Monthly Archives: June 2010

28 Years Ago Today…

God began a work. 

A good work. 

Into the lives of 2, God brought many!

 

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Staying together through all the battles life can bring is rare for so many today…yet with God—we are here!  Glad to have our arms wrapped tightly around each other!

Thank you LORD for the blessing of marriage.  Thank you LORD for the blessing of my sweet man, myOld_Family_Pictures_015 children, grandchildren, and all the lives You bring into our hearts and home!

“Trust in the LORD with all  your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.”  Proverbs 3:5-6 

I am thankful of where we’ve both come from—I am thankful for the heritage we both have—and the legacy we will leave behind. 

Follow Jesus.  No matter where the path leads, follow Him—as He directs and leads your lives—you can rest assured, He will be there—at the end to meet you!header

 

What started out with just us two…

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Then the added blessing of two more…

 

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Grew to this…and perhaps…just maybe…will grow some more!

Maybe.


Psalm 121

 
A song of ascents.

1 I lift up my eyes to the hills— August_2009_Ellijay_016
       where does my help come from?

2 My help comes from the LORD, 
       the Maker of heaven and earth.

3 He will not let your foot slip—
       he who watches over you will not slumber;

4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
       will neither slumber nor sleep.

5 The LORD watches over you—
       the LORD is your shade at your right hand;

6 the sun will not harm you by day,
       nor the moon by night.

7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—
       he will watch over your life;

8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going
       both now and forevermore.


GREAT NEWS!

If you want to know….REALLY want to know—REALLY want to GO—to the 2010 Sisters of Faith Retreat….

Changes have been made…

LIMITED spaces are available—HURRY! READ the WHOLE post on Sisters of Faith! on JUNE 1st!

Did I mention….it’s at the beach?

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 © The Knightly News 2007-2010

Summer Fun!

Friday is almost here….Camp Nana is coming to a close….
(do you know–that under stress of camp life..the hormones get WORSE??)
If you live close enough,
you just might hear us
shout for JOY!
(Now, for those of you who know us, you KNOW we are kidding…
and if you don’t know–these little boys are the sweetest gifts this side of heaven. 
Most days.)

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© The Knightly News 2007-2010


Trust in God (Part 3 of a 3 Part Series)

Have we settled for lives of slavery–rather than a life of trust, obedience and freedom in Christ?

I think if we are honest—many of us would have to say yes.

At least that was the box I neatly packed my life into. 

Slavery is predictable.  You know what to expect day in–day out.  No surprises there. 

  • You get up-shower (hopefully)
  • work all day
  • go home
  • do some laundry
  • cook supper
  • watch TV
  • eat supper
  • shower
  • read a verse or two before you fall asleep
  • sleep–(hopefully)
  • start all over the next day

Slavery. 

It may not be the making bricks from mud and straw kind, but nonetheless–it is what it is.

When the children of Israel had been delivered from slavery by God–using Moses as His servant and instrument–(picture this)–they are coming up on the Red Sea.  It’s in plain sight.  However, what was not in sight were boats.  Not a single one.  Somewhere up in front of the line, the complaining started.

“Moses–how are we getting across?  You have some boats or rafts hidden somewhere?” (my thoughts–not found in the Bible)  The feelings of restlessness and fear began to filter through the ranks of followers.

Moses–kept on walking.  Probably doing some internal praying–I like to imagine, having a very serious conversation with God.  “Okay God.  I have obeyed.  I see no boats–I see no rafts–but I KNOW I heard Your voice–and I KNOW You will not lead me astray.  I TRUST YOU.”

As they drew nearer, the whining and complaining grew more intense.  At that point, being slaves for the rest of their lives seemed more appealing than TRUSTING God with the unknown and yet unseen.

I imagine this walk to be much like a ride in a car with a troup of fussy kids.  “Are we there yet?”  “It’s hot back here!”  “Sally poked me in the arm!”  “Jimmy tore my paper!”

Being a mother, and a grandmother–I know the frustration I feel when I am headed somewhere with a determination—and trying to concentrate and all I hear is whining and complaining from the back seat.  I personally want to slam on brakes, getting their attention–and giving them the “look” all kids fear–“I will put you OUT of this car if you don’t hush your mouth!” 

