Monday, May 15, 2017

Enrichment for Summer

This summer I plan to have roughly an hour of enrichment for the children in the mornings.   This is geared toward early elementary but plan for my younger ones to tag along.  I want this time to be fun!  Living books, fun writing activities, math games, and learning about courage. On my quest to plan out this time, I found some amazing free resources and wanted to share.  I catered these plans to my children’s gifts, areas that need improvement, and enrichment.  We also hope to teach bravery and courage through stories, so I will start the time by reading some tales about the Vikings and then about Christian martyrs. 


Rising third grader goals: writing poetry, loving reading, math, thinking activities
Read 20 minutes of a book of his choice, do one day of the reading, math, and thinking section on ‘all in one homeschool site’ for 3rd grade https://allinonehomeschool.com/third/
extra: break the code https://code.org/learn (great get that mind working activity)
Other things to incorporate with writing:
 http://www.walkingbytheway.com/blog/inspire-writing-in-your-homeschool/ (This site has incredibly easy and fun ways to teach poetry! This site is amazing!)

Rising first grader goals:  handwriting, reading, and math
read 15-20 minutes with me (he reads a sentence and then I read one and back and forth until becomes second natue), math on ‘easy peasy all in one homeschool site’ each day for rising 1st grader https://allinonehomeschool.com/first-grade/ ,


Rest hours: 
We require all children to rest for two hours.  For the boys who do not nap, this means structured rest time.  The first hour they can draw, play leggos, or read.   The second hour they will listen to a story online/ audible.com.  Here are some suggestions: http://www.walkingbytheway.com/blog/audio-books-homeschool/  There are also suggestions directly below. 

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Read aloud suggestions by my sister the book guru:
Roald Dahl, Beverly Cleary, CS Lewis, Hobbit
Here's a list of books I have either read with the boys or want to:
1. Mr. Popper's Penguins. LOVE this one.
2. Indian In the Cupboard
3. Boxcar Children series
4. Black Beauty for Mead!!!!
5. Sideways Stories from Wayside School (do you remember these from growing up?)
6. Little House on the Prairie series
7. Hardy Boys
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As for books, off the top of my head:
1. Roald Dahl is one of our current favorites. the BFG, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach...
2. The Hobbit.
3. Chronicles of Narnia. The boys always come back to these... have listened to them SO many times!!
4. Charlotte's Web (the boys will like too)
5. The Magic Tree House series... all will love. Jack and Annie go on adventures and the kids learn history, etc. STELLAR!
6. Henry Huggins (and other Beverly Cleary)
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The Big Friendly Giant


