CHAOS NEVER DIES DAY

TL 11-9 CHAOS NEVER DIES DAY

11-9 CALM IN THE CHAOS

As I look for documentation, I see no solid evidence of when this wacky holiday started or who started it.  Today we celebrate (I say that tongue in cheek) CHAOS NEVER DIES DAY!!!

What are we afraid of, as humans?  Chaos.  The outsider…  We’re terrified of disruption.  We’re afraid that somebody’s going to steal our mushrooms in the checkout line.  – Stephen King

There’s no doubt that life in general is messy and busy, but I suppose that keeps us from getting bored with it.  Chaos has a purpose – to make us stronger.  There’s not much control over the degree of chaos outside your own home to be sure, but within the walls of your home, you most definitely have some control (even though you may not believe you do).

With the Thanksgiving and Christmas season fast approaching, we should use this day to practice for even more hectic days to come.  There is definitely a fair amount of chaos in the world and every time we walk out the door of the sanctuary of our home we should pray that God will help us navigate it with some clarity of thought.  Let’s not forget – God is NOT the author of confusion.

 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.  – 1 Corinthians 14:33

Chaos and confusion does not need to rule the day in our own homes.  With God’s help we can have a calm and peaceful oasis.  It’s a choice we make as a family, just as love in a family is a choice.

Here’s a little refresher course about the color wheel:

Of course, choosing the right colors to invoke a sense of calm in your living space is only part of the solution.  The bulk of the work is done psychologically and spiritually.  Invite God into your plans and watch how He will work in your family.

The most difficult circumstance is when a couple is unequally yoked.  In other words, one partner has accepted Christ as their personal Savior and the other partner has not.  That is the kind of chaos that really does seem to never end.  Keep praying for your spouse and don’t give up.  My girlfriend actually printed off the Sinner’s Prayer and framed it (beautifully) and hung it in the entryway of her house.  I’m not suggesting you do that, but eventually her husband of over twenty years asked her about the prayer, she was able to share her faith, and her husband came to a saving knowledge of Christ.  They have enjoyed a lovely, chaos-free home ever since.

Lord Jesus, I want to know You personally. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life to You and ask You to come in as my Saviour and Lord. Take control of my life. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Make me the kind of person You want me to be.  In Your Name I pray, Amen.

God has given each of us free will.  That means we have a choice in what we accept and what we reject in life.  If something (or dare I say it – someone) is causing you enormous stress, pray about it and let it (or them) go if you need to.   ❤

NATIONAL SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER APPRECIATION DAY

TL 10-19 NATIONAL SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER APPRECIATION DAY

USE YOUR GIFTS(1) HAPPY SUNDAYSHOW THEM JESUSGOD CHOSE YOU3

Today is NATIONAL SUNDAY SCHOOL TEACHER APPRECIATION DAY!  I started teaching Sunday School when I was only 12 years old, about the same time I began playing piano for church.  Believe me when I tell you it’s not for wimps!  God gives us what we need, and most of the time we need a sense of humor!

I appreciate those times when you have worked all day Friday, come home to fix supper for your family, get your Sunday School packet out and begin to organize the lesson in your mind – and put together all the fun games included in the lesson packet.  Hey, we do laundry and cook-ahead on Saturday, so the lesson plan has to be done on Friday night.

I appreciate the moments when you realize that there’s no way you’re going to teach this lesson on a level that is going to be understood by your kids.  Sometimes you literally have to take the words used in the lesson book and re-write them.  It’s a definite waste of time for you, but the kids will benefit from it  because at least they will get something out of it.

I appreciate the days when you smile even though you walk into your Sunday School class and Tommy has already spit gum into Suzie’s pretty brown hair.  See what I mean about praying for a sense of humor?  You handle this rather sticky situation with grace and finesse – you send Suzie to her mom and set Tommy in the corner for a time out.  Yep – all better now.  Of course, the first bell has now rung and you haven’t gotten around to doing any teaching, but hey…  stuff happens.

