Wednesday, February 25, 2015

He is able

I thought of you today… as I so often do.

Today it was the innocence you had which has been lost.  All your childhood was protected and nurtured.  Your love of life, the way you embraced it. 

Much was given to you in the LORD and yet you turned away. 

Legalisms now control you. God is somewhere in your mix, but you can’t and won’t be “confused” with His truth.  Legalisms are your leaders no matter how they contradict the LORD God Almighty.

I will never understand what happened, how it all came about, how you lost your first love, and instead, grasped human legalisms while shunning God’s truth you knew and loved.  

All the analyzing, all the thinking, it only leaves me at the LORD’s merciful feet. 

I trust You, my God and King! 

You who raise the dead! 

You who can carry the walking wounded through a life embroiled in chaos! 

I have seen it! 

I live it! 

So...why do I doubt that You can certainly do more than I can ever imagine in these impossible circumstances?  

LORD, Your mercy over me is precious!
__________________________________________

...when the storms come, it’s important for you and I, not to look back or around or ahead, but to look up! 

We need to pray for God to give us a fresh vision of Jesus, seated on the throne, in control of everything that’s happening. 

Ask Him for His peace in the midst of the storm, His power to make it through, and His perseverance as we remain focused and faithful until we make it through. 

One day the storms of life will be over. We will come to the end of life’s journey, and we will enter into our Heavenly Home where Our Father will welcome us with a long, loving embrace. And we will be safe. Forever.
--Anne Graham Lotz

Ephesians 3:20-21

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.



Crabby










Calvin and Hobbes
by Waterson

A laugh to share:

My travel plans for 2015:

I have been in many places, 
but I've never been in Kahoots.
Apparently, you can't go alone.
 
You have to be in Kahoots with someone.

I've also never been in Cognito.
I hear no one recognizes you there

I have, however, been in Sane.
They don't have an airport; you have to be driven there. 

I have made several trips there, thanks to my children, friends, family and work.

I would like to go to Conclusions, but you have to jump, and I'm not too much on physical activity anymore.

I have also been in Doubt.
That is a sad place to go, and I try not to visit there too often.
 
I've been in Flexible, but only when it was very important to stand firm.

God created amazing water droplets






















Philippians 4:6-7

Be anxious for nothing, 
but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving 
let your requests be made known to God. 
And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, 
will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

The same God who created the Heavens and the Earth, and, for example, 
created the ability for water to “bead up” and reflect His creation better than 
any manmade mirror, is the same Almighty God who can love you,
comfort you, lift you up, hold you tight, and understand ALL that you are going through and thinking.  He is always with you.

He will not abandon you! He is with you!  

He is FULL of compassion!  

Psalm 62:5-8

My soul, wait in silence for God only, 
For my hope is from Him.
He only is my rock and my salvation,
My stronghold; I shall not be shaken.
On God my salvation and my glory rest;
The rock of my strength, my refuge is in God.
Trust in Him at all times, O people;
Pour out your heart before Him;
God is a refuge for us.

*


Walking alongside each other

A friend is someone 
who knows the song in your heart 
and can sing it back to you 

when you have forgotten the words.
*
thank you, Teri
*

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Happy belated Valentine's Day




















Calvin and Hobbes
by Bill Waterson


The Red Flag Game

A few weekends ago we attended an Intelligent Design Conference with three different speakers.  It was excellent. The Speakers were, John Stewart,  J. Warner Wallace, and Frank Turek.

One of them said at their home they play “Spot the Lie” when they watch TV.  In this way they are teaching and honing everyone’s Biblical discernment skills of what is true and what is a lie.

The next time we were watching a movie it was “The Day the Earth Stood Still”, 1951, black and white.  As I have stated in previous posts, I have walked beside many women who have dealt with all levels of abuse from their husbands or boyfriends, so the game I began to play was, “The Red Flag Game”.  

