Thursday, November 29, 2012

Moving forward, Trusting God, Being Obedient

Still writing. I've been writing long hand, with an actual pen and on actual lined paper. I find that my mind flows more fluently and quickly writing this way. Then I type what I've written in the computer and the ideas continue. Writing is so much fun. I realize that not all people like to write. And I realize that a lot of my writing is just words. But I do so enjoy it. I only hope that someday my writing will encourage people around the world for generations to come. Will make people laugh. Will guide people to the truth. I've entered two additional contests, one short story and one novel. The short story win will get me enough to publish my novel and send me to writing school. The novel win will actually get the novel published. How exciting is that! Of course I mustn’t get my hopes too high. There are so many other writers that have the same dream as I do and are so much better than I am. It's all in God's hands.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Animals named in the Bible

Bel boweth down, Nebo stoopeth,...Isaiah 46:1

When I first read this the other day I truly thought the bible was talking about horses or donkeys. I thought to myself, wow, I didn't know God gave animals names in the bible, until I read further. (The notes in the margin helped as well.) I was so disappointed. They're names of Babylonian god's. Yes I know, I can be quite ditzy! lol

But I was intrigued by this chapter. It made very eye opening comparisons. When those who have other god's run from danger they carry their gods’s with them and are burdened down. But when those who have God, well, God caries them through danger and lifts their burdens. Isn’t that the coolest thing? I've read the poem, Foot Prints in the Sand. I've heard, learned, read about God being there for us, lifting our burdens. But, I've never quite looked at it like that before. I don't know, sometimes seeing or hearing things that have become so common place in a different light, makes everything new and exciting again. It revives the excitement, the assurance, the peace, that our Lord and Savior IS ALWAYS with us! Loves us! Cares for us! Thank you God!

Those other god's? Well, their just dead weight! I can do without! :)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Encouraging Rejection Letters

Yes you read it correctly! Encouraging rejection letters. About a year ago I sent several copies of my Novel to some hopeful publishers. (For the second time) I received a couple rejection letters, most publishers don't send out letters these days unless it's an acceptance letter. Well, the other day, I received a rejection letter that had been sent to our old address and forwarded to our new. Perfect timing actually, (of course, God always has perfect timing.) I really needed the boost. I had just put out a prayer request on the JVR FaceBookpage. A couple of old friends also commented on my last post, which helps encourage even more so. This rejection letter started out, I enjoyed reading your story. Wow, a publisher enjoys reading my story! I don't know why I have to be constantly told. I can't even write the words...I want to so very much to be a published writer, but I...oh I've already written it all. If you've followed my blogs you know what I'm saying. So, I tweaked one of my stories. Actually I reorganized it. And...I sent it in to another contest! Yay! I did! Thank you everybody for your encouraging words and prayers!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Knowing God

Todays service was out of Titus 1:9-16,2:1 (Sept 9, 2012)

It was a great message! We as Christians need to encourage sound teaching and refute those who counteract it. God is in ALL things. We need to help others seek Gods way, not ours. We need to tell others how good God is, not how bad they are. God blesses me in spite of me, not because of me. If we, God's children show and share love, God's Holy Love with others and let God take care of the rest; wouldn't more people understand and accept Christ as their savior? Christianity I think has such a bad wrap, a bad name, not because of non-believers, but because of Children of God who take it upon themselves to tell others what they should and shouldn't do. We all miss-use the Bible for our own benefit at times, some more that others. I know I have before. That's where a relationship with God comes in, we'll keep learning more and more about Him. I enjoy getting to know Him. Sometimes it's really hard and humbling. Sometimes it's emotional and overwhelming. Sometimes it's just relaxing, peaceful, and refreshing. But always it's comforting, encouraging, and fulfilling. I would Love to hear about your knowing God experiences.

I found this blog I wrote a month ago. I thought I'd go ahead and publish it. Maybe it will encourage somebody.

Pulling out of the blaaaahs!

Don't you just hate the blaaahs! September on into October of 2012 has been just that...blaaahh! I having been able to write, feeling old, and well, sorry for myself. You see I had high hopes. I had entered this short story, a true story in fact (with a couple of writers privileged upgrades) in a contest. I was so hopeful. I wanted the $3,000 prize so I could publish my novel. And the trip to New York for a writer’s conference was a wonderful incentive as well. Well, with over 9,500 writers all striving for the same thing, No, I didn't win, another blow to my blaaaahhh time. Well here it is, see for yourself why it didn't win.

Anyway, I need to stop wallowing in my self pity, get up and wipe off the dust. I have to remember that I will write because I love to write and I feel God blessed me with this passion and even if I touch one person with my writing,it's worth so much more than $3,000 or any writer’s conference. So there, I wrote a blog. Thank you for reading it!!! :)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

1st Three Chapters..ahead of schedule!

The goal was September 30, 2012...but now, September 4th, the first three rough chapters of the JVR Novel is complete. Yippee! When I say rough, I mean very rough. But the content is there, the spelling, grammar, and person will still need to be ironed out. Now I get to move on to the next three chapters. My goal for the second three chapters will be February 28, 2013. These next three chapters are going to be a bit more difficult, but challenging. I'm going to need to spend time interviewing and researching. I'm getting so excited just writing about it. I guess I'm a nerd...but it makes my day to know that just maybe, someday, a book I've written can make a positive difference in people’s lives. That what I write will encourage, share the truth, maybe even save somebody's life, both physically and spiritually. That's exciting! But I can’t do anything without God's hand, guidance, direction, and wisdom in it all.

The first three chapters introduce five scenarios, the JVR director, the day care, mentors, as well as the ministry.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Elders vs Deacons

I love our church! FOTC...they have a website and all of their services are online as well. They even have a FaceBook Page! :) I was brought up in a Catholic Church. I accepted that God gave His one and only son Jesus Christ to die for me and rise again so I can be forgiven and go to Heaven at the age of 21, and have been attending the Southern Baptist Churches ever since. It was quite a learning curve, and there are still things that I wonder about. One of my biggest questions was how do you know when God is really talking to you? That was a question that God answered a few years back with a wonderful Bible study, Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby. If you are looking for a great bible study, I highly recommend this one! Well, another question that I've had was answered today during our service. Not a huge mind, soul changing question, but a question never the less. Some churches have elders, some deacons, and it seems to me that the terms are interchanged. I went to an ordination not too long ago thinking it was a pastor ordination. During the service they kept referring it to an ordination of elders. I was so confused. Well today, my confusion has been cleared up.

Pastor Matt spoke from Titus 1:5-11...A letter of encouragement from Paul written to Titus. Of course God spoke to me in so many ways this morning. Ways that encouraged me to keep the faith. Not to 'work' myself to God, but to accept God's work through me. Step out in faith to do what God is calling me to do, even if I don't think it's very good...then God will use me, teach me, grow me...

Sort of like my writing. I love to write, I have a passion to write, I feel God is telling me to write...but...I feel like I'm not a very good writer. That others, really great writers will laugh at me. But I'm not writing because I think I'm great at it. I'm writing because I feel God is telling me to and can use my writing to share the truth with others.

With that, let me get back to my answered question. What is the difference between an Elder and a Deacon? Are they the same, just some churches call them Elders and some call them Deacons?

Well, the word Elder means Presbuteror (sorry if I misspelled, I can't read my own handwriting! lol) and is found in Titus, 1 Peter 5:1-2, and 1Timothy 3:1-12. The word for Deacon is a different word that means...runs to serve others.

So, in this I learned that Elders and Deacons are different. The word for Pastor and Elder is used interchangeably.

Interesting, I think...

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Above it All

As I'm flying home from a wonderful two weeks of family time, the clouds remind me of a lesson I learned only a few years ago. I look out over the fluffy sea of clouds stretched out to the horizon only to be framed by an edge of peachy pink as the sun disappears. Peaceful and unaware of what's going on below. Above it all. We have to come down. Down in the midst of "life". Where it's not always so peaceful and quiet. It reminds me of the weekend retreats I've been to, the week long camps, the quiet times spent alone in prayer with our savior. The feeling of peace, quietness...Above it All! Then one step into reality, life hits hard. I read a Facebook status today, it said something like, if your always upset about something your not trusting God. I also remember a saying...Don't be so heavenly minded that your no earthly good. It's just a wonderful time being in the presence of God! It encourages growth and closeness to our Heavenly Father. I just have to remember that just because life hits us on the face doesn't mean God leaves us. In fact it's a growing and learning experience we can use to grow even closer to God. So my prayer as we descend below the clouds, Lord I give it all to you! All is yours! Use me as you want. Let my mouth be yours, my feet be yours, my attitude be yours. Speak through me. Be in my thoughts up front and first before any negative thoughts or attitudes come into play.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Happy Christian?