Wednesday, January 11, 2017

My World's Not Falling Apart, It's Falling into Place

Falling flat on my face again and again in a two month period directly following the birth of our 5th child in a new town away from friends and family felt like more than I could bare- in fact it was.  My world as I knew it fell a part. My health fell a part and I was not able to do for myself or my family. At first it was a flu like fever virus that started the day after giving birth.  Then it was a severe uterine infection.  Then it was strep throat. Then it was allergies that got stuck in my sinuses and caused my ear drum to rupture.  Illness would not let up.  It just kept coming.  My children also became ill during this time- many sicker than they have ever been before. Some had strep and RSV and croup at the same time.  Even the baby got RSV,  but his case ended up being so extremely mild.  To say it was crazy is an understatement.  I remember lying in the bed many a mornings after waking not wanting to get out of bed because I did not want to face the day. I was utterly exhausted and it felt like the intensity would never let up.
The question I asked God time and time again is what am I suppose to learn through this.  What in the world are you doing? I also spoke very honestly begging him to ease the intensity of these trials yet he kept saying no as those trials kept coming. After weeks and weeks of praying the same prayer, my perspective started to change from despair into gratitude: "Thank you that I am simply dealing with sickness.  Thank you that I have children I get to take care of.   Thank you that I have a husband that is bearing the heavy burden of a job, ordination, and taking on most if not all of my responsibilities." 
Not only did my despair change into gratitude, but I also began to see how so many things in my life were out of order.  You want to know what is most important in your life? Look at your check book or credit card report. Where you spend your money is where your heart is.  Natural medicine, herbs, whole foods, essential oils is where I spend my money.  Without realizing it, slowly over time I began to believe that I could control my destiny- that I could actually fully control my health through a whole foods diet, rest, exercise, supplements, herbs, etc. While I may not have said it out loud, I thought I knew so much.  And then this perfectly healthy woman had to take 6 rounds of potent antibiotics in one short month due to a severe uterine infection and strep throat. It was through these trials that I began to repent and see the idol health had become for me.  I began to ask the Lord to put my interests of healthy living in the right place and to forgive me for thinking I could control so many things I quite frankly cannot.  I also thanked him for antibiotics as without them I would have lost my uterus or worse my life if the infection went untreated.  
As I spent many of these weeks on modified bed rest, I had ample time to think. I began to see how overwhelmed I was with my life and as a result how much time I wasted by checking out on social media or texting.  I began to see my little toddler girls take their fake cell phone with them everywhere- that was my wake up call. Monkey see.  Monkey do.  I also saw that I seemed to have an answer for everything.  I talk more than I listen.  Now, I am praying that I will listen more than I ever speak and that I will say "I do not know" way more.
While I was down, my husband began to make order out of chaos.  He made chore charts for the kids so that my load is eased and the kids develop even more by being given age appropriate responsibility.  He made schedules for the day- set outdoor time, set chore time, set reading time, set school work time, etc. He took on the responsibility of cooking a hot breakfast every morning so that I could get some personal time and not hit the ground running. He helped me set a schedule to my day and taught me to make lists instead of keeping everything in my head.  My husband's dying to self is producing life in me.
Looking back on late October through mid December,  my world was not falling apart, it was truly falling into place like the song "Held " describes by Casting Crowns. Many things were out of order in my life that I was completely blind to and it was only through being knocked flat on my face that I was able to see it.
As I look back on this season, I truly feel gratitude that the intensity has let up and we are healthy, but more importantly than that, I feel gratitude for all the Lord taught me.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Sometimes God writes a chapter in our story we would never choose

I prayed. I asked others to pray for no complications after birth.  God said no.  You see this was one of my fears and God saw it best for me to walk through that door.

Soon after labor, I developed low grade fever that eventually turned into a flu like virus making me very ill. That virus ended and I went straight into a uterine infection.  My fever at times spiked to 103.7.  Yesterday in the wee hours of the morning, I noticed stomach cramping that got worse and worse until around 10 am. At this point, I could not move due to the pain. I became delusional and spiked a fever of 103.  We called our midwife who was out preparing for Halloween with her family. She dropped all her stuff in the floor of the store and came immediately to me.  I was diagnosed with a uterine infection and administered fluids and 4 rounds of a potent antibiotics every 6 hours. I could  not walk nor move. I was in excruciating pain yet I knew I was in the best care possible with Lauren.  Lauren was also consulting a top doctor in Atlanta Ga who trained her.

Lauren comes with much experience.  You can read about her here:http://serendipitymidwifery.com/Meet_Our_Staff_2.html  She is extremely well rounded and practices evidence based medicine.  She is middle of the road....if a natural method is proven, she utilizes it. If a traditional medical method is proven, she uses it.  I love that.  She is a mix of natural and medical which this world needs more of. She listened as I cried about the idea of taking such potent antibiotics.  She talked about risks verses benefits and told me how serious my situation was.   I trusted her and told her to do whatever I needed.  She was by my side every 6 hours for an hour or more at a time talking me through any and everything and has been available by phone or text as needed.

Today, I am on the upswing I think.  I am hobbling to the bathroom and back now, which originally was impossible. I still have pain and am weak with fever controlled by Tylenol, but am so grateful to know what is going on and slowly but surely get better.  I am confined to my room on bed-rest, but hope to feel like a normal post par-tum woman by the weekend.

I don't know why all this happened, but I do know that I have a father that is o so good.  He was not surprised when I shook my fist out of fear. He was not surprised by my tears or anger at the lot I was dealt. I was reminded of his goodness and embraced it quicker than the last trial as he has given me much practice in dealing with trials.  I am learning to trust and rest in a father that is writing a beautiful story that I am only in the middle of.  I don't rest well nor trust well, but as the years go by, centimeter by centimeter I do trust and rest more- all evidence of his mighty work.  

