Thursday, August 30, 2012

Captive Danger

Today I thought I would link-up with RED Writing Hood.

This week's prompt...

write about a face to face meeting which,

for better or for worse,

doesn’t go as planned
Step into my world: Rome is a place of power and iron and war. Ionez, a captive from wild Britannica, has found nothing she can't outsmart. Yet.
            Word Count: 450
© Pure Grace
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The hall was blacker than her room and it took a moment to let her eyes adjust. As she stepped forward, eager and daring, a black figure rose out of the gloom before her.

Startled, Ionez halted. A little snake coiled in her stomach, ready to spring. Before she could, a hand shot out a gripped her wrist. Turning her about in one smooth movement, the stranger pushed her back into Brixia’s room bodily. Fighting, Ionez jerked. The hand let go of her, careening her across the room.

Brixia scrambled from her cot and hastily lit a tallow candle. The pale yellow light filled the room and cast bizarre shadows upon the floor and walls.

Ionez rolled over, hands pressed against the cold stone floor. Cleopas stood in the doorway.

A small growl curled in the back of her throat. “What are you doing?” she demanded.

Cleopas moved farther into the small room, seeming to take it over with his immense size. “A question more suitably put from me. Marcellus thought you might try something tonight.”

“He sent you!” her voice rose with frenzied anger.

“And well sent.” He folded his arms, looking down on her like to a child. “Will you tell me what you thought you were going to do?”

Ionez leapt to her feet. “I need tell you nothing.” She moved to return to her room, but Cleopas intercepted her.

“He will hear of it.”

“From you!” she spat. “Do you think nothing of your own countrymen?”

“I don’t know? Do you?” His brows rose slightly as she glared at him. “What were you doing?”

Ionez folded her own arms, her eyes shooting daggers. “I was going to wake Aelia,” she said bluntly.

Surprise blanketed his face. “For what purpose?”

She whirled on him, accusing. “Do you never want to fight? Do you never want to show them they can’t master you, Cleopas? Why don’t you show Marcellus he has nothing over you?”

Cleopas’s answer was well measured and quiet. “Because I know it will do no good. If I want to get out of here, the last thing to do is fight.”

“What other method do you propose?” she scoffed.

“I can earn money to buy my freedom.”

“In thirty years, when you are crippled and broken and no longer care for life!”

“At least I’ll have life.”

“Better death than that life.”

“Very well. You are free to choose your path. But remember, after tonight, you will no long be under Brixia or my protection.”

“I don’t need your protection.”

“Let’s hope so. Good night, Ionez.”


Monday, August 27, 2012



The average Olympian (worldwide) trains 23 hours a week.
That’s about 4 hours a day, six days a week.
For 8 years.*
And it's all to receive five minutes of fame.

Think of that. All “the blood, the sweat, the tears,” the training, the discipline, the pain. All dedicated to earn a gold medal. These men and woman give their lives away for this sole purpose. Something momentary. Something that will go no further than this life.

How many Christians can say we spend this kind of time in training to advance Christ’s kingdom: spending time in His word, praying to Him, and meditating on His precepts? Yet for how much more we strive! How much more we will gain by it! We do not struggle for temporary gain, but an eternity of glory.

“Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” (Gal. 6:7-9)

The challenge:

Train like an Olympian.

Option 1: Pre-Olympian training. Spend 15 minutes a day praying, 15 min reading the Bible, 15 min memorizing, 15 min meditating.

Option 2: American Olympian (Americans average 12 hours per week in training). Spend 30 minutes a day praying, 30 min reading the Bible, 30 min memorizing, 30 min meditating.

Option 3: Worldwide Olympian. Spend 1 hour a day praying, 1 hour reading the Bible, 1 hour memorizing, 1 hour meditating.

The goal is to go from pre-training, to Olympic training, by building up strength, so that we can truly compete. Imagine entering the 1500 without having ever trained! We would be laughed out of the stadium. Yet that is what most of us Christians are doing today, and we wonder why we so rarely succeed.

We may have wonderful, noble goals to love the Lord with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, but fail to sow the seeds to the Spirit. We end up being frustrated Christians who fail miserably because we have never trained.

