the boys with their MEMS tattoos!
Uncle Greg should be proud!
What absolutely adorable advertisement!!

Red Woves Scrimmage

Clay running. He's the one with the long white shirt. Their uniforms aren't in yet!
Clay on the bench with his coach looking at his thumb!
Clay on the line. He's down & ready!
Clay & some of his teammates before the game!

Clay had his first scrimmage games last Saturday. It was extremely hot, the state was under a heat advisory and it was almost unbearable. He had a great time. Learned a lot. He was run over by a huge kid & injured but I guess that's the breaks of playing football. He said, Mom, the first time I was hit, I think I kind of blacked out & when I cam to a few seconds later, I saw stars. He was face-masked a little later & someone clipped him & he jammed his thumb. As he was on the sideline, he told the coach, I'm so hot I can't breath...He said Mom, the coach said, well take your helmet off! LOL. We have another scrimmage this week & his first official game is on Saturday. Can't wait to see how much they've improved since now they know what it feels like to be plowed over!


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Meet the Charging Wildcats


Friday night NLR High School had ceremony to introduce all of the fall sports. Chandler is running cross country so his team was announced. It was fun to see all of the kids we know who are playing sports & other activities & a neat way to kick off the year. Chandler doesn't really like running, but is participating to stay conditioned for baseball. One day at practice I heard some of the guys talking about working on their time so they could get a scholarship for college. I was telling Chandler about it & he said, "Mom, I will go to Clown College before I get a scholarship running!" I literally died laughing. I said...Chandler, I'm right there with you! I don't like it either, that's why in track, I ran hurdles. They were a short distance & over quickly! He is my child for sure!!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

Old State House Museum

Now homeschoolers know how to do it right. We plan field trips on the 2nd day of school! A group of about 60 of us went to the Old State House on Friday. We dropped Chandler off at school & headed downtown. The museum was interesting. The guide who did the Civil War presentation was great. Our other tour guide was a little...well a lot...light in the loafers & the only thing on the whole tour he was excited about was the first ladies ball gowns. We were not impressed with him & hopes he finds a career somewhere else b/c we don't think he'll succeed as a tour guide for school groups.






Sunday, August 22, 2010

On the first day of 9th & 5th grades.........



August 19 was the first day school for the NLR Schools. Chandler started 9th grade today at "real" school. He's been homeschooled since he was in kindergarten. He decided last year that he really wanted to go to school for various reasons. We've talked, prayed, discussed & discussed it. I've had my reservations, not about his ability but about my role in preparing him. It's a very humbling feeling to know that someone else will be critiquing my role as a parent, teacher, and sole educator of my child. Most people will never face those feelings & thoughts but for those of us homeschooling parents out there who decide to put our children into the school system we can totally relate & know that this is where the rubber meets the road. I've never been one to really care if people agree or disagree with the decisions I make for my children but in this instance I can only pray that I've done well & that I've prepared him.

We've had God's tremendous blessing all along the registration and enrollment process so we are extremely happy about that. Generally 9th graders take Algebra I, but Chandler took that last year. We got permission from the school district by providing my lesson plans, course of study, grades, etc for him to use his Algebra I that he took last year & move on to Geometry. So he's starting high school with a high school credit in math, & he's never attended a public school. I loved Chandler's attitude about it. I told him that we would pray about it, submit the materials, & we would take whatever decision they made. He said, "Mom, it will be ok if they don't, I'll take the class again." God blessed us; so Yeah God!!

So here he is in the car ready to go. He was super excited! When we got out to the car early that morning, there was a small sack on the windshield. It was a sweet note, bag of goodies, & some money for lunch from Jerri, my sister. I was not worried, emotional or anything about him going to school until I read the note. It was such a sweet gesture that I cried....so thanks Jerri...for messing up my mascara! LOL.
Chandler's First Day of 9th Grade!

Chandler reading Jerri's note!

Jerri's Note!

Now not to leave Clay out. He was along for the ride to school. After we dropped Chandler off, our friend, Taylor, missed the bus on the first day. He called me so we headed over to pick him up & take him to East Campus where he & Chandler both go. He as a little anxious that the bus came early & he missed it on the first day, but I think we talked him out of his nervousness on the way to school. He was a little late but it was ok.

