Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Being A Lady

This morning, I have been pondering over what it means to be a lady. When I think of a picture of a lady, I think of Jane Austen books and Audrey Hepburn's grace. I think of the debutant's in movies who float around the house in beautiful dresses and drink tea and await their gentleman caller. I think of buggy rides, of long walks in the garden, and of glamorous balls to attend. But I also mix lady likeness with the Godly passion of women like Maeyken Wens and Amy Carmichael. I think of women such as those who gave up everything for the cause of Christ. They did not care about fancy dresses or handsome beaus. They thought of their Savior and Lord.

Nowadays, I am seeing a staggering rise in "ladies" whose actions are, well, far from ladylike. Instead of delicate, sweet ladies who are thoughtful and kind, I think of modern day Scarlet O'Hara's; arrogant, prideful, vindictive, and impure. And it's really a shame. There are many ways that girls and women are straying further away from lady likeness. For example:


I remember going shopping several years ago with a friend and observing her choices of clothing. Appalled, I remember seeing her don outfits like skin-tight jeans and a cleavage baring top. When I addressed the situation, her remark left me shocked. "What do you mean?" she said. "This IS modest."  Oh dear....

Clothes are just one factor in the art of being a lady and, sadly, most girls and young women can't seem to get that one nailed down. Far too many use the "modern Christian approach" and say, "God does not care about the way I dress. He only cares about my heart."

Well, first of all, how you dress REVEALS your heart, so if you are dressing provocatively or in a way that draws eyes to your body, then we know what is in your heart. Secondly, to say that the Lord is not concerned about how we dress is a lie. When Adam and Eve sinned in the garden, the very first thing God did was - make them clothes! He covered their nakedness. Over and over again in the Bible, He reminds us, women, to dress modestly; pointing all those we come in contact with to HIM, not us.

1 Peter 3:3-4
"Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price."

1 Timothy 2:9-10
"In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works."


Another example of modern day UN-lady likeness is that of speech. I cannot tell you how many times I have had to sit through conversations that left me overwhelming burdened over the state of womanhood. Nowadays, it is seemingly normal for professed Christian girls and women to slip a cuss word every now and then, to talk crudely of bodily functions, and plaster the color of their undergarments on Facebook and Twitter. They will toss their hair as they reveal information that is meant for the privacy and sacredness of marriage. I have been amazed at how little regard women have for upright and pure speech. It is not ladylike to loudly take over conversations and make yourself heard over everyone else in the room. It is not ladylike (or Godly, for that matter) to spew out vulgarities and improper words at any time. Is there Biblical proof to this? Yes.

Colossians 4:6 -
"Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man."

Titus 2:7-8 -
"In all things shewing thyself a pattern of good works: in doctrine shewing uncorruptness, gravity, sincerity, Sound speech, that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you."

We have all heard the common phrase, "Actions speak louder than words" and I have to say that there is much truth to that. Though words mean a great deal, our actions back them up. It means nothing to say you love your husband or your parents when you treat them with disdain. In our modern culture, the actions of women are become more and more burdensome. I have met many so-called Christian girls who will tell me that they love the Lord and seek to follow and worship Him. Yet, when I observe their lifestyle, their habits, their everyday schedules, I see differently. I see a girl who is not obsessed with her Creator, but obsessed with the latest Twilight or Harry Potter movie. I don't see the Christian girl who loves to worship and praise Jesus, I see a girl who is excited about the Justin Bieber concert next weekend or the latest Taylor Swift music video. Life's ambition? To be a rock star. Heroes? Brad Pitt, Carrie Underwood and Jesus.


Such is the modern day Christian.

1 Corinthians 3:13 -
"Every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is."

Ephesians 4:1 -
"I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called."

Colossians 1:10 -
"That ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God."

I love reading stories of great men and women in history. One of my favorite couples is Jonathan and Sarah Edwards, who lived in the 1700's at the dawn of the Revolution. Both were Godly Christians who saturated themselves in Word of God and, later, filled their children with the knowledge of Christ. At one point in their relationship, Jonathan, observing his love, wrote these words about Sarah:

They say there is a young lady in [New Haven] who is beloved of that Great Being, who made and rules the world, and that there are certain seasons in which this Great Being, in some way or other invisible, comes to her and fills her mind with exceeding sweet delight; and that she hardly cares for any thing, except to meditate on him— that she expects after a while to be received up where he is, to be raised up out of the world and caught up into heaven; being assured that he loves her too well to let her remain at a distance from him always. There she is to dwell with him, and to be ravished with his love and delight for ever. Therefore, if you present all the world before her, with the richest of its treasures, she disregards it and cares not for it, and is unmindful of any pain or affliction. She has a strange sweetness in her mind, and singular purity in her affections; is most just and conscientious in all her conduct; and you could not persuade her to do any thing wrong or sinful, if you would give her all the world, lest she should offend this Great Being. She is of a wonderful sweetness, calmness, and universal benevolence of mind; especially after this Great God has manifested himself to her mind. She will sometimes go about from place to place, singing sweetly; and seems to be always full of joy and pleasure; and no one knows for what. She loves to be alone, walking in the fields and groves, and seems to have some one invisible always conversing with her.

