Friday, September 2, 2011

Hello again! :)....and my thoughts on Quiverfull teaching.

Wow, summer apparently is a bad idea for my blog! Oh well, maybe now that fall is coming I will get into a good routine.

I don't have anything earth shattering to share, but as I was thinking over things this summer, I stumbled upon a thought. In the quiverfull movement Ps. 127:3-5 is quoted a lot:
Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.
First of all let me preface by saying that I want lots of children. Personally, I happen to think large families have many benefits. That being said I do not make a doctrine out of the above verse. The above verse is not a command.

Second, just because something is good does not mean you must go to the extreme. Children are precious, but they are not a contest or spiritual status. I remember a speaker who said, "Children are a blessing. Why would you want to cut off God's blessings by only having a couple?" Basically he was saying every time you say no to trying to have a child is like saying no to God's blessings. Who would do that?!?!? Then it dawned on me that 1 Corinthians 11 says hair is a women's glory. So if we interpret 1 Cor. 11 like we do Ps. 127 we must conclude that women should keep their hair as long as possible and never cut it. Why would you want to cut off your glory? Yet the speaker doesn't follow his own logic. His wife cuts her hair all the time. I don't think I've ever seen it much longer than her shoulders. How is that for consistency!

My third point is Ps. 127 is talking about a man in his youth. ("so are children of the youth" or another translation says "children born to a young man") Many times those who chose not to have anymore children because they are older and their wife's safety and health are a concern are looked down on as not trusting God. I would beg to differ. Maybe they are just being wise and prudent. (I am not talking about a women who has already gotten pregnant and discovered that there are complications and now wants to end the life growing inside of her. That is a different matter!)

Prov. 24:13" thou honey because it is good.
Prov. 25:16 "Do you like honey? Don't eat too much, or it will make you sick!"

Maybe too much of a good thing ends up a bad thing??? Children are a blessing!!! But that doesn't mean have so many that you end up abusing them. (spiritually, physically, or mentally) Each couple should seek God's wisdom. The number of children God wants each family to have will be different. We as Christians need to stop making doctrines out of side issues that were never commands in Scripture. We need to focus on the main thing and that is Jesus.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy 4th of July!

Hope you have a wonderful 4th of July!

Remember to thank God for living in a free country! I don't think many of us realize how amazing that privilege really is! Please pray for those who don't get to celebrate and live in freedom. Jesus, please strengthen persecuted believers and those living in spiritual and/or physical bondage. Show them your Love!

Friday, July 1, 2011

So Much More Chapter 10-Fathers, Daughters and Highest Education

Pg. 129 The wrong education can pollute her mind, corrupt her heart, and make her useless as a tool for God's glory.
I would say, in many ways I agree with wrong education polluting one's mind. Growing up I was not firmly grounded in Christ. I didn't have a solid relationship with Him. It was more about standards than Christ. If I had gone to a public school or college I know I would have wandered in my faith. However, I am not saying that all institutions are sinful to go to. (nor am I implying that the authors are saying that) I know kids who have gone to public school and college and came out fine. In fact it amazes me and I have more respect for them. Its not hard to stay pure when you aren't tempted everyday. Its not hard to be "different" when you aren't pressured to conform.

That being said, personally I don't see the huge benefit of going off to college. It is extremely expensive and not the most efficient. (in my opinion) Whoever came up with the idea of distance college learning was a genius. I never understood the whole degree thing. I have seen people with a degree who hardly knew anything. They were just going for the diploma and not the knowledge. I have seen others who didn't have a degree and who really should have been teaching at a college since they knew so much! Yet they wouldn't get hired simply because they didn't have a piece of paper?!?! Really?!?! It drove me crazy!

I think that's one of the reasons why I jumped onto the So Much More bandwagon. I felt like it gave me "permission" to do things unconventionally. It sounded so good to say to people "No, I'm not going to college. I think God wants me to train to be a keeper-at-home" Who could argue with God? At least if people didn't agree or thought I was crazy they respected the fact that I was trying to please God. In reality, I was just afraid to say, "No I'm not going to college. I'd prefer to learn in a way I think best" Gasp! Have my own opinions and be willing to stand up for them?!?!?

I think this post ended up being my own thoughts of why I didn't do college and the reason I should have had instead of a book review. Oh well. It's my blog. :-)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

I apologize

I apologize for the complete lack of posts. Its not that I don't have things to write. I do. I guess I've been to busy living life to write it down. I will attempt to have a new post in this next upcoming week.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

So Much More Chapter 9: Career

Some of my thoughts:

Pages 105-107 talk about women being provided for. I think this is a good admonition. Often times women are left high and dry to support themselves and raise their children alone when husbands just walk away. This is not the way it should be. Women should not be abandoned.