John 10:10
The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

During my life I've heard many different views of Christianity. I've heard that to be a real Christian you need to sacrifice all you have. That a real Christian is poor in material things. I've heard that to be a real Christian you will be blessed with health and riches or you're not in Gods will. It gets so confusing listening to man. That's another reason it's so important to develop a relationship with God. Religion isn't bad, please don't miss read what I'm saying. What is Religion without the relationship? The Bible is alive and speaks to us. You think I'm crazy? I give you this challenge...Read a Bible verse every day for a month. Each day before you read your verse, pray a simple prayer asking God to show you what He wants you to hear. After you read your verse, listen. If you'd like, write the answer in your journal. I like to do this, it helps me grow as well. A suggestion might be to read the book of Proverbs. There're 31 chapters, one for each day of the month. I would love to hear what you think and what God told you during this month of reading. Back to the featured verse of this blog. This is telling me to be happy with my blessings, enjoying each day giving God all the praise and Glory! I must not let satan or man take that joy away! Praise goes to our Holy God!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Proverbs 31

I just finished the book of proverbs this past week. In fact I camped out in Proverbs 31 for about three days. I'm not sure when I first realized how encouraging Proverbs 31 was, and I'm not sure when I first adopted this chapter as my life chapter. People talk about life verses, well I can't just settle on one verse. Of course the bible is full of verses, all awesome ones at that. But the whole chapter of Proverbs has spoken so deeply to my soul, that I have to claim the whole chapter. Not only has this chapter helped me in life, its helped me in practical, physical, spiritual, emotional, mental, relationship, ministry... well every nook and cranny a human needs help and direction, this chapter addresses it. It's a challenge worth taking, an example worth following, and it keeps a woman humble. No woman can be the proverbs 31 woman on her own. There a ministry called Proverbs 31 ministries. Check out the page on Facebook.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

So Satan

Cleaning out my purses, moving allows a person to find all kinds of treasures, I came across some notes I made on several pages of 'tea cup' note paper.
November 20, 2006...
A youth minister has sex with his youth...So satan.
A Christian couple divorces...So satan.
A Christian counselor counsels a spouse seeking help to leave the marriage and move on with their own life...So satan.
A child of a Christian home lives a life of the world...So satan.
I've heard it said before, not to give satan so much attention.
But do we give satan enough attention?
Have we gone from one extreme to another?
Have we gone from blaming satan for everything bad to taking satan out of the picture all together?
Do we, our generation of Christians, realize the power of satan and his demons? Everything is so watered down, do we really know or believe the spiritual wars that go on around us? Yes we Christians know God has won! But do we realize how we are facing unnecessary struggles and hardships along the way and effecting the ability to share the truth with those around us? why do we not know this? Why do we put up with worldly views and beliefs? Why do we not pray as we should, as intentionally, earnestly as we should? Why do we feel spiritually mature people are strange and the spiritual evil raging around us is normal? Why? These are more of my 'why' questions.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Taking it slow...

Well, since there were no likes or comments I guess it's safe to say, it's not time yet for the finance aspect of JVR. And that's okay, I want God's timing, He is in control and that's the only way for it to be. I was able to work on the JVR novel today, only wrote about 1000 words, but was able to read over what I had and was inspired all over again. Is it bad to cry over your own writing? I wish I had somebody to help me edit the novel that could handle a rough copy without being too harsh, yet honest and helpful. Somebody that understands what I'm trying to relay to others and can gently guide me to write with proper grammar, spelling, and consistent with the proper person, if you know what I mean. Without changing the content. Hmmmmmm, tall order? Am I rambling?

Friday, July 13, 2012

Moving Forward, the Next Step

So I'm thinking about taking a huge step forward, dipping my big toe into the water here. I want to be cautious not to move to quickly or in my own strength. This has to be totally God or it's a waste of my time and energy. I'm thinking of updating the JVR budget and posting it along with a donation link. I'm thinking that once there is $1,000 in the JVR account, I'll file for a 501c3 so the donations will be tax deductible. I'd blog the activity as well as prayer lists on the JVR Facebook page and web site. Well, what do you think? Just how many people are reading this? How many would share this blog with their FB friends? Just throwing it out there. Any suggestions?

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Quiet Time

Wow! I can’t believe how long it’s been since I’ve blogged. We’re moved into our new house now. It’s huge! There’s so much work around here, but it’s ‘fun’ work. I’ve only been writing in my journal during my quiet time. I do miss the writing though, words are overflowing out of my brain screaming to be put on paper! Talking about quiet time…I’ve been thinking about that lately. I remember a few years back when I was constantly trying to make time for a quiet time. Not being a morning person and things taking away all the other time in the day, I struggled for many years trying to make it a priority, a habit, if you will. I found that if I don’t have my quiet time first thing in the morning before everybody else gets up, you might as well forget it. And prayer time? I struggled with this as well.  Trying to work all this out I tried many different approaches. (More about those in a later blog.) But the approach to my quiet time that works best for me? Well, I’ve been reading through my bible slowly from the beginning to the end. I’ve read through the bible a few times, but this time I’ve been working on reading through it so slowly I’m into my second year and only now in Proverbs. I love this approach because I’m really getting to know God in a deeper level. I’m learning more about God, His creation, our relationship, relationship with our families. Reading the Bible this way has opened my eyes to truths I’ve never seen before. Then my prayer time, I’ve learned to write in my journal. That’s how I pray best and I also have a record of my prayers which is so very cool! It strengthens my faith to see this record and how God answers my prayers, sometimes many years later. This is very good, because my memory has its good and bad days, mostly bad as years go by. It also helps me know myself better. I’ve seen through the years how whiney I’ve been, how un-thankful I’ve been at times, and how I need to listen to God better. (If I’d just listened to God in the first place, I wouldn’t have to ask God for help.) I know I’ve said this before, so many times, and I’ll continue to say it! Quiet time is so important! My recommendation to everybody and anybody, quiet time with the Lord!

Take today for a perfect example…I read Proverbs 9…This is part of my journal entry for the day, my conversation with our Lord!

Lord, even Christians today will say, “That’s from the Old Testament and we are living by grace now, New Testament not Old.” Some will say the Old Testament is legalism. The Old Testament is part of the Bible. The living breath. And yes we live by Grace today, but the Old Testament is just as real to us as the New. To read the Old Testament is to really get to know God. Being legalistic is ‘not knowing’ God well at all. If a person has to live by the law without love, that is what I call legalistic. God is Holy Love! By reading the Old and New Testament, the whole bible, we get to know God personally and intimately. Then to spend time with you God daily, strengthens and deepens our relationship. Doing a quiet time, reading the bible, going to church, all these “religious” things may need to be put in place by habit, discipline, planning, determination, but as you do these things you get to know God for who He is! And the relationship grows stronger and deeper, so doing these things become needed, desired, and natural, a part of life, not legalistic and boring. Bible reading and prayer time are one of the most important parts of a Christian life! Without it you can’t grow and you’ll drift away from what is true and Holy. It’s the glue that holds the relationship together, the most precious, important, exciting relationship there is.

This was my journal entry today. And to add to it, when I don’t get a chance to have my quiet time, I know it. My day and attitude show it. No, it’s not a magic happy thing that will make everything good. It’s a relationship, communication with my Heavenly father that helps me be closer to Him and know Him personally! To see things as He sees them or wants me to see them. It’s as precious as, or may I say, more precious than communicating with your spouse, children, parents, best friend.  So don’t be surprised when you read in one or more of my blogs or even one of my Novels or stories, Quiet time is the thing to do!!!!

Share your quiet time stories, both success stories as well as failures. We learn from them both! J

Monday, June 18, 2012

No Spell-Check on Moving Boxes!

Yep that's what I said! Lol yesterday was the "Big Day"! Well, if you've been following my blog at all you'll see it's been awhile since I've written. That's because we finally moved in our new house! And let me just say..."Our God is an Awesome God!"

I'm so thankful for all the help we had moving all our "junk" lol! Family involved will remember their experience forever! Not only the very HOT day! Not only all the endless heavy junk! (31 years worth!) Not only the lonnnnnnnnnnng steep driveway! But I'm told my moving box labeling made them smile! :) I guess it was the inspiration they needed to keep them all moving...with smiles on their I'm told.

Spelling has always been my downfall with writing, that and grammar. Technology has helped me along quite a bit. I'm learning, and trying to be careful. In fact I almost forgot how bad my spelling was until I was reminded by our move. Moving Boxes don't have spell-check.

It reminds me of living a life as a Christian Child, a Child of God! After any length of time living in the arms of our Heavenly Father, I wonder if we sometimes lose sight of how much we are living in God's Grace. Do we realize how our life would be without God? Do we take God for granted? As bad as life gets, without God it would be unbearable. When I sit back, reflect on this thought, I take more seriously all the people out in this world, my community, my friends, even family, that don't share in this grace. I'm motivated and energized to be more intentional with my words, writing, and life.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Why God?

This is a very common question. So common a lot of sermons have been preached on this subject. Many books have been written in this subject. I suspect many journals have been consumed by this subject. But my "why" question is different. My "why" question is why do we complain? Myself included. God is so faithful, so good, so merciful. He has proven Himself over and over again. Why do we not get it? Why do we not trust the ever knowing God? He knows us better than we do. He knows the future, we don't. He keeps His promises. He never lets us down. So again, why do we complain against God?

Sunday, May 20, 2012

We are the city on a Hill

This song has been playing over and over in my head for over the past two months.

