Saturday, May 31, 2014

Beginning Again

"There is no sin SO great that it cannot be forgiven.  There is NO wound too deep that it cannot be healed.  There is NO life so broken that it cannot be restored and made into something beautiful by the healing touch of  the Master's hand.  In Christ, there is always a sure hope of fresh, new beginnings, with the past totally forgiven as thought it had never happened."   

I believe that.  

I know God heals. 

I know God restores.  

I have seen something so totally dead be brought back to life.  

But first there has to be godly sorrow that leads to godly repentance ....that means quite a bit.    Forgiveness.  

There was a time in my life where there was great pain.  Revelation. Sorrow. and then the HARD work to believe in something that did not seem possible.  

Many times I would think of the story of the Prodigal Son and ask God...'could he please return the prodigal to me'... it was not until I realized and knew that the Prodigal had to RETURN to God first.  It was not about me - it was about a person and his relationship with God.  For me...when I realized that, and sought GOD to be my husband, best friend, and my first LOVE....then God was able to move MORE within our home, our lives, and our hearts.   God has to be first.  It was only when my husband fell back in love with God and asked God for believe that he could be restored....did 'stuff' seem to get better and there was visible HOPE.  

I write this evening to encourage another -- don't give up.  
Beth Moore wrote a blog today about beginning again.  
God is the god of 2nd chances... and God does miracles.  

God CAN fix whatever.  
If you are in a difficult marriage, or some major hurt or pain has been revealed and it has to do with your husband -- give it to God.  Ask God to intervene.  Ask God to open his eyes.  Seek God as your husband, pal, and provider.  Seek a place of worship to be filled and prayed for.  Seek some counsel.  Seek.  

God can fix...but many times we must MOVE first in faith.  

Is God asking you to begin again or is God asking you to NOT give up?  
Only YOU and God can answer that.  

This week, I have had a LOT of thoughts about beginning again.  And there have been some new starts -- and  with each day, when I asked God, "please check me Lord, is  this right?"....   EAch Day -- HE replied....and peace remained.  

 I am not quite sure - for whom this post is intended, the hour is late.  But, I must remind you - as your read about the Prodigal Son below...please note, that I was a Prodigal daughter as well...spiritually.  I had walked away -- and thank YOU Lord, that you allowed me to begin again.  


The Story of the Lost Son (or daughter.)  

11-12 Then he said, “There was once a man who had two sons. The younger said to his father, ‘Father, I want right now what’s coming to me.’
12-16 “So the father divided the property between them. It wasn’t long before the younger son packed his bags and left for a distant country. There, undisciplined and dissipated, he wasted everything he had. After he had gone through all his money, there was a bad famine all through that country and he began to hurt. He signed on with a citizen there who assigned him to his fields to slop the pigs. He was so hungry he would have eaten the corncobs in the pig slop, but no one would give him any.
17-20 “That brought him to his senses. He said, ‘All those farmhands working for my father sit down to three meals a day, and here I am starving to death. I’m going back to my father. I’ll say to him, Father, I’ve sinned against God, I’ve sinned before you; I don’t deserve to be called your son. Take me on as a hired hand.’ He got right up and went home to his father.
20-21 “When he was still a long way off, his father saw him. His heart pounding, he ran out, embraced him, and kissed him. The son started his speech: ‘Father, I’ve sinned against God, I’ve sinned before you; I don’t deserve to be called your son ever again.’
22-24 “But the father wasn’t listening. He was calling to the servants, ‘Quick. Bring a clean set of clothes and dress him. Put the family ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Then get a grain-fed heifer and roast it. We’re going to feast! We’re going to have a wonderful time! My son is here—given up for dead and now alive! Given up for lost and now found!’ And they began to have a wonderful time.
25-27 “All this time his older son was out in the field. When the day’s work was done he came in. As he approached the house, he heard the music and dancing. Calling over one of the houseboys, he asked what was going on. He told him, ‘Your brother came home. Your father has ordered a feast—barbecued beef!—because he has him home safe and sound.’
28-30 “The older brother stalked off in an angry sulk and refused to join in. His father came out and tried to talk to him, but he wouldn’t listen. The son said, ‘Look how many years I’ve stayed here serving you, never giving you one moment of grief, but have you ever thrown a party for me and my friends? Then this son of yours who has thrown away your money on whores shows up and you go all out with a feast!’
31-32 “His father said, ‘Son, you don’t understand. You’re with me all the time, and everything that is mine is yours—but this is a wonderful time, and we had to celebrate. This brother of yours was dead, and he’s alive! He was lost, and he’s found!’”

