A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

My folks never purchased a security system for their house.  I grew up in a different time…  dare I say, it was a simpler time.  Yes, in the 1970’s we had BTK running around killing people, but I was taught to check the phone just as soon as I walked in the door after school.  My parents drilled it into my mind – they said if I pick up the receiver and the line was dead – I was to run like the wind to the neighbor’s house and call the police!
When I was growing up, a security system meant that you had an attack dog.  Well, maybe not an attack dog, but at least a dog who would bark loudly when strangers came into the yard.
Now I live in an area where we are required to have security.  It’s a good thing, and it lessens our insurance rates too.  Security in our day and age is so important.  Thieves are all around us.  They’ve always been around, but it seems they are closer these days than ever before.  Most of us not only fear the loss of our material possessions, but the loss of something as intimate as our identity.  If ever we needed services like Lifelock, it’s now!
This portion of Scripture reminds us that we need security, protection and hope!  The Lord Jesus Christ is our source of spiritual security.  He is a reliable source of strength and our hope in times of trouble.  We know that His commands to us are not only for His glory, but for our own good.  He wants nothing more than to protect us because He loves us so much.
May we seek His will for our lives as we rely completely on His protection and thank Him for the security He provides for us spiritually.  When we have the courage to do that, we will have the ability to ignore all the false voices that try to talk us out of God’s best in our lives.  The enemy of our soul would like nothing better than to lure us away from our Father and His plan for us.  As long as we delight in our Father’s ways, we will not only survive, but we will thrive because that is God’s desire for us!

I want to live life there!  🙂

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

Yes, I know this is not Sunday – LOL!  I’m interrupting this Friday the 13th, which is typically seen as the worst day you can possibly have, to bring you some GOOD NEWS!  But first, let’s review a few things that historians have claimed:

They claim that Eve ate the forbidden fruit from the tree of Knowledge on Friday the 13th.  They also say that the great flood began on Friday the 13th.  And finally, the builders of the Tower of Babel started their work on – you guessed it – Friday the 13th.  And what about the New Testament?  Well, it’s notable that there were 13 people present for Christ’s Last Supper on Maundy Thursday, the day before Jesus was crucified on Good Friday.  Now – was that a Friday the 13th?  I think not.

One Friday the 13th, I was watching a telecast of a sermon by Joseph Prince.  I don’t like to say I have a favorite TV preacher, but I enjoy listening to him.  He interjects interesting facts – and on this Friday the 13th, I was not disappointed.  Let’s take another look at this verse in Hebrews:

Let us go forth therefore unto HIM outside the camp, bearing His reproach.  – Hebrews 13:13

Well, the obvious thing is that this is the 13th Chapter and the 13th verse.  Joseph Prince also pointed out that there are 13 words in this verse – but wait, it gets better.  The word in the center of this verse is HIM.  I l LOVE THAT!!!  So, what is that take away?  If we have HIM, do we have to dread Friday the 13th as the world does?  NO!  No, we do not!  

I vowed that I would point this out to everyone here on the blog the next time we have a Friday that falls on the 13th.  I want to promote the positivity that belonging to Christ brings!  He brings His children joy, peace, love, and all the fruits of His Spirit.  Lucinda wrote a neat poem about Hebrews 13:13.  I know you’ll like it!

I wasn’t able to find the sermon by Joseph Prince, but Hebrews 13:13 means even more to me since I saw this sermon.  I hope you will watch with receptive hearts and minds.

So…  let’s keep the positive side of Friday the 13th in mind, and throw away the other stuff.  Oh, I do want to leave you with something that I think is HI-larious!  Frankly, this is what comes to mind when I think of Friday the 13th:

Isn’t that funny???  I’m rollin’!!!  😀

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart
    and my portion forever.  – Psalm 73:26

I’ve battled the flu this week.  Ugh…  I feel quite weak, so today when I read this portion of Scripture, I was encouraged because even though I may at times fail, yes – but certainly feel sick and weak…  My God is the strength of my heart!  He is with me and will continually provide strength and support within me.  Often when I face a blank screen to write, He helps me to say exactly what He wants us to read – yes, that includes me.  ❤

