Monday, November 24, 2008

Calvinism vs Armenianism

For reasons that I cannot begin to comprehend, I have lately been fascinated by the Calvinism vs. Armenianism debate. I don't know why.
I have learned that women do not usually blog about this, but preachers do. They write loooooong posts and looooooong comments on other's posts. I don't know where they get all that time! The other thing is that the more I read about it, the stupider I feel (see how bad it is? I just wrote "stupider") These writers use long words I never heard before like "Lapsarianism" and "amyraldism".
I have seen harsh disagreement between these two positions. I have also seen inflexibility. For example, one man wrote that if you aren't a calvinist, you're an armenian. Oh, and of course, they both use some of the same words, but define they differently. Another example; Do I believe in the sovreignty of God? Yes. Do I believe that God chooses people to go to hell? No. Do I think that is two opposing views? No, but that's just me!

The sad thing is that it appears that both groups believe that the other group cannot possibly be saved. Hmm. Since I do not place myself in either group totally, where does that leave me? Hmmm.

Ahh, theology!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Mommy Musings, A tale of two Babies

Almost thirteen years ago, a wee baby was born to the Arias Family. Her 23 year old mama tried her best to prepare for her arrival. She read the books and listened to Dr. Dobson on the radio. (this was actually very helpful) But nothing prepare her for the reality of a baby. Mama and Daddy were preparing to head for the mission field in the next month after the blessed birth. So, shopping and packing, visiting and last goodbyes, they flittered all around Southern California during Baby¨s first month. Oh yeah, and a last trip to Disneyland. And a few Christmas programs. Mama was amazed at how well Baby did on all these outings. She did well, until nightime, that is. At night, Baby could not sleep. She fussed and cried. We took turns walking here all hours of the night, Mama, Daddy and Granny. Baby was frustrated. Mama was frustrated. Still, ding-bat Mama did not realize that maybe she was making this situation worse. She never dreamed that all the running around might be affecting her little one. As Baby grew, she seemed to need even more stimulation, leading ding-bat Mama to put Baby in her swing In Front of the TV, just so Mama could get some work done. Needless to say, Mama was not incredibly anxious to have another go at motherhood.

NOTE. There was another baby born between the two girls. I adore my son, but I cannot hardly remember anything from his babyhood. This may be because baby girl Number 1 was two at the time, and I was on overload. Sorry Ronnie.

Fast forward to Little Girl Number 2. Mama is now 35. She has watched "The Baby Whisperer" and read her book, especially the parts about over-stimulated babies. She and her Big Girl get the house ready. She relinquishes her SS class. After baby is born, she stays home. When she does go to Church, she keeps Baby in the cry room. Amazingly, Baby is much calmer. No need for hours of walking and lullabies. Very little frustration. Fewer tears from Baby and Mama. But then, Mama makes a mistake. Mama takes the ladies for a quick retreat. (Not her idea) One nïght away from home. Baby cries all night. Mama walks the halls of the retreat center and remembers the past. Next night, at home, same thing, fussiness. But then, all is calm again. Not perfect but definitely livable.
Maybe later on we can go out and about, but for now, for the first few weeks, we will stick close to home.

Lesson learned, and it only took 13 years.

Another Note.
God was exceedingly merciful to Baby Girl Number 1. She has turned out to be a lovely, godly young lady, in spite of her ding-bat mother.

Monday, November 17, 2008

A miracle

Last week, a lady from Church stopped by my house and told me that a guy in our church had had an accident and had broken/dislocated his shoulder and would need expensive surgery. The Preacher went to see him the very next day. He was horrified when he saw the x-rays of the broken shoulder, and the pain this brother was suffering. Through the public health system, the dr had given him an appointment for the following Friday. That night Neil took two men from the Church over to visit Jose Luis. They encouraged him, but also gently told him that maybe this was God's way of getting his attention, as he was not really faithful at all to God or the Church. This man broke down and cried out to God in repentance, acknowledging his guilt in this matter. The men prayed with him, asking God to heal him.
Neil knew that his physical condition shouldn't wait, so on Sat night, he drove Jose Luis into Valdivia to the Regional Hospital to the emergency room where they took more x-rays. Here's what they said. "Boy, why are you here? There's nothing more than a contusion here!" What!? He's OK! He doesn't need surgery. Its just a contusion! Wait a minute. Was there a mistake in the first x-ray? The second? No, my friends, there was healing from Above. When did this happen? We don't know. We just know that God is still here, and He still pays house calls! We praise you , Lord!