Monday, May 26, 2014

I know what God can do.

 ( This is a long blog.  You may need coffee or a Coke to read it, I pray if you love me and the body of Christ, then you will read it prayerfully and know, it is me - my heart.  I am transparent...I am wanting to be used by God)  

I know what God can do.  He can take a situation that seems totally dead and make it come alive again.  I am not going backwards but I have sort of a crush on this one guy that lives in my house --  I have watched him over the past  weeks be used by God in a very HARD way...but, I have watched him pray, plead with God,  and pray even more.  I have also watched him carefully seek HIS word for guidance and direction.  

However there is another man -- that lives in my house too.  HIS name is the Holy Spirit.   He comforts.  He speaks  and He guides.  And his best buddy Jesus also lives within our hearts in this home.   Jesus is the one that covers me...and my husband.  He intercedes.

And God forgives.  God restores.  God remains.  God is good.  God is the very reason I write this blog. It allows me to tell  others -- HOW HE is within my life. It allows me to be transparent and honest.  I know many read this and as I type today, I ask God to protect it in every way.

God's Word is HIS direct communication or love letter to me.

Whoever rebukes a person will in the end gain favor
    rather than one who has a flattering tongue.

Whoever rebukes a  FRIEND  will in the end gain favor
    rather than one who has a flattering tongue.

Whoever rebukes a CONFIDANT  will in the end gain favor
    rather than one who has a flattering tongue.

Whoever rebukes a LOVED ONE  will in the end gain favor
    rather than one who has a flattering tongue.  Proverbs 28.23

God's Word is HIS direct communication or love letter to me.

This is a HARD word to swallow, especially if you don't agree with a loved one and it will hurt to express your opinion.   But God calls us to be strong with a sense of Justice and Righteousness.  We are not called to judge.  We are called to love.    

Sometimes, God calls us to do the HARD.  
Obedience will bring fruit and rewards.  

“Don’t pervert justice. Don’t show favoritism to either the poor or the great. Judge on the basis of what is right.
16 “Don’t spread gossip and rumors.
“Don’t just stand by when your neighbor’s life is in danger. I am God.
17 “Don’t secretly hate your neighbor. If you have something against him, get it out into the open; otherwise you are an accomplice in his guilt.
18 “Don’t seek revenge or carry a grudge against any of your people.
“Love your neighbor as yourself. I am God.  Lev. 19.17

Sometimes you really have to do the HARD.  Some of God's written testimony is HARD to accept.  

I want to say this...I don't secretly hate my neighbor.   I do my best to NOT allow any gossip - I strive to deal with facts and go directly to a person if I feel the Holy Spirits conviction.  
I won't stand by when I see one of my friends or family hurting.  If I can't directly help in some way, I pray.  Well I pray THAT is my first SWORD.   Knowing that I am to pray!  

God's word says in James 4.10 -- Humble yourselves before the Lord and HE will raise you up.  

I will question everything against God's word.  And I forgive.  I KNOW how to do that...I know it takes a daily reminder to forgive a situation or a person and that it is a process but I know I am to forgive.  And I can love a person...or love the sinner but still hate the sin.  

It is not personal.  It is what God has asked us to do.  We show love...we walk in love and we are kind and gentle...but sometimes, God also asks us to do HARD stuff.  

I also refer to my SWORD of Light...the ability to discern.  This is no suspicion.  It deals with facts.  This is not about putting a label on another.  I know about labels.  In the past week, I have heard my husband say, " I am labeled adulterer".  And I remind him - that was in the past, his name is REDEEMED.  Everyone can be redeemed but there has to be repentance after godly sorrow.  There has to be a time of healing... There has to be time.  So we intervene and we pray.  

There is a SWORD of Harvest.  It changes the environment - it makes a clear path.  In the past few weeks, there have been changes and we have sought God to clear the way.   And there has been a harvesting and a pruning as well....and I believe it was of God.  

There is a SWORD of Song and I have sought my quiet time -- singing..."this life will not go down in shame"...I praised God for my Pastor of Music and Worship and that song..and I praise God  that I have that Song of life won't go down in shame...that life won't go down in will rise and glorify YOUR name... THAT has been my prayer.  

