Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Monthly Interview :: Miss Elizabeth


{Miss Elizabeth & her family}
ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself? How did you come to know Jesus?

MISS ELIZABETH: Hello! It is such a blessing and privilege to be able to share with you, sisters in Christ. I feel very honored to be asked to answer the questions and humbly hope that you will be encouraged by some of it, by God’s grace.

I am a fourteen year old young lady, who loves the Lord with her heart. I am homeschooled and really love being able to spend more time with my family. My three younger brothers are such a blessing to me and although when I was younger I wanted a sister, the Lord knew I needed brothers and I am also blessed by some sweet sisters in Jesus.

A few of my many interests include: spending time with my brothers and sisters in Christ, capturing some of the blessings the Lord has given me through the camera, reading, writing (letters, articles, journaling), posting on my blog/website {View HERE!}, creating handmade projects (sewing, card-making, etc), organizing, encouraging young ladies through planning of modest clothing exchanges, teas, etc, helping grandparents, cooking and other homemaking adventures, playing and learning piano (and some flute and guitar), playing outdoors in God’s Creation and the list continues. I am thankful for the pleasantly full life the Lord has given me!
The Lord has taught me so much on my journey and continues to teach me new things each and every day. His faithfulness is so amazing and I am so thankful for it! Although I do not remember all of the details, on my great grandpa’s 80th birthday I was thinking a lot about the topic of death and asked my parents a lot of questions. I prayed to the Lord and wrote the date in my Bible. Later, in 2009, I re-committed my life to Christ and was assured of my salvation. I remember that time much more clearly and am so thankful that Jesus died on the cross for me and saved me of my sin. What an amazing Savior we have! For around a year I had been thinking, praying and reading in His Word about the topic of baptism and was baptized earlier this year by my daddy. It was a wonderful experience and my journey with the Lord gets sweeter each day!

ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: How are some of the ways you remain joyful in your Savior?

MISS ELIZABETH: My favorite way to remain joyful in my Savior is to seek Him. Praying to Him to give me joy and strength can refresh me. Recently I was trying to get to sleep, thoughts swirling through my mind of difficult situations in life, and I started reviewing memory verses in my mind. I realized again that the Lord will always remain faithful and He is in control. And though the Lord cares about my little difficult situations, He has suffered so much for me…I should delight in suffering for Jesus and remain joyful in that! James 1:2-3 really is convicting: “My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.” Wow! Counting it joy when we have struggles because it works patience in us! It can be difficult, but as the Lord promises in Neh. 8:10b, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” I also am uplifted when reading His Word. And, as I mentioned briefly above, storing away God’s Word in my heart can be helpful when I am struggling. Focusing on the blessings the Lord has given me, journaling and writing letters to the Lord also helps me stay more joyful. To close this section, I’d like to share a quote from Mrs. Susannah Spurgeon, the wife of the preacher Charles Spurgeon. She had many trials in her life, but still pressed on to glorify the Lord with her life. “…the moment we come into any trial or difficulty, our first thought should be, not how soon can we escape from it, or how we may lessen the pain we shall suffer from it, but how can we best glorify God in it…” –Susannah Spurgeon.

{Miss Elizabeth playing the piano}

ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: What are some of your favorite books, and why?

MISS ELIZABETH: I have been blessed to read many encouraging titles:

