Sunday, January 28, 2007

Kaitlin's Journaling

I love journaling, and it is always enjoyable and enlightening to read about other people's writing habits. There are so many ways that we can grow in our writing and continue to bring glory to God.

Kaitlin from Mission Amare brings a fresh perspective in her posts on the subject of Forgetting to Remember. Part One dealt with daydreaming and the importance of writing things down, and Part Two focuses on journaling and the inconsistencies we all face.

It was especially interesting to hear about Kaitlin's first diary, as I could completely relate. My journal didn't have a key, and that only compounded the problem.

Go take a look at her recent post!

Thursday, January 25, 2007

The Stop Owns Santa

What is wrong with this sign? You guessed it – the artist made a punctuation mistake, and this easygoing yard decorator didn’t even notice.

I found the sign in my neighborhood, and it reminded me of Lynn Truss’ book Eats, Shoots and Leaves. Truss would have stuck a “The Panda Says No!” sticker on the wayward apostrophe – but I just took a picture.

Winter Wonderland

Oklahoma was covered with a thick layer of ice two weeks ago. Snow followed days later. It wasn’t much fun to work in, but it did transform the neighborhood into a winter wonderland. Snow falls on a wintry evening. A smooth sheet of solid ice. Watch the curb!
This is ice shoveled from someone’s driveway.


Can you tell it's ice?

Monday, January 22, 2007

Past and Present Reading

The book list on my sidebar hasn’t been updated for a while, so I thought now would be a good time to post a summary of a few of the titles that have interested me over the past few months. Enjoy!

Currently Reading
The Holy Bible
You never finish this one! I am enjoying Ephesians right now.

Ten P’s in a Podby Arnold Pent III
I have wanted to read this family story for a long time now, and it is just as great as I anticipated. This book will make you laugh while centering your mind on the faithfulness of God.

Handbook of Magazine Article Writingedited by Michelle Ruberg
My sister gave this book to me for my birthday. It is answering many questions that I have wanted to ask about writing for magazines as well as many questions that I would never have thought to ask. This handbook is a treasure.

Biblical Creationismby Dr. Henry MorrisThis was a Christmas gift from my parents. I have not read much of it yet, but I can already tell that it is going to enlarge my understanding and give me a fresh perspective on the creation of the world.

The Importance of the Electoral College

by Dr. George Grant
The Electoral College has always baffled me, regardless of the fact that it has been explained to me several times. It is time to put all confusion away, and this book will do it. Strong tea will be a friendly companion with this one.

George Whitefield
by J. R. Andrews
George Whitefield was a dynamic speaker, but this biography is almost a lulaby. It might take me a few more months to finish it.

Recently Finished


Spy: The Story of Modern Espionage (1969)
by Clifford Irving and Herbert Burkholz
See Post
A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens
I have been familiar with this classic Christmas story for years, but this was my first time to actually read Charles Dickens’ masterpiece from beginning to end. I enjoyed it on Christmas Eve – the same infamous night that Scrooge receives his ghostly visitors.
Oliver Twist
by Charles Dickens

Christy
by Catherine Marshall
See PostsJulieby Catherine Marshall

Sense and Sensibilityby Jane Austen

Eats, Shoots and Leaves
by Lynne Truss

Friday, January 19, 2007

January 19 – Robert E. Lee

This is a guest post written by my father, Robert W. Moore.
Thank you, Dad!

Today we remember the life and service of perhaps America’s greatest soldier, General Robert E. Lee. On this day 200 years ago, a hero was born in Virginia.

Robert E. Lee’s faith, wisdom, courage, and devotion to duty are legendary. He stood to defend the Old Dominion, his native Virginia, against Yankee aggression when she seceded from the Union in April, 1861. The southern states were right – and Robert E. Lee was right.

What shapes a man’s character? As a boy, Robert E. Lee gleaned the importance of the Bible from his mother. Her faithfulness to God made a solid impact in the young man’s life. Robert entered the United States Military Academy at West Point in 1825, graduating in 1829 with no demerits – an achievement unmatched by any other cadet to this day.

