My Political Plan

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It’s that time again – election season in a Presidential year. Oh my, how I hate it! As a young girl, I experienced my first heart palpitations while listening to preachers proclaim the evil-incarnate that was Bill Clinton. They told us to go home and kiss our religious liberties goodbye, because Clinton was on a mission to rid the world of all things Christ-related. I wept the night Clinton was inaugurated.

This morning, because of God’s grace alone, I read my Bible in freedom.

If only I could go back and speak a bit of wisdom to my younger self. You see, the truth was something more in the middle. Clinton wasn’t out to banish religious freedom, nor was he out to protect it; he was out to do that which furthered his favorite cause: Bill Clinton. And, that’s just what he did for eight long years. But Billy-boy wasn’t the only politician who loved himself more than all others…no way. If we made a list of those people, we would have to include Obama, Bush (both of ’em) Reagan, Carter, Ford, Nixon, LBJ…you get the idea. One thing that each of those men have in common, along with all of their competitors for that high office, is that they all have a thirst for power. Whether their intentions are good or evil is for God alone to know, but they want that power. And we need someone to have it. Our nation must have a leader, a good one, if God would allow it, and He uses us to determine that leader.

This year, I have been amazed at the choices available on the GOP side of the race. (The Dems didn’t surprise me a bit.) People are downright angry at a certain candidate named Trump. They are simply gaga over one who smiles and says, “TRUSTed”. I’m a little disgusted with the extremes on both sides. As soon as the masses declare a politician “evil”, I tend to think, “He’s probably not that bad.”. As soon as they say, “Savior of the Constitution”, I tend to think, “He’s probably not that good.”

But I hesitate to share too many political thoughts on this blog or social media, because of the following:

#1. I don’t have time to fend off the attackers.

#2. I do not think anyone really cares how I’m going to vote.

#3. And, I know this sounds heartless, but I don’t care how they’re going to vote, either.

I am done letting others (even preachers, ladies and gentlemen) frighten me about the future. The Lord rules and reigns all things, and He will decide my future, and yours, too. This is not an excuse to sit back and do nothing. People are the tools the Lord uses to bring about His plans. I will vote, I will pray, I will obey the leaders God installs over me as much as I am able. But I am refusing fear, and that’s hard because I’m naturally a skittish person.

“But, Baptist preachers everywhere are telling you to vote for Mr. So-and-So! Shouldn’t you listen to them?” you may ask.

No, and here’s why:

I’m not married to them.

Here’s my political plan: Read my Bible, pray, and vote the way my husband does.

Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body.Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. ~ Ephesians 5:22-24

God honors those who obey HIM, not man, and the wife is to be in subjection to the husband. Here’s some good news: when the victory and concession speeches are long forgotten, there is one thing that shall stand forever, and that is the Word of God:

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever. ~ Isaiah 40:8

Thanks for reading.

And don’t forget to vote.

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My List

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I love making lists! I write lesson plans each week, a menu, a grocery list, a to-do list on Saturdays (or any day that is different from the norm), a prayer list, and even lists for Sunday school songs. I just like to write things down, and in the case of to-do lists, cross things off. I read a research study long time ago that said when you cross something off of a list, it releases a tiny amount of endorphins, which is the “feel good” hormone. And I really like feeling good.

I decided I would make a list of things I’d like to incorporate into my life each day. Some of these I’ve been doing for years, some are new. Here’s my list:

Every day I want to:

  • Read my Bible and pray
  • Write for ten minutes
  • Read a portion of a book (besides the Bible), even if it’s only one chapter or a few pages
  • Write down what I eat

Each week I want to:

  • Write one blog post (or more)
  • Exercise three times (or more)
  • Do something fun with my husband

I know that we are over a week into the new year already, but since I have had company until recently, I feel that my new year is just beginning.

How about you? Do you have lists, or goals, for each day? Please share them!

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A Rough Week

Sickness, dental appointments, homeschooling, and more sickness. That’s what my week has consisted of. That is also the reason for my absence from my blog.

On Monday, Matt came down with a terrible stomach virus. It took him a full two days to get over it. Tuesday, Leslie and Laci had milder versions of it. By Wednesday, everyone seemed much better so we took the kids for their six month dental cleanings. That’s always an ordeal just because of the waiting involved. Fortunately, I had a book bag with three books inside. We managed to eek out a full three days of school (five for Lauren and Mitch since they never got sick), but boy, it was difficult!

On Wednesday, I got sick with a head cold and low-grade fever. Just enough to sap my energy. I really haven’t felt well since.

Friday night the children got to play basketball for the first time with our homeschool group. I was too sick to go, but I did spot this photo of Matthew on our homeschool group’s Facebook page (he’s holding the ball):

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All the kids really enjoyed their new sport. Even Matthew, who claimed he wouldn’t like it before he went, was telling me how to dribble when he got home.

