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Thought I’d keep you posted on the case in California.
Note the part I highlighted from the court case; it makes me shudder a bit.

HSLDA: Update–Defending Homeschool Freedom in California

Dear HSLDA Members and Friends:

The following is an update on the developing situation in California from Michael Farris, Chairman, Home School Legal Defense Association.

State Superintendent Supports Homeschooling

On Tuesday, March 11, Jack O’Connell, California Superintendent of Public Instruction, announced that he believed that homeschooling is still legal in California. O’Connell’s statement is welcome news. To read it visit http://hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=4893 . Some might conclude that the statement ends the controversy. However, it is not the end of the matter; it is just an important step along the way.

His clarifying statement was probably the result of the massive public outcry against the February 28 decision of the California Court of Appeal which effectively ruled that homeschooling is illegal in California unless conducted by a credentialed teacher and that parents have no constitutional right to homeschool.

O’Connell’s statement is helpful, but the courts will undoubtedly take the position that their determination of the meaning of state law is final even though they should give serious deference to the position of the Superintendent of Public Instruction.

It should also be remembered that local school districts make the decision about when to initiate prosecutions for truancy, and they are not officially controlled by the state agency on these matters. However, many local officials may be influenced by O’Connell’s positive statement.

Did the February 28 Ruling Intend to Affect All Homeschooling Families?

Some have contended that the decision of the Court of Appeal in In Re Rachel L. only affects that particular family. While a court order can only direct one family to stop homeschooling, the case clearly sets a legal precedent that will be binding against all other families if this case is not reversed. (Technically, the decision is binding only in the Second District which consists of Los Angeles, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties. However, other appellate
districts will normally treat it as persuasive precedent. If ratified by the Supreme Court of California, it formally binds all California counties.)

There are two basic issues in the case:

1. Does state law allow parents to homeschool without a state teaching credential?

2. If not, is this law unconstitutional?

Below are three short quotations from the case which give the clear answer:

“It is clear to us that enrollment and attendance in a public full-time day school is required by California law for minor children unless (1) the child is enrolled in a private full-time day school and actually attends that private school, (2) the child is tutored by a person holding a valid state teaching credential for the grade being taught.”

“California courts have held that under provisions in the Education Code, parents do not have a constitutional right to school their children in their own home.”

“We agree with the Shinn court’s statement that ‘the educational program of the State of California was designed to promote the general welfare of all the people and was not designed to accommodate the personal ideas of any individual in the field of education.”

In the first quote the court makes it clear that it believes that parents may not operate their own private schools. In the second they deny that a parent has a constitutional right to homeschool, and in the third they concur that California law does not accommodate parents pursuing their own education program for their children.

As you can see, the decision is categorical and was not written to be limited to just the facts of this case.

Due to the scope of the court decision, HSLDA is pleased to be working with other self-identified pro-homeschooling organizations, including Christian Home Educators Association of California (CHEA), Homeschool Association of California (HSC), California Homeschool Network (CHN), and Family Protection Ministries (FPM) in order to oppose this ruling. We are all in this one together.

What is HSLDA’s Immediate Plan of Action?

We plan to:

1. Support the family’s petition for review to the California Supreme Court.

2. File an amicus brief on behalf of all our members, and others we represent, if the California Supreme Court accepts the case for review.

What Can California Homeschoolers Expect in the Short Run?

We believe that it is highly unlikely that local officials will begin proceedings against homeschool families until this present case is resolved.

This ruling has obviously caused great concern among California homeschoolers. We want to remind all California homeschoolers that you should stay calm in the face of this decision. Please continue to operate your homeschool, because we believe that our interpretation of the law is correct and will ultimately prevail in the court system.

We must remain vigilant, however. If you are a member of HSLDA, and you are contacted by a school district, please contact HSLDA immediately.

Long-Range Solution

On another front, later today I am meeting with a half-dozen congressmen to plan a strategy to push for a constitutional amendment on parental rights. We have been receiving numerous calls from members of Congress wanting to respond to this decision. See http://hslda.org/elink.asp?ID=4891 for more information.

Final Thoughts/Conclusion

The way the homeschool law has worked in California for the past two decades has been successful for all homeschoolers. If we can keep what we have today that would be a significant victory for homeschool freedom.

We also understand that the current situation has caused much stress for California homeschool families. We are praying, and we encourage you to pray, that the threat we face will be swiftly removed and that homeschool freedom in California will be preserved.

We have seen God’s hand of protection on the homeschooling movement for the 25 years we have been working together for this cause. There is no reason to begin to doubt God now.

Michael Farris
Chairman, Home School Legal Defense Association

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A sweet friend of mine brought it to my attention that I’ve not blogged about Bessie and Brenda in a while.  There is SO much to tell!!!  I haven’t really had the time to type it all out.  It’s NOTHING to quickly copy and paste a bunch of Tiger Toons (thanks to the very FUN and talented Tom Sylvest), but it takes me a pretty good amount of time to sit and pour my heart out online…

Until the business of being my honey’s helpmeet (impending evaluations, grades being due, other public school, beauraucratic craziness), birthday shopping, xmas shopping, planning, parties, etc… all calm down… I’m going to have to pass on the serious blogs!  I want to be able to devote myself to the quality and accuracy of it… and I just can’t right now.  It’s so fun relating it to all of you verbally, too! 

