Previous Posts: September 2014

Nathanael Ten Month Update

Hey Lovelies,

Nathanael turned 10 months this past week, so you know that means an update!

Weight: 17lbs 6oz – Nate had a sickness bug that has being going around so lost a little weight this month.

Length:  He is too quick to pin down at the minute! The health visitors should have fun when he has his 1yr check in!

Eating: Nathanael is eating 3 good meals a day he really enjoyed a chicken stew and dumplings we made recently and its nice to get more meat into his diet. In terms of breastfeeding I just feed him in the morning and evening now and he has regular drinks of water throughout the day.

Sleeping:  Nathanael is still sleeping through the night from 7pm till 7am.

Nappies:
Still in size 4 nappies.

Clothes:
Nathanael is in 9-12 month tops, with 6-9 month trousers, however he still has lots of 6-9 month jackets that fit him as they tend to be a little roomier, so the boy has quite a few options in his wardrobe at the moment.

Things Nate likes to do:
Nathanael has got up to so much this month I honestly don’t know where to start and I am sure I will miss some things out! The previous month he had just learnt to arm crawl, I can safely say he is quite proficient at regular crawling now and he seems quite impressed with the speed he can get up to as well.
In learning how to raise his stomach off the floor he discovered how to sit himself up and again was thoroughly amused with this new skill as well, whenever he gets a bit tired he just sits himself down and of course in the most inconvenient places imaginable.
Low and behold this month Nate began to climb over things, of course Mummy and Daddy encouraged this by pulling the seats off the couch for him to crawl over (so much fun) so in his ability to crawl over objects he can now pretty much pull himself up on anything. Mummy and Daddy’s legs, couches, tables, have all been tested and proved successful standing aides.
In light of all this big boy business, Mummy and Daddy had to lower the cot bed to its lowest rung, so coupled with his weight and the bed being quite low, we may need a back replacement booking in at the end of the year!
Nathanael has found his voice and has mastered a few “words” Mama has been said inconsistently but his favourite word is baba, what this means we haven’t quite figured out he must speaking in the spirit as its used for happy times aka food arriving and sad times being cleaned after food.
This month has seen us putting away some baby toys, Nathanael hasn’t really enjoyed his jumperoo, and some small soft toys for new borns have been stored away. This has seen space grow for new items such as a walker, a ball pit and a crawling tunnel, so much fun! We have even bought from some friends a massive train set to be kept for when he is a bit older.

Nathanael you have been such a busy boy! Who knows you could be walking next month – panic!!

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Blogging Through The Bible–1Peter

Hey Lovelies,

Hope your all doing well, you will have to give me some grace this week as my hubby is off from work and its holiday mode around the Smith house. I managed to keep up with the reading of Esther but SOAPing out my thoughts have been missed for 2 days.

GMG bible

Today marks the beginning of our reading in 1Peter, during this whole epistle Peter is exhorting persecuted Christians to steadfast endurance.

The dictionary defines Endurance  as – 1. The ability to endure an unpleasant or difficult process or situation without giving way. 2. The capacity of something to last or withstand wear and tear.

I totally relate why Peter was encouraging his fellow Christian’s to endure, perhaps like me you have had tragic circumstances in your life that you have lived through – for me it was losing my Mum at age nine and my Dad by 21, add other circumstances including a step-mother and estranged grandparents and you have yourself one heck of an endurance challenge!

Maybe you haven’t had that much, but you can relate to Peters command to endurance, and I always thought I had that in the bag, tick that off my list, lets move on to the next spiritual discipline.

Yet on reflection I think what Peter is asking us is to daily endure, for these Christians it was a daily threat of persecution not temporary, not gone next week, next year, next season. It was daily.

I am just thinking and soaking this in, you see although I have had hard seasons in my life, they have been that, hard seasons. I don’t want to minimise it but eventually once some tears have dried you again begin to look up and see the glory of God who has carried you through it.

So daily endurance – how does this look for me in the everyday, in the monotony of life. I believe we are called to live a life not just for the here and now but for the next life to come in verse 3 and 4 Peter points us towards heaven

“Praised be God, Father of our Lord Jesus the Messiah, who in keeping with His great mercy has caused us through the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah from the dead, to be born again to a living HOPE, to an INHERITANCE that cannot DECAY, SPOIL or FADE, kept safe for you in heaven.”

What are we daily living for, the next gratification – a new pair of shoes? a new top? makeup? electronic gadget? 3000+ hits on a blog post? sat on the front row at church? leader of a team? Some of these we can dress up, make ourselves sound all spiritual – “I want my blog to reach people” – Ah yes, but that nice feeling it gives inside when you see your numbers scroll up doesn’t hurt the ego either.

Are we daily enduring? Sowing an inheritance in heaven? I have heard people say “It doesn’t matter reading your bible daily, don’t become legalistic” Why? Why do we say those things, I think really its to convince ourselves, because its an endurance to be in the Word daily. You have to purpose the time, you then may have to get up early or miss a TV show, set aside your latest gadget.

Are we purposing to be good church members, not just showing up and getting a tick next to our name like school. Are we actually connecting, forming relationships, meeting a need in our fellow church members life or are we turning up late, half attempt at worship, semi listen to the preach, criticize the theology, start thinking about Sunday Lunch?

I write this because I am probably guilty of all of them, you see, big trials come up and you endure, you steel yourself, you wont let it beat you and you are encouraged by others. What about daily, daily enduring this life that encourages to get our eyes off our noses and onto a bigger picture. The only picture worth thinking about.

