Thursday, December 27, 2012

2013 Right Around the Corner!

I'm not going to call our new series resolutions, but most of us do use the New Year to take stock of ourselves and decide where we could use improvement.  Me; I just like to plan and organize.  So I have an entire year's worth of posts planned for you already!  And if they help you keep any resolutions well, that's just a bonus.  Here's a reminder of what we will be doing this coming year.  Be sure to sign up to get posts emailed to you, or join the Facebook page then add it to the left hand column in your news feed, or sign in to Networked Blogs, or follow on Pintrest, OR simply check back everyday!

Mondays: how to get out of debt and stay out of debt

Tuesdays: quick tips, could be about cleaning, cooking, money, etc.

Wednesdays: Bible study...first up Made to Crave by Lysa Terkurst

Thursday: workouts and exercise tips...first up, triceps.  You'll need 5lb hand weights and a stability ball

Fridays: recipes!

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Coming in 2013 - A Woman's Passionate Pursuit of God

I'm excited about this one....and it's not in the typical 5 day study plan...more on that later.  Here's the blurb from Amazon.

Karol Ladd, author of the bestselling The Power of a Positive Mom, shares a passionate exploration of Philippians with women who are longing to love God and life.
With humorous stories, keen biblical understanding, and engaging examples Karol encourages women to live with intention and joy and reveals how they can
  • enjoy being a work in progress
  • uplift others with sincerity
  • change their thoughts and change their lives
  • find strength when they are losing heart
  • discover contentment in every situation
Karol's trusted guidance and infectious enthusiasm will help women fall more deeply in love with God and His Word as His plan for their lives becomes more meaningful and possible than ever before. Insightful, leading questions make this a great resource for individual or group study.

Look for it at your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't find it, here's the link to Amazon.

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Coming in 2013 - A Virtuous Woman

A Virtuous Woman: Shattering the superwoman Myth by Vicki Courtney

I am VERY much looking forward to this one!  We have all read Proverbs 31 and thought, "how can I ever measure up?"  Maybe this study will help!  This one is back to the 6 week format with 5 days of homework each.

Check your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't find it, here is the link for Amazon.

Here is a blurb that gives more description:

Does the woman in Proverbs 31 make you feel like a sluggard? For years Christian women have struggled to understand what the Proverbs 31 woman was all about. Instead of encouragement or instruction, for most, this passage offered “more guilt than eating a one-pound bag of M&Ms.” Is this the ideal woman? Or is the Proverbs 31 woman an outdated fixture of the past? Vicky Courtney believes that this passage is not in the Bible by accident and that a virtuous woman is a rare find in today’s world. Join Vicki as she sojourns with you to unravel the mystery behind the Proverbs 31 woman.

Until Next TIme.....

Monday, December 17, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - December Week Four

This week you can:

  • make a list of all last minute details
  • create a holiday checklist for the big day
  • stock up on after holiday sales
  • make use of the week between Christmas and New Year's

Forgot a card, forgot a gift?  Make a final list and go get it done. Do you have everything you need if you are preparing a meal or taking a dish somewhere else?

The day before or the morning of the big day, make a final sweep of your home and be sure everything is in place and ready to go.

Now, stop stressing and enjoy the day and your family....even the in-laws!

After Christmas, you might want to consider stocking up on wrapping paper and cards and such.  Maybe keep track of how much you used and just replace that amount.  It's not a good deal if it just sits around your house and never gets used!

The week between Christmas and New Year's can be a messy one.  Lots of offices and business take this time off as well as schools.  Maybe you can too.  Consider a small vacation this week, or take this time to put away decorations, clean up and just enjoy down time with your family.  Whatever you do, just make the most of it!

Can you believe we made it through the year?  Did you follow along the whole time?  If so you are completely organized and now you are just in maintenance mode for all the years to come.  How awesome is that?!

Hope you enjoyed this series...and don't feel bad if you might need to repeat a few months.  Life gets away from all of us at one time or another!

Have a very blessed Christmas or Chanukah!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Coming in 2013 - Live Faithfully

Live Faithfully: A Study in the book of James by Lenya Heitzig & Penny Rose

Here is another Bible study we will be doing on Wednesdays in 2013.  This is a 12 week study with 5 days of homework for each week.  You can easily do your homework in 20 minutes or less each day.  This is a perfect one for your quiet time each morning.

James is full of wisdom on how to live.  I've done Beth Moore's James study, which is awesome, and I can hardly wait to jump into this one.  The book of James is so small, but so packed full of wisdom you can't get it all in one study.  This is a book I'll be studying for years to come.

Try to find it in your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't here is the link to find it on Amazon.

Here is a blurb with more description:

From the Back Cover

Do you ever ask yourself, Am I living what I’ve learned in the Bible? I say I have faith, but am I living faithfully in how I speak, use money, and relate to people in need?
In twelve thought-provoking lessons, Live Faithfully explores the practical wisdom of James, the brother of Jesus and a leader in the Jerusalem church. James wanted to make sure his readers understood how to live what they believed. His wisdom and real-life applications are as helpful today as they were thousands of years ago.
Each twenty-minute lesson in Live Faithfully is structured in five parts:
Lift up (prayer)
         Look at (God’s Word)
                  Learn about (new insights)
                           Live out (application)
                                    Listen to (quotes from other believers)
Come take a fresh look at James’s no-nonsense words and encouragement for living what you believe.
The Fresh Life series was created by women, for women—women who crave a profound experience of God’s Word without an overwhelming commitment of time. With each lesson, you will come to a deeper understanding of the truths of the Bible and develop a deeper intimacy with God.

About the Author

Lenya Heitzig is an award-winning author and Bible teacher. She and her husband, Skip, founded Calvary of Albuquerque, and Lenya has served as director of She Ministries at Calvary since 1984.
Penny Rose is also the award-winning author of numerous books and Bible studies. Penny and Lenya lead a Bible study at Calvary for a thousand women every week. 

