Thursday, April 29, 2010


The vitamins seemed to really help last month by the way, but tonight I'm weepy.  

It's difficult sometimes to see the forest for the trees (is that the right phrase?) sometimes when things come up during times when I'm more emotional.  I wrote the previous post a few minutes ago.

I know that there is a lesson God had for me--that indeed I am often a hard person for people to love.  But, that I am not to condemn myself for it.  I am to trust God that he will use this in my life and the lives of the people I come in contact with.  Isn't that an odd thing to say?  I realize that I might be a thorn in someone's side--I might be a "bug" to someone--without realizing it or meaning to.  (I would never mean to be!)  Yet, I have to trust that God created me this way and that God is working in all things.  Those are big things to trust God with and let go of!  I tend to dwell on my mistakes and faults.  I don't want to be imperfect.  

Yet, we are all imperfect.

I am thankful for God's love.  I remember reading in one of Jerry Bridge's books about seeing our sin and receiving God's grace at the same time.  We have do both at the same time or else we will fall into a pit of despair!  Sometimes those sins aren't intentional--yet when we see them we again have to look to God and receive his grace as we repent and seek God's forgiveness of our sins.

I think I'm climbing back up onto level ground again. =)  It is God's love and grace which helps us out of the pit that the realizations of our sins and faults can put us in.

Hard to Love

I realized tonight that I am a hard person to love.  I am the person who interrupts and misspeaks and doesn't always listen very well.  I am the person who may be preoccupied and asks you to repeat yourself.  I am the person who misses the cues about what is said and what isn't said.  

It feels horrible to be that person.  You know, I don't ever mean to be.  

I try. I really genuinely try.  But, these things still happen.  I still misspeak and miss social and verbal cues.

I was told once to think the best of someone and give them the benefit of the doubt.  

Tonight, I was with a group of gals and one of the topics was how we would respond to someone who was hard to talk to.  The thought that was in my mind was that often we don't know what's in the other person's head and heart--where they've come from and what their day's been like.  And that God often gives us people in our lives that are not easy for us to love.  

It's a humbling thing to realize that I am that person that is hard to love.

Timely Book for Women Fighting the Influence of the World...

Mary Kassian’s book, Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild, is a comparison of the woman gone wild in Proverbs 7 and the wise women of Proverbs 31 and other parts of the Bible. She looks at 20 character traits of the wild woman and what the traits of the wise woman would be.

Normally, I wouldn’t have picked this book to read. The cover and title wouldn’t have appealed to me. I review books and was sent a complimentary copy of this book. I trust that the Lord works in all things and so I began reading it. He has used this book in my life four times in the past week since I began reading it. I have been amazed at the timely reading of this book in my own life.

#1 The first day I read the first 50 pages of this book and puzzled as to why I was reading it. The chapters were about women having affairs and the temptation to be unfaithful. The next day a friend shared with me that she had been having an emotional affair with a man. God prepared my heart to hear her, not judge her, and have compassion. I encouraged her to flee temptation.

#2 A few days later during a small group discussion at my home, this book came up again. A conversation had been related in which a wife nit picked at what her husband said in front of his family. I related a story from this book. The story had hit me very hard. A woman wrote a letter to Ms. Kassian about how she treated her husband for 30 years. She bucked him at every turn and wouldn’t go along with anything he said (her words). After 30 years, her husband left her for another woman. Two years later, she said that she would have been married for 32 years, but instead all she has to show for it is an empty house. The woman wanted young women to know the falsehood of what feminists have been teaching women. She was thankful that Ms. Kassian was speaking to young women to open their eyes and encourage them to love the Lord and submit to their husbands.

#3 The next morning, I turned on VH1 hoping to see some old 80s or 90s videos like Glee. No luck. Instead, there was a video by a popular singer of today. Oh, my goodness! I realized in that moment how sheltered my life is. I do not expose my eyes, heart, and mind to the things that were on that video. I realized that the content of that video is commonplace today. Women are inundated by sexual messages that are ungodly and full of sin.