We Are by  Kari Jobe 

Here is the chorus:

"We are the light of the world
We are the city on a hill
We are the light of the world
We gotta, we gotta, we gotta let the light shine
We are the light of the world
We are the city on a hill
We are the light of the world
We gotta, we gotta, we gotta let the light shine
Let the light shine, let the light shine"

Yesterday, when explaining our new home to a friend, I was telling her how we can literally see the entire Martinsville City from the side yard. I continued to explain how this will be so inpirational for my husband's art and my writing. She added, and a great place to pray for the city. YES! Of course! This is all part of God's plan! God's timing is perfect! JVR...God is laying out the ground work! Step by step! Martinsville, God Loves You So Much! World, God Loves you so much! John 3:16.

God's Word is Written for People Yet to be Created

Psalms 102 is one of my new favorite bible chapters. (Proverbs 31 is my very favorite life chapter.) Yesterday on Klove I heard a challenge and encouraging word about praying for our family and needs. Then today I read Psalms 102. This chapter talks about Gods holiness and eternal existence. I just love vs18 How God's word is written for all-including generations to come, that people yet to be created may praise God's name! People not even created yet! I just think that is the coolest thing. All will perish and grow old yet God will endure vs 26. God is the same and will have no end. Vs27. The children of God's servants will continue and their descendants will be established before God. Vs 28. This just hits home, and helps me to realize how important it is to continue praying for our families. I've prayed for our children's salvation and relationship with our heavenly Father ever since they were in my womb. I've also prayed for their future spouses the sameness as they will one day be my child as well by marriage. And now I find myself praying for their children, children's children, from generations to come for the same purpose. To know God personally! To see God in action, to have a growing living, active relationship with our lord and savior. This chapter encourages me to keep praying this prayer!

As far as the East is from the West

Have you ever thought about it? I sure haven't. A popular Christian song East to West by Casting Crowns. I love this song but never really understood what it meant. Until the artist explained the song. What a our God!

Psalm 103v12 "As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us." If you continue east you will never go west. If you continue west you will never go east. But if you go north you will eventually go south. If you continue south you will eventually go north. Yes, now you get it? Isn't is a mind exploding concept? It's like trying to think about eternity. When you sit and ponder, think, mull over, understand, it gets overwhelming and more complicated by the second. Our God is so Awesome!!!!!!!!

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Taking Care of Your Children

Psalm 92, 93 again. This is what I started to write in the last blog, but... I'm thankful that God takes care of His children. I'm grateful for the encouragement, comfort, assurance God gives me using everything around me. Nature, people, music, fragrances, your Word! God takes care of my enemies for me, that's His job. I'm thankful. God knows whether or not they are really my enemies or lost people who don't understand and just need love and truth shared with them. They may be begging to know God, to be loved, to understand the truth. If I shun or judge them it would just push them further from God. My prayer is that everything I do, say, even think will give God glory and honor, being the light for God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged

A favorite saying, one found in Mathew 7 1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Well...not everybody's favorite. Lol In my bible reading of Psalm 92 and 93 this verse came to mind. But not in the way you would think. It's so cool how Gods word comes alive. This reading spoke to my most inner soul. People, evil, truth, how God sees our hearts. How important it is for us, Gods children to really know Him! Really really know Him! Its such a deep subject but one that deserves our attention. We are told to love everybody, love our neighbors, love our enemies. How hard is that? We're suppose to be in the world but not of the world. How do we know if a person needs discipline, judgment, a kind word, love, understanding, encouragement...we don't. We are told to share the truth in love and let God handle the judgment. Do we as Gods children know how any times we've hurt people, our witness, Gods witness, the church, because we've taken judgements into our own hands? I cringe when I think of it. I see it on tv, hear it on the radio, read it on Facebook. When I think of my own judgmental thoughts, words, And actions I cringe to think how I've hurt others and how I would be judged by my own words. But yes, I surely don't know what's going on in a persons mind or heart. No wonder Christians are getting a bad wrap. Yes, we are going to be beaten down because of who we are because we scare satan. But we do a lot of the harm to ourselves and supposedly in Christ name. I want to be used of God to shine the light and truth towards God. Tall order, but with God All things are possible. I need to be reminded by Gods word that loving all and sharing the truth doesn't mean we're compromising our faith, it means we're obeying our Heavenly Father and letting Him do the dirty work! I'd love to hear your thoughts on this deep subject.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Faith and the three P's

Yes, that's what I said, no typo here! Faith and the three P's. Prayer,Patience and Perseverance!

We are finally, and once again, scheduled to close on our new house tomorrowafternoon. But...It's not over until it's over. (Almost quoted the old saying,"It's not over until the fat lady sings." But I'd sing right now ifthat were true! lol) I'm convinced there's a spiritual war going on about thiswhole moving thing. I'm not even slightly suggesting anything holy on our partwhatsoever! I'm merely stating a feeling and opinion that’s based on this wholemove being ordained by God! I feel such a peace and assurance that this move ispart of God's plan. His plan to move His ministry forward in the town He has strategicallyplaced us in. I've seen every small detail down to the fact that people in thistown know me by name to the huge detail of sending us here 25 years ago, andeverything in-between. I never said, insinuated, or suggested it would be easy! Nope, not at all. In fact I am so very humbled that God chooses to use me inHis huge plan. I'm not the typical missionary person. I have so many flaws and embarrassing actions, thoughts, and words, that a person would question me. Who do I think Iam to be doing God's work? I have no special talents, skills, or gifts to speak of. But then again, I've heard all my life that God uses the weak, the simple, and the plain to accomplish His work. He does this to show His power and Holiness. So I guess that pretty much qualifies me, wouldn't you say! HaHa! If you're reading this please say a prayer that my husband and I will be the light God wants us to be. That satan and his demons will be squashed, boxed in, confused, and pushed away by the Holy Spirit and the blood of our Savior Jesus Christ!That God may once again victoriously be seen! Oh, I pray that everybody, my family, friends, coworkers, people I'll never meet, generations to come long after I'm gone will See God for who He is, the Truth in everything I say, write, do, portray. Quite a tall order, but that is my deepest Hearts Desire!! OH, I think I've swayed off the subject. I was going to erase this, but I feel God wants me to keep it this time. (If only you knew how many times I've swayed off the subject, erase, and refocus!) I better end this blog before I make this a run-on blog! If any of you readers get any kind of revelation, or if God has used this blog to reveal anything at all to you, I would love to hear about it! I love to hear stories of how God is working!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

And Your Footsteps were Not Known

Psalm 77: 19...And Your footsteps were not known. As I read the scriptures surrounding this, my mind and eyes keep jumping back to this verse. We see the miracles that God did. We read about them. No wonder God tells His children to teach their children so we don't forget. We don’t know where God leads us, just as the Israelites didn't. Who would've thought they would walk right through the sea? They were in an impossible situation. Trapped, a full deep and wide sea on one side, steep mountains on another, and an army of angry solders coming at them. They were trapped. But even with their complaining, disobeying, and rebellion God provided the way out. Moses stepped out in obedience into the sea with the rod of God as God parted the sea providing dry land, a path to the other side. Not only that but after all Gods' children crossed safely over, He allowed the sea to come crashing down on the enemies keeping the Israelites safe and free. Who does that? Our God that's who. And has He ever let us down? Really? I wonder how many times we panic and take matters into our own hands when God was just at the verge of stepping in and doing what He does best. How many times have we, His children messed up His plan, His provision, just to blame Him for our misfortune? How many times I wonder? I'm sure, too many to count. As always, I'm talking to myself here. God is talking to me. It's quite an eye opener, and writing in my journal is one thing. But blogging actually opens up a whole new dimension of my mind, learning what God is telling me. Pretty cool actually. Give me some feedback. Can you relate to any of this, or am I the only one. Oh, wait...if I'm the only one, don't answer me. I would rather think that nobody is reading this than to think I was the only one. lol

Friday, April 27, 2012

...And the Earth Feared and was Still

Psalms 76:7,8 God was angry, the earth feared and was still.
Wow! Do we really get it? His is alive! The earth knows it!
When I read this and the following chapter, 77, I'm reminded of how I would make it through hard, sad, depressing times in my life. There are seasons of life where I would feel alone, afraid, or forgotten. It was during those times that I just took one step at a time, thinking, singing, repeating...Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, Holy are you Lord. Listening to Christian music that lifted God up and gave him Glory would fill my mind when I woke up and when I went to bed. Reading His word even when I just went through the motions soothed my soul. God is alive! I remember when my dad was dieing, I had no prayer to pray...numb and blank, yet I felt the Holy Spirit pray for me. God is alive!!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Hard Lesson to Practice

Psalm 75...A lesson I'll admit is hard to remember and practice. What helps me is the fact that I hate it when I'm judged by others. V1 We give thanks! V2 God's timing is perfect even if we don't understand or don't think so. V7 God knows all, the heart, the circumstances, the future.

Easier said than done, judging is for God. Especially when a loved one is hurt or the seemingly unjust gets by with something they shouldn't. When it seems unfair or uneven, we thnk we need to step in and help God out. Yesteday at church I realized a new way of thinking. the Pastor said to resign from leadership and let God take charge. The same goes eveywhere, including as a parent. Our relationship with our children, friends, co-workers, family. Take charge of all of them and let us all see "You"!

What helps you keep God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit in focus even during the hard times?

