Thursday, April 30, 2009

Make It Easy....

As I was driving down the boulevard yesterday evening returning home from a grocery run, I rolled up behind a car with a male driver and obviously another person in the front seat.
I couldn't see the head of that passenger on the right side, but I knew he or she was there, because the man was conversing non-stop with the passenger. As we sat at the loooong stop-light, I could see the man getting more and more animated and he seemed to be getting incensed. Whoever was the recipient of his ranting must not have gotten too many words in between his punctuated head jerking and building anger. It was painful to watch, because the more I witnessed of this 2 minute "exchange", the more I became convinced that the person in the passenger side must be a child. They never moved from their position for me to see even a hair on their head or a profile, a hand, anything. Finally as the man finished his "lecture" or whatever was going on, I saw his left arm come across the gap between the two front seats, and deliver a fist-punch to either the arm or face of the passenger. {I hope the arm!!. :-( .... }

I almost started weeping in the car, but the light was green, and he was moving on, and so I had to also. I shook my head in sadness, disgust, and shame, as a fellow parent, that so many times we all must not have handled situations with our children well, responding in angry words. In the heat of the moment, some even resorting to violence and abuse.

Did the child in the front seat do something terrible, talk back, show dishonor, disrespect the man's rules, get in trouble at school, steal from a store??? Did he "miss the mark" when it was a time he should have chosen differently?

Why did I witness that scene? Truly I wished I hadn't....but I did. I don't know if anyone else around that vehicle was even aware of what was going on, but this mama was, and it made me pause to think as I continued home.

I thank God that Kurt and I know the Lord our God. I thank God that we know we are broken and can only miss the mark as parents every day in every way, were it not for our Savior's grace to constantly renew us to do His will and His ways. I thank God that we had godly parents who even in their own brokenness still showed us to pursue God with all our might, and practice confession and experience forgiveness from our own merciful Father. I thank God that we know that we can be MORE than we could be, in the strength of Christ.....AND I thank God for beautiful children who have been merciful and gracious to their own parents, as we stumbled and fumbled in our walk to pursue godly parenting.

I thank God for all of this, and I say a prayer for that child and driver in the car in front of me yesterday, and for all home situations where abuse may be taking place.

God, Father...protect your little ones. Help us as parents, to pursue being honorable people, to make it easier for our children to honor us, as you have commanded them to do.
Lord, may we never be people that make it difficult and trying for our children to obey, for in this, we become enablers for them to stumble, and fall short of their efforts to obey YOU.

In my bible, there is a small piece of paper, that has been there so many years that I cannot even say how long ago I wrote it. I know my children were toddlers, because I do remember it was a time when we were living in our previous home. I placed it within those very pages for a reminder every time I was reading God's Word and seeking His message and counsel. It simply states:


I believe that this probably came from a Focus On The Family daily radio program, as I was a loyal and dedicated listener in those days. :-) Today I believe that this still applies as we continue to raise and "rear" our older children in the nurture and admonition of our Lord.
The more honorable we are as parents.... the easier it will be for our children to respect and love us, listen to what we are now saying from the sidelines, and eventually be our very good friends, as they leave home and naturally phase out of the "parent>child" relationship.

I hope this has made you stop and think today. Whether you are young parents with small ones, seasoned parents with teens, or empty-nesters with now adult children, possibly on the verge of "grandparenting years." Are you an honorable parent? Do you model and display the same grace and mercy to your children when they "miss the mark" as your heavenly Father does for you when you fall short?

Trust in the Lord. Seek daily, afresh every morning to be that honorable parent in the strength of Jesus Christ who makes it all possible.

Make it E A S Y for your kids to be good!!

Blessings and Success!

****a very popular song, directed more to dads, but still the message for all of us is..
the days are short, time is flying, a blink of the eye, and they are gone...
Be honorable in your calling of Parenting, Do it as unto the Lord.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Are you Game...or Lame? :-)

Oh my goodness. I never....!

Is anybody tempted to try this???

I have to say, Life is short!

Would it be sin to mess up a Krispy Kreme doughnut with a hamburger?

Only Paula Deen.....

Have a great day in the Lord. (We ARE called to be a "peculiar" people!)

Blessings and Fun Days.


Monday, April 27, 2009

The Dreaded Testing Is Upon Us!!!!....

It's that TIME of year again!
Spring always means that Annual Testing is approaching. For homeschoolers this is a necessary but not always desired part of schooling at home. The DREADED HOUR is upon us! We must buck up, be strong, confront it and conquer!!!

My kids have NEVER liked the testing. I must admit neither have I! Not because it drains any supply from my brain, or challenges me to finish umpty-ump questions in a short amount of time! It's just the strain of administering the tests, encouraging "Just do your best", and walking away.

The purposes of these tests is not so much to let us see what our kids know. As parents who have our kids at home every day, we can pretty much discern that information by conversations and questions on a daily basis. The best reasoning for testing (besides that it is a mandatory requirement in NC) is that it allows us to see what our kids do NOT know, or where their weaknesses are. That is where we know we will need to shore up, fill in the cracks, and build their strengths.

As I contemplated all of this last week, I realized that this is a pretty true picture of why God allows us to be tested in our spiritual walks. Does HE know how strong we are? Yes! Does HE know where our weaknesses are? Yes!

How about from our end of the picture? Do we know our strengths? More than likely, and probably we exaggerate them in our own assessment. Do we know our weaknesses? I would say we naturally depress our weaknesses, and do not look at them, nor do we study them. We do not pursue ways to stretch ourselves for growth in those areas. So what does our loving Father do?....... He helps us out. :-)

God does not bring hardships, trials, or suffering our way to punish us, nor does He receive delight in seeing us pay for our shortcomings. He is our Abba! He loves us. He delights in bringing us closer to Himself, and seeing us grow and rely on Him for the knowledge and strength we need. He knows us inside and out.

"O LORD, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O LORD." (Psalms 139:1-4)

Testings are the inevitable times in our lives, as children of a caring and concerned God, where He is preparing us for what is ahead. He is laying the foundation for continued growth and the stretching times that will most certainly come as we walk this earth.

So, today I am reminded to be thankful even in the midst of testing. It is a sign that God is just continually checking me out, having me do inventory on my strengths and weaknesses, so that I can take care of the breaches in my walls of defense against the enemy. It is a GOOD thing.

Our God is faithful. He will take care of us. He will not allow us to be tested beyond what we are capable of handling, just as I would never have tested my 2nd grader with 12th grade level materials.

"So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall! No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it." (I Corinthians 10: 12,13)

And now, I must go and get ready to TEST! I don't like making my boys do it, but I know it is for their best, and it is required. I must submit to the authorities over me.

May we know today that God loves us, even as He loved Job, and though some of our trials and testings seem long and hard to endure, in the end, all will be for our good, God's BEST for us. So let us change our view from this end of the picture!

Are you being tested? Thank God that He is with you. He will be your loving and caring administrator as you work through the questions and challenges you face today. He will help you find your weak spots and grow you to face and CONQUER next time this test time rolls around.

"Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting>" (Psalm 139: 23-24)



Saturday, April 25, 2009


Honorable - see examples below. :-)

The good-willed men in my family, worthy of my admiration and respect and love.