Patricia Neal’s character plays a WW2 widow with a preteen son who is now dating (Hugh Marlowe).  Practically every time the boyfriend of Patricia Neal's was on the screen, he was exhibiting classic abuse qualities which spelled ABUSER!  He was definitely not a good man to ever marry—-which the movie plot had her find out—thankfully!

We all need to play the Red Flag Game or Spot the Lie in our everyday lives.  If we would do this, it would keep our Biblical eyes open for falsehoods in every area of life.

























"Gort, Klaatu, Barada Nikto"


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Two Temples

A Builder builded a temple,
He wrought it with grace and skill;
Pillars and groins and arches
All fashioned to work his will.
Men said, as they saw its beauty,
“It shall never know decay;
Great is thy skill, O Builder!
Thy fame shall endure for aye.”

A Mother builded a temple
With loving and infinite care,
Planning each arch with patience,
Laying each stone with prayer.
None praised her unceasing efforts,
None knew of her wondrous plan,
For the temple the Mother builded
Was unseen by the eyes of man.

Gone is the Builder’s temple,
Crumpled into the dust;
Low lies each stately pillar,
Food for consuming rust.
But the temple the Mother builded
Will last while the ages roll, 
For that beautiful unseen temple
Was a child’s immortal soul.


by Hattie Vose Hall, from The Best Loved Poems of the American People

*
Dear Christian sisters...do not be dismayed if the children you have raised up have become wayward, and your efforts have seemed to be worthless!  

Your efforts are still in your children---in their inner person, even if you can not see it.  
Continue to cry out to the LORD and never give up on them. He is working.  He is working in you, and He is working in them.  

Our God is mighty!



A little bit to warm our hearts!

It is 5 degrees with 25 mph winds, but sunny! 

This picture is a little bit of what is to come in spring:


















Enjoy!


Stop complaining









Rose is Rose
by Brady

Correct Biblical Submission


Thought provoking!

From "Women, stop submitting to men?" by Russell Moore, The Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission:

...Your beauty is found not in external (and fleeting) youth and “attractiveness” but in the “hidden person of the heart” which “in God’s sight is very precious” (1 Pet. 3:3-4). And it will be beautiful in the sight of a man who is propelled by the Spirit of this God.
Sisters, you owe no submission to Hollywood or to Madison Avenue, or to those who listen to them. Your worth and dignity cannot be defined by them. Stop comparing yourselves to supermodels and porn stars. Stop loathing your body, or your age. Stop feeling inferior to vaporous glamor. You are beautiful.
Sisters, there is no biblical category for “boyfriend” or “lover,” and you owe such designation no submission. In fact, to be submissive to your future husband you must stand back and evaluate, with rigid scrutiny, “Is this the one who is to come, or is there another?” That requires an emotional and physical distance until there is a lifelong covenant made, until you stand before one who is your “own husband.”
Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands as unto the Lord. Yes and Amen. But, women, stop submitting to men.


Friday, February 13, 2015

Abuse is not romance



After years of knowing and walking alongside women who are abused, I am shaken by what will come from the acceptance of sexual violence in mainstream culture.  

Great commentary by Landon at Entreatingfavor on "50 shades" and the effects of this type of violence in even our Christian culture.

*

Romans 12:1-2
Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, 
to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, 
acceptable to God, 
which is your spiritual service of worship. 

And do not be conformed to this world, 
but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, 
so that you may prove what the will of God is, 
that which is good and acceptable and perfect.

*

From Landon's "50 shades" blog post:

NOTE: The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCSE) has launched an aggressive national campaign against the controversial film, Fifty Shades of Grey. NCSE’s new webpage, fiftyshadesisabuse.com, highlights 50-plus ways that Fifty Shades harms and provides various actions that the public can take, including signing a boycott petition and joining the #50DollarsNot50Shades campaign, which calls on patrons to forgo the film and donate to women’s shelters instead.

*


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Building Character










Calvin and Hobbs
by Waterson


Do not love the world...

Mankind in Sin

“[T]he man who is not a Christian is a man who is simply governed and controlled by the world, its mind, its outlook, its mentality.  