I appreciate the dedication you have for your kids.  They are a charge given to you.  When you walk in ready to evangelize to them and let them know they are loved not only by their Savior, Jesus Christ, but by you as well, it’s a very good and productive day.  Well done!

I appreciate the time you take to teach children.  In our church we had a lot of bus kids – kids whose parents didn’t think it was important to bring their kids to church, but they could ride our bus.  One little girl will be in my mind forever – Virginia.  For some reason, Virginia decided I was her favorite person on the planet.  She never wanted to go to Children’s Church after Sunday School.  She wanted to go into BIG CHURCH with me.  I think she would have come home with me if she could get away with it.  I’ll tell you a little secret – I would have let her!  That little girl is not so little anymore.  She’s probably a mother herself now.  I pray for her every day.  I pray that the words she heard in Sunday School (and in BIG CHURCH) stayed with her and that somewhere along the way, she accepted Jesus into her heart and life.  ❤

NATIONAL FACE YOUR FEARS DAY

TL 10-14 FACE YOUR FEARS DAY

10-14 WHICH WILL YOU CHOOSE TODAY

Coincidence is when God chooses to remain anonymous. Did you know that the phrase FEAR NOT, or the equivalent, is in the Bible 365 times? That is one reminder per day for an entire year! Coincidence? I think not. God wants us to overcome our fears with faith!

Don’t let the fear of striking out hold you back.  – Babe Ruth

There is plenty of serious stuff to fear these days. Our large government is out of control and not being held accountable for any wrongdoing. Our southern border is not secure and terrorists and anyone else can just come on in and do whatever. Now Ebola has reached our country. There are at least two confirmed cases. With cold and flu season fast approaching, I wonder how many cases will be misdiagnosed.

We have good reason to be fearful. If you are not, you are being foolish. As Christians it’s okay for us to be concerned and act on information with wisdom. We don’t need to stick our heads in the sand and act as though nothing bad is going on – pleeeeze don’t do that. It’s not wrong to be informed. It’s wrong to let fear take the place of our faith in God. We know we have a great God and He will take good care of us no matter what.

On this NATIONAL FACE YOUR FEARS DAY, let’s put faith in the God of the universe instead of letting fear rise up in our spirits. Faith can bring peace to a soul where fear has paralyzed it.

Faith is like radar that sees through the fog.  – Corrie Ten Boom, Tramp for the Lord

We all know someone who has what we would consider an irrational fear. I have a friend who will not cross a bridge of any kind. She lives a very lonely and isolated life because of this fear. I can’t make her stop fearing bridges but I can remind her that God will take care of her.

Another friend will not wear the color red because she believes it is an evil color. Again, I can’t change her mind about red, but I can remind her that God made the color red and if He thought it was alright to make strawberries, apples, cherries and many other fruits and vegetables red, it must be just a color – nothing more, nothing less.

Some fears can be faced and conquered while other ones – the ones we cannot change – need to be prayed about and left with our Lord. When there is so much fear that has the potential to paralyze us, we just have to give it to God in prayer and keep living our lives.

Yes – there are terrorists, an open southern border and Ebola is in the United States. Wow, there is much to fear. But Christian, take heart because our God is in control and He will take care of us. ❤

NO SALT DAY

TL 10-8 NATIONAL NO SALT DAY

10-8 TEMPER SALT WITH SUGAR

The week of October third through the tenth is NO SALT WEEK. The emphasis, of course, is to make us think before we pick up the salt shaker and begin mindlessly pouring salt on our eggs in the morning before even tasting them. We all know someone who does that – maybe you do that. But the idea of no salt made me think of a familiar Bible verse on the subject.

You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people’s feet.
– Matthew 5:13

To have a salty personality is to be bold and strong. My dad was in the Navy with a guy who earned the nickname “Salty”. He wears it as a badge of honor that his buddies gave him. Salty people influence others the most. They are the ones that leave a lasting impression, whether good or bad. They stand by their principles and won’t back down. A stubborn streak runs through them and no amount of debate will change their minds. They are admired and followed by people because they are usually so sure of themselves and their belief system. They attract others – and that’s a good thing.

