Tuesday, November 27, 2007

What It Means to Be a Christian (poem)

Christians
by Maya Angelou

When I say... "I am a Christian"
I'm not shouting "I'm clean livin'."
I'm whispering "I was lost,
Now I'm found and forgiven."


When I say.. "I am a Christian"
I don't speak of this with pride.
I'm confessing that I stumble
and need Christ to be my guide.


When I say.. "I am a Christian"
I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing that I'm weak
And need His strength to carry on.


When I say... "I am a Christian"
I'm not bragging of success.
I'm admitting I have failed
And need God to clean my mess.


When I say... "I am a Christian"
I'm not claiming to be perfect,
My flaws are far too visible
But, God believes I am worth it.


When I say... "I am a Christian"
I still feel the sting of pain.
I have my share of heartaches
So I call upon His name.


When I say... "I am a Christian"
I'm not holier than thou,
I'm just a simple sinner
Who received God's good grace, somehow!



Matthew 7:21-23 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.


There is a difference between being a Christian (living like Christ's example) and having a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Only one of them will get you into Heaven:
  1. All Have Sinned. Romans 3:10Romans 3:23Romans 5:12 
     
  2. There is a Penalty for Sin. Romans 6:23
     
  3. Christ Died as a Substitute for Us. Romans 5:8
     
  4. Call Upon the Lord Jesus to Be SavedRomans 10:13

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Proofreading

Alright, don't write me any more letters about Elliot. He's really a nice guy and he's apologized. We've written quite a bit back and forth. I like him! In over ten years of being online, he's the only critic we've ever had to send an e-mail.

Here's the deal: Clint and I are responsible for over 2,000 internet pages. We would love for everything to be perfect, but it is not going to happen. Even the best of writers have paid proofreaders that go over their work several times in different ways. (Amazingly, I took a proofreading course in college.) Your own errors are never as apparent to you as they are to someone else. If we waited until we had time to get everything perfect, nothing would ever get posted to the blog or anywhere else. I just don't have that kind of time. Being perfect isn't our goal anyway. Sharing the love of Christ and encouraging fellow Christians is the aim of Contentment Acres. We hear from people all around the world who say we are doing a pretty good job of that too.

We had a campfire cookout last night and everyone enjoyed their fire roasted meals and desserts.

This morning we have school and then we will begin moving furniture. All of the furniture from the den and dining room must be moved today so Clint can begin to sand and refinish the floors tomorrow afternoon. There is a lot to move too. We had planned to do the floors four years ago until Hurricane Isabel forced it further down the list.

Don't expect e-mail. It's going to be a very busy weekend.

Pictures are next. Elliot will be happy....much less text to proofread. :-D

I am already tired from nursing and yesterday, so today should be a challenge. Pray for me.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A Letter and My Reply

I got this today. My reply is below:

Please correct your site for spelling, grammar and useage. As a Christian, I am embarrassed when someone who is so obviously Christian is running what is supposed to be a professional operation and they write something like this:

"People who suffer from skin allergies, winter itchies, eczema, and dry skin are frequent users of goat's milk soap. While we can't tell you it will heal these conditions, we can tell you it will not further excerbate them."

The word is "exascerbate," not "excerbate." If you start to get shaky when you reach for a more than 3 syllable word, either use words with less syllables,(as in "it will not make them worse), or reach for a dictionary.

Also, the phrase, "further exascerbate" is redundant. It's like saying "repeat again" or "stupid idiot."

The correct way to write the sentence is: "While we can't tell you it will heal these conditions, we can tell you it will not exascerbate them."

I understand a home schooler won a National geography contest, but it has been my experience that Christians as a group are very poor spellers and very lazy about using words. They use the words "impact" and "incredible" both incorrectly and to the point where anyone who is listening for them could about vomit.

Please have someone who knows spelling, grammar and useage go through your site and correct what is wrong.

Here's another, actually humorous error:

"Brandon was born in 1992. Clint and I realized then that we wanted the best for our children and recommitted our lives to Christ when he was still in womb." It sounds as if you recommitted your lives to Christ when Clint was still in the womb.