Until Next TIme.....

Monday, December 10, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - December Week Three

This week you can:

  • find ways to give back
  • complete any holiday details left undone

I know this is a busy time for everyone, but it is also a time when a lot of those less fortunate than us get overlooked in the busyness of our lives.  There are many ways you could carve out a few minutes or hours from your schedule to help others.
  1. contact your house of worship for any programs or people you can help with
  2. check your local newspaper
  3. look for holiday meal programs you could help with or donate to
  4. check the internet for quick ways to help or donate
  5. check with your chamber of commerce
  6. hospice, nursing home, or hospital
  7. don't forget the animals! check with shelters and rescue groups
I won't take anymore of your time so you can have more to go help someone else!

Until Next TIme.....

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Coming in 2013 - A Woman's Wisdom

A Woman's Wisdom: how the book of Proverbs speaks to everything by Lydia Brownback

This is a 9 week study that is a little bit different than most of the ones we will do in 2013.  There aren't definite labeled days of study.  What I did was go through the book and decide to break each week down into 5 days like most of the other studies.  So this is how I am doing it, you feel free to do it however you wish.
Mon: read 1/2 of the chapter
Tue: read 2nd 1/2 of the chapter
Wed-Fri: work on the study guide questions at the end of the book.
Each week there is one question that is marked as being longer than all of the others.  I usually had that question on it's own day then for the other two days left in the week, I split up the rest of the questions.
for example:
Wed: question 1 by itself since it is long
Thur: questions 2-5
Fri: questions 6-10

Check your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't find it, here is the link to Amazon.

Here is a blurb that tells more about the book:

Advice books are no short-lived trend, even though much of the advice parading as “wisdom” proves shallow in the long run. What we need is biblical wisdom, and even more than that we need hearts set on the One who governs all our practicalities. The book of Proverbs unlocks the key to both, helping us to face very real challenges such as:
  • handling our freedom, independence, and material resources wisely
  • keeping ourselves sexually pure
  • practicing biblical femininity in a world that scorns us for it
  • sustaining God-glorifying marriages
  • elevating biblical priorities ahead of day-to-day pressures
Exploring the timeless counsel in the book of Proverbs, A Woman’s Wisdom teaches us to know the very Author of wisdom and to apply his relevant, how-to riches.

Until Next TIme.....

Monday, December 3, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - December Week Two

This week you can:

  • tune up your home for guests
  • bring out the decorations
  • hit the stores

Declutter before you decorate!  For me this entails putting away a lot of framed pictures.  I just happen to have a drawer in an end table that has room for most of them.  The cabinet part of my entertainment center holds a few knick knacks and other framed pictures.  Another idea: take down all the knick knacks and framed pictures that will be in the way for decorating and place them on a table or some other out of the way place.  Then decorate, and when finished, put the knick knacks and pictures in the boxes and bins used to hold your decorations.  Then when it's time to take down the decorations you just work backwards.  Take the pictures out of the bins and place them on the table. Put decorations back in the bins. Place pictures back where they go.  No need for extra storage boxes or space.

Your list is made so hopefully you are ready to shop...if you haven't already started.  I am done except for my husband.  Remember to stick to the list and budget or you will regret it next month!  Use the internet to "shop around" to be sure you are getting the best deal before running out to the store.  Most stores have a website so you can see the in store price and save a whole lot on gas.  Sometimes with special deals on the internet, it's cheaper to shop online and get it delivered to your house.  Just do the math'll be glad you did!

One extra tip:  when you are done shopping this year (if you don't already do this) add up everything you spent and how much for each person.  Now add this amount into your budget for next year so there are no surprises or scraping to get by next holiday season.

Be sure to read the chapter for other great tips from Regina!

Until Next Time.....

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Thursdays in 2013

Coming Thursdays in 2013.....Exercises and workouts for the rest of us.

We will begin by doing one move a week for the first two workout routines.  From there we will focus on areas of the body, flexibility, building bone, building muscle, etc.

These workouts aren't really meant for someone who is already in shape, although you could use these moves to shake up your current routine.  These workouts are meant for people who are not in shape at all, want to start a program, want to build up their program, people who are older, or people like me who need to exercise, but can't do too much all at once due to medical issues such as arthritis, lupus, fibromyalgia, and the like.

For most of our routines you will just be using your own body.  Sometimes you will need a stability ball, a set of light dumbbells, a chair, and a mat if you like.  Also, a resistance band you are comfortable with and a small ball with a little give like those playground kind of balls that you can get at Target or Wal-Mart for around $2.  There will be a walking series that could be done on a treadmill if you can't get outside.

DISCLAIMER: I am not a doctor, and although I have seen a lot of physical therapy and have been prescribed many different types of exercises, do not use any information in this series without first consulting with your doctor or therapist, especially if you have medical issues.  Also, if you begin an exercise and it hurts more than just muscle stretching stop immediately.  Franny is not responsible for any injuries you incur trying these workouts.

That being said, I hope you will join us Thursdays in 2013 for this exciting new series.  I am really looking forward to it myself as a tool to keep me going!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Coming in 2013 - Get a Life

Another Bible study we will be doing on Wednesday's in 2013 is Vicki Courtney's Get a Life: Debunking 6 myths for the quest for contentment.  Here is the blurb from Lifeway's website:

Get a Life! by Vicki Courtney counteracts misguided concepts in our culture that can drive women-even those who know Christ-toward a less-than-abundant life. Myths such as "If I follow Christ, my life will be trouble-free" and "If I could just meet the right guy, I would be happy." And although women may know that fulfillment is not found in a remodeled kitchen or new pair of shoes, these false ideals may still impact them more than they realize or care to admit.
This Bible study confronts the worldly perception of what it really means to live "an abundant life" and shows how women can find true abundance. Vicki Courtney's signature high-energy, engaging style makes this resource ideal for women of all ages, even collegians. Text includes leader notes in back.

