Thursday, December 30, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Monday, June 7, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Sunday, May 2, 2010
We are temporarily living in a new neighborhood. All the houses are neat and well kept, though some are a little shabby with age. The gates and fences around them are shiny and very high. If you walk around the fences it is hard to find the entrance gates or how to enter because the latches are missing. It is as if they are only opened from the inside.
At closer examination, there appears to be some tunnels between the houses. Certain paths beaten between neighbors, but even those paths have high and shiny fences lining them and there are no gates to those.
There is an apparent friendliness to the residents. If you are passing by, a few might come out of their yards and greet you in the usual pleasantries. Their best welcome is at their weekly meetings at the community clubhouse. Every week they gather together to say hello, to welcome new comers, to restate the community rules and to collect money for common projects.
At those weekly clubhouse meetings I am always looking to the current residents to ask me over. After all, I am the visitor, the newbie. I figure they will want to invite me to their homes and introduce me to one another and get to know me and my family. I want to find out what books they read, what interests they have, and what are the common goals of the community. Is there something here that we could contribute to or they could teach us? Is there some connections we have or ways that we can encourage one another in our life purposes. If we are to live in this community, what are its goals and vision for community life? And isn’t the current condition the manifestation of what that vision is and how it is being lived out?
Yet, after two months, after attending the weekly meetings, what I am discovering is more of a grief and woe to me than anything to induce me to want to keep living there. No one has ever invited me into their own home. No one comes out of their shiny fence to show me who they really are or to find out who I really am. The club meetings appear to be mainly social and to accomplish little to channel the people into community living. They have their groups that do meet, and there is no entrance into those unless you were there when they were originally forming. It seems I must knock on all the gates and fences and ask to be let in if I am to form any kind of relationship with these people that I would be living with if we settled here. And I know that if I did all the work, knocked on all the fences, invited all the residents to my home, we still would not be included into their social circles. It would be a rare thing to happen and I am not sure that is what I want at all. In fact, living here temporarily is causing me to consider what it is I really want and what I really think is right when it comes to community, especially for a Christian person.
What I am describing is indeed a Christian community otherwise called a church. And it is a grief to experience.
----posted by Queen Lucy
Monday, April 19, 2010
Edmond does not know what he is accused of or that he was going to prison until they reach the Chateau D’If, a prison built on an island. In prison he eventually meets another prisoner; an Abbe named Faria, who was attempting to escape by tunneling, but tunneled into Edmond’s cell instead. Faria teaches Edmond many things including how to read and write and speak other languages. Faria also deduces how and why Edmond was betrayed and who did it. The two men continue tunneling for their escape, but before they can finish Faria falls deathly ill. He tells Edmond of a vast treasure that his is buried on the island of Monte Cristo and how to get it before he dies. Edmond then escapes by sewing himself in Faria’s burial shroud, and when he is thrown into the sea he swims to a nearby island. He finds out that he has been in prison for fourteen years; he was nineteen when he was arrested and thirty-three when he escaped.
Edmond eventually goes to the small island of Monte Cristo and finds the massive treasure hidden there. Then he sets out to revenge himself on all those who made him suffer, using his new found wealth, which takes up only the last 1,200 pages of the book! He also uses his money to help those that had helped him and cared about his well being and his father’s.
This book shows to some extent that revenge is bad by the death of innocent people caused by Edmond’s actions. And Edmond also goes about his revenge by using the people’s own actions for their undoing. Edmond also thinks that he is doing God’s will in his revenge, reasoning that he escaped from prison and literally got rich quick to enforce and be God’s tool for justice against these men. For the most part the book’s story flowed well but it had quite a few sections that became hard to read, because they were slow and became boring. You can really see how selfish and sinful people can be in their ambition for themselves or others dear to them; and to what lengths they go to get others out of their way and cover up what they have done. Overall it was a well told story with a good plot that keeps you reading.
Posted by ME
Monday, March 29, 2010
My sons, you have the incredible God given privilege to someday be a picture of Christ. As a man, you will be given the opportunity to display Christ, His love, His sacrifice, His ongoing nurture, His proactive care for His Bride. If God grants you a virtuous woman someday and you have prepared yourself to be worthy of her, then you will get the delight of living Christ for her benefit and for the world to have a living epistle by your marriage. You will have the untold wonder of a beautiful union that will be a whisper of the marriage supper of the Lamb and a breath of our becoming one with Christ. This is a high calling, one worthy to prepare for, one challenging for even the best of men.
With such an important purpose ahead of you, remember the warning of 2 Timothy 2:4, “No one engaged in warfare entangles himself with the affairs of this life, that he may please him who enlisted him as a soldier.” You are the soldier of the LORD Jesus Christ. Do not let yourself be distracted from your goal and glory.
How can you be dissuaded from your high calling for just a few moments of attention from some young woman who is not to be your Bride? Do you think Christ allowed some other attraction to enter His thoughts or purpose? Do you think He gave into impurity so that His love for His Bride would be tainted in any way? Do you think He defrauded His Bride by some previous dalliance with anyone else?
As a man, you have to engage in warfare against the temptations common to your sex. Men love to want. They enjoy the art of desiring and longing after women. Men also enjoy the attention of women. They will receive those attentions of women skilled in man hunting and then excuse themselves by saying they (the men) are not guilty because they were not pursuing or engaging the woman, only receiving the attention offered as if that meant they were not present and involved in the whole incident.
