I Thought You Were Cleaning Today?

Colossians 3:23, (NKJV), “Whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the LORD and not to men,” is my focus this week.


I’ve come to realize something that I didn’t easily embrace today. When you schedule cleaning and tell your spouse, when he needs to shop near the mall and that entails a nice long drive together and usually lunch at a restaurant, the cleaning overrides the outing.


When I asked if he could wait for me after Bible study and a quick oil change, his response-“I thought you were cleaning today.”


“Yes, I am.”

Image result for lady cleaning house pictureshttp://www.dreamhomecleaners.info/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/Cleaning-Lady.png


I remember meeting people for a meal after a meeting and one of the attendees, an organized gal, didn’t show up. I kept watching the door for her and finally she arrived just in time to place her order before the waitress left. “Where were you?” I asked.


“My car got filthy so I ran it through the car wash.”


I remember being surprised. She lives in a rural area with the nearest car wash twenty minutes away. Her house sets back from an unfinished road that gets stones applied when the town gets around to it. So, I understood but at the time it wouldn’t have occurred to me to take advantage of the gap in time.


Other times, I’ve invited her to go places with only a little forewarning and she sticks to her agenda no matter how enticing the opportunity. She keeps the results of her plans in mind and carries through.


When my youngest sister asked me to go to a play with her, years ago, her treat, I’d hesitate. She’d get frustrated when I’d say, “I’m not sure if I can make it.
Back then, I didn’t have a planner. I was aware of responsibilities hanging over my head that she didn’t understand. She was single. I needed to consider my husband’s and my kids’ schedules as well as my own.


“Just make a decision!”


So, with no chance to check with others, I missed more than one off-Broadway plays with her.


I like getting more organized, but it’s a shift in thoughts and actions. I watch YouTube videos with organizing tips on them and one night I said, “Enough!”


I looked over at my husband and his eyes were glazed over, poor guy.


Monday morning, I asked him a question about one of the organizers’ suggestions and he said, “I don’t want to talk about it, just do what you’re going to do.”


Later, I gave him more details and he said, “Don’t paint during the cold weather season, you hate the smell of paint.”


I know that about paint fumes, I just thought if we closed the door and avoided the room for a while, it wouldn’t be too bad.


Timing in communication in marriage is everything some days. Proverbs 25:11, (KJV), says, “A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.”


I’m spending 15 minutes or more this week on one room that got messy and the organizer said to do it up nice as you de-clutter. That’s what got me thinking of painting one of the next rooms on my list. Every room has some clutter, but the one I’m working on got away from me. I plan to finish it by Saturday and the finishing touch will be to make curtains from fabric I bought in the past.


May God bless you!


The Book of Jeremiah


A few months after the beginning of January, 2017 I decided to start reading the Bible through from start to finish. In the Old Testament, I’m only in the book of Jeremiah. I wouldn’t want to be a false prophet. God’s anger seethed against them and they either got imprisoned or they ended up dying before the end of the year.


Some years ago, I had a next-door neighbor. She never wanted to be on a jury because she could always feel sorry for the law-breaker, no matter what she or he did. I think she thought God doesn’t get mad, either. In Jeremiah, he prophesies by saying, “Thus says the Lord God Almighty,…”


Jeremiah 28:11, (NKJV)  And Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, “Thus says the LORD: ‘Even so I will break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations within the space of two full years.’ ” And the prophet Jeremiah went his way.

Jer 28:12  Now the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah, after Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from the neck of the prophet Jeremiah, saying,

Jer 28:13  “Go and tell Hananiah, saying, ‘Thus says the LORD: “You have broken the yokes of wood, but you have made in their place yokes of iron.”

Jer 28:14  For thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: “I have put a yoke of iron on the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and they shall serve him. I have given him the beasts of the field also.” ‘ ”

Jer 28:15  Then the prophet Jeremiah said to Hananiah the prophet, “Hear now, Hananiah, the LORD has not sent you, but you make this people trust in a lie.

Jer 28:16  Therefore thus says the LORD: ‘Behold, I will cast you from the face of the earth. This year you shall die, because you have taught rebellion against the LORD.’ ”

Jer 28:17  So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month.


God allowed the Babylonians to capture the Israelite’s, both North and South kingdoms-Israel and Judah, and take most of them to Babylon. The ones that stayed behind, God told them they’d be devoured by the sword, famine and pestilence, in Jeremiah 21:9.


It concerns me when I read Jeremiah because one of the sins the Israelite’s committed was to follow and worship Baal, the god also known as Satan. They threw their babies into the fire as an offering to Baal. We in America have killed over 63 million babies. God says He is the same yesterday, today and forever. Surely, He’s furious with us as a nation. I don’t even know how to pray for our country, other than for revival and repentance. Even after the Israelite’s repented over the years, they seemed to go through cycles and when they chose sin over God, He eventually sent punishment. He’s merciful, but after a while, He says, “Enough is enough!”


That is the benefit of reading the Bible through from cover to cover. We can see the character of God and His behaviors. He is loving and kind and compassionate and gives us undeserved grace, but after we’ve wallowed in sin for a long time, and ignored His Word and His prophets, He usually sends severe weather, famine, plagues, etc. Mostly to get our attention so we’ll cry out to Him, but as in Jeremiah, even our most merciful and loving God says, “You’ve gone too far. What kind of a loving parent would I be if I didn’t discipline you and try to turn you around?”


Some people resent the authority of God. Some want to serve Satan. If they studied those who allowed Satan to be their god, they would see that many end up committing suicide. Satan is dark and hateful and wants the glory that belongs to God, so he deceives multitudes of people. I see young people wearing a tattoo around their wrist. I asked one, “What does your tat represent?”


“It’s my pledge, I belong to Satan.”


A friend and I talked to him and found out his heritage is Jewish. I said, “You are one of God’s chosen people, why would you bow down to Satan?”


I then told him many of the things God had done for me over the years. One is: I’ve never been hungry a day in my life unless I chose to fast.


His mouth dropped open. “You’ve never been hungry?”


My dad was a hard worker and a good provider. If he couldn’t work in his home town, he drove an hour or two to another city to work until he could be gainfully employed at home again.


My mom stayed home with us and sewed clothes, canned fresh produce, baked and cooked for us all, cleaned the house, nursed our wounds, and helped us with homework. She welcomed our friends with open arms, taught us about Jesus, and listened to us when we needed to talk. She wasn’t perfect, nobody is perfect, but I’ve found Jesus to be faithful to me even when I messed up. She would agree, based on 1 John 1:9. If we confess our sins, God forgives us and cleans us up.


I hope that young man reconsidered his allegiance to Satan. From all that Jesus spoke about hell, I wouldn’t wish that place on anyone.


May God bless you. He came to give life and that abundantly, according to John 10:10.




Thanksgiving Wishes

Hi! If you celebrated Thanksgiving, I hope you were able to enjoy family and/or friends, food, and able to give at least one blessing you’re grateful for this November.




As we sat around a large rectangular table borrowed from the church, I looked at each individual adult and child and love filled my heart and mind.


As our middle grandson said our Thanksgiving prayer, I savored his quick acceptance to the question, “Who wants to pray before the meal?”


The adults and other children quickly agreed to his response and bowed their heads. It was short and to the point and it moved this grandmother’s heart.


Psalm 37:3  Trust in the LORD, and do good; Dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.

Psa 37:4  Delight yourself also in the LORD, And He shall give you the desires of your heart.

Psa 37:25  I have been young, and now am old; Yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken, Nor his descendants begging bread. (NKJV)


May God bless you!



Hearing the Voice of the Holy Spirit

https://www.amazon.com/Obeying-Voice-God- -Journey/dp/0977854515

The author of Obeying the Voice of God, (as told to Donnie MacDonald), Jack MacDonald came to visit our church with his wife earlier this year, if I remember the time correctly. The book was published by Borrego Publishing* from the US. It was copyrighted in 2008. At the top of the cover over the title of the book, it says, “The Voice of the Holy Spirit still speaks today if one listens…”


Jack MacDonald asked my husband if he could address the congregation and received permission, so he shared some of his testimony. He’s a dynamic speaker.


My husband read 275 pages of “Jack MacDonald’s Journey” before I felt easy to ask if I could read it. He marked his page and told me to go ahead. I don’t always finish books that I own because library books have due dates and I usually have one or two of them I’m working on. I picked up Jack’s book over the weekend and the remaining chapters flew.


I’ve never been in the service, I’ve never hunted, or visited Montana or Alaska, or built a home. Yet, I’ve experienced the refreshing presence of the Holy Spirit and seen God heal people.


Donnie MacDonald showed the adventurous hunting trips, the family love and respect for each other, the peril of being in the Vietnam War and other anecdotes with clarity and with skill so I grew concerned for those in the various situations.


The book left me hungering for more of the Holy Spirit, for more time in the Word, for other spiritual disciplines and for more spiritual gifts from God.


Jack and Donnie MacDonald also influenced me to think about what gifting’s God has already bestowed on me and to ponder how well I’m putting them to use.


What would this world look like if every Christian moved in their gifting’s, obeyed God to love others more than themselves, to tithe and to plug into a body of believers with an outlook to bless people?

Add to the above the ability to hear the Holy Spirit’s still, small voice directing the Christian in specifics and we would live in a radically different world.


Once, I kept getting ideas to turn the other way or to stop at that person’s house. I argued the reasoning away. I was a new Christian, so I didn’t realize it was God. My oldest daughter got bit by a dog and afterwards I struggled with a fear of canines and the need to forgive the owners. I eventually got to the right place, but it was a battle I could have avoided.


Anyway, Obeying the Voice of God can impact your life if you’re willing to take the opportunity to explore.


May God bless you.


*www.barregopublishing.com now sells sneakers at their website and not books.


Marriage Tips


I’ve noticed older couples with good marriages get along, for the most part, because they’ve hashed things out over the years. Either there’s been improvement or the other person decided it wasn’t important enough to argue about anymore.

As Christians, we’re told to love others as we love ourselves, so if we decide to do that, we’ll study our mate and try to do things we know that they really enjoy. I’ve done that here and there over the years, but lately I’m aware of some things that are not that difficult that I could have been doing and just didn’t, for whatever reason. I’m also more cognizant of nice things that my husband does for me and I’m trying to say thank you when I see it.

Plus, he changes over time, as I do, so the benefits of the new behaviors are a plus to our relationship. All of his life as an adult, he’s been in leadership and sometimes he just wants to do relaxing stuff. So, he started watching chefs and learned cooking techniques from programs available on television or online.

Image result for iron chef photos free

(photo from: https://www.scoopnest.com/s/Brooklyn%20Daddy%20Iron%20Chef/)

If I’m preparing a meal and feeling the crunch of time, I’ll ask him to dice the onions and he’ll show me a way that is safe with the sharp knife and he keeps the rooted end in place for ease of cutting. The next thing I know, he’s asking if I need anything else chopped or sliced. If he hated that kind of thing, I wouldn’t ask unless I felt absolutely desperate, and then he’d have the right to refuse.

I heard Focus on the Family yesterday on the radio. I caught the tail end of the program on marriage and they showcased the next day’s program with a quote. A lady said, “I started looking for the good things that he does.”


I hope I’ll take the chance to hear the program online, they both sounded good. I hope this finds you well. Do you have any marriage tips that you can share with a family-friendly audience?

May God bless you!

What About Prejudice?

(photo from https://www.amazon.co.uk/Smoky-Night-Eve-Bunting/dp/0152018840)

When my husband preached on Matthew 15: 21-28 from the New Testament of the Bible this last Sunday morning on the desperate Canaanite mother with her demonized daughter, he made a comment that grabbed my attention.

“Prejudices are inherent, we all have them. We need to recognize them and fight them until they are gone.”

I like to read children’s easy reader books by Eve Bunting. One of her tomes placed a Hispanic boy in a big city with his mom. A local grocery store owner from an Asian country had a fat growly cat. The lady yelled at the children in the neighborhood, the cat hissed at them.

When their tall building caught on fire it changed all of their lives.

Such a great story: Smoky Night by Eve Bunting and illustrated by David Diaz, portrays people in a powerful way without preaching about their attitudes or circumstances.

This award-winning book was published by Voyager Books, San Diego; New York, NY; and London, and copyrighted in 1994.

I hope you are well. May God bless you.

Healthy Habits


I read Jeremiah 1:4, “Then the word of the LORD came to me, saying:
Jer 1:5 ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.’” (NKJV)

It strikes me that God has a purpose for every one of us, and for those who call Him Lord and Savior, He says in 1Corinthians 6:19 “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own?
1Cor. 6:20 “For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (NKJV)

The previous verses talk about sin and in this case, are saying people in Christ should not be sexually immoral.

In Proverbs 23:15, (NKJV), King Solomon says, “My son, if your heart is wise, My heart will rejoice—indeed, I myself;
Pro 23:16 Yes, my inmost being will rejoice When your lips speak right things.
Pro 23:17 Do not let your heart envy sinners, But be zealous for the fear of the LORD all the day;
Pro 23:18 For surely there is a hereafter, And your hope will not be cut off.
Pro 23:19 Hear, my son, and be wise; And guide your heart in the way.
Pro 23:20 Do not mix with winebibbers, Or with gluttonous eaters of meat;
Pro 23:21 For the drunkard and the glutton will come to poverty, And drowsiness will clothe a man with rags.”

I know these verses and in my mind, I want to eat healthy and stop eating when I’m full. I also think about exercising regularly, it’s a good thing.

I have developed some good habits: when craving sweets, I’ll grab a fruit instead of dessert. I park the car far from the store when feasible; when grocery shopping, avoid the sweets aisle or if it’s not possible, avert glance away from the cookies, etc.; walk the stairs instead of using the elevator; eat less fatty foods, substitute lean choices and choose spices for added flavor.

I’ve been spending more time preparing healthier foods lately, but I keep missing organized exercise classes our town offers for free.

Since the food preparation has improved, I may be ready to begin the exercising within the next couple of days.

My brain acknowledges the truth of the Scripture that this body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and therefore it is not my own. It hasn’t made it to my heart, even after all these years of following Jesus and knowing that He bought me with the price of His sacrificial death.

I accepted His free gift of salvation and told Him I wanted to belong to Him.

My doctor doesn’t tell me I need to lose weight, I’m just aware of the stealthy creeping in of eating unhealthily and the numbers on the scale going up.

So, I’ve been cutting back and making wiser choices but it’s not always easy.

Oven-baked root vegetables tasted good to me tonight. My husband thought they were too sweet and with a tiny amount of spice the taste of vegetables predominated. We’re experimenting with new recipes lately. Winter weather hit our region; it was a pleasure to set the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit for over an hour.

Are you considering your health? Do you sneak in exercise or resist potato chips in a way that can be copied for good health? I’d like to hear from you.

May God bless you!

Are We All Connected?

Sunday was my day to play guitar and worship the Lord at morning service, at a nursing home church meeting at 2:00 p.m., and again at night for the gathering of the saints.

One of our pastors has a great grandchild two years old. She has grandchildren in their teens and one who just turned twenty or twenty-one. When she came into our building in the evening, she told us about the shooting in East Texas at a small church. We cried for the victims and their families and for the man wielding the weapon who is no longer alive.

I had chosen a song about the goodness of the Father. God is good even when evil spouts its ugliness unexpectedly.

We sang, “I’ll Fly Away,” written by Albert Brumley in 1929 and recorded by Johnny Cash in 2003 according to this YouTube link to the song sung by Johnny Cash: https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Ash+June+Carter+%26+Johnny+Cash+I%27ll+Fly+Away&&view=detail&mid=3ADF54C81EE47C9FC9E73ADF54C81EE47C9FC9E7&rvsmid=BFA57F1FFF1EF618A692BFA57F1FFF1EF618A692&FORM=VDRVRV. That was near the end of our song service and I think it brought comfort.

I spoke to the crowd about God knowing all and having a plan for our lives. He alone can turn a tragedy into something good, but it may take years for the good to manifest or months. Right now, it causes tears and questions and anger and all the different steps that people go through when they’re grieving.

So, we prayed for the families of everyone involved.

Our hearts are heavy. One of the ladies at our church got into such a slump she had to grab hold of her emotions this morning and force herself outside of the house. So, she came to our church and started working the garden and pulling weeds. She got to express her emotions to my husband and then later to me.

It wasn’t part of my agenda to stop and listen, I had an appointment elsewhere. I don’t know how to say to someone, “Not now,” when it’s of that magnitude.

I listened and then texted the person I was about to see that I got detained. They didn’t get the message and greeted me with an exasperated tone, “I was just about to call you!”
The minute I explained, they softened and they felt bad for the folks in Texas as well.

We humans have a capacity for compassion and the ability to “walk in another’s moccasins,” if we so choose. I used to hear a quote my parents told me was wisdom from the American Indian nations about not really knowing someone until you’ve walked in their moccasins.

