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Counting Blessings, Middle Ground and Outward Appearances

rainbowSeptember 19,2016 – Counting Blessings

Psalm 77: 11-12 I will remember the works of the Lord; surely I will remember thy wonders of old. I will meditate also of all thy work, and talk of they doings.

I can remember when my life was miserable. Nothing ever seemed to go right. When I was in an abusive situation for over 15 years, with no apparent way to get out, I used to ask God what horrible sin I had committed that I had to be punished they way I was. Of course he wasn’t punishing me, I was simply experiencing the results of my own mistakes.

When I finally was able to move from that situation, my eyes were opened to that very fact. It was when I started praying for God to help me get away from this person, when I truly put my faith in him because nothing I tried to do helped, he started opening doors for me, taking me through different steps and situations until I was completely free of this individual.

It was shortly after that, that a little girl asked me to come to church with her for the children’s Christmas program. I rode the bus with her, and immediately felt compelled to return there for weeks afterward, thinking the bus was just for the children. When I discovered that I could also ride the bus to Church, I was there for every service, and rode the van for evening services and bible study. I was so hungry for God, that for months there wasn’t a service that you didn’t find me crying at the altar.

When I look back over my past life, I can clearly see that even when I was in the valley for so long, there were times when God was blessing me, and so many times that he was protecting me. In December I did a post about this project. I was determined to look for something in each day to be thankful for, and even though it may take some time to get them all posted, I have truly realized just how much God has blessed me. Today I am thankful to be counting his blessings, although I know I will never be able to list them all.

bibleSeptember 20, 2016 – Middle Ground

Matthew 5:37 But let your statement be “ yes, yes” or “no,no”

I’ve attended several churches in my life. A few were so spirit filled that you could feel it the minute you walked through the door. Several I visited a few times, but never returned because it was more like to going to a rock concert or a sales convention than it was going to a church.

Over the years since I gave my hear to Jesus, I have had many conversations with people about Christ and about what it means to be a Christian. I’ve had these conversations with other Christians and non-believers as well. When it would come to certain subjects, I quickly found that many of Christian brothers and sisters stayed on middle ground.

It is true today, in many churches, people are so worried about offending someone, hurting some groups feelings, being accused of being judgmental or politically incorrect that they will agree with any person on any subject just to avoid arguments. This is so sad since God has been very specific in his word.

From the beginning, he has told us what is right and what is wrong, and just because we don’t believe that something is against God doesn’t mean that we dislike or detest the people doing it. Take the LGBT movement. God clearly states that unions should be one man and one woman, not two women or two men. But, many Christians will not stand their ground on this for fear of insulting someone, for fear of being rejected by their own “Social” group because they are not agreeing that everyone has the right to live how they want.

The word of God is clear, we are not to be lukewarm, we are to be either hot or cold, less he spew us out. I know this article may rub some people the wrong way, I apologize, but I try to follow the word of God, not the ideas of man. Today I am thankful that God is teaching me to stay away from that Middle Ground.

Jesus with children 2September 21, 2016 – Outward Appearances

It is good to be a Christian and know it, but it’s better to be a Christian and show it”

John 13:35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples , if ye have love one to another

It didn’t take me long after I started attending Church to realize that not everyone is the Christian that they claim to be. The churches are full of sinners, and that is the way it is supposed to be. All people, all Christians are sinners, but the difference is that a Christian, one who has accepted Christ and repented of his sins is supposed to be an example to others, not just at church but also out in the world.

I would never name any names, but early on in my new Christian life, I found that some of the people, who in all appearances at Church, who I thought were great examples of being a Christian, were completely different in the outside world. One lady, who was always willing to give me advice in Church, was just as mean and nasty to anyone she dealt with outside those four walls. I heard her and saw her, several times.

Another person, also one who was giving me Christian advice, turned out to be one of the biggest gossips around, and she wasn’t just talking about people outside the church,but the people inside also. She told me one day, that one of the members was sexually abusing his daughters, she could tell by the look on their faces. Then it came back to me, that she was saying that outside of Church I was a drunkard. My feelings were so hurt , but I never said anything to her about it, I simply didn’t know what to say.

What I’m trying to get at here is the fact that if you are a Christian, you are to be a Christian in and out of the church. Your outward appearance, your attitude is what people look at. They don’t care if you claim to be a Christian, they pay attention more to how you act outside of Church, what kind of person you seem to be inside and out than whether you go to church or not.

Today I am thankful that the Lord continuously works with me on being a Christian, inside and out, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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Burdens, Kindness, and One Day at a Time

older woman prayingSeptember 16, 2016 – Burdens

Psalm 55:22 Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.

Everyone, in every walk of life, Rich, poor, famous, unknown, or infamous have problems. For each individual, his/her problems may seem insurmountable. The poor look at the rich and wonder, what kind of problems could they have, they have enough money to do or buy whatever they need, whatever they want. They don’t know what it is like to go hungry, to be homeless, to be forgotten.

