Sunday, December 28, 2008

I will because of Who He is.

I hope you all had a blessed Christmas. We sure did. God is good isn't He? Hallelujah.

This morning in church our youth pastor, Isaac spoke and it was an awesome message. He talked about how whenever someone in the Bible said "I will" great things happened.
Life changes occurred.
He taught mostly out of Psalm 56 about David, but also gave other examples of when others chose to say "I will" to God.
Lining up our will with God's will guarantees that amazing things will happen.

This is the second time I've heard this message this week alone. I love when God does that because it just confirms to me that THIS He wants me to get. Grasp this Lelia is what I feel He is saying. So Pastor Isaac had my attention to the fullest this morning.

He talked of how when we face circumstances our response reflects our faith. He talked of how David didn't throw a pity party, but instead said "I will". I will praise you. I will not fear...
I about fell out of my chair when Pastor Isaac said these exact words that were in my study..."Instead of choosing to be bitter, we will choose to be better."

This week my study time by Debbie Williams Taylor,"If God is in Control Then Why Do I Have a Headache" was an incredible journey. I studied more of Ms. Hannah in 1 Samuel, one who chose to say "I will" to God when she gave her long awaited son to God. Listen to this...

May we face the trials and provocations of our spirit in a way that will model to those who are watching the testimony of Hannah. May we model prayer, not self-pity, becoming better, not bitter. May we model dropping to our knees, not dropping out of life. May we model hope, not hopelessness!

Pastor Isaac also talked of when we combine God's way with our faith that a holy explosion occurs. Here's from my study: "The outcome of our faith is proved when we trust God through the difficult times, when things are not going our way."

More from my study:
Perhaps the reason we fall short in our Christian walk is because we do not expect outcomes of our faith. We don expect God to be faithful. When we do have faith, we demand immediate results. Perhaps we can learn from Hannah that the outcome of our faith is not always immediate. The outcome is often hard, but our Heavenly Father is faithful!

So I will begin and hopefully finish out the year of 2009 with saying "Lord Jesus...I will".

May I encourage you to give Him your all.

Your dreams.
Your hopelessness.

Your godly desires.
Your lustful thoughts

Your hopes.
Your fears.

Your hurts.
Your joy.

Your victories.
Your failures.

Your scars.
Your testimony.

Your love.
Your anger.

Your faithfulness.
Your flesh.
Your words.
Your actions.

YOU~give Him you because He wants you and finds you usable to enhance His Kingdom.

I have failed so many times in this area especially when the going gets tough. When the unexpected happens instead of trusting God I look a different direction and cause my King to grieve.
No more.
Seriously, I want to follow God with a faithfulness I have never experienced. A steady faithfulness that doesn't throw up her hands when the light at the end of the tunnel has been blown out by her enemy. My hearts' desire is to keep hold of the nail scarred hand of my Savior even in the darkest of days instead of looking for the nearest flashlight.
Trust. I will.

Let's see what this King of all Kings does with a life that chooses Him. A life that says, I don't want to, but I will God because of Your faithful history recorded between the beginning of Genesis and the end of Revelation.

One that dies to self and says, "Lord Jesus...I will."

I will.

Will you?

~Many Blessings~
Tuesday, January 6th the new YES to GOD study begins.
Please consider joining us.
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Love you much.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


What I will not be getting Gene for Christmas:

Burger King is hoping to be known as more than “The Home of the Whopper.”
This weekend, the fast food chain rolled out “Flame,” a new men’s body spray billed as “the scent of seduction with a hint of flame-broiled meat

~Boston Herald~

Ummm...I don't know about you, but I can't tell you the last time I was seduced by the smell of a hamburger!

What are the BK big wigs thinking??? Even if it is selling for only $3.99!

Here's a review of it from Amanda in Virginia:

I received Flame in the mail two days ago....yesterday I wore it to work for the first time. As a tattoo artist, our tip amounts vary greatly..... but yesterday not one tip was less than $50!!!!! I know it had everything to do with wearing flame....... THANK YOU! :)

Oh sweet Amanda...they were just trying to raise enough money so that you buy a different smell!

How did this come about anyway?

Did some guy go home after working an 8 hour shift at BK, go to bed without showering and his wife called him at work the next day to tell him: "When you get home tonight, don't take a shower because I loved that you smelled like a Whopper!" Did that guy then run into his boss' office and present his idea of a Whopper cologne and now we have FLAME?

I don't know, but I'm guessing by the look on this woman's face who was asked to smell it while dining in a Burger King that this won't be making any top seller's list anytime soon...

