Wednesday, October 29, 2008


I don't know about you, but I always find it so refreshing when I look at someone out in public, and they genuinely smile at me. This is something that I'm working on too. I've MADE myself do it. I've always had a tendency towards shyness, it goes back to childhood. I tend to be more of a serious, get down to business type of gal. I like joining in the fun of things, but it's not usually me that starts it - well, sometimes I do. *hehe* After 27 yrs of marriage, my Honey's playful side has kind of rubbed off on me!
Giving a smile to someone is so easy to do. You have to get your mind off your problems first, and think of others. Remember, there is always somebody worse off than you - and it may be the one you smile at today! You might make their whole day and encourage their heart to keep going, just through a simple smile.
Why not try working on that this week and see what happens! Just smile at everybody you see. People at church, out in public, at work, etc...
If ANYBODY should have a reason to smile, it is a Christian! But sadly, through circumstances, even they are caught dragging their lower lip sometimes. If you see one of those, give them a smile too! Because, we sure don't need to kick our wounded! Amen?

"These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full." John 15:11

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

A smile costs nothing, but gives much.
It enriches those who receive, without making poorer those who give.
It takes but a moment, but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever. None is so rich or mighty that he can get along without it and none is so poor but that he can be made rich by it.
A smile creates happiness in the home, fosters good will in business and is the countersign of friendship.
It brings rest to the weary, cheer to the discouraged, sunshine to the sad, and it is nature’s best antidote for trouble.
Yet it cannot be bought, begged, borrowed or stolen, for it is something that is of no value to anyone until it is given away.
Some people are too tired to give you a smile.
Give them one of yours, as none needs a smile so much as he who has none to give.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Should antibacterial soap be outlawed?

Have you caught any of the buzz about antibacterial hand soaps? These sort of health articles always interest me. Our daughter, Hannah, suffered with childhood cancer and is a survivor. I adopted many healthier habits during that time and have continued them. One of the things that has ALWAYS bothered me though, is the use of chemicals in hair and body products: soaps, lotions, shampoos, etc... I am NOT a germ-a-phobe by any stretch of the imagination. But I do like to wash my hands a lot to prevent illness. We are with people a lot and do a lot of hand shaking. I find that hand washing is one of the best ways to stay healthy. But they say you're not supposed to put anything on your skin that you can't eat. Well... I'd like to say I go that far, but the truth is I honestly can't afford to buy all natural everything. It's a bit pricier than the store brand. But I can still cut WAY back on the amount that I purchase. One of those I'm going to cut off is antibacterial hand soap.

ANTIBACTERIAL SOAP -VS- REGULAR SOAPSometimes plain old soap and other tried-and-true cleaning agents can work just as well as today's antibacterial products. Good, old-fashioned soap may not say "antibacterial" on its label, but it still kills germs. Sometimes it does a better job than antibacterial soap.

In addition, soap isn't the only thing that kills bacteria -- there are many naturally occurring antibacterial agents. Lemon juice, for example, changes the pH level in bacterial cells, creating an acidic environment in which microbes can't survive. Other naturally antibacterial substances dry cells out, killing the bacteria (bacteria most commonly thrive in moist environments). Still others, like bleach and alcohol completely obliterate the cells of the bacteria. Unlike the targeted attack of antimicrobial agents, bleach and alcohol simply cause the cells to lyse, or rupture.

Why haven't bacteria adapted to the agents found in bleach, alcohol and lemon juice? The reason why bacteria aren't resistant to these agents is because they do not leave a residue. There is no chance for surviving bacteria to adapt within the residual environment, so bacteria are just as susceptible to bleach and alcohol as they were 100 years ago. Skip the antimicrobial smart bomb and go for the big bleach blockbuster.

To read the full article concerning this health issue, go to: Should Antibacterial soap be outlawed?

Sunday, October 19, 2008


Just in case you don't get over to my cooking blog - I wanted to share this idea with you for an edible gift. It's the Traveling Treat Jar! The specifics for it are over on my other blog. Just click the link and it will take you there! Enjoy and have fun!

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Papa and Darren. I love this picture. It is big Darren (my hubby) and little Darren (my grandson). I always tell little Darren he's my favorite little boy and Papa's my favorite big boy!

Little Darren (3 yrs old) said the the absolute funniest thing I've ever heard a little one say, the other night. My hubby had been out of town all week, and to celebrate his home coming, our grandson spent the night with us. We both absolutely adore him and will do anything to spend a little time with him. He lives next door, and after dinner last night, he came walking through the door with his little, Cars back pack on wheels. You could tell he was in high gear, all excited for an evening of play with Papa and MooMoo. We played on the floor for a while, pretending to be dinosaurs, roaring at one another, scaring one another and running away. Then I gave him piggy back rides and airplane rides on my feet while I was laying on my back. I get such a kick out his giggle when he is tickled about something. He seems to have appointed himself as my personal comedian lately! He will do anything to tease me or get me to laugh or play along with him. Anyway, I said to him, "Why don't we get jammies on?" He of course, wanted to "do it himself." I showed him how the tag on the bottoms went in the back by his bootie and the tag on the shirt went behind his neck and he thought that was pretty neat. I'm sure his Daddy and Mommy have already shown him that, but he got a kick out of it anyway! After he got his jammies on, he walked out into the kitchen, stood by my pantry, paused for a moment, clapped his hands then rubbed them together, and said, "Well, let's get started!" haha I thought I would die laughing!! It was like he was saying, I have an agenda here people, and only a certain amount of time to get it accomplished! haha That kid is too much! He has me in stitches all the time over things he says.
But the best is when we are laying down for nap time together and he looks at me and smiles, then reaches over and rubs my cheek and says "MooMoo, you're so pretty, I love you." That thrills my heart for more than one reason: One - He has heard his Daddy say that to his Mommy and two - it shows, even at his tender age of 3, a love and compassion for people, a caring heart. That will be such a benefit to him in his adult years, if the Lord doesn't return before then.
I'm telling you, grandkids are just the best! I'm so thankful to the Lord, every day for my precious grandbabies! They bring such joy to our lives, and smiles to our faces.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wow Check out this give away!

