Monday, November 17, 2008

Party of Five

Kendra, Kristin, Linn & Me - Brad is taking the picture!

Last weekend was a sort of reunion weekend. My college roommate and I met up for a girls weekend of sorts. We shopped and ate and stayed up way to late catching up on life :) I can't believe we let so much time go between visits, but we never seem to skip a beat. Linn & I spent one evening with a few other close college friends. It was like freshman year all over again! Except for all the conversations surrounding every ones kids :) I honestly cannot explain the friendship we all share. We basically lived our entire freshman year together, every weekday and every weekend. Believe it or not most of it is caught of tape! Man I miss those days :) These are people I always love sharing life with! They are the most amazing people I know, and the most amazing parents I know as well! I love you all! I miss you all!

Linn & Me

Home again, home again....

October & November have been traveling months for me. I have been working on a project in Dallas and have taken advantage of the opportunity to see family...especially all our nieces and nephews! I just can't get enough! My first trip to Dallas fit right around Halloween so that was a real treat! During the week I was able to meet my sister and her crew for dinner. Then for Halloween I went with Chris' fam to their church fair. It was a great trip!

We love being an aunt & uncle!

The Farrell Four

Back in October we finally got to spend a weekend with the other Farrell's, Chris' dad & step mom. Rod & Marsha took the train up overnight from Savannah to Newark for a visit. We had a wonderful time! It was our first chance to really show off New Jersey. We had the most amazing dinner at Highlawn Pavilion in West Orange. The food was fantastic and the view was even better! What a great way to celebrate a few late birthdays. Then Saturday we started our day with the largest pancakes ever! Next we headed to Princeton for some apple picking and taking in the sites. We enjoyed Terhune Orchards (thanks Marcy) and ice cream at Halo Pub. To top the weekend off we did lunch on Sunday at Nellie's - our favorite pizza place. It was so great to spend time with family!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Grumbling About the Election

Today someone sent me the blog posting of Pastor Joe Stowell. I believe what you will read below it great words of wisdom so I hope you'll think about what he says.

Our Only Hope

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” 1 Peter 2:9

The early days of November in America signal election time, when the politicians maneuver for votes and the people cast their ballot for their favorite candidates. And, like it or not, for the next few years we are stuck with whoever wins. If it’s not our kind of candidate, Christians can get pretty down in the dumps.

To hear some of us talk, you’d think that our only hope for righteousness and godliness lies in the hands of the government. I’ll never forget the time when I was speaking to a group in Florida regarding the importance of living for Christ in the deepening darkness of our changing culture. I said, “America has changed, and we’re not going to get our good old America back”—to which a man in the front row blurted out, “Oh, no, that can’t be! If that’s true, we have no hope!”

Since when was our hope to be found in Washington, DC? When did we start thinking that it’s the government’s job to uphold, promote, and protect biblical truth and values? Actually, it’s not such a surprising misunderstanding. Christians in the US have experienced an unusual phenomenon in the history of the world. Rarely, if ever in modern history, has there been a nation built more squarely on the fundamental tenets of a biblical heritage than our nation. But that has all changed. We join Christians throughout time that have lived successfully in nations where Christ is not honored as they light up their dark and decadent world with the light of Jesus.

If you feel betrayed when the government doesn’t advocate truth and righteousness, then you have misunderstood the biblical mandate for those in authority over us. Romans 13 tells us that their job is to keep the peace, collect the taxes, and rule in authority over their subjects—hopefully for the good of the people. Other than the unique relationship God had with the nation of Israel in the Old Testament, He never assigned government the task of upholding and advancing biblical truth. That’s our job as His followers. The advancement and articulation of godly values is up to us, and quite frankly we no longer have the luxury of always expecting our government to help us in the process.

Christians through the ages have lived under hostile, oppressive, pagan systems and have often thrived in those kinds of environments. This was true of the early New Testament believers who, during times of ruthless political regimes upheld their faith under great cultural pressure. They understood that they, not their governments, were the light of the world. They followed Paul’s instructions to submit to the governing authorities, pay taxes, and even honor, respect, and pray for those in authority (Romans 13:1-7). And they understood that a Christian’s only hope is in the protection that God provides.

When we follow this biblical mandate, we will shift our hope and confidence from the White House to the throne room in heaven. It will realign our attitudes toward our leaders, and release us to get on with the business of being the torchbearers God intends us to be. So no matter who wins the election, remember that it is your high privilege to be the light of your world.


* Read Romans 13:1-7. Paul emphasizes: “There is no authority except that which God has established.” How does your view of God’s sovereignty challenge your attitude toward those in government today?
* What can you do to show your submission to the government and at the same time uphold truth and righteousness?
* Paul instructed Timothy to pray for those in authority (1 Timothy 2:1-2). How often do you pray for government leaders?
* As you meditate on the verses for today, do you feel your attitudes aligning with God’s calling to advance what is good and godly in your world? What kind of actions should grow out of your refocused attitude?