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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Where my treasure is

Matt 6:21 "For where your treasure is there will your heart be also."

Where is my treasure? What is it? Think about all the homes and families destroyed and damaged in a few short seconds in the tornadoes. Terrible loss. I know what it feels like. But there is something that happens at the moment of tragedy when our hearts are clinging to the Lord. In spite of catastrophes, we realize they cannot touch the most important treasure we have...The Lord. They cannot take it away!!

In these last days, as we spiral toward the end of time and beginning of eternity, we need to be busier laying up treasures in Heaven, than working harder to make sure we have all the comforts of this world. It is as simple as the verse says, our hearts will be where our treasures are.

We lost many "treasures" in the quake, but we gained so much more. We gained a closer walk with the Lord.

Praying for those of you who have been hit by tornadoes. Praying you find peace in your heart. Praying. Just praying.

God bless you


Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

Did you follow the royal wedding? I enjoyed watching the cultural part of British Royalty. Beautiful! So much planning, time, money went into this wedding. Truly a beautiful wedding. What amazed me most of all is the bride. She was not born into royalty. She was a middle class young lady. What made Prince William choose her? Why would he go below his status to choose his wife? I did notice that she had the mannerisms of royalty. If I hadn't known I would have thought she was born in a castle.

This is a perfect example of what Jesus did for us, the church! He went below His royalty and chose us. We weren't born into royalty. We were born in sin. Yet He chose us. He left His royalty to live among us. Can you imagine? But wait a minute, now Kate is acting and living as her Groom. What about us? Have we taken the life of our King? Do I act the part? Or are people just not sure who I am? I pray people see Jesus in us.

One day soon there will be another wedding. And a supper to boot!! The marriage supper of the Lamb. We will be served in royalty! Heaven. Eternity. Forever the presence of Jesus, our groom. William and Kate had a beautiful wedding, but the one in Heaven will far outweigh it!! There will be no comparison.

God bless you

Thursday, April 28, 2011

First Fruits

I am reading a most interesting book "This Blessed Life" (a gift from our son-in-law) which is teaching the value of giving our first fruits. Left-overs are not first fruits. First fruits are our best that we can give.

Malachi 3:10 "Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this," Says the LORD of hosts, "If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you blessings That there will not be room enough to receive it."

The Lord is challenging us to give to Him our best. Our tithes. Why? So there will be food in His house. I translate this as the church. So should I give just so God blesses me, and I will see what the return is? Of course not, I should give because I love the Lord and He gave His all for me!! The blessings will come, but if my focus is on my return from my tithe, then my focus is wrong. My focus needs to be on Him not on me! And if I am more concerned about my returns than on honoring God and blessing others , then I need a focus change.

Food for Thought: God rejected Cain's offering but accepted Abel's offering because He gave the first fruits.

Lord, help me to bring my offering to your storehouse and not mine. If I store it in my storehouse it will rust and thieves will break in and steal.

Note: I'm feeling ok again. Patrick is home from Haiti. He had a good trip. I'm glad to have him home.

God bless you

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Detours

Yesterday was a detour. Not at all, my plan, but God's.

Sitting at my desk, and suddenly a chest pain like never before, then my lips turned numb. Off to the ER, and spent the night in the hospital. Everything from EKG, lung scan (for clots), xray, blood tests, cardiogram, and CAT scan. The answer? "You are in great health". Praise the Lord for a good report. The only test not back yet, is the CAT scan. That should tell me if I'm sane or not! Smile.

Now I am back home, enjoying my freedom. No needle pricks or waking me up during the night.

I was blessed to meet several Christian employees. God has His servants in the field.

God is Good. All the time.

God bless you



Sunday, April 24, 2011

Resurrection Day

Jesus is Alive! He is risen! He lives forever. Resurrection.

Without the resurrection our faith would be futile. Without the resurrection, we'd be foolish to believe that there was a God. But there was a resurrection. That is why we believe! He is the Son of God just as He claimed He was.

We have witness of His resurrection all around us...changed lives, answered prayers. The disciples had proof, but they could hardly believe it was Jesus in the room before them. What was it about Jesus? Before the crucifixion crowds followed him everywhere he went. But the night of the crucifixion, Judas kissed Jesus so the soldiers would know who he was. Then after the resurrection, when He walked along the Emmaus road, the two disciples didn't even recognize him.

