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Monday, July 28, 2014

N is for Narration {Blogging through the Alphabet}


~ the act of telling back what has been read; the act or process of telling a story or describing what happens

This isn't a new topic on my blog, but it hasn't been really talked about as much as perhaps it should. Narration is essential to the way that we do 'school'. Essential is not too strong a word either. 

What is narration? It is what people, especially children, do all the time! When there is something that really catches the attention in an article, a blog post, or even on television or the internet, who doesn't turn to another person and recap the bit of information. Sometimes people even talk to themselves about what it was that caught them so. That is narration.

It is showing what is known. There is a quote that Charlotte Mason uses in her books: "the mind can know nothing but what it can produce in the form of an answer to a question put by the mind to itself" (copied from AO). Narration is the way of answering those questions put to the mind by the mind. It is not simply memorizing and regurgitation.

You cannot narrate what you do not know.

In a Charlotte Mason school, narration is required of every subject. That's a lot of talking, you might think. But really narrations are not limited to talking, or writing. Recently at a Charlotte Mason gathering, there were at least three forms of narration: silent narration, drawn narration, and verbal narration. There were probably more. 

The point is that if one can retell, in any of many different forms, what they have assimilated, it is possible to gauge their understanding; what they know.

Here are a few links to help with understanding what narration is:
The Art of Narrating (Charlotte Mason herself!)
Narration Discussion (Ambleside Online)
Some Thoughts on Narration (Ambleside Online)
Narration for the Newbie (Carroll Smith of Charlotte Mason Institute, formerly ChildLight USA)

Narration sounds very simple. Before judging the simplicity as an indicator of its worth, try it for yourself. Read a passage from a book (a textbook isn't recommended for this exercise but it can be done), once, then close the book and either tell someone what it was that you read, or write it down. 

Not so simple, is it? Narration requires the complete attention of the reader. It requires one to focus, knowing there will be a narration afterward, and only one reading is granted. But that's another topic, perhaps, for another post.

After attending the Charlotte Mason gathering in Peoria, IL, this past week, I've found a renewed focus on our 'school'. It is for the children's sake that we use Charlotte Mason's philosophy and methods. It is for their lives, now and to come. This is my N is for...entry in the Blogging through the Alphabet. You can see others' entries at Ben and Me or search abcblogging. 

Friday, July 25, 2014

Part 2 of Our Experience at the CMI Education Conference

Earlier in the month I shared at The HSBA Post part of our experience at the Charlotte Mason Institute's 2014 Education Conference. Today you can find Part II to the three part series. 

I invite you over to have a read about the workshops/sessions that we attended

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Book Review: The Case for Christ Student Edition {BookLook Bloggers}

The Case for Christ Student Edition by Lee Strobel with Jane Vogel
ISBN: 9780310745648
Paperback, 128 pages
Publisher: Zondervan
Retail: $9.99

About the book: 
Who was Jesus? A good man? A lunatic? God?
There's little question that Jesus actually lived. But miracles? Rising from the dead? Some of the stories you hear about him sound like just that- stories. A reasonable person would never believe them, let alone claim that he's the only way to God! But a reasonable person would also make sure that he or she understood the facts before jumping to conclusions. That's why Lee Strobel- an award-winning journalist with a knack for asking tough questions- decided to investigate Jesus for himself. Join him as he retraces his journey from skepticism to faith. You'll consult expert testimony as you sift through the truths that history, science, psychiatry, literature, and religion reveal. Like Strobel, you'll be amazed at the evidence. The facts are in. What will your verdict be?

About the authors:
Lee Strobel was the award-winning legal editor of The Chicago Tribune, and is the bestselling author of The Case for Faith, The Case for Christ, and The Case for a Creator. Visit Lee's website at www.leestrobel.com 

Jane Vogel, a writer who has been involved with youth ministry for over twenty years, wrote The Case for Christ Student Edition and The Case for Faith Student Edition with Lee Strobel. She lives with her husband, Steve, and their two children in Winfield, Illinois.