  • The most encouraging and my favorite Book of all is God’s Word. It never fails to give me encouragement. Make time each day to read it and it will keep you refreshed.
“Before You Meet Prince Charming” by Sarah Mally {Available from Bright Lights HERE} If you have not read this one, please do. Sarah shares some beautiful wisdom on preparing for a Godly marriage, if it is the Lord’s will, and practical advice for waiting on the Lord’s timing.
“Joyfully at Home” by Jasmine Baucham. {Available from Vision Forum HERE!} Filled with Jasmine’s inspiring thoughts makes you excited to serve your family, the Lord, and to seek the Lord’s will for your life. She shares Biblical, yet practical insights. I was so blessed by this one!
“The Basket of Flowers” by Christoph Von Schmid {Available from Lamplighter Publishing HERE!} A dear family at our church let me borrow this classic and I absolutely loved it. It is a beautiful, charming story from the 1800s of a sweet girl and the journey of her life and the lessons she learns.
The Elsie Dinsmore & Millie Keith series by Martha Finley. {Although some are out of print, the original Elsie books are available at Vision Forum HERE!} I am currently reading through the original Elsie series and they have blessed me. I have read the revised version of the Millie Keith series and Millie’s heart for the Lord is so inspiring.
“Preparing to be a Help Meet” by Debi Pearl {Available from No Greater Joy HERE!} is one of my current favorites. It gives vision and practical advice from a Titus 2 woman. I have enjoyed discussing chapters of the book with my mom and this one is great as a mother-daughter study. Ask your mom about this one and if you are younger, you may want her to read it first.
“The Family Daughter” By Sarah Lee Bryant {Available from The King's Blooming Rose Ministries HERE!} This recently-published book by a daughter at home has lots of wisdom!
“One Thing You Can’t Do in Heaven” by Mark Cahill {Available at Mark Cahill.org HERE!}was a book I read a few days ago and I absolutely loved it! It is so inspiring and Mr. Cahill shares much wisdom and practical tips. If you want to get excited about sharing with others about the Lord, read this book. You won’t want to put it down…my mom was blessed by it, so I decided to read it and I finished it in about two days and loved it.

There are many, many more, but those are some of my favorites. =) A helpful list from a website for mothers & daughters can be found HERE at Raising Homemakers.com. I have not read them all, but many of them have been encouraging! Of course, be sure to check with your parents before reading new titles. Each family has their own standards. Seek the Lord on what books to read and ask Him to show you ones that are pleasing to Him.

 ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: What are some of your guidelines when it comes to dressing modestly?

MISS ELIZABETH: Although inner beauty is more important, we want to make sure we glorify God in all we do and are not a distraction to our brothers in Christ. We want others to be attracted to our joyfulness and faith in Christ, not our outward appearance. Most importantly in this area, we want others to see Jesus and be pointed to Him instead of us. (John 3:30 says, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”) These are some ideas that I have found helpful for me, but ask your parents and pray to the Lord for guidance in this area. You can also ask your brothers for their thoughts, what outfits they prefer, etc, to add another perspective.

Another thing to consider is thinking about how we can dress in a feminine way. (Deut. 22:5) In an article by Raquelle Sheen, she says, “True femininity is more than ruffles and froo-froo—it means being happy that God made you a woman and rejoicing in it, not going out and trying to be just like the guys. It means searching the Scriptures to see what God wants women to do—and then obeying it.” (1)

The last thing I want to add in this section is we can consider if the fabrics/colors of our attire are too distracting or drawing attention to ourselves. These are all things I am learning and working on and I hope you will delight that the Lord made you a daughter of the King, because it is a blessing! Psalm 45:11 says, “So shall the king greatly desire thy beauty: for he is thy Lord; and worship thou him.”

For tops: Tops can be tricky! Look for simple, comfortable, not clingy tops that are not too low-cut. You can also layer another top under if the top is too low. A white cardigan is helpful and jean jackets can also be cute. Try looking at a Goodwill or similar store for a nice selection of more budget-friendly tops. Plus, perhaps you can find some more modest attire, since modesty isn’t always in style. :) A fun, easy project can be to sew little fabric flowers out of a material that matches your skirt/capris and then pin it to your blouse.

For skirts: Below the knee works best for me, to make sure I am covered and my skirt does not fly up on windy days. Skirts can be difficult to find, so you have to be creative at times! One helpful idea is to find a shorter sundress in a cotton or other material {often on sale at end of summer!} and sew the top down to make a waistband for a skirt! The shorter dress turns into a longer skirt. Many of my skirts are sewn this way. Other ideas are: sewing your own skirts, if you enjoy doing that or would like to learn. For a link to a free pattern for an easy, pretty skirt click HERE! (I made this one in a green, yellow and white daisy print.)

For dresses: I’ve sewn some with the help of my mom. Simplicity 5645, view A is a dress I sewed with her. It has a lovely flared style and mine is a lovely light blue with white flower trim (and no complicated zipper to sew!). A nice shorter white cardigan can be nice to layer over a dress on cool days to cover up a bit more and is a nice classic piece to have.

For capris: Capris can be nice to wear. Colors like khaki, denim and white go with a lot of tops and blouses. I recently found a pair of nice khaki ones on sale, since it’s the end of summer.

