Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Of Feathers and Friends by Darlene Haggard Davis

"Nobody loves me everybody hates me. I'm gonna eat worms." Tyler is a child of divorce and sent to live with his grandmother. He is confused, angry, and hurt. He is trying to figure out where he fits in and decides to run away. He wants to show his family that he doesn't need anyone anymore. As Tyler goes about on his adventure, he meets other kids that help him find his place in the scheme of things. As he goes about experiencing life with his new friends, he discovers how valuable friends and family can be. Although this book is written for young readers, adults can glean some treasures from the pages. Readers can find the messages about friends and family to be universal. I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I give the book 5 stars and will recommend this book.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The 7th Trumpet and the 7 Thunders by Russell M. Stendal

Mr. Stendal has written an inspiring book for all students of prophecy and those of us who want to understand the book of Revelation better.

Beginning with Noah’s Ark and concluding with God’s plan of redemption the reader is led through prophecies that will culminate with the end times.  We are shown that all the Bible is tied together and not a bunch of independent stories that do not relate to each other or our world today.

I enjoy the scripture passages that Mr. Stendal uses to support his points.  The reader is treated with a panoramic view of the biblical prophecies and how they tie in to each other.  This is a good resource book that deserves to be read again and again.  In fact, it should be read more than once to glean all the treasures it contains.

I received a copy of this book from Life Sentence Publishing in exchange for an honest review.  All the opinions expressed in the review are solely mine.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Tessa From Fear to Faith by Melissa Wiltrout

Tessa is a young girl caught in what appears to be a helpless situation.  Abused and forced to help her father make and sell drugs, she sees no way out.  When she did attempt to escape she was caught and forced to return home.  Who can she trust?

She must not only deal with home situation, she discovers her family’s dark secret.  This secret haunts her as she is fighting for her own survival. 

When neighbors open their home to her she begins to feel hope and begins to think that her life is worthwhile after all.  She discovers that God does love her in spite of what she has done.  She realizes that He is there for her and reaches out to Him.  She can see that her new found life can positively impact her father and he stops his illegal activities.  What he does next proves that no one can sink too far in the depths of sin that God cannot or will not reach down an lift them out.

I found myself cheering for Tessa and her family as their new lives emerge.  I also felt the need to pray for the many of today’s teens and young people who find themselves caught in horrible and frightening situations.  Ms. Wiltrout has written a realistic book without “preaching”.  I highly recommend this book to teens and their parents and to anyone who works closely with today’s youth.

I received a complementary copy of this book from Life Sentence Publishing in exchange for an honest review.  The opinions expressed in this review are solely mine.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Truth or Consequences

The lip of truth shall be established forever, but a lying tongue is but for a moment.  Proverbs 12:19

 

We all fall for lies sometimes.  Let’s face it—truth is often boring; it’s much more exciting to think our neighbor is a “wanted fugitive” rather than to know the truth that he is just a hard-working father and coach for his kids’ little league team.

Lies can be more believable than the truth.  We can believe lies the politicians tell us or the smooth talking salesman that hooks us in their deception.  Too often we discover we discover the truth when it is too late.The politician is elected and his true agenda is then made known.  The wonderful we bought from the salesman breaks down after we finalize the deal.  The man who promised a good job leaves and does not return to finish the job after the money changes hands.  We all learn the truth the hard way and chalk these deceptions up to experience.

I have come to the end of a long and painful battle trying to dispel lies told about.  Although the lies were exposed and truth was finally reve4aled, more people chose to believe the lies and I am left to deal with the aftermath.  What hurts even more is the fact that two of my family members started these untruths.  I know God is hold me up and has promised He will never leave me to suffer alone.  I can rest assured that although these people continue to prosper and live their lives without obvious consequences, the consequences will eventually come.  It is up to God to deal with them.  I am so glad He is in control.

I Peter 5:8,9 tells us the enemy prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour.  Resist him, standing firm in the faith.  We are not alone alone in our struggles.  God is there with us and He will make us strong.

Don’t let satan work his web of of deceit.  If we focus on God’s love and presence, He will give us peace that the “father of lies” cannot take away.

