Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween Evangelism Tips

Here are a few tips from the Fish With Trish website. I incorporated her tract/treat bags idea this year into my own Halloween plan .



Here are some of my own tips I've used in the past:
  • I buy full size candy bars (I recall from my trick-or-treating days that you remember the houses that give out the big candy bars with eagerness to return).
  • I usually tape our church business card to the back of the candy bar and hand it out with a gospel tract.
  • For the older kids, I give out a DVD (with the candy, of course). I favor the the "Why Christianity" DVD put out by Living Waters ministry (I look for specials on these throughout the year and buy in bulk allowing me to purchase them for $1.00 a video).
  • I also like the curved illusion tracts by Living Waters ministry. It fits well with the "trick or treat" theme of the evening (also demonstrated in Trish's video).

Happy Evangelism Day!


Halloween Postscript:

I had another ministry/evangelism opportunity come up last minute that took me away from home during the prime trick-or-treating hour this evening. Greg said he would take over for me on the home front. I called him right before the evening's activities began, and he announced "I made a Jack O' Lantern". I said, "Why?" He said, "If I'm going to stay home and hand out candy, I want a Jack O' Lantern." (okay--works for me). Never being one to do things half way, Greg found an image he wanted to use on the Internet (Felix the cat, He said, "It must have a happy face" and Felix the cat fit that criteria). He printed it, cut it out, used it as a pattern. He then used his dremel drill to carve the image into the pumpkin and used a small light bulb to light it up. I think he did a fantastic job! So, our evening ended in a photo shoot, and the results are posted below.



Candy, gospel tracts, and a fancy Jack O' Lantern--sounds like Halloween to me.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Speak O Lord

I recently heard this song (Speak O Lord by Keith & Kristyn Getty) while at a women's event. I enjoyed both the melody and the words to the song. I'm sharing it with you today via this video (which is lovely in its own right).


Friday, October 28, 2011

180

This is the latest video put out by Ray Comfort and the gang at Living Waters. It's worth the (at times uncomfortable) thought-provoking 30 minutes it takes to view it.

To my young blog followers: Watch it after your parents (or a parent) have watched it and with their permission.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Autobiography of God Part 4

This week I commend to you part 4 in the Bible Baptist Church Sunday morning sermon series titled "The Autobiography of God". Click here to listen to the sermon or to download it for future use.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Book Club Wednesday 10/26/11

The Musings book club selection for September and October is Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild by Mary Kassian. Ladies, I encourage you to pick up a copy, read along with me, and let me know what you think in the comments section of the "book club" posts.

This week I read chapter 8. It was titled "Body Language" (Her nonverbal behavior).

Here are the contrasting characteristics between the Girl Gone Wild and the Girl Gone Wise

Girl Gone Wild

Suggestive
Compared to daughters of Zion (Isaiah 3)
self-assured
assertive
deceptively charming

Girl Gone Wise

Demure
Reserved
Full of Favor & elegance
Gracious

I recommend this book. There hasn't been one chapter yet where I haven't taken away an application for my own life.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Psalm 46

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling.
Selah

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy habitation of the Most High. God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved; God will help her when morning dawns. The nations rage, the kingdoms totter; he utters his voice, the earth melts. The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah

Come, behold the works of the LORD, how he has brought desolations on the earth. He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the chariots with fire. "Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!" The LORD of hosts is with us, the God of Jacob is our fortress.
Selah

Psalm 46: 1-11

Monday, October 24, 2011

Cookie Baking Night 10/24/11

Tonight was Cookie Baking Night. In attendance this evening: Emily, Ethan, and Carissa. We decided to try our hand at a box kit of Whoopie Pies.



Hmmm. The end product didn't come out quite like the picture on the box, but this is the version you get when you "add real kids". It was a fun process for us, though. Sprinkles = fun. Can't beat a good treat with sprinkles!

This project took up most of our evening (between preparing, baking, cooling, frosting, and sprinkling) but we did manage to squeeze in a fall-evening walk (lovely), and we read from Leading Little Ones to Godby Marian Schoolland.