The SWORD of Silence is so important and keeping silent is so very important .......but God also calls us to be willing to speak when HE calls us to.   God's word speaks louder than our silence.  

Galatians 5:16-26

Common English Bible (CEB)

Two different ways of living

16 I say be guided by the Spirit and you won’t carry out your selfish desires. 17 A person’s selfish desires are set against the Spirit, and the Spirit is set against one’s selfish desires. They are opposed to each other, so you shouldn’t do whatever you want to do. 18 But if you are being led by the Spirit, you aren’t under the Law. 19 The actions that are produced by selfish motives are obvious, since they include sexual immorality, moral corruption, doing whatever feels good, 20 idolatry, drug use and casting spells, hate, fighting, obsession, losing your temper, competitive opposition, conflict, selfishness, group rivalry, 21 jealousy, drunkenness, partying, and other things like that. I warn you as I have already warned you, that those who do these kinds of things won’t inherit God’s kingdom.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against things like this. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified self with its passions and its desires.
25 If we live by the Spirit, let’s follow the Spirit. 26 Let’s not become arrogant, make each other angry, or be jealous of each other.

And finally the SWORD of Restoration.  I am completely yielding to God.  I know what restoration looks like and how it feels.   Believe me ....that has been my prayer as well.   As I said, I forgive.  When we forgive, it empowers the person to get the forgiveness they need from God.  

So...when I am in the battle...

I CONSTANTLY beg God for little tidbits of blessings or signs to know ...I am STILL in HIS will...that HE still believes I am worth dying for.....and at times, I ask HIM for an actual verbal affirmation.  The affirmation can come in an action, HIS word, from another...or it even sometimes comes with a tremendous PEACE that transcends all understanding.

When I say I pray - I pray.  And when I say that I am praying for my enemy
-that could be the neighbor
-the one saying false things about me
-the student that continues to show no respect
-and that could be just the one person that I have to deal with when they believe I have wronged them. 

  In that case....I pray.  And I seek forgiveness - all the time.  I ask them for forgiveness and I make a point of making sure I quickly say - I MESSED UP. There was a time when I had to move ...move away from my church family and seek a new church family because I knew that I knew....once my husband and I were restored -- it would be AWKWARD to continue within that church building.  

It broke my heart - but I trusted God and HE took me to a new place and I still have those friends at the other place...and I still pray and honor them...I just don't sit in a pew next to them every Sunday.  And it is OK.  

God moves us as we grow.  I moved away from my home - Wisconsin.  At the time, I wanted to get away, I was young and our home is here now in Florida.  This is where GOD has us.  But each visit home...I long to be able to just go to a Friday night movie with  my sister or my brother,  but then realize that can only happen if I travel 1400 miles.  

 And one final move....  when my husband and I were trying to rebuild our marriage and our family.....we had to MOVE.  Literally MOVE.  We sold and left our home.    I say that to say this:   change is hard...but sometimes THAT is what our God is asking us to do.  To do the HARd.  MOVE.

Our  true enemy though is Satan.   He is the one that steals, kills, and destroys.  He sets traps.  He plots and plans.  And if we are not careful and watchful - he just needs an inch and he can become our ruler.  ( no pun intended )  In the past  weeks, I have witnessed how God can use something that Satan planned to kill and destroy a body of believers...but  he did not succeed.  There is still some strife.  There are feelings that are hurt and each one involved has to answer to God -- not to  me...not to anyone else.   Forgiveness is the first thing.   God does know our hearts.  God knows our motives...and God knows  what will happen next.  But God also wants to RAISE us up...Nothing is wasted and HE teaches us through every bit of stress..that HE wins.   God's beauty rises out of ashes.  One person may say this and another husband and I have prayed and agonized these past weeks and prayed Jesus' blood over it all.  

I pray and will continue to pray for the BODY of believers in Okeechobee.  I have become SO more aware of this community and its beautiful people -- many of which are STILL lost.  I have grieved a friendship but....I continue to pray - my husband and I continue to pray that friendship will not be HIS time, I am claiming healing and restoring.  

God is so sweet.  

I stared this blog with a 'love' note about my man.  I watched him -- I have watched him...over the past 10 years....closely.  We will be married for 28 years this coming August...that is a LONG time!!!  I have come to realize that God is alive and well in him and I have come to understand how Satan can attack and how cunning he is.  But I also know -- and see a man, that continues to seek HIS word and stand humble before God.     And when God was asked...God answered.  

