Monday, May 29, 2017

Be thankful for your freedom






































If you think Memorial Day is for a day off, picnics, camping, store sales, TV marathons, etc. - you need to discover what our freedom in the USA actually cost us.




Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Friday, May 19, 2017

"Embrace a new season of loveliness"

This heading quote is the ending sentence of Candice Watters post of May 15, 2017,  
Don't Hide Those Gray Hairs.  In this post she speaks of her grandmother, her mother, and then her own aging, and what her choice has become now. She speaks of the scriptures which she loves and how she began to biblically understand them:

Concerning Titus 2:3-5:
"Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, 
not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, 
teaching what is good, so that they may encourage 
the young women to love their husbands, 
to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, 
kind, being subject to their own husbands, 
so that the word of God will not be dishonored."

In this passage she comments, 

"I've always loved this passage, wanting to be mentored by older women when I was younger, and looking forward to being the mentor when I got older.  

But if this gospel-adorning discipleship is going to happen, the older women must be willing to acknowledge that they are, in fact, older."

(Hehe...this made me giggle.)

I love the other scriptures she showcases such as Psalm 92:12-15
"The righteous man will flourish like the palm tree,
He will grow like a cedar in Lebanon.
Planted in the house of the Lord,
They will flourish in the courts of our God.
They will still yield fruit in old age;
They shall be full of sap and very green,
To declare that the Lord is upright;

He is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in Him."

She comments is this passage that it gives her hope and purpose for the years which remain for her.

She encourages us all at the end of her post with

2 Corinthians4:16
"Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, 
yet our inner man is being renewed day by day."

About this she boldly states, 

"If you belong to Jesus, your 'inner self is being renewed day by day'.  

Let's spend ourselves for the younger women in our lives, 
looking beyond what is seen and temporary, 
to what is truly beautiful and eternal."

*And so very significant to me is her last statement:

"For the blood-bought woman, 
you're called to embrace 
a new season of loveliness 
the world will never understand." 

Thank you to Candice Watters.  Please check our her original post.

*

I have spoken before about my hair and how I seemingly cause a flurry when I am out in the world. I do not mean to do so, I am just me, but my simple hair seems to always be a topic among women.

It’s a funny thing.

My precious mother said to me once that I was born with blonde hair, but from seeing pictures I know that by my toddler age my hair had turned auburn brown.  I remember when my little sister was born with her very dark hair, and by the time she was a toddler her hair was quite blonde. It is a funny thing.

Another reason it is funny is that my hair began to have silver in it by 25 years old.  That just seemed too young to have gray hair, especially because I had listened and believed the advertising campaigns while I was growing up which said to 'me' that 25 was so young - that your life is just beginning.

Fast forward 4 decades and my ever growing silver is turning back to blonde.   

I grew up barely fitting in to my peer group, and in adulthood I definitely know I do not fit in.  

My long hair (my preference) has “bothered” the countless women I have known, but when I began to have silver throughout my head, I know so many were affected by it.  

No one has ever said, "oh, look at your hair" etc, but some women just begin to say to each other comments such as, 

“my husband won't let me have gray hair because he says it makes him look like he has an old wife.”  This comment hurt me so, for her sake, as she was a pastor’s wife.  -Real nice guy.

Other comments I have heard because of my hair were in general about how these certain women “couldn’t stop” coloring their hair “now”, or that they would fight to the end not to “look old”.  Many, many feel they "must" do so for their husbands (true or not).

The most significant thing about my own hair and my own hair color is that other women through time have been, to whatever degree, offended by my choice to just be.

Proverbs 16:31
"A gray head is a crown of glory;

It is found in the way of righteousness."

And for our men:

Proverbs 20:29
"The glory of young men is their strength,

And the honor of old men is their gray hair."

*Sisters in Christ, let us be encouraged by all of God's Word, let us be thankful for who we are no matter what our age, and let us embrace each new season of loveliness because of what our Savior has done for us.  

His Precious Blood. 

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

What happened?


Grieving: Real Life 101

When I began the subject of grieving it was months ago and only in the chaos of my own head.  It was all bouncing around in there, with no direction, and with no order.  

Eventually I decided to write it out in some semblance of order, but not all at once or I think I would never have finished it because of the emotional toll of looking at all of it at once in my own life.  Dividing it into pieces has helped me, and perhaps those of you who have read the posts. 

Here I am all "written out".  I know I did not completely write all there is on the subject of grief.  You may be grieving in ways in which I did not even touch, and I completely understand this.  Grieving is very real and completely surprising.  It is like "this" for me, and it is like "that" for you.  

*But grieving is real, it is part of our every day lives in this extremely fallen world.  We should not run from it, but acknowledge it.  We should take time to express it in healthy ways.  Sometimes it should be expressed often, other times daily, and then, perhaps once in a while. When we bottle it up, when we squelch it, then sometime it will come out, and maybe not in appropriate ways.

Appropriate ways to handle our ongoing grieving:  This could mean talking about your sadness, or it could mean crying.  If the pain is too deep where you can not cry, then you can know the LORD is understanding your groans. 

Our pain in our grief is not lost to the LORD.  

He knows and He understands our agonies.

Grieving in our fallen world is like a class called "Real Life 101", but the curriculum is as varied as our sufferings.  Pain is pain, though, and although grieving can "look like" many things in each of us, we can know the LORD holds on to those who trust in Him completely.

My encouragement to you, sisters, is to -continue-.  

Life goes on and usually we can not just "stop" and grieve.  

So continue to live and do it for Him and for His glory. 

