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Happenings Around the Home -and a Winner-

 15.2.12

Hope your week is going great, friends. At the Pliegos we are very happy because yesterday we picked up some friends at the airport and tomorrow another group of friends will be coming in, which means that we will have a full house for the next couple of weeks. So, if you don't see me around, you now know why.

Source


The winner of Andrew Peterson's  CD, Counting Stars, is:


KIM SHAY at The Upward Call

Kim, please send me a message with your mailing address.


God willing, I will be posting later this week some reflections on Titus 1: 5-9. And it is my prayer that if you are memorizing this epistle with us, you may be encouraged to keep pressing on.


Under His sun and by His grace,


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A Love Song That Makes Me Close My Eyes When I Listen -and a giveaway-

 9.2.12

When my husband and I got married, one of the dreams we had was to travel through the world together. It really seemed like an impossible dream, but we are grateful that God's Providence has brought that dream to come true.

Friends always ask us which has been our favorite country, city, or corner of the world... we always say it is so hard to tell, every place has its own magic. There are many books that tell you all about traveling, and the 1,000 places to see before you die; and every time I see them I think to myself, "no matter where I go, or not go, the eyes of my husband is what I don't want to miss seeing." 

So, no matter where you travel, or not... make sure that you see into your husband's eyes today.





Andrew Peterson has so many wonderful songs, that I am sure you would totally love. So I have decided I will give away a copy of his CD, Counting Stars, which also has another love song that I just love, Dancing in the Minefields. To enter your name in this giveaway,  leave a comment here and maybe share with us your favorite love song,  and -if times permits- a story on why that song makes you close your eyes?

I will announce a winner Tuesday, February 14 



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Related post:

Our Marriage, Our Dance.

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Memorize by Heart, Live by It -Titus 1: 1-4-

 8.2.12


Titus 1

1 Paul, a servant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, for the sake of the faith of God's elect and their knowledge of the truth, which accords with godliness, 2 in hope of eternal life, which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began 3 and at the proper time manifested in his word through the preaching with which I have been entrusted by the command of God our Savior;

4 To Titus, my true child in a common faith:

Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior.

How are you doing with this week's memory verses? I must admit that for me it has not been easy. Normally the opening and greeting in the epistles are somehow easy to memorize; but this one has been tougher.

I have "broken" this set of verses in a manner that will help me understand with more clarity what the apostle is saying and at the same time memorize with ease:

Paul was two things: 

First of all: a servant of God

Second: and apostle of Jesus Christ


For what reason: 

1. For the sake of the faith of God's elect (and here, as I have been repeating these words slowly as to eat them them without chocking, I see the doctrine of Divine Election. It is so clear. Faith belongs to those who have been elected by God!)

2. Their knowledge of the truth [which accords with godliness]

Now see this beauty, the faith of God's elect and their knowledge of the Truth (yes, we must have knowledge of the truth, we must study the Word) accord with godliness. They go hand in hand with godliness, not with arrogance and a prideful heart, but with godliness.  When you meditate on these words, one by one, you see this, and let me share with you that the Holy Spirit has convicted me in some areas of my life in which I have professed to have the faith, and I certainly have the knowledge but clearly lack godliness.

The saints can persevere in godliness because of the hope of eternal life which God, who never lies, promised before the ages began. Do you see this? WOW! I get all excited when I read these words. We are not hopeless, we don't desperately mourn the loss of those whom we love and have gone to be with the Lord, because of this hope. We can live like many saints have lived before us, without fearing death, because of this hope. We have hope of eternal life. God's elect have hope in the eternal life He has promised. And He never lies.

He never lies.


He never lies.

Now verse 3 tells us the incredible way God has chosen to make known his Word, and that is through the preaching of it. I pray God will give me a heart that burns within in me to preach the gospel to those who have not heard it. I fear that sometimes I am more worried to have a sound doctrine -and defend it- than to reach for those who have not heard the gospel yet.