I have prayed over him...encouraged him...and stood amazed at how HIS word has guided and directed him.  Brendan shared with me a prophetic word that was given to him by another praying warrior that loves us...loves the ENTIRE body of believers...and loves God first.   This couple is so important to in my time of need, they gave me such a prophetic the right time that it changed or rather confirmed what I knew I was to do with my own crisis of faith.  So it is very sweet and awesome of God to give him, my husband, a direct word for him at the RIGHT time in his crisis of faith....

Brendan:  " I will never leave you nor forsake you".  " you are my chosen vessel that I have created with a strong sense of Justice and righteousness ( Ps. 89.14) and these are the foundations of my throne. I bring about my righteousness and justice by speaking the Truth in Love.  But do not mistake my love and kindness for weakness or permissiveness. I am none of  those.  I am a Father who loves His children, but like any good parent, my love is sometimes 'tough love' and I discipline those I love when needed. See that all those who are involved are siblings. As siblings, they will tell their father if they see one of their siblings disobeying the rules or putting themselves in harms way.  It is the Father's job to correct, discipline, and punish with consequences for wrong choices and behavior. This gives an opportunity for one to learn from his mistakes and repent.  But like any good parent, if this discipline is not used as an opportunity for repentance, the process will continue until the will is broken ( but not the spirit ) . Turn your siblings over to me for my discipline.  Because I am the perfect parent, my discipline is also perfect.  It is my promise to work all things together for the good to All those who love Me, to All those who are called according to my Purpose.  I am doing a work in All of you".  

 As I have said, we have prayed.  I have my husband's permission to share this word on my blog...he wants anyone to know - God wins.  God makes a way when it seems there is no way.  God restores.  God redeems. And God places the right people in our lives -- God is raising us ALL up.  I know my faith has increased in the past few weeks, I know that I am a different person and I know that the enemy will continue to steal, kill, and destroy but I know - God wins.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Proverbs 28 - a prayer and my thoughts.