Our lesson this evening was titled "God's Children Obey". I really liked the way this lesson was laid out. It provoked the children to deeper thoughts about God and led to much conversation on the subject. Emily read John 15:8-12 from the Bible for us.

It was a good evening and, as usual, a fun time was had by all.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Proverbs 19:21

Many are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand.

Proverbs 19:21 (ESV)

Friday, October 21, 2011

Passion and Purity

I recently read Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot. It is the story of the courtship between Jim and Elisabeth Elliot (missionaries in Ecuador) before their wedding in 1953.

The book was given to me by my friend Jenny. She purchased it at a garage sale because "everyone should read this". The book contained an inscription that read like this:

Holly,

This is written by a woman who had found God's match for her. I pray that you will learn from Elisabeth's wisdom and grow closer to your Savior in the process.

In love with Christ,
Amanda (12/99)

I'm thinking Holly was not quite aware of what she had here (or it wouldn't have ended up in a garage sale). Anytime you have opportunity to read a book by Elisabeth Elliot (especially a free one put into your hands), I suggest you seize the moment. She takes every thought and views it through the lens of Scripture. She is a treat to read, and I guarantee you will come away provoked to deeper thoughts about God.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

The Autobiography of God Part 3

Today I'd like to share with you part 3 in the Bible Baptist Church Sunday sermon series titled The Autobiography of God. I hope you're following along. It's well worth your time. Click here to listen to the sermon or to download it for future use.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Book Club Wednesday 10/19/11

The Musings book club selection for September and October is Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild by Mary Kassian. Ladies, I encourage you to pick up a copy, read along with me, and let me know what you think in the comments section of the "book club" posts.

This week I read chapters 6 & 7.

Chapter 6 is titled "Focus" (What Commands Her Attention) contrasting the Girl Gone Wild who "gets" and the Girl Gone Wise who "gives". One of the characteristics of the Girl Gone Wild in this chapter (taken from Proverbs 7) is that she "lies in wait". I found this paragraph particularly interesting about the woman who lies in wait:

"Lying in wait behavior isn't restricted to getting a guy and getting married. It extends to getting other things too. After she gets the guy, the Wild Thing may turn her attention to getting the house, getting the furniture, getting a car, getting new clothes, getting a job, getting some kids, getting a break, getting her husband to change, getting the money to retire ... Many women spend their whole lives laying in wait. They perpetually wait and watch for their next big catch and hope it will bring them the fulfillment they so desperately desire."

I jotted down a few characteristics of the focus of the Girl Gone Wild vs. the Girl Gone Wise in this chapter:

Girl Gone Wild:

Greedy at heart
On the hunt
Feet do not stay at home
Me-focused
Wants to satisfy own desires

Girl Gone Wise:

Productive
Enjoys and glorifies Christ
Kingdom-focused

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

God's Purposes

"In the infinite wisdom of the Lord of all the earth, each event falls with exact precision into its proper place in the unfolding of His divine plan. Nothing, however small, however strange, occurs without His ordering, or without its particular fitness for its place in the working out of His purpose; and the end of all shall be the manifestation of His glory, and the accumulation of His praise.

--Benjamin Warfield


"In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.

Ephesians 1:7-10 (ESV)

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Autobiography of God Part 2

This is the second sermon in the "Autobiography of God" series at Bible Baptist Church. You can click here to listen or download the podcast and listen at another time. It's a sermon series worth following, using the text of Exodus 34:6-7

Friday, October 14, 2011

God Is His Own Interpreter

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.

Deep in unfathomable mines
Of never failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs
And works His sovereign will.

Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take;
The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings on your head.

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust Him for His grace;
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flower.

Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter,
And He will make it plain.


