"Daily frame me more and more into the likeness of Thy Son, Jesus Christ." - George Washington

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Darkness No More

Psalm 63:6-7
When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches. Because You have been my help, Therefore in the shadow of Your wings I will rejoice.

I have been afraid of the dark since I was little. I was forever scarred after watching Wishbone's version of H. G. Well's Time Machine, and seeing the red-eyed morlocks that haunt the darkness, and can't live in the light. Just as much as that show scared me, this verse has comforted me and reminded me who really controls the darkness. I am reminded to meditate on my protector, and be at peace in his shadow.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Hurricane by Streamline

(You can find this song in the iPod on the side. Personally one of my favorites)
You shimmer like the Northern Star and I’m just the guy with the telescope on the ground
You’re rushing like a waterfall and I’m just the dribbling of a faucet that won’t turn off
I got concrete shoes, and you’re strapped to rockets,
If it’s sink or swim, then I’m swiftly drowning
I’m on the ocean floor and you’re out of the atmosphere

Why do I not see this coming?
The more I try, the less you’re enamored
When it all plays out, well who was I kidding?
To say you’re out of my league doesn’t start to explain it
I’m a drop of rain and baby you’re a hurricane

I whipped out the big guns, aimed to impress,
centered those cross-hairs on your chest
crossed my fingers, pulled the trigger
just hoping for the best
you probably wish the bullet had caught my head
but it landed in my foot instead

Why do I not see this coming?
The more I try, the less you’re enamored
When it all plays out, well who was I kidding?
To say you’re out of my league is a kind understatement
I’m a drop of rain and baby you’re a hurricane

Those chemicals made synapses fire,
made illogical seem probable
Like a cannon ball, I’m bound to soar and fall
I’m just a lead balloon, you’re anti-gravitational.
And I’m out of my head

Why do I not see this coming?
When the more I try, the less you’re enamored
When it all plays out, well who was I kidding?
To say you’re out of my league doesn’t start to explain it
I’m just a drop of rain and baby you’re a…

But if I had what I want, I’d get you off and I’d turn you on
And I’d have what I need, to bring down a goddess to her knees
I’d sell my soul to know, what to give to the girl who’s got it all
I’d conjure the winds to blow and knock you off of that pedestal
I’m calling your bluff, and I bet it all so you better fold
If I don’t strike gold, what’s left to give when you got it all?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Walk And Not Faint

Isn't God amazing? My greatest weakness is diligence and I have let my pen-pals suffer from the lack of diligence, but my spiritual life has suffered too. Back in June, God convicted me and told me I needed more strength in my daily walk and that He would give it to me. I just needed to keep taking one step at a time. And He also promised that I would not grow weary in my walk! He kept bringing this topic into sermons and camps throughout the summer, and here it is again! =) What a wonderful promise, to walk and not faint.
From Charles H. Spurgeon's "Morning and Evening" December 14th Morning entry:
“They go from strength to strength.” Psalm 87:4

They go from strength to strength. There are various renderings of these words, but all of them contain the idea of progress.

Our own good translation of the authorized version is enough for us this morning. “They go from strength to strength.” That is, they grow stronger and stronger. Usually, if we are walking, we go from strength to weakness; we start fresh and in good order for our journey, but by-and-by the road is rough, and the sun is hot, we sit down by the wayside, and then again painfully pursue our weary way. But the Christian pilgrim having obtained fresh supplies of grace, is as vigorous after years of toilsome travel and struggle as when he first set out. He may not be quite so elate and buoyant, nor perhaps quite so hot and hasty in his zeal as he once was, but he is much stronger in all that constitutes real power, and travels, if more slowly, far more surely. Some gray-haired veterans have been as firm in their grasp of truth, and as zealous in diffusing it, as they were in their younger days; but, alas, it must be confessed it is often otherwise, for the love of many waxes cold and iniquity abounds, but this is their own sin and not the fault of the promise which still holds good: “The youths shall faint and be weary, and the young men shall utterly fall, but they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles, they shall run and not be weary, and they shall walk and not faint.” Fretful spirits sit down and trouble themselves about the future. “Alas!” say they, “we go from affliction to affliction.” Very true, O thou of little faith, but then thou goest from strength to strength also. Thou shalt never find a bundle of affliction which has not bound up in the midst of it sufficient grace. God will give the strength of ripe manhood with the burden allotted to full-grown shoulders.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Thorn In My Heart