I apologize for writing to criticize, but I think it is in our best interests as Christians to look just as good and intelligent as we can to the rest of the world. Dan Quayle did us some real damage. Let's not make that worse.

Blessings and best wishes,
Elliot


Thank you Elliot for taking your time to go over our website and find errors that make you "want to vomit." I have been very clear in our blog that I will make mistakes in spelling and grammar. In fact, I know of many more than what you pointed out. Overall, we find our readers to be very understanding, forgiving and humble people who encourage us to keep sharing our lives.

I've learned to face the facts that I will make mistakes not only in writing, but in every area of my life. In fact, I make them often. If you are looking for perfection in any area, please don't look this way! Instead, I point you to the example of Christ. He is the only Perfection I have ever met.

I am a full time mother of six children. I am homeschooling five of them this year. The other is a newborn. I breed our dogs, run our farm, make soap, sell used books, garden, use coupons to plan out each grocery trip and cook our meals from scratch. I also spend time each week writing women around the globe who are desperate for Christian fellowship. I have been asked to do three book reviews in the next few weeks. I am also working with my husband to repair and renovate our home and so on and on the list goes. When I get a chance, I am also working on a book, which will be edited by someone who is paid to find my many errors. :-D I am asking you to cut me some slack, Elliot.

I promise to everyone reading that I WILL make more mistakes. I am not going back to correct the errors you mentioned. I am just not that proud and do not have the time. Many people relate to me because my flaws are so apparent.


In fact, I receive many, many compliments and have been told more times than I can count that I should write a book. Parts of our website are printed in electronic and print media every month. Something here works OK in spite of the many mistakes!

While I like doing things correctly, how I spell and the grammar I use is not quite as important to me as it is that I convey God's great love for each person who comes to this site. God is not going to ask me about my spelling and usage. He's going to ask me if I reached out to others in His Name. Did I change lives for Him? Did I show love, encourage, build up, strengthen, help, die to self and so much more?


Maybe that is why you find Christians to be "lazy" with words. Sincere Christians try to reflect Christ's humble, loving and forgiving spirit. Doing that means we work harder on the inner man than the external appearances. It's much easier to worry about how my hair, clothes, writing, home, etc appear to others than it is to work on the character traits it takes to be a dedicated follower of Christ.

What you get here is leftovers of a tired, hardworking mother with a love for the Lord and good sense of humor. If it bothers you so much, please find another place to read. If you can accept my humble and imperfect ways without being driven to the barf bucket, keep reading. We'd love to count you among our friends.

By the way Elliot, since you brought it up:


You misspelled usage. You do not need the "e." Spell checker would have found that for you, or were you like me, going so fast in a very busy day that you forgot it was there? or just didn't have thirty seconds more before your family needed you again?

The word I was looking for was exacerbate which means to increase the severity. According to dictionary.com (yes, I know how to use one) and Blogger's spell checker, you misspelled that also.

If it were part of a title, national would need capitalization.

In spite of your imperfections, I understood your meaning. I saw other errors in your writing, but I believe my point is made.

No matter how imperfect we are, Christ still shows us His awesome love. I don't have to have perfect words or a beautiful voice because He sees right to my heart. He never demeans. How wonderful it is to belong to Him! If only we could follow His example in how we relate to others.

If you really want nightmares Elliot, you should drop by the house and hear my southern accent whip out some slang. That'll put a knot in your britches. :-)

If Dan Quayle's only flaw anyone can remember is that he misspelled a word, I feel he's done very well.

You should also be aware that homeschooled children are doing a lot more than winning at national geography contests. Read up a little and be impressed.


In Christ,
Wendy



Thursday, November 08, 2007

There is a God by Trent Willmon (video)

We enjoy this song and video.
It's busy here today. I hope to get the errands run tonight so we can work around the house this weekend.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Memory Lane (picts)



Here's Clint and I our senior year of high school in 1987.
We had to scan these in for a class reunion power point presentation.
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