I used to put a salt lick out for Grandpa Frank’s horses, goats and cattle. If you’ve ever tried to move a salt lick, you know how solid, strong and secure the block is. Salt in large doses is very heavy and very solid. There is a place for salt in large doses, but that one block can take care of a lot of animals at the same time.

It just takes one LULU THE PIG to bust up the goat party! LOL!!!

From a distance I watched as the horses and cattle enjoyed the salt lick. They walked up to it as expected, but once in a while, a wild deer or other critter would find it too! Salt is attractive but must be tempered with sugar to be effective and helpful to others. If the salty people of God are going to reach out to the lost with the good news of Christ, we must sprinkle some sincere compassion and understanding – some sugar, in with the boldness of the salt. The cornerstone of our message is Christ and He loved everyone.

Besides, I am more attracted to a salty-sweet friendship than a salty one, aren’t you? I’m not suggesting that we let go of the salt, but I hope we never let it overpower the sugar.

I think I made myself hungry for a salty-sweet snack! 😉

LOVE NOTE DAY

TL 9-26 LOVE NOTE DAY

It’s LOVE NOTE DAY, a great time to tuck a little note somewhere for your mate or significant other. There is one special love letter that I keep close to my heart. Your God loves you so much! Please take a moment to read this slowly and meticulously. Let the truth of God’s precious promises sink into your spirit. Apply His love to your life. In this day of fear – uncertain days – let the love of God make a home in your heart and mind.

My Child,

You may not know me,
but I know everything about you.
Psalm 139:1

I know when you sit down and when you rise up.
Psalm 139:2

I am familiar with all your ways.
Psalm 139:3

Even the very hairs on your head are numbered.
Matthew 10:29-31

For you were made in my image.
Genesis 1:27

In me you live and move and have your being.
Acts 17:28

For you are my offspring.
Acts 17:28

I knew you even before you were conceived.
Jeremiah 1:4-5

I chose you when I planned creation.
Ephesians 1:11-12

You were not a mistake,
for all your days are written in my book.
Psalm 139:15-16

I determined the exact time of your birth
and where you would live.
Acts 17:26

You are fearfully and wonderfully made.
Psalm 139:14

I knit you together in your mother’s womb.
Psalm 139:13

And brought you forth on the day you were born.
Psalm 71:6

I have been misrepresented
by those who don’t know me.
John 8:41-44

I am not distant and angry,
but am the complete expression of love.
1 John 4:16

And it is my desire to lavish my love on you.
1 John 3:1

Simply because you are my child
and I am your Father.
1 John 3:1

I offer you more than your earthly father ever could.
Matthew 7:11

For I am the perfect father.
Matthew 5:48

Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand.
James 1:17

For I am your provider and I meet all your needs.
Matthew 6:31-33

My plan for your future has always been filled with hope.
Jeremiah 29:11

Because I love you with an everlasting love.
Jeremiah 31:3

My thoughts toward you are countless
as the sand on the seashore.
Psalms 139:17-18

And I rejoice over you with singing.
Zephaniah 3:17

I will never stop doing good to you.
Jeremiah 32:40

For you are my treasured possession.
Exodus 19:5

I desire to establish you
with all my heart and all my soul.
Jeremiah 32:41

And I want to show you great and marvelous things.
Jeremiah 33:3

If you seek me with all your heart,
you will find me.
Deuteronomy 4:29

Delight in me and I will give you
the desires of your heart.
Psalm 37:4

For it is I who gave you those desires.
Philippians 2:13

I am able to do more for you
than you could possibly imagine.
Ephesians 3:20

For I am your greatest encourager.
2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

I am also the Father who comforts you
in all your troubles.
2 Corinthians 1:3-4

When you are brokenhearted,
I am close to you.
Psalm 34:18

As a shepherd carries a lamb,
I have carried you close to my heart.
Isaiah 40:11

One day I will wipe away
every tear from your eyes.
Revelation 21:3-4

And I’ll take away all the pain
you have suffered on this earth.
Revelation 21:3-4