Page 108 talks about women called to be keepers at home. They quote Titus 2:4-5. I have a problem with this. So often this passage is applied to unmarried women as their calling in life. I'm not sure that was what was meant. Notice the passage says these young women should love their husbands (doesn't sound like they are talking to single girls!), love their children (again married women, siblings are NOT to become sisters responsibility), subject to their husbands (again not talking to single girls) So often single girls put themselves under this passage as a rule to live by when it doesn't even seem to be talking to them!
Pg. 113 According to Scripture is chasing a career outside the home a sin? Because only God can dictate what sin is, and because sin is a very serious thing, we must be very cautious about what we label as sin. Careerism may not technically be a sin in theological terms, but doing one's best to get out from under God's order for families and society may be a sinful action done with sinful motives. It may not be "want of conformity to the law of God, but it does appear to be want of conformity to His design for civil society.
They may claim that they can't say that it is a sin but I know in those circles that girls who don't conform to these standards are not accepted, gossiped about, and looked down on for not being "enlightened" as to what God wants for every single girl. It seems a lot of girls who hold to these standards have an outward form of righteousness but ignore the matters of the heart (loving others, not gossiping, etc)

They then go on to talk about the Proverbs 31 women. My own personal note, I find Prov. 31:16 interesting. With her own earnings she buys a field. This women was earning money. She didn't go to her husband for everything she needed. So often people are trying to create rules to live by: A women shouldn't work outside the home. Why do we need to create rules if Scripture didn't? Maybe when God gives a women a love for her husband and children she will be able to see how to earn some money in a balanced way without harming her husband or children and without needing to be bound by rules that aren't even in Scripture anyway!

Pg. 115, 116 I appreciated the admonition here that women who are childless or whose children are grown and gone don't have to go to work but instead can be ministering to the body of believers. So often women are made to feel worthless or lazy if they don't go and get a job when their children are grown. Personally I think money isn't the most important thing. If women want to help other believers instead of getting a job I think they should be free to do so without being looked down upon.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

So Much More Chapter 8

pg. 93 The word "femininity" is also fraught with derogatory misinterpretations. It is a common misconception that femininity is all about being fluffy, pink, prissy, flirtatious, bimbo-like or trivial. These are descriptions that the world brings to mind when the word "feminine" pops up, but nowhere in Scripture are such things mentioned as being signs of godly womanhood.
I appreciated the above statement because so often I was told that to truly embrace godly womanhood I had to basically look like I came from the Victorian era. Not everyone likes lace, ruffles, or the color pink. Just because one dresses with less frills doesn't mean they are trying to rebel against femininity. Maybe they are just being practical. Imagine having to wash yards and yards of material for just one dress! I think I'll pass....

Saturday, March 26, 2011

So Much More Chapter 7: Modesty

On page 86 they quote the passage "The woman shall not wear that which pertaineth unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman's garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the Lord thy God" (Deut. 22:5)

This Scripture passage got me thinking about a speaker I heard many years ago (not the Botkin family or Vision Forum) His basic premise was that since pants used to be solely men's clothing it was wrong for women to wear them today. He used an example of the signs on the bathrooms in stores. (The one with pictures only and not words) He said women don't look at the sign and go "Hmmmmm I can be like the picture of the women in a skirt or the picture of someone in pants. Which bathroom do I go in?" So he said obviously women's clothing is skirts/dresses and men's clothing is pants. According to the Deut. passage a women should never wear pants otherwise you are an abomination to God.

This held me in bondage many years until I pondered why the passage didn't say what was specifically considered men's clothing and what was women's. Why? Could it be that the standard can change? For example, go to Scotland or the Middle East and the men are basically wearing skirts/dresses. Definitely not something we would see normally here in the US. I would find it a little disturbing if a guy in my church started wearing skirts. Here in America it just isn't done. The standard is different. For girls no one thinks twice (unless you are in the conservative movement) about a girl wearing pants. Pants aren't seen as solely men's clothing anymore.

So did the standard change? Can the standard change? I would say yes. It would be impossible to go back through the ages and make sure the clothing you wear was never worn for the opposite gender. Not only that, but start trying to double check other countries and you will run into contradictions all over the place.

If God had specific clothing items that would for all times be for one gender He would have said so.

