Friday, October 29, 2010


I cannot count how many times in my day I intercede for someone. It isn't always in prayer, though most of the time it is. A few words can turn a squabble between my Grandladies into a laughing spree or just a quiet acceptance. A few words in prayer can calm the fears of a friend, opening the door for her to receive peace in the middle of her storm. Just a few words, and a caring heart makes one an intercessor.

The heart of an intercessor is never closed to the hurt of others. They see, hear, and feel what others are going through. A prayer warrior has no power of their own. They receive the direction of the prayer from the parties concerned. They go between as a communicator with no power to change the situation for others.

A few days ago I received an email from Master Media Ministries. They minister to the top executives in the media and ask people to pray for two people by name each day. I am happy they are sending out their names via email now. I do not need to refer to a printed sheet lined with three months of names for which to pray. When I got the email this last week, I felt a tug on my heart for all my family members. Some are going through a tough time. Others have no clue as to why they need Jesus in their lives. Still others are very opposed to the ways of Christ. My family needs an intercessor.

The idea was born. I would make a calendar of family names. Praying specifically for two members of the family every day. I asked my sister if she would like to join me, and she responded with enthusiasm. The list of names is complete. The calendar is being made today. My hopes are to see Gods' hand move and the hearts of my family to be moved also!

Do we have a few words to spare? Do we care for someone enough to use those words on their behalf? Do we care enough for God, our Father, to speak out His love to those at odds with Him? It really only takes a few words spoken in love.

Father, You gave us Jesus and the Holy Spirit to intercede on our behalf. You have given us Your Word so that we might be reconciled to You. You anoint us with a call to pray and intercede for others. I don't want anyone to fall through the cracks because no one cared to pray. I am sorry to say that I have avoided prayer for some people who I thought would not want prayers. Forgive me! Maybe they don't want prayer, Lord, but You do. Thank You for calling me to prayer. Thank You for the honor of speaking to You on behalf of others. Thank You for the privilege of speaking to others in Your behalf! Open my ears to hear Your words for them. Open my eyes to see them as You see them. Open my heart to care enough to be faithful in prayer.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Children learn by playing. They play out life situations and learn about relationships. They play with the materials around them and discover color, numbers, and letters. They learn engineering and physics though they won't understand it fully for many years, maybe never. They learn by playing with water, toys, dirt and food. They are amazed at our world and delight in discovery!

There are few people in this world that continue to play. They put aside play for the adult activity of work. Those who do play at their work love what they do and enjoy everyday playing for money. It is the envy of others to watch the smiles of those who love what they do! I wonder if it is possible to change our minds so that we can love whatever we do for work.

There is a scripture that tells us to do whatever we do as if we are doing it for the Lord. (see Col.3:23). Maybe in knowing we work for the Lord we can find excitement, joy and satisfaction that we found in play as a child. Certainly that would please God. He asks us to become like little children so we can inherit the Kingdom of God. Is He telling us to play for our inheritance? Maybe.

I have a wonderful cd with a recited poem that stirs a playful attitude in my heart. The cd is entitled City of Gold. It is all about heaven, and the poem I like best describes heaven as a playground. The last stanza speaks for all of us too proud to let ourselves become as one of Jesus' little children.

"I suppose I might be too tall for the entrance.
Ah, but Lord, chuck the rules in the bin.
If I am too large, tell the angel in charge
To let me bow down and come in."
by Adrian Plass (c)1997 Little Room Music (administered by IQ Music)

I suppose if we do not learn to work at our play and play at our work we will learn to do so in heaven. I look forward to that day!

Father of the little child within me, Thank You for encouraging me to play and delight in Your world. You have created a marvelous world to explore and enjoy! I am so sorry that I allow fear to rule my heart, stopping me from taking the risk of discovery. Though I know I might find You and even myself in the amazing playground here on earth, I am aware that my sin and the sins of mankind have polluted the experience. But I thank You for allowing Your light shine in this dark world. I want to find the joy and delight You have given for my enjoyment. Open my eyes and ears! Let me taste and see that You are good! Let me risk the touch of You in my life!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Cocoon Escape

I remember finding cocoons hanging from a branch of my favorite tree when I was young. I loved to tickle them and watch them squirm. I knew there was something alive inside, and I knew that if I was patient a butterfly would emerge someday. Recently I have witnessed the emergence of a beautiful butterfly in the disguise a friend.