Sometimes I get these crazy ideas!

Sometimes my brain overflows with ideas and I can't get them out quick enough! Anybody else have that problem? My brain flits from one thing to another. Well, this blog is helping me zone in on one subject...JVR/CWJC...tyring to use my new found blogger skills and knowledge, I'm searching all the CWJC and CMJC sites, blogs, and FaceBook pages out there on cyberspace. I'm working on building my comunity! Well, I'm trying anyway. CWJC/CMJC Check out their blog.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Not Homeless...Just Houseless

Here we are again, the second time in our life...houseless. It would'nt be fair or correct to say we're 'homeless', even though we are inbetween homes, again. Though we have encountered the obstacles of not having an address. You can't do anything without an address. Fortunately we thought ahead this time and set up a post office box before we lost our home address. But even then, most places will not accept a PO Box number and require a physical address. Then there's the joy, and challenge of living with somebody, if you're fortunate. In our case we're living with our 29 year old son. This in itself is ironic and comical. Our son moved out of the house when he was 18 and moved back into our home when he was 25. He, in fact, just moved out and back on his own about three months ago. Then we sell our house and...surprise! We didn't even need to ask, he volunteered before the subject even came up, what a sweetie! As I said earlier this isn't our first time. Our first, exactly 25 years ago. We were living in Missouri, in a two story old and cool, I might add, Mother-in-law house. we had three of our children at that time, the boys. The twins were 4 and our baby, 1. We had a wonderful solid church home, with wonderful close friends. My hubby had a great job that well, what can I say, it was the 80's. The first of large corporations liquidating their work staff and merging with other large corporations. (Maybe not the first in history, but the first in our lives.) There were a sequence of events that happened 25 years ago. We were ready to move out of renting and into home ownership. I was home working on our budget, and had just completed a budget plan that would allow us to be able to afford to purchase a home. Only one little problem, we didn't have a down payment. The phone rang and it was somebody we hadn't heard from for a while. They explained that they had been blessed by God and wanted to bless somebody else. God had laid us on their hearts. They wanted to give us a down payment for a house. They didn't even know we were looking for a house. Then as we proceeded with our house search, my hubby's job made their huge announcement. Fortunately for us we were able to take advantage of a volunteer package, and after much prayer and advice we felt God was leading us to Indiana. My brother -in-law and sister-in-law opened their home to us for three months. God, of course has blessed us, and now here we go again. Only this time we get to stay in town. This is obviously where God wants us! How about you? Can you relate?

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Still Reading, Writing, and Learning

If you haven't noticed before, blogging really gets my passion going. Not so much the blogging in itself, but the opportunity to use my love for writing to share my true feelings, ideas, and passions with whoever wants to listen. I'm onto part 2 of the Guide to Blogging book I'm reading. This part of the book will help me to get my blog out there. This is a scary, yet exciting thing for me to do. This guide book has been a tremendous help, though my blogs are not political in nature by no means, the blog info is priceless. I'm also hoping this blog will pave the way towards the book I'm writing as well as the end result the ministry. I need to focus and keep my eyes on God's direction and will for my life. One is the JVR Ministry.

Sunday, April 15, 2012


JVR...Jennifer Victoria Renee...AKA...Jesus Victoriously Reigns

CWJC...Christian Women Job Corp

This is the ministry that God has given me detail by detail to start. Now God has confirmed Martinsville is the community to expand this ministry. This sounds strange, why wouldn't I have known this all along? Well it's complicated, and someday I'll blog about it. But for now, I just want to share my excitement to know that yes, Martinsville is the place!

WellSpring Center is a great starting place, this shelter is a wonderful help to the Morgan County Community. I'll blog about other helpful community contacts in future blogs.

And the JVR...The Novel? I'm writing this so all of you viewers all over the Country, possibly the world might be able to be encouraged to start a JVR in your community!

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Learning to Blog!

Well, I'm learning! I'm reading TheHuffington Post Complete Guide to Blogging. I've learned almost everythingI know from books. That's so ironic because growing up I didn't like to read at all. Give me a movie over a book any day! It's crazy how we change as we grow old! Well I'm happy to say I'm blogging in the right direction, according to the book I'm reading. And it's answering a lot of questions that I've had. I'm only half way through it, so I'll learn more as I read on. I'm currently reading rule # 5 Own Your Topic. I'm currently doing just that. This Ministry, JVR...CWJC that God spoke to me years ago, is growing up. Rule # 1 Blogoften...I'm having fun at that! Rule # 2 Perfect is the Enemy of Done...Well that's for sure! My blogs are not perfect by any means! And that's the way Ilike to write. No no, not that I like to write 'non perfectly' if that's a word. It's that I love to write but I know my grammar and spelling are, well, let’s just say needs some help. Rule # 3 Write like you speak. Yes I'm writing as my mind that is. I always have things to say in my mind. Not thatanybody really wants to hear. But then again, writing this blog helps me speakmy mind and anybody who is interested can read it, or not. The point is, I do have things to say and I do want to be obedient to God. Well, writing is a way feel most energized, passionate, and encouraging to do just that, be obedient to God. Rule # 4 Focus on Specific Details, well that I need to work on. But the Guide Book to Blogging is helping me with that.

Friday, April 13, 2012

People think I am crazy!

Yes, that's right, people think I'm crazy! Maybe you're one of them. I'll admit I'm a little wacky at times, and I make mistakes all the time. Boy is that an understatement! I get confused and forget things easily. I even mess up the simplest things. I know I frustrate lots if people, and down right irritate some. My thinking, ideas, convictions, motivations upset and anger many. But...I love God and my intentions are to please God in all I do and say! My motivation is to be and bring all closer to our wonderful Holy God!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Moving forward to new opportunities and challenges!

Well, yesterday was the last day in our house of 24 1/2 years. I thought it would be a bitter sweet time. But I was pleasantly surprised when, as I cleaned each room and memories flooded my mind, of how happy and excited I was. In fact I was almost jolly with laughter and excitement. Anticipating the next step in our lives as we're in between houses. Excited because I have such a peace about the whole move and I see God's hand in all of it. I'm learning how to trust in God more everyday. It reminds of how 25 years ago at this same time of year we took a huge step of faith and obedience and moved to Indiana from Missouri. One month we are in Missouri trying to decide what to do and a month later we are in Indiana, jobless, homeless, with three babies. God has blessed us so much through the years and I just cant wait to see what He has in store for us now. And I'm not talking selfishly, I'm talking ministry, sharing His truth and Holy Love with all according to God's perfect plan.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

My reading today...Psalms 58. This isn't your typical Easter Bible verse and it wasn't planned to I write in my journal what, it became all about Easter. The scripture reminds me of myself and Christians in general. We think we're so good sometimes, but that's when the pride comes in and the attitude takes over. Yes, that's when the judgmental and unforgiving attitudes come into place. That's what tear up families, marriages, relationships, people, ministries. The "attitude" the "religious attitude". We all, as God's children, have had it, I would guess, at one time or another. Some more than others. Today, Easter Sunday, represents the day God's son rose from the grave...resurrected from death! Everybody listen! HE DID NOTHING WRONG! He was falsely accused, abused, and used! He was beaten, humiliated, killed! He was abanded, mocked, tortured! Yet...he willingly, yes...I said willingly! Let it happen! Not only that He asked His Holy Father to forgive US! ALL WHO DID THIS TO HIM! In the midst...the darkest hour He did this! No bitterness toward any of us! No hatred, judgemental thoughts, accusations toward any of us! Only forgiveness! And Grace! And Holy Love! A love that not one of us can know without God! And on top of all of that, after our Heavenly Father sent down His only Son to this earth to be devoured, He left His Holy Spirit to dwell with us here on earth until He decides to come back and snatch us away from this beautiful yet wicked place we call our home, to a place without one spec of evil in the presence of our Holy Father! So, how can we, that have been forgiven of every bad we've ever done or will do will do, judge others. Keep others held up in our walk of bitterness. Shouldn't we love all, forgive all, pray for all and let God handle the judging? We can't do a thing about it but mess it up and make it worse! But God can do all things! Speaking to myself here...let's pray for each other in Gods love and let God do the judging! Let's share Gods Truth and Holy Love...isn't that our job? This said to nobody else but myself. This. Is what God spoke to me in my personal time today. Just sharing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

God cares about us so much, He even takes care of the details!

But why would I expect anything any different? As I sit here listening to the different birds and bugs, with the warm sun against my skin and a cool light breeze flowing through my hair! The soft fragrance in the air. The textures and colors of the many trees as far as the eye can see with the border of a baby blue sky lightly covered with scattered white fluffy clouds ahh yea...the details! Jer. 29 and Romans 8:37 are two scriptures God used today to reassure me that He is in control and that we are doing His will.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Trust in our Wonderful God All Things!