I would encourage you today on your daily endurance, we live a finite amount of time on this planet, I want my years to count for something, I want a glorious inheritance in heaven.

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Blogging Through the Bible – Esther

Hey Lovelies,

This may be a long post as I will explain to you what I intend to do with my weekly Blogging Through the Bible post and the post in general. I plan to follow the plan and every Wednesday post about what stood out to me,(Its my sisters birthday tomorrow so you can have this one early) it maybe a particular part of scripture, or something that grabbed my attention, it may even be a little background to the book itself.

Disclaimer – I am not a theology student I highly recommend you reading the Bible for yourself and with the Holy Spirit’s guidance coming to your own conclusions or insights. I simply am passionate about what God’s Word can do in our lives and share in encouraging you with your own study. For my own study I use the Complete Jewish Bible with side by side reference of the NIV.  On with the post …

GMG bible

The book of Esther  is set 483 – 473BC, by now many of the Diaspora had returned to Yerushalayim/Jerusalem to begin rebuilding the temple . Most captives however had chosen not to return as they should have done Isaiah 48:20, Jeremiah 50:8, Jeremiah 51:6. By not returning Adonai could not bless them as stated in Deuteronomy 28. So as we begin to study Esther we known that Hadassah/Esther and Mordekhai/Mordecai have not heeded God’s command to return to the promise land. Esther is the only book in the bible not to mention Adonai, the book is not referenced in the New Testament, the scripture is not found amongst the Dead Sea Scrolls, and nowhere does it mention law, offerings or sacrifices command by God. In short it represents how the Israelites were living in the Persian Empire – separate from Adonai. There is no mention of prayer in the book of Esther however they do fast, Could Esther and Mordecai believe they will not be saved by God?

With all that information you could run a number of tangents and compose several posts on the subject but I want to settle on the first chapter. In Chapter One we meet King Achashverosh/King Xerxes in the third year of his reign as he hosts a banquet lasting seven days just shortly after his 180 day stint of displaying the wealth of his kingdom

“He displayed the dazzling wealth of his Kingdom and his great splendour for a long time 180 days. At the end of that time he gave a 7 day banquet” Esther 1:4

I think we can skim over the Bible, so lets just soak that number in 180 days! 6 months! HALF A YEAR of massaging the King’s ego of all his wealth and military might. Scholars suggest this was likely before his planned invasion of Greece, so he had motive to indulge his military leaders. King Achashverosh/ Xerxes clearly hadn’t shown off enough as he gave a 7 day binge party where you could drink to your hearts content, don’t worry he was picking up the tab.

It’s at the end of the 7 day banquet where we meet Queen Vashti the meaning of her name is the once desired and the beloved, with a name like that we can elaborate on the comment in verse 11 “she was a indeed a good looking woman” The King wanted to show off all his dominion and that included his wife, however she had other ideas, she wasn’t that keen on joining thousands of lager louts at the end of their 7 day binge and refused the King’s order.

On a personal note I can’t say I blame her, as a woman alone who would really subject themselves to that? Also there is no historical evidence of a Queen Vashti, scholars propose this could be Queen Amestris who happened to be six months pregnant at the time, even more reason of her wanting to protect herself.

Clearly influenced by his heavy consumption the King lost the plot and agreed by his “wise sages” to banish the Queen and so he did. I think as wife’s we can really look at this one chapter of scripture and glean a useful message to help us in our marriages.
King Achashverosh/Xerxes had immense wealth, his kingdom stretched from Ethiopia to India, he had immense military power, his palace in Iran was covered in precious stones – marble and mother of pearl. He had everything, well everything that is except the respect of his wife.

“When the edict made by the king is proclaimed throughout the length and breadth of the kingdom, then all the wives will honour their husbands, whether great or small” Esther 1:20

Its a well known saying that “women want to be loved and men want to be respected” Now your husband might not be a King of several Continents, wanting you to parade in front of his courtiers, however he still deserves your respect in your covenant relationship. I am as guilty as the next person of not thinking before I speak and a tendency to overshare, sometimes that could be to my husbands detriment.

Queen Vashti had an audience (the kingdom) and it was her example of dishonouring her husband which had the sages in a panic, if even the Queen refused to honour the most powerful husband in the kingdom what would it be like for other marriages.

As Christians we are a witness also to our friends, family, neighbours and co-workers about the power of God in our lives, this includes our marriage. Luke and I spoke even before our marriage on how we would deal with conflict – we made it an in-house rule, no talking about our disagreements to others. (If we are together we can joke about our misfortunes and share our failures to encourage other couples) When you open your mouth and blab to a friend about how annoying it is that your husband doesn’t pick up his socks or that your wife is a nag , you are giving that friend carte blanche to say whatever they like about your spouse. You have already criticized them so why can’t they join in?

To put this into practice, when I worked in retail a number of co-workers would talk about the negatives of their boyfriends/husbands, one day a colleague chipped in and say “Kiri it’s ok for you, Luke is perfect” Well we are all far from perfect, but why did this person say my husband was? because they never heard a criticism about him from me. I am his biggest cheerleader, as a wife I am called to be my husband’s helper Genesis 2:18. We have enough people in the world tearing us down and our spouse does not need to be one of them.

I would encourage you today to place honouring your husband high on your list of priorities, if you have misspoken (I have definitely done this) go to them humbly and ask for forgiveness, if you have been wronged take the first step of faith. Your marriage is so important, when we dishonour one another we can quickly build walls around ourselves and like Queen Vashti banish ourselves from the glory of the kingdom.

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