Men full of compassion, who laugh and love and cry.
Men who will face eternity, who aren't afraid to die.
Men who will fight for freedom and honor once again
God just needs a few good men.....

What this dying world could use is a willing Man of God
Who dares to go against the grain and works without applause;
A man who'll raise the shield of Faith, protecting what is pure;
Whose love is tough and gentle; a man whose word is sure.

God doesn't need an Orator who knows what just to say;
He doesn't need authorities to reason Him away;
He doesn't need an army to guarantee a win;
He just needs a Few Good Men.

Men full of Compassion, who Laugh and Love and Cry-
Men who'll face Eternity and aren't afraid to die-
Men who'll fight for Freedom and Honor once again-
He just needs a Few Good Men.

He calls the broken derelict whose life has been renewed;
He calls the one who has the strength to stand up for the Truth.
Enlistment lines are open and He wants you to come in-
He just needs a Few Good Men.

Men full of Compassion, who Laugh and Love and Cry-
Men who'll face Eternity and aren't afraid to die-
Men who'll fight for Freedom and Honor once again-
He just needs a Few Good Men.

Thanking God for the Good Men in my Life,

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Big 18!

" But you belong to God, my dear children. You have already won a victory over those people, because the Spirit who lives in you is greater than the spirit who lives in the world...All who confess that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love." (I John 4: 4,15,16)

Jonny is 18 today!

My 3rd born, 2nd son:

God dedicated
sports lovin'
friend committed
big brother
little brother
Lord serving
worship team
weight lifting
supplement faithful
biggest loser (weight, that is!!!)
protein eatin'
Chuck Norris fan
Dark Knight fan
Rocky/Rambo fan
knife lovin'
gun supporting
ooo-rah Marines loyal
awesome.... son....

Happy Birthday, Jonny. We respect and love you. You are an honorable young man.
Have a Super Birthday.

God's Blessings On You, Jonny.


Thursday, April 23, 2009

YOU Raise Me Up...

When I am down and, oh my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then, I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

There is no life - no life without its hunger;
Each restless heart beats so imperfectly;
But when you come and I am filled with wonder,
Sometimes, I think I glimpse eternity.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up, to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong, when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up: To more than I can be.

This is one of my favorite songs. It speaks of a reality that comes with an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ my Savior. I am grateful for people who are gifted to write words that hold meaning, and musicians who are gifted to set those words to melody. Together they create songs that can express what our hearts feel, but sometimes our own minds cannot find the words to say it well...

I have used this song before in one of my posts, but today it just fits my entry, so I will use it again... just because! :-)

I won't ask "Have you ever...?" because I know everybody has. We have all had those times where we were down, burdened in our heart about something, so weary from the energies spent to stay upbeat and positive. We feel like throwing in the towel, we feel like giving in, we feel defeated by our very own emotions repeatedly beating us up, pushing us back down, saying "You'll NEVER win...what you wish for will NEVER arrive, life will NEVER be what you long for."

And then, when we step away, go and sit in the silence, far from the madding crowd of those inner voices, there is THE ONE who comes, and sits with us, and HIS words begin to soothe us. HE knows all that we fight inside ourselves. HE knows all of the self-imposed words that come from our own fears, and doubts, and disappointments. HE comforts us like no other. HIS words are salve to the wounds and scars left by life and all its battles.

It is the times spent with our Lord that give us the renewed energy to get back up and go back out, revived once again with a passion to say, I will NEVER, EVER give in. We realize afresh that it is HE that lifts us up. It is HE that raises us above the turmoil of life's daily toils, and beyond earshot of those inner voices trying to pull us down. His voice rings true in our spirits and our souls are full of joy and worship and gratitude for Him, for all that He means to us, yes?

The best line of this song is the truth of this statement.

I am strong when I am on HIS shoulders.
HE raises me up to more than I can be.

In Christ I stand. I am not beaten down.

In Christ I am given the strength and power to be MORE than I could possibly be in this life on my own. It is because of my Savior and Comforter that I am anything good and worthy today. He sets me in that place. And once again I find myself on His shoulders, and it is exhilarating!!

This is life in Christ and with Christ. Yes, life is hard; sometimes it is downright depressing.
But there is more... much more to life than what we see with our eyes, what we hear with our ears, what we perceive from our own inner voices.

There is no life without its desires, wishes, or hungers. Our hearts do beat restlessly for changes and victories in our earthly race.

Today...make time. Get away. Be still in the quiet places you can find. Sit with your Lord and be filled again with wonder at His holy compassion for you, His presence that moves you to reset your eyes on eternity, not the here and now.

Jesus Christ, your best comforter in this age, and the ages to come, will give you all you need and more. He will raise you up today. You will be more than you could have been without HIM.

Blessings and Encouragement and a Hug!


Wednesday, April 22, 2009


"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength." (Philippians 4:6-7, 12-13)

GOD, Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Amen.

The familiar words above are better known as the "Serenity Prayer." It is often prayed by those who are experiencing troubles, feeling unrest in their circumstances, or living in events that are threatening the peaceful existence of their day to day lives.

There are many days and years and seasons in our walks here on earth that we will have to go through times of stress, times of fear, times of uncertainty, times of recovery. Along with the good and happy moments of life, there must also fall a little rain...sometimes these showers may become storms.

Paul speaks of what he has learned throughout the ups and downs, even turbulent days in his lifetime, sometimes facing death. At the time he penned the words in his letter to the Philippians, he was sitting in a Roman prison waiting to find out whether he would be executed.
He had learned the secret to contentment. He had found that the only way to travel on his journey was to turn everything over to the pray about EVERYTHING.

Everything that Paul had faced in his life up to this point in time had been a learning experience. He probably never walked away from any moment without having conversed with the Lord about what was going on in his heart and mind. As a result, he felt the peace of that companionship. His thoughts and heart were quiet and at rest..not troubled, as he walked away having put his trust fully in the One whose comfort now cloaked him.

Paul had most likely prayed the words of the Serenity Prayer long before they were written down and published. There were things in his life he could not, would not be able to change.
"So to keep me from becoming proud, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger from Satan to torment me and keep me from becoming proud. Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me." (II Cor. 2:7-9)

There were times of fear, danger, trials, uncertainty, arrest...

"I know I sound like a madman, but I have served him far more! I have worked harder, been put in prison more often, been whipped times without number, and faced death again and again. 24 Five different times the Jewish leaders gave me thirty-nine lashes. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked. Once I spent a whole night and a day adrift at sea. 26 I have traveled on many long journeys. I have faced danger from rivers and from robbers. I have faced danger from my own people, the Jews, as well as from the Gentiles. I have faced danger in the cities, in the deserts, and on the seas. And I have faced danger from men who claim to be believers but are not.[c] 27 I have worked hard and long, enduring many sleepless nights. I have been hungry and thirsty and have often gone without food. I have shivered in the cold, without enough clothing to keep me warm." (II Cor. 11: 23-27)

Who of us today could speak of such trials and horrible circumstances in our lives such as this man faced constantly throughout his ministry? It puts us to shame, does it not, for the small things we may complain or whine about in our growth as Christians.

