Today you can visit me over at Laced with Grace! (Click on the box Grandbuddy!)
Monthly Archives: November 2007
I am having a give-away! (Drawing to be held Monday, November 26)
I want to show my appreciation for all my sweet friends and “dedicated” readers! Some of you I never hear from — but when I “see” you —- you are always an encouragement to me! So please allow me to bless you (if your name is drawn in that “random drawing thingy”) with this awesome New Testament! It is 18 CD’s full of the Word of God! It is read by women, many of whom you are already familiar with. This Bible has traveled with me for months. I have listened to the Word read completely through three times now. I want it to penetrate my being. I want it to pour forth from my heart, mind, and most of all my mouth!
I recently purchased a new one….just for you (you know I have to keep mine—I have much driving every day!) So please comment–or e-mail me directly-(my e-mail address is found on my profile page on the side bar)–make sure I know how to get up with you if you win! I am certain that you will enjoy this—it is perfect to put in your player while you are cleaning house, driving or to read along with! It has wonderfully soothing music in the background.
Again, I thank each of you for being a significant part of my life. May God bless you and strengthen your walk with Him!
Credit for this incredible photo goes to Joe—He willingly allowed me to use this awesome photo he took from some of his travels. Go here to see more of his spectacular shots!
One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from”?
Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.” Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.”
“Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. But stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.”
The Lord sad to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your hands, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.”
Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord.
How many times have we felt like someone had cut a hole through or even knocked down our hedge…or “fence”. We all know what a fence is. We even know what they are used for. But for kicks….I looked it up. According to Mr. “Webster” A fence is a barrier enclosing or bordering a field, yard, etc., used to prevent entrance….or mark a boundary…..raise a fence…defend; protect; guard.
Hmmmm, pretty clear what a fence is designed to do. We also know how we feel when it is damaged or missing, whether it is our property fence or….our heart fence. It is the “heart fence” that I am going to talk about. Once we discover the problem, we begin to search within us…sometimes the damaged or missing fence would be our own doing.
For farmers a fence is of utmost importance. It not only keeps out the unwanted trespasser or animal, but it will also hold for safekeeping what you have on the inside. You don’t want your crops stomped. You don’t want your livestock injured or even stolen. And you especially don’t want them “wandering away”.
Whether you have only 10 cattle or 10,000, keep the fence lines checked. If you have hundreds of head of cattle…and thousands of acres of land, this would have to be an ongoing task. Checking the fence lines would never end. Daily would you see to the security of your surroundings. The stability of the fence is a high priority.
Our prayer lives are the same. Our Christian walk is the same. Our fence line is prayer. We go to the Father not only on a daily basis, but a “continual basis”. I remember when I first started working at Holmes County High School….(more than 15 years ago). The precious, “soon to retire”, woman who was training me, had given the me the daunting task of balancing the school bank account. Can you feel my pain? As I worked through the numbers, I realized quickly that I had a problem. She was sitting in the same office with me, but working on something else and I began to “talk to the Lord, forgetting that she was there, I spoke to Him as if He were leaning over my shoulder looking at my column of numbers Himself! She looked up from her work and asked me, “did you say something to me?”
I looked at her in puzzlement, “oh, sorry no, I was talking to the Lord.” She kind of laughed and asked me if I did that often. I looked at her with all sincerity, “all day long”.
I had realized less than two years prior to that new job that I could no longer go about my every day life, as if it were only my life. For through several life altering and heart sobering circumstances, I knew that if I were to continue on in the manner I had been, very lackadaisical in my Christian walk, then I would never be what my Father intended or wanted me to be.
Looking back, I ask myself, did my fence get lowered and my circumstances change in order to “see what I was made of?”….or rather did my happy-go-lucky life of “hit and miss prayer time” cause the fence to fall into disrepair? Could be either. Could be both. At this point in my life, the answer is irrelevant. The result is significant. The outcome of each circumstance irrevocably changed me forever.
