Thursday, July 28, 2011

Stay as Sweet as You Are, You're Divine Dear

Stay as sweet as you are....sweet as you're divine dear...Stay as grand as you are....

This is our oldest daughter, Lea. She is 28 and still looks like such a young gal, love this shot of her on the mower this week taking the garbage down the long driveway for the independent garbage man, no city pick-up here! : ) Yes, she is enjoying it here in the country, she loves the wildlife as we are constantly fascinated by it. I get tickled, one minute she looks like our little girl, the next minute she's in her skirt with her rolling briefcase going to the office in Oldtown to work with Hubs, the next minute she's in the kitchen singing and creating supper for us.

Love that song by Nat King Cole. "Stay as Sweet as You Are". That song just cheers me up when I have the blahs. : )

Want to hear a clip? Here you go. It's number 7 on the list.

We went to a wedding reception last week and I had the pleasure of sitting with an older lady who lives in Dallas and had seen Greer Garson more than once when Greer Garson was living, once in an elevator of a department store. She said Greer Garson was so lovely, just as lovely and every bit of the lady as she was in the movies... She said Ms. Garson was also very nice and chatted sweetly with her there in the elevator years ago. Do you know just hearing this made me want to cry and brought tears to my eyes? It was just so refreshing for me to hear and also a heart clincher of sorts... I think in part it was the fact that Greer Garson bore a strong resemblance to my daughter's piano teacher in Smalltown when she was in her younger years. Yes, I think that is what got to me. It had an emotional tie to Mrs. B. I soooo want things to be as they were...And to top it off...

Lately I've been a bit troubled about the direction homeschooling in our area has been going in, it started around ten years ago and it seems to be going blub-blub-blub. I don't understand how people seem to be so accepting of things and so quick to throw out what is right and good. Now as far as academics, homeschooling is doing great, one of our fellow homeschoolers in the group, a young man was accepted into medical school just last week. But morally? But just the simple relationship to Christ? A sweet and holy life pleasing to God? I am seeing academia on the throne in that affluent suburbia of an area. The life preserver of Jesus is floating and ebbing away and not many in our area seem to care, many seem to almost be blowing Him away, some seem to really believe they are self sufficient I think. Beware.

That evening of the reception I was surrounded by it all. Although it was a very sweet reception in celebration of a godly couple, I was troubled in what I was hearing and seeing around me. Don't mind me though, I'm just very alert to it all these days for various reasons which I will write about later, Ive almost been made to feel as an old horse put out to pasture. I've homeschooled for going on 22 years and yes, it's very troubling to me.

But on the bright side, the grandmother and I just had such a sweet chat about the old 40s movies and how she would have to cover her ears (and eyes too I suggested) if she were to see the modern movies with the exception of Winnie the Pooh. : )

I will celebrate sweetness on my blog today. I will meditate on things that are lovely and of good report because that is what the Lord would want me to do.

One of the sweetest things in our lives besides our family is our doglets...

This is Muffie. He is our sweetie. Do you remember Marianna rescued him from an intersection? He is a tiny little guy, and one look at his sweet little face is all you need. : )

We have a profile shot of him too! Isn't it cute? It reminds me of a school picture...Yes, I know I'm sounding nutty now.

And of course we have a tired little Muffie resting, it's been said by a soldier friend that he looks like a forlorned dustmop when he gets like this. ; )

Have a sweet evening everyone! I hope to be posting more sweet and favorite things soon!


Mary said...

Hope the wildlife does not include snakes!! Oh, and yes, about the homeschooling, one of the things that troubled us about it (although we are not against it) is that it soon seemed to become a religion of its own with many, and they were evangelistic about it, and forgot about Christ. I see this with health food, too, and stuff like that. How quickly we are distracted.

Amelia said...

Hello Mary, No not too many snakes but yes there are some. We try not to get too terribly excited by them though.

On homeschooling? When we've had the privilege to share at our workshop in the past I would say: "Don't follow the herd, follow the Word!" The Lord had given me that little phrase several years ago.

I can understand why many are evangelical about homeschooling because when it is done for the glory of the Lord with His excellence it is such a blessing. But I know what you mean on losing the heart of things.