After dropping Taylor off, Clay & I went to the home school "Not Back to School Breakfast" at the donut shop. There were so many homeschoolers there that there was hardly room to sit. We visited with some old friends, then headed home to start our school day! All in all....it was a great first day of school!
Clay's First Day of 5th Grade!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Fishing with Friends


Some good friends of ours called Clay to spend the night & go fishing. The picture above was the result of that trip. Clay caught a 10 pound catfish! Thanks to the Naylors, Clay had an awesome time.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Boating in the Pool

Clay giving his army men a boat ride in our remote control boat in the pool!
Great concentration placing all those army men in that boat only to fling them out by turning the corners sharply! But fun nonetheless....cause you have to go deep sea diving to rescue the men.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

A Special Sight

We decided to take a trip to Branson to pick up a few school clothes for the boys. On the way, we caught sight of something I've always wanted to see in this area of Arkansas. Just north of the cabin is a herd of elk that has been brought in by Game & Fish. They are trying to repopulate the area with a species that once lived in the area. As we were heading north in a field off of highway 65, we saw this elk walking & grazing in a field. We were really excited because the elk just stood there & watched us. It was really cool to see a species that isn't seen often. What a beautiful creature!

Friday, August 13, 2010

A Day at the Buffalo

The Buffalo River is really close to the cabin so we decided to take a day to canoe. We decided that Clay would canoe with Tom & Chandler would canoe with me. Boy that was an experience. Chandler & I had an interesting day. Chandler had never canoed so he had to get used to navigating us. In the mean time, we went ashore several times, he ran me into a log once & we hit a huge rock going about 10MPH. That was hilarious because he didn't realize we were going to hit the rock & he went flying on his butt into the bottom of the canoe. We laughed & laughed. Tom & Clay spent the day laughing at us because I'm sure we were a sight. The fun day was dampened by the drowning of a young man in a group just ahead of us. It was a good lesson to the boys of how a fun time can quickly turn tragic in just a matter of moments. Before the tragedy, Clay didn't really think he needed his life jacket, after the drowning, he said he wasn't taking it off. It made our day a very thought provoking one & we were able to talk about some not-so-pleasant topics that sometimes just need to be talked about in life. All in all though it was a great day! And we will definitely canoe again!
Tom--master canoer

Chandler & Stephanie---the not so experts!
Our little picnic! If we had not stopped to eat at this point, we probably would have been right upon the drowning.
Clay & his first time to sport the canoe paddle! He did great!
Our guide took this quick picture of us before we set out!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Drive-In Movie

Last week we took a mini-vacation to the cabin. Marshall has a drive-in movie that is open year-round Friday-Tuesday. We've never been to a drive-in so we decided it would be a fun time for the boys. It cost us $12 to get in the movie for all of us. Clay was free! We took in the whole experience with the actual car speakers. The sound of the movie can be heard on the car radio but we decided since it was our first experience we do it right! We decided to make a night of it & eat out too. Their concession is great! We bought 4 drinks, a large popcorn, a cotton candy, a hot dog, 3 hamburgers & nachos for $17.50. That my friends, if you've been to the movies in the last 10 years, is a bargain! We saw the Eclipse movie, & we'd all seen it before so we weren't that excited about it. But the whole experience was fun. Next time, we will take a blanket or our lawn chairs & sit outside but we will definitely do it again. It was a fun time!


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Henderson's Corner

Several weeks ago Tom & I took the boys to stay with some friends in Helena. On the way back home, we stopped by Henderson's corner to see my cousin, Pop. Pop is my late grandfather's nephew. His family has owned the corners of the intersection of highway 49 & 17 in Monroe County for as long as I've known. We always try to stop by to leave a note or something when we are that way. I try to send Pop cards & letters from time to time just so he knows that he still has family. Pop has no children & he was an only child so really we're all the family he has. Which makes me really sad in a way. Anyway, we stopped by & as we were leaving a note, he pulled up. He asked could he drive us around the farm so we were off. He wants Tom to bring the boys down to duck hunt & frog gig really soon! He drove us on the levee he just had dug & built & he had Tom pull his tractor that wouldn't start for some reason back to his house. I think he enjoyed our visit. It was fun to let him show us around.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Clay & Football

Today Clay started football! He was super excited! He's never played so he has a lot to learn, but he had lots of fun! I've never been a huge football fan so I have a lot to learn as a football mom, but I can already tell....he's gotta stick 'em! I guess that competitive side of me can get involved in whatever sport my boys play!

I love this picture with his tongue hanging out!















He was getting down & dirty! And loved it! A little H20!!!

Chandler's a New Driver



Monday, August 9, Chandler took the written part of his driver's test! He passed! Now he has a legal "learner's" permit! In 30 days he can take the practical part of the test. We've been letting him practice driving! I cannot believe he's old enough to be doing this!
Way to Go Chandler!

