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Showing posts from 2012

The Gift of Song

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I have my alarm set to a contemporary Christian station.  A few weeks ago, God woke me with these words from Colton Dixon's song "You Are"

If I had no voice,
If I had no tongue,
I would dance for you like the rising sun.
And when that day comes and I see your face.
I will shout your endless glorious praise.


I've been a part of a church choir for many years.  As I sing, its my shout to God for his amazing grace, provision and mercy on my life.  Its as much of a ministry and a blessing to my heart to stand and sing as I hope it is to those who hear it.

In July of 2011, I had a very minor ear surgery.  The procedure, simple, performed in office, was the greatest thing in the world for the dizziness and constant pain I had been facing.  I never expected something so simple to literally change my life.  As soon as the procedure was finished, I could tell sounds I heard all my life were very different. The doctor assured me it would level out in the coming few days.

A lot…

Nothing Compares

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As I sit writing this morning, the sun is breaking through the clouds from the east in an explosion of warmth and light that makes me think of heaven.  These moments in life where we see just a tiny glimpse of what the eternal holds, they are so special.

Tears of joy, that's what's flooding my face right now.  Reflecting on the past few months and the sweet release God has brought me. 

Recently, several of our choir members prepared cardboard testimonies to use during our Christmas musical.  The stories just our group can share of God's amazing plan for each of us is yet another small glimpse of the greatness of our Lord.  My "testimony" is the final one.  It was meant to be a general summary of how nothing compares to life with Jesus.  Ironically, it accurately describes my journey as a Christian.

I was brought up in church and saved as a child.  I have no doubt the experience was real and I know with certainty I gave my heart to Jesus that night.  I've not…

Electing the Leader of Our Nation

Psalm 146

Praise the Lord. I will praise the Lord. 2 I will praise the LORD all my life. I will sing praise to my God as long as I live. 3 Don't put your trust in human leaders. Don't trust in people. They can't save you. 4 When they die, they return to the ground. On that very day their plans are bound to fail. 5 Blessed are those who depend on the God of Jacob for help. Blessed are those who put their hope in the LORD their God. 6 He is the Maker of heaven and earth and the ocean. He made everything in them. The LORD remains faithful forever. 7 He stands up for those who are beaten down. He gives food to hungry people. The LORD sets prisoners free. 8 The LORD gives sight to those who are blind. The LORD lifts up those who feel helpless. The LORD loves those who do what is right. 9 The LORD watches over the outsiders who live in our land. He takes good care of children whose fathers have died. He also takes good care of widows. But he causes evil people to fail in everythi…

Illumination

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Ephesians 5:13-14
But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.This is why it is said:  “Wake up, sleeper,rise from the dead and Christ will shine on you.”
One of the things I won't soon forget about my time with the American Cancer Society is the drive home after an overnight Relay event.  The overnight Relay experiences symbolizes the hard, dark road walked by a cancer patient followed by the hope that comes at the end of their journey.Watching the sun rise after a long Relay eventhas always been a magical experience.  As the light spreads its way across the field, it warms the soul and brings with it a renewed spirit.  However the light does not take away the exhaustion, nor does it wipe away the experiences of the dark night.  Only when the light begins to break does one realize just how dark the night was before.

Its pretty easy to understand how something exposed to light becomes visible.However its the second part of th…

Redeemed

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This is one of the toughest posts I have been called to write.  Admittedly, it has taken more than a month for the words to come together to share.  It bears an issue with which I really struggle, and I know there are others here who deal with the same things.  I have heard too many of them around me lately.


After praying for how to share, I was blessed with a testimony of Rhett Walker, lead singer of the contemporary Christian Group The Rhett Walker Band.  Rhett was a preacher's child who led a life of rebellion during his teen years and fathered a child.  