My thoughts:
I will preface this by stating that I have read Strobel's original The Case for Christ and I find it to be much better than this student edition. While I will try not to compare the two and review this one of its own merit, it probably won't happen that way. It is important to know that I have, of course, a bias towards the original.

This book is extremely short. It is a very quick read. That's both good and bad. It allows one to get it all in real quick. But it doesn't really give much substance to mull over and ponder. There are a lot of 'points' throughout, in the writing itself (the paragraphs) as well as side notes (in little boxes and such on their own) but I don't see them as substantial. 

The tone is quick, like "hurry up and read this, don't think too long, just read!" That's just my take on it, of course. It's too fast-paced. And that sentiment is coming from a person who listens to audio books at 1.5-2x the normal speed! And another thing about the tone- it borders on disrespectful (?) in my opinion. It could simply be a more 'casual' tone. An example is when referring to Dr. Ben Witherington, "who has a whole string of degrees and memberships in societies..." Apparently those degrees are no longer of importance- just take their word for it because they have degrees. Even teens should be able to distinguish when a degree of a specific field is pertinent to the subject at hand. 

The good thing about this book are that Strobel (with Vogel) leave in the 'important' parts of the interviews conducted. We get the gist of their conversations in this book, without all the details (I rather liked the details myself).

I will end this review with one last bit. My son read the original The Case for Christ when he was 13 years old (almost 14) and he found it to be a very well-done book. I asked if it was too much and he said no. With this topic, really how can you have too much? It dispels the disbelief. It bares it all. This book however, written for teens will most likely solidify their belief, if they are already believers, but it is lacking what was in the original.

All-in-all, if one is looking for a 'refresher' on the case for Christ, who is a believer or on the edge of being a believer, this book will be good. For someone who is not a believer and is truly skeptical, I don't see how this little book will do much but annoy. It doesn't have enough to convince a true skeptic. It is missing what the original book had, in many ways.

***Disclaimer: I received this book free from BookLook Bloggers for the purpose of this review. All opinions stated are my own or those of my family members. No compensation was given. See Disclosure/Policies.***

Book Review: Smart Money Smart Kids {BookLook Bloggers}

This post contains *affiliate links. See Disclosure/Policies.

Smart Money Smart Kids by Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze*
ISBN: 9781937077631
Hardback, 256 pages
Publisher: Lampo Press
Retail: $24.99

About the book:

Dave Ramsey and Rachel Cruze teach parents how to raise money-smart kids in a debt-filled world.

In Smart Money Smart Kids, financial expert and best-selling author Dave Ramsey and his daughter Rachel Cruze equip parents to teach their children how to win with money. Starting with the basics like working, spending, saving, and giving, and moving into more challenging issues like avoiding debt for life, paying cash for college, and battling discontentment, Dave and Rachel present a no-nonsense, common-sense approach for changing your family tree.

About the authors:
Dave Ramsey is America's trusted voice on money and business. His four New York Times best-selling books- Financial Peace, More Than Enough, The Total Money Makeover, and EntreLeadership- have sold more than 7 million copies combined. The Dave Ramsey Show is heard by more than 6 million listeners each week on more than 500 radio stations and iHeartRadio.

Rachel Cruze is a seasoned communicator and presenter who has been speaking to groups as large as 10,000 for nearly a decade. The daughter of Dave Ramsey, she now uses the knowledge and experiences from growing up in the Ramsey household to educate America's students and young adults on the proper ways to handle money and stay out of debt.

My thoughts:
Excellent book! I have read (and reviewed) Ramsey's book The Total Money Makeover, and I like this one much better. Perhaps it is the tone that the book uses- it's more of Rachel Cruze talking than Dave Ramsey- that appeals to me. Who knows. This is a great book to help those with kids to teach them how to tell their money where to go so they don't have to wonder where their money went! 

It has suggestions and tips for ages three to adult. Tips on working, 'commissions' (not 'allowances'), saving, spending, and giving (it's not ours anyway). It also breaks down why a budget is necessary, and how important it is to be able to spend all your money on paper, and know exactly where it will go before actually spending it and not being sure where it went. The back of the book also has some sample forms for budgeting. 