I think Moses may have wanted to put some of the Israelites out of his ride at that point.  Instead of lashing out, he recognized their fear and said to them,

“Do not be afraid.  Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today.  The Egyptians you see today you will never see again.  The Lord will fight for you;  you need only to be still.”  (Exodus 14:13-14)  I hope you got that part where Moses told them they would NEVER again see those Egyptians! 

Then in verse 31 of the same chapter it says:  “And when the Israelites saw the great power the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared the Lord and put their trust in Him and in Moses His servant. (Exodus 14:31)

The children of Israel thought they were on the brink of their destruction–all they could see was their dilemma–but God was about to show them their deliverance!

Friend, when your feet have taken you as far as they can go–when your heart is weary and all you see in front of you is the Red Sea–friend–step out in faith!  God is about to do one of two things!  He will equip you to walk on water–or He will part the Red Sea in front  of you!  TRUST HIM!!
Psalm 9:10  “And those who know Your name will put their trust in You;  For You, LORD, have not forsaken those who seek You.”
Do you trust Him?  Have you given Him all your fears?  Friend, He knows you have them, He knows your heart, you cannot be free in Him until you release ALL you are and all you have to Him.  Firmly.  Resolutely.  No take backs!

If He asked you today, “step out in faith–I will meet your needs” could you?  Would you? 

If you didn’t know for sure what His plan was–would you trust Him? 

If you couldn’t see where He was leading you–would you trust Him? 

If you didn’t have a plan or map from Him for the road He put your feet on —would you still go?

These are all questions I had to answer for myself.  In the past several months.  No, I have no map–nor plan or grand scheme I am working from.  He didn’t wake me up in the middle of the night and tell me that I would lead millions to Christ through song and dance routine. (I can’t dance—and my singing days are not what they once were!) 

What He did was call my name.  He planted a desire in my heart to do MORE for Him than ever before–and He has lead me step by step along the way.  Have I been afraid?  Yes.  But did I give Him my fear?  Yes.  And—more than that.  I trust Him.

I remember with tears, the last words of my sister Wanda.  “I don’t understand. (Long pause for breath.)  We trusted God. (Another long pause.)  But–I still–Trust Him.”

On the bed in a hospital in Gainesville, Florida she was faced with the reality and finality of life.  The words from the doctors offered no hope.  The scriptures in her heart and mind however, brought everything in clear view.  Psalm 56:3-4 says, “What time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.  In God I will praise His word, in God I have put my trust;  I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.”

The Psalmist David faced fear–but each and every time, he turned his fear into faith by handing it over to God. 

He trusted in God–do you?

Father, as I have listened to Your voice speak to my heart–I have laid aside my fears in exchange for a faith that I didn’t know was in me!  I am so thankful that YOU have planted my feet on this path to walk out the rest of my days–may my life be pleasing to YOU! May my steps–words and message be ordered by You and bring GLORY to Your name!  Touch lives through the clicking of this keyboard–or the voice and message You have given me.  Reach hearts in ways that only You can!  I give everything I have and am to You–do what You will.  In Jesus Holy Name~Amen.

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 © The Knightly News 2007-2010


God Will Take Care of YOU!

I want to share with YOU today something that was shared with me via phone call this morning….and I needed it so…maybe you do as well.

For YOU today…..

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TRUST IN GOD (Part 2 of a 3 Part Series)

TRUST:  (2)  Confident expectation of something; hope.  (According to dictionary.com)

We like plans and programs.  The tangible–the touchable–real or actual, rather than imaginary or visionary. 

Trust is something we can’t see–we must rely on Who is invisible.  We expect Him to be on time–every time–IN OUR TIME.

We like to orchestrate the events of our lives ourselves, not wanting to depend too much on someone else–having our own ideas and thoughts–and desiring “our” plans to be the plans to succeed!

That kind of trusting is not the REAL trusting sort that God has in mind for His own.  I learned this lesson…as most all lessons…the hard way.

After Wanda passed away in February of 2008, God began to realign my faith.  Securing it with strength and force that the winds of doubt could not disturb it’s foundations.

I began to allow Him to show me “me” with a fresh look–one that saw through everything.  I saw all the things in my life that I had allowed to consume me.  Things that were actually “draining” on my faith.  Can you feel the pain that was involved in this?  Yes it hurt to see the me I had allowed myself to become.

Up to this point, I could tell you more about CSI, Bones, or House than I could Abraham, Isaac or Jacob.  The secular books on my shelves outnumbered the faith inspired testimonies of others.  The catchy tunes on the radio reverberated their life stealing voices in my head all day long–those were the voices of the stagnant life following after selfish flesh.

