Thursday, November 27, 2014


Psalm 150 is a beautiful expression and reminder to us that the Holy Scriptures contain the formula for our total and ultimate fulfillment in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Praise the LORD!
     Praise God in His sanctuary;
     Praise Him in His mighty expanse.
     Praise Him for His mighty deeds;
     Praise Him according to His excellent

     Praise Him with trumpet sound;
     Praise Him with harp and lyre.
     Praise Him with timbrel and dancing;
     Praise Him with stringed instruments
        and pipe.
     Praise Him with loud cymbals;
     Praise Him with resounding cymbals.
     Let everything that has breath praise
         the LORD.
     Praise the LORD!

This Scripture teaches us such an amazing lesson in praising the Lord!

It teaches us where to praise, why we're to praise, how we're to praise, and who should offer praise.

We are to praise Him in the "sanctuary."
We are to praise Him for the wonderful blessings He bestows on us.
We are to praise Him for "Who He is." His awesomeness, His power and "great excellence."
We are to praise Him as our "Father Elohim" our all-powerful "Creator."
We are to praise Him "loudly", "tenderly","eagerly","graciously", "fearlessly."
We can praise Him in so many different ways, wherever we are!

Who should praise Him? (v.6) says, "Everything that has breath"! That clearly means the rich and poor, the young and old, the white and the black, the sick and whole, the weak and strong. Every living creature on the face of the earth!

God is the "breath of life", let's confess it, believe it and acknowledge His strength and vastness!

Thank You, Heavenly Father!

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Thursday, October 16, 2014


                                   In Loving Memory,
                                                           October 15, 2014

Our friend Kimm from (Reinvented) just shared that their beloved pet Archie, passed away sometime last night. The family woke up this morning to find Archie resting peacefully. Here is a pic of Archie. At some time or another, we've all experienced the loss of a loved one, whether a human relative, a friend, or a pet.

Their not "just" pets. Their family, our children, and they come to fill a deep, deep part in our hearts. We enjoy the laughter they bring into our lives, and we worry when their sick, or not their usual playful selves. We love just as much as they do just hanging out cuddling on the couch, and rubbing their tummies. As time goes by, we seek their companionship and unconditional love.

So here's to you,  Archie...  Thank you for the beautiful memories! You will always live in our hearts!

Your time on earth has reached an end
Our home will never be the same
For memories of you greeting me
Will always linger and remain.
Your napping spot, your feeding bowl
Your toys are still scattered
Your life on earth as my best friend
Tells the world how much you mattered.
And now my dear beloved pet
One last command I send
Please wait for me in heaven
As my eternal friend.

(Poem by Theresa K. Hardy)  I Loved You Best

Thursday, October 9, 2014

My Vegan Corner

I know it's been awhile since I posted anything remotely close to food, but life happens! Although I have been extremely busy, I always find time for the best of the best... Jesus! He has been busy advising me into taking more time alone with Him. And so I have agreed to obey! I have claimed a nice little spot in my backyard under this great, old, massive oak tree, and have made it my place of "worship." As I continue to press on with my quiet time, the Holy Spirit has been instructing me on my eating habits, and steering me towards a more raw diet.

In the midst of my quiet time the Lord has been teaching me more about "His flow" and instructing me on less participation of the "worlds flow". It was during this time that I discovered the awesome vegan website Angela is such a gifted blogger, and an amazing vegan cook. She and her husband are both vegans, and she incorporates an incredible selection of raw foods. While her recipes are incredibly delicious, they're simple, filling and very easy to make. Some recipes can be prepared ahead of time, freeze them, and pull them out when you need them.

This was my breakfast today, after my workout at the gym. If you an an early morning eater then by all means you can certainly have this even before your workout, I chose to have it after because I am not an early morning eater. First thing in the morning I make myself a Green smoothie, and an hour later a cup of either Green tea, or Camomile tea.

Note: For energy and strength, remember to eat some protein and some carbs before your workout. Nick English wrote a great article about the "12 Complete Vegetarian Proteins."

