Saturday, October 24, 2009

Life Changer

Because God is, again, refining my family by fire (quite literally) I will not be posting on this blog much, if ever, for several months. House work and family help will be taking up a great deal of my time, and so I will be unable to have much free time to spend on the computer (or free time, period.)

If you would like to know more about the refinement, or would like to keep updated with my family and how we are doing, please feel free to visit www.flowersinthewinter.blogspot.com

God richly bless and keep you and your families.
May He pour out His abundant blessings and joy over you and
Have a Happy Holiday Season!

God bless,
Miss Elisabeth

Monday, October 19, 2009

Christian Manners; Part 1 - Introduction and Celular Phones

Note to Reader: this is all based on a Biblical, or Christian worldview, and is written to those who share such a world view. I do not mean to, nor do I have any intention of conveying that those who have a Biblical Worldview are any better than those who do not. This is simply the mind-set I know, and the people with whom I see the need to better themselves (in some cases more so than those who do not have a Biblical Worldview.)
This week my nose has been buried in a book lent to me, titled "Twentieth Century Etiquette; A Read Manuel for All Occasions."
As I was reading this more than captivating, and comical, book, my thoughts turned to our culture, my generations social skills, and what a stranger would think, were they to walk into our church and take a good look around in the middle of a service.
Teens openly text on their cell phones, during service, as do some adults. Cell phones don't ring, but a strange vibrating, or buzzing, can be heard omitting from some people's pockets. Gum is chewed, generally with care, hats are worn, and when you get a very ill-manned group of young people, seats are turned into foot rests. It's all quite... appalling! At least, compared to the well mannered, or in that culture, "well bred" circle of human beings.
Etiquette and protocol was not only expected, but turned into an art form. Humans were distinguished by their social circles, who were defined by "good breeding" or "codes of observances."
As is written in Twentieth Century Etiquette:
"Rules of etiquette have their allotted place among the forces of life, and must be acknowledged as moral agents in refining and making more agreeable our daily intercourse with each other. They are agents for good. They teach us to be more lenient with the various elements which compose society, as life is a sort of partnership in which each human being has an interest; so the laws of etiquette, well enforced, oblige us to make concessions to the many tastes, prejudices and habits of those we meet in the social circle, at public entertainments, in business relations or when traveling."
(Page 24)
And so, as I read this interesting, mind reeling, and cross-cultural book, my own thoughts of basic, yet proper, etiquette squirm to be freed from my mind and onto paper.
Here is the beginnings of, perhaps, many parts of proper etiquette in our technological society.
Cellular Phones are beyond common in our society. So much so, in fact, that it is considered unusual when a family does not own as many cell phones as family members.
Since cell phones hit the market, so quickly and even more quickly became the biggest rage, and most popular fad, no on, no adult, no teacher, no student nor child, has apparently come up with some basic principles that one should follow, while using their cellular device, in order to not appear to be a rude or disrespectful person.
I have not seen, or heard of any such book, or any such person who has come up with such basic principles to follow while using a cell phone. I'm continually shocked and continuously hear of parents who are shocked at their children's rude and disrespectful attitude because there are no "laws laid" for them to follow, concerning their technical device.
So, I write this with the great concern for my generation, that you would at least read and come up with some fundamental laws of your own, to follow, which put others before yourself, and human - meaning face-to-face- interaction at a higher priority than a mechanical one.
General Cell-Phone Usage
Cell phones are used as regular, land-line phones, but are generally used more often, and it's becoming more popular to replace a land-line with cell phones. There are also many more gadgets and nifty add-ons to a regular conversing device, on a cell phone.
So I've organized this section into smaller areas of possible interest, based on the use of a cell phone (texting, talking, etc.)
There is an introduction to each section which defines the terms used for those who may not be well acquainted with the cell-phone world.
Texting
Texting, more or less, is instant message over cell phone. However, there is not yet any rule as to when it is appropriate to text back - this is left up to the cell phone holders good, or bad, judgement. I have found the cell-phone user to have quite bad judgement when it comes to texting, which not only causes frustration when attempting at a conversation, but I have also felt rather blown off by those who choose to text while conversing.
Appropriate timing for Texting
"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the Heavens." Unfortunately, cell phone usage and texting is not included in the list of "timeliness" in the third chapter of Ecclesiastes. So we'll just have to form our own ideas on timely use, based on the attitude of putting others before yourself.
It's definitely appropriate to text when your alone- in solitude, no one else is around you, there is no chance at all that you might happen to bump into someone you know, which could possibly start up a conversation. Another general, basic, basic, basic, rule is to text only when you don't have some other responsibility which may be demanding your time. This rule also makes it easier to avoid putting things off.
Responsibilities more important than texting could be:
  • During a speech - it's important to actively listen
  • During a sermon - when one texts during a sermon this not only shows disrespect but disinterest and an extraordinary amount of rudeness to the pastor, those around, and most importantly, disrespect to The House of God
  • Chores your parents give
  • Work that must be completed - home work, business work, church work, etc.
  • During work - if you're a barista, please don't text on the job. This is very rude, and alienates business. Baby-sitters and child care workers, you're hired to care for and watch the child, not let 'em loose and if they get hurt put a band-aid on it. Do the job you were hired to do!
  • While Driving - Please, do yourself and all those around you a favor and do NOT text while driving. Not only is this unsafe because your eyes are not on the road, but also because your mind is not focused on driving, but on text messaging, making your driving unpredictable and confusing other drivers. This is especially important when others are in the car with you. Please do not text while driving!
  • At school. Scientia Potentia - knowledge is power. If you must text someone, and it is vitally important, like if it's to a teach, parent, adult or work, wait until after your class is over, and you are in a somewhat solitary place. God gave you a mind to steward. You are not stewarding that which God has placed in your hands and blessed you with if you are texting during a class.
  • It's always, always, rude to text when talking with, greeting, saying goodbye, listening or have any sort of conversation with any other human being. This conveys an extraordinary lack of curiosity for another creation of God, rudeness, indifference and an incredible lack of caring or concern for a brother or sister in Christ. If you are interacting with a non-Christian while you are texting, what are you conveying to that person about your relationship with Christ? Are you being a good witness? Are you treating them they way God longs for you to treat them? What would Christ think if he walked up in that moment?

If you must text while driving, or during a class, or during work, please wait until after you have completed what must be done at school (like, after class), or at work, this means you need to communicate well with your boss or the other person on duty, or pull over off the road into a safe parking place, and text away. But wait until its safe, and you have stewarded well what God's given you (your mind, your job, your relationships, etc., etc.)

If you're a host, or a guest: RESTRAIN FROM TEXTING! If this means turning off the phone and hiding it or locking it away: DO SO! I have been to people's homes, as a guest, where the hosts teenagers were texting. I use the term "teenager" as a descriptive term, meaning they were self-absorbed, unsocialized when it came appropriate adult interaction (such as that with my parents), and rather immature. Those who text while hosting a guest are immediately placed in the "teenager" category in my mind - adult children, teenage-men/women, etc. Even if you see the guests are your parents guests, you still owe your parents the respect and honor they deserve by being, at the very least, polite to their guests, and greeting them at the door, waving them goodbye, and helping your mom clear the table, serving the food, passing the food around the table, etc. YOU OWE YOUR PARENTS! They worked to pay for your education, which more than half the world cannot afford, they fed you every day, watered you, gave you a bed, and at the very least put a roof over your head. You owe your parents.

