Monday, June 17, 2013

The Impossible// in White Eyelet

Hey y'all! How ya doin? I am surprisingly well for getting up at 6:30 this Monday morning. ;) I have to borrow the computer before my sisters need it for school. :P

Oh, how encouraged I am today, though! Every Lord's Day I think, "How is it possible that the sermon is so relevant, convicting, and inspiring to my life and struggles every.single.week??"  I sit there in awe of God's grace and providence.

 So this week, our pastor preached on faith as a way of living, working out of Romans 4:18-25 where it is talking about Abraham's faith and the incredibly impossible (by human thinking) circumstances that God brought him to. Romans 1:16-17, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith." 
We all know our goal in life is to be more like Jesus. The word or God is showing us how to do that; it's focusing our vision so that we can see more of Him. Faithful covenant living is a life of living for the glory of God. 
Every transgression, disobedience, lawless act is rooted in unbelief. In doubt. You waiver in your faith, you sin. Simple as that. {I don't know about you, but I am so, so, so, thankful for Christ and His work for me, because I am so unfaithful to Him in my falleness.}. This faith is not a nebulous optimism or wishful thinking. Faith is believing God as opposed to denying or doubting Him. 

Looking at Romans 4 and Genesis 12, 15, and 17 together, we see that 15 years elapse between when God told Abraham that He would become the father of many nations (and he believed) and when God did the impossible and gave him a son. During those years, Abraham lived a full life of faith. He believed God would fulfill His promises, contrary to all human facts and reason. God meets with us at a brick wall of humanly impossible circumstances. 

The Lord gives us His Word. He expects us to believe everything He has spoken and declared. There are two kinds of God's leading in our lives-- subjective and objective. Subjective leading is individual. There is no chapter or verse that is commanding you to do something. However, there are some principles that we need to realize when it comes to subjective leading: "God is telling me to..."
* He will never, ever, ever lead us to do anything contrary to His Word in Scripture. 
* He will always lead us in ways which promote His Word. 
* We must constantly maintain the possibility that we might be wrong.
* You need to subject yourself to God changing your situation or direction at any given moment. 

Objective leading of God is found in His Book. "The Bible says the borrower is slave to the lender so I won't go into debt..."
* We always are wishing for subjective leading when the Scripture already gives us so much objective leading. 
* People of great faith are always students of the Bible. It is impossible to be a man of great faith without the Word of God. "Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God."
* We must believe the Word of God alone. Without a doubt. 
* We are always looking for "a sign". We want a very clear message from God about what we are to do. We want the cloth to be dry in the morning, when what God wants is our faith. He wants us to follow even when we don't know where we are going. 

When we find ourselves in impossible situations, at the end of our rope, we should look at it and realize how desperate we are and have faith that God will work. When we know we are not capable of something in ourselves, He gets the glory. We also shouldn't pray, "Lord, get me through this and I'll be fine" because just as He works that out, he's going to put us in another situation where we must have faith. It's a cycle. Why? Two reasons the passage points out as it speaks about Abraham's life: 
      1) He was strengthened in His faith (Romans 4:20). God gave him Issac, which took a lot of faith. Then God asked Abraham to sacrifice Issac and He had the faith God would work in the impossible there, too. We often don't give Him time to work. Abraham waited 15 years. This is a huge theme in the Psalms- wait on the Lord. (This was particularly convicting+encouraging to this single girl!)
      2) Verse 20 also tells us it gives glory to God. That is what we are to be all about. God gets the credit when He is the only one who is able to accomplish it. We must trust in Him. The greater the trial, the greater the fruit from it. I need to submit myself to God to arrange my circumstances so that He gets the glory and I grow in my faith. This is something so foreign in our culture of pursuing personal peace and affluence. 

Here's the part I'm most excited about (hoping the majority of you have read this far-- I'm just so encouraged by this!). God wants to give us the privilege of exulting His name. He uses us to bring Him glory! Those who steer clear of impossible circumstances and do not rely on God to work will never find the joy that comes from bringing Him glory! When we are at the end of our rope, that is when we have the greatest joy in serving our King. Faith is not a work, but a posture of being used as a vessel. For His glory. Shall we walk by faith and not by sight? I open myself up to Him and His work, so that I may be strengthened and He may be glorified. 
 