Much love… and now I must run!

(I’ll explain all FOUR B’s when I tell you what’s been going on in the Bessie & Brenda arena).

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Hello!
I’ve rescheduled my meeting with Bessie for NEXT Tuesday.
A sweet sister in our body has a TON going on, so I’m hoping to spend some time with her grandchildren and free her up a little bit.
I also have to get the Trumpet done this week… TODAY, actually, I should send the rough draft to Pastor.  I confess, I am unbelievably behind!!!
So…  I’ll meet with Bessie (and HOPEFULLY Brenda) next Tuesday at 11.  As usual, I am DESPERATE for your prayer!  Pray that we can read LOTS of Scripture and talk about justification.

 I had to giggle.  In my blog stats, it says that someone googled “jehovah’s witness women who want a man” and found this blog!  Two others googled “hymns of the jehovah witnesses” and www.watchtower.org and found Delight Within the Veil!  Wow!  My hope (and perhaps you’ll pray with me) is that these people will read some of the conversations I’ve had with my Jehovah’s Witness friends and that the truth of SCRIPTURE will plant seeds in their hearts! 

If YOU are one of the Jehovah’s Witnesses who googled and found this site, it’s not an accident!  :o)  And I pray that the veil will be lifted and you will behold the King of Glory and all that He is!  THEN… I’ll pray that God will bring you a man saturated with Scripture and a heart whose desire is Christ alone!!!  :o)

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Brenda couldn’t come today, so Bessie brought Courtney and Courtney’s 9-week-old nephew Aiden.

Bessie immediately began with Isaiah 44:6 and said that she had been wrong to say that the “repurchaser” was Jesus Christ.  “It is talking about Jehovah there”…  I nodded in agreement.  She looked confused. 

Of course, Bessie!  That’s what the bible SAYS… it really isn’t confusing! 

Thus says the LORD (Jehovah), the King of Israel and his Redeemer (their bible says “repurchaser”), the LORD (Jehovah) of hosts (theirs says “armies”):
‘I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god.’

We went on to read through verse 8.

WHO is the Redeemer?  WHO is the Repurchaser?  WHO PAID THE PRICE AND BOUGHT THE PEOPLE OUT OF SLAVERY?!?

We looked at verse 24 and then flipped over to Colossians 1- after all it was Bessie and Brenda who, a few weeks ago, agreed with me (because I kept reading when they wanted to use the first 8 words of Colossians 1:15 in the attempt to explain that Christ is NOT God- they read “He is the image of the invisible God” and stopped there!) that all things were created through Christ and for Him (my desire to prove His preeminence at that time)… ANYWAY… I ramble!

… because they agreed a few weeks ago that all was created through Christ and for Him, we hiked from Is. 44:24; 45:7, 12, 18 to Col.1:16-17 and Bessie declared that Jehovah USED Christ to create everything, therefore JEHOVAH is the creator and Christ is the tool!  WHAT?!?  JEHOVAH is the Redeemer/Repurchaser and Christ is the tool!  WHAT?!?  I couldn’t say a thing!  I could only pray.  What on earth?!?

“Tina, do you think that Jehovah and Jesus are one?”

I looked at her stunned.  What have we been talking about these many weeks?!?  What did I just read to her from Isaiah?

Am I casting pearls before swine?  Should this be the end?

Pray!

I became angry and JEALOUS… I was BURNING and having a hard time being gracious as her rambling continued.

“You are calling God a liar, Bessie.  Either you are sitting in my living room, calling Him a liar, or you are completely confused and illogical!  We agree that there is ONE TRUE GOD!  We talked about this last time!  Yet you tell me that Jesus is god!  Answer me!  Is He false?  How do you reconcile THAT?!?  Your JEHOVAH has told you that He is IT!  NO ONE ELSE!  NOTHING ELSE!  He’s the only true one!  What is the deal?  You have not satisfied me because you have tampered with God’s word, you take things completely out of context and you sit here, making God a liar.  Tell me!  (calming down) Explain it to me… using YOUR BIBLE!  Is Jesus a god and if he is… then he must be false because there is only ONE TRUE ONE, right?”

I need to figure out how to keep Bessie on a subject.  When she is at a loss, she quickly changes the subject… she began talking about the Kingdom and how our purpose on earth is plain as day in Matthew 24:14:  “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughtout the whole world as a tesimony to all natinos, and then the end will come.”  We are to be quiet servants…  and then she started talking about how the Jehovah’s Witnesses are everywhere… about how they don’t have the names of men on their signs… about Jeopardy (again) saying that their bible was the most accurate translation…  I’m not sure what that had to do with anything… but then she asked about whether we paid our pastor and other “servants” in the church and then she bragged that NO ONE in the Jehovah’s Witnesses is paid…  she’s a bus driver and told me, disgusted, that a boy on her bus told her he want to be a preacher because they make good money.  WHAT?!?  What are we talking about now?  She was rambling now…  How did we get from her calling God a liar to the Jehovah’s Witnesses being God’s great servants?

I interrupted.