Today…  I need to hear Don Moen sing this Scripture.  ❤

As we talk about the heart this February, isn’t it great to know that God is the strength of your heart?  I’ll tell ya…  today that is what I needed to hear.  I’m so very thankful for that strength from Him!  ❤

God is a sure and firm foundation, which will bear my weight, and not sink under it.  He is the only One I can rely on because I know this body gets older and sick, it is certainly not dependable in any way.  ❤

You know, in a matter of minutes, all you have can disappear before your eyes.  Not to be a downer, but it’s true – all the things we’ve worked years to build can tumble to the ground.  No matter how educated or successful you are, there are no guarantees in this life.  ❤

The only security and safety is in God.  He is our strength when bad things happen.  He is our security when we feel insecure in this life.  He is our safety in an unsafe world.  ❤

It’s my desire to stay very near to God by faith and prayer.  He promised to become my portion in this world and in the next.  I thank Him and praise Him today for all He’s done and will do for me.  ❤

 

 

O HOLY NIGHT

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For it is written, “Be Holy for I am Holy.”  – 1 Peter 1:16

O Holy Night was not a song at first, but a poem.   In 1847 it was written by Placide Cappeau, a wine merchant, mayor of the town, and an occasional poet, who was asked by a parish priest to write a poem for Christmas mass.

It most certainly was a blessed Holy night, when Christ was born.  You might say, it was the birth of Salvation.  Actually, that’s exactly how Lucinda referred to it.the-birth-of-salvation

The birth of Christ was just the beginning – for Him and for mankind.  He came to offer us more than we could imagine – and surely more than we deserve.  He came – He gave – He made the ultimate sacrifice for God’s creation.  Was it easy?  No it was not.  I cry when I read about how He prayed and sweat drops of blood in Gethsemane – no it was not easy!  He asked His Father if there was some other way – some easier path that could be taken to save man.  He would not have had to willingly give His life for us.  He could have said no and gone back to Heaven with mankind lost for all time.  He chose to take those nails and die for us.

Heaven’s Lamb is worthy of all honor and praise.  Let’s celebrate that most Holy of nights.

She’s only 7 years old!  Isn’t that great???  When I was 7 I was playing in mud puddles…  true story.

A birth of joy, peace, light, love, hope and everlasting life for you and me.  If that’s not a good reason to give praise and worship to the King – then I don’t know what is.  He came to earth as a baby, was raised as a human, was ultimately given a death sentence and was tortured in a horrific manner before being hung on a cross.  He went through with it – because He loved us.  He loves you more than anyone ever has or ever will.holy-night-prayer

Is living a life of holiness too much to ask?  It’s probably the least we could do in return for all He went through for us.  He wants us to live for Him and to love one another.  With His help, we can do that.  🙂

 

 

 

PRAYERS & WISHES FOR THANKSGIVING

tl-thanksgiving-2016-11-12-thru-11-24There is so much to be thankful for…  and I have two more posts for Thanksgiving!  Decisions… decisions.  Today I am so very thankful for Warmth – and by warmth I mean not just the snuggly feeling of being in a coat on a cold day.  Warmth on the outside, yes – but also warmth on the inside.  I’m so very thankful for a sense of security and confidence because of a relationship with Jesus Christ.  I’m thankful for God’s joy and His peace that passes all understanding.

I am thankful for my new coat – and I have to show it to you:

new-image5It’s snuggly and warm – it resists moisture and the strong Kansas wind!  And…  it is TEAL BLUE which is my favorite color.  It was my mom’s favorite color too.  I also like to wear it on Friday for Blue Friday for diabetes awareness.  It was half price which cinched the deal for sure.  I’ll be toasty warm  this winter and for that – yes I’m very thankful for physical warmth and protection.  Oh, and by the way…  I know my hands are inside the sleeves.  Yes, I do have hands – but the coat is not a petite, so…  well – if you’re short, you understand.

In a spiritual sense, I feel very secure and God instills confidence in my soul every day.  There’s nothing like having God’s love, joy and peace within.  I know you know that.

Let’s take a moment to thank God for the warmth He give us – inside and out:a-poem-prayer-for-thanksgivingAs we acknowledge God in all our ways, He promises to direct our paths.  I don’t take those promises for granted, do you?  I take Him at His word and lean on Him for help every moment of every day.

