February 26, 2011

And just when it was beginning to feel like Spring..

 ...it snowed.

Just last week I was finally starting to believe that Spring was here. No kidding, there was one day that the temperature got to 72 degrees!! 

But then the snow came. 

I'm really looking forward to warmer weather!

February 22, 2011

Living in a whirlwind

I'm sorry for being absent for the past week. It was mainly due to my busy schedule...and also not knowing what to post about. I would post about farm life...but nothing worth posting has been going on. I would post about my latest photography adventures...but I do that all too often. So, that leaves me with daily life. Where do I start?? I honestly feel like I'm living in a whirlwind because the days fly by faster than seems possible.

I've been doing a lot of hippology stuff lately, as the contest is the end of March. If any of you are wondering what the contest includes, there is a written test, slide show with things we need to identify, tack identification, and stations (10 pictures on poster board, a word bank, and two minutes to match up the words with the pictures). The contest covers anything and everything horse related...colors, breeds, gaits, tack id, genetics (it's not as hard as I thought it would be), events, and any other horse related topic they can think of. It's a lot of fun, but there is so much to study!

I've also been trying to keep on top of school, babysitting, and farm stuff. Then you mix in all of the other things that come up...

As I try to keep up with the whirlwind of activity, I sometimes need to remind myself to slow down and not trade in the good things for the best things. I'm sure that all of you can relate. There get to be times in our life where we get so caught up in our day to day activities that we forget what really matters. Each and every one of us was made for a purpose...and that purpose is first and foremost to glorify the Lord.

Now I'm not saying that we need to drop all activities, but just to be mindful that our purpose in life is to glorify God, and a part of that is seeking to grow in Him and spend time with Him. I know that I struggle with this all too often. There have been times when I get so caught up in what I feel needs to be done, that the most important things, such as spending time with the Lord, get put on the "I'll do it later" list. Why is this? As I was thinking about it, I think that part of it may be this. Satan knows that one youth on fire for the Lord could change the world. Mary the mother of Jesus did. She was just your normal girl, but gave God all she had and because of it she changed history. He knows that we have that same potential, but if we fill our lives with "good" things there is more of a chance that we'll neglect the best things. I once heard the word "busy" used as an acronym...


Ouch. I know that it doesn't apply to all circumstances, but it still gives you something to think about. So when you notice that your schedule's filling up, make sure that the most important things do happen. And when I say most important things, I'm not meaning school and all of that other "important" stuff, I mean spiritual life. Time with the Lord. I find that when I make that my top priority, and really dig into the Word instead of rushing it, it's always so refreshing. God wants us to grow in Him. He wants to spend time with us. He wants us to learn from and live by His Word. So instead of getting caught up in a whirlwind, why not take a while to slow down a bit and focus on the things that really matter?


I just realized that I never posted the photo for weeks 6 and 7 of the 52 photo challenge. I just downloaded all of the photos that were on my camera onto the computer, so I'll try to post those soon. Also, starting in a week or two I'm thinking of trying to add an "extra" challenge to the 52 challenge, so be looking for an upcoming post about that!

February 14, 2011

You are Loved

To all of my dear readers...

When Valentines day comes around, it reminds me of the most beautiful love story every written, and its all the more beautiful because it's true. It's not just a fairy tale like Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, it's a true story about a Prince that came to rescue the one He loved, for she was being held bondage by the powers of evil. He came looking like a common man, and not many recognized Him. He came in peace, but when He explained who He was and why He came, but He was scoffed, beaten and crucified like a common criminal. He died for the one He loved, He hung there in agony because He knew it was the only way to free her from bondage. Even though she rejected Him, He was willing to do whatever it took to show her just how much He loved her. He died a criminal's death because, even though she turned from Him, He still loved her.

I'm sure that you all know what I'm talking about...Christ's love for the world, and more specifically, His love for each of us individually. What beautiful, amazing, and wonderful love.

Isn't that how each of us want to be loved? Don't we want to be loved by someone who will love us no matter what, and not by someone who is flattering us with their flowery words and feelings that may fail at any moment? Well let me tell you something, you are loved with an unimaginable love. You are loved by a Prince. His love is unconditional, which means that His love doesn't change according to who you are, what you look like, or what your past has been. There are no strings attached. No "I'll love you...if you'll do this for me". He just simply wants you to accept the free gift of love He is extending to you. He wants you to fall in love with Him. He wants you to bask in His presence, and find in Him all that you need. He wants to be your love.

"But you, O LORD, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness."
{Psalm 86:15}

  This Valentines Day remember...YOU ARE LOVED {by a Prince}!! 