This is one exciting give away going on over at Lizzy's blog! Can you imagine giving away such a work of art?! This is no small thing! I totally hope I win this beauty! Go check it out at Pigtails and Snails. She is a VERY talented lady and you'll enjoy looking through her blog!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


I will be so glad when this election is over! I am SO tired of the constant babble about it! There is a lot of hatred and anger out there, being generated by the media, the politicians, and lots of other people in leadership, including teachers and parents. It's gotten so bad, that tonight on my bus route (I drive a bus route for our Wednesday night children's program) one of the little girls, about age 8 or 9, was just ranting and raving about McCain and how if he gets into office she is going to pray that he dies, and if he does she will do an evil laugh. Then she went on to say that people are lying about Obama, saying that he lets people kill babies. Obviously she is not old enough yet to understand the vileness of abortion - especially the heated debate over live birth abortion (if you've not seen any footage on this yet, it will sicken you when you do). The first time I heard of it, I wept and then I couldn't sleep that night. How does God hold back His hand of judgement on people that do such things? Anyway, I digress....
I was shocked to hear such hatred coming from such a young girl. A girl whose only concern should be what color of socks she is going to wear to school tomorrow, or how far her Mom will let her ride her bike today. What happened to the innocence of childhood? Sadly, in this little girl's life, it's been tainted by some hateful talk she's overheard in her home.
I made her stop talking like that and urged her to not think about it or talk about it like that. I told her little girls like her shouldn't be worrying about politics, let the adults handle it. Little ones don't need such stress and worry in their lives. It was so sad, it just broke my heart for her.
I asked my bus worker (a teen in the public schools here) if there was a lot of talk about the election in the high school and she said, "OH YES! And I'm so sick of it! The kids aren't even old enough to vote or have any say in it, but they insist on talking about it and choosing political sides. Some of them are really hateful about it."
I am just so tired of all the mud slinging TV ads, newspaper articles, billboards, bumper stickers, yard signs, etc.... I don't even watch the debates, because you know BOTH of them speak out of both sides of their mouth! Oh I plan to vote - you can count on that!
I don't know who will be voted in on Nov. 4 though, but you know what, whoever it is, God is still in control and like it or not, we'll get the leader we deserve as a nation.
Doesn't it just make you say even more:

Even so COME Lord Jesus!

Friday, October 10, 2008


It's been so long since I posted on here. I thought I'd better pop back on and let you know I was still here. I've been busy over at my cooking blog, doing some downsizing and combining some things. I wanted to share this craft idea with you. It's easy, quick and inexpensive. Makes a cute gift for any time of the year.
You will need:

Small mouth, quart size, mason jar
*votive holder
scented votive candle
Seasonal ribbon

Fill the mason jar with the potpourri, nestle the votive holder into the top, add the candle, tie a sesonal ribbon around the top and VOILA! You have a cute, inexpensive gift to give.

* I found these votive holders at Michael's craft store. But you could probably find them at any larger craft store.My jar doesn't have a Fall ribbon on it yet. I took the Summer ribbon off and haven't found a ribbon that I like yet, to replace it.

When you give these, you could also add different ribbons for them to change out during the seasons. Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Christmas, etc...

Sunday, August 24, 2008


Clovis Chappell, a minister from a century back, used to tell the story of two paddleboats. They left Memphis about the same time, traveling down the Mississippi River to New Orleans. As they traveled side by side, sailors from one vessel made a few remarks about the snail's pace of the other. Words were exchanged. Challenges were made. And the race began. Competition became vicious as the two boats roared through the Deep South.

One boat began falling behind. Not enough fuel. There had been plenty of coal for the trip, but not enough for a race. As the boat dropped back, an enterprising young sailor took some of the ship's cargo and tossed it into the ovens. When the sailors saw that the supplies burned as well as the coal, they fueled their boat with the material they had been assigned to transport. They ended up winning the race, but burned their cargo.

God has entrusted cargo to us, too: spouses and children. Our job is to do our part in seeing that this cargo reaches its destination. Yet when “our program” takes priority over people, people often suffer. How much cargo do we sacrifice in order to achieve the number one slot? How many people never reach the destination because of the aggressiveness of a competitive captain?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


The day is over, you are driving home. You tune in your radio. You hear a little blurb about a little village in India where some villagers have died suddenly, strangely, of a flu that has never been seen before. It's not influenza, but three or four fellows are dead, and it's kind of interesting. They're sending some doctors over there to investigate it. You don't think much about it, but on Sunday, coming home from church, you hear another radio spot. Only they say it's not three villagers, it's 30,000 villagers in the back hills of this particular area of India, and it's on TV that night. CNN runs a little blurb; people are heading there from the disease center in Atlanta because this disease strain has never been seen before.

By Monday morning when you get up, it's the lead story. For it's not just India; it's Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iran, and before you know it, you're hearing this story everywhere, and they have coined it now as "the mystery flu." The President has made some comment that he and everyone are praying and hoping that all will go well over there. But everyone is wondering, "How are we going to contain it?" That's when the President of France makes an announcement that shocks Europe. He is closing their borders. No flights from India, Pakistan, or any of the countries where this thing has been seen. That night you are watching a little bit of CNN before going to bed. Your jaw hits your chest when a weeping woman is translated from a French news program into English: "There's a man lying in a hospital in Paris dying of the mystery flu. "It has come to Europe."

Panic strikes. As best they can tell, once you get it, you have it for a week and you don't know it. Then you have four days of unbelievable symptoms. Then you die. Britain closes it's borders, but it's too late. South Hampton, Liverpool, North Hampton, and it's Tuesday morning when the President of the United States makes the following announcement: "Due to a national security risk, all flights to and from Europe and Asia have been canceled. If your loved ones are overseas, I'm sorry. They cannot come back until we find a cure for this thing."

Within four days our nation has been plunged into an unbelievable fear. People are selling little masks for your face. People are talking about what if it comes to this country, and preachers on Tuesday are saying, "It's the scourge of God."

It's Wednesday night and you are at a church prayer meeting when somebody runs in from the parking lot and says, "Turn on a radio, turn on a radio!" While the church listens to a little transistor radio with a microphone stuck up to it, the announcement is made, "Two women are lying in a Long Island hospital dying from the mystery flu." Within hours it seems, this thing just sweeps across the country.

People are working around the clock trying to find an antidote. Nothing is working. California, Oregon, Arizona, Florida, Massachusetts. It's as though it's just sweeping in from the borders.

Then, all of a sudden the news comes out. The code has been broken. A cure can be found. A vaccine can be made. It's going to take the blood of somebody who hasn't been infected, and so, sure enough, all through the Midwest, through all those channels of emergency broadcasting, everyone is asked to do one simple thing: "Go to your downtown hospital and have your blood type taken. That's all we ask of you. When you hear the sirens go off in your neighborhood, please make to the hospitals."

Sure enough, when you and your family get down there late on that Friday night, there is a long line, and they've got nurses and doctors coming out and pricking fingers and taking blood and putting labels on it. Your wife and your kids are out there, and they take your blood type and they say, "Wait here in the parking lot and if we call your name, you can be dismissed and go home."

You stand around scared with your neighbors, wondering what in the world is going on, and that this could be the end of the world. Suddenly a young man comes running out of the hospital screaming. He's yelling a name and waving a clipboard. What? He yells it again! And your son tugs on your jacket and says, "Daddy, that's me."

Before you know it, they have grabbed your boy. "Wait a minute, hold it!" And they say, "It's okay, his blood is clean. His blood is pure. We want to make sure he doesn't have the disease. We think he has the right blood type. Your son could save the world."