I know of nothing which is more sad about man in sin than just that.  You see it in all your newspapers.  Is it not sad to see the way people are governed entirely by what other people think and say and do?  

They are sorry for those of us who are Christian.  They say, ‘Fancy shutting themselves down to that one Book, those narrow miserable Christians!’  So speaks the so-called broad-minded man of the world.  

How subtle the devil is to persuade people of that!  For their little life is entirely controlled by the organization of the world.  They think as the world thinks.  They take their opinions ready-made from their favorite newspaper.  Their very appearance is controlled by the world and its changing fashions.  They all conform; it must be done; they dare not disobey; they are afraid of the consequences.  

That is tyranny, that is absolute control — clothing, hair style, everything, absolutely controlled.  The mind of the world!  

There is no time to elaborate on the subtle, almost devilish influence that is displayed often in its fashions — sex rampant.  This is a sex-ridden age.  It comes out everywhere — photographs and pictures and placards suggesting it.  

Most lives are controlled by it and governed by it, all their opinions, their language the way they spend their money, what they desire, where they go, where they spend their holidays; it is all controlled, governed completely.  

Surely all this was never more evident in the world than it is today.  [1972]

When people talk so glibly about their emancipation they are giving a very clear proof of the fact that they are governed and dominated and controlled by this world, the mind of the world, the age of propaganda, the age of advertising, the mass mind, the mass man, the mass individual, without knowing it.  

Is it not tragic?  But that is man in sin.  He is spiritually dead, because he is controlled by this mind of the world.”

Quote from D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, God’s Way of Reconciliation: An Exposition of Ephesians 2, p.21-22, from Watchman's Bagpipes

*

1 John 2:15-17
Do not love the world nor the things in the world. 
If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 

For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh 
and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, 
is not from the Father, but is from the world.

The world is passing away, and also its lusts; 
but the one who does the will of God lives forever.
*


Sunday, February 1, 2015

As political as I get...."if a tree falls..."

How many of us grew up with this question:

“If a tree falls in the forest, and no one is around to hear it—does it make any sound?”

Back when my age group first heard this question, we could still discern truth---of course, the tree does make a sound( but as time has marched on, so many people have begun to lose their common sense.   Their answer would be, "no".  

This is how brain-washing works.  Leadership says something with authority over and over and soon enough the population believes it.  

It has happened before our eyes.

In our family we used to say, "Common sense isn't common any longer."   Logic ended up one of our children's favorite subjects.  

As time has marched on for us, verbal interactions with the populace do not go well.  A large part of the people we have interacted with do not understand common sense at all.  

One example began happening over a decade ago. College students were saying to us that they (college students) deserve "free college".  

(I wonder where they got this bright idea?)

When we asked these students about who would be paying for this "free college", they would answer it didn't matter!  

Trying to educate them on how this country works, it was as if we were speaking a foreign language to them.  

(The taxes which pay for everything "free" are paid by the people who work to pay the taxes.  You will be one of those people who pay taxes when you graduate.  We need to think before we desire to spend someone else's money on things which should be personal expenses.)

They could not see ahead to the future when they would be the tax payers who would have the burden of paying for this "free college".  It was very strange to see them not understanding.  They were not dumb -- in fact they were very intelligent people -- but we could tell the kind of "educating" they were getting was manipulation and control. 

Please refer to this post to hear it written more profoundly:

HT to Liberal Logic 101, If a tree falls.

"...There’s a large segment of the population now unreachable with common sense because they actually believe right and wrong are determined by the individual. What is convenient, must be right...."

*

Hopelessness!

How can we "fight" this change in people?  How can we "go back" to when they all began to be changed?  What can one person do?  It seems impossible, and so, why not just give up and join them in the way they think?  

AH! Don't give up---keep thinking!  As in any cult (a group of people who manipulates and controls others) your mind is what they mess with, but your mind is also where you can actually think, and think rightly---without them even knowing it.  

Common sense is worth cultivating.


