All in the name of organizing

I post a lot of snippets on Facebook instead of breakin’ it down on here, and I am working on changing that.

I’ve been kicking butt and taking names all morning, for the sake of personal efficiency. I am a stickler about my gmail inbox, but have been a lazy girl recently in keeping it streamlined. I have subscribed to a bunch of new stuff recently and noticed the wee email chime on my phone going off a LOT more than I like. I also noticed that Gmail was being handled on my phone in a different manner than on my computer due to the newish tabs that Google inserted without asking me if I wanted them. My inbox on my phone was turning chaotic and Something Had To Be Done.

I spent a bit of time this morning using Gmail’s native functions to create new labels and filters, so the vast majority of my email will automatically be marked read, archived, and labelled so I can review it at my leisure. A bit more effort as emails continue to land and the only emails I will see are ones that need to be seen immediately. The rest will be tucked away for later. Huzzah!

Whilst reviewing my Gmail I noted my Google calendar needed freshening up so I worked on that as well, adding calendars and reminders for our Bible study, menu planning, editing for blogging, budget, and tasks along with color coding the calendars for easier reading. For easier viewing I set it to agenda style instead of the larger calendar so I could look at individual items. The Gmail reorganizing took about 45 minutes by just going to each email in my inbox that needed filtering or recent trash and using the “set up filtering” button. While doing the filtering I could create labels and nest them on the fly, which sped the process up. Adding the calendars and color coding them took about 10 minutes. It took longer to decide what I wanted to do than to actually do it.

I am also revamping my Evernote and added some custom templates I found online for some categories I’d like to keep in a more orderly fashion: Bible study, budgeting, menu planning, and blogging. (See some overlap there?)
I created new stacks, a nice set of new GTD *Getting Things Done* style tags, and a place to archive all of it set up and humming. I am still using a Bullet Journal as my day planner on paper, but I have been adding fun doodles, colors, and gluing cute pics into it with a glue stick to make it more like a personal planner than just a wee cheapie spiral notebook. I use an Evernote app to photograph the pages to archive those as well.

It might seem like a lot of effort to set up but once it’s done everything becomes automated. I like to work on these sorts of tasks quarterly, when the creeping chaos of information overload starts rearing it’s ugly head. Automation turns that overload into a steady stream of organized information that I can dip into at my leisure, and savor instead of feeling like I am drinking from a firehose.

Heroes of the Reformation

There are a lot of heroes from the Reformation, and lest we forget them by ceasing to talk about them, people MUST revisit the history of the Reformation from time to time. Many of the early Reformers paid a HIGH price for what we take casual advantage of now, such as reading a copy of the Bible in our native language.

Our first hero: READ THIS.

This will tell you about William Tyndale, who was BURNED AT THE STAKE for translating the Bible into English. Here’s an excerpt from the article by John Piper at Desiring God:

“Tyndale hoped to escape this condemnation by getting official authorization for his translation in 1524. But he found just the opposite and had to escape from London to the continent where he did all his translating and writing for the next twelve years. He lived as a fugitive the entire time until his death near Brussels in 1536. He watched a rising tide of persecution and felt the pain of seeing young men burned alive who were converted by reading his translation and his books.

His closest friend, John Frith, was arrested in London and tried by Thomas More and burned alive July 4, 1531, at the age of twenty-eight. Richard Bayfield ran the ships that took Tyndale’s books to England. He was betrayed and arrested, and Thomas More wrote on December 4, 1531, that Bayfield “the monk and apostate [was] well and worthily burned in Smythfelde.”

Three weeks later the same end came to John Tewkesbury. He was converted by reading Tyndale’s Parable of the Wicked Mammon which defended justification by faith alone. He was whipped in Thomas More’s garden and had his brow squeezed with small ropes till blood came out of his eyes. Then he was sent to the Tower where he was racked till he was lame. Then at last they burned him alive. Thomas More “rejoiced that his victim was now in hell, where Tyndale ‘is like to find him when they come together.’

Four months later James Bainham followed in the flames in April of 1532. He had stood up during the mass at St. Augustine’s Church in London and lifted a copy of Tyndale’s New Testament and pleaded with the people to die rather than deny the word of God. That virtually was to sign his own death warrant.

Add to these Thomas Bilney, Thomas Dusgate, John Bent, Thomas Harding, Andrew Hewet, Elizabeth Barton and others, all burned alive for sharing the views of William Tyndale about the Scriptures and the reformed faith.”

When I read this I was moved to tears. Don’t let their sacrifice be forgotten or whitewashed in today’s “acceptance and tolerance” atmosphere of “can’t we all just get along?!?” Xtianity.

Acts 20:7 and the Sabbath

NATSAB: The First Day of the Week and Acts 20:7

I read this article by Pete Rambo with a great deal of interest. He’s a thoughtful and passionate guy on his blog, and I’ve found he is well worth reading. It helps for me that he comes from a Reformed background, so I get what he’s saying and the journey that he has undertaken, as mine is somewhat similar.

A while back I had a big, drawn out discussion with the pastor from our old church *Reformed Baptist* regarding the Sabbath. I wanted to know what he thought about why the Sabbath had been moved Sunday instead of remaining on Saturday. Pastor Don believed strongly in keeping the Sabbath, as it was a part of the Big 10, like many of the Reformed churches, but felt just as strongly that it was on Sunday and used Acts 20:7 as a large part of his defense. I wish I had looked up the words in Strong’s at the time, as I think it would have bolstered what I had to say about the subject. My take is that the Sabbath was never moved BY GOD from Saturday, and as a person that believes that God is unchanging, and his word is the final authority I note that there is no Biblical support for the moving of the Sabbath. We as a family are always testing everything, and trying to root out man made traditions from what Scripture states.
Full disclosure: I am a Sabbath keeper, but far from perfectly. We are mindful that it is meant to be a day of rest, but we are not Jewish and don’t follow Talmudic law in the observance in any way.

Neither of us convinced the other, but it was a spirited and enjoyable evening. Pastor Don died unexpectedly last spring, and after a failed long search for a replacement the church closed a few weeks ago. Pastor Don will be sorely missed.
There’s a video this same blogger posted a day or so ago, that I think fits nicely with this that I am gonna stick here. I have had this same experience a WHOLE bunch of times, and it made me laugh.

On “experiencing life first”

This.

“For some reason as he told me about it I couldn’t help but recall this post from Sunshine. My second thought was that she wasn’t referring to experiencing “life” at all, but what she really meant was experiencing multiple relationships.”

This is the single woman experience, in a nutshell. I can feel a bigger post a comin’ on, regarding growing up with a feminist mom, and how she missed out on just about everything breaking “free” of the patriarchy. She was a multiple marrier back in the 70’s, before it became REALLY fashionable to commit serial monogamy, and had three children by different men. This post will not slam her, as I don’t wish to, recognizing she is a child of her times as well as noting she truly believed that she was doing the right thing by living her life “her way”. She is a now delightful woman in her 70’s, and still defending her choices even though you can see a clear line from those choices to the results that she now finds dissatisfying, near the end of her life.

More later!