Mommy Musings

I guess since I have a new baby, it makes sense to blog about it. I don't think I've done a series, but I have been thinking a lot about mothering, especially during the time-outs for nursing, so I've got a few things to say.

Getting Real and learing to love.
I am going to try to be honest here. This may make you think less of me, but at least it will be the truth. I also think that it may encourage others to know that not every other mom is the perfect mother, and that we can all strive to be better at this sacred calling.
Confession: I am not a Baby Person. I do not, generally speaking, like babies. (Gasp! The Horror! How can she say that!!!!) Do you know that God knew that there would be women
who would have babies that would not be Baby People? Sure! Why else would he have written the Titus 2 command for the older women to teach the younger women to love the children? NOTE: I LOVE MY CHILDREN, but I had to learn to love babies!
Do you love babies? Great! Then you need to learn to spot out young ladies who need to learn this, and share your joy with them. Mentor an over-whelmed new mommy. Help her see past the tiredness and crying and see the joy. Also, many new mothers need to learn motherhood skills. The reason that they are so frustrated may be because the do not possess the skills needed to be competent mommies. I my own case, I only had one sister, born 4 years after me. Mother always wanted more babies, but the Lord said No. So, I grew up, never having the opportunity to care for a baby. I lived in Chile,where nobody babysat, and those who needed a babysitter, usually had a maid to do it. Many young women today grow up never having cared for a baby.
I was totally without experience in the Baby department, and it showed. May God bless all first-borns, who live through their mother's inexperience! I made a lot of mistakes and I had to repent of many bad attitudes. I want to share something I read this morning. I didn't comment there, but decided to tackle this here. Yes, we are all appalled at this mommy's lousy attitude. Yes, she is wrong. But let's not crucify her. Here is a woman (and a baby) in desperate need of some Titus 2 tough love. She is trying to find justification for her bad attitude, but what she needs is some help and loving. Also, she doesn't need the guilt trip. You know, the women who have a dozen kids and never ever dreamed of leaving any of them not for one second! They never wanted to go to a retreat alone, or even to the salon. This is not what that poor, foolish woman needs. Mostly what she needs is some godly examples. Maybe you can invite this woman or others like her over for tea or whatever. You can dote on her precious baby, and maybe she can start to see her child through different eyes. I don't know. Maybe you can offer to pray with her. Ask her if she has any needs. Ask her if she is getting enough rest. Ask her if you may offer her some advice. If she says no, thank you, then let it go, you tried. But maybe, she'll just break down in tears and you'll be able to share and help.

Now, almost 13 years after my first baby, and 9 years after my second, God gives me a third chance to do it right. Things are different now, I am different now. Had I known then what I know now, I'd probably have had more babies!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

An Award!

What do ya know? I got an award! Michelle in Mx, missionary to the Deaf, awarded me with this:

This means a lot because I would be awfully sad if people thought my blog was a lot of fluff! Thanks, Michelle! I would also like to thank God because without Him, life itself would have no purpose, much less a little ole blog like mine!

And now, it is my great pleasure to pass this award on to Sis. Julie, missionary wife, of Julie's Jewels. Her blog knows no fluff!!!! Her purpose is to share what God shares with her through His Word, and I am always blessed.

Monday, November 10, 2008

More Baby. Mas de la Guagua

Arent my kids cute?
¿No son lindos mis niños?

Baby, oh Baby! Mi Nena!

This will be a bi-lingual post for all our friends and family.
Esta entrada será bilingue para todos nuestros amigos y familiares.

Here's the last family photo without Vanessa! Aqui esta la ultima foto familiar sin Vanessa!

