Delivered UPS has delivered the shipment.
KING OF PRUSSIA, PA, US
After school yesterday, we enjoyed the traditional first-day-of-spring free water ice at Rita's Water Ice! Rita's all around our area were packed with happy faces waiting in line for their favorite flavors of Italian water ice...FREE!
This past week was full of festivities as Jim and I celebrate our birthdays each year just two days apart. It is always a fun week of March celebrating with precious family and being remembered in beautiful ways by wonderful friends. We were treated to and enjoyed delicious meals (a few too many!) and made many special memories with the kids. We are so thankful for all of the Lord's blessings.
Aunt Anne kicked up her heals with her Irish dancing team in the Philadelphia St. Patrick's Day Parade last Sunday!
Jim's parents treated us to some Italian delights on Jim's birthday
Jim's mom always makes him his favorite cake...German Chocolate
We are enjoying the afterglow of a week blessed bountifully by the Lord. Our hearts are thankful to Him.
Amazing! As I wrote in my "God Always Gives Us The Right Verse For Each Day, Mommy" post, He's done it again. Today, in my March 11th reading in the NIV One Year Chronological Bible, I am in Numbers 33 where it records the stages in Israel's journey to The Promised Land. I found it so interesting that 40 places in their journey were recorded. 40! A significant Biblical number. This record of their journey demonstrates God's faithfulness and deliverance to the Israelites and His generous lovingkindness in His great gift to them of the land of Canaan.
This verse from Numbers was perfect for today for our 100th blog post because, for my husband and me, that is what Joy In The Truth has become to us...a record of the stages of our journey with the Lord through life. Our blog records some of the wonderful ways He is showing us His faithfulness, perfect unconditional love and provision. We pray this little blog in cyber space brings Him magnificent glory in some small way.
Originally, I was inspired to start blogging by reading my friend Heather's beautiful family blog. Serendipitously, I have made some friends in Bloggityville, like Jill, Kelly, and Susan. Jill's family even had Heather's family and my family over for dinner last year! (Jill happens to live less than an hour away.) Kelly and I are planning a trip to New York City in the future to be in the studio audience of "Live! With Regis & Kelly"! (That is a fun girly trip I take via train at least once a year and invite a few girlfriends along.) And Susan's energy and enthusiasm literally come through the computer screen to me!
For this 100th Blog Post Celebration, hubs and I will be giving away 7 books that get you into God's Word. Just leave a comment to enter to win. The winner will be announced on Tuesday 3/17/09, which happens to be my birthday (and St. Patrick's Day!)! "...remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.' " Acts 20:35
Here are the books we are giving away. If you already have one of these books, please just note that in your comment. Each winner will also receive one "Philadelphia treat" - see below.
"Holiest of All" by Andrew Murray Thank you, Jill, for introducing me to this book. It is a treasure of a study on the book of Hebrews.
"Jesus Calling Devotional" by Sarah Young One of my very favorite devotionals first given to me by my friend Nancy, and now available at P31.
"A Woman's Secret To A Balanced Life" by Lysa TerKeurst and Sharon Jaynes My friend Laura S. gave me this book as a gift, and I'll never forget that day. The Lord used this book mightily in my life when I was a sleep-deprived new mom. He ministered His love and truth to me through this book and got me back into His Book daily. He is our sustenance and portion forever. Lysa has become a friend as the Lord has gently woven some rare but precious threads of our lives together in some amazing ways.
"Mining for Gold in The Heart of Your Child" - CD and character chart by Renee Swope Have you met Renee? She is passionate about raising children in the ways of the Lord and according to His Word! This is a wonderful resource for parents.
"Out of the Mouths of Babes (Learning God's Precepts From My Preschooler)" by Wendy Pope Wendy Pope loves God's Word. She is currently hosting hundreds (thousands?) of women (and a few men) in reading through the Bible in a year. God is doing a mighty work as she invited others to join her...the response was amazing (click here to read the story)! Wendy has been such an encourager to me as I desire to walk in obedience to and dependence on the Lord.
"Hidden Joy In A Dark Corner" by Wendy Blight This recently-released book is next up on my reading list. Wendy shares her testimony of God's faithfulness to her through a very dark time. I respect and admire Wendy for sharing this part of her life as she brings glory to God for His perfect love for her. (And Wendy turned me on to a really "cool" clothing place!)
"Wise Words for Moms" by Ginger Plowman This is a great resource for applying specific scripture while raising children to honor Him. I have had this since our cherubs were just little tots, yet it applies to people of all ages.
In addition to the book, each winner will receive one of the following treats (I have given them away before and they were a real hit...especially to those who have never had them before!) -- Tastykakes or Peanut Chews, two companies based nearby in Philadelphia! Just indicate which you would prefer when you leave a comment.
Thanks for stopping by! Leave a comment and check back on 3/17/09 for the list of winners! :)
Me and Cheryl as "Room Moms" for our daughters' 1st grade class.
Cheryl and I are both reading through the Bible in a year. I am reading the NIV Chronological Bible. It's fun to compare notes. And let's just say, it was a journey getting through Leviticus, but we both looked for His treasure of truth for us.
Thanks for stopping by for a visit! ON WEDNESDAY 3/11/09 I WILL BE HAVING A SPECIAL 100TH BLOG POST CELEBRATION AND GIVE-AWAY! JOIN IN THE FUN! SEE YOU THEN!
Our Proverbs 31 Gather and Grow group pictured above had a pajama night when we gathered in February!