And the closing line in these verses: 

Grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Savior. 

Grace: what makes this word so special is that there is another one on the other side: guilty. We can not be amazed by God's grace if it were not because He has taken away all guilt and sin from us.

Peace: True peace is only found when Grace has met us. First comes grace, then peace, in that order.

"Grace began in eternity, and it extends to eternity. we don not have to worry about exhausting the supply of God's mercy because of the duration of grace: forever."         Bryan Chapell

Under His sun and by His grace,



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Grateful for Our Love Story

 6.2.12

Because it is February and "love is in the air"...



I woke up close to my man, and as he noticed that I was awake he held me closer. And just being there, in my favorite place to be, I kept thinking with my eyes half closed.

Isn't this why waited? To wake up together in bed.

Isn't this what we dreamed of?  To sleep side by side all nights, all of our lives.

Isn't this the story we desperately wanted to live?

And now we are in it, we are living it. It is for real.

After all these years we are still making and living our love story, and I don't want to forget that.

The dreams we dreamed many years ago. The words we spoke. The promises we made. The Yes-I-Do. The growing old together. All this is actually happening and I want to enjoy every second of it; after all, it is our love story. I am the wife and I am married to the man of my dreams.

Who have thought that the "And they lived happily ever after" is true, not because happiness is easy to have, but because the trials are many. The living-happily-ever-after, happens because together we have fought dragons, and walked through valleys of desolation, and have seen not only our physical nakedness, but our naked souls. Because we have not only said to each other "te amo" a thousand of times, but because we have also forgiven each other more than a thousand of times.

Somehow, when one has been married for several years, it is easy forget that we are living the love story we dreamed of. Why? When did we stop seeing the daily routine as the frame in which our love would grow stronger? In what page number of our story did we stop looking intensely at each other's eyes? In what chapter did we stop getting excited to listen to each other's voice over the phone, and long for a long embrace at night?

All good stories are worth reading over and over again. And when we don't understand a part of it, we must go back and re-read, and find the missing pieces to try to understand. Why not going back... a few pages or maybe a few chapters and see what is it that we have missed?

Maybe a long kiss has the magic to bring fire to that love story again...

Maybe a yes...

Maybe a note...

Maybe an embrace when he gets home...

You know how you started your story with the one you love; reread the beginning and find, please, by all means find whatever it takes to keep the fire on. Do whatever it takes to keep dreaming and writing, and living your love story.

 Today I am grateful, deeply grateful to my God and my husband...

#1489  for our beautiful love story. I want to keep on writing it with him... living it at his side.



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Praying the Psalms -Psalm 119: 25-32- A Prayer as We Memorize the Scriptures-

 5.2.12

Today some of us start Memorizing Titus, and as I set my heart and mind to do it, I pray this prayer...

Shiloh Photography


Psalm 119:25-32
(ESV)

Daleth

25 My soul clings to the dust;
give me life according to your word!

26 When I told of my ways, you answered me;
teach me your statutes!

27 Make me understand the way of your precepts,
and I will meditate on your wondrous works.

28 My soul melts away for sorrow;
strengthen me according to your word!

29 Put false ways far from me
and graciously teach me your law!

30 I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I set your rules before me.

31 I cling to your testimonies, O LORD;
let me not be put to shame!

32 I will run in the way of your commandments
when you enlarge my heart!



Lord, I come to you, to your Word, still clinging to the dust, to my humanity, to my weakness. My sin is in front of me, and I want to be pure of heart. God, I need your Word. I need your Word to change my life, to turn my thoughts, the way I see life, all of it turn it upside down. O LORD, give me life according to your Word. Set your eyes on me and give me life as I read the Word, as I memorize and meditate on them. Give me life as I consider one by one your words.

Answer my prayer, Lord. Teach me, please, teach me your statutes, help me to live by them, to treasure them, to make them mine. To be able to see all through the lens of Your Word.