My guy loves eating Whoppers, but I can't begin to imagine kissing his neck and him smelling like flame-broiled meat!
I know he'd love it, but Gene honey...don't even ask.
Now, we all have different ideas of what is sexy, so just in case you think your man would smell good smelling like a juicy flame broiled burger, then click here to buy him a bottle of it.
To each his own.
Linda from 2nd Cup of Coffee...I think Jorge would smell mighty good in this! Your dog Zoe will really love him then...probably lick his neck raw!

Now if reading this has made you hungry for a Whopper or Big Mac or whatever else you can order from your car then check this out.

My friend Rachel works with the ministry of Mission Nebraska who stewards several Christian radio stations in Nebraska and can also be heard on the web. I love My Bridge Radio because they play a lot of new worship songs I haven't heard yet. Here's what she shared...

Participate in The Christmas Gift that keeps on Giving!

All you have to do is:

1.) Print a flyer by clicking here .

The flyer will have the radio station's frequency and website address so they can tune in if they live in Nebraska or listen on their computer if you live in another state.

Also on the website it has "The rest of the story"...

We are giving because we have already received....the Gift of Jesus!!!

2.) Go through a drive-thru and pay for the person's order behind you.

3.) As you hand the money to the cashier, also give them the flyer you printed off to give to the driver behind you when the cashier tells them that their debt has already been paid.

I did it this morning...lots of fun to be a blessing - and who knows how God may choose to use this simple little act!!~Rachel.

I've done this before too throughout the year and it is so much fun and like Rachel never know what God is up to! Be used by Him this Christmas season.

Love ya!

~Many Blessings~

I will re-post the poem that was up here before Christmas. Was just too lengthy of a post and wanted to share the above with you instead.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Naughty or Nice

My little girl Alivia has been sick all week and home from school. I wish I had the desire and smarts to home school her, but I'm afraid she'd lose all intellect. So, unless God clearly spells it out for me by sending Moses down to hand deliver a message she will remain in the school system...for her sake.

Anyway, I worked an overnight shift the other night and in the morning after we dropped Aaron off at school Alivia shared with me.

"Oh Mom, last night I slept in your bed and in the middle of the night I woke up and I heard Daddy praying over me."

Life is hard...married or single.
I shared in my last post that I'm doing the Love Dare book from the movie Fireproof right now. I love how in the middle of hardship, God gives me the words of a child touched by her Daddy's desire to be the godly man in her life.
Thank You sweet Jesus.
I so needed to see the side of him that I often ignore because I am focusing on what he my eyes.

On a different note, the other day sweet Alivia asked me out of the blue...

"Mom, have I been good?
This year?"


"Have I been good this year?"

Then it dawned on me...she is wondering if she is on Santa's naughty or nice list.
Great opportunity for me to share with her that no matter what we do God never has a Naughty or Nice list He keeps about us.
For when we ask Him to forgive us, He does just that without holding it over our head in the future.
He forgives us and moves forward hoping we follow His lead.
When we are naughty...He is nice.

Keep focused on Christ as the "holiday" season approaches.

The birth of a King is much to celebrate!

~Many Blessings~

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

As to Lelia...I mean the LORD!

Right now I am currently doing the 6 week Bible study on my own of
If God is in Control,Why do I Have a Headache?
by Debbie Taylor Williams. I'm only on week 2, but I am telling you ladies...powerful.
My life is changing.
It's one of those studies that you can barely wait until tomorrow for and I am excited at the changes God is making in me both spiritually and physically.

I'm also doing the book Love Dare by the directors of the movie Fireproof. I'm being very challenged.
I want God to change my husband Gene, but God's pretty much let me know that I'm the project needing repair right now and to not worry about fixing Gene.
I think He also mumbled something about not needing my help. Ever.
This has been both tough and very neat as I am learning to love Gene God-style. Which means since God doesn't think or act like Lelia, I'm really having to take a close look at myself. Having to humble myself and make the choice to choose change over attitude.

This morning the chapter I read in Love Dare was on loving Gene "As to the Lord". God-style love consists of loving my husband with no conditions put on it which is what I do right now. I love Gene when he interacts with our kids the way I think he should. I love him when he cleans up after himself and I really love him when he chooses to listen to me run my mouth over watching football.

Now don't get me wrong here, Gene and I both have things we needs to work on, but if I choose to focus on Christ and obey what He wants me to do, how He wants me to different will my marriage be?
How different will I be?
How different will my relationship be with God as He sees me trust Him more than myself?
It's hard and often I feel like just giving up and giving in to the plans the enemy has for me, but then I realize that God loves me...imperfections and all. And Gene...imperfections and all I need to love him "As to the Lord".

The night before Thanksgiving I was far from loving "as to the Lord" that one can be. I initiated a fight with Gene and surprisingly he fought back. A fight that left our little bedroom TV broken on the floor.
So godly was I when I picked up the television set and sent it crashing to the floor.