Joyce Meyer Ministries sent a status the othe day, Psalm 27:14...Wow! do you think God is trying to tell me something? Actually more than I realize. I'm enjoying watching him work. And then to look back and see all of the pieces come together, now that's what I call awesome! When I stop and think of all the times I tried to help God out and just got in the way it makes me so sad. Not that I can stop Gods will, oh no! God is still in charge still in control! I and my loved ones lose blessings. Oh how many blessings I've missed. How many blessings have I caused my family to miss out on. I can't even think about it, it hurts too much. But then I realize in the mist of all my messups God loves me so much! He disciplines me, yes...but His grace gives me peace and comfort no matter what. God is in control and does love us. Why would've He given His only son for us if that wasn't true?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Psalm 27:14

14 Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD. I should really memorize this verse. This is so much easier said than done. But of course. Very wise. Sometimes I think I have to help God out. Who do I think I am anyway? I remember about 21 years ago. I made a promise to God that I would not use credit anymore. We had three boys the youngest 5. I finally gave into the idea we weren't going to have anymore children, although I wanted a girl so bad I settled with the fact that God blessed me with three healthy boys and some day will bless me with three wonderful daughter in laws. So we sold and gave all the baby stuff including my maternity clothes away. Not long after that I found out I was pregnant. (our 5 year old prayed for a sister.) it was summer and I was so hot with no maternity clothes or budget to buy any. I thought I would help out by making my clothes. I would have to charge the patterns and material, but I was saving by making my own clothes, right? Haha...I know better than to try to outsmart God. Well I made a dress,washed it and it fell apart.God spoke to me loud and clear. "trust me my child." He said. I knew what I had to do. I had to take back the unused material and patterns. If that wasn't humiliating in itself, I had to take the material back to the fabric table to be measured. No big deal you say? Well it is when you used to work in the department and know everybody. Then, and here is the really cool part... The very next day I received two boxes full of maternity clothes from my dad and step mom! How cool is that? Yea...thats my God! "Wait on the Lord!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

JVR...The Novel

Hello there, anybody who reads this! I'm back! It's been crazy busy and it's so good to be back. I'm reading in Psalms now, just read Psalms 23. At first when I read this I was depressed. Depressed because it reminded me of funerals. Then as I pondered, my feelings turned to....awwwwwe... memories, precious memories. I remembered the little ones at church reciting this as their first memory verse. But as I read and listened to God I realized that these verses tell of a wonderful God, a Holy God, who I can trust my very life with, my every breath! I can trust my family, my children, every single thing to God, my heavenly father! My anxiety, fear, and worry need to be given to God who is in control of everything, EVERYTHING!!! Yes, that's my Awesome God!

So, I've been second guessing the JVR ministry that God has convicted me of. I've wondered if I was ever going to be able to do what God was wanting me to do. I was second guessing my writing, my ability to do what God is calling me to do. The novel I've written hasn’t been published and I'm working on re-editing it now. But the other day, when I read what I had written so far on the JVR-the Novel I surprised myself. I thought to myself, did I really write that? Wow, what a God thing! God has inspired me to write this Novel and He showed me how I need to trust Him! It was so exciting! I'm once again excited and encouraged to continue writing this Novel. I can't wait to finish it! So here's a little bitty sample, the first part of Scenario #1 (there are 5 scenarios that intertwine and tell the full story, plan, and vision of how JVR works):

 Scenario #1
Arlene, a mom of a 12 year old girl, Tammy and 6 month old boy, Chase…abandoned by her husband.

As I walked through the front door a kind young lady greeted me. She took Chase from my arms as she explained he would be right inside, first door on the right. She handed me a label with a bar code and number on it. Identical labels were attached to the diaper bag and the back of Chase's shirt. Chase never minded strangers. In fact, he almost preferred them over me. I can't say that I blame him, I’ve not been the happiest person around. Chase was taken into the daycare and the receptionist directed me to the stairs. "Straight up, turn left, first door on the right. Eily is expecting you."

Nervously I looked around at the bright clean colors of the interior. More of a house than a daycare, I couldn't help but feel a sense of peace and even a hint of happiness. It was loud, but loud with happy children, babies, chatter, and even singing. I walked up the stairs, made a left and slowly walked into the open door.

I spoke to Eily the other day. I found her number on a flyer my 12 year old brought home from school. She was so pretty and professional looking, yet relaxed and friendly. She immediately stood up and put out her hand. She had a smile on her face that opened a valve that released my built up anxiety. "Hello Darlene! So glad you could make it. Please have a seat over there on the couch. Would you like something to drink?"

I shook her hand and then walked over to the couch. It was such a nice little cozy area with a couple of comfortable couches and a coffee table in-between. "No, that's okay." I really was thirsty but didn't want to ask, not yet anyway, I needed to get this over with.

Eily grabbed a couple of bottled waters out of a small refrigerator and walked over sitting on the couch across from me. "That's okay, I brought a water just in case you change your mind."

"So, I guess you're wondering what we're all about." She opened her water, sat back, crossed her legs and began to explain the process to me. "I'll just lay it all out and then we'll discuss the details and any questions you might have. I find it easier to start off with how JVR works.” Eily took a long drink of her water and then began describing JVR.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

JVR...The Story: God's Holiness!

JVR...The Story: God's Holiness!: Again, if you've followed my blog, you'll remember how I repeat myself on how God speaks to me in themes. Usually I can figure them out pret...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

God's Holiness!

Again, if you've followed my blog, you'll remember how I repeat myself on how God speaks to me in themes. Usually I can figure them out pretty quickly. But the most current theme, I just wasn't sure...until today that is. I've been at the annual Transformed event. The Indiana Women’s Retreat that I've attended every year for the past 18 years I think. It's such a time of spiritual renewal, self evaluation, and...well...just a great big breath of fresh air! I've always been an attendee, and attend I did. I helped with small things, but always made sure I attended all the sessions I could possibly attend. This year, about the end of summer or first of fall, I was sitting on my front porch enjoying the quiet, gentle breeze. Watching the butterflies flutter to and fro around our butterfly bush, God spoke to me. He reminded me of how He took care of me, of how He brought me through some trying times. He reminded me of the very first Women’s Retreat I ever attended. It was in Indiana, but was actually based out of Texas. The logo was a butterfly. What a revelation. God spoke to me so strongly about my own attitudes, expectations of others, my relationship with Him, His Holiness. I still to this day have a card I wrote, with dedications written on it. One of those dedications was to wake up at 5am every morning for my quiet time. (I don’t always make it, but most of the time I do around 5 to 6 or at least some time of the day.) It started out as about 5 minutes, and it was a hard habit to make. But God has blessed me so much through my quiet time and I really do miss it when I skip that precious time alone with my Father. God also spoke to me about all the wonderful things He spoke to me though these conferences. Then He spoke to me again, He said it's time for you to do the sharing and help encourage others. Give back to other women what I the Lord have given you. It was so strong; I had to tell our WMU director. I told Allison, and she didn't really have anything for me to speak on, but I ended up being the money person. I helped with the bags and collecting the money. I wasn't too excited about this; working with money is my job, and not my interest or what you would call my rathers. But, God has used this time to teach me humility, the reality of humans even in a leadership role, and attitude once again. The theme I'm talking about, well it's God's Holiness. I've heard of God's Holiness all my life. I know God is Holy. I've taught that God is Holy. But I'm starting to grasp the true meaning of God's Holiness. It's like I grasp it, then it slips away. Lord, praise your name! Holy is Your Name! Thank you for using me to point others to the truth, the light, you! You are indeed Holy! Beyond our understanding!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Job 41 the Leviathan

Cool!!! I remember being told about the dinosaur mentioned in Job, I even think I read this chapter before, but never really got it. But this morning, as I read chapter 41 I began to see a picture of a sea monster in my head. You know the Loch Ness Monster! lol Oh I can hear you readers now, "She's really going off the deep end now!" Well, I'm not talking about some mythical monster; dinosaurs are nothing more than old reptiles, mammals, fish, and birds. The Alligator and the turtle are two modern age dinosaurs. I only know this because my now almost 26 year old son loved dinosaurs. We did research on what the bible says about them. It's pretty interesting actually. The Creation Museum in KY is a great place to learn about dinosaurs. The creation museum answers all of your questions about how the bible and dinosaurs relate to each other. I'm planning to take our grandchildren there sometime, when they're able to come of a visit. I know they'll just love it! Back to the Leviathan...I said earlier in this blog that I didn't think this is a mythical creature. But then again, there are so many things we don’t know, so many spiritual things. There are angles and maybe. Have you read the Chronicles of Narnia? Have you seen Lord of the Rings? It really makes you think doesn't it? Of course no matter what, all the praise and glory go to our Heavenly Father, the creator of all!