If this man could write and encourage us today to be filled with joy, to trust in our Lord and to allow God's peace to transcend over us in the midst of our trying and frustrating days, we have no excuse not to listen and follow suit.

Life is a journey. We are daily being changed and transformed into the child God wants us to become, the man or woman of God that He has foreseen from before we were born.
There will be many days we will fall short, we will stumble, we will fail to do all that we know we should. In this whole process of recovery from our past failures, God wants us to learn from our mistakes, to turn to HIM, and to find serenity in the midst, as we accept our lives as they are.

Life consists of wonderful days and joyful moments, full of smiles...and life can be difficult and trying with moments of trials and unpredictability, full of tears. These are the days of our lives, ordained by our Heavenly Father. We must become increasingly aware of the things we can NOT change in our lives, just as Paul did.
We must be constantly discerning of the things we CAN change, and always on our knees asking our divinely appointed helper, the Holy Spirit, for the wisdom to know the difference.

What will I do with these words of encouragement that this man of wisdom and experience spoke to his fellow brothers and sisters in Christ? What will you do with them?

Pray every day for God's peace in your current circumstances.
Ask the Father for courage to change the things that you can do something about.
Lean on Him for inner peace and acceptance of the things that you can not change.
Look to God in His Word for wisdom, such as we read today, to know the difference.

This is our Father's desire for us. That in all things He might be the ONE to whom we turn to and get our directions and our comfort, and the peace that accompanies that submitted position in our hearts.

Like Paul, might we be able to say, "I have learned the secret of contentment in every situation..." (Phil. 4:13)

Serenity, Courage, and Wisdom!


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

PAID IN FULL.....Be Ye Glad!

"So be truly glad....For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver.It was the precious blood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God. God chose him as your ransom long before the world began, but he has now revealed him to you in these last days." (I Peter 1: 6,18-20)

Oh, be ye glad
Oh, be ye glad
Every debt that you ever had
Has been paid up in full by the grace of the Lord
Be ye glad, be ye glad, be ye glad.

What a wonderful thought it is to imagine what it would be like for someone to get on the World Nightly News and proclaim that every debt of every person and family in the world was paid up in full. What a noise and celebration would be heard around the world as people revelled in their freedom from the burden and bondage of paying back what they owed to institutions for services and materials rendered to them.

Of course this is an imagined thought, and not reality. What we owe to others must be paid back. If not, there are consequences and penalties.

In our eternal existence, from the beginning of time, in the Garden of Eden, by the hand of Adam and Eve, we have incurred a debt. We carry upon ourselves the bondage of that first act of sin. Our very souls are in debt to a Holy and Just Creator and God. One who designed and made us for His pleasure, and yet we turned away and sought out own pleasures, creating the debt and penalty of death, a separation from the One who loves us.

Today, those of us who know in our hearts the weight of that debt, and have heard the Good News from God's Word that we have One who has acted on our behalf, and cleared our account, stand in awe and amazement. Our debt is removed....marked Paid In Full! This is by no means a thought of the imagination. It is the truth. We only have to accept it as such, and believe. This is the wonder of a love so deep that God's Son would leave His home, come to our earth, die the death required, simply because He loved us so much, and obeyed His Father.

As I think of the earthly debts we have for our homes, or cars, or other such items that have required more than we had to give at the time, and the payments we incur and have to bear over years to repay the source, I know that the amount of joy and gratitude we would feel if someone stepped up and erased these debts would be incredible.

I think of what the Lord has done for us at Calvary. Are we incredulous at the sacrifice and depth of love it required for His death to wipe away our sin debt before God? Do we pause and ponder what our eternity would be like had He not been willing to do so?

Does your heart revel in the debt-free status it now holds because of your Savior? Then thank Him today. You owe nothing as you stand before God with Christ by your side declaring you free indeed.
God's grace is sufficient.

Be ye glad!


Monday, April 20, 2009

Wise choices, God's choices, Watching Over You..

God gives HIS best to those who leave the choice up to Him. :-)

Kurt has made his decision. As of Saturday morning, he was offered another option in his job direction as he was leaving the night shifts behind and following the clear cut path God was placing before him.

As we prayed and he made some phone calls to try and get a better perspective on the new choice, we leaned in once again, very closely to our Lord. It was God's voice we wanted to hear. It was God's confirmation we wanted to know. It was God's choosing we wanted Kurt to pick up.

There are times in life where our paths sometimes have an unexpected little fork off to one side or another, or perhaps a crossroad pops up, and we are stopped short in our tracks. When the choices of life suddenly become more than just the obvious of the Lord, "Walk This Way..." we can view it in two ways.

It can be an obstacle, a disturbance... something that ruffles the calm and unobstructed routine that we are accustomed to, day in and day out, the expected way our days will go.
It can be an opportunity, an excitement.. something that presents the possibility of new horizons, new assignments, God-planned changes in our settled routines!

How will you view the choices put before you this week? As a Pilgrim walking through your journey on this earth, when you are confronted with an unexpected, possibly unwanted choice on your pathway, What will be your first thought? Where will you turn, Whom will you ask, as you seek to make your decision?

When we truly do NOT know what the best choice is, we are blessed beyond our knowing to have One who knows it all. He has paved our paths, He has placed the choices, He has planned the perfect route, and He is there to see it done. He walks with us every step of the way. He stands beside us in this journey, waiting... to read our thoughts, to see us turn to look at Him, to hear us ask Him, "Lord, Father...which way? YOU choose."

" My child, listen to what I say, and treasure my commands. Tune your ears to wisdom, and concentrate on understanding. Cry out for insight, and ask for understanding. Search for them as you would for silver; seek them like hidden treasures. Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord, and you will gain knowledge of God. For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding. He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest. He is a shield to those who walk with integrity. He guards the paths of the just and protects those who are faithful to him. Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair, and you will find the right way to go. For wisdom will enter your heart, and knowledge will fill you with joy. Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe."
(Prov. 2: 1-11)

The promises of our Lord to His children as they are away from the Homeland, pilgrims walking the paths of another land... are precious. They are life giving. They are instructional. They are directional. They are priceless!

Remember this day that God is the God of your creation, your youth, your adulthood, your entire life! He is walking with you every step of that process, that lifelong journey as it unfolds day after day, presenting new and unexpected forks and crossroads.

How will YOU view these choices put before you? As Obstacles....or Opportunities? To whom do you turn to and trust with no doubts, fully confident of the answer you will receive? Whom do you find understanding from?

Trust in the LORD with all your heart...NO DOUBTS!... Lean not on your own understanding... fearful of what you know you cannot see...In all your ways, recognize Him in the planning...give Him first and final say...and He will direct you and crown your choice with success. (a promise from Prov. 3:5-6)

THIS is God's promise to us. Believe it. Claim it. LIVE IT!

Our God is an awesome God. He will never disappoint those who leave the choice to Him. Lean on His everlasting arms.



