Monday, December 30, 2013
I think this is a good caption to think about as 2014 approaches. People often set goals for the new year and that's as far as they get......give or take a week or two. If only we were as good as our intentions. Good intentions are worthless without actions behind them.
Your actions speak for themselves. People will tire of your claims to be better at 'whatever', if there is nothing to show for it.
Have you heard the phrase, 'The road to hell is paved with good intentions.' The false idea that 'if you are just good enough' that you will get to heaven leads so many in the opposite direction. People might claim to put God first after everything settles down and gets in order but that only happens when God is your first priority. ''Ego says, once everything falls into place, I'll find peace. Spirit says, find peace, and everything falls into place.''
What is holding you back from being the person God created you to be? Procrastination, laziness, self-doubt? Make a plan and follow through....just do it.
Sunday, December 29, 2013
I like to 'appear' put together and at my best when around others, even when I'm not up to par. As they say, 'Fake it till ya make it.' Well sometimes, you get caught off guard unexpectedly.
Today as we drove into church, I didn't recognize the car in front of us. As we were getting ready to unload, a woman was walking toward us and the church. Even after 25 years, I knew that was my friend from high school, Tabetha. I wanted to greet her, as well as hide. I had my mask on and it was not how I wanted her to recognize and see me after all these years. Of course, Tabetha knew me and was as sweet as ever. It was great to visit with her, after I left my pride outside in the van. It was a humbling experience, but there was greater joy to see my friend from long ago.
Life is a process of changes and it keeps us humble. I am the same girl who drove endless miles cruising Levy in my red Prelude that waved and honked at friends, like Tabetha, every weekend. Now I am with a few more miles with wear and tear to show for it. True friends, like Tabetha, accept you for who you really are, despite the changes we have all been dealt.
Saturday, December 28, 2013
The mindset of a person is very revealing. In just a few words, you can tell what a person's perspective on life is...negative or positive. What is yours and which do you like to surround yourself with?
'Your life is a message to the world, make sure it's inspiring.' We all complain at times, but don't make it a chronic issue in your life. I believe in the caption's message whole-heartily. Where our focus lies is where our energy is spent. Are you wasting or investing your energy and time?
Misery is optional. You must see your trials as temporary and move both your mind and yourself to better things. Trust in God's goodness and enjoy the journey.
Friday, December 27, 2013
These are a few snapshots of the carolers who came to my room Monday night. This is no way captures all the people who were involved. The room was filled with Christmas songs from about 40 people from my church, FBF. They sang 'Joy to the World', 'Who is He in Yonder Stall', and 'We Wish You a Merry Christmas.' Since I was given two plates of goodies, I gave one to Karla the next day. Thanks to everyone who spent their night spreading Christmas cheer.
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
''So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.'' Luke 2:16-20 NIV
Has Christ awakened you, changed you, and made a difference in your life? God sent His Son for that very purpose. We are all born into sin that separates us from God, but He sent Jesus to bridge that gap for those who believe in Him.
The Bible states all the prophecies that foretold of Jesus' birth. Is there any greater proof needed to put our trust in Him? As we are told of His cry at birth and later on the Cross, I think of my own cry...'Savior, Savior..hear my humble cry. While others thou art calling, do not pass me by.'
May you trust in the One who was sent for you, came for you, and died for you. Then was resurrected so that we may live again with Him.
Monday, December 23, 2013
Here is my Christmas card to those of you that did not get one in the mail. I'm sorry I couldn't give one physically to everyone. I do wish each and everyone of you a Merry Christmas. I have been blessed by knowing you each in your own way.
May our friendship grow over the next new year as we share in God's blessings to come.
Saturday, December 21, 2013
Why does the Christmas season bring out 'The Grinch' in people? If there is ever a time in the year to be more Christ-like, it's now! I hate the fussiness, the selfish ways, and the time-crunched attitudes. Whatever you feel like your burdens are, turn them over to God. Your issues are your own, don't take them out on others. Family gatherings are not a vent-athon. Talk about your year of blessings, more than your complaints.
Your speech is a direct reflection of your connection and relationship with God. How do you sound? Have you heard yourself lately? If you're hoping you weren't recorded lately, then get into the Word and see what God thinks about it because He heard it all.