#4 The last time this book came up was two days ago, when I heard about a popular Christian singer coming out. I grieved as she claimed that the translators have mistranslated the Bible (she inferred this on Larry King Live) and that homosexuality is not a sin. Many people commented on blogs that many churches and denominations have come to a fuller and deeper understanding of human sexuality–implying that homosexuality, affairs, and such are not sins. That isn’t what the Bible says. It is clear. I read a sign in front of a church that says “don’t re-write the Bible, just re-read it”. Ms. Kassian is urging young women in this book not to be deceived by the world, but rather to look to the truth in God’s Word about sex.

Affairs, sexual sins, homosexuality, lewd talk… our culture is filled with these things today. If we become desensitized to it, we can easily fall into these sins and not see what’s wrong. Mary Kassian wants to sound an alarm and make young women aware of what they need to watch out for. She wants young women to guard their hearts and minds. She wants them to protect their relationships and not go down the slippery slope to sexual sin.

If you live in the world and are surrounded by this culture and are struggling to know what is right and wrong, please read this book! It will give you a strong defense and help strengthen your resolve not to give in to the temptations of the world to sin.

I was reminded in my heart of the phrase “But for the grace of God, there goes I” as I read the first 50 pages. I am not experiencing these temptations right now, but I was reminded how important it is that I continue to guard my heart and mind as well as the hearts and minds of my family.

Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book for review by Moody Publishing.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Derek Webb and Jennifer Knapp

This afternoon I had a chance to look up the Larry King Live episode on Youtube with Jennifer Knapp.  The interview made a lot of things clear about what Jennifer Knapp believes about God, the Bible, and her right to be happy and be "herself".  It was a good, interesting interview.  The pastor, Bob Botsford, who was also interviewed did a good job in the interview, I thought.  I was proud of him for standing firm and speaking the truth in love.

Derek Webb is touring with Jennifer Knapp, so I was curious where he stands on this issue and if he's made any public statements.  Officially, I gather that he hasn't.  If you're curious about some of the discussions going on about this, this blog had some interesting comments. 

One of the comments that really struck me was when one of the people commented that many denominations have come to a "fuller and better understanding of what the Bible says about homosexuality".  One thing that Jennifer implies in the interview on Larry King Live is that the word "homosexuality" has been translated wrong in the Bible from the original Greek and Hebrew texts.  

It has floored me to realize how many churches no longer trust and believe authority of the Word of God.  The pursuit of self fulfillment has trumped the pursuit of God.

My heart is grieved.  We need to stand firm in our faith...

14Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, 15and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. 16In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. 18And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.                     Ephesians 6:14-18

We shouldn't compromise.  We need to stand firm in the truth of God's Word.  The translators didn't "mistranslate" the Bible and the word homosexuality.  We need to speak the truth in love and grace.  We are to love the sinner, but not the sin.

Jennifer Knapp--came out of the closet

The link above is to an interview Christianity Today did with Jennifer Knapp and published last week.  I read a brief note about it in World Magazine and so I wanted to find out if it was true.  I came across this article.

The second link is on World Magazine's website.  Some of the quotes they're including must come from the printed version of the magazine.

It made me very sad.

It has shocked me how many times in the past week since I began reading Girls Gone Wise in a World Gone Wild, the book has hit home in my life because of things that have come up with friends or that I've heard about in the news or on television.

What are the implications of a Christian singer coming out as being gay?  Is it the same as Amy Grant getting a divorce or Sandi Patty committing adultery?  Sandi Patty has recognized her sin and grieves over it.  So did Michael English.  The interviews I've read with Amy Grant have never said that she publicly felt her divorce was a sin.  But, is it my place to judge?

No, I know it is not my place to judge, but I do think that when we are living in sin and not repenting of it it affects our whole compass.  I would assume as well that it would affect the lyrics and messages of songs the artists write and sing.  

Jennifer Knapp sees no sin in living openly in a same-sex relationship.  She feels the Christian church should accept and support her in this relationship--I'm making that statement because of the interview above and what she says.

The Bible is clear that living a homosexual lifestyle is a sin.  There are multiple scriptures which state this.  

A friend just made me aware of her interview last week on Larry King Live and that the Christian Pastor who was also on the show endeavored to show her compassion with compromising.  From what my friend said, Jennifer Knapp took everything the pastor said as a personal attack, though it was said in grace and love.