How can this be? Wouldn't we have recognized him? I doubt it. Why do I say that? For me, we pray and ask God for answers, and because that answer doesn't fit what we thought it should be, it passes us by as being from God. Just like Jesus, He didn't follow the culture so much. He didn't fit the image of a King. But He was.

Last but not least, when Jesus left this world He promised His spirit to be our comforter, to dwell within us. The veil in the temple was torn from top to bottom which gave us entrance into the Holy place, before His throne. His spirit within us, we before the throne of Grace. We have so much praise to give to Jesus!! He is worthy of all our praise.

I pray you each had a beautiful Resurrection Day.

God bless you

Saturday, April 23, 2011

All is silent

Today. The Sabbath. Jesus is dead, buried. The guards surround the tomb to make sure no one comes to take the body. I almost can hear the silence in the city. After the uproar "crucify him", then the lashing of the whips, on to Gethsemane and the mockery and cries "save yourself".

The disciples are hiding for fear of the leaders. A mother is silently weeping at home. So alone, so distraught. The son she loved so much is now gone, or so she thought.

Was there anyone who remembered "I will rise again?" Or was his death so final in their minds, the promise totally vanished from their minds?

Jesus gave more promises "I will come again." Have we remembered? Or has the catastrophes of the day overtaken us? Do the political problems steal the remembrance of His promise? He prayed for us. He prayed that His words would bring us joy. Joy? Yes, joy in the midst of suffering. To be truthful, that is when we find real joy. In the midst of suffering. That is when we pray more earnestly.

Prepare your heart for Resurrection Day!!

God bless you

Friday, April 22, 2011

At the Foot of the Cross

What do I see? I see a multitude of people by the cross. Some were mocking Jesus. Some laughing to scorn. Others were crying. Others stunned. Soldiers were playing dice to see who would own the robe of Jesus.

Come closer to the cross. There I see a woman. I imagine her heart being torn in two to see her son hanging on the cross, innocent. She knew he was innocent. She remembered the things she pondered in her heart since he was a child. Next to her stood one disciple. Only one is mentioned— John. Only moments before His death, He committed his mother to John's care. The love of a son for his mother!

Now it is my time to come to the cross. To come close to have his blood flow to cleanse me from my sin. Oh the sin, and He took it all. He went to the cross for me, and you. The grace at that moment. The grace from the throne of God all the way to my heart. Oh thank you Jesus! Thank you isn't enough!

Make your way to the cross. Push through the crowd of mockers, of scorners. Push through the crowd of those who laugh you to scorn, who criticize you. Come to the cross. There you will find grace and forgiveness.

He is Worthy!! He is Majesty! He deserves our praise.

God bless you

Thursday, April 21, 2011

John 17

This is one of my favorite chapters in the Bible. It reveals the heart of Jesus. Was this the prayer in Gethsemane? Who heard him pray? Peter, James, and John? Or just John?
A few of the statements: "The hour has come, I have finished my work, I have told them all things you have given me, I am no longer in the world"...These are all statements Jesus said in His prayer.

Jesus was speaking as if He had already left this world, yet he had the crucifixion to endure. In all this Jesus prayed that our joy would be fulfilled in Him. Shortly before his crucifixion, He said He had given His words to us, so that we would have His joy. Not feeling sorry for himself, not crying out for deliverance, but still remembering those in the world and that our joy would be fulfilled.

I would encourage you to read John 17 as a part of your Easter celebration. This is the Lord's prayer!! Jesus shares His heart with us.

Thank you , Jesus!! I'm so glad you prayed for me!

Easter Blessings
God bless you

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Wednesday

We are now in the middle of Easter week. I wonder if Jesus was thinking of the count-down.
What about Judas? Did he know what he would do? Or was that a spur of the moment decision? Thirty pieces of silver? Really?

My next question is—what am I giving in exchange for my soul? Less than 30 pieces of silver? Or am I willing to lose all so that I can have eternal life? Makes me sad to think how easy it is for me to think of the "don't have's" in my life. Then God nudges me again and again. Things are not important. HE is! Our life in Him is all that counts. Let's not sell ourselves short of eternal glory!