  

And so what if they "win"?  It is quite difficult now-a-days, because they probably will eventually win"---

But as a child of God we can rest in Him!  The God of the universe, the God of the Bible is our safety if we are His!  The world may fall away into craziness, but we are safe in His hands no matter what happens here.  

*
"Some trust in chariots and some in horses,
    but we trust in the name of the Lord our God."
Psalm 20:7
*


Half-Sane









Rose is Rose
by Brady

The Portion of my Inheritance

For me, there is nothing like being really ill to make me want to clean the house.  As soon as I feel better, I need to begin.  This week was one of those times.  

It brought back so many memories of the salmonella outbreak decades ago which caused deaths, closed a dairy business, sent me to the hospital, and overcame my family with different levels of food poisoning.  The day I was released from the hospital I loved up my young family, but after putting everyone in bed that night I was up cleaning the house!  

It must be all that time laying, thinking, and not able to get up!

I now spend my time, healthy or ill, praising the LORD for how He holds me safely in His hands no matter what happens in life.  

As for the salmonella outbreak, I will never forget to glorify God for how He protected my children that week.  We had two little ones, 5 and under, who always drank their milk.  

This week was different, though.  They did not want to drink it, and I never made them; instead, I drank it.  As it turned out, my husband did not drink much of that gallon of milk either so each one of them only had a minor case of food poisoning.  Although I was so ill, in God's grace I recovered and came home ready to get back to being a wife, a mom, and a homemaker.

Psalm 16:5-6

The Lord is the portion of my inheritance and my cup;
You support my lot.

The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places;

Indeed, my heritage is beautiful to me.
*


Monday, January 26, 2015

Live now and live it in the joy of the LORD


Decades ago, after my baby sister married, my parents began visiting the Smoky Mountains every autumn.  It became a special tradition for them.  One year my mother expressed to me that, "the next time we go", she wanted to stop at a roadside quilt sale, and that is just what she did.  She purchased a lovely "Wedding Ring" quilt in muted pinks, greens, and cream colors, with the woman's name embroidered on the back.  She loved that quilt.

It wasn't until I helped my father clean out the house after she died that I found her lovely quilt carefully folded by her bed, never used.  She loved it but "from afar".

That next Christmas my grieving father visited every one of his children's homes that week, making a big circle in the mid-west.  As he drove up to our home, I ran outside to hug him and welcome him.  In his arms was my mother's lovely quilt and the rack she kept it on.  He gave this thing which was precious to my mother for me to enjoy.

What an honor for him to give me this beautiful hand-made quilt!  I dutifully folded it and displayed it in our living room.  How could I use it?  My mother loved this quilt and she never used it.  So this treasure was there for almost a year reminding me of my precious mom and how my father had given it to me. 

I love how the LORD works in our lives.  Quietly, inside of me, I was remembering my mom and things she often spoke about.  She shared this one when I was to be a newlywed.  She spoke of when she was first married, and eventually had two little boys, and they moved far from home to a location where my father's new job was, and then I was born soon after.

The housing in this "Air Force" town was slim, so at first they ended up living in tiny military quarters off base---although my father was a civilian working for the Air Force.  All the other "Air Force" wives were her friends with just as many little ones to raise, and everyone was busy.  

The main difference in these other wives and my mother was that my mother would be staying in the area - for this would be my father's career - the other women were Air Force wives and would eventually be transferred, often to other bases perhaps all over the world.

My mother would describe the housing which had been torn down long before I was grown.  Every living unit had a little place for a garden by the front door; one of the first things my mother did was plant flower seeds in this spot.  Other women would come and go as their husbands were transferred, but no one would plant their gardens because they may only be there for a short time.

The other women would openly love my mother's little garden, but lament to her that they could never plant a garden, not knowing how long they would be at each base.  

Soon enough my sweet mother began to encourage the other wives to plant seeds no matter if they would ever see it to fruition.  If they never saw the results, the next woman who moved in would enjoy and appreciate them.  If other wives would begin to plant seeds perhaps they would end up at a vacant home whose former tenant chose to plant seeds even though she may never see the flowers.