Sunday, April 19, 2009


"If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on my holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the LORD's holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way, and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, then you will find your joy in the LORD, and I will cause you to ride on the heights of the land, and to feast on the inheritance of your father Jacob. The mouth of the LORD has spoken." (Isaiah 58:13-14)

"I gave them my decrees and made known to them my laws, for the man who obeys them will live by them. Also I gave them my Sabbaths as a sign between us, so they would know that I the LORD made them holy." (Ezekial 20:11-12)

" There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from His." (Hebrews 4:9-10)

Today is Sunday. It is the Sabbath for Christians. It is our day of worshipping our God.

Six days we have had to do our work, to go our own way, to be about doing what our Lord has called us to do as we live on this earth. Our daily offering is to give ourselves to Him, and whatever we find to do in those 6 days to do it with all our might as unto HIM.

But today....Sunday... this the Sabbath. It is set aside from the other six days. The Lord our God has asked this one day to be His, totally His. We were not made for the Sabbath. The Sabbath was made for US.

I read His words today. I challenge myself and my readers to think as we make choices today. Will we present this day differently to the Lord as we commit our thoughts and actions to Him? Will we consider if what we are doing is:

An act of our own choice and pleasure that we are offering up to Him?


An act of God's choice and command for HIS pleasure to honor and obey Him?

Yes...there is a difference... in the heart, in the attitude, and in the action that comes forth from it.

Sunday is a day of rest and worship. It is God's sign to us. We are to be holy, set aside, "peculiar." This day is our weekly reminder. It is our day of preparation for the 6 days to follow.

Would you like to find " JOY in the Lord....ride on the heights of the land..." knowing in your heart the good pleasure of the One who has made you?

Worship the Lord your God today. Recharge! Feel His delight in the sanctuary of HIS people.


Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Ear of God

"The goal of prayer is the ear of God, a goal that can only be reached by patient and continued and continuous waiting upon Him, pouring out our heart to Him and permitting Him to speak to us. Only by so doing can we expect to know Him, and as we come to know Him better we shall spend more time in His presence and find that presence a constant and ever-increasing delight." (E. M. Bounds)

Prayer is our pipeline to the Lord. It is this simple and easy access we have with our Heavenly Father to talk to Him at any time and any place that is the most gracious and loving gift He could hand over to us. We do not do it enough!

Our highest goal in this life would be what Brother Lawrence has stated:

" think on God often, by day, by night, in your business, and even in your diversions. He is always near you and with you; leave Him not alone! You would think it rude to leave a friend alone who came to visit you; why, then, must God be neglected? Do not, then, forget Him, but think on Him often, adore Him continually, live and die with Him; this is the glorious employment of a Christian. In a word, this is our profession; if we do not know it, we must learn it. " (The Practice of the Presence of God)

We do not live by a religion in which God is a deity to whom we strive to please by works and rote prayers, but we live our lives in a relationship with a God who is our sovereign and caring Father... who loves us intensely. He seeks our communion and fellowship and devotion with Him daily, in the moments and in the steps of each hour. He desires for us to talk to Him.

Do not forget HIM! Yes, this is our job, our "profession".
Pray on your knees. Pray in your set times. BUT
Pray.....TALK.... to your Father all day, as you sit, as you walk, as you drive, as you work.... He waits.

Today Kurt and I pray. We are talking to our Father for wisdom and understanding and insight.
Kurt has had two cards placed on the table before him in his new job situation. As I mentioned before in earlier posts, God has always just placed the one. It was clear what way God wanted Kurt to walk in.

We look to HIM for His way and His path. We seek His ear, we pour out our hearts to Him, and wait....wait for Him to do His good will and pleasure in our lives. This we desire.

Get to know your God through talking to Him. He waits. Pray....


Friday, April 17, 2009

Missing The Mark

"For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God..." (Romans 3:23)

This week, Justin, my son training to become a Marine on Parris Island, has been in the phase called "Firing Week". It is what they prepared for all of last week in learning positions and stances for firing their M-16. This week they did the real thing. Today is Qualifying. They will be firing at the targets on the range, and being scored on their marksmanship.

In the Marine Corp, all soldiers are riflemen. They all must shoot and shoot WELL. They must not miss the mark. It is vital. They will always be watching the backs of their fellow Marines.

The Greek word for sin, hamartia, means "missing the mark."

This is what Paul spoke of when he said "all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."

In the week following Easter and all of the remembrance of what that crucifixion and resurrection mean for us, I cannot help but be grateful to Christ for the price He paid for me.

My efforts and attempts to hit bulls eye on the target of God's requirements of holiness for me will never, ever be enough. I will never be able to do enough good and righteous acts to fly from the bow in the archer's hands. I will never be able to stop doing bad and unrighteous acts in comparison to God's Holiness to get even close to the mark.

Thank God my Savior and Redeemer has done it "for me." For this, I am eternally thankful. Out of devotion to Him, I start afresh every day to keep my eyes on the mark, knowing it has been hit once and for all, bulls eye, through Christ, and yet... I will love Him with all I have in me as my response. To live for give honor and glory to Him by all that I think and do and say. Will I ever hit the mark? No. But it's okay. My Lord stands with me and reminds me that He has accomplished all for me. He gives me the confidence and assurance to now live for Him in that freedom.

We have the perfect score. Our attempts are all simply for glorifying the One who gave us the Perfection to meet God's requirements to pass.

As Justin finishes up this week, and aims to hit the mark and qualify, I pray that he will know in his heart, that he gave his best, and that is enough. I pray that he will know who he is and where he stands before his Lord, because Christ hit the mark for him for eternity.

I pray that all who are striving to reach a point in their lives where they feel they are in a better standing with their Lord will know today, that their striving is unnecessary. Christ has done it once and for all. You have a bulls eye. Your scorecard is perfect.

Praise the Lord.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

Contentment In The Waiting

"...For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength." (Phil. 4:11-13)

YES! Night Shift Is Officially OVER! Praise the Lord.

Have you ever been going through a rough time, experiencing frustration, not understanding why God was doing things the way He was... and you started a little self-talk? Something to this effect, "Well, surely God will do this or that,...or....God will bring us out of this soon, I'm sure."
Inspiring, encouraging talks to yourself??? And, then those little pick-me-up pep rallies began to have an effect on your attitude and outlook? Today, I raise my hand right up there with yours.

As I mentioned yesterday, when Kurt began this whole night shift season, we had been through 10 months of unemployment, and almost 8 months of a job that took him away to Ohio. I counted every month of those moments. Here we were taking another step in this journey God had planned. What was my little cheer I shouted to myself each month? .... Ten months, then eight months, ahaaa, this one will be less. God is making each step a little shorter!

When October approached, that 6 month deadline, and we were still going strong, I didn't despair. I told myself that we could really go up to December and still come out on the shorter end this time around. You know what happened. December came and went. No change, and No end in sight. I was truly disappointed. I had set myself up!!!

In this whole time of talks to myself, and talks with my God, I was being moved from one mindset to another. And in January, I had the state of brokenness and surrender to God's plan, and not my wishes. After the holidays, I raised my hands up to my Father, opened them wide, and gave it up. Your will, Abba, your plans, not mine. I will be CONTENT in what you have for us. I will wait only with an expectant HOPE for what is yet to come. I will be still...and see the moment by moment blessings you have been doing and continue to do for us, yes....even in these days of night shifts. I accept your ways, your timing, your best for us.