Until Next Time.....

Monday, November 26, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - December Week One

This week you can:

  • journal about holidays past
  • check your calendar to see what you can reasonably add to your schedule
  • plan parties, card and/or gifts
  • consider tools that lighten your load

Americans are great at being busy, and it seems like this is the time of the year that we double everything we do.  It doesn't have to be that way, we can learn to enjoy this season instead of stressing over it.

Begin by answering the journaling questions at the beginning of the chapter.  Some of you like to skip over this section, but I have always found some helpful nugget every time I have done them.

You don't have to do it all!  Check your calendar.  As soon as you know each activity you WANT to attend mark it on your calendar.  Also mark the days when gifts must all be purchased, cards must me sent, etc.  Then DO NOT OVERBOOK!!  Your calendar will be your best friend this season, if it isn't already.

If you are planning a holiday party or meal, use what you learned in November to plan this one as well.  If you did it last month, it's going to be twice as easy this time.  

About cards...some people don't do those anymore.  Some people address the envelopes before Thanksgiving, then sign and mail by December 1.  Some people send a picture greeting and some people write a family letter.  Regina offers a few other ideas in the chapter.  Decide what you would like to do and schedule it in...yes schedule it, or it will get lost in the shuffle.

Gift shopping!  YIKES!!  If you haven't already, start planning this week.  Make your list, shop the sales ads, and make a plan.  Again this needs scheduled in or you will be grabbing last minute items that people may not want and overspending at the same time.  I usually start in October or early November especially if I know exactly what people on my list want.  That gives me plenty of time to watch for sales.  I don't enjoy the black Friday rush, so it is important to me to get it done before then if possible.

While you are shopping, if you don't already have a stash, be sure to make a list of what you will need to wrap those gifts and any boxes you might need if they are to be shipped.

I can't believe we are in our final month!  How did your year go?  Are you heading into this season stress free or are you still juggling? Hopefully you have things under control, or soon will!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Coming in 2013 - Me, Myself, and Lies

Me, Myself, and Lies by Jennifer Rothschild

This is another 6 week Bible study that also has DVDs to go with it.  You do not have to purchase the DVDs to be able to do this study, but it is an option.  You can also download the video content to your computer from

This study is subtitled, a thought closet makeover.  How many times have you felt sabotaged by your very own thoughts?  Yeah, me too.  I'm really looking forward to doing this one!  That is one closet I definitely want to clean out!

Check your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't find it here is the link from Amazon.

Here is a blurb that gives more description:

Me, Myself, and Lies: A Thought Closet Makeover - Member Book by Jennifer Rothschild provides a personal study experience five days a week plus viewer guides for the group video sessions of this women's Bible study that encourages them to clean out the junk in their minds and replace hidden negative thoughts with positive truths from God's word.
Words are powerful. Especially the words women speak to themselves. All too often, what they say to themselves when they lie in bed at night or look in the mirror in the morning is not even close to the words God wants them to speak to their souls. According to Rothschild, what we think about often has a ripple effect on nearly every area of our lives. (7 sessions)
The Member Book includes:
  • 6 weeks of personal interactive study (five days a week)
  • Viewer guides for the video introductory session plus the 6 weekly video sessions
  • Leader guidance with instructions for facilitating the group sessions

Until Next Time.....

Monday, November 19, 2012

1 Week to an Organized Life - November Week Four

This week you can:

  • create a step by step guide to Turkey Day
  • set the stage
  • clean up the kitchen and restore the house

This one will be short and sweet because it is GO TIME!!!!

If you are following along, you have probably already read the chapter for this week, I know I have.  The goal is to organize the week to conserve our time and energy and not get that for the in-laws!  The chapter breaks down what to do today, Tuesday, Wednesday and then of course Thursday!

The last section deals with the aftermath....but if you have been planning with us all along, this will be a breeze, just simple clean up.

Now it's time to gear up for our next holiday....but let's enjoy this one first!  See you next Monday, and have a very happy, stress-free, blessed Thanksgiving.

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Coming Soon - Made to Crave

Coming Wednesdays in 2013....thematic Bible studies!  To start with, Made to Crave by Lysa Terkeurst.

Let me be clear, this study is for most anyone.  You do not have to be overweight, you just have to have some sort of issue with food....and doesn't that describe just about all of us?  I am not over weight, but I have actually gone a month at least, and never touched a fruit.  Yep, it's true!  And pizza?  Heck yeah I would probably go out for pizza before doing a whole bunch of other things that God would prefer I do.

This is not a diet plan....this is a plan to get back your "want-to"....wanting to crave God more than food.

To do this study with us on the blog all you need is the Made to Crave book and the Participant's guide.  Yes, you can do the daily activities without ever seeing the videos, but if you are really committed you could get the kit that included the guide and DVD.

Look for it at your local Christian bookstore first, but if you can't find it, here is the link to buy in from Amazon.  I suggest you start reading it and doing the activities on January 1, 2013.  My first post will be Monday January 7, 2013 that will recap that first week.

I am really looking forward to doing this study with you!  Stay tuned the next few Wednesdays to see what other studies we will be doing in 2013!

Until Next Time.....

Monday, November 12, 2012

1 Week to an Organized Life - November Week Three

This week you can:

  • create your to-do list and shopping list
  • design your menu
  • try the menu provided in the chapter from a professional chef
It's just about go time!  Now for the final planning.  We have two lists to make this week.  A to-do list of everything left to do in your home, and a shopping list for the meal itself.  Your to do list might include specific cleaning, decorating, choosing serving dishes and borrowing if needed, etc.

Then we create the shopping list...I actually like this part!  Decide what's for dinner and then see what is already in your pantry and what you will need to purchase.  THEN, grab the grocery ads or look them up online to be sure you get the best deal out there.