"Children honor your father and mother..."

- Exodus 20:12; Deuteronomy 5:16; Matthew 15:4;

Matthew 19:19; Mark 7:10; Mark 10:19;

Luke 18:20; Ephesians 6:2.

Based on these eight scriptures throughout the Bible, I would say this is pretty important.

When to "Pull the Plug"

There have been numerous times when I have been sitting in a church service and some one's cell phone goes off, or there is a group of teenagers, even adults, texting during a service.

If you are in a church, then there is no reason why you should have your cell phone ringing, or be texting, unless some emergency has happened in your family and you are needed ASAP. Sorry, this sounds harsh, but give me a good reason why you should be texting when you are in a church to learn about and grow deeper in the Word of God, and learn to be better in your part as The Body of Christ.

In fact, it would bring the pastor great delight, and show an amazing amount of respect that few people are capable of showing if you simply turned of your cellular device.

If you absolutely must use your cell phone during a church service, if there is a family emergency or you are on call at work, please find a secluded place to take or make your call. Such as the church office, if you're granted permission, outside, or some other place where there are few people and you will not be disrupting anyone.

Sexting

If you're a committed Christian, than you know the rule to this: Don't do it. Period. The end. End of discussion. Go read your Bible!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Excellent Articulating!


Over the past several months I have enjoyed reading posts written by Christa Taylor on her blog http://www.empoweredtraditionalist.com/


As I was looking through some of her older blog posts an article titled "Is It Pride?" caught my eye. This is probably because many of the blogs and web sites that I have found written by young woman who are passionate about modesty, seem to be more worried about the legalism of modesty rather than modesty flowing out from you love relationship with Christ.


Because I have found this to be true in so many cases, I find Christa Taylor's blog to be refreshing and her article on this topic up-lifting.





I hope and pray you find the same!


Blessings!

Miss Elisabeth

Monday, July 20, 2009

Wow! Anyone Look at the Hottest Fashion?

Short-shorts anyone.
This seems to be the style of the century.
Please visit:
Beautifully designed dress -
minus the very sensual painting on the front
Brought to you be http://www.elle.com/.
It reminds me of something Padme Amadala would design
based on a bad dream she had
the night before - random thought ;) Both this and the below image are from
http://www.fashionising.com/
Maybe I just don't understand, but the shear look
is just not working for me.

So I was googling "2o09 Fashion Trends" and was rather shocked at what I found!
"See Through and Shear Fashion Trends: The hottest look for 2008
and 2009"

And I'm sorry, but I just don't see how this is at all attractive. Okay, sure if you keep everything that God intended for only your spouse to see covered, and use shear fabric as an accent, then I can certainly see how wearing some shear articles could be an absolute blast - but let's keep it modest :)
Why do young woman find it so hard to be creative and design their own outfits? I myself find it extremely hard, sometimes, when I hit an artistic rut and can't find inspiration. For the most part this is cause by my lack of courage in stepping outside the cultural box, or I feel reserved about wearing a particular outfit that is more feminine then usual, or has more character than the the group of people I happened to be in at the moment.

Culture certainly makes it hard to step outside the box and create your own ideas on what fashion is, and what your own personal style happens to be.
Using your artistic eye, distinguished sense of color and your own shape, you can create just about any outfit for any occasion you might cross in life. But when it comes down to actually wearing the outfit in public... well... nobody else is wearing anything like it!! And this is where I begin to clam up and shut-down.

"What will they think?"
"No one else is dressed like this?"
"I'm over-dressed!"
"Who will be looking?"
"It makes me look good... and guys will notice me!"

I happen to be quite a shy person. I just out-grew hiding behind my mom when I was thirteen and was no longer short enough to actually hide behind her (I am taller than mom). I enjoy acting on the stage, but when I'm off the stage my favorite thing in the world is not to be noticed, I like to have privacy and generally keep to myself.
However, God asks us to be His image bearers: to be His light and life. His joy and love. His color and vivacious character.

How then can we live behind the scenes - behind the curtain - when God asks us to take center stage, lead, and walk down that red carpet in something that is captivatingly modest, feminine, flattering and vivacious - totally not what Hillary Duff or Miley Cyrus (or whatever celebrity happens to be the "hottest" at the moment) would wear, but something you would totally wear!

All this to say, I'm sending out another challenge out there!
I challenge you to wear an outfit every day this week that only you would wear. Something that shows your own personality, style and character. Something that is 100% (or close at least) YOU!! Something so creative that even Hollywood couldn't imagine it!

If you would like to join in the challenge, please post pictures on your blog and leave a comment with your blog site on it so others can read it and look at your pictures:)

God richly bless and keep you all this week!!


Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Challenge

Once to twice a month I will post a challenge. If you participate in the challenge, please link to this blog with "Challenge" as your blog title, and comment on this blog post with your blog info. I will do a drawing at the end of the week of those who completed the challenge and send them a prize.

This months reading is:
'Honor, Patronage, Kinship & Purity;
Unlocking
New Testament
Culture'


By: David A. deSilva
Your view of God and the Old Testament will be forever changed!
The research deSilva has done is extraordinary!

I challenge you to pick up the book and read it, cover to cover, and write a review of the book on your blog. Link to this blog and comment on this blog post with your blog link. The weekend of the 12th I'll draw a name from the hat, of those who participated, and whichever name/ blog I draw will be the winner of:
'Why the Passion'
By, Greg Laurie
AND...

'Authentic Beauty;
the shaping of
a set-apart you woman'

By, Leslie Ludy
(Updated and expanded version)

Again, if you participate in this challenge, please comment on this post
with your name and blog site
so others can read your review, and I know
how to contact you if you are THE WINNER
for this months drawing :)
Blessings,
Miss Elisabeth!

Souled Out


Under the Umbrella of South Dakota's pride and joy, Life Light (a free weekend long concert featuring artists of every genre, as a Christian ministry to the locals of SD, pulling in people from Wisconsin, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, North Dakota, and a few other states) there is a ministry known as Souled Out. A youth ministry. A ministry to reach out to our mostly lost generation.

A ministry with a hundred or so people working in it to woo the hearts of me non-logical, calloused generation.

What a calling to be a part of such a ministry!

I personally know two families who work closely with and in this ministry. Both are amazing families, both Souled Out themselves, both families have three children. Both live their lives on the line for Christ.

Last Friday I attended our church Young Adults ministry, The River. Never in my life have I been so shocked at the participation, or lack there of, in a group.
  • The young adults did not interact with the leaders of the The River - the leaders always had to initiate if they were to expect any interaction.

  • The attendees did not interact with the speaker except to laugh nervously, or in inappropriate places (for example, when the speaker attempted to give the Hebraic word for certain themes in the Bible [praise, stewardship, etc.] and then defined the Hebrew word, the audience would laugh as if it were a joke.
  • As the speaker was asking the students to think about things that were keeping them from growing deeper in the Lord (jobs, money, boy/girl-friend, etc.) a couple sitting in front of me was touching each other in a very friendly manner... This is probably sounding very judgmental, but an apparent friend of the couple (sitting next to them) looked at the girlfriend, raised her eyes brows and smiled in that "uh huhh" type of way. Perhaps I'm reading too much into this, but don't you think our generation would be closer to God if we focused on God at church instead of focusedly touching our boy/girl friend?

