Our Life on Christ

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Infographic: Homeschool Kids Dominate!

Fellow homeschoolers, this info-graphic is VERY encouraging...but not surprising!

Homeschool Domination
Created by: College At Home

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Looking for Love? Look in the Right Place!

Before I gave my life to Christ, I felt like something was missing from my life. I tried to fill the emptiness with new clothes, new shoes, new stuff for the house, or even new love interests. Nothing ever seemed satisfying enough. True, some of the guys I was dating were pretty lame but, even the "amazing" ones were not enough to make me feel complete.

Things are different for me now. Graduating college, securing a specific position, obtaining a certain amount of money, getting married, or having kids didn't cause my current state of joy and contentment - Christ did!

We all have a need to feel loved. Let us look in the right place for love (and show other people where they, too, can find TRUE love)!

Press play on the above video to hear Trip Lee's Lookin For Love, a song about Jesus' love versus man's love.

*To grow your relationship with God, you need to do two things: 1) Read your Bible and 2) Pray!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

5 Steps to Achieve Your Goals This Year

If you are like me and have one of the ancient paper calendars, you have flipped (or thrown away) the first page of 2012—January is over! How are you doing on those resolutions or how many baby steps have you taken towards accomplishing your goals? Do you have goals for this year?

Last year, Wil and I created 100 Life Goals (click to read goals for our lives) and then broke them down to yearly goals (we didn’t post our 2011 goals but you can read our 2012 goals here).

Steps to Take

  1. Create goals: Read 7 Steps to Creating Life Goals with Your Spouse for detailed information about creating goals (you don’t have to be married to follow these guidelines). Basically, categorize your goals, be specific (measurable goals), write everything down, take action, and revise.
  1. Share your goals: Get together with a group of friends or just one other person and talk about your goals for life and for the year. Sharing your aspirations with others has four benefits:
·         Challenge: Sometimes people see things in us that we do not readily see in ourselves. The friends or relatives you choose to let in on your ambitions can push you to think even bigger and really examine your gifts.

·         Creativity: Similar to the above point, others can help us to stretch our thinking. You may have mentioned something that you “always wanted to do” but when it comes time to put pen to paper, the idea is escaping you. Your loved ones can help you to remember the yearnings of your heart.

·         Perspective: You may want to read one book per week but being that you have three children, work full-time, volunteer at a local charity, go to school part-time, not to mention you want to have some semblance of order at home and want to have fun sometimes—this might not be a realistic goal. Friends can help you keep perspective on your goals. It’s good to try and stretch yourself but, at the same time, you do not want to get down on yourself because you were not able to accomplish any of your goals at the end of the year.

·         Accountability: I did not share my goals with anyone (other than Wil) last year. Had I, I probably would have stayed on track better. One goal, for example, was to cut all fried food out of my diet. I definitely minimized my intake but, if we were hanging out with people, I would indulge. If I had told my friends what I was trying to do, maybe a different entrĂ©e would have been on the menu. Who knows. Either way, if others know where you are aiming, they can help you keep your sights in focus.

  1. Make a vision board: The below vision board took a long time but it is well worth it! You are more likely to make positive strides towards your goals if you them in front of you. We are very visual creatures so when we have an idea in our heads, we see an image—not just the words.

Creating a vision board is like downloading all of your dreams and ideas from your brain and uploading them to a large, tangible object that you see everyday! I didn’t check all the goals off my list last year but constantly seeing them on my board helped me to remember. Also, it made me feel good to look up and see things checked off.

Steps and materials needed to create vision board:
    • Get images: I searched online to find all of the images I wanted. You can also look in magazines.
    • Poster board: Get any color you want. I have also seen people use large picture frames. Or you can nix the board and just use your wall.
    • Adhesive: Glue, tape, thumb tacks, gum…whatever to get the images to stay on!
  1. Keep moving: I just looked over my goal list for the year and I saw that I already failed on one of my goals (to read the Bible every single day). I am not going to throw in the towel for this goal and say “What’s the point of trying?” (that would be really bad) but I can see how, for other goals, I would be inclined to feel that my future efforts would be futile and just save the goal for the upcoming year.
Don’t quit. Maybe you won’t accomplish everything you had hoped. Maybe you won’t partake in every list item to the extent that you had wanted. That is okay! Keep going.

  1. Make plans: “A goal without a plan is just a wish,” says Antoine de Saint. You can have all the goals you want, you can steal other people’s goals, you can have goals flowing out of every crevice in your body but if you don’t have a plan, very few of them will come to fruition.
Plan your work and work your plan! 

Goals for the Year 2012!

Photo Credit: The Thriving Small Business
"In life, as in football, you won't go far unless you know where the goalposts are," Arnold H. Glasgow is quoted as saying. I don't know who he is but he has a great point! Another great quote was taken from Aristotle (I do know who Aristotle is): "Man is a goal-seeking animal. His life only has meaning if he is reaching out and striving for his goals." 

We all need to make goals in life.

Along with our 100 Life Goals, we decided that we should make yearly goals--basically smaller goals each year that will help us to realize our bigger life goals. You can read 7 Steps to Creating Life Goals with YourSpouse for more information about making your own list!