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Book of Job...I'm Beginning to Like It

Job 38...God talks to Job. As I read the awesome speech of God and followed it up from some notes written on the side of my Bible, a light bulb goes on in my head. Wow! God has masterminded, controlled, orchestrated, the whole universe, world, earth, Heaven and hell! Why can't I trust Him with my life? My family? Why do I fret and worry so? That's all today...small but huge!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Job...My Revelation

If you've been following my blogs at all, you'll remember when I said I had a hard time with the book of Job. I've been struggling trying to read through it. I took a short break while reading the Awaken 2012 prayer guide, but now I'm back reading it. I'm at chapter 35. Yesterday during our devotions at work I had a revelation. My light bulb went on. J Job's friends are upset with Job thinking he was saying how he was righteous, and rightly so telling him no man is righteous. But what Job is saying if you read, pray, and listen is through God's son Jesus Christ Job is made righteous. During Job's time they didn't know about Jesus. Jesus hadn't been born yet. Many verses in the Old Testament point towards the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for our sins so we can all be washed in Jesus blood being made righteous so we can spend eternity in Heaven. This is so cool! What a revelation! Now I understand the book of Job so much better. I just love it when God speaks to me and explains His word! J

Monday, February 6, 2012

Day #21

John 4:27-38, Acts 1:8 The Coming Harvest the last day of the Awaken 2012 Prayer Guide. What have I learned? Well, I've learned that I'm more of a sower than a reaper, and that I can't be discouraged. I just need to trust God and obey. I've learned that I need to be more serious about my prayer time and topics. I've learned that I need to be urgent about the need to share God's truth. I've learned that I need to listen and obey God even if others around me have different ideas. That even if I don’t' think I'm good enough or strong enough to do what God is calling me to do; I still need to obey and walk in faith. I've learned that I need to be prepared by studying God's word, praying in God's name, listening to the Holy Spirit, trust, obey, and be willing and ready to move, go, do whatever God is calling me to do. I have the blood of Jesus Christ all over me and am filled with the Holy Spirit. I'm willing, ready, eager, and waiting on God's next step. Lord, Holy God, where do you want me to take my next step?

Day # 20

John 4:28-30, 39-42 A Testimony for Your "Town" Today's devotion is about sharing the truth with your own town. I figure my own town would be my writing audience, if I would have any. I really feel this is where God is leading me, yet I still feel embarrassed that my writing is not professional enough to sell. But, I'm encouraged by something as simple as a TV show. Something I heard just today from one of my inspirational authors, Laura Ingalls Wilder. She wrote a birthday card to her Sister Mary in Brail. The card started off by saying, “I don't have a way with words like you do.” Don't have a way with words, and her books are collector’s items, classics, a TV series, and movies. With our almighty God, all things are possible. So, my prayer is that my writing may prosper as a tool to lead others to Christ. People all over the world and generation after generations until you Lord come back again!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Day # 19

Mark 5:1-20 Go Home and Tell..Before I go on about today's reading, I have to tell about my $10 challenge! I had several ideas, some, no, most were non-threatening ways, like write a note and send with the money. Or drop off the money to a ministry of my choice. But no, God said to listen and wait on Him. He gave me this idea last night to go out for a meal and give to the waitress. I prayed about it, even asked God to send somebody to my office asking for money. (That's happened on many occasions! But not this week.) But I knew I had to step out and seek. So I asked around to see who would go to lunch with me. One coworker prayed for me and the chosen one. One was too busy to even listen to my plan and challenge. One listened, felt my trepidation, but in the end didn’t go with me. But one, my faithful buddy, chose to hold my hand through the process of stepping out of my comfort zone. We went to Bob Evans for lunch; I was excited, anxious, and wary. We were seated and our waiter, not waitress waited on us. When he gave us our checks I jumped. Tongue tied, and not making much sense I handed him the envelope. I asked if he had a minute. He looked nervous, and pretended to be taking our order. I told him about our church giving us money and giving us a challenge to share it with somebody along with the truth. I asked him if he knew Jesus. He replied that he went to a small general Baptist church in town, hadn't been lately but planed to go back. We told him about where we worked. He seemed interested, but cautious. I asked him if there was anything we could pray for him for. He said that he had just come through a rough time and that his church family was helping him through it. His name is Max. Please pray for Max. Now on to today's reading...What has God done in my life? Where do I begin? At the beginning? My memory is sketchy at best. As far back as I can remember I think I was about 5. There was this very small church in our subdivision. I'm not sure how I got there. I think it was a Baptist church. They were having a vacation bible school in a trailer set up in the front yard of the church. I remember playing with play do, that's all. I remember when I was a little older walking to church with my brother, sometimes by myself. I walked to Saturday school as well. We went to a Catholic church. I remember when I was even older I started to go to Monday night youth meetings, CYC. I remember my first communion, my first confession, my confirmation. I remember sitting in church listening to all the different voices singing Gods praises. It was so beautiful. I remember moving away, but still yearning for church. I read my bible and prayed to God. I remember getting married in the Catholic Church, a beautiful wedding! I also remember crying myself to sleep night after night as a teen ager thinking that if I never woke up nobody would even miss me. I remember crying and praying to God for help on my tests at school, grade school all the way to High school. I remember my parents fighting and yelling horrible words at each other. I remember praying to God to make it through another day. Then, I remember how God answered my prayers, how He brought my now wonderful husband into my life. How He kept me from harm’s way more than I will ever know. How He brought our family to a wonderful church! How He brought the deacons and pastor to our home to tell us about how Jesus died on the cross for our sins. How we needed to confess our sins, ask for God's forgiveness through the blood of Jesus, and accept Jesus’ sacrifice accepting the gift of everlasting life with God in Heaven. That wonderful day was in August of 1981, less than two months after we were married. I honestly don't know how anybody in this crazy world can make it without knowing Jesus. I mean, I know God protected me before I became a Christian, I know God answered my prayers, because I believed in Him. I also know the first time I heard the truth at my kitchen table that August evening; I had to make a choice. A choice that would change my life forever. If I would've waited, refused, or laughed it off, I would probably not be here today. It was like God told me that night, this is it. Believe or our relationship as I knew it would be gone. But I believed, because God Himself told me so. And our relationship just keeps getting better, in spite of my constant mess ups! Yeah, our God is like that! He Loves us no matter what! Isn't that the most Awesome thing you can ever imagine!?

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Day #18

Matthew 28:18-20, Mark 16:15, Luke 24:47-48, John 20:21-22, Acts 1:8 Jesus Final Command...The excitement in the air is thickening! The crowds are coming from all around the nation, from around the world. My eyes are open and I see people of all colors, backgrounds, sizes, ages, on foot, on bikes, on motorcycles, in cars, buses, trucks, horse and buggies. They are literally everywhere! It took me over 45 minutes to get into the city to pick up my husband. That’s over twice as long as an average day. Then getting out was just as challenging. I'm talking Indianapolis, SuperBowl week. You got it...I'm living in it, driving in it, experiencing it. And I'm not even a sports fan. (Sorry, nothing against it, I'm just not one of them, not my nature.) It is exciting though, crazy, stressed, overcrowded, but exciting. A song on the radio fills my ears, words that say to let your light shine on the city, don't let your light go out. Scripture verses fill my eyes, The Great Commission-Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I Jesus have commanded you, I Jesus am with you always, even to the end of the age. And my mind is full of thinking, waiting for what God wants me to do with the $10 FOTC Challenge, who, when, where, how...the what is already known...God gave us, each of us his one and only Son, Jesus Christ our Savior so we can spend eternity in Heaven, living for God almighty Our Holy God who is Holy indeed! This exciting time reminds me of 1987, the year we first moved to Indianapolis, the year of the Pan Am Games.  I was new to a state, city, and church. I went downtown Indianapolis to do volunteer missions. I thought serving food, handing out bags of groceries, working in the office running errands as needed. Not knowing what to expect I overdressed, wearing a dress to a sports function was not the norm. (Like I said earlier in this blog, I’m not a sportsman and this proves it. I didn’t even know what the Pan Am games were.) I found myself in a classroom learning how to walk the streets; I was petrified, talking about stepping out of my comfort zone. I remember walking the streets handing out tracks and doing nothing more than that. I remember a lady who caught my eye. She was also in a dress, an old worn dress, and she was following me block by block, and she was watching me. I was able to talk with her, give her a track that was all. Very simple, but I felt on top of the world. She smiled and walked away. It was like she just needed to be reminded that somebody loved her. Isn’t that the way most of us are? God knows our needs better than we do ourselves. So that’s where I stand. Maybe tomorrow I’ll have something to write about. Until then…May God Richly Bless and Fill you with the Holy Spirit, overflowing you to share with those around you. J

Monday, January 30, 2012

Day #17

Matthew 9:35-38 Pray for Workers in the Harvest...What did I write about not too long ago in this blog? That God talks to me in's so cool. Today on the way home from work the radio was on and they were talking about Make a difference Monday, KLove station. They were telling a story about how because one person obeyed God and shared the gospel, a 62 year old man came to know Christ. Then they shared the scripture of how the Harvest is ready, but the laborers are few. Then tonight as I was reading my verse for the day, wouldn't you know but the verse Matthew 9:37 The Harvest is ready, but the laborers are few. What have I been praying for? That God give me what I need to share His truth with others? Yesterday our church did a bold and out of the box challenge. Our pastor gave everybody in the church an envelope with a $10 bill in it. Yes, you heard me, our church gave us money. But it had a string attached, a challenge. We are to go do something with it that shows others the truth, salvation, who God really is. Now my first thought was, this is too easy. I'll just give it to WellSpring. Now if you've been keeping up with my FaceBook, you'll see that I also have a WellSpring page. This ministry is dear to my heart and a very vital part of JVR. But, that would be too easy. Too easy, because I feel that God wants me to get out of my comfort zone and give it or be creative with it, somehow to be face to face so I can verbally share who God is. I thought of writing a note of encouragement and the plan of salvation and the challenge along with the address of some churches they could go to. But then again, I felt the Lord telling me, too easy. Get out of my comfort zone. This week, before next Sunday is when I need to complete this challenge. Then, when we accomplish this task we are to share what we did, and the outcome on the FOTC FaceBook page. You should go there and see all the wonderful things God is doing. So I've got my eyes, mind, and heart open to what our Holy precious Lord will have me to do. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Day #16

Luke 16:19-31 and Luke 21:25-28 Live with Urgency...When I read and hear these and similar passages I want to run and shout and share the good news with everybody! I want to go up to people I don’t even know and tell them the great news of our Lord and Savior! How God gave up His son for our benefit so we can spend eternity in Heaven not the Hell we're all destined for. I definitely feel the urgency to run out and tell the world. Then life happens...a wall shoots up in my face stopping me in my tracks. My excitement, zeal, urgency, words, motivation is all taken away, escapes like air let out of a balloon, leaving a defeated blob of nothing good for nothing but a choking hazard. Life, self, satan, all those things are so strong and get in the way. But...our Holy God is stronger than all of those! Keep our eyes on our Heavenly Savior!