If that is what it took to get my full attention on Him…then I would have to say it was worth every tear shed, every night spent on the floor in anguished prayer. I have to do a continual check on my fence line. I don’t want something coming in my life that the Lord does not invite in through the gate….and guess Who my gatekeeper is? Of course. Jesus Christ.
I also realized over the years that some “tightening up” has been necessary. As a fence is neglected, it seems to lose it’s strength. the wires sag a bit. Erosion takes a toll on the fence posts, causing some to lean a bit. Time we spend in His Word pulls that wire of our fence tight, it restores the ground around each post. As we spend more time in His Word and in prayer on a daily basis, the fence posts seem to even cement themselves into the ground. But the fence line still must be checked daily.
The enemy is more cunning with each passing day. He knows each of my weaknesses. He knows where the weakest place in my fence is found. I must continually ask the Holy Spirit to stand guard, apply reinforcement wire, “barbed wire” even to keep out the enemy!
In knowing my weakness, I know what I have to do. For me, I have to spend less time in front of the TV, and more time in my Bible. The last thing I do at night is “quiet time with Him”. I have also had to spend less time “on the computer”. I rarely “shop” online. If I am on the computer, most likely I am reading blessings from other Christian Women bloggers, or I am working on my Laced with Grace post, or a new devotion to share with you, or praying for someone, or being blessed by the articles in the Christian Women Online Magazine (CWO) or working on the Youth Blog, Renewed Day by Day (sorry I have neglected that of late). I am trying to keep it under control. When I find myself spending too much time there…I simply stay away from it. Usually these days, I try and not turn it on at all on the weekends, unless I have a post that happens to fall on the weekend. I take a book and pencil with me everywhere though….for if the Lord gives me a thought for you—-which is always for me too….I am ready. I want to stand at the ready. Always willing to do what my Father requires. I keep my “work gloves” on….minding the fence.
This is my 100th post. When I first began this journey, I never dreamed I’d be here. I had no idea where my first little blog would take me. The day I set my blog account up, I did not post anything. I had it in my mind what I wanted to post, but didn’t have time. I had discovered it during lunch one day, March 6th to be precise. On March 7th, the enemy came in….seemingly with every force he had. When my sister Wanda called the office I could not even speak to her for the thickness of the tears in my throat. She called me back in less than five minutes. She asked me if she could pray for me. I hesitated briefly, but told her yes, please do. I was worried that the phone that had been ringing (all 6 lines) non stop since I had arrived would interrupt. I was concerned that a co-worker, or worse yet, one of the attorneys would come to my office and need me. I was hoping that a client would not come early, as my desk is at the reception area. But when my sister began to pray with the authority of the Holy Spirit inside her, all worries and concerns melted away. Wanda had no clue what I was facing that day. She had no idea the phone call I had on my way to work, nor the frustration I was feeling from the hectic mornings routine. But the Holy Spirit knew. He spoke through her and demanded all “confusion to cease”. She prayed peace right into my heart and day. The phone didn’t ring, no one came in nor did anyone approach my office during the entire phone call. I stood amazed at what God had just done.
What I think was that the enemy had a “gut feeling”, that through this blog business, I would be blessed. That my fence would be strengthened and that God would use me. I had no idea how God would use me, but I know that He has certainly used others that I have met in this realm of the Internet to bless my life, increase my faith and strengthen my walk with Him. If you have time, read my very first post. Especially the passage from one of my favorite authors that Wanda shared with me.
In closing, I share this awesome word from Isaiah 59:19 “So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD shall lift up a standard against him.”
Sisters, as we stay in with God, should the enemy break through and flood our lives —-rest assured, our Father will lift up a “new fence” against him!
It has been my delight and privilege to meet each of you. Some of you have gotten to know me quite a bit. I love each of you and want you to know how you have blessed my life with your love for Jesus!
