Consider the Lilies..: 2017   

Dec 29, 2017

Favorite stuff this week..

So, funny story.  We decided to do a gift exchange in my little online disciple group.  On of the girls sent me The Christian Planner.  
But other than church and the doctor's office, I don't really do anything or need to remember anything that would actually require a planner.  So I decided to give it to a friend.  Well, the next day when I got up and I looked out the window I saw Gunner laying down in the yard eating the planner.
And just the other day he ate one of my Charles Spurgeon books..  
He's been pretty naughty this week.
My goal for 2018 is the same as it has been for the last 2 years- read more.
I'm finished with school now and I find myself seriously missing all the work and I know there is LOTS more to learn, so I have a bunch of reading plans going at the same time.
It's sort of difficult to keep them all organized so I decided that I really could use a planner.  
And after looking at several, I settled on..  Yep,  The Christian planner.
Funny huh?
There are things that I like and things I don't like about this planner.
I like how it has the whole month laid out with spaces big enough to write everything in.
And I like how each day is broken down into thirds because I spread out my reading plan and study plans throughout the day (so I actually clean my house instead of just reading all day).
 Ok, now this part I both like and dislike..
It gives you a page every week for sermon notes and study notes, which I think is a good idea but not all that practical for me.  I take at least 3 pages of notes every Sunday and there is no way I could fit one day's worth of study notes on that page, let alone an entire week.
But maybe I can use that space for verse memorizing or something..

But this is what I really don't like.  So much that I'll probably end up tearing this page out.
The 'Vision Board'.
Just the words 'Vision Board' makes me think of The Secret which is something I was very into when I was a satanist, and it's basically the same concept as the charismatic church's 'name it and claim it' mentality (which is not at ALL biblical).
I'm not thrilled about the place where you write down your favorite 'church images' but I might be misunderstanding that part since all I can think of when I think about church images are idols.
But what bothers me the most is the spot where it says "what are your gifts".
I'm pretty sure I'm just jaded by my opinion of any and all things even remotely related to the charismatic church, and add to that the fact that I am a cessationist, I'm probably overreacting, but still it bothers me.  
A lot.
Yeah..  I'm gonna tear that page out.  :)
Yes, I know I'm uptight.  I'm good with it..

Moving on.  
I'm still working on studying Psalm 119 and probably will be for at least a year.  I've been on it for over a month and I'm only on verse 7 so I'm thinking maybe longer than a year :)
But I'm learning sooo much!  
I'm using 3 different study bibles, a commentary by Charles Bridges that my pastor recommended, and these:
I blogged about this one the other day.  It was a gift from my friend Julie.  Oh my gosh, it's so good!
 I'm using my Journable too.
I really like these Journables..
I sort of thought the novelty would wear off and I wouldn't want to use them every day but so far that hasn't happened.

Next.  Bookmarks.  
It's a weird favorite thing to have isn't it?
I got 3 of these for free the last time I ordered a Moleskine from Missional Wear.
I liked them so much that I ordered more.

A while ago I finally got up enough nerve to go into the Asian Market.
I gotta say, I was super disappointed.  I don't know what I was expecting exactly, but it was kind of gross.
It smelled horrible.  I mean, really horrible.  
We walked up and down every aisle and looked at everything, even put a few things in the cart.
Their produce is pretty good but everything else we bought was just, ew..
Except this.
These are really yummy!
For some weird reason that I can't explain (but am super stoked about) I've had no appetite for anything sweet.  Sky made my favorite cookies the other day and I've only eaten one.  Even better, I've had no appetite for bread, or crackers either..  Weird huh?
Anyway, these little orange-ginger candies aren't really sweet and they have a bite to them.  Lots of ginger..
I like them so much that I might even suck it up and go back to the Asian Market.
Ok, honestly I probably won't.  
But Clay will.
Because he's AwesomeMan.

This body butter.
I love body butter.  All different kinds.
But I really really love this body butter.
It smells SO GOOD.  You have no idea.
You gotta try it.
They have it at Walgreens.
That is all.

Happy Friday!

Dec 27, 2017

Present Day!