I am your Father, and I love you
even as I love my son, Jesus.
John 17:23

For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed.
John 17:26

He is the exact representation of my being.
Hebrews 1:3

He came to demonstrate that I am for you,
not against you.
Romans 8:31

And to tell you that I am not counting your sins.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled.
2 Corinthians 5:18-19

His death was the ultimate expression
of my love for you.
1 John 4:10

I gave up everything I loved
that I might gain your love.
Romans 8:31-32

If you receive the gift of my son Jesus,
you receive me.
1 John 2:23

And nothing will ever separate you
from my love again.
Romans 8:38-39

Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party
heaven has ever seen.
Luke 15:7

I have always been Father,
and will always be Father.
Ephesians 3:14-15

My question is…
Will you be my child?
John 1:12-13

I am waiting for you.
Luke 15:11-32

Love, Your Dad
Almighty God

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NATIONAL RESPECT DAY

TL 9-18 NATIONAL RESPECT DAY

9-18 DON'T GO SAYIN' DAT

Most people in my generation have, or more than likely had, a sock monkey. Most of those sock monkeys were made by our grandmothers, am I right? My granny LaVella made my sock monkey, but I am sad to say it went by the wayside at some point. I guess I just grew up and lost track of it. This guy hasn’t lost track of his sock monkeys – take a look at this collection!

In these days of uncertainty, why is it we look back on the days that seemed so much better, safer and more secure? Those days filled with simple joys and simple, homemade toys – like sock monkeys? Well, it’s easy to long for something you used to know because it made you feel better than you feel now.

Security is a funny thing. We take it for granted until it’s taken away. When I was a very small child, my sock monkey went everywhere with me. At some point, apparently something else became a better form of security for me and sock monkey went by the wayside.

I know my faith will never be replaced with anything better. My security in this life is found in my Savior, Jesus Christ. The last time I checked, no one else willingly died just for me – but He did. God loved the world so much He sent Christ, His only begotten Son, to die just for us.

He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. – 1 John 2:2

Have you ever wondered about that word… propitiation? I used to like to say it just because I thought it sounded really cool and theological (I know, GEEK, right?) – but have you ever actually looked it up?

Propitiation: an atoning sacrifice. Christ is the atoning sacrifice for our sins. Wow. The only reason I can make heaven my home is because He chose to die for me – to be an atoning sacrifice – for me. Nothing I have done, am doing, or will ever do is enough. It’s about Christ – period. I am safe and secure in Him. ❤

NATIONAL TEDDY BEAR DAY

TL 9-9 NATIONAL TEDDY BEAR DAY

9-9-14 IN HIS NAME

Let’s pray that God put a hedge of protection around America on 9/11. It’s not some hocus pocus magic – we are instructed to ask God for what we need and where two or three agree together, He is there and hears and will answer our prayers.

I’m not allowed to be worried, but I can be concerned. I would venture to say anyone who is not concerned, should be. These terrorists are wackadoodles who want to kill off the west and believe it is an honor to die in the process. I will be praying for the UK and for the US in the days to come. These nut jobs mean business. It’s not a game.

In the meantime, I have found the most wonderful blessing:

And now may the Lord bless you and may the Lord keep you. And may the Lord bring to you his strength and may God give to you his peace. May you know today with divine assurance that God is going to bring you through the storm with his power, with his peace and through your prayer and praise. Let us know with assurance that whatever happens in the world, we’re in our Father’s hand and no one can pluck us from His hand; that our tomorrows are secure; that God our Father is all-powerful. – John Hagee Ministries

There’s not a doubt in my mind that God “has” this. He is sovereign God and yes, HE is in control of everything; however, that does not mean I will do nothing. I am by nature a pro-active person. I’m going to pray and I hope that you will take time to pray too. I keep hearing people say, “Why worry about it when there’s nothing you can do?” Well, I won’t worry – but I’m sure gonna say some prayers! Add your prayers to mine – let’s agree in prayer about this terrorist situation!

