On Wednesday

First of all,

Thank you to everyone who left me “get well” wishes. I am feeling totally well now! Your prayers were appreciated!

I am sorry to have been so scarce- this week has come and is going so fast- and I hope to resume normal postings later this week or early next week.

We have been busily re-working my Mom’s website, Lines From The Vine. With a scheduled re-launch tomorrow, that is where my computer time has been spent, and it is looking VERY nice. I hope you drop by to see it!

Many blessings,
~*~Courtney~*~

Monday Musings: Being Sick

Being sick is not fun. Not fun at all. I had a little tummy bug over the weekend, which gave me plenty of time to think on the Monday Musings for this week.

As a person who has trouble going anywhere in the car because of extreme car sickness, I generally try to stay home as much as possible during the day, because I know that I WILL be sick EVERY time I take a car ride.

I am asking for your thoughts this Monday afternoon. Any suggestions on how to better manage this without using medicine?

Any thoughts/comments/emails would be appreciated, and I am also still taking link exchange requests, so you can leave those in the comments or email me.

Have a wonderful Monday,
~*~Courtney~*~

Poppy’s Birthday!

It is my dear friend Poppy’s birthday! She is such a shining light and example to everyone around her about God’s love. I wish her many blessings and good wishes over this coming year.

Happy Birthday Poppy!

Leviticus 26:1-15
Reward for Obedience

“‘Do not make idols or set up an image or a sacred stone for yourselves, and do not place a carved stone in your land to bow down before it. I am the LORD your God.

‘Observe my Sabbaths and have reverence for my sanctuary. I am the LORD.

‘If you follow my decrees and are careful to obey my commands, I will send you rain in its season, and the ground will yield its crops and the trees of the field their fruit. Your threshing will continue until grape harvest and the grape harvest will continue until planting, and you will eat all the food you want and live in safety in your land.

‘I will grant peace in the land, and you will lie down and no one will make you afraid. I will remove savage beasts from the land, and the sword will not pass through your country. You will pursue your enemies, and they will fall by the sword before you. Five of you will chase a hundred, and a hundred of you will chase ten thousand, and your enemies will fall by the sword before you.

‘I will look on you with favor and make you fruitful and increase your numbers, and I will keep my covenant with you. You will still be eating last year’s harvest when you will have to move it out to make room for the new. I will put my dwelling place among you, and I will not abhor you. I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people. I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt so that you would no longer be slaves to the Egyptians; I broke the bars of your yoke and enabled you to walk with heads held high. ”

~*~Courtney~*~

A Sunday Scripture: Proverbs 1

Prologue: Purpose and Theme
1 The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:
2 for attaining wisdom and discipline;
for understanding words of insight;

3 for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life,
doing what is right and just and fair;

4 for giving prudence to the simple,
knowledge and discretion to the young-

5 let the wise listen and add to their learning,
and let the discerning get guidance-

6 for understanding proverbs and parables,
the sayings and riddles of the wise.

7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge,
but fools [a] despise wisdom and discipline.

Exhortations to Embrace Wisdom
Warning Against Enticement
8 Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction
and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.
9 They will be a garland to grace your head
and a chain to adorn your neck.

10 My son, if sinners entice you,
do not give in to them.

11 If they say, “Come along with us;
let’s lie in wait for someone’s blood,
let’s waylay some harmless soul;

12 let’s swallow them alive, like the grave, [b]
and whole, like those who go down to the pit;

13 we will get all sorts of valuable things
and fill our houses with plunder;

14 throw in your lot with us,
and we will share a common purse”-

15 my son, do not go along with them,
do not set foot on their paths;

16 for their feet rush into sin,
they are swift to shed blood.

17 How useless to spread a net
in full view of all the birds!

18 These men lie in wait for their own blood;
they waylay only themselves!

19 Such is the end of all who go after ill-gotten gain;
it takes away the lives of those who get it.

Warning Against Rejecting Wisdom
20 Wisdom calls aloud in the street,
she raises her voice in the public squares;
21 at the head of the noisy streets [c] she cries out,
in the gateways of the city she makes her speech:

22 “How long will you simple ones [d] love your simple ways?
How long will mockers delight in mockery
and fools hate knowledge?

23 If you had responded to my rebuke,
I would have poured out my heart to you
and made my thoughts known to you.

24 But since you rejected me when I called
and no one gave heed when I stretched out my hand,

25 since you ignored all my advice
and would not accept my rebuke,

26 I in turn will laugh at your disaster;
I will mock when calamity overtakes you-

27 when calamity overtakes you like a storm,
when disaster sweeps over you like a whirlwind,
when distress and trouble overwhelm you.

28 “Then they will call to me but I will not answer;
they will look for me but will not find me.

29 Since they hated knowledge
and did not choose to fear the LORD,

30 since they would not accept my advice
and spurned my rebuke,

31 they will eat the fruit of their ways
and be filled with the fruit of their schemes.

32 For the waywardness of the simple will kill them,
and the complacency of fools will destroy them;

33 but whoever listens to me will live in safety
and be at ease, without fear of harm.”

Wishing you a restful and worshipful Sunday,
~*~Courtney~*~

A Flick On Friday: A Review

I am reviewing “The Ultimate Gift”.

Last week, my family and I enjoying watching this movie. It was a pretty clean movie, with the exception of a few outfits that were a little skimpy in a couple of scenes, and a reference to a curse word. Also, Abigail Breslin is portraying a girl with cancer, and is a little rude in some scenes, as is Drew Fuller, who is your typical rich kid in the beginning of the movie.