Make me understand the way of your precepts, and I will meditate on your wondrous works. That is the only way my soul will find rest when sorrow comes. O Lord, strengthen me according to your Word. Strengthen my inner being, so that I can fight effectively with the Sword in my hand and in my mouth, against my flesh, against the assaults of the devil, against this world and all the pleasures it offers me.

Have mercy on me, LORD, and put false ways far from me and graciously teach me your law! Give me grace to learn obedience and deliver me from evil.  Oh Father, I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I want to set your rules, Your Word before me. I do not want to depart. I want to abide in you, in your Word. Help me, Lord.

Lord, I cling now to your testimonies, let me not be put to shame. Help me live what I memorize, help me be a doer and not a fool that disobeys.

Enlarge my heart, Father, and I will run in the way of your commandments.

In the name of Jesus Christ, the Word made flesh,

Amen



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If Ever Two Were One

 3.2.12

Buy at 52home@home



Have a blessed weekend with the one your soul loves,





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Why Two Words are Better than Three -A Short Spanish Lesson-

 1.2.12



Words have the power to bring life or death; joy or sadness; clarity or confusion; liberty or captivity. It is just amazing how much of our lives are built upon the words we have said and the words we have heard.

It is true then, that to know which words are better to use, and when to use them, is not an easy business. Now, if you happen to know more than one language you will find it very interesting to see how some words that are not part of your mother tongue are the perfect fit for a certain occasion, and no matter how hard you try to find a substitute for them in your own language, all seem too short.

For me this has been true, especially with one phrase, a powerful one: I love you

In English we love our cars, our new shoes, our country, our brownies, our coffee in the morning. In Spanish we like those (we could even be "enchanted" by those, as in the phrase: "Me encanta el café y el chocolate").

In English we love our friends, our neighbors, our husband, our God. In Spanish we don't.

We have two different phrases that help us distinguish between the way we love some of our friends and the way we love, for example, our husband.

In Spanish we have two ways of expressing our love:

Te quiero

 Te Amo

The difference?

Te quiero is a phrase that you would use to express your love for a good friend, for example.

Te amo is a totally different story.  

Te amo is special.  

Te amo is never said lightly.
 
Te amo is more intimate.

Te amo are the two words that are spoken softly in the ear of the wife.

Te amo are the words that a wife uses to sign a love letter for her husband.

Te amo are the words that a mom whispers to her baby in the arms, and the ones she says on the phone to her son living in another country.

Te amo are the words we say to our best friend, our brother, our sister who prays and cries with us through the darkest nights.

Te amo are the words a father tells her daughter every night.

Te amo are the words that I say in prayer to my God.

I am thinking that at times two words are better than three. Te amo and I love you will never mean the same. At least for me.


Learning to love,


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Who is Becky?

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Becky
If I am happy it is because of God! God, in His sovereign grace, has called me out of darkness into His Admirable light. He has opened my eyes and has shown me the way to Eternal Life. He has set my feet on a journey, and now I am walking Daily on My Way to Heaven. I did not find Jesus, He found me. I did not seek Him, yet He called me. I did not love Him, yet He loved me. I deserved death and He gave me Life. This is the place where I keep a journal of my life under His sun and by His grace!
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Borrowed Words

"It becomes us to spend this life only as a journey toward heaven... to which we should subordinate all other concerns of life. Why should we labor for or set our hearts on anything else, but that which is our proper end and true happiness?"

Jonathan Edwards

"I am still pondering God's greatness in His creation. I have so many questions that I would like to ask the Lord about the universe, creation, the fall of man... But when I'm in heaven, I wonder if I will even remember them. At that time, being in the presence of God will be enough. I'm thankful that I can look forward to that day."

-Persis

“Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next. God is forever luring us up and away from this one, wooing us to Himself and His still invisible Kingdom, where we will certainly find what we so keenly long for.”

- Elisabeth Elliot, Keep a Quiet Heart



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