When deciding on your menu, don't forget to consider how each item will be cooked.  I like for everything to come together at the same time and be fresh and warm, to do this I use a variety of recipes that use the stovetop, microwave, crock pot and oven.  If you are the kind that can make things ahead of time and warm things up right before the meal, you can have a greater variety.  I wanted to do one of my roasted Brussel Sprouts recipes, but since they mostly take 45 minutes and I only have one oven, I don't think I'll be able to since there will be a revolt at my house if I don't have a certain kind of oven baked rolls!

The rest of the chapter gives you party planning ideas, a menu from a professional chef and other ideas such as delegating.  For example, I could have someone else bring the rolls already baked, then I could do the sprouts!

Here are some links to recipes that I have used for Thanksgiving...I hope you enjoy!!

and there are many more on the blog...

Until Next TIme.....

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Self Control

Fruit of the Spirit is Self-Control
By Dr. Richard J. Krejcir

Is the Self-Control working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this Fruit of Self-Control from God's most precious Word by examining the passages below. Now ask yourself:
  1. How do I exhibit Self-Control in my daily life?
  2. What can I do to develop a better attitude of Self-Control?
  3. What blocks Self-Control from working and being exhibited in me?
  4. How can I make Self-Control function better, stronger and faster even in times of uncertainly and stress?
Galatians 5:22-23
Self-Control (Prov. 16:32; 25:28; Rom 13:12-14; I Cor. 6:12; 9:25-27; 1Thess. 5: 22; Titus 2:12; Heb. 12:2; II Pet. 1:5-7) is allowing God to be in control of your will and heart and seeking the Spirit to enable us. Then we will know what not to do and guard the areas we are weak in. This will allow us to have discipline and restraint with obedience to God and others. It is not letting distractions derail or remove us from His will and plan so we will not be held back with what Christ called us to do.
Self-indulgence is the opposite, from eating a pound of chocolate at once or partying your way to oblivion. Too much excess will leave you empty and alone, it will at best cause us to gain a lot of weight and lose your friends and at worst lose your life and miss out on our heavenly reward! Self-indulgence seeks what is fleeting when we as a Christian are made for eternity.
· Here are positive examples from Scripture (Gen. 39:6-18; II Sam. 16:5-13; Dan. 1:8-16)
· Here is are negative examples from Scripture (Gen. 3:1-7; Nub. 20:7-12; II Sam. 13:1-19; I Kings 21:1-7)
Further Questions
  1. How would you define Self-Control?
  1. What are the things that lure you to be self-indulgent?
  1. How does the excess of life counteract Self-Control?
  1. What happens to our relationships with God and others when we relinquish self-control?
  1. When have you been filled with Self-Control the most?
  1. In what situation did you fail to have Self-Control in which you should have?
  1. What issue is in your life that would improve with more Self-Control?
  1. Think through the steps you need to take to put Self-Control into action in a specific instance. Such as how can you place safe guards against the areas in your life where you are weak in? Or how can you avoid situations, things, certain people and places that may cause you to lose control? Or how can you balance having joy and fun so they do not become excess that lead to sin?
Self-Control is not the subject of the media; you may perhaps never see a movie with this as the premise because it is anti-climatic and perhaps boring. The world wants us to grab all of the gusto that we can, go for that brass ring regardless of the consequences or who we step on to get it or taking the responsibility of our actions. Yet, Christ is calling us by His example and Word to seek what is in eternity that is permanent and lasting not what is fleeting and empty. Christ was our greatest example from the humbleness of the incarnation through Gethsemane to the Cross He was the perfect model of self-control! Self-control will be the key to inner strength that will help deliver us from fear, depression, harm and the pain of life by being focused on Christ and not our circumstances. Christ's strength in us that we cannot do on our own! And the key to receive this strength is our surrender to His Lordship over all aspects of our lives! Remember God wants us to have fun too and enjoy life; we are not to be prudes at the same time we are not to seek sin either!
Remember, we make the fruits by taking His yoke so it will create the blossom, and when we keep His yoke (growth in our faith and practice of being a disciple) you will bear the fruit. It is what we are to Christ not so much what we do in His name.
© 2002 R. J. Krejcir Into Thy Word Ministries

Monday, November 5, 2012

1 Week to an Organized Life - November Week Two

This week you can:

  • sweep through the home to make sure it's ready for guests
  • plan your day through all the details
If you have followed along from the start, you know where your good china is and your kitchen is organized and ready to go.  If you have not, let's start with an emergency clean up plan.  What rooms do your family most often end up in?  This is where you want to focus.  Be sure the dining room and family or living rooms are clean and neat.  Do a 30 minute speed elimination in each room if needed.  There is a detailed plan in this week's reading.

Now is the time to make a plan.  First it is important to set a budget.  Yes, really.  Just like Christmas we can overspend on this holiday just to impress, or when we see cute decorations or an expensive unique food item.  

Then: make a guest list, will it be sit down or buffet, how will the table be set, what kind of beverages, fresh flowers or other centerpiece, background music or football game, candles for the table, tablecloth, do you have enough utensils, enough chairs, will there be a kid table?  Then of course anything that is unique to your family.  