I googled the interview and came across an article in which a woman said basically, who am I to judge her?  She admired her courage and guts about coming out.  

Coming out isn't the issue.  Repentance and believing that living in the homosexual lifestyle in a same-sex relationship is not a sin is the issue.  It affects her outlook on faith and God.  

As Christians, we are constantly cajoled by the world to be tolerant of others.  We are condemned by unbelievers as judgemental when we take a stand and say that something is a sin.  In a book I recently read by Jerry Bridges, he wrote that many things we now consider to be sins today will not be in 10 years.  He was very concerned.  I could see his point.  It is important that we not compromise and forget what the Bible says.

Several years ago, I read Philip Yancey's book What's So Amazing About Grace?  He addresses the issue of homosexuality and talks about how to we love the sinner and not the sin in that specific context.  I appreciated all that he shared and his perspective.  

It is very important that people who struggle with the sin of homosexuality are not condemned by our churches as people--but that they are loved, encouraged, and held accountable to the Word of God--just as we all should be when we sin.  

So, those are my thoughts for this morning.

Monday, April 26, 2010

What little boys are made of...

I try to be very honest in my book reviews, so here is my first admission about this book.  I didn't like it--at first.  But, by the end, I was laughing and enjoying my time reading this book. 

How Do You Tuck in a Superhero?  Is a collection of short stories (each about the length of a newspaper column).  Rachel Balducci is the mother of 5 boys (with another little one expected any day now) .  Her book is about raising boys--each story is about one of the joys or funny stories that she experienced as the mother of these boys.

I am the mom of 2 girls--very girly girls and only 1 boy--who happens to be a boy's boy.  As I listen to friends who have all boys, I realize that it is a very different world than the one I live in.  My girls are pretty quiet, though high maintenance as girls tend to be.  My son is one of those that climbs on everything and gives me at least one heart attack a month.  I'm also a pretty structured mom.  We don't do junk food and the kids don't get a lot of desserts.  It's one of those things my husband and I feel convicted about for our kids.

Knowing those things about me will help me explain why my style of parenting is different than this author's.  Because Rachel Balducci's style of parenting is so different than mine, I struggled to find the first few stories funny.  I found myself cringing and simply not laughing as I know she hoped the reader would do.  But, I pressed on as I'm obligated to do when I read and review a book. 

I'm glad I did.  Only a few stories later, I began to laugh and smile.  And through the rest of the book, I started to appreciate our differences as parents and enjoy her stories as I would those that my friends tell me about their children.  That night, my husband and I had a rough dinner with our middle daughter and I walked downstairs to where my husband and older daughter were.  I pulled out the book and began to read him the short anecdotes that the author wrote amidst the other stories.  We both started to laugh and enjoyed a much needed break filled with laughter from the stresses of parenting.  For that break, I am very thankful for this book.

Lastly, I read him her story about her sons' and husband's phone allergy.  My husband suffers from the same allergy.  I've tried for the past 9 years to explain it to friends and family, but I think I'm going to simply start telling them that he has a phone allergy.

Here is a good quote "I think I have loosened the leash a bit.  The old me, the mother I was before I had children, wouldn't have allowed some of the things I allow now.  Not necessarily with what shows we watch or what language we use--there are plenty of issues I stand firm on.
    The changes are centered more on the adventures I permit my boys to have.  When we go to the ocean, I don't want them to go past their ankles, but it cannot always be that way. 
    As they grow and bloom and spread their wings, I have to do the same.  I ahve to keep up with them, while allowing them to be who God created them to be."  p. 190 from How Do You Tuck in a Superhero?

I agree.  I'm working on protecting my children, yet letting them spread their wings at the same time.

In her book, Rachel Balducci expresses so many of the things that all of us, I think, realize to be the blessings of being a mom--whether you have boys or girls.  The very end of her last story is one that I won't forget.  But, I don't want to share it in this review and ruin it for you--I hope you'll read it for yourself =)

Please note that I received a complimentary copy of this book for review from Revell books. 

Friday, April 23, 2010

Second Romantic Suspense Review...

In Harm's Way by Irene Hannon

I'm going to cut to the chase with this book.  I read it in a day.  It drew me in and I was hooked...