Here are our goals for 2012:


Do 2 community service/outreach projects per month
Always give when asked

Always ask, “In light of what we are trying to do for God and in life, is this the BEST use of our money?”
Save $3,000 by December 31
Pay off $2,000 from student loan ($17,000 balance) by December 31 (Average of $167 per month)
Invest in apparel (shirts and bracelets) by July 31 (OLoC)
Sell 100 t-shirts, earn $1,000 by December 31
Run an engagement ad (engage people, not having to do with weddings) on FB by June 30(OLoC)
Give 10 percent of our income towards something that breaks God’s heart

Do family devotionals weekly on Saturday mornings
Pray together daily
Go on a date 2 nights a month
Have a family game night every Thursday
Take a family photo by October 31

Share 1 thing God showed us in Bible/through day with people on social media sites everyday
Have an article published on blog three days per week, including guest posts by May
Add store to blog by December 31
Build a stronger community on blog:
Engage people on FB page one time per day
Get 500+ Likes on FB
Have 2,000+ Twitter followers (OLoC)
Get 50+ subscribers on YouTube
Do 4 challenges per year on blog
            Add prayer list to blog
            Add memory verses to blog
            Start monthly newsletter (upcoming challenges, tips in marriage, parenting, discipleship,
frual living, etc that are too short to blog about?)

Go on a couples/family trip
Go to Texas

Plan menu every month
Eat out only 3 times per month
Go to YMCA together 1 time per month


Personal Growth
Read Bible and journal every single day! No Bible, no breakfast.
Pray daily
Don’t buy anything “new” for the year--can be new to me but not a brand new item(this does not apply to things like batteries, toothbrushes, undergarments and the like—mostly for clothes and furniture)
Start in a “mentorship” program (get involved in a child/teen development program)
Query 20 more agents, 20 publishers
Say 1 nice thing to myself when looking in the mirror everyday
Consciously “cancel” importance of others’ opinions—don’t care what other people think (be aware of the thoughts, intentionally counteract them)

Start Spanish Rosetta Stone by September
Do an art project with Truth every week, use Drawing with Children lessons
Continue swimming lessons in May
Enrichment classes/programs: ballet, art, American Heritage Girls?

Make Truth Snapfish book by February 29
Make Serenity Snapfish book by December 31

Finish Christian PF Article about blogging

Have a 28” waist by December 31
Go to YMCA at least once per week, work out at home 5 times per week
Get at least 1 professional massage

Have a 4 “girls nights” this year
Build a relationship with 1 new non-Christian
Make 2 single friends


Personal Growth
Pray every day
Read/listen to the Bible every day
Start in a “mentorship” program (get involved in a child/teen development program)

Every Friday, call someone from my past and see how things are going (52 people)

Career – Merchant Processing
Add 10 customers every month
Start company blog
Every Monday work on blog for 30 minutes


Do 100 sit-ups and 50 push-ups every day to get a six pack by December, start in February 

Monday, January 23, 2012

3 Steps to Solve the Idolatry Problem (and the Definition of Idolatry)

I realized after watching the above video that I, even though I like to think it is not the case, put idols before God. I do not sit in my house and bow down before figures of rotund little men or kiss golden figurines before making decisions but, unfortunately, God is NOT always who I turn to first during times of affliction. Who or what is, you ask? Usually chocolate. Whenever I am stressed or sad, chocolate—lots of chocolate (like an entire bag of Hershey’s kisses)—usually does the trick. Or I’ll have a movie marathon, or just sulk. This is not always the case when I’m down but it happens more often than it should.

I found the above video at Take Your Vitamin Z blog. It is an interview with Dr. David Powlison from the Christian Counseling and Education Foundation. Watch it for yourself. It’s only 3 minutes long. If that is too long for you (if it is, we need to see why you are so busy), you can skip to my favorite, most relevant part--2:10 to 2:35. I’ll make it even easier for you--here is what is contained in those 25 seconds:
"If God is supposed to be my refuge in trouble and a very present help in affliction but whenever I’m in trouble or affliction I go flip on the TV or I go eat, behind my action there is a spiritual action that is saying, '[Go to] the ice cream or the TV,' that is driving [my outward action]."
We were made to be creatures that worship. In his book Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Tedd Tripp says that we are “all essentially religious—we either worship Jehovah or idols.” God knows us. He knows us better than we know ourselves because our hearts are deceitful. And the God who knows us, knows that we lust after our neighbor’s spouse or that we hate our brothers and yet, He chooses to renew His mercies for us every morning. Doesn’t He deserves our full worship?

How can we keep idolatry out of our lives? 

1. Identify your idols. How? Take the verbs that relate us to God like love, fear, obey, glorify, or praise. Flip it around and ask yourself, “What am I loving? What do I fear? What voice in this world do I obey? Who am I praising? What am I glorifying?” Whether it is human comfort, being in control, death, poverty, rejection, whatever you answer can be considered an idol you have before God. Besides finding comfort in any confection that originated from the cocoa bean, I know that I also place too much emphasis on others’ perceptions of me. This (the fear of man), too, is an idol.

2. Seek mercy and deliverance from God. Ask God for forgiveness and to strengthen your trust in Him.

3. Repeat and repeat again. We will never be perfect. After we gain control over one idol, another one may present itself. We will always need God’s help. There is a blessing from knowing your need for help from outside of yourself.

What idols do you have in your life? Feel free to share--we won't judge you! Leave a comment below.

Here is another video that goes over the steps listed above: