Tuesday, November 21, 2017

God Wins!

Does He?       


Isaiah 25:1 NIV says:  Lord, you are my god: I will exalt You and praise Your name, for in perfect faithfulness you have done wonderful things, things planned long ago.  

I have not blogged in almost 30 days.   If you watch or read my posts -- for almost 2 months now, I have written a new blog -- one that focuses on my grand-daughter.  That was a clever disguise for my "Writer's Block".   And if you look closely, I re-posted several blogs as well -- again, covering my Writer's Block.

  I would like to tell you that I was fasting blogging, or that God had me in a super QUIET time with Him -- but confession is what I must type.

I have been in a funk.

I have been flat..... frustrated and yet, discouraged.   And yet -- needing rest and a fresh move of God.  I have seen God all around me and He reminds me---He has not left -- I have. 

 Or..did I?

  yes.... it 'feels' I did.   

In the past month, I have questioned WHY I am in this funk.  There is a LONG list.  I have analyzed it, confessed it, and sought counsel and yet.....still....a funk. 

Lack of energy.
Too much on my to do list.
Stupid people.
Prayers that seemed to go unanswered.
Time Hop reminders of some stuff.
Too busy. 
Lack of sleep.
Too much sleep.

I was able to see the ROCKS cry out-- lots of times in the past few months -- and sing His praises and yet....I still remained in a funk.    I will admit -- I am still there -- some could label it depression.  Others could say, "pity party".  And yet, others will remind me -- it is Spiritual Warfare.  What I know, is that it is a place that feels uncertain and yet I know that I know -- God is trying to move to something or do something.  Or....it is a season of such spiritual warfare and my flesh just won't 'feel' better until I SEE something! 

My husband keeps me in reality and reminds me -- it is the enemy.   Praise GOD for that -- THAT is a miracle in itself!  And I know it is.   

 Sunday, I sought out a precious sister in Christ that I submit to and just let her speak over me and pray.     That helped! 

In all of that -- if this makes any sense -- I believe I was just frustrated, as at times, I believe the Lord has me doing something and I expected some different answers and then it did not happen.  And then again -- I am believing the Lord is just calling me DEEPER to trust Him -- even when I can't SEE the mountain moving. 

Deep calls to deep. 

There I said it -- I don't feel pretty deep right now and so therefore, I do think the Lord is a bit distant and yet -- THAT is such a lie from the enemy. 

There, I can say that!  The enemy lies -- but to LIVE in that knowledge....that is where it  gets hard. 

It gets hard when I see this season and yet...I want to be obedient.

 In the past six months, He, God,  has asked me to do some "things".  I have been obedient in about 1/2 of them.  And the enemy uses that info to remind me that I am less than perfect.  I failed.  And thus....a crack in the armor happens and the funk sets in and ......continues. 

But the enemy will do anything and everything to distract -- in fact on Sunday, through a guest preacher, God reminded me...

The enemy -- brings discouragement, division, doubt, discontentment, distractions, and deception! 

So, with that -- I am blogging today.  I am being obedient -- being transparent.  I don't feel like the Lord is writing this -- I feel like it is a confession.  But -- I do believe the Lord will USE this for His Glory. 

I can't be the only warrior for Christ that gets into a funk. 

I have claimed victory over my "list".  I have made a few doctor's appointments to address the hormones.  And....  today, I blogged - in obedience.  Being transparent. 

Lord, this blog is me being honest and as You know I prayed today -- I want this season to be for YOUR glory, but I want to know its purpose.  But...I will trust that I don't HAVE to know its purpose.  Protect me Lord,  you know the secret places that need Your touch and You know how the Holy Spirit lives in me.  God, as your Word says - You have planned wonderful things for me -- long ago.  I will trust that YOU made me for THIS time...for  Your purpose and that You will use me -- IN Jesus name.  Amen!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Reading a book. How the ending can turn so quickly.

I read a book yesterday about a boy who went to heaven and was in a coma.  The book  is written from the Dad's point of view as he was driving and miraculously  survived the crash.  And there are excepts and inserts from the bystanders at the crash site and the various  paramedics -- and then the perspective of the six year old as he shares what he remembers.

They  share   an entire book about what he learned about heaven.   It was quite fascinating.  As I read - I believed it to be true, as the publisher is reputable and the theology within the pages are pretty sound.  I was totally uplifted and was reminded that my own problems were really nothing. 

The boy was 6 when he and his dad were this  car accident back in 2006.  As I said, the dad was ejected from the car and was barely injured.  The little boy, Alex, was still strapped into his back seat when the firemen had to cut the seat belt off of him.  He was literally decapitated within but the skin and muscle was not severed so his head was still attached.  He was not suppose to make it.  His mom had given birth to his little brother 2 days before the crash and there was a 2 and 4 year old at home as well. 

The accident happened back in 2006 - so I figure he has to be pretty close to 16-18 years old now.

I went to the internet and tonight found several articles and warnings that the book was a lie.  That the mother published one of the boy's  open letters that states -he made it up.  I read more -- the couple is divorced.  There is of course much to read about how the publishers have pulled the book off the shelves and there are articles from the Dad's family that state he is not lying.  And then, before I finally gave up and quit reading, I found the mother's blog where it stated, she is not divorced but they are separated.  However,  my uplifting experience the night before -- was now.... questioned.

Fake news?
No -
Confusion?  Yes.

How did this turn so quickly?   At what point when one was working on the book, that the other decided to write a blog and dispute the story?  

And then I realized or had a revelation  about  how quickly a sister in Christ can be happy one day and the next -- shattered.

I mean, everything she thought was real ...to be true...to count on....was ripped or destroyed within the day.

This happened to one recently.  One day she was shopping for baby furniture as they are expecting and the next day, her husband pulls her aside to tell her he is  having an affair.

 Or, maybe it could read out like this:   One day a mother can feel and enjoy the kicking of her twins within her belly.  They are almost full term and then she awakes the next morning and realizes, she has not felt them all day.  She heads to the doctor to check and is given the news that her twins have indeed  - died.  And then she must give birth to them.

Or another scenario:   One morning a mother notices her son is sleeping in, which is very normal, especially on a Saturday, but when she goes to wake him a few hours later, he has already slipped into heaven.  So quickly.  

Or maybe it is like this:   One day a mother realizes there is a weird spot or red mark on her breast and tells herself to watch it and as the week progresses, she realizes there are more red marks all under her arms and after a visit to the doctor and some tests -- her red marks become cancer.

And, what about the mother who kissed her sweet boy goodbye as he loaded the bus and headed overseas after his boot camp and training, and a week or so later she gets the official visit from an officer and is told her son was killed in action.  

So quickly -- so quickly, one life or one story can turn.

Today I was thinking and praying for a  family that is very dear to me and they were in ministry for many many years.  I watched them.  I dropped my child off at their church to be ministered to and yet -- somehow -- something got "in" and they are divorced and no longer in ministry.  What?  Why?

And there is a mother this evening that has watched her child suffer a lot.  The young one needs a miracle, a physical miracle, as her boy continues to decline and as she sits by his bed -- when will his last breath be?     When will it turn? 

How does one story turn so quickly?   

Some days my brain can quickly justify it as I will see and say--"oh - look -- well, there are consequences to his  or her  actions". 

And then, the Lord will allow a quick  discipline in my head and thoughts and remind me,  that indeed -- each and every day -- our enemy seeks to KILL, STEAL, and DESTROY.  Period.

And we can't control life.  

Yet -- HOW hard is it to believe that God is still good? 

I read this:

Sometimes  God allows what HE can hardly stand -- to accomplish more than we understand. 

In fact, I think I already blogged and wrote that out once before.  

There are many around us - if you are not so self- absorbed  - suffering and needing a hug and a kind word.   There are many around us that need Jesus.  

I know that God is good.
One desire is that God is present and His presence brings hope.
Sometimes, for some....the only way God can get to them is when a crisis turns -- or when something turns into a crisis. 

  I know that God did not create this suffering nor is it a punishment.  

But tonight, as I write out this prayer, there are several people I know that could fit in my scenarios where their lives turned so quickly and I want to pray for them.  I also want to pray for  the authors of that book I read a few days ago.  Ironically, their name is "Malarkey".  When I was a kid, we would use the phrase -- "that is a bunch of bologna or malarkey" but for some reason I still don't want to think it is a bunch of bologna -- I want to believe it was a true story - as it was advertised.  

Lord,  this eve -- my heart is heavy - especially for my sweet sister in Christ who is bedside with her son -- God, give her the comfort that only You can.  Lord, for the families within these real and hypothetical scenarios.  God the real truth is -- there is one who will fit it.  God I pray for those mommas and daddy's who get those phone calls from the military.  Lord, I just pray for those of us blessed with "normal" lives  - may we be Your hands and feet and extend love, kindness, and compassion.  Lord, for Your will to be done - here on Earth as it is in Heaven.  Lord, for those struggling - wanting a HUMAN to meet their needs this eve - God - that YOU are all.  Lord, I love you and praise Your name.  Use this blog for Your glory.  And Lord, would you give me peace - some how some way and confirm to me what about this book is true. I know You can use a paper bag to draw in your lost son or daughter -- so use what is needed, that NO one would be left behind.  Until You return Lord -- humbled, I am.
-- Your daughter --   

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Psalm 136 - rewritten for me -- maybe for YOU!

I wrote this back in September 2011 -- six years ago.  I have felt rather distant from the Lord as of late -- and it is my own fault.  He has not moved, I have not sought Him out.  

I go in circles at times -- really focused -- on fire -- working and then I get into a slump.  I am either very tired or circumstances just interrupt.  However,  God is ever so gently reminding me -- "hello -- I am here".  

Tonight, I began a blog and then it the save button and closed it.  I tried to start another as I was longing to write and then the Holy Spirit brought me to this one I wrote some time ago.  

 I think it is ok to "rewrite" a psalm  when it becomes a prayer.  It ministered to me perfectly and as I read and prayed it again, I could see WHAT has indeed changed and come into fruition.  You can tell it is old, as it would need to be updated and I would be adding Jacob my son -in-love and my new Grand kid - Ava, as well the one awaiting birth in TP's tummy.   But what really struck me is -- there is ONE I can think of this evening that needs to write this out and ADJUST this psalm to FIT her prayer.  


She needs to be reminded that He is good.  So, I post this tonight and challenge that one who comes to this -- spend thirty minutes this eve and write this psalm out and where I placed my name... place yours.  And when I personalized it -- personalize it with YOUR family members.  And when it comes to the end and I thank and praise God for my present /then/ circumstance -- praise HIM for yours.  


I promise, His Word will not return void.  It is therapy to allow God's Word to wash our heart, our ears, and our thoughts.   God bless --    



psalm 136, rewritten for ME . . . . .

Psalm 136

1 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! Michelle gives thanks to God. HE is good.
His faithful love for Michelle endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods.
His faithful love for Michelle endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords.
His faithful love for Michelle and her family endures forever.
4 Give thanks to him who alone does mighty miracles for Michelle and for Brendan and for Taylor and for Hunter because.
His faithful love endures forever.
5 Give thanks to him who made the heavens so skillfully. HE also made Michelle so skillfully, HE gave her a heart that wants to please and can love unconditionally.
His faithful love for Michelle endures forever and now Michelle has a LOVE for HIM that she believes will never waiver!.
6 Give thanks to him who placed the earth among the waters.
His faithful love endures forever.
7 Give thanks to him who made the heavenly lights—that Michelle has looked at and watched and she would remind herself that HE made those stars so HE can make something out of nothing.
His faithful love endures forever.
8 the sun to rule the day,
His faithful love for Michelle and her family endures forever.
9 and the moon and stars to rule the night.
His faithful love the loves ones of Michelle endures forever.
10 Give thanks to him who killed the firstborn of Egypt. And HE allowed something in Michelle to be killed as well. It had to be done.
His faithful love endures forever.
11 He brought Israel out of Egypt. And HE brought Michelle out of a pit of mire and muck and HE slowly brushed and cleaned her up and loved on her.
His faithful love endures forever.
12 He acted with a strong hand and powerful arm and held Michelle each and every time she asked as well as other times when she did not have the strength to ask.
His faithful love endures forever.
13 Give thanks to him who parted the Red Sea. And he allowed division and a parting with Michelle and her idols and still [a]
His faithful love for her and her family endures forever.
14 He led Israel safely through and HE held Michelle in her darkest and most sad moments,
His faithful love endures forever.
15 but he hurled Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea and HE came to the rescue and took care of Michelle's enemy - God wins.
His faithful love endures forever.
16 Give thanks to him who led his people and Michelle and her family through the wilderness.
His faithful love endures forever because HE is eternally good and HE loves Michelle and her entire family more than she ever could.
17 Give thanks to him who struck down mighty kings and HE opened and shut doors that needed to be, HE sold a home in a market that is rough, HE provided a new place to start over where one could afford, and HE also provided property and at HIS rate so we can rebuild again - litteraly. HE also provided godly counsel and secular help to sort out the mighty kinds and to SET them straight and to 'cancel' their power so real problems and solutions can be discussed and life can begin again as well, as providing the Pastor and counselor that HE uses to restore.
His faithful love endures forever.
18 He killed powerful kings—and the principalities that HELD us at bay for far too long.
His faithful love endures forever.
19 Sihon king of the Amorites,
His faithful love endures forever.
20 and Og king of Bashan.
His faithful love endures forever.
21 God gave the land of these kings as an inheritance—and HE has an inheritance for Michelle and her family that is going to be GREAT . . Michelle can't even imagine HOW great it is going to be.
His faithful love endures forever.
22 a special possession to his servant Israel.
His faithful love endures forever.
23 He remembered us in our weakness.And HE was always there and still is for MIchelle in good and in the bad, and she is most humbled that she is loved THAT much.
His faithful love endures forever.
24 He saved us from our enemies. Oh God, YOU saved me. Period.
His faithful love endures forever.
25 He gives food to every living thing.Oh God, your word is the breath that sustains me and I am so thankful.
His faithful love endures forever.
26 Give thanks to the God of heaven.I give thanks for the God in heaven. I praise you Lord, and YOUR love has endured forever and I trust it now.
His faithful love endures forever.

Lord, thank you for today for the special women that prayed for me. Today, the enemy wanted to destroy me. Today, YOU made me strong enough to grieve what I needed to grieve but then move on to YOUR promises and YOUR truth!! Today, you ministered to me, via church, your warriors, and your truth. Thank you Lord.

Thank you for this blog . ...I am SURE you did not mind me personalizing this psalm. I love you Lord.

Michelle - your beautiful daughter!!

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Prayer #40 -- Brutely Honest

I have pondered and asked God exactly how to end this season of prayers.  Monday was Day #40 and yet, I just could not bring myself to get this typed up and posted.  I have felt the Lord, leading me one way and then I felt He was moving me another. 

In the past week, there has been  a mother believing for a miracle for her son --

Just 24 hours ago a mother was seeking a medical miracle for her daughter 30,000 feet above the Earth  as she was traveling home--that was my sister as my niece was in respiratory distress and needed to spend some time in the PICU with oxygen and fluids-- 

There is a wife, that was the beginning inspiration for this blog series, she  has prayed with me for a movement of God and yet it seems nothing has changed within her home --

And there is another wife whose  husband told her earlier this week that he was moving out, he would provide for the children but he was having an affair and was moving out, leaving her --

And last night, as I was trying to pray for and comfort a young mother in desperate pain she mentioned something -- "all my praying and all my reading has brought forth nothing".......

This haunted me all day - our prayers are for everything.   But, I admit -- at times, I am looking for WHAT I see instead of trusting the faith within. 

And this evening I read a blog by Ann Voskamp and she says:  

What if:  God's purposes are not so much for me to understand His plans: His plan is for me to understand Who He is.  And He is my Peace. 

