Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Wednesday March 11 Good News From Mary

China: Is Bible Smuggling Obsolete?

Afterwards it would be called the “Night of a Million Miracles.” It was June 18, 1981, and Bibles were scarce in communist China. The borders were tightly closed to Christian literature, and believers risked arrest and torture simply to meet together in their homes. In spite of the persecution, a network of house churches was springing up across the country, creating a tremendous need for Bibles.

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Why a Large Tax Refund is Bad for Your Finances

Scripture instructs Christians to pay their taxes faithfully. "If you owe taxes, pay taxes" Romans 13:7. We're also to pay our taxes respectfully, because "the authorities"—whose salaries are paid by tax revenue—"are God's servants, who give their full time to governing" Romans 13:6).

But there is no biblical requirement to pay more than we owe. Yet every year, millions of Americans do just that, by setting their income-tax withholding too high.

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The Adoption Option: One Mom's Decision to Give Up Her Baby

(Note from Mary: On February 19 I posted a story about one young man's feelings and thoughts about his adoption. This article is his birth mother's story)

The room is dark and quiet, foreboding in a way. The curtains are drawn. I wanted to be alone, to think and to mourn. I didn’t want friends visiting or calling me. Though they meant well and said kind things and brought me simple gifts, for now I just wanted to be alone.

For the last 9 months it’s just been you and me. Us. I was not ever alone. No one really understood how much that time meant to me. I would often stay at home, my feet resting on the small footstool a friend had made for me, listening to music, rocking in my chair, hoping I would always remember the feelings, the thoughts, the time I got to spend with you.

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The Frugal Family Guide

Last summer I was at my parents' cabin in rural Virginia and I noticed a dead mouse in a rusty old trap. I tossed it in the trash. Later that day I told my dad about the mouse, and he asked, "Where's the trap?" I told him it looked as though it were falling apart, and I'd thrown it out with the mouse still attached. He looked at me as if I'd punched him in the face. My mom chimed in: "We've had that trap since we got married!" I wasn't sure she was joking, and they got married almost 50 years ago. I sheepishly dug it out of the garbage and loaded it up with cheese again. Now it's become one of those perennial things they bring up every time I go home: "Remember when Steve threw out the mousetrap, mouse and all!?" This is followed by shuddering and head shaking, as they silently wonder where it all went wrong.

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New iPod Shuffle -- Even Smaller

Apparently the tiny iPod Shuffle wasn't tiny enough. On Wednesday, Apple unveiled a 4GB Shuffle that's half the size of its predecessor.

The new device is smaller than a AA battery yet holds up to 1,000 songs, Apple said. The preshrunk Shuffle also adds a new VoiceOver feature that can recite song titles, artists, and playlist names, as well as provide status information, such as battery life. Speaking of which, Apple said the gadget's battery life clocks in at 10 hours.

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