As I have had time to reflect much the past week since I am incapable of doing anything on my own, I find myself reflecting often on love. I thought I knew what love was when I married my husband close to 12 years ago. Looking back I had no clue- no clue at all.  With each trial, I grow in admiration and respect and love for him.  His strength is mighty.  His tenderness and sacrifice is unending.  This past week he has been asked to do things that are beyond yucky yet he has stomached it and done it all.  That is a man and that is love.

We have been blown away by the love of our community near and far.  I have read every email and text even when unable to respond.  We have devoured every meal and listened to every message.

I have also thought much on those dealing with chronic illnesses and long physical suffering as I now have a tiny glimpse of what they go through.  It has been humbling, but needed.

So now, sick yet recovering, I choose to rest in His plan all the while asking continued protection of our new son.  Would you pray for our little one's health as he is not even a week old?  Would you pray for the Lord to continue to protect our newborn and me as my immune system is shot?  One of our son's is now running fever and feeling lousy.  My husband and my mother are handling it as I cannot.  We are all weary and this just seems like too much with our lack of sleep and one thing after another.  We are asking the Lord that this would not spread.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Birth Story

Birth. Whew.  When I reflect back on little one's story, I cannot help but smile not because I did it well, but because of all the people that played a part in walking me through what I believe is one of the toughest things I have ever done in such a relative short amount of time- give birth to my children.

This was my 6th baby.  First one went straight into the arms of Jesus in the first trimester.  We grieved his loss and wondered if I would ever have children.  At this point, I never knew how common yet how tragic miscarriages are.  Was something wrong with me?  With the second baby, I endured a long labor of 36 hours with epidural injury causing partial paralization and requiring me to undergo physical therapy to walk again correctly and heal. With the third baby, I was told our little child was sick and upon being born would need to be swept away to NICU due to kidney, lung, and heart issues.  I went through the scares and many downs from 31 weeks pregnant until he entered the world at 41 weeks with no medication or epidural after 31 hours of labor.  He came out completely healthy. A miracle occurred. I cried uncontrollably at the gift of not having to walk down a road that seemed certain. The NICU doctors walked away with no Turner baby. He was in my arms.  With the fourth baby, I finally got my dream of birthing at a birth center in the bath tub and it truly was miraculous and everything I hoped.  Labor was extremely quick and lasted only 3.5 hours from start to finish.  With the fifth baby, I again was able to birth at the birth center in the bed after 3 hours of labor but suffered from severe thromboses hemorrhoids following labor- the worst the medical team had seen landing me on bed rest for 3 weeks barely escaping surgery.

And now the 6th baby.

Sometime in the last ten weeks of pregnancy, I started dealing with an intense fear of the pain of labor.  My anxiety would keep me up at night or wake me up.  I at first bottled this fear and then began reaching out to others to pray.  Through the prayers of others, the verses others gave me, and the listening ear especially of my husband,  my fears began to surface less and less.  At the recommendation of others, I began to read positive birth stories and pray that the Lord would help prepare my mind, as natural childbirth with no medication is first and foremost mental and second of course a physical race that requires every part of the body to work. Here is the site where I read positive stories: https://juliebyers.com/birth-stories/

Labor came at first with many false alarms starting at 37 weeks and coming and going until 40 weeks 2 days when he was delivered..  With these false alarms, terror arose that I had to work through each time. Three nights before I actually went into true labor, insomnia started.  It was Wednesday around 12 that my membranes were stripped and I began contracting harder yet infrequently. I took an hour nap and by the afternoon, they had not let up.  We called the midwife and she arrived around dinner  time to set up.  There still was no pattern so she instructed us to walk or sit on the birth ball.  This was such a sweet time for my husband and I.  I depended on him in a way I had not in the prior births.  Around 11, she said everything was set up and could leave coming back as soon as a pattern arose.  I panicked at the thought and asked if I could get in the bath, calm down, and see what happens.  Almost as soon as I entered that bath, my body relaxed and I went straight into active labor.  Essential oils were diffused.  Soft wordless music was played. The midwife and her assistant stayed and I labored in the tub, birth ball, standing up, and lying down on the couch.  I went into this labor truly exhausted from the past week of not much sleep. I noticed that my legs began to give out requiring me to need help to stand, walk, etc.  In active labor, we talked- all four of us- in between contractions.  It was a sweet time.  I then got to a point where I would fall asleep in-between contractions both in active labor and transition time.  I listened to piano hymn and praise music and sang and prayed and focused as hard as possible to embrace the contractions and not fight them.  At this point I was in the bath tub and my husband right there in the tub with me.  It was such a sweet time when I reflect back.  He was so extremely selfless.  He endured back spasm and much pain helping to hold me, etc.  He pushed on my back as the baby descended, he held my hand, and sat there fully present with no words. I finally reach a 10 and eventually the urge to push came which is uncontrollable.  I delivered his head and needed assistance with his shoulder so my incredible midwife jumped in clothes and all to assist getting his shoulder out.  He was born at 5 am perfect looking like all his siblings.   It was miraculous.  As I reflect back, I smile.  God met me.  He sustained me.