What a beautiful "picture" I still have of the "seeds" my mother "sowed" into the friends she made at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base housing in the '50s.  She never told me if anyone listened to her encouragements, but she shared with my sister and I the encouragements of enjoying your life in the "moment".  Plant your flower or vegetable seeds in season even if you may not be there at the end.   Enjoy your life now; do not wait for the "someday" where you have "this or that" to be what makes you happy.  Live now!  

I now say, live now in the joy of the LORD!

*

For almost a year my mother's quilt sat prettily displayed in our living room.  I feel it was the LORD reminding me of my mother's encouragement to live now.  I went over and took the quilt to our bed and began to enjoy her precious quilt.

Almost 20 years later I still use it, trading off to another quilt for a change.  Last night I began fixing the spots which have been worn on my mother's quilt.  It has been used, it has been loved, and you can see the wear---but I have lived and loved in the "now" in the joy of the LORD, and I wouldn't change this for anything. 




A silly interruption









Rose is Rose
by Brady

"My grace is sufficient for you"

Do you have a thorn or two in the flesh? (2 Cor. 12).  

We all have something or more than one which nags us, shows up now and then, or something which never leaves us.   

Do not fear or feel overcome! The LORD God is with you always!  He is your strength and He is your comfort!  Rejoice! for He draws you closer to Himself as you rely on Him!

HT to Winging It, for Stan's post, "Thorn in the Flesh".

Stan ends with,

"[The LORD] wants to constantly remind me I'm not autonomous, not sufficient, not capable on my own. He doesn't want me depending on my own power. He wants me depending on the power of Christ dwelling in me."
*

2 Corinthians 12:7-10

“Because of the surpassing greatness of the revelations, for this reason, to keep me from exalting myself, there was given me a thorn in the flesh, a messenger of Satan to torment me—to keep me from exalting myself! 

Concerning this I implored the Lord three times that it might leave me. 

And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 


Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ’s sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.”
*


Saturday, January 24, 2015

The Two Glasses

There sat two glasses filled to the brim,
On a rich man’s table, rim to rim;
One was ruddy and red as blood,
And one as clear as the crystal flood.

Said the glass of wine to the paler brother:
“Let us tell the tales of the past to each other;
I can tell of a banquet and revel and mirth,
And the proudest and grandest souls on the earth
Fell under my touch as though struck by blight,
Where I was king, for I ruled in might;
From the heads of kings I have torn the crown,
From the heights of fame I have hurled men down:
I have blasted many an honored name;
I have taken virtue and given shame;
I have tempted the youth with a sip, a taste,
That has made his future a barren waste.
Greater, far greater than king am I,
Or than any army beneath the sky.
I have made the arm of the driver fail,
And sent the train from the iron rail;
I have made good ships go down at sea,
And the shrieks of the lost were sweet to me,
For they said, ‘Behold how great you be!
Fame, strength, wealth, genius before you fall,
For your might and power are over all.’
Ho! ho! pale brother,” laughed the wine,
“Can you boast of deeds as great as mine?”

Said the water glass: “I cannot boast
Of a king dethroned or a murdered host;
But I can tell of a heart once sad,
By my crystal drops made light and glad;
Of thirsts I’ve quenched, of brows I’ve laved,
Of hands I have cooled, and souls I have saved;
I have leaped through the valley, dashed down the mountain,
Flowed in the river and played in the fountain,
Slept in the sunshine and dropped from the sky,
And everywhere gladdened the landscape and eye.
I have eased the hot forehead of fever and pain;
I have made the parched meadows grow fertile with grain;
I can tell of the powerful wheel of the mill,
That ground out the flour and turned at my will.
I can tell of manhood debased by you,
That I have lifted and crowned anew.
I cheer, I help, I strengthen and aid;
I gladden the heart of man and maid;
I set the chained wine-captive free;
And all are better for knowing me.”

These are the tales they told each other,
The glass of wine and the paler brother,
As they sat together filled to the brim, 
On the rich man’s table, rim to rim.


Ella Wheeler Wilcox

from “The Best Love Poems of the American People”