Present Day was pretty good this year.  Sky baked a bunch of cookies, we made drinking chocolate and watched movies all day.  
I got some good stuff too :)

Gunner keeps stealing my glasses and tv remotes off of my end table so Clay got me a box to put everything in.  He also made the lamp..
Isn't it adorable?
Oh, I liked Gunner's bowl holder so much that he made one for Keisel too

Sky gave me a magnet spice thing.  I can't really call it a spice rack, but I don't know what it's actually called, so magnet spice thing is what I'm going with.
She gave me a set of crochet hooks too but I forgot to take a picture.

Clay got me tickets for the g3 conference. Oh my gosh I am so excited!  Steve Lawson will be speaking there.
Steve Lawson!! 
The conference is on discipleship which is hugely important to me (have I said all of this before?).
So I wasn't expecting anything else from Clay, but he got me luggage too!
It's the perfect size to fit everything I need to take with me and still carry it on the plane.

This g3 conference will be giving out more free books than any conference before it, so he got me a matching backpack to bring all my books home in.
For reals..  Best husband EVER!

Dec 18, 2017


I saw a blanket ladder made out of pallets on Pinterest and I asked Sky to bring a pallet home from work so Clay could make one.
Because making stuff is just one of the bazillion things Clay is good at.
And let me tell you, pulling nails out of pallets sucks!

But Sky brought home several pallets so I got back on Pinterest and found other stuff for Clay to make.
Like a dog bed!
Isn't it adorable?
Gunner loves it!

So, as I was looking at dog beds made out of pallets on Pinterest I saw a dog bowl holder made out of a crate, and since I happened to have a crate in the closet Clay made one of them too..

There is a bunch of other pallet stuff that I think I want Clay to build but I'm probably just on this weird 'make stuff out of pallets' kick, so I think I'll chill for now.

Dec 16, 2017

R. C. Sproul

“The young R.C. Sproul thought the Christian movement was too shallow theologically. People were not thinking deeply enough about the Bible, he felt, so somehow they needed to go to seminary.”

Dec 14, 2017


I'm sick.  Let me tell you, being sick when you have a super mutant autoimmune disease is pretty freaken' awesome.  On the rare occasion that you do get sick, you're only sick for about a day and you barely notice that you're sick.
But being sick when you have a super mutant autoimmune disease and taking monthly infusions of biologics means that when you get sick, you get sick for real.
Oh my gosh people, you are all my heroes!  For reals!  If this is how you feel every time you get sick, I don't know how you go on with your day.
Ugh, this is horrible!
Plus I spilled steaming hot water from the humidifier down my shirt and burned myself.
Blisters and everything.
AwesomeMan got me a bunch of stuff to make me feel better as well as a COLD air humidifier that changes colors.  

Based on my buying history - three books by John Owen, a Charles Spurgeon study bible, Puritan Theology, and a book about Martin Luther - Amazon recommends that I purchase a few books by Joyce Meyer.
I have absolutely no idea how anyone could come to that conclusion.

Dr R.C. Sproul died today. 
I'm sad and happy at the same time.
I've learned a ton from him in the last few years.

It's a lame blog post but I'm going back to bed..

Dec 12, 2017


 “We curate our lives around this perceived sense of perfection because we get rewarded in these short-term signals – Hearts and Likes and Thumbs-Up. We conflate that with value and we conflate that with truth, and instead what it really is is fake brittle popularity that’s short-term, and leaves you even more vacant and empty.”
-Chamath Palihapitiya

Dec 11, 2017

Stuff I'm thinking about..

I think that Jay-Z is one of the most unattractive men I have ever seen. 

Sky bought the dogs an ugly toy. 
They love it. 
I HATE possums. 

I’m sad about R. C. Sproul. 

I can’t find a healthy dog food that Gunner likes. 

I found a way to keep people from approaching me during the ‘turn and greet someone around you’ part of church. 
I'm pretty proud of myself.

Putting wax on parsnips is dumb. 

After 46 weeks my church has finished learning the Book of John. I am sort of bummed but looking forward to whatever is next. 
I asked our pastor what was next and he said “I’m not sure, I was thinking of doing something topical”. 
I’m pretty sure he’s joking.
At least I hope he is. 

If engineers today can come up with cars that drive themselves and drones to deliver mail, I don’t know why no one has come up with a way to prevent rocks from chipping windshields. 

Fresh Thyme Market has the prettiest onions. 
I don’t even want to eat them. I just want to buy a bunch of them because they look so perfect. 

