Thursday, April 27, 2017

17. Spiritual Multiplication in the Real World by McNabb

I just read this in October to see if I would use it in my Kingdom Community Curriculum, and I am so glad I included it. They LOVED it and all bought it for themselves. SO it was a good call to have them read it. I reread it when they read it because I had read it on my Kindle and wanted an underlined book because it is so hard to lead a book discussion with a Kindle!

Here is my prior review:

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Liturgy Audit

I have this from my Renovare Book Club and from the book Liturgy of the Ordinary

What activities and practices are you regularly immersed in each week? How much time is spent doing different sorts of activities? (Name 3-4 things you do in a week and time spent doing them).   • If you have children, how do they spend their time?  (Name 3-4 things they do in a week and time spent doing them).

M/W Teach two Pilates classes at OSU
T Teach Kingdom Community Training
M-S Daily Time in Bible Reading and prayer
M-S Daily reading to enrich my mind

What do you do with the first 2 hours of your day? 

Time with God - reflection on Scripture and praying responsively

How does that shape the rest of your day?How does this routine shape you? 

It sets my feet to be intentional about living to glorify Him as I live and move and have my being.

What do you do with the last 2 hours of your day?

Watch the news or a program on TV. I watch Survivor and Amazing Race. Not really into any dramas. Sometimes I will watch a DVD movie or series that has a good plot and no smut.

I also read books before I turn off the light.

During Lent, I read more of my Bible and Jesus books, and that was very fun!

How does this routine shape you? 

I don't get depressed by the news. It helps me understand people better and helps me pray more. I am in a prayer group, and it helps when we pray for different parts of the world to be informed about it. One woman knows nothing, and I feel like I help her pray more effectively by my information.

Survivor and Amazing Race help me to observe people dynamics and effective (and ineffective) communication strategies. No joke. I am such a people person that this is my overflow of my time with God so I can continue to grow without constantly being with people.

Sometimes I have evening commitments with people, but it is not my best time of  day. I used to have them a lot more, but now I get to bed fairly early, and I have better health as a result.

How might you “surrender” to God at the end of a day? How do you resist “surrender” at the end of the day? 

I don't think I do resist that I can think of. I maintain surrender through the day.
Think through yesterday. How did you use each hour? (Try to write this down in detail). 

5-7 - Up and make chai tea. Time with God. Read in Acts. Contemplation and prayer. Listen and Obey time in the shower writing how He speaks to me on the wall.
7:00-7:30 Review Field and Prayer work for Kingdom Community - send out email reminding them. Finalizing that last five weeks.
7:30-7:50 Dress straighten room
7:50-8:30 Get house straightened up for Valentina and Pieter to come and clean. Dry hair.
8:30-9:00 Do OSU Pilates class attendance on line as Valentina talks to me and cleans.
9-9:15 Drive to library and park
9:15-9:30 Walk and pray as I approach OSU Campus. Pray for Avery where Sandy is going to lead her Mom and Baby Class on Thursday.
9:30-9:40 Visit with PAC Office staff and pick up mat
9:40-10 Set up Pilates room, get equipment for day
10-12 Teach two Pilates classes and interact with lots of students
12-12:15 Walk back to library and pray
12:15-1:10 Deliver books and flowers to shut ins for Corvallis Library Dial a Book. Deposit check.
1:10-1:20 Drive home and pick up a Salmon Hazelnut Salad from Burgerville (YUMMMMMY!)
1:20 Home and Michael was already gone to work! HOUSE CLEAN!!!
1:20-2:00 Relax and Eat
2-5:30 Book Review for Crucial Conversations (book we are finishing for Kingdom Community), prayer for friends, catch up on Lose It food and exercise recording, doing a Freewrite.
5:30-8:00 News of the World (I had not watched it in a while)
8-10 Survivor (was only expecting it to be one hour, but it was a delightful two)
10-10:30 Trying to watch more news but fell asleep some time during that.

What do you think are the most important rituals in your life?  In your day?

Chai tea and Christ together each morning. Prayer walks. Bible Book Club. Staying in the word daily.

In my life are both above and also my regular prayer retreats for days and overnighters.

Walking and talking and praying with George and also watching BBC dramas together.

Regular Freewrites.

What activity do you feel incomplete without? (However mundane…could be getting coffee or going on a walk). 

Chai and Christ the most important to me.

 How does this activity shape your daily routine?How does it shape you?  

I think I answered this one early on in the questionings.

Are there habits you go to when you feel sad, angry, or hurt? 

I think when I am all the above, it helps me to get outside in nature and move my body and think and pray.

How do those habits shape you?

Helps me see the bigger picture.

 How do they shape your view of God? 

When I see nature I see how I am in the whole scheme of things.

Think about the most potent practices in our culture. What cultural practices do you want to embrace? Which do you hope to avoid?

I would love to have an example from this. Maybe I will submit my question to you for your podcast! 

I want to avoid smut on TV and tons of negativity.