Go to www. to read up on the variety of proteins we can all benefit from.

Although this here is somewhat my creation, I did get to use some of the dinner leftovers from Angela's recipe for the Ultimate Green Taco Wraps with Lentil-Walnut Taco Meat. What an amazing dish!

This deliciousness consists of:

1 slice of toasted Ezequiel bread.
3 Tbsp of the Lentil-Walnut Taco Meat (vegan + Gluten-Free from Oh She Glows).
A generous helping of the sauteed red, green peppers & onions.
Avocado slices (as many as you can fit on the slice of Ezequiel bread).
A sprinkle of some Hemp seeds, Chia seeds, and ground Flax seeds.
1 Tbsp (or two) of Angela's Homemade Vegan Sour Cream. YUM!
Fresh fruit of your choice.

Because all the fruit I had at hand was a couple of bananas and a bowlful of grapes, I chose the grapes simply because I really didn't want anything sweet to take my taste buds away form the savoriness of the Lentil-Walnut Taco Meat. But you can have whatever fruit you have at hand, or skip the fruit all together if you prefer.

I wasn't too sure what to call this, and after much thought I decided to call this creation, My Vegan Deliciousness!

My beverage was a delicious and refreshing concoction of:

8 oz of bottled water
2 Tbsp of 100% Organic Maple Syrup Grade A
A dash or pinch of Cayenne pepper
2 Tbsp of freshly squeezed lemon juice

I also use this concoction when I am detoxifying in conjunction with a colon cleanser from WholeFoods. This is something I do once every 3 to 4 months, just to keep my "pipes" clean and healthy.

So there you have it my friends... a delicious after workout vegan breakfast! Simple, filling, healthy, easy and yummy!

Now you all can head over to Oh She Glows, and checkout what Angela's up to. I guarantee you she's up to something really good! Have fun!


In His grace,

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Scripture of the Day

Lord, Lead us Safely

"In You Lord, I take refuge...
   You are my rock and my
fortress; for Your name's sake
        lead and guide me."
               Psalm 31:2,4

                                                             Shepherd, Lead Us

                                                   We can go through life each day,
                                                        Deciding whom to trust...
                                                    Or we can lift our hearts to God
                                                       And let Him choose for us.

                                                       It's a matter of perception
                                                      And knowing how to pray...
                                                      God will never let us down
                                                        Or lead His sheep astray.

                                                      The road that's set before us
                                                     Is sometimes less than straight...
                                                     But God will guide us every day;
                                                      He knows which path to take.

                                                     A sheep can trust the Shepherd
                                                       To lead His flock to grace...
                                                         He's with us in this place.

                                                          Poem by Jill Lemming

"Making My Life Something Beautiful For God"

In His Grace,

~ My Books ~

Friday, September 26, 2014

Scripture of The Day

             More of Him,
              Less of Me 

"More than that, I count all things to be
loss in view of the surpassing value of
knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I
have suffered the loss of all things, and
count them but rubbish in order that I may
gain Christ."

Lord, thank You for reminding me of the value of knowing You more intimately. Help me to keep myself out of the way as I pursue a deeper walk with You. Amen

Do the choices you make in life bring glory and honor to God or to yourself?

Think about that!                                           

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Literary Works...Near and Far

                                                 Sweet Assurance
                                                                    Life is like a storybook;
                                                                  Each day a page unfolds.
                                                               We never know beforehand
                                                                  What scenarios it holds.
                                                               But whatever be the drama,
                                                           Filled with bounty or with tares,
                                                            There's comfort and assurance
                                                             That our Father always cares,

                                                    Poem written by Virginia Borman Grimmer

I trust in Your faithfulness. Grant
my heart joy in Your help, that I
may sing of the Lord, "How good
our God has been to me!"
Psalm 13:6

Blessed Be The Name Of The Lord!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Fall Season

                                         Country Fall Bliss
A lively crowd of people assembled
Oh, the taste of authentic food
All determined to win at the humorous games
While the skillful pumpkin carves begin.

