A Break-Up Song of Sorts

 

A thousand lessons learned,

absolutely forever changed.

Grace of God please work

through all the joys and all the pain. 

Let us trust that you are good,

You are working, you can heal.

Keep us far from bitterness, 

and at your throne please let us kneel. 


You are always worthy of our praise.


You are holy-our lives are but a breath.

You love us deeply-and saved our souls from death.

You graciously give the peace of knowing Truth.

Please keep us loving, trusting, seeking only you.

Please keep us satisfied with you.


You weep with those who weep,

And you morn with those who morn.

You knew this trial we’d face

Before we were, or time was born.

You have purposed all our days

For your glory and your name.

As your children we have hope

And are free from guilt or shame.


You are always worthy of our praise.


You are holy-our lives are but a breath.

You love us deeply-and saved our souls from death.

You graciously give the peace of knowing Truth.

Please keep us loving, trusting, seeking only you.

Please keep us satisfied with you.


Work out your good in us

Though I don’t understand

In your grace, reveal to us,

Your perfect purpose and your plans.

But even if you don’t

And I never see the why.

I’ll cling to your character-

Your love can’t be denied.


You are always worthy of our praise.


You are holy-our lives are but a breath.

You love us deeply-and saved our souls from death.

You graciously give the peace of knowing Truth.

Please keep us close-abiding, seeking

Keep us joy-desiring, seeking

Keep us spirit-guiding, seeking you.  


Is God Better Than My Imagination?

So…recently I’ve been lonely. Not, “I don’t have friends or anyone to talk to lonely”-I’m blessed with amazing, loving friendships and family members, but that sort of “I desire a daily companion- loneliness”. I want a person that knows me. All of me. And that I can process my daily events and ponderings with.  One day when recognizing this yearning in my soul (sorry if that sounds dramatic) I remembered that God is my ultimate companion, and that any desire I have for companionship in this life is but a shadow of the deepest, most fulfilling, indescribable companionship found in the perfect person of our Triune God.

So I decided to try and imagine God as my companion.

I sat down to my dinner of delicious leftovers and asked Him the first question I would ask an earthly companion which was “How was your day?”

I imagined God sitting with me, eating dinner…well…not really Him eating…just me, and him just being there, telling me about the best and worst parts of His day.  With a twinkle in His eye He told me of a beautiful concerto Bach had written in heaven today, and how he had just discovered how to use chord progressions to move buildings.  So the structure they were in was spinning as he was playing! “You’ll love it when you get here! It’s wild!”  He told me about a teenager in Cambodia who was just born again-and the eruption from the angels when it happened!

He told me about a hard part of his day too. “There is a daughter of mine in Mississippi who has prayed to me for 3 years for a son, and I keep telling her no. In fact, today she got back the negative results from in vitro and she cried and cried and cried. It was so painful to hear and see her pain. I moved in the heart of her sisters and friends to call her that day to comfort her, but still I know she is aching.” I asked God why he kept saying no? The answered I imagined him giving blew my mind. “Because in 6 years, the world will be exactly where it needs to be for her son Judah to be born.” I must’ve had a face of panic at the thought of 6 MORE years of heartache for this poor woman, because that’s when I imagined the Lord showing me a little glimpse of His plan.

It appeared before our eyes like a Star Trek-ish computer screen. And the gist of what I imagined Him saying was this: “See I need him born when this, this, this, this, and this has already happened, but I need to move in these people, this country, and this university before that can begin…then at this time I’ll put him here and he will fulfill THIS plan I have for his life. It’s beautiful. It is perfect. As much as I hate to see her cry, I KNOW that my plan is flawless, and I literally cannot have him born ONE day earlier.”

complicated

I imagine it sort of looking like this!

After that conversation, He asked me about my day and I imagined little comments He would respond back with, and questions He would ask. I rambled about different life things and imagined his lighthearted and comical responses. It was an enjoyable time! So enjoyable in fact, that I did that same sort of thing a few days later on Easter, when I took a walk and imagined talking with Him about random reflections and thoughts on the resurrection.

Harmless, right?

Well that’s what I thought until I realized that the god that was answering my questions and responding to me and laughing at all my witty remarks, sounded a lot like Betty. In fact…that god  thought my questions were interesting and barely ever talked about his own holiness or my sinfulness or the gospel really at all. And for that week, I had started to replace God with this imaginary god.

And it makes sense why I started to do that. Because that god is comfy and very relatable and addresses my particular, everyday situations. But that god is not God. That is simply my made up thoughts. My God, my True God, is not hiding in the nooks and crannies of my imagination, but boldly standing in every word, line, and page of the inerrant Scriptures. And that is where I need to CONSTANTLY be in order to live my life in a way that pleases God. As entertaining/fun as it may be to imagine God and how He would respond, that should NOT ever be my first line of defense against anything.  God’s word is all sufficient. In it’s pages lie the revelation of who God is, what He likes, dislikes, how He responds, why He responds, and through it I have the privileged to deeply get to know God. Me! Know God! It’s foolish to depend on my imagination and be more thrilled by that, than by the true character and nature found in Scripture of this mind-blowing, Betty-loving, good and sovereign, abundantly gracious, infinitely creative, joyful, righteous, perfect King, Friend, and Savior.

So don’t just depend on your mind, imagination, or previous knowledge about God in your relationship with Him. We must steadfastly be in His word to not be led astray by any false gospels, or simply entertained with weak caricatures of a god that we can comprehend. Don’t go to bed tonight without reading The Book and reflecting on what it teaches you about who God is-because He is bigger and better than anything we could ever imagine.