I will admit that the budgeting at first confused me because I'm used to using a formula much like "income-expenses=leftover for whatever!". Not exactly like that but close enough. I often don't have a set category for that 'leftover for whatever' money (when there is some). The Ramsey's budget fixes that. There should always be enough money for what is necessary when a budget is followed. 

Great book that I'd recommend to others. There may be things that you'll not agree with (just calling allowance commission isn't going to fly with some people, even with Ramsey's way of explaining that it is a bit different than the usual allowance), just take what's good and applicable. But really, following his plan all the way is going to give results like he says. Not following the plan as it is laid out, well...the results will definitely vary.

My daughter also has read some of this and really appreciates the advice given. 

**Disclaimer: I was given the reviewed book for free from BookLook Bloggers for the purpose of an honest review. No compensation was given. All opinions are my own. See Disclosure/Policies.

Monday, July 21, 2014

M is for More {Blogging through the Alphabet}

~in greater quantity, amount, measure, degree, or number; additional or further.

This whole blogging through the alphabet sure has a way of making me think about things more deeply than usual {the pun wasn't intended but I wholly endorse it!}. While I'm not doing word studies like Marcy is at Ben and Me, I still find myself studying the word I choose, and trying to put it into my life.

Our family went camping last week at a wonderful camping spot. It's the exact same one that we went to the year before- on the same dates. This year was a bit chillier than last year; okay, fine a lot more so. We still enjoyed our time immensely. We want more time there next year. 

As a family, and individually, we are so blessed with all that we need and so much that we want. Very rarely do we find that we need something, and only occasionally do we want more than what we have. {I am referring to myself and my husband; our kids still have many wants, I'm sure.} We don't however have so much that we can just dish out things to others on a consistent basis- unless of course we were to give up our own things. That's what the 'more' of this post got me thinking about.

We don't have a lot of money, but we are not in poverty. But we have more than others in some cases. Personally, I don't see the benefit of giving to others to the point that a person is in need themselves. That is radical, that's for sure, and I'm not a proponent of that. Don't get me wrong; I won't not help someone just because I wouldn't have something as a result. But I won't give someone else all of something we have that we need, so that they will no longer be in need. We would then be in need and not able to help others. Does that make sense? 

We are to be good stewards of all that God has given us. If He leads us to give it away, then that is what He meant for it in the first place. 

I do have time and enough resources to help a person or two here and there. My first thought was that I want to help a family, most likely a single-parent, with childcare. How wonderful would it be for them to be able to take their children to a safe and decent home that would provide warmth and good food for their children while they worked? And at the same time be able to put the money that would normally go to the sitter towards their bills; towards a better place to live or for more groceries, or clothes if needed? 

I thought about this while we were camping. I thought about it a lot. I didn't think about the possible kinks in my plan. Would I need insurance? What if they were to take advantage of the situation and leave their kids with me while they went off for the day, not working? How long would I agree to watch their children for so that they could get their feet under them? A lot of questions I really didn't think about. 

I'm still thinking about it, though. I recall being in a similar situation when my kids were very young. I was very fortunate that my mother was there to help me. If not for her, I'm not sure how things would have gone. There are scary people out there who 'care' for kids just for the money; disregard for the child as a person. 

Anyway, my point is- I can do more than just give money to someone. I can give my time and resources. I had a friend point out the points I'd not thought of in terms of the hazards of providing care for someone else's child. She also suggested other ways to give: Helping others to learn to garden; helping others to make healthy economical meals; or tutoring others who are studying for GED.  Another friend suggested driving people to medical appointments or grocery shopping.

All great ideas! And I am going to look into them more. 

I will say though, that it is out of my comfort zone. Majorly. It would be so much easier to give a person some money than to take the time and effort to do any of the other things listed. I am an introvert. I like people but I have a difficult time around people. If that makes enough sense. 

But I want to help. And so I am going to be searching out more ways that I can be of help to others with my time and resources. The first step, though, is to pray.

