Here is a note I just wrote to my friend for herself and her daughter, and also for my own precious little girl.
Hannah longed for a baby, but the Lord had not opened her womb. And so she had no children.
God's Word says she was in “bitterness of soul” meaning she felt a deep distress and sadness.
And she “wept sore.” Which means she cried intensely.
When she prayed she said
“O LORD of hosts, if thou wilt indeed look on the affliction of thine handmaid, and remember me, and not forget thine handmaid, but wilt give unto thine handmaid a man child, then I will give him unto the LORD all the days of his life ...”
Do you notice what she called herself?
She was God's handmaid.
And we remember another special woman in the Bible who also humbled herself before God and called herself God's handmaid:
Luke 1:38 And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.
So what does it mean to be a “handmaid”?
Webster's 1828 dictionary says:
HAND'MAIDEN, n. A maid that waits at hand; a female servant or attendant.
What does “wait” mean in this sense?
I think it means: “To pay servile or submissive attendance. To attend to. To be ready to serve.”
How can we have a heart and an attitude that is submissive to God? To be ready to serve Him?
John the baptist said: “He must increase, but I must decrease.” John had already given God his whole life, but he wanted to give even more.
And in Matthew 16:25 Jesus says: “For whosoever will save his life shall lose it; and whosoever
will lose his life for my sake shall find it.”
So maybe if we want a heart and an attitude that is quick, ready and happy to serve God we need to think less of our “selves”. Get rid of all selfishness.
Paul, in Philippians 2:4 says: “Look NOT every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.”
That's where we remember:
J Jesus first
O Others, then
This is not the recipe for a life of drudgery and pain. The Lord blesses obedience to Him in ways we can never, with our limited human mind, even conceive of!
As mothers and daughters we are blessed having people around us all day to practice this on. We can serve everyone quickly and happily.
Too hard! I hear you cry. Yes - it is very difficult in our own strength, but entirely possible with the Holy Spirit working within us.
And when we serve others we are serving God.
I want to be the Lord's handmaid. Do you?
Sunday, June 20, 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010
This is a fun and easy game to make.
Collect some lovely little items from around your house (or from your box of "lovely little things" that you keep for times just as these!). Say seven of each item.
Carefully hot-glue one of the items to the top of a peg.
Get some nice big tweezers. Put everything into a lovely wooden box, a tray, or a little basket.
When child would like to play this game they:
- tip all the items out neatly
- put the pegs onto the ice-cube tray
- then use the tweezers to put matching items into the holes of the ice-cube tray.
This is one of those games that's easier to make if you keep your eye out for goodies each time you visit the re-use shop or opportunity shops (or if you are in America I think they are called Charity Stores).
We have another game coming up during the week if we find what we are looking for during our next op-shop visit.
And I'd like to share a system I have worked out to keep little boys busy when we do our reading-aloud sessions.
Watch this space!
Tuesday, June 15, 2010
It's in just about everything we buy, and if you don't put sugar in a lot of the things you cook at home then they just don't taste right!
However - at 5 weeks pregnant, after eating a biscuit I felt very sick. In fact a pregnancy test showed "negative", but I knew I must have been pregnant because I felt sick when I ate sugar!
It was the same with my last pregnancy. So I was off sugar. All forms of sugar. And yeast. Not good for my system. See my last post about what I could eat that didn't have sugar in it.
I have subsequently learned about CARBOHYDRATES that TURN INTO SUGAR after consumption, so that is something for me to do some homework on. :o)
Adding sugar to things is not good for us. And even worse for diabetics.
I am not diabetic. But I suspect that I get gestational diabetes. My blood tests were all good because I didn't eat any sugar.
During those long 9 months when I couldn't eat so many things that I wanted to eat (couldn't have a sandwich, no pickle on the one brand of cracker biscuits I found with no sugar in them, no sauce, no prepared stock or soup, and definitely no sweets, cakes or chocolate!!).
I admit that my attitude was bad for a lot of my pregnancy in relation to my food. I would be positive for a while, eat well, concentrate on those things I could eat, prepare food to nibble on to stop myself feeling so sick, but then I would get hungry, sicker and tired and my attitude would slip.
And now, nearly three months after the birth of our beautiful baby things have returned to "normal" in my system, and I can eat sugar and honey again. I have repented to God for my bad attitude because I can clearly see what a huge blessing it was that I felt sick when I ate sugar. If I hadn't been sick it would have been so much harder to stop eating sugar. But the effect on the baby and my body could have been terrible.
Quite a few people have asked me HOW I managed to stay off sugar. It wasn't in my own strength. I couldn't have done it without the Holy Spirit working within me. I praise His glorious power, and stand amazed that I serve such an awesome God.
When God allows us to walk through the dark valleys He is there.
And when we soar over the mountain tops He is there.
I encourage anyone who is going through a dark valley in their life - give it all to God. If He doesn't want you to be there in that dark valley He will lift you out. And if He has a purpose for you to be there, then rejoice in the dark and hold onto His hand.