In all the hustle and bustle of the season, have you forgotten the reason for the season? Have you ever considered how Jesus feels about having to share His birthday with all your other priorities? Jesus' patience with us, to get to Him, is one example of His love. He has an appointment with each of us but many put other things ahead of Him. He didn't say on the Cross......Can we do this later?
God is always there for you, 365 days..24/7. Why don't we do more to make Christmas about Christ?
Luke 2:10-12 '' But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” He is the good news for 'all' people, but does He cause you a feeling of joy or a feeling to dismiss in your life?
May you find time or make time for stillness this season, so that you may hear His whispers.
Friday, December 20, 2013
Today Karla and I delivered fudge to a few people. Their light has shined on me so I wanted to reflect a little light back in their direction. Yes it was cloudy and ultimately rainy today, so a little care package hopefully brightened their day.
How do you let your light shine? We all have something to give and share with others. You think you don't? Even kids give when they draw you a picture or make something out of nothing. No effort given is ever wasted. ''Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.''
["You are the light of the world" is one of those statements which should cause us to lift up our heads and make us realize what a glorious thing it is to be a Christian. The apostle Paul told the Ephesians, "For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of light" (Eph. 5:8). We not only have received the "light" of the gospel of Christ, we have become transmitters of that light.
Our light is meant to be seen by men. A Christian should be the same in his place of employment, the schoolroom or on the golf course as he is in the assembly of the saints. Jesus did not say, "You are the light of the church," but rather, "You are the light of the world." As we live in the world, our Christianity should be evident to all. Our good deeds ought to draw attention, not to ourselves, but to God.]-quote from the internet.
May you be a vessel of bright light to others in this world of darkness.
Thursday, December 19, 2013
I had good friends over today for a visit. I think this caption describes them in order.. Gloria, Charity, and Rebekah. They are friends I can count on in both the good and bad times of my life. My spirit is always lifted by their visits. Our lives are very different but our true bond is Christ in our lives. I may not see them as often as I'd like but I know we are always there for each other in this life and for eternity.
No hesitation, no limits and no changes will keep our true friendship from being the support we need from each other. 'The measure of love is to love without measures.'
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
Isn't this the cutest? This is one of my Christmas gifts from my friend, Betsy. I've never thought of myself as Lucy till now, but there is a bond in more ways than one.
There is a difference between advice and opinion. Sure I give both, but hopefully my advice is 'good' and of benefit. Advice should come from experience and lessons learned. I think women of any age should have older girlfriends in their life to seek advice and younger girlfriends to help keep you in a youthful spirit. I have both in my own life and I reap the benefits. Friends are a kind of therapy, in that you can feel free to share both your joys and sorrows, struggles and triumphs, and woes and wows in a safe place.
I am blessed by my friendship with Betsy. She is a wonderful example to me of patience, love to others, generosity, and kindness.
Monday, December 16, 2013
Most parents tell their kids to narrow their Christmas list down to their three most wanted items. Three??? What a daunting task. Whether your selection came from the Sears Roebuck catalog or from ToysRUs, there was so much to choose from.
As adults, we have accumulated so much stuff that is there anything we really need? I'm not saying I can't find anything in the store that I couldn't want but it's something I can talk myself out of too. We should all be past the stage of 'I'll die if I don't get this' by now.
They say that the best things in life are free, but I would add that they can't be bought either. My Christmas list for myself and from others is really just more of the fruits of the spirit. To be specific, they are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Yes, those things are really things that are giving of one's self.
Years ago when I had to wear this awful machine at night, someone said 'I would give anything for you not to have to wear this anymore.' Years later that prayer request was answered. No power of man could have changed my circumstance but in God's timing He answered.
May we put EVERYTHING on our prayer request and Christmas list because He delivers what we truly desire and need.