Vivacious high spirited characters
A fanciful hayride to be shared
Pretty colored balloons displayed
Talented musicians
Lively bonfire created
Lovely music in my ears.

Innocent laughter everywhere
The loud roar of a farm tractor 
Self-initiated jolly conversation
Sweet, soft and fluffy cotton candy
Juicy plump hot dogs on a stick
Shiny and crunchy red candy apples
Tasty and salty popcorn to eat.

They served hot spiced cider
Decadent chocolate chip cookies teasing my taste buds
Bubbling pies shaped like stars
Brimming casseroles of hearty stew
And buttery corn served warm
The mouthwatering aroma of BBQ.

The sweet smells of spices wafting through the air
My senses sensitive to the baked goods
Soft and meek animals to pet
Warm and cheerful hugs
Strong and friendly handshakes.

Poem written by Yolanda Acevedo

Dr. James Dobson's Family Talk
The Set-Apart Woman

Monday, September 8, 2014


The Harvest Moon is the full moon closest to the autumnal equinox. This occurs when the moon is in opposition to the sun.

It is expected to reach it's full phase at 9:38 pm ET tonight, Sept 8-9.

"The Harvest Moon", a circa 1833 oil painting by Samuel Palmer. Closely spaced moonrises meant extra light to bring in the crops in the days before electric lighting.

Around the time of Harvest Moon, the full moon's path is tilted at a shallow angle to the eastern horizon making with successive moonrises only about a half hour apart instead of the usual 50 minutes. Source: Stellarium

The creation of the moon is recounted in Genesis 1:14-19. The Scriptures doest not tell us how God made the sun, moon, and the stars, but it does tell us why He made them.

Their purpose is strictly geocentric:

1.  to divide day from night
2.  for signs
3.  for seasons
4.  for days
5.  for years
6.  to give light upon the earth
7.  to rule over day (the sun) and night (the moon)
8.  the sun moon were made to praise the LORD

Psalm 104:19, "He made the moon for the seasons. The sun knows the place of it's setting."

Conclusively, creation is to be observed and acknowledged in awe of the Creator!

Isaiah 66:23, "And it shall be from new moon to new moon, And from sabbath to sabbath, All mankind will come to bow down before Me," says the LORD.

Only God Creator, can display the vast universe in all it's magnificence and splendor!

"Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all you shining stars," (Psalm 148:3).  

May the grace of God be with you,

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

A Kingdom Woman

A kingdom woman is a woman who knows that her identity is in Jesus Christ. She loves and serves God in spirit and truth.

A kingdom woman exudes grace and strength in every season of her life. She trusts and believes that God is her constant strength and her rock.

A kingdom woman walks side by side with her kingdom man.

A kingdom woman raises kingdom kids.

Dig deeper into the Word of God.

Dig deeper into the Father's heart.

Are you a kingdom woman? Do you have a kingdom woman in your life? If so, how is she pouring into your life?

Thank you for reading, and please feel free to leave a comment, I would love to hear about your kingdom woman.

May the grace of God be with you.

What Happens When Women Walk in Faith

Terrific Tuesday Ten

As promised, every Tuesday I will be sharing on Terrific Tuesday Ten about a few of my "Favorite Things."
So don't be shy and share some of your "Favorite Things," in the comment area on the bottom of this blog page.

My list looks like this:

1. Crickets singing in the rain.
2. Rain tea, and a good book.
3. Girlfriend wisdom.
4. The Book of Esther.
5. Adult coloring pages.
6. Purple yams (yum).
7. Whimsical words such as, Copacetic, Perspicacious, and Cattywampus!
8. The Chronicles of Narnia
9. Bestselling Author Charles Martin
10. Flannel PEANUTS pajamas.

Phew! Ok, now it's your turn. Show your confidence, there's nothing to it!  Simple as that! Personally, I actually find this quite therapeutic!