--William Cowper

Thursday, October 13, 2011

God is Doing Big Things

I commend this Bible Baptist Church Thursday Night Bible Study sermon to you titled "God is doing Big Things". It provides a very quick overview of the Bible within in it. It's well worth the listen. You can listen to it at our church's website or download it for later use.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Musings book club selection for September and October is Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild by Mary Kassian. Ladies, I encourage you to pick up a copy, read along with me, and let me know what you think in the comments section of the "book club" posts.

This week, I read chapter 5 titled "Habits", contrasting the self-indulgent woman (girl-gone-wild) with the self-disciplined woman (girl-gone-wise).

This chapter was tremendously helpful to me.

Ladies, this is a chapter worth reading. If you haven't picked up a copy of this book yet, I hope you will.

Here's a list of the contrasting characteristics between the self-indulgent woman and the self-disciplined woman:

Self-indulgent:

procrastinates
habitual patterns of neglect
poor priorities
pursues pleasure
undisciplined
restless
feet do not stay at home

Self-Disciplined:

Orderly
Tends to the emotional and spiritual condition of her house
Attends to matters of personal faith and character
Proper priorites
Tends to her house/works while at home
settled

Ladies, the book is worth it for this chapter alone.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

To Know God

This year our church had a booth at the local Otsego Festival and we displayed a board where people could ask questions about God or the Bible and our pastor would answer them biblically on his blog. Only one question this year, the one I put on the board, but Pastor graciously answered it nonetheless. The question was "Is it possible to know God?" I think his answer is worth checking out. You can click here to do so.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cookie Baking Night 10/10/11

Tonight was Cookie Baking Night. In attendance this evening: Emily, Ethan, and Carissa. Tonight we made rice crispy bar/pops. It was an interesting experiment that I'm not sure we'll try again. It was fun while it lasted, though. The kids particularly enjoyed buttering their hands and pressing down the rice crispy mixture. Then we cut them up, put them on sticks (much harder to do than I anticipated), dipped them in white candy coating, and rolled them in sprinkles.




We also managed to squeeze in a couple games of air hockey (a favorite game at the moment), and we read lesson 56 from Leading Little Ones to God, titled "God's Children Give". Ethan read Matthew 10:42 from the Bible.

We ended the evening with a rousing game of Uno.

As usual, a fun time was had by all.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Evangelism Focus 10/07/11

This evangelism focus post, I'd like to share with you a video of a pilot who was scheduled to fly on September 11, 2001. It's a bit on the long side but worth the time.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Prone to Wander

I was listening to Revive Our Hearts Radio program the other day, to a show titled “Prone to Wander”. I transcribed a small part of the program (that I felt was worthy of quoting) so I could share it with you on the blog today. It is as follows:

In commenting on the evil of idolatry, Nancy Leigh DeMoss said: This is no small matter to God. We need to see our sin as evil in the sight of the Lord. How does He view it compared to the standard of His awesome holiness? Every sin is evil in the sight of the Lord.

I received an e-mail from a woman this week stating: “My husband and I have just gone through some major transitions with our finances, which were holding our whole family in bondage. As God freed us from the bondage in the financial area, it became apparent to me that I have switched bondages from money to food. I think about it constantly. I shop for food whether we need it or not under the pretense of it being on sale. I hide food in my bedroom drawers. When you said that we should have nothing in our lives that holds us back from God, I realized how wrong I have been.”

We will never get freedom from bondage and idolatry if we do not come to see it as evil in the sight of the Lord. The Apostle John says in 1 John 5:21 “Little children [covenant people] keep yourselves from idols.” Keep yourselves from idols.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Book Club Wednesday 10/05/11

The Musings book club selection for September and October is Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild by Mary Kassian. Ladies, I encourage you to pick up a copy, read along with me, and let me know what you think in the comments section of the "book club" posts.

This week, I'm reading chapter 4 titled "Attitude". It's contrasting the clamorous and defiant woman (girl-gone-wild) with the gentle, calm, and amenable woman (girl-gone-wise).