The older Clay gets the more he reminds me of his father. 
I’m totally OK with that. 

After putting three of my favorite pans in the dishwasher for about a year now, I noticed that the bottom of them say “hand wash only”. 
These pans hang on my wall with the bottoms facing outward.

I’m not sure when female news people started dressing like they are going out clubbing instead of reporting the news, 
but I don’t like it. 

Gunner ate one of my brown pens. 

I’ve said it a dozen times and I’m going to say it again, this is the best devotional ever written. 
Seriously, if you don’t have it, buy it.
(just make sure it is the 'collection of Puritan Prayers' and not the other one)
 If you don’t want to buy it, I will buy it for you. 
No joke.

I was listening to Spurgeon today..
“God has myriads of the elect out there, we must go and search for them.”- Charles Spurgeon

Dec 6, 2017

And he went on his way..

I posted on my other blog.
You can read it HERE

It's a Bible post so you don't have to read it.  
I won't take it personally..

Dec 2, 2017

Early again..

I'm starting to think that blogging at 4:30 in the morning is gonna be a thing for me.
My hips were hurting too much to sleep so I got up and made coffee.
Ok, so that's all of the downer stuff..

I'm going to G3 in January!!
It's in Atlanta and I'm going without Clay.

Yep, I'm going to get on a plane and go to a 3 day conference full of hundreds of people without Clay.  CRAZY!
A friend of mine who lives in Florida is going too so we got flights that land within 30 minutes of each other and we are going to share a hotel room.  
I'm super excited.  Some of the speakers are responsible for making me aware of the true gospel; Todd Friel's show Wretched lead me to teachers like Sproul, through whom I learned about the Reformation, which naturally led me to the 'Johns'- Calvin, Owen, and Bunyan and of course Charles Spurgeon.
I learned about John MacArthur through Todd Friel too, who led me to Justin Peters and Paul Washer who were detrimental to my leaving the hyper-charismatic church and joining a true church that does nothing but preach the Bible.
Justin Peters will be speaking there, Voddie Baucham and a bunch of others, but best of all,
Steve Lawson!  

Yeah, Steve Lawson!!
He is at the top of my top 5 best (living) Bible teachers.
Also, they will giving away more free books at this G3 Conference than any other before it!
For reals, FREE books!  
*happy sigh*

OK, second cool thing..
I belong to a little online chatroom (just me and 3 other women) where we talk about discipleship, our kids, pretty much everything..  We decided to do a gift exchange this year.  Julie got my name (she's the one going to the conference) and sent me these-
The whole set of The Treasury of David by Charles Spurgeon!
She remembered that Clay and I are studying Psalm 119 and that I'm a huge Spurgeon nerd (I may have a little bit of hero worship for the guy).
Oh my gosh, best gift ever!

I think I'm gonna take a nap now..

Nov 29, 2017


I've been awake since three.  Well, I got up at three, I was awake before that.  I haven't been sleeping well lately, not even with the Ambien.
So here I am folding socks and watching Mystic Pizza at 4 in the morning.

I had an infusion yesterday and another shot.  They keep giving me shots for anything they can think of as if I'm going to get sick now that I'm on the Remicade but the tests they do every month shows that my immune system is still as super-hyper-active as ever.
I haven't had any problems with my digestive system in weeks but the pain from the Ankylosing Spondylitis hasn't eased up at all (I can finally spell it right!) but yesterday was my first full dose of the biologic and things should get better soon.  My case manager gave me some stretches to do until then and I walk with Gunner even if it hurts.
The B12 shots work for about 3 weeks and I can definitely tell when it's wearing off.  Like now.  I still do everything I need to get done during the day though, I just do it slower.  :)
Clay is a huge help.  I dunno what I'd do without him.
Seizures are one side effect of auto-immune diseases.
My epilepsy is not the result of an injury, so that's one mystery solved.
Have I blogged that already?

He will be officially laid off from Angola in the middle of December.  
My main concern is insurance, but he always manages to take care of things so I'm still not worried yet.  Plus he still has a few options he is working on.

I got a new book!
A friend sent it to me.  I've only read the first 4 pages but I've already learned something so that's pretty cool :)

Well, other than the book, this whole post sounds like a major downer.
Things don't suck though, I promise.
Life it good!