A wonderful blessing from the Lord has been a “modest clothing exchange” that I organized for young ladies to “trade” for free modest items. It is such a fun time. (If you’d like, you can see photos on my blog HERE!)
ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: How do you stay focused while spending time with the Lord? (How do you overcome those worldly distractions such as the computer, phone calls, other reading materials, etc…)

MISS ELIZABETH: This is a good question-it can be hard to stay focused completely on the Lord when many other worldly distractions appear. Some may even be good, wholesome things, but if they are pulling you away from focusing on the Lord, they are a distraction. This summer I took a “summer pursuit” of spending time with the Lord at least 15 minutes each day, which was a good challenge for me. Sometimes, especially during the summer months, it can be difficult to sit down with no distractions for a while. But it is so worth it to do so!

One idea is to do it first thing when you get up in the morning. Although it isn’t always possible, try to at least start the day with a Psalm or shorter portion of Scripture and pray to the Lord. Start your day on the right note. You could also do it at the end of the day, but I find that I get rather sleepy at that time. Find a time of day that works for you. Maybe it is after you finish your homeschooling work in the afternoon or outdoors later in the day. But I would encourage you to start and end your day by reading His Word and giving thanks to Him with prayer.

Also, find a place that doesn’t have a lot of distractions. Try not to choose a place where the computer is beeping, the phone is ringing and you have lots of questions to answer. Find or make a sweet, quiet atmosphere for your time with the Lord. Perhaps it is in your bedroom with some soft hymn music playing or outdoors in a chair on the grass. Or maybe just sitting at a table or desk keeps you more focused. Pray to the Lord for strength to keep focused on Him and for limited distractions.

One other tip is to get into the routine of reading the Bible first before reading any other books. This way you make sure you are grounded in the Word and putting His Word first in our lives. The Lord Jesus gave His life for us and put us first…now we can put Him first in our lives!
 
ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: How do you perform your duties (such as school, etc.) to the glory of God?

MISS ELIZABETH: Do them as if Jesus is watching…because He is! Exodus 20:12 says, “Honour thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the LORD thy God giveth thee.” When we honor and obey our parents we are glorifying the Lord. So when they ask you to take out the dishes, do it cheerfully, as if doing it unto the Lord! Colossians 3:23 says, “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.” Memorizing Scriptures like these can be really encouraging reminders when you grow tired or upset with doing tasks day after day. Singing hymns can also be uplifting and to those around you (assuming that it isn’t a distraction to them :D)! Serve Jesus diligently! He is definitely worth living for! It can be difficult, but do it cheerfully for Him.


ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: How do you use your gift of writing to glorify the Lord?

MISS ELIZABETH: When writing, speaking, or thinking, I find it helpful to think, “Is what I’m saying/thinking/writing pleasing to the Lord right now?” We want to please the Lord in all we do. How do we know if it is pleasing to the Lord? This verse is great in discovering if it is pleasing to Him: Philippians 4:8- “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Also, “Is this a profitable, worthwhile use of my time?” Are we edifying, encouraging others? We want to encourage others, not tear them down and we don’t want to build ourselves up pridefully. Also, I would suggest to have your dad and/or mom edit/proof your writing before it is published or mailed, as they often have good insights, concerns and suggestions. So in writing, consider if you are (1) pleasing the Lord and (2) encouraging others.
  
ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: What are some of the ways you use your influence on your younger brothers to live more for Jesus?

MISS ELIZABETH: Look for ways to be a blessing to them! Encourage them. Look for ways to make their day special. Also, if you aim to be a kind sister with Biblical qualities of daughterhood…our brothers will probably seek those things in a future wife. Our brothers are going to be the next generation’s leaders and we want to be good influences. I would highly recommend reading the chapter “Brothers and Sisters” in J.R. Miller’s book, “The Family.” (Formerly titled “Home-Making”) Originally published in 1882, this chapter gave me new vision and again brought me to realize what an influence we have on our brothers. It can be difficult, but so worth it. I have so far to come in this area and patience with my brothers is something I constantly am praying for. But I have seen others who have wonderful relationships with their brothers and I want to keep making progress in having close relationships with them…and ones that continue in years to come.