Considering the importance of fathers in their children’s spiritual and moral character, one should consider Robert E. Lee’s own father, the hero of the American War for Independence, Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee. Robert E. Lee’s mother, Anne Hill Carter Lee, was Henry’s second wife. (His first wife, Matilda Lee, died in 1790.) Robert E. Lee was Henry and Anne Lee’s fifth child, born in 1807.

It is fascinating that Light Horse Harry Lee had accomplished the following things before Robert E. Lee was even three years old: commissioned a captain, and then a colonel, in the Virginia Dragoons (War for Independence cavalry); member of the Continental Congress; governor of Virginia; major general in the United States Army; member of the Sixth Congress from the state of Virginia. His friendship with President George Washington was notable, and it was Henry “Light Horse Harry” Lee who was asked by Congress to deliver Washington’s eulogy to both houses of Congress. Light Horse Harry remembered his old friend well, noting that Washington was “…first in war, first in peace, and first in the hearts of his countrymen.”

Robert E. Lee’s heritage of bravery, steadfastness, and loyalty must surely have been learned from the stories told by, and about, his father. Light Horse Harry was a real-life hero of American freedom. He did not flinch when Virginia’s liberties were assailed. Neither did his son.

There were difficult times, and Robert E. Lee’s father died in 1818 when Robert was eleven years old. The family was destitute because of bad investments made by Henry Lee. Although the humiliations suffered by Henry Lee should not – must not – blacken his heroic stature, they surely impacted the mind and heart of the young boy, Robert. In God’s providence, Robert E. Lee was the progeny of a valiant warrior and national hero – and a man struggling to emerge from financial ruin and debtors’ prison. Through these hardships, Robert E. Lee found the grace to grow more wise – to conquer mediocrity in virtually every aspect of his life.

I don’t think a single young person understands the lasting significance of the things he or she endures. May we prayerfully commit each day to Christ, trusting that our legacy to future generations is noble and bright.

We thank God for the example set by General Robert E. Lee of the Confederate States of America.

Robert E. Lee

Today is the 200th birthday of General Robert E. Lee. He was a great Christian man and is to be commended for his faith, honor, and unfailing loyalty to his homeland.

I would like to share a few quotes from the great general. Enjoy!


"My trust is in the mercy and wisdom of a kind Providence, who ordereth all things for our good."

"My chief concern is to try to be an humble, earnest Christian."

"With all my devotion to the Union and the feeling of loyalty and duty of an American citizen, I have not been able to make up my mind to raise my hand against my relatives, my children, my home. I have therefore resigned my commission in the Army, and save in defense of my native State, with the sincere hope that my poor services may never be needed, I hope I may never be called on to draw my sword..."

"Do your duty in all things. You cannot do more, you should never wish to do less."

"[T]here is no more dangerous experiment than that of undertaking to be one thing before a man's face and another behind his back."

"I cannot trust a man to control others who cannot control himself."

"The gentleman does not needlessly and unnecessarily remind an offender of a wrong he may have committed against him. He can not only forgive; he can forget; and he strives for that nobleness of self and mildness of character which imparts sufficient strength to let the past be put the past."

"Whiskey - I like it, I always did, and that is the reason I never use it."

"Obedience to lawful authority is the foundation of manly character."

"It is well that war is so terrible -- lest we should grow too fond of it."

"[W]e made a great mistake in the beginning of our struggle, and I fear, in spite of all we can do, it will prove to be a fatal mistake. We appointed all our worst generals to command our armies, and all our best generals to edit the newspapers."

"So far from engaging in a war to perpetuate slavery, I am rejoiced that Slavery is abolished. I believe it will be greatly for the interest of the South. So fully am I satisfied of this that I would have cheerfully lost all that I have lost by the war, and have suffered all that I have suffered to have this object attained."

"You must study to be frank with the world: frankness is the child of honesty and courage. Say just what you mean to do on every occasion, and take it for granted that you mean to do right."

"You cannot be a true man until you learn to obey."

"A true man of honor feels humbled himself when he cannot help humbling others."

"My experience through life has convinced me that, while moderation and temperance in all things are commendable and beneficial, abstinence from spirituous liquors is the best safeguard of morals and health."

"The education of a man is never completed until he dies."

"We failed, but in the good providence of God apparent failure often proves a blessing."