Writing:  I haven't read the previous two books in this series.  It is a stand alone book.  Irene Hannon is a gifted writer and I did enjoy this book.

Story:  The plot drew me in and had great twists and turns--many predictable, but still good.  The story centers around a woman my age, 35, who finds a doll in a snow drift in the parking lot of a restaurant.  It gives her a physical reaction when she touches it.  She takes it to the FBI and meets a dashing FBI agent in the process.  Normally, I wouldn't include that description of the agent, but in this case it gives you just a taste of what this book is like.

Plot:  A child is missing and the doll is linked.  Are there any other connections?  Of course!  There wouldn't be much of a story without them.  This is truly a romance novel that is also a suspense novel.  It is the suspense and plot that made it an enjoyable book for me.  I wish the romance had been more realistic.  An example of what I mean might be using the words "attractive" or "appealing" instead of "tantalizing".

Concerns of mine:
This book is a romance novel.  I continue to long for realistic romance novels, but this one doesn't fit that bill.  I have not known a man who would describe how he sees a woman he is attracted to the way Ms. Hannon describes it in her book.  This book is written from a very feminine idea of romance and physical attraction. 

Conclusion:  I know that most people who read this book will find exactly what they were looking for--a well written romantic suspense novel.  And for it's genre, I think it is a good one.  It will draw you in and make you want to sink into a comfortable chair for a few hours.  But, would I recommend this book?  Is it the first book I'd recommend if I were asked?  No.  I've tried to think of another way to say it and I simply can't.  Because the romance is so unrealistic to me in this novel, this novel isn't one of the first I'd recommend to someone. 

Please note that I was given a complimentary copy of this book  by Revell Books for review.

Turning 2...

There are moments when children are just plain cute.  This morning there was one of those moments.  I have a lot of dirt to truck back around the house and dump from the wheelbarrow.  I came around to see Eli with his little green wagon.  He was pulling it around to the dirt pile and dumping out the dandelions he had picked--just like his mommy was doing.  It was one of those moments when I just stood in awe of how much he understood and how creative he was in imitating me.

He turned 2 yesterday.  It didn't feel that much different from any other day except that we had cake and ice cream and that the girls sang Happy Birthday to him several times yesterday!  

We gave him two Tonka Trucks--the "classic" ones that are made of metal.  It's amazing how hard it was to find something that felt like it was going to stand up to a 2 year old!

I'll be honest.  Part of the reason I didn't feel especially joyful yesterday is that Eli still isn't talking but is very clear about talking back and disobeying Mommy.  If I ask him to do something.  He will adamantly shake his head and turn his body away.  He is my child that throws fits--literally he will throw himself on the floor.  So, it wasn't one of those days when I could celebrate his birthday without having to worry about disciplining him and training him up.  His disobedience and rebellious heart, (yes, I do see his rebellious and selfish heart) made him seem ungrateful.  But, his happiness over his trucks or over anything only seemed to last a moment and then back to the "no, I won't do what you tell me to" business.  

I suppose many 2 year olds are this way.  But, Autumn wasn't.   I remember Sami having a hard 2nd birthday too for a similar reason.

It's funny.  I'm certain that there are moms that would say (or maybe just think) that "you must just not be disciplining him".  

No, I am.  He is my first to throw fits. He didn't see anyone else do it in our house since my girls didn't throw fits like he does.  

I was talking to another mom at Sami's preschool today and she said the same thing about her 4 years.  He's her first to throw fits.  She agreed with me that there are some things that are unique to children--that they don't learn them from others.

Actually, he's in time out right now.  It's funny how quickly I forget the chases my girls went through when they were younger.  I have never been a big believer in "phases", but I know that behaviors do come and go.  I know this shall pass and then there will be some new parenting challenge! =)

Please don't think that I don't love my son.  I do.  But, there are definitely challenges these days in parenting him and loving him well!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Have you been struck by this at times? I have =)

Finding Contentment in a Facebook World
 By: Debbie Lykins
I have to admit, I'm hooked on Facebook.