Jesus gave His all for me. I desire to do the same for Him. My all is quite meager, but He sees it through His righteousness, not mine.

On Friday I will meet you at the foot of the cross.
God bless you

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Rooster Crowed

I have often thought of the rooster's crow the night Peter denied Jesus.

It is most annoying to hear roosters crowing at 1:00 am or 3:00 am. Don't tell me they don't crow in the middle of the night. Try Haiti. Haitian roosters crow all night, whenever the mood hits. After 29 years, it wouldn't wake me up, but if I wasn't asleep already...ahhh then it is most annoying.

But Peter...I have a feeling he wished the rooster had never crowed that solemn night. The rooster crowed, and Jesus turned and looked at Peter. The rooster would have been so convicting, but the "look" even more so.

What about me? Have I ever denied the Lord? Have I ever kept silent when I should have spoken for Him? Have you? Have you ever heard "the rooster crowing"? I have, but not a literal rooster for reminders. God pricks our/my heart when we stay silent instead of we speaking His Name.

Peter went out and wept bitterly. The was the first step in church work. Peter repented, God forgave, Jesus loved. God didn't give up on Peter. He doesn't give up on you. Or me. Peter was used in a mighty way to start the church. He has a plan for your life and mine. He is waiting for us to come to the end of ourselves. Like Peter.

Repentance, Redemption, Resurrection!! A work completed.

Have a good night
God bless you

Monday, April 18, 2011

For What Purpose

John 12:27 “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’?"

We are starting the week of Easter. What was the purpose? Oh that's easy we think. Yes, we do know the purpose of Easter. But would there have been an Easter if Jesus would not have obeyed His Father in the years prior to Easter? Of course not. Although Jesus heart was troubled, and he prayed to be saved from the hour of crucifixion. Yet, He prayed "Not my will but thine be done."

God has a purpose for each of us. Do we know that purpose? Do the troubles of our lives over-take the purpose God has for us?

Tonight my soul is troubled. I'm troubled because I let my thoughts and attitudes stray from the attitudes of Jesus. Philippians is filled with verses of being of one mind, of having a mind of humility, considering others more than myself, being filled with joy. Today I feel I have strayed from this.

I'm tired of not walking, I'm tired of being able to get out and about, I'm just tired. Yet, God. God knew this was going to happen from the beginning. My prayer is that I serve Him faithfully in whatever capacity He has called me to serve.

Forgive me, Lord. Let me approach resurrection Day with great joy.

God bless you each one.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The God of Jacob

Have you ever wondered why God chose to be titled "the God of Jacob,?" The God of Jacob? He was a conniver, a thief, liar. The God of Jacob? He could have chosen to us his new name, Israel. The God of Israel would seem a bit more holy. But He didn't. We see God as the God of Jacob many times in scripture. There is nothing to hard for the Lord. He can save anyone. No one is too bad for the Lord. Salvation is for all.

Sometimes we don't want to be seen with certain people because it may put an edge on our name, reputation. Jesus got his hands dirty. He worked among the poor, sinners, the dirty. He touched the leper, the adulterous woman, spoke with a samaritan woman. None of these things were culturally acceptable. He was accused of sinning, and even accused of having a demon. This didn't stop Jesus from His work.

He also reached out and touched me. He reached out and brought me into the fold. He cleaned me up. Gave me a spiritual bath. He continues to do that.

We needn't be afraid to reach out to the unclean, the ugly, dirty. If God puts them in your way, then give them a message of Hope. Share Jesus.

Have a beautiful Lord's Day
God bless you

Friday, April 15, 2011

Rags to Redemption

Last night I was privileged to attend a fund raiser for a crisis pregnancy center. Six girls gave their story/testimony. All of their stories ended with being redeemed. From rejected, homeless, abused, violated, normal to Redemption! Beautiful testimonies.

All of us are examples of rags to redemption. Isaiah 64:6 states that "our righteousness is as filthy rags." So how is it that I think I am good or worthy? I am graciously redeemed. Of myself I am less than nothing. The challenge last night was "How can I make a difference?" I am retirement age, but is there retirement in kingdom work? For me, the correct answer is "No."