Wait.  You have not reconciled the Word of God to me.  I don’t want you to tell me about the Jehovah’s Witnesses.  I am not interested in what they do.  I am interested in what the Word of God says.  If you won’t tell me WHO Jesus is, then tell me, what must I do to be saved? 

She turned it onto me, “What do YOU think you need to do?”

YAY!!!  While I would LOVE to hear her answer, THANK YOU, FATHER, for having her ask me!!!

“Well, Bessie, the bible says to ‘Believe in the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.'”

“And that’s all you think you have to do- just believe?  You don’t have to walk like Jesus?  You don’t have to be like Him and be His follower?”

“Wait a minute!  You asked about what we needed to do to be SAVED.  The Bible says to repent and believe!  If I repent and believe and I am wooed by the King of all of Creation… don’t you think I’m going to want to be LIKE Him?!?  Don’t you think it’s going to be earth-shattering and life-changing?!?  Walking like Him and being like Him is a natural outpouring of a heart that has been saved from the wrath of God!  It will NOT save me, though!  I could never HOPE to be as good as Him!  Can you?”

She changed the subject AGAIN!  Before I could get into Romans and Ephesians!  I know… I can’t ask any questions… not even rhetorical… or she’ll change the subject as soon as I take a breath!

It kind of worked, though… she wanted to go BACK to the diety of Christ… I feel like a ping-pong ball!  I’m pooped.

That’s fine!  My God is the God of the Bible and it’s all His turf… what have I to fear?  NOTHING!  My purpose is to glorify Him.  That’s all I need be concerned with! 

She’s flipping to Isaiah again… REALLY?!? Oh, GOODY!!! 

She declares again that the Redeemer/Repurchaser is Jehovah and that Jehovah USED Christ.

Back to that again?  Okay… well… Let’s look at Isaiah 45:21 and 22 in light of Acts 16:31!!!

What now?

“If Jesus is God, why was he praying in the garden that the cup would pass from Him?  Why was He always praying to the Father?  Why was He tempted all of the time?”

(Gushing and trying NOT to be weepy over the unbelievable love and condescension of my Creator):  We talked about our sympathetic High Priest.  We talked about the willing subordination of Christ. 

I can’t remember what she began talking about next… I was just blown away by her comment, “Jehovah was sad about what happened when Jesus was on the torture stake and made the whole earth get dark and shake.”

“WHOA!  Wait a minute!  Show me that!”

“Show you what?”

“Show me that God was sad about it all.”

“Well, I’ll have to look for it.”

“Okay.  Please do, because the bible says that it PLEASED God to CRUSH His Son.”

“Where?”

“Oh Goody.  Let’s turn to Isaiah 52!  This is great.  This is AWESOME!  It’s TERRIBLE!  And WONDERFUL!  And HUMBLING!  And HEART-RAVAGING!  Look at verse 13 and we’ll read all the way through chapter 53:

52:13  Behold, my servant shall act wisely;
   he shall be high and lifted up,
   and shall be exalted.
14  As many were astonished at you—
   his appearance was so marred, beyond human semblance,
   and his form beyond that of the children of mankind—
15  so shall he sprinkle many nations;
 kings shall shut their mouths because of him;
 for that which has not been told them they see,
   and that which they have not heard they understand.
53:1 Who has believed what he has heard from us?
   And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
2 For he grew up before him like a young plant,
    and like a root out of dry ground;
 he had no form or majesty that we should look at him,
   and no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He was despised and rejected by men;
   a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief;
and as one from whom men hide their faces
   he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

 4 Surely he has borne our griefs
   and carried our sorrows;
yet we esteemed him stricken,
   smitten by God, and afflicted.
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions;
   he was crushed for our iniquities;
upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace,
   and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we like sheep have gone astray;
   we have turned—every one—to his own way;
 and the LORD has laid on him
   the iniquity of us all.

 7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
    yet he opened not his mouth;
 like a lamb that is led to the slaughter,
   and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent,
   so he opened not his mouth.
8By oppression and judgment he was taken away;
   and as for his generation, who considered
that he was cut off out of the land of the living,
   stricken for the transgression of my people?
9 And they made his grave with the wicked
 and with a rich man in his death,
although he had done no violence,
   and there was no deceit in his mouth.

 10 Yet it was the will of the LORD to crush him;
   he has put him to grief;
when his soul makes an offering for guilt,
   he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days;
 the will of the LORD shall prosper in his hand.
11 Out of the anguish of his soul he shall see and be satisfied;
by his knowledge shall the righteous one, my servant,
 make many to be accounted righteous,
 and he shall bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will divide him a portion with the many,
 and he shall divide the spoil with the strong,
ecause he poured out his soul to death
   and was numbered with the transgressors;
 yet he bore the sin of many,
   and makes intercession for the transgressors.

Before I could really get gushy and comment on anything, Bessie said, “Well, my bible says that it delighted God… but I’m going to do some research and find the verse I’m thinking of but we’ll talk about it next time because we have to go right now.”

WHAT?!?  Unbelievable!