This is my M is for M... blogging through the alphabet post. See others at Ben and Me, or simply search abcblogging on the web. 

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Book Review: The New Colored Pencil {Blogging for Books}

This post contains affiliate links*. See Disclosure/Policies.
The New Colored Pencil: Create luminous works with innovative materials and techniques by Kristy Ann Kutch*
ISBN: 9780770436933
Paperback, 176 pages
Publisher: Watson-Guptill Publications
Retail: $24.99

About the book

Learn to draw and paint using colored pencils in The New Colored Pencil: a how-to guide for creating vibrant, textured, and easy art illustrations by best-selling author and teacher Kristy Kutch

Master the Latest Breakthroughs in Colored Pencil Art

If you want to create colorful, radiant works of art, colored pencil and related color media (wax pastels, watercolor pencils, and so on) provide you with limitless options for adding vibrancy to your creations. In The New Colored Pencil, artist and instructor Kristy Ann Kutch guides you through the latest developments in color drawing media with examples of and recommendations for the newest pencil brands, drawing surfaces, and groundbreaking techniques (including using the Grid Method, grating pigments, blending with heat, and more). Supported by step-by-step demonstrations and showcasing inspiring art from some of today’s best colored pencil artists, The New Colored Pencil shows you how to use color theory to your advantage, combine color media, create and enhance textures, and experiment with surfaces to create interesting effects. Whether you use traditional wax-based, or watercolor colored pencils, The New Colored Pencil will take your art to the next level. 

About the author: 

Kristy Ann Kutch has taught more than two hundred colored pencil and watercolor pencil workshops to artists and students worldwide. She is the author of Drawing and Painting with Colored Pencil, and is a contributor to several colored pencil publications, including The Best of Colored Pencil, Creative Colored Pencil, and Colored Pencil Explorations. Her work has appeared in International Artist Magazine and Pratique des Arts. She also authored a DVD called Colored Pencil Landscapes: Beyond the Basics, released by Artist Palette Productions. Kutch is a resident of Michigan City, Indiana.

My thoughts:
Organized in three parts, wax-based traditional colored pencils, water-soluble colored pencils, and wax pastels and combining colored drawing media, this book touches on everything I would personally need to know about using colored pencils in art. Originally, I chose this book simply because I would like to learn techniques for traditional colored pencils; it includes much more than I expected.
You should always aim for quality above quantity as you build a collection of colored pencils. pg. 14
I had no idea there were so many different kinds of colored pencils. I personally use Prismacolor (Sanford) and find them to be adequate for my needs. However, reading through Kutch's book, I am interested to try some of the other brands, such as Lyra or even Derwent (that'd be further down the line, I think). She also talks about different kinds of paper, the old 'tried and true,' as well as the new. Included are tables that describe the characteristics of each. 

I'm not to the point where I think I will be using water-soluble colored pencils but the section is just as informative and helpful as the first. Since I do already own a set of Lyra Aquarell's, this will come in handy when I decide to try my hand with them.

The topics of the book cover getting ready to do a drawing; different methods for preparing. She discusses freehand sketches, using photographs, tracing, and the graph method; pencil pressure, strokes, grating the pencil point, and using erasers; blending and burnishing; brushes, sponges, and heat; and so much more. Texture, negative space, tone, washes and glazes, creating vignettes, backgrounds, and combining the different media. 

I think it is a beautifully illustrated how-to that is well-written, even for someone who doesn't usually use colored pencil in their artwork. This would be good to help get started, or to advance skills an artist already has by picking up new techniques from this book. I am definitely happy with this book.

I received this book free from Blogging for Books for the purpose of this review. All opinions stated are my own. See Disclosure/Policies.

Locker Clean Out! {End of the School Year} Used Book Sale

***UPDATED: 07/19/2014***

Woohoo! The 2013-2014 School Year official ended on 05/30/14 for us. It was a good year with some snags here and there, but we finished well. And actually we start back to school on July 1st

This post contains Amazon affiliate links*. See Disclosure/Policies.