Imagine if someone I dearly love asked me to bench press 150 pounds. Do you think could I do it? No! And no matter how much they shouted at me to try harder, regardless of how much I love them, that still will not enable me to lift it. But, if they gave me training for a few years, developed those muscles, I could. I could lift more! That is the goal. Training is not so that you become legalistic, arrogant in all your knowledge, or overwhelmed and exhausted (though it may be tiring at times, just ask any Olympian), but to deepen the passion for Christ through the exercise of spiritual muscles.

Will you commit to training? Bring your whole being into this, zealous for the Lord!! For what we will gain is so much superior to the prize of an Olympian. I’m not big into guilt trips. It’s a serious commitment not to be entered lightly, but I do hope that you will consider the spiritual benefits to this. God will not be mocked. You WILL reap what you sow.

Come, join me!

If you want more information, or want to let me know you are joining the Olympic challenge, message me! I will be glad for the encouragement!

“And LET US NOT GROW WEARY of doing good, for in due season we WILL reap, IF WE DO NOT GIVE UP.”

(*Based on research done by my Daddy)


Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Meet the Incredibles....

I just realized I have never introduced my family to my blogger friends.

Let me do so.

Be prepared to be bombarded with a thousand pictures.

This is me. (before my hair was relaxed)

My name is Caitria Karis. I am a dreamer, a believer, a sister, a daughter, a reader, a writer, a thinker, a Christian.

I am 18 years old, the oldest of five children. Laughter is easy to me, tears unforgettable.

I am nothing extraordinary, but I hope to do something extraordinary to this world.

                                   This is my Mum.

She is the most amazing Mommy in the world. She teaches softly, loves greatly, expects much, forgives more, and is gentle and kind. I love learning from her. She is soooo Godly. She is not easily frustrated and thinks of others first. The conversations we have together are irreplaceable. She will always be my number one confidant.
                                                                                             This is my Daddy

My Daddy is my protector. He looks out for me in ways I cannot ever imagine. He loves me so much, he puts up with hearing all about everything that is happening in my life, no matter how foolish it may seem to a man. He offers incredible counsel and even more than that, teaches me how to use it. He spends time and effort working on my marathon of a book, just because he knows it is something in my heart, and is worth the investment.
This is Thadden Elias.

He is 17. And I just realized I have very few pictures of him on my computer and I don't know why. He is the funniest person I know. He is compassionate, strong, and gentlemanly. We love to ride our bikes out to the little stream down the road and sit and talk for hours, just about life. He is my fellow conspirator. I do things with him I would never do with any other person.  Proof ~ Don't ask, that is all....
This is Brisa Jane.


Brisa is 15, and the sweetest person I know. She never shouts, never calls names, never dreams of cruelty. If she offends you, she asks your forgiveness. She is quiet in crowds, never quite to assume, and brings out the best in people. But at home, there is a second side to her only our best friends know. Rambunctious, sportsy, lol hilarious, brilliant... Brisa is the one that brings this family to its knees, when we need to be ashamed, when we need to laugh, when we need to jump for joy, when we need to beg for forgiveness.
This is Abrienne Keirra.


How to describe Abrienne? THAT is the question. I don't know a single person like her. I never will. She is 13. Unashamed. Knockout humor. Stunning. Crazy-sister affection. Over-the-top reactions. Laughter until your ribs ache. Outgoing. Abrienne and I are the most alike. We plan and dream and scheme together. We build up castles in the air and then tear them down. We fight. We make up. We fight. We make up again. We LOVE life. We live it to the best of our abilities. Abrienne is the icing on top of the cake for our family. Without her, nothing would be the same. And a little bit of her will just get you going.
This is Keaton Adlai.
Our miracle baby. (See how even the sun puts a heart on his face!)
Keaton is so sweet, I can never begin to tell you how he blesses us all! His life started out in a hospital; he was 3 hours away from death when he was only 8 days old. If he had died, I don't know how I could have missed the way he brings love and happiness and cute adoration to this family. He is now 7, and totally addicted to the civil war. His favorite thing to do is dress up and pretend he is some sort of soldier. He will never say no to you if you ask him to do something for you. He kisses you when you are sad, hugs you when you hold open your arms, and loves to run around hooting like a wild Indian with you! This little boy is God's blessing to this family. And I am sooo thankful He decided to let us have him!
And now:
For the millions and millions of pictures.
Here am I, with my braces... I got them in May. 
My two sisters are so beautiful.