A lie travels around the world while truth is putting her boots on.  Jewish Proverb

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Keep Your Eyes On Jesus

In all your ways submit to Him and He will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:6

 

I have recently been through a very trying time in my life.  I was taken to court for custody of three grandkids I have raised all their lives.  I kept the faith prayed daily that I would prevail.  God worked it out in His own way and time.  I retained 50% of the custody which still keeps me in their lives but I now have time to pursue my writing.  I have felt God’s calling to write but had not been able to devote much time to that pursuit.  Friends, I want to tell you to keep your eyes on Jesus and trust in His promises.  He does keep His promises to sustain us in all circumstances.  This past week I have spent more time writing and will eventually post them but this poem came to my mind and I felt the need to post it first.

 

Keep Your Eyes On Jesus

When the road of life seems all uphill,

And troubles come as they most certainly will.

Don’t give up—just keep plugging along.

Keep your eyes on Jesus and you can’t go wrong.

Friday, May 23, 2014

Social Events

Well friends, last night was a very busy but exciting one for me.  At 6:00 I attended a very exclusive concert.  Attendance was invitation only and the music was top quality.  It didn’t hurt that I know one of the talent Saxophone players on a first name basis.  After an hour of wonderful music I went to a play premiere where I also know one of the stars on a first name basis.  Both events were wonderful experiences that I would not have missed for anything.  OK you caught me—these were school events.  This makes them all the more enjoyable because I watched my own grandkids perform.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Update

I am sorry I have not been posting regularly.  I have been going through a very rough time.  I am standing in the crosshairs of  some vindictive people who love nothing more than spreading lies and untruths about me.  I am  now in danger of losing the grandkids I have had for their entire lives based on these lies.  I have been working and praying in order to keep these kids.  To the other parties involved, the kids are only collateral damage in this vendetta.  There have been so many trials and obstacles placed in my way I am getting physically and emotionally exhausted.  I do covet any prayers you can offer up on these children’s behalf.  If I do lose these kids, I feel like I will be throwing them to the wolves.  None of these kids want to be taken out of my home.  I am raising them to know and trust God.  They are all at a very impressionable age (9-12).  I pray that God gives the lawyers and judges involved the wisdom to really see what is in the best interest of these children. 

I do promise I will post more in the future—bear with me until then.  I know my God is bigger than this problem and He is the one holding me up through all of this. 

Thursday, May 1, 2014

He Has Arisen

He has arisen

He walked from that room.

Death could not hold Him

In that borrowed tomb.

 

He has arisen,

Spread the news around.

Satan thought he had won,

But he couldn’t keep God down.

 

He has arisen

Such good news to tell.

When Jesus was put to death

My soul was saved from hell.

 

He has arisen

Though He was crucified

Oh how Satan must have laughed

When he watched my Savior die!

 

He has arisen

Take the message to the streets.

When Jesus Christ arose

Death had met defeat.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

URGENT PRAYER REQUEST

I am asking for all your prayers.  I have had custody of my 4 grandchildren all of their lives.  Tomorrow, April 30th, the father of 3 of them is taking me to court for custody of them.  The kids do not want to live with him and are totally stressed out.  I need the prayers of all my friends to soften the heart of the judge and let her see that in best interest of the children, they need to stay in the only stable home they have ever known.  To move them now would put them in new schools, no outside activities (football, music,), and leaving their friends.  I know God is in control but I think prayer makes a difference.  Please pray for my kids.

The oldest is 12 (boy)  a very impressionable age, 10 (boy) and 9 (girl).

Friday, April 18, 2014

The Dream

Easter is not about bunnies and eggs.  It’s about the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross so that we might be forgiven.  Imagine how much love God had for each of us.  He gave His own son for us.  Jesus willingly went to the cross as an expression of this love.

One night I had a dream

That seemed so real to me.

I saw my Lord and Savior

On top of Mount Calvary.

A crown of thorns was on His head

Nails pierced His side.

The soldiers laughed and mocked Him

Until my Savior died.

When I awoke, my face was wet

With the tears that I had cried.

But He gave me eternal life--

The day my Savior died.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Great Possum Caper

 

One day my husband fixed a leak under the commode in my bathroom. Being the handyman he is, he is, he cut a small hole in the floor to make it easier to reach the pipe. Fine--no problem—leak fixed. Now he will fix the hole and life goes on, right? Wrong! He decided to leave the hole for a few days to make sure the leak is really fixed. Now that few days has turned into months. Although it is a small hole, I have tried my best to conceal it but there is just so much I can do to make a hole in the floor attractive. Now fast forward about six months. The hole is still there even though I have done all I can to conceal/decorate it. A hole is a hole and it is still there.