Go in God this week….check those fence lines!
The Lord is good! This picture was taken…hmmmm—many years ago. The youngest girl showing the bright smile , just received her restricted drivers license. The young boy in the picture is a whopping 18. Those two belong to my sister and her husband to my left. The sweet looking chick in the green—did I say greeeeen? shirt is my youngest daughter—who is now 22. My oldest daughter, the one showing all the teeth. Jeff and I are the middle couple….I am the one that looks like a “farmer”. My favorite look. The two fellows on either side of Jeff are Assembly of God ministers. Making their precious wives, which are my beloved sisters, MW (minister’s wives). My brother is sitting in the “prayer chair” (my mother’s chair), looking suave and debonair. Last but certainly not least, is our mother and our Grandbuddy. A house full of blessings!
These blessings have grown and multiplied. From our two precious daughters, we gained two sons and now have 6 grandchildren. The sister and her husband to my right have a wonderful gift from heaven full of delight, in the form of a sweet girl. My brother and his wife have a darling baby girl who is almost 2 months old!
There is not a day that goes by that I don’t think of things that I have to be thankful for! I am incredibly blessed with wonderful family. A praying family. A believing family. A thankful family.
I love the innocence I see in the faces of the children. I love the joy I see on the faces of the adults. This picture is a regular event at my mothers house on Christmas Eve. Every year we gather in a “clump” and say cheese to the “automatically set” camera. We generally take more than one picture. Invariably someone is looking off, blinking, giggling uncontrollably, and sometimes, there are some behinds that get pinched by our spouses! Of course that results in a very unique family photo! This tradition began when Jeff and I were first married. Over 25 years ago. There were some years when he was missing from the picture when he worked on offshore drilling rigs. There were a couple of years when one of the other of us girls were missing due to sickness. But in the years that it was possible, a family photo was made. A treasured keepsake.
We record the history and life of our family and our blessings. When we look back, we see where we’ve been. As we cling to the hand of the Father, we know where we’re going. We may not know the exact route, but we know where the final destination is. I long for that day. When the “complete” family is gathered around the eternal throne of our heavenly Father. We have grandparents that loved the Lord with all their hearts that are waiting for us in heaven. Then—our picture can be made with no one missing. All of us will be home. Home with the Father.
I wanted to share these blessings today of my thankfulness as my 99th post. The Lord has been doing incredible things in my life. All of my life. Through every trial, fiery furnace, den of lions, valley of shadows, lonely roads, and turbulent seas, He has been there. He has proven His love in countless ways. He has never forsaken me. He is my trustworthy Savior. My King. My Lord. I love Him passionately. I am His—completely and forever. He is mine.
If you belong to Him, we are “sisters”….we are of the same family. No matter where you come from. No matter the path you’ve been down. No matter the color of your skin, nor the language you may speak. If you believe in my Lord Jesus Christ, and He has come into your heart and life—covering your sin with His blood that He shed for each of us on Calvary…then we are sisters (or brothers). The same family. Getting ready for the “photo shoot” of a lifetime!
Be sure your garments are pressed and spotless! If there is mending to be done….you’d better see to it quick! We are soon to be gathered. All eyes on the Father….waiting for the Son!
Join in with us on Thankful Thursday. You will be blessed as I am when I read the sweet thankful hearts of the others. Our sweet host is Crystal—-thank you again sweet friend for “taking us all in”!
Stay tuned for the 100th post! You might find a surprise!
Yes, it is Monday….has been all day long!
My first day back at work after a “wonderful” vacation. Time spent in the mountains with my sweet husband and the Lord!
Tomorrow is what is on my mind. I am supposed to be cleaning house….couldn’t do it Saturday…had some “little helpers” here. So it’s clean it tonight! Tomorrow night is the first official night of the new “20 Something” Bible Study group.
Pastor Potter sort of gave us that name….so until the group itself comes up with a better one….”20 Something” they are!