Nov 27, 2017

Arguing internally..

305 people were killed while worshipping inside a mosque in Egypt.  27 of them were children.  People, Christians I know personally, are calling it a "good start".

The the word 'constrained' in the bible means so much more than I thought it did.

 Why is it weird to call someone you've met online a friend?
I mean, you could know someone face-to-face for years and still be in the dark about who they really are. 
*that was the pot calling the kettle black right there*

Once you get close to a real homeless camp and see people living there with your own eyes, it's hard to be comfortable in a warm house and a warm bed without feeling guilty and wanting to do more.
Could this be what compassion is supposed to feel like?
It sucks.

Donald Trump's obnoxious tweets are an embarrassment.  
I miss the good old days when the office of the POTUS still cared about dignity.

This is on Amazon Prime!
It's full of fantastic teachers: Sproul, Thomas, Trueman, Kolb, and Lawson (super fantastic)! 
So many churches tell their people that Martin Luther nailed his 95 thesis to the door, but they don't tell them why, what his true intentions were or what he actually wrote. 
Why is that?

Cauliflower is cheaper, easier to prepare, healthier, and tastes better in casseroles than potatoes or pasta.
For reals- boil it or steam it in some broth for about 5 minutes, season it, add some cream cheese and cheddar and pop it in the oven.
Easy peasy.

We just found out that Canada wants Clay to move there and cut his salary by 40%.
So he has to find a better transfer in about a week or he won't be working for Halliburton anymore.

I saw this when I walked into church yesterday and didn't even get mad like I usually do..
Not gonna say that I'm ok with it or that I support it, but if this is the only thing about my church that bothers me, it's not that big of a deal.

Wait, there is one other thing that sorta bugs me.
Next week the men's group will be starting 'The Institutes of the Christian Religion by John Calvin'.  They will be studying the theology book of all theology books and they will be learning it from a brilliant teacher.  
The women's group will be starting a new study too.  
It's called "Jesus is my friend".
I really shouldn't be annoyed though.  It's not like my church is intentionally keeping the women from learning anything.  It's just that most Christian women don't want to read books that are 1000 pages long, written by a guy who's been dead for over 450 years.  They don't want to study marrow controversies, reformations, confessions, puritan theology, covenant theology and hermeneutics.  

They want friendships, support, community and all that stuff.  It's not really what I want personally but most women do.  
* I have those things, but in an unconventional sort of way
It's how most women are wired, and that's not a bad thing. 
But a couple of us are wired differently.
I don't want to teach, or preach, or be a pastor or anything,  I'm in 100% agreement with what the bible says about women in ministry.  But there's nothing that says we can't learn everything that the men do, or even that we shouldn't want to.  It's just that most women don't want to, or maybe their needs and interests are just in other areas?  But now that I think about it, I know a lot of men who don't want to learn that stuff either.
So I study whatever book Clay's group is studying and then he teaches me everything he learned from the teacher.
I should stop being angry about it and be grateful that I do want to learn it, that I have the tools available to me to learn it, a church that does teach it, and a husband who wants to learn it and teach it to me.

Plus there is a lot of stuff that Christian women are interested in that I'm not. They shouldn't be denied that because of what I want and it's pretty selfish of me to want things to change when the church is providing what all of the other women DO want and need.
I'm glad we worked all that out.

Speaking of Clay..
Isn't he just the best guy ever?

P.S. I'm super bummed about David Platt.

Nov 24, 2017


I got rid of Facebook altogether a few days ago.  Even after unfriending everyone but the people in my reformed theology group there was still posts calling people libtards and stuff. 

We played boardgames for most of the day yesterday.
Clay won almost every game because he's perfect and pretty much everything he does.
It looks like he will be off the Halliburton books around the middle of next month. Hopefully something will come up soon.