You know what, though, our good God let me read Isaiah 52:13- 53:12 uninterrupted!  The seed is the Word!  He has to woo her.  It’s got nothing to do with me.  Pray with me!  Pray for Bessie and Brenda and Courtney (who didn’t utter a word).  Pray that the seed will be watered and harvested!  Bessie is coming again Tuesday morning at 11.  I don’t know who will be with her.  Pray with me, though!  As long as I have a chance to read the LIVING WORD OF GOD and to talk about my Savior… I will.  Pray that I won’t be tired.  I admit it.  I already mentioned it to my sweet friend, Angel:  The last thing I wanted to do this morning was have Bessie here.  I’m nursing an injury.  I’m tired.  I went to the obgyn yesterday and that is NEVER fun, even though mine is the BEST.  I just was not up for it!  It’s a GORGEOUS day that could be spent with my fun babies outside!  But they were coming, regardless and as I poured over the Word of God, He reminded me that whether I feel like it or not… He is WORTHY to be proclaimed!!!  And you know what… His reminding me of His value… of COURSE made me EXCITED about proclaiming Him!  He is so good!  I could hardly wait for them to get here!  He’s faithful.  Pray that He will continue and that I won’t be selfish.  Pray that my babies will continue to do well.  Above all, pray that God will be honored in EVERYTHING that transpires in this happy house!

And I welcome your thoughts about how long this should go on… and the direction it should take… as long as it’s biblical!  :o)

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Hi!

I just got off the phone with Bessie!
I had to reschedule our “get-together” for Wednesday at 11.
I forgot that I have a doctor’s appointment Tuesday that I really must go to.  :o(

So…  you faithful friends and family, PRAY PRAY PRAY and especially on Wednesday!  :o)

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Next Tuesday.  Keep praying!

I’m sorry I’ve not updated you on this week’s visit until now…

I think it was a good meeting.  I didn’t get to read the “Should You Believe the Trinity” booklet they gave me, because I had family come into town and was so caught up in the other, much longer book, “What Does the Bible Really Teach”

Doesn’t that just creep you out?!?

Anyway…  I also wanted to get away from discussing the Trinity and the Diety of Christ.  I wanted to (very sweetly and gently) rattle them, if I could, and get them to question the Watchtower.

They came in and had a seat (I got my sweet little kiddos, who were FABULOUS, occupied in different rooms) and I picked up the above book as they asked how my week had been, etc.  We had polite, friendly chatter about the weeks goings-on and I fiddled with that book, chomping at the bit and praying fervently that I would honor God and that it would be all about Him… begging Him to make these women see.  We all know how passionate and emotional I can be… just on a daily basis *blush*… but after reading their booklet… I’ve been SEETHING… heart-pounding… blood-pressure rising… head-swimming… ANGRY!  I prayed that God would calm me… quiet me with His love *happy sigh* and that if NOTHING ELSE HAPPENED, I would get to read scripture out loud.  I didn’t care if it was geneology!  I just wanted to read the word of God out loud to these women.  The seed is the Word!

After our polite chit-chat (which lasted less than two minutes), they asked if I  had been able to read “What is the Truth about God” (the first chapter in the book).  I wanted to scream, but I didn’t.  The Truth about God.  Oh!  Father!!!  Reveal Yourself to these sweet women!  My heart groans, still, thinking of it!  Why me?  Why have You so sweetly cultivated (and continue to cultivate) a personal relationship with me?  I am so unworthy… but SO HAPPY!  YOU are the desire of my heart, God.  Woo Bessie and Brenda with your Truth as You have me! 

I told them that I had nearly read the entire book.  Shocked, they asked what I thought.

“You know, this is a great book,” I said. 

They smiled at me, a hint of startled amazement in their eyes… perhaps hope for a new convert.

“Really, this is very good.  It’s a great story.  The verses you use to back it up are great.  It’s so happy and worry-free.  I have nothing to fear.  Even if I don’t believe, I just cease to exist.  That’s really pretty great!  Separating myself from everything I believe to be true, I had no problems with anything in this book until I picked up the Word of God.”  Picking up my bible, I continued, “See, your book is by a man- or a team of men. THIS book is God’s Word.  So, to be responsible- and your book challenges me to be responsible and get the facts- I’ve GOT to read this book you gave me in light of the whole counsel of SCRIPTURE.”

They nodded in agreement.

“That’s where I ran into a big snaffu.  The verses your book cites are snippets, taken out of context and sometimes not even accurate translations of Greek and Hebrew.”

I continued to cite examples.

We ended up talking about hell for a long time.  I got to read a good bit of Luke 16, several psalms, Revelations 20, a lot of Genesis… I was happy to be reading ANYTHING from God’s Word out loud!  Yay!  They brought up “works of righteousness” and I got SO excited!!!  But when I wanted to really dig, they switched back to death… I was able to talk to them about God’s holiness, righteousness, and justice.  They only wanted to speak of His mercy.  But how do we know mercy and really appreciate it unless we know what we are being saved from?!?  I told them that ceasing to exist was no problem for me.  I didn’t need to be saved from that.  It wouldn’t be dreadful at all.  We went on and on.  I got tired, but remembered what God had given me in 2 Corninthians 4.  He is SOOOOOO good!  Y’all!!!  Wow!  Why is He so nice to us!?!  Why does He come sweeping in with tenderness and words of encouragement…  *happy sigh*  He’s always giving… but to think that we exist for Him!  I like how Piper put it in one of his sermons “We exist to make Christ look good.”  Of course, He doesn’t need us to make Himself look good… this statement is about our purpose.  Yikes!  What a standard!  TO MAKE HIM LOOK GOOD!  How I fail!!!  But I digress…

I can’t remember exactly how it came up now, but I read ALL of Romans 6- which is fun.  My sweet Father let me read 2 Corinthians 4:1-6 out loud… I wish I could have continued through the rest of it!!!  I MUST this next Tuesday… there are lots of juicy morsels!