One night I stumble into bed exhausted after transporting four kids to four different activities as well my daily struggles of running a household with four kids. Around 2:00 in the morning my little dog woke me up with frantic barking and yelping. I forced one eye open to see him jumping up and down on the floor by my bed. He looked at me as if to say “I’m trying to protect you, now come on and do your part.” When I did manage to stumble into the bathroom, I was instantly awake. There between the commode and the waste can was a possum! Pugsley, my dog had him trapped. I could not move because I was totally in shock until Pugsley barked again as if to say, “See, I told you. Now get rid of it. I’m tired and want to go to sleep.”

Frantically, I woke up my husband and screamed, “THERE’S A POSSUM IN MY BATHROOM! GET UP AND KILL IT!” He looked at me as though I had totally lost my mind. “Ok, get me something to use to kill it,” he calmly said. I ran to my grandson’s room and came back with a ball bat. I gave the bat to hubby and jumped on my bed and covered my eyes. I could hear the battle raging on the bathroom. “HISS!” “POW!” “KA-POW! “BOOM!” finally all was silent so I opened my eyes. There on the floor lay the lifeless body of the intruder. I picked it up carefully by the tail, placed it into a plastic bag and ran to throw it into the outside garbage can. I was finally able to fall to sleep but the bathroom light was left on for the rest of the night.

I bet you thought this was the end of my story. WRONG! I pulled into my driveway the next morning after running errands and three kids met me at the car. All three were talking at once. I was finally able to understand their excitement when Christian told me, “Nanny, there is a possum in our garbage can,” “and he is alive,” Alyssa interrupted him to excitedly tell me. “Yeah, he is ALIVE!” Nikolas finished with excitement written all over his face. I went over to the garbage can to see for myself. Sure enough, when I raised the lid of the can, I could see two beady little eyes staring up at me. I slammed the lid down and got the kids into the house after explaining to them to stay away from the garbage can and leave the creature alone.

I don’t know what happened to our uninvited guest. The kids think he escaped and is now living happily-albeit traumatized-with his family. I hope that is what happened, but at least, he is living out his life in my house with my family.

When I was finally able to sit down for my visit with God, I asked Him, as I always do “What doe you want to talk bout today, Father?” His answer came as a total surprise to me. “I want to told about the possum.”

“What about the possum?” I asked in astonishment.

“That was a small hole in your floor, wasn’t it?”

“Yes, it was a very small hole.” I answered, not sure this conversation was going but definitely intrigued by it.

“Well that possum was able to come into house through that small hole, wasn’t he?”

“Y e a h,” I slowly answered.

“Just like that possum squeezing through such a small unguarded hole in the floor, the enemy can enter your heart through a small unguarded hole in your heart. Just as that intruding animal filled you with dread, the enemy can fill your heart with fears and worries. When he does that you do not fully trust me to care for you.”

Suddenly, I understood what He was telling me. We must always guard our hearts against the enemy that roams around who he cab devour. Satan doesn’t need a door with a flashing neon welcome sign, he enters through a hole he finds unguarded. Don’t make it easy for him to enter your heart. Fill your heart with joy and love and trust in your Heavenly Father who loves you unconditionally and will never leave you unprotected.

Oh, by the way—the hole in my floor has been fixed!

Today’s Whisper:

Have you ever left your heart unguarded? Did the enemy enter in and fill your heart with doubts and fears? Journal about the doubts and fears you had and write out a prayer confessing about them and ask God to come into that hole left by doubt. Just as the enemy can enter our heart God can close that hole with His peace and joy.

Today’s Prayer:

Loving Father, help me to be ever vigilant to guard my heart against the enemy’s attacks. Only you can fill my heart with the peace and joy I crave. Make me ever mindful of your love and care for me. I surrender my heart and soul to you. I know you will never leave me or forsake me. I covet your presence in my life today and forever. Amen.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

He Lifts Me Up

I was having a bad day recently. I know you think all my days are bad by the other stories I write. But, honestly, my life is not all that bad. Anyway, I found this clipping I had filed back and it was just what I needed to realize He is watching out for me. God is so awesome.

I know He is in control and after a heart felt talk with Him, I felt as though a load of bricks had been lifted from my shoulders.

