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Taxes and Paying it Forward

16 Apr

“6 This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, who give their full time to governing. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.  8 Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”

Romans 13: 6-8

It may be April 16th, but it is TAX DAY!  Yay? Sorry to those who thought they could escape it since the 15th fell on a Sunday this year.  I’m sure most didn’t, but I wouldn’t put it past some individuals.

I thought I’d share some scripture pertaining to the wonderful world of taxes.  Yep.  Even way back in biblical times (and before) people paid their dues and hated it just as much as we do.  What I enjoy about this particular scripture passage is that the focus is not just on giving taxes.  Yes, we are to respect the governing authorities and pay our dues, but we also are to give to others what is due them.

What does that mean? Should we only respect and honor those in position over us or only those we think deserve it?  What about only those who first respect and honor us?  Is this a good way to live with others? Continue reading

You is Important: Day 28: Lent Journey

24 Mar

Image copyright of Heather Tiger

” 7 or because of these surpassingly great revelations. Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. 8 Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. ”

2 Corinthians 12: 7-10

Aibileen Clark, one of the main heroines from The Help, faced great trials and persecution.  She felt weak; yet she was made strong.  She had great faith in the midst of struggles.  She never forgot that she, and those she fought for, were worth every minute of pain.  She knew her value and the value of others, even when told there was none to be found.  She was worth the fight.

Do you know you are? Continue reading

Royal Invitation: Day 23: Lent Journey

19 Mar

  “Daughters of kings are among your honored women;
   at your right hand is the royal bride in gold of Ophir.”

Psalm 45:9 (NIV)

My email contains the word princess in it.  My mother has told me numerous times that I need to get a grown up email address.  I told her it is my grown up email address since it has my married name in it too, and is quite a step up from rainbowbrite!  Yep, rainbowbrite.  (Child of the 80’s, remember!)

As I was reading today’s scripture, I was reminded and affirmed that I indeed have my grown up email address, because not only does the hubs often treat me like a princess, I am the daughter of a King.  We are all children of God.  He is the King of Kings, and that makes us royalty!  Sons and daughters of God; princes and princesses of the King.

Is this really how God sees us?… Continue reading

Just As You Are: Day 22: Lent Journey

17 Mar

 

 

 

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Romans 5:8 (NIV)

*Today’s post will follow the KISS method….Keep it simple silly (Yes, I use the nice word), as I have a darling toddler literally hanging on my arm, waiting for undivided attention.*

One of my favorite chick flicks is Bridget Jones’s Diary (2001); a very imperfect girl and her zany, British, antics to land the “perfect” man.  Besides a scene where Bridget belts out some Celine Dion to, “All By Myself,” my favorite scene from the movie is the incomparable Mr. darcy declaring his “love” for Bridget.  (I say “love” because it’s a strange, reserved, British, sort of love….stodgy?)  I’ll let Darcy speak for himself:

Mark Darcy: I don’t think you’re an idiot at all. I mean, there are elements of the ridiculous about you. Your mother’s pretty interesting. And you really are an appallingly bad public speaker. And, um, you tend to let whatever’s in your head come out of your mouth without much consideration of the consequences… But the thing is, um, what I’m trying to say, very inarticulately, is that, um, in fact, perhaps despite appearances, I like you, very much. Just as you are.

The best part of the entire speech rests in the last sentences; I like you, very much. Just as you are.  Just as you are.  He’s telling Bridget that she is good enough, as is.  Despite her craziness, her quirks, her tendency to make the wrong decisions, and blurt out the wrong sentiments, he likes her.  Heck, he loves her more because of these things.

This is how God loves us.  Just as we are.  Warts and all.  Faults and all.  Despite our sin, God loves us.  He sent Jesus as a sacrifice to cleanse us from sin so we could be reconciled to Him.  God is not waiting for us to clean up our act, look or act perfect, or lead a sinless life before loving us.  He loves us now, as we are.  He wants us to accept Jesus and be brought close to Him.  He’s waiting to show you how much He loves you, and all the good plans He has for your life.  He will bring forth the best you.

Are you ready to be loved as you are?

I’ll leave you this weekend with a smile:

Remember, you are not alone!  God already loves you, as you are!

