Posts filed under ‘School’

Counting the Cost for Next Semester

531969_abacus3 classes, 7 books, 19 meetings, and 30 papers.

That’s what my next semester looks like at school. Pretty easy load after this past semester of 5 classes.

For now I get THREE weeks off. I guess that’s why I can’t sleep, there’s too much FUN to be had.

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4 Week Hospitality Group Format

Sunday nights I attend a hospitality group with (9-18) adults and scads of kids. This 4 week small group, led by John & Shula, will help us to understand and then to better implement hospiality in our own spheres of influence.

We start out with a potluck dinner and lots of talking.

  • John then leads in a lecture/discussion on some aspect of hospitality.
  • The evening progresses to dessert, coffee, and more talk.
  • Sometimes we have homework assignments to fulfill during the week.
  • When we get to the lecture/discussion portion of the evening, the kiddos and a babysitter go to another room and have some fun more suited to their ages.

I am attending this group for 4 reasons . . .

  1.  To get me back into the entertaining/hospitality mode . . . .  In July of 2006 I felt like hospitality had taken a backseat far too long. Read here for more. Despite some valiant attempts (here, here and here) I didn’t get past the writing stage. John & Shula are great examples of showing hospitality. Nothing like learning this from the “masters.”
  2. To eat a meal with people . . . .  As a single I eat most of my meals alone. The exceptions are my evening seminary classes and when my nieces/sista invite me over.
  3. To get to know others better .. . . You can’t get to know others on Sunday mornings at church  – too much going on.
  4. To observe group communication for a paper I have to write . . . . This observation has made me sensitive to what is working well in this group. And there is plenty.

Eventual Outcome of Group

The typical Dinners for 6 has been suggested. But an even better idea was suggested.

Form a Sunday hospitality group – Couples, singles and families would sign up (maybe once a quarter) to invite others to share the Sunday afternoon meal with them after Church. This could be at a restaurant, park or at the host’s home. Really the ideas are endless.

We are just at the beginning stages of brainstorming and it is exciting. It is also exciting to “work” with John, Shula and their kids in this hospitality experiment at CNC.

 What do you think? Any ideas? Suggestions? What’s worked at your church?

Note: It is Jan. 4, 2010. This group is not currently in operation.

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Buy One Sundae and Get One Free & What’s a Good Book to Read?

Go to your local Baskin Robbins with a friend and use this coupon.

Go soon because this offer expires on the 31st of this month . . . . . Which is January and only 9 days away.

Hat tip to Don’t Try This At Home.

Ok – so I’m procrastinating.

I should be writing a 4-6 page paper on proposition one – “Communication is involvemnet.” It’s really good stuff, but I want to play.

After all, I just finished writing a 6 page paper that list 20 books (ministry-related) I want to read in the next couple of years (and why). This is a useful list and I could have come up with more. The bad thing is that I bought several (truthfully about 6) books. Just when do I think I’ll have time to read them?

And I complied a list of 20 websites that I can use in ministry. This paper was supposed to take only about 5 hours. I easily spent double that.

 So, what books do you hope to read in the next couple of years and why? And what about websites – any useful ones you’d like to share?

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First post of 2008 with some firsts

I am spending the week in San Jose taking two classes for school. This is the first time I’ve been to one of the other campuses for a class. Communicating Christ to the Culture is M-W am and Proving Pastoral Counseling is W pm-Friday. The books I’ve read had helpful information and I’m looking forward to the classes.


The hotel I am staying at is lovely. This spacious room would be quite easy to live in full-time. This is only the second time that I’ve stayed in a hotel by myself. I am a little nervous, but the gorgeous surroundings and the friendly staff have put me at ease. There are a few life-sized statues of people au naturel. A little embarrassing to be standing by when waiting for my turn to check in.  🙂

Other Firsts

1. Tried Airborne. Quite a few people I know take this whenever they feel off. I thought I got a great deal at the store. The sign boasted a festive sign of: On Sale! $5.00. So a little bit ago I opened ALL the packaging and popped my Nighttime tablet into a mug of hot water. After downing the drink I discovered I still don’t like fizzy “health” drinks. And I discovered that there are only 9 (although huge) tablets in the canister – so not such a deal.  I’ll let you know if it helps me sleep.

2. Tried an Odwalla bar. It was the Berries GoMega. I really wanted a soda (while shopping with dd today) but dd said my body wanted a “Naked” drink and a healthy bar. Both were actually quite good. And good for me! I’d link to the drink, but don’t remember the whole name. I certainly do NOT want to google for that item.

Well, I’m off to bed and will let you all know about more firsts this week.

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Sorry about the silence

The computer demons have attacked again.

When all is up and running, I will be vocal!

Thanks for the emails and phone calls. My seminary classes have started and so live is again hectic.

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So Far the Angora Fires Have Not Cancelled Retreat

The fires are 40% contained & are on the opposite side of the Lake. As of yesterday afternoon the smoke was blowing away from the Camp and should pose no threat to those of us with breathing problems.

Go here and here for updated information about the fire efforts.

Reggie will be getting up-to-date information from the Camp director today. I will update this blog and put a message on my phone at that time.

 Let’s pray that God’s mighty hand puts out the fires, protects the firefighters, support personnel and homeowners, and that He glorifies Himself in this situation.

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Answers to Yesterday’s Sin Quiz

Here’s part of our True/False quiz and their answers.