Now less than 3 days out, I sit here with with all pains of recovery and a low grade fever causing aches and what the medical team thinks is due to severe exhaustion as I have no other symptoms, but yet again, I have to surrender and trust God with my baby and myself.  Covet your prayers that my body would heal and most importantly that our little one would stay healthy and somehow we'd get rest.  Thankful for my team of helpers all around.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Freedom to be flawed

As I sit and await our newest Turner's entry into the world, much floods my mind.  To be honest, right now, it is my failures.  My many failures.  My fears.  My hopes.  The gaps between what I want to be and what I am.  Yet while those failures surface and seek to cause me to despair, a pivotal conversation I had this summer with a friend in the parking lot comes to mind washing my mind with truth and therefore hope.

I told this friend ashamedly how I love tasks way too much and many a times choose tasks over people. They are comfortable.  They don't talk back.  I can check them off my list.  I spoke honestly and freely because she is that kind of friend.  I told her I thought I should be so much further in this journey of life than I am.  I knew that I never would arrive this side of heaven, but shouldn't I have come a little farther than I am?  Shouldn't I be better at friendship and choosing people over tasks.  Shouldn't I know how to ask the right questions?   Shouldn't I delight over being on the floor with my kiddos much of the time?  Shouldn't people feel like delight more of the time than not since I was created for relationship?

She listened and said something to the extent of sometimes we "get it right" 80% of the time and sometimes 20% of the time.  It is all grace.  This is the very thing that will cause you time and time again to run to Jesus. She then sent me a book in the mail called Extravagant Grace.  It is excellent.

Since that conversation this summer, I am beginning to realize that my many failures are actually an opportunity for gratitude. Yes, gratitude because Christ's righteousness was given to me fully and completely, which means that God actually sees me as perfect at relationships because of Jesus. This truth is actually giving me freedom to relax about my inability to change myself.  It is making me desire to obey even more and ask the Lord to bring growth in this area of my life.  It is also causing me to give thanks because I see how my desire to fully embrace inconvenience and the mess of relationships is growing millimeter by millimeter.  I am aware of my struggle whereas in the past I was completely oblivious to it.  Hatred is growing toward my sin.  I love that Paul grants freedom through his words in Romans 7 to be alarmingly honest about our weakness because we can be radically confident of God's love for us.  Sanctification as historically articulated is 'the work of God's free grace, where He renews us in the image of God, and enables us to more and more die to sin, and live unto righteousness.'  I love that!  It means He is at work in us and that this work is continual throughout our entire life; however, it will never be perfect in this life.  It is not just 'getting better and better' and cleaning ourselves up so we look or act a certain way.  Growth in the christian faith is more about seeing how great our sin is yet how great our God is.  The more we grow in our relationship with the Lord the more we should realize how our every deed is tainted in sin. We should not be puffed up with pride because we see how sick our souls truly are.  We should be overcome with gratitude that we have a father who has promised to make us whole.  As God sanctifies us we are moved to hate our sin and love our neighbors not out of a heart to compare or make ourselves feel better, but from a heart that really is hurting for others.

Our culture hates Christians because of our self-righteousness.  What if we started being honest about our lives, our struggles, and looked first at the speck in our own eye before we condemn another?  We are just as flawed as the person we despise the most.  While we may have different sins and therefore suffer different consequences, we are no better than the worst person we imagine.  If we embrace these truths, maybe our culture would start to watch and maybe even ask us for the medicine it needs....the gospel...just as you and I need the gospel daily.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Second Half of September Meal Plan

Breakfasts
Hard boiled egg mashed up with salt and pepper served with fresh fruit - 3 breakfasts first week/ 3 the second
Have 2 dozen eggs hard boiled in fridge.  Pull out each morning desired amount and mash with a fork and sprinkle with salt and pepper and chopped up avocado if have on hand. 