He discussed the destructive behavior I call "self beating."  You know the feeling, that nagging, second guessing of yourself, That voice reminding you often of the things that could have been better or should have been better.  "Oh if only I had," or "if only I hadn't."  Satan is so wonderful to remind us of our imperfections and use it to keep us down. Don't you find it so much easier …

Guest Post-Paige Barnes

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Today I would like to introduce to you a very special guest blogger, Paige Barnes.  Paige is my cousin by blood and my sister in Christ.  I had asked her to share on my blog several weeks ago, and when God gave her the words to say, it was the same subject I was preparing to write about myself.  So enjoy her post, and then check out her blog for more!  Thank you, Paige for sharing.



Sucker Punched
 By: Paige Barnes

Realizing that you have not been truly obedient to God is like a sucker punch to the gut. It's like you think you are making progress, and then God speaks to you. And this time you can hear him because you are really listening.  And He tells you that you are not being completely obedient to him. You are partially obedient, but that is not enough. He has called you to more. He asks for and is due complete obedience. It's not because God is greedy and needs it, but He desires for me to be his pure and spotless bride. He knows that it is for my good and thus, for His glo…

On a Very Personal Note-Perfect Peace

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My blog has been silent for a couple of weeks.  I've spent a lot of time listening, intensely, to the call God placed on my heart more than two years ago.  Until now I have been able to shove it neatly back into that corner, waiting on this huge opportunity for everything to fall perfectly into place as I wanted it to happen.

God has called our family to make changes this year.  We started off looking at a relocation, to make things logistically easier.  Instead change has been about awakening our very complacent spiritual souls and reviving the heart of our family.  We have been so guilty of "going through the motions" of life, living by a checklist of what needs to be done, then falling into bed exhausted at the end of the day with nothing left to give.

I have been so incredibly blessed with a job that has fed my passionate desire to help people.  Its been an honor to know that every day I worked, I made a difference in the lives of people across our world, as well…

Taking the Message Back to School

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Back to school means shopping for new supplies.  Its always been a favorite time of year for my daughter.  As soon as the list comes out, she is begging for her trip to the store.  She carefully considers each item before making her selection.

We were ecstatic to be chosen to review Dayspring's line of Back to School Supplies.  For me, it is an opportunity to send my kids to school with a little reminder of God's love while they are surrounded with the great big world.  For my children, they have cool school supplies that make a statement.

We received the "Forever is in my Future" and "Jesus is my BFF" set.  As soon as the box was opened, the binders, folders and composition notebooks immediately disappeared straight to my daughter's backpack.  She was kind enough to share one of the notebooks with me.

Her favorite thing?  The encouragement that comes from them.  The composition notebook has a cover full of scriptures and one line encouraging notes th…

Guest Posting Today!

I am honored to serve as a guest post for Candice at Lilly Through The Valley today.  Please visit her blog at http://lillythroughthevalley.blogspot.com/.

Candice is a mother to a special needs child, a Proverbs 31 wife, and writes a great Christian inspirational blog. 

The great big internet makes it possible for small town moms to share the message of Jesus all across the world!  The more people who see our blogs, the more lives we can change.  If you enjoy what you are reading, please share it with a friend who may need it.

Feel free to message any prayer requests you have on my Facebook Page.  Have a great day!

A Message to My Daughter

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It seems only a short time ago God placed you in my arms, a tiny baby with big, beautiful eyes.  Time has passed so quickly.  Yesterday, as you prepared to go to your "dress up" lunch to celebrate the beginning of school with your friends, you took my breath away.  Standing before me was a stunning young lady, dressed in her beautiful dress and heels, makeup accenting those big green eyes and sparkling freckles. 

The next few years will not be easy.  God gives us our babies to feed and nurture for just a short time.  You are now a fledgling, and we will attempt to teach you how to fly.  Just like the baby birds, you will make mistakes.  You will fall, and you will get hurt.  The hard part about being a parent is sometimes we just have to sit back and to watch.

We want you to know that we will always love you, not matter what, and your heavenly father loves you, no matter what.  You will never be alone in this world!