Dinner was good.  Sky brought home a 16 pound turkey from work and there was no way our little family of 3 could eat it all so when we made all the sides yesterday we made sure to make way more than we usually would, then we made up a bunch of to-go boxes and took them to the homeless camp.  We handed out all the tarps, scarves, hats, and socks that we had plus a few bibles and soap.  We took a bunch of coats too.  
But there are more people there and at the other camp who need help so if you have anything...
I know I sound like a broken record, but we have so much compared to families who live in shelters made of tarps and cardboard.  Most suburban families have closets so full of sheets and blankets that they have to shove everything just to close the closet door.  
We have extra while they have nothing.  
We aren't asking for money or even asking anyone to go with us, we're just asking for extra stuff that y'all probably don't use anyway or could do without, you don't even have to bring it to us, we'll pick it up.  And if you don't have anything, you probably know someone who does (who knows somebody, and so on).   

Nov 23, 2017

Good morning..

Happy Thanksgiving.

I'm up earlier than I wanted to be this morning but Gunner felt that he needed to warn us of the impending opossum invasion.
I only saw one baby opossum on the fence but I'm sure it was just a scout and there was an army of them just waiting for the right moment to attack.
At least I'm sure that Gunner thought so.

So we did most of the Thanksgiving prep yesterday.
(pie bird, don't make a fruit pie without it!)
The turkey is brining, the pies are done and the stuffing and sweet potato casserole is ready to go in the oven.  I don't do the marshmallow and canned sweet potatoes thing because that's just gross, why does anyone eat canned potatoes anyway?  Bleh..
This year I made the streusel topping with gingersnaps.  It's going to be bomb-diggity!
So all I have to do today is make the green bean casserole; don't use canned stuff for this either, for reals make it from scratch with fresh beans, and the cream corn *cream corn, not creamed corn. Huge difference* so yummy!.

We put the turkey in the brine and the set it on the deck to stay cold but when I looked out the window I saw Gunner standing on the table just about to knock the lid off so Clay went out and secured it.  :)

 My pastor wrote the introduction for this London Confession book.  
He explains why confessions are so important, far better than I could.  
It wasn't until I left my ex-church that I even knew what a confession was and what they were for.
So if you have never read it or if you are like I was and have no idea what it really is and why it's so important let me know.  I'm happy to get one for you.  I'll even ship it to you at no cost.

Sky sent me a picture from work yesterday to prove to me that she was actually following safety procedures for once..
She is running the paint line (as well as running the welding in her department) now so she has been powder coating stuff for the last two days..
She really is the coolest kid on the planet..

Nov 20, 2017


I shaved Clay's mohawk.  
Now he looks even more intimidating.
Go figure..

I ask myself this at least twice a day.
Have you?

My living room looks like a doggy-daycare.
(this was just 30 seconds after I had picked everything up)

I have a LOT of gray hair.
I've given up trying to cover it.

I love lox and bagels.
But dragonfruit is nasty. For real, who eats this stuff?

Saying "share the gospel, use words if necessary" is like saying "feed the hungry, use food if necessary".
You gotta open your mouth and say something, and if you can't bring yourself to do that, then just hand them a tract, and if you can't bring yourself to do that, then just leave it somewhere.  
If you live in Omaha I'll give 'em to ya for free if you promise to share them.  
I'll even give you Bibles.
Not even joking..

I don't know what I did to deserve it;
but I'm getting a serious stink-eye from Gunner

We found a HUGE homeless camp today.  Didn't take any pictures but I will when we take them stuff tomorrow.  We have a dozen tarps, some winter clothes and food to take to the camp but they really need blankets. They live out there in makeshift tents made of tarps and cardboard and it's already freezing at night, so if anyone in Omaha is looking for a reason to clean out their linen closets  please let me know..  
We will pick them up and take them to the camp.
Anything helps!

Nov 18, 2017


They want to transfer Clay to Canada but I don’t think he’s going to agree. 
They want him to do the same job, but they want to pay him half his salary to do it.  From what I gather, they don’t think he will either.  
The people in Colorado still want him so unless he finds something else soon I assume he’ll be going there.  He doesn't seem too concerned about it so I won't be either.
It will mess things up at home a little and some adjustments will have to be made but it’s doable.

Now, Ligonier.
There are a few people who read my blog who have said that they would like to take a some Bible courses but either can't afford it or just can't fit it into their schedules because of work and/or family and stuff like that.  
So, I wanted to tell you about Ligonier Connect.  
Ligonier is an accredited and renown seminary founded by R.C Sproul.  They have amazing teachers  like Sinclair Ferguson, Stephen Nichols, and Steve Lawson (who is number 1 on my top 3 list of best Bible teachers alive today). 
If I ever decide to go back to school for the bomb diggity of theology degrees, this is definitely the school I would go to.  
Anyway..  Ligonier Connect.  
You can take a bunch of courses and learn a bunch of stuff from a bunch of fantastic teachers for $9.00 a month.

