A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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Doing good things enriches the soul.  – Dustin James

There was a young lady standing by the roadside in 10 degree weather.  She was holding a sign that said “Homeless – anything helps.”  Dustin was prompted to go to a nearby Dunkin’ Donuts to buy her a cup of coffee.  He said the look on her face was priceless.

Each one of us is God’s special work of art… a painting like no other in all of time.  – Joni Earreckson Tada

The Bible tells us that we may be entertaining angels unaware.  How many times do we cross paths with angels, but miss the opportunity to entertain them because we are too self-absorbed or think we have no time?  We’ve all seen people standing by the side of the road with signs.  We’re scared to stop or to get involved because there really are some evil people in the world who use that as a rouse to attract others for their own evil purposes.

The conversation goes like this…  “I’d help, but if you give them money, they’ll just go buy cigs or booze or something like that.”  That sounds weak to me.

There are smart ways to help others…

If I’m impressed to meet a need, I make sure my husband is close by and I don’t give anyone cash.  I ask what the need is – if it’s a meal, I’ll buy it – if it’s gasoline for their car, I’ll buy it.  That’s how we give – we provide the need at hand to help them along their way.

Sometimes the person isn’t standing there with a sign.  One Thanksgiving we were at a restaurant.  When the waitress came to take our order, I felt a nudging from God’s Holy Spirit.  I didn’t know what her issue was, but God did and that’s all that matters.  We’ll never know if what we did helped, but we trust that God helped her through her issues.

WHERE JESUS IS HEARD

When God’s Holy Spirit impresses on you to act – you act – it’s as simple as that.  I believe that He guides me quite literally through my life and lets me know when I need to help someone – and He also lets me know when I need to walk away from someone.  God’s Spirit keeps me safe and helps me live the kind of life that is pleasing to Him.  I don’t apologize for my lifestyle.  I believe it’s the best life a person can choose to live.

I was so encouraged when I read Dustin’s story today.  I pray that we all stop to see the signs that others are holding up – whether they are literally holding a sign up or not.  May we be more sensitive to the leading of God’s Holy Spirit in 2016.  ❤

 

 

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A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

 

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Oh admit it…  you’ve done it – I know you have!  Okay – if I admit that I just did it, would you admit you’ve done it then???  Fine…  I’ll admit it.  It’s the middle of the month and I forgot to change both of my perpetual calendars to October!  They are still on September – both of them!

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While I’m sure the perpetual calendar police won’t be visiting my house anytime soon, it still makes me crazy to think that I’ve lived through an entire half month without the calendars being correct.  You’d think someone would remind me.  Oh – scratch that…  we’re talking about a person who does not notice when I’m only wearing one earring.

I used to think it would be so cool to have a perpetual calendar – and they are sort of nice.  I must have liked it because I bought another one – a totally different kind – for the basement.  So, now I have two of them, one upstairs and one downstairs.  You’d think I would have remembered to change one of them – at least.

The time just flies by, doesn’t it?  Maybe I’m just having a difficult time keeping up with it.  I know it sounds like I’m beating myself up over it, but I’m not.  Part of me wonders if it’d be worth changing them now – I mean, I only have another half month to go – so maybe I should just catch it up again in November and be done with it.

Where did this year go?  I just keep wondering what happened to the time…  seems like yesterday we were welcoming 2015.  Welcoming and wondering if things were going to get better or worse, but knowing that no matter what, our God would be faithful to us – and so He has!

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You know, I don’t believe we have much longer to share our faith with those who don’t know Christ as personal Lord and Savior.  My granny used to say, “I feel it in me bones” – and I guess that’s how I would describe it.  We’ve been given the signs to look for in the Bible – and I suppose I just see that prophecies are coming to pass almost daily – and very quickly!  When I heard that Russia was becoming such a key player in world events, my mind went to the portion of Scripture that talks about the BEAR coming down from the North.  I have heard that preached my whole life – that BEAR is Russia!  I believe the second coming of Christ is very near.  Look at it this way – we’re one day closer than we were yesterday.

If you disagree with me that is certainly your privilege.  It’s more of a feeling deep down in my spirit than anything, I guess.  I just believe time is a-flyin’ and time is short for those of us with a purpose for ministry.  Now…  I suppose I’d better get those calendars changed – to NOVEMBER…  then I’ll be ahead of time for a change.  LOL!!!  Wink!  😉

PROVERBS 9:1 ON 9/1

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Wisdom has built her house; she has set up its seven pillars.  – Proverbs 9:1

The wisdom of God is in the person of Christ Jesus.  He has prepared a church with patriarchs, prophets, apostles, pastors and teachers.  Have you ever heard the phrase “A pillar of the community” – ?  In the Southern Baptist church there are deacons.  In the Nazarene church there is a church board.  Every denomination has some degree of organization – they have to.  It’s definitely a good idea and based on biblical principles.