I have known this friend for over fifteen years. In that time I have watched her struggle in her cocoon as a care giver for her husband. She was willing to die to herself so she could give him the care he needed. It is a beautiful love story. Her struggle was hers alone. I could be watchful and pray, but it was she, herself who was wrapped in the cocoon. As her husband walked closer to heavens' gate, she was changing, and I only hoped the change was good.

I wanted to help. I wanted to comfort, encourage and even understand, but like the butterfly in the cocoon, I could only see and understand a small part of what she was going through. Then it happened! In the release of her husband into the arms of God, she began to emerge.

My friend has struggled out of the confines of her bondage and has taken flight! She still misses her love and always will, but now her life is new! She learned to submit to God's will and timing through her confinement. She learned to allow His purpose for her life to be fulfilled. In all of the lessons learned she became a butterfly!

She now has a new purpose in Christ! She must fly and touch many lives with the message she was given in her cocoon. As I sat and watched, I have been encouraged that my cocoon will last only for awhile. Someday I will be released to fly and touch others for God in a greater way too! I must be patient! But I can't wait!

Mysterious Miracle Working God, You surprise us with resurrection power! You make Your ways known to us through Your creation! I don't like my cocoon. I have been comfortable here for awhile, but now I want out! I am trusting You to release me and help me fly! Thank You for Your wisdom and timing! Fill me with Your Spirit as I wait. I need Your love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faith and self-control. Fill me! Use me!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I have been admiring the moon these past few nights. It has been so beautiful! Lit with an iridescent glow, like a pearl sitting amongst diamonds on a dark blue velvet cloth, the moon slowly rolls up to the heights spreading the suns warmth into the darkness. Okay, so maybe it is beautiful all the time, but recently it has had an appeal for me that keeps me wondering and enjoying!

It is no mystery that the moon does not own its own light source. It is a simple orb gently encircling our earth. It is illumined by the sun and shines brightest in the dark starry skies of nighttime. Our moon was created to reflect the sun. Though it has little to offer in its own right, it has much to offer when revealing truth through its reflective properties.

We could learn an important lesson from the moon. We are created to reflect the light of Christ. We are meant to spread His light into a dark world. It is also true that when we allow the world to get between us and God we become caught in a shadow that lessens our impact in the nighttime darkness!

The moon has no choice in moving away from the shadow of the world. It repeats its lesson for us month after month, generation after generation. God reminds us continually about the shadows of the world and our created purpose of reflecting His beauty and glory so we will not forget. We do have a choice. Yes, the shadows loom large sometimes, but we can choose to stand in the light. We reveal our own truth in where we stand. I often told my children if they were sneaking or hiding what they were doing, it revealed that they knew they were wrong. In the same way when we hide away from the light by sitting in the shadow of the world, we are revealing the condition of our hearts. It is so much safer to be in the light!

Creator God, maker of our earth, moon, stars and sun, I praise You for the lessons You teach and reteach through it all! I forget so easily and fall into the shadows without thinking sometimes! Thank You for reminding me over and over that my beauty can only be revealed when You shine out to the world through me! Thank You for creating me to reflect Your glory! Continue to teach me through creation. I have many lessons to learn.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Message from God

Last week my dear husband, Patrick, had two encounters that were extraordinary. Twice he had complete strangers come to him and tell him that God loved him. No long conversation, just a simple statement that God loved him. These messages came at a time when he was down and needing encouragement and hope for the future. The messages were timely and certainly of God.

Could it have been angels who spoke to Patrick? It is possible. Were they simply followers of Jesus Christ who listen to the direction of the Holy Spirit? Again, it is possible. Whoever these messengers were, they did their job well.

The next question is could God use me, or you, to bring His message to a hurting, bruised or lonely heart? Yes, He could and does! The encouragement we receive from Him must be passed on to others.

How is God encouraging us today? Is He providing for our needs? Is He filling our lives with peace? Is He assuring us of His love? It is time to pass it on. It need not be passed only to a stranger. Families need God's message too. Children as well as adults and our seniors need to hear God's messages. Are we willing to be the messenger?