Today is NATIONAL TEDDY BEAR DAY!  The Teddy Bear was named after Theodore Roosevelt when he refused to hunt a small bear cub.  A newspaper article was written about the soft-hearted Roosevelt and he was asked if a line of stuffed bears could be named “Teddy Bears”.   It’s one stuffed toy that has not lost steam through the years.  There are “Build-a-Bear” stores in nearly every mall in America.

There’s a unique comfort when you hug a Teddy Bear.  Somehow you just know it’s gonna be okay when you’re bear is there.  As we face the days ahead, let’s hold tightly to our teddy bears because we know it really is gonna be okay – God has this.   ❤

READ A BOOK DAY

TL 9-6 READ A BOOK DAY

9-6 BOOK IT

According to the Online Slang Dictionary, the term “book it” means to move very fast. But I could be wanting a room in another town for the night if I’m taking a trip – so I would have to “book it”. Isn’t slang fun… and confusing?

Well all of that nonsense was to introduce READ A BOOK DAY, which has nothing whatsoever to do with moving very fast or making reservations. This is a holiday that was began by a librarian, one we suspect was encouraging youngsters to read books. It was first observed at the end of the first decade of the 2000’s.

I take a book almost everywhere.  Books are the perfect entertainment:  no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent.  What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots in life.  – Stephen King

Don’t feel pressured to read an entire book today, but hopefully this day will remind you to read a certain passage of a favorite book. Maybe this would be a good day to look at some of your favorite Bible verses or read from a book of poetry. My favorite poet is Lucinda Berry Hill. I use her devotional book, “Coffee with Jesus” every day.

412580_355061781207165_982962890_o
To order this devotional, go to:
http://www.lucindaspoetry.webs.com/

I may be telling tales out of school, but there’s talk of a second cup of coffee with Jesus! Shh… don’t tell.

A SECOND CUP WITH JESUS
Some other ways to celebrate this day may be to volunteer to read to children or give a book to a children’s school library. How about hosting a book reading party. What ever happened to book clubs? When did we all get too busy to get together to talk about a book?

Times have changed but I must admit I miss the old days. These days we not only have print books but e-books as well. I’m sure they count on this Read a Book Day. The idea is to encourage reading, whether it’s fiction or non-fiction. Books open up a whole new world to young and old alike.

Until I feared I would lose it, I never loved to read.  One does not love breathing.  – Harper Lee

I hope you’ll take the opportunity to relax and read today. It’s good for the soul and mind. 🙂

NATIONAL NO RHYME (NOR REASON) DAY

TL 9-1 NATIONAL NO RHYME (NOR REASON) DAY

9-1 I WISH IT WAS PRETEND
Today is NATIONAL NO RHYME (NOR REASON) DAY!!!  I’m not making it up – it really is.   

The 9/11 anniversary is coming up in just a few days. I’ve prayed now more than ever about the terrorist activity here in our country. Then we hear from our President that he has no strategy against ISIS. No, I’m not worried… not a problem.  Yikes!!!

The Brits are at a level 2 alert while America is not taking action of any kind. I suppose it’s true that England is closer to the threat, but aren’t we just a plane ride from England? Jus’ sayin’…

I know my posts are usually brighter and if this one bums you out, I am so sorry. I hope to end this one on a bright note even if it starts out a little rough. Just hang in there with me, OK? Thanks for understanding! Last Thursday we heard this:

OK – I don’t give a flying fig what color SUIT the President wears! PLEASE… focus people! There’s a greater threat to our homeland than ever before and all I hear about is the color of suit the President is wearing! The man was ready for the Labor Day weekend and dressed for it – isn’t he always in vacation mode? You know, if he would have done a little less golfing and had more meetings with the people who will help him come up with a strategy – MAYBE HE WOULD HAVE A STRATEGY! I pray for the man – I really do!

That’s one more reason to pray more than usual. I don’t exactly place a lot of faith in the government about this – um… or anything else. Forgive me for not being a rock solid positive person today. The worst threat in the history of the United States is knocking on our door – they don’t stutter when they speak – they want to kill all who are not Muslim. Last time I checked, that would include me and many of my friends. And yes, I know if I died I would go to heaven – that’s not the point. I thought I might get to visit a beach and tour a few lighthouses first. I’m being honest.

