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Tuesday, October 30, 2012

The Storm Around Us

2 Chronicles 32:31b "God withdrew from him, in order to test him that He might know all that was in his heart."

Would God still do this today? Think about all that is happening just in the US and rest of the western hemisphere. Think of all the destruction that Sandy has caused. Who is behind the power of Sandy? Who controls the wind and the rain? Who controls you and me? God is more powerful than satan. So if for one moment we think we can outsmart God, think again.

For all the good Hezekiah did, God still withdrew Himself for a moment so that Hezekiah could see what was in his heart. God already knew what was in there. He knows what is in my heart and yours. We have no hidden agenda with God, we just think we do.

When we humble ourselves before God, He will draw near and hear our prayers. God is a God of mercy. He loves us, He wants us. He takes great joy in His children. This is almost more than I can comprehend...why would He be so patient and loving when too many times I try to get on my own throne and control things...

That is unconditional love, forgiven as far as the east is from the west, peace that passes all understanding, a Father that never stops loving or gives up on me! Life really can't get any better than this, no matter what the conditions around us look like.

In the midst of all the devastation and destruction, take heart and look up. God holds out His Hand to give you peace in the midst of the storm.

You are loved.

God bless you.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Report From Haiti

So I haven't blogged for a few days. It's been a bit of a roller coaster ride at our house. You know, with Sandy on its way, turned hurricane versus Tropical storm. When I called Patrick a few days ago, he was saying how the storm the night before was terrible. What he didn't know that it was a hurricane 2 that hit. It rained in Haiti for 4 days.

What happens in Haiti when it rains for that many days...floods, mudslides, bridges are washed out, and people are hungry because you can't get out to buy anything. The river in Mayette suddenly had no water in it. The reason? A mountain slide blocked the water. Now there is a lake up where the mountain slide blocked the water coming down in the river.

Once again, Haiti is in a very precarious and difficult situation. What can be done to help? We do not know. So many needs again. So many people without homes again.

Because of all this, Patrick is blocked in Mayette and can not come home on Monday, as planned. He plans to stay a week longer to help all he can, and also hoping roads will be dried out and somewhat repaired by then. So please pray for him. Also pray for those who have damaged or demolished homes from the storm.

In all this, God is faithful and He hasn't made a mistake. We just don't understand, but we only need to continue to praise Him for His Goodness.

Have a wonderful weekend.
God bless you

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Cleaning Bathrooms

Psalm 119:71-73 "It is good for me that I have been afflicted, that I may learn Your statutes. The law of your mouth is better to me than a thousands of coins of gold and silver....." 73b "Give me understanding that I may learn Your commandments."

Precious verses, reminders of God's goodness to me. He sees afflictions that are good for me. But the end of those verses touch my heart...I need understanding to see afflictions God's way. But they hurt, they are uncomfortable. That they are, but God calls afflictions good.

Is cleaning bathrooms considered an affliction? Probably not, but may come close. But if I suffer for a moment while cleaning them, the reward is great...CLEAN and smells good. The only problem is, it doesn't last so long. But the effort is worth it.

I wonder if God sees me a bit like cleaning a bathroom...lots of work, lots of scrubbing, looks and smells better for the moment. Where does the bathroom get the dirtiest? Behind the stool where no one can see it. So much dirt collects there. That's a bit like our life. We try to hide things, hoping no one will notice, but God sees it anyway. We may as well allow Him to work on the hidden things, we will feel cleaner.

I am an unfinished project that God keeps working on daily. He is amazingly patient and kind. He is good, even in His corrections.

One day, I will be complete in Him. Then no more the kids say, "I'll be sparkly clean."

God bless you

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Today He Is...

I am back home. Great weekend in NC. It was a privilege to meet missionaries serving in Fiji. I love meeting missionaries serving around the world and hearing of their experiences. Also met a couple who will soon be going to Chile. But who will be missionaries to America? There are many who are reaching out into their neighborhood, but I believe more of us should be doing the work.

While in NC, I was privileged to visit a beautiful lady who is now in an assisted living facility. She will be 92 years old in December. After the quake, she sent Patrick and I a "thinking of you" card every week for many months. What a ministry and blessing!

This morning I need all of Jesus—Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God (strength), Everlasting Father, and Prince of Peace. For you see, I have so many things that need to be done and in these moments it is easy to get distracted on the urgent. It is easy to get frustrated and tired. But God is able to take me through the mounds of paperwork, laundry, etc.

Then I open my Bible and read Psalm 33..."Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous. For praise from the upright is beautiful." This is a Psalm of praise, and it ends with "Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in Him, Because we have trusted in His holy name. Let your mercy, O Lord, be upon us. Just as we hope in You."

Today go in the name of the Lord. He is our Hope...

