Finding Relief

Do you ever find yourself overwhelmed with all the changes going on and all the negative news? Wednesday was one of those days for me, so I sought out a favorite song on YouTube performed by The Martins: “The Promise”. https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=YouTube+The+Martins+singing+%22the+promise%22+song

After that song played, a medley of songs by Mercy Me and other artists came up, one after another. I remember “Holy Water” by We The Kingdom and Tasha Cobbs started and that is a praise and worship song. I must have pressed the +50 button. Some of those spiritual warfare songs rising up got me dancing. The next one was Mercy Me’s “Even If”.

In the Bible in the Psalms somewhere close to Psalm 150, it mentions fighting the adversary of our soul. I believe I learned that singing to Jesus and dancing for Him makes the enemy flee. Lisa Bevere taught many years ago at a Ladies’ Retreat offered by Bethel Full Gospel Church on East Avenue in Rochester, NY. The ladies traveled to Watson Homestead in Coopers Plains, west of Corning, NY. Maybe that’s when I learned it.

The next song may have been “Raise a Hallelujah” by Bethel Music. I remember “Chain Breaker” performed by Zach Williams and “Redeemed” by Big Daddy Weave and “Eye of the Storm” by Ryan Stevenson and “Surrounded (Fight My Battles)” by Michael W. Smith.

Earlier, I was asking God, “What’s the matter with me?”

Were tears brought on by being overtired, not getting the right nutrition, because after all this alone time-meetings starting three to four a week, what was it? Or maybe a combination of it all? Company staying over for days on end, as much as I love the people involved? Reading the book of Job in my daily devotions?

Heart breaking from my country attacking itself from within. Disbanding police is the most ludicrous thing I have ever heard of. Dear God.

After a few songs, a few worshipful dances I began to realize whatever was bothering me was completely gone! Lifted! As long as I’ve been a Christian, there are still times when I don’t recognize spiritual attacks. The enemy of my soul threw salt into wounds. Looking to God, Who is in control-even if I can’t see the way things will work out for people, gives me back my peace and my joy. Repentance and then prayer moves the hand of God!

May God bless you!

Learning From History

I began reading another Bodie and Brock Thoene book this week entitled Second Touch from the A.D. Chronicles series. It was copyrighted in 2004 and published by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, IL in association with the literary agency of Alive Communications, Inc., Colorado Springs, CO.

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Part of the story deals with leprosy and its affect on major characters. I began to cry at one point and then decided to pray for a real situation. A young lady I know posted a prayer request on Facebook. She contracted the Corona Virus and wants prayer for the pain to leave and for her sense of taste and smell to return. So, I did pray and called other pray-ers from our church.

Before writing this post, I checked on the internet. Leprosy does exist in the world, but is treatable by antibiotics. If caught soon enough, there are little to no effects. If not, then there may be damage to skin and nerves, etc. We are blessed not to live in times of hopelessness for this dreadful disease.

I’m enjoying this book, Second Touch. I feel like I’m understanding Scripture better because of the examples of the Jewish and Roman cultures when Jesus was in Israel as a man in His early thirties.

I’ve not read the first book in the A.D. Chronicles series. I’ll have to search for a copy. Do you have a favorite author or two you’d like to name for us?

May God bless you!

All-powerful God and His Truthful Word

Hi! I hope this finds you well and coping in a positive manner during this COVID-19 pandemic.

                   I have to admit, I’ve had a couple of times when I felt panicky for a minute or two, which felt longer since I rarely panic. I immediately turned to activities that decompress stress.

                   One time, my husband was at home, so I told him my fear. He has a calming type of personality and he gave me a hug. Words of assurance accepted, big breath, I regained equilibrium.

                   The second time, he wasn’t home, so I spoke out loud (2 Timothy 1:7, NKJV), “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 

                   The Bible says in (Rom 10:17, NKJV), “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”

                   Speaking God’s Word over whatever I’m dealing with does something in the supernatural realm that I can actually feel in the earthly realm that I’m inhabiting. My anxiety lifted after I spoke 2 Timothy 1:7.

                   When I hear other people’s angst over the phone, I’ll mention something that helped me and God’s perfect peace that passes all understanding envelops me so I don’t take on their distress. I’m able to pray for them or share a Scripture and then rest in God afterwards.

                   My mother-in-law’s favorite Psalm was Psalm 91 and last night I read it out loud, as Marilyn Hickey suggested back in 1986, when I was in the midst of a trial and she was speaking via the radio. This is the gist of what she said, speak Scriptures that pertain to your predicament and see God move according to His Word. The Bible says God can’t lie. If He spoke it through His Word, it comes to pass in the context of the Scriptures.

                   Malachi 3 tells of God scolding the Israelites for stealing from Him by not paying their tithes. He said to prove Him now in this. Give to God’s work and He’ll open the windows of heaven and have man pour into your bosom.

                   Having re-dedicated my life to follow Jesus in the early 1980’s, I read this Scripture and then said, “God, You said to test You in this,” so I put $15.00 in an envelope and then in the mailbox to send to a televangelist. The mailman hadn’t picked up the mail yet when my youngest sister pulled into our driveway. She loved to give gifts to people. She beeped the car horn and called for me to come outside. Her trunk lid was open and a large television set was inside.

                   “Look at this color television set I just won at Sears! I’m giving it to you!”

                   We owned a smaller black and white television set. “Why don’t you keep it for yourself?”

                   “I just bought one and it’s nicer than this one, but only by a little bit. Don’t you want it?”

                   “Sure,” I said. “Thank you!”

                   Then it hit me, Malachi 3 said to give unto God and He would have people give to me! Oh, hallelujah! What a blessing!

                   Over the years, I’ve experienced God’s Word is true. When I worry about health, immediately I pray to thank God for His Word that says, “I am the LORD Who heals you,” (Exodus 15:26c, NKJV).

                   I am practicing safe distances from folks, washing my hands, staying home way too much for an extrovert and actually getting things done that have been weighing me down. I’m also imploring God to let this pandemic disappear as soon as He wants it to, the sooner the better from my perspective.

         Last night, I prayed the “Our Father” as taught by Jesus and found in (Matthew 6:9-13, KJV):  “After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. 

Mat 6:10  Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. 

Mat 6:11  Give us this day our daily bread. 

Mat 6:12  And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. 

Mat 6:13  And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.” 

“God’s will be done and deliver us from evil!”

May God bless you and yours!

The Places You’ll Go

I wrote this in early December of 2019 and never sent it out. I looked for another one I jotted down, but this one caught my eye.

Some of you may know that after a week in Tennessee, driving home on Thanksgiving, that night I packed another suitcase. On Friday, November 29 a friend and her daughter and I headed from rural Upstate, NY to JFK Airport in Queens, NY to go to Paris, France.

Image result for airplane cartoon pictures free
This airplane is from http://clipart-library.com/airplane-images-cartoon.htm
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I hadn’t been on a plane in a number of years. We flew economy because our final destination was a mission in Romania in Eastern Europe.

We walked past a number of rows of roomy seats into a narrowing of numerous mid-sized seats and past a second curtain to the third section of closer-set smaller chairs. Every seat on the plane was filled and the sections held more than two aisles across. We were the last group invited to board and when I finally got situated, an aroma of pretty perfumes mixed with unwashed body odors added to my sensory overload.

I sat quietly waiting for the take-off and felt my heart rate increase. A sense of foreboding washed over my nerves. I turned to my seatmate. “Are you feeling anxious?”

She nodded her head and whispered, “Yes.”

2 Timothy 1:7 says God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and a sound mind. So, I prayed, including that Scripture and we both took a deep breath and settled in for the long flight.

Our first leg of the journey to http://Beliefinmotion.org began and we tried to sleep. My chair reclined some, but not so for one of the seats in our row of three. So that person sat ramrod straight as she wore her black-out eye mask and tried to sleep without much success.

Our nine-hour layover in Paris, France hovered in my sub-conscious mind. We all anticipated a wonderful opportunity to see the famous city of Paris.

My friend quoted Pastor Joel Olsteen a few times over the ten-day excursion, and I hope I’ve got it right: “Oh, the places you’ll go, and the people you’ll see where God takes you!”

