Women’s Update – 7/24/14

Scroll down for current announcements.

Alone with One’s Thoughts

by Joy O’Toole

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.”
Philippians 4:8

Are you afraid to be alone with your thoughts?  Does the thought of being still and quiet with no outside distractions turn you off?  Are you bored when your cell phone dies while sitting at a doctor’s office?  When you are alone in the car, can you drive without the radio or phone or audiobook and just think?

According to a study done by a professor at University of Virginia, a large majority of Americans would prefer not to be distraction-free for even a few minutes.  Even more amazing is the fact that many of them would choose to give themselves an electric shock rather than be alone with just their thoughts to keep them company!

This amazed me because I yearn for time alone–to pray, to think, to write blog posts in my head, to simply be.  Part of the charm of gardening to me has always been that I am alone outside and don’t have any distractions (as long as the children don’t need me).  When I worked in a molecular biology lab, I used the many hours of running gels and preparing for experiments alone in a little room and used the time to memorize poetry, hymns, and Scripture.

My son and I discussed this study and wondered if the reason people these days seem to need constant stimulation is due to the fact that our culture, as a whole, is on the downswing and there is a lack of wholeness in our culture, our communities, our families, and our own person.  That lack of wholeness, of integrity, leads us to want to flee our thoughts because we don’t know what to think or how to think it anymore.  We also wondered if there was a difference in results between introverts and extroverts or if the results were spread evenly as they were in age group (although not in gender).

And yet, part of me understood these results.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I too am easily distracted these days– by outside noises, electronics, and busyness–and will often pick up a book rather than be completely still. I rarely stop and just think.

However when I do set that time aside, even for ten minutes, I am refreshed and enriched as I pray and ponder things in my heart.  I think there is a reason why the Bible exhorts us to pray and meditate.  Through prayer and meditation on truth and goodness and beauty, our hearts and minds are reminded of what is true, noble, just, pure, lovely, of good report, of good virtue and praiseworthy.

I am slowly adding in time to write letters and journal.  I am finding that forcing myself to slow down and write with pen on paper allows my mind to dwell more deeply on what I am writing and thus meditate more on the truths I am copying or communicating.  Meditation and prayer time is a time to be alone with my thoughts and with God.  I believe that as my thoughts are more focused on the “things above“, my life will be fuller and more whole and richer for me and for all those around me.

About Joy:  Joy is wife to Greg, mother of Luke, Jonathan, and Joshua, stepmother of Jennifer and Gavin, and “Grandma Joy” of Edison.  She fills her days caring for her family, teaching her youngest son at home, and working as a part-time librarian.  In her spare time she likes to read, listen to music, and think and write about the Gospel and Christ’s truth, goodness, and beauty.  Her blog can be found HERE.

Current Announcements:

Scroll down toward the end to read a message from Kathryne Marple, NLICC Women’s Ministry Committee Chair

Girls’ Sunday Summer Study is Complete for this Summer

  • Thank you to all of the women who have led lessons, helped with service projects, and prepared meals and opened their homes up to our girls this summer.
  • Since no one was able to sign up to lead this Sunday at Gretchen’s home, Heather and Carrie have decided to postpone the lesson to next summer.  We will have had seven lessons this summer and will have eight lessons next summer. Have your girls save their books!
  • It is our prayer that the girls have grown in their knowledge of biblical womanhood and their role as life-givers and helpers in the church and home.  We have enjoyed them!

Open House at Pastor Doug and Mary Jane Kittredge’s Home after Evening Service this Sunday
Summer gives us extra daylight and more relaxed schedules.  Come fellowship after evening service.  The Kittredges live at 709 Mary Ball Street, Fredericksburg, VA  22401.

Red Cross Blood Drive at NLICC on Thursday, August 7th from 2-7 pm

  • Did you know…

one blood donation can save 3 lives?
every two seconds someone needs a blood transfusion?
less than 38% of the population is eligible to give blood?
5 million patients in the U.S. need blood every year?

  • Click HERE to learn about donor eligibility
  • Make an appointment in the foyer on Sunday
  • Childcare is available.

Baby Shower for Amy Auker,  Saturday, August 16th from 2-4 pm at the Page home
You are invited to a baby shower for Amy Auker on Saturday, August 16th from 2-4pm at the Page hom, 5207 Cedar Ridge Drive.  Plan to share a verse or word of encouragement.  Amy is registered at Buy Buy Baby and Amazon.

Open House Hospitality Opportunity – August 17th
Contact the church office if you are willing to open your backyard to fellowship August 17th after evening service.

Baby Shower for Katie Crawford, Sunday August 24 from 2-4 pm {Ferry Farm area}
Please join us as we celebrate the upcoming birth of Katie’s baby girl! RSVP, directions, and questions to Sarah Schroeder. Please RSVP by August 10th. Katie is registered at Buy Buy Baby.

Women’s Bible Study for Fall
We have decided on a study for the Fall – The Promised One – Seeing Jesus in Genesis by Nancy Guthrie.  It will be on Tuesday mornings from 9:30-11:30 and will begin September 9th.  Childcare will be available. More details to come!

Do you have an interest in an Evening Women’s Bible Study for Fall?
Are you interested in being a part of a weekly women’s Bible study in the evening beginning in September?  We’d study the same book as the Tuesday morning class – The Promised One – Seeing Jesus in Genesis by Nancy Guthrie over 20 weeks.  If so, let us know what evenings are best for you at wm@nlicc.org.  If there is no interest we will not have it as an offering, so please let us know!

Bulletin Folding
Summer is a great time to fold bulletins – older children are out of school and can help prepare for the worship service! Do you have a couple hours on a Friday afternoon you can spare? Sign up HERE to fold bulletins after 1 pm some Friday. Takes about 2 hours (faster if you bring a friend!) Questions? Ask Pam in the office.

From Kathryne:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy. It does not boast. It is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking. Love is not easily angered; it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails.”
I Corinthians 13:4-8

If you are participating in VBS this week, the catchy song that goes with these verses is now probably stuck in your head as you read this. What a blessing for me to watch Ruth de los Santos teach the 5th and 6th grade class as her assistant! Ruth has a natural ability to teach and capture children’s hearts with her storytelling and applications. As the children hear Bible stories that show Jesus’ patience and kindness toward sinners , their responses to real life situations that require a difficult choice to love selflessly demonstrate that they understand and desire to apply the truths of 1 Corinthians 13. Praise God that His Word does not return empty. (Isaiah 55:11) Continue to pray for God’s Word to take root and grow in these precious lives. (Col. 2:7)

Do you have information or needs that you’d like passed to the women of the church, activities or studies you’d like to see? Let us know at wm@nlicc.org.

in His grace,
the Women’s Ministry Committee

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