The whole time, they had their Reasoning with the Scriptures book out.  grrrr…

We talked about some of the Watchtower’s prophecies that had not come to pass… things that they prophesied in the Creator’s name.

Brenda said, “Isn’t it better that people were looking for Christ than if they just went on about their lives.”

I replied, “The BIBLE tells us to look for Him… it is specific in telling us that we don’t know when He’ll come… not 1914… not 1975… but to ALWAYS look… .  Open up to Deuteronomy with me real quick.”

I then read Deuteronomy 18:20-21 and challenged them to question their leaders.  They are following men who are false prophets.  They disagreed with nothing to back them but emotion and comments about persecution.   I prayed in my heart!

Before we knew it, almost two hours had passed and my sweet kiddos needed feeding and Brenda and Bessie had to get going, too.

On the way out, I said, “Oh!  I forgot!  Read to me what your bible says in Isaiah 44:6.  (I knew what it said, because I looked at www.watctower.org– they have an online NWT).

Bessie:  “This is what Jehovah has said, the King of Israel and the Repurchaser of him, Jehovah of armies, ‘I am the first and I am the last, and besides me there is no God.

Me:  “Okay, one more time.”

Bessie: “This is what Jehovah has said, the King of Israel and the Repurchaser of him…”

Me:  “Who id the Repurchaser?”

Brenda and Bessie in unison:  “Jesus Christ”

Me:  “Okay,  sorry… wanted to be sure we both had the same idea.  Start from the beginning again.”

Bessie: ““This is what Jehovah has said, the King of Israel and the Repurchaser of him, Jehovah of armies…”

Me:  “There!”  (pleading, inclined to her, my heart LONGING, my eyes IMPLORING)  “Your version says it.  The Redeemer/Repurchaser is Jehovah.”

Brenda (visibly rattled, but smiling sweetly):  “Wait, we spoke too fast.  We’re human, too.  The Repurchaser is God, not Jesus Christ.”

Me:  “No.  No.”  Shaking my head and praying in my heart to the Redeemer. “You were right the first time because Jesus Christ is the Repurchaser and He is God.”

Bessie:  “Well we have to go.  We’ll look this over and talk to you next time.  Is Tuesday good?”

Me:  (a bit sad, but trying to be upbeat) “Tuesday would be great.”

Brenda:  (hugging me) You are so sweet.

Waves all around… goodbyes…

Please, friends!  Keep praying with me!!!

Great Jehovah, mighty Lord,
Vast and boundless is Thy Word;
King of kings, from shore to shore
Thou shalt reign forevermore.

Jew and Gentile, bond and free,
All shall yet be one in Thee;
All confess Messiah’s Name,
All His wondrous love proclaim.

From her night shall China wake,
Afric’s sons their chains shall break;
Egypt, where Thy people trod,
Shall adore and praise our God.

India’s groves of palms so fair
Shall resound with praise and prayer;
Ceylon’s isle with joy shall sing,
Glory be to Christ our King.

North and South shall own Thy sway;
East and West Thy voice obey;
Crowns and thrones before Thee fall,
King of kings and Lord of all.

Fanny Crosby

 

Amen!

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Bessie and Brenda came again yesterday. 

My hope had been to NOT discuss the diety of Christ and the Trinity.   I wanted to talk about how one can be made right with God and go from there. 

Even though we wouldn’t be bowing to the same God, I wanted to pray, before we “got to talking”.  I knew they probably wouldn’t want me to… and I was right, so I just prayed and prayed and prayed in my heart.
Really, I don’t blame them.  They think that I am an idol-worshipper!  Really and truly.  It’s so strange!  They want me to read a booklet that they gave to me “Should You Believe in the Trinity.”  Look at this page:

They declared that my worship of a triune God is blatant idol worship stemming back into history for centuries.
Of course, LOGICALLY… the ONE TRUE GOD that I worship (the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob), who is TRIUNE was the BEGINNING of all the mess you see above!  The one TRUE God ALMIGHTY, creator of the universe, was corrupted by people wanting to worship something they could SEE… just like every culture has a story of a flood… many religions worship triune gods.
It’s okay, though.  I’ll read this 31 page booklet  and the other 223 page book they’ve given me as a reading assignment, “What does the Bible REALLY Teach”.  They’re coming to the idol-worshipper’s house again NEXT Tuesday!  I’d really rather read about Classical Homeschooling or Christian Hedonism or On the Incarnation by Athanasius (I’ve been wanting to finish it for ages!)  Oh well!  What better way to prepare than to understand the opposition?