What if:  Prayer isn't about getting what you desperately want, but about getting more of the One Who desperately wants you.  

What if: You discover Jesus is really enough -- when you discover Jesus is really ALL you have left.  

Her  blog spoke volumes to me.  I do believe and know that God has been walking me through these 40 days.  As I have prayed  and blogged, these prayers and words of wisdom have been for others and also for myself.   And as I finish this series -- I did believe that a MAJOR circumstance change would occur within this one family -- nothing has noticeably changed on the outside, but I know that I know -- there has been change on the inside.  She has chosen to continue and fight through Jesus and be a warrior in a heartbreaking marriage -- but she is listening to God and being obedient.  That is indeed -- answered prayer.  

Sometimes God    allows what     He     can hardly       stand -- to    accomplish     more than we understand.  

Sometimes God allows -- I know this and understand it as best as I can, but I never truly felt that what He allows....brings Him sadness as well.  I mean, I know God is God -- but it gives me comfort to believe that He did not want to allow the hurt.... this season....or  the roller coaster we can't get off of.  

As I finish this prayer series -- whether the outcome came or not -- God won --- for 40 days, there was a bigger focus on Hearing from Him and being obedient.  For 40 days, healing was declared and faith to believe that indeed --- much fruit will come because of our faithfulness and steadfast obedience.  

Lord, for my sweet sister in Christ - hold her.  Bless her.  Lord, for these blogs -- use them for YOUR Kingdom come...  


 I am humbled Lord and indeed in AWE of Your Majesty!  
- Michelle 

Monday, October 16, 2017

Prayer #39 -- For a Sister in Christ in Crisis - Putting Your Armor ON!

 Today is Day #39!  Or Prayer #39.  As it is also the Lord's Day and the first day of the week -- I am reminded of an important task or way to begin each day-- by getting ready -- putting the armor on! 

 This weekend I have the pleasure of having and enjoying my youngest sister and her three 'gingers'.  They all have different shades of red hair.  And as they awake and need food in their bodies -- Auntie Chell begins to make Mickey Mouse pancakes and the banter and chatter begins about what we will do for the day.  The beach is on the list for today but first-- breakfast,  the changing of poopy pants, and then a silly song to get teeth brushed.   By the time my nieces leave they will have Raffi's "brush your teeth" playing over and over in their own personal playlist in their heads.  


"When I wake up in the morning and its quarter to one, and I just want to go have some fun,  I brush my teeth --- chitch chitch chitch cha.....  chitch chitch chitch cha cha cha"   

 Can you hear it?   

 "When I wake up in the morning and its time to rise Up -- I  just can't wait to pray my armor on"......


The Armor of God

10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  

This battle truly has been fought in the heaven-lies -- and it will continue until complete victory is met -- are you willing to continue?  
You must continue to fight for your husband or family in prayer and it may not be easier after you put your armor on;  but when you realize the battle is not against flesh and blood -- perspective comes!   

13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. 14 Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place,  
YOU battle with God's Word -- His Truth!  Read it - love it - seek its answers. 
15 and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  
 You may need to change those shoes each day or write yourself a note to make sure you don't take those shoes off -- but understand that faith will speak LOUDER than your words and allowing God to discipline the one hurting you, allowing God to orchestrate the timing is indeed what is best. 
16 In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. 17 Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. 
 If you read these blogs and have read this series, you know how praying in my prayer language  is needed something that gives me comfort and strength each day.  Many people, when speaking about the armor of God stop at verse 17 and yet verse 18 says to pray in the Spirit -- this, I believe is very key! 
With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.

Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, 20 for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it
fearlessly, as I should.

This scripture from Ephesians -- is a treasure.   Praying our Armor on each day - is so vital and needed.   As I wrap up these 40 days of prayers, I feel it is most fitting to make sure that one has their armor on.  

Lord,  as I pray this eve - I pray the one reading this knows and understands how important the armor - YOUR armor is and that it is prayed on.  Lord, I pray she would stand firm as this season continues or even begins to change -- and that she is comforted and favored in Your eyes.  IN Jesus name.  Amen.

Prayer #38 - For a Sister in Christ in Crisis -- our LIkeness ----

Psalm 139:14New International Version (NIV)

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

Today has been fearfully and wonderfully made  day.  My house was full of people.  Literally.  My daughter was honored with family and friends showering her with love, encouragement, and gifts.  And I had several moments where the only person my Grandkid wanted was me -- ignoring her Mommee.  (That may seem like no big deal, but this kid- Ava Lynne-  has me wrecked at times. )
 Finally -- the morning ended with prayer -- prayer over my daughter and her child.  Prayers over her  family and  the extended family that will help raise and support this child- Sawyer.   Prayers said by Sawyer's grandmothers, prayers said by those Taylor has touched, prayers said by  friends and colleagues--prayers by strong women in Christ.   Women who know their identity.  This young baby has been conceived through prayer and bathed in prayer since conception and now as she continues to grow within Taylor's belly a prayer brigade will continue.  

I don't share all that to boast or try to make anyone feel shame...I am humbled by the love and support I saw for my child and family that it has me wrecked as I think of it.   That our Lord orchestrated that for her ...for me... And when I say "wrecked" -- I am just in a very sweet place with Jesus and Father God that words don't fit and actions or thank yous are just not enough. 