Do not be hard on yourself, but show compassion to yourself as you would to anyone who is grieving. Give yourself time, cry out to God, and then move on even if it still hurts.  Life will hurt until glory - that is part of life on planet earth.  

We have the ONE and ONLY who can give us strength to carry on, and to carry on in our agonies with His joy in our hearts.

*One huge caution is not to allow yourself to venture in to "Victimhood" where you are always saying to yourself and others, "poor, poor me".  When we venture into "Victimhood" we are sinning, because we are not trusting the LORD in all things.  Nobody's life is without troubles, it is the human condition.  The LORD can truly lift your head out of "Victimhood" if you are caught in it.  

2 Chronicles 16:a
"For the eyes of the Lord move to and fro throughout the earth 
that He may strongly support those whose heart is completely His."

Grieving posts:

#1 Why did I begin all this? 

#2 Pain is Pain 

#3 The only thing we need is Jesus!

#4 I do not want to be shipwrecked! 

#5 Rejoice in the LORD always 

#6  A living death

#7  Living one day at a time

#8 Agonies which haunt you

Monday, May 15, 2017

Eating outside!










Calvin and Hobbes

Agonies which haunt you: Grieving #8

As we all know, life in general is more difficult when we do not feel good and when we have chronic pain.  Everything we do, we see, we think about seems so very much worse.  It is just difficult. During these times it is difficult to capture our thoughts for the LORD and think on things above when we physically hurt.

Meanwhile, our traumas, our agonies, our sadnesses, our grieving...all of these haunt us in our physical weaknesses.  

We do not feel good, and so we seek the LORD.  We are blessed!  

But then it is "the next day" and life is still painful in the many ways it can be painful, and we are "needled" by our agonies.  

It may seem we can't get away from the thought of them, the pain of them.  Everywhere we turn we are reminded of our life's agonies. These agonizing trials and troubles haunt us.  Grief may become unbearable.  We may become so overwhelmed in our grief that we forget to trust in the LORD and call on Him.

*Do not give up, precious sisters in Christ!* 

The LORD hears your cries!  He knows your sadness, He knows your physical pains.

He has not forgotten you.  You may feel like He forgets you, but this is not in His character.  He never leaves you alone, He always hear your cries, and He will not turn away from you. 

When you trust Jesus as your LORD and Savior, you are safe in Him.

Hebrews 13:5-6
"Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, 
being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, 

“I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,” 

so that we confidently say,

“The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid.

What will man do to me?


Psalm 118:5-9
"From my distress I called upon the Lord;

The Lord answered me and set me in a large place.

The Lord is for me; I will not fear;
What can man do to me?

The Lord is for me among those who help me;
Therefore I will look with satisfaction on those who hate me.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
Than to trust in man.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
Than to trust in princes."

Sisters, when you become overwhelmed in your physical pain, overwhelmed in your grief, overwhelmed in anything in your life - REMEMBER the LORD.

The LORD God Almighty is your ROCK, He gives you a "large place" where you are safe in Him.  It is in Him in which you can and will be revived when you rest in Him.

Psalm 6:6-9
"I am weary with my sighing;
Every night I make my bed swim,
I dissolve my couch with my tears.

My eye has wasted away with grief;
It has become old because of all my adversaries.

Depart from me, all you who do iniquity,

For the Lord has heard the voice of my weeping.
The Lord has heard my supplication,

The Lord receives my prayer."

Psalm 71:17-23
O God, You have taught me from my youth,
And I still declare Your wondrous deeds.
And even when I am old and gray, O God, do not forsake me,
Until I declare Your strength to this generation,
Your power to all who are to come.

For Your righteousness, O God, reaches to the heavens,
You who have done great things;
O God, who is like You?

You who have shown me many troubles and distresses
Will revive me again,
And will bring me up again from the depths of the earth.

May You increase my greatness
And turn to comfort me.

I will also praise You with a harp,
Even Your truth, O my God;
To You I will sing praises with the lyre,
O Holy One of Israel.

My lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to You;
And my soul, which You have redeemed."

Colossians 3:1-4

"Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, 
keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, 
seated at the right hand of God. 

Set your mind on the things above, 
not on the things that are on earth. 
When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, 
then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.

May we give God the glory in our joys and in our sorrows!

Praise be to God!


Sunday, May 14, 2017

O taste and see! The LORD is good!

Psalm 34
I will bless the Lord at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my mouth.

My soul will make its boast in the Lord;
The humble will hear it and rejoice.
O magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together.

I sought the Lord, and He answered me,
And delivered me from all my fears.

They looked to Him and were radiant,
And their faces will never be ashamed.
This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him
And saved him out of all his troubles.
The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear Him,
And rescues them.

O taste and see that the Lord is good;
How blessed is the man who takes refuge in Him!

O fear the Lord, you His saints;
For to those who fear Him there is no want.
The young lions do lack and suffer hunger;
But they who seek the Lord shall not be in want of any good thing.

Come, you children, listen to me;
I will teach you the fear of the Lord.

Who is the man who desires life
And loves length of days that he may see good?
Keep your tongue from evil
And your lips from speaking deceit.

Depart from evil and do good;
Seek peace and pursue it.

The eyes of the Lord are toward the righteous
And His ears are open to their cry.

The face of the Lord is against evildoers,
To cut off the memory of them from the earth.
The righteous cry, and the Lord hears
And delivers them out of all their troubles.

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted
And saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Many are the afflictions of the righteous,
But the Lord delivers him out of them all.
He keeps all his bones,
Not one of them is broken.
Evil shall slay the wicked,
And those who hate the righteous will be condemned.
The Lord redeems the soul of His servants,

And none of those who take refuge in Him will be condemned.


What every mother would love to hear