I want to embrace the fun-loving spirit of many Americans and the way they express themselves through art and literature.

 If you have children, grandchildren, godchildren, nieces, or nephews, what are the cultural forces that you don’t want children in your life to be shaped by? 

Same as above.

What are the liturgies that you do want to shape their habits or desires? (Notice how this helps you glimpse what you value and find alarming about your own cultural practices).

 Good questions. I am going to think about that. I would love for them to have regular time listening to God. Enjoying his presence. Pursuing their passions. Tuning their temples.

Are there rituals in your day that encourage your anxiety, impatience, or distraction? 

I don't think so. I live a pretty peaceful life. I gues the one thing I would say is that if I get too busy. I get anxious. I know whey I have pushed myself too hard, but I rarely do that anymore. It has been nice to live a life of balance.

How do you see hints of Christian worship in your day? 

Isn't every minute worship? The sun is coming out right now, and I see God in nature. I marvel at His wonderful works. I give thanks for everything that I enjoy INCLUDING the inconveniences that all seem to be "first world problems."

What rituals help you embrace God’s work in your day?  

Morning time with Him and walks.

What moments of the day or tasks do you find most draining and/or disheartening? (Name 1-2)  

Taxes (I only have to do those once and year and finally decided to let them go to an accountant this year when they got overly complicated.)

Ironing - I have learned to play worship music or put on a audiobook or even a nice Jane Austen movie. Substitute the drain with a pleasure.

What moments of the day or tasks do you find most exhilarating and/or encouraging? (Name 1-2)

Leading the Kingdom Discipleship Training Team
Studying the Bible with not yet believers
Time with God
Teaching Pilates and seeing people grow in strength
Riding my bike
Taking walks.

(I cannot stop at 1-2!)

What Matters

"What matters is to listen attentively to the Spirit
and to go obediently where we are being led,
whether to a joyful or a painful place."
Henri Nouwen in Making All Things New

Wednesday, April 19, 2017


I have attempted to do this so many times by doing a "Prayerful Review of my Day," but it has not happened. So, I am just going to write freely in a freewrite for the next fifteen. It seems like it has been a while since I did that.

The last couple of weeks have been really lovely. Something is changing in me that is really encouraging. For instance, we had taken our taxes to an accountant, and we had signed everything on the dotted line last Friday and thought they were going to the IRS. Tuesday afternoon (tax day) brought in a flurry of texts and emails. Long story short, there was a mistake on our tax form, and we would not be getting the big refund that we thought, and we had to pay more for our Oregon tax. I had looked forward to getting a break on Tuesday afternoon. We had all day Sunday with guests for Easter, all day Monday with teaching at the University and then visiting for about five hours with different internationals, and then getting ready to lead my Kingdom Community on Tuesday morning (getting up early on Tuesday to do it since I had quite a bit of reading to do). So, I was taking a walk and then was going to just rest! (I was sick in bed Thursday - Saturday with a nasty cold.)

Instead of resenting, complaining, sighing, etc. I just got in my car, drove down to the accountants office, and wrote a check and walked out and was laying down within 30 minutes. No hemming or hawing. I was just resigned and peaceful.

I have been that way since then. I made a choice. I just decided not to exert any energy on it. I even had a great time driving down there in the car and back.

Then, I rest and woke up this morning to have great time with God (reading Acts now), preparing for Kingdom Community for next Tuesday (only five more weeks), and leading two high powered Pilates classes, walked and did Dial a Book, and now I have just been home and so peaceful.

I asked Elizabeth for prayer on Monday night. Someone (who is obviously in pain and probably ashamed) doesn't want to talk to me. I know I didn't do anything wrong, and they are feeling unsafe. (I think something really terrible happened, but I don't know what happened.) Anyway, I realized the pain of that was bothering me. So, I asked Elizabeth to pray for me (I don't usually do that except with George). Since then, I have a real peace. God keeps on telling me that He is keeping me from drama. That it is a matter too difficult for me and I can compose and quiet my soul (Psalm 131:2). So, I chose peace and not drama.

So, I sit here just aware that I don't need to be fearful or afraid or frustrated or even nervous. I can just be at peace.

That is lovely.

So, here I sit composed and quieted. I am good.

I do think it has helped that Michael is working the swing shift, and I can have solitude in the afternoon. He is not loud or obnoxious though. It is just nice to have the run of the house for all these hours. I love it. I love just resting into that.

I have to say that I am really going to miss this Kingdom community. They are so positive and encouraging and caring and love to pray. They are also so teachable. They have been introduced to so many new things, and they have just eaten everything up and APPLIED everything. They feel convicted, and they respond so humbly. I really like this group. I will miss praying and studying and doing outreach with them. Such a good year. I am really glad I listened and obeyed.

Well, I think that has been a long freewrite. But I am going to press the button and just not worry about proofreading anything. (I always say that, but I might do it, and that is ok because it is my freewrite.)