When we ask God for things like security, acceptance, confidence, and peace…  He is faithful to answer those prayers – and it’s a different answer for each of us.  I think that’s great, and more proof that we are not robots, but were created by a loving God who knows just what we need and how to provide for that need!  I love how God answers our prayers.

Lucinda does too!

thankful-for-the-way-god-answersI wish for you answered prayers!  I wish you more of whatever it is you need.  I wish for you better relationships, and success in life.  I wish that more of your plans and dreams will come to pass if it is God’s will.  🙂

 

PSALM 9:1 ON 9/1

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For the director of music. To the tune of “The Death of the Son.” A psalm of David. I will give thanks to you, LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.  – Psalm 9:1 

Sometimes the most difficult thing to do is live your life in spite of the broken dreams that lie strewn behind you.  No, I’m not suicidal – don’t worry…  but it’s been a challenge lately to grab ahold of real purpose for living.  I suppose part of the problem is that I keep seeing my friends on facebook…  some of them I’ve known since high school.  They have raised their children and are now spoiling their grandchildren.  It’s as it should be and I’m very happy for them!  I just question LORD…  why is that not the way my life turned out?

I wonder what I’ve done that was so awful to be overlooked.  I am not perfect by any stretch, but neither are those who have been blessed with people in their lives.  They have big people, little people, dysfunctional people, quiet people, loud people…  what a blessing!

Does anyone else think this verse holds a great deal of irony?  I mean, do the words and the tune really mesh up?  The tune is called “The Death of the Son” – but the wonderful, uplifting praiseworthy words are…  I WILL GIVE THANKS TO YOU, LORD, WITH ALL MY HEART, I WILL TELL OF ALL YOUR WONDERFUL DEEDS.

Wow…  epiphany!  Here’s the key to living a happy, good quality life!  Regardless of the cards you are dealt in life, you find the good parts and PRAISE GOD FOR HIS GOOD DEEDS.  Although there are shattered pieces of dreams behind me, I wake up every morning and praise GOD for HIS goodness, for HIS love, for HIS grace, for HIS mercy, for HIS provision in my life.  He is all-sovereign, all-strong, all-powerful.  He is all I need in this life.

There are situations and circumstances I’ll never understand…  but then I remember that regardless of my circumstances, the LORD has done wonderful deeds in my life.  That is when I can be thankful to the LORD for my life.  Maybe He’s not done with me yet.  I’m just being still and know that HE is GOD and HE holds my simple little life in the palm of HIS great big hand.I TRUST YOU, PAPA GOD

Today let’s take a cue from David…  no matter how far you think you’ve sunk – and no matter how many tiny pieces of broken dreams lie scattered on the path behind you, trust God for answers and for hope.  Yesterday is over.  Press on, knowing that God has a wonderful plan for your future!  🙂

PSALM 10:17 ON 10/17

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You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry.  – Psalm 10:17 (NIV)

LORD, you know the hopes of the helpless. Surely you will hear their cries and comfort them. – Psalm 10:17 (NLT)

O LORD, you hear the desire of the afflicted; you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear.  – Psalm 10:17 (ESV)

O LORD, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear.  – Psalm 10:17 (NASB)

LORD, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilt prepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear.  – Psalm 10:17 (KJV)

LORD, you have heard the request of the oppressed; you make them feel secure because you listen to their prayer.  – Psalm 10:17 (NET)

I’m not typically a translation junkie, but today I just could not settle on just one translation!  I believe there are powerful meanings in certain words.  If we could somehow put all these translations together, wow…  it would be terrific, wouldn’t it?

First we see that the LORD hears.  Only one translation skips the hearing and declares that the LORD knows without hearing first.  Well, I don’t know about you, but I’m encouraged by this verse already!

Then we see that He hears and knows our request, desire and hope.  Again, this makes me smile for sure.  My faith is strengthened right away.

It says that the LORD hears and knows the request, desire and hope of the oppressed, humble, afflicted and helpless.  Have you ever felt any of these?  I sure have.  Aren’t you thankful to God for this truth?

Then the verse varies even more from translation to translation.  The LORD hears and knows the request, desire and hope of the oppressed, humble, afflicted and helpless.  The LORD will make them feel secure, prepare and strengthen their heart, encourage them and hear their cry!