GOD has that for YOU as well.  God has an army of warriors that are  will to go to battle for you -- just submit and ask.  God has an army of warriors that are going to battle for you if you have claimed that Jesus is your Lord and Savior.  And I pray - that YOU will have an opportunity to realize this - thank God for is -- or seek it -- today. 

She is fearfully and wonderfully made!    That baby is fearfully and wonderfully made. 

I am fearfully and wonderfully made. 

 YOU -- The one,  on the other side of this computer or phone that is reading this,  IS fearfully and wonderfully made.  

Warts and all -- literally.  
One of the hardest lessons I learned is that I am enough.  
Who I am in Christ dictates HOW I act to hardship. 
 It dictates HOW I react to others. 
 It dictates HOW I see others and HOW I treat others as well.  
It dictates!   

Do you read this verse and accept it as truth?    Do you know what God has commissioned over you?

Psalm 139:14New International Version (NIV)

14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

God knows you -- fully well.  
This is a photo of my niece Ellie Jo.  She has the most adorable strawberry blond hair and she is all of 4 years old. 

My sister brought her three girls to help celebrate Taylor's special weekend  and we had a baby shower for her family here.  My family is so important to me and being 1400 miles away, I would always try to incorporate Wisconsin and my 8 siblings into Taylor and Hunter's lives as much as I can.  However, truthfully, her Florida adopted Aunts and Uncles are just as much family too!   Having Ellie and her two sisters here has brought forth many laughs and tears too -- but we ended up looking at old photos.  Ellie reminds me of my mom's childhood photos.  I don't have many but when I found this one - I wanted to get a side by side to show Ellie, she did have some likeness to her Grandma Sandy -- my mom.  She was a bit reluctant to cooperate -- that would be the stubbornness she gets honestly from her Grandpa Jim -- and the Peiricks -- but, she certainly favors her Grandma Sandy in this photo.     She just does not want her photo taken!                                                                                                      
  You will notice that once I snapped the photo her head turned.   Isn't that true of us?    When someone gives us a compliment or tells us that we remind them of someone -- we shy away...we turn our heads.  Many times we can't accept the compliment and then other times we really don't want to "look like that person". (Ellie just did not want her picture taken.)

I immediately knew -- I could use these two photos in a blog.  I remember being told "you look like your dad" and I would go-- "REALLY?"  No matter what age you are at -- most of us question  the comments or observations made about our personal appearance or even our temperament.    To this day, if my sister begins to tease me and remind me that I am the "spitting image" of one of my Paternal Aunts -- I sort of cringe!  Where is the plastic surgeon?  Can I get a face lift?  LoL 

But we are fearfully and wonderfully made. 
 Perfect in His eyes.   So we are created to appear like him.  I believe our physical bodies   - when we get to heaven -- will resemble our Lord and His angels.  And as we are created in His image -- there is no mistakes. 

   However,   Do we reflect the image of God?   Do we act with his likeness? 
         Do we reflect the knowledge of WHOM we are in Christ?  
        Do we accept that we are not perfect -- warts and all?
Do we know who makes us complete?  

Dear Lord, for the one reading this today-- May she know WHO she is in Christ and if she does not -- may she have the hunger and drive to DIG into your word and read Psalm 139 and find out.  Or may she google Joyce Meyers and find that list of WHO we are in Christ and then POST it on her mirror and begin to transform her thoughts to line up with WHAT Your Word says about her.  You Lord, created her --You Lord know HOW she thinks -- and You know the present circumstances.  As we are at the end of these 40 days of prayer-- where I believe and trust you  have this precious sister  is right in Your hands and she is stronger now today than she was 40 days ago.  I also pray and believe that You will meet her every need and thought -- and help her to transform her thoughts so that she can see YOUR LIKENESS  in her and in her actions.  IN Jesus name.  Amen.  

And PS -- we pray that the husband that is estranged right now and away from God - find a mentor - a man who is in the image and likeness of You  Lord and that he may want to be like  Christ.  IN Jesus name. 

Sunday, October 15, 2017

She is 50 !

Taking a moment on this blog to wish my sister a Happy 50th Birthday.  She is presently in Africa - riding camels and taking photos in the sand with her man -- it would be pretty lame to be 'here' and just eat a cake and blow out candles when you can have this type of 50th.....but I wanted to share a bit and publicly wish her the BEST of days today ....and may she be blessed with 50 more! 

 Her birthday was a few days ago -- I realized that when I began to "write" and post this,  as I was thinking of her most of the day,  on her birthday, that she was 12 hours AHEAD of me and it was already PAST her birthday.  Great...Super..... epic fail...LOL...so posting it now--what is a few more days?  

50 Shades of J....

1.  We call her JJ among the family -- short for Jeanette Kae Peirick Miller.  Her given nickname was "peanut" cause my mom says she looked small and sort of like a Spanish peanut in her arms.  My kids call her Aunt JJ.  Maybe Mom has a different reason -- this is what I remember. 

2.  She is my younger sister - if you don't know - I am the oldest.  Of Nine.  Yes...Nine. 
This was "all of us" - missing 2 grands in the summer of 2015.

3.  We are 20 months apart and apparently when Mom and Dad brought her home, I was so jealous of this new baby that Mom had to ship my 20 month old self off to Grandma Peirick's for three whole weeks so Mom could adjust - or maybe I could adjust.