Saturday, December 14, 2013
|'The Three Blind Mice'|
These are pictures from our ornament party at my church. It was a long night of fun. It began with a baked potato bar with all the fixings and desserts by Sams. There were 25 ladies there and a special appearance by Sherry, who we've been praying for. The night was filled by laughter, teasing and fellowship. I was especially glad Karla could go with me for a second year in a row and my mom wasn't in Branson this year and could go. Enjoy the pictures of our fun night out.
|My mom and I with photo props|
|Karla and I were using the|
|Betsy and the ornament that soon got|
stolen from her
|Presents table and the doorprize, necklace|
|Karla and me taking a selfie|
|Nancy and my mom|
|One of several table decorations.|
|The ornament I won|
|Beth won the ugly sweater contest|
with her husband, Jimmy, as
|A Rudolph original|
|'Thou shall not steal',except at the ornament party.|
Some aren't so willing to let go.
Friday, December 13, 2013
Yesterday when my friend was over visiting, I asked her whether they still had chickens. She said no and that they had been victims to the raccoons. She said, 'We need a little grace. We make one mistake and it's all over.'
Aren't you glad our lives include God's grace? We are not expected to be perfect because God knows we all fall short of Him. Grace is God giving us what we don't deserve. Trying to be a perfectionist in our own efforts and our expectations of others is a setup for disappointment. We need to know that trying our best is good enough. Mistakes will happen and there are lessons to be learned from them.
When you think you're the 'worst' at whatever and yet you're doing the best you can, give yourself some grace. Nobody's perfect on earth so remember that includes you.
Thursday, December 12, 2013
'Good Grief'......who said it first, Charlie Brown or my Guardian Angel? I'm sure my guardian angel has had to get her wings updated or refurbished often to keep up with me. I think about my younger years especially and wonder how I'm still here. I was a good driver but I didn't tow the line of caution exactly. We are so too confident in ourselves but thankfully God does protect His own from our foolish ways.
Do you recognize His protection in your life and others? We are creatures of habit and often find ourselves making the same mistakes. We are protected from things we are totally unaware of too. We see glimpses of tragedy but think 'that won't happen to me.' Yes, we push our guardian angels to the limit.
Psalm 5:11 ''But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you.'' For those of us who seek shelter in His wings, let us be thankful for that protection.
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
Today Karla took me to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned. When we got there, the parking lot was full except for two spots. A man with a cane and his two kids had just pulled into the handicapped spot. Karla was going to let me out and then park. The man saw this and insisted that he would move and let us have that space. He was legally valid to occupy the parking space and we could have managed but his kindness was an example to both his kids and to us.
His example had obviously been previously taught to his kids because his young son opened the door for an older woman without her asking. Kindness is both taught and watched so let it be part of the joy in your day.
Monday, December 9, 2013
Do you ever feel like you're just hanging on by a thread? If one more thing shakes your world, you're gona lose it? That my friend is relying on your own strength. As one who has lost so much physical strength, I know and trust that I am not here by my own strength alone. Our own strength and abilities are actually an illusion because any of us could be taken at any point in time.
I say this to remind us all Who is in control and sustains us. Sustain does not mean free from trials or hardship. Sustain means to strengthen and support us physically and mentally. He will be with us and help us through whatever His plans include for our lives. 'The righteous will not be left in the fallen position, He will vindicate us in the end.'
When I think about persecuted Christians and how they endure all the atrocities in their life, I think of this verse above. ''Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.''
Sunday, December 8, 2013
Social media and just everyday life can lead us down the path of comparison. It's an easy, yet dangerous, road to take. We want more, instead of being grateful for what we have. It is rebellion against what God deems for our unique life. You cannot live the life God created for someone else and your efforts to do so will lead to frustration, fatigue and failure. "Envy is a destructive attitude that God outlawed in The Ten Commandments with 'Do not covet.'"
Four harmful effects of envy.....[from A Purpose Driven Life]
---Envy denies your uniqueness
---Envy divides your attention
---Envy misuses your time and energy
---Envy leads you to other sins
Instead of comparing ourselves with others, we must learn to be happy in the joys and successes of others. If you think life should be fair and equal for all, then you're doubting God's goodness to you. 'Envy is the enemy of contentment.'
You might ask where this post all derived from. Well I am subject to the sin of envy too and these days stuck at home makes it more prevalent. I am prone to the envy of my abilities of my past and the tasks of others on facebook. That is when I have to stop and be grateful for all I do have and take into account the new abilities I have now. No, I don't want the power to go off to force me into counting my blessings. I have much and others are praying now for the things I take for granted.