"What a cruel thing is war: to separate and destroy families and friends, and mar the purest joys and happiness God has granted us in this world; to fill our hearts with hatred instead of love for our neighbors, and to devastate the fair face of this beautiful world."

"You can have anything you want - if you want it badly enough. You can be anything you want to be, have anything you desire, accomplish anything you set out to accomplish - if you will hold to that desire with singleness of purpose."

"Get correct views of life, and learn to see the world in its true light. It will enable you to live pleasantly, to do good, and, when summoned away, to leave without regret."

"Never do a wrong thing to make a friend or keep one."

"They do not know what they say. If it came to a conflict of arms, the war will last at least four years. Northern politicians will not appreciate the determination and pluck of the South, and Southern politicians do not appreciate the numbers, resources, and patient perseverance of the North. Both sides forget that we are all Americans. I foresee that our country will pass through a terrible ordeal, a necessary expiation, perhaps, for our national sins."

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

One Year of Study.Quiet!

Study.Quiet is one year old! It was on January 16, 2006 that I took the plunge and decided to occupy my own space on the web. I entered the blogosphere and “published” My Personal World View. Excitement hardly describes that first week as one old writing project was published each day. I had a blog!

My first posts included a 7 page long library research report on George Washington, an essay on The World of Narnia, and two book reviews on The Brothers Grimm and The Wizard of Oz. It was a pace that I couldn’t keep up with, of course, and I soon ran out of publishable material.

The moment of decision came on the first Saturday after the creation of Study.Quiet. I accidentally DELETED my blog! This could have been a great opportunity to call my blogging experiment a failure and move on. Would I continue? Up until that time I had used old projects that did not involve additional work. From that point on posting would require new ideas and hours of writing. It would be difficult.

In essence, Elizabeth Ellen Moore was a “wannabe” author who never wrote much (outside of journals). Could I keep up a blog?

With the Lord’s help – and a lot of support from my father and mother – I decided to try.

That was one year ago now, and Study.Quiet has been one of the most rewarding disciplines of my entire life. Blogging has encouraged me to write, and I have started a journey that will continue my entire life.

God has used Study.Quiet to bless me in so many ways. I have met new friends and been uplifted and encouraged by a multitude of Christian young people that I might never have known otherwise.

I used to scoff at the idea of making meaningful relationships “online,” but I have done just that. God has given me new friends that I hope to keep for a lifetime. The Christian blogosphere has shown me that I am not alone when it comes to some of my “odd” beliefs and preferences. We may not agree 100% on every issue, but that doesn’t matter. I have met new brothers and sisters in the Faith, and we have used our blogs to “build each other up.”

Thank you, Readers, for a wonderful year. I appreciate you all so much. Thank you for your encouragement, comments, and prayers. You mean so much to me, and I hope that the Lord has used Study.Quiet to bless you as well.

God Bless,
Elizabeth

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

I read Julie by Catherine Marshall in November 2006.

The Good
Julie is a coming of age story about a young high school girl placed in extraordinary circumstances. Partially based upon the catastrophic Johnstown Flood of 1889, this Depression era story is full of action, hard work, generosity, and forgiveness.

Julie Wallace’s father is a recently retired minister when he moves his family to a flood prone steel town in Pennsylvania and uses their entire savings to buy a struggling newspaper. The entire Wallace family learns to work together as they labor to make the newspaper profitable and put food on the table.

17 year old Julie creates friends and enemies as she attempts to improve the ghetto-like neighborhoods of the factory workers and make a difference as a newspaper reporter. When she becomes interested in the nearby dam and asks too many questions about its safety, Julie and her father meet unexpected opposition from the powerful business owners who control the dam, steel works, bank, church, and pockets of their fellow businessmen.

The Bad
The story comes to a dramatic climax when we realize that Julie’s fears are well founded, and the neglected dam breaks – resulting in thousands of deaths. Julie's young brother and best friend are among the victims killed.

It was an exciting story that kept me on the edge of my seat, but did I like it?

No.

The Ugly
Although Julie has many good qualities, the story was much too romantic for my tastes. If you thought the love triangle in Christy was confusing with David and Dr. MacNeil, try to imagine the chaos of three young men all vying for the attentions of our fair lady. There is the rich Englishman, the poor idealistic pastor, and the young high school boy: all three charming, handsome, and kind.

