The Pharisee and the Tax Collector

Luke 18:9-14 ~ My Sermon Notes from the service today.

Who was Jesus talking to?
Those confident in their own righteousness & looked down on others

… that I’m not like other people…
It’s our nature to compare ourselves to others – as better than, or at least not as bad as…

The reality?
We are all the same. Sinners, fallen short of the glory of God.

Galatians 6:4
But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor.

“comparison is the thief of joy”

— Theodore Roosevelt

“God have mercy on me, a sinner.”

Actions are louder than words. The actions in the story? stood apart, didn’t look up to God, beat his breast. He didn’t even consider himself worthy to approach God.

Be humble before God, or be humbled. – Luke 15:14

God can exalt us WAY more than we can exalt ourselves.

Jesus sees us through the loving eyes of compassion. We are not the standard of comparison, Jesus is.

Prodigal Son

Luke 15:11-32

The older son’s relationship with the father is based on obligation, whereas the younger son’s relationship basis transformed from selfish rebellion to humble submission. The father’s relationship with the sons is based on unconditional love.

There’s also a whole works vs. grace vibe in this story as well as obligation vs. sacrifice element. What is your motivation/attitude regarding the inheritance we receive from the Father?

Habitica App

When I spotted this Habitica App from my Evernote newsletter a little while back, I just had to try this out! It speaks to my GTD kind of personality. I thought my teenagers might like it enough to use it and maybe remove the need for me to “nag” so much!

I downloaded, installed, and registered with this app on Android earlier today. The app is lovely, easy to use, the tour is cute without babying, and the website interface is spectacular. I can see this being a lot of fun (AND productive) for the teens. If I were more of a gamer personality, I would probably really enjoy this myself!

One caution: I wouldn’t recommend this for younger than teenagers since there are chat rooms (taverns) and the like. Here’s more info on the app from Common Sense Media. I’m curious to see if Bark.us* is able to monitor this platform.

Marvel Movies Chronological Order

  1. Captain America: The First Avenger πŸ‘
  2. Captain Marvel πŸ‘
  3. Iron Man πŸ‘
  4. Iron Man 2 πŸ‘
  5. The Incredible Hulk πŸ‘Ž
  6. Thor πŸ‘
  7. The Avengers πŸ‘
  8. Iron Man 3 πŸ‘
  9. Thor: The Dark World πŸ‘
  10. Captain America: The Winter Soldier πŸ‘
  11. Guardians of the Galaxy 😐
  12. Guardians of the Galaxy 2 😐the first time and πŸ‘the second
  13. Avengers: Age of Ultron πŸ‘
  14. Ant-Man 😐
  15. Captain America: Civil War πŸ‘
  16. Spider-Man: Homecoming πŸ‘
  17. Doctor Strange 😁
  18. Black Widow
    not released yet
  19. Black Panther 😁
  20. Thor: Ragnarok πŸ‘Ž
  21. Ant-Man and the Wasp 😐
  22. Avengers: Infinity War πŸ‘
  23. Avengers: Endgame 😁
  24. Spider-Man: Far From Home
    haven’t seen yet

My Ratings

  • 😁 Great
  • πŸ‘ Good
  • 😐Meh
  • πŸ‘Ž Not that great

New Web Host

I’ve been a member of WPMUDev.org since 2014! I love their blog, their forums, knowledgebase, customer service, and, of course, their plugins and services. Not long ago they started offering dedicated WordPress web hosting. Exciting!! Well, I finally got the chance to give it a test drive. Naturally, this little guinea pig blog is now officially hosted by WPMUDev. So far so good.

I did the site migration manually rather than by automatic means mostly because I wanted all my content, but not necessarily all of the other stuff that I’ve been experimenting with (plugins and the like). Clean slate time!

Because of this decision, I started to receive SPAM comments again! I have a list somewhere of all my standard plugins and Anti-spam Reloaded is one of those. It’s a quiet little plugin that chugs away and keeps me from having to do extra work. I highly recommend it.

Now, I need to go find that list!

Be Angry… And Train Your Kids

Be Angry...and Train Your Kids: Directing Your God-Given Energy to Wisely Fuel Godly Parenting StrategiesBe Angry…and Train Your Kids: Directing Your God-Given Energy to Wisely Fuel Godly Parenting Strategies by Peggy Ployhar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The format of the book is easy to read in small chunks, which is good because small chunks of time is all I have! Her honesty in the struggle is encouraging and refreshing on its own, but her Christ-centered instruction and intentional hope-giving tones are what I valued the most. This is an excellent read and a book not going on my shelf, but a book going to another parent in need. I’ll buy it again if I need to.

View all my reviews

Life Together by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

I was recently reminded of this book and even used it in a devotional earlier today. It’s a really great book. Two of my favorite bits:

On Prayer

“The prayer of the morning will determine the day… The temptations which the working day brings with it will be overcome by this break-through to God. Decisions which our work demands will be simpler and easier when they are made, not in the fear of men, but solely in the presence of God. ‘Whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men’ (Col. 3:23). Even routine mechanical work will be performed more patiently when it is done with the knowledge of God and His command. Our strength and energy for work increase when we have prayed God to give us the strength we need for our daily work.”

page 71

“And we may be certain that our prayer will be heard, because it is a response to God’s Word and promise.

page 85

On Meditation

“It is one of the particular difficulties of meditation that our thoughts are likely to wander and go their own way, toward other persons or to some events in our life. Much as this may distress and shame us again and again, we must not lose heart and become anxious, or even conclude that meditation is really not something for us. When this happens it is often a help not to snatch back our thoughts convulsively, but quite calmly to incorporate into our prayer the people and the events to which our thoughts keep straying and thus in all patience return to the starting point of the meditation.”

page 85

Good Stuff

Two weeks into this Coronavirus stuff, and I’m finally taking a day to catch up on all my emails. I found a blog I nearly forgot about, downloaded bank statements, and listened to voicemail my kids left me while I was working.

A lot of folks have extra time on their hands right now, and I’m both sad and glad for us all. Extra time is a gift. Too much extra time, not so much. Double-edged sword.

My favorite part of this staying home business is that the kids and I have a new evening routine. “It’s art time, Mom!” rings out shortly before it’s time for bed. We gather in the classroom and color, work on latch hook rug, or whatever art project we’ve got going on. It turns out, it’s my kids’ favorite too. I had to work late yesterday, and I got a phone call:

Kid: “Mom, you’re missing art time!”
Me: “I’m sorry kiddo. Maybe we can do art time in the morning?”
Kid: “No, we’ll wait for you. Art time can’t actually start until you get here.”

Stalling bedtime? Maybe. Do I care? Not even a little bit.

Opting Out

I read a brief article on this idea of opting out of all this data sharing. This one paragraph that caught my eye:

A good first stop is the World Privacy Forum, a nonprofit “dedicated to reimagining privacy in a digital era.” The organization has an extremely detailed opt-out list for data brokers, with the respective links and steps needed to remove your info from the companies’ clutches. More broadly, the WPF put together what it calls the top 10 opt-outs β€” a detailed step-by-step guide to pulling your information from the data brokers of the world.

Mashable

For years now, I’ve utilized the site Catalog Choice to get unsubscribed from LOTS of catalogs and other junk mail. I still have lots to throw in the recycle bin straight away, but it is considerably fewer thanks to this service. One of the first steps in getting organized is to have less stuff to organize! I’m pretty sure that’s why this simplification craze is taking on like wildfire. πŸ™‚

Now, I’m off to the races with the “top 10 opt-outs” to start opting out of some stuff. Happy day.