This post was originally for when I teamed up with other homeschoolers through The Homeschool Post's Cleaning Out Our Lockers Multi-site Used Curriculum Sale. I went through our stash of books and have some to offer to others that may need/want them. I've listed them by subject area. I have also included a link to *Amazon on each book so that you can see the book. The links are affiliate links, and you might just find the book for less. 

Shipping will be Media Mail, unless you would prefer otherwise. Shipping cost will be figured based on your selection, and I'll let you know how much it is. I will combine shipping.

Send email to northlaurelschool@gmail.com with the books you would like and at least your zip code. I will respond with whether the books are still available and the total cost, including shipping. 

Educating the WholeHearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson
ISBN: 9781932012958
Paperback, 376 pages
Very good condition
$12.00 plus MM shipping
Note: Great book. I wrote a review of it on the blog: 

A Young Historians Introduction to Worldview (Fourth Edition v.2) by Marcia Harris Brim (the one at Amazon is an earlier version; sorry, no link)
ISBN: 9780977070497
Great condition but missing "Hands-On Activity B: "Sort the Questions" yellow card stock sheet
$5.00 plus MM shipping

A Comparative Study for Youth: Christian Theology and Ancient Polytheism (First Edition v.2) by Marcia Harris Brim
ISBN: 9780977070473
Good condition
$10.00 plus MM shipping

ISBN: 9780966621174
Paperback, 80 pages
Good condition
$5.00 plus MM shipping
Note: You can read my review of this book here: 
http://www.nlfamily.net/2012/07/algebra-no-nonsense-wayand-geometry.html (second half of post)

UPC: 733792812499
3 DVD set
Like New
$10.00 plus MM shipping

Foreign Language
First Form Latin Pronunciation CD (mine has "Pronunciation Guide" as track one, and lists each lesson as a new track) 
1 CD
Like New
$3.00 plus MM shipping
Note: Both of my kids used First Form Latin with much success. My daughter has used Second Form Latin and intends to also go through Third Form Latin. I had actually misplaced this CD early on so we didn't even get to use it! It would have been helpful.

The Art of Argument DVD Set by Classical Academic Press
ISBN: 9781600510632
5 DVDs
Like New
$30.00 plus MM shipping
Note: Read my review of Art of Argument here:
This has actually become a favorite subject and book for both of the kids. 

In Freedom's Cause by G. A. Henty (published by Christian Liberty Press)
ISBN: 1930092202
Paperback, 310 pages
Good condition, the cover has a crease running diagonally
$2.00 plus MM shipping
Note: This book is scheduled in Y7 of AO. It was used by both of my kids; enjoyed more by one than the other.

The Lives of John Donne, Sir Henry Wotton, Richard Hooker, George Herbert, Robert Sanderson by Izaak Walton (this is in 'history' but it does include poetry)
Copyright 1962
Hardcover with dust jacket, 426 pages, size is about 4x6 
Very good condition
$5.00 plus MM shipping
Note: The Life of John Donne is scheduled for biography in Y8 of AO.

ISBN: 0140108556
Paperback, 500 pages
Good condition
$2.00 plus MM shipping
Note: This is a supplement suggested book for history in Y9 of AO

The Body Has a Head by Gustav Eckstein (mine does not have a dust jacket)
Copyright 1969/1970
Hardcover, cloth, 800 pages
Good condition
$5.00 plus MM shipping

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made by Dr. Paul Brand and Philip Yancey
ISBN: 0310354501
Hardcover, 206 pages
Good condition, no dust jacket; has light pencil marks on some pages
$7.00 plus MM shipping
Note:This is the Y7 Health option for AO.

English/Language Arts
ISBN: 0822000881
Paperback, 531 pages
Good condition
$3.00 plus MM shipping

ISBN: 0020474105
Paperback, 156 pages
Good condition
$1.00 plus MM shipping
Note: This book is outdated but makes for a good beginning into editing. The last chapter especially is almost irrelevant today. There is also a chapter on explicit works -bleh-. We just skipped that.