In this life, there are the times where we are waiting.. waiting, and longing for the time to come where circumstances are changed, rearranged, or simply left behind us as we move on. We do not know the times or means by which all will take place and what the end results will be. These are the times that try the souls of men and women alike.

I believe there is one thing God seeks to work on and see flourish in our lives in days such as these. And it is what He has shown us in our household, once again, throughout the last 3 years of waiting. God yearns for us to have a spirit of CONTENTMENT in the times of the unknown... in the days of uncertainty. It is when we are under the most pressure of not knowing the end, not seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, that we can literally collapse under the strains of Discontentment.

It is then that our attitudes are most vulnerable to become oppressed and depressed with what we have not yet attained, rather than focusing on all God IS blessing in the moment.

DO NOT LET THE DECEIVER CAUSE YOU TO LIVE OUTSIDE THE BOUNDARIES OF... "One Day At A Time, Living In The Blessings Of The Here and Now."

As you face your own period of waiting on the Lord for an answer to your prayers, for a change in your lives, for a revelation to something unknown as you walk in the darkness, remember this! Keep your eyes directly on His face. Keep your ears directly open to His instruction for this current day...(only). Keep your heart directly in line with all that He is pouring out to you in blessings that you might have missed if you were not focusing on just today.

This is the order of "Contentment Reality."

Do not allow yourself to operate in a holding pattern, circling around and around waiting for your plans to take place before you land and rest. You may be circling a year and a day, exhausting yourself, because you have not relinquished your hold to the One who is in the Control Tower. He wants you to let go and experience His version of R&R. Release, and Rest... in His plan, unknown though it may be. Be content in your here and now. TRUST the one who holds your days in His hand.

I would encourage you to muster up courage, grab hold of Hope, count all of the blessings you can think of and write them down. Then get down on your knees, and THANK GOD for all He is showing you and all that He isn't showing you. Tell Him you trust Him to take care of you and bring all "holding patterns" in your life to an end with blessings unbelievable. Ask Him to help you to focus on today, and find contentment in His will, not yours.

It took months for God to get me to the position on my knees of resignation and submission to totally release my hold on the "ending time" for night shifts. And when I did relent, oh what peace and contentment He showered down on me. (If only I had done that from the start!)
Life is a journey. :-)


On January thirtieth, a call came to Kurt offering a new job with day hours... 1st shift. Next Monday, April 20th, that new step begins for us.

God is good...ALL the time...God is good.

There will be many, many more times of waiting in our lifetimes. If you and I do not learn the secret of Contentment in the midst of those times, we will indeed have a future of disappointments and discontentment as life inevitably comes full circle again, and brings another period of waiting,... waiting for the next unknown answer.

My blogger friend....Wait with Hope!!!! Let Go and Let God. There is no better position to be than right smack in the middle of Contentment With Your God and His plans today, This Day... For You!

Courage...and Contentment to you.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

WAIT....I say, on the LORD

"I wait for the LORD, my soul waits, and in His word I put my hope.
My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen wait for the morning, more than watchmen wait for the morning." (Psalm 130:5-6)

"Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength;
They will mount up with wings like eagles,
They will run and not get tired,they will walk and not become weary." (Is.40:31)

"Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD." (Psalm 27:14)

"My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from Him." (Psalm 62:5)

"It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD." (Lamentations 3:26)

In the last 3 years, Kurt and I have experienced together, more than ever, the longsuffering of waiting...

It is not as if we have never gone through any period in our life where we were not waiting for something to come about. However, God has intensified our waiting moments as we went through 10 months of unemployment, 8 months of a 500 mile separation, and most recently a year of night shift work.

Today holds a special significance. Tonight, when Kurt goes in to work, it will be his last 12 hour overnight shift to work at his present job and location. This has been a long time coming for a woman who found it hard to accept that assignment for my husband's job in God's plan. But our God can do amazing things in His people, when they finally relent and release it ALL to Him. And this He did for me.

During all of this past year, we were keenly aware that God was working in us, looking for change and growth out of us, but still, we were waiting,.... waiting for the next steps in His plan to take place. Even recently, Kurt mentioned he was waiting to see what God would bring about in his career out of all these changes. Why is life SO much of the time simply about .....waiting?

Let me attempt to tell you by what HE has taught us!

"My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing." (James 1:2-4)

Faith is a gift from God. We cannot grow it within ourselves.

Having to wait for something or on something that hasn't happened yet makes us have to practice Patience!

If faith is the gift, then patience is the wrapping God puts on this awesome package. Inside the workings of patience, we are compelled to pray and proclaim our trust in our God. When we tear away the gift wrap of patience, we find the awesome, unshakable supply of more faith and a deeper confidence in our Lord. It is this confidence that enables us to turn our life circumstances over to God and fully yield to His work and will for us. We gain a trust that is grounded in HOPE. It is an expectant hope in a God Who keeps His promises.

Waiting in life is inevitable.... It can be painful.

Could you radically change your outlook about something you are waiting on in these present days of your life?

Picture that package with the wrapping of patience around it. It is a mysterious gift! It is only in the waiting that God does His best work and reveals His secret treasures to those who wait upon Him. He strengthens faith... increases courage... renews hope... and turns our expectations toward Him alone.

Do not be impatient for God to work. Keep pressing on, obeying Him with the measure of faith you have in the moment, confident He is with you. Stay strong in your race, for He has promised to renew your strength. You will not faint. He will see you through. You will run and not be weary. Obey, simply by doing what you know to do, and wait for God to do the rest....His best!

So, this is what I tell you. We have learned that if we endure, God delivers! He gives us way more than we ever could have imagined. He is faithful.

Cry out for His peace as you wait on Him. You will taste His merciful bounty of goodness as a reward. Wait, and see...



Tuesday, April 14, 2009


"For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works." (Titus 2:11-14)

"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light;
Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy." (I Peter 2:9-10)

What comes to your mind when you think of the word "peculiar"?

The dictionary definition says:
1. distinctive; characteristic of only one person, group, or thing.
2. different from what is considered usual or normal; particular, odd, strange.

Did you ever think that you should be considered peculiar by others in this world who are not redeemed by Christ?

Is it most likely that we are putting our great efforts into "fitting in" into the world? Though we claim that our lives are different, and even changed, yet there are days where we are not necessarily shining forth from the darkness of this present world.
We tend to dress the same, eat the same, go with the latest "movement" the same, purchase the latest and greatest items the same, watch tv the same, view movies the same.....

Do we really stand out that much that we are considered.... peculiar?

Have we become so seeker friendly in our personal lives, even in our churches, that it has dulled our senses and calling to what we were truly redeemed for?

"purified to be a peculiar people," "a chosen generation," "a royal priesthood," "a holy nation."

I fear that more often than not we would choose not to be looked upon as strange or odd. We are creatures who desire to belong, to fit in, to be a part of.

Christ, our Lord and Savior, gave Himself for us, redeemed us from our debt of sins, that we might be purified, and able to do the good works, set apart for the holy living He would require of us.

And what might that be....?