Steel cut oatmeal with almonds, blueberries, and raw honey- 3 breakfasts first week/ 3 the second

Gluten Free or Regular Muffins (your choice) stuffed with veggies - 1 breakfast first week/ 1 the second
Jenna Daniel
Ingredients
3 eggs
1/3c light olive oil
1 1/2c organic vanilla Greek yogurt
1/2c mashed banana
2c grated zucchini
A big handful spinach (about a cup?) puréed in a bullet with a splash of almond milk
1 tsp organic vanilla extract
1c sugar in the raw
3c Bob's Red Mill gluten free flour (if I ever bake with regular flour, I do 1/2 white and 1/2 whole wheat)
1tsp salt
1 tbsp baking soda
1/2 tbsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon

or if you prefer non gluten free:
Ingredients:
3 eggs
1/3c oil
2c vanilla yogurt
2c grated zucchini
1 1/2c sugar (I used 1 cup sugar)
3c flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp baking soda
1/2 tbsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon


Two weeks ago, I added shredded carrots and raisins.  This week I wanted to get in more green, so I added puréed spinach. I'm going to experiment with oatmeal next week. Just think about what will work for your kids and what kind of nutrients you feel like they need. I changed the white sugar to turbinado and reduced it to a cup. I honestly think I could cut it to 1/2c and they would be plenty sweet. You can add a few mini chocolate chips on top if you prefer.  If you need them to be dairy free completely, just sub coconut milk yogurt.

Baking Instructions:
Preheat oven to 350. Mix wet ingredients well. Mix dry ingredients together with a fork, then slowly add to wet ingredients until moist. Pour mixed ingredients into greased muffin tin or use cute cupcake papers to add a fun twist for kids. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes, per original recipe. Our oven cooks a little hot, so I bake at 340 for 18 minutes. 




Lunches
Roasted Veggies and Chicken - 1st week
Roast winter squash, onions, and whatever veggies are on sale in a big batch in avocado oil on 400 for 40 minutes or until done and crispy .....each day reheat on 200 what we will eat. 
For the chicken, I will cook two chickens in various crock pots.  I will put a chopped up onion on the bottom and season with herbs (whatever I have) and salt and pepper and cook on low for 8 hours. 

Hummus on Celery, handful of nuts, Green Meal Replacement Smoothie - 2nd week
2 cups fresh kale or spinach
2 cups coconut milk, unsweetened
2 cups berries
4 tbsp. chia seeds
2 tbsp. coconut oil

For kids'  lunches: http://eastcoastmommyblog.blogspot.ca/2015/09/lunchbox-smoothies-school-lunch-hack.html (I omitted honey and banana because when I tasted it it was already so sweet) or http://myboredtoddler.com/strawberry-banana-smoothie/

Cold salads I can simply pull out of fridge and serve as needed with dinners below:
Marinated Veggie Salad on right/ Tomato Salad with Mint on left



Tomato Salad with Mint
2 lbs cherry or grape tomatoes, 1 small red onion- chopped, fresh mint as much as you desire (food processed) in sauce (1/2 evoo  to 1/2 lemon juice...as much or as little as you like), lots of sea salt. Great to keep in fridge and pull out as needed. 


Marinated Vegetable Salad
http://www.food.com/recipe/marinated-vegetable-salad-67180?photo=137402


Dinners


Lemon Artichoke Chicken x3 nights
Ingredients:
4 tbsp. butter
1/2 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic,  minced
3 cups chopped artichokes, rinsed and drained
1/4 cup capers, drained
zest and juice of one lemon
6 bone in chicken thighs or legs
salt and pepper
Melt  butter and saute onions adding a little salt.  Add the artichoke hearts, capers, and zest and juice of one lemon.  Season everything  up with a bit more salt and pepper.  Stir to combine.  Add some dry white wine if you prefer.  Place chicken in pan and season with salt and pepper pouring sauce over dish.  Top each piece with an extra dab of butter.  Bake for 30-45 minutes or when chicken reaches internal temp of 165.
Serve on bed of kale.
*This can also be made in a crock pot...I just added an extra stick of butter.  I put all the goodies on the bottom and then the chicken and then a big stick of butter and cooked on low for 8 hrs!