4.  She has 5 brothers.  Ranging in age from 30+ to 48!

5.  She has  3 sisters - one being me.

6.  We were raised on a dairy farm in Wisconsin and she never did anything wrong in the barn.  I heard often from my dad at how "great" she did her job!  

7.  She was born and raised in Watertown, Wisconsin but moved to Florida after she graduated from UWW to help us at the insurance office.

8.  I don't remember us ever trying to socialize in the same circles in High School, but I was busy working and in my own life and she had hers.  We did carpool a lot and of course there was always the time in the 'barn'.

9.  As kids we spent a lot of time in the barn or outside -- even on Sunday's we would get locked out of the house -- and our favorite was playing "pizza place" where we would create mud pies  and add certain toppings.  Daryl and Aaron always made good customers.

10.  We also played "doctor" with the neighbor Jenny -- with kitchen utensils as her instruments.

11.  We could also be found playing "house"   where I was always the wife named Chris and she was the husband... and right now I can't remember the name she would pick.

12.  What is really embarrassing is that I know we also played 'babies' and I remember practicing to breast feed with my doll -- and Jeanette was near by.     Right now -- that just makes me CRINGE!  Oh My.

13.  Speaking of dolls -- she destroyed mine.  Well...I had two legs on my doll and she ripped off one of them.   It totally ruined my life.  LOL.  No it didn't -- but it certainly was something we fought or cried about.  ....we laugh ...to this day! 

14. Of the two  or three years we attended UWW together, I think I saw her 3x and was in her dorm once.  I know she had a roommate that loves the Milwaukee Brewers as JJ was always very interested in her sports teams.

15.  She worked at the college as a senior and after she graduated and it was always fun going back to see her once we had moved to Florida.    She managed the "Down Under". 

16.  She would watch football on Sundays with my dad   -- or I think she did, I always wanted to watch Star Trek.  Perhaps that is where her love of football came from --

17.  She came to stay with me for  the 3 weeks around  Taylor's birth  -- little did I know she  was pregnant herself  I always wanted to be pregnant with a sister and here I was.  She even left my house and couldn't tell me -- as I was WAY too into myself and my life.... of which I apologized for!

18.   I was able to be WITH her when Blake was born -- totally a GOD orchestrated event.  My little "yoda" was born!

19.  When Brendan went to insurance school for 6 weeks and Taylor was 11 weeks old, we packed up and moved in with her so that Bren could concentrate.  We did not have FACETIME then but Taylor's eyes would light up each night as she spoke to her daddy. Many photos began between Blake and Taylor.

20.  Countless phone calls than began between two sisters with young children.  I went through post-par tum depression so MANY tears were shed. 

21.    She moved her in 1993 with her son - Blake and spent their very first night in Okeechobee in Raulerson Hospital -- as Blake had an upper respiratory thing. He was just 2! 

22.  She loves to clean -- well, maybe not that she loves it but her house is always spotless.

23.  She is the ultimate hostess and enjoys having family around.

24.  She has the COOL POOL for when family visits as I did not have guest room until the past few months!

25.  Her freezer is completely stocked and the meals she makes -- super.  The pies...  the casseroles ....she is a  cook!  
26.    She loves to walk and travel.

27.  She is married to Craig and has 3 children.  Blake, whom I have mentioned, is in heaven - and Cali and Jordyn  are close and  have blessed her with two grand babies  and she loves them dearly.

28.  She loves being an Auntie and dotes on many -- even 'adopting' the children of friends and loves on them!
Unsure who this pretty girl is, but she has my sister's heart.

29.    Traveling has become a hobby --and presently as I type she is 1/2 way around the world in Africa  -- hence the photo!

30.  She played softball and volleyball in high school and probably would of done another sport if she could of figured out transportation. She is VERY competitive.

31.  Speaking of being competitive...we would CONSTANTLY compare each other's legs to see who was the most tan, or the most fit.  Constantly.

32.  We shared stuff -- but as we became teens - it could be a problem.  She will tell the story that I am  NOT very proud of that I went crazy when I learned she was wearing my underware -- and ended up needed Valium admistered at the ER.

33.  Um...my we had a bit of a stress-filled life as teenagers....needless to say the Guidance Counselors knew us -- and our family.   But... God is faithful! 

34.   As a kid, we had our ups and downs -- that would be putting it mildly.  LOL.   I have memories of ALWAYS having to include her in birthday parties  and friend sleep overs and she tells another story.  She tells a different version.
Our Aunt Gloria

35.  We fought a LOT.  We did.   Hair pulling -- pushing shoving fighting.  And a lot of yelling.  At times when we talk about it - I just get embarrassed -- it is what it is.  I have apologized. BUT... when a crisis happened -- we rallied around each other and KNOW -- love is there! 

36.  She says Mom always seemed to make sure I got the best present at Christmas and she got gyped.  I remember one Christmas where she counted the gifts and cried at the end of the night that I got one more and my Dad was fussing at my mom and we headed to Farm and Fleet the next day and she got another gift.  My mom pleaded that I got an extra cause of all the babysitting I did - for "free".  Dad didn't buy that.   Now -- that is what I remember ... I am sure she has a different version.

37.  However, there were good moments and times where we did get along.   Especially as we got older and had common enemies!  And she is a dear woman who LOVES the underdog and fights for what she believes is right and correct.

38.  Being untruthful would kill her -- she has the Utmost integrity and when you know her - you love her and you know what she is about.