ME- Dad

I admit that I often wonder why the Lord took my dad home to heaven when I still needed him. I needed his example, his wisdom, his humor, and most of all, his encouragement. The image above was on my Mary Engelbreit calendar for today. After a difficult week, it brought a smile to my face. For the twenty-six years I had a dad, he was the greatest. He believed in me, when few others did. Yes, I wonder why God took him when He did, but I bow to the Father’s will. He knows best, and He doeth all things well.

To end this on a high note, the Math U See Pre-Algebra and Geometry are going great! I am so thankful we came to that decision quickly and that it was the right decision. Again, I praise the Lord.

I’m praying this coming week goes better for us. How was your week?

Thanks for reading,

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Happy March!

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It’s hard to believe that it’s already March 1st! Spring is just around the corner. 🙂 To celebrate, I wanted to share (again) my “31 Days of Proverbs 31” series. You can find it HERE. Just click on the day of the month and then print, or read on the screen. It’s not lengthy, but maybe it will be something different that will be a encouragement to someone. The series looks at one verse from Proverbs 31 each day.

School has been progressing very well so far. However, we are hoping to take a spring break sometime this month. It’s nice to get out and enjoy the fresh air and have a change of pace.  March is usually a happy month of year for me and I hope it will be for you, too!

Thanks for reading!

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Goodbye, 2013

Happy New Year 2014

It’s hard to believe that we have come to the end of another year. This time last year, I was looking out of our school room window at the tall, swaying pines, wondering where I would be when 2013 ended. I never dreamed that I would be in Oklahoma, and in my own home! The Lord’s mercy and love for me never cease to amaze me, because I realize what a wretched soul I am. This year, however, I stand in particular awe of what He has done for me. I have made so many wonderful new friends, and met many joyful, enthusiastic people that my cup truly runneth over. I am excited at the thought that perhaps this will be the year the Lord will return! If He doesn’t come back this year, then I am excited to think about the amazing possibilities we have to reach our area for Christ!

I finished reading my Bible through today and it always makes me kinda sad to come to the end. I’m very glad that I can just flip back to the beginning and start over tomorrow in a new year! My husband used the Robert Murray M’Cheyene Bible reading schedule last year, and has encouraged me to give it a whirl in 2014, so I think I will. If you’re looking for a daily Bible reading plan, click HERE and scroll to the bottom for links to various types of schedules.

I realize that I have no idea what each new day holds, much less a year, so I must run to Him each morning for help. I cannot count how many times I’ve read something from His Word in the morning, only to see it bear fruit in the afternoon. His Word is the most crucial sustenance of each day. I don’t always get to it in the morning, but I do my best to get to it sometime before sleep overtakes me. I am so thankful for a husband who will corral the kids (if necessary) so I can get in my Bible time in peace and quiet.

We’re standing on the precipice of a brand new year! What are your goals this year? I am hoping to see the Lord do great things in my walk with Him – I need to draw closer to Him. I want to be a bolder witness for Him this year. I want to be more confident in HIM, not in myself. On a temporal note, I have a truck load of books that I want to read. 🙂

Happy New Year to you! Thanks for ending your year with me. Join me next year, too! 🙂

Love,

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A Weird Week

Two weeks ago, we had a winter storm that nearly prevented us from going to my mom’s for Thanksgiving. The Lord allowed us to make it safely there and back, with no delays due to weather. The week after a vacation, though, is always weird. Suitcases – seven of them – are lying in odd places around the house, all of your good clothes are dirty, there’s no milk in the house, and the house has that stale smell. It’s just…weird. The Saturday of our return, I was feeling icky. My throat was scratchy and I was sneezing. I made it through my Sunday school class, but it was hard. I felt myself wanting to say, “You know, you guys are yawning and I’m feeling rotten, so how ’bout we just have a testimony time?” My only problem was that these first graders didn’t have a testimony, or perhaps didn’t even know what that meant, so I forged ahead. I was so thankful that I wasn’t scheduled to sing that day, because it probably would have been really terrible!

By Monday, I was worse. Terry graciously went to the store to buy groceries while I managed to do about three loads of laundry. By God’s grace I eeked through the week of school. I even got our tree set up and decorated, but I did it in phases. I hate it when I feel bad during the holidays! I love this time of year, but it requires energy, the one thing I was short on this week. I didn’t get to feeling better until Friday.