And now on a more spiritual note, Isaiah 40:28 reads,  "Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary and His understanding no one can fathom."

As we take on new challenges in life let us not forget that God is on our side always, and that He will accomplish in our lives ALL that He has started. Philippians 4:6 reminds us of this truth: "Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus."

In the days to come, let's take a step out in faith, trusting and believing that God is in control, and that our strength comes from Him. Deuteronomy 31:6 reads, "Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you."

Fun Quote:

May the grace of God be with you,

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Terrific Tuesday Ten

While every blogger I know has a whimsical Wednesday post, I decided to be different. What is trending on my post is none other than, Terrific Tuesday Ten.

Every Tuesday I will be posting a list including ten of my 'Favorite Things'.

I read somewhere that Oprah has an extensive list of favorite things during the Thanksgiving holiday season. In 2013 she included a $500 truffle risotto kit and $475 steak knives on her 'Favorite Things' list. That's what I call a 'whopping upscale list'.

But hey, Oprah can do that, she's Oprah!

Although my list is not as extravagant as Oprah's, I often consider a few of my 'Favorite Things' to be budget minded, yet with great sentimental value. Well without further ado, these are a few of my 'Favorite Things'.

                 Hallmark Christmas Ornaments                    Charlie Brown
Bright colored running shoes                                             and  the Peanut Gang
          Dreaming in the morning
                                                             Coffee flavored lip gloss          

Sunflowers in a Cobalt Blue vase                                               Honey dew nail polish

                                                                   A cup of English Tea

     When someone comes running to hug you                   Theodor Seuss Geisel

So there you have it, these are just a few of my 'Favorite Things' this Terrific Tuesday Ten.

Why don't you share with me and our friends your Terrific Tuesday Ten list of these are a few of my 'Favorite Things'? We just might have some 'Favorite Things' in common!

May the grace of God be with you.

"When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window."
          -Maria Von Trapp
            From The Sound of Music

Saturday, August 16, 2014


Michelle Duggar shared this poem in the book titled 19 Kids & Counting A Love That Multiplies that she co-wrote together with her amazing husband and kingdom man, Jim Bob Duggar.

Michelle explains, "My job was, and is, to keep praising the Lord, even when I don't feel like it. As an encouragement to other women, I like to share this beautiful poem by Roy Lessin. (He also authored one of my favorite books, How to Be the Parents of Happy and Obedient Children.) This poem is good to keep displayed before our eyes."

A woman fretted over the usefulness of her life.
She feared she was wasting her potential being a devoted wife and mother.
She wondered if the time and energy she invested in her husband
    and children would make a difference.
At times she got discouraged because so much of what she did
    seemed to go unnoticed and unappreciated.
"Is it worth it?" she often wondered. "Is there something better that I could
    be doing with my time?"
It was during one of these moments of questioning that she heard
    the still, small voice of her Heavenly Father speak to her heart.
"You are a wife and mother because that is what I have called you to be.
Much of what you do is hidden from the public eye, but I notice.
Most of what you give is done without remuneration.
But I am your reward.
Your husband cannot be the man I have called him to be
    without your support.
Your influence upon him is greater than you think
    and more powerful than you will ever know.
I bless him through your service and honor him through your love.
Your children are precious to Me.
Even more precious than they are to you.
I have entrusted them to your care to raise for Me.
What you invest in them is an offering to Me.
You may never be in the public spotlight, but your obedience shines as a
    bright light before Me.
Continue on. Remember you are My servant.
Do all to please Me.

Michelle is a wife, a mother of 19 children, a daughter-in-love, a mother-in-love, and a grandmother of three. She is diligent in her ministries and family businesses. She is one busy woman! Michelle has felt weary, and tired, and overwhelmed. On recalling a time of feeling weary as she was up late at night doing laundry, and crying, she voiced this prayer, "Lord, You must have the wrong person here! I simply can't do this. I'm not capable; I feel so overwhelmed and inadequate. I'm so grateful for these precious gifts You've given me, but Father, I need Your help!" The good Lord showed Himself strong on her behalf that night, as she heard His soft voice in her heart saying, "Michelle, it's easy to praise Me when things are going great-when the house is neat, the dishes are clean, the laundry's done, and your children are healthy and behaving themselves-but are you willing to praise Me right now, when it's not easy?"