39.  I complete admire how she can see the GOOD in many and her heart hurts when hypocrisy is present. 

40.  As a little girl, my parents had an old farmhouse.  My Grandparents and family helped to finish the attic in that old house and a sleigh bed was added  to the room for Jeanette and I.  We would go to bed and I would be dog tired and I would hear, "Chelly, I can't fall asleep".  Note -- there was a lot of whining involved and so I would just tell her to go to sleep.  She couldn't.  So I began to tell her stories using her hands as hand puppets.  In my head, I did this for weeks... in her head, it was not every night but I felt it was.   In reality, Blake enjoyed me telling the stories over and over.

41.  This story reminds me of HOW kind my sister is - she always placed the needs of me before hers and would praise me publicly  and loved me unconditionally.    In fact, I had this one romper that I loved to wear.  She realized and knew it was TOO Short for my legs and politely asked if she could buy it from me - as I was pregnant with my second kid and I was not wearing it.  She never wore it.  I found out years later -- she knew I did not look "good" in it and was just trying to make sure I never wore it again in public.  That story may seem harsh -- but it was endearing....she always looks out for me. 

42.  As I remember, she seemed to ALWAYS do things perfectly and seemed to be Dad's favorite.  IN recent years I have come to the realization that the baby was probably his favorite.  Namely, Brittan.   Why do  I state that? Our Dad has always  been such a neat freak or 'cleaner'.  About 9 years ago, I was visiting Wisconsin and having breakfast with my youngest sister and her daughter and I witnessed  an unbelievable act -- my 1 year old niece, Haidyn,  was sitting on his lap with sticky  hands from eating her pancake and he never flinched or fussed that syrup was dripping down his pants.  Then I knew it -- literally -- the 'baby' must be his favorite. Who was this man?  My dad? 

43.   She is a business major. We brought here her some 20+ years ago to help us at the Insurance office and she has been an intricate and vital piece of the puzzle to keep our agency successful.  We know we owe her a debt of gratitude!

44.  She has been married to Craig now for over 15 years... I think the 20 year anniversary is close. He was "set up" with her on a date back when I was PG with HP.  She was in the process of actually moving back to Wisconsin - but praise God it was a divine meeting and she and Blake stayed.  And Blake received a family through Craig - a brother and a sister that indeed blessed him and made him feel so loved.

45.  Speaking of Craig -- she relies on him, loves him and I admit - he is a pretty good catch.  Hey -- he took her to Africa for her 50th??  All I could do was bake a cake!!   But, I totally believe Craig's influence on her son...their son...Blake was indeed a God appointed thing.  Blake flourished  and grew in many ways -- it was awesome to watch. 

46.  She loves the Green Bay Packers and basically everything stops when a game is on -- I mean - seriously!!    I wonder if she will be able to see it from Dubai?

47.  She is in a new season of her life -- she knows what she wants to do and I pray that as she continues to seek God -- He will orchestrate her path as she begins her "2nd season".

48.....  I love her -- and treasure our time together and treasure her honesty.

49.  I believe and hope that as we continue to grow older....she may have to DYE her hair... !!!  LOL
Cue the laughing -- seriously - she is a Natural beauty and natural red head and loves to remind that she has never dyed her hair.

50.  And on that note - sweet sister -- you are VERY far away and yet, the video of the camels made me smile today -- thank you for thinking of me.   I pray this blog BLESSEd you - I figure there will be a few corrections I need to make - I KNOW you hate ANYTHING public like this -- but too  bad.

You are loved and I wanted to share with my readers -- a little of my sister -- God bless you and Happy Birthday!

Love - Chell 

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Prayer #37 - For a Sister in Christ in Crisis -- Get involved.

So, first I want to express my sincere appreciation for  you on being faithful and continuing to read this series and believe with me for a victory as we approach the 40th day. 

I wish to be transparent -- as the 40th day approaches, I am somewhat relieved as getting these posted daily hasn't been a struggle, but certainly I have struggled to try and get everything done that has needed to be done for the day and then as I wind down and think about blogging -- the enemy has used all of his usual tricks but I have also allowed time to be wasted.

With that -- God is really asking me to evaluate my 'extra' time and how I am spending it.  I have been praying and thinking and some times - arguing with God about what I need to do.  Yes, I said, argue -- or really converse back and forth but I know that when I don't respond to what He has asked or called me to do -- I am being disobedient and THAT is no good!

Therefore, I continue with this blog series and allow the laundry to sit a bit and I will continue with this series and not stress about a 'messy' house! 

One of the best ways to get outside of our problem is to get involved in something -- else.

My husband recently gave a word of testimony and stated, "worship and praise God, when you praise the Father  your faith is increased and much is accomplished, when you praise the problem -- you faith decreases. "

Very good words -- 

So, as I begin to finish this project the Lord asked me to write, He has already sought me out to join with an army of women  - A Call to Arms - and pray for the men of our lives and community -- to rise up and be the men God created them to be!

A Call to Arms - is a private Facebook group where we will commit to prayer and fasting on Thursdays for the next 5 months until the feast of Purim.  Read the book of Esther.  

So as I finish this series, the Lord has already given me a focus in another -- getting involved in being the hands and feet of Jesus is a good thing...and it helps us get our focus off our present situation or problems.

IN a dire season, the Lord brought me a group of young women that met with me on Tuesday nights and it was powerful.  It gave me focus to study and prepare and get my mind away from my present season of hurt.

