Sanctified Sections

Sanctified Sections

Years ago, I was introduced to a book that would irrevocably alter my warped, worldly thinking and set me on a new path to appropriate my identity according to God’s Word. That book was The Common Made Holy by Neil Anderson and the Freedom in Christ Ministry. A book that opened my eyes and heart to the idea of sanctification on a very practical level. A book that I recently picked up, reminded me of an important principle found in Anderson’s book. The importance of relationships in our sanctification process. The Lord uses relationships with others to sanctify US! Ohhh! So that’s why relationships can be so difficult – they touch areas that we would prefer remain untouched! YES! Some relationships more than others seem to touch such areas. And some relationship-seasons (husband-wife, parent-child, friend-friend, employer-employee, etc…), are more challenging than others at different times. While we have a tendency to (more comfortably) focus on the OTHER person’s need for sanctification during a difficulty, we must be careful to follow the command to work out our OWN salvation, or sanctification, with fear and trembling. The principle and application of “the log and the speck” has transformative power – personal transformation and relational transformation. Sounds difficult but desirable, yes? Yet many of us settle for the paralysis created by neatly placing blame and guilt on the other party, ignoring our own participation and contribution to an often relationally polarizing process. So let’s first look at the WHY question. Why do many of us have a tendency to solely settle for seeing others as the incessant thorn in our side and...
Sanctified, Set Apart… the Next Generation

Sanctified, Set Apart… the Next Generation

To Danielle (a close family friend and special young woman to me) on your 19th Birthday… This landmark year encompasses your transition from the teen years into your twenties. While I will always have memories of our first meeting – you as an energetic and tenacious ten year old, the young woman you have become over these past ten years is most remarkable. I marvel at your strength to make difficult yet God-pleasing choices in the current culture. I pray for your continued strength, Danielle, as the years ahead continue to require more of the same -strength, as well as wisdom, discernment and grace. Remember He is the potter, you are the clay. As you cross into this next decade of your life, may the Lord continue the good work He has begun in you. All my love and grace,...
Meet Mary Ann Smith, a Sanctified Woman

Meet Mary Ann Smith, a Sanctified Woman

A son of a widow, my husband, Ed,  is the fifth of five children.  My husband’s mother, Mary Ann Smith, was widowed when she was five months pregnant with Ed and caring for her four other children ranging from ages 15yrs to 2 yrs of age. Talk about a sanctified woman, Mary Ann Smith’s life has modeled trust and dependence upon the Lord. Even in the darkest of times, she has chosen Him. Over the years, we (Ed and I) have come to possess the precious four minute video reels of Mary Ann and her young children.  After inquiring on the cost to transfer some old 8mm video reels to DVD, this past December my husband and I took the task on ourselves.  Over a few days, we transferred some old 4 minute video reels (no sound) to DVD format, adding sound. Creating a tribute to Mary Ann Smith, to her life and sacrifice for her children.  After losing her husband, she raised all five children without remarrying until her youngest was twenty-one years of age. While the video process was tedious, this past Christmas, with all five adult children present along with several grandchildren, the memories and appreciation were worth all the toil and effort.  Tears of joy and gratitude flowed… Here is a great picture of Mary and her five children – all adults now with their own children and one even has their own grandchildren! While I am not able to load the video right now, I am able to share some precious pictures of Mary Ann Smith, her youngest son’s family (that would be us!)...
I’ve been tagged…

I’ve been tagged…

This is most interesting – this whole idea of tagging!  Everyone wants to be "it" don’t they!?! Thanks Beth (Pages of our Life) for tagging me – this should be fun, revealing and enlightening – and all at the same time! Random and weird – ambiguous and relative terms…  therefore I will take the liberty where I find wiggle room…  Let me do this countdown style… 7… I have completed 4 half marathons, 2 spring triathlons, and 1 olympic triathlon – all after turning 35 years old! 6… I was a bit of a radical "feminist" (in the N.O.W. sense of the word) and a self-proclaimed atheist, until the Lord go a hold of me at age 19. 5… During our long-distance "courting days", my husband, born and bred in Mississippi, sent me the following personal ad in the mail… Man looking for good woman who loves hunting, fishing, and digging worms; has most of her teeth and owns a boat and trailer. Please send picture (of boat and trailer). I knew I had a good man! 4… I lived in Saudi Arabia for two years when I was 9 and 10 years old.  My extracurricular activities were belly dancing and synchronized swimming! 3… After finding out I was pregnant with our second child (1997), I turned down two job promotions (that would have taken me close to a six figure salary) within six months of each other… When my second child was three months old I resigned to stay home full-time.  Hmm… is this the same gal from #6? Yes and no. 2… I don’t really cook (or...

Our Trip to Jamestown

We’re back!  From Great Wolf Lodge (GWL) in Williamsburg, VA to touring Jamestown – the Shirley family had a wonderful trip! If you haven’t heard about Classical Conversations annual GWL in Williamburg Deal every September, you are missing out!  Loads of family fun at 1/3 of the price! It is during Williamsburg’s homeschool week, which is usually around the 2nd full week of September!  We see other CC friends and home schoolers from across the nation! Due to the fun I was having a the GWL water park – I have no pictures of our time at the water park.  However, Jamestown is a different story!  I mean Jamestown was fun too, but I actually have pictures :). Jamestown is the first permanent English settlement in the new world. It was founded in...

Celebrating the Next Generation…

Special family friends… Our families met in 1999 and as a result our lives have been much richer. I met Danielle when she was 9 years old and she has held a special place in my heart over the years.  From hosting one of her Disciple Now Weekends at my home to being honored to be her True Love Waits mentor,  investing and sharing in Danielle’s life has been very important to me and my family. I now look forward to sharing in her adult years. Back in May, we celebrated Danielle’s Graduation and 18th B-day in style. I have finally gotten around to creating the slide show! Investing in the next generation… Is there anything more...