It’s really been fun.  HARD, but fun!  I’m taking a student role.  I don’t want to argue.  I ask LOTS of questions and challenge their responses with Scripture.  This usually results in a quick change of subject, or a new approach on their parts. 

I was talking to Charles about it the other night.  I wonder how long this will go on.  It’s hard on the babies.  THAT’S the big drawback.
You know, though, every time they give me a verse to look up… I read the WHOLE passage out loud.  I told them that I WILL NOT read just the one or two verses they give me… that we have to look at these Scriptures in their entirety.  And I get to read LOTS of Scripture out loud.  THAT’S  what’s powerful!  The WORD OF GOD!  And it’s being read… lots of it… out loud!  It has nothing to do with me or my “brilliant”  well-planned and outlined arguments.  It’s the LIVING WORD OF GOD that has the power to change a man’s heart!  The seed is the word of God.  Woohoo!  How that takes the pressure off!  🙂 

Keep praying, though, my dear friends and family!  These women want to worship God, the creator of all things.  They think He’s worthy of it!  They just don’t know who He is!  Isn’t that sad?  Think of your relationship with King of creation!  Think of how wonderful and intimate it is!  Think of the gushiness, the wonder, the majesty, the awe and, at times, the giggles… the JOY!!!  The JOY!!!  Oh my!  I want EVERYONE to know it!  I want everyone to know HIM!  I will read any blasted book they give me, if it will keep them coming back so that I can read the Bible OUT LOUD! 

Oh!  And another thing that I quizzed them about… that really concerned me… they will not read their bible without this other little book with it!  Every verse I would put on the table that conflicted with a point of theirs, they would look up in that little book FIRST… and then their bibles!  Huh?  They think that the Word God has given us is too much for us… we can’t understand it on our own… that the Watchtower is the mouth of God.  THAT is kind of scary. 

Pray, pray, pray!  I really like these women!  I want them to know that Joy and Delight that I know… and I haven’t even grasped the HALF of it!  :o)

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

Hi Family!!!

I have a big prayer request, if you can get through my rambling…

Last Friday, I saw them coming up the walk… two Jehovah’s Witness women, and while my flesh longed to ignore the impending knock and keep cuddling my kids and reading Wind in the Willows, the Spirit of God who lives in me (though debatable at times) won!

I had a fun, sweet conversation with Bessie and Anne that ended in them wanting to come back and talk some more (I think it helped that I asked questions about how they could reconcile certain verses in Scripture).  They wanted to talk more about the subordination of Christ and His deity and how I reconciled them. They planned to come today.  I wondered if they really would. YAY!  A little after 10ish, a car pulled up and out climbed Bessie and another woman, Brenda.  I hadn’t expected them until later in the afternoon… but that’s okay.  It’s not about me, it’s about GOD (the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit)!  *giggle*

Of course, I had pages and pages of notes that I’ve been working on and Scriptures to share… but what happened?  It all went out the window… but that’s okay… because… that’s right!  It’s not about me!  It’s about GOD!  They were startled by their own agreement when I reasoned, “In the garden was the woman, the woman was with the man and the woman was man.” That sent all of our thumbs racing and flipping and my heart praying!  God is SOOOOO faithful, y’all!  He doesn’t leave us alone!!!  Woohoo!  I LOVE Him!  We really had FUN conversation.  One moment… when they BOTH were talking and telling me to look up Scriptures, I thought- this is NOT fair!  It’s two against one (me) and I can hardly get a word in… but I was reminded that it was really two against God (the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit)!!! :o)  They have no chance!!! 

And!  YAY!  They want to come again NEXT Tuesday!!!  They wanted to talk about Philippians 2:8-9.  I said, “Well… why don’t we talk about Philippians 2:6-11.  Brenda laughed, called me sweet and easy to talk to and agreed.  Bessie, after a little persuasion said, “Only if you tell me how/why we are supposed to bow to Christ.”    Wow!  Sure!!!  I’d LOVE to! 

They’ve just gone (12ish).

Can you tell I’m excited?!?

If you guys would, pray for me!  Pray that God would make me diligent in studying His Word and sharing it in a way that would bring honor an glory to Him.  Pray that the lies these SWEET women (for they are some of the sweetest women I have EVER met) have embraced would be obliterated by the Truth!  Pray that my own heart would be protected… for while I may look like a rhinocerous, I’m really very tender and could easily be swept up by emotion… for I agree that God alone is God and that He alone is worthy of worship… the hitch is that we’re not worshipping the same God (That’s why I said we weren’t going to say God as a NAME anymore in our conversations- otherwise we’re likely to have circular arguments for eons).  Anyhoo… pray, Saints!!!  Pray that these women will question what they’ve been taught.  They already can’t believe that I confess Christ’s subordination to the Father (though I have to keep interjecting “voluntary”)  Christians aren’t supposed to do that, according to what they’ve been taught.

I’m off to study… I don’t know a THING!!!  I know, though, that God is good and that the BRIDE is more than one and thankfully, I’m one of the many of the Bride!  :o)

xoxox

tina

Oh!  A funny thing!  Brenda said, “So what religion are you?  You don’t talk like a Southern Baptist.”  I smiled and said, “Oh…  I’m a Biblical Theologian  I study the God of the Bible.”  She giggled.  I’m glad she didn’t say, “Me, too.”  Or my children would never get to eat lunch!  ~tmm

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

…Sprite in one can!!!  I never knew just how much until I dropped a closed can on our ceramic tile floor and watched, helpless, as it exploded.  It covered me… it covered every cabinet and appliance in the kitchen… and the floor!  Oh!  The FLOOR!!! 