I just wanted to let y'all know (if anyone reads this blog) what I've been up to since I've had the flu for a week. To pass the time, I picked up this wonderful book that I started awhile back, Thorn In My Heart. It's kept me VERY well entertained, I must say; I finished it in the same day and I plan on finishing the second one tonight. I also ordered the third one, I can't wait 'til it comes!
It's a historical fiction/christian romance, which takes place in 18th century Scotland (a place I'm dying to go now!) and is entirely based on the Biblical story of Jacob and Esau, and Rachel and Leah. Just knowing the main plot is enough to keep you fettered to this book! I'm always wanting to know how the author will direct her story, since I know she has such-and-such parts of the story to fill. And though the story is a wee bit fantastical, or radical, it is much more realistic and satisfying than any vampire story. Just a note of forewarning: this book is not for young readers, it has some minor, but mature content. Please don't be mistaken, 'tis very clean, but mature in some respects.

I find myself longing to be as patient and perseverant as the main character, Leana. If anyone has ever read the Elsie Dinsmore series, they will find quite a resemblance. Don't be mistaken, Leana is not an angel and makes some grave mistakes, but she is a very admirable godly character, and a deeply devoted wife and mother in the face of all odds. I find this book not only enjoyable, but even profitable, and if you finish it, be sure to read the others; Fair Is The Rose, Whence Came A Prince, Grace In Thine Eyes and Here Burns My Candle. Happy reading!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Retro Ornaments

Don't these ornaments look awesome? Take a stab at what they're made of... Guess yet? Toilet paper tubes! I saw these in the Family Fun magazine and I'm determined to make a few just for fun. I think I would spray-paint mine with metallic paint though. Here are the instructions:

For each ornament, flatten a 7 1/2-inch length of cardboard tube. Mark and cut it into 3/4-inch-wide rings; you'll need 10 for this project.

On each flattened ring, mark dots 3/4 inches in from each folded edge. With a hole punch, make holes at the dots.

Starting with the inner circle, string the rings onto a pipe cleaner. For the outer circle, twist two pipe cleaners together to make a double-long piece, then thread it through the outer holes in the cardboard rings. Twist the ends together and trim the excess. Hang with thread or string.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Flu Season

Thank goodness for a cup of hot coffee or tea when you have a sore throat. I've been hit with a mild flu this week, which was rather inevitable since the boys I nanny for were running outrageous fevers and noses. lol And I don't think I've ever made a year without catching something at least once or twice during the flu/cold season. Anyway, I'm on the mend and I've been enjoying myself with lots of liquids and movies. Sometimes a flu is a welcome break.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Heater Time!

Yay! It's Christmas time again and I had my siblings haul up the decorations boxes from the basement. =) It was fair, I did two and they did two. Anyway, for the past few years, everyone leaves the decorating up to me. Not that I don't enjoy it, it's not a heavy task (four boxes, are you kidding??!!) and the coordinating-creative-organized-visual side of me can be put to one of it's favorite pastimes. =)

There's always something very nostalgic about Christmas decorations, snow, the lights, holiday music, fudge, hot cocoa, a good book, a warm fireplace. For me, Christmas feelings start when the heater comes on at night. I enjoy being snuggled in bed with the blankets under my chin, and knowing it's cold outside, but not in the house. Do you have any random memories like that? I'm sure you're laughing but I'm really serious. =) There's something I can't put a finger on, but I've always loved that sound and I enjoy it every year.

I went to Jolly Holiday Lights too last night with some family friends. I haven't been in years, but my family used to go every single year. We would take Grandpa and Grandma too and I remember smelling Grandma's cologne in the car. (Estee Lauder. I own it now since she passed away) We not only went to the park to look at lights, but we would wander around some of the most popular neighborhoods to see their displays. When I was little, I was thrilled to see a real elf while we were driving around! (Okay, it was a kid with a pointy-eared hat on, but I didn't know that then.)

Those are some of the memories tucked in my noggin'. And speaking of noggin', have any of you had eggnog yet?.....

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Freed-Up Will

Pat Nemmers, pastor of Saylorville Baptist Church. This is a clip from his sermon entitled "The Ultimate Gift" from James 1. Look up his podcasts on iTunes.
The cause of salvation is the will of God. Did you notice that? “Of His own will…He brought us forth” Now some of your Bibles say “He chose”, or “In His goodness” but the New King James is the absolute, most literal translation in this case. That’s exactly what the original says; “Of His own will.” Why is that important?

Well when I was in my twenties, after high school and with a little bit of college, I just became very discontent. My wife and I had a child, and my life started taking on a more serious bent, and I just became very discontent with my life. As many of you know, I started dabbling into drugs, taking drugs every single day for several years and all of that just spelled discontentment to me. And so, I wanted more, and as God would have it, I worked at John Deere and many individuals would come to me and talk to me about God they would give me literature, they would give me tracts, they would talk to me personally about it. There’s a desire that started welling up in me and I really was thinking “I want that! I don’t have it, but I want that!”