"Purified" to:

deny ungodliness - careful to watch for dishonorable scenes on the television programs we so eagerly get attached to, watchful for a dulled awareness that we are talking about others in a way that is not edifying... but tearing down, wary that we are becoming more materialistic in our wants and desires for things of this world that are not needful in our lives or homes, cautious to catch a covetous attitude creeping in where we want what we cannot have when we compare with others, laughing at things we should not laugh over, using speech that would not be for a holy use, worrying over things that we should not have cares for, spending too much of our time with our "things" and our "social networking" than we do with our Lord and our families...

live soberly - mindful of the times, on the alert for what Satan is capable of as he runs to and fro on our stomping grounds - building up the walls and guarding our homes from the slow fade of unsacred influences.

live righteously - zealous of good works, always looking to serve our Lord in word and deed.
being a good neighbor, an excellent wife, a loving and teaching mom, a discipling sister...

live godly - studying our Lord, praying earnestly for His coming, learning more and more of His ways that we can emulate Him, to be more like Him in this present world.

These are hard things.
This is a high calling.

We are a needy people in a broken world. It is not of our sinful nature to stand out and be counted as odd by taking the high road. We can not choose this on our own.

Yet there is One who calls us to walk that path. It is rough looking. The way is narrow, and many times there is only enough light for the steps being taken. It is the strange choice. It is the road less travelled. It is the Road of the Redeemed.

We are in this world, we therefore must walk on its byways and highways. However we are not to be of this world. This, in and of itself is a peculiar calling. It is not an easy choice, but it is the only choice if you wish to please the One who died for you.

He stands and beckons to you.
Will you answer the call? Will you dare to be different?

Choose today whom you will serve. The days grow short, and the times are near where you may find that "fitting in" and following the usual and normal way was not what it seemed, and the sadness it brings with it must be accepted...

Seek Jesus as a precious jewel. He is our treasure. Do not give up! Be peculiar for your Lord.

You may just find you will be surprised by joy...



Monday, April 13, 2009

I Am The Lord Your God....You Are Mine

"...Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.

For I am the LORD, your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior..." (Isaiah 43:1-3)

It is "Easter Monday." For some people that means an extension of their holiday weekend. For others it is back to work, business as usual. Easter Sunday is over. The new dresses and bonnets, bow ties and white jackets are all put away.

The organized egg hunts are over. A few stray baskets still sit half-full of chocolates and bunnies.... pastel colored eggs linger in the yard undiscovered.

Another Christian holiday, another worldly "Easter Bunny" day has come and gone.

Is that all there is?

We know better, praise the Lord! Easter is more, so much more than a block on our calendar month marking a holiday observance. Hopefully it never leaves our hearts... this most amazing event to ever take place in our world... in GOD's world.

Now that it's Monday, is your celebrating done? Will you numbly and resignedly settle back into your daily and weekly routines as you arise? Will the choir's inspirational Easter music and the uplifting sermon by your pastor simply become another Sunday in a year of Sundays?

That, my friends, is up to us! With the remembrance of the Resurrection miracle fresh in our minds and renewed in our hearts, what is our response to be?

Our continued and consistent response...?

May the verse above be an ever present thought, more than that, a burning presence in our hearts. WE ARE NOT TO FEAR....ANYTHING! The God of the Heavens... has redeemed us. Through His own Son's death and resurrection, He calls us by name.


No matter what happens... no matter what comes our way, He is with us. He is our tower of refuge. He is our comfort and strength. He walks through the waters, the river, the fire... with us.

If we lose our way, He will be our guide. It is His promise. We only need to keep our hearts turned toward Him, pulled in close, so close.

Will that assurance affect your day-in and day-out walk?
Will you remember that deep awe and gratitude you felt in response yesterday, and let it drive you to the changes you know you need to make in your life?
He is all you need to accomplish what your heart is speaking to you.

Don't let today be business as usual. Start today, this first day after Easter Sunday 2009. Rise up because He rose. Live because He died for you. Love because He first loved you. Make Him your thankfulness for the miracle you celebrated yesterday.

We have been bought with a price, and it is too precious a gift to set aside in our hearts when Easter Sunday is over.

NOTHING compares to the LIFE we have in Him!



Saturday, April 11, 2009

Passion That Compels Compassion


May the passion you feel for your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ be so fervent, that it renews and energizes a compassion in you to go out and share it with the ones in your world.

Lord... let your Love so fill us, that it overflows with a current so strong we could not stop it, even if we tried....



Friday, April 10, 2009


Today is Friday, April 10th, 2009. Today I am reminded of Who my Savior is. I am reminded of What He did for me.

It was most certainly a dark and dismal day for the ones who witnessed their Lord dying on the cross. All of their hopes must have been dashed in those final days, as they watched the One they believed was their Messiah being crucified. How incredibly traumatic it must have been!

But today...we know better. It is not Dismal Friday. It is Good Friday! All that had to be accomplished for God's redemption to take place was completed. It was finished!

It remains finished for you and I today. Praise the Lord.

"After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: "Father, the time has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do." (John 17:1-4)

Even though it looked like the plans of men were being carried out, they were not!

God was still overseeing and directing every single moment of Easter weekend. It looked hopeless and devastating, but victory was coming.

Even today, God still sees His plans done. He is working both when we see His handiwork, and when we don't. He is a God who sustains continuously and tirelessly behind the scenes of life as we see it.

This is the original weekend that Justin would have graduated from Marine Boot Camp, had he finished in the timeline from the day he first arrived and set foot on Parris Island. But because of his bout with pneumonia, he was set back 6 weeks.

As I think on that, I know without a doubt, that the God who orchestrated the immensely HUGE plan of Christ His Son coming to earth to live and die and redeem you and I back to Himself,... also plans and puts into place the very smallest details of our lives for our best. It is His best, so we can rest assured that it is all for good.

Just as long ago on a hill called Golgotha, people like you and I suffered the agony of not knowing what was going on, or why, and feeling like life was falling apart, you and I experience the same misunderstandings and doubts about what is happening in our world and in our walks today! But we know that we have a God we can call out to. He does not turn aside from our requests. He makes all things new and good.

This I know for my eternal salvation. This I know for Justin's journey on Parris Island.

God is good....all the time...God is good. :-)

I stand in awe, and beyond that, I kneel before the God who has a love so deep and so wide, that I cannot understand how far-reaching it is.

Jesus.... may we be so in love with you, for what you gave for us, that it incredibly changes everything about us. May our lives be sweet offerings to You.

Fall in love with Jesus again this Easter. Feel the awe and wonder of being loved so deeply .

Blessings on this Good Friday...


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Looking For an Intercessor..

"This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope. Through the LORD’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. “ The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “ Therefore I hope in Him!” The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should hope and wait quietly, for the salvation of the LORD." (Lamentations 3: 21-26 )

The great prophet, Jeremiah, wrote the words above. He was called the "weeping prophet" because his heart was so heavy for all that he witnessed in his day concerning the children of God. He wept...lamented over the messages he was required to deliver to these stiff-necked and stubborn people.

Now we are not prophets, but I believe that even in our day, we have reason to be weeping before the Lord.... We live in a world where societies are morally and ethically running wild and everyone does what is right in his own eyes. Tolerance is encouraged for anything and everything except...Christianity.