Proverbs 28

New International Version (NIV)
28 The wicked flee though no one pursues,
    but the righteous are as bold as a lion. Heavenly Father, this verse says a lot -- God I pray that I am as bold as a lion -- but I seek to make sure I am righteous...right before You.  
When a country is rebellious, it has many rulers,
    but a ruler with discernment and knowledge maintains order.
God I pray I am not being rebellious by questioning and seeking Your word for guidance.  I tender my heart - raise my SWORDS - YOUR word and believe that I am wielding it in YOUR truth. 
A ruler[a] who oppresses the poor
    is like a driving rain that leaves no crops.
Those who forsake instruction praise the wicked,
    but those who heed it resist them.  Lord, we must seek Your word in all situations...even in the tough ones and we must seek the HARD passages as in James...and many other books. Even this portion of scripture -- Lord...
Evildoers do not understand what is right,
    but those who seek the Lord understand it fully.  Lord, this verse is like BLINKING in front of me.....I question stuff cause I don't understand it and yet...there is a supernatural peace - because YOU are leading.  
Better the poor whose walk is blameless
    than the rich whose ways are perverse.  Lord, when I read this, I think of rich, meaning 'having money'......but...I see this as ....Lord, we will walk blameless ..even if that means a loss of friends...comfort....and 'affirmations from people' means I must always answer only to YOU and know that I know ..I am walking in Your truth with grace and mercy.  
A discerning son heeds instruction,
    but a companion of gluttons disgraces his father.  
Whoever increases wealth by taking interest or profit from the poor
    amasses it for another, who will be kind to the poor.
If anyone turns a deaf ear to my instruction,
    even their prayers are detestable.  Lord, I believe it is so important to search Your word and seek ALL of Your knowledge - in any present, past, or future situation.....God I know YOU will win.  And I know, that I know - my prayers are being heard -- they aren not detestable. 
10 Whoever leads the upright along an evil path
    will fall into their own trap,
    but the blameless will receive a good inheritance.  Oh God, I walk in the fear of You...knowing what can happen to me if I lead anyone along an evil path.... I wish to walk blameless.  I wish to walk with right standing in You.  I wish to walk according to Your will.  And I will receive a good inheritance! 
11 The rich are wise in their own eyes;
    one who is poor and discerning sees how deluded they are.
12 When the righteous triumph, there is great elation;
    but when the wicked rise to power, people go into hiding.
13 Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper,
    but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.  God, I have never be a 'bluffer'...I have never been able to lie and get away with it....I have never had a poker emotions are on my face expresses all emotions...and I pray Lord, that the mercy I was given...will always be extended to others from me.... God reveal sin in my life - I want to be transparent and real before You.  God reveal what needs to be revealed so that --- YOUR will can be done.  IN Jesus name - I believe! 
14 Blessed is the one who always trembles before God,
    but whoever hardens their heart falls into trouble.  God, I believe hearts are being hardened.....Lord, I claim that this would stop..and I rebuke what Satan is trying to do...Satan will not succeed.  
15 Like a roaring lion or a charging bear
    is a wicked ruler over a helpless people.  Lord, I am tired of bullies and ones trying to manipulate situations....I want YOUR truth..YOUR knowledge...and YOUR wisdom to shine out....
16 A tyrannical ruler practices extortion,
    but one who hates ill-gotten gain will enjoy a long reign.
17 Anyone tormented by the guilt of murder
    will seek refuge in the grave;
    let no one hold them back.
18 The one whose walk is blameless is kept safe,
    but the one whose ways are perverse will fall into the pit. God, I have been in that pit before - it is NOT fun....God I pray that I never put myself in that pit - ever again... 
19 Those who work their land will have abundant food,
    but those who chase fantasies will have their fill of poverty.
20 A faithful person will be richly blessed,
    but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.
21 To show partiality is not good
    yet a person will do wrong for a piece of bread. God I can't control others....I pray they won't sell themselves out for 'saving face'....God -- I know you won't be mocked.... Your Kingdom is a strong tower...the righteous run into it and are saved....from all...
22 The stingy are eager to get rich
    and are unaware that poverty awaits them.
23 Whoever rebukes a person will in the end gain favor
    rather than one who has a flattering tongue.  Oh Lord, this verse...are you saying that when we STAND for YOU and renounce sin...when we stand in the gap and  call out sin.... -- we will gain favor?  I do believe that is the case Lord...I know, that sin must be can't be swept under the must be dealt must be forgiven....the is the first step - repentance.  Lord, I pray I never become a 'yes person' that just tells another what they want to hear.  God I will thought- walk in love and You have said, we catch fish first and then clean them....ONly YOU can 'clean' them...Only YOU can make a way -Only You can convict...and I trust You.  
24 Whoever robs their father or mother
    and says, “It’s not wrong,”
    is partner to one who destroys.
25 The greedy stir up conflict,
    but those who trust in the Lord will prosper.   We will prosper! 
26 Those who trust in themselves are fools,
    but those who walk in wisdom are kept safe. I have 'been' in this place before.  I have trusted in myself...and know it does not work.  God I trust will fail me...
27 Those who give to the poor will lack nothing,
    but those who close their eyes to them receive many curses.
28 When the wicked rise to power, people go into hiding;
    but when the wicked perish, the righteous thrive.   Lord, this last verse can almost be a word of prophesy for me right now....I will believe that the 'wicked' will not rise to power - In Jesus name - amen.  

Lord, ONLY YOU know exactly WHAT is going on.  This post is a reminder to me.  IN my hardest moments when I was 'single' and when I was in a state of crisis....I wrote and rewrote prayers and journaled to You.  Today I believe another one reading this, would stop and think...What on earth has happened that she would post this....?  What Michelle?  

What is important --is that - one really does not have to know the reason for my heavy heart and firm prayer right now.  One can read God's word and then my heart and pray with me.  I know Lord, that Your word does not return void...and I bet there is a young mother that is trying to hold onto her family but her husband has overdosed again and she is struggling for guidance  and she will read this, and she can read the words in RED and will be her prayer too.  

Another student today shared with me a certain situation at his home.  If he would read this Psalm and my red reflective prayer...he too would be able to pray this.  As again, God's word is alive and active....and that is the beauty of God's word.  I can read this prayer and it blesses me and then...another can read it and it will bless them.  

You could even be a woman with a BIG decision to to trust God or to trust 'man'....and I believe that reading God's word and then my red reflective prayer will help you.  

God -YOU will win. amen. 

Monday, May 19, 2014

God continues to test me...

I am being tested.  I don't like it; however, I have had such a peace beyond all understanding so I won't question God.

However, it happened again today - I questioned.
It happened last night - I questioned.