Gracefully~~Heather

Still Good: Day 21: Lent Journey

16 Mar

This is the family tree of the human race: When God created the human race, he made it godlike, with a nature akin to God. He created both male and female and blessed them, the whole human race.

Genesis 5:1-3 (The Message)

We all spring from the same family tree.  We were created in the image of God; the entire human race.  We were created unique and purposeful, and to be in relationship, with one another and God.

While sin has marred the image of God within us and within our family (humanity), we have not been cast off and forgotten.  God sent His very son, Jesus, to redeem us and reconcile us to the Father.  Our family heritage is one of great sacrifice and greater love and grace.

This is how we should live out our love for each other, as the family God created.  We are all broken and seeking wholeness and healing.  We seek to be reconciled to one another, yet we do not treat everyone as family.  God calls us to love as He loves; unconditionally and abundantly.  We are to love God with all we have and are, and love our neighbors, our family, as ourselves.

So take a look around….. Continue reading

Are You White Rabbiting God?: Day 15: Lent Journey

9 Mar

“God isn’t late with his promise as some measure lateness.  He is restraining himself on account of you, holding back the End because he doesn’t want anyone lost.  He’s giving everyone space and time to change.”

2 Peter 3:9 (The Message)

I enjoy the classic Disney film, Alice in Wonderland.  I adore the mischievous Cheshire Cat.  I think the Mad Hatter is endearing, and what a dear little mouse.  I even find a soft spot of sadness for the unhappy Queen.  I do not, however, care much for the persnickety White Rabbit.  Whenever I watched dear Alice chasing the rabbit’s retreating tail, I found myself wanting to flick him in the head for being so darn rude.

Instead of just repeating, “We’re late. We’re late, for a very important date,” how much trouble would it have been to take 5 seconds to explain what you are late for, and why things are looking so very strange?  You have time to consult your giant pocket-watch, you have time to explain yourself, rabbit!  Instead he scurries off, repeating the endless phrase, We’re Late, and leads Alice into Wonderland.

I wonder if God gets tired of our endless white rabbiting?

Image courtesy and copyright of Disney. Image is a screencap and displayed for personal and fan use from http://www.alice-in-wonderland.net/pictures/white-rabbit-pictures.html

Continue reading

Featured Flick Fridays: Need Some Sunshine?

7 May

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind, 2004

Eternal Sunshine

Independent films production company, Focus Features, has released some of my favorite movies.  It is the art house films division of Universal.  I really like their logo; it’s very artsy.  One of their more successful films is, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Boasting a pretty stellar cast with Jim Carrey, Kate Winslet, Kirsten Dunst, Mark Ruffalo, Elijah Wood, and Tom Wilkinson, ES is one of the more unique story-lines I’ve encountered.

Joel (Carrey) and Clementine (Winslet) meet and strike up a relationship on a train from Montauk, NY.  Joel is emotionally guarded and Clementine is a nutty, free spirit.  This meeting, however, was not their first.  In fact, they recently just separated after two years together, but do to a little procedure they both undergo, they don’t remember this.  Most of the movie plays out in Joel’s mind as it is being erased by employees of Lacuna.  These employees (Wood, Dunst, Ruffalo, and Wilkinson) all play peripheral roles in the main character’s lives, and we see these moments intermittently throughout the film.

The movie can get pretty depressing and high-strung at some points but I think it beautifully mirrors the arcing story of Joel an Clementine.  It is quirky and insightful and can really make you think about choices you have made and the effect we have on each others lives.  I, myself, love the ending.  If you need a good film to stir your heart and mind, give Eternal Sunshine a shot.

Ten Things Tuesday

4 May

Ten Movies To See

In no particular order are the top ten movies I am eager to see with a brief reason as to why.  Yes, there are some that are rentals now, but with an almost 7 month old in the house, we haven’t gotten out much.

1. Eclipse: The third installment of the Twilight Saga series, by Stephenie Meyer, premiers June 30, and I can’t wait.  I was a hold out on reading the books, but when I found myself on bedrest during my pregnancy, I gave in.  I am a total fan of the books and movies now.  I love a good, tortured, love story.  Nothing like teenage angst.

2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1: I have only missed one HP premier, but I do not intend to miss these last two.  I heart Harry Potter and even after reading the books, again which I finally did on bedrest, I still love the movies.  Yes, the books are richer in detail and the movies make some changes, but they are still highly entertaining and, I think, thoughtful and moving.  And yes, I want to go the Universal’s Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park, badly.