I heard on the news yesterday, that the state of Vermont has had its way. Same sex marriage is now fully legal there within their borders.... Ordained by state legislature. To paraphrase James Dobson's infamous words a number of years ago:


Then, adding devastation to my disappointment , I was notified by email of the following news:

Rick Warren disavows support for Prop. 8

"California mega-church pastor and author of The Purpose Driven Life Rick Warren says he apologized to his homosexual friends for making comments in support of California's Proposition 8, and now claims he "never once even gave an endorsement" of the marriage amendment. "

This was indeed a blow, a surprising blow. What in the world changed this man's very firm support of the biblical mandate of marriage - one man and one woman - as God ordained it in Genesis?

Is there an element missing somewhere in this story???

Or is Satan having a heyday?

Christians can ill afford to be complacent and quiet about their stand on these issues. We will ...we are... easily being drowned out by those who choose to actively give full support both vocally and financially to what they believe in.

We can not simply go through the motions any longer. Listen to what the Lord said to Jeremiah:

“Get yourself ready! Stand up and say to them whatever I command you. Do not be terrified by them, or I will terrify you before them.” (Jer. 1:17).

I am going to include a link in this post that I would encourage you to click on, read, and then pray.

We are witnessing first hand, step by step, what is already leading to the downfall of this great nation. God uses the very foundations of strong Christ-centered marriages to build families who in turn pass down the faith of their fathers to the next generation. Christianity is always just one generation from extinction. And it is that faith, along with mighty prayers that will directly impact the culture to turn from its downward spiral of evil.

The same people who have twisted the Scriptures, saying that God is accepting of homosexuality are now the same ones twisting the very definition and laws of marriage. If they can attempt it with the very WORDS spoken by God, should we be surprised that they now pursue changing the laws of man?

What then can we say? What can we do?

The first step in response to all of this is quoted below from the following link.

".... the future of America does not lie in the hands of the politicians in the Congress, the president in the White House, or the judges in the courthouses, it lies with the people of God who must get on their knees, and pray and seek God’s face. Abraham did something the Sodomite government wasn’t able to do. He got a hold of God. Do you know how to do that? Do you know how to intercede? You can change the destiny of a nation by intercession. In Ezekiel 22:30, God says: “I’m looking for an intercessor, I’m looking for someone who will build up the wall, and stand in the gap on behalf of the land so I won’t have to destroy it.” But in that day God found no one. Can He count on you? The need of the hour is not just enthusiasm, not just activism, but we must begin with intercession. Step number one: Pray! "

(please make note: this article is almost 3 years old now. Some things predicted have already come to pass!)

"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land." (2 Chronicles 7:14)

Let us, as women of God PRAY for revival. Let us fervently build up the walls in our families, and stand in the gap, interceeding for the future of our children and our nation.

"If marriage means anything....then marriage means nothing."

God is still The God In Control.

"This I recall to my mind, therefore I have hope."

Blessings and Courage,


Wednesday, April 8, 2009

A Badge of Honor

"It is a badge of honor to accept valid criticism." (Proverbs 25:12)

Why am I blogging?

Sometimes I have to get back to the drawing board.

It was suggested yesterday by my closest critic and my best battle buddy, my cozy confidante and my sweet soul mate, all that good stuff... {and more}, :-) that I might could improve my blog by shortening my posts!....

Well, as I told a girlfriend who inspired me to start blogging in the first place, this is a journey of journalling, continuing its progress, a little less private than in my handwritten notebook, but still, just a space to voice what I'm learning, how I'm growing or when I'm being challenged.

I tend to be W-O-R-D-Y!! Now you can all sigh and let out a tsk...tsk...for my poor family members, in sympathy for what they must go through.

Really, I believe my hubby if he says I am too long winded, so I am accepting a challenge to not go on so much in my posts. I will attempt to wear the "badge of honor."

Forgive me if I stumble every now and then.

"If you profit from constructive criticism you will be elected to the wise (women's) hall of fame. But to reject criticism is to harm your self and your own best interests." (Prov. 15: 31,32)

I only desire that the writings from my heart would give glory and honor to my Lord. I also hope and pray that on any given day the reader might be cheered or encouraged from what I share and relate. :-)

For today I am just going to post a couple of short-take videos from a Christian comedian who is simply CRAZY! He makes my sides hurt sometimes ....I laugh so hard. Hope you get a giggle, or a guffaw, or a belly buster listening to him!

Have a super day in the Lord, and don't forget to smile at everyone you see. It's amazing what a small change in facial muscles can do to brighten another person's day.

" A happy face means a glad heart..." (Proverbs 15:13)



Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Road To Freedom

Psalm 138:8 - "The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever— do not abandon the works of your hands."

In my readings through the Old Testament, I have reached the book of Ezra. It is a time where the King of Cyrus has been moved by God to look favorably upon the Jews. He has made a decree that they may return to Jerusalem, and has given them orders to rebuild the temple.

Truly this is the hand of God working in a land where the children of God had been in captivity for 70 years just as the prophet Zechariah had prophesied. Now their time has come. They may return to their own land, freed from the ones who had held them captive.

According to the numbers that actually returned to Jerusalem, the footnote in my bible says that "when the invitation to rebuild was made, most of the people failed to respond...."

Why??? Here they were living as captives, slaves in a land that was not their own. They were being given freedom over bondage. What would hold people back from a return to their God-given land, a life out from under the rule of one who was not a leader blessed by God?

Why indeed... Why is it that you and I today, when offered the freedom in our Lord Jesus Christ from our old ways and habits, our exile to sin, hesitate to fully commit to the journey? What holds us back from grasping the strength of the Holy Spirit to continually confront and conquer in our new walk? What trips us up as we are choosing whether to move out...or stay put?

Are we possibly like those living in Persia, fearful to step out of what has become familiar and comfortable? Would we choose to remain in a comfort zone that leaves us in a depressing lifestyle of bondage when we have the opportunity to walk away into freedom? Are we afraid of the journey itself or is it that we are afraid of failure to accomplish what lies on the path ahead?

Sometimes it is so much easier to choose what is easier over what we know is best for ourselves and those around us. Sometimes when we look at the road to recovery, it appears too long, too demanding, and too hard to travel.

It is in these moments of doubt and fear that we need to draw in and draw near to the God who is there for us. He will help us climb the mountains we feel we cannot climb. He will calm the raging storms when they would attempt to defeat us . He will heal the hurts when we have failed and cry to have victory in our walk.

God always has, is, and will be there when we cry out to Him. We are His children. We are His beloved. He calls us out of our land of bondage, our chains of slavery to things we no longer desire in our lives.

Lord, reach down, tenderly lift our chins up. Turn our eyes back toward you, our Maker. Do not allow us to be downtrodden by our own emotions. Do not let us be overcome by circling thoughts of self-serving excuses to justify our self-imposed bondage and weaknesses. Give us others to surround us as we step out, who are likeminded with us in our fight, to encourage us to hold fast, to stay the course.

Cause our downcast spirits to once again take flight and rise above the clouds of sadness that accompany life's bumps and bruises as we travel rough terrain.