It happened again this am....I questioned.
I even got MAD at God.  I posted a prayer/ slash conversation to him  and shared it with  another sister in Christ.
I had to vent it...I had to write it all down.  I was mad at God.

God already knew it - HE knows my heart, but I KNOW HE also hears the frustration and difficulty within my prayer.

So, I believe I am being tested.

I have proclaimed that God can set the captives right now, maybe if someone watched me closely...would they agree that I am 'looking' like I believe that?

I have proclaimed that God right now.....when I realize that some hurt just has to heal in time.....would someone watching me agree that I am 'believing' that?

I have proclaimed certain battles are being won,  but only at the hands of God.
But right this VERY moment -- it feels like the enemy is winning.

Being tested is no fun.
I think God is asking me to rise up a trust Him again in a situation even when it does not look good.

Lord, I don't assume I know it all.
I can tell you - I KNOW nothing.
My head tells me one heart tells me another and yet YOUR word says.....

You will keep me on track.
I will 'practice' what I preach and wait this out...continue to pray....believe....and I have claimed something that is not impossible....but for right now - it looks pretty unbelievable.

God - only YOU know - all of it.
God  - only YOU can move the mountain or move me.
God - take over.....I don't like this test.

I will stand firm as to what I believe YOUR Holy Spirit has impressed upon me.
But Lord, lead and Jesus name, Amen.

Warning signs - being watchful! peaceful -- unaware that anyone snapped a photo.....
As I was driving to school today, this blog came and  now I  write.

 IN the past few days,  as I have been in prayer, hearing from God, hearing from others, and listening; I continue to hear about being watchful.

Being alert.
Being on guard.
Being prayed up!

Warning signs......

As a child, and about to start the 3rd grade and I watched my mom and extended family deal with the news and then burial  of my Grandfather.  He committed suicide.    It would of been 1974.  Back then, people did not discuss problems or situations---much less Mental health issues.  Mental health issues  were NOT something you could google and find advice.

 But in all of that - I observed   a few things.   My mom kept asking and trying to find out information about the warning signs that were missed.   And one of the pieces of advice  that my mom was given  and I have held onto for years is:  'when you are talking about committing suicide - it does not usually happen, but it is the one person that DOES not talk - that is whom you have to worry about'.  I can hear the person speak that into my mom's ears.  I can hear my   mom repeat it to others if I close my eyes and I have said it and thought it often myself.

 Now I  don't know if  that is  true  nor do I think it is invalid.  I have seen in my life, how the 'quiet' ones ....are the ones that  suddenly surprise you.

What are the warning signs?  

1 Peter 5.8 says we need to watch and be careful  as the enemy is looking to devour....
1 Cor 16.13 says to be on guard, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, and be strong...
Matt 24. 42-244 says we are to watch, as we don't know the hour at hand when Jesus will return...

Being watchful.
Being alert.
Being aware -- and be prayed up.

Many times when a crisis of faith hits us, we stop and thing, "where did this come from?"  "What did I miss?"   

And when we watch another walk into a crisis, we automatically say, "I never saw it coming.".

Most often the crisis did not just had been building for awhile or there was a spiritual door left open and the enemy just slowly weaseled  its way into the fiber of the being....and began to kill, steal, and/or destroy.  ........and many times there are warning signs - but we fail to see them.

Other times, I believe we do see warning signs but we are too busy to stop and dig deep into the root of the problem.   Or maybe we think they will just go away.

And I bet  - that often, many  just fall into a pattern and allow the 'business' of this world to take over our very basic need to spend TIME WITH GOD and so we don't have a quiet time with Him.

I know that with me.  I was NOT paying attention.  When  problems, squabbles, or crisis moments happened early in my marriage - I believed I could figure out the why and the what and then fix it.  And as I grew older, I just got better at fixing the immediate problem -- but never allowing the ROOT to be addressed. A crack or a tear left on its own will tear more and crack further.

My husband and I were married young. I can only speak for myself, but I bet my husband would agree,
that,  as time goes on and certain patterns surface there are warning signs - but are they realized?  Can we really see them?    For example, one warning sign I now realize we displayed was  being too busy for some church type of family ...and being to busy to attend church.  WE found and kept  finding excuses  to justify that staying at home and watching church on TV/Internet  was better anyway .......  now  THOSE  are some warning signs. It is not good to be isolated from others. Others that can help keep you accountable.

I noticed that I had less patience at my job, less patience with my children, and even less patience with our dog.  There was increased 'negativity' around our home -- a warning sign.  And as that negativity grew...the time spent with God decreased.  That was a warning sign.