Here is Keaton, playing civil war!!!!

 My funny face.....

Mommy! (Why my sisters are SOOO pretty!)

Thadden at 11: this was his favorite way to read a book. Me and my black Golden Retriever, Treasure, at 12. I just realized the other day that I have 3 Golden Retrievers, and none of them are golden. :D

 Me and Keaton!!!

My brothers!!! *_*

Isn't she GORGEOUS!!!!

Thadden and I have a mutual language to make funny faces without saying a word. (the boy in the middle is no relation)

Me in choir!!!!
Little Keaton!! We used to call him Pook. Don't ask why. I don't know why.

Two random shots of Abrienne's 11th birthday (two years ago).

And I think I have made my point about Thadden and I............

Well, that is my family. I wouldn't trade them for anyone else in the world. And I don't just say it. I mean it too.


Saturday, August 18, 2012

casting down the gavel

There is one thing that really makes me frustrated.

It is the way people judge one another. I just don't get it.

Appearances are deceptive and often times fleeting. Just learn to accept that people are sinful and WILL make mistakes. And more than that, just love them for the way they are.

Every single person alive was created by God. And He LOVES them. And we have no right to find faults in those beloved by our Creator!!! Yes, understand that certain actions are wrong. Don't be ignorant. Don't ignore the implications of certain behavior patterns. Turn away from sin yourself. Don't follow bad company. BUT, among the Christian community, we CANNOT look at ONE ANOTHER and say, "she did this, and he did that, and so and so tried to do such and such". It is just not right.

"For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all." (Romans 11:32)

That is, in my opinion, one of the most powerful statements in the entire Bible. God designed us to fail, so that we would need Him ~ require Him!! ~ to have mercy on us and shed His grace upon us.

It goes on to say: "Oh, the depths of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgements, and his paths beyond tracing out! Who has known the mind of the Lord? Or who has been his counselor? Who has ever given to God that God should repay him? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever! Amen." (Romans 11:33-36)

And if we require so much of Him, how can we look at those around us and point out their flaws? How can we say we dislike them for the little things? How can we be annoyed by them? How can we judge them by what they have done?

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Does it matter? Does it really tell who they are? Is that what they want to be? Do they really love God?

Those are the questions we need to ask. Because in the end of things, God will not ask us whether we saw "so and so doing such and such". He will ask us if we loved them, and showed them His mercy and grace. He will want to know if we were a good friend, even when we were hurt or cast aside or unhappy or knotted deep down inside ourselves. He will want to know what WE did. Not them.

This world was not made for us. We cannot selfishly judge others.

So let's cast down the gavel. Let's look at our fellow men with eyes of compassion and forgiveness. Let's stop whispering behind hands about people who to their face we laugh and joke with! What hypocrisy!! This is a sin I find abundant in my Christian circles and it disgusts me. No more. NO MORE!!! We must capture this temptation of Satan's and bring it back under Christ's dominion.

Next time you are tempted to say you don't like somebody, stop a second. Evaluate WHY you are about to say it.

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Is it something God honoring? Is it something Jesus would approve of? And if it isn't, resist it.

"This is my commandment, that you love one another, that your joy may be full."

Thursday, August 16, 2012


Normal life. It is what makes us who we are. It is what brings the joy to our face and the tears to our eyes.

And it is the simple things shape us, create us, make us who we are.

I am so grateful for this day. It went by way too fast. And I have no pics to share.

But it was filled with laughter, love, smiles, good times, lots of shopping, ice cream, more laughter, and neat talks.

Perhaps, after my mammoth post last time, I should keep this short, sweet, and simple.

So here are a few really beautiful pictures to end a beautiful day and start a beautiful night.

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I really love roses.

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How stunning is this!!! Wish I could take credit for taking a pic like this!!!

Ok, that is all for now.

Have a great evening, darlings!