Now listen to this. As far as I could tell, I was seeking God on my own. But the Bible tells us right here, and in many other places, that just doesn’t happen. You and I just don’t go about seeking God on our own, did you know that? God is the first cause. God has to come in there. God comes in there, and he may use a bevy of circumstances, but He’ll come in there and He’ll do whatever He has to do if He’s picked you out, and He’s gonna pull you toward Himself. Jesus said “No one can come to me unless the Father draws him in.” Draws him in, pulls him in. And James says it here, it’s of His own will.

Just shortly after I became a Christian, my father came over and he was very concerned about me going off the deep end, and joining some cult or something. And I said “Dad, this is something God has brought about” and I quoted to him John 1 where it says “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name.” And then I shared with my dad this passage. It says: “Who were born, not of blood” That is, we don’t get salvation because we were born into a Christian family. “nor of the will of the flesh” That is, we don’t get salvation because we’ve done good works, we’ve tried to please God by being good people. But then this: “not of the will of man”!

I know, many times we talk about our free wills; you have the freedom to trust Jesus as savior, and I understand what you mean by that. I really thought I was freely just moving’ along. But in reality, it’s God doing the work! Instead of saying “I have a free will”, think of it in terms of “I have a freed-up will” How’s that? God has sort of unloosened my bound will, my will which would never trust God. My will and your will would never come to God, did you know that? Never in a thousand years! But if God gets involved in it, make no mistake, you will come. You will come, if God’s involved and because the cause of salvation is of God. Just like in the book of Acts, there’s a lady whose name is Lydia the Bible says “As Paul talked to her, God opened up her heart so that she could attend to the things Paul was saying. And that’s the way it works in every one of our lives.

You may think you’re pursuing God, you may think you’re seeking after God, but it’s really God seeking after you. Isn’t that what Jesus said? The Son of Man has come to seek and to save those who are what? Those who are lost.

Friday, November 20, 2009

What A Lesson!!

Every bursted bubble has a glory!
Each abysmal failure makes a point!
Every glowing path that goes astray,
Shows you how to find a better way.
So every time you stumble never grumble.
Next time you'll bumble even less!
For up from the ashes, up from the ashes,
Grow the roses of success!

For every big mistake you make be grateful!
That mistake you'll never make again!
Every shiny dream that fades and dies,
Generates the steam for two more tries!
There's magic in the wake of a fiasco!
It gives you that chance to second guess!
Then up from the ashes, up from the ashes
Grow the roses of success!

Disaster didn't stymie Louis Pasteur!
Edison took years to see the light!
Alexander Graham knew failure well;
He took a lot of knocks to ring that bell!
So when it gets distressing it's a blessing!
Onward and upward you must press!
Till up from the ashes, up from the ashes
Grow the roses of success.

This is simply an amazing song, despite the humor of the movie itself. For some reason, the reoccurring theme in my Bible study, TV shows I've watched, sermons I've listened to, and everyday circumstances, is suffering, and the reason why things go wrong. Not that I'm suffering, which is what worries me; I've been wondering if God is prepping me for something unforeseen. =)

But since it's not always the big things that go wrong, like the death of a family member, I've been watching for the little things. It's getting up early in the morning when I would seriously pay money just to sleep in. It's the fact that our country is deteriorating and it's up to us to fix the last generation's mistakes. It's tiny circumstances that go wrong when things would have gone so much better if it had happened another way. But God works all things together for the good of those who love Him, who are the called according to his purpose, and I know everything that happens is for my good. It sure keeps me from complaining when God lays that verse on my heart.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


1 Chronicles 16:8-13 (New King James Version)
8 Oh, give thanks to the LORD!
Call upon His name;
Make known His deeds among the peoples!
9 Sing to Him, sing psalms to Him;
Talk of all His wondrous works!
10 Glory in His holy name;
Let the hearts of those rejoice who seek the LORD!
11 Seek the LORD and His strength;
Seek His face evermore!
12 Remember His marvelous works which He has done,
His wonders, and the judgments of His mouth,
13 O seed of Israel His servant,
You children of Jacob, His chosen ones!
I'm thankful for many things, firstly for a good job that I really enjoy, that I can really learn life lessons from, and one that God basically placed in my lap. God is really good!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

My Latest Craze

Here's my Kit American Girl doll styling the jacket I made for her out of one of my own. Don't worry, I got the jacket at a garage sale and it never fit right anyway. =) But this is what I've been up to for the past few days; making doll outfits outta my own favorite-but-too-small clothes. I think I'm gonna start a minor business, and sell a few items. Actually, the idea is for people to bring their own clothes for me to modify for their dolls. Maybe a good Christmas present? It would definitely be more sentimental and inexpensive than buying another outfit from the catalog. You could even buy two cheap tee-shirts at Wal*Mart and have one modified, for a matching set. What do you think?