Perhaps I am being to judgemental, perhaps I don't understand. Perhaps being home schooled my entire life has left me to expecting to much from other people, especially my peers.

Perhaps.. perhaps... perhaps...

Or... Perhaps I expect what ought to be expected of my peers, raise the bar of expectation, expect them to research and dig deeper into finding the true, God-intended meaning of words...

Perhaps I am following my calling in life, to expect much of me, but expecting too much of others in my generation..

???

What is one to do, when they can see all that could be enriched, but perfectly incapable of making it into reality because fear sets in, or you feel inadequate, or "you're younger than those people," "you don't have enough experience," "you've only gone once?"

Should I stand up and Face my Giants, or sit back and let Someone Else stand up?

Should I go against the flow of culture, or live my life on the line, as my friends in the Souled Out ministry do?

Where is the line between too high of expectations, and raising the bar to where God intended it?

When do we know, as followers of Christ, when the time has come to STAND UP, and when we are supposed to focus on SOMETHING ELSE?

Very distinctly, a few weeks ago, God spoke to me. He said that my ministry was "right here.. right amidst these young adults of 2-13... Right here, where the young woman are seeking help, guidance, support and mentors... Right here, among the young woman, and young children is where I called you."

So does this mean I edit and copy up a list of "suggestions" on our computer of The River, and gently, thoughtfully, prayerfully and encouragingly give the list to our youth pastor?

Or does this mean I simply pray and ask God to bring someone into the church who has a heart for ministry?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

The Last Sin Eaters Maiden

The Actress Gabrielle Fitzpatrick, who played
Bletsung McLeod

I have a dream, though. A dream to to be a Proverbs 31 Woman. A dream inspired by a movie which is seemingly irrelevent to being an ezer. If you have seen The Last Sin Eater, then I think, perhaps, you'll know who and what I am referring to in that movie. Just to be extra clear, I will explain this a little further.
In the movie The Last Sin Eater, which was originally a book written by Francine Rivers, there is a maiden whose name is Bletsung McLeod. She is a hermitess, or so to speak, due to the unusual circumstances of her life story.
Her life story goes something along the lines of this:
Bletsung McLeod lived with her abusive father. She found a safe friend, and the masculine leadership she needed in her child-hood guy-friend, Sim.
As Sim and Bletsung grew they found they met each others needs in emotional, psychological, mental and spiritual ways, and so their relationship became that of a sweetly tender romance.
Being first generation immigrants from Scotland to America, there was a great deal of superstition and past sins which hurt more than just their families and clan. The immigrant leader, along with the help of the other clan men, annihilated an entire tribe of Natives to the Appalachian mountains. Desiring to hide his sin and the true reason for destroying the tribe of Indians (which was simply because he did not want to share the resources of the land, and not because the Natives were dangerous, as he claimed) the clan leader took a pole with chicken bones to declare a new "Sin Eater," which was a superstitious practice brought over from Scotland.(The pole was very similar to "whoever draws the shortest stick gets to do the yucky job")

The Sin Eater was chosen, and Bletsung McLeod, from that day forward lived a life of singleness as a hermitess. She was ridiculed and scrutinized because she was relational with the Sin Eater and extended her knowledge of herbal medicine - the outcome was being called a "witch," despite the simple fact that she was no witch, nor sorceress, but a good steward of the resources God had given her for that time in her life - good soil, plenty of water and herbs.

She did not have a faith in God as a father, nor did she have knowledge of Christ. But she sought Truth, and then accepted it with open arms when it was offered to her.

Looking at the character of Bletsung McLeod, one can see many desirable qualities, as young women, as maidens and as ladies desiring to be ezer's and Proverbs 31 women.

Firstly, which is my favorite, Bletsung is Fearlessly Feminine. She wears a dress all the time. Now, this was the right and proper thing to do, especially in the early to mid 1700's. Unlike her peers, although they were worn out from bearing many children, losing several children through death (as was common in that day and age) and providing for their sometimes heathen husbands, Bletsung dressed as a lady. The movie portrays her as being an incredible seamstress (although not stated directly, she would have no one else to sew her clothing for her, she's an outcast after all). Her taste in fashion is portrayed as mastery in excellence. The design of her dress, color and style are simply breathtaking and modest! (I would take one of her dresses any day!).

And her hair! Oh my goodness! Yes, it is true, the actress of the movie is a natural beauty, I must say (many in this movie are, naturally beautiful in an innocent and pure way). I am basing this aspect strictly on the movie (as I have not read the book and have been told by several people that the movie is much better), Bletsung lets her hair run free with the wind. Although I would not suggest curling your hair for every day activity (as I believe the actress did to her bangs), I do hold high regard and respect for those who take the time to fix their hair in an attractive way and take care of it properly (conditioning it when necessary, trimming it when you need it etc., and in a "fixing it up" way, styling in it such a way as to keep it out of and enhances your face, everyone wants to see your beautiful eyes and bright smile! Hair is beautiful, but sometimes it is overwhelming and hides one's facial features, making it hard to converse and takes away from Paul's teaching that a woman's hair is "her glory," not place to hide :)

Although I don't think either dress or her hair was practical, having worked on outside building projects in Appalachia for a week in the middle of Summer, I do think Bletsung McLeod is a wonderful example of what feminine modesty is in a fashion sense.

Secondly, the woman was a good steward. She had skill and worked to enhance those skills. She lived off the land and provided for herself - no one else would and she had no family.
She studied botany and was an herbalist. It shows in the movie and talks a bit about in the book Bletsung tending her garden and working with wild bees for honey.

She obviously used herbs for healing, as she prepares naturally based medicines (she had nothing else) to tend to a boy with broken ribs and other serious injuries - he heals beautifully. (Read the Epilogue of the book)

In her knowledge of botany and allowing her maternal instincts to shine through, instead of stuffing them inside, or exchanging them for "toughness" as so many woman in our culture, Bletsung McLeod was used as a tool to bring physical healing to a character in the story, bring emotional healing and companionship to a persecuted outlaw of the cove (or clan) and was capable of inviting redemption and personal healing to herself.
Bletsung mastered the art of natural living and found contentment in this simple-lifestyle; and so she had truly conquered the concept and state of being an "Earth Mother."

Thirdly, which is perhaps one of the most beautiful and incredible aspects of her role, Bletsung McLeod was a true, marked ezer. She wasn't a Christian, but she knew her place in the world as a whole, and then also in society. She was unafraid and openly identified herself as a lady, helper, friend and nurturer.

She befriended her seemingly "worst enemy" - the Sin Eater. (Who, according to the superstition, was unable to touch or be seen by anyone, otherwise that person would too take on the sins of the world. As I said, this is a perfectly family-friendly film about an entire Celtic clan's redemption, forgiveness - of one another and the past generation - for themselves, and then basking in the love of the Lord)
The sweet romance she had with Sim as a young woman, had died. In it's place an unquenching, deep and definite love resounded between the two characters.

They could not have "romance" in the worlds standards, and certainly could not have a "passionate 'I'm in love'" twitter painted infatuation that comes over many young people during puberty and young adulthood. (Which has taken the place of the love Paul talks about when he tells husbands to "love your wives as Christ Loves the Church." This is an Agape, or Caritas and Eros, or "I love you because you are you" love, as C.S Lewis puts it. This is very different from a "Venus," or sexual love.)