3. The Losers: 3 words. Jeffrey Dean Morgan.  I also am due for a good action flick.

4. The Back-up Plan:  I am a JLO fan.  I think she can act and I enjoy her music.  Selena, is one of my favorite bios and I think Jen really shines in Rom-Coms.  After surviving my first pregnancy, I am looking forward to a few good laughs, and I’m sure a few over-top Hollywood moments.

5. Date Night: This film has the potential to be unbelievably funny or unbearably funny, but raunchy.  I’m hoping for option 1 and think that’s the right one with Tina Fey on board.  Aaron and I love Steve Carell, and I am eager to see him in a good mix of his acting skills.  Plus, great excuse, Date Night on date night?!

6. Sherlock Holmes: Who doesn’t love a big action block-buster?  This looks clever, funny. and the actors are quality.  Jude Law is, um, a nice-looking bloke.

7. Remember Me: This film combines two major favorites.  See #1 for my mini-obsession with Twilight.  Robert Pattinson is angst and tortured in this film, so lots of brooding looks which he wears well.  Plus, Emilie de Ravin, better known as Claire, from Lost is Rob’s love interest and fellow tortured soul.  Love the love stories.

8. The Last Song:  I’m not really a Miley Cyrus fan.  Nothing against her or her talent, just kinda ambivalent.  I am however, a Nicholas Spark’s fan.  I have read all of his books and seen all the film adaptations.  I’m not expecting this to be The Notebook quality, but I enjoyed the book.  This will no doubt be a rental for a night when Aaron works late.

9. Sex and the City 2:  My best friend Melodi adores the series and tried to sell me on it numerous times.  It wasn’t until moving to KY and I had some sleepless nights that I finally watched the show on TBS.  I find the relationship dynamics fascinating and the whole show a brilliant case study into the psyche of our need for love.  I enjoyed the first movie, especially because it involved a girls night.  I am overdue for a girls night with Mel, so this is the perfect excuse.

10. Letters to Juliet:  Yes, another love story.  However, I think it is a must see when it involves one of the classics.  I think the Romeo and Juliet aspect will be cheesy, but the movie will probably provide exactly what is expected; a fun, sweet, happy-ending love story meant to uplift.  We all need more of those don’t we?

Movies, Movies, Movies

Featured Flick Friday

30 Apr

The Emperor’s New Groove (2000), Disney

Two things I love in a movie; sarcasm and endless memorable quotes!  The Emperor’s New Groove has both in spades, or rather because of Spade.  David Spade voices the lead character, Emperor Kuzco, and manages to bring Tommy Boy type humor and sarcasm to this clever film, but he keeps it kid and family friendly.  John Goodman lends his familiar voice to the character of Pacha, a local villager who wins hearts and provides many moments of dead pan humor.  The villain of the story is Yzma, voiced by Eartha Kitt, and she is one ugly Disney villain.  Perhaps one of my all-time favorite villains, Yzma is a diva and a very demanding employer; just ask Kronk, her right-hand goon, voiced by Patrick Warburton of Seinfield fame.  My two favorite scenes of Kronk’s are when he provides his own theme music while he is sneaking out to get rid of Kuzco after Yzma’s attempt to poison him turn the emperor into a llama, and the ending scenes with Kronk leading the Junior Chipmunks and ‘speaking’ squirrel.  I think Warburton and Spade provide the most humor throughout the film.  The best part for me is that it is sarcastic humor for the majority of the film and this is what makes the film adult worthy.  There are so many quotes that I won’t attempt to list them, but I encourage you to check out imdb’s page of memorable quotes and have a good laugh. Of course if you haven’t yet seen this movie,  they are always better in context, so rent the movie!  If you need more encouragement, check out the clips below.  They’ll brighten your day at the very least.

I’ll leave you with my favorite quote of the movie provided by Emperor Kuzco.  It is my go to quote when I’m trying to be sneaky and get caught!

Kuzko: [after throwing a rock at Pacha’s head, acting innocent] Huh? What? I didn’t do anything. I didn’t… Somebody’s throwin’ stuff. You gonna build a fire or what?