Next week we will talk about the food!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Gentleness

Fruit of the Spirit is Gentleness
By Dr. Richard J. Krejcir

Is Gentleness working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this Fruit of Gentleness from God's most precious Word by examining the passages below. Now ask yourself:
  1. How do I exhibit Gentleness in my daily life?
  2. What can I do to develop a better attitude of Gentleness?
  3. What blocks Gentleness from working and being exhibited in me?
  4. How can I make Gentleness function better, stronger and faster even in times of uncertainly and stress?
Galatians 5:22-23
Gentleness (Prov. 15:1; Isa. 40:11; 42:2-3; Philp. 4: 5; Matt. 5:5; 11:29; 12:15; Eph. 4:1-2; Col. 3:16; 2 Timothy 2:24; 1 Thessalonians 2:7); is the character that will show calmness, personal care, tenderness and the Love of Christ in meeting the needs of others. It is to be more than just a personality; it is to be who we are from the work of the Sprit within us.
Roughness and violence are the opposite! When we have the mindset to just see what we can get out of life and make a name for ourselves we miss out on what is best for our benefit. Then it causes us to run over others and we end up being like the men who built the Tower of Babel (Gen. 11:1-9). Their downfall was not the building project but the pride and arrogance. To seek significance outside of glorifying God by their achievements alone, ignoring God's love, care, plan, and providence for a cheap and temporary substitute.
· Here are positive examples from Scripture (Isa. 40:11; 42:1-3; Matt. 11:28-29; Luke 7:36-50; 10:38-42; John 8: 1-11; I Thess. 2:7-8)
· Here is are negative examples from Scripture (Nub. 20:2-13; II Sam. 18:10-15; 19:1-8; I Kings 21: 5-14; Luke 9:51-56)
Further Questions
  1. How would you define Gentleness?
  1. What are the things that cause you to be rough and course with others?
  1. How does being rough counteract Gentleness?
  1. Are you aware of the intricacy and delicacy of life, so you are tender too? Are you approachable?
  1. When have you been filled with Gentleness the most?
  1. In what situation did you fail to have Gentleness in which you should have?
  1. What issue is in your life that would improve with more Gentleness?
  1. Think through the steps you need to take to put Gentleness into action in a specific instance. Such as how does God's tenderness toward you affect the way you go about your life to get things done? Does His care affect the way you care with humility and gentleness being tender in spite of people treating you like a doormat?
Gentleness is not being weak, as with meekness, gentleness is strength under control. It allows us to be tender, just think how big and vast and powerful God is, who is bigger than the universe, who transcends space and time way beyond our comprehension. Yet, He treats us with the utmost of tenderness and care. Knowing gentleness is trusting that God will take care of justice, thus we need to think correctly about who God is and who we are in Him. This understanding of His sovereignty, doctrine and control will move us from the hurriedness of life and the cruelty that goes with it to take the time with relationships, growth because we are at peace with God.
Gentleness allows us to be caring and nurturing to others. It helps us stay calm and not escalate problems or push people's buttons! To build others up, by allowing them to grow. It places the other first, it is being selfless. As attracting people to you who could use a listening ear or help, at the very least to hear and the most important thing we can do for others is offering our friendship. When we are too full of pride, we cannot be gentle with others; we cannot be a friend, for all we will do is hurt them and push them away. We can look to Jesus who modeled ultimate gentleness and care. Being fully God He does not have to be gentle, yet He takes to time to nurture others even when they make mistakes and fail. He helps them up and puts them back together; He will do this with you too. But you have to allow Him to form you. This character must continue to function in a society that does not see its importance, care for perceived limitations or think it is weak. But when others need an ear to listen they do not go to the ones filled with pride they go to someone who is gentle! Will that be you?
Remember; what come into your mind when you think about God tells a lot about you, perhaps the most important thing!
© 2002 R. J. Krejcir Into Thy Word Ministries

Monday, October 29, 2012

1 Week to an Organized Life - November Week One

This week you can:

  • look back on your childhood Thanksgiving experiences
  • decide what kind of holiday you want to create this year

If you have been following along all year, you are now all organized and your home looks its best.  This holiday season should be a far as that goes, I make no promises regarding in laws and extended family!!

Even if you have just started, reading the November chapter will give you the plan and tools you need to have a stress free holiday.

I love Regina's take on Thanksgiving: "We don't have to worry about presents, all we have to do is count our blessings and eat!"  Of course some of us have to host the meal so there is a little more work for us.  It doesn't have to be....well, it doesn't have to be overwhelming anyway.

Be sure to take the time this week to do the journaling questions, it will offer great insight toward your plan of attack for this Thanksgiving!  

Here we go....let the holiday season begin!!

Until Next Time.....

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Following Frugal Franny

There have been a lot of changes on Facebook and other social media sites lately.  You might be missing out on all the latest posts from your favorite blogs like Frugal Franny.

Did you know you can sign up to get the blog posts through email?  Simply put your email address in the box right there on the top left side of this page.

On Facebook, you need to go to Franny's Facebook page (click the link right here on the left hand side of this page) and hover your mouse over the button that says "liked".  Then add to your interests list.  If you have never started an interest list, click "new interest" and then give it a title such as "recipes" or "frugal living" or whatever you like.  Then when you are on your home page on Facebook, on the left hand side about halfway down you will see your interests links.  Click on whichever one you'd like to look at and you will see all the posts from your favorite FB Frugal Franny!  Why so complicated?  FB now wants pages to pay to promote their posts, so they are only posting to 7% of our followers for each post.

On Pintrest, simply follow the boards you are interested in by clicking that choice, or choose to follow all boards and those pics will show up on your Pintrest homepage.

On Networked Blogs you should be able to sign up and simply see a list of all the blog posts you have signed up to get.  I have had some trouble with this myself.  Sometimes it just won't update.

