Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Global Girl Network and Women of Influence

Did you know that the first lady of Paraguay, and mother of six, Maria Penaya de Duarte is a socially active, evangelical Christian? What do you know about the first female Prime Minister of Haiti, Portia Miller? Check out the Global Girl Network and read more.

Micah Girl

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

All the power in the universe

What would you do with all the power in the universe at your fingertips?
Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God;
Not only are you powerful, but you are God and you are headed for glory?
so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples' feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him. (John 13:3-5)
How's your attitude?
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
Who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
and became obedient to death—
even death on a cross!
(Philippians 2:5-8)
Micah Girl

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Verses for the kitchen

15 All the days of the oppressed are wretched,
but the cheerful heart has a continual feast.

16 Better a little with the fear of the LORD
than great wealth with turmoil.

17 Better a meal of vegetables where there is love
than a fattened calf with hatred.

Proverbs 15:15-17
Here are the proverbs from today's One Year Bible reading. These are among my favorites. I would love to have these framed and placed over my kitchen sink to remind me of the continual feast that I have with a cheerful heart, and to encourage me to be content with my many simple blessings and not to worry about needing more.

Micah Girl

Friday, May 12, 2006

Flee to the desert

"If the only prayer you ever said was "Thanks" that would be enough..."

I've heard this often and don't know for sure if this is true, but it's a good place to start. I do think we need prayers of repentance as well, but even those lead to thanksgiving...

I am struggling with my prayer life lately. Trying to know what is enough--wondering if I can achieve more significant depth, but just want to hear from God.

He speaks to me--He did this morning. And yet I want more.

Lord, teach me to listen. Teach me to pray. Teach me to sit at Your feet.

I am re-reading Henri Nouwen's The Way of the Heart: Desert Spirituality and Contemporary Ministry. I am trying to do what he prescribes--


Be Silent


Lord, I believe. Help Thou my unbelief.

Micah Girl

Monday, May 08, 2006

Proverbial postcript

Proverbs 14:30

A heart at peace gives life to the body,
but envy rots the bones. (NIV)

A sound mind makes for a robust body,
but runaway emotions corrode the bones. (The Message)

Sunday, May 07, 2006

The fattest woman in the room

There is a line in the Weight Watchers TV advertisement that captures my attention everytime it's on: "There's more than one woman who thinks she's the fattest woman in the room." That is so true. And if you look around the room and don't think you're the fattest woman in the room, you are desperately looking around for who is, so that you can favorably compare yourself with her. It's pathetic, but it's reality.

I have been thinking deeply about body image lately. This is not a new topic for me, because I have been struggling with it my whole life, and am currently exercising eagerly in order to achieve a thinner, healthier shape. The exercise has been great--I have more energy and am more toned, but my scale mocks me consistently and tells me that I'll never get my weight down to a number that I would be willing to put on my driver's license with pride.

My husband is supportive of my efforts to become healthier and has always made me feel attractive. He even fell in love with me when I was quite heavy after a year of being on antidepressants which socked the pounds on my body. The antidepressants are a distant memory, but after three children my body weight is about the same it was back then. My youngest is a four year old, so it's not as if I just left the labor and delivery room, but my body has not yet bounced back--that is for sure.

All this to say, I must be the target audience for that Weight Watchers ad because it pulls my attention every time.

I am seeking to think about my body biblically, however, and that includes appreciating it, caring for it, feeding it and exercising it and using it to glorify God. Whether I am the fattest woman in the room or the least fat woman in the room (notice I can't quite bring myself to say thinnest?) this body is a gift from God to be used for His glory. My health is one of my most profound blessings, and I will seek to be a good steward of my health.

To neglect my body because it is not worthy of attention is to agree with Plato that my body is bad and not as valuable as my mind. To hate my body because it does not live up to an impossible cultural ideal is actually demeaning to true femininity and true Christianity.

Not caring for myself is a form of gnostic heresy, in fact. Gnosticism begins with devaluing the body and then, perversely, leads to hedonism because the fact that our bodies are evil, leads us to indulge them to an extreme degree. How can we help ourselves? It is our earthly bodies that drag us down into sensuality--it's not our fault.

Also, since our sexuality is so powerful we are taught to trade on it like commodity. And if our physicality does not match up to the unrealistic ideal, then we are less than ideal women. Even some feminists seem willing to use their sexuality as currency.

However, Jesus teaches us that this is backwards. The incarnation and resurrection of the Son of God crushes gnosticism. If bodies were evil, He would not have taken on human flesh. If bodies were not good, he would not have been resurrected nor would he promise us resurrection.

Our bodies are GOOD--God told us that back in Eden. My body is not perfect, but it is a good gift from the Father. While I await my resurrection body I am a steward of this gift. This body that dances, walks, lifts weights and plays with children, that embraces my husband, shakes hands with friends and makes dinner, that sleeps and stretches and carries me around--this body is mine and I am responsible for it. I must make friends with it, no matter what my weight.

Micah Girl

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Kentucky and Tennessee

Our trip to Kentucky and Tennessee was GREAT. We just flew back on Monday, and Tuesday was our catch-up day--laundry, sleeping, etc.

Following are some highlights. Thanks to all who made suggestions!

We flew into Nashville and drove to Bowling Green, KY, a really nice college town. We walked from downtown to the campus of Western Kentucky University. WKU was a beautiful, beautiful campus. I am not used to public universities that are so well endowed. There was a strip of beautiful victorian homes right that I loved right off the campus. The next day we went on an underwater boat ride at Lost River Cave Really very fun.

We drove into Louisville and went to the Louisville Science Center (across the street from the Louisville Slugger Museum) and walked around the beautiful clean downtown area including the impressive Fourth Street Live. We were surprised at how clean and sophisticated Louisville was. We also took a peek at Churchill Downs, but didn't take the tour because the kids were worn out. Driving in that part of Louisville we started to see some of the poorer neighborhoods and the contrast was quite stark, particularly compared to the luxury of the Kentucky Derby and Churchill Downs.

We also stayed in Cave City (a depressed small town in the touristy "Cave Country") and walked through Franklin, Kentucky, supposedly one of the South's 50 Best Small Towns.

Finally we spent time in Nashville which had so much more energy and sophistication than I expected from my own preconceived notions. I have a dear friend who lives there and we were able to spend time with her--which was great. The kids and my hubby went to the Nashville Zoo, and we enjoyed the indoor gardens and fountains at the Opryland Hotel and also the unbelievably huge Opry Mills.

That's my quick recap, but we so enjoyed our time!

Micah Girl

Blogarama - The Blog Directory Who links to me?