throwing this out there…

hey peoples.

i just wanted to throw this out there again — if anyone is interested in writing a guest post for Grow Up!, all you have to do is shoot me an email at growup318 [at] gmail [dot] com and say so. or leave me a comment under this post.

if you’ve guest posted on here before, you welcome to do it again. if you’ve never guest posted on here and feel you’re “not qualified” (whatever that means), you’re also welcome.

of course, you’ll get full credit for your article, a short bio will be included at the end of your post, AND you can even link back to your blog, twitter, facebook, whatever-you-want-if-you-want. It turns out to be a win-win for everyone!  :]

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Question of the day: 2012 was the year…

This week’s QOTD post is going to be a bit different. There are no right or wrong answers. I just want to hear from you and learn a little about what your year contained.

It doesn’t have to be a huge 25-point list or 4 paragraphs of information – it could be just one or two or five things. Whatever – as little or as much as – you want to share is completely fine.

What did you accomplish this year?
What did you learn from?
What were some of the struggles the Lord brought you through?
Is there anything you wish you would’ve done differently?

I’ll go first.
2012 was the year I…

  1. Transferred my church membership to another church closer to home.
  2. Taught myself how to play the guitar.
  3. Lost 20 pounds.
  4. Went on a 2-week vacation to Vancouver, BC, and a 7-day cruise to Alaska.
  5. Went to Florida for work.
  6. Became a “flegan” (a flexible vegan).
  7. Bought the sweetest, most handsome little puppy in the world!
  8. Graduated with my Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management.
  9. Started my Masters Degree in Business Management.
  10. Lost friends I thought I would never lose, but gained new friends I wouldn’t trade for the world.
  11. Got in my first “bad” car accident.
  12. The Lord taught me what it meant to forgive people, esteem others better than myself, and let go of anger and bitterness.
  13. Went to my first Comic Convention ever and about died from happiness.

Mary, blessed among women.

By the time I actually post this it won’t be Christmas Day anymore. In fact, it’s not “Christmas Day” anymore right now… it’s currently 1:30 in the morning.

Christmas morning is one of the most anxiously awaited times of the year – and, like every year, we have my dad’s side of the family over for fellowship on Christmas. I don’t get to see that side of my family very often due to life and all that keeps everyone busy, so I always look forward to seeing the people I love for several uninterrupted hours on Christmas. While I was finishing up some last-minute cleaning and decorating my dad was playing a CD in the basement – I just happened to be near the CD player when a song written from Mary’s perspective titled “You’re Divine” was playing. “When You need me my love will say yes, though my heart knows You’re not really mine – You’re divine!”

I started crying as I listened to the words. Then my imagination went into overdrive. *I wonder what I would’ve done if I had been Mary… I wonder what I would’ve said to the angel had he announced to me that I was pregnant by a seemingly impossible method. I wonder if I would’ve just run away from the life I knew in order to avoid harassment, scorn, and judgemental glares.*  Then I started wondering about Mary herself. I wondered what the first words out of her mouth were when she saw Baby Jesus – “You’re perfect…” or maybe “I’m so unworthy…” or perhaps even “I love You more than life itself…”  Maybe she was completely silent; speechless; in total awe of the glory that was shining round about the humble stable that starry, silent night.  I wondered what kind of lady she was…

God always seems to choose the most unlikely person for the job. No doubt she was probably poor, and she was very young – some say as young as 13 years old, other believe she could have been closer to 17 years of age. The likelihood of her having a good education were probably slim to none. On any normal day you could probably find her helping in the kitchen, teaching her younger siblings to read and write, or fetching water down the road a ways at the village well. Oh, and no doubt she was working on her wedding plans – the big day was coming soon for her and Joseph to be married!

I have no doubt she was of a quiet temperament, meek, more humble that any other girl in the village – her willing spirit and obedient attitude was the pride and joy of her parents – she probably never had to be told to do the same thing twice.

She probably had the smile of an angel and the softest of brown eyes. Perhaps her hair was somewhat curly as it framed her face and fell over her shoulders. I’m sure she was soft-spoken, but when she laughed it was alive and from the heart. I wonder if she told stories to the children in the cool of the day, or if she cared for the animals in the stables nearby.