Honestly our outward actions will reflect our inward heart. If we accept and love what gender God created us to be why do we need to create rules about it? We will naturally do the right thing as we seek God and embrace His design. Many girls are very feminine in pants. They look adorable. The bulk of guys I know don't think a girl is wearing pants because she is disregarding her femininity. They just see it as something practical. Who would go rock climbing in a skirt?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Great spirits have often encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds

~Albert Einstein

Saturday, March 12, 2011

So Much More Chapter 7

They had a quote from Peter Marshall and I really love this part:
The world has enough women who are popular. It needs more who are pure. We need women, and men too, who would rather be morally right than socially correct.

Reminds me to keep Christ first even though the world doesn't.

From page 74
By simply being your father's daughter you are entitled to his protection. To be worthy of this protection, you must appreciate the reasons God has provided it for you, and then gratefully receive it from your dad.
I guess I'm not clear what they are trying to say. I don't think a person's worth is based on works. We are all worthy of protection simply because we were made in the image of God and are His creation. Any Jew in the Holocaust was worthy of protection no matter how nasty they were as a person.

From page 75
By self-denial, we mean something deeper than the usual meaning, "denying yourself things you want." Rather, we mean, "denying that you have a 'self' " 1 Corinthians 6:19,20 tells us that we do not belong to ourselves, but have been bought with a price. Matt. 10:39 says, "He that findeth his life shall lose it; and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it." We often hear people talking about "being true to yourself," "finding yourself," saying things like "That's just not 'me' " " I need to follow my heart" or "I'm special because I'm me."
The natural "us" deserves to spend eternity in Hell. Being true to our natural selves and "following our hearts," which "are deceitful above all things and desperately wicked" (Jer. 17:9) condemns us to spiritual death. We have no "selves" that are worth being loyal to. Much of what makes up our natural personalities and the state of our hearts is dictated by our sin natures.
I'm not sure I agree with the above quote. In one sense the old self was crucified at the cross and we don't want to bring it back. I agree that it was nasty! But on the other hand to deny the part of us that was made after God's image and to say our hearts are deceitfully wicked  and we have no selves worth being loyal to wouldn't really be true. After all, we were made after the image of God.

I know Conservative Christians are constantly quoting Jer. 17:9 about the heart being desperately wicked but what about Jer. 24:7? "And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the Lord: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart"
Our hearts can turn to Christ. He can give us a new heart with new desires. It doesn't have to stay desperately wicked and something that has to be ignored. Christ must always come first before anything, but just because He does, doesn't mean we completely ignore our heart and desires.

We do have a part of our self that is rebellious against God. It was crucified at the cross. I certainly don't want bring it back again and follow it! But we also were made after the image of God. God gave us personalities and desires. I don't need to deny the part of me that is made after God's image. For so long I wasn't really who God had created me to be. I was always trying to measure up. Fit into a mold of what others thought a good godly girl should be. I lost myself. I lost who God created me to be.

Ps. 37:4 Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart's desires.

Yes, I should be delighting in the Lord, but notice it doesn't say delighting in trying to follow standards or rules. It says delighting in the Lord. He is to be my delight.

Notice it also says God will give me the desires of my heart. If my heart was only desperately wicked why would God give me something evil? How can God give me the desires of my heart if I never allow my heart to have any?

I'll have more thoughts on Chapter Seven soon!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Food for Thought

I came across these sayings and they gave me some good food for thought:
When we lie we are preserving how we want to appear, not who we really are.
 How we spend our days is how we spend our lives.

Friday, March 4, 2011

So Much More Chapter Six

Chapter Six discusses Karl Marx and Feminism. I haven't really studied the history of either of these but reading through the chapter reminded me how important it is to be grounded in Christ. It doesn't matter what the doctrine is (Marxism, feminism, legalism) it is easy to fall prey to them when one isn't grounded in Christ.

"A little leaven leaveneth the whole lump"

For me the leaven wasn't feminism but trying to live a life pleasing to Christ. Sounds good doesn't it? But the problem was it was MY effort. I was trying to find out what God wanted me to do. I was trying to measure up. The problem was I never could. That's not how I received Christ and that isn't how I continue to walk (be sanctified) in Him. (Col. 2:6) My life was all about earthly things (modest dress, holy living, godly music) but that isn't what the Christian life is all about. It's about Christ! (Col. 2:20-23)

I would almost think that any theology or idea does have some good in it or we wouldn't follow it. I'm realizing more and more how much truth can be in something with just a little falsehood added into it and yet still have extreme, life changing consequences.

Tragically I have seen this to be the case this week with a friend and it breaks my heart. It makes me want to go through all of my books and throw out any that do not preach Christ and instead are teaching man-made ideas that look good but really are nothing but filthy rags.