Julie appears to love each of them and she dates and kisses all three. Her casual dating relationships made me want to shake her and yell, “Make up your mind, already!” Her parents’ involvement in this crucial matter is very little, and she seems to think that it is entirely her business. Sadly, her parents agree.

I had a feeling that the author would conveniently dispose of at least one of Julie's young men during the flood, but surprisingly, all three survive, and Julie still has the decision of a lifetime to make when the flood waters recede.

Julie lacks wisdom when it comes to relationships, and she allows herself to be put in compromising situations: circumstances that every Christian young lady attempting to guard her heart and body should avoid at all costs. The “dating scenes” are too numerous and much too intimate for my standards.

I almost didn’t admit to reading this book, but I hope that this review is helpful to you. It does not meet with my stamp of approval, and this is one “Christian” novel that you can do without.

For a more uplifting Catherine Marshall book, click HERE to read my opinion of Christy.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

A Book of Secrets

I recently finished reading Spy: The Story of Modern Espionage
by Clifford Irving and Herbert Burkholz (1969)

As a young girl I wanted to grow up to be a spy. I would sneak around the house, hide in hallways and closets, and peer around corners. My church didn’t know it, but there was a spy ring operating under their very noses after services, and it was organized by none other than the stealthy Pastor’s daughter: me. I and my little cohorts would “try to act normal” while gathering secret intelligence and holding clandestine meetings.

Spy: The Story of Modern Espionage was written during the political unrest of the late 1960’s and tells of the Soviet Union’s KGB, the United States’ CIA and FBI, and Britain’s MI5 and MI6. I learned about the professional and amateur spy rings of the 1940s, 50’s, and 60’s and the intense training programs that attempted to build the perfect spy: the spy that could live under a false identity and gather and transmit classified information for years without raising suspicion.

Despite the fact that I have long determined upon domestic simplicity over international espionage my “inner-spy” enjoyed reading about codes, tunnels, and secret agents. This book is more fascinating than any fictitious novel, and I sped through the pages.

Monday, January 01, 2007

His grace is sufficient.

It is the first day of 2007. A new year is beginning.

January 1st has long been a day of reflection, and for the Christian it is also a day of prayer. As I look back over the years I recognize that much has changed over time. Resolutions are revised and reworded; our goals and opinions are refined. Who am I now, and what does this year hold for me?

In many ways I feel like Maria as she clangs the Abby gates behind her and heads into her new life: a new adventure. She sang prayerfully,

What will this day be like? I wonder.
What will my future be? I wonder.

A lot has changed in past years, but one thing that has not and will not alter is my desire to bring glory to Jesus Christ in my every word, thought, and action. That is my resolution for 2007. I won’t always succeed, and sadly, I won’t be perfect. Who can be? The good news is that I don’t need to reproach myself or be despondent about it. My Savior has already paid the debt. I am free! By no means free to sin, I have been released from its condemnation. I am the righteousness of God in Christ. God is my Father, and He cares deeply for me.

I would be lying if I said 2006 was easy; it wasn’t. There were times when I felt sad, discouraged, and confused. I would also be lying if I said that I expect a perfect 2007. My comfort and strength does not lie in my hope for a flawless tomorrow but in the grace and everlasting joy of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. In every challenge and difficulty I feel His presence around me. In my greatest turmoil I find relief in His Word.

My Heavenly Father is always available. He is always waiting for me to share my trials and worries with Him. His grace is sufficient. So many times this year I have seen His loving hand at work in my life. It was obvious in the perfectly timed scripture read by my mother. It was revealed in the hug from my father at the exact moment I needed him.

Jesus loves me. He died for me, but it didn’t just end there. He continually shows His love by caring for my today and my tomorrow. My Heavenly Father foresees my distress and supplies exactly what I need at the exact moment I need it.

Jesus is my rock and my strong tower. I want to praise Him and give Him glory. Turn to Jesus today. Give Him your problems and your heartache. He is the only one who can truly relieve you of your burden.

Give God the glory today. 2007 is going to be a great year. It won’t be good on account of anything you or I can do. It will be wonderful simply for the journey that we, as Believers, will travel with our Lord.

Praise God! The joy of the Lord is my strength!