Please be in prayer for Jeff. He will begin the teaching sessions…and a “cake”—yes one of his delightfully delicious cakes will be our “fellowship refreshment”. He has been in prayer and study for weeks now preparing for this. I expressed my “fear” today….”that no one will come”. But hopefully, someone will. If not….well, we will try again!
This is my 98th post. I can hardly believe that myself. 98 times have I come to this place to share the love I have for my Lord. 98 times multiplied over and over have I been blessed by reading from the blogs on my sidebar. 98 times have I stopped to share something that was on my heart with you. Most of the time, I don’t know who “you” are. But “you” have been prayed for. It has been my fervent prayer that “your” life will be touched by something that the Lord can say through my typing fingers. Many times of the 98 I had to “pray through” about my post. I don’t ever choose randomly. Rather, I ask God to do the choosing. For He alone knows what each of us are in need of. Most all of the 98 times, it was “me” that needed the message…the digging in the Word…the seeking of His presence.
Since this is the 98th…..stay tuned for the 100th! See what good things are to come! A give-away….??? Most likely! A new devotion….(you betcha! I already have been talking to the Father about it!)…a new challenge….most likely….so, come on back–now— ya hear?
For right now….I have GOT TO CLEAN!!!! We have folks coming!!!
I want to focus on two sentences here. “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.”
I heard this complete text read several weeks ago and a clear mental picture formed instantly in my mind. I became so excited as it unfolded in my mind and heart. I thought about it during the night and even called my sister Aimee the next morning on my way to work. Still excited, but not able to adequately form the words to such a degree as to get my “picture” from my mind, over to her, she asked me to blog it. Easier said than done at times. Several other devotions came to my mind and heart between that morning and this. I blogged those, unable to wrap my mind around the exact way I wanted to express my thoughts from that heart message. But here goes—
Let’s break it down. “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies.” When we prepare a table for our loved ones, what do we put on it? If you said “the best”, then you are right, the very best. In speaking of food, we prepare their favorites. I know when I am going to my dear mother-in-law’s house, and it is a “planned” meal, she always has rutabagas. For me. Because she loves me and she knows that they are one of my favorite vegetables, and one that I rarely cook myself. In fact, I can count on one hand the times I have prepared them (probably using only 3 fingers!). It is a lot of work! Since I am the only one with a great love for them, I don’t go to the trouble at home for just me.
Do you see the picture here? We prepare the favorites. We use the best dishes. The best glassware, the best serving dishes, the best of everything we can find in the house for the special guest. We try to find out what their favorite dessert is. If it’s a cake…then of course I track down the recipe for my sweet Jeff. If it’s a pie or pudding, then that would be my delight. I love the look on my son-in-law David’s face, when April tells him that “daddy” has made a “German Chocolate Cake”. We know it’s his favorite. We delight in pleasing our children.
God delights even more so in pleasing us. In Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount (Matthew 7:9-11) He shares this insight of the Father’s love for us. “Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gift to those who ask him!”
That is plain “as the nose on your face”. It is clear that God loves us more than we can comprehend. So if He is “preparing a table” for us, what do you suppose is on it? His best!
Let’s look somewhere else. In Joel 2:25-26 we read, “I will restore to you the years that the locust hath eaten, the cankerworm, and the caterpillar, and the palmerworm, my great army with I sent among you. And ye shall eat in plenty, and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, that hath dealt wondrously with you: and my people shall never be ashamed.” (KJV)
I used the KJV here for a reason. It gives particular names of the types of locust. They are all in the locust family. Simply put, locusts are swarming grasshoppers and they devour crops and vegetation. Sound familiar? Sounds like the work of the enemy in our lives. We are very aware that he comes to “kill, steal, and destroy”. However, God promises to restore. To give back—in plenty—go back and pick up verse 24 of the same chapter. He will “overflow” our restoration!