Five agonizing minutes later, out come the doctors and nurses, crying and hugging one another some are even laughing. It's the first time you have seen anybody laugh in a week, and an old doctor walks up to you and says, "Thank you, sir. Your son's blood type is perfect. It's clean, it is pure, and we can make the vaccine."

As the word begins to spread all across that parking lot full of folks, people are screaming and praying and laughing and crying. But then the gray-haired doctor pulls you and your wife aside and says, "May we see you for a moment? We didn't realize that the donor would be a minor and we need...we need you to sign a consent form."

You begin to sign and then you see that the space that indicates the number of pints of blood to be taken, is empty. "H-h-h-how many pints?" And that is when the old doctor's smile fades and he says, "We had no idea it would be a little child. We weren't prepared. We need it all, sir." "But...but..." "You don't understand. We are talking about the world here. Please sign." "But can't you give him a transfusion?" "If we had clean blood we would. Can you sign? Would you sign?" In numb silence you sign.

Then they say, "Would you like to have a moment with your son before we begin?"

Can you walk away? You've asked yourself, can you walk back to that room where he sits on a table saying, "Daddy? Mommy? What's going on?" Can you take his little hands and say, "Son, your mommy and I love you, and we would never ever let anything happen to you that didn't just have to be. Do you understand that?" And when that old doctor comes back in and says, "I'm sorry, we've got to get started. People all over the world are dying." Can you leave? Can you walk out while he is saying, "Dad? Mom? Dad? Why, why have you forsaken me?"

Then the following week, when they have the ceremony to honor your son, some folks sleep through it, and some folks don't even come because they go on vacation, go fishing, go to the ballgame, stay home with company, and some folks come with a pretentious smile and just pretend to care.

Would you want to jump up and say,



~Author Anonymous

He asks us to set one day a week aside, in honor of His Son. How faithful have you been? Or is everything else more important? Something to think about friend.....

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Someone needs a minute of your time!

How often have you talked with someone on the telephone who seemed to be in a hurry and wanted to get on with more important business? Or visited with someone on the street and received that same hurried feeling? You've undoubtedly experienced it...and didn't enjoy it. And, perhaps, you have also been guilty of this. If you have, why not decide to invest a little time, save up chunks, bits and pieces of it, and give them away to people who interrupt your pre-established plans?
It is a great principle of love that people don't interrupt, not really. Perhaps there shouldn't even be such a word as interrupt; for when people come into your existence, even for a brief time, that is a wonderful moment of experience for both of you. Relish it. Probe it. Invest some time in them. We can't afford to indulge in the luxury of "being too busy and important" for another person.
We have time for such inanimate things, as pieces of mail, vast sprawling shopping centers, the television program which starts at 7:30. But what about relationships with people? Isn't that a great deal of what life is all about--loving other people? Remember Jesus? How he raced about, hurrying from one city to another, collecting great crowds on the way, to give them a few minutes of hurried heaven-data, then dashing on to the next place?
No, that is not the picture of Jesus the New Testament gives. He had time for people. In a crowd, a woman touched his robe. Lots of people were probably pushing against him, touching his robe, but he discerned the urgency in this particular touch. He stopped, taking valuable time for this "interruption." His disciples were full of fire and computer-like- efficiency. They wanted to get on with the task of getting something done, even if they didn't always know what that "something" was.
Once a bunch of small, grimy-fingered kids came along and wanted to climb on the Master's lap. "Get those kids out of here," thought the goal-oriented disciples. But when Jesus saw it, he was much displeased, and said unto them, Suffer the little children to come unto me, and forbid them not; for of such is the kingdom of God.....And he took them up in his arms, put his hands upon them, and blessed them. The Son of God knew and expressed the great worth of an individual.
The next time a person "interrupts" you, think not of your work and your deadlines; rather, think of that person's needs, of his covert compliment in desiring to spend a few moments with you. Your meeting may be a significant point in each of your lives, because it is an encounter with another person God has created. You may impart something crucial to his fulfillment--or he to yours. Paul prayed: Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: Romans 15:5
Who will you make time for today?

Sunday, July 20, 2008


My Honey preached a great message tonight and I wanted to share just a few snippets of the notes that I took tonight in the evening service.

When you get to Heaven, how much of what you've done here on earth will endure the test of the judgement seat? How much will turn out to be wood hay or stubble and burn up right before our eyes? Will we be shocked to see the size of the pile that remains, the gold and silver?
There will for sure be some tears of regret in Heaven, will there not?

What sort of regrets will we weep over?

*Foolish priorities we've had.
Things we've spent money on: hair products (have you ever added up the amount of money you've spent on hair care products over the past, oh say, 10 years?), dog or cat food and products, home improvements, unnecessary shopping - just to shop - then once you get there, you HAVE to buy something since you're shopping.
Those things aren't bad in and of themselves. But we seriously need to strive for a balance in our lives. The cause of Christ SUFFERS today when high value is placed on LOW value things.
* Flippant positions we've held to.
Things that won't matter in eternity, like facial hair on men, eating pork, drinking coffee, etc.
We major on the minors and minor on the majors. Where is the balance in that sort of thinking?
To some Christians, church attendance, Bible reading and prayer have become optional in their life, but they would never miss a day of work or a family reunion or scheduled appt. such as the dentist. Yet when it comes to church functions or even just simple church attendance, sadly, way too many Christians these days say "I have other things to do today."
* Flippant conduct.
We don't think a thing about lying, swearing, gossip or backbiting. But we'd never say a cross word about the boss we work for. Our flippant conduct really reveals who we are.
*Flippant giving.
We don't tithe because it's a "tight week." Have we ever NOT had a tight week? Doesn't everybody have tight weeks, these days? Why is it that when the finances are strapped, tithing is the first thing to get kicked to the curb? But we make sure the union dues at work are paid up! Then there is the cell phone - gotta pay that! And *GASP!* What about the cable bill - we HAVE to pay that or they'll shut it off!

We just need to make sure Christ is in His rightful place in our lives - first place. And all our other priorities will fall into the right place. I don't know about you, but I don't want to get to Heaven and see all that I've done "for the Lord" burn up because it was only wood, hay and stubble. I want, what I do for Him, to last.