The Scripture from Hebrews 13:15 came to her mind immediately, "Offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually." Continually in the English dictionary is an adverb. It means, repeated frequently in the same way; regularly. Without interruption; constantly. 

Michelle decided long time ago that she is "going to praise God even when she doesn't feel like it." She knows where her strength comes from. It comes form the Lord!

As women, the power and strength that comes from God is what carries us on. Proverbs 31:10 reads, "An excellent wife who can find? She is far more precious than jewels." Weary woman be encouraged, be strengthened in the Lord, because you are loved. You are valuable. You have a divine purpose and a divine calling on your life.

As Christian women we need to surrender to the strength that God provides and His strength is made perfect in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9).

It is so refreshing to know that we can rest in the strength and comfort that God will provide when we are facing troubles and challenges of many kinds. Beloved woman of God,  let Him have the glory and show Himself strong in your life. 

2 Chronicles 16:9 reads, "For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show Himself strong on behalf of those whose heart is loyal to Him."

God wants to show Himself strong on your behalf. Surrender to Him today and let the peace and strength that He gives you take over.

Finally, here is a quote:

"A woman's heart should be so hidden in God 
that a man has to seek Him just to find her."
    -Max Lucado

And now beloved I pray, "May our Lord Jesus Christ Himself and God our Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting encouragement and good hope through His grace, encourage your hearts and strengthen them in every good deed and word." Amen.
    -2 Thessalonians 2:16-17

The grace of Jesus Christ be with you.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

A Full Day With God

                                                   Fill my days with sunshine bright,
                                                   With flowers in wondrous array -
                                                       Each in it's own colorful hue
                                                      And all in a fragrant bouquet!
                                                    Fill my nights with moonlit skies,
                                                     With stars and the Milky Way -
                                               With a peaceful sleep and rested mind
                                                      To help me greet the new day.
                                                       Fill my hours within each day
                                                        With joy and praise to Thee
                                                    For each and every blessing sent
                                                       From You, dear Lord, to me.
                                             And may I use each minute, each second,
                                                          Throughout the entire day
                                               to share Thy love and peace with those
                                                             I meet along the way!

                                                           Poem by Mary Chevalier

"Guide me in Your truth and teach
me, for You are God my Savior. For
You I wait all the long day, because
of Your goodness, Lord."
Psalm 25:5