The problem with the decline in our immediate area, is that it is an affluent area with many highly educated people, many who now homeschool primarily for the sake of academia. Many who at one time homeschooled for godly reasons seem to have lost the heart of it all because of influences and the companionship of fools. It is to the point now in our area that many have formed what looks to be charter schools, outclassing and still wanting to call it "homeschooling". It is so very sad.

Is it any wonder we have to drive over an hour for a like-minded church? Why just today our two oldest daughters are having to drive an hour and a half away to meet for coffee with two precious young ladies.

Mary said...

Wow, that's interesting. It's been a long time since I have lived in your neck of the woods. Where you are, people can do stuff like that; around here, "group homeschool" is illegal (I don't know in what particular states, I think N.D.) in many states, and only a parent can legally homeschool their child.

Too many homeschoolers I ran into in my experience were more interested in bashing the public schools and condemning other Christians for not homeschooling, than for saying anything positive about homeschooling itself. I rarely ever heard anything positive about it, and wondered why they were even doing it; all they did was put people on the defensive and turn them against homeschooling. You win more people with honey than vinegar, as they say.

I know what you mean about finding a good church. It gets more and more difficult. It also gets more and more difficult to attract people to churches where the Bible is preached and taught (such as ours), because people want programs and large mega-churches (our church is small, but personal, with good expository Bible preaching, few programs). Wish the Bible churches and the people who want the Bible preached could get together!!

Roxanne said...

Anyway, it made me think: I don't want to just be negative when I try to encourage people to join a Bible church (not just bash other churches), and stuff like that. I want to be more positive and make people think rather than be defensive.

Lea said...

Oh, Momio, I'm honored to be "featured" in your blog! That is so sweet of you and touching to me... :)

It's true, taking out the garbage these days is quite different than it used to be! But it's kind of a nice morning outdoor chore in a way too... :)

I look young because I've inherited good genes... ;D

Those pics of Muffie are SOOO cute!!!

Love you!

Amanda said...

Amelia you have a beautiful way with words.
btw, I listened to the song and it made me want to slow dance with my husband. {who is now in bed} I don't think he would appreciate me waking him up to slow dance to Nat King Cole. Do you think?
I agree with Lea in that she has inherited good genes:)

I hear you loud and clear about the direction of homeschooling. Unfortunately it's not only in your area, it's here too.

We must be steafast and keep our heads above water and remember WHO we are serving and who we are leading out little children to.

If only we had more mentors like you...

Love you dear friend;-)

Amanda said...

dear mary, I hear what you are saying about church. Folks here are attracted to the "mega" church too. Looking at it like big is better and it's so very sad. I wonder where God is amongst this?
I wonder what He thinks about activities and busyness in his house?

Amelia said...

Hi Mary,

I would love to be able to go to an old fashioned church something like your church. Many times committees and programs are nothing but busyness where the heart of things are usually overlooked. I've talked to too many pastor's children now grown who tell me they thought their dad's church was a business.

These mega churches are heartbreaking. We have received more than one postcard from a couple of different churches when we lived in the suburbs advertising their topics and it was on sex in the bedroom! I didn't even want my girls to see the cards. I emailed one of the churches to politely complain and received a very rude reply from them. These are the "cool" churches.

We have to drive a long way to go to an old fashioned church where our values are supported and even the one I'm describing is going to have slight doctrinal differences that we have been able to overlook. Some are driving even further than we are...Up to 3 hours away when they are able.

Unfortunately we have found the ones who are usually attacked are the people trying to lead a godly life, a holy life loving the sweet things of Jesus.

Blessed are the pure in heart for they shall see God.

In these last days may we seek His face and be willing to stand alone for Jesus.

Amelia said...

Thank you so much Amanda! You are so right, we must keep our eyes on Jesus and stay afloat encouraging one another and lifting each other up. It's so easy to become discouraged now days.

My goodness, so you have the classes and such going on there too? We have seen such bad fruits from them. Whatever happened to the kitchen table and sweet picnics? When Lea graduated homeschool she planned a senior outing with the seniors going out to eat at a nice Italian restaurant and then to a Christian playhouse for a play. The seniors wore Sunday clothes and chaperones were present. Now? They have secular dances with dating! What happened to courtship and saving that first kiss? The chaperones dance too! Modesty is not enforced. Every year it goes down and down and down...My husband wrote a letter to the organization about the dances and what they promote etc. and they never wrote him back.