The church is built on Christ.  Christ Jesus is God’s wisdom.  If we claim Christ as our personal Savior, we have access to wisdom through the Holy Spirit of God.  Where is wisdom for decision-making found?  On our knees.  It’s that simple.

So much of the non-stop drama and less than enviable circumstances in life are self-inflicted.  How insane is that?  We just keep making the same bad decisions while expecting a better outcome!  When are we going to humble ourselves before God and seek His wisdom in decision-making?  What is it going to take?

EAR TICKLING PROMISES

Today I want to encourage you to pray about the upcoming 2016 election.  So many Republicans are angry and see one candidate as the one who will make all the frustration disappear.  But my Christian brothers and sisters, please temper all that frustration you feel with wisdom from God’s Holy Spirit.  I believe what we are hearing from this frontrunner is some ear tickling with little substance or common sense.

Don’t we want a president who will seek wisdom from God the Father regarding all of the decisions that must be made on behalf of our country?  I do not want a president who is so self-sufficient that he can or will not seek godly counsel or pray to the Father for direction.

There are many godly men running for office, some of them are not career politicians either.  I guess it’s not secret, I’m hoping and praying for a Cruz/Carson or Carson/Cruz ticket.  I believe they would take our country in the right direction.

I hear people say they won’t even think about the 2016 race until the choices get narrowed down.  I have an idea for us, though.  I think we should be praying about it now.  Who’s with me?

You know a little prayer for God’s wisdom never hurt.  🙂

ROMANS 8:26 ON 8/26

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Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.  – Romans 8:26

LIFT WITH YOUR KNEES

Hands up, everyone who readily admits that they are weak.  Our ego rarely permits us to make such a bold statement, but as we’ve discussed before, as we pray there is no room for false pride or cover-ups.  He already knows what we need before we ask, so being completely forthright and honest before Him behooves us.

Jesus knew exactly what He was doing when He left His Holy Spirit, the Comforter, with us before He ascended to heaven.

No, I don’t know how God’s Holy Spirit can help all of us at the same time.  No, I don’t know how He can hear each of us when we pray – and treat each one of us as though we were the only child.  My human mind cannot even begin to fathom the “how”, but my faith tells me it is so.

The concept of the Trinity is amazing to me.  I mean, what an awesome plan, to have God, the Creator and Father of us all, then send Jesus to earth to save mankind once and for all.  As though that was not enough, we were not left alone to navigate this life.  The blessed Holy Spirit helps us every step of the way!  He is the One who lends comfort when we are distressed, and helps us to pray when all we can do is weep with no audible words.  He knows our thoughts and our needs before we even bow before God the Father.

Christian, know that today you are surrounded by supernatural power from on High.  God the Father loved us so much that He gave Jesus to be the perfect sacrifice, sinless and loving.  Even when Jesus ascended to heaven, He was thinking of us.  He left His precious Holy Spirit to live in our hearts to love us and help us along.  All we have to do is ask Him for help.

No, it’s not a natural thing to be weak, but if we can just be humble before God, He will be there and the Holy Spirit will make intercession on our behalf.  🙂

 

ROMANS 8:16 ON 8/16

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 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children.  – Romans 8:16

ABBA DADDY

We hear so much about self-esteem in our world today, don’t we?  Buy this new product and it will make you so beautiful and boost your self-image.  Sound familiar?  Some commercials really hit us where we live, don’t they?  The advertisement that hits me where I live is when Marie Osmond comes on and talks about Nutri-System.  Sometimes it airs so often, I finally say, “Oh Marie, get off my TV!” 

We think that if we lose weight or change the color of our hair or paint our toenails it will make us feel better about ourselves.  Those are not bad goals, but they don’t produce a lasting peace or joy within.  These fixes are temporal to say the least.

What brings a lasting peace and joy to our hearts and lives?  I’ll answer for myself.  When God’s Holy Spirit testifies (gives evidence) with my spirit that I am God’s child – it’s amazing!  I call it “God-esteem”!  It’s all about Him and nothing about me.  He did all the giving and praise God, He asks me to receive – and I have.

The Holy Spirit’s voice is a deeper voice than mine.  It’s a still small voice.  Some think it’s like a tornado, fire or earthquake – but no, the voice of God speaks to my heart and my consciousness, telling me that I am His child.

My reply is to cry, Abba…  Daddy! 