I was sick of being as the song says, “Stirred but not changed”.  I want to share the lyrics with you by Lanny Wolfe.  (I could not find it on YouTube but found the lyrics on another blogger site!)  The song is found at the bottom of this post.  But that was me—tired of being stirred in my heart for a bit—but then the reality of dishes and laundry and I soon forgot the soul stirring Wind that had passed my way.  Until “that” day.

That day I drove home–(just a few weeks after Wanda’s passing)–after work and talked to Jesus the whole way home.  I wanted more of Him in my life.  Active.  I repented for not being as dedicated as I knew I should be.  I repented for having conversations with Him only when I had a need or a burden.  He desired a daily conversation–He desired that I would KNOW HIM. And through knowing Him–that I would make Him known.  That’s the mission statement of our home church, “To Know Him~To Make Him Known”.

I had given my life to God when I was a teenager.  Made mistakes—scraped my knees—laid my life for Christ on a back burner—and then fell on my face before Him years later.  Fully giving Him all I had.  Trouble is, the troubles of life sometimes cause us to be consumed with us.  That was at least my trouble at times. 

See, I like to fix things.  As a matter of fact, I’d rather fix it myself than ask someone else.  That too was my trouble.  Jesus Christ came so that we might have life–and have it more abundantly—and He wants to be the FIXER in our life troubles.  He wants us to TRUST Him enough to give it all up to Him.  Since “human beings” had let me down…that was an area I have had trouble with.

On the day that became “that day” in my heart–I remember coming in the door, meeting Jeff in the living room, standing in front of him and stating, very matter-of-factly, “My life is about to take on some major changes.  I cannot be as I have been and grow in God.  I cannot live as I have lived and grow in God.  And growing in God–and being used of Him is of utmost importance in my life.” 

I don’t really know what I expected—but Jeff’s life didn’t change right then, and it was hard sometimes to not sit with him night after night watching TV when I had always spent my “down-time” doing just that—you know—to “relax and unwind”.  Who are we kidding?  We are really filling our minds with things that hinder the growth of God in our lives!  (I’m very serious–and you might not like it, and you might not come back here–but I may as well tell you how it is with me.)

I won’t say that I never watch TV.  I do–just not a steady diet.  I guard myself–my mind, my heart–because I know exactly where the devil attacks my mind.  And with what.  I remember feeling in my heart a message God was trying to get through to me.  “There are things to extract from your life in order for your faith to fully grow.”  The extractions came, it seemed without Novocain.  Some are still taking place.  Again, without Novocain.

So—I began.  Coming before Him–allowing Him to extract–remove–replace.  Seeking Him diligently, not knowing the full journey–but the churning and burning in my spirit would not leave. 

In the fall-winter of 2009 the urgency picked up speed.  I went to Jeff one day after work and told him that I felt God was releasing me from my job.  Changing the path I was currently on was a major shift in my financial, emotional and spiritual walk.  Not necessarily in that order.  This was the longest prayed over decision of my entire life.  I sought God daily–fasted and prayed.  It was during my first fast of 5 days in January that I felt God answer the 3 questions I had posed to Him—for direction-clarity-and faith.  You also need to know that before that fast in January–God gave me a serious message.

I need to back up just a bit and give you that message.  I shared it when I spoke on Mother’s Day and I have shared it with a few others individually.  In November, early one morning–in the first few days of the month, as I was showering before work, I was having a conversation in my head with God.  It went something like this.  Well–actually, it went “exactly like this”.

“Father, if I leave my job in the first week of January, then I will be able to receive the pension plan portion that the firm puts into the account each year.”  (I completely forgot that they had cancelled the pension plan that very year!)  And I can draw out what I have and pay off this bill, and this bill and this bill.”  There.  I paused in my “mind-prayer” as I was shampooing my hair–and God spoke to the core of my heart.

“Angie.  If you’ve got it all figured out–what do you need Me for?”

At this point, I was done shampooing/rinsing and was squalling like a baby.  I felt the instant hit in my heart from “my plans”–and that fact that I was doing the planning and had not fully given it all up to Him.  I fell out of the shower and onto my face before Him.  Grabbing my robe around me, I began to weep and pray and talk to God out loud as I circled the living room–repenting of my “planning” His direction and call on my life.  When He’s calling the shots in your life—He allows no suggestions from the side lines.  Either you trust Him all the way or you don’t.  There is no middle ground.