Picture this: A long banquet table covered with a crisp white linen cloth, of the finest quality imaginable. This is the table He prepares for us….on my table I see all the things that the enemy of my life has taken from me. All the things in my life that the enemy has damaged or caused me to suffer pain from are laid out for all me to see that my Father is now “restoring to me”.
Gilded ornate frames, with pictures of my dear loved ones that have wandered from the most holy path of our Father sit among the various dishes on the expanse of white. I see a big platter of “joy” that the enemy continually tries to steal. I see “compassion” in a delicate porcelain bowl. For it is in the busyness of our lives we tend to lose our compassion for others.
“Peace”, pouring from an endless silver fountain sits firmly in the center of the table. Trust is plenteous, for my Father knows that bit by bit the enemy has wrecked havoc in my life regarding trust. Vision is clear in the crystal goblet on the right hand of my filled plate. Our “vision” to see the lost come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, many times, has been stolen right before our very “eyes”. Hope is brimming over, along with purpose. Distinct, clear purpose.
Our purpose and His calling are now restored with clarity as never before experienced! As I stand at the table, He has so lovingly prepared for me….in the presence of my enemy, I am overwhelmed at the fullness of joy I now feel. I see the enemy, but I am not afraid. For my Father has him completely bound and subdued.
The enemy in my life is the same enemy that you have faced. He may have worn different clothes, but his purpose was the same. His actions were the same. Bit by bit, things have disappeared in our lives that God has so lovingly given to us. Maybe we didn’t even notice.
If your couch suddenly went missing, you would notice right away. But if someone took only took one cup from the cabinet—-would you notice? If one sock went missing—would you notice? Probably not until you “needed” it….hmmm. I see that now you have the picture.
We neglect protecting our valuables that have been bestowed upon us, until many times, it is too late. We don’t have what we need—-at the very time we need it!
However, He is a restoring God! He will cover your table with every knick-knack that has disappeared from your life. Look around your spiritual house. What has gone missing? As I fall down on my face before the throne, the Father begins to “set my table”. He has anxiously been watching the driveway for me to seek Him out. To seek out His company. His divine Presence.
As I am seated in His Presence, He “anoints my head with oil; my cup overflows.” His lavish blessings overflow my life as His Holy Spirit is pouring on my heart, mind, body and spirit. His anointing represents my life dedicated for service to Him. As kings and priests of old were anointed for service, so does the Lord desire to anoint each of us for service to Himself.
My heart overflows with the love of my Father as He tenderly cares for my needs. We will share in this table of plenty that He has set before me….and I will remember—-to carefully guard all that He has restored in my life.
Hope I’m not too late for the party! You know….the one we have each week giving thanks with a “grateful” heart to our Lord!
I am thankful that we have returned home from a glorious week of vacation! Jeff and I were joined by mother and Grandbuddy for a couple of days basking in the awesome colors of fall in the mountains of North Georgia! We had a great time….but I am glad to be home again!
I had NO INTERNET SERVICE AT ALL —-THE ENTIRE WEEK!!! Do I look like my eyes are bugging??? (Actually my eye stopped twitching as we drove out of Dothan!—but will probably start back up by mid-afternoon on Monday!)
Mother and I were shopping as hard as we could in all the unique antique stores and specialty shops! I found a wonderful Christmas store!!!
But, I am so thankful to be home—ready to see grandsons tomorrow!
I missed EVERY ONE of my sweet bloggity friends! I am so glad to be back! (did I say that already????) I did work on a post….took me a couple of days…read it below … “The Lord is my Shepherd”—it really did something in my life—
I will share more details of the trip later this next week. This morning my post with Laced With Grace opened–thankful for the “post dating” of that! (to see it click on the Laced with Grace button on the sidebar).
Anyway….glad to be home! I love you girls! Don’t forget to visit our sweet hostess “Crystal“
to join in other thankful Thursday’s—I hope I not too late!