How do people cope with this crazy life without the Lord?  I don’t understand why anyone would not welcome Him into their hearts and lives.  Imagine having a loving heavenly Father who wants to keep you safe and constantly converse with you Spirit to spirit.  I welcome His Holy Spirit in my life every day.

We have many lovely conversations.  🙂

 

 

I STILL BELIEVE AS I GRIEVE

I STILL BELIEVE AS I GRIEVE (3)

Does anyone have the number for heaven?  I would really like to call my mom and dad today!

I want to tell them how much fun I’ve had this week and how much I appreciate the lessons they taught me.  Daddy always told me to be aware of my surroundings at all times.  I believe that lesson kept me from harm’s way last night.

We were traveling home and stopped at a well-lit, popular and seemingly busy truck stop in another state last night.  I went in and headed for the women’s restroom.  Ahead of me, I noticed a man standing in the narrow hallway.  He did not appear to be going in to the men’s restroom, nor did he appear to be leaving it.  He was just standing there, leaning against the wall.

Something told me to wait…  so I stopped in my tracks and did an about-face, heading toward the grocery section of the store.  I pretended to need something, but was of course, watching the actions of the man.

I thought maybe he was waiting on someone – but nobody came out.  It seems like he stood there for several minutes (my poor bladder was convinced he stood there an hour).  I never felt it was safe to go back there.  My instincts kicked in…  the instincts my father instilled in me.  The instincts my heavenly Father helps me to remember.

I prayed that no other woman would walk back there – and that prayer was answered.  I got tired of waiting for him to leave, so I went to the clerk and told him about my concern.  I didn’t want to get an innocent man in trouble, but I didn’t want to assume he was innocent and live to regret it if he wasn’t.

God’s Holy Spirit helps me to use wisdom at times like this.  I praise Him for that and thank Him for giving me a dad who taught me to be observant of my surroundings at all times.

Was I being paranoid?  I’ll never know, but I got home from vacation safely.  I want to encourage you to listen to the little voice inside that tells you that something doesn’t look right.  If you see someone who is neither coming or going from a restroom, that’s not normal.  If there seems to be no good reason for a person to be there, they are probably up to no good.

At any rate, I had a very good time and would love to call my folks and tell them all about it.  Wouldn’t that be nice?  I always talked about vacations with my mom.  I used to call her on the phone from the motel – yeah, wish I could do that again.

So, what did we find at the Longaberger Homestead???

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I have wanted wrought iron shelving to organize my “coffee” stuff for so many years.  I found it at a quaint little shop in Dresden, OH.  I decided to get one for the kitchen upstairs and one for the bar downstairs!  I’m so tickled with this find.  We found other things too, of course, but the shelving was something I’ve wanted for a long time.

There was one piece of sad news from the Longaberger Homestead.  They have closed Crawford Barn because the furnace exploded!  All of the basket making is done in the main building now.

Do you enjoy Longaberger baskets & pottery?  Me too!  I have a group called “I’m a Basket Case” on facebook!  I hope you’ll come over and join us!  https://www.facebook.com/groups/669536513153216/

It’s great to get away, but wonderful to be back home.  We’re so thankful for traveling mercies and that God brought us home safe and sound.  🙂

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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It really is the little things that bring happy sparkles into your life!  Laughing is at the top of my list, but there are certain events that come to mind – and won’t likely be leaving my mind anytime soon.  I hope I can hang on to all the happy sparkles and think on the positive aspects in every circumstance.

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If we can re-live these little moments when the going gets tough, it not only brings a smile to our face, but it puts a little more courage and self-confidence in us.  These are moments when we were successful and happy and ready to high-five everybody!

  • One morning I tried for the umpteenth time to flip an egg over without breaking the yoke.  In 54 years of life I have never flipped an egg over without the yoke breaking, but guess what?  I carefully scooped the egg up with the spatula and flipped it over – and it was intact!!!  That was the best egg sammich ever!
  • Writing is my passion and music is my life.  Imagine my surprise when I was asked to write about music and got paid for it!  It’s not even about the money, but it’s about the words I write being read and appreciated.  There’s no better feeling to be sure.  Everyone wants to be appreciated.
  •  A friend recently asked if she could come to my house and listen to me play the piano.  I asked how long she had exhibited signs of instability – and she laughed and told me she was serious.  What a boost it was to know that she enjoyed hearing me play.  It gave me more confidence in the face of uncertainty.

Happy sparkles are gifts that God gives us.  He delivers them to us in many ways, through others or even when we’re alone with Him.  When we count our blessings and remember the happy sparkles along the way, we become the joyful Christian that Jesus wants us to be!