I think anyone who has lost a loved one, and especially as a result of violence, will be able to empathize with the people in that small Texas town. “Holy Spirit, Comforter, please be with all mourning the lost lives of the people, especially for the deceased members’ families and for their friends and acquaintances. We need your help to cope and to heal and to forgive. I ask in Jesus’ mighty name, Amen.”

God of All Comfort is the heading in this section of the New King James Version of the Bible:
2Corinthians 1:3  “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort,
2Co 1:4  who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.”

In my opinion, we share a connection with people all over the world. May God bless us all.



Millie Keith




Probably a month or more ago, I read the first book in the Life of Faith: Millie Keith Series, copyright 2001 entitled, Millie’s Unsettled Season. Kerston R. Hamilton updated them and added more Scripture to the originals which were written by Martha Finley in 1876, just 11 years after the Civil War ended in America.

Millie is thirteen years old in the second book, Millie’s Courageous Days which is also copyrighted in 2001, and is published by Mission City Press, Inc., Franklin, TN.

There’s a marriage in the book which prompts Millie to ask her father how one knows that they are in love. He tells her to let him think on it overnight and to pray for wisdom for such an important question.

The next day he talks about 1 Corinthians 13. On page 91 her dad says, “Being in love, the kind of love that will last a lifetime, starts right here, in 1 Corinthians 13:4. ‘Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.’ If your feelings and your actions cannot stand up to these verses, then how could you be in love?”

In the book, one question led to another because as the heroine points out, these verses tell all Christians what love looks like. I’ve heard these Scriptures repeated at many marriages over the years. They are a target worth aiming for, and as we try to hit the mark we can’t help but reach a number of those worthwhile actions and attitudes. Some attributes I’ve struggled with and now, I can honestly say, I don’t have a problem with them by the grace of God. Others are still a work in progress.

I hope you are well this fine time of the year.

May God bless you!

Know Thyself, Know Others

(photo from: https://www.christianbook.com/organizing-management-techniques-that-will-work/sandra-felton/9780800733155/pd/733155?product_redirect=1&Ntt=733155&item_code=&Ntk=keywords&event=ESRCP )

Our church hosts an organizing class once a week and today we only had an hour to meet, so I brought my computer and we watched Sandra Felton on YouTube, a minute or two for each episode.

The attendee took notes on the ideas that were new to her. I showed her one chapter from the e-book from our library which is still downloaded on my computer: Organizing Your Day: Time Management Techniques That Will Work for You. It’s published by Revell, Grand Rapids, MI. The e-book written by Sandra Felton and Marsha Sims, was created in 2011 and copyrighted in 2009. Then the lady jotted down the information so she could get it for herself. I don’t know if she’ll have to wait for me to finish it or if they have more than one copy.

Occasionally, I end up wanting to own a library book and purchase it. One advantage of an e-book, it doesn’t take up shelf space.

My granddaughter in her twenties prefers a paper book over an e-book. I don’t know if that’s the norm for people in her age group or not.

I’ve been reading the book of Isaiah and should have finished it by now, but I didn’t mark my place, so I re-read some of the chapters in the 50’s section. I felt as if I hadn’t read them before and seemed to glean more the second time. The Old Testament gives us examples of people’s lives and God’s interactions with them. I feel as if I know God better after reading His reactions to the Israeli’s and the other cultures.

In addition, while on vacation lately, I tried to listen to my family along with my talking to them because as they experience life, it’s interesting to hear their ideas and to get to know them better, as well.

When I gather with the ladies for our organizing class and we share our struggles and our triumphs, not only do we enrich each other’s lives, but we get to know ourselves better. We try to figure out why we do things the way we do. I said a few times, as we listened to Sandra Felton, the Organizer Lady, “she understands.”

She tends to offer encouraging comments like, “I used to be unorganized but I’ve learned organizing strategies that allowed me to change. You can change, too.”

She may have said that disorganized people tend to have a lot of interests and they are creative and intelligent. She might have said they are extremely intelligent, borderline geniuses-oh, that might have been my imagination.

Lead on, Organizer Lady, Sandra Felton and her co-writer, Marsha Sims.

I appreciate their vulnerability as they share their stories and their compassion for like-minded people struggling with disorganization. After my husband read part of my copy of her book, The Messies Manual, published back in 1983, it helped him understand me better, which helped our marriage.

Thank You, Jesus.

I noticed online that there’s a new version of The Messies Manual out now.

May God bless you.