God, You are the Living Word and the Author of our faith! Our faith comes by hearing Your Word. You entrust Your servants to bring the message of Good News to the World. I ask Your forgiveness for the times I have been silent and kept the message to myself. Thank You for trusting me again with the message of Your love to the world. Teach me to be silent only before You, so that I might hear the Word You want me to speak. Give me boldness and may I speak with authority and truth to the people You love so much that You sent Your Son to die for them! I want to be Your messenger!

Friday, October 22, 2010

My Birthday

Today is my birthday! God has been pleased to give me another year of life on this earth. I am blessed to have 59 years of testimony of God's rich blessings. I pray that my life gives God glory!

This morning as I awoke to a new day and a new beginning towards another year of living, I thought that life is amazing! We celebrate each year heading toward a doorway that leads to eternal living! I am so happy to have Jesus' presence today and to be assured of His presence in the future!

Life is chosen. We choose life when we chose God's way of living. God gives and sustains life. We chose to receive and enjoy each day as it comes! For me there is no fear of death. Only life awaits for me when my days end. Today I will celebrate this day and all the past days I have been given. Today I rejoice in living and the blessings of lives that surround me with love!

Father of Life! Giver of breath and living water that sustains and transforms me, thank You for my life. Thank You for the lives of those who love me, including Your Son Jesus! I pray that my every breath will breathe in Your life so that I might exhale life into those who are suffering and dying without You! My life is Yours! In this I will be happy!

Thursday, October 21, 2010


Tuesday I attended the local National League of American Pen Women (NLAPW) meeting. I am a member and proud to be a part of this prestigious group. The group is not just for writers. It includes musicians and artists. Our local group is primarily artists.

The speaker, Mary McBride, is a curator for a local art gallery. She shared her own creative talent for quilted crafts and her "Bear" poetry. She also shared some insight she has about rejection. Most art galleries accept submissions to be displayed through a process called jurying. A jury, consisting of various artists, will review the submissions and choose the ones that should be exhibited.

Mary shared that most jury members judge others work according to their own style and preferences. Prejudicial? Yes. For example, one juror she worked with chose only art work that contained circles and lines. Another would refuse any art that had purple in it because she hated the color purple. Mary effectively opened our eyes to understand that most rejection of our work is due to the prejudice of the one who is in the seat of judgment, not the quality of our work. Whether it be a written work, art, or musical score, we place our work before someone with a preconceived idea of what is good. The truth is we all look through prejudicial eyes. People judge others by faith, color of skin, education and a host of other prejudices. It is a human flaw.

In contrast to our human frailty of judging unfairly and with a closed mind, God judges rightly. His rule is true and honest. He includes every good work done for His glory to be prized in heavenly halls. We can trust Him with our honest efforts of creativity. It is only our rejection of Him that will be judged harshly.

God The Almighty Judge, you are truth and your scales of justice are fair and righteous. I want so much to judge others rightly, as You do. I find that I fall short of that desire when I look through prejudicial eyes. Thank You for revealing Your love to me and help me to love others like You do. Lord, I remember Amy Grants' song "Father's Eyes." Let me see with Your eyes and judge rightly or not judge at all!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Losing and Finding

It seems that our household is misplacing too many things lately. As we move things from one room to another cleaning up clutter we are moving things out of their normal, easy to find places. Not everything that goes missing gets found. When it does get found there is rejoicing.

Last night my daughter was looking everywhere for her ipod jack to sync her ipod on the computer. Her regular routine is to keep it attached to the computer until she brings her ipod to be rejuvenated. For some reason it was not where it was supposed to be. We moved furniture, looked through drawers, pretty much turned the room upside down looking for it! It was not to be found. We interrogated each of her girls but they insisted they had not removed it. Finally, Erin made her way to her husband and asked if he had seen it. Yes, he had. He had used it, wrapped it up neatly and put it aside where he knew where it was. Our rejoicing had a bit of frustration added in, but we were happy it did not need to be replaced.