May God bless you! If you’d like to pray for me, I’m still awaiting my suitcase from the return trip from Rome. 😊

A Change in Techniques

I just got back from TN tonight. I went down to attend my granddaughter’s wedding, which was simple and relaxing and great! Our family stayed for a few days before and after, so once again I fell behind in blogging.

I decided with all the holidays and trips here and there being scheduled, that I would publish snippets of favorite things.

Here is a poem on a parchment gift from close friends with a matching Scripture:

The Grace of God

will enable you to be

what He made you to be

and do what He has called you

to do.

Then, there’s a pretty feather for effect.

Then, the Scripture:

“The one

who calls you

is faithful and he will do it.”

1 Thessalonians 5:24

May God bless you!

Proverbs by the World’s Wisest Man

King Solomon asked God for wisdom to lead the nation of Israel, way back in the day. God was so pleased that Solomon didn’t ask for things for himself that God said, (in 2 Chronicles 1:11-12 NKJV) which I copied from esword.com:
2Ch 1:11 …”Because this was in your heart, and you have not asked riches or wealth or honor or the life of your enemies, nor have you asked long life—but have asked wisdom and knowledge for yourself, that you may judge My people over whom I have made you king—
2Ch 1:12 wisdom and knowledge are granted to you; and I will give you riches and wealth and honor, such as none of the kings have had who were before you, nor shall any after you have the like.”

When Queen Sheba came to Solomon from Africa with tremendous gifts for King Solomon and with questions, she left having received more than she gave him and it says in 2 Chronicles 9:4 that when she saw all that King Solomon had and how things were set up, “there was no more spirit in her.”

She came to him because she heard of his incredible wisdom, but she underestimated him until she listened to his answers and saw the blessings of God firsthand.

Solomon blessed the people and praised God. ‘The Lord has kept his promise to David and I have built the temple for the Name of the Lord,’ he declared. – Slide 13

https://media.freebibleimages.org/stories/FB_Solomon_Temple/overview-thumbnails/013-solomon-temple.jpg?1538658913

I’ve been reading Proverbs lately, and when I got to Proverbs 15 I thought, I’m going to write these down so I can meditate on these verses and possibly memorize some of them.

I’ve been reading Proverbs for years. It amazes me how many times while reading the Bible that I’ll think sometimes, oh, I’ve already read this, nothing new here.

Then, I’ll read and it’s like I’ve never seen this verse or passage before and ideas will formulate that never occurred to me before. It’s definitely a supernatural book, the best selling book ever printed.

One day, at a hospital waiting for my sister to come out of surgery last year, I read a section in the Old Testament that was hard to read because God was mad about sin. On and on it went about sin and the consequences for His people that lived in ways that violated His commandments. They never intended to repent. The nation was going downhill and families were splitting up and women were destitute because they didn’t have the ability to make money, etc.

So, while reading, this older guy came along and he saw my unsmiling face and made a comment about the Bible and my attitude toward it. And without giving it any thought, I told him the Bible was boring. I got so flustered and he got called away, and I thought, why did I say that?

Not to say that when I’m reading long lists of names of people that I don’t know, that I haven’t had to stifle a yawn. But there’s such a richness to the Word of God, when I think back on that conversation, I wish I hadn’t responded that way. I asked God to forgive me and I prayed for the fellow, because I wasn’t prepared to answer him about God’s wrath.

I heard a sermon in a church I visited on Sunday. Part of the message was to pray to God to be prepared to share the glorious news of salvation. The “Good News” includes the bad news that all are sinners and all need an advocate, a redeemer to make it into heaven. So, I’ll pray again for that elderly man in case he doesn’t know Jesus as his Lord and Savior.

I hope this finds you well. May God bless you!

A Summer with Babysitting

I’m back North for a second stint of babysitting for my four grandchildren. The first day we readjusted to each other-a little testing on their part, me determining how strict to be.

Four Square fun https://www.playworks.org/game-library/4-square-switch-2/

            The last time I was here, in June we played four square with a red rubber ball. If some pushing or other roughhousing kept going on, I’d step in and tell the offender to sit on the porch and count to 120 while they composed themselves.