As the movie progresses, it becomes more and more apparent that Bletsung and her friend share an Eros love for one another. A love that expresses "you are who you are, and I love you because of that." This is intertwined with an Agape (or in Greek, Caritas) love.
Bletsung tells her love to his face;
"If I cannot be your wife, and bear your children,
then I will be no mans..."

She is unshakably committed to this lion-hearted man, dispite his complete inability to care for her as a man ought care for his woman.
They cannot touch each other.
They cannot look at each other.
They can only speak to one another - communicate through words, share a mutual love in verbage and share dreams using limited language.
How pure their love must have been when Bletsung "became his wife" and "bore his children"

How special their relationship must have been; how deep their loyalty to one another when, after years of waiting, life-altering hardship, and the extremities of the world pressed down on them, they share an intimately romantic life. Not only intimate in the physical sense (as defined by so many), but also in the emotional, intellectual, spiritual and mental sense.

She may not have been able to be close to the man she deeply loved physically, but she waged war for him by being his help meet and loving him for who he was - with Eros love, and in doing so she was even closer than any two sexually involved lovers could ever be, they knew each others' heart. For providing for herself and telling him she cared enough about him, despite what the word said, to wait for him.

In the end, her loyalty, faithfulness and commitment to be courageously feminine, an excellent steward and passionately committed to the man she loved paid off, despite the world telling her "she couldn't do it," "he's not good enough," "you deserve better," "you act as a witch," and "why don't you just give up..."
You can be a Proverbs 31 woman too!
It takes just one small step at a time.
What step is God asking you to take?

Monday, June 22, 2009

Modesty Revisited


Her essays have appeared in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, City Journal, and other publications. Her book, A Return to Modesty, was published by The Free Press in 1999, and last year was reissued in paperback by Touchstone Books in an edition that includes questions for classroom use.

Miss Shalit spoke at Hillsdale College on November 15, 2000. The following is an excerpt of her presentation, which she delivered in Phillips Auditorium at a seminar sponsored by the College’s Center for Constructive Alternatives.

...

This afternoon I was reading a magazine for brides in which a woman had submitted the following question: “My fiance wants us to move in together, but I want to wait until we’re married. Am I doing our marriage an injustice?” The editor responded: “Your fiance should understand why you want to wait to share a home. Maybe you’re concerned about losing your identity as an individual. Or maybe you’re concerned about space issues.”
Space issues? Losing her identity? If this woman cared about those things she wouldn’t want to get married in the first place. Her question was a moral one. She wanted to know what would be best for her marriage. And on this—however unbeknownst to the magazine’s new-agey editor—the evidence is in: Couples who live together before marriage are much less likely to get married; and if they do marry, they’re more likely to get divorced. Yet the vocabulary of modesty has largely dropped from our cultural consciousness; when a woman asks a question that necessarily implicates it, we can only mumble about “space issues.”
I first became interested in the subject of modesty for a rather mundane reason—because I didn’t like the bathrooms at Williams College. Like many enlightened colleges and universities these days, Williams houses boys next to girls in its dormitories and then has the students vote by floor on whether their common bathrooms should be coed. It’s all very democratic, but the votes always seem to go in the coed direction because no one wants to be thought a prude. When I objected, I was told by my fellow students that I “must not be comfortable with [my] body.” Frankly, I didn’t get that, because I was fine with my body; it was their bodies in such close proximity to mine that I wasn’t thrilled about.
I ended up writing about this experience in Commentary as a kind of therapeutic exercise. But when my article was reprinted in Reader’s Digest, a weird thing happened: I got piles of letters from kids who said, “I thought I was the only one who couldn’t stand these bathrooms.” How could so many people feel they were the “only ones” who believed in privacy and modesty? It was troubling that they were afraid to speak up. When and why, I wondered, did modesty become such a taboo?
At Yale in 1997, a few years after my own coed bathroom protest, five Orthodox Jewish students petitioned the administration for permission to live off-campus instead of in coed dorms. In denying them, a dean with the Dickensian name of Brodhead explained that “Yale has its own rules and requirements, which we insist on because they embody our values and beliefs.” Yale has no core curriculum, of course, but these coed bathrooms, according to Dean Brodhead, embody its beliefs. I would submit that as a result of this kind of “liberationist” ideology, we today have less, not more freedom, than in the pre-1960s era when modesty was upheld as a virtue. In this regard it’s important to recall that when colleges had separate dorms for men and women, and all the visitation rules that went with them, it was also possible for kids to circumvent those rules. It was possible, for instance—now, I’m not advocating this—for students to sneak into each others’ dorms and act immodestly. But in the new culture of “liberation,” a student can’t sneak into the dorms and be modest, or, more accurately, she can’t sneak out. There is no “right of exit” in today’s immodest society. If you don’t participate, you’re a weirdo. Hence students are not really free to develop their best selves, to act in accordance with their hopes.

Modesty’s Loss, Social Pathology’s Gain

Many of the problems we hear about today? sexual harassment, date rape, young women who suffer from eating disorders and report feeling a lack of control over their bodies—are all connected, I believe, to our culture’s attack on modesty. Listen, first, to the words we use to describe intimacy: what once was called “making love,” and then “having sex,” is now “hooking up”—like airplanes refueling in flight. In this context I was interested to learn, while researching for my book, that the early feminists actually praised modesty as ennobling to society. Here I’m not just talking about the temperance-movement feminists, who said, “Lips that touch liquor shall never touch mine.” I’m talking about more recent feminists like Simone de Beauvoir, who warned in her book, The Second Sex, that if society trivializes modesty, violence against women would result. And she was right. Since the 1960s, when our cultural arbiters deemed this age-old virtue a “hang-up,” men have grown to expect women to be casual about sex, and women for their part don’t feel they have the right to say “no.” This has brought us all more misery than joy. On MTV I have seen a 27-year-old woman say she was “sort of glad” that she had herpes, because now she has “an excuse to say ‘no’ to sex.” For her, disease had replaced modesty as the justification for exercising free choice.
In 1948 there was a song called “Baby It’s Cold Outside” by Frank Loesser, in which a boyfriend wants his girlfriend to sleep over. His argument is simple but compelling: Baby it’s cold outside, and if she doesn’t sleep over, she could catch pneumonia and die, and that would cause him “lifelong sorrow.” In response, the girl offers several counter-arguments: “My father will be waiting at the door, there’s bound to be talk tomorrow,” etc. It’s a very cute song. And while post-modern intellectuals at progressive institutions like Yale would no doubt say this song proves how oppressed women were in 1948, I would argue that today’s culture—in which fathers can’t be counted on to be waiting at the door—is far creepier.
The counterpoint to “Baby It’s Cold Outside” is a story I read in a women’s magazine, written by an ex-boyfriend of an 18-year-old girl whose father had decided that she was too old to be a virgin. After commiserating with the boyfriend, this father drove the pair to a hotel (he didn’t trust the boyfriend with his car), where the girl became hysterical and the scheme fell apart. This article was called “My Ex-Girlfriend’s Father: What a Man!” And although the story isn’t typical, it is quite common these days for parents to rent hotel rooms for their kids on prom nights, which is essentially the same principle. So the father in “Baby It’s Cold Outside” waiting at the door, and the older culture that supported modesty, actually made women stronger. It gave them the right to say ‘no’ until they met someone they wanted to marry. Today’s culture of “liberation” gives women no ground on which to stand. And an immodest culture weakens men, too ? we are all at the mercy of other people’s judgment of us as sexual objects (witness the revolution in plastic surgery for men), which is not only tiring but also dishonest because we can’t be ourselves.
When I talk to college students, invariably one will say, “Well, if you want to be modest, be modest. If you want to be promiscuous, be promiscuous. We all have a choice, and that’s the wonderful thing about this society.” But the culture, I tell them, can’t be neutral. Nor is it subtle in its influence on behavior. In fact, culture works more like a Sherman tank. In the end, if it’s not going to value modesty, it will value promiscuity and adultery, and all our lives and marriages will suffer as a result.