Since joining the Facebook family more than two years ago,I've been roped into training for half-marathon (whose idea exactly was this anyway?), had the secret pleasure of chucklingat a picture of a high school crush (he once had a nice head of, not so much), and received virtual "support" when my preschooler won the drawing to bring home the classroom hamster over Christmas break (she was thrilled; I silentlypanicked). And, of course, I've reconnected with many people from the past who I haven't heard from or seen in years.

But, as much as I enjoy using Facebook, I don't always likewhat it does to me. Or, more to the point, what it brings out in me.

You see, on Facebook, you peer behind the doors of a lot ofpeople's lives. This can be fun. Who knew, for example, thatyour best friend in the fourth grade who you haven't seen in 25 years loves the same quirky author as you? Or that your second cousin's daughter had a new boyfriendOf course,others share more serious things like moving stories of saying goodbye to a husband and daddy deploying to Afghanistan orlosing a loved one to a devastating illness.

But, sometimes, having a front row seat into people's lives and hearts leads to some not so good things-or more like, some not so good attitudes-at least in my own life.

The trouble with Facebook is that people's lives often can come across as "perfect." There's the business contact thatjets off to New York to meet with powerful media, the stay-at-home mom who spends hours in creative play with her children, the family that heads to Disney every spring break,the couple packing for a cruise. Everything is so...perfectAndsometimes, somewhere inside of me, attitudes like envy, discontentment, and ungratefulness, begin to creep out.

Why don't I have her life? If we just had more money...or more time. When do we get our turn to watch our daughters' eyes light up at Disney? It's so not fair. Discontentment.

I find discontentment rearing its ugly head when it comes to my off-line relationships, too. Take my friend, Lisa: she lives in a 14,000 square foot mansioncomplete with an indoor racquetball court, multiple flat-screen TVs, and the requisite fountain out frontEverything is top-of-the-line. Then there's my friend, Amy, who got married, moved south, and recentlymoved into a new home on five acres-complete with an indoor pool and its own chapel.

We live in a townhouse. It's conveniently located, meets ourfamily of five's needs just fine, and really, most of the time, I love living here. But sometimes I feel a twinge of envy and wonder why I can't have Lisa's or Amy's life. I mean, I'd be able to go to the gym in my own house...think of the timesaved! We could take the kids swimming every day.And, I'm certain Lisa is not scrubbing the toilet on Saturday afternoon, GodDiscontentment.

I have another friend who spends hours teaching her children.One week they explored music by attending a band practice at the local high school and coloring pictures of composersI don't even think about those kinds of things. See what I could do, God, if I just didn't have to work? I could just focus on being a mom and wife.  I could play Candyland every day. I could bake brownies for the neighbor. I could, I could...Discontentment.

I don't think I'm alone in the "grass is greener" syndrome. While I read a lot of "I love my life" status updates, other moms lament on Facebook that their agenda for the day "only"includes changing diapers or watching Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang. And the way that the information is shared quietly says,"I lead a boring life. I don't like my life. Can't I do something more important?" So much discontentment. And we wonder why our culture is so discontent. And why our kids are discontent, always wanting something more-bigger, better,cooler.

I started thinking about my own attitude toward contentmentrecently as I read the book, Growing Grateful Kids in an Ungrateful World by Susie Larson. On first blush, you might think you'll be reading a book filled with practical tips on how to teach your kids to be thankful in our "me-first" world of entitlement. Not so much. If you're like me, you'll walk away realizing that the issue of discontentment in the life of your childisn't so much the culture around you-the issue is you. And the even bigger issue is your relationship with Christ, and your understanding of His love for you-the secret to gratefulness.

Susie writes books and speaks around the country, and she's also a mom herself-having raised three boys with her husband.In the book Susie explores four critical areas we as moms need to focus on to help grow an attitude of gratefulness in our kids. Areas like modeling thankfulness, teaching perspective, encouraging faith, and living abundantly. Within each area she delves into things like practicing restraint, developing compassion, teaching forgiveness, and giving blessings. Sheshows how we, as moms, need to develop these areas in our own life, so that in turn, these traits can be developed in the lives of our children.