You must have a higher standard than that if you are going to fulfill your duties as a Christian man. You must reject the arguments that are made such as, “It is nothing; we were just talking,” and ones likely to cover up what is in your heart. You cannot claim innocence if you allow young women to hover around you seeking attention or giving it. You must determine to live better, to live more holy lives in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation.
I know that many of the young ladies are not instructed in godly behavior. I understand that they many not even know that they are man hunting because all they see is that everyone else interacts that way. I certainly see that they do not have the appearance of “evil”, if you will, but nevertheless when they are placing themselves before you in the hopes of being noticed or getting to notice you, then they are acting, as Proverbs describes, the behavior of strange women and you must extricate yourself from such situations.
The Scriptures give young men stern warning about these very kinds of interactions with women. “Do not let your heart turn aside to her ways, do not stray into her paths; for she has cast down many wounded, and all who were slain by her were strong men. Her house is the way to hell, descending to the chambers of death.” (Proverbs 7:25-27) This is a stark warning to those who think they can “stray into her paths” and survive. It cautions that even wandering near her can lead to your demise. The previous victims were all strong men WHO WERE SLAIN.
In the same chapter from Proverbs we learn this: “With her enticing speech she caused him to yield, with her flattering lips she seduced him. Immediately he went after her, as an ox goes to the slaughter, or as a fool to the correction of the stocks, till an arrow struck his liver, as a bird hastens to the snare, he did not know it would cost his life.”
A man who welcomes, receives, and encourages any and all man hunting
is forfeiting his life. If he loves a woman’s flattering lips and enticing speech and flirtatious interactions, he is as an ox going to the slaughter. He is basically giving himself over to her will and losing his own.
Over and over again men are gravely warned about the consequences of letting their hearts and lust overtake them and giving themselves to the clutches of an evil woman. Proverbs says that such a man will lose his honor, his wealth, his labors, his flesh and body will be consumed, and he will fall into the depths of hell.
And again, Proverbs tells the young men to stay as far away as possible from such women: “Remove your way far from her, and do not go near the door of her house…” “Whoever is simple, let him turn in here; and as for him who lacks understanding, she says to him, ‘stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant.’ But he does not know that the dead are there, that her guests are in the depths of hell.”
So whether or not you believe it all to be harmless, take heed to the warnings of Scriptures and of your parents who love you dearly. Avoid such folly at all costs. I cannot help that most men and fathers have never learned to do this very thing so they cannot teach their own sons. In fact, the fathers of the young ladies who are man hunters are not teaching their daughters to refrain from such behavior either. We have seen some fathers who actually take pride in the attention their daughters are able to get from their man hunting.
For this reason and many more, you must be vigilant to watch your eyes, always talk with young ladies in a polite manner, and leave the conversation if there is any digression into flirting styles. Do not allow yourself to have any media contact with females: no texting, phoning, or internet relationships at all. Refrain from singling out any young lady for your particular attention or from receiving her attention. And most of all, “Keep your heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” (Proverbs 4:23) You have to learn to exercise wisdom in each and every situation that arises so that you can live with a clear conscience before God.
Train yourself not to even THINK about a young lady in a romantic way until you have done these things first: prepare yourself spiritually and financially to take on a wife, discuss it with us to seek our counsel, and then ask permission of her father or guardian to get to know her better with the intent that you will quickly discern if she and you are a good fit. We do not want you dallying with the heart or affections of another person without the intention of carrying through on a relationship.
It is your responsibility to see to it that you are in no way guilty of encouraging any young lady wrongly and thus you can be free of condemnation before God in these matters. We are not to allow even a hint of immorality in our lives and yet DAILY in Christian circles active man hunting occurs and men enjoy the role of prey.
Wise men will still use Proverbs 31 as a guide in searching for a virtuous bride. In it King Lemuel’s mother instructs him to be wise and what to look for when searching for a suitable wife. See, mothers know what women are like and want to warn their sons to stay away from the wrong kind of women and instead to turn their hearts toward God and what a godly woman looks like. Wise men will turn away from the paths of any and every strange woman. In our day that means you will have to find a very narrow way because the paths are wide and filled with man hunting and sin. But the narrow way is the one to choose after all.
-----posted by Queen Lucy
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
I am writing this letter to you so that you may know what has happened to me since I left the ranch after uncle Herber beat me for racing Sunday. As I hope you would know by now, my horse Sunday was stolen by soldiers in the Confederate army.
Two men by the names of Porfirio and Juan Sanchez took me east into Mexico. While in one of the towns there, I found out the name of the man who took Sunday. It was Jefferson Coleraine. I continued following Coleraine’s trail, but I could never seem to catch up to him. I eventually met a photographer who wanted to take photos of the battles so people could see how battles were really horrific bloody things instead of these glorious things that people were always thinking they were.
After one battle I heard President Abraham Lincoln give a speech that started with words like “Four score and seven years ago.” This was his Gettysburg address. I eventually found my horse Sunday. He had been picked up by some poor farmers after he had been shot in the leg and ran from the battle. I decided to let the farmers keep Sunday and I am returning as soon as the railroad is built. Please keep my sisters safe.
Sincerely your nephew,
--posted by Princess Ann