Lord, give us courage! Let us never be afraid to take the hard roads to get to the high places where you stand beckoning us. Let us choose what may be hard and difficult over what is easy and comfortable. Help us to run for the higher calling of a disciplined journey over what is a self-serving life of exile away from your treasures yet to be revealed. Thank you for not abandoning us!



Monday, April 6, 2009

Dynamite Power!

Have you ever wondered what it must have felt like to stand in the disciple's sandals as they listened to Jesus telling them that He was about to leave them? Have you ever imagined the emotions that must have risen up in them? The One whom they had left everything for, and committed their very lives to was delivering a message too hard to grasp!

For three years, these men had travelled together, prayed together, eaten together, rested together, worked together, argued together, jested together, celebrated together, witnessed in awe, the miracles of their teacher.... together. Throughout it all, they had grown in boldness and strong character . They had become a band of brothers, committed to the cause, willing to follow their leader with a devotion that was deeper than any other they had ever felt in earthly fellowships.

And now, the One who had gathered them, motivated a courage in them they had not known, exposed them to truths they had never heard, delivered miracles before them they had never imagined, charged them to stay the course they had begun....... was leaving them?

I can only imagine they must have felt something pretty close to abandonment. They were treading some pretty stormy waters at the time. The sentiments against Christ were starting to heat up and the roads they were travelling required large measures of courage to remain steady and not retreat from the rising opposition.

The following scene from the Forrest Gump movie enters my mind at this point. Forrest Gump has run across the United States and back, with many committed followers now running behind him. Suddenly in mid stride he slows to a complete stop, turns around and declares that he's tired now, and thinks he'll go home. The followers are incredulous. They have followed him down many a road. He had given them something to pursue in life... a cause...shallow as it may have been. Now they ask among themselves "what are we supposed to do now?" The one whom they were following is quitting on them.... walking away with the very motivation and inspiration that had kept them running. Their dismay and disappointment, approaching even anger is obvious.

Pardon my "Hollywood selection" in an attempt to set the stage for what was a very believable possibility of the true life drama unfolding in this moment between a leader and his followers. This small band of ordinary men with very human emotions and very intense loyalties to their leader must have felt abandoned. The honor and commitment amongst these men was one that I'm sure they would have given their lives for one another at this point, if pressed to do so. They were willing to go wherever it was that Jesus was going rather than stay behind.

Christ must have felt a deep and tender love for these brothers He was about to die for. It is at this time, that He unveils one of the deep secrets of the Heavenly realm so far away and unreachable in our minds. He would never leave them. In fact, He reassured them that there was One coming who would take His place, and yet.. it would still be Christ with them.

"And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you. No, I will not abandon you as orphans—I will come to you. Soon the world will no longer see me, but you will see me. Since I live, you also will live. When I am raised to life again, you will know that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you." John 14:16-20

How confusing the words of Christ must have been to these founders of the faith. How could they understand, how could they know the miraculous power and intimate communion they would receive from One whose time and appointment had not yet arrived? How could they know that the Spirit indwelling would fill them with as much joy and intense devotion for their Lord as if He was still there amongst them fellowshipping with them in person? It could not have been conceivable. It was an "out-of-this-world" yet "in-this-world" gift yet to burst upon the scenes of a world being impacted for God by humans transformed by the Spirit.

I find great comfort in the words "I will not abandon you as orphans." The King James version states, "I will not leave you comfortless. I will come to you."

As redeemed disciples of our Lord and Savior today, post-resurrection, we have the privilege of experiencing this revelation immediately. The Spirit enters into us the moment we accept Jesus as our Savior and Lord. This is no small thing.

Jesus Christ the Son of God walked this earth. He came to reveal in the flesh, the love and compassion of our Heavenly Father. He desires for us to experience the reality of our Divine Creator. He wants to reassure us that we have a Comforter, a Defender, a Source of strength that accompanies us as we walk the broken roads of this brief earthly lifetime before us.


The mystery of the Holy Spirit, the very presence of the almighty God Himself indwelling you and me is nothing short of a miracle. It is above our thoughts and brain capacities to grasp the meaning of it all. It is in the realm of the impossible for us as humans in our broken and unglorified state to take hold of such intangible truths. And so it is, that by FAITH, we believe. By FAITH, we hold these truths to be alive and real and believable, because of the experiences we live out of the acts of God in our lives. His inspirations and motivations in our Spirits cannot be ignored, even if we cannot explain them.

This is a Heavenly gift... a spiritual treasure. It was given to the disciples of the early church, and it is given to the followers of Jesus Christ today. Do not neglect the promptings and strength welling up from within by the Spirit who is your Counselor and your Comforter. He is the One who walks with you today, even as Jesus Christ walked with the Twelve during His time here on earth.

Are you experiencing the intimate communion that is at your disposal with the Holy Spirit who resides in you today?

Are you fellowshipping with the Divine Friend, the closest Comforter you have on this earth, the One sent by Jesus Christ your Lord to stand in His place?

Do you know the encouragement of this One who would support you and defend you in your everyday battles?

Do you have the peace and security from knowing that this One in you can intercede on your behalf before God in a language that you cannot even express as you pray? He can take the desires of your heart and then interpret those prayers so that as they ascend before the Father, they are lined up underneath the very will of God. In return, only God's plans will be accomplished, and not the misguided petitions arising out of a child whose visions are limited to the ways of an all-knowing God.

This is the friendship you have in such an unspeakable gift that was given by the One who gave His life for you, and imparts Himself to you in the form of the Holy Spirit.

I pray that you and I will know and experience the power and reality of the "hagios pneuma", literally the "holy wind or breath" that God has placed within our souls, housed in these weak and puny earthsuits we daily walk in. The very manifestation of this truth is that God can instill His Divine attributes and character in us!

Our physical bodies need to constantly breathe in air to survive in this world. If we stop, we will die. Our spiritual souls need to breathe the holy breath of the Spirit if we are to survive the spiritual battles we will face and have to confront as we remain in this physical realm.

This air we breathe is invisible, only seen when it causes movement in the physical world we see with our physical eyes. Even so the Holy Spirit is invisible, and only seen in the movement He causes and stirs up with His "dynamis" power. It is huge. It is translated into our word for dynamite! This is the power source you have IN YOU!

Believe this truth that is revealed to you from God's Holy Word. When He claims that ALL things shall be possible for you through Christ, who is in you, in the form of the Holy Spirit, it is your reality to claim.

Love the Lord your God with all of your heart and soul and mind.

Live for Christ your brother and Redeemer and most loyal friend with all that you have to give.

Lean on the Holy Spirit, your closest advocate and comforter in this world!

You are not left alone in this world to tread the stormy waters and walk the broken roads that you will come to face. There is One in you who has the dynamite power that conquered death itself. It is this powersource that you are given to fight the good fight, stay the course, and win the race God has placed you in.

Believe it. Draw from it. Conquer with it.

Begin today, in this Holy week approaching Easter, to live the life God has called you to pursue.

As the disciples many years ago stepped out and drew from their newfound source of strength, so you and I can do the same.

What dynamite impact will we have in someone's life this week? Only God Knows!!

Blessings and Courage!