When I fall, He lifts me up!

When I fail, He forgives!

When I am weak, He is strong!

When I am lost, He is the way!

When I am afraid, He is my courage!

When, I stumble, He steadies me!

When I am hurt, He heals me!

When I am broken, He mends me!

When I am blind, He leads me!

When I am hungry, He feeds me!

When I face trials, He is with me!

When I face persecution, He shields me!

When I face problems, He comforts me!

When I face loss, He provides for me!

When I face Death, He carries me Home!

He is everything for everybody everywhere, every time and every day!

He is God, He is faithful

I am His, and He is mine.

My Father in heaven can whip the father of this world.

So, if you're wondering why I feel so secure,

Understand this…

He said it and that settles it!

God is in control, I am on His side,

And that means all is well with my soul.

Author Unknown

Thursday, April 3, 2014

In a Desert Place

When I’m in a desert place

Where fears and doubts abound,

I look up to Jesus for I know

He’s already looking down.

When I’m in a desert place

And feel overwhelmed by despair,

I can hear Jesus whisper to me,

“My child,” I’m always near.

“I will never leave nor forsake you

Though from me you often stray.

Just take my hand and hold it

And I will lead the way.”

When I’m in a desert place

Lord, help me to see

That there are others hurting

Even more than me.

So let me thank you, Father

For this trial I’m going through,

Because this desert place

Has brought me back to you.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Eating With A Three Foot Spoon

Shared joy is joy doubled. Shared sorrow is sorrow halved. Anonymous One night a man had a dream. In his dream he was escorted down into hell. He saw a round table filled with delicious food. People were sitting around the table with three-foot long spoons in their hands. They were wretched, skeletal, and starving because the spoons were long enough to reach the food, butt too long to put the food in their mouths. The people were angry and frustrated because they could not feed themselves. He was then escorted to Heaven. There he saw an identical table with the mouth-watering bowls of food. Here too the people hold three-foot long spoons. But instead of being wretched, these people were healthy and full of joy. Laughter and songs filled the room. In great love the people were feeding each other. Selected This story illustrates the difference between thinking only of ourselves and putting other people first. When we think of ourselves and strive only to get what we want no one is happy. Too often we will help someone with the expectation of getting something in return. This can be called "what's in it for me?" syndrome A modern affliction suffered by many people is called "Me-itis". Symptoms include a severe craving for "It's mine and I want it; I deserve to get what I want when I want it. What's in it for me? Me, me, me...." There is no quick fix or remedy for this malady. A daily appointment with God, the Great Healer, is our only hope for relief. His medicine always works and has no negative side effects. Without treatment victims of "me-itis" will live lives of hell on earth. When we put other peoples' needs first we will all be happier. The secret to a well-lived life is to live as an encouragement to others. It doesn't take a large bank account to make a difference in someone else's life. A warm smile, an encouraging word, or even a hug to a person who is experiencing difficulty in life can be all it takes to lift them up and let them know that someone actually cares. We all have struggles in life but when we take time to share each other's burdens, life can be happier for all of us. God sent His son to demonstrate love and compassion for us. He even commanded us to "love our neighbor as we love ourselves." Doing good deeds for others will not only lift them up but will also bring us great joy. At your next party with "three-foot spoons" don't try to feed yourself. Instead feed each other and you will find it to be a very satisfying meal indeed! The mind is in its own place, and it itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven. John Milton Paradise Lost

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thanksgiving—Not Just One Day

I want to wish all my friends and family Happy Thanksgiving. Enjoy all the good food and company of family and friends but don't forget to thank God who has blessed us so much throughout the year. Let's make every day a day of Thanksgiving because God continues His blessings throughout the year--not just one day. Some of you I will never meet but that doesn't mean I don't think of you often and whisper a prayer for you.

A Mother’s Holiday

Up before dawn

Sweeping and mopping

Too much to do

No time for stopping.

The family is nestled

all snug in their beds,

While visions of a turkey dinner

dance in their heads.

There’s cooking to be done

and laundry to do.

gotta scrub the floors

and clean the windows too.

The TV comes on

the family is awake`--

How much more

do you think I can take

The relatives pour in with

shouts of good cheer.

Why did I offer to have

the family dinner here?

Now that the meal is done

the relatives leave amid

shouts of good wishes.