As I know you agree, we must teach our children and youth to stand alone, we mothers and fathers must stand alone too. Too many are going with the herd and not the Heart of Jesus. The manner that some of the women behave in with all of their busyness and outclassing reminds of a social or academic club. I'm not talking about all homeschoolers, there are still godly sweet ones, but certain support groups and various moms definitely have that worldly social competitive spirit to them. The Lord has been so good to us to cross paths with some wonderful godly families.

Thank you so much for your encouragement Amanda, I cannot tell you how timely and on target it is. Be encouraged!

Love you! xxxooo ~Amelia

Amelia said...

Awww...Glad you enjoyed the blog! I thought those pics of you on the mower were priceless! Muffie, he is such a cutie pie. I wish everyone could see him in person, all nine plus pounds of him. : )

Love, ~Momio

Mary said...

I don't like the cool churches. I did when I was younger, but now I don't. No substance in them. Very little Bible.

We went to a mega-church once in the midwest and I never saw anything like it. The pastor was not dynamic, but a good CEO, however, he told us when he was speaking to students at the Christian college my husband was attending at the time, that his church board wanted him to grow the church beyond its present 4,000 members or he'd be canned! Guess he couldn't comply, because he's gone now.

Anyway, it was Wednesday night but they were crowning Stars (an A/G program) in the sanctuary, so everybody met downstairs and had a discussion, I don't remember about what.

There were vending machings, an information booth, parking attendants and crossing guards, and our then teen-aged sons went to a youth class and won a Star Wars video for knowing all the Bible answers on a quiz.

We came out thinking, Wow, felt like we were at WalMart or something.

We have a small Bible church, but cannot attract people to come. Everybody wants these exciting mega-churches. Nothing you can do. They truly are businesses.

When we lived in E. Texas, a well-known Christian radio personality came into town with several million dollars in support and they raised up a mega-church overnight. People empty from the smaller churches into these bigger ones. They are like religious franchises. Churches like ours cannot compete. Bible teaching and preaching, good visitation, concerned people, this is not enough.

People also like anonymity as well as excitement. Nobody will know if you are co-habiting or have been unscripturally divorced many times or if your kids are on drugs, or whatever. People want privacy. You can always call somebody on a telephone prayer chain for prayer.

It is so impersonal.

Mary said...

People want programs, but nobody wants to work in them, but the mega-churches can afford to hire people to run them. Little churches cannot compete, any more than small businesses can compete with WalMart. Well, my husband believes we are in "the great falling away," and this is all part of it. We need to hold on the the Word of God.

Amelia said...


If it will make you feel any better we do not want programs. : )

If everyone would behave as real Christians should, witnessing on their own, showing hospitality, etc. the church would be the Church. I think that is why family integrated churches and homechurches are becoming so popular. Many do not want their families fragmented by a church or programs.

My husband has often said, if he was a pastor he would do church as the Lord would have, a simple no compromise gospel, simple music is fine with a single guitar, acapella is fine too and the ones who stay and want truth, stay. If people are looking for programs you may not want those anyhow.

Just give us the Truth. And yes, your husband is right, it is the great falling away. Just recently we heard of a local pastor who ran off with a woman he met on a missions trip. Everywhere we look people are backsliding in major ways. I don't know what we will see next.

Yes, I too think the mega churches are attractive with the lukewarm because they can live any which way they want. That is terrible the small churches emptied into the mega church in your area, I can just hear the dodies saying how exciting the new church is. (shaking head)

It is a very sick time we are in. The walmart carnival atmosphere sounds typical, they don't have the annointing any longer so they replace it all with entertainment.

We must walk the walk and keep our plumb line straight no matter what.

Be encouraged!

Amelia said...

Mary, On the music, not that a choir, piano or praise team is wrong, but if the Lord didn't send folks in that area that would be fine too.

Mary said...

Fellowship has dwindled today because people are so busy.

Mary said...

I prefer old hymns right now, but used to really like the contemporary. There is a time for everything when it comes to that, and no, I'm not against choirs or praise teams, either.

I think mega-churches are growing all over the place, not just here. They really appeal to people. People complain about them a lot, how they're impersonal, how the pastors are CEO's and whatever, but they keep going.

