Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Pursuit of Virtue

Monday, was the second day of Virtue Family Fun Camp and so the journey begins!  Ladies, if you are in need of inspiration, encouragement and/or accountability, come join us for this summer series...Called to be...A Virtuous Woman.

I am so excited to share what God is teaching me about me.  Thus far, I know that I have been called, for the question has been posed, "Who can find a virtuous woman?"..., Proverbs 31:10a.  That is to imply that I must accept the call or responsibility to "be" virtuous.  I do, I accept my call and I know my worth, "...for her price is far above rubies", Proverbs 31:10b.  This is the value placed upon me by my husband;  I am certain that he knows I am a rare find ;) and I must reflect that worth daily.

I accept the charge to be trustworthy, "The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her...", Proverbs 31:11a.    I want Walter to be confident of my submission to him and his well being.

I choose to make it my business to know his heart and mind and to help him accomplish that which God has called him unto; I want to compliment him.  Even with my greatest desires and sincere heart, I must admit, this requires my submission to God and his Holy Spirit, first, that I may be filled with fruits that I lack.

I know that my presentation at home and in public are what makes Walter feel safe with me, not threatened, nor shamed. " that he shall have no need of spoil", Proverbs 31:11b.  It is a privilege to manage his affairs and to do him good.  For me, the difficulty is to be considerate of him, always, no matter what his state: physically, mentally or spiritually.  I know that my commitment and covenant unto him can not be conditional, "She will do him good and not evil all the days of his life", Proverbs 31:12.

I must be wise and discerning, willing to make sacrifices, having knowledge to make good decisions for him and our household. Wow! Lord, what a call!  I know I can NOT do this on my own.  I  have need of You continuously throughout each day, for my duties are great. I have need of my sisters in Christ as well to walk along side me that we might sharpen, inspire and empower one another.

As reflect on the Proverbs 31 Woman this summer, one of the greatest blessings I have is to embrace this journey with my daughter as she too has accepted the "call" to be a virtuous woman.  I have the pleasure of watching her pursue God for herself.  She is reading a couple of books this summer to give her wisdom and insight that she might be the woman God has called her to be.  As I engage in conversations with her and she shares what God has said to her and how He is leading her, I am humbled by her love and passion for pursuing Him and his will for this season of her life.  Won't you join us?  We meet each Monday at Lazelle Woods Park, Lazelle Rd. Virtue Family Fun Camp begins at 1:30 and includes a Bible study, book review and prayer, 3:00-4:30. Comment for more information.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Your Abundance...Others Blessings!

It's gardening season and many people reap a harvest, what about you?  And what do you do with all those herbs, fruits and vegetables?  I hope you share them.  As for me, we rarely have extra crop, but please know that we are willing to receive!  Your abundance is others blessing.

It's a good idea to let others know when your pickins are ripe and have them join you for a meal or take them to work or church and share them.  As we all know the cost of food is expensive and we should let not one morsel go bad or a fellow to go without share your harvest today!

Who Can Find A Virtuous Woman?

The apostle Paul is often admired as a "true" man of God, one many admonish.  Well, the Proverbs 31 Woman is my "Paul", the woman in whom I see Christ in and through, the woman I look up to...desire to be like.  She has been the model woman of God to me since I became a Christian.  I like to think I am like her in some ways.

As this year began, I sought the Lord for material to study that my heart and mind will be refreshed and renewed. He lead me to Proverbs 31:10-31.  I was instructed to take my time and study this Word, carefully, pondering it in my heart and to align my life as He leads.  I must say, I am excited!  For I am back at home with a more normal daily agenda and I am ready to embrace this season of life with integrity and grace.

"Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies." Proverbs 31:10, nothing like getting straight to the point.  This scripture, personally translated says to me, "Can You, Michele, Be Found To Be A Virtuous Woman?".  To be virtuous is to be morally excellent, upright before the Lord.  A Virtuous Woman is a woman of strength, wisdom and grace, a woman who fears God.

This question caused me to pause and examine my heart, my conduct and ask God to search me and reveal to me that which is not of Him.  The one thing the Lord showed me was the need for me to daily ask the Lord to fill my heart with the "fruits of the spirit".  "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law", ' Galatians 5:22-23, that my responses to life will be a blessing.

...For her price is far above rubies.  For some, to be like the Proverbs 31Woman is an unattainable idea, for me she is a mentor worth following.  She is rare, she is full of value.  Thank you Lord for leading me along this path.

What do you think about the Proverbs 31 Woman?  Will you pray for me as I study this Word...will you join me in this pursuit of excellence?