God bless you

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Be Back Soon

I may not have the internet connection to post a blog for the next few days.

Pray as I travel to NC tomorrow for a mission conference. I will be sharing in the conference on Sunday evening. Pray that God will use me mightily for His glory.

Pray for Patrick as he finalizes things so he can return home on Oct 28.

Reach out to those who are lonely, hurting, abandoned. Bless them in a special way.
Have a wonderful weekend.

God bless you

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

He Is..

Isaiah 9:6 "For unto a child is born, unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. and His name will be called Wonderful counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.."

I heard this verse the other day, and the speaker reminded us how the name of Jesus is all inclusive. He is government. I am sure this would come as a big surprise to many leaders to realize they really are not in control. They can't even make their heart beat one extra beat without the Lord.

Jesus is our All. Are you troubled, worried, burdened? He is the Wonderful Counselor (or He is Wonderful, and a counselor). He knows the answers to all my concerns and fears. He is my counselor. Do you feel weak and lack of energy? Sick? He is my Strength—Mighty God. No weakness there. Have you been abandoned? He is the Everlasting Father. Do you have problems relaxing, going to sleep? He is the Prince of Peace.

He takes care of us, His children. He loves us. This verse comes as a great encouragement to me right now. I haven't been sleeping well. I can rest in peace, knowing He is my everlasting Father.

I am encouraged with this verse. He is faithful, yes, He really is...

God bless you

Monday, October 15, 2012

One Way Jesus

Promise learned a song at church, and she loves it. "One Way, Jesus"  One way, Jesus you are the only one....

How I trust that she would always remember that and hide that truth in her heart. He is the Only way. Every where we look there are hurting people, lonely ones, rebellion is running out of hand...

The truth is Jesus is the only Way...the only One. Christ in me, the hope of glory. We have the answer. We need to share the Answer, Jesus!

Saturday night at church we learned that there were over 300 people baptized at the beach that same afternoon. But there was one extra special baptism which blessed me beyond imagination...a 90 year old lady was pushed on a wheelchair to the baptism sight and was baptized. Wow! There is no age limit and praise the Lord she put her faith in Jesus. This is determination!

Patrick is in Haiti, returning the end of the month.

God bless you

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Run With Joy

Have you ever felt trapped in your own life? Like going nowhere fast? What do you do about it? How do you handle it? Eat more? Go shopping more? Become a workaholic?

We all have ways to hide behind our discouragement or depression. Maybe you are thinking if we are a child of God, we shouldn't even have these moments. But the truth of the matter is, we do. The answer is not to stay there or try to "bury" ourselves in the trap. Of course, we wouldn't want our friends to know. But if we continue down the road of discouragement, friends will know. Our expressions and attitudes will soon speak louder than our words.

Did I find a solution this morning? Yes.
Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of
witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so
easily beset [us], and let us run with patience the race that is set
before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of [our] faith;
who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising
the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
(Hebrews 12:1-2

When I read this, I thought "we really do have a great cloud of witnesses." I find it in Hebrews 11. These people lived their life out in faith. Believing God in the midst of suffering, discouragement, sin. We often look at Abraham, Gideon, Noah, David, Samuel, the prophets as being men of unusual power. Oh, but they didn't know the end of the story of their life. They trusted God and obeyed Him one step at a time. We know how their story ended. Remember, they didn't. Just like you and I don't know what our next step will be.

So today, we take these witnesses, learn from them. We lay aside those burdens that weigh us down. We ask God to forgive our sins, and we leave that sin at the foot of the cross. Run with patience (yes, even if you have to run with one leg). Just Run...into the arms of Jesus. Most of all, in all of this..look to Jesus..He endured the cross with joy. He is the author of our faith.

Learn from the witnesses given in Hebrews 11. Run with Joy.

Have a great day and
God bless you

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Go in the Name of the Lord

I think a lot of the condition of America. I also hear a lot of rumble from Americans, and even Christians, lashing out at our leaders, esp. President Obama, and how he has caused the downward spiral of the economic recession, etc.

Then as I read through the Old Testament, a thread of truth keeps running through the scriptures. The nation of Israel was formed on the laws of God, of a people chosen by God, and commanded to give their whole heart into obedience to God. When that didn't happen,and they chose to serve other gods and build altars to other Gods, there were repercussions for the choices. God chose a king to fight against them or to take them into captivity. There were times when God sent famine or other natural catastrophes to judge the people.

God is the same yesterday, today and forever. So why do we think it is Obama's fault. I believe that God is judging America for our silence in speaking out for God. Where was the church when prayer was taken from school? Where was the church when abortion was legalized? Where is the church today when some churches are having pastors in a homosexual relationship/marriage? There are many pastors who are turning their hearts toward a more modern way of presenting God, to please the people.