Anyway, we had a wonderful service today. There are not many of us, but the Word is preached (verse by verse) and we have lovely concerned caring people. I love our church.

Amanda said...

"If everyone would behave as real Christians should, witnessing on their own, showing hospitality, etc. the church would be the Church."


This is exactly the way I feel. We came out of the organized church 4 years ago. We are not currently involved with anything. We attempted home church for a while and eventually it fell apart too. I so long to be a part of a fellowship with other belivers on a regular basis. My heart needs the fuel of weekly togeterness with like minded folks that I can be encouraged from, learn from and share with.

{enjoying this discussion:)

Mary said...

You just have to keep praying and looking and eventually you will find a church. Homechurch can be difficult to keep going just like any church. We've done it a couple of times. If you have more than just your family, it can be hard on the family who hosts it -- they have to get up early and make sure beds are made and dishes done and the place generally cleaned up for everybody to come over and worship. Dinner cooking on the stove and the family dog waving his tail in your face can be a distraction. When we ended up with 15 or 20 people, the Lord provided an inexpensive store-front for us to rent.

Amelia said...

Mary, I know what you mean on programs and people complaining. We had what we called "Vessels of Honor" in our home for four years in our home in the burbs. Marianna taught Bible study along with her sisters from time to time...and then a homemaking skill would be taught and the girls could get their hands dirty in the kitchen or sew til their hearts content. The email list was at least 60 families. Many times we had a house bulging with girls praise the Lord but what a mess afterwards! : ) I tried not to complain but it was difficult, it took 3 plus days for us all to prepare in one way or another.

It made me feel so degraded and used at times when a mom would come in and eye our home.

When we moved here to a country area, Marianna prayerfully decided (we all prayed about the decision actually) to have the VOH meetings in a restaurant meeting room, a nice cozy place that serves coffee and desserts in the burbs. There would be a Bible study as usual and discussion time and fellowship...But obviously no homemaking lesson at least in a kitchen. Marianna asked the families to send her mom (me of course) a thank you note for hosting the VOH meetings for so long. Do you know how many thank you notes I received? One. One thank you note from a precious family. We did receive a complaint via email because there would be no more homemaking lessons, and then a btw tell your mom thanks. We received another complaint from a family that lives here in the country that they were disappointed that we were still having the VOH in the burbs and not here because they wanted to condense trips to the city. No thank you from them at all. This week another mom emailed Marianna rudely telling her to take them off the monthly email reminder because her daughter is no longer a member of VOH. No kind of thank you or any appreciation ever mentioned.

So yes, I think I know how you feel...I'm flabbergasted at what has become of people!

Just call me grieved these days...But ya know? God wants us to be with the humble and not the proud and that is true fellowship I have been finding. : )

Bless you Mary! Your church sounds sweet.

Mary said...

Yeah, people are getting ruder and ruder these days everywhere. That's so sad that so few people thought to say thank you. We take so much for granted these days. A lot of volunteers work hard in churches and people just take it for granted.

Amelia said...

Hi Amanda, Yes, We too have come out of the organized church for around the same amount of years...What many are calling church is not church, we have found we feel almost endangered in some of the churches when visiting.

I too would love to have a fellowship of believers but times are hard spiritually, I do believe that is why the Remnant is called the Remnant.: )

The church we drive a long way to is on our page with our family for the mostpart,they support homeschooling and courtship, our daughters saving their first kiss for the altar and of course modesty but it is very far to drive and hard to connect it seems with others, although our daughters have some wonderful friends there so that is great.

We also do homechurch, sometimes my husband shares, sometimes it's a sermonindex sermon and praise and worship too. Sometimes it's just our family and once in awhile the girls' single friends will come drop in on church too but not often.

We are heartbroken over some in this new area. We have known many of them for a long time and at one time attended one of the family's bible studies. The scenario now? The family who hosted the Bible study suddenly stopped having it with no explanation and are very involved with a Reformed church now. Many of their friends who we also know go to that same Reformed church. We have felt left on the outskirts by most of them, it is so hard for us to understand how so many seem to be followers of Reformed theology more than our precious Jesus and can be so very mean and ugly about it all. Our closest neighbors go to a lukewarm Baptist church close by, the wife was chastised for passing a quiver-full book to the newly married praise leader to borrow if that tells you anything. Since her husband is a deacon the pastor said he didn't want people to think the entire church believed in quiver-full families. Is that not sad? If it would have been a modern movie with sin in it the pastor would have most likely said it was her business what she passed on. This same pastor insisted on his kids in public school, one of them went to a very intellectual and prestigious college, became an atheist and went online to convert others to atheism. Of course we all this can happen to any person when they get around the companions of fools, and educated fools at that. That is why I don't understand how some homeschool families are so bent on sending their youth away to college. It doesn't make sense.

