Monthly Archives: June 2012

Five Minute Friday: Risk

The Gypsy Mama shares this great idea to write every Friday for 5 minutes on a topic.

Want to take five minutes with me and just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.

I am generally speaking, not a risk taker.  I do everything I can to stay in my comfort zone.  I never really imagine myself doing the daring thing.  Just let me sit back and watch…better yet, I will remove myself from watching.  I don’t necessarily see this as a bad thing. However, in the past year I have done some risky things.  I put myself out there to hike up Half Dome in Yosemite last September. I made it out of there alive…and actually would risk doing it again.

The most recent risk was meeting new people.  I have grown up in the same 15 mile radius for my entire life and have become acquainted with the same people.  But I heard of a recent Bible study in the book Forgotten God by Francis Chan and decided I would join.  I knew no one…very risky to put myself out there.  But I actually really enjoyed meeting the new people.  Learned something about myself:  that I can step out of the comfort of my normal routine and take advantage of some great people of faith.  I also learned that I can contribute; I can speak up and take a risk of being wrong at times, but often able to help others learn and grow themselves.

Back to Ezekiel – Moving towards RESTORATION

Looking back through the past summer’s blog entries, I began to recall the great lessons that I was able to glean from the book of Ezekiel.  Who would have thought that this book of prophesy would become such an intriguing book.  I was in the midst of finishing the study when summer ended and so did my study…of this book, anyhow.  I knew that when I was able to escape my regular daily routine and get away for a bit, I could reestablish this connection with Ezekiel.

I looked back through my blogs, the study guide I was using, and the notes I jotted down in my Bible.  I re-familiarized myself with the main ideas and took up where I left off.  The past 2 days and 4 chapters have been energizing.  Let me share.

Chapter 33 marks a pivot in the book of Ezekiel.  Chapters 1-32 are saturated with statements of sin and punishment.  From now til the end of the book, the prophet will fashion a catalog of comfort as he scans the prophetic horizon.  Beyond judgment God will regather and restore his people, and in the process establish a new covenant with them.  Glory will prevail when the groaning has ceased.  (Daily Walk Bible p.993)

Chapters 33-36 focus on how Israel has a new Shepherd and how there is hope of RESTORATION and HEALING  following the captivity from Babylon.  Here are the lessons I took away:

  • We, just like the nation of Israel must go beyond regret and remorse for our sin; there must be true repentance of the mind, heart, and the will (33:10)
  • Israel had Ezekiel as a watchman over their souls as he attempted to bring them to true repentance yet many of them did not apply the message but rather just enjoyed hearing the words Ezekiel spoke.  We have a great responsibility…we have access to Scripture on so many levels, yet how often do we fail to put the WORD into action through love, sacrifice, obedience (33:30)
  • God’s transformation of Israel included a new SPIRIT (36:26) and a guidance to despise their sin (36:31-32).  God gives us His SPIRIT upon salvation to comfort us, but to also convict.  “One of the evidences the Spirit’s presence within is a growing sensitivity to sin and a strong desire to turn away from it.”  (Be Reverent, p, 193) I appreciate this gentle reminder; may I continue to listen to the SPIRIT’S voice and may I not quench HIS work in my life.

A Fresh and Supportive Look at Assessment

During my get-a-way vacation, I brought many books along.  I realized that NONE of them were novels or read-for-entertainment books.  Instead I had 3 books for Bible study and  5 books to improve teaching.  So, I guess my vacation isn’t so much for getting away from work, but rather to do work away from the regular interruptions of my at-home routine.

 The first book I completed was one I started last week – How to Assess Higher-Order Thinking Skills  (portions of the book found here) by Susan M. Brookhart.  Brookhart does a wonderful job compiling a variety of sources from the original Bloom’s Taxonomy (did not stay on this topic too long since there are a multitude of more innovative approaches) to the new way of looking at creative thinking in Partnership for 21st Century Skills.

I was most excited to see that this author brings in practical examples of how to do these higher order thinking skills.  Believe me…I have read many books and looked at many websites that offer samples, but this book gave me a creative approach.  There were always multiple choice samples (not your regular content, rote type either), essay samples, and project ideas.

Table of contents includes

  • assessing analysis, evaluation, and creation
  • assessing logic and reasoning
  • assessing judgment
  • assessing problem solving
  • assessing creativity and creative thinking

All in all, I have taken some applicable methods away from this book.  With just 150 pages, this resource was a quick read but invaluable.

Five Minute Friday: Path

The Gypsy Mama shares this great idea to write every Friday for 5 minutes on a topic.

Want to take five minutes with me and just write without worrying if it’s just right or not.

First post of the summer…after almost a year.  Don’t know how consistent I will be…life is already crazy, and it’s only been a week since my normal crazy life ended.  Today, I write on PATH:  perhaps this can give you some idea of what I am up to lately.  Forgive me if my writing is a little rusty.

 

I would be more inclined to say “paths” since I so often have a variety of them to choose from.  Recently, I have decided that I would go back to college and work to get my credential.  Along the way, I had so many paths to observe from the starting point that I am at.  It was all a little overwhelming since I didn’t really know what I was looking for.  And worse, once I started looking down each road, they all offered something different.  I have had to weigh all the components of all the different options, and at times have begun to doubt that I even knew how to choose.  I wanted to see the end of the road that each path offered.  What I have come to realize, however, is that I need to take my mind out of the “paths” (and definitely off trying to figure out where the end of the road leads) and realize that I just need to join the path of God’s direction.  All these paths seem so confusing, but when I focus on just taking that first step down the leading of the Holy Spirit in my life, I find that all the paths converge and become part of a greater plan.  I can’t see the end…but God is “Already There,” directing the chaos and knows how it all turns out.  How faithful will I be in allowing Him to guide each step I take along the way?