Here's the hospital, before all the hoopla.
Aqui esta una foto de la clinica antes de todo el espectaculo.
After this, they took me to what they call pre-parto, where I spent the next 4 hours.
The Dr was having a really busy day, so we spent most of the time with the midwife who did not really believe my stories of the previous births. By the time the contractions got really bad, then they decided to insert the catheter for the anesthesia. It took forever because of the really painful contractions. They kept telling me to roll up in a ball (yeah, right!) and be still. (are they kidding?) By the time the catheter was inserted and before I could feel the efects of the aneshtesia, I felt that the baby was coming. I told the midwife. She couldn't believe it! i had gone from 4 cm to 10 cm in 30 minutes! They wheeled me lickety-split into the delivery room and called Neil and Mom who they had sent out for the anesthesia precedure. In the delivery room, I had two really bad contractions which, by the way, I could feel because as yet the anesthesia had not taken effect. Then, before Neil and Mom could get into their scrubs, the baby is born!!!!! I was thrilled and ticked off all at the same time! Ticked because Neil and Mom missed the whole thing, and that I felt the whole thing!!!!!! I won't even tell you about the screaming! (me, not the baby!)
Despues me llevaron a pre-parto donde pasé las siguientes cuatro horas. El Dr. estaba muy ocupado, asi que estuve todo el rato con la matrona, quien parece no haber creido cuando le conte de la rapidez de los otros partos. Cuando las contracciones estaban super fuertes, decidieron insertar el cateter para la anestesia. Se demoraron, porque fue super dificil. Querian que yo me enrollara(como si pudiera) y no me moviera (¿estan locos?) Cuando ya habian insertado el cateter y antes de sentir los efectos de la anestesia, senti que la guagua ya venia. Se lo dije a la matrona y no me podia creer. Yo habia avanzado de 4 cm hasta 10 cm en 30 minutos. Me llavaron rapidito al pabellon, y llamaron a Neil y Mama, porque los habian echado para la cosa de la anestesia. Una vez en el pabello, tuve 2 terribles contacciones mas, que igualmente senti, porque la anestesia todavia no habia tomado efecto. ¡Y nacio la guagua! Yo yestaba feliz y a la vez molesta porque 1, Neil y Mama se lo perdieron todo, y 2, Senti tod0! Y ni les voy a hablar de los gritos (los mios, no los de la bebe!)

Alls well that ends well!
Ya todo esta bien!

Ronnie wasnt really keen on holding the baby
Ronnie no queria tomar la guagua.
But he had a change of heart!
Pero cambio de parecer!

Heres a shot with Emily and the lovely flowers she brought.
Una foto con mi hermana Emily, y las flores que trajo.

Monday, November 03, 2008

One last pre-baby post

That is, if the Dr. doesn't change his mind tomorrow. All is ready...... I still don't have a diaper bag. Diaper bags are serious things, not to be purchased on a whim. It has to be big enough, small enough, not too pink, as those show the dirt all to easily. I'll just wait until I can find the perfect bag!

The Dr. asked us to come in to his office on Sat evening, as we were in the city anyway. Neil and I were wondering what he was going to say, or was looking for. I told him that I figured that he would want to see if I was dilated at all. Neil asked me just how the Dr. would find that out, was there a test or something? I laughed. I told him exactly how the Dr. found out just how many centimeters dilated someone is. He gave me the most horrified look! Now, this is our 3rd baby. Where has that man been?????

My 9 year old is getting excited about the delivery. He asked me if I was having "contraptions"!

Now, on to the elections. Just know this. God has determined who will become the next president of the USA, and that man will be there to fulfill God's sovereign purposes. That thought encourages me, as I am not thrilled about one of the candidates, and I am really frightened by the other one! I have just finished reading in the Bible about Nebuchadnezzar, and how God chose to use him to punish his rebelllious people. Are the Americans really any better than the Israelites of old? I think not.

We are having a prophecy conference this weekend. That's not my favorite subjects, but in light of current events, its good to go over again. It gets me to thinking about that old song, "Soon and very soon, we are going to see the King!" Hallelujah!