Four Myths Exposed

A First step toward reviving respect for modesty in our culture is to strike at the myths that undermine it. Let me touch on four of these.
The first myth is that modesty is Victorian. But what about the story of Rebecca and Isaac? When Rebecca sees Isaac and covers herself, it is not because she is trying to be Victorian. Her modesty was the key to what would bring them together and develop a profound intimacy. When we cover up what is external or superficial—what we all share in common—we send a message that what is most important are our singular hearts and minds. This separates us from the animals, and always did, long before the Victorian era.
The second myth about modesty is that it’s synonymous with prudery. This was the point of the dreadful movie Pleasantville, the premise of which was that nobody in the 1950s had fun or experienced love. It begins in black and white and turns to color only when the kids enlighten their parents about sex. This of course makes no sense on its face: if the parents didn’t know how to do it, then how did all these kids get there in the first place? But it reflects a common conceit of baby boomers that passion, love and happiness were non-existent until modesty was overcome in the 1960s. In truth, modesty is nearly the opposite of prudery. Paradoxically, prudish people have more in common with the promiscuous. The prudish and the promiscuous share a disposition against allowing themselves to be moved by others, or to fall in love. Modesty, on the other hand, invites and protects the evocation of real love. It is erotic, not neurotic.
To illustrate this point, I like to compare photographs taken at Coney Island almost a century ago with photographs from nude beaches in the 1970s. At Coney Island, the beach-goers are completely covered up, but the men and women are stealing glances at one another and seem to be having a great time. On the nude beaches, in contrast, men and women hardly look at each other—rather, they look at the sky. They appear completely bored. That’s what those who came after the ’60s discovered about this string of dreary hookups: without anything left to the imagination, sex becomes boring.
The third myth is that modesty isn’t natural. This myth has a long intellectual history, going back at least to David Hume, who argued that society invented modesty so that men could be sure that children were their own. As Rousseau pointed out, this argument that modesty is a social construct suggests that it is possible to get rid of modesty altogether. Today we try to do just that, and it is widely assumed that we are succeeding. But are we?
In arguing that Hume was wrong and that modesty is rooted in nature, a recently discovered hormone called oxytocin comes to mind. This hormone creates a bonding response when a mother is nursing her child, but is also released during intimacy. Here is physical evidence that women become emotionally bonded to their sexual partners even if they only intend a more casual encounter. Modesty protected this natural emotional vulnerability; it made women strong. But we don’t really need to resort to physiology to see the naturalness of modesty. We can observe it on any windy day when women wearing slit skirts hobble about comically to avoid showing their legs—the very legs those fashionable skirts are designed to reveal. Despite trying to keep up with the fashions, these women have a natural instinct for modesty.
The fourth and final myth I want to touch on is that modesty is solely a concern for women. We are where we are today only in part because the feminine ideal has changed. The masculine ideal has followed suit. It was once looked on as manly to be faithful to one woman for life, and to be protective toward all women. Sadly, this is no longer the case, even among many men to whom modest women might otherwise look as kindred spirits. Modern feminists are wrong to expect men to be gentlemen when they themselves are not ladies, but men who value “scoring” and then lament that there are no modest women around anymore—well, they are just as bad. And of course, a woman can be modestly dressed and still be harassed on the street. So the reality is that a lot depends on male respect for modesty. It is characteristic of modern society that everyone wants the other guy to be nice to him without having to change his own behavior, whether it’s the feminists blaming the men, the men blaming the feminists, or young people blaming their role models. But that is an infantile posture.

Restoring a Modest Society

Jews read a portion of the Torah each week, and in this week’s portion there is a story that shows us beautifully, I think, how what we value in women and men are inextricably linked. Abraham is visited by three men, really three angels, and he is providing them with his usual hospitality, when they ask him suddenly, “Where is Sarah your wife?” And he replies, famously, “Behold! In the tent!” Commentators ask, why in the world are the angels asking where Sarah is? They know she is in the tent. They are, after all, angels. And one answer is, to remind Abraham of where she is, in order to increase his love for her. This is very interesting, because in Judaism the most important work takes place, so to speak, “in the tent”—keeping kosher, keeping the Sabbath, keeping the laws of marital purity. Torah is only passed on to the next generation because of what the woman is doing in the home. Yet it is not enough for there to be a Sarah who is in the tent; it is also necessary that there be an Abraham who appreciates her. So I think the lesson is clear if we want to reconstruct a more modest, humane society, we have to start with ourselves.
I don’t think it’s an accident that the most meaningful explication of modesty comes from the Bible. I was fascinated in my research to discover how many secular women are returning to modesty because they found, simply as a practical matter, that immodesty wasn’t working for them. In short, they weren’t successful finding the right men. For me this prompts an essentially religious question: Why were we created in this way? Why can’t we become happy by imitating the animals? In the sixth chapter of Isaiah we read that the fiery angels surrounding the throne of God have six wings. One set is for covering the face, another for covering the legs, and only the third is for flying. Four of the six wings, then, are for modesty’s sake. This beautiful image suggests that the more precious something is, the more it must conceal and protect itself. The message of our dominant culture today, I’m afraid, is that we’re not precious, that we weren’t created in the divine image. I’m saying to the contrary that we were, and that as such we deserve modesty.

Reprinted by permission from Imprimis, a publication of Hillsdale College (http://www.hillsdale.edu/)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Beautiful Post by Laughing Lioness!!

The story of Isaac and Rebekah hold a special place in my heart, and always have, especialy when I was little. Esther was a lovely story as well, but something special surrounds Isaac and Rebekah's relationship - it's God chosen. God ordained. God defined. All about the will and want of being in the center of God's will.

Laughing Lioness did a beautiful job!! :)

http://goldengrasses.blogspot.com/2009/06/worries-cease.html

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

God is.... MORE!