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14


Wednesday, July 9, 2014


     As some of you already know, I am vegan. I made the transition very slowly and it's been a year now, yea!  Thank You, Jesus! I became vegan for several reasons. First of all,  I say "STOP" to animal cruelty. Secondly, because I support a "Greener Earth." Thirdly,  because I am a 54 year old woman that until a year ago was experiencing a lot of health issues that kept me going back to doctors, only to hear the same thing, change your diet, change the way you view food, change your dairy, change seasonings, stop eating red meats. It was the same word over and over again, change, change, change. So I decided to change.
     I decided to partake of the 21 day fast, The Daniel Fast, that my church was about to embark on as a New Year's resolution last year.and glory to God, within two weeks into the fast the Lord started showing me the areas of my life that needed change. Not just the physical. But the mental, emotional and spiritual. So today, I can say I feel wonderful and even my skin tone has changed for the better. I joined a gym where I workout 5 days a week, and at 54 I haven't felt better in my entire life. I won't change this new and improved lifestyle for anything in this world!
     It's about going back to basics and making a conscientious effort in adopting a healthier lifestyle. I sleep like a baby, and I have better focus. I enjoy my family more. So no more night sweats, no more acid reflux, or mood swings. No more bad taste in my mouth. It's about a healthier body as the temple for the Holy Spirit to dwell in. It's about a closer walk with the Lord as He continues to heal me and pour into my life. It's about my seeking Him and His truths in the Scriptures, and enjoying everyday life. It's about living for Jesus!
      Although my amazing husband does not share completely my vegan lifestyle, in the name of Jesus and our marriage vows, he opted to at least eliminate all red meats from his diet. Baby steps! All in all,  he continues to make some very healthy choices now. On the other hand, however, our 15 year old daughter is all for eating healthy. She loves earthy, plant based foods, no meats. Although for now she is only choosing scaled wild caught fish twice a week. I am so very proud of my family, and am grateful to the changes they have made in their lives as they support my health choices. The Lord is doing some pretty wonderful things in this family. He is faithful!
      I also decided that it would be selfish on my part to keep all to myself some really delicious vegan recipes. So at least once a week I will be sharing with you some of my very favorite ones.  Here is my first, simple, easy and delicious recipe. Nothing complicated about this one and it's ready in 30 minutes. So while this is in the oven you can stay busy fixing the rest of your meal. We eat these chips at least 3 times a week. Got some of my "meat eating" friends hooked on the chips, (hehe).
     I serve these as appetizers, snack, and sometimes with my yummy Garbanzo Bean Burgers as a meal.  They go with anything. So without further ado, please welcome my "Broccoli Chips." (some clapping please!)

Broccoli Chips

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Chop a head of broccoli (do not rinse immediately prior to preparing).
Mince 2-3 cloves of garlic

Place broccoli, garlic, 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, and a few shakes of sea salt & pepper in a ziploc bag.
Shake it up!

Spread out on a baking sheet, place on top rack of oven, and bake for about 30 minutes. Broccoli will be crunchy and delicious. You can also use kale, as an alternative. 

(Optional) Sprinkle a tbsp of nutritional yeast for that great cheesy flavor. Serve with hummus, or just eat em up plain! If you have some "little people" in your family that are a tad finicky, let me tell you, they will devour these chips in a jiffy! Enjoy!

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you."
2 Corinthians 13:14




     As another day comes to an end, I am thankful for Your provision and protection, and I am humbled by the opportunity to experience Your constant presence.

     I sought to glorify You in all I said and did today. Even as I sleep, I pray my thoughts will be focused on what honors You (Phil. 4:8). Let me wake in the morning refreshed, renewed and transformed with a heart yearning and ready to serve.

     Thank You for extending me Your wisdom and grace. I am grateful for Your unconditional love. How wonderful it is to abide in Your rest.


"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14


Tuesday, July 8, 2014


     Thank You for the blessing of a new morning and the privilege of beginning the day by talking with You. I give You myself and my schedule today, asking to be used to further Your kingdom.

     Grant me the wisdom to handle each situation I encounter with grace so that my speech will be pleasing and my thoughts pure as I follow Your direction. I am grateful that Your plans for me are good (Jer. 29:11), and I trust in Your steadfast faithfulness.

     Help me to live in a manner worthy of the calling You have placed on my life (Eph. 4:1) and to magnify Your name in all things.


"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14



     I finally built up the courage and decided it was time to revisit my dad's favorite park. That special spot under the huge old oak tree by the edge of the lake , that he loved so much. Yes, that quiet tranquil place where he did most of his critical thinking and reflecting on life's little and big intricacies. The same spot where he would sit and feed the ducks as they came wobbling over to gather around him anxiously, in the hope for the morsels of bread dipped in honey. Where he would sit and talk to the ducks squirrels and birds. Where he would sing to them , hum and even whistle his favorite hymns. The very same spot where he sat and enjoyed his favorite chocolate covered vanilla ice-cream sugar cone that he bought from the neighborhood ice-cream truck.
     I am talking about Jay Blanchard Park in Orlando Florida. You see everyone knew him as "brother Freddie." Even ranger Dave would stop occasionally by the huge old oak tree on his way to make his daily rounds through the park for some meaningful, and heartfelt conversation on the different subjects they would engage in. Subjects such as Jesus, salvation, marriage and family. As I made my way through the winding road that led to the heart of the park, I was amazed at how it all looked exactly the same way it did that week before dad went home to be with the Lord. I immediately parked my car in the lot straight across from that huge old oak tree. I just sat there in the car for a few minutes looking over at the park bench, the tree, and of course the ducks. Wow, the ducks were still here, I thought. But then I rationalized that bit of information. It's been two years since I visited the park, perhaps these are not the same family of ducks.