Ladies, this is a chapter worth reading. If you haven't picked up a copy of this book yet, I hope you will.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Detecting Sin

This is one way I detect sin in my life:

Sometimes when my conscience is pricked that a particular action might be a sin, yet I am determined to brush over it and convince myself it’s “not that bad”. I ask myself, “Am I in anyway trying to hide this particular action from someone else?” (i.e., I turn off the computer when a family member comes in the door so they don’t know how long I've been sitting there; I cover up the contents of my garbage can at work so no one knows how many candy bars I've eaten that day, etc.). I have found, in my life, when the answer to that question is “yes”, then I know it’s sin, thus my desire to hide it.

It is a practice going back to the first sin in the Garden of Eden.

And they heard the sound of the LORD God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD God among the trees of the garden. But the LORD God called to the man and said to him, "Where are you?" And he said, "I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself." He said, "Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten of the tree of which I commanded you not to eat?" Genesis 3:8-11 (emphasis added)

Monday, October 3, 2011

Cookie Baking Stories

Here are a couple of stories from past Cookie Baking Nights that I found amusing. Maybe you will too.

Story #1:

Back Story: Each Cookie Baking Night, the kids eat supper with us at the beginning of the evening. Right before supper, I ask them what they would like to drink. The choices usually consist of water or milk, juice or water, or a variation thereof. I give the choices, and then (inevitably) Emily says, "I'll take Mountain Dew." To which I usually reply, "Nice try, but not one of the choices." We all giggle, she makes a real choice, and we sit down to dinner.

Story #1: A few weeks ago, Emily was sick and didn't make it to Cookie Baking Night. When Carissa arrived, she asked when Emily would be arriving. I then broke the news to her that Emily wasn't going to make it that night.

She said, "Oh. I wanted to tell Emily that yesterday, me, Ethan, and Mommy had Mountain Dew at the church picnic. Then Emily would say, Awww. No Fair." (which in front-toothless 6-year-old speak came out more like "awww, no fay-a"). Then she giggled at the thought, and I followed suit.

Story #2

Back Story: About a month ago, my sister-in-law was showing me some decorative crockware/cookware that she had just purchased. It was unusual and pretty, and I expressed how much I liked it.

Story #2: It was my birthday in the beginning of September. One Cookie Baking Night in September, Emily came in with a large birthday bag that her mom instructed her to give to me. Later in the evening she watched me open it as she was unaware of its contents as well. As I recognized what it was I let out an "Ohhh" of delight, and Emily was all the more intrigued to see what this great gift could be. It was a piece of the crockware that Mary (Emily's mom) had showed me a few weeks earlier. Emily was dismayed and disappointed when she saw what it was. She said, "It's a pan." Then she said, "Is this what's going to happen when I turn like-30. I'm going to pull out a gift and say, Ohhh, looook it's a frying pan."

I said, "Yes. Yes, you will."

Saturday, October 1, 2011

A Night With A Niece 10/01/11

Emily spent this weekend at our house. Greg was out of town, so we had a Girl's Night/Beauty Night. Emily found several homemade beauty concoctions to make from my recipe book. Here she's making homemade bath salts. You don't even want to know what we put in our hair (which is now shiny and soft).

Here's Emily letting the "conditioner" sit in her hair before she takes her "oatmeal cookie bath".


Here's the recipe for the bath salts in case you're inclined to try this at home. We made two batches of Orange/Lavender bath salts in the colors of blue/purple and apricot.

Colored Bath Salts:

1 cup Epsom salts
1/4 cup kosher salt or sea salt, coarsely ground
Food coloring
Essential oils (optional)

Mix together the Epsom salts and kosher salt. Add a few drops of your favorite color and stir well to blend. If you would like to scent your bath salts, add a few drops of the essential oils, mix well.

We divided ours into 1/2-cup portions and placed in small plastic baggies to be used in baths later. Makes nice gifts too.

Cookie Baking Night (10/23/17)

Tonight was Cookie Baking Night. In attendance this evening: Emily, Allison, Rylar, and Enzo. Tonight we made our traditional fall favorite:...