Now if any man build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, stubble; every man's work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man's work of what sort it is. If any man's work abide which he hath built thereupon, he shall receive a reward. I Cor. 11-14

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Recently I was asked about my salvation testimony. It brought back such memories, as I recounted the emotions and steps that led up to it. Once again, I thanked the Lord for people, He placed in my path, to bring me to salvation. There were so many people the Lord used to help me find the right way, but the one that I am most indebted to, is my precious father-in-law. He loved me unconditionally, even during the times I was most unlovely - those rocky, rebellious, teenage years. He made up his mind he was going to love me, no matter what, and that's what he did. Then he never got rid of me! LOL I loved him as much as my own flesh and blood.
My testimony of salvation can get a bit lengthy, but I'll try to shorten it. LOL I made a false profession at 12 yrs old. I carried that w/ me until I married the preacher's son, at 18! We were married 6 months and I was expecting our first baby. We had been showing the "Thief in the night" videos to our teen group (I see them now, and I wonder what we were thinking! YIKES at the 70's clothing in it! LOL) Anyway, they were instrumental in MY salvation. They made me begin to do a little self examination. All of a sudden I became troubled about the after life and preoccupied with the rapture. I began to worry that I might be left behind for some reason. I tried to go back in my mind and remember what had happened the night I made that profession at 12. I was at a huge crusade that was taking place in our local high school. When the invitation was given, I went forward because my friend urged me to, not because the Holy Spirit was convicting me of any sin. So consequently, it really meant nothing to me. It was all perfunctory.
But I hung onto that as my salvation experience for years. Now all of a sudden, 7 years later, married to the preacher's son, and pregnant, I couldn't remember what had happened that night. What did the preacher preach on? What verses of Scripture were shown to me? Did I pray? If so, what did I say? I couldn't remember any of it. That really bothered me. I began to get worried. But what do I do now? I married the preacher's son. I teach Sunday school. I work on a bus. I help in the nursery. EVERYBODY thinks I'm already a Christian! One day when I was at my in-laws house, my precious father-in-law (who is now in Heaven) said to me, "Chub (that was his nickname for me LOL) the best thing you can do for yourself and for that little baby you are carrying, is to keep your heart right with the Lord." Then he showed me I Timothy 2:15 Notwithstanding she shall be saved in childbearing, if they continue in faith and charity and holiness with sobriety.
I didn't fully understand what that verse meant, but began to wonder, if I wasn't right with God, does that mean that the Lord might judge me somehow through this pregnancy or birth? That weighed heavy on my heart. Fear and pride just continued to hold me back from saying anything. Then one hot July day, I had been at my mother's house doing laundry. I was big as a house with the baby. I came home, expecting to see my husband, home from work. But instead, what I saw, scared the daylights out of me. I walked into the house, calling for him, only to get no response. What I saw, were his clothes - pants draped on the side of the bed, socks in a pile, by the legs of the pants, and his shirt crumpled, on the bed. My first immediate thought was HE'S GONE! The rapture has happened, and I've been left behind! I got on the phone right away, to call my father in law, to see if they knew where he was. No answer! I was mortified! Later I found out that he had gone swimming with his little brothers. That night, I couldn't sleep. My emotions were through the roof. My husband was sound asleep, and I just sat there in bed, in the dark, staring out the window. Wondering, if I'm saved, then why am I so worried about the Lord's return? That event should be exciting to a believer. I argued with the Lord for hours, it seemed. Finally, it was almost as if I heard a voice - "It's now or never! If you don't take care of this tonight, you never will." I had to swallow my pride once and for all, and get it settled. In sobs, I woke my husband. His first thought was, that it had to do with the baby. But when I finally got him to understand it was my eternal soul hanging in the balance, he jumped out of bed, and we went to the living room of our little apartment, knelt by the couch, and there I TRULY repented of my sins, and asked the Lord to save me. I've never doubted it since. I still mess up, who doesn't? What a joy to pillow my head at night though, and know without a doubt that when I die, I will go to Heaven. I don't know what people do without the Lord. He gives me such peace.

*As an added note* When I delivered our first baby (our son), I had preeclampsia. To force delivery, I was admitted to the hospital 3 weeks early. I had been induced all night with Pitocin, to no avail, no labor pains had begun. My hubby, who had been by my side all night, stepped out of the room to get coffee, and get washed up. Moments later, I hemorrhaged badly, and was rushed in for an emergency C-section. We lived 30 miles from the hospital. They told me later, that had I been at home and that would have happened, I could have lost the baby or died myself. My mind went back immediately to I Timothy 2:15.....

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


I have one deep supreme desire,
That I may be like Jesus.
To this I fervently aspire,
That I may be like Jesus.
I want my heart His throne to be,
So that a watching world may see
His likeness shining forth in me;
I want to be like Jesus.

Oh, perfect life of Christ my Lord,
I want to be like Jesus.
My recompense and my reward,
That I may be like Jesus.
His Spirit fill my hung'ring soul,
His power all my life control;
My deepest pray'r, my highest goal,
That I may be like Jesus.

I Want to Be Like Jesus
Thomas O. Chisholm

Monday, July 7, 2008


Surely I'm not the only one that is alarmed at the increasing number of Christians involved in internet chat. I wonder if these particular Christians that are involved in chatting with the opposite sex, think they are above getting into sin over the thing? I wonder how many instances there have been, where a seemingly harmless, strictly platonic, online "friendship" went much further than it was intended to go?

One thing I have covenanted to do for myself and for my marriage is to NEVER chat (IM) with or private message back and forth with the opposite sex. Couples that get involved in such things, destroy the trust that has been built in the relationship. That is the exact opposite of what you want to do. You want to BUILD trust in a marriage, not do things to eat away at it or ultimately destroy it. Married people who chat with the opposite sex are teetering on the brink of the destruction of their marriage. Even if it is a "harmless" friendship. We've all heard the horror stories of men and women alike.... "they met someone online." God have mercy!

Also, am I the only one that is troubled over the numbers of Christian young people using Myspace? Now before anybody maligns me for this, I know many responsible adults use facebook to keep up with family members and old friends who may have moved away. I'm not talking about that sort of thing. I'm mainly talking about Christian young people who get online, join Myspace, and then post uncensored pictures and chat about everything under the sun, all without parental control. They post pictures of themselves with their boyfriend or girlfriend in compromising ways. Ways that damage their testimony with others who might happen on their page.
I asked a young person the other day, "do you guys ever talk about anything spiritual on there? Do you kids that all go to the same church ever say anything about the Lord? Or do you ever say anything to help these other kids in your youth group in their walk with the Lord?" I'm not saying I think they need to get on their and have online Bible studies with each other. I'm all for having fun - good grief, we do our fair share in this family, that's for sure! But from what I've seen of it, most young people on there are just horsing around and playing on the edge of sin. I just don't think the kids really put any thought into the fact that many people will see pictures that they post, and read things that they talk about. And the effects can be far more reaching than they realize.

I don't know.... I just find it all extremely troubling these days.
So what can Christians do to protect themselves while surfing the worldwide web? Here is an excellent safe traveling guide for traveling the super highway.


Safe Traveling Guide
For The Super Highway


Simple, but helpful safeguards for protecting your heart and mind from diverting from a healthy Christian Focus.

  1. Open Door Policy Keep the computer in a public place with the screen facing the doorway or other viewers. If needed, commit to never using internet while alone in a room.
  2. Use Filtering Services Subscribe to a reliable filtering service that supports your own personal values.
  3. Be Accountable Request the help of a friend to monitor your activity regularly checking your web history to personally hold you accountable.
  4. Use Wisdom Be committed to use the Internet for only constructive and helpful ways that will not interfere or weaken your spiritual journey with Christ.