I was late for work that day–for I had to get myself prayed through over what I had thought in my heart.  I left the entire planning up to Him.  That is exactly why the leaving my job didn’t take place until March.  But He knew when it would be all along.  He just wanted me to TRUST Him.  Can I tell you I learned a lesson that day?  Again, the hard way.

And now—for the song–if you call me on the phone, I will sing it to you:

“Often times my heart has been stirred by the things that I have heard,
’bout so many who have never heard God’s word,
and though tears would fill my eyes all to soon I’d realize
though my hearts been stirred my life has not been changed.


I’m so tired of being stirred about the lost who need to hear.
I’m so tired of being stirred that His coming is so near;
I’m so tired of being stirred till I cry bitter tears.
I’m so tired of being stirred but not being changed.”


Have I heard it for so long that He’s just another song?
Has the story lost its thrill that I once knew?
Lord, give me a burden that’s so strong,
That it will last when my tears are gone.
I’m tired of what I’ve been. Lord, make me over again.


I’m so tired of being stirred about the lost who need to hear.
I’m so tired of being stirred that His coming is so near;
I’m so tired of being stirred till I cry bitter tears.
I’m so tired of being stirred but not being changed.”


But this time Lord change me let the work begin just now,
this time Lord change me please change me some how,
this time Lord change me let my life be rearranged,
I’m so tired of being stirred but not being changed.”

I sang this to Him this week.

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© The Knightly News 2007-2010


Trust IN God (Part One of a Three part series)

Do we?  Fully?  Trust Him?

Several years ago, when my sister, Wanda’s daughter was not even a year old–Wanda became very sick.  According to the doctor on her case, at the point of death.  He offered very little hope.  The changes he made in her medication made things even worse.  With her blood pressure dropping to the low thirties and her breathing very labored, talking was impossible.  Prayer on the other hand, was not.

I remember the room in Tallahassee Memorial Hospital being very large, enough to accommodate her bed, the equipment, and 9 of us.  The family.  The blood of Christ flowing in our veins making us family for those where not actual “kin”.  When hopes were dashed upon the rocks of life, we clung to the cross on the hill.

While we listened to the doctor state the facts as he saw them, my mother adamantly requested Wanda’s childhood physician be notified.  The very one who had seen her from the onset of discovery of her heart condition.  The doctor, not taking my mother as serious as he should have, stated that “his notification of her condition would not change the facts.”  He then went on to suggest alternative medications–although not giving hope of them working.

The sister (chainsaw) anger in me was rising up.  This was long before my hormones came in to play…(he should be thankful).  With my face reddened, my fists clenched, I stated louder than necessary, causing my mother to stare, “You will not make my sister a guinea pig!”  Just a few more moments of discussion ensued, the air in the room stiff and as labored as Wanda’s breathing.  The doctor standing to leave, shaking his head, obviously could not imagine why we were acting thus, surely at this point in Wanda’s life, we had to know that it could not last. 

Yet we held on to a faith that he could not see.  In One greater than he supposed himself to be.  Faith and trust in a God that is Sovereign.

As we began to seek God with fresh urgency after the doctor left, with hands lifted and hearts beckoning God to be present and give us a sign of His working—all things for our good. 

The door opened.  In walked the Doctor, in physical form, and with him came a spiritual ignition for our faith and trust!  The atmosphere in the room instantly changed!  It seemed as if all the hot air of the enemy had been pushed out the window and in GUSHED the fresh air of the Holy Spirit!  (Isaiah 59:19)

I saw the expression on my mother’s face change instantly.  Relief washed over her like a clean waterfall gushing it’s cool freshness down a mountain side.  The situation was re-examined.  Suggestions offered–decisions made.  We left for Gainesville.  Praying all the way.  Beseeching God.  Surely, God would not have given this long dreamed of –prayed for–baby to this woman only to take her life after just a few short months of motherhood.  Indeed not.  Our TRUST in God secure as the dawning of the next day’s sun.

If you know anything about us, or our story, you know that all turned out exactly as God planned.  Her life was just the number of days as God set forth from the beginning.  (Job 14:5 “You have decided the length of our lives. You know how many months we will live, and we are not given a minute longer.”)  The next few years with her precious gift were a sweet blessing–captured in a bottle of time.  Giving God daily praise for each breath!