When we live in relationship with others we often find that losing our things is a normal everyday occurrence. However, our possessions can be lost and replaced so much easier than our relationships! Losing a friend or a family member is tragic in that the unique person and their relationship to us can never be replaced. It is very important to keep our relationships healthy and if they become lost, to reach out and do our best to find them again.

When I lose my things I often pray and ask God to show me where they are. More often than not He leads me directly to them. He does care about our things. He cares about our world and wants us to care for our worldly possessions. He cares more, though, for our relationship with Him and with others. I must remember to pray when I lose a relationship too!

God went the extra mile to restore the relationship between us. He took the cross and made it the healing balm between us. Should we not do the same with those who have ought against us?

Forgiving Lord, You are our Savior. You are our healer. You are love! My flesh too often lets people slip away from me. I fail to humble myself to bring them back into right relationship with me. I too often want to be right! Thank You for Your humble example. Thank You for forgiving me! Thank You for restoring our relationship so that I can find what was lost through sin. Lord, hep me to lose myself and find the joy of togetherness!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Looking to God

Yesterday I was a bit taken back to realize that I was looking to a person, not God to provide for my needs! I became aware of my misguided focus when the person I counted on could not supply my need. It was Gods' whisper of correction that turned me to my true source.

When I expect a certain payment or wait impatiently for a debt to be paid, my attitude reveals where I look for my source of provision. Anger, frustration, worry or fear is my compass telling me I am looking in the wrong direction. On the other hand if I live in peace and continue to obey, I can trust that God is always faithful. He will supply all my needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus! (my way of saying Phil.4:19). I must look to my Heavenly Father for all my needs.

Heavenly Father, You already know what I need. You clothe the birds and the flowers! I believe You will do no less for me, Your child, and in whom Your Spirit dwells. When I turn away and seek other sources, please open my eyes and turn me back to You! I choose to look to You for all my needs. How can I ever doubt Your faithfulness when You so often supply more than enough and even most of my desires! You are good and I humbly bow to You as my provider!

Monday, October 18, 2010

In Need Or In Want

Decisions need to be made. Hard decisions. The question I ask myself is how is our helping this person going to make a difference?

Sunday mornings' service included a plug for The Empty Plate drive. We buy bags of groceries to distribute to people who are in need. We read I John 3:16-18 together as a congregation. In the ESV it is written like this: "By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers. But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him? Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and truth."

Love moves us to act on the behalf of those who are in need. A true need demands our loving attention. We, who are loved by God must love as He loves. But what is our love to look like when it becomes apparent that the need is never filled and there is no change in the hand that reaches out for more? I am not saying this about true needs like a person incapable of providing sustenance for life on his own. What do we do for able bodied, intelligent people who continue to choose a path that keeps them from becoming responsible for their own actions.

Could it be that their true need is not being met? Could it be that we are handing them what they want instead of giving them what they really need? To withhold my help may be exactly what they need to finally see their dead end road. Some people have called this tough love and it is. It is tough to see a loved one or even a stranger living a life wanting someone else to care for them, while they continue to enjoy their vices. It is tough for them to finally face their truth and do without the handout.

The next question arises as to when do we say "No?" Can we say no to some things and yes to others? How would Jesus handle the problem? This is certainly not an easy decision to make. We can only judge by the fruits, not by how we feel. We also must look for underlying needs instead of just the most obvious. The best way to decide is to converse with God in prayer.

All-Knowing and All-Loving Father, You alone can see and know the hearts of men. You alone can see and know their true needs. You know me, and still I ask You to search my heart and see if there is any offensive wicked way in me that needs to be corrected in this struggle. I want to obey your word and yet, I so often try to play Your part instead of seeking Your wisdom to know my part in helping others. Thank You for supplying all our needs, even the needs of those who seem so needy. You may call me to supply their needs, so I ask You to show me the way. Teach me Your truth and help me discern needs from wants not only in others but in myself!

Friday, October 15, 2010


My life feels crowded right now. My mind is crowded with learning new things, my time is crowded with not only the regular things to do, but the extras that have blossomed with family emergencies and the start of a busy season. My house is crowded too.