Safeguards to prevent Internet usage from interfering with healthy priorities and productivities of a purposeful life.

  1. Use Self Control Avoid all unnecessary surfing or other web activity unrelated to your task at hand while on the job, or working on a specific project.
  2. Verify Important Information Be cautious in accepting Internet information as factual, accurate, and reliable.
  3. Honor Legal Expectations Honor local, state and federal laws regarding communications, modification of materials, unauthorized materials or fraudulent copying.
  4. Be Respectful Respect the interest and guidelines of the company, church, or institution that you represent in ways that honor faithful Christian principles.
  5. Be A Good Steward Define and limit the amount of leisure time allowable for web activity in correlation with the primary goals of your life and standards of Christian stewardship


Helpful ways to nurture and promote healthy relationships through Internet usage.

  1. Create A Schedule Work out a schedule limiting your usage to times that are most acceptable with those whom you are in close relationship.
  2. Know Your Contacts Block instant/personal messages from all people you do not know and do not answer unknown contacts. If you are married, do not answer instant/personal messages from members of the opposite sex.
  3. Watch New Relationships Be cautious and accountable to someone who cares about you should any new relationship develop through e-mail, chat rooms, or Instant Personal Messages (IMS).
  4. Care Deeply Find ways of helping others develop healthy standards for Internet usage who you know are using it recklessly and inappropriately.
  5. Review Your Activities Review your Internet and e-mail activities regularly with those whom you are in close relationship to help you be a responsible user.
  6. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


When was the last time you invited somebody over for dinner? It doesn't have to be fancy schmancy. You can just pick up a pkg of cheap hamburger and buns and grill out burgers. If you don't have a grill, then fry them in a skillet. You could even just slap together some good old bologna sandwiches. Toss some chips in a bowl, make a batch of cookies. You can even use your leftover chicken, to make a pot of chicken and dumplings. People don't really care what you fix them. It's just healthy to fellowship with other believers. We invited a large family over recently and they were surprised first of all, at the invite, because of the size of their family. After they arrived, they commented that it had been probably 10 years since they had had a dinner invite to someone's house! I'm sure that's probably so, we invite a lot of folks over, but I don't see a lot of others doing that. There are a few, but for the most part people just don't do it anymore. Not sure why. Too busy? Nah! No space? Nah! Money? Eh, maybe, but that doesn't need to stop you.

You can't really get to know someone when you only see them at church. But when you sit down to dinner together with someone and fellowship, you can really start to get to know them well. People relax and you can laugh and maybe even share burdens and prayer needs with each other. After dinner, you can brew a pot of coffee, break out the homemade cookies and reach for your favorite game, as everyone gathers around the table to join in the play.

I remember when my Honey and I were first married. We learned from his folks, the obedience and importance of fellowship. We lived in a TINY 2 bedroom apartment. There really was no dining room to speak of, it was jut kind of an afterthought to the side of the kitchen. Our table wasn't much bigger than a card table and we had 4 metal folding chairs. And counter space.... HA! It is too laugh! This is how we remedied that obstacle. We would invite someone over. Fix them a modest dinner for our budget. I would set up my ironing board in the living room and cover it with a sheet and we would use that as our buffet. LOL Everyone would fix their plate and we would sit in the living room to eat. Hey, it worked! And I'm thankful we started early, getting our feet wet, so to speak, in this area of hospitality. Over the years, I have learned to be comfortable with people coming into our home. I like to hear folks say they felt right at home, while they were here. That is my goal, to put people at ease. I don't want them to feel like they can't be themselves around us.
My Honey preaches often that the church should be a "hospital" for hurting people. Well our homes should be no different. People from all walks of life are just hurting, for one reason or another. Could be sickness, marriage problems, financial woes (who doesn't have those these days?), family issues, trouble on the job. The list is endless. But people don't walk around carrying signs that say "I'm hurting, because...." They just hurt, and it's our job to help bear their burdens.
"Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ." Galatians 6:2
And a good way to help with that is to have them in your home for fellowship. You don't even have to fix them a full dinner. You can fix snacks or just have dessert. Invite them over for pie and coffee. The idea is to just DO IT.

And don't worry about your house. If you're waiting until this gets fixed or that gets fixed, you'll never have anyone over. Your house will never be perfect. People don't come to see your house, they come to see YOU. So do what you can to make it clean and neat and a good testimony and don't worry about the rest! Relax! And don't let "space" be an obstacle to you. Remember my ironing board? LOL And now with the warmer weather upon us, you could even move outside to eat.

I just want to really encourage you to take a minute today and ask the Lord to put someone on your heart that could use a little encouragement. Then get on the phone and invite them over for SOMETHING.
"Use hospitality one to another without grudging." I Peter 4:9

Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another; not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Lord; rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer; distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality. Romans 12:9-13
Just because hospitality is last on the list up there, doesn't mean it's of any less importance. We are instructed to DO IT. So who are you going to be hospitable to this week in your home? Care to share?


Earth's cries recorded in space.

I read this story on Yahoo news this morning. The first thing that came to mind as I read through it, was this passage:

For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body. Romans 8:22, 23
It's so true isn't it? You can almost feel the earth and all creation just groaning, waiting for the Lord to come. It's so evident in all the world's disasters, hurricanes, typhoons, floods, fires. The list just goes on and on. Every time we read of another world disaster, it ought to make us keep our eyes fixed even more on the Eastern sky.
One thing I found kind of comical in the news story though, was how behind the times scientists are, in relation to God's word. He told us thousands of years ago that creation was "groaning." But here it is 2008 and the "professionals" are just discovering it. We think we're so smart. Isn't it wonderful how the Bible can be such a text book of LIFE? Science, history, literature, etc... We just need to READ it to learn such things. I wonder if any of those scientists working on that project have ever read the Bible?

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


I have been privileged to have some very Godly men in my life. My father didn't get saved until later in life, I was probably in my mid teens. Up until then he was a heavy drinker and smoker. But when he got saved - oh what a difference that Jesus made! He & I would sit and talk about the Bible all the time. He loved it when I had Spiritual questions that he could answer. He drove a semi truck all of his life, with the exception of a few years when he was trying to start his own cabinet business. I still remember the smell of fresh cut wood, out on our closed in porch, where he had set up shop. He used to let me come out and help him rub the wood down with almond stick. When I was a little girl he made me an entire bedroom suite: dresser, closet, and nightstand. Then when I had little girls of my own, he made them a table and chair set to play with. He was wonderful with wood and so badly wanted to make a go of that business, but it didn't bring in enough consistent work to pay the bills. I was sad for him when he had to let it go and go back to driving. I remember one Summer when he let me go on some of his runs with him. He drove a milk tanker at that time. We had a lot of fun together. My Dad taught me how to work, and how to work hard. How to really give someone the days work they were paying me for. My Dad loved me and seemed to always watch out for me especially. I guess that comes with being the only girl. I don't know how he put up with my antics as a kid though. We lived on a big farm surrounded on 3 sides by corn fields. We constantly had snakes in our yard and I am petrified of snakes! I would be out there mowing and hit a snake, rip it to shreds, scream, leave the lawn mower running and hightail it for the house! He would say, "Well, it's DEAD now! Get back out there and finish the job!" LOL Or the year of the locusts, I was deathly afraid of them. You'd go outside and they would jump on you and stick! One day I ran outside for something and several of them jumped on me. I was so mortified, I ran to our big suburban, jumped in and started honking the horn for someone to come rescue me! LOL My Dad came out, but it wasn't to "rescue" me! LOL
My Dad passed on to Heaven in 1988 after a long bout with heart disease, and I still miss him today. I was only 26. I'm so glad he got saved and I get to see him again one day, in his brand new, pain free body!