I had JUST finished cleaning the ENTIRE kitchen, even the top of the refrigerator and the cabinet ABOVE the refrigerator, just two hours ago.  I had gone outside to let my babies play while I tidied our deck. We were so hot and sweaty that the kids nicely asked for a very special treat of a “fizzy drink.”  Happy to oblige, I set the broom down and went into the pantry, smiling and knowing that the munchkins would be so happy- though their thirst wouldn’t be quenched.  As I went to put the sprite on the counter, to get water that WOULD soothe their parched little mouths, it sliiiiipped from my hand and crashed to the floor…

There is just sooooooo much anger in me!  At just that moment, Noah came to the door fussing and whining and demanding and I exploded.  Like a can of soda crashing to the floor I blew up!  “Why?!?”  I asked.  “Why are you so selfish?  Do you see this mess?  Do you see that I’m dripping with soda and that the kitchen is covered in it?  Why are you fussing and whining?  What on earth do you want?”  I felt HORRIBLE!  He began to cry.  The REAL tears… not the forced ones that come with selfish fussing, whining, grumbling, and complaining.  Oh!  My temper!  My poor sweet boy!!!  While he IS selfish and MUST STOP with the whining, he did not deserve his mommy’s wrath!  I crumpled to the floor, covered in a wet, sticky mess, and pulled him to me gently.  Looking him square in the eye, I confessed my sin and begged his forgiveness.  The sweet little lamb!  He forgave me and replied, “and Mommy, I am so sorry that I don’t always obey you and that I fuss a lot.”  Pretty sweet!  We tangled ourselves together in loving hugs and kisses and he happily went back to the deck to tell Lydia what had happened and that I would be there soon.  Oh Lord, God!  Get me under control!  Keep me from anger!  Protect my children’s hearts when I snap at them!  Erase it from their memories.  And God, I pray that YOU would forgive me!  I am to be YOU, to these little olive branches.  I am such a failure!  Work in me, and make me a vessel to honor and glorify you in ALL THINGS!!!

A man of quick temper acts foolishly,
   and a man of evil devices is hated.
Proverbs 14:17

Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding,
   but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly.
Proverbs 14:29

A hot-tempered man stirs up strife,
   but he who is slow to anger quiets contention.
Proverbs 15:18

Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty,
   and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.
Proverbs 16:32

Good sense makes one slow to anger,
   and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
Proverbs 19:11

A man of great wrath will pay the penalty,
   for if you deliver him, you will only have to do it again.
Proverbs 19:19

Make no friendship with a man given to anger,
   nor go with a wrathful man,
lest you learn his ways
   and entangle yourself in a snare.
Proverbs 22:24-25

A man without self-control
   is like a city broken into and left without walls.
Proverbs 25:28

For pressing milk produces curds,
   pressing the nose produces blood,
   and pressing anger produces strife.
Proverbs 30:33

But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these:  anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.
Colossians 3:8

Do not be quickly provoked in your spirit, for anger resides in the lap of fools.
Ecclesiastes 7:9

My dear brothers, take note of this.  Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.
James 1:19-20

God is SO good!  There are so many more WONDERFUL verses that I can jot down, but my fingers are tired and my babies are needing me!

Oh Lord!  You are gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.  Make me like You!  Please?!?