Oh! And by the end of the week, we had yet another winter storm warning. This time, it was worse. We didn’t get much accumulation, but we got about two inches of solid ice coating everything. We haven’t lost our electricity so far, and the kids have enjoyed sledding, so it’s been kind of nice! I have spent a lot of time sitting by the fire practicing my knitting, reading to the kids and writing blog posts! For the first time in my life, we had to cancel our Sunday (Dec.8) services due to weather! If last week was weird, this week will be even weirder! I’ve never missed church with my whole family, ever! Starting out a week like that is very strange indeed.

Today, I dressed up and went out for the first time since last Sunday! (Dec. 1) The side roads and parking lots are still *very* icy, so Terry drove me to Aldi and Walmart to do some shopping. We even made it to church to check on things there and ate lunch with some friends. I feel like a true member of society again!

Ice at the Aldi parking lot today.

Here are a few photos of the kids sledding down the side of the flood canal across the street from us. Terry also took them to a big hill at Cameron University to do some sledding, but I didn’t venture out to do that. 🙂

 Terry made a little sled for them, but it just wasn’t fast enough!

 Mitch enjoyed sliding around just on his feet. He’s a ham…just like his father. Right?

 The kids decided that my Rubbermaid container lids worked just fine!

 Matt went down slowly one time. 🙂

Then he was ready to come inside for some hot cocoa.

Lauren has just developed a pretty bad cold today. I’m afraid I passed it on to her. If you think of it, we would appreciate your prayers for her. I haven’t seen my church family for over a week, and I really miss them. I’m praying that the roads are all clear this Wednesday, and that everyone is well, so we can be in our places for church.

It’s been a weird week, but the Lord knew all about it before it arrived, and He knows about tomorrow, too. I’m so glad He is in control not just of the weather, but of my life.
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Daily Blessings and a Verse on Suffering

I can’t believe it’s already November! We have been having busy, full days here at the Basham hacienda. Each day, I do my best to have my quiet time with the Lord first. From there, I try to get in a workout, get ready for the day, and then get the kids going. My oldest two kids need my laptop to view their math lessons on CD, so I only get to blog if I get up really early and beat the rush. 🙂 By afternoon, I’m usually too brain dead to write anything except an email or two, so I just haven’t gotten to blog. I have so much to share though. God is so good and he “daily loadeth me with benefits”, as it says in Psalm 68:19. If I had the time, I could post twice a day on the blessings God pours out! I do try to keep a personal journal, jotting down His goodness, to have some record of it.

In October, we celebrated six months in Oklahoma! So much has happened in that time! I can’t believe that six months ago, I had a life in another place. It’s amazing how quickly we can learn to adapt and adjust to a new home and city. We have met so many wonderful people in that time! I love living here, and the kids are adjusting well. I am so grateful for God’s help in this transition.

Terry took a trip to Southern Seminary last week for the Expositor’s Conference. He was able to meet some kind pastors and get several good books. He says he learned a lot, but I thought he was already pretty smart. 🙂 It was interesting taking care of the five kids alone. It was my first time to be alone that long here. I missed having family nearby (I used to live an hour or so from my mom), but my church family has showed me how much they care. I know if I had a need, they would be there for me. Anyway, I really missed my sweetheart. Whenever he is gone, I not only appreciate all he does around here, but I realize that he truly is my best friend. He got plenty of bear hugs upon his return, and he delighted everyone by bringing us all a little souvenir. The older kids got a nice pen, Matthew and I got T-shirts, and the little girls got tiaras for when they play dress up (everyday). The photo above shows them modeling them.

The kids just finished their first soccer season in our homeschool group. I hope to share some more photos of that soon. They had a blast! It was a lot for me and Terry to keep up with, but it was worth it. Mitchell is enjoying piano lessons from two teachers – one is focusing on classical and one on hymns. He loves music and is doing well. We just met some wonderful people in Coweta, Oklahoma, last weekend. I have never been treated so kindly by people, except by my own church family! And, after a stressful week last week, I really needed the encouragement. Again, God is so good! I hope to share photos of that, too, soon.

I just wanted to let you know I’m alive and well, praise the Lord, and give you a run down of what we have been doing. I hope to share more specific posts in the near future.

This morning, I read these verses, which were both convicting and a blessing:

But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honour; that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.
For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings. ~ Heb. 2:9-10

I noticed that Christ, the “captain of their salvation” was made perfect through suffering! I often complain about suffering, yet, it is though that very suffering that Christ conforms us into his image. Last Wednesday night, while my husband was away, one of the men of our church brought a message on suffering from Romans 7. My husband preached last Sunday morning a sermon called “What Suffering Can Get You”, and now this. I’m not sure, but I think the Lord wants me to understand that suffering for Him is a good thing, a thing that shouldn’t be feared, but embraced. I think He wants me to trust Him and claim His promises and have stronger faith. I have a long way to go, but by His grace, I will get there.

I hope you all have a great week!
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