A few days later, the oldest came running in and said his sister needed to chill and count to 120. The others rushed in to tell their side of the story.

            My daughter quieted them down and said, “Use your words.” They all got a chance to explain.

            Turns out his sister didn’t need to count to 120. I thought, that was handled well!

            Please excuse the bragging on my daughter. I think following the Lord and being a Special Ed teacher helps her in raising her children. I’m back to reading Proverbs again, along with some other Scriptures. Not every day, but there’s so much meat in Proverbs, lots of good advice for relationships, for managing life, for handling money, and getting to know God.

            I hope you’re well. May God bless you!

Privileges and Responsibilities of Being Christian

I’m sitting in a recliner with my feet up because a week and four days ago I went to the foot doctor to have a small biopsy taken off a toe. It hurts and daily there’s been a touch of blood on the bandage, so I decided I’d better take care of it.

To change the subject, I love being a Christian because God answers prayer, besides the benefits of getting to know Him. On Mother’s Day, our church gives each lady a carnation and some of the last of us divided up the leftovers, so I got four. After putting them in a wide-mouthed vase, they looked like they needed more flowers in there. I wanted more but not enough to go to the store, maybe because of my hurting toe.

On Wednesday I went to a place of ministry and the person in charge of it asked a few ladies if we could join her in prayer there. Afterwards, she and I pulled out a book we’re studying every two weeks together. Well, that’s the plan anyway. In an office, I noticed two bouquets of flowers almost out of water, so I suggested she water them. She bought them for two employees and one recently quit without notice. “Want one?” she asked.

“Yes,” I said.

I thought, God gives us the desires of our heart when we follow after Him. That might be in the book of Proverbs.

Also, we’ve been having a lot of rain, which fills half of our basement floor. In the book of James, it says, “You have not because you ask not.”

When we first moved into our place, the basement was dry. I’m not exactly sure what we did, but it changed. So, my husband took on another chore in his already busy schedule because the water is too heavy for me to lift.

With days and days of rain, my heart ached for my husband and I asked God to keep the water out of our basement. Because of His compassion, He did something. Our basement is dry!

I prayed a week or so ago for my husband and I to get away for a break. A couple of days ago, a lady at our church called me. She said she went to get a hair cut and it turned into a God appointment. The hairdresser is Christian and she and her husband have a heart for pastors and missionaries. They open their place in the Southern Tier for a small retreat for a donation. My friend said, “My husband and I want to pay for you to stay there for a couple of days.”

I tell you, that felt great to know they cared and God made a way. My husband is thinking about it and I told the Lord if it falls through, it’s okay. It’s just awesome to see how much He cares.

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=free+picture+of+the+Christian+flag

Our lives are not perfect. My emotions get out of hand at times. Today, I called a friend for prayer because of another sinful decision our Federal Government made in the House of Representatives to favor one small group of Americans to the detriment of a larger majority of others. It’s causing me stress physically as well, which is not helping my toe to heal. So, I’m doing my best to cast my cares upon Him for He cares for me, as paraphrased from (1 Peter 5:7).

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-1-d&q=free+picture+of+the+american+flag

I’m asking God to influence the Senate and the President to keep this bill from becoming a law. I’m reading the Old Testament and I know God punished Israel for all the choices they made which America is making now. Our country is in a spiritual war and it’s heartbreaking. I’m praying Americans will write their Senators in Washington and vote their consciences in the Fall and may God have mercy as He continues to judge our land in an effort to get people to turn to Him for their eternal welfare.

So, I continue to lean into God and continue to learn lessons about the need to depend on Jesus and to rest in His loving arms. I saw a Christian program on YouTube last week and the host said he had a dream. Three times Jesus appeared to him and said, “I am coming soon.”

I clicked to the beginning. The show aired in 2017. Sid Roth loves the Jewish people and he said many in Israel are becoming Messianic Jews. They’ve determined that Jesus fulfilled the many prophecies of the Christ in the Old Testament. To God be the glory, thousands and thousands are coming to faith in other countries around the world.

If you are a born-again Christian in America, living out the faith as best you can, repenting and making amends when you fall, please join me in praying for revival to come to America. Please ask God to soften hearts. I’m asking the Lord to show me what He’s called me for and to strengthen me to fulfill that calling. If you haven’t done that, I hope you’ll do that today.