Hope this helps you keep up with all of your favorite blogs!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Faithfulness

Fruit of the Spirit is Faithfulness
By Dr. Richard J. Krejcir

Is Faithfulness working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this Fruit of Faithfulness from God's most precious Word by examining the passages below. Now ask yourself:
  1. How do I exhibit Faithfulness in my daily life?
  2. What can I do to develop a better attitude of Faith?
  3. What blocks Faithfulness from working and being exhibited in me?
  4. How can I make Faithfulness function better, stronger and faster even in times of uncertainly and stress?
Galatians 5:22-23
Faithfulness (Psalm 119: 89-90; Matthew 17:19; 25:21; Rom. 1:17; 5:1-2; 1 Cor. 12:9; Hebrews 11:1; 1 Thess. 5:24) is the "gluing" fruit that will preserve our faith and the other characters of the Spirit and identify God's will so we can be dependable and trusting to God and others. It is the one fruit that we give to God, whereas the others are from the Spirit working in us! Faithfulness is authenticity, the power and motivation for Christian living. Because God is trustworthy with us we can be faith-worthy in Him!
Doubt, distrust and Misplaced Anger are the opposite, losing our trust and hope that God is in control!When we do this, we will lose or miss out on seeing God come through with His promises.When we are not exercising our faith, we will be consumed with doubt and distrust-the opposite of God's call and plan for us.
·Here are positive examples from Scripture (II Kings 5:8-14; Matt. 15:21-28; 21:18-22; Luke 7:1-10; Acts 3:1-10; Heb.11: 1-40)
·Here is are negative examples from Scripture (Matt. 6:25-34; 14:22-33; 17: 14-20; Mark 6:1-6; James 1:5-8)
Further Questions
  1. How would you define Faithfulness?
  1. What are the things that cause you to doubt or distrust God?
  1. How does distrust counteract Faithfulness?
  1. How can you give God more Faithfulness so you can fully realize that God is in control of your life and situation, so you can fully trust Him?
  1. When have you been filled with Faithfulness the most?
  1. In what situation did you fail to have Faithfulness in which you should have?
  1. What issue is in your life that would improve with more Faithfulness?
  1. Think through the steps you need to take to put Faithfulness into action in a specific instance. Will Christ find the kind of faith in you when He comes (Luke 18:1-8)? Such as having faith in spite of confusion and uncertainty or standing firm believing what is true even though you may not experience it or know what is going on or what Christ is doing in you?
Faithfulness is very difficult to have or hold on too especially applying it to our work and relationships. We tend to lose our patience with God thinking He is just a blessing machine and when we do not get what we want we leave Him because of our uncertainty. Yet, Faithfulness is the fruit that we give to God so He can change us inside and out! It is the ability to take what Christ has done in us and be a blessing to others with loyalty and trust. Faithfulness goes against modern psychology and societies thinking, as it requires us to move beyond ourselves, whereas psychology tells us to be selfness putting the "me" first, rearranging the world to our needs, which creates self-destruction and broken relationships. We have to keep the goal of faithfulness in our minds always, as it will allow God to work deeper and us to respond to His call! God has bigger things at stake that He wants you for, much more than the petty complaints we give or things we ask of Him!
Remember; God does not want our complaints, thus He will not give us an answer for them, rather He wants our obedience, so He can use us more and better!
© 2002 R. J. Krejcir Into Thy Word Ministries

Monday, October 22, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - October Week 4

this week you can:

  • make the family room more fun to be in
  • share the fun; get a chore
  • learn how to organize the most common items stored in the family room
I love the pic of this room.  The adults can watch TV in one side of the room but still have a view of the kids playing on the other side and kind of back behind the TV so the noise shouldn't bother either group.

This is the room where the real living is going on.  Wonder who decided to call the other room the living room?  This is the place to be comfortable, be entertained and have fun.  That doesn't mean it has to be a mess all the time though.  Remember, everything has a place and everything should go back to that place when you are done with it.

Not everyone has a space in their home shaped like that in this pic.  Some of us don't even have a separate room for this, we've got a family/living room.  Whatever you decide to do with this space be sure that it is functional and not just overcrowded and cluttered.  No one will have fun then.

Be sure to read the chapter this week.  Regina gives some great ideas for organization solutions for most any reason you can think of in this room.  Hidden storage is the best, in my opinion.  I love the cabinet that is used for the TV in this pic.  Two big drawers.  These could hold games, remotes, DVDs, maybe even some of the toys you see strung out on the other side of the room.  In our house, we store the batteries here since the remotes are what use the most batteries anyway.

Another great hidden storage solution is the foot stool that has a lid for the top.  This is a great place for blankets, pillows and again games.

Look around.  What hidden storage do you already have?  What could you add?  Are you using it effectively?  Do you really need to store everything that is in there or do you need to eliminate?  Speaking of, I've got a box of hidden storage that I need to go through, and I might as well do it right now!

Until Next Time.....

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Goodness

Feedback has been good for the "guest post" format, so I will let him do the talking for the rest of the fruits of the spirit.  I hope you are learning something and enjoying the study format.

Until Next Time.....