Trust secure. 

Is ours?  When the checkbook gets into the single digits are we secure in Him?  In His care for us?
When the bread box contains only 2 end slices…does our stomach growl in mock hunger?  When the fabric of our faith wears thin, where is our trust?  In Him?  Or in what we can see.

Do we say “I trust You LORD even when:

  • the children get sick
  • the hours at work are cut
  • the promotion is given to someone else
  • the husband cheats
  • the child rebels
  • the loved one dies

Do we trust God ONLY when things are going our way?  Or—are we in it for the long haul?

Is our faith securely clamped onto God when our family becomes part of a group of statics of the divorce rate among Christians?  Or, of unwed mothers; alcoholics; or a runaway-prodigal child.

If it seems your trust slips at the points of sever tension–know this:  Jesus Christ is there to realign your faith in Him.  To bolt your faith so securely to Him–adjust your vision and focus to Him–and not on your seemingly insurmountable circumstances.  Remain in HIM.

For your reading today:  Read and visualize the story of Noah.  Genesis chapters 6-8

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© The Knightly News 2007-2010


He’s GOD!

Enough Said!

I have played THIS song (on cd) over and over and over and over—and over.  He’s God.  Realize that TODAY!  EXPERIENCE THAT TODAY!

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© The Knightly News 2007-2010


Adversity and Destiny

To him who overcomes, I will give the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God. Revelation 2:7 (NIV)

Have you been side swiped by adversity? I don’t mean in a car. I mean in your heart—your life. Something that has stumped your toe–tripped you up.

A storm in your life that may have caused you to run for cover. Only maybe you didn’t run for the right Cover.

Think about it for a minute.

What about Job? You know, Job in the Bible. The one who had it all and lost it all… but by the mercy and grace of God, had it all and then some—again!

And what about Joseph. Sold by his brothers into slavery. They thought they’d never see him again. Little did they know—Joseph had a destiny–and God used the adversity in Joseph’s life to usher in the destiny– for the well being of his family.

Okay, those are some men, what about Naomi? She lost her husband and her sons. What did she have? Adversity with a capital “A”. But she also had a daughter-in-law that vowed to never leave her side. And God had a plan.

Okay, if those aren’t enough, think about Esther.  She lost her mom and dad—maybe at the same time, maybe close together—the point is—she lost them both. And being raised by her uncle…well, I call that some adversity. But she also had a destiny. Designed by the Master Designer Himself!

We can go on and on here!

Have you ever considered that the very adversity surrounding you— may be shaping your life for your destiny? Or, consider that it could be shaping someone else’s destiny.

I know. It’s hard to imagine that losing a job would play any part at all into shaping up your destiny. But I remember a time when Jeff lost his job. Many years ago when our daughters were very young, Jeff was “let go”.

Sound familiar? Well, let’s just say he had principles and the boss did not. He wanted Jeff to lie –deceive a fellow employee. He wanted Jeff to do some “dirty work” for him. And Jeff refused. In a nice way of course. But…that ended that.

It also ended our income.

I remember distinctly going into the closet in April’s room. She was the baby—and had the most space in her closet. I didn’t need much space—for I only stood and pounded the wall —and asked God “why”?

“Why now Lord? Don’t you see? We’ll have no food! What if we get sick? We won’t be able to pay our bills!”

We were Christians. We believed God “could” meet the needs…we just never had to “depend” solely on Him for them. Little did we know that God had a plan.

Looking back at that time, I can’t really tell you what we did next–besides pray. I know we prayed. God not only supplied one job, but He supplied two. Two part-time jobs and then soon, very soon, a full time job opened up and Jeff walked in.

As Jeff settled into the new job, he made some friends. One friend, a young black man, was very nice to Jeff and they began to talk daily about the difference in Jeff’s life over some of the others that were there. It was not long before Jeff was leading this young man into the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ!

Not many months after that, we attended our first A.M.E. Church service as that very same young man preached his first sermon! How glad we were to be a part of that day!

Through our adversity, God brought about this man’s destiny.

Care to give God what’s troubling you?

I assure you He can handle the adversity going on in your life right now. Rest in His care. He’s assembling all the pieces into your destiny.

And might I say….what a picture it makes!

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 (Don’t forget about the RETREAT!
Read about it at Sisters of Faith!)

© The Knightly News 2007-2010

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