While much of what she covered spoke to me, one area stood out-embracing contentment. She wrote of her own struggles in this area over the years, particularly when she battled Lymes disease and her family had acquired a pile of medical debt.Like me, she too saw the "perfection" in the lives of friends.Susie writes that the sin of comparison (yes, it is a sin) triggers two kinds of responses-pride and/or despair. Pride when we appear to have the one-up; despair when we see ourselves as the loser. This, she says, leads to seeing things through a skewed lens. The key is to quit looking right or left-and to look up. She writes, "He is writing a beautiful story with our lives. His will for us is our best-case scenario. He doesn't want us to want someone else's story...because ours fits us perfectly."Susie also says that when we compare, we take a little something away from the relationships we have with our precious friends. God, forgive us, forgive me.

When it comes to our children, Susie writes that we must go after discontentment in our children because it is rooted in a sinful, selfish mind-set, just like oursI can help buildcontentment in my three children's lives by doing things such as praying with them and thanking the Lord for specific blessings, helping them learn that every good and perfect thing comes from above, and pointing out the countless ways that we are truly rich. But by far, the most important thing can do is be content in my own life, be content with the life God has given me, be content with the blessings He's given me, and stop thinking that somehow God is shortchanging me. Gratefulness.

Forgive me, Lord. Thank you, Lord, for the life you've given me. Thank you for a warm house on a cold night. Thank you for gently used clothes given freely by friends. Thank you for a godly school for our kids. Thank you for a career that allows me to work at home and be with my kids. Thank you for a husband who seeks after you. Thank you for worship songs sung from young lips, for the tender heart of my oldest whose biggest concern is if someone knows Jesus, for the laughter that comes from my middle child, and for the heartwarming smiles from my baby. Thank you, Lord.

I took Susie up on one of her ideas and bought a journal todaily list things I'm thankful for. I did this once before but it's been several years. I know God will meet me here, will use this to teach me, to remind me of the story He's writing for my life-for our family's life.

Contentment. Gratefulness. Praise be to Him, alone.
 Meet Susie
With enthusiasm, humor, and conviction, author/speaker SUSIE LARSON speaks to thousands of women through her blog and conferences. Susie also serves a regular guest host for Along the Way - a two-hour talk radio show (AM Faith 900). In addition to authoring several books and many articles, Susie works as a freelance writer for Focus on the Family, and has been featured as a guest on radio and TV programs across the country, including Moody Midday ConnectionFamily Life Today,Chris Fabry Live!The Harvest Show, and the LIFE Today Showwith James and Betty Robison.

The Sword Trailer

The Sword Trailer from Crossway on Vimeo.

I found this trailer for a book that I reviewed a few weeks ago called The Sword. I really did like this book, so I thought I'd post this video...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Difference in my life

1 Corinthians 2:9-16 (English Standard Version)

9But, as it is written,

"What no eye has seen,
 nor ear heard,
 nor the heart of man imagined,
 what God has prepared for those 
 who love him"—

 10these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 11For who knows a person’s thoughts except the spirit of that person, which is in him? So also no one comprehends the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might understand the things freely given us by God. 13And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual.
 14The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. 15The spiritual person judges all things, but is himself to be judged by no one. 16 "For who has understood the mind of the Lord so as to instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ.

I was struck this morning by this scripture.  I wish I didn't get upset with my kids.  I got very upset at them yesterday morning.  I tried to think through what my motive was--and all I could see was my selfishness.  I didn't want to be bothered.  I wanted to get done what I wanted to at that moment.  Blech.

When I read this scripture and did my Bible study, I realized that the fact that I felt bad for getting upset with my children was a good thing!  It is one of the ways that I am changed because I love the Lord.  For a moment, I thought of how I wouldn't care about getting mad and yelling if the Holy Spirit didn't live in me.  I realized that it is the Holy Spirit that helps me see my sin.

Over the past few weeks, I have become acquainted with the lives of the family members of a dear friend.  My heart grieves and yet understands.  How could they make these choices?  How could they choose the mud puddle instead of the holiday vacation at the sea (per the C.S. Lewis quote in my last post)?  They choose these things because their eyes are not open.  The scripture says that it is The Spirit that helps us to understand and discern God's truth in His Word and in our lives.

I am thankful, so thankful for the Lord's grace in my life.  I can't imagine my life without Him.

Ephesians 2:8-9, ESV

8For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9not by works, so that no one can boast.