Day #15

Matthew 7:7-11, James 5:13-20 Praying for Those Yet to Believe...Praying for people I know need the Lord is a privilege as well as a responsibility. I know that nothing is more important than salvation. A person can be the wealthiest, happiest most popular person in the world his whole life, but without knowing Jesus as savior that person will live eternity in hell. What is eternity compared to a mere 100 years or so? When I open my eyes and ears I see a whole world of people around me. There are people driving next to me, in front of me, in back of me, around me. There are people walking around me in the stores. There are people calling on the phone selling things, taking surveys. We deal with people every day. When I think of them as real people instead of well, I don't know, instead of obstacles I have to deal with? I realize that I need to be more loving, more caring, more patient, more sharing. I wonder how many people I don't even know that I come in contact with in some way each and every day. How can I share God's truth with them? A smile, and friendly hand, a prayer? It puts a whole new perspective on things. And we're not even talking about people we know or family members. The old saying, I might be the only Jesus a person may see? No, this doesn't mean I have to be perfect, because believe me that will never happen. It means that I am a witness for Jesus, and the character that Jesus has should be reflected through me. If I get angry with the driver next to me, or grumpy with the cashier at the store, or hateful with the telemarketer caller on the other end of the phone, or slam a door on a Jehovah Witness or Mormon at my door, what message am I relaying to those people? Surely not the truth of the Loving Holy Almighty God we serve!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Day #14

John 1:35-51 Survey Your World- First let me add on to yesterday's blog, Day#13. At church our pastor talked about who God is and how He is not just a loving God, but He is a Holy Loving God. This is different and so much more than just a loving God. It puts God in a different perspective, well not really a different one, but a more humble one. We mere humans don't really understand what 'Holy' is. Well, I know I don't...really...I just accept it and know that God is God and He can do whatever He wants, whenever He wants. I know that I'm just a little peon, yet so important in His eyes. This is where I get confused or overwhelmed. It seems an oxymoron, yet it makes sense. And I praise God that it does make sense. Today's posting is totally different than what came to me. Today's posting talks about bringing people with you to be disciples of Jesus. What really spoke to me however was the last verse, v 51. The Heavens open up and the angles go to and fro to God and Jesus. If I was to wake up tonight or look up right now and see a stranger I would be so scared. Reading God's word whenever angels appeared they would always start saying, 'fear not'. I use to wonder why anybody would be afraid of an angel. No I shudder to think of having an experience like that myself. Not that it wouldn’t be an honor or exciting, just fearful, at first anyway. When I think of miracles, and angels, and spiritual things, I realize that you God made us out of dust with a breath. And then I realize that you Lord, can take in a deep breath and just as quickly we can all be dust again. But you Lord, chose not to do that. You God gave us another chance; everyone who is alive has another chance. My prayer Lord is to show me, guide me, lay out the path, open the door, let me walk through and keep my eyes on you Lord! Let my hands be yours! My feet yours! My mouth yours! My brain yours! My pen yours!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Day #13

The Power of Love John 13:34-35 and John 15:9-17 The power of love is a strong power. It's a power that is stronger than any superpower known to mankind. Unfortunately it's not as easy to be found as one might hope. This world of ours is so full of hate and bitterness that even in the best surroundings it's hard to keep that power of Love alive. But, then again life is full of surprises. Today my daughter went to the laundry mat to wash a large blanket that wouldn’t fit in our washing machine. She was short a quarter and called me in a quandary on what to do. She had already put the soap, blanket, and all the money she had into the machine. Being on the other end of the phone, I was trying to tell her she needed to come home to get more money. Such a small thing, but I hear her voice full of excitement when I hear "awe, thank you! That was nice, thank you!" Somebody had given her a quarter and that little act of kindness filled my daughter with hope and love. Love doesn't have to be anything large, in fact the little things we do are sometimes the largest vessels of love we can show. When we show love, we show God. When we fail to love we fail to show God. In fact, in my opinion, as a child of God, if we fail to show love, we do more harm to the witness of God than anything.

Day #12

The Blessings of Obedience John 14:15-23 and Matthew 7:21-27 Obedience is a bad word in our world today. Obedience is a negative word, a word that shows weakness, unhappiness, and control. A child cannot be taught to be obedience without the parent or teacher being accused of abuse. A wife cannot be expected to be obedient without being accused of having a controlling or abusive husband. A man cannot be expected to be obedient without being accused of being a weakling, controlled, or being walked over. So when we hear that God expects obedience, how can we expect our world to embrace this teaching? The problem is the understanding of the word 'obedience' in the way God expects it. God is not a controlling God, we would still be living in the Garden of Eden like robots doing and saying exactly what God wanted us to do or say. Or we would not exist. God has so much for us, so much more than any of us can even comprehend. All He wants is for us to Love. Love Him, His Son, each other. I speak to myself when I ask, what is so hard about being obedient to God? The Holy One! The One who created me, you, our world, our existence. Really, what is so hard about that?


Surrendered Lives Romans 12:1-2 and 1 John 3:16 The prayer guide tells about people who had a heart for slaves in another country. They felt led to go and share the truth with the slaves. They found out that the slave owners would not allow them to preach the gospel to the slaves. So they devised a plan that they would sell themselves as slaves to live among them and share Christ. The Count wouldn’t allow it saying it was too high a price for them to pay. They insisted it was what God wanted them to do. After prayer they felt led and went only to find they were allowed to share without selling themselves. Isn’t this what we've learned all these years as Christians? This is what we've taught our kids. But do I live it? Really? I have a spoiled comfortable life. Yes I would like to believe I'd do anything for God. And yes I've crept out of my comfort zone before. But now in my aging life I'm settling more and more in my comfort zone. Lord, fill me again with your zest and excitement and urgency to share you with others! Again I pray for your wisdom, knowledge, and guidance along with support, encouragement, and motivation to do your will! I'm yours! Take me! Use me!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Day #10

Revelation 2:1-5 Return to your first Love. It's so easy to get involved with church, volunteer work, helping others, doing what's right. I remember when our children were young and we were so involved in church, that was our life. We ate, breathed, and slept church. And there's nothing wrong with that. In fact I think it's an excellent way to raise a family, especially in this world of ours. Where the problem comes in is when our First Love is lost in all of the involvement, things to do, places to go. Yes, I do admit that saying no sometimes is best. I've learned that listening to God means sometimes saying no. And sometimes, ummm, most of the time, even God's children don't seem to understand when you have to tell them no. I remember one time a member of a church was asked to work in the nursery. This member answered, I'll need to pray about it and I will let you know. The remark was, why would you need to pray about that? We need nursery workers, you were asked, so the answer should be yes. Well, I can't really agree with that, simply because if we are truly in Love with God we will want a relationship with Him. And in a strong loving relationship we will want to do what God's wants of us. Sometimes we know immediately, but sometimes we need to pray and wait for an answer. All this to say, we as God's children, doing God's work, can lose our first love. I guess when we get an attitude about doing God's work we need to return to our First Love!