While hubby and the kids watch TV

Guess who gets stuck with the dishes!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Where Is That Empty Nest?

Every little girl has a dream.  She dreams of falling in love, getting married, and having a family. I was no different.  I wanted to find my Mr.. Right, marry him and have two perfect children:  a boy that would hunt, fish, play baseball and do all the manly things with his dad; and a little girl that would let me teach her how to do all the feminine little things that girls like to do.  Well, I had a little boy and a little girl and my life was perfect. 

When the kids grew up, a new dream began to unfold.  I was looking forward to be a grandmother.  I would be the type that would spoil the grandkids because they would only be visiting.  Well, I did enjoy the kids and did spoil them BUT I was given custody of them and now I am responsible for their daily needs and all their wants.  This can’t be too bad, I thought.  I will just be raising kids all over again.  In fact, it was fun having the grandkids around all day everyday.  I did not stop to think that they would grow up and I would grow older.  That is the life cycle isn’t it.  Kids grow up and grandparents grow older.  Although, I am not as young as I used to be, I still manage to provide for these precious little ones.  I have four active kids that are now in school and I get to attend all their functions.  I have been able to attend all of the social events of the seasons from ballet recitals to championship baseball games.  In fact, I am on a first name basis with the superstars and coaches.  What could be better than this?  I do admit I get tired but when I look at the bright expectant faces I gain a new sense of strength and love every minute of sharing life with these gifts from God.

When I hear people talking of the empty nest syndrome and how lonely they are, I realize that I still have the sound of kids’ laughter and fighting in my house.  My house doesn’t always stay clean and I do get frustrated trying to keep up with the housework.  When I feel overwhelmed by the lack of time to get all the housework done, I realize there are more important things than a shiny house.  My house does stay clean enough for health but has that comfortable lived in look and feel.  In fact, my house is well lived in.  I do keep my floors clean enough you can eat off them.  Yeah, over here is some bread, there is a french fry or two and if you look closely you might even be able to find a cookie or two for dessert.

I always thought that when my kids were grown and had kids of their own, my husband and I would be able to retire, spend time getting to know each other again and travel whenever and wherever we wanted to.  I guess that will have have to wait because God has given me a task that is more important than any other I can think of.  Sure, I could be working and obtaining new possessions but what could would material possessions give me when I have the love of my grandkids.  Of course, they don’t get everything they want but God is good and lets me provide everything they need.

No matter how tired and discouraged I get I realize the blessings God has given me when He put these kids in my life.  I always ask Him for strength and grace to make it through the day and He is always faithful to provide what I need.  I do not get paid for caring for these children in earthly ways but my reward is much more valuable because I am paid in pure love.

I hope I leave these kids with a legacy of love.  I want them to know that I loved them but, even more importantly, I want them to know God loves them.  I want to teach them about Him and His love.  They should be taught that with Him by their side and holding their hands, they will be able to accomplish anything and do whatever He asks of them.  I can provide the material things they need but I want them to know that God can provide for them even more than I can. 

While other people are suffering from the empty nest syndrome, I consider myself fortunate that I still have children in my life.  I just ask God to give me the wisdom and strength to bring them up in the way He wants me to.  I know He will because He said He would and my God keeps all of His promises.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

If I Only Had a Brain!

I think my all time favorite movie when I was a kid had to be “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”.   I would watch Dorothy, Toto, and their friends travel the Yellow Brick
Road in search of Emerald City and the Great Wizard.  I remember tuning out the world and feel as though I were with them and experiencing all their adventures as they did.  For weeks afterward I would walk around the house singing (or at least trying to) sing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”.  Believe me my family were glad when I quit singing.

Anyway, you can imagine my excitement when I had a chance to watch this movie with my grandchildren.  I wanted them to have the opportunity to see a wonderful movie and hoped they would like it as much as I do. We decided to make it a movie night with popcorn, sleeping bags, and all the junk food we could eat.  As the opening music began we settled down with our bowls of popcorn for a wonder filled night.

Soon, however , I began to hear that still small voice begin to speak to me.  I knew the voice was my Heavenly Father but I was totally unprepared for what He had to say to me.

“Do you see that the adventures Dorothy and her friends have are like the doubts and fears that can rob you of your peace and joy?  Fears and doubts sneak in when you least expect them and take control of your life.” 

