I'm Still Alive

 I can't seem to find the source for this image.  Sorry!
Don't worry.  Despite my lengthy absence, I'm still here.  I'm having what's commonly called bloggers' block.  ;)  Thus, I'm going to take a break for a bit.  I will (hopefully) still be blogging more consistently at Abigail Aspirations, so you can pop over there.  I'm not really stopping for good, just taking a break until I feel like blogging again.  Meanwhile, that donkey can keep you company.  Ha!  xo, Ella


Hello!  It snowed this week, and we went sledding today with Dad.  It was soooo much fun.  Anyway, here's some pictures of what's going on lately.
I got glasses!  They're nerdy, and I love it.  My mom said they look like glasses her mom wore.  ;)
My brother's perfect looking dough from his most recent baking escapade – croissants! 
My angelic brothers.  Yeah, right.  Ha!  You should've seen another picture I took of them.  I think they were pretending to be tigers... :D
I recently took down the little Christmas trees from my room.  Sad day.  But hey, we've still got February!  I just hope it keeps snowing.  xo, Ella

Bloom Where You're Planted

Okay, so yes, it's been a looong time since I last typed within the most illustrious blogger, but I have good, solid excuses.  First, my brother and I got baptized last weekend, and so I quite legitimately forgot about blogging.  ;)  Second, I have some exciting news (read on...).  Third, I've been doing stuff offline. 
I love this quote.  I feel like this is what God's telling me right now.  I've just been havin' a tough time with school.  I must admit – I just don't like it!  Well, that is, except chemistry.  I decided today to just embrace the fact that yes, I do like it.  Okay, okay... here goes.  I... love... chemistry.  Okay, there... I got it out.  I admitted it.  The math-loathing, science-detesting Ella just admitted that she liked – no, loved chemistry.  Phew!

But I just get real tired of doing school every. single. day.  Besides that, I do it for most of the day.  So I've had a hard time being content being a student with school to do.  Yeah, I know that every other kid in America has to do it too; it's just a pain.  God's been showing me that I need to be content with where I am and with what I do.  I think this quote says it so well.  It doesn't just say grow where you're planted, it says bloom.  In other words, I can't just survive, I should flourish.  I read that the teenager years are sometimes just viewed as a time to scrape by, to just survive.  That's so wrong, especially when one is a child of God.

In I Timothy 4:12, Paul instructs young Christians: "Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity."  Those don't sound like instructions to just survive teen years, do they?  Absolutely not!  That's a direct command for something much higher.  We are to encourage the believers, to be exemplary when it comes to word, conversation, charity (or love), spirit, faith, and purity.  That sounds like a command to flourish right there!  As young Christians, we are called to a life so much higher than that which the world presses upon us.  When I read Paul's charge to young Christians, I feel emboldened, eager, and like God's counting on me!  When I look around at the teens in our society, however, I don't see this very much.  And so, that leads to my next proposition...

I feel like God's set teens apart in this day in age for exactly what Paul commissioned.  We're to be examples in a dark world!  What higher calling?  To change the world for God.  How's that for blooming?  I also don't think most teens know that.  God recently put this on my heart.  I was reading a book the other day, and it kind of just whacked me all of the sudden.  I could start a blog aimed at young women that would charge them with turning the world upside down for God.  Basically, it's going to be all "musings" posts.  There's a huge deficit of truth for young women who aren't necessarily Christian, and I feel like I help out through a blog.  I looove to write, and I feel like God's telling me to do this.

Now, I certainly don't know very much, and I really don't think I'm entitled to writing a blog encouraging young women to be godly; I have so much to work on.  However, I think that I will also grow from this, and I think God will give me His Spirit that He will give me the words to say (type) and that He will be glorified from this endeavor.  That's my prayer – I am excited to see what God will do with this!

This new blog – Abigail Aspirations – will have posts about all the things that assault girls today.  This includes topics such as: guys, appearance, attitude, worth, character traits, relationships, etc.  Most of the time, the posts will result from reading a book, finding things in Scripture, devotionals, and other things that strike me when I do my devotionals, read things, etc.  I don't know where it'll go, if I'll even have any readers, :) but I feel led to do this, and I pray that God will bless it.

I just started the blog last week, so I have 1 post so far, but you can find it here and follow along.  Thanks for reading this long thing!  xo, Ella

Musings – 1/19/13

Hi there!  Now I realize it isn't Saturday today, but I ran out of time to blog this last weekend.  This week's chapter was on God's jealousy.

Jealousy is one of those words people normally don't use when they describe something good.  We look at the word in the sense of what we know of it.  Well when God said that He was a jealous God, it didn't sound too good.  For example, what if you were imagining what God's characteristics are.  If you were trying to image a perfect God with only good attributes, there's a good chance jealousy wouldn't make the list.  It's just not normally something one would thing of as a good thing.

Thus, when the Bible says that God is a jealous god, it's confusing.  However, once again, us humans are trying to shove God into our likeness.  Usually when you or I are jealous, it's sinful – wanting what someone else has. 

Before we go any further, we need to realize that there are two kinds of jealousy.  First, there's that bad kind – vicious jealousy.  The kind where my brother sees my younger brother playing with a toy.  All of the sudden, August reeeeally wants that particular thing.  So, according to August's nature, he goes and takes it – usually by force.  That's the bad kind.  Second, there's the righteous kind of jealousy that should exist between husband and wife.

"This kind of jealousy is a positive virtue, for it shows a grasp of the true meaning of the husband-wife relationship, together with a proper zeal to keep it intact.  ...The worship of idols, and all compromising relations with non-Israelite idolaters, constituted disobedience and unfaithfulness, which God saw as spiritual adultery, provoking him to jealousy and vengeance." 

Now it is much easier to understand why God called Himself jealous.  He meant that He demands from those He has loved and redeemed absolute loyalty, and He will vindicate His claim by stern action against them if they betray his love.  Because the whole Bible was built around a love story – the marriage between God's Son and the worldwide church at the end of time – God's jealousy is the marital kind.  He is jealous for us like the righteous man is jealous for his wife.  

Doesn't that make you feel special?  When we read this chapter, I was amazed by this.  The God whom we rebelled against, disobeyed, whose Son we betrayed is jealous for our love? our praise? our loyalty?  What could be more compelling than that?  The Creator of the universe – jealous for our love!  

I hope this fact convicts you to worship God more fully, to know Him more deeply, and live for Him completely.  xo, Ella 

The link for the book – Knowing God – by J. I. Packer