Not having a consistent  quiet time,  where me and GOD had time to communicate .....THAT was a warning sign.

I think  when there is a communication break down with God - our Heavenly Father -- we do begin to realize it ....but maybe we just pretend and believe that maybe it will just go away.   I think many times, we just don't want to deal with it as well -- we think that maybe by ignoring it -- it will go away.

 And, sometimes I think the Holy Spirit prompts and prompts us over and over, until we just harden our hearts to any sort of conviction.   The Holy Spirit is such a gentlemen, He continues to speak to us and convict but  if we begin to get 'hard' and ignore....  Now there is a warning sign....but it is one that ONLY you and God can see....  

   Well, maybe a spouse can see it too.....         I saw it........   but it did not make me  pursue my Lord  any further.

It was only after something broke or the earthquake hit  -- then,   I knew, I was in the middle of a crisis of faith.  And then I  saw those warning signs - clearly.  But I did not  really understand that I had been ignoring them until much later....I was not alert.  And I was not prayed up.

That had to change.

Then I began to be.......alert...prayed up....guarded....and I changed.

Lord, I think about the ones reading this...I pray they are not like HP in the photo--asleep and unaware. God I pray that each and every person reading this, is prayed up...alert, courageous and on guard.  Lord, I pray that the enemy does not find ANY open doorways within my own life and heart....God I need Your guidance and I wish only to do Your will.  Lord, for anyone reading this and feels the Holy Spirit convicting them of their own warning signs...may they have the courage to get with you ASAP and find a church home to continue this.  Lord, for anyone reading this and feels they are 'fine' and 'free from any type of attack from the Enemy'....OH God...I pray protection over them and I pray their eyes would open -- and not be haughty as to think ...'that will never happen to me'...OH God... I pray they will come before you and seek repentance and seek YOU ....and Lord, I pray that I will remain alert, watchful, and that I am prayed up.  God...for the one reading this tonight or today and they are listening to the Comforter....God I pray you will direct and lead them to a body of believers...I pray you will lead them to a cell group of some sort....and you  will be glorified,  God I pray that when we need a warning sign - we get it...Lord, I pray that non of these children will need a sick  IN Jesus name. Amen

Saturday, May 10, 2014

MY MOM....(s)

Happy Mother's Day to first my mom.
 Sandy.  In the photo  below where she is holding Taylor --at about a week old, I did the math and she is probably 46 in that photo --I am already older at this point.

My other mom is my mother-n-law.  Marilyn, I did the math on her too -- she was just 2 years older  in that photo than I am presently.

Those 'ages' sort of freaked me out at first -- because today I have been teasing Brendan that we are now "GRANDS"  a puppy - Taylor got herself a baby this week
- she weighs all of 2 pounds and her head is still a little to big and she falls over here and there - but she is a cutie!

Not that my moms are old or that I am, I just had a little laugh and pondering moment in realization of 'where' my moms were in time when ...Taylor arrived.  TP was a first grandkid for my Mom - now she has 20+ .......I would have to stop and count to be specific but I am too tired.

And Marilyn has a few more than TP now  - but Taylor was her 2nd granddaughter.

And now with Taylor getting a puppy - and believe me it is like having a newborn in the house -- well, it just has made me laugh and appreciate motherhood all over again.

My mom, Sandy, Taylor and Marilyn 
 Seriously -- I have been preparing this  blog for over an month now- but now  it is midnight on the eve of Mother's Day and I am just finding the right photos to post....

I guess I really had to just wait for Taylor's little one to be a part of this family too.

BTW- Hunter is home for summer, he and Brendan enjoyed the Miami Game and I heard HP yell at the TV a few times....and Bella, our 7 year old Boston, was asleep on Hunter's legs.  Elsa, Taylor's Boston ( 8 weeks ), was asleep on Brendan's chest and Taylor and I were busy doing other necessary stuff -- the house was full - is full and my HEART is happy.

I do enjoy being a mom and having both of them home -- for the present time. And this entire day has been one big Mother's Day present!

 So - back to Mother's Day -- First to my MOm......Mom, Happy Mother's Day - if you were here, you would be joining us for a drive over to St. Pete to meet more family and enjoy a First Communion Service.  If you were here, there would be a big hug -  probably no card - this is it, but there would be some good fun.  If you were here, I would tell you this face to face.  