THINK SOMETHING KIND-SAY SOMETHING KIND

My professor made this comment today when discussing change and conflict:

“It takes 20 statements of encouragement to balance out one statement of discouragement.”

That’s right folks. 20-to-1.

This isn’t going to be long, or profound, or beautifully said. My point is simple: our words are powerful. They can (even unbeknownst to us!) be destructive and pain-evoking, or they can be empowering and be life-giving.

My simple challenge/throw-down/idea is just for you to try and make it a habit to be a person of uplifting words. Think of ways to intentionally encourage people you interact with tomorrow. If you think something positive about someone-just tell them! Don’t keep it to yourself! You don’t know what statement of discouragement they may be needing to battle today.

But hey, don’t take my word for it! Look at The Word!

 

1 Thessalonians 5:11 ESV

Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.

 

Ephesians 4:29 ESV

Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.

 

Hebrews 10:24-25 esv

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

How to Catch the Eye of a Reformed Guy

calvin-spurgeon

How to Catch the Eye of a Reformed Guy

Reformed men who don’t live in their parent’s basement

Seem to be a rare commodity.

Ones who are willing to initiate and pursue are even

more of an blessed oddity.

So if you find yourself rubbing elbows

with a man with much appeal

Here are some things I’ve heard you can mention

to really seal the deal:

“Just call me Miss ESV

Why, yes these are the

Institutes you see!

My favorite passage is

Romans 8:28-33

I love the atonement,

Substitutionary!

I have a Spurgeon based blog

I write in every day.

I love beards and free trade coffee

Jon Edwards all the way!”

After saying things like that to him

His heart will skip a beat

But if he is timid or apprehension filled

You can try some of these:

“I love how godly women

Are to just sit back and wait

For godly men

Following Christ’s example

To initiate.

One of the favorite subjects is

Complementarianism

I love the incarnation, alcohol,

and debates on paedobaptism!”

Affectionately reference Tim Keller, Martin Luther, Abraham Kuyper

B.B. Warfield, Charles Hodge, and of course, John Piper!

And if time is running out,

and you need to make a last impression.

All you need to do quote

As much as you can of the Westminster Confession

Don’t Always Believe Your Big Sister

So I asked my sister, (Glenda) if she read my blog and she gently reminded me that she is very busy raising 3 children and doesn’t always find time…

Germany and then some 144

..then she added at the end…”plus they are always so serious. “

Now I enjoy a good serious blog just as much as the next person-but I realized that she was right in the sense that I don’t often incorporate my humor too much into Bit o’ Betty (BOB for short)…(no that is weird)  which is a big part of who I am! So here is my attempt at not always being so serious.

So this is for you Glenda 🙂

I’ve entitled this short story: Don’t Always Believe Your Big Sister 😉

When I first moved in with the family who ended up adopting my brother and I, Glenda was almost 16 years old. She went from being an only child, to being the on-call babysitter, entertainer, chauffer, and blame-receiver to a wild 5 and 7 year old.  We turned her world upside down, and wreaked havoc on her once peaceful living situation. Despite us ruining her things, and seemingly stealing her parents, she tried hard to love us (though often unlovable!) and was a quite champ! She would bring us to her room, escape out her window, dress up like a clown, climb back into her room from her balcony no longer as Glenda, but as “George the Clown” and entertain us for hours!

Though don’t put this super sister on a pedestal quite yet. She had a dark side. A very dark side. And that dark side was knowing-that-I-was-and-still-am-super-gullible-and-would-convice-me-of-all-sorts-of-things.

The most memorable of things being this: The first summer I moved in, Glenda convinced me that children were not born with a butt crack. That’s right. They were butt crack-less, smooth bottomed, and had to be shipped to China where they have a special butt cracking machine. They would slide the babies on, and then like a giant paper cutter, *shhhfiinnggg*, (that is the best sound effect I can think of), and then the babies were shipped back home to their families.

Well, trusting my new big sister got me in trouble that next fall in Mrs. Nani’s second grade class. We were having a sort of cultural emphasis week, where we were to bring in foods and artifacts and facts from different places around the world. A time came when my dear, sweet, teacher asked the class if anyone had been outside of the country. This was my chance to inform my fellow peers of the wisdom my older, smarter, big sister had bestowed upon me.  Hand raised as high as I could, and wiggling it to show my excitement, I was finally called on, “We’ve all been to China!” I proudly proclaimed!

Mrs. Nani didn’t miss a beat, “You visited China? How lovely! Did you see the Great Wall?”

“No, no, no. We have ALL been to China!” I waited, a second, excited to share the news, “When we were born, we were all shipped there to get a butt cracks!”

Mrs. Nani’s eyes enlarged, and the 2nd grade giggles around me urged me to explain further. “When you are born you don’t have a butt crack so you are shipped to China because they have a very special butt cracking machine where the baby…”

“ENOUGH MISS HAMPTON!” (name prior to adoption)

I pursed my lips, and furrowed my brow as I watched her walk to the front of the class to write another note for me to take home to my parents.

Needless to say, I got in trouble-I’m pretty sure it was a spanking. Supposedly “I knew better”. Doubtful. But do you know who did know better?

My big sister.

And you know who didn’t get a spanking?

My big sister. (okay so she was 16 at the time, I still thought it was deserved!)

You know who you can’t always trust with facts concerning medical procedures with newborns?

My big sister.

Love you always and forever Glenda!! Hope this isn’t too serious for you 😉

Germany and then some 042

(Aunt B and the 3)