I've been trying to simplify my life, but it seems I clear out one thing and three more run to take its place! My house cleaning/simplifying job is the worst. There is no room in a house filled with two families to make everything fit. I'm getting rid of a bunch, but could give away more. My only thought is that when I move and finally open my packed boxes I might find I gave away not the "Extra," but the only one of a certain item! So to be safe, I keep some things I am not sure about.

I'd really love to do as the shows on tv where they empty the room, clean it out completely, paint and repair. The next step is to sort and throw out before placing the room back without all the clutter. To do that I need extra hands. None seem willing or available. So I may have to wait until we finally move. When will that be? I don't know. A list of things need to happen first. None have happened yet.

So back to my cleaning and moving clutter from here to there. I will get back to shifting things around the stuff belonging to me and five others and make the best of a crowded situation. In all of this it is nice to know that God can see me in this messed up world I live in! If I need help He knows where to find me! In fact, He is the one leading me out of this mess one little scrap at a time! This maze is not too complicated or too big for Him.

Almighty and All-seeing God, You are the organizer of the universe. The world revolves around Your plan. I have a plan, but it is far from perfect. I work hard to make my plan succeed, but it is not working as I would like. Thank You for leading me. Thank You for being patient with this cluttered mind and all my things that will someday be ashes. Thank You for teaching me the wisdom of letting go! Make me more like You, setting things in place and keeping them in order. I need You!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


Jacob, my Grandman #2, is only three months old. He is just beginning to enjoy wonderful experiences with his little body. He has found his hands and yet still surprised when they randomly pass in front of his face. He rubs his feet together and seems to enjoy the sensation. The roll over is not yet perfected but every so often provides movement that gets him to a new place. He can even push his way to "some place else" while lying on his back by leveraging his feet and giving a good shove.

Yesterday, I was commissioned to chauffeur needy family members throughout the day. Jacob had to go with me strapped into his car seat for long drives. He has made it clear that he does not like the car seat. Though he is moving from one place to another within those safe confines, he feels bound and restricted. I would too!

There are times in my life when I am stretching, growing and learning new things too. I enjoy the new experiences or thoughts and revelations coming my way. I seem to be moving forward even if it is little baby steps I am taking, but then something gets in my way. I get tied down with something that restricts my progress, and I get frustrated. I am moved along to a new place, but it isn't where I want to be!

For Jacob, the restriction is for his safety. He may not delight in the new places yet, but someday he will. Maybe my restrictions are also for my safety, slowing me down so I can evaluate the bigger picture, or explore the idea that maybe God wants me to take a different route.

Life won't always be safe, but my loving Heavenly Father is. His times of restriction for me are not to harm me, but to bring me good. Just like my restrictions on my little Grandman in his car seat, God wants me to be safe, or sometimes just take a rest from the exercise of living.

Heavenly Father, your plan for me is good and exciting! I want to embrace all You have for me. I don't want to be hindered. Sometimes I know You hold me tight until I hear Your voice telling me the truth of why I need to be restrained. Thank You for revealing Your will. Thank You for revealing the enemies lies and my blindness in believing his lies. Thank You for protecting me in Your loving restraining arms. Complete the good work You have begun in me as You have promised. I trust You will!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Today is our sons' 30th birthday. God brought David into the world through us and has blessed so many, including us, by His choice!

David has a teachable spirit. He listens to instruction and for the most part obeys. There have been times when he has not followed the wisest course, but he has learned from those experiences. David also has a joy that was fought for and won when he was young. Until about the age of two and a half, David was angry and kept himself at a distance from all those who loved him. Through diligent prayer and spiritual warfare, he was set free. God has, from that day, filled David with a lasting joy and made him a great hugger!

David has brought us a daughter (in-law) and two Grandmen to love. How could we not love that?

Our son, taught us to seek and trust God, receive blessings, and to smile! 30 years has gone by way too fast! David is a man we are proud to call our son!

Father God, Lord of all, You know David very well, better than we do! You have made him very special and we know You have the best of plans for him. We see only a small part of who he is and who he can become. Thank You for keeping Your eye on him and helping him to grow closer to You and deeper in Your love. Lord, Show David who You are and lead him in all truth! We thank You for allowing us to be a part of his life!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Laughing Out Loud

This morning I have been wondering when I last laughed out loud. Since I can't readily remember, I figure it is time to look for a laughing moment. To be honest, I am not looking for a little TeeHee or even a short HaHa moment. I want my next laugh to be a belly filled squeeze that makes my eyes leak and maybe get me close to wetting my pants!