  1. True. God determines and defines what sin is.
  2. True. God’s definition of sin can change. (Trace the eating of meat throughout the Bible.)
  3. False. All sins are always sin. (Context is important. There are many examples of this besides the meat issue.)
  4. True. Some sins are always sin. (Obvious examples are murder and adultery.)
  5. False. Sin is eternal. (Only God is eternal.)
  6. False. Thinking about sin is just as bad as committing the sin. (We’re talking about consequences here.)
  7. False. All sins are equal in God’s eyes. (This one was hard for me to swallow as I’ve been taught this since a young Christian. I was told it is man who makes distinctions. Well, so does God. If all sins are equal, then the punishments would also be equal, but they are not. See  Exodus 22:1-4; Exodus 21:12-14; Matthew 5:19 and James 3:1; Luke 12:42-48; Galatians 6:7.)
  8. True. God leads people to be tempted to sin. (Matthew 4:1)
  9. True. God does not tempt people to sin.
  10. True. God tests his children. (Genesis 22:1)

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True/False Quiz on Sin

My Theology 2 class studied hamartiology (the doctrine of sin) on Monday.

Here’s part of our True/False quiz:

  1. God determines and defines what sin is.
  2. God’s definition of sin can change.
  3. All sins are always sin.
  4. Some sins are always sin.
  5. Sin is eternal.
  6. Thinking about sin is just as bad as committing the sin.
  7. All sins are equal in God’s eyes.
  8. God leads people to be tempted to sin.
  9. God does not tempt people to sin.
  10. God tests his children.

So, what are your answers? This turned out to be harder than I expected.

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Don’t You Love It When God Confirms Something?

“It is not acceptable that we as married people [or single parents] in ministry neglect our families for the service of the church.”

That came from Lorna at See Through Faith.

Okay – I’m off to call my two kiddos.

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Love is not a feeling; it’s a verb.

I used to have a rock with that definition on it.

In the book Spiritual Disciplines of a C.H.R.I.S.T.I.A.N. by Gil Stieglitz there is a chapter on the Discipline of Loving. Dr. Gil further defines love as “meeting needs, pursuing or pleasing” (p. 218).

 I’ve ascribed to and followed the meeting needs and pleasing part, but until now I haven’t given much thought to pursuing. This chapter  (and lecture in class) in the book caused me to rethink my “love” relationships.

I was convicted in how I haven’t been “loving as pursuing” towards my two adult children. Since my divorce 5 years ago, I’ve gone to work (used to be a stay-at-home, homeschool mom), attended school, and limped along emotionally as well as I could. Since my two young adult children have been mostly of the house and on their own, I haven’t given them a lot of daily, weekly or monthly time.

Dr. Gil says that family needs 4 hours a day.*  I know  my kids are out of the house, but many times I haven’t even given them 4 hours a month.

God has shown me that I’ve been selfish. So I am making some changes.

  • God sent some unexpected funds to my sister and me so we are taking my two kiddos to Disneyland in mid April. Its always been a fun place for us to go to and I anticipate more of the same this time around.
  • I called my daughter and asked how she wanted to spend her birthday in May. Normally her birthday falls around the time my church has a big to-do. This year, I will spend it with my daughter. 
  • I want to send them a letter (OK -really a note) every couple of weeks just to let them know I care and how proud of them I am.
  • I plan on seeing them every month. I know that many times I’ll have to go there (both live in San Francisco). I really do NOT like driving in San Francisco: I get lost every time both ways and those one way, mountainous streets freak me. But I am committed to this way of loving. 
  • My goal is to average 4 hours a week between the letters, phone calls and visits.

I am sad that . . .

  • I let all this time pass before making these relationships a priority again.
  • My behavior hurt my precious children.  

But I am grateful that . . .

  • God  has shown me how unbalanced I’ve let myself become.
  • It isn’t too late to re-establish a healthy, fun and pursuing relationship with my children.

* Dr. Gil gave us some other stats as well.

  • Spouses need1 hour daily with each other in a good marriage. 2 hours daily for a distressed marriage.
  • Women need 6-8 hours a week with women.
  • Men need about 4 hours a week with men.
  • Most everyone would benefit from 1 hour of alone time daily.

I know that since our world isn’t perfect, we won’t be able to fulfill these needs all the time. But I like knowing these facts so that I have something to align my life with.

Hey, please ask me from-to-time how I’m doing in this area. Thanks.

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Proposed Plant City Church Presentation Rocked!

 Oh yeah, we did well on Tuesday night and My Thinking Theologically about Ministry class is now finished.

Our “pastor” Matt did a great job explaining our vision.His PowerPoint show creatively backed up our eclectic ideas for this new (imaginary) church.

Bruce was so helpful in managing the legal side of our proposal.

I am relieved to be done with my (speaking) part, although I was more than ready with our proposal plan and brochure for all those who attended. Thanks to HR for all her genius and help with those vital documents.

Three other groups also presented their church plant proposals. I must say, these men and women have skills, enthusiasm and much talent. Their love for God is evident. I’d go to their churches.

It was also evident that the Prof, Pastor Greg Krieger, wanted to stretch us, guide us, and if need be, force us to really think about ministry. The many helpful books pointed out many different models of ministry. 

Two things sum up what I learned. . .

  • Is my heart breaking for the lost? If not, pray and ask God for that. For that is ministry!
  • Am I ministering out of the overflow of my relationship with God? If not, make sure a relationship with God is of daily prime importance. And don’t leave His Presence until I have heard from Him.

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Agenda for Annual Meeting

Of course, every church, imaginary and real, has to have an annual meeting. Read on for Plant City’s proposed agenda.

Annually we will meet together to pray and discuss our last year’s successes and failures.

  • We’ll discern (through fasting and prayer) where we need to focus the coming year.
  • Finally, we will end this time with a period of thanksgiving to our faithful God who worked in and through us, His Body, a bunch of branches.

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