You say “ancient history” like it’s a bad thing.

It’s confession time.  Ancient history is not my thing.  And even worse I have to admit that as a homeschool mom/teacher, I managed to instill the same apathy toward the study of ancient history in my children that I have always possessed.  Imagine my surprise and delight when a recent blog post revealed that my firstborn has begun to overcome this gap in her homegrown education.  And even more surprising is the fact that with her post she’s actually managed to plant a seed of interest in ancient history within me.  I actually want to read some of the books she recommended.

Here’s an excerpt.  But if you want to see her reading recommendations, you’ll have to click over and read the whole post.

“In fact, one thing I saw this year for the first time is how, from the world’s perspective, the story of God and His people is actually pretty tiny. In the books about ancient Rome, the land of Judea is simply one place in a list of many places under Rome’s thumb. At the time, it wasn’t considered “special” to the Romans. In some of the books we read this year, it isn’t mentioned at all. Similarly, the Romans crucified thousands of people. In their records, Jesus is just one of the many who died that gruesome death, probably not even bolded or footnoted. How much more amazing is it, then, when we realize God’s story is anything but tiny? A tiny baby born to insignificant parents in an insignificant town, barely a blip in the timeline of human history, became the entire purpose – the point – of all human history. The rest of the world’s history pales in comparison.”

Read more of “You say “ancient history” like it’s a bad thing..”

A Prayer of Thanksgiving


(For paper Thanksgiving Pumpkin Craft click HERE!)

As I sit and reflect over the many things that I am thankful for, my heart and my mind are drawn to the words of so many songs that I have sung through the years. So often it seems that this musician’s heart is moved to praise you in song. Thank you for this precious gift! And so as I say thanks to you today, Lord, I borrow the words of others and join my heart with theirs as they sing their praise to you. I love you, Lord!

Thou Life of my life, blessed Jesus,
Thou death of the death that was mine,
For me was Thy cross and Thine anguish,
Thy love and Thy sorrow divine;
Thou suffered the cross and the torment,
That I might forever go free-
A thousand, a thousand thanksgivings,
I bring, blessed Savior, to Thee!

My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought,
My sin, not in part, but the whole,
Was nailed to the cross and I bear it no more.
Praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord, oh my soul!

I love Thee because Thou hast first loved me
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree.
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow:
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus ‘tis now.

Immortal, invisible, God only wise,
In light inaccessible hid from our eyes.
Most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
Almighty, victorious—Thy great name we praise.

To God be the glory-great things He hath done!
So loved He the world that He gave us His Son,
Who yielded His life an atonement for sin
and opened the life-gate that all may go in.
Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!
Let the earth hear His voice!
Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!
Let the people rejoice!
O come to the Father thro’ Jesus, the Son,
and give Him the glory-great things He has done!

Jesus, our Savior, Shepherd, Friend, Our Prophet, Priest and King;
Our Lord, our Life, our Way, our End, accept the praise we bring.

Weak is the effort of our heart, and cold our warmest thought;
But when we see Thee as Thou art, we’ll praise Thee as we ought.

Lord of glory, we adore Thee,
Christ of God, ascended high!
Heart and soul we bow before Thee,
Glorious now beyond the sky:
Thee we worship, Thee we praise,
Excellent in all Thy ways.

Jesus, the very thought of Thee with sweetness fills my breast;
But better far Thy face to see and in Thy presence rest.

No voice can sing, no heart can frame, nor can the memory find
A sweeter sound than thy blest name, O Savior of mankind!

O Lord, from my heart, I do thank Thee
For all thou hast born in my room,
Thine agony, dying, unsolaced,
Alone in the darkness of doom
That I, in the glory of heaven,
Forever and ever might be—
A thousand, a thousand thanksgivings,
I bring, blessed Savior, to Thee!

Saturday Morning Soccer

It’s the activity that moms everywhere love to hate.