We want you to know we aren't perfect.  We have made our…

Protection

Isaiah 43:1-2: 
But now, this is what the Lord says—
he who created you, Jacob,
he who formed you, Israel:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.
2 When you pass through the waters,
I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
you will not be burned;
the flames will not set you ablaze.


I flipped open my Bible to Isaiah several weeks ago after reading this verse, shared by a coworker as he began his cancer journey.  They are words of hope, and words of courage.  They are calming words and a promise from God to take care of us during our hardest times.

I got so excited as I thought about the examples the Bible of God's provision described here.Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego walked in the firey furnace unharmed.  The Israelites crossed the Red Sea after it was parted by Moses.  Peter, walking on the water to meet Jesus.

As a busy road warrior mom, I often lis…

The Tale of the Stretchy Shorts and Bummy T-shirt

I have been guilty of being seen in public in my slouchy stretchy tees and shorts, along with no makeup and my hair pulled back...on multiple occasions.  You see I'm not a fashion diva, and honestly it pains me to take extra time to change clothes just to run to the big box store to grab something we need for dinner.  I dress for work and church, why shouldn't I get to be comfortable when I am on my own time?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying you can't be comfortable or go without makeup.  I've seen women who are absolutely beautiful in their own skin.  Everyone is entitled to their time of pajama pants, although tucked in your cowboy boots at Pizza Hut while having dinner is a little outside the limits in my opinion.

So while I was at said store, I ran into a stay at home mom,.  After scoping out her matched shirt and shoes,  makeup AND jewelry, I realized just how little I had put into myself.  Then as I was studying later in the evening, I ran across these…

Courage

Matthew 14:  25-33
Shortly before dawn Jesus went out to them, walking on the lake.When the disciples saw him walking on the lake, they were terrified. “It’s a ghost,” they said, and cried out in fear.But Jesus immediately said to them: “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.”
“Lord, if it’s you,” Peter replied, “tell me to come to you on the water.”
“Come,” he said.
Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus.But when he saw the wind, he was afraid and, beginning to sink, cried out, “Lord, save me!”Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?”
And when they climbed into the boat, the wind died down.Then those who were in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God." 

I have walked in Peter's shoes.  Stepping out on faith to honor the path God places in my life.  As soon as you get comfortable, you look around and get caught up in the world's storms.  How…

Running

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My all time favorite movie is Forrest Gump.  I can't tell you how many times I have watched that movie, and each time I catch something embedded in the scenes that reaches deep into my soul. 

Lately I've been thinking about Forrest and his running.  Forrest ran as a child to escape the taunting of his classmates.  Ironically, that ability to use a skill gained from a not so good situation gave him the college education he otherwise would not have been able to get.  His running saved his life during the Vietnam War.

Then there was the scene where he "just started running", traveling across the country.  Why did he run?  The movie never explains out loud his reasons for running.  Maybe it was to escape the pain from Jenny.  Maybe it was the way he knew how to let go of the hurt.  I've heard runners talk about running to relieve stress and to clear their head.  The reason he ran may not be as important as the message of what happened along the way.

Forrest meets p…

Renovation Realities

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Maybe it was that obsession with HGTV that got me started.  Maybe it was all that time working with my Daddy in his shop growing up.  My self proclaimed title of Mrs. Fixit has led to a string of home improvement projects over the past two years.  Becoming a DIYer has taught me a lot. more than one blog entry will hold  The greatest one, however, is things are never as easy and simple as they appear.  A project you think should be straightforward and take just a couple of hours to complete almost always becomes a lesson in patience and perseverance.

Our latest adventure started with a can of paint (let's brighten up the kitchen) and has now included electrical, sheet rock, a tile back splash, under cabinet lighting...and the list continues.  For the past year, we have been finishing out our sunroom into a real dining space, insulated and wired, along with an overhaul of the kitchen.  We were looking forward to the near completion of our project.  We hired out the flooring work,…