Last week God challenged my call to femininity in a deep way:
Application!
I spent the week, Monday through Friday, as a camp guide (also known as a counselor, however they chose the word "guide" to convey to the campers that we are there to serve, mentor, challenge, learn from and help them wherever they and we see the need), located in an old mining town called Deadwood, at Kamp Kinship. The camp I staffed at was for the 3-6th graders.
Every evening God spoke in "a still small voice" through the tender praise of His little children, and the passionate please of His servants (pastors, other guides, leaders, worshipers).
"You are my pearl of great price..."
'El Shaddai is my Savior;
Poppa, my Father;
El Roi, my God...
They are one and the same.."
Words similar to these echoed in my mind...
"God, oh God, clear my thought! Let me say nothing
but that which you desire me to say."
Anxiously, I plead to God, clear my thoughts! I felt this prompting to write out the words I was hearing in the form of a Bible study, which He then asked me to present to my campers later Monday evening.
Two key statements that had repetitively overwhelmed my thoughts that first evening of camp are:
"God invested in pearls..." (Matthew 13:44-46)
and "God is in love with you!"
By the second evening, I was literally overwhelmed at how amazing God is when we "let Him loose" in the midst of children. Meaning, we don't put Him in a box, restrain Him (give Him a time limit, geographical limit, word or musical limit, etc.)
God is above words!
Sometimes He reveals himself in such simple incomprehensibly humongous ways - a part of who He really is - that the only thing we can do - the now overwhelmed, physically incapable of handling this without some sort of miracle human beings - is weep!
The strongest people I met that week were
the ones who wept first!
Wednesday morning brought buckets of rain.. Something I, a very strange person, generally enjoy. However, when you have only one pair of pants, one pair of walking shoes and no rain coat for the entire week in 55 *F weather, one has a tendency of abhorring the weather man... or in my case, the bringer of cold, wet clouds.
Despite the horrors of prairie weather, realism slapped me in the face.
These people are the kingdom of God!
Right here! We - us... Children of the Almighty, saved by Jesus Christ, the Lord - are the Kingdom of God!
Wow!
Does this not send chills down your spine? You... me and you, my friend, my family in Our Lord, are the Kingdom of God!
.... no pressure or anything =)
Thursday was a day of gathering together many thoughts...
Firstly, this:
When Christ found just one pearl -
one
small percent of all the people,
from the beginning of time until now -
one fraction of all living -
He gave everything for the price
of that one pearl!
Matthew 12:44-46
We had a lot of found pearls that week.
WELCOME TO THE FAMILY KIDS!! :)
A song that came to mind was "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" by Marvin Gaye (scroll to end to read the lyrics)
God is so passionately, head-over-heels
in LOVE
with
YOU!
(This is pretty much self-explanatory)
Another interesting (reprimand) from the ever beckoning, compulsive (yes, God does call for perfection...), Righteous One:
When you can do more...
DO MORE!
This is also self-explanatory... But please let me explain myself and why I found this so revolutionary (although I understand it probably is not to many of you).
God has given me the gift of leadership.. Yes this does sound very self-righteous, I understand.. *sheepish grin*...
I have been told by many people that I am a natural leader and that if I see something needs to be done I need to just do it.
However, I also have a "person pleaser" streak in me. This does not bode well for leaders, since, generally, as a leader they are called to go where other have not.. do what other will not.. And I think Mother Teresa basically sums it up:
"A sacrifice to be real must cost, must hurt, must empty ourselves.
The fruit of silence is prayer,
the fruit of prayer is faith,
the fruit of faith is love,
the fruit of love is service,
the fruit of service is peace."
Perhaps this doesn't seem relevant to you. However, I have seen in life is that the best leaders are generally those who are willing to take risks first (before their followers, before other leaders even). They are willing to lay their life down on the line for what they believe in.

Looking at leaders of the past (Mother Teresa, William Wilberforce, Leslie Unru, Star Parker, the Apostle Paul, and even Jesus), each of these leaders have gone through (and will continue to go through) scrutiny, persecution and negativity from people around them. They cannot be phased by what other people think about them if they are to accomplish what God has laid on their hearts to do.
If one is to lead they must:
get over themselves
Get over other people
And get over what they don't understand about God.

On Thursday morning, I wrote this in a journal a friend gave to my for my graduation
"My Reflections/ Noted for:
Thursday...
Public school sucks the innocence out of you:
One has to make decisions they probably aren't ready to make.."
Note: This is an opinion of mine, which I have come to due to many camps, traveling, jobs and a few internships I have participated in.
Innocence is different from virginity or "plain ol'" purity (which is not at all plain in our day and age!!!).
Innocence, in Websters 1964 dictionary is defined as:
"Freedom from sin, evil or guilt.
Freedom from knowledge of evil.
Freedom from guile or cunning;
Simplicity.
Incapability of harming, injuring or corrupting.
Synonyms:
Innocuousness, harmless, inoffensiveness,
guilelessness, guiltlessness,
simplicity, purity, sinless"
There are few children who were innocent. There was a constant pecking order of who was "higher" on the totum pole, and few kids who didn't care and who truly displayed innocence and protection of that innocence. The very few that I saw there who truly captured an innocent heart were always the first to pray, the first to encourage others, and the first to just stand up and do what was right, generally speaking.
As you can see, over the week I have learned a lot of new things, and truly tried to grow deeper in my walk with the Holy One.
Now, I'm on the journey of better understanding my role as a woman and as an Ambassador for Christ - a created being of Yhwh, an ezer, a friend, a student, a teacher and a disciple.
Woman, as created by God are:
Image bearers of Him - El Rio
Warriors of the God of the Angel Armies
Comforters, (sisters, mothers) of El Shaddai
Encourager's of Emmanuel
and in all things, seekers and defenders of Truth!
- the Living God, His Son and the Holy Spirit
God is big! HUGE! Yet, He is right here, right now, with us.
This, in my mind sums it up:
"Where were you? Do the eagles soar at your command?"
"But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength..
They will soar on the wings of/ like eagles..."
Job 38-40 and
Isaiah 40:31
Meaning: Where were you when the eagles were taught to fly? But if you hope in me, then you will soar on those wings, of the eagles..." ~ Love God
:) Isn't that so cool? Go ahead, read it yourself, dissect the discussions, research it and come to the conclusion and conviction that the Spirit of the Lord of Hosts brings to you! :)
God is... MORE!
Than you could ever imagine!!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Starved for Modesty

"Truth or dare?"
"Truth."
"Have you ever kissed a boy, other than your dad and brothers?"
"No-"
"What about your boyfriend?" The preteen girls asked me agast. Her eyes wide and jaw dropped, I couldn't help but giggle.
"I don't have a boyfriend."
"Why not? You should!"
"Why do you say that?" Honestly, I really was curious as to what her response would be.
"You're too pretty not to have a boyfriend..."

This answer I was so totally not expecting. But to be honest, it really fits into the reason why I haven't had a boyfriend.
The discussion that ensued was more than emberassing, not because it was innapropriate in any way, but because I am uncomfortable sharing my convictions regarding not having had a boyfriend, and then the discussion that followed, which regarded modesty and why I dressed modestly... there were three pre-teen boys in the car who also ended up asking questions...
"Why do you dress modestly?"
"What is modesty?"
"Why does modesty matter?"
"Why don't people dress modestly now?"
"What does modesty mean..."

For girls, I can totally answer these questions, especially when I know their parents! But boys... this makes the definining a little more... umm... challenging, let us say, especialy when you are trying to be modest while defining modest. It's a challenge! But I made it through! And none of the kiddos were emberassed, just me ;-)
To be honest, I shocked at how niave these young people were in regards to modesty, and yet how open and inquzzitive they were about the topic. Especially the boys. Especially the loud, obnoxious, boundary-pushing boys.
However, the reward was incredible.
"Modesty is keeping everything that God intended for your husband or wife covered...."
(I hoped they wouldn't ask what "intended for your husband or wife" meant ;)
"Ooh... Why would you do that?"
"Because God created your body to be seen by only your spouse (husband or wife)."
Basically, this was enough to satisfy the desire to talk about this topic, which I was thankful for.
I did think it was pretty cool how responsive they were though, and thought I would share:

THERE ARE SOME PEOPLE WHO CARE... Even if they don't know what it means :)

God richly bless and keep you this week!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Feelin' feminine Challenge, day-5

An adventuresome day. My two youngest siblings had friends for a sleep over last night, so they were here until late this afternoon.
As the week has progresses I find it more easy to pick out skirt-oriented clothing. It is fun wearing something airy, frilly and elegant.
We had dinner at our friends house - another night out on the town with friends ;-) Actually, not "night on the town" but we did have a fun meal with our friends, who live about a half hour from civilization themselves, just on the opposite side of civilization from us... if that makes sense?!