Fruit of the Spirit is Goodness
By Dr. Richard J. Krejcir

Is the Character of Goodness working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this Fruit of Goodness from God's most precious Word by examining the passages below. Now ask yourself:
  1. How do I exhibit Goodness in my daily life?
  2. What can I do to develop a better attitude of Goodness?
  3. What blocks goodness from working and being exhibited in me?
  4. How can I make Goodness function better, stronger and faster even in times of uncertainly and stress?
Galatians 5:22-23
Goodness (Amos 5:15; Prov. 25:22; Matthew 7:12; 19:16; Luke 6:27, 35; Rom. 12:17; II Cor. 5:20; Eph. 5:8-9; I Pet. 3:11; II Pet. 1:3-8) is the engagement of love! It displays integrity, honesty and compassion to others and allows us to do the right thing. Goodness takes our virtue and excellence and models it to others in the action of love. It is doing the right thing even when it does not feel like we should, as Joseph was betrayed and sold as a slave, he chose to make his situation good and help and treat others better than he needed too. Goodness is the model for people to repent and accept Christ.
Badness, cruelty, ruthlessness, depravity, debauchery and evil are the opposites. It is being mercilessness and unscrupulousness in our dealings toward others! When we fight against each other especially in the church, you have to see it as how hurtful and even pathetic it is in God's eyes!
· Here are positive examples from Scripture (Gen. 39; Luke 10:30-37; Acts 7:60; 9:36; Luke 23:34; Gal. 6:10; II Thess. 1:11)
· Here is are negative examples from Scripture (Gen. 4:8; Duet. 25:17-19; Joshua 7; Luke 9:54)
Further Questions
1. How would you define Goodness?
2. What are the things that cause you to act bad or ruthless?
3. How does ruthlessness counteract Goodness?
4. How can you make Eph. 5:8-9 work in you, even through times of waiting and confusion, even when people are rude and evil to you?
5. When have you been filled with Goodness the most?
6. In what situation did you fail to have Goodness in which you should have?
7. What issue is in your life that would improve with more Goodness?
8. Think through the steps you need to take to put Goodness into action in a specific instance. Such as learning to be good to people who are rude to you or not letting your circumstances get in the way of the way you treat others?
Goodness is the fruit that virtue and the rest of characters combine to produce endearment. It is the character that makes people liked and even lovable by others. It is what is attractive and luring, that catches people's attention and respect. This is the quintessential element that attracts people to you and finds and keeps friends. It builds marriages and shows God's love to others around us. It is virtue in action; it is being a role model and putting into practice excellence in all that we do to God and others. Goodness enables us to be liked and enjoyed, even if an enemy comes against us (Prov. 25:22). It is the taste of what is to come, the flavor of how we are to be (Psalm 34:8; 119:103). It is our expression of worship and gratitude to Christ played out in our lives, so we can enjoy Him and He can enjoy us, and so that life can be more enjoyable for all.
Why are we to be good? Because God is good to us (Psalm 86:5; 145:4-13)! Because God has defeated evil, so why would any rational person seek failure unless they are deluded as Satan is (Matt. 5:43-48; 25:41; John 12:31; 16:9-11; Col. 2:15; Rev. 20:1-3)! Because we are to serve a God of love and in so doing we are to love (1 Pet. 2:1-3; 1 John 4:7-21)! Goodness is the application of love, whereas pride is the love, the only love we have and use and it is for only ourselves (Prov. 16:18; 29:23)! Being good will help us be patient, kind, understanding and forgiving to others. It will be the fruit that helps us build each other up, build His Church, reach His community and restore relationships and seek the best in all we do. It is excellence in action! It is what builds great societies and its absence causes those same societies to collapse in debauchery!
Remember; the fruits and character cost dearly, they are not cheap by and from the One who bought them for us, for our betterment and for His glory. We must not take for granted what Cost Him so much!
© 2002 R.J. Krejcir Into Thy Word Ministries
"It is that particular Wise and good God, who is the author and owner of our system, that I propose for the object of my praise and adoration. He is not above caring for us, being pleased with our praise and offended when we slight Him or neglect his Glory . I love Him therefore for his goodness, and I adore Him for his wisdom. Let me then not fail to praise my God continually, for it is His due, and it is all I can return for His many favors and great goodness to me." Benjamin Franklin

Monday, October 15, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - October Week 3

this week you can:

  • clear the clutter and put life back in the living room
  • learn what to store in this room
  • declutter your piano (if you have one)

Look!  Another green pic...I bet you though I would pick purple, but I really like this color, Love the widow treatments, and that lamp is pretty cool too.

The living room in most homes is going the way of the parlor...just doesn't exist much anymore.  My mom still has a living room, or what some people call a FORMAL living room.  There is no TV, just space to sit and very neat, almost like a showplace.  Back in the day, this is where you would meet with guests for a visit.  This is not the place where you put your feet on the couch or have a bowl of popcorn in your lap.

There is nothing wrong with a room for these types of guests, especially if you get those types of visits often, but it doesn't need to be so tidy and perfect that no one feels comfortable in it.  Walk into this room with fresh eyes.  Do you like how it looks?  How do you think it looks to a stranger?  Sometimes a little paint and new furniture arrangement are all it needs.  Don't have too many frames or "stuff" on top of the piano or every table surface.  The eye has a hard time focusing when there is too much to look at.  

You might have a piece of furniture here that has some storage.  This might be a great place to store items you use rarely, like holiday decorations or fancy table linens, etc.  If you have a bookcase here, maybe dedicate one shelf to photo albums or scrapbooks.  This is also a great place to store candles in any table drawers you might have.  Beware that this room doesn't become a dumping ground, simply use the available storage.

Also beware if you do use this place for hidden storage that it is a regular thing.  I mean, everything needs to have it's place.  If the coffee table drawer is where you store batteries, don't have batteries in three other drawers.  This is its place and everyone knows it.  When looking for batteries or looking to put them away after being purchased, everyone knows where they go.  When everything has it's place, cleaning up takes very little time and there is no early morning shouting across the house of  "WHERE IS THE......"  It is so worth it!  A place for everything and everything in its place. AMEN!

Until Next TIme.....

Thursday, October 11, 2012

1 Year to an Organized Life - October Week 2

This week you can:

  • declutter your dining room table
  • create a room that is inviting as well as organized
  • find creative ways to enjoy the dining room if your dinner party days are over
I love this pic.  The room appears small, but nice and bright and inviting!  Love the green and wish I had that storage!!

This room should be easy to do.  We've already done the kitchen and home office...most dining room tables tend to be a home office extension...but it might need a reminder!  If you have a home office, box up and papers and take them there and deal with them accordingly...don't just drop the box into the room!  If you don't have a dedicated room, take it to the temporary home office or to the proper filing cabinet or system you developed during home office month.  If you have a sideboard or hutch, clean out the shelves and drawers just like you have for every other room.  Be sure good dishes or silver are properly cared for or wrapped.

Remove any extraneous items.  I know my dining room chairs end up being coat racks quite often.  Remember the one touch rule.  When you take your coat off, hang it up in the coat closet or wherever you had decided it belongs.  Now that it is cleaned out, does it need fresh paint?  Can you display your best dishes or serving pieces in the hutch?  Do you need new window coverings, etc.