<3 <3

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

From the land of Unknown

Life spirals out of control sometimes. It seems one moment, I drag each day out of the depths, trying to create some sort of excitement that will fill my hours. Then the next, I can't catch up, no matter how frantically I run around. I don't think the analogy of a chicken with its head cut off fits. Perhaps a cow? Or an elephant? That might suit better.

Anyway, I have had one of those elephant with its head cut off weeks. Between running my pups to the vet, work, weddings, birthdays, and day to day life, I seem to have found exactly no time for blogging. I am glad to be back.

Silver and Tizona are both growing at a rate which astonishes me.

Silver is very playful, but she LOVES to come sit in my lap.

Tizona is a little doll. I love her sooooo much!

 I had a lot of fun fiddling with the camera yesterday. I was trying out the scope and the focus.

Friday we had tons of fun hanging out with this beautiful girl. She's the one with LONG blonde hair.
AND ~ we straightened my hair!!! The first time it has been straightened that it actually looked good!!!! (We were color coordinated on purpose.)

Thursday, the 9th, was my sister Brisa's 15th birthday. (She's the one with brown hair.) We spent all day having a Lord of the Rings marathon. Well, Abrienne (curly blonde hair), did. We (Brisa and I) ended up going up stairs to my room in the middle of the second one and working on our book together. She was done watching movies, and since it was her birthday, I asked what she wanted to do. And that was it. She is such a special, wonderful, IRREPLACEABLE sister.

Saturday were the weddings of not one, but two different friends of mine!!! Actually, a third friend of mine was married that day too, but she lives in Oregon... :(

My friend Stephanie's wedding had a brilliant wedding idea that I would so love to do at my wedding. They bought a whole bunch of really cool old crystal cups and had root beer floats (Mmmm, my favorite soda). And you got to take home the cup. So you will always remember the wedding. I LOVE that idea! Here is the cup I got to take home. Isn't it pretty! I saw it from a distance and knew, THAT cup was MINE. LOL!

And that evening I had a surprise birthday party to go to as well! It was a fantastic day and I loved every bit of it!!!! My friend Alli was so surprised her jaw was dropped open forever!!

At the birthday party, we played volleyball. That was the greatest. Especially since we played... in the dark.

And Friday, I relaxed my hair again!!!! It is sooo wonderful (that's how we were able to straighten it). Here are some pics of the new due!!!

It is more of a gentle wave now instead of a kinky curl.

I like it a lot.

Who wants to guess how I took this picture?

Anyway, my life has only kind of slowed down. I have to go to work today. Tomorrow is the first day of puppy training! I am on my way to being a certified dog trainer!!!!!!!!!! I have always loved animals, since I was the very littlest I could be (duh). And I am soooo glad God has enabled them to be a part of my life forever (especially since I have finally resolved with myself that I cannot own a farm... sigh...)

The rest of my family has started school this week. It is so strange watching them, knowing that for 13 years I followed the same course... (Yes, 13, not 12... I was unlucky. Or lucky, depending on how you look at it, lol!) Anyway, they've been going at it.

Oh, one more thing I did this last week was finish a drawing I have been working on!!!

Here's the pic of it!

Well, I had better go get me some lunch!!!! I want to work on my book today.

Oh no... can't do that yet.

I must respond VERY tardily to my newest blog award....

Once again, it was from frabjous Cait and Mime.

As Mime said, it IS getting to be quite funny and frequent how these awards are going around.

Well, to be brief, this one works in multiples of five.

The Rules

1. If tagged you must tag five others, giving each a quick sentence as to why you ALWAYS read their posts, and tell them that you've tagged them.

2. If tagged you must post your five favorite words. I know, I know, most people do facts, but facts are hard to think of so...

3. If and only if you want to/can be bothered to/have time to you can put up five questions for the people you've tagged. If and only if you want to/can be bothered to/have time to you can ANSWER the five questions your tagger set. If you want to answer questions but your tagger left none, answer your own questions :)

The five questions sent by Cait and Mime are as follows:

1. What was the first post you ever blogged about?
2. Have you ever walked into a glass door? (Be honest.)
3. If you could do anything you wanted (expense aside) what would you do?
4. Lime green or fluoro pink?
5. If you could be bald or have webbed feet, which one would you choose?