Thursday, June 12, 2008


I've updated some of the pages on my cooking blog if anybody is interested. Mainly the Summer camp page and the catered events page. Both of those links are on my main cooking blog. I have SO much more post on the catered events page! I was looking back through all my pictures and it's going to take a while to get all of it up on there. So if you're lurking, waiting, please be patient. We are heading into the busiest time of year for us - SUMMER. You pastor's wives know how that goes. Lord willing there will be a vacation squeezed in there somewhere!

Monday, June 9, 2008

Cleavage, cleavage, everywhere!

I'm confused. It's interesting the various styles that come and go and how they infiltrate the church and Christian women in general. So many styles these days to choose from (actually, I would say NOT many styles to choose from). It used to be the mini skirt that you would see popping up here and there in the church. Now it is the deep plunging neckline. The kind that reveals way too much of how God created a woman. My Honey and I were at several functions over the weekend, some of them, where Christians were attending. I was shocked to see so much cleavage. And not just a little bit, a lot. I'm convinced I'm not just an "old fashioned" gal here. The Bible is very clear on modesty for women. Yet we continue to see Christians touting the styles of the world. I know God looks at our heart and man looks at the outward (I've heard that argument for years). But that is one of the VERY reasons why we should dress modestly - because man DOES look at the outward. What happened to the desire for an outward testimony? I wonder what the average Christian feels that separation means, when we are instructed to "come out from among them be ye separate." I'm not so narrow minded that I try to cram my dress standards down another's throat. Nor do I think Christian women ought to wear gunny sacks, turtle necks in the Summer, skirts to their ankles, etc. But just some simple modesty would be so refreshing. Covering of the breast area and the thighs. Both areas, that when exposed, can cause a man to lust. When I was first saved, my precious Pastor's wife taught me the 4 finger rule. After you are dressed, place your hand at your neckline. If the neckline is lower than your 4 fingers, it is too low. Some even suggest 3 fingers to be more modest.
I came across a couple one liners of how the world flaunts their immodesty: "Cleavage: as if we need a reson"; "Never underestimate the power of cleavage"; and finally, "Cleavage is an accessory." How sad. And what's even sadder is, little girls, adolescents are allowed to wear such revealing tops. Have mercy. Don't their mothers realize the dangers there?
While my daughters were growing up, I taught them to dress, then go look in a full length mirror and ask "Jesus, is this alright with you? Are you pleased with how I look?" Then I said, if you have any doubts whatsoever, don't shrug them off, that's the Holy Spirit. Go change into something more modest.
We actually used that standard for every area of life. Some have given it the moniker "WWJD?"
We taught all 3 of our children to invite the Lord to partake of whatever it is you are doing. Ask him to sit and read your book with you, to watch the TV show with you, to go with you to your destination, to listen to your music with you. If you can't ask Him to do those things with you, then you ought not do them yourself. It's a good reminder that the Lord DOES accompany us in ALL that we do, in the person of the Holy Spirit. I'm afraid He's a bit grieved over what He sees today in the lives of believers. Christians have grown so immune to the things that used to be so shocking years ago. We're losing our "saltiness" by blending in with the world. If I don't have the time to witness to someone for whatever reason, I want them to know even by looking at me, that there is something different about me. Oh how we need to let our lights shine BRIGHTLY in these last days.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Is it time to go to bed yet?

Wow what a day this has been! I woke up early so I could get over to the church and help my Honey fill packets for our city wide door knocking campaign that we are doing. We have been having 35 - 40 of our precious people show up every week to knock doors in our town! How exciting and thrilling! We have seen new families visit almost every week since we began. The strange thing is, not many of them are results of our door knocking. But they ARE results of obedience! Praise the Lord!
Anyway, I made my visits to my bus kids and ALL of them said they are coming tomorrow. If that is the case, I will be making 2 trips again to get them all to the church in our 15 passenger van. We have another bus route, but they go a different direction and they are full up too. I made 2 trips on Wednesday because we had 30 and I just couldn't squeeze that many in!
I got home from calling and 15 minutes later we were walking out the door to head 45 miles away to Lansing for a 40th wedding anniversary celebration. It was a missionary couple that we support. Actually it was the lady that I received a call from on my cell that morning when I asked her about needing toilet paper. That story is in a previous post. My daughter Sarah, made the cake for their party, but she had to work, so I was volunteered to cut the cake and serve it. I didn't mind, they are precious people.
We left there and drove home long enough to take a couple Ibuprofen for the headaches that were setting in and ran back out the door to an open house of one of our young people that graduated from our academy last Sunday night. Ashley is a sweet girl and has grown up here in this church. She'll be leaving for Bible college this Fall.
We came home from that, long enough for me to finish up the last few items on our Sunday bulletin - I don't believe in "boring" bulletins - haha. Then we headed out for a piano recital of 2 or our young ladies in the church. They did an amazing job. But 1 1/2 hrs into the recital (after they had already played their pieces) I turned to my Honey and pleaded, "Can we please go now?" I could feel myself sinking and I knew I still needed to copy and fold the bulletin before I could call it a night.
I was finally able to kick my shoes off my swollen feet and call it a night! But I was so determined to try a new recipe, that I just had to whip that up before I got jammies on and headed off to bed. It's called French Toast Casserole and you can find it on my cooking blog here:
Now I sit here posting on my blogs, trying to update them a bit. I am really LOVING my new cooking blog. I'm going to like filling that one in a LOT. I plan to have pages dedicated just to Summer camp menus and shopping, pages for my catered events and hopefully some pages for weekly menu plans. I love anything to do with food - you'd think I'd weigh a ton as much as I talk about it and cook it!
I'm looking forward to tomorrow - the Lord's day. It's supposed to be a cool 90 degrees tomorrow. That means the church van will smell like kid's head sweat! haha That's OK, I love em! The AC doesn't work in the van. Last year in the hottest part of the Summer, I got the bright idea that I might be able to stay cool if I used my "chillow" to sit on. So I filled it with water, put it in the fridge to get it nice and cold, put it on my seat and pulled out on my route. Half way through the route I realized it was leaking on my skirt! Then I thought, "OF COURSE! It's mean't to lay your head on, not sit all your bulk on!" Oh well... another bright idea gone by the wayside! It'll be a hot ride tomorrow, but onward, upward!