Friday, November 13, 2009

"Man's Choice, Or God's?"

Man’s Choice, Or God’s?

For those of you who are confused on the point of predestination, I wanted to do a little more explaining. Several young people have asked me if predestination meant “If you desire to be saved, you can say a salvation prayer, but you have to wait until judgment day to find out if you were predestined or not? If not, too bad, you weren’t saved all along?” Instead of looking at it from man’s point of view, let’s start with God’s before I answer the question.

Ephesians 1:4 ~ … He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world…

Predestination was God’s choice of who should be saved, decided before the foundation of the world, before He said “Let there be light.”

In fact, “before the foundation of the world” means before God even laid plans for the whole world, and according to Ephesians 1:5, 9, & 11, it was according to the good pleasure of His own will. He predestined because He wanted to.

Also, we do not choose our salvation by our own will.

John 1:12-13 ~ But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.

Our sinful nature did not choose God (the will of the flesh) and our conscious minds did not choose God (the will of man). God chose us (Ephesians 1:4). Thus, from God’s point of view, only those who are predestined will desire to be saved, not the other way around.

In Christ, Auty

"Whom God Wills"

Whom God Wills

I wanted to tell you about how my transformation unto understanding began. It began with the Lord, but Ms. Lynn was one of His instruments. When I was about 12 or 13 years old, I was in an art class and I overheard her speaking with a friend about something new to me – predestination; and though I never meant to eavesdrop, Lynn wanted me to. Our friend was quite astonished, as was I, that God would pick and choose not only who would go to Heaven, but also who would go to Hell. She kept reiterating “But I thought God loved everyone.” She meant no argument, she was only confused as I was, and Lynn told us that the Bible was actually quite clear about predestination. All we had to do was take a good look at Romans and Ephesians.

She explained that predestination is like adoption; when you go to an orphanage, you have a given right to choose whichever child you prefer, you don’t have to take them all. And of course underlying that is God’s perfect sovereign right to do whatever He wants, partly because He is Master and Creator of all things. Shouldn’t a great composer be allowed to design a masterpiece according to his own whims? Those who play the symphony have no right to complain or decide what it should sound like. Even more biblically, we can look at the potter who forms the clay to be an honorable vessel or a dishonorable vessel. The clay cannot speak, the clay cannot move, only the potter shapes and controls it.

I’ve gotten a little carried away, but my point is that it’s not only possible for God to choose whom He wills to save, but that He does.

God bless, Auty

"Images of Christ"

Images of Christ

My life theme right now, as I mentioned, is reflecting Christ, and mainly being an image of Him, so that He may glorify Himself through me. My favorite quote from Charles H. Spurgeon on this topic is from his book, Morning and Evening:

“A Christian should be a striking likeness of Jesus Christ… If we were what we profess to be, and what we should be, we should be pictures of Christ; yea, such striking likenesses of Him, that the world would not have to hold us up by the hour together, and say, ‘Well, it seems somewhat of a likeness’; but they would, when they once beheld us, exclaim, ‘He has been with Jesus; he has been taught of him; he is like Him; he has caught the very idea of the holy Man of Nazareth, and he works it out in his life and everyday actions.’”

The verse Spurgeon uses with that quote is Acts 4:13 “Now when they [the Sanhedrin] saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.”

I take a silly delight in the unique ways God operates, and in this verse and passage of scripture, God stays true to His ways. Here were two fishermen:

Uneducated - They probably were not able to read. Chances are if they were fishermen, they didn’t even pass the first grade. They are totally without knowledge in matters of scripture.

And Untrained – They are obviously not Rabbis; they’re not even motivational speakers. They used to catch fish and mend nets for a living.

And they are filled with the Spirit of God! This causes the Sanhedrin to absolutely marvel! Even for those who were not of God, it was plain for them to see who Peter and John resembled.

How much of Christ do others see in you? Despite the fact that He gets glory no matter what, are you acknowledging the fact that He deserves it?