16. Crucial Conversations by Patterson

This is my third time reading through this book, and it is always so challenging. I sometimes forget to apply these principles, but when I do, it is amazing how much easier crucial conversations become!

Here is my previous review:

Sunday, April 16, 2017

15. The Story of Jesus by Reader's Digest Association, Inc

This is third in the books that I have been reading since Christmas. I love this book! It is in full color (and I purchased it at a used book store for only $10).  It starts at the beginning of the Gospel account and adds literature, poetry, and art from all over the world. It is a lovely book. It ends in the book of Acts where the Apostles spread Jesus to the world.

14. Jesus: A Gospel by Henri Nouwen

 I have had this book sitting on my coffee table for quite a while, and I thought I would read it along with the Harmony of the Gospels. I have recently been on a Henri Nouwen extravaganza so it fit to read a compilation of his quotes related to Jesus' life! On top of all that, there are illustration by Rembrandt! YUMMY!

I love Nouwen's insights. Here is one of my favorites:

As you see more clearly that your vocation is to be a witness to God's love in this world, as you become more determined to live out that vocation, the attacks of the enemy will increase. You will hear voices saying, "You are worthless, you have nothing to offer, you are unattractive, undesirable, unlovable." Do not be afraid. The more you are called to speak for God's love, the more you will need to deepen the knowledge of that love in your own heart. The farther the outward journey takes you, the deeper the inner journey must be.


13. The Harmony of the Gospels by Thomas and Gundry

2 - Harmony by carolfoasia
Here is a previous review:

He is Risen! He is Risen Indeed!

It is Easter Sunday 2017, and this year, I read through the life of Jesus in "harmony" from December 21st until today.  This is such nice way to walk with Jesus chronologically.

I couldn't wait to get up at dawn this morning and read about His resurrection. It is going to be a blessed day.

(I also read two other books along with this, and the reviews for them will be coming soon!)

Saturday, April 15, 2017

12. Ross Poldark by Winston Graham

I have been asked over the years what my favorite Masterpiece Theatre series is, and I have always said POLDARK! My husband and I have been fans of Poldark since the early 90's when we watched the 70's version on VHS. We have watched it more than once, and we love Robin Ellis as Ross:

Then came the equally wonderful NEW Poldark series! I like both actors as Ross and both series are equally amazing. Aiden Turner is a mesmerizing Ross:

Image result for robin ellis
And I love that Robin Ellis is also in the NEW Poldark! How cool is that?

So, I was curious to know what the Poldark books were like. My husband had read this first one many years ago, and when the new series came out he commented that the new one is much closer to the books, and I have to agree. As I have read up on things, Winston Graham was disappointed at how they changed things in the 70's version, but I think he would definitely like this new version.

I just have to say that if you love the TV series, and you love to read great literature, you will love this book. I thought his writing was SUPERB, and it really is the best I fiction I have read in a while. He paints such vivid pictures and has wonderful character development. I love knowing the thoughts of the characters; something you cannot always surmised from watching it being acted.

So, TWO THUMBS up for this book. My husband went and got the next one (Demelza) from the library when I was on my last hour of listening to the audiobook version of this book (helps that I have a terrible cold and canceled all my plans for today).

By the way, the narrator, Oliver Hembrough, is absolutely wonderful. He does the Cornish accent to perfection. He also does men and women distinctly.

There are 12 books in the series, and I have a feeling this will be my summer series like Narnia was last summer.

Then we will have to go back to England and go to Cornwall! :)

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Prayerful Review of the Week: April 2-11

What made me feel most alive and in tune with God's plan:

  • Starting another term of teaching Pilates I and II - I was born to teach movements and health. I love young people. I love empowering them to develop lifelong habits that will prevent physical pain when they get to be my age. Desiring to be salt and light
  • Kingdom Disciplemaking Team (DMT) - leading a discussion of Spiritual Multiplication in the Real World and having the light bulbs go on and people feeling a gentle nudge from God to grow in this area. His kindness leads us to respond in action. So sweet.
  • Riding my bike to and from work.
  • Fourteen years of volunteering on Wednesday and going to the appreciation banquet on Friday.
  • Having it work out the I could deliver all the books to our Kingdom DMT because one of my volunteer book deliveries was right across the street from Rebekah's!
  • Listening to J & M's heart after a return from overseas.
  • Seeing EIGHT rainbows on the way from J & M's and claiming them as promises for them.
  • Going to MAZZI's after J & M's with my sweetheart!
  • Deciding to have our taxes done by a professional and finding out we get a federal refund! (and only a bit of Oregon Tax if we contribute to the Oregon College Savings Program)
  • Kingdom DMT on April 11 had us Skyping with a graduate of the kingdom team who was in North Africa. His update and prayer for this wonderful area were so wonderful. I LOVE praying with this team of women!

What made me feel most dead and not in tune with God's plan:
  • Nothing comes to mind from the day


Here I go for fifteen minutes. I did not do the fifteen-minute freewrite Friday as I thought. And I totally missed this last Friday. So, I a...