Monday, June 2, 2008

A chosen vessel

I have loved this poem from the first time I read it years ago. It is a good reminder, that it is the BROKEN things that God uses. If you have been broken, or are in the process of being broken, take heart - God has something in store for you!


The Master was searching for a vessel to use;
On the shelf there were many – which one would He choose?
Take me, cried the gold one, I’m shiny and bright,
I’m of great value and I do things just right.
My beauty and luster will outshine the rest
And for someone like You, Master, gold would be the best!
The Master passed on with no word at all;
He looked at a sliver urn, narrow and tall;
I’ll serve You, dear Master, I’ll pour out Your wine
And I’ll be at Your table whenever You dine,
My lines are so graceful, my carvings so true,
And my silver will always compliment You.
Unheeding the Master passed on to the brass,
It was widemouthed and shallow, and polished like glass.
Here! Here! Cried the vessel, I know I will do,
Place me on Your table for all men to view.
Look at me, called the goblet of crystal so clear,
My transparency shows my contents so dear,
Though fragile am I, I will serve You with pride,
And I’m sure I’ll be happy in Your house to abide.
The Master came next to a vessel of wood,
Polished and carved, it solidly stood.
You may use me, dear Master, the wooden bowl said,
But I’d rather You used me for fruit, not for bread!
Then the Master looked down and saw a vessel of clay,
Empty and broken it helplessly lay.
No hope had the vessel that the Master might choose,
To cleanse and make whole, to fill and to use.
Ah! This is the vessel I’ve been hoping to find,
I will mend and use it and make it all Mine.
I need not the vessel with pride of its self;
Nor the one who is narrow to sit on the shelf;
Nor the one who is bigmouthed and shallow and loud;
Nor one who displays his contents so proud;
Not the one who thinks he can do all things just right;
But this plain earthy vessel filled with My power and might.
Then gently He lifted the vessel of clay.
Mended and cleansed it and filled it that day.
Spoke to it kindly. There’s work you must do,
Just pour out to others as I pour into you.

~Author Unknown~

Friday, May 30, 2008

Time to WAKE UP!

Few things wake you with a start, like the sound of weather sirens. That was the sound that woke me from sleep this morning. It's funny how you can hear things like that and think you are dreaming, or that it's the cat next door, or a baby crying (even when you don't have a baby!). When I finally realized what it was, I jumped up, ran to the window and looked outside, and then went to the computer to check the weather alerts. There were no alerts though, other than strong thunderstorms being forecast for our area. I don't know what I expected to see when I looked outside. Maybe a stage 5 tornado whirling down our street? Truth is, the only tornado I've ever seen was when I was about 15 and lived on a farm in Indiana. It was out over the corn fields and didn't do any damage to our house, but my Mom made sure we were in the basement, in safety until that storm passed.
There are other things that wake you from sleep. An alarm clock. Someone touching you. Snoring (your spouses or your own). A barking dog. Sunlight. Birds chirping. Emergency vehicles. The telephone ringing. The buzzer on my clothes dryer (it sounds like half time at a Piston's game!). When the video you are watching is done and the TV switches over to snow and fuzz - I know this from MANY personal experiences.
When I was thinking about being woke from sleep by that siren, a Scripture passage came to mind.

¶ And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying: but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. Romans 13:11-14
So many believers today are asleep spiritually. Apathy reigns supreme in this day and age. There are those rare ones who are filled with zeal and remain stedfast in the work, but it just seems like so many are slumbering while the world careens head first into Hell. Even the most basic of our fundamentals, like faithfulness, is hard for many to maintain. I wonder why that is?
Could it be that Christians aren't saturating themselves with the Word on a daily basis? What is it that makes people fall into such a spiritual stupor, then stretch and yawn, when we are told to work while we can? Oh that we would be more like Jesus, who said:

I must work the works of him that sent me, while it is day: the night cometh, when no man can work. John 9:4
Wouldn't it be wonderful if we were all in a constant state of revival? I love revival meetings! It's a week of saturation with the Word. Meeting every night with other believers. Praying together. Preaching. No outside influence, like TV or radio. It's easy for the Lord to speak to hearts that way. But alas, almost as soon as the revival ends, the emotional high goes with it.
I praise the Lord for our little church. They are an amazing bunch of people. We run around 200, but it is nothing to see 30 or so out for soul winning! I just think that is phenomenal! And it makes me love them so much more.

But I know that's not the case in most Bible believing churches. I've seen the Lord "wake" slumbering believers up before and it can be a sobering thing. I honestly believe not just individual believers, but believers as a whole are in for a real awakening in this land, before too much longer. It's hard to hear things when you're asleep. We need to be AWAKE to hear what He has for us to do. Like Samuel of old, we should ALL be saying,

Speak; for thy servant heareth.
I Sam. 3:10

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Sparkling Lime Punch

I've made this yummy punch recipe before for my family and they all love it. Especially on a HOT Summer day!


1 large can pineapple juice, chilled
1 (2 liter) bottle of Squirt soda pop, chilled
1 can frozen Limeade
Crushed or shaved ice
Fresh lime slices

Combine the pineapple juice, Squirt soda pop and frozen limeade in a punch bowl. Stir in enough crushed ice to make it slushy. Serve with a fresh lime slice on the edge of the glass. Serve immediately.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My Greatest Joy

I LOVE being a wife and mother. I suppose my greatest joy, outside of being saved, is the joy of raising children for the Lord. And now, 2 sweet grandbabies are added blessings! I love it that I get to be such a large part of their life.

I adore my children. They have always been such a blessing to my husband and I. I can never remember feeling regret or grief over them when they were growing up. I just enjoyed every day with them. I home schooled our children for 12 years, so we had LOTS of days together. They are all happy, well adjusted, social, very talented young people. One of my favorite things is hearing them all sing together for church service. Our daughter in law blends right in with them to make a nice little quartet.

Our son is married to a sweet young lady and they have 2 precious babies. What a blessing to my life that they live right next door! He is our youth pastor, music director and Christian academy supervisor - a very busy young man! His wife is a wonderful, Godly helpmeet to him. I couldn't have hand picked a better young lady for his wife. They go together like peanut butter and jelly!
What a blessing that we get to spend so much time with them. I love those impromptu nights when neither of us has plans for dinner and we end up eating together, just because. And the grandbabies.... oh boy, I could write a book! They are so precious! Little Darren is only 2 1/2 but he is my constant "helper" and Katie is such a happy little lovebug!