Maybe this room is now pretty bare and you have even gotten rid of your dining room table...if you ever had one...because you just don't entertain.  How else could you use this room?  My friend turned hers into a Wii room for the kids. It's a very small room, but big enough to play on the Wii and it is downstairs where they can keep and eye or ear on the kids if they start fighting over games, etc.  My "dining room" is actually an extension of the living room.  There are no separate walls.  I would love to make it into one large living/family room, but my husband is not yet ready to part with his Mother and Father's first dining room set. *sigh*  So I'm just doing the best that I can by keeping it tidy.  And we have used the table quite a bit as we occasionally have our small group over from church for meals/gatherings.

This might be a great area to consider making a dedicated homework area.  Place the family computer here and table/desk space.  The kids will have an area to spread out and work without distractions from the TV, and you will have an eye on the computer and what they might be looking at.

Every family is different and every dining area is different.  Figure out what works for you and go for it!

Until Next TIme.....

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Kindness

pic from Google images

Guest post this week is really more of a mini Bible study.  I hope you can make the time to do it.  The world would be pretty awesome if we were all, myself included, a little more kind.  Enjoy!
Until Next Time.....

Fruit of the Spirit is Kindness
By Dr. Richard J. Krejcir

Is Kindness working in you?
Here is how you can find out. Take a careful look at this Fruit of Kindness from God's most precious Word. Examine the passages below and ask yourself:
1. How do I exhibit kindness in my daily life?
2. What can I do to develop more of a kindness attitude?
3. What blocks the practice of kindness in my life? How can I make kindness function better, stronger, and faster, even in times of uncertainty and stress?
4. How can I make Kindness function better, stronger, and faster, even in times of uncertainty and stress?
Kindness (Rom. 2:1-4; 12:9-21; Ephesians 4:32; Col. 3:12-14; 1 John 3:16-23) is the medium through which Christ's love becomes tangible through us. It is practicing benevolence and a loving attitude towards others. Kindness is the essence that shows the world that we are a Christian, like the fragrance coming from a flower. It is being convicted with God's Word, and then modeling it to others. Kindness is the subject to the object of who we are in Christ!
Cruelty, spitefulness, being mean, and holding grudges are the opposites. This can include seeking to harm someone, being cruel and rude, or just ignoring people you do not like. God created us for relationships, and when we ignore this, we fail in the most important aspect in life besides our relationship in Him!
· Here are positive examples from Scripture (Gen. 39:21-23; Josh. 2:4-16; Ruth 2:8-16; 3:15; Luke 7:2-6; Acts 24:23; 27:3, 43)
· Here are negative examples from Scripture (Gen. 21:9-14; 37:12-36; Ex. 5:6-18; Luke 22:64; John 19:3)
Further Questions
  1. How would you define Kindness? Notice how Joseph's brothers were cruel to him, yet a jailer, who was a stranger, was kind!
  1. What are the things that cause you to be cruel or rude?
  1. How does rudeness counteract kindness?
  1. Boaz had no obligation, outside of tradition, to help Ruth, yet He did. Why did he (Ruth 2:8-16; 3:15)?
  1. When have you most been filled with kindness?
  1. In what situation did you fail to have kindness when you should have?
  1. What issue is in your life that would improve with more kindness?
  1. Think through the steps you need to take to put kindness into action in a specific situation. How about learning to drive without rage when someone cuts you off, or spending more time helping someone you do not like, or not letting your circumstances get in the way of being kind to strangers, even if you are in a hurry?
We live in a world that accepts cruelty as being cool. Just look at TV and the movies. However, the Christian is called to be higher, while at the same time, lower. This means to be higher in our character and lower by acceptance of others (as long as it does not bring us down to their level!). Kindness is beyond just being accepting, liberal, or open minded. It is thoughtful consideration to one another, putting ourselves in their shoes. We are called to be kind to enemies (Luke 6:34-35), to strangers (Lev. 19:34), to family (Duet. 22:1) and to outcasts (Life of Jesus). Kindness is not something we confront. It is something we proclaim! We must change our behaviors to reflect Christ's treatment of us in how we treat others, on the road, in our work, school, and family. As society gets more complicated and crowded, kindness will gradually disappear, which makes it increasingly needed. Let us "step up to the plate" of treating and serving others as Christ would (1 John 3:16-23).
Remember the Fruits of the Spirit are not what we do when we have the time or feel like it, they are what we are to do--period!
© 2002 R. J. Krejcir Into Thy Word Ministries

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Fruit of the Spirit - Patience

Galatians 5:22-23

I'm sure you've heard someone in your life tell you, "don't pray for patience because you won't like what God will give you to learn patience!"  Anyone nodding along?  I know I for one certainly want to have more patience, but I also don't want to have to learn to have it the hard way!  That's like having to do 1 million sit-ups to get a toned tummy...maybe I'd rather have the flab!

But patience is a virtue, and it is a fruit of the spirit, and I for one, do not want my fruit basket lacking anything, so I will grudgingly ask the Lord for more patience.

Look up Psalm 27:14.  Did you know that patience is directly linked with courage?  It does take a brave person to conjure up the strength needed to be patient especially if it is in the middle of a difficult situation.  

Patience seems to be a passive waiting game, but not so.  Look up Proverbs 19:11.  It is an intentional process that grows with time, maturity and wisdom.  We may not develop patience as quickly as we want but we can learn to tolerate our impatience...which actually means we are growing patience!

I could tell you some lofty, high and mighty kinds of things about patience, but the truth is that it is something that needs worked on daily just like your golf swing, a guitar riff, learning another language, or keeping your sanity while your child learns to play the drums.  Keep working on it, like sit-ups, and your patience muscle will become just as toned as your tummy.

Here are a couple cool quotes about patience:

Patience with others is love, patience with self is hope, and patience with God is faith - Adel Bestavros

If the person you are talking to doesn't appear to be listening, be patient.  He may just have a small piece of fluff in his ear - Winnie the Pooh

Until Next TIme.....