While this may seem true to so many unfortunate people, if you ask someone who was poor and became rich, they would probably tell you they preferred being poor, life was much simpler. Everyone suffers from illness, and while the poor are trying to find their next meal, the next place they will lay their head, some of the rich are dealing with debilitating diseases or mental illness, or they are being hounded by so many business problems, they don’t know what to do with themselves.

The fact remains that we are all children of God and love us all the same. We are each uniquely made and just as uniquely precious to him. He hears all of our prayers, not just those of the poor and needy, but those of the rich and famous also. What might be a problem for you, might not be a problem for someone else, and what might be a problem to someone may mean nothing to you.

Jesus said he would take our burdens upon him. He said he would carry our load, but you have to believe first that he is the son of God, and secondly that he can forgive your sins. Then you have to believe that he is able and willing to do as he says. Today I am thankful that I can place my burdens on his shoulders.

Jesus 002

Drawing of Angels taking Jesus off the cross by Richard Carter

September 17, 2016 – Kindness

Colossians 3:12 Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience

There was a time in my life that I wasn’t very kind to people. I was in such a horrible situation, that the only way I believed I could survive was to be coldhearted. I didn’t have time to think about the problems or cares of others, all I could think about was the survival of my son and myself, and because of the oppressive person I was with, I believed being this way was necessary.

When God intervened and moved from that situation, he showed me who I really was. I was they type of person who wanted to help others, who really cared about those that were going through tough times and needed the kindness of someone. Don’t get me wrong, I am not patting myself on the back, I just came to realize, through the kindness of others, that I wasn’t meant to be an uncaring individual.

Sometimes just one act of kindness can make a persons day. They may be depressed, anxious, angry or hurting and just smiling at them, holding a door open for them, paying for their meal, or just starting a conversation with them could be the band-aid they needed for that day.

When I think about the kindness others have shown me over the years, I am totally amazed at how many giving and caring people there are. The world is a horrible place right now, filled with violence and hatred, but there are still many out there that truly care about their fellow man. Today I am thankful that the Lord is teaching me to always be kind and for the kindness of others around me.

turtle speed limitSeptember 18, 2016 – One Day at a Time

Matthew 6:34 – Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Things were so much simpler when I was a child. Families spent time together each day at home. Everything that was of any importance centered on the home life. Meals together, activities, family gatherings, holidays and church took up enough time that no one was bored or had to seek enjoyment or activities elsewhere.

Now we live in such a fast paced world, that it often seems like our heads are always spinning. The family unit is not what it used to be. Children are absent from the evening meal because of after school activities or hanging out with friends. Parents are busy with work or socializing and often leave the kids to fend for themselves at dinner time.

Stay at home moms not only have the responsibility of taking care of the house, but the shopping, paying the bills, the laundry, after school activities and playing chauffeur to the kids give them very little time for peace and quiet.

When I was still in the workforce, I was up at 5:00, out the door by 6:30 and at work on the road by 7:00. Most days I had to stop at the store on the way home, see to dinner, laundry and on Wednesday night off to church. When I was living with my son and his family, I often had the care of the kids for a few hours a day, chauffeured my son and his wife where they had to go and still made it to church three times a week.

When I brought my step-father to live with me for awhile, I had to be on the road by 7, drop him off at the senior center, pick him back up, maybe stop at the store, make dinner and then finish up my work on the computer. Often there were times I had to take him to appointments at the VA Clinic or the VA hospital in the city.

When I became disabled things slowed down for awhile. Because of medical and physical problems I can make no long term plans. There are the doctor visits, shopping, paying bills and the occasional trip to the thrift store, but because there are often messed up days spent in the ER, we make no permanent plans. Today I am thankful that the lord has taught me to take it one day at a time.

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Looking Up, Divine Intervention, and Keeping Silent

September 13, 2012 – Looking Up

cloduy skyPsalm 123:1 To You I lift up my eyes, O You who are enthroned in the heavens

The world is such a disaster, more now than ever. Satan has been sowing his wickedness around the globe for thousands of years, trying in vain, to take over the very children of god. Through all his acts of violence, degradation, immorality, sexual perversion, lies and misleading,he gathers more to his cause everyday.

The sad part about it is that many who fall into these traps that he has set, don’t even realize just how doomed they are. In turning away from their God and worshiping all the material and pleasurable ideas he has established on this earth, they are clearly taking a path to hell.

It is also a great time of evangelism. More and more, each day are coming to know Christ . More and more are changing their lives, reaching out to others and proclaiming the message of the one true God, Jesus Christ.