Our Children: Three Generations

It is said that a generation is the span of 10 years and our children range in age from 23-3 years old which means we have three generations of children; our quiver is certainly full!  With three generations, it can be very easy to over look ones and at times, though not on purpose, I am sure that I have.  Parenting is a choice and I am committed not to get weary, but to do well unto each child I have birthed and boy is it difficult at times.  When I say well I mean to personally care for their needs as their mother and to offer each one attention, affection, instruction and discipline, daily accepting my responsibility to train each one, of each generation.

God does not give me a pass because I have had ten children, no, but He does give me wisdom, strength and much grace and mercy.  I find myself seeking him often, sometimes several times a day for discernment and joy, for I know I can NOT do this by myself.  This week we allowed two more of our second generation of children to participate in a (FCA) sports camp leaving me with just a few at home to nurture and train.

What a joy and a pleasure it has been to look in these little guys faces each day this week, conversing with them and kissing on them.  I "want" to know them.  I am grateful for the opportunity to do ABC's and 123's with them.  Our week has been full as is my heart unto the Lord for his goodness and his grace.

I have also had the joy of watching our first generation of children do life independently this week as they have been busy at work, volunteering and participating in football camps.  It was once said to us that we should spend at least 15 minutes talking to each child, each day.  This practice has been a great investment.  Now, they regularly come to me with the days events, I just love these talks!  My greatest hope is that when my task of training them comes to an end, each one will choose to have a lifelong relationship with me, with us.  "She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness.  Her children arise up, and call her blessed..." Proverbs 31:

What about you...what is your greatest hope as a mother?

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Called to be...A Proverbs 31 Woman

I have always been inspired by Proverbs 31:10-31, the word that speaks of a woman of God who has discipline, confidence, commitment, wisdom and grace, a Virtuous Woman.  It is evident that she accepted the call on her life with passion and dedication.

At first glance many are intimidated by her resume, for she is very well equipped by the Lord to live out the tasks placed before her.  I am not intimidated, but instead encouraged to know there was a woman after my own heart who strived consistently and accomplished  her responsibilities...daily fulfilled her call.  She is my Paul, my mentor, the one I esteem to be like.

It is so fitting that the Lord led me to study the Virtuous Woman during this season of my life.  I have need of sharpening, for the battle that I am in is an attack on my character, my commitment and my dedication to the Lord and his calling on my life. As I have indulged in this Word,  I have been convicted and convinced, insighted and encouraged.  I know I don't have all of the gifts and talents the Virtuous Woman had, but through this study my own gifts and talents have been illuminated.  My character and the lack thereof  has also been highlighted.  These revelations have given me opportunities to seek the Lord that I can be equipped and strengthened to walk, run and stand in the heat of the battle.  "For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds.", 2 Corinthians 10:4.

I believed every woman has been called to be virtuous, don't you?  Come and join me in this study of the Virtuous Woman this summer.   I will be using my own personal commentary on Proverbs 31:10-31 and "A Woman's Walk With God Growing in the Fruits of the Spirit, by Elizabeth George, every Monday afternoon at Lazelle Woods Park.  I wil have additional copies of this book at a cost of $12 each.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Hot Fun in the Summertime!

I must say, I am looking forward to this summer! 

We are blessed to be back in our home where we will return to a few Bowie summer traditions as well as indulge in a few new actvities.  I have been busy the last couple of weeks putting together our family summer schedule and in the process I see that camps and activities are very expensive especially for our family of 8 children (of 10 that are still at home).  So, one thing I know for sure that we will do is continue with our weekly family fun camp, Virtue.

I was led to start Virtue Family Fun Camp about ten years ago.  I have it at our community park.  It consist of a picinic lunch, a book review, a creative writing time, a craft, an outside group activity, bible study and prayer; something for everyone, moms and children!

Virtue has been a good alternative to a weekly camp that I might enroll our children in.  It gives them exercise and fellowship. It is also a great way to keep my children reading and it gives them an opportunity to indulge in arts and crafts and  creative writing with others.

For me, it is an opportunity for sweet fellowship, and a time to be sharpened by my sisters in Christ.  I enjoy discusing God's word and praying with other women.  Over the years I have been encouraged and inspired through this camp as have our children.

Please consider joinimg us!  There is no commitment or cost, it is FREE for all and it is fun, fun, fun!  We meet weekly at Lazelle Woods Park, Lazelle Rd., Westerville, Ohio, 1:30-4:30 every Monday, June 9th - August 4th.

Leave a comment for more information.