A note from a friend, "Our resources are limited. God's aren't. Our wisdom is limited. God's isn't. Our power is limited. God's isn't. What we offer, in the face of such great need, is small ... until it is brought to God through Jesus, and then it is multiplied, empowered, enhanced, broadened, increased, and sufficient. This is not just our hope; it is God's track record throughout His time with His people. Let's bring Him what we have now to do his work, and not wait until we think we have the plan, the power, and the resources to do what only He can do. Let's quit waiting and wandering and wondering and bring Him what we have." (P. Ware)

For me, this puts my nothingness in prospective. We don't look on our rags but on HIS Grace, His wisdom and power.

God bless you

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Pray

Tomorrow Patrick heads to Haiti again. Prayer answered...the container of goods that was sent to Haiti soon after the quake has finally been released from customs!

So now Patrick is in overload for tasks to be done this time, but the container will take days to have it organized and distributed. So just pray that he will be able to get things accomplished without many frustrations, etc. Life and work is so difficult in Haiti. Pray for wisdom.

I will be making an appointment to see a specialist for my amputation. My doctor wanted me to have a second opinion. Praying the problem will be found and taken care of soon.

Pray also for Carolyn, my cousin, whose husband died suddenly of a heart attack. He is young, at least I think it is young. Probably in his early 50's.

I lift my eyes to the hill, from whence comes my help. My help comes from the Lord.

God bless you

Monday, April 11, 2011

comments

Thank you to the many of you who have commented. For those of you who asked how to comment. At the bottom of the page after the post, you should see "write a comment".
Hope this helps.

Balancing

I feel like I'm doing a balancing act. Waiting on the doctor to call, office work, trying hard to get caught up with tasks needing completed, helping Patrick get ready for Haiti, enjoying my mom, not to mention enjoying the grandkids and wishing I could play with them. All done rolling around on my office chair. haha. So happy we have wood and tile floors. Makes rolling around so easy.

The balancing act is not getting so much done but deciding what to do first so that it all gets done before I'm so exhausted I can't go on. Of course, aging comes into the picture.

I was thinking of the verse "they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength." That's what I'm waiting for—more strength.

For those of you who are wanting to comment, I am sorry. I have not figured it out either. When I do, I will let you know how to do it.

God bless you




Sunday, April 10, 2011

Every Tongue

Isaiah 54:17 "...every tongue that rises up for judgement against you will prove to be guilty."

This morning's message challenged me to wonder how often I have believed the label people put on me. What are some labels we have heard since we were children? Loser, failure, no good, ugly, and one I have heard in Haiti "little demon"? Do we grow up believing this of ourselves? Or do we find redemption in our Lord, knowing that those labels are proven untrue of us.

We all work through words spoken that have cut to the core of our spirit. But we have a Lord that has redeemed us, called us precious and takes joy in us. We are winners under the blood of Jesus Christ.

Let's hold up the banner that says redeemed, forgiven and victor!! For that is who we are.

Only through Jesus. Praising Him
God bless you

Friday, April 8, 2011

A Mother's Instinct

A mother is always a mother. I believe the mother "instinct" never goes away. Today that instinct got me into trouble.

What does a mother do when she sees a 2 year old standing on the couch, face to the wall, and losing his balance? Of course, we try to run to catch the fall. That works fine if one has 2 legs. But the result of that "run" with one leg doesn't turn out so well. Yes, I really did get up and tried to make a run for it, totally forgetting I had only 1 leg. I fell instead. Zion, on the other hand, fell and never bumped his head. Took off running as if nothing even happened.

Me, I'm still "suffering" the result of that decision. Lots of pain. Not sure which hurts more—my leg or my arm. I really need my arm to use the walker. Oh well...so let's wait and see what tomorrow brings. At least I may be able to tell which hit the hardest. I know I didn't break any bones. Bruised? I'm sure.

Rest well tonight.
God bless you!!

A Mother

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Discipline=pain

"Discipline is the act of inducing pain and stress in one's; life in order to grow into greater toughness, capacity, endurance, or strength. So spiritual discipline is that effort of pressing the soul so that it will enlarge its capacity to hear God speak and, as a result, to generate inner force that will guide and empower one's mind and outer life." Gordon MacDonald

Pain? Stress? That isn't fun or even desirable. But that is my lot if I want to hear the voice of God more clearly. Do I really want to omit pain in my life. I think of the discipline of a little child. Let a child go its on way, and when he is grown there will be a rebellious heart. That is why God doesn't ease up on me. He knows without the discipline my heart would be rebellious.