The Golden Books Family Treasury of Poetry selected and with a commentary by Louis Untermeyer
ISBN: 0307168514
Hardcover, ex-library book, 312 pages
Good condition
$6.00 plus MM shipping

Friday, July 18, 2014

Book Review: Out of the Depths {Bethany House}

This post contains affiliate links*. See Disclosure/Policies.
ISBN: 9780764212604
Hardcover, 192 pages
Publisher: Bethany House
Retail: $16.99

About the book (from the back cover):
The inspiring true story of a World War II hero's miraculous survival at sea.
July 30, 1945- The USS Indianapolis and its 1,196-man crew is making its way toward a small island in the South Pacific. The ship is sailing unescorted, assured by headquarters the waters are safe. It is midnight, and Marine Edgar Harrell and seveal others have sacked out on deck rather than spend the night in their hot and muggy quarters below. Fresh off a top-secret mission to deliver uranium for the atomic bombs that would ultimately end World War II, they are unaware their ship is being watched. Minutes later, six torpedoes are slicing through the Indy...

For five horrifying days and nights after their ship went down, Harrell and his shipmates had to fend for themselves in the open seas. Plagued by dehydration, exposure, saltwater poisoning, and shark attacks, their numbers were cruelly depleted before they were miraculously rescued. This is one man's story of courage, ingenuity, and faith in God's providence in the midst of the worst naval disaster in U.S. history.

About the authors:
Edgar Harrell, USMC, owned and operated a Pella Window distributorship in Rock Island, Illinois, for thirty-five years, served for fifteen years on the board of Moody Bible Institute, and has been a lay minister throughout his adult life. He lives with his wife, Ola, enjoying their two children, eight grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. Edgar speaks extensively around the United States about his survival at sea.

David Harrell, son of Edgar Harrell, is the senior pastor-teacher of Calvary Bible Church in Joelton, Tennessee. After attending Moody Bible Institute, he graduated from Grace College, Grace Theological Seminary, and the Oxford Graduate School. He is married to Nancy, and together they have three children and six grandchildren.

My thoughts:
This is an excellent book. There may be points I could make against the writing but I won't because the book isn't about how vividly it recounts the ordeal that Harrell went through, nor is it a book that I think they want you to get 'lost in' while reading. No; this book has real emotion and enough detail that it will wretch the gut of those who have compassion and a hope in the Lord. 

When I began the book I thought it slow-going but I had to shift from a novel reading mentality to a nonfiction book about war. Harrell gives backstory- his, the USS Indianapolis, and a bit of the circumstances ultimately leading to the ordeal he and his crewmates endured. One of the things that kept me reading was the very evident belief that God would get him through whatever he encountered. In the book, Harrell mentions that before leaving for the war he hadn't really accepted God- he had be a churchgoer but did not have a relationship with God. That changed right before he shipped out. 

Throughout the book, Harrell relays the verses that kept him holding his head above water- literally. There were so many who were without the peace he had; did they not know God?; did they not have a relationship with God? Many did not; many gave up. Harrell says that the peace he had helped him be okay with however his plight turned out. In one instance, his buddy Miles Spooner, who had major damage to his eyes and was in a lot of pain, wanted to just let go and sink. Harrell prayed with him. Here is what is in the book: 
Years later, my Marine buddy Miles Spooner gave an interview to a newspaper and described me as "a 'hard-shell' Christian, (who) quoted Bible verses, prayed, and pleaded with God during their extended time afloat." 
"I didn't care much for religion then," Spooner said, but he's changed his mind over the years. Did religion save him and Harrell? "Probably so," he said, in a choked voice.

I am thankful that the Lord gave me a steadfast hope and a desire to pray to Him during such an agonizing ordeal. But make no mistake; it was the God of the Bible, not mere religion, that saved us. pg. 138 (emphasis mine)
Towards the end of the book, Harrell talks more about after the rescue; the lack of reception for the survivors; the hush-hush attitude of the higher-ups; the strange court-martial of Captain McVay; and the "Journey for Justice," the last chapter. I will say that it leads one to believe that the circumstances surrounding the sinking of the USS Indianapolis were avoidable and that the US government handled this in a very poor manner. Harrell references other books if one is interested in researching it further. I appreciate that he does included those references as opposed to stating only his feelings on the matter, although this is a biography of his experience.