Truly, a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

So Much More Chapter Five

I don't have a lot to say on this chapter except that I appreciated "You don't have to respect his [your father's] weaknesses, but you should be sensitive to them. We are all weak." So often I tend to see the weaknesses in my "authority figures" (father, mother, pastor, etc.) which can turn into disrespect or bitterness for me. But I love the grace that in Christ I can extend to them. They won't be perfect and neither will I. Not until we see Jesus face to face will that happen. I can choose to see their faults only or I can realize that "but for the Grace of God there go I" and choose to give them grace and mercy. I am trying to choose the latter.

Friday, February 18, 2011

So Much More: Is Every Girl Called to be her Father's Helper?

From pg. 42
As we stated before, every woman is, by nature, a man's helper. You are a helper, no matter what your age or marital status. The choice before you and ever other young woman isn't, "to help or not to help?" Its who to help. Can you imagine a man more deserving of your devotion and assistance, someone whom you love and trust more than your own father?
The chapter than goes on to explain different ways we can be of help to our fathers.

Now I do agree that girls can make great helpers. I also think that many times Christians over glorify helping "organized ministries" and look down on those who choose to help their own fathers as wasting their lives and not serving Christ. Home can be a great ministry and something God uses to conform us to the image of Christ. He may want some girls staying at home and helping their fathers.

However, it seems Vision Forum and the Botkin family is focused on girls training to be keepers at home (nothing wrong with that) and helping their fathers (again nothing wrong with that) as their calling in their unmarried years. (I would have to disagree that these things are every girl's calling.)

I have yet to see a Scripture verse stating a command for single girls to be their father's helper. I thought that was given to his wife not his daughter? I'm not disputing the fact that being under authority and learning to be your father's helper may help you in your future marriage but what I would like to dispute the myth that somehow all girls staying at home are more in God's will because they have been "enlightened" to "God's way" for every single girl then all of the other girls who don't stay at home. I just don't see it.

As far as I remember the only specific direct command to girls in the New Testament as to what they should be doing in their single years is to be focusing on the Lord and being Holy in body and in Spirit. (1 Cor. 7 v. 34) Maybe by telling them to focus on being a keeper at home and their father's helper we are missing out on this season of life that God says girls are able to focus solely on the Lord. I literally know of girls who were more the mom of the house than the mom was. How is the way these girls are living any different from how they will be living when married if they have all of the same responsibilities now? How are they freer to focus on the Lord?

I sometimes wish people would stop telling and pressuring young adult girls what to do. They are pressured to start a career. Pressured to go to college. Pressured to do "ministry". Pressured to stay at home and be their father's helper (otherwise they are told they are out of God's will.) What if we stopped pressuring girls and just let them focus on the Lord? Maybe then they could actually hear God's still small voice in their life and be able to follow Him!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

Hope you have a wonderful day and feel the love of God more deeply. May His love flow through you to give to others! <3

Saturday, February 12, 2011

So Much More Chapter 4-Submission

Wow....Submission...this is a controversial subject. I'm going to try to tackle it anyway and believe me I do NOT have the answers. Basically I'm still seeking God's will on this topic and by no means have I figured it out yet. Below I will be referencing two articles that have an entirely different perspective on this subject than what I originally had. I really encourage you to read them since my thoughts really won't make much sense without them.

Chapter 4 of So Much More talks about Submission. To Quote:
According to the laws of the vows in Numbers 30, an unmarried girl is under the authority of her father, just as a wife is under the authority of her husband. In addition to being able, as we mentioned earlier, to annul his daughter's vow, a father has the authority to guide his daughter concerning marriage (1 Cor. 7:36-38) God has placed our fathers in a  position of authority over us, and to disobey them is to disobey God, unless the two come in direct conflict with one another.
Basically they are saying that single girls are under a father's authority (in the same way a wife is to her husband) until marriage and to disobey a father is to disobey God (unless the two come in direct conflict).

First of all, Numbers 30 does not say ALL unmarried girls can have their vows annulled. Every time in this passage it mentions an unmarried daughter living at home with her father it says the girl is in her youth. Is this significant? I'm not sure but it may very well be. Mike Pearl had an interesting article on unmarried kids and obedience. It can be found here (You will have to scroll past all of the letters to get to the article) It got me thinking, "Is an older single daughter still required to obey her father or is she only required to give him honor?" "Is she required to live at home in all of her single years?" The Bible doesn't have much to say about what single girls are supposed to be doing. Maybe because the norm was that most girls would get married while still in their youth (Pr. 5:18) which would then avoid the stage of parents and young adults relating when they are fully adults but haven't started their own household yet. Mike Pearl makes an interesting point in his article: obedience to parents is always in the context of children and not adults. Honor (not the same thing as obedience) is in the context of adults. Implying adults can disobey without necessarily dishonoring their parents.