In the past I've laughed like that over little bitty things. Sometimes it is something I say that made no sense or came out wrong. Sometimes it is someone else who has let go with just that little bit off kilter trivia that suddenly tickles me deep inside. It is always a surprise! It is those little things that can open up the lid with which I've kept my emotions in check. It is time to pop it off and give my tummy a workout, squeezing all the bottled up worries, confusion and fears out and fill me up with the simple pleasure of laughter.

I have a picture of Jesus laughing. It is an inspiration to me because thinking of Him enjoying a good laugh lets me know there is joy in this crazy mixed up world. Jesus came into the world to do serious business. He wept many times. I'd like to think He also laughed much! What do you think He laughed about?

Did Jesus laugh with the little children? Maybe the disciples disapproved of the children coming to Him because they were too serious minded to see the benefit of laughter. Did Jesus laugh at the wedding feast and maybe even chuckle at His mommas' request for help? Did Jesus laugh at dinner with Zacheus and his tax collector friends? In what does Jesus find delight? Does He laugh with me over the silly things I do? Well, maybe He just laughs. I can be too serious about my little missteps most of the time. :o) I think I'll read one of the Gospels and look for times when Jesus could have laughed.

Jesus, You are a Joyful Spirit. You are the fullness of Joy! Your joy gives me strength! I am too serious sometimes, Lord. I know there are times I must be sober, but these days are overwhelmingly trying and I see light in Your laughter! I want to run to You and be engulfed in your pleasure and Your joy! Thank you for filling me with good things. I pray that I will soon be surprised by Your deep joy that squeezes me to the point of tears! Would You let me share it with someone too? That will double my lasting happiness!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Good News!

Have you heard the Good News? In this world we seldom hear good news, but there is Good News to be heard. We can even join in the experience of it on a daily basis!

Problems surround us. We wrestle with our finances, relationships, and all sort of other issues. The world seems to have turned wrong side up. Many people have embraced evil and call it good, shunning good and calling it evil. Within our own hearts we do, think and say things we do not want to do. God seems so far away! The truth is that there is separation between us and God, but He does not desire for us to be wrapped up in this place so far from His love and care. There is hope.

The solution was given long ago. God, Himself, loved us all so very much that He became a man. He alone could cross the chasm of sin that separated us from Himself. He crossed over in to our world and then died on a cross so that we could cross over into His presence! He did it all out of love for you, and me! Though He paid a price, He asks for no payment from us.

His free gift is held out to all. He wants so much for us to reach out and take it. He gives us free access to Him and all He has for us. What would you do to gain this free gift? Would you believe in its goodness and trust the giver? What would you say if I told you that is all it takes?

Why is it so hard to take a free gift from a good God? Maybe because we don't believe it is really free. But it is! I have to admit that religious people have made long list of what we must do to cross over into the heavenly world God has prepared for us. Once we choose this gift we fear that we must follow a long list of stringent rules that make this world near impossible to enjoy. Foolish notions like this are not from God.

Our free gift from God is unhampered relationship with Him! In that relationship we continue to have freedom to choose His riches of a life lived with joy and free from bondage, or remain stuck in our chains and blinded to the true beauty of life. In relationship with God we have access to the best ways to deal with the problems of this world. We are free to take His advice or live with the consequences.

I pray that this blog might reach one or more that are searching for that cross over place. Is that person you? Are you ready to hear and be a part of the Good News?

Father, You have proven Your love for us! You have done all that needs to be done so that we can live in Your presence, not only after we die, but now as we travel this world. You call us to take the first step to You. It takes faith. We must believe in Your goodness and Your free gift. I pray, Lord, that someone reading this will come to know You, by receiving Your gift of life. I pray that this day will be their beginning. Thank You for the cross. Thank You for Your love. Thank You for Your free gift.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Abundant Life

What is abundant life? According to the Websters New World Dictionary, abundant means very plentiful; more than sufficient; ample. It also means well-supplied; rich. So, again I ask what is abundant life?