I'm sure Gene awoke the next morning offering thanks for his oh so sweet and not-so-quick-to- anger "gift from God". Truth be told, we hardly spoke Thanksgiving Day and I for sure said no thanks to God for the "thorn in my side".

Oh sweet Love Dare book...the book I tried to not pick up for a few convicting you can be. The words on these pages give me the desire to want to be more like Jesus and if you look at Him he wasn't a

control freak
or a
screaming lunatic
so there is much work to be done in me.

When Jesus got upset with the disciples He didn't throw His sandals at them or stomp away from them. He loved them in spite of their shortcomings.

The other day in If God is in Control, Why Do I Have a Headache? Debbie asked a question that seriously pierced it's way deep through my heart.

God has designed women to be uniquely used for His glory.
Women hold opportunities as
helpmates to husbands and as mothers,
teachers to children,
employees, employers,
and spiritual neighbors to those around us.

Are you on board with God or are you dead weight?

I think when I read that last sentence all breath coming out of me ceased for a moment.

According to an on line dictionary,

dead weight is defined as
The unrelieved weight of a heavy, motionless mass.
An oppressive burden or difficulty.

While the definition of on board is:
Carried or used aboard a vehicle or vessel

In my marriage, with my kids, on my blog, with my family, with my friends, in my church, at I on board with Jesus?

Am I usable to Him or am I a motionless mass?

Am I living a life that says I choose to live this way because I am living..."As to the Lord"?

I want to be on board with my Savior because sooner or later...motionless masses sink.
Guess that means no more throwing of television sets.
Poor least Jesus knew what He was getting into when He chose me.
I tell ya, if it wasn't for the fleshly woman side of'd clearly be able to see my halo.
Know that I love you...

~Many Blessings~

Don't forget...the next YES to GOD Tuesday on line study of

begins right here on Tuesday, January 6, 2009.

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Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Worn boots

Due to our circumstances, I have returned to doing home health care mainly overnights while my husband is recovering from back surgery. I have done this type of work for 17 years and have always loved it.

I work days for my Grandparent's business, then at 11pm spend the night with a client until 7am then come home, get the kids to school and then spend some time with God. I love my mornings with Him and when I don't get that time it really shows throughout my day. There is just something about spending alone time with Him.

This past weekend I was with a client from 3pm until 11pm. Sweet little 87 year old lady that wanted me to help her hang her Christmas decorations. These decorations were so cute...had to be from the 50's to 70's era so you can imagine...lots of tinsel. Anyway, around 4:30 she got very sick and I ended up having to take her to the hospital. When I went to get her shoes from her closet I noticed her husband's work boots next her little black shoes.

I was so touched I think I actually said, "Ohhhhh" out loud.
Her husband has been deceased for 10 years. Some of his clothes hung above the shoes and his hats laid upon the top shelf next to her purses.

For some reason the visual of his worn work boots lined up next to her little tiny black shoes keeps coming to my mind.

Her husband is gone. She can't cook for him, wash his dirty work clothes or touch him, but she can keep him near with something he once wore. Something she won't let go of that means everything to her but nothing to someone else. A sweet reminder of her loved one.

So why can't I shake the boots?

I wonder what he worked on when he wore them.
When he took them off were his feet blistered and sweaty?
Did he build her something beautiful while wearing them?
Did he earn the money to pay for their home, cars and pay the bills wearing those boots?
Did he teach their children something only a father can teach while those boots covered his feet?

The thought that came to my mind is the Bible.

The Bible needs to be to the believer what those boots are to this elderly widow.
Close to us. Something we won't let go of that may mean nothing to someone else, but everything to us. A reminder of our Loved One.

Psalm 119:105
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.

We need to let God's Word lead us in our walk.

The Bible tells us of the Man who wore sandals that John the Baptist said "I am not worthy to untie."

Just like those work boots in her closet 10 years later... his widow knows the story behind the man that wore the boots. She knows when he wore them and why.

The Bible knows the story behind the Man that wore the sandals. The Bible tells us where Jesus walked and why.

The Bible takes us from His welcome in the stable to His exit on Calvary... of His return 3 days later and then of His promise to come back for us.

It tells us much about His walk.

And it tells us how to walk with Him even though He is not with us physically.

The Bible is God's way of teaching His children things only a Father can teach.

I wonder when she sees his worn work boots...
Does she miss the touch of his feet against hers under the sheets at night?
Does she smile at the thought of him taking the boots off for the night?
Does she regret the times he walked into the house with muddy boots and she yelled at him?
Does she ever slip her tiny feet into his big boots?
After 10 years does she still cry that his boots are empty?

When I see my Bible...
I want to touch His feet when I read of the sinful woman washing His feet with her hair.
I smile at the thought of Him taking my burdens from me.
I regret the times I've walked into His house covered in the mud of my without Him is too messy.
I love slipping into His Word.
After many years of being "saved" I sometimes cry at the thought of the tomb being empty.