When I heard this, I began to see that I was letting these fears and doubts haunt me every day.  When I am thinking that all is well and my life could not be any better, the old doubts and insecurities begin to creep into my mind and fears sneak in to send my world spinning out of control.

Like Dorothy I long for love and security.  Too often I have looked for these in wrong places and with wrong people.  I have even counted on filling the hole in my heart through obtaining more and more material possessions.  Instead of giving me a sense of security, I found I had created more stress and problems by having more financial difficulties.  These difficulties in turn created more stress and offers no security.

The Lion was looking for courage which he already possessed and proved during their travels to Oz.  Although I have shown courage when faced with some situations, I find myself cowering in fear all too often.  When my life overwhelms me and seems to spin out of control, I am frozen in fear and try to hide from life.

The Tin Man wants a heart in order to show emotion.  Sometimes I feel as though my heart is missing when my problems seem to take over my life.  I find myself focusing on me and my problems instead of looking around me and seeing the pain of other people.  When I do focus on others, I often find their problems are much bigger and more serious than mine.  I then remember that I am put on this earth to help and encourage others.  I am commanded to come alongside others and help them in their times of troubles.  When I do this I find my heart is there and beating strong.

Yes, I even find a part of me when I see the Scarecrow.  Remember,. he was looking for a brain.  When I want to take my life back into my own hands and do not trust God, I find my brain does not want to work.  Instead of telling me to listen to God, it is telling me not to listen to God.  It is telling me, “You don’t need help.  You are in control of your life and can handle it on your own terms.

Too often I have trusted the “Great Oz”.  He offers a false sense of security.  He tells me he can get me home where I can find the love and security I seek.  He leads me to believe he can give me courage to face my trials, a heart to show compassion, and a brain that will solve all my problems.  But what he is telling me are lies….lies that are meant to take my eyes off my Father who can offer me these things.

I have learned through many hard lessons that only with God can I live a life of peace and joy.  God is the life giver and sustainer of life and security.  I will have doubts and fears and suffer from insecurity but He will always be by my side to see me through the troublers I face.  I will not have smooth sailing every day but He will never let me down.  Sometimes He will calm the storm, but often He will calm me so I can make it through the storm.  Although I will feel insecure and unloved, lack courage, lose my heart for compassion, or my brain is sending me wrong signals, I know He is there giving me His messages of love and peace.  I know that even when I feel like Dorothy looking for security and a way home, I know He loves me and He gives me the greatest security that I will ever know.

After the movie ended, I looked over at the kids.  They were all sound asleep but I knew I would never look at this movie the same way again.  A childhood favorite has now become a daily reminder that God’s love can be seen in day to day life.  I might let God down but He will never let me down.  How encouraging is that?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Where My Loyalties Lie

It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.  Psalm 118:8

Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love Him.  James 1:12

 

I am not a Democrat.

I am not a Republican.

I am a human born in America.


Above all else I am a Christian.  God is my Father and my leader.  Everything I am or do is because of His love for me and my love for Him.   I have rights and responsibilities that are given to me by God which cannot be taken from me by anybody, including the government.

I have the responsibility to be a missionary for Him.  All Christians are given this mandate and should not take it lightly.  I may not be called to serve in a foreign field, but I am called to be a missionary to my family, friends, neighbors, and colleagues.  This is a rich field for broadcasting the news of the Gospel.  I have a responsibility to teach my children about Him.  If I don’t teach them about Him, the world is waiting to detour them to worldly ways.  I try to live a life that shows His mighty love and grace.  I want to radiate His love because I may be the only Bible that many people will read.  I am called to stand up for Him and His Kingdom.  This is very difficult at times but I do know that what God calls me to do He will equip me to accomplish the task set before me.  I do know that He will give me the strength and courage to do what He wants me to do.  In fact, He is doing just that right now as I type this.  I know some people will be offended by my message but Jesus said, “If you deny me in front of men, I will deny you in front of my Father.”


God has also given many gifts and blessings.  One of these is a freedom of choice—free will.  No earthly government can take that from me.    This country, no, this world, is in a cycle of destruction.  It seems that decency and morals have totally been put in reverse.  What God calls good and just is now against the law.  Christians have been called terrorists and racist if we stand up for what is right and just.  Evil is rewarded and godly living is condemned.  What were once freedoms in America is now being usurped by the government.  Our freedom of choice is being eroded with the persecutions of Christians and the “law” that one insurance plan be used.