I’m scared. I was going to say I’m concerned – but it’s much more than that. God knows I am just scared spitless about this terrorist activity. I will not be in a large group of people on 9/11 this year – or any other year on that day. Did you know there are some comedic satires about this stuff? Let me tell you, the threat is not funny to me – not even almost. Those skits are in such bad taste! I was going to post a YouTube video of some of the sick satires about it – but why would I want to spread it around? If you do look up those videos on your own, make sure to give them a big THUMBS DOWN before you leave!

This is the part that gets encouraging. See, I told you it’ll get better! The key to overcoming fear is FAITH in God and His Son, Christ Jesus. These are times when we need to lean on Him more and less on our own understanding.  No matter who the President of the United States is, Jesus Christ is the King of kings!!!  WORD!!!

Putting feet to our faith is not easy. Since childhood I’ve heard teaching about overcoming fear with faith. I speak the words out loud on a regular basis, but today I needed to be reminded once again. When I look at what my eyes can see, it frightens me. When I feel what God says to my soul, that fear is calmed and replaced with faith. It’s a matter of keeping God’s Word ever before me.

Hey, do me a favor. If you read this and agree with me and you agree to pray for this situation, please leave a comment here! You don’t have to write a book in the comments, but I’d like to know that others are agreeing with me in prayer about this. Thanks – and thanks for letting me be less than “happy happy” today. I appreciate everyone who reads my blog! God bless you!

VESUVIUS DAY

TL 8-24 VESUVIUS DAY

8-24 PLUG IN TO THE SOURCEToday is VESUVIUS DAY!!!  Italy’s Mount Vesuvius is in the Gulf of Naples.  It has erupted three dozen times since 79 AD.  It last erupted in 1944.  For more information go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mount_Vesuvius

As awesome as God’s creation is, it’s more important for me to be plugged in to God on a spiritual level.  How do I stay plugged in?  Through prayer.

This is an analogy that has been used for years, but it’s effective so I’m going to use it again. If you wanted a couple of pieces of toast (oh, that sounds so good) but did not plug the toaster in before pushing the bread into the toaster, would you still get toast? If you answered “yes” I’d like to see you after class to hear your hypothesis.

If you have an older toaster, the bread will sit down inside the toaster and do nothing until you plug the toaster into the outlet. If you have a newer toaster like mine, the toaster will pop the bread back up, as if to say, “Hey, stupid, you have to plug me in before I can make this bread into toast – duh!” Yes, my appliances talk ugly to me. Bad, bad appliances!

So how do you expect to have any power in your life if you refuse to get with God in prayer and Bible study? Do you think all that stuff you learn on Sunday morning is enough to get you through the deep waters that come along in life. Do you not think there will be any deep water in life? Seriously???

Pray without ceasing, – 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Pray all the time. Ok, that doesn’t mean you have to spend every waking hour on your knees, but it does mean that you stay plugged in to the source of your power, strength, joy, peace, patience, loving kindness, gentleness, goodness, self-control. Wow – sounds like the fruits of the Spirit, right? Bingo! If you are not plugged in to the source – the trinity – Father, Son, Spirit – you can’t do life the way it’s supposed to be done. Yep, that’s what I said. An attitude of prayer – those little prayers that shoot through your mind all day long – they are heard by God through Christ. We pray those prayers all day – you know the ones, like, LORD HELP ME – you think He doesn’t hear it? Think again. That is an attitude of prayer. That’s how you stay plugged in to your source! Praise Him today! ❤

A great way to plug-in is to have a devotional book based on the Word of God. My recommendation is one by Lucinda Berry Hill called COFFEE WITH JESUS. It’s unique because it is her original poetry! Poetry, of course resonates with me. If you would like your own copy, please go to the link below. 🙂

http://www.lucindaspoetry.webs.com/

Oh – and hey… there’s a rumor she has another book in the works – I don’t know whether I was supposed to tell ya – but I guess I spilled the beans!  I shouldn’t be listening to rumors anyway, right???

BE BEAUTIFUL YOU ARE GOD'S CHOICE