February 9, 2011

The Never Ending Hurdles

Do you ever feel like life is a long line of never ending hurdles? You make it over one, only to find that another is right in front of you and you aren't sure if you have the strength to clear it. When you look behind you, you can see no beginning, and as far ahead as you can see, they seem to have no end.

Well, I have found this to be so true in my life lately. I feel like I have so many deadlines and so many things to do, but as soon as I accomplish one I don't feel relieved because I know that another deadline that must be met is waiting for me just around the corner. And because it seems like so much is going on at the same time, I feel that I put just enough effort into each job to get me by, because I need to get onto the next one. Oh, the joys of growing up.

As I was laying in bed last night thinking about it, I also got thinking about how we have a God who is bigger than anything. He's bigger than our hopes, our fears, our failures...our life. We are human. As we run this race of life, as we try to clear all the hurdles, there are going to be times that we fail. We'll fall down and don't feel like we have the strength to keep going. But we need to remember that God our Father is always right there beside us, cheering us on when we are doing our best and giving the glory to Him, drying our tears and picking us back up when we fall down. No matter what life may bring, He'll always be there.

I can almost hear Him saying, "Rebekah, why are you worrying and fretting about life? You don't know what the future will bring, so why worry about it? Just put your faith and trust completely in me because I'll give you the strength to make it through whatever you have to face. You are human and there are times that you'll fall. There are times that you'll feel like you have failed. But just remember that I'm always right there beside you, ready to pick you up and dry your tears. Keep your eyes fixed on me, give me your best, and don't care what others think. I have an amazing and wonderful plan just for you and I love you so much."

So next time that you are overwhelmed at all that's going on, take a moment to remember your ultimate goal in life...to live for the Lord. He never promises that life will be easy, but He does promise that He will never leave us or forsake us and that He will give us the strength we need.

February 6, 2011

Living a Life of Love

"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."
(1 Corinthians 13:4-8a)

Love isn't just a feeling. 
Love is a lifestyle.

As Christians we are called to "live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God." (Ephesians 5:2). Christ's life on earth was a wonderful example of love. He was a friend of sinners, helped those who everyone else looked down on, and then died a horrible death...all because of love. Unconditional love. Love that wasn't just a feeling, love that was a lifestyle.
If Christ loved us so much as to die for us, and we as Christians know and believe that, how can we not seek to live a life of love as He did? How can we not want to tell everyone about this amazing love we found? How can we not want it to be our lifestyle?

Week 5 {52 Photo Challenge}

February 2, 2011

A little bit of everything...

Here's a little update about what's been going on in my life recently...

1. A verse that has kept coming to mind lately is:

"If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man's work. If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward."
1 Corinthians 3:12-14

This verse really makes me question...what "building materials" am I building my life with??? Things that are only temporary, or things that will last for eternity? I may post more thoughts on this verse another time and go into a little more depth.

2.  I'm looking forward to Spring. It's so cold here, and the warm sunshine of spring is sounding so good!!! It snowed pretty hard yesterday, and then last night it blew really hard, making tons of drifts. Big drifts.  Oh, this Iowa winter weather...

3. The latest news around the farm is that we took 4 of our market hogs to the locker yesterday. I know, that's not very exciting (but loading the into the trailer sure was...*grin*), but that's pretty much the only thing that has been going on farm-wise. Winter is usually pretty uneventful... 

4. Daily life has consisted of school, Hippology study, and other little things that come up from day to day. It's actually been a fairly slow week compared to most. 

5. Hippology (the study of horses) study started last week, and I'm really enjoying it. Each year, the "horsey" members of our 4-H group get together and study for the 4-H Hippology contest that will be in March. The contest covers everything from horse tack id, to genetics, to colors, to breeds...pretty much anything and everything horse related. This will be the third year that I've participated in the contest, and it's always a highlight of my year. A lot of hard studying, but it's worth it...not to mention that it's also a lot of fun!

6. I just finished reading "Pearl Maiden". I'm usually not one who sits down and makes time for reading, but I read this whole book in almost one afternoon (that was quite an accomplishment for me seeing as it was quite a thick book). It was a wonderful story, keeping the reader so caught up in the adventure that it was almost impossible to put it down. I highly recommend it :)

7. I'm almost to 50 followers!! I know that some may not consider it very many, but who doesn't like getting a new follower? I've tried to make it my goal to post the things that I would find fun and encouraging, and not focus on "What will others like, and what will get more people to follow my blog?". I don't want my goal in blogging to be to get a ton of followers, but that doesn't mean that I don't appreciate each and every one of you! Thank you so much for all of your encouraging notes and comments!