So, for the ladies reading this -- I ask...where can you minister right now?  Seek and Ask God to give you someone to mentor or a ministry to support --  

Psalm 126

A song of ascents.

When the Lord restored the fortunes of[a] Zion,
    we were like those who dreamed.[b]
Our mouths were filled with laughter,
    our tongues with songs of joy.
Then it was said among the nations,
    “The Lord has done great things for them.”
The Lord has done great things for us,
    and we are filled with joy.
Restore our fortunes,[c] Lord,
    like streams in the Negev.
Those who sow with tears
    will reap with songs of joy.
Those who go out weeping,
    carrying seed to sow,

will return with songs of joy,
    carrying sheaves with them.

Lord, for the women reading this blog and for those that have been faithful to believe with me that after these 40 days of prayers are finished....there will be victory and a change in the atmosphere in their present situation.  Lord, I believe -- I believe -- I believe!!  

Lord, I pray that "if" no present change appears - that they will realize there HAS been a change in them and in their circumstance -- it is just not visible as of yet.   Yet.  Lord,  hold them today - help me to finish strong in these postings  - speak Lord speak.  IN Jesus name.  

Prayer #36 - For a Sister in Crisis in Christ. -- Glory

God is always so sweet.

I found a letter I wrote to myself on November 22, 2009.  That day was  a year beyond the death of my nephew.  That year was a 'hard' year.  I had begun to seek some counsel for myself -- as I was beginning to believe that I was crazy.  My  head had categorized that the entire problem within my home was the fact that my husband was in a mid-life crisis and so was I - it just looked different between the two of us and I  will admit - was crying myself to sleep -- probably every night for most of that year and probably all of 2010.  It sucked.  We just existed.  We had been existing for a few years already by this time....and we existed  several months more until -- the skies broke open.

However, today - in finding this prayer God reminded me - HE wins.  

Here is that note.

I crave to leave a legacy of faith to my children, not just works! I crave that they will remember me praying - always choosing what is what God would be happy with.  Lord, love is not a fight - but it is worth fighting for.  Lord, I know you are fighting for me and that should be enough but I wish he would fight for us too.  Maybe he is - but it does not seem like it.  Lord, I am not feeling patience today.  I am feeling sorrow and despair.  Lord, I am trying to serve and be patient while I wait. But.  Lord, I don't even want to run or do anything today.  I am numb.  Lord, I have to forgive him again - don't I?  For what?  But he is not being the husband and father he is to be.   Lord, as I write this - I pray he will walk in and see me and want to read it -- or can I leave this about for him to read.  But..that is me  - manipulating it again.  Lord, help with my unbelief right now. I am trying to serve and worship while I wait - like the song says - but God, I can't anymore.  Lord, I will I will try.... I will try....  It is so hard.  I feel sad and lonely today. Lonely.  Lord, may today be a blessing to my kids and my husband.  Lord, may they each awake refreshed today.  Lord, as my son plays soccer - may the opportunities for a goal come.  Lord, for his teammates, I pray they will be able to score and do their best on the team.  Lord, yesterday you reminded me or told me - I believe you did - that one day, he will be able to say "I love you", once he loves Me.  I want to see him love you.  I want him to love you.  Lord for whatever is clouding his vision to you - be gone!   Lord, I love you.  Lord I love you more than my husband.  Lord, I thank you for ___ and ____ and I NEED this to work out between them.  May their marriage hold tight.  I need this please.  I need to see some good within others...I need to see that when you asked me to pray for them and take them supper -- it was of YOUR calling and YOU used it.  I need that.  Lord for the babies... E___, A____, and for that one -- God each of them need a medical miracle.  Lord I pray for my mentor's heart and her requested miracle.  Lord, I pray for my students.  Lord, I know my name is written in the Lamb's book of life and THAT is enough.  Lord, God you are who you say your are.  You will do what YOU say you will do.  Lord, I am who YOU say I am.  I am blessed, chosen, adopted, accepted, forgiven, and redeemed.  Lord, I can do all things through Christ Jesus - I am believing God as God's word is alive and it is alive in me.  Active - Amen. 


So "today" -- Thursday - October 11th something happened.  I have not been able to blog or post anything since Thursday.  My mom is here and my sister with her 3 girls and I have been in family/entertaining heaven but I would of needed an assistant to get all that I needed to get done, much less this blog.  

However - I prayed for the women on my heart -- that have been faithful to prayer with me for these past 36 days.... and today is Saturday so it is Day #38!  

Anyway -- on Thursday, my husband gave a brief testimony to a group of about 30 women.  There is a calling - A CALL to ARMS is a group of women gathered to intercede for men in their lives and Brendan gave a word to that group in their opening meeting.   I was humbled.  To say I was floored would be wrong, as I had this incredible peace about what he was going to say and how I would react and...then what I would add and it went well.  God spoke.  Brendan spoke words of life back into me.   I believe he also spoke words of HOPE into the women that had gathered -- 

As I reread my prayer/journal entry from 2009, in the middle, it states that I prayed for my husband and wanted him to love and crave God -- 

He does.  Its awesome ....total redemption.  
So, I will add this --
 God's time is perfect. 
Don't give up. 
Believe -- God does heal and restore.  God IS winning!  Amen. 

So for the woman reading this - on prayer #36....I just want you to know - GOD has NOT given up -- and He will restore what the locusts have taken.  Amen.  

- Michelle