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved

How exciting!The kiddos and I were in (as Noah puts it) “A bad wreck that just crushed our car up”. It WASN’T that bad.  It was hard.  We all find ourselves groggy and sore this morning.  But besides bumps, bruises, and stiffness… PRAISE GOD!… we are well!We were in the right lane of King’s Highway, headed to 49 (by Cane’s and McDonald’s) when the car in the left lane TURNED RIGHT… into us!  I don’t know if she thought she was in the right lane already and decided at the last-minute to duck into Cane’s or Mickey D’s… but it was an accident… you can’t be mad!  It is especially sad because the very first thing she said to me was that her husband has brain cancer.  “My husband has brain cancer and I just didn’t see you.  I was on my way to the hospital to see him.  I didn’t see you there.  My mind was on other things.”  The impact was HARD and it was SHOCKING… but we are well!  My fist thought was the kiddos and I turned around to check on them.  They were stunned, Noah was holding his neck and Lydia was teary.  I asked Lydia if she was okay, “yeeeeeeessss” she replied, trying to hold it together and figure out what had happened.  When she opened her mouth to say yes, I saw blood.  I didn’t freak, I figured she had bitten her tongue and I was right not to be too alarmed.  She bit it hard.  It’s still purple in that spot today, with a little (teeny-tiny) bump.  The tongue is, I think (I could be making it up), the fastest-healing muscle in the body… she’ll do well.  After having my tongue pierced so many times, I know she’ll be fine.  It did make my heart leap for a moment.  She didn’t sleep well last night and came into our bed this morning, stiff and sore but happy.  The strap marks on her neck (from the car seat) have faded to a pale pink… no bruising there…  Her right thigh has a big ugly purple bruise from slamming against the side of the car seat.  That’s all!  She’s great,  a bit clingy, but GREAT!  Noah is a big boy and sits in a booster now, so he uses the seatbelt that goes across your chest and lap.  The belt did get him, right in the neck.  He’s also FANTASTIC, though.  He was right behind me and was hit harder than Lydia, but he woke up this morning saying that his “muscles don’t feel good and his throat (touching the part of his neck where the seatbelt bit him) hurts a little bit.  He is great, as well!  After the accident, we sat on the curb in the McDonald’s parking lot and Noah started praying, “Thank you God that you kept us safe and that we are alive and not in the grave or hurt.”  Thanksgiving!  That’s all!  Oh!  How much I can learn!  I had started to think practically… insurance, money to fix our car, no sweet happy car…  Noah thanked God for His goodness to us!  “Out of the mouths of children and tiny, nursing babes, from the lips of the little ones, God has ordained His praise!”  *OH!  Make me like a child, God!*As for me, I got the hardest bit of it.  She smashed the front of her car into the left side of ours, right at the front wheel well (I think it’s called that).  I am happy to report that I am doing well.  I felt fine right after the accident; everyone said that I would, that I should take it easy, because adrenaline was pumping (especially because my babies were involved).  They all predicted that I would feel much worse last night and today.  You know how it is, being a momma… you don’t feel like you CAN feel bad.  There is too much to do and too many people to take care of!  Yesterday, though, my left shoulder and arm really hurt.  I tried to take the cap off of some deodorant (Noah wanted to be like daddy), and I couldn’t get my hand closed around it, it hurt SO bad… tears popped out and I quickly brushed them away.  What is pain, right?  Take some Advil!  Suck it up and press on!  ANYWAY…  It continued to hurt more, my forearm especially.  I have been prescribed Soma and Lortab.  You know me… I HATE taking drugs!  Like an idiot, I’d much rather “suffer”.  Three Advil is about as much as I’ll do.  My good doctor wants me to take 3 Advil plus the Soma plus the Lortab ALL TOGETHER!  What?!?  No way!  That’s a crazy cocktail… then I remember that I don’t have a medical degree…  I’ve not treated people for more than half of my life… so… I obeyed- and besides the dizziness and nausea (which passed after one of Ginny’s biscuits) I felt a LOT better!!!  REALLY GOOD!  Charles laughed at me, though.  He thought I was funny for some reason.  I thought HE was funny!  Noah was the FUNNIEST and Ginny was the GREATEST!!!  I don’t know WHAT I would do without her!  *Thank you God for Ginny!  You knew I needed her!  Thanks for making her mine and for making me hers!*    I slept restlessly last night because I usually cuddle up to Charles on my left side… but it hurt!  *pout* so I had to sleep on my right side with my back to Charles.  I couldn’t put my head on his chest.  How is a girl supposed to fall asleep without Charles’ chest for a pillow?!?  Boo hoo hoo!  This morning, I am happy to report that I am just stiff and sore.  My neck and the top of my back hurt, but that is to be expected, isn’t it?  I’ve taken three Advil and am waiting for them to kick in.  I don’t want to take all of the other stuff without my honey here.  We are just going to hang out and veg today.  Movies, books, board games, and puzzles are ALL we have on our agenda.  We shall take it easy.  I think it will be pretty nice!So… thank God!  Praise Him!  He has been so GENTLE with us!  Pray for Sue Goff, that God will show her His gentleness!  Pray for her husband, John, who has brain cancer.  Pray that if ANYTHING comes from this, it is dependence on Christ alone in both families.  Pray that God will be glorified and that His name will be magnified!

Psalm 145
Great Is the LORD

A Song of Praise. Of David.

1I will extol you, my God and King,
   and bless your name forever and ever.
2Every day I will bless you
   and praise your name forever and ever.
3Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised,
   and his greatness is unsearchable.
  4One generation shall commend your works to another,
   and shall declare your mighty acts.
5On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
   and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.
6They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds,
   and I will declare your greatness.
7They shall pour forth the fame of your abundant goodness
   and shall sing aloud of your righteousness.
8The LORD is gracious and merciful,
   slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9The LORD is good to all,
   and his mercy is over all that he has made.
10All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD,
   and all your saints shall bless you!
11They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom
   and tell of your power,
12to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds,
   and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
13Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
   and your dominion endures throughout all generations.
 [The LORD is faithful in all his words
   and kind in all his works.]
14The LORD upholds all who are falling
   and raises up all who are bowed down.
15The eyes of all look to you,
   and you give them their food in due season.
16You open your hand;
   you satisfy the desire of every living thing.
17The LORD is righteous in all his ways
   and kind in all his works.
18The LORD is near to all who call on him,
   to all who call on him in truth.
19He fulfills the desire of those who fear him;
   he also hears their cry and saves them.
20The LORD preserves all who love him,
   but all the wicked he will destroy.
21My mouth will speak the praise of the LORD,
   and let all flesh bless his holy name forever and ever. 
 

©PortCityPrincess 2007
All Rights Reserved