''The next time you start to rant about God’s unfairness to you, remind yourself of these facts:
1. Everything I have is an undeserved gift from God. I wouldn’t even exist if it weren’t for God’s grace. The next breath of air I take is a gift of God.
2. I don’t know what God knows and I can’t see what God sees, so I should trust him.
3. Life on earth is unfair because of sin, not because of God. Our rebellion against God has broken everything on the planet. This isn’t heaven, where everything works perfectly. Nothing works perfectly here.
4. God sent Jesus to save us from the judgment day when he will balance the books, right all wrongs, and administer justice.
5. It was not fair for Jesus to die in my place for my sins. But he did.''
James 3;16 '' For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice.''
Warren, Rick (2012-10-23). The Purpose Driven Life: What on Earth Am I Here For? (Purpose Driven Life, The) (p. 421). Zondervan. Kindle Edition.
Saturday, December 7, 2013
Isn't this how it always happens? Not just with waiters, but the dentist too. Do you really want me to answer and choke to death?
'Eating and swallowing are complex neuromuscular activities consisting essentially of three phases, an oral, pharyngeal and esophageal phase. Each phase is controlled by a different neurological mechanism.' Swallowing is one of those things we take for granted but many people struggle with it due to stroke, alzheimers or neurological disease. Anybody can have this problem due to being in a hurry and not chewing their food well.
Here are some tips to help with any swallowing problems that you or someone you know might find helpful..........
--Try eating smaller, more-frequent meals. Be sure to cut your food into smaller pieces, and eat at a slower pace.
--Avoid sticky foods, like peanut butter and popcorn
--Liquids like milk or carbonated drinks cause phlegm
--Use something like yogurt w/meals to help with food that seems to get caught in your throat
--Try not to talk while eating....finish your bite first
--If you struggle with a certain food, avoid it...it's not worth it.
Friday, December 6, 2013
What does Christmas mean to you? Is it Santa, gifts, shopping, or family gatherings? As the caption says, 'Christmas begins with Christ.' Everything you associate with Christmas is just nothing without the Savior's birth.
Our culture and society does so much to take Christ out of everything. I think it's especially offensive at Christmas time. Sometimes when my hand is tired of typing, I am tempted to type 'X-mas' but I reject that thought and don't do it. Christ is what it is all about. I support the effort to say 'Merry Christmas', not 'Happy Holidays.' Nativity scenes should be allowed anywhere, including at the government buildings. Who is offended? God mostly by our lack of acknowledging His greatest gift of all.
Christmas chrIStmas cHrIStmas CHRISTMAS [Christmas is His christmas]
Thursday, December 5, 2013
As Christmas approaches, I've gathered together a box of gifts for friends and kids. It's not much but just a little something to show I care.
The most important thing I can give on a regular basis is the sharing of my faith to all here on my blog. Jesus is the gift above all gifts. He will not fade, get old or wear out. People try to fill the void in their lives with material things but it never fulfills the true longing in their hearts. If people would quit avoiding Jesus in their lives, He will fill that void.
Here below are some verses on the gift of salvation and eternal life thru Jesus Christ.....
1 John 5:11
And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. (NIV)
For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (NASB)
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. (NIV)
But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. (NKJV)
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish. No one can snatch them away from me. (NLT)
1 Timothy 1:15-17
Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners—of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience as an example for those who would believe on him and receive eternal life. Now to the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory for ever and ever. Amen. (NIV)
Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Tuesday, December 3, 2013
Oh what a tangled web we weave when we attempt to deceive. Sin begins in our mind and then we try to justify it with our warped thoughts. One thing you can be sure of is God never changes, nor do His rules of right and wrong.
I think the verse above addresses how our rationalizing thoughts are wrong. We can think that if an immediate and visible consequence doesn't occur after we sin, then we either got away with it or God understood our side. Wrong, that's your sinful self talking to you. I heard a robber on tv saying he asked God to not let him get caught just one more time. I can guarantee you that his request won't be answered. God will not let sin go unanswered.