All-in-all, a very good book. It doesn't take long to read but it stays with you for awhile. It does have quite a bit of detail on the explosions of the USS Indianapolis, but without such gory detail as to be unreadable. And when they are in the water, Harrell accounts the shark attacks that took many of his crewmates  

I am giving this book to my almost 15-year-old son to read. It is a great book about courage, but mostly faith in God during extreme trials. 

I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers for the purpose of this review. All opinions stated are my own. See Disclosure/Policies.

Monday, July 14, 2014

L is for Love {Blogging through the Alphabet}

~a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes that ranges from interpersonal affection to pleasure; virtue representing human kindness, compassion, affection

~or charity

~or as Pam Forster says, "not a sentimental or romantic feel-good love, but a practical, where-the-rubber-meets-the-road, but impossible-to-accomplish perfect love- the kind of love only Jesus has fully accomplished"

To think I was going to do the word "lazy" because that is how I was feeling. But then I thought it was quite selfish to choose that simply because I didn't want to really focus on something. Just wanted to put the post up and call it done. Love goes along with Kindness that I posted last week. That's another word that snuck up on me last minute. 

Interestingly, I don't know much about the word love. It's almost as if it is so overused {I love my husband, I love my house, love my car, love that song, etc) that it has lost meaning. I can just hear teenage girls {and guys, I guess} squealing how much they love some rock band/song. It's hard to distinguish what it really means; what sort of value is truly put on things that are loved.

It's also interesting that in languages other than English, there are different words that denote the level of care and affection one places on a person, thing, idea, etc. In English we have love. Oh, and like. As I think on it more, I suppose adore, admire, covet, and lust-after are words that could be used in place of love to denote the difference. But a lot of the time love is the word that's chosen. 

How many times is love in the Bible? There are a lot. But there are also loved, love's, loves, loves, liveth, loving, loving-kindness, and lovedst. When I chose the word, I was specifically thinking along the lines of what's in 1 Corinthians 13; which isn't love at all, per se; it's charity.

I'd always understood there to be three kinds of love in the Bible: Agape, philos, and eros. Agape is the love that Paul speaks of in 1 Corinthians. Charity.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; beareth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
And this is the agape love that doesn't mean the love we feel towards our family members. Not the deep-seated, in our bones and heart kind of love. No this is the love we have to humankind as a rule. Er, the love we are supposed to have. That explains why Pam calls it "not a sentimental or romantic feel-good love." That's why it's a perfect love that only God can show us through the sacrifice of his son. Can we say we love something so much that we would die for that thing, or person? Perhaps we can. But how many of us would actually follow through with that claim?

Other than my loved ones, my family and close friends, I cannot honestly say that I'd give my life for another person. And absolutely never would I give my life for an object. 

So I wouldn't give my life for another, but would I at least suffer for them; would I endure for them; would I look to their fulfillment over my own; would I think no evil of them? All very very good points for me to have a look at. These are things that I am to do for others, and not necessarily those I love with my heart. 

And if I am to treat others who are just a stranger to me, or even an enemy {I don't have any specifically that I know of, but if I did...}, how much better should I be treating my loved ones? 

These last two words have really touched me. Even now, my ds is playing a game that he is excited about. He shares with me. I really am not interested in his game, but when I ignore or avoid his enthusiasm, how am I presenting what I think of his pursuits and interests? I'm showing that I don't care. It's selfish of me to wish he would just silently play his game. {And yes, I did have that thought.} Because I love him I should be interested in things that he is interested in, simply for the reason that he is interested. 

Of course, there is much more to charity than what I've put here. There are many who have written on this topic, and much better than I. This is my submission for L is for ... for the Blogging through the Alphabet series. See more L entries at Ben and Me. Or search abcblogging in your browser.
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