It just gets better…

The LORD hears and knows the request, desire and hope of the oppressed, humble, afflicted and helpless.  The LORD will make them feel secure, prepare and strengthen their heart, encourage them and hear their cry!  He will incline His ear to them and listen to their prayer and comfort them.

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This is for those of us who know that God hears and knows our request, desire and hope.  We feel oppressed, have been humbled along life’s way, leaving us afflicted and helpless.  We know that God will restore our security, prepare and strengthen our hearts, encourage us and hear us when we cry.  We trust that He will tilt His head, which inclines His ear so He can carefully and intently listen to our prayer.  After we have prayed, we know without a doubt that God has comforted us and restored our sense of purpose so we can keep serving Him in whatever way He desires. 

THROUGH GOD'S EYES

Somebody needs to praise God for Who He Is…    🙂

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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There are some changes taking place in Wichita.  Although embracing change with an open mind is a challenge for me, I’m opinionated and need to add my two cents worth (which in today’s economy is worth less than one cent).  :-/

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DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER NATIONAL AIRPORT Wichita, Kansas

Wichita has a new airport – the Dwight D. Eisenhower National Airport.  It looks quite modern from the outside and everyone talks about how fresh, clean and new it looks inside.  My husband and I decided to go check it out.

Before I go on, allow me a moment of nostalgia.  There’s not a ton of fun things to do in Wichita, so we used to go to the OLD airport and watch the planes take off and land.  Don’t feel sorry for me – that was fun!  We used to do that for a while, then eat at one of the restaurants and just walk around a bit.

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These days – in the post 9/11 world – it’s considered loitering.  Just hanging around an airport is not encouraged now for obvious reasons.  I get that – but part of me is sad.  Bit by bit our innocent activities are being taken from us.  Hey – when you’re low on cash, watching planes at the airport can be sort of fun!  There’s a people-watching opportunity you just can’t get anywhere else!  😉

There is absolutely no reason to darken the door of our new airport unless you are catching a flight.  There is one small “café” on the ground floor – as far as I could tell, they sell donuts and coffee – maybe hot dogs.  That’s about as good as it gets for those of us who are not being winged off.

If you are going to pick someone up at the airport, take my advice and brown bag it or eat something before you get to the airport.

All the other restaurants are beyond security!  Yeah – I’m just sad.  

Gone are the innocent days of eating a nice meal with friends or relatives then walking them to their gate to see them off.  Then once they’re on the plane, standing at the huge window to watch the plane take off (crying and waving – as though they can see you).  LOL!!!

It’s sentimental and silly – but I will miss it.

I guess the new plan will be to eat at a restaurant somewhere in the city before taking them to the airport.  Then we will say goodbye outside in the parking lot – and drive away, trusting that they will get through security and on the right flight at the right time.  It seems so cold compared to the way things used to be.

I don’t like it – but I don’t like the way 9/11 changed our country and our lives forever.  The new airport is efficient and discourages loitering – I get it – this is the way it has to be.  Just give me a minute to be nostalgic and sentimental – and yeah – silly.  I pray that God will bless our country – in this post 9/11 world.  We will never see the innocence we once knew again.

It’ll be okay – really it will.  🙂

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

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I didn’t used to have to poke my finger every morning to test my blood.

When did I start having to make noises while getting up from a chair?

For the life of me I can’t remember why I came in this room.

I don’t remember my knees hurting before as I walked up the stairs.

Hugs didn’t used to hurt – but with fibromyalgia, they really do.

Acne and wrinkles at the same time…  now that’s just unfair!

There are more silver threads among the gold these days.

The weight I’ve gained these past few years just doesn’t want to go away.

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When [my old films are on TV]… I slide slowly under the table in embarrassment.  I cringe at having these huge heads of hair, big sideburns, and wearing some terrible bell-bottom pants.  – Clint Eastwood

Mr. Eastwood – be proud of your accomplishments.  Your movies have entertained us for decades and we all have photos we’d rather not display.  For most of us, the hairstyles of the late ’70’s and early ’80’s are not cool by today’s standards, but hey – back then all the girls wanted to look like Farrah and the guys – um…  well, I’m not sure what they wanted [I mean hairstyle…  lol] but those were good days – and your movies are timeless.