If you’re not sure if you’re going to heaven when you die, the Bible says in (Romans_10:9 NKJV) that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

May God bless you!

Sad, and then Not

I wrote a blog last week that I hoped readers would find interesting. I also decided to author an article and a sidebar for a magazine I’ve been published in before.

Then, one thing after another grabbed my time. So, on this less hectic day I went to my desk and there’s the manuscripts for the magazine but no tablet with the blog.

I searched high and low, no luck! So, I began another and it didn’t set right, so I put a big X through both sides of the paper.

I try to write things out on a legal pad first. I feel like the words flow with the gel ink and the cursive letters.

A friend of mine suggested we watch a children’s movie from Walt Disney Co. called, “Inside Out,” on a DVD. My husband thought it was a deep topic for children. Maybe it’s because of the last week or so, but it made me feel sad. My youngest daughter stopped by tonight. She said her husband loved it. It shows how important emotions can be and he particularly liked “Joy.”

I did, too. Who wouldn’t? Today I told my husband I felt sad. “How come?” he asked.

Part of it is because I prayed for a young mom to get healed from cancer. I knew she was near death when we began praying for her. “You didn’t even know her,” he said.

That’s true. Things have a way of working out. I recently heard of a man marrying again after his first wife died, and the second wife was more compatible with him than the first. So, one never knows. I’m fully convinced God could have healed her. I’ve seen Him allow miraculous healings over the years. Plus, I’ve weathered blasts to my faith when prayers didn’t get answered with a “Yes” in the past.

Sometimes God says, “No,” and I find out later why. Other times He says, “No,” and I’m left pondering until I acquiesce to His sovereignty and then move onto something else to consider.

I trust God knows best because I’ve seen how gracious and kind He can be. I watched Christian television the day after this lady passed away. He said if a person has a burden from the Lord, it’s almost like being a little depressed over a life or death situation. He’d learned to get away to a quiet place and to pray until the heaviness of spirit lifted. Then, the ill person would recover or God would take them home to heaven having accomplished what He wanted done through the prayers.

I did feel that “heaviness” on Monday before she died, but I didn’t know about the “burden” praying or didn’t remember having heard it. My husband said, “How do you know that preacher is correct?”

“I don’t know,” I told him. “I just remember how I felt on Monday and it lifted by evening time.”

By then, she was already gone. My friend went to see her a week or so before she passed away. They talked about salvation and she prayed to receive Jesus as Lord and Savior. That takes the sting out of death!

I don’t feel sad very often and, when I do, something happens and the melancholy state of mind lifts. For that and many other blessings, I say, “Thank You, Jesus!”

Spring is finally coming our way and the robins appear much fatter than normal to me this year. I watched one suck a long earthworm out of the ground one morning. In all my years, I’ve never seen that before.

http://allaboutbirds.org

God says His eye is on the sparrow and if He takes care of the birds and the lilies of the field in all their glory, how much more will He take care of you and me as we follow Him and endeavor to be righteous as He asks us to? That’s a rough and short paraphrase of Matthew 6:25-34.

May God bless you!

Remembering When

A few weeks ago, I drove north to spend a week at my daughter’s house because her kids had the flu. Whenever I told others I couldn’t fulfill my ordinary responsibilities and told them we’d have to cancel or ask them to fill in for me, when I said, “The kids have the flu,” these words came to mind: “but it’s sure nice talking to you Dad, I know we’ll get together soon, Dad. I’m sure we’ll have a good time, then.”

That’s how I remember the words to the Harry Chapin song, “Cat’s in the Cradle,” from a concert I heard many years ago at college.

That song reminds me of a verse from the Old Testament and one from the New Testament in the New King James Version of the Bible:

Malachi 4:6  And he will turn The hearts of the fathers to the children, And the hearts of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and strike the earth with a curse.

Luke 1:17  He will also go before Him in the spirit and power of Elijah, ‘TO TURN THE HEARTS OF THE FATHERS TO THE CHILDREN,’ and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.”

I hope this finds you well. May God bless you.