May He cause more of His light to reflect in me, Auty

"Beginning My Journey"

Beginning My Journey

Hello dear brethren in Christ! I am Lynn’s friend Auty, and I have accepted her gracious offer of writing for her blog. I am a Bible-believing Child of God – a Christian – in my late teens, striving to reflect the LORD in all I do, with several reminders from my mom along the way. I guess the title of my series has a sort of two-fold meaning: my reflections and thoughts, as well as my reflections of God.

A little about me and my life: I am being raised in a Christian family, so hearing about God the Father on a daily basis is nothing strange to me. Church attendance has never been optional; dressing up for church has always been required as a sign of the respect God deserves. We attend a very small, but very lovely church right now and I and my whole family are involved with several ministries there.

I have a “typical” testimony – saying a “salvation prayer” at a young age and being baptized several years later. But the LORD never truly revealed Himself in me (Galatians 1:15-16) until my early teen years. I have immensely enjoyed the journey He is taking me on and will share some of the lessons I learned along the way.

Grace be with you, Auty

"Auty's Reflections"

I was blog cruising today and remembered that I have written for a blog before. My art teacher once asked me to write a few articles about my Christian walk with the Lord from a teens point of view. I didn't get very many written, only about four, but I thought it would be nice to re-publish them for my own satisfaction. You certainly don't have to agree with them, many of my friends don't, but I hope that doesn't keep you from coming back to visit sometime. =) You're always welcome! God bless!

Daily Benefits

Psalm 68:19 (New King James Version) Blessed be the Lord, Who daily loads us with benefits, The God of our salvation!

God blesses me every day, in ways I usually miss. This morning, I really wasn't looking forward to getting up at 5:45 to take a shower and go to work. But as I was showering I was reminded of how much I enjoy a hot shower and being alone in the morning. And then as I was right in the middle of breakfast and my Bible study, I looked up and this gorgeous sky is what I saw. =) Imagine if I had gotten up half an hour later, I would have totally missed it. I barely got a few photos before it was gone. A good start to my day.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

What I Love to Learn About

My favorite subject in school is history, and my favorite time period in history is WWI, simply because it's a treasure trove, forgotten and tucked away. My interest was sparked last year when our 4H group went to the WWI museum in Kansas City, it's the biggest collection in the world, I believe, of WWI weapons and uniforms from all across the globe.

I knew relatively nothing about what I was seeing, and that bothered me, I wanted to go home and find out everything! What were gas attacks? Why don't you hear of those in WWII? What were the most popular weapons? (Did you know swords were still used at the very beginning? Weaponry very quickly evolved in a short amount of time.) What was the political reason behind the war? What about trench warfare? Why did America join? I have the answers to all of these questions and I'm still not done studying after a whole year. =)

Why does this war still fascinate me? I don't know. I have a few questions still unanswered, but I don't think that's why. Maybe it's the scruples of the people who fought the war. It was a political battle more than anything. The men who lived in trenches, with rats and fleas for close companions were simply tools. "Expendable crewmen" as it were. Their stories are depressing and tell of humans for whom the battle wasn't personal. Have you ever heard of the Christmas Truce? In the very first year of the war, soldiers stopped shooting and walked into no man's land. Enemies wished each other well and traded small gifts and cigarettes. And it lasted for several days. Why wasn't this phenomenon repeated? Because the top dogs didn't appreciate it. The real enemies in that war weren't the soldiers, but the politicians.

If you ever have a bit of free time in your school year, take a detour through WWI. You are guaranteed to learn something new.
Christmastime in the German trenches.

Chicago Mystery Trip

Here we are in Chicago! Even though I've graduated and I'm not really in school or 4H anymore, I decided that just like TeenPact, you're never too old for the 4H mystery trip. =)

I've never been to Chicago before and it was in no way anything like what I expected it to be. It didn't exactly exceed my expectations, but that's not a bad thing =) It was still pretty disco.

We went to the Shedd Aquarium (where this picture was taken), the field museum, science museum and art museum, where we saw the real American Gothic. And not to mention, the Silver Bean, the observatory in the John Hancock tower, Navy Pier, the river tour, the Cheesecake Factory, Giordano's, and Interstate 80. We were busy!!! And I still feel like I'm missing something...


Hello all, this is AutyBug =) This is my very first blog so we'll see how it goes. I titled it AutyBug's Reflections for various reasons, the obvious one being my thoughts, but the underlying meaning would be my reflections of Christ. I am living my whole life with the purpose of glorifying God, pointing everything I do back to Him.

This blog will hopefully have a bit of everything, from lessons God is teaching to me, to vacations, to things I find interesting while nannying, to everyday circumstances of life. ;-) I hope you find something fascinating at least once in awhile, while I enjoy myself.

God bless, ~AutyBug~