Back in the day, certain shirts, jeans, jackets – made me feel so cool and turned the darkest of days into great days!  There was a local clothing store called CRICKET ALLEY and when I close my eyes I can still see the shop and smell the incense burning!

I bought the coolest satin jacket there – it was a beautiful shade of blue with white trim.  I wore that thing everywhere – with a white tee and bell bottom jeans.  A lot of kids could wear the really big bell bottoms – but I was so short – I would have looked like some sort of freaky flying saucer if I wore them.

We wore patches on our jeans – my jeans were always brand new and never had holes in them – but I sewed patches on them – LOL.  I remember one of the patches my mom got for me – it had Smokey the Bear on it – and my poor mom misread one of the words.

It’s funny because my mom never swore – I mean if she said doggone it – you knew she meant business.  When she got the patch home and let my dad read it – he said there’s no way it was going on my jeans.  Mom was confused until dad pointed out the word that she was mistaking for another word.

By today’s standards, it’s not a big deal at all – but back then – it really was.

Smokey the Bear was saying…

HELL, DON’T FOLLOW ME, I’M LOST TOO!

My poor mom thought it said WELL.

LOL – she spent a few hours working on that patch – making the H into a W.  It’s a funny memory – my mom, the sewing machine, the patch and a lot of red thread.

I got to wear it – for a good long while.  It was on the back pocket of my favorite pair of jeans.

We also put patches on Army jackets – we had an Army Surplus store in our city where we’d go get the jackets – we wore them over tee shirts with jeans.

It was a simple time.  I don’t apologize or cringe with embarrassment because I was in great health then, I didn’t make weird noises like I do now.  I had blonde hair – natural blonde – untreated hair and lots of it.  I could hug without hurting and even though we had issues in the government like Watergate – it still seemed like a better time.

At least there were consequences for actions in Washington back then.  There are not even attempts to prosecute crimes in the government now.  There’s a scandal almost every day – and while that gives some news organizations a lot to talk about, there are no punishments for wrongdoing – and I’m scratching my head wondering why?  Isn’t anyone else scratching their head wondering why???

I miss the days when right was right and wrong – was punished.  🙂

 

NATIONAL ADOPTION DAY

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I hear writers tell those who have not been writing very long (like me) that we should write about what we know.  Let me tell you, if there is a subject I could write about until next Tuesday, it is the subject of adoption! 

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Today we celebrate adoption with NATIONAL ADOPTION DAY!  The challenge I face is to share something with you today that I have not shared with you in the past – LOL!  I have let you know quite a bit about my childhood (because it was so amazing) but today I want to share my very first Thanksgiving with you – the one at Grandpa Frank and Granny LaVella’s farmhouse.  Oh, by the way, I was only 7 months old so I don’t remember a lot about it.  I’ll do the best I can with the narration.  Wink!  😉

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There is one word that quickly springs to my mind when I think about my life as an adopted kid – LOVE!  Yeah, I was an only child and maybe in some ways I was a little spoiled, but I knew the word no and I knew the checking account was not bottomless.   These people were hard-working folks and I learned to appreciate what I got.  I cherish my Granny’s homemade things more than a solid gold Cadillac.  Does anybody remember that song from 1961?  It was one of my mama’s favorite songs:

Given my mama’s love of R&B and my daddy’s love of Country – is it any wonder I am so messed up?  It was rhetorical, folks…  don’t answer that question!

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Even though they liked all kinds of music, my parents were pretty united in their beliefs and ideals.  They raised me to be comfortable and at ease around them.  I knew I could say anything on my mind without fear of judgment.  There is not a question I could ask that would make them “unlove” me.  They raised me to be a secure woman of faith.  How can I repay them?  I can’t, except to do my best to live up to the standards they set to honor them.

Now that mom and dad are gone, I’m left to live by the code of conduct they raised me with.  I never want to say or do anything to bring shame to them, but more importantly, I want to be the person God wants me to be.  I miss my folks and sometimes in the shadows, in the quiet of the evening – I think I hear them speaking to me.  I’ve had a few dreams about them and when I wake up, reality hits me in the face.

SOMETIMES IN THE SHADOWS

So…  was I spoiled???  Not so much – I was just loved.  Really really loved!