I like this picture because it gives a hint of what the blouse is like. It's actually very feminine/ girly. Ruffles follow along the neckline, and buttons grace the front, and a bow ties in the back :) I thought the scarf added a touch of fun to the whole out-fit.
I just love scarves!
Well this is as good as it's gonna get, regarding the way-cool earrings that completed the dress.
My sister gave them to me for Christmas. They're from Chico's, a very fun little store that has awesome jewelery (that costs and arm and a leg, but in the end it's all worth it, especially if you only buy one pair every fifteen/ twenty years, right? :0)
This definitely shows off the skirts gracefulness a little better than the first picture. I love this skirt. It's the second, or maybe third, time I've worn it this week. Simple, elegant, yet easy to move in, and not too long so it doesn't get underfoot, nor is it a delicate fabric like the camouflage skirt I wore earlier on this week, making it much more easy to clean and work in.

As I stated in the first paragraph, we went to some friends house for dinner this evening, and had a beautiful time of fellowship and conversation.
This morning and afternoon mom spring cleaned the kitchen. The refrigerator, the cabinets, the floor, the cupboards, the drawers.. What did we not clean!
For the most part it has been cool, rainy and dreary, so I did not venture outside for very long at all, except to take my puppy outside :)
I hope you all have a fantastic week and enjoy your wonderful femininity as God intended it - vulnerably searching to glorify Him in all you do, in all your ways, in every word, breath and move taken.
Blessings in the name of Our Lord, Jesus Christ;
In the name of our Father in Heaven, El Roi, Yhwh, El Shaddai
Miss Elisabeth

Friday, June 5, 2009

Feelin' Feminine Challenge, Day-4

All I donned today was a frilly blue skirt and simple t-shirt
(which is from our church and states "STRETCH!
Rest more, reach more, laugh more, love more, serve more..."
And then has Isaia 54:2 written in almost unreadable letters at the top ;)
Picking lettuce for our chicken, tomatoe, pepper, carrot
and chees salad - a truly satisfying lunch!

Today has brought many unexpected turns and twists to our schedule. It was a lovely day though! The sun was shining, the sky a bright blue, and the grass incredibly green. We were planning on going into town to pick up some friends for my two youngest wonderful siblings, but their friends mom drove them here, bringing their grandfather with them, who was a delight to speak with!


We did make a run to the local grocery store for some heavy whipping cream, chips and two gallons of milk for Rhubarb Marignue, chips for our hot-dog and kiwi dinner and milk to last us the week.. But other than this I spent the day blissfuly enjoying the fantastic weather, enjoying the puppy, discussing topics such as femininity, beauty, modesty, evil and the Screwtape Letters (by C.S Lewis) with the adult-type figures in the family.
My brother and I had an extremely fun conversation about the Screwtape letters, and laughing at Uncle Screwtapes inconsistancy regarding his (literally) love-hate relationship with nephew Wormwood.
So long for tonight :)
God richly bless and keep you,
May His face shine upon you and be gracious to you.
May He lift His countenance upon you and give you peace.
God guide, protect, heal and deliver you,
As you rest in His loving arms.
Miss Elisabeth

Feelin' Feminine Challenge, Day-3

Yesterday, June forth, was quite a busy day! To start the morning off, mom and I took a rather refreshing forty-five minute walk with my puppy. Following our walk I was asked to finish up my school work for the day as quickly as possible, as we were going into town at noon.
We spent the majority of the afternoon at a families house, who's mother is leading a "Child rearing/ training" class. A group of Christian mom's from our church. It was very refreshing to fellowship, and sit under the wisdom and experience of so many woman :)
After this stopped by Wal-Mart to pick up some dinner to share with our new-found kindred spirited friends.
At this point I would like to break from the day and discuss and interesting subject mom brought up while we were standing in the WalMart check-out.
Standing in from of mom and I in the check-our were two guys. Both of which had a crew-cut-almost-completely-gone head of hair. Both of which stood in a manner which announced to the world "I'm leaning back, looking relaxed, because if I don't my gangster pants will fall off." Both of which looked very... rough around the edges, to say the least.
Looking around the store, this was how ever single one of the the guys even around my age who shared the ame attire and the persona that the two guy, no longer in the check-out, wore.
"Where are the good-looking young men?" Mom was also noticing these same traits that I saw, woven so deeply into our culture.
"Not here! In Africa, and the Middle East, taking their faith seriously, and getting shot for it." Laughing, I tried not to think too hard about it, and move on... the two guys had heard my mom's and my exchange, and sneared. Walking back to the car, groceries retrieved and payed for, bagged and ready to consume, I asked the question that had been floundering in my mind for several months.
"Mom, where are the nice-looking young men of my generation?"
Mom's response was a band-aid to the real issue going on here - there is an extraordinary lack of godly young men, who go to church regularly, openly pursue a relationship with Yhwh, and if their pants are too big, wear a belt to hold them up.

Strangely, this topic followed me back to the home where we had enjoyed the parenting fellowship-group. Tammy, the mother of the home, asked me later on that evening if I was
"interested in boys."
I almost laughed and stated "No, not boys, but young men..." But didn't.. missed opportunity ;) Instead my response was that of most young woman, "yeah... sort'a..."

Her next question was one I dread answering, due to the discussion that usually follows...
"Is there someone you are interested in at church..."
After responding with a hesitant "no" she followed with the next dreaded question

"Why not..."

Here's where I get stuck. In some cases I just come right out and state the problem (especialy if I am feeling frusterated, or tired). In this case, I found it a little easier to be open with Tammy, and respond more honestly
"Well, there aren't any guys, at church, who keep their pants pulled up, and I personally don't like looking at their underwear."
Yes, I do know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that God is refining, preparing, growing, raising up, and building a godly young man for me, and a generation of God-fearing people... it's hard to keep faith, though, when the people around you reflect the opposite- when opposition is so strong!


My attire for the day. Because we were gone most of the day,



I couldn't get any pictures outside :(



A close up - it's not a very good one :)



Nothing fascinating done with my hair today. I had some of my hair, and bangs, up in a barrett, on the right side of my head, but you can't see it very well...






Anyhow, I hope you all have a fantastic day, enjoy the wonderful weather, praise the Lord much, and conquer the earth for Him :)




Blessings in His Holy, holy, holy name,


Miss. Elisabeth


"I saw the Lord, seated on his throne, high and exhalted. And the train of his robe filled the temple. There were angles, with six mighty wings; with two they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they fly.


And they sang "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty, and the whole earth is filled with his glory...."

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Feelin' Feminine Challenge: Day-2

Today was a fantastic day! There's just a hint of breeze drifting through the air, dancing with the tree leaves. Sun is smiling brightly, amidst warm, hazy clouds, and bright blue sky, and the grass is so soft, incredibly lush and flowers are blooming beautifully.