Is there more than one choice: the choice of life or death? God says we can have abundant life and so there must be more than just living. Life is a precious gift. Jesus offers us the gift of a choice to live abundantly or deficient. The abundance comes from relationship with Him. If we choose not to have relationship with Him, we live a less than sufficient life.

There are times when I walk through a valley of emotions. I struggle with life issues and stumble over thoughts that push me down. In those times, I must make an extra effort to open my life to Jesus. Patrick and I go through those tough places too. When we do, it is our choice to reach out to one another and to take time to be together in relationship. Jesus is my Bridegroom for eternity. His promise to me has always been more than just an ordinary life. Tough times can bring depth and fullness just as much as the mountain top experiences.

Jesus, Lover of my soul, You alone supply abundantly the life I long for! You give me riches even in the valleys. I am so sorry that I grumble and complain about those long hard days and nights! Please forgive me. Thank You for making all things work out for my good!

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Perfected Government

Political ads are filling the tv screen, mail box and even our phone lines. Many are not aimed at the issues, nor at the candidates' own ideas about the issues. They are mud balls slung at the opponent to make sure the voters see them as a better choice. I imagine they believe that the one with the least mud will win.

Politics isn't much different than playground spats. Children who want to feel important tend to tattle, gossip and make known anything to bring down the classmate they imagine has more popularity or brains. Sadly we have not learned much since our playground days.

Voters watching the melee must decide who would be best to lead and guide our country. Do we really want to get what we see? How do we stop this cycle and demand a more sane campaign? Will we find a way to change for the better? Probably not. We will continue to do what works and what works is the truth or lies being used as a punch at the other side. Don't get me wrong, I want to know the truth before I vote and sometimes the opponent needs to make the truth known, because the other guy certainly won't tell you his past mistakes, not willingly anyway.

If we want honest politicians don't we want them to be honest about their strengths and their failures? That is risky politics isn't it? I think I would be inclined to trust a person running for office who was forthright in who he is and what he will bring to the governmental process. I would also know where he/she would need to be made accountable. As for now, who do I believe, those who have the most muddied campaign or those who have thrown the most mud?

Perfection only lies in God. If we seek to find a perfect match for our side of the issues we will surely fall into the mud with them. Maybe the best way to look at the ballot is to look first at our own truth. What are our strengths and weaknesses? If we can be truthful in ourselves maybe we can see the truth that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God. We will not find perfection in the polling booth. Our hope is in God. He is our perfect governor! If we are governed by Him and His laws we will find freedom!

We MUST VOTE. The important point is that we must vote with honor and integrity knowing that we too are sinners and our leaders are fallen too.

God Almighty You are the perfect Governor, Senator, President, Mayor, etc. You have given me the freedom to choose You as my Lord. You are the only one I can trust to lead with perfection. I am blinded in my choices and so I ask You to reveal what I need to see. I ask You to be in my voting booth and direct my vote in truth and wisdom. Thank You for letting me live in this wonderful country that was founded on the freedom You have given every person. Help me to be Your light.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Search Me, O God

Looking within my heart is tough. It is most difficult after I've been accused by the devil or someone I care about. It is tough to hear my failing from God, also, but He brings love and forgiveness along with His correction.

I've been searching through my relationships, my actions and my thoughts to see if there is any thing within me that goes against what I know to be true. I haven't liked everything I have seen. It makes me sad and I know repentance is the cure.

Some of the questions I have asked myself are:
* Am I being transparent and totally honest with myself, my husband, family, and friends?
* Am I being kind and loving in the honest communication I am involved in?
* Am I doing what I know I should ? Am I obedient to God in what He has revealed in His word and in His urgings throughout my day?
* Are my thoughts centered on the truth and what is good and pure? Am I choosing to forgive others and put them higher than myself?

There are more questions, but you get the idea. Tough questions. Sometimes the truth hurts. Sometimes I must confront myself more than I'd like to confront others!

My truth rests in God. He sheds light in the dark places of my heart. He reveals my failings only because He loves me. He is with me in the revelation, in the decision, in the repentance, and in the healing and restoration. Unlike those who would point accusing fingers, He opens His arms to welcome me into His embrace.