It’s Saturday mornings sipping coffee on the sidelines of a cold soccer field.  It’s the comedy of watching 12 little boys follow a white ball around the field in a beehive like formation.  It’s the joy of seeing the look of excitement on a 7-year old’s face when he “almost makes a goal”.  It’s the anguish of seeing the ball get by the same little boy wearing the green goalie’s jersey.  And it’s the satisfaction of seeing a team of boys take pride in their accomplishments and show good sportsmanship despite having never won a game.

It’s the activity this mom loves.  Period.

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September 11, 2011: Jim Cornelison’s National Anthem…

Jim Cornelison’s singing of the National Anthem and the fans’ reaction to it never fails to amaze.  Here he is singing at Soldier Field on September 11, 2011 for the opening of the 2011 National Football League season and in commemoration of the lives lost on September 11, 2001. This was broadcast live at NFL stadiums all over America. They couldn’t have chosen a better performer for the task.

Breathtaking.

Weddings, Gardens, and Independence Day…

Last weekend, all four of my children were in the wedding of a dear friend.  The girls have been been friends with Emily…more like sisters, really…for more than 20 years.  They’ve share both the blessings and the hardships of growing up “in ministry.”  It’s created a bond that is unbreakable.  It was a wonderful weekend with laughter, tears, and lots of makeup and hairspray!!

Summer has finally arrived in Northern Illinois and our garden is finally looking like a garden!  In fact, we’ve even eaten some peas!  Now, if only the tomatoes would ripen.

And finally, I was asked to write an Independence Day guest post over at The Homeschool Village!  You can hop over HERE.  Happy Independence Day!

He Is Risen!!

Matthew 28

Jesus Has Risen

1 After the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb.

2 There was a violent earthquake, for an angel of the Lord came down from heaven and, going to the tomb, rolled back the stone and sat on it. 3 His appearance was like lightning, and his clothes were white as snow. 4 The guards were so afraid of him that they shook and became like dead men.

5 The angel said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus, who was crucified. 6 He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay. 7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples: ‘He has risen from the dead and is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him.’ Now I have told you.”

8 So the women hurried away from the tomb, afraid yet filled with joy, and ran to tell his disciples. (Matthew 28:1-8, New International Version, ©2011)

Gethsemane

Gethsemane

To see the King of heaven fall in anguish to His knees,
The Light and Hope of all the world now overwhelmed with grief.
What nameless horrors must He see, to cry out in the garden:
Oh, take this cup away from me
Yet not my will but Yours,
Yet not my will but Yours.

To know each friend will fall away, and heaven’s voice be still,
For hell to have its vengeful day upon Golgotha’s hill.
No words describe the Saviour’s plight – to be by God forsaken
Till wrath and love are satisfied
And every sin is paid
And every sin is paid

What took Him to this wretched place, what kept Him on this road?
His love for Adam’s cursed race, for every broken soul.
No sin too slight to overlook, no crime too great to carry,
All mingled in this poisoned cup, and yet He drank it all,
The Saviour drank it all.
The Saviour drank it all.

Stuart Townend & Keith Getty

Praying for Dana….

Yesterday, Dana Hanley, of Roscommon Acres (formerly Principled Discovery) posted a heartbreaking post concerning the sudden passing of their sweet 22-month old son, Mattias Ryker Hanley. Please pray for Dana, her husband, and their five other children as they pass through these deep waters.

“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling.” (Psalms 46:1-3 NKJV)

“The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” (Psalms 18:2 NKJV)

Questioning a Rabbi? Really, Arby?

If you’re running low on pencils, you might not want to read Arby’s new post, Shalom, Rabbi Dude,  over at The Homeschool Apologist.  When I read it myself this morning, I nearly broke my pencil right in half!

Mind you, it isn’t Arby’s writing that will make your blood pressure rise. It’s the article that Arby is reviewing that’s well…just infuriating! I’m not sure how this very ill-informed Rabbi feels qualified to write such a post—he clearly doesn’t know the first thing about homeschooling or homeschoolers—but well, here’s a taste of what’s coming.

“Parents should be aware that total home schooling can cause as many problems as it solves.”

So head on over…but you better put your pencil down first…..