Is this what God wants? Is revival going to come if we as Christians sit back and only complain about our government leaders? Really? Judgement has come.

Again, I quote Christine Caine, "We were not saved to be safe. We were saved to be radical." There just is no other way. But won't we be an offense to people? Yes, we will. So was Jesus. The church leaders in His day were offended. His greatest critics came from the church/temple.

Let's learn to stand for Jesus....He gave His all for us. Read the Word, Pray, then go in the name of the Lord.

God bless you

Monday, October 8, 2012

Talking with Jesus

It was a lonely weekend. Missed Arlene so much. My other sisters were busy all weekend and also my mom. So they couldn't talk on the phone. And of course, Arlene was busy in dance and worship. Not sure if she was in class learning, or if there is perfection as soon as one crosses the threshold into Glory.

I think if I really knew and could comprehend how beautiful and wonderful Heaven is, I'd have a most difficult time staying earthbound. We do have somewhat description of heaven in the Bible, but the sound of worship isn't quite clear. Focus on life on earth needs to be such that our goal is to be diligent in Kingdom work, but not bound to earthly work and dreaming of comforts here. Seems a bit ridiculous when I think of it...we save money for more comforts here, to have more clothes, things, etc. When all the time that money could be used to help someone and even maybe they would come to Jesus.

I really wanted a sister to talk to this weekend, but then I believe God wanted me to talk to Him. I like the story of the lady who always had an empty chair close to her bed. She never wanted it moved. When asked about this, she said, "Oh that is the chair Jesus sits in when He and I talk."

How many chairs have I passed by? Jesus was there, but I just thought it was a homeless person. Or a lonely person. Or a hurting heart. But I was busy and preoccupied with my own problems. Yet Jesus on the cross, looked down with compassion on his mother and told John to take care of her. Wow, even on the cross, Jesus had compassion for others.

Am I still lonely? Yes, but I have so many people I can pray for....Zion is sick, a young lady whom the doctors cannot find a remedy for her problem, a little girl with cancer, a lonely missionary, and the list goes on.  I'm off....

Need to talk to God for a while

God bless you

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Don't Change Others

Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be. ~Thomas à Kempis, Imitation of Christ, c.1420

My niece just posted this on FaceBook. I thought it worthy of sharing. For isn't it just like this...we spend a lot of time wishing others would do things differently, act differently, at least be more like I am. But the quote is so true, we can't even make ourselves who we want to be.

Quite frankly,  we don't even know who we want to be, so of course we can't become who we want to be. The problem lies when we compare ourselves to others. When we do this, we do not have a good measuring line. Everyone is different, so when we compare ourselves to others we think we aren't so bad after all. Or we want to be more like "so and so." That also creates a problem. Others change often  and are comparing themselves to others.

This is a sad domino effect. Is there a solution to this miserable condition? Oh but there is!! For you see, God never intended us to compare ourselves to others. We are unique to God. He has formed us. He leads us in the path He has chosen for us. He is the potter and we are the clay.

The Word of God is our mirror. That is our measuring stick to compare ourselves to the Word. And we are found wanting. But for the Grace of God, we could never come close to approval. God sees beyond our faults and humanness, He sees us through the Robe of Righteousness because of the blood of Jesus. The veil was torn at the death of Jesus. Now we can come boldly to the throne of Grace. To the Throne of God. 

Don't try to change others to what you want them to be. Neither try to change yourself to be more like others. Be unique in Jesus. Let Jesus change you to who He wants you to be. That is the only way to contentment and peace. God takes great joy in His children. We are precious in His sight.

God bless you

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

I Qualify

Isaiah 46:4 "Even to your old age, I am He, and even to gray hairs I will carry you. I have made, and I will bear; Even I will carry, and deliver you."

The is a wonderful promise. Just to know that we serve a God who cares about us from before birth into eternity! It really can't get better than this. Those of you who can still walk on both legs, the idea of being carried and delivered may not make much sense.

Then there are those of us, who "hobble along" with 1 1/2 leg, and I'm thankful for that. But that half leg that is man-made just is not as well done as God the Creator did. My son often offers to carry me from one place to another, but of course I decline as it really isn't necessary as long as I can still go.

My question is, how many can God carry at one time? I know I'm not the only one who needs to be carried. Many in Haiti are still suffering greatly from their amputation. They still suffer with infection and great pain. In comparison, I have no problems.

There are times I use a wheelchair, such as, airports. I'd rather walk/run from gate to gate. But I can't now. So it just feels good that God has promised to carry me...

I guess this verse is really for me, I qualify with old age (I'm getting there), gray hair (definitely). Thank you Lord for the promise to carry me and delivering me to the finish line.

God bless you