I'm not sure I've ever blogged this dress, even though I've had it for years. It's a great summer dress and I was happy to find it in the back of my closet last week! :) It was a size or two too large in the bodice when my aunt gave it to me, so I just made a quick seam up the back and it fits like a dream. I still haven't cut off the extra fabric- ha! A couple years ago I also added the pink trim around the hem on a Sunday morning whim. Gotta love sewing. :)
I chose to just keep things simple by wearing my black halftee underneath, a black belt to coordinate with that, and pink shoes to keep the pink hem of the dress from looking out of place. Bonus points for a pocket to keep my phone in!
Dress: Hand-me-down
Undershirt: Halftee.com
Belt: Thrift store 
I again misplaced my hat just before taking pictures. I wore this black one.
Shoes: Thrift store

I hear the call for breakfast-- gotta run! I want to hear all about your sermons and your days and what you wore to church, kay? mkay thanks.

Oh, and don't forget to enter the Florence Adams giveaway! It ends Thursday!

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34 comments :

  1. Great Dress! I would never think of wearing it like that, but find that I like it! Do you always wear hats to church? Just wondering! Also, I miss your A+A posts!

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    1. Thanks! Yes, I do always wear a head covering for church services.
      A+A to resume this week! :D

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    2. Olivia, I'm curious if the other ladies at your church wear head coverings, and if so what kind. Thanks!

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    3. Hello! Most of the other ladies wear them. We have a range of things from headbands to handkerchiefs to all sorts of hats to doilies. :)

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    4. Do you somehow connect this with the teaching in Corinthians 11? Just wondering. .. have always wanted to know more about what people think about this.. c

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    5. Yes! I've been covering during worship for several years now, but I just found a site that is adding articles about it: http://www.headcoveringmovement.com/

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    6. Okay! Thanks for the article site....
      Blessings! C

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  2. It is church members like you who bring genuine encouragement to a pastor at a time that they might get discouraged and feel like Jeremiah with no one listening! (Take it from a pastor's wife!)

    How blessed you are to have a pastor that speaks Truth and doesn't desire to become a professional ear-tickler.

    Your dress is lovely, by the way! I hope you have a blessed week!


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  3. Our sermon was about following the Holy Spirit's leading and being attentive to hear His voice in our lives! How it is by God's grace and none of our own effort that His Spirit abides in us, but that it is our responsibility to remain tender and alert to the Spirit's promptings. (That sounds highly charismatic, but trust me it wasn't!)

    I wore my purple t-shirt with a purple and blue tye-dye skirt. (I love tye-dye! It's so much fun.) And I wore flip flops, purple ones, for the first time ever to church! Annnnd, I wore more jewelry than usual- the cross necklace my Grandpa and Grandma gave me for graduation 2 years ago and the silver mother daughter bracelet my mom gave me at the same time.

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  4. Well, my mum was out of the state yesterday visiting her family, so I had several different small siblings on my lap. Our sermon was on Matthew 28: 18-20. Finally finished the book! I wore a green and white plaid blouse and a knee length white skirt.
    ~Aleni~

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  5. We were unable to go to church yesterday as my Mom just had a baby and she had to stay home and rest and someone had to be home with her so it was easier that we all stayed home as we travel a long way to church. We did a Bible Study (Heart Matters 1) from www.kjvhearthelps.com.
    Your outfit is pretty.:) Thanks for sharing.

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    1. How neat! The couple that runs that ministry website is sent out from my church! It's a small world.

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    2. That is so neat! It sure is a small world.:)

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  6. Your posts are so encouraging, Olivia! I genuinely enjoy hearing about your church sermons each week. Your faith (and your pastor's work) is very refreshing.

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    1. Hey!I think I may know you....do you live in IN?

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  7. Lovely dress ! I really like this one ! I'm looking forward transforming some floral fabric I bought a couple weeks ago into a summer dress...
    Our sermon was on Matthew 5, the last beatitude...Very interesting how this one sums up all the previous ones ! I wore a red tshirt, a white skirt (first time this year, yeah for warmer weather !), some white wedges I bought on sale last week. And a tribal print scarf too...
    Have a great week !

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  8. I guess I'm to self conscious to wear a belt over something. My stomach isn't totally flat after having 2 children:( Yesterday, I wore a great a-line jumper made by Bree from Cover Up For Christ. It is so comfortable and actually flatters my figure! The top is fitted, but not tight and the skirt gracefully skims my waist and hips. Hey, I love anything that can actually make me look thinner!!