When it came time for worship, I wonder what her favorite song was. Or what her favorite “Bible story” of old was. I wonder if she asked her father again and again to tell her the stories of Noah and Abraham and Jacob and Moses.

Yet for all my questions, I know this for sure — she loved God, and she was obedient to Him regardless of what it might’ve cost her. She accepted His will for her life, despite the toll it might take on her reputation.

Oh, that women today might be more like Mary. That we might trust Him and love Him like she did.

I hope you all had a beautiful Christmas! May God continue to bless you and yours!

Question of the day: wish list.

During the week of Thanksgiving, the QOTD post asked what you were thankful for.

So since Christmas is tomorrow, I have another no-brainer (hopefully) QOTD post for you.

There are no right or wrong answers… well, technically there could be a “wrong” answer… I guess. Let’s discuss that too…

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I Just Knew.

Christmas is upon us, and while we’re busy preparing for company, cleaning our houses, shopping for presents, attempting to shun the desserts, and running helter-skelter like psychotic chickens trying to get everything done on time, let’s not forget the REAL meaning of Christmas.

 CHRISTmas.

Christ. God with us. Emmanuel. the Perfect Son of God. the Lamb that was slain. our Redeemer. our Hope. the Rock of Ages. the Creator of the ends of the earth. the Sacrifice. the Righteous Judge. the King of kings. the Comforter. our Saviour. and our Friend.

While it’s fun to dream and tell stories of Santa and Rudolf and Frosty — they are merely fairy tales. Reindeer don’t fly. Santa does not really visit every home on Christmas eve to drop off presents. a snowman never really danced through the streets of town.

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Question of the day: government and marriage.

Over the years we’ve seen a decline in the moral and ethical views of the American people – especially when it comes to marriage.

There are several states which have made marriage for same-sex couple legal. A couple of months ago I read an article about how the “gay crowd” is now pushing for the legalization of incestuous relationships — including relationships between a grandmother and her grandson (and their surrogate mother), twin brothers, fathers and daughters, etc.

This is a disturbing age we live in, and it’s getting worse and worse with every day that passes. Even so come quickly, Lord Jesus.

Use Scripture to back your opinions. Please. and thank you.

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Question of the day: the Bride of Christ.

Back in August we had a QOTD post about the Baptist Briders group. This week’s QOTD post is along the same lines, but completely different.

The Baptist Briders believe only those who are saved, baptized, and members of a “NT Baptist Church” are what makes up the Bride of Christ and everyone else is either just part of the “extended family” or completely left out altogether.

Use Scripture to back your opinions. Please. and thank you.

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Question of the day: divorce and remarriage.

So what does the Bible really say…?

The Bible discusses the qualifications required for pastors/deacons in I Timothy 3 and also in Titus 1 – so feel free to study up on that before you answer today’s QOTD.

Use Scripture to back your opinions. Please. and thank you.

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Question of the day: Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is this week! I’m so excited for it because Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year.

This week’s QOTD is a simple one – there are no right or wrong answers.

What are your plans for the Holiday?
What is your favorite dish of the Thanksgiving meal?
What are you thankful for this year?
Have you started your Christmas Shopping yet?
Do you plan to participate in the chaos that is known as “Black Friday”…?

I hope you all have a fantastic week and a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with friends and family!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Challenge 23: Romans 8 Essay Report.

What does Romans 8 mean to a new believer?

Many people, prior to salvation, believe that they must earn or work their way to Heaven. However, the Bible says: “For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us” (Romans 8:3-4a).

The law couldn’t save us; our works couldn’t save us; so God sent His only begotten Son to live a sinless life and die upon a cross in our place. Because of His sacrifice, we can be saved by trusting in Christ as our personal Savior. When we accept Christ as our Savior, the justice of our Holy God is satisfied and “the righteousness of the law… [is] fulfilled in us” (8:4a). We see later in the chapter that God “spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all” (8:32). Christ died and suffered separation from His Father that we might never have to spend eternity in Hell.

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