Now you may say, but wait! What about all of the arranged marriages and examples in Scripture that seem to imply that a father is in authority over his single daughter and what she does with her life until she marries. Again I will reference a really good article since she said it so much better than I did. Please check out Three in one makes five Are all of those stories in the Bible on unmarried girls actual direct commands God is calling us to obey? For example, the story of Jephthah and his unmarried daughter. What should girls apply to their life? Should we conclude that a single girl should never be the first one out the door to meet her father when he has been away since consequences followed? (Judges11:34-39) I should think not!

If adult daughters are not required to obey parents but can disobey parents without always having it be dishonor and disobedience to God the ramifications could be huge for some girls! Maybe it would mean they would be able to leave an over-controlling parent without feeling like they are living in sin.

I love my father.  I do seek his advice. I do respect and honor him and will put his wishes before my own because I know he has wisdom in certain areas that I do not. But I won't let him be the controller of my life. (By the way, he is NOT controlling) Christ is the only one with the right to control my life.

God does give girls desires that He wants them to follow. Sometimes they aren't given that freedom because a parent thinks they know best and what the girl wants doesn't fit in with the parents' plans. So the parents (often unknowingly) put a guilt complex on girls saying they must do the parents wishes otherwise the girls are disobeying God.

Now I am NOT saying girls shouldn't take their father's advice and that sometimes if a girl's desires conflict with her father's she should do her own thing. God gave us parents for a reason. That being said our parents are not God and there may be times we need to disobey or part company with them and it won't be sin or from a rebellious heart.

Those are my thoughts. I am not sure if any of it made sense because I'm still thinking and studying this issue through. I guess you can take what's truth and spit out the rest.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

New Year Resolutions

I was thinking about New Year Resolutions this year. How January is almost over and what have I done with my time? Some of the things I originally wanted to set as goals don't look like they'll happen. Life sometimes just throws me a curve ball and there is nothing that can be done but just learn to be flexible.

So I decided to set a new one based on my new circumstances and that is: Finish what I start. I'm great about starting things. Books (at LEAST 5 of them started!), craft projects, house projects, diets and exercise programs, etc. My problem is finishing them. It does me absolutely no good to start something and not finish it. You really don't lose weight and keep it off if you don't follow through. The house is not more organized if you start a project and then don't finish it. In fact it usually makes a bigger mess than when you started!

So I'm going to try. Try envisioning what work will need to go into a project before I start so I can decide if I actually will be able to do it all the way through. Try to make the commitment to actually see a project to completion. Try anyway. That's the plan. Old habits are hard to break!

So how did your January go? Did it go the way you want to spend the rest of the year? Or what changes need to happen so you can live a fulfilling 2011? The year is still young!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

So Much More Chapter Three

So I'm finally getting my life back together after Christmas Break.
:-P Below are my thoughts on Chapter 3 of So Much More. I must admit I'm a little intimidated doing this review. I really don't think I have the discernment to tackle this yet. So many of their ideas are true but not 100% or they are true but they have made them into a rule which God never commanded. It may be a good thing but doesn't mean its the only thing we could do or it is always the best choice. So if any of you have something to share please do!!!!

pg. 23 Because the Bible doesn't give a huge amount of instruction exclusively to fathers and daughters, most of what we have to work from are the passages setting the patterns for men and women in general.
That statement should have given me a red flag of caution when I first read this book. It's true. God doesn't give a lot of specific instructions therefore I should have been careful about creating a rule and living my life by a pattern that wasn't specifically commanded in Scripture.

I read a great article on this topic from Grace For My Heart. Part of it said: 
One of my general rules of interpretation is that God could be as specific as He wanted in His Word. There are very specific commands, detailed instructions on rituals and behavior, in the Old Testament. So, if He is not specific, I think He intends to give us some leeway. I know this is uncomfortable for the legalists, but the truth is that God could have given us intricate details for anything He wanted. He could have told us exactly how long a woman’s hair should be; exactly how much money New Testament believers should give to the church; exactly what the governing structure of a church should be; and exactly when and where and how we should worship. Since He didn’t give us these details, we must be free to seek His leading on a more personal level.
Wish I would have understood that much earlier in my Christian walk!!! It would have made such a difference!

The chapter goes on to talk about how fathers should be protecting their daughters. I do agree that a father should protect his daughter. Though what this looks like will probably be different in every home.

I guess that is all I have on Chapter 3. I don't think I'm quite back to normal after my holiday break. :-P
Hope you all had a Wonderful Christmas and that your New Year is going well!