Amanda, it's such a pleasure hearing from you on this. I know exactly what you are feeling, we feel the same way. It's a hard time to live, there really is a great falling away. It can be a lonely walk but perhaps the online fellowship is a nice way to be encouraged from time to time and ya know? As I shared with Mary above earlier, I think some of the truest fellowship is with the humble, the elderly, those who don't have much in the way of material goods, many times it may be at the check out lines or with an elderly lady at the grocery store.

You are a blessing Amanda. : )

Amelia said...

Yes, people are becoming rude. 2 Tim. 3 describes the perilous last days and one of the characteristics mentioned is being unthankful.

One of the classes at the homeschool convention my 21 year old daughter helped with talked about a youth passing up an elderly man with a walker. The youth passed the elderly man up and let the door slam on him as he went into the store!

As Christians, whether homeschooling or not, we should have the most thoughtful children and youth around and for me that includes thank you notes. It's hard for me to believe parents were not brought up to write thank you notes. It could be they are too busy to teach their children the importance of thoughtfulness, thankfulness and gratefulness. I think many of them are too busy running their kids around from class to class totally losing the heart of homeschooling, grown women competing in the popular game. If they can't teach their children Christ-like character, then forget academics...It's like a doctor with a horrible bedside manner.

Rude, unthankful people stay away from our door! : )

Amanda said...

Mary and Amelia,
I'm certain I've never conversed with two women such as yourselves reguarding this. Only my husband.

I am thankful to know you both via internet. so thankful.

These ARE hard times we are living in. Times when those that are walking down that narrow road feel most isolated from others. It's a daily remiinder for me to focus on eternity and not this world. I find the young people our age are focused on receiving blessings here on this earth. What if we don't receive a blessings until we meet our Father? I'm afraid many Christians live like this everyday. Waiting for God to handout blessings here when God may be waiting for eternity. What do you think?

I think your right Amelia, some of true fellowship can be found in those who don't have much. Those who live a simple life.
I've never thought of fellowship in this way. I appreicate you opening my eyes to this.
I'm excited to share this with my husband!

Amelia said...

Hi Amanda, Oh how encouraging you are!

I know exactly what you are saying, oh how I know, it makes my heart hurt. So many of the younger women except for a few like yourself seem so self absorbed, very much into the things of the world, many of them are ungrateful and disrespectful, they love the academics, the outclassing seeming to shun sweet things, pursuit of college degrees as a given. (Heaven help a young man who would like to be a gifted farmer!) Most of their mindset reminds me of the Emperor's New Clothes tale. They seem to just run after what is popular in the world's eyes, perhaps they want the approval of man?

Every year it gets worse and worse in our big homeschool convention. It seems many want to see how close to the world they can get. Sometimes my heart hurts over the generation my age and older too that have sold out to the world and compromise seems to be their hallmark.

My girls have seen the same thing in many young women and men who they thought were to be solid, and it hurts me to say their parents aren't the same anymore. It's been a sad thing for me.

Yes, I see the same you are seeing. The love of the world. I hate to sound so negative but yes, I see it too.

I was tickled years ago listening to a radio broadcast on a Christian station. The speaker was talking about his father, a doctor of education in some sort or another had passed away. The man's father was highly esteemed and known by many. The son was going through his father's files after passing away. There was a file called "dung". Guess what it was? It was a file with his accomplishments. That story always stuck with me. : )

Bless you Amanda, I agree, so many love the things of this world and they are ignoring the Lord Jesus.

Lately the Lord has been sending fellowship in some elderly at the store and such, they are the best! : )

And of course you certainly send encouragement too and I appreciate that very much. We must look to Jesus with a single heart and encourage one another and lift each other up as the day approaches. Love to you dear friend! ~Amelia