Ok, for those tagged:

Jacey because she is striving to do things for the glory of God!!! She has an adorable baby, and does so many cute crafts!

Rachel... I LOVE HER SO MUCH! She makes me laugh and cry with all her posts. She is just the greatest.

Mary: I hesitate to tag her because she has been tagged so much. That is how awesome she is. I read her entire book and it is incredible!!! She is so smart and so funny. And she was my first writing friend.

Jonnah just is the sweetest girl on the planet. She loves to write about the simple things that happen, and somehow, she makes them seem amazing!!!!

Yes, that is only four people. I realize that.

Ok, I have to go... I mean leave... So I will complete this post when I get back home.

Lame, but I can't help it.

So just so you all know, this here.... is a pause.

And now I am back. Ha! And you all have no idea how many hours went in between, lol!!!

And whats more lover-loverly is I don't have to rush anymore, so after I complete the award section, I can tell you about some more of my adventures this week!

Ok: next section.

This is the reason I like this blog award more than any other that I have gotten... BECAUSE I GET TO TELL YOU ALL MY FIVE FAVORITE WORDS!!!!!!

I love words. No, I live on words.

So, to list my five favorites:

  1. Anomalous
  2. Exhilarated
  3. Machinate
  4. Bravado
  5. Inextricable

A couple of those I like because they are such so different and amazing. And others I love because of the meanings and how they sound in sentences. I know, I know... Most people put words like... ice cream, dogs, sleep, fun, chocolate, food, coffee, etc........ But not me. Nope. Not me.

And now to answer Cait and Mime's questions.

1. What was the first post you ever blogged about?
My first blog post... was an introduction about me!!! I think it was pretty thorough too!

2. Have you ever walked into a glass door? (Be honest.)
Actually.... yes. In fact, I ran into it. No more said.

3. If you could do anything you wanted (expense aside) what would you do?
Travel the world; get married in a meadow, in front of a green forest (that had nice neat trees, no underbrush :P), with an ambling silver creek nearby that somewhere along the way created a stunning waterfall, and lots of flowers everywhere; write over a hundred books; never stop doing anything I wanted (expense aside); give God the glory for everything I was able to do; oh wait, was I only supposed to put one thing? You should have told me!

4. Lime green or fluoro pink?
Definitely lime green. I don't hate pink. But I like green better.

5. If you could be bald or have webbed feet, which one would you choose?
Oh, so the webbed feet! Because then I could swim in the Olympics and would probably win too! And it would just be so much fun. Besides, people don't stare at your feet. They would so stare at a girl with a bald head.
Ok, and questions for my tagged friends:
1: If you could do only one more thing before you died, what would it be?
2: What is your favorite place in the world?
3: Can you breath with your tongue sticking out?
4: Now put your tongue back in. Ice cream or cheese cake?
5: What was your first memory?

And now, feel free to tag anyone girls!!!! And have fun!

We have finally gotten some rain! Hurrah!!! Now everything is muddy. Very muddy. But I just thank God for the rain. We needed it so badly.

I have been reading a lot of books lately. A friend of mine lent me Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot a while back and I have GREATLY enjoyed reading it. And I just finished Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire, a book about prayer. It will change your life. Mommy gave me Not Even A Hint by Joshua Harris last night. I have read the first few chapter already. It's intense. I have read several Joshua Harris books before, and they are always really good. I would recommend them all. Just be forewarned. He does not pretend to scoot around the issues. He addresses them straight on. No question.

I've been reading in 1 Timothy this weekend and of course, the specific verse that always pops out to me right now (because I am young), is "Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity." It is so encouraging and uplifting!!! We all need those verses. :D

Well, I think this is insanely long and so I will close for now. My apologies to all of you. I did not mean to lie when I said I would post on Wednesday of last week... My life just kind of interfered. So forgive me? And I will try (try) to stay on top of it again. And also my apologies for not commenting on all recent posts, for the same reason. Again, I will try to go back through and read them all! I love looking through them so much!!!

Enjoy your evenings, loverly friends!!