O Ancient of Days, You alone have the right to judge. You judge rightly! You are merciful, loving and faithful in Your judgements.You are truth! I fail so often along the way to the eternal home You have provided. I need Your presence to lead me into truth and to make me more like Your Son Jesus. Thank You for being God! Thank You for the power to overcome by the blood of The Lamb and the word of my testimony. I trust You! "Search me O God, and know my heart; Test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting." (Psalm 139:23-24)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Life Long Battle

One week ago today, my daughter, Briget, was in labor to give birth to her first child, my fifth grandchild. Abigail Grace was born after a grueling labor and a c-section delivery. I watched the battle from the early stages. I entered the arena several times always leaving with more determination to pray and support this new Mommy and Daddy and their child as they fought for life.

God offers us a choice of life or death and He entreats us to choose life! He is the giver of life and desperately wants us to embrace its fullness. However, we do have an enemy who would deceive and discourage us from accepting the life given by God. It becomes a life-long battle to hold on to life and life abundant!

Not all battles are won with a perfect plan that is perfectly executed. Abigail needed intervention in order to enter this world with the least of complications. There have also been other battles that raged over the last week. Our sons' wife, Laura, battled an infection and won with the help of antibiotics. A miracle brought our pastors' daughter safe , though bruised, from a severe car accident. We know that more war needs to be waged in the upcoming months when my husband returns to the operating room to fix the knee that was supposed to be fixed last year. In all of our battles we must remember that God said the battle was His. The victory is ours, even if we may not see the present skirmish resolved as we desire.

Yesterdays' battles offer faith and courage for today. Each day has its own troubles. We can face this days' trials knowing that God is faithful. He will get us through, make something good come to us despite the wounds, and deliver the ultimate victory if we remain truly His.

This day we celebrate a new life joining our family tree. We take time to thank God that the one who steals, kills and destroys was bound. He may have taken some little pleasures but he will never steal life everlasting that Jesus gives. Abigail is healthy. Briget is mending, Jimmy is relieved! God is mighty and faithful and always good!

Almighty Father, You are the strength we need. You are our strong tower. We run to You and are safe! You have brought us through a storm because You are our protector and Savior! Thank You for Your love and watchful eye. We trust You to care for Your children in all ways. I pray we trust You for life and life abundant even through our wounds.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Birthday Girl

Today is my #2 Gradlady's 9th birthday! Brooke is very excited for today, as any 9 year old would be. I have to admit that I am a bit happy and sad for her today.

I am happy that today she gets some little special treats. I am sad that all her big dreams for her birthday won't happen because of lack of money. I wish I could do more for her birthday, but the important thing is to make sure she knows how much she is loved!

The family is coming together to celebrate in ways that are unique and special to Brooke. A special dinner and treats go alongside the little gifts that say we love her. Even God is getting into the fun surprises!

Today as she walked to school with her friends. Two school buses passed by them. One was decorated with balloons and a sign saying "Happy Birthday." Grown ups can argue that it wasn't meant for her, but the child in me recognizes God's hand in giving her that special delight! God knew that a decorated bus would delight and make a fun memory for any child. That it came on her special day and as she walked to school was more than coincidence! God prepared a treat that would delight Brookes' heart! God loves her so much!

Brooke is a strong little girl. Determination, persistence, wit and insight are some of her character in which I take pleasure. Little girls learn quickly how to use their words to draw others in or push them away and Brooke is no exception. She loves the color pink. She loves gymnastics and winning! She will push herself even if others give her a way out. Brooke brings a new perspective to our family discussions, mostly with a humorous bent!

Brooke makes me smile and laugh at the harsh and dismal world. I am so glad she is my Grandlady#2!

Father, You have created a magnificent creature when You created Brooke! Her birth was a miracle. You have placed in her unique and amazing gifts and talents that are so fun to watch. You have generously given her to our family and we are ever so grateful! Having her live in our home for the last 8 years has not always been easy. Forgive me for overlooking the gift You gave. Thank You for teaching me through Brooke. Thank You for making her shine in my life, and showing me more of You! Bless her abundantly! I pray she will live a long and healthy life, know You completely as her Lord and Savior and walk with You all her days!