     Dad was working on a nature album and there were all sorts of treasures he had collected on his visits to the park. He had tons of nature pictures, unusual leaves, twigs, dried wildflowers, and even seeds all in a variety of shapes and sizes. I felt an incredible sense of excitement and deep sadness, all at the same time. I sat down on the park bench and closed my eyes, hoping to recapture those easy breezy happy times with dad. I just wanted to relive and enjoy once again the distinctive smells of nature in the air that came wafting through the tree branches as the wind blew east. Then I heard crows, cawing back and forth as if greeting one another.

     I don't know exactly how long I sat there like that, with my eyes closed, but suddenly I was brought back from my reverie to the familiar sounds I so very much loved to hear. There were sounds of cars and motorcycles making their way through the winding road into the park, there was children's laughter as they rang their bike bells. Parents calling out to the children to wait up for them. Somewhere in the distance I could hear the faint sound of the music to "row, row, row your boat" song, and instantly knew the ice-cream truck was headed this way. As I opened my eyes, I noticed bikers riding up and down the bike path, teenagers rollerblading,  mother's pushing strollers, dogs on leashes, and even elderly couples enjoying their morning stroll. And of course, ranger Dave putt putting down the road on his way to his morning rounds through the park. As I am sitting there on the park bench, I recall the many times that dad and I would just sit there taking in the beauty and sounds that surrounded us, neither one uttering a single word. It wasn't because we had nothing to say. There was plenty to say, but you see, my dad and I had an understanding. We both loved nature, and nature was to be observed, appreciated, respected and enjoyed as the good Lord intended it. It was God's creative handiwork we were dealing with here.
     Although dad has gone to his eternal resting place with our God "Elohim", God Creator, he now enjoys the most breathtaking view of beauty beyond our imagination. Exquisite cities of pure gold, rivers as clear as glass, walls made of precious jewels, gates of pearl. Heaven will be lighted not by the sun, but by the glory of God! Heavenly angels singing continuously praises to the Lord! For me remembering dad now is about the wonderful memories me built together. Reminiscing about the good times. Today,  my memories are no longer full of pain and sadness, but memories I welcome wholeheartedly with peace and joy, because I know I will see him again. The Bible teaches us in Tutus 2:13, the blessed hope that just as we will recognize the Lord Jesus, we will also reunite and recognize our loved ones in heaven. What a glorious time that will be! Until then, I sit on the familiar park bench under the old oak tree feeding the ducks, squirrels, and birds talking to them and singing dad's favorite old hymns.

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

These Make a Home

                           The love of parents, dear and true,
                                                To dwell beneath the skies of blue,
                                                 Country meadows, vast and wide,
                                                 The wonder of God's countryside,
                                               Kindness, caring, childhood dreams,
                                                  The happiness of magic scenes...

                                                 Touch of beauty, hopes to keep,
                                                    Confidence, believing reaps,
                                                      Memories we cherish still,
                                                    Valleys deep, a climbing hill,
                                                    Yesterdays we treasured so,
                                                   Sun at dawning, nights aglow...

                                                         Family that's ever dear,
                                                     Happy moments ever near,
                                                 Laughter, sorrow - bits of each,
                                              Pleasures close - some out of reach,
                                                  Togetherness - sometimes alone...
                                                   'Tis all of these make a home.

