Hi Patrice! It's great to be back with you again. I've missed you these past couple of weeks, and so am especially looking forward to our wee blether.
I hope you had a great Thanksgiving Day, and that you remembered to chuck the scales out before the day actually arrived.
And so to today's questions and, as always, thank you for hosting our (almost) weekly get-together.
1. Please tell me the three most valuable things you learned as a child or young person.
(i) I learnt that I needed a Saviour. I knew from as far back as my memory goes that I couldn't get to heaven without Christ Jesus saving me. I'd say this is the most valuable thing I learnt as a child.
(ii) I learnt not to be too concerned about what others thought of me. (Of course, whilst passing through my teen years, I reckon I forgot this valuable lesson: like most teenagers, I thought far too much of the opinions of others, but once these years past, the childhood lesson was found to be deeply ingrained.)
(iii) I learnt that the Bible was a real, living book and that it applied to every area of life. That means I can do the dishes to God's glory; or not. I can spend my spare time to God's glory; or not. I can raise my kids to God's glory; or not. I can dress, read, spend my money, speak to friends, plan the future to God's glory ... or not.
I remember my Dad speaking about what was known as the 'Protestant Work Ethic' and the reason behind it. It was because God's Word was real to these people and the way they worked was affected to such a great extent by God's Word. It was because the Bible wasn't a book just for Sundays, but for every day and every situation. I read recently that Luther said this:
'If my cobbler is a Christian, I will not expect the shoes he makes me to have little crosses on them. I will, however, expect the shoes to be the best he could possibly make.'
Yes! If we are Christians, everything we do ought to be done to God's glory. Sadly I fall waaaaay short of this - every minute of every day of my life ...
2. Did you participate in Black Friday or Cyber Monday?
I was safely ensconced right here, Patrice, so was kept well away from any Black Friday or Cyber Monday related sale.
3. Do you pray?
Yes, I do, but what's amazing isn't so much that I pray, but that the God who created the heavens and the earth, who is King of kings and Lord of lords hears me.
He hears me! That is amazing. Although I've prayed ever since I became a Christian, I can truly say that prayer has become more precious to me as I've gone on in my Christian life. I realize now, and am realizing more and more, that my Lord not only hears me but delights to hear me. To think that the all holy, all wise, all powerful, all good God would delight to hear a sinner like me come to Him ...
pouring out my praise - poor as it is;
pouring out my confession - repetitive and incomplete as it is;
pouring out my desires and needs - pathetic as they sometimes are ...
and yet He delights to hear me, His child, coming my Father, with all my praise, my confession and my pleadings. What a God He is!
4. Have you been invited to any parties to celebrate Christmas or New Year?
Dearie me, Patrice. I'm a Scot. A Highlander. A Presbyterian. You forget yourself!!
5. Have you ever owned cowboy boots or a cowboy hat? Or a cowboy?? Tee-hee :) Just had to throw that one in for fun!
Well, Patrice, I don't have a cowboy hat; nor do I have cowboy boots ...
BUT I have my very own Cowboy. Although he's normally known as the Builder, he can morph into being my Cowboy too.
(I do realise that at forty-seven years of age, I'm not supposed to be swooning over my husband of twenty-something years. (Erm, not that he is twenty-something - clearly. He's been my husband for twenty-something years. That was clear, right?) But - supposed to or not - swooning it is.
My kids are gonna love this.
And as for boots, much as I love cowboy boots, these are still #1.