    I think dressing modestly gets easier until it's a way of life. The only thing I still struggle with is necklines. I wear mine up to my collar bones and neck back(kind of a personal conviction) and sometimes it's a little awkward to make it look right, particularly with dresses.

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  9. JMJ
    You look so, so, beautiful, Olivia! :)
    In Christ,
    Rose

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  10. I just wanted to let you know that this post greatly encouraged me. Thanks for sharing, Olivia! :)

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  11. Very cute & classy for church I wore jeans, white pumps, pink & white tshirt, black blazer and gold chain necklace.

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  12. I love the drape of this dress! I have a similar formerly ill fitting dress that I took in, in the side seams just a few days ago.. It was worth it.
    On Sunday I wore a printed maxi skirt, military style jacket, 3" heeled boots, and a pearl necklace. One of those brainwave outfits that you don't know how it will look, until you try it on...
    Last Sunday, we had a guest speaker who spoke on Acts and about receiving the Holy Spirit. I wish that I had, had a pen to take notes with.

    The way that your outfits are put together are SO my style.

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  13. The eyelet fabric is very summery!

    I went with a 1950s look: a peach pleated skirt that hit mid-calf with a white t-shirt and beige eyelet sweater. I completed the look and tied in the beige+1950s with some open toed Bear Traps sandels.

    Our pastor is between books and skipped over to Proverbs 4, where he spoke to fathers and children on relationships and wisdom. His sermon was super practical (gotta love the Proverbs :))

    We had a quiet afternoon at home celebrating Father's Day with presents, jokes, and family time :)

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  14. The dress is stunning. SOOOO cool!

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  15. What a stunning outfit Olivia! :)

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  16. I love your dress... It's fabulous. Gotta love hand-me-downs!

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  17. Super cute, as always, Olivia!
    I'm always so encouraged by your blog! Thanks for taking the time (and getting up at 6am...) to post for us!
    I agree so much with what you said on your sermon! Although, fleshly I always want OUT of whatever situation is causing me pain. I've been going through a lot lately and indeed, found myself praying that God would take me out of it. (I actually just had a crying meltdown yesterday...)But He reminded me that I'll be stronger on the other side of things.
    I really struggle with forgiving people. I tend to hold grudges for far too long and I have a hard time with it. I have to rely on God to help me forgive, and also soften towards people. When I'm upset with someone, I let them know...no seriously, I LET THEM KNOW. It's something God is helping me with, definitely one of my biggest weaknesses. Thank you, Jesus for mercy.
    Natasha
    A Modest Fashion Blog:
    www.natashaatkerson.blogspot.com

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  18. For Sunday I wore a coral maxi skirt with a polka dot blouse and white sandals. :) The sermon was really good- it was about different men in the Bible including Stephen and Peter. I love your dress...it's so refreshing to see pretty summer outfits that are modest! :) ~Annemarie~

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  19. I wore a new dress from WalMart, it's black and grey and white and blue and green, sort of looks like small paint strokes all over. It's a knit maxi dress. I put on a bolero that has sleeves nearly to my elbows, in dark grey. Black flats, white fine straw hat with elegant flower, black and white floral silk clutch, blue/green circle pendant on a silver necklace. It's fun to hear what everyone wears to church!

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  20. I love your blog, Olivia! This post was especially encouraging to me in what you wrote about the sermon you heard. I've been going through more than one struggle lately, and this post touched on all of them and really encouraged me. So thank you for always sharing what your sermons were about. I hope you never feel discouraged if you don't get a lot of feedback from them.

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  21. wow! this looks super pretty! i love this style a lot! always wins my heart!

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  22. I recently discovered your blog,and I fell in love with it! I'm a young girl that is trying to find nice outfits, but not immodest,too!This outfit is especially cute. Keep posting! I can't wait to try out some of your ideas!
    ~Naomi~

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  23. I looooove the dress! ~ Sarah

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  24. LLLLLLLLLLOOOOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVVVEEEEEEEE the dress!

    But I have to say DIDNT like the Pink shoes

    -Rebekah-

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Fresh Modesty is fashion blog which encourages girls to "Dress outside your box, but inside His Book!" I allow anonymous comments so those without accounts can comment, but I would really appreciate it if you would identify yourself by some form of a name. :) Thank you for taking the time to comment!