                                                   Poem by Garnett Ann Schultz

"Happy the chosen ones You bring to dwell in Your
courts. May we be filled with the good things of
Your house, the blessings of Your holy temple!"
     -Psalm 65:5

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14


The Importance of Feeding your Soul

      I believe in the importance of feeding your soul. As a Christian I have had my share of trials and pain in my journey through life. No matter where I go, what I do, or what level of spiritual maturity I am in there will always be some struggle, or some challenge for me to overcome. Jesus warned us in John 16:33, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." If Jesus had trouble in this world, what makes us think we are to live trouble-free lives? As Christians we are to feed our souls on the Word of God. Day and night. And to "pray without ceasing" (1 Thessalonians 5:17 ESV). Jesus did it!
     In Psalms 43:5, the psalmist David says while in deep prayer, "Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? The Greek translation for cast down is kataballo, which means to be forsaken, prostrate, struck down. The word disquieted means worried, or anxious.  David was clearly feeling troubled and terribly overwhelmed, yet in the same verse he answers himself and goes on to say, "Hope in God, for I shall yet praise Him. The help of my countenance and my God." He is affirming, and acknowledging that God Himself is his source of strength. Some scholars feel that this psalm was written when David was excluded from the temple at the time of Absalom's rebellion. Later in David's reign Absalom took over the kingdom temporarily and David was driven into exile outside of Jerusalem. This psalm reflects a time of deep sadness and frustration. None of us need to think that because we are Christians we will escape times of sadness; they will come. But we need to do something about them.
     When our souls are troubled, and we are feeling weary, and tired, let's practice what the psalmist did. Let's pray. Let's praise and worship our Lord. Let's pour out to our heavenly Father. Let's feed our souls the spiritual food we can only find in God's Word. Psalm 46:1 reads, "God is our refuge and strength. A very present help in trouble."
     The Lord is a safe place where we can find strength and refuge from the storms in our lives. Philippians 4:13 reads, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." This was one of the many Scriptures that ministered to my soul during some very trying times in my life. I believe in Psalms 40:1-3, "I waited patiently for the LORD, and He inclined to me, and heard my cry. He also brought me out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps. He has put a new song in my mouth-Praise to our God; many will see it and fear, and I will trust in the LORD." This Scripture is truly a reminder that we are to wait joyfully and patiently in the Lord, because help is on the way! He is faithful!
     Jeremiah 29:11 reads, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope." Let's stop grumbling and complaining. When challenges come our way, let's get on our knees and pray.  God has a plan, a divine plan for each and everyone of us. Sweet communion with God is a holy, blessed, and quiet place that we can enjoy as we fellowship with our Father, and we can feast on the benefits of His Word as we feed our souls. Philippians 4:8 reads, "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy-meditate on these things." Let's find peace for our souls in this Scripture, as we infuse our spirit with the Word of God.  We can experience peace and joy in the midst of our trials. God knows exactly what our days hold, and He is always willing and able to sit at the table and fellowship with us.

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14

Monday, June 30, 2014

My Thank-You Prayer

                                                         My Thank-You Prayer

                                                        When I lay down at night
                                                        Wondering what to pray,
                                                     I try to thank the Lord above
                                                   For whatever happened that day.
                                                        It could be a simple thing,
                                                           A bud upon a flower
                                                   Or perhaps some time to think,
                                                          A peaceful, quiet hour.
                                                 It might be that our humble home,
                                                         Small though it may be,
                                                   Was filled with joy and laughter
                                                            For everyone to see.
                                                            If it was unpleasant,
                                                            I thank Him anyway
                                                       For all the lessons learned
                                                             On that fateful day.
                                                     And when I'm done that night
                                                       With my thank-you prayer,
                                                  My heart is filled to overflowing
                                                    With all the love He shared.

                                                    Poem by:  Rebecca Sweeney

"I thank You for You answered me;
     You have been my Savior."
               Psalm 118:21

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all."
2 Corinthians 13:14