I'm not telling you about this because I get any credit or money or free courses or anything.  I'm telling you because it's an opportunity (a great opportunity) to dig deeper into scripture and learn some things you might not have had the opportunity to learn at your church.
Stuff like the WCF and why it's so important, the Reformation and what really happened (lots of churches that tell you that Martin Luther nailed something to a door but they don't really tell you why or even what it said).  There are other courses too; particular books of the Bible, Apologetics, Prayer, The Sermon on the Mount, Holiness of God, Biblical Interpretation, just LOTS of stuff..
It's not time consuming or particularly difficult either.  Each course has about 8 to 12 lessons, they are all on video (about 25 to 30 minutes long) there isn't a lot of reading unless you want to read a lot, optional discussion questions, and a refresher quiz at the end of each lesson.

Each course is accredited so if you wanted to, you could use them towards a degree (or not, whateves).
I do a lesson every day.  Right now I'm doing The Whole Christ by Sinclair Ferguson because it's what Clay's men's group is studying at church Tuesday mornings.  It's about the Marrow Controversy.  I've done 2 lessons in the series so far.  It's so good!
So..  CLICK HERE to check it out.
You won't be sorry :)

Nov 16, 2017

Favorite things..

 My favorite picture this week.  
I had just read an article from a 'dog expert' saying that dogs don't like to be hugged.  As I was telling Sky about it, Gunner crawled into her lap so she could hug him.  I think I should send this picture to the woman who wrote the article.
By the way, he's a year old now!

My favorite Moleskine journal.  I love these.  This is my third one.  Gunner chewed on my first one (but I used it anyway) but so far this one is my favorite.  I use them for bible study, church notes, and a prayer journal.
I get them from Missional Wear. Go see if there is anything you like, especially if you have a weird obsession with journals and reformed authors ;)

This devotional. It is the best I have ever read and I plan on reading it again when I'm finished, and then again. And again..  And so on..
There are three devotionals I would recommend; two are by Spurgeon and then this one.  The Valley of Vison is a book of Puritan prayers and meditations- not the weird "ooomm shallaboom" chanting while you clear your mind meditations (that's bad) but the- sit quietly and contemplate the words meditations.
I don't like other devotional books because they are usually centered on the reader; building up their self-esteem, reminding them of how great they are (how special, how important, blah blah blah).  Even devotionals with a bible verse in each daily entry are about how the verse applies to you- how to defeat the Goliath in your life, tearing down your Jericho (that's all wrong by the way) and don't even get me started on Jesus Calling!
But this book is different.  
Trust me!
I got the leather-bound copy from my church bookstore but you can get it on Amazon.  You can get it in paperback too.
For reals..  Get this book!  I promise you won't regret it.

Brown pens.  
I dunno, just been liking brown pens lately.
They go with my journals I guess?

A few months ago I posted that I really liked SenGence hand lotion.  Well I got a sample of 417 in the mail and I like it even better, so I ordered more on Amazon.  It's even a few dollars cheaper :)

This is my second favorite picture this week.  Steve Lawson on the back of a motorcycle on his way to preach at a church in Indonesia.
If you don't know who Steve Lawson is, you really should find out.  He's an amazing teacher.

My new study bible.
Ok, this isn't really a picture of my study bible because it's in the other room and I don't wanna go get it but it looks exactly like mine.
The Charles Spurgeon Study Bible.
Alistair Begg (another good teacher) put it together with Spurgeon's bible study and sermon notes.  I've thumbed through it but I haven't used it to study yet, I'm waiting for Clay to get home so we can add it to our daily bible-study. I learn so much more when Clay is home.
The cover matches the cover of my Lost Sermons of Charles Spurgeon (vol. 1) which is super cool!
Volume 2 is out now.  
And Present Day is coming up.

I guess that's it..

Oh, I got a text from Clay at 2:20 this morning, he was in Paris and said he would be getting on the plane in 20 minutes.  I think he's landing in Minneapolis?
Anyway, he'll be home today..