The Amazon review reads as follows:

“The Ultimate Gift is a tale of one man’s tumultuous journey toward personal growth and fulfillment. Surrounded in life, and death, by avaricious family members fueled by a sense of entitlement, billionaire Red Stevens (James Garner) wants to bequeath at least one member of his extended family “the ultimate gift”: something he perceives as immensely more valuable than material wealth.Red’s arrogant grandson Jason (Drew Fuller) holds a deep-seated hatred for his newly-deceased grandfather, so he’s surprised to learn from his grandfather’s friend and lawyer Mr. Hamilton (Bill Cobbs) and assistant Miss Hastings (Lee Meriwether) that he’s been mentioned in his late grandfather’s will. Far from a straightforward gift of cash, land, or stock, Red’s bequest comes in the form of a series of mysterious recorded instructions, the first of which requires Jason to hop on a plane for Texas the very next morning without a hint of the trip’s purpose or the nature of the gift that awaits him.Dropped into a life of hard physical labor on a ranch in the middle of nowhere, Jason’s bad-tempered fury eventually turns to resignation and he finds himself engaged in, and even taking pride in, the first real manual labor he’s ever done in his life. Unbeknownst to him, his journey toward claiming the ultimate gift has only just begun. When he returns from Texas, Jason finds his home cleared out, his car confiscated, and instructions to produce one true friend. While Jason is reduced to sleeping in the park, a young child name Emily (Abigail Breslin) and her mother Alexia (Ali Hillis) make his acquaintance and lead him to re-examine his personal prejudices and perceptions of what’s truly important in life.Jason’s journey of self discovery continues throughout a series of other trying experiences and, in the end, Grandpa Red’s “ultimate gift” of life lessons profoundly and permanently improves the quality of Jason’s life. What’s more, Jason’s new perspective of his place in society has a very positive affect on the larger community. This very powerful film is funny, heartbreaking, and intensely thought-provoking.”

I thought it was a pretty good movie. The comedic parts were funny, and there were some tear jerker scenes as well. This is one that I definitely recommend, but do take to heart the warnings above. 4 out of 5 stars for me.

You can learn more about or purchase the movie at the official website.

~*~Courtney~*~

Thursday Thoughts: JOY

This is a neat little memory tool for prioritizing your time and how you spend it:

J- Jesus First

O- Others Second

Y- Yourself Last

Although it seems so simple, JOY is a great way to remember to put the most important priorities first.

Many times (and I am guilty of this myself!), we put ourselves first, without thinking about others and what they might need. There are so many people who are hurting or just need a helping hand, and we are so occupied with ourselves that we miss the bigger picture. God wants us to help and be more mindful of others.

Sometimes we shove God aside, saying or thinking things like: “I will read my Bible later” or “Praying isn’t that important”.

God is the very backbone for my life. If He wasn’t here, my life would be totally different. He loves and cares about me. If I truly loved Jesus, why would I put Him aside? I try to remember this before thinking of my own time.

JOY has really helped me place my priorities in order, and I know this will help you too! :)

You can feel free to place the graphic in your sidebar.

Wishing you all a lovely day!
~*~Courtney~*~

Is The Government Spying On Us??

I received my weekly “Texas Straight Talk” by Ron Paul this week, and was horrified at what I found.

Here is the article:

“Last month, the House amended the 1978 Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) to expand the government’s ability to monitor our private communications. This measure, if it becomes law, will result in more warrantless government surveillance of innocent American citizens.

Though some opponents claimed that the only controversial part of this legislation was its grant of immunity to telecommunications companies, there is much more to be wary of in the bill. In the House version, Title II, Section 801, extends immunity from prosecution of civil legal action to people and companies including any provider of an electronic communication service, any provider of a remote computing service, “any other communication service provider who has access to wire or electronic communications,” any “parent, subsidiary, affiliate, successor, or assignee” of such company, any “officer, employee, or agent” of any such company, and any “landlord, custodian, or other person who may be authorized or required to furnish assistance.” The Senate version goes even further by granting retroactive immunity to such entities that may have broken the law in the past.

The new FISA bill allows the federal government to compel many more types of companies and individuals to grant the government access to our communications without a warrant. The provisions in the legislation designed to protect Americans from warrantless surveillance are full of loopholes and ambiguities. There is no blanket prohibition against listening in on all American citizens without a warrant.

We have been told that this power to listen in on communications is legal and only targets terrorists. But if what these companies are being compelled to do is legal, why is it necessary to grant them immunity? If what they did in the past was legal and proper, why is it necessary to grant them retroactive immunity?

In communist East Germany , one in every 100 citizens was an informer for the dreaded secret police, the Stasi. They either volunteered or were compelled by their government to spy on their customers, their neighbors, their families, and their friends. When we think of the evil of totalitarianism, such networks of state spies are usually what comes to mind. Yet, with modern technology, what once took tens of thousands of informants can now be achieved by a few companies being coerced by the government to allow it to listen in to our communications. This surveillance is un-American.

We should remember that former New York governor Eliot Spitzer was brought down by a provision of the PATRIOT Act that required enhanced bank monitoring of certain types of financial transactions. Yet we were told that the PATRIOT Act was needed to catch terrorists, not philanderers. The extraordinary power the government has granted itself to look into our private lives can be used for many purposes unrelated to fighting terrorism. We can even see how expanded federal government surveillance power might be used to do away with political rivals.

The Fourth Amendment to our Constitution requires the government to have a warrant when it wishes to look into the private affairs of individuals. If we are to remain a free society we must defend our rights against any governmental attempt to undermine or bypass the Constitution.”

This is yet another way that the government is getting in our business, and another reason for Ron Paul to win the presidential election.

~*~Courtney~*~