Look through the scriptures and you will find every great man of God, lived a life of pain—Noah, Joseph, David, Daniel, Jesus, Paul, Peter and the list goes on. It is easy to see their success, but often we by-pass what it took to reach the goal.

My encouragement to you: Press on, don't hide from discipline. Accept the way God chooses for you. You will have great rewards in the end.

God bless you.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Update

Another visit to the doctor for results of the MRI. I have a few issues at hand with my leg, which is causing the pain. A pocket of fluid which seems to be infected, a jutting bone which is too long and all my weight is on that bone. I will be seeing a specialist in amputations. I am not able to wear my prosthesis.

There may be the possibility of a revision of the amputation, but will need to wait for the specialist.

This was not my plans. My plans were to be walking and on the way to a bit more of normalcy. But for the grace of God...I must confess this turn of events have not been so easy, but yet my prayer is that God can use this for His glory. I pray I don't complain at the situation.

Rejoice in the Lord, and again I say rejoice!! The apostle Paul wrote that while in prison. And he had things to rejoice about. So do I.

God bless you

Monday, April 4, 2011

President announced

The votes are finally counted and the result given for the next president in Haiti. Marteley will be our next president. So far it is peaceful, and we are praying it will stay that way. Our prayer is that God can use this man to make some changes in Haiti.

Waiting...for? Change? for a different reign? for a new government? Even in the States...I hear a lot of people saying what they don't want, but what do we really want? We don't want higher taxes, we don't want medical care reform, we don't want a lot of things.

Have I really prayed for the leaders? Really prayed for their spiritual condition? Have I? I have failed. My desires for a government shouldn't be just for my good, or what pleases me. It should be for God's Kingdom to be glorified. Are we so busy looking at the situation around us that we forget to look to the heavens for the second coming of Jesus.

Will He find us watching? Or will He find us complaining about our government and leaders?

God bless you. Oh and don't forget to pray for our president, praying in love.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Like a Child

Having our 2 grandchildren with us is a blessing and a joy. Presently, my mother, 89 year old, from Indiana is visiting us. What a pleasure and a joy!! Promise claims her as her own. Every morning Promise goes to great-grandma's bedroom to "help" her put her hearing aid in. She loves to help. Then this morning as they started down the hall, after the hearing aid was in, she says, "Grandma, I'll just walk like you do." And proceeds to hold on to the wall for balance, and humps over a bit, and does a perfect imitation of grandma. My mother was quite amused. Promise is also the one who hops around the house on one leg to imitate me. Smile.

Children are so unassuming. Not poking fun, just imitators! We are to be imitators of Christ. We are to follow Him, do as He does, and be the magnet of the Gospel. If we keep our eyes on Him, we can be imitators of Him also. But we also are commanded to make disciples, teaching the Word. This isn't just just your pastor's job. All of us are to make disciples, which is nothing more than making imitators of Christ. Showing others the way.

No wonder Jesus said "Let the little children come to me." They are so real, so trusting of others and really do love to imitate. Watch what they are imitating. Maybe it isn't always so good.

God bless you

Friday, April 1, 2011

How long is forever?

It seems like a forever since I got out of bed this morning. The key word is "seems." A lot of things seem like something, but really aren't. The day has been very long. Round trip to Sarasota, meetings all day, and now I get to go to bed.

So I'm thinking how often I use the term always, forever, unending, etc. You know the vocabulary. To our spouse "You always forget to take out the trash. You always leave me with all the chores." Really? Always? Think about it. Always is never ending. I'm sure it seems never ending. Smile.

How about this phrase—"oh I haven't seen you in forever." Meeting a friend you haven't seen in a long time. Oh I know, we use it as a way of expression.

Just as I have no words to describe this long day, so it is with eternity. There are no words to describe it really. I can't even imagine it. Never ending, with no tears, no sorrow, no problems, no suffering, no death. NEVER.

God's forever is not based on time. Forever will just be forever, never ending. The best description I can think of is looking into the heavens, and see the stars and the heavens go on and on as far as the human eye can see, and then more. There is no end to the heavens. "The heavens declare the glory of God."

Have a wonderful weekend.
God bless you.