I am using my free will God gave me and live up to my moral standards and live my life to please God and not men.  It is true that my life can be taken away, my soul cannot be taken because my heavenly Father sent His son, Jesus, to pay the price for my soul.  I accepted His free gift and now my soul belongs to Him.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

I’m Growing Down

I’m Growing Down

Recently my granddaughter completed kindergarten. Although she should have been happy and excited about entering first grade in the fall, she went around the house with a very sad look on her face. Instead of celebrating the end of the school with her friends she proclaimed, “I want to stay in kindergarten!” Needless to say this took me by surprise but Tori refused to explain to me what she meant by that statement.

One night after reading a story together and saying our prayers I again brought up the subject of her going into first grade. Aren’t you excited about going into first grade in the fall?” “No, nanny, I’m not. I want to stay in kindergarten for the rest of my life.” Now this was not exactly what I expected to hear. My son and daughter were glad to be “one of the big kids” so they could be one of the “old” timers at school—the envy of the little kids in kindergarten.

After recovering from the shock of Tori’s remarks I attempted to explain to her that we all “graduate” from one stage in life to another. I went to tell her how each stage is built upon the last stage to help us grow. Imagine my shock when she looked at me with tears running down her face and said, “Nanny, I know that but growing up is so scary.” I hugged her to me and brushed the tears from her eyes and sighed. She was right—growing up is scary—and I was at a total loss for words of comfort until I had an idea (a brilliant idea for me, I thought).

“Listen, Honey,” I gently began. “I know growing up is hard but I am growing older too and it is scary for me. Wow! This is brilliant, I thought to myself. So I continued, “You know growing up can be fun. Just think, Sweetheart, you are going to learn how to do so many new things, meet new friends and have so much fun. But I’m growing older and won’t be able to do as many things as I once did. That is what makes growing older scary for me.”

After I had finished explaining this to her, I congratulated myself on my wonderful wisdom. I sat back, kissed her cheek gently, and asked her if she understood what I was saying. With solemn eyes she replied, “Yeah, I think so.” Then her eyes widened with understanding and a smile crossed her face. “I understand now Nanny,” she exclaimed with a leap into my arms. “I’m growing up and you’re growing down. Wow! Out of the mouth of babes! I had not thought of it quite that way but she was absolutely right. I used to be able to mow my yard, clean my house completely and still p0ractice baseball with the kids. Now if I can make sure the house is clean enough not to condemned by the health officials I congratulate myself on making it through another week.

This sobering conversation with Tori caused me to reflect on my life. I was reminded of the challenges I have faced in my life. Some of these challenges left me feeling overwhelmed and confused about the meaning of my life. I never doubted God’s love for me but I did have doubts about my ability. I realized that these challenges made me stronger and wiser. I would not be the person I am today without these experiences. I realized that God has not let me down but instead had held me up during these trying times.

I might be “growing down” in the physical realm, but I know that God is “growing me up” with His love and grace. He is always with me each day to give me the wisdom and strength I need to fulfill His purpose in my life.

As I thought back on my life span, I began to realize that we should not just grow “down” in age but we should always strive to grow up also. To grow up in the Lord is something we should all do whether we are young or old. I hope that I am able to help Tori grow in her relationship with God and always look to Him for her strength.

Yes, Tori, growing up can be scary but with God holding our hands, there is nothing we cannot do. I want you remember that God will grow us to be the people He intends for us to be if we only believe that everything is possible with Him and He promises us a life that is eternal and abundant.

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13

Then we will no longer be infants tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect, the mature body of Him who is the that is Christ.

Ephesians 4:15, 16

But grow in the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

2 Peter 3:18

Today’s Whisper: Journal about ways you can mature in the Lord.  What does maturing in the Lord mean to you:? Does maturing in the Lord automatically come with age or does it take effort on our part:?

Today's Prayer: Father, help me to grow in wisdom and knowledge of you. Hold my hands and help me as I go through each day. I depend on you and your word. I know that you love me and are always there for me. Help Tori as she grows up to always follow you so she can always know you are there for her in the stages of growing—both physically and spiritually.

*Since writing this, the little girl in the story is now entering college and I have seen three others children through kindergarten.  Through it all they continue to grow up and I continue to grow down.  But I do know that God will help them to grow up and me to grow up in Him.