I love meeting other young ladies who have younger brothers. (Specifically only brothers, like myself right now). It is a great privilege to have and one that is very special to me. I love having brothers! Of course, I get frustrated at times, but I am so thankful the Lord blessed me with brothers. One time I heard how when we grow older, our brothers (and dads) can be like “secret agents” on brothers in Christ who could be possible future husbands. :) Pray for your brothers. Pray for their future wives. Our brothers need our prayers! Uplift them in prayer.

I would like to end this section with a few favorite quotes from “The Family.” {Available from Vision Forum HERE!} “Next to mother and father there is no one who can do so much to help a young man live nobly as his sister…It is not the help of good advice and earnest words--these should have power too--but the help rather of silent and holy influence, gained in the home by a life of unselfishness and beauty, and then held as a potent charm outside and beyond the home walls.”

{Miss Elizabeth & her cousin Ava}
ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: Do you have a hope chest? If so, what are the most important items to include (to you)?

MISS ELIZABETH: Yes, I do have a hope chest, which is a medium white wicker “chest” in my room. It’s a small collection of some things that may be helpful in a future home. I look forward to adding more in the years to come, but recently I haven’t been adding a lot of new things. Some of my favorite items in mine are: a red/white checked tablecloth and frayed-style napkins (the hem was sewn by my friends and I at my 13th birthday), a box of recipes (I don’t have a lot, but I hope to add more), some cooking accessories (hot pad, whisk, etc.), knitted handmade dishcloths in brown and blue, some items from my grandparents, etc. I have found “The Hope Chest: A Legacy of Love” by Rebekah Wilson to be a wonderful resource. Sometimes it’s a bit overwhelming at all of the ideas, but just focus on a few handmade, special items at first. Two other things I consider kind of like a hope chest are: my collection of books (although there aren’t a ton, I hope they will be an encouragement to my future daughters, if the Lord wills) and my homemaking binder (kind of like a hope chest of papers and ideas).

Just a quick note--even though it is good to have a vision for the future, try to focus mostly on serving the Lord now. Trust in the Lord to work the details of your life together in His timing and way-because it is perfect and best. Focus on delighting in the Lord. Psalm 37:4 is one of my very favorite verses- “Delight thyself also in the Lord: and He shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”

ROYAL DAUGHTERS OF THE KING: Is there a message you would like to share in closing?

MISS ELIZABETH: It can be difficult to stand alone and be different in this world. But if we are on the Lord’s side, it will be so worth it to stand alone for Him. And we’re really not standing alone, because He is always with us! Recently the Lord has been teaching me to trust Him completely, keep my heart with all diligence (Prov. 4:23), and to rest in Him. He is the most faithful Friend one could ever have! Even though earthly friendships can and will be disappointing at times, the Lord is always faithful and will never break His promises. Put Him as your #1 Best Friend. I would like to close with a verse that has been a blessing to me recently: 1 Samuel 12:24- “Only fear the LORD, and serve him in truth with all your heart: for consider how great things he hath done for you.” He has truly done great things for us! Keep shining brightly for Him!

I would also like to thank Johanna and Bethany for kindly asking me to share some thoughts with you. I am excited to see how the Lord continues to use this lovely website. I still have struggles and feel like there are so many other young ladies who would bring more encouragement to you all than myself, but hopefully and prayerfully, by God’s grace, some of this may be a blessing to you. Thank you and many blessings! Neh. 8:10b- “The joy of the Lord is your strength.”

With Joy in Christ Jesus,

Elizabeth

www.joyfuljewels4jesus.blogspot.com

Endnotes:

(1) http://www.homeschoolfamilyforum.com/ViewBlogEntry.aspx?EntryId=135 (“Femininity” by Raquelle Sheen)

3 Words of Grace:

Erin said...

Hi Bethany!

You are the winner of my giveaway over at Courage Through Christ!! Congratulations! If you could leave me a comment with your email address, that would be wonderful so that I can find out where you would like for me to send your book:) (i promise not to publish the comment:)

Thank you so much for entering my giveaway and I hope you have a wonderful day!

Blessings in Christ,
Erin

Bekah said...

I enjoyed reading your interview, Elizabeth!!

Lindsey Marie said...

I have learned so much from Elizabeth! Although she is my age, I often think she is older because of her maturity. This interview was such a blessing to me and I know that I shall learn and remember much of it. Thank you!