God sent His Son to answer for all the sin in the world. His patience in waiting for you to accept it is indescribable.
Monday, December 2, 2013
Time is one of those things that we all take for granted. We've got it, then it's gone and we don't know where it went. Garth Brooks sums it up by singing, 'I'm too young to be this dang old.' Where does the time go? I think about my younger years when I didn't leave the house till 9pm and grumbled about being in by 12am because that's when things got really fun. Although I'm still a night owl, going out after dark is not appealing as it once was.
Time is like a river and it will not stop and wait for you. I say this to encourage you to get out there this month and enjoy all the Christmas shows, events and get togethers. There is probably no busier month in the year so don't stay home and miss out. Don't end the year with 'I coulda, shoulda, woulda' gone but I just didn't and the opportunity is now gone.
Saturday, November 30, 2013
Do you ever feel this way? We try our best but it just doesn't seem good enough. I've felt this way when recovering from sickness and my patience is at a low point. You just have to tell yourself that you're doing all you can and that's good enough. Trust in God's timing is good enough to get us thru all our trials.
Some people tell this quote to God because they are relying on their works and efforts to be 'good' in order to be saved. 'No one is good, no not one.' No matter how hard you try, you will not be saved thru money, charitable works or your rationalizing ideas. "For by GRACE you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God..." Eph. 2:8-9.
What you should be trying really hard at is surrendering your will to His. Faith in Jesus' life, death and resurrection is the only good enough reason to get you into heaven.
Friday, November 29, 2013
Proverbs 25;28 ''Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control.''
One of the fruits of the spirit is self control. How is your handle on it? Are you a match ready to be lit or are you a watched pot that never boils? Self control is only controlled by self. You can blame others for setting you off but your reaction is only in your control.
Proverbs 16:32 ''Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city.''
''Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead.''--Mac McCleary
''How can a society that exists on instant mashed potatoes, packaged cake mixes, frozen dinners, and instant cameras teach patience to its young?''--Paul Sweeney
You can see the lack of self control in our society by the amount of violence around us. Guns settle arguments all too often, instead of civil conversation. 'Ain't nobody got time for that' is our code phrase for lack of patience.
May your self control be intact regardless of the amount of heat that is on you.
Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Yes, I am surrounded by God's blessings to me. As I look around, I can see things given to me by different people and am reminded of their part in my life. Everything in your life can cause a moment of memory reflection, if you give it the time. Pictures can account for a thousand words and show you God's faithfulness.
As we celebrate Thanksgiving, take the time to count your blessings of the past and present. We take so much for granted, but we'd certainly notice if those things were gone. Let's give thanks for what He has given and taken away....it's all for our good.
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Sometimes the dreariness of winter needs a little brightness added to it. I've thought my recent pictures looked dull and drab, especially with my mousy-looking hair. So off to the salon I went today for highlights and a needed haircut. While I was there, I ran into two people I don't see very often, Rebekah and my aunt Corene. I think this was a God-thing and a good reward for stepping out of my comfort zone to do something a little different.
God opens doors to give us opportunities, we just have to walk through them. Sharing our lives with others is one way of showing how God is working in our lives. It inspires people to see others out and about, especially if they've heard of your recent trials.
Monday, November 25, 2013
I am a delegater. Sure I'd like to do things myself, but reality says otherwise. Some people are too proud to ask for help, but I try to leave that in God's hands. Tonight, we welcomed home a church member who has just returned from a 5 month deployment. All I did was come up with the idea, get the cake and delegate to wonderful volunteers. Well it's a good thing I wasn't in charge of decorating, because my simple thoughts were a banner and balloons. Beth took her artistic talents and ran with her decorating ideas to a level beyond my imagination. It was wonderful, beautiful and very classy. She came up with a creative gift that we all could sign and say 'Thanks Dale.'
I can truly say Dale was honored and appreciative. His words were 'humbled and thankful.' I think he was a little overwhelmed by the spotlight being put on him, but that's okay. All servicemen and women should be shown a little love and appreciation by all Americans. Freedom is never free, but requires all kinds of sacrifice. Thank you Dale for your service and sacrifice of being away from family and our church family