Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Sprucing Up!

Well, I have been a little perturbed with blogging lately. Over the period of about a week, I worked on a post that included a simple yoga workout (I have been teaching basic yoga classes for 7 years) with full descriptions of each of the poses. Somehow, the post was deleted! Ugh!

I had also included in that post our memory verse for last week. It is part of a passage that we have building on to: 2 Peter 1:5-7 says,"For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. We have already memorized verses 3-4 & 10-11 and plan to do more later. Peter rocks! (Is that redundant?) ;)

I love the progression of verses 5-7: you can't master the next until you achieve the former. The more I have meditated on this passage, I am realizing that the items that Peter lists are in increasing difficulty to achieve. For me, the perseverance is where it all goes ka-put. Every person has something that they struggle with; some spiritual weakness. (I bet you can pick something from this list.) For me it's perseverance, or consistency. I get comfortable and lazy just when things start feeling good; when I have displayed self-control in ONE or two situations [rolling eyes here]. I studied my Bible a few days in a row. I may even declare, "Oh, how blessed my life is!" I start relying on myself, finding my identity in my earthly circumstances, and soon I feel empty and unfulfilled. Eventually [PRAISE HIM!] the Holy Spirit convicts me; I spruce-up my spirit by starting at the beginning again. (I need to write an entire post on sanctification now; I'll save it for another day.)

I want to be clear: I am not a blogger because I think my life is perfect and I believe that other people want to be like me. On the contrary, I want to shout out, "I'M NOT PERFECT, NOR IS MY LIFE!" What I do want people to hear from me is reality. I am selfish- sometimes I love my life too much, but Jesus clearly says,
"If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it." Luke 9:24 NLT
What I am trying to say is that I hope none of you ever think that I am bragging about my little life. I only want to help people realize that we all need a little spiritual sprucing-up every so often (about every 5 minutes for me!), and the only thing worth pursuing is a journey that glorifies Him.

And this prompts me to go ahead and share this week's memory verse:
But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness."  Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me.  That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties.  For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10
So, I challenge you: figure out what your weaknesses are. They may change from day-to-day. Admit the weakness to God first, and ask Him to help you have the wisdom to consistently defeat it. Then find someone that you respect spiritually (read my post on the importance of community), and share your weaknesses with them. Ask them to pray with you about overcoming them. Read 2 Peter 1:10-11. This can be your motivation for being real with God.

Speaking of sprucing up and motivation, we have been working on our yard all weekend! Ben brought home 3 truck-loads of topsoil and unloaded it shovel by shovel- yes, he's a beast (with a reeeal nice tan)! We had to rip out some shrubs that had gotten a mold last year, and we planted a few annuals for color and one new Cypress tree. AND, after 4 years, we finally put our Nicaraguan lanterns on the front porch. They are very special to us because we bought them on our first mission trip to Nicaragua. I will post a picture of the yard soon!

I got to do some more baking this week! I made King Arthur Flour's No-knead Whole Wheat Bread. I love it for breakfast with some orange marmalade on top! Here's a tuna sandwich I had for lunch one day. I smeared on a little bit of Hummus, piled on quick tuna salad and topped it with baby spinach leaves (a staple in our kitchen- new post topic coming soon).

I also made some delicious cranberry-orange muffins that my sister had given me the recipe for a couple of years ago. It is my favorite muffin to make!

As for what's happening this week, I will be practicing 3 songs for a wedding coming up next weekend. I'll also be getting ready for Freezer Group Swap next Friday! I am still deciding what to make, but I will put it in a post once I do decide.

Thanks for stopping by and checking in with the Mills!

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