The Ultimate Salad x3 nights
http://www.thefreshmarket.com/recipes/details/the-ultimate-salad/#.V9nr2kmQIdU
Add chicken to make a meal. 


New Orleans Roast x3 nights
(use bottom round or chuck roast/ not lean roast) 2-4 lbs
Have ready: 2 large chopped onions, coconut oil, and 2-4 lbs roast
Sprinkle salt on skillet and sear meat on all sides.  Remove roast from pan.
Have ready the following in a bowl:
4 chopped tomatoes or 28 oz can (drain and save juice)
1/2 cup red wine or tomato juice
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 tsp basil, 1 bay leaf, some parsley to taste
After searing meat, pour in a little coconut oil to saute onion. The pour in contents of bowl you set aside and heat to a boil.  Remove from heat.  Put the browned roast into a large oven proof pan.  Pour the heated stuff over the and cover the pan with a lid or foil.  Bake at 300 for 3 hours. Pull out and use a fork to twist in the meat.  If done, it ought to practically fall apart and pull apart easily.  If the roast is not tender enough, put it back in the oven till it gets tender. 
Doubling the sauce I do often!


Nacho Layered Dip x1 night
1 16 ounce can refried beans
1/2 package taco seasoning
guacamole
8 ounce sour cream
4.5 ounce chopped black olives
2 tomatoes, chopped
1 onion, chopped
shredded cheese
Layer above in the exact order and serve with chips


Spinach artichoke dip x1 night
1 can (14 oz artichoke hearts, finely chopped
large package fresh spinach
3/4 cup grated parmesean cheese
3.4 cup mayo
1/2 cup mozerella cheese
1/2 tsp garlic
Preheat oven to 350 and mix all ingredients together in a 9 inch baking dish.  Bake 20 minutes until heated through and serve with fresh veggies.


Crock Pot Lamb Roast x 2 nights
Lamb (I used greenwise lamb leg sirloin....comes in a bag looking like a roast....), potatoes, carrots, onions, butter. Make a seasoning mix of the following: rosemary, oregano, mint leaves, cloves, and garlic.  Rub butter and spice mix into the meat and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
DELICIOUS!





Wednesday, September 7, 2016

My Jumbled Up Heart Fully Known and Loved

So I sit here again being forced to look at my sin, my expectations both good and false, my hopes, my reality, and bring them before You for You to shed light on all these things so that I may possess understanding in dealing with my own heart and grace in the present situation.  The verse that strikes me is 1 Peter 5:6-7: "Humble yourselves therefore under God's mighty hand so that He may lift you up in due time.  Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you."  Visually picturing this verse, I imagine myself as a fisherman taking a rod and placing all these many anxious thoughts on the hook and casting them out far from me to the Lord.  Thus, I must choose continually even as often as second by second to let my worries go and give them to the one that can handle them. 
Truth be told, all I see is a jumbled mess right now that wants to prove myself right as well as hold onto the old and not embrace the new. 
Lord, I want so desperately to handle this situation the way you teach us to in Ephesians 4:2-3 where it says to be humble and gentle and bearing with each other in love making EVERY effort to keep the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace.  And then in Ecclesiastes I am reminded that the end of the matter is better than the beginning and patience of spirit way better than haughtiness of spirit.  Lord, would you grant me these things?  Would you help me not put my trust in circumstances, knowledge, people, my illusion of control, but instead put my trust fully in you?  Would you help me believe that you are sovereign over all my circumstances and that nothing is out of your control? Would you help me rest?
Thank you that you fully know me, fully care for me, and fully love me right now as I am struggling.  Thank you that you are just as pleased with me when I struggle as you are in those rare moments when I think I am getting it right- for the Bible states clearly that even my best deeds are like filthy rags.  Nothing this side of heaven is void of sin's tainting.  Thank you that you promise to make my paths straight in Proverbs 3:6 and that in Isaiah 30:21 you remind me that you direct my steps as I take them.