Cabin Update

I haven't blogged about the cabin in a long time so I'll give you an update. While the boys were at summer camp, Tom & I spent a few days at the cabin. It was a nice get away. The cabin stayed completely clean, I didn't have to wash very many dishes, & was able to just sit & actually read a few magazines & did a crossword puzzle. Don't get me wrong, I love the boys being there but it was a nice time for just us! When we're not there, our neighbors keep an eye on the place for us & have been really helpful to us. Tom will mow their "yard" for them when he mows ours, & Mark will make sure we have diesel for the tractor. He's always good to call us if he notices anything "off" & has been a good neighbor. Below is a picture of the outside of the cabin with the deck.
Deck with chairs & fire pit.

We found hammocks several years ago on a clearance rack for like $4 each.
Tom & I finally hung two of them.
Me in the hammock
Tom in the hammock!
Tom & Me
The table area!
This area is very small & we're trying to think of a table/bar or something that would make better use of the space but for now...This is it!
The kitchen area. If you notice the curtained area to the right, that is the bathroom; complete with toilet, shower, sink, & hot water heater! We've tried to figure out how to put a door on the bathroom that would be conducive to the area. The kitchen is complete with refrigerator, microwave, toaster oven, 2 burner electric stove top & 4 cup coffee pot. We purchased the sink from an antique shop. It was taken out of an old house. It's a single basin sink with built in drainboard. It think we paid $45 for it. We love it because it's old & unique.
This is what we've come up with.
We think it will work.
I do miss my little curtain though.

The living room area...which is really just one room and not a very big one. The couch is a family "heirloom" It's a hide-a-bed & originally belonged to Tom's mom. It's not the greatest "print" decor but it's a top of the line hide-a-bed & it gives us 2 extra sleeping spots. The quilt on the wall was given to me by my Grandma Mel. I think she said her mother or grandmother made it....so it's really old. Most of the decor is stuff we had left over or rounded up. I'm sure you all are thinking...yep...it looks like it, but most of the items have a story or a meaning behind them or they're things we thought were "cabiny"


Upstairs...this is Tom & my side of the room!
Upstairs...this is the boy's side of the room.

Our cabin isn't much & it's come such a long way from a shell. We've done a lot of work on it and it's a great get-a-way. It's almost to the place where we could let people use it because it's almost self sufficient. We would like to have a washer & dryer there because it would make it much nicer than hauling clothes home every time, but that is in the future. We recently covered the septic tank with dirt. The septic tank sits directly behind the cabin. The photos below were taken while I was sitting on the steps. When we had the septic put in, the guys couldn't bury the whole tank because there is a rock under the tank as big as the cabin & he said we would have to dynamite it out. We decided that dynamite that close to the cabin probably wasn't the best idea so it was left sticking up out of the ground. We are covering it with dirt here.

Now we have our very own "Toltec" mound. Our future plans are to continue the deck around the back of the cabin to hopefully build a small room to put the washer & dryer. This will cover the mound & it will hardly be noticeable. Hopefully that will take place next year.

In this photo, you can see the small shed behind the tractor. We had this put in to store the diesel & gas & small equipment in. The tractor is sitting beside the shed. We plan to build a covered carport there to keep the tractor under. That is a plan for the future as well.
Another thing we're considering is to take the balcony at the top of the cabin & enclose it. At first we were against it but we've found that we hardly ever use the balcony & that it might better serve us as a small room for another bed & a closet. We will take the windows and move them to the front of the balcony area & it will give us another 6 feet of room upstairs. We're still considering...we'll see. Currently the cabin will sleep 6. We have an extra twin sized mattress that is on one of the beds that can be taken off & put in the floor so technically we can sleep 7. If we enclose the balcony that would give us 2-3 more beds depending on how we design it.

One other thing we've toyed with is getting goats. We would like to install fencing in a small area & get goats to clear that area then move the fencing as the areas are cleared. That's just a fleeting thought but it is a consideration.

The cabin has been a fun project for us. It's been fun working on something that is ours. Not for a minute would I imply that it's been easy but it has been fun. We've had some really good times up there & are very thankful that God has allowed us to have this adventure in our lives!

Monday, August 9, 2010

New Pool Liner

At the beginning of the summer, we had to replace the pool liner. We let the boys choose the liner & they chose the Atlantis themed one. It turned out really well. Our friend, Joel, helped us with the liner! Thanks Joel!