Day #9

Matthew 5:23-24, Mark 11:25 Reconcile Broken Relationships. So I'm trying to figure out Matthew 5:23, 24 where it says if somebody has anything against you-go take care of it. The devotion says that means if you've wronged anybody go ask for forgiveness and make restitution if needed. And yes, that makes sense. My confusion comes in when somebody has a problem with you even if you've done nothing wrong, or don't know that you've done anything wrong. Falsely accused, or refused to forgive you when you've asked and made restitution. What do you do in that case? I guess the only answer to this is to pray for God to give wisdom, open the eyes to see, and then follow through with asking forgiveness and restitution. I always seem to over think things. I need to just trust in God, open my heart in His presence, and give my all to Him!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Day #8

Luke 24:45-49, Acts 1:1-8, Ephesians 5:18 Be Filled with the Spirit. Goes along with yesterday, in order to be filled with the Spirit you need to be empty of the ugly stuff. I find it interesting for some reason that before Jesus returned to Heaven, he told His followers to wait for the filling of the Holy Spirit. It was 40 days later before they were filled. I don't know why it intrigues me, but they weren't filled immediately, but 40 days later. Another interesting verse I found in this days devotion, 2 Chronicles 16:9 "The eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to show Himself strong for those whose hearts are completely His." Now I just recently read through the entire books of Chronicles and I don't remember this. But that doesn't surprise me a bit. When I read the personal questions in this day's readings I'm to ask myself if I'm empty or not and to ask God to cleanse me and the Spirit to fill me. I want this so bad, but I ashamed to say I do hesitate. Not because I don't want to do Gods work, oh no. I really do, my heart’s desire is to. It's because I'm afraid. I'm afraid that if I open up and expose my heart that I'll be smacked upside the head and then I'll close up and layer another layer of armor over my heart. I say this because it's happened before and I'm just not strong enough to handle the enemy. So I'm taking a huge breath and asking God to take all of me, cleanse me squeaky clean, Overflow me with the Holy Spirit, and then hold on to me tight! Pull me through the smuck, the uglies, over to the other side where it's peaceful, incomparable, and where nothing else matters but your Glory! Be with and in me so I will respond to others in words, actions, attitude, and spirit that's without guilt, swaying, nor second thoughts, but know that it's all from you, not me, not satan, but you! Breathe...thank you Lord! I give you all the praise and Glory!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Day #7

2Corinthians 13:5, 2 Corinthians 5:17, Galatians 5:19-25 What is the evidence? Hmmm. Test myself to see if I am in the faith...The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual, impurity and, idolatry and, not really, aggravated, disappointed maybe, frustrated, but not hatred, discord...mmm...sometimes, times, fits of rage...ummm...once in a great moon, selfish ambition...uuuu...might think about it, but dismiss it, dissensions...ouch...more than I want to admit,, and times; drunkenness...nope, orgies...nope, and the So these are the things of the flesh. I'm embarrassed to have to admit to some of this. I wish I could say I don't do any of it, but unfortunately there is some of this inside of me. These fleshly things need to be replaced with the fruit of the Spirit, love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The thing is, we as humans cannot replace our fleshly acts with these spiritual fruits by ourselves. We must be a child of God, living in the Spirit allowing the Holy Spirit to cleanse us and replace our fleshly acts with these fruits of the Spirit. Too many times I think we are told that we need to replace these ourselves. I think that is so dangerous because of many reasons. One, we just can't do it and we will fail and fall into depression. Two, we may be able to pull it off for a time and become prideful and conceited before we fall even harder bringer others with us. Three, we fail to depend on God and let God take us, use us, hold us. Well, I kind of went out on a limb on this blog with some personal ideas and opinions. But most importantly, if you are reading this and you do not know Jesus as your personal savior, pray right now to receive Him. He loves you as you are. You don't have to be good enough for Jesus, because, well, none of us are. God sent His Son on this earth to live as a man, suffer, die, and then come back to life. He did that for you and me. He did that because we messed up and He Loves us so much He's given us another chance to live eternity with Him. It's this simple, we all die. There is a Heaven and a hell. When we die we go to one of the two places. We all are doomed to hell because of our sin, Adam and Eve being kicked out of the Garden of Eden, the perfect place given to us from the start but then we, mankind, Adam and Eve messed everything up. So yes, we are all doomed to go hell. But, because of God's Love for us, He has given us another chance, Jesus! We have a choice, God doesn't make us choose. And God doesn't doom us to hell, we do that all by ourselves! Oh boy am I on a soap box tonight! Well, I'll call it quits for now. If I've totally confused you, just comment. I'd be glad to answer any questions I can, if I can.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Day #6

Proverbs 28:13 Confession I find that one of the hardest things to do is to ask God to show me my blind spots. To show me the un-confessed sin in my heart. I hate it because inevitably there is sin, even if I don't want to admit it. Take for instance, road rage...:/ I consider myself a pretty calm, easy going, laid back sort of person. It usually takes quite a bit to upset me, or just the right button to push. I remember one time I was on my way to work. I was listening to the Christian Radio Station, enjoying, worshiping, singing God's praises. Yes, I said praising God, when all of the sudden somebody cut me off. Boy I tell you out of my "Heavenly Worship Mood" came an ugly attitude shouting what are you doing stupid? I surprised myself with the outburst. God used that moment to teach me how ugly my insides are, without Him. This morning after my quiet time I grudgingly prayed the prayer of God to reveal to me my un-confessed sin. He showed me my pride, as I didn't want to do a simple polite thing. My rotten attitude, again during traffic when a car pulled out in front of me. Actually, this morning twice did I have a road type of testing. The first was a taxi behind me honking his horn at me to make a right on red, when the sign clearly says no right turn on red. I held my cool, pointed to the sign and jestered (a friendly one at that.) I couldn't turn. My attitude was cool to moderate, and no name calling or anger. I was feeling pretty prideful, there it is pride! Yes, it wasn't a few blocks later that I was making a left on a green left arrow when a car pulled out in front of me making a right on red. (Isn't God clever?) Well, my anger rose to the top of my head and I laid on the horn, pressed the gas, giving the other driver a look of "I dare you!" Yes, some Christian attitude hugh? So yes, I confess my pride and ask God to forgive me and cleanse me of it, filling me with the Holy Spirit that I be made pure and give God the Glory in everything. That I remember to keep my eyes on Jesus always!

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Day #5

Isaiah 40:1-5 So why does God have us here in Martinsville? Why did He bring us here? Why did He not let us leave when we tried to? Why did He give me details of JVR over 10 years ago and still nothing? Those questions lurk in my brain every once in a while. But then you answer me, again, so patiently. Thank you Lord for bringing me back to prayer, the very foundation, basis of a relationship and obedience to you Lord. Today's readings talks to me about my need to be serious about prayer for Martinsville and everybody JVR-the Novel will touch. So yes prayer for Martinsville and everything, every living soul that is touched or touches JVR-the Novel here is my prayer for you: 1) Bring conviction to all in Martinsville and all who read and hear about any part of JVR-the Novel that they will put away sin and doubtful habits. That you Lord will direct my pen, word, and witness to this in all I do. 2) I pray that so many people will come to faith in you Christ, that Martinsville and all that are touched by JVR-the Novel will be changed for good for God's Glory. That JVR-the Novel will be known as the life changing book for Gods Glory for communities at a time. 3) Bring me to the next level in your Ministry JVR, to write the blog, book, website, whatever that next step will be-for Your Glory not mine!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Day #4

Making the Gospel Attractive Titus 2:9-10 and 1 Peter 2:11-12 Wow! Does this one hit home. Everybody is watching me! My family, children, strangers, co-workers, everybody. How do I respond to my husband when I've had a hard day? How do I react when somebody cuts my off in traffic or walks in front of me at the grocery store when I'm trying to pick up something. How do I answer the phone when a telemarker calls? Yeah, uhu, that's right! A telemarker is a person! Oh yes, and the sale people or peopel from other churches come to your door? Yes they are peopel too. I know, it's hard isn't it? After all we are all human, and nobody is perfect right? Like I said this is a hard one. We need to be attractive to others so people will want to know our God! Easier said than done! Again Lord, I need your help!

Day #3

God's Pattern for Revival and Awakening 2 Chronicles 7:13-14 Sorry I didn't get on the computer at all yesterday. I feel that God is bringing me back to where I need to be strong before I can move on. Prayer...I need to learn again to be in Prayer for every single thing in my life and trust God with every single thing in my life. Sometimes I feel that it will take the rest of my life to get this one. So much so that I have to wonder if I'll ever be able to be used by God. But I'm getting older and time is getting shorter and I know that God wants to use me because He showed me. So, here I am Lord! Lead me, talk to me, Use me! In my family, church, community, work, city, state, country, world.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Day #2

Zechariah 1:1-6 What did I just write about? How God speaks in themes in everything around me until I get what He's telling me? Today is about prayer, and wouldn't you know...I just received my lesson for children's church tomorrow and it's about prayer! :) Prayer, what is prayer? Communication with the Heavenly Father. I've always prayed, for as long as I can remember. Before I was a Christian I prayed. Growing up I prayed for school, tests, grades, friends,boys, just about everything. In fact, by time I was a teenager I prayed every night. I was afraid not to pray. I was afraid that if I forgot to pray, bad things would happen. As I became a Christian prayer became a totally new concept. Still talking to God, but now in a true relationship. A relationship that talks back to me too. It hasn't been too terribly long since I struggled with that. And I can't say that I totally understand today, but I have a much better understanding or should I say, peace about it. A few years ago, we had a Bible study at our church, Calvary Heights Baptist in Martinsville. The study was Experiencing God. This Bible study, it's been probably about 14 or 15 years ago, is the one of the best Bible studies I've ever been to. I learned so much. I learned how to listen to God, how to know what He is saying and when he speaks. How to keep my eyes, heart, spirit, mind open to everything around me. You see, God speaks to us in everything! Remember the Bible verse "even the rocks will praise Him"? Luke 19:40 and Isaiah 55:12,even the hills, mountains, trees, animals. They know God because God made them, God made us. So, even though I don't always remember that fact, and sometimes I forget to really listen...Thank you God for speaking to me right now as I write. Praying isn't just bowing your head and talking with God in your mind. Praying can be many different ways of communication. And wouldn't you know, my favorite way is Journaling. Yes many prayers are scattered throughout my journals, notes, blogs. :)