Our daughters are both in Bible college and I LOVE it that they want to spend time with me when they come home on the weekends! Many Saturdays, I get to enjoy the morning by door knocking or bus calling with them. We always stop at Sozo's coffee shop for a coffee treat before we head out. Then later on, we'll head to Walmart or Meijer or Cato or Goodwill - LOL and just spend time laughing and shopping and chit-chatting about everything under the sun. They both sing like a Lark and play the piano like they're trying to walk it across the floor! They are without a doubt 2 of my very best friends in the whole world! This past week for Mother's day I got to hear them sing in their Ladies ensemble and hear them play in their Bell choir from college. It was TREMENDOUS!

I love it that since my children are growing into adulthood that we can talk about more serious things. They become confidants of sorts. My kids have grown up in the ministry since birth, and have seen the "underbelly" of it. But amazingly enough, after all they've seen and experienced, they have surrendered their lives to the Lord for full time ministry. It seems only natural. They have all been groomed for it. My husband and I don't take what we have for granted - we know it was the Lord that helped us put a love for the ministry in their hearts.

My heart is just full of praise to God for our precious children. I can't think of them without thanking God for the blessing that they are to our lives. They make me so proud (in a humble sort of way!)

Lo, children are a heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate. Psalm 127:3-5

Friday, May 9, 2008

The morning after.

I always dread that "morning after" feeling! You know the morning after you've done a new work out and you know your muscles will be feeling like you singlehandedly moved a house full of furniture! Or the morning after you've been up way too late and you know you'll feel groggy all day long. Or how about the morning after you've binged on donuts, that your husband "surprised" you with, from a bakery that he just found! haha You get up the next morning and in fear and trepidation you step on the scale and *OUCH!* There it is in black and white. Huge numbers mocking your weakness from the day before. You would think a 40 something year old woman would know how to say NO to a box of donuts! After a downfall like that, I feel like Paul, when he said:

the good that I would, I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do. Romans 7:19

O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? Romans 7:24

This flesh we live in for now, is sure awful weak sometimes. So weak that it caves in to a box of sugared sweets! Then the next day you feel such guilt and remorse and vow to say NO to donuts and sweets from now on! You walk an extra mile on the treadmill, and eat Atkins all day long to make up for your slackness the day before. You do really well for a good long while and just when you feel like you're cresting the mountain top again with your weight and your health, someone brings you the gift of a nice piping, hot, apple pie! Well, you can't eat apple pie without ice cream can you?

We need to make our motto: "Just say No!" It reminds me of the SS song I used to teach my kids.

"When Mr. Satan knocks on my heart's door and says, "May I come in?" I say, "NO! NO! For Jesus loves me so, and He washed away my sin." Then he turns around and runs away, I wish he'd go away to stay! When Mr. Satan knocks on my heart's door, I just say, "No! No! No!"

Learning to say No to a donut seems pretty simple and it is. But there are lots of other areas in our life where we need to learn to so No, as well. We sure would save ourselves a lot of grief and heartache in this life if we would learn to say No to sin. What is it in your life today that you need to learn to say NO to? Is it anger? Laziness? Unfaithfulness? Gossip? Apathy? Whatever it is, determine in your heart to say NO, I'm not opening that door today! Then tomorrow you can wake up with a song in your heart and you won't have to suffer with that "morning after" feeling!

Think before you speak!

Have you ever heard the phone ring and believing you “know” who it is, you start to speak before hearing the person on the other end? I NEVER do that, but that happened to me a few weeks ago. It was pretty early in the morning still. I was sipping my morning cup of coffee and checking email. My husband had just been downstairs with me getting his coffee and had gone back upstairs. Within moments I heard my cell phone ring in the kitchen. Not many people have my cell phone number and those that do, don’t normally call early in the morning. So…… assuming it was my husband calling who had just gone back upstairs to shower and get ready for the day….. and also assuming that he was beginning his morning routine and then realizing there was no toilet paper up in the bathroom…… I picked up my ringing cell phone without checking to see who the call was from and bluntly said in my bass morning voice that hasn’t had enough coffee yet, “Let me guess, you need toilet paper!” On the other end I hear this polite little lady voice say, “Oh! Excuse me?! Hello? Hello?” My face was one of utter horror & shock! I had the phone down by my leg laughing at myself for having spoken so quickly like that! I was so mortified at what I had done, that I just quietly closed my cell phone, hoping she would think she had reached a wrong number. I had no idea who it was. Then I heard it ring again. This time I checked to see who the caller was. I didn’t recognize the number, so I didn’t answer it. They left a voice mail. I checked the voicemail later and it was one of our older missionary wives! She was also the one that had called earlier. We eventually made contact and had a good laugh over the whole incident. But let me tell you, I will never do that again!

Thankfully that incident was one we could all laugh over, but how many times have we opened our mouths in haste and spewed something out that was hurtful and we later regretted? Sadly, it is also usually a family member, those we love the most, that bears the brunt of our rashness. Sure you will make the thing right with the one you hurt and be extended forgiveness. But words cut like a knife and cuts leave scars. How much better it would be to just put a little thought behind our words before we speak them. If it’s not kind or helpful, just keep it to yourself.

“Seest thou a man that is hasty in his words? There is more hope of a fool than of him.” Proverbs 29:20

Oh how we need to set a watch before our mouths and really think before we speak.

“Set a watch, O LORD, before my mouth; keep the door of my lips.” Psalm 141:3

“Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O LORD, my strength, and my redeemer.” Psalm 19:14

Give and it shall be given unto you!

I find it incredibly exciting how we give to the Lord and He ALWAYS gives back! But we give to Him seemingly with a teaspoon and HE gives back to us with a dump truck! The more faithful I am in giving, not only money, but my time and talent, the MORE He gives back to me. I was humbled today as I drove one of our ladies to a doctor appointment at the pain clinic. I honestly didn't expect anything from her. I just wanted to do that for her as a friend and sister in the Lord. She not only gave me money for gas, but insisted on giving me money for my time and "trouble" (her words). I tried to give the money back on several occasions, even waiting until she was groggy from the anesthesia recovery, to attempt it - but she continued to put it back in my hand. So I said Thank you Lord and accepted it graciously as a gift from Him. He is so good to His children!

It is our job to keep it going, not to stop up His blessings on our lives. We give to get, to give again, so God will give again so that we can give again..... If we only give to get, we stop up His hand of blessing.

I've seen this played out recently in our Saturday morning soul winning time. It is a time that we give back our time and talents to the Lord by witnessing for Him. We spend many hours and knock on literally hundreds of doors. The next day, our visitors might not be a family from one of the doors we knocked on, but somebody from another county or neighboring town, that nobody knew or had contacted! We've seen it over and over. God just blesses our obedience! It's our job to give and go, and He always gives a greater return!

My husband / pastor says it every Sunday from the pulpit: "You can NEVER outgive God!"

"give, and it shall be given unto you; good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom. For with the same measure that ye mete withal it shall be measured to you again." Luke 6:38