Each month, a wonderful group of women gather in our home for a "Gather and Grow" study and fellowship. God has given His life to this special and diverse group of ladies as we come together to seek Him in His Word, to fellowship and pray together, and to encourage each other in our walks with Him.
Currently, we are reading through "What Happens When Women Walk By Faith" by Lysa Terkeurst. At the end of each chapter is a Bible study. We each have been reading the chapters and doing our Bible studies at home through the month. When we come together, it is exciting and encouraging to discuss and listen to all that God is doing in each woman's heart and life as they seek Him in His Word.
We often have a "Make His Name Great" portion of our evening when one of our gals shares her testimony of salvation or something the Lord is currently doing in their life. As glory is given to God for His mighty works in our lives and hearts, our faith roots grow deeper and He knits us together in Him. "Come and see what God has done, how awesome His works in man's behalf!" Psalm 66:5
In February, our lovely Nancy led us in worship before we began our study, which was such a blessing. Here is Nancy (keep in mind it was "pajama night"!).
For me, the real proof in the pudding is when the husbands of the girls in the group say how much the love Gather and Grow for their wives. The husbands are seeing the fruit of Gathering and Growing in Him! One husband has even given a few other names for the group, such as "Hang Out and Sprout" and "Assemble and Resemble"!
Here is what a few of our gals have shared about what "Gather and Grow" means to them:
"The group has been like the Word lived out among women who are free to be real and vulnerable as we read the extraordinary testimonies, encouragements and exhortations from the book and respond from the heart." - Jenn W.
"After attending several Gather and Grow get-togethers, I was reflecting on what makes this group so special to me. Although I love to participate in in-depth Bible studies on my own and with my church, there has been an aspect of my walk that I always seem to put on the back burner. Because of family obligations, my work schedule, and trying to keep my house somewhat clean, I have very few opportunities to simply hang out with other girls who just love Jesus. Meeting once a month has been a highlight for me. The atmosphere is very relaxed which makes it easy to let your guard down and really be yourself. I can already see how the Lord is working in our group and meshing our hearts together." - Nancy C.
"Something beautiful is happening to the diverse group of women my girlfriend has prayerfully invited together to 'Gather and Grow.' What started as a refreshing fellowship time is now after several months becoming a deep heart connection between women. We are being challenged to obedience to Christ in all we do. Thanks to the swiftness of the Internet, we have instant communication for prayer needs and praises. We are not only developing a more intimate relationship with Jesus, but an accountability and closeness with each other. The safety that is being felt by our group is being expressed in the testimonies that have been shared over the past few months.Sharon, who leads our group, puts every detail before God in prayer and yield to His leading. Yet she is able to maintain a structure and proceed with our lessons. The goal of Gather and Grow is more of Jesus and less of me, and yet our Lord blesses me each time we meet with remarkable gifts. I count this time we have together as one of the most precious in my life." - Lucille O.
Our small group of women met for several years each Tuesday evening and read through several P31 books that pointed us to Christ and His Word. Now, several years later, Proverbs 31 Ministries began official "Gather and Grow" groups...and that is the perfect name! Indeed, we gather together and we grow in our relationship with Christ, in our relationships with each other, and in His love, Word and truth. Our now monthly gatherings are an oasis of sorts. God is faithful to give us our portion every time we seek Him. Gathering and Growing in His Truth....a precious and wonderful place to be! By His grace, truth and love alone. We look to Him in all things, the Giver of Life.
"They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer."
"Sanctify them by the truth, Your word is truth." John 17:17
(Updated below at 6:05 PM)
The kids have a snow day off from school today! We have been hoping our area would have one more decent snow fall before spring arrives so the kids could have one more fling of snow-time fun!
At 9 AM, they came inside to warm up with some hot chocolate and toasted bagels. While they were outside, I made a quick batch of chocolate cookies (a friend is scheduled to have her baby girl tomorrow!), so they each had a very special treat waiting for them -- a mixer beater adorned with cookie dough!
After they prayed and thanked the Lord for today's snow day and all the special yummies waiting for them, Gabrielle exclaimed with enthusiasm, "We have everything we need!" Daddy, who was getting ready to leave for work, was nearby and said, "Yes, we have everything we need and more. God provides everything we need and blesses us with extras as well. And we have everything we need in Christ Jesus."
Gabrielle's excited exclamation reminded me of 2 Peter 1:3, "His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness." This has been a recurring verse to me this year and a great reminder and encouragement that HE, HIS DIVINE POWER, has given us everything we need for life and godliness, through our knowledge of HIM, who called us for HIS own glory and goodness. That is comforting, satisfying, reassuring and strengthening.
To Gabrielle, "everything we need" was sweetly and innocently satisfied momentarily this morning by hot cocoa, breakfast and a cookie dough beater. She loves Jesus and His Word, too. May we gently, faithfully and unwaveringly always point our children's hearts and eyes to Jesus, His Word and His divine power where we have been given everything we need for life and godliness. Satisfaction to the full. Satisfaction forever.
Enjoy your day today! Is it snowing where you are???
The kids favorite part of the day! My younger sister, famously known as "Aunt Anne", came over this afternoon for several hours of playing and sledding in the snow with the kids! As I have said before, my sister is way more fun than me! (And I am perfectly OK with that!) The kids love her so much. They could see her twelve times a day and still get just as excited to see her each time. Here is a picture. (Notice the icicle Joshua is holding!) Thanks for coming over, Anne! Once again, you were my "oxygen" today! :)