Thank you for teaching me unconditional love, giving me your talent to write,  and sharing with me the  many secret hiding places where you would stash chocolate.  ......

Thank you for the ears that were cleaned out and the times you would try to have peace and quiet in the bathtub and we always invaded your spot.  Thank you for Sour Cream Twists and the ability to go to the refrigerator and put together something.  AND.....How could one forget the endless trays of Rice Krispie treats that were our first breakfast bars.  

Mom - thank you for teaching me the value of friendship and loyalty.  Mom, you taught me perseverance.  And Mom...even though we are far away , your photo is on my dresser and I look at you each morning and say hello and pray.  Even though we don't see eye to eye on some topics...I do respect your opinions and listen.   Mom, my worth ethic is also because of YOU.  I love you and miss you - and I pray the REST of my siblings did something spectacular....cause they are close!!  LOL! 
 I pray a blessing over you - that you will remain healthy and full of energy to continue the task at hand - there is much for to do for the Kingdom of God.   Happy Mother's Day!

Blake and Taylor - probably 1996-97.

Taylor and Elsa on their way home.
Taylor and our first Boston - whizzer!  
My Mother's Day 1992
 To Other Moms....the photo above is of Taylor at my 2nd Mother's Day - what a joy a child brings...

Lord, I pray right now for the many moms who are hurting. I pray for the ones who have lost their children and I pray for the ones that have such little ones right now and they are just trying to juggle a job, a family, and everything else besides making sure there are plenty of diapers and orange juice.   - God may each and everyone of them understand that being a mom is a blessing and a calling  and I pray that any hurting mom will find comfort in your arms  this Mother's Day Weekend -  I especially ask a blessing upon my sister - who lost  her child several years ago, but my how you had the healing already planned as she enjoys a grand-daughter from her daughter and she gets to enjoy another son -  we will believe that Blake is planning a big  Mother's Day party for us all  when we are  in heaven! -  I pray for the women I know with teenagers - God - that they will continue to cover them with prayers and believe that God has great plans for them.  And I pray for a dear one and her 2 year old who are going through the valley right now - may, by this time next year, the confusion that seems to plague them right now--be gone.   God that each of these moms put YOU first -- as with that in perspective -- the rest will fall into place.   amen.  

I am a mom of two -- TP and this is HP...on his golf cart - typical Sunday afternoon.

Now for my next mom - Happy Mother's Day to Marilyn,  whom I affectionally call 'mom'  as well.   Mom - thank you for raising a son that has become the God's  mate for me.  Thank you for the endless words of encouragement and prayers for me and my kids...and your boy.  Thank you for always watching out for us, grabbing the bill at Pogey's and for reminding me that our time is precious.  

 Thank you for what you have taught me as well, especially how to listen to the Holy Spirit.  
I pray a blessing over you - that you will remain healthy and full of energy to continue the task at hand - there is much for to do for the Kingdom of God.   You are a welcome of marital wisdom and godly wisdom and you dote over us so.   Most importantly,  thank you for the endless errands  and stuff you did for Brendan and I as we raised out kids -- like staying home with a sick one and babysitting a puppy ...whizzer each day.  We owe you a bunch, Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day -- especially to  my sisters -- Diann, Brittan, Jeanette,
                     -My Sisters - n laws.... Becky, Janette, Tina, MArcia, Kristi, Tiffany and Laurie
                      -Erica - who is going to deliver soon and to Alyssa who just had her girl last night.
  And the list can go on  - seriously - I am thinking of one right this moment  that needs a reminder that God is in control with her daughter and she will come to repentance!!    - So I will stop at this and not try to list or name them all -- as they know whom they are and they will use the follow prayer to cover their children this morning.

Lord, thank you for being a mom.  Lord, thank you for the blessing and the honor to instill the love of Jesus into their lives...thank you for the provisions you give and thank you for the continued love , grace and mercy.  Lord, ONLY you can make a 'perfect child'...that was Your son which we thank you for, I pray a blessing over all the mom's I know - may they seek YOU first today and may their children - give them the love and honor they deserve...IN Jesus name  - amen.  And Lord for the men of these women -- may they too - honor their wives today - with YOUR grace and mercy .  Amen.

And  - if you love me and you are a mom ...  and this blog touched you  -- then --THIS note is to remind you - GOD is in control but you must let Him be.  

God bless - hugs and kisses to my moms....- chell