What a grand picture of a true lady! Godly, holy, sweet and kind; Peaceful, joyful, and always seeking to be in the presence of her Creator. One of my biggest passions is to try and awaken our generation of girls (and guys!) to a "MORE" mentality. More God, more servant hood, more nobility, more love, more passion for the Word of God..... just more of Him and less of us. More of Christ and His blood and less of pop culture and Hollywood obsession. More radiant beauty and less scantly-clad dressing. More of Godly lady-hood and less of secular feminism.

If I may give some encouragement to you girls reading - BE A LADY!! More importantly, be a Godly Lady! I can assure you, our God takes great delight in a lady who is everything He made her to be.

Titus 2:3-5
The aged women likewise, that they be in behaviour as becometh holiness, not false accusers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things;
That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Monday Meanderings - 09/20/10

Monday Meanderings is a weekly "planner post" that Sarah from In Light of the Truth began! I'm new to this, but I love organizing and planning, so.... I'm going to give it a go! Feel free to zoom on over to Sarah's blog and join in on the "meanderin'!"

Bible Study... James

Memory Verse... Philippians 2:5 -
"Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus."

Husband Encouragement...
* Iron his dress shirts
* Organize his closet
* Spend time in his presence

Train Them Up...
* Begin getting ideas for nursery
* Read another chapter of "To Train Up a Child" by Michael & Debi Pearl

Personal Goals...
* Exercise every day this week
* Write in journals
* Work on honeymoon scrapbook
* Work on book

New Habit of the Month...
* Vacuum couches twice a week

MUST Do...
* Get plastic storage boxes
* Get all laundry washed, dried, folded/ironed, and put away
* Catch up on e-mail
* Go through boxes in the garage
* Buy gift wrap from neighbor's little girl

Zone...  the study closet. I MUST clean it out!

Menu - This is tricky because my morning sickness is still hanging on a little and Grant has put himself on a very strict diet. Each night, he wants either eggs, a salad, or salmon for dinner. With me needing several small meals a day, I have figured out a basic idea for what I will have each evening and, if Grant so chooses, for him as well:

M - Leftover lasagna
T - Chicken Parmesan, mashed potatoes, green beans
W - Chili and cornbread
Th - Chicken fettuchini, broccoli, bread sticks
F - TBD (to be decided). Possible breakfast for supper!
S - Concert in Farmerville, LA so, Church food of some kind.
Su - Revival in Bearden - Church food again!

* Call up some friends
* Play with Gracie and maybe give her a bath

3 things I'm thankful for today
1. Cooler mornings and evenings
2. Family
3. Friendship and fellowship

Thursday, September 9, 2010

A Baby's Heart

Well, it is official!! I am most DEFINITELY pregnant! Today, I went in for my first doctor's appointment. I was anxious, excited, scared, nervous, and giddy all at once. After a long wait, a million questions, and various exams, I saw our baby for the first time! I cannot tell you how small I felt when I saw what God Himself planted in my womb! When we glimpsed a little life squirming and wiggling around and when we heard a strong heartbeat, I was in sheer awe. My grandfather had a frequent saying. He would always say:  "God is big!....and He's GOOD."  How often do we forget just how BIG God is...and how very, very small we are? If you are like me, you forget a LOT!

I am currently 8 weeks and 6 days pregnant. I have been nauseous, I have been tired, I have grown to hate foods I used to love and crave foods (and combinations of foods) that were never on my list of "favorite yummies." Some days, it is easy to groan and say, "WHY ME?" But I haven't been able to complain. I am housing a LIFE, a SOUL. God Himself has entrusted me and Grant with a baby....a child with a destiny, a calling...and an eternal home. It is our job to "train up" our child in the ways of God, binding them on the doorposts of our home and our lives. It is an incredible responsibility! And it is an awesome and humbling honor.

Many people have asked me if I am going to journal my pregnancy the way I did with my engagement and wedding. My answer? YES, Lord willing. During my engagement and wedding preparation, I learned a great deal about salvation and how every aspect of wedding planning somehow, someway, pointed to the saving grace of our Savior! Is it possible to see the same things in a pregnancy? ABSOLUTELY!!

One of the very first things that happens after conception is the heart. What does it do? It starts beating! Today, when I watched a little "spot" appear on a screen, one of the first things our doctor asked was:

 "Do you see the heart beating?"

"What?" I said.

"There. Do you see?"

As I looked closer, I saw a movement and, sure enough, it was a HEART. We SAW it beating. After a few moments of complete awe, we HEARD the heart beating. Strong and fast, it was thumping along.

Likewise, salvation begins with the heart. It's a HEART change, first and foremost. When you, as a sinner, get a good look at what you are (which is a dirty, rotten, sinner) you want to change! And then you ask Jesus to come into your life...and your heart. And He does!! He inhabits your life, your soul, your mind...and your heart. And He gives you a new heart; one that begins to beat for HIM, for HIS glory, for HIS applause.

I was speechless today. I was moved. If I were to sit and really dwell on all the happenings of today, rest assured, I would burst into a fit of happy tears! I saw and heard my baby's heartbeat. My goodness, HOW MUCH MORE do you think our Father is moved and stirred with compassion and love when He sees OUR heart, new and full of spiritual life, beating strong?  I'm sure my human feelings hold no comparison.

I encourage you....BEAT for Jesus. If you have never surrendered your heart and life to Him. DO IT. NOW. And if you have? Beat strong for Him. Beat fast and firm...and do it for His glory alone.

2 Corinthians 5:17
"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

Psalm 51:10
"Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me."

Colossians 3:15
"And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful."



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