Today's attire, and my no-longer-baby-sister in the background:)

Every time I wear my hair up like this, people ask me how I "did it"
as if putting it up in this fashion is some marvelous wonder.
Frankly, it's rather easy:
French braid your hair upsidown (starting at the nap of your neck
and working your way up to your crown)
Then twist in a bun, and
Voila!

If you want some hair to curl in the back (hanging from the right side of my head)
You need to only twist part of your hair in a bun,
put a scrunchy in it,
secure the bun with bobby-pins
(or a pin of some sort that secures your hair tightly)
and curl the danglingtresses.

I did wear shoes- plain ol' brown leather sandals,
very cute sandals, but very loved... and worn :)
Hairstyle inspired by Miss. Elizabet Bennett from Pride and Prejudice
(A&E version)
Today was rather a full day. I spent most of the day working out logic problems for school, discussing with my parents today's schedule, and locating the Latina Christiana (which I have almost completed... maybe I can even start working on Henley Latin this Summer :).
This afternoon consisted of a couple errands - the post office and our local foods store, nothing of interest I must say. It was a rather dull run into town (a total of one mile to our small village of one-thousand people... the closest to civilization as we get during the week, except for Tuesdays and Sundays... and before long, just Sundays... But it is a nice town, nothing shabby about it!)
Skepticism was very prominent within me when I first read a couple of peers' blogs stating "people treated me differently when I wore my skirt... with more courtesy..." However, I was delightedly surprised when the lady at the post office was so friendly, and sufficient in making sure every little microscopic detail was in order before I paid a single penny - this is partially to do with the culture of our small town, but I also think it delighted her to her toes to see a young person wearing a skirt... and looking nice on a typical day.
As I think about it, probably everyone dressed nicely on outings, even to our small town, when the post-office lady was growing up. She probably grew up in the post-world war II era, when dresses and skirts were still "the fad" and jeans and pants were just beginning to invade our rather dignified and civilized culture. My great-grandmother (a WWII veteran in her own right) wears a navy blue skirt, hoes, and pumps which she keep in spectacular condition, which she has kept with her since, I'm sure, world war two.
The more I think about it, the more I am convinced - we may have won a war, but we lost a great piece of our culture in WWII. The woman started to masculinize themselves, and "the men were in a hurry to catch up with the life they missed at war" (quote from The Walton's, episode nine or ten).
Quite frankly, I did feel like I had just walked out of a post card from one of the Great World Wars. It was like being stuck in the twilight zone, as everyone watched the strange young woman, in her skirt and curled hair; as elderly men smiled, and became young again as they were reminded of a time and age when woman were proudly feminine and a man was thought improper and rude when he didn't open the door for a lady... At time in which men were proud of being men, and woman wore with courage their badge as "ezer" - not only in the home, but as in my great-grandmothers case, worked hard as a mechanic while her male-friends and loved one's fought over-seas... I have become homesick for a time and place which I have never lived, never experienced, never even seen for myself... only heard about in intricately woven tales told by my great-grandmother, and in my grandfathers telling of the Great Depression...
I have felt, heard, seen, learned and been reminded of a great deal.
Yes ladies, we must take up action - remind ourselves we are woman, dress as ladies, bless the men, woman and children around us. Little girls gaze up in wonder when older girls wear skirts and dresses; elderly men smile and feel at home when there is a lady to open the door for; elderly woman must feel like they are back in their element - serving another woman who is proud to be feminine.
And our generation? Well, quite frankly, I'm sure there were a few who scoffed, some who tagged me as "strange," a "weirdo" and probably other things... but there were younger people who appreciated it. The cashier, who was about my age, appreciated it.
It has been a full, beautiful, creative and wonderful day!
Are you up for the Feelin' Feminine 7-Day Challenge?
Blessings in the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ,
Miss. Elisabeth

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I Am That and Who I Am; Part II

Creation of Life
Gently, these artistic hands pulled from the earth gigantic trees, lush green grass and fertile shrubs. Blessings them, I Am bid each plant to multiply and fill the face of the earth by the fruits and flowers of each plant, in accordance to its kind. After naming all the beauty of His work, I Am let the words of Life again flow from His mouth.
“Let the fish fill up our overflowing waters and greatly multiply this good earth.”
As these words filled the cosmos, earths womb burst forth mighty beasts and docile four-legged creature. Soft winds flew across the broken, animal covered terrain.

I Am spoke gently to his wild creatures, “Go all you beasts of the field and untamed things, scatter upon this earth and multiply upon it. I will protect you as you birth your young. Have no fear, for I even clothe the Lily-of-the-Valley. Not one sparrow shall ever fall and go unnoticed by me, for they are the Apple of My Eye, precious and genuine.”

Knowing all that was, and is, and would come, I Am brought up dust from the earth and held it passionately in his aged hands. Speaking softly to the dust the Great Creator spoke to it all that He desired of it, all that it would become and do. Knowledge and wisdom would be given to this next masterpiece. It would have an assignment, commission, obligation and duty to the earth and her Creator. And I am welded it into the core of the new creatures being.

Thoughtfully, the Creator spoke into existence Deoxyribonucleic acid. As the creature’s genome executed what the designer desired, an Imago Deo formed before him.

Speaking tenderly, the Master Artists, El Roi, breathed a life giving name upon the chemical-genetic substance.

“Adam…Adam, hear me. Be the namer of all things. Your calling from me to you knits the very genetic substance within you together. Be my son. Walk with me, Adam.”

Then El Roi breathed into the nostrils of his creation, who gasped with the breath of his creator. He was Adam.
Walking with His creature, El Roi pointed out the beauties of His garden. As they walked I Am beckoned Adam to name each extraordinary creature that He saw.

When Adam had named all the creatures of the earth, each with its own kind, each with its mate, he looked up to his father and Creator with longing.
“My heart is lonely!” Cried the single living human. “Have you created me to walk all lonesome, without a kind of my own? With none to multiply the earth with? As all your other beautiful creatures do?”

I Am smiled. He knew His son's desires. This new creation was not deigned to be alone. It was not good for man to be alone.

“Sleep son.” Into a deep sleep fell His creature. Meditatively I Am pulled from Adam a rib. Sewing up his side, the Master Artist breathed life into the rib, and began molding the rib to fill and take in the needs and desires of His son. The two would be one.

Waking Adam from his deeply peaceful slumber, the newest creation was brought to his son. Immediately, Adam named the creature,

“Woman! Because she was taken out of man, she shall be called woman. She is bone of my bone and flesh of my flesh.”

I Am blessed within the woman the commission to multiply the earth, nurture children, love her husband and care for them all. She was very beautiful and virtuous. Her strengths balanced out and complimented those of Adam, because El Roi had created the woman specifically for the man.

The wise and forgetful, fearless and shy, strong and captive, trusting and stupid, swift and slothful, servant and selfish were created. Every being was created by I Am. Every creature is seen by the creator. All things are known by Him. I Am is the beginning. The beginning is set in the hearts of men. In the Creator creation finds Life.
“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.”
Psalm 139:13 NIV

Based upon the text from Genesis 1:1-2:2;2:3-25; Job 38:1-39:30; John 1:1-4 using the NASB and NIV Bible translations.


El Roi is the name Hagar gave God in Genesis 16:13.

The name El Roi means: "The God who sees (me)."

No one is invisible to God.