Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Updates du jour


 (**oops, thought I had already sent this through earlier**)

two prizes awarded  for this month's virtual sew-in provided by Anthea. Thank you for these tempting little lovlies.

And the winners of these prizes were selected by random generator.

1. Christina M, and
2. Cathy

A big thank you to Wendy for hosting this months FNSI!

Pilgrim's Progress RAL

While I was whizzing along in the first few chapters, they certainly became meatier as I continued reading. I read only for as long as I was able to concentrate and really digest as I read. I developed early on in life the bad habit of reading fast and skimming fluff...suffice to say there is none of that in this book.

Chapter 1-4

"I am condemned to die, and after that to come to judgment; and I find that I am not willing to do the first, nor able to do the second."

It is difficult to believe that no matter the wonderful promises of God and everlasting life, we still hold on to this one. With the ridicule and harsh words against us by those who do not believe. Coming to judgment is a scary affair. No matter how good I may be, there are many things for which I will be judged...shamefully, yet rightfully so.

There are many out there in our life who would like to persuade us not to follow the Christian path. Not out of malice, but out of misunderstanding or ignorance...friends, family, strangers. It is difficult to leave friends, family, and familiar ways behind. We really stick out when we do these things.

Like me, have you ever found yourself in the Slough of Despond? It is a very nasty place, and so easy to get yourself turned around a white out during a blizzard where you cannot see your hand in front of your face and you dare not move in any direction, and yet you dare not remain still.

I like when Christian was told by Goodwill in Chapter 2: "Thou mayest distinguish the right from the wrong, the right only being straight and narrow." This suggests a serious focus.

Christian asks the Man in the Iron Cage: "For what did you bring yourself into this condition?"

The Man in the Iron Cage responds: "For the desires, pleasures, and gains of this world; in the enjoyment of which I did then promise myself much delight; but now every one of those things also bite me, and gnaw me, like a burning worm." 

I like in chapter 3 where Christian says to Mistrust: "To go back is nothing but death; to go forward is fear of death, and life everlasting beyond it. I will yet go forward." I have had thoughts like this. To stop living the Christian life is to go back to death. To continue living the Christian life is fear of death...fear of all the sorrows, the roaring lions, the wolves in sheep's clothing, but perseverance achieves life everlasting and so I continue on the straight and narrow path.

On more than one occasion I have fallen asleep, and had to retrace my steps. It is a worrisome affair!

Did you like the part where Porter talks to Christian about the lions. About how the lions are chained and are placed there for the trial of faith where it is, and for the finding out of those that have none. This is a really beautiful example of how God is in control of everything, and how he will let nothing harm us. It also shows how he tests us to help us learn about ourselves and to grow in our walk with Him.

"Jael slew Sisera", I am not familiar with this story. I had to search it out and found it in Judges 5:20 or with Shamgar, also in Judges. Guess I need to familarize myself with this particular chapter. Hmmm.

If I had to choose one thing that most spoke to me as I read, it was the following words found in Chapter 4 from the Valley of Shadow of Death: " of the wicked ones got behind him, and stepped up softly to him, and whisperingly suggested many wicked words to him, which he verily thought had proceeded from his own mind. This put Christian more to it than anything he had met with before, even to think that he should now speak evil of Him that he had so much loved before." "...but he had not the wisdom either to stop his ears, or to know from whence those wicked words came."

Sometimes it is hard to know whether the voice or thoughts in your head are actually your own. Those little tempting thoughts, encouraging you to do what you know is wrong. Read that book, watch that immoral program, don't come to a full stop at the stop sign because there is no one there....

This book is so meaty, that I am going to stop my comments here. My thoughts on the remaining chapter contents of Part 1, are very unformulated. I'm not sure that I will blog any further comments on my reading done to date, but I will continue with my reading into Part 2 in an effort to complete my RAL on time or not too far off my designated end date of August 9, but I will be reading this again. Perhaps this Fall once my routine returns more to normal with the start of school for my son and for us when the sun sets earlier. I think I will purchase a copy with notes, but I'm undecided if I want a paper copy or ebook copy. I still prefer a paper copy...guess that shows my age :)

Project 119

Whoo boy, I am incredibly behind. I have memorized the first verse only.

Psalm 119: 1 Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the LORD.

I have not kept up with using Scripture Typer, and really just not had the focus to memorize. I will get back to this.

- Clematis - in my garden

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