His boots were dusty and worn. Let your Bible get worn, but not dusty.

We have to be in His Word...everyday.
Keep your Bible close to you.
Memorize it.
Share it. Love it. Desire it.
Let it speak to you.
Let it guide you.

~Many Blessings~

Monday, December 1, 2008

Running the Race

I just started this awesome Bible study by Debbie Taylor Williams called

If God is in Control, Why do I have a Headache?

I've been studying Esther and it has been just incredible. This morning I had to read these verses that Paul penned I imagine with tears splashing down his cheeks...

1 Corinthians 9:24-27

24Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

25 Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training. They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.

26Therefore I do not run like a man running aimlessly; I do not fight like a man beating the air.

27No, I beat my body and make it my slave so that after I have preached to others, I myself will not be disqualified for the prize.

Although this is a passage I've read many times in my life, I read them completely different through this Bible study this morning.
I love watching other people run. Especially the ones that make it look so easy.
I am not one of those people; after 2 minutes on a treadmill, my life flashes before me.
Recently we watched many athletes compete against each other in the Olympics.
They all came from different locations, but all had the same like-minded goal of ending their competition in1st place. Only one person would accomplish becoming a gold medal winner of each race, but each athlete ran with much effort and determination to get that medal.
In verse 24 Paul tells us to do the same thing. only one gets the prize...Run in such a way as to get the prize.

I know so often I just go through life and yet we are instructed to run.
Run as if we are are going to receive that gold medal at the end of our day.

The athletes that earn their way to the Olympics train themselves for days, months and years for that one race. When multi-gold medal winner, swimmer Michael Phelps was getting ready to race the commentators shared his daily training routine. Made me so tired and I was just sitting on the couch watching. His winnings demonstrate the discipline of his training. He is focused. When they showed him on TV, he had earphones on and had a set look of concentration on his face. He wasn't waving to his mom in the bleachers or texting on his cell phone. At the end of the race his
strict training paid off.

In verse 25 Paul again tells us to do the same thing. We need to be focused, we need to go into strict training. So what does strict training look like for a believer?

Determined time alone with God.
Just you and Him.
Reading His Word...memorizing His Word.
Staying focused on Christ takes devotion, dedication and determination.

Then instead of a gold medal put around our neck that will not last, instead we will receive a crown from God that is eternal.

Please take a quick second and watch the beginning of this clip of Phoebe from Friends running in Central Park. If you never watched that show, don't worry there is nothing bad. After the running scene you can click out of it if you wish. The whole thing only lasts a minute.

Paul said: I do not run like a man running aimlessly.
When I choose to sleep in and skip my alone time with God I look just like Phoebe did as I try to survive my day.
Spending time in God's Word is a must and keeps me focused so that I don't find myself running aimlessly on the wide path of life looking like a complete fool.

Verse 27 is what shook me up the most out of all these verses though.
Paul tells us how he beats his body into submission.
His flesh is forced to bow down to Christ.
OH, I love that!!!

I've shared before about an affair I had years ago.
When things get tough between Gene and I, the first thing the enemy tries to do is bring that up and I'll be honest some days it doesn't look half bad.
Some days the temptation is strong sisters!
BUT I have to beat the flesh sinful woman in me to bow down before Christ and not run through life being out of control.
I have to.
I can't write about Christ here on this blog and then go lay down with a man that is not my husband.
I know if I do I will be disqualified from the race and I don't want that.

Recently Olympian winner Marion Jones admitted to lying about using steroids while running and was sentenced to 6 months in prison. This was said about her at her trial:

"The guilty plea in this matter and the circumstances surrounding it have been a very painful and life-changing experience for Marion Jones-Thompson," said the memorandum.
"She has been cast from American hero to national disgrace. This part of her story will forever be one of personal tragedy. To be clear, the public scorn, from a nation that once adored her, and her fall from grace have been severe punishments. She has suffered enormous personal shame, anguish and embarrassment. She has been stripped of her gold medals, her accomplishments, her wealth and her public standing."

When it comes down to the end of my life, I don't want this kind of thing said about me because I chose to make poor daily choices.

Instead I want to hear these words come from my Savior's lips as I am held in His embrace:

"Well done, good and faithful servant".

Your life matters so much.
God has such greatness planned for each of us.
Live each day as the track star of Jesus that you are.
Get into strict training.
Cross the finish line of each day with much grace and with a bowed head.

And when that fleshly sinful woman in you wants to rise up and run the race for you, remind her that Jesus Christ is now your track coach and she needs to step back and bow down before Him.

Don't be like Phoebe from that video and run aimlessly, instead be like Paul and run focused.

~Many Blessings~