There is no end to the suffering in this world, world wide. Hunger, violence, disease, wars, slavery, oppression and so much more are rampant in every part of the world. Countries such as ours, who once served as a light to others, have slipped down the ladder by being complacent and at times obeisant to groups who would wipe out our history and our Christian beliefs.

Every day there are murders, robberies, rapes, assaults and drug related crimes. The numbers climb higher by the hours. But, there is also the fact that terrorists are quickly infiltrating our country and the homes and countries of others, burning churches, setting off bombs and executing Christians world wide.

In all that is going on we have but one hope, Jesus the Christ. It is now, more than ever that we should be turning eyes to him. Today I am thankful that I can continue Looking up to Christ.

Hands holding the worldSeptember 14, 2016 – Divine Intervention

1 Corinthians 2:9-10 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him

I can’t count the times that I have heard people say “I’m lucky, I’m unlucky or it was just dumb luck”. It’s just a toss of the coin, a flip of the cards, a spin of the wheel that changed my luck. There is no such thing as luck, only God, but there are so many that actually believe In “Luck”, even some Christians.

People, who after being saved from a horrible accident, or being healed from a severe disease, or saved from a crime want to attribute all to luck. They don’t want to give credit where credit is due. They don’t want to admit that maybe they were the recipients of Gods intervention.

I can think of so many times that I was spared from disaster and I know that it was God’s divine intervention that saved me. Too many times I have been saved, by seconds from a car accident that I know it was God. I’ve driven through hurricanes and came out unscathed. I’ve had guns pointed at my head but drove away safe, and all because God intervened in those circumstance for me. Today I am thankful for Gods Divine Intervention.

Christ of the Ozarks

Christ of the Ozarks, Eureka Springs, Arkansas

September 15, 2016 – Keeping Silent

Proverbs 17: 27-28 He that hath knowledge spareth his words and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit Even a fool, when he holdeth his peace, is counted wise: and that shutteth his lips is esteemed a man of understanding

Do you have a relative, friend, or co-worker who likes to control the conversation. They talk so fast and so loud that you can’t get a word in edgewise and you soon find yourself following their example to just get a few words in? I do. There are two of them, who when you start talking, ramble on for a hour about their problems, their day, their family etc.

They tend to get into every minute detail of a conversation or event that you soon start thinking of ways to end the conversation. It’s gets boring and it can become aggravating. I’ve experienced this many times and actually had to be a little rude to be able to end the conversation. It was brought to my attention one time, that I was getting louder and talking faster, trying to get a word in on a conversation.

I’ve stepped back from that with these two people, trying to understand that maybe they haven’t had anyone else to talk to for awhile and could be very lonely, or they have so much going on in their lives that they are overwhelmed and need to get it off their chest.

I have quickly learned that by being silent, trying to actually listen to what they are saying, I can learn a lot about their situation, and it is starting to work. A couple times now they have slowed down, realizing I hadn’t tried to say anything, and actually asked if I was still on the line. By actually listening to them, instead of thinking what I have to say is more important, I am learning a lot about them, and a lot about their situation. Today I am thankful that God is teaching me when it is time to be silent.

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He’s Under my Feet

Legs in SPA

I know that I am really behind on posting. I actually had six articles that I had been working on, had them all laid out to finish off today only to find that my word program did not save them. I rewrote them all, all six earlier this afternoon, went to save them, actually saved them twice but when I just went in to post them on the site, they, too are gone.

This is very disappointing. It would be enough to make me walk away, but I won’t. Evidently Satan doesn’t like what I am doing and is trying to discourage me from continuing. Guess what !!!!! That is not going to happen. Until I find out what is wrong with my word program, I will be copying and pasting them to site right away and saving them in draft there until I have tweaked them to my satisfaction.

It will take a few days to go back and find my titles and the verses I had to go with them, but I will not be deterred. I will get them up here and I will continue to write them, I just may have to save them a different way.

Be Blessed and Believe!!

Satan is under my feet and that is where he will stay !!!!!!!!

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Natural Cures,Good Examples, and Humor

fruits and veggiesSeptember 10, 2016 – Natural Cures

Psalm 51:7Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.

Isaiah 38:21For Isaiah had said, Let them take a lump of figs, and lay [it] for a plaster upon the boil, and he shall recover.

All through the bible we read different examples of the usage of herbs for medicine. We also read about dietary restrictions that the lord placed upon the children of Israel. They were to eat mostly organic food that was provided by the trees, bushes and plants that God created. They were also to abstain from certain meats and fish such as pork, catfish and eels, any kind of fish without scales. They were told not to eat animals like the Emu or Ostrich.

You don’t read much in the bible about diseases and illnesses unless it is a plague that God sends. For the most part, he knew which foods would be the best for the people to eat to keep them healthy. The worst diseases listed in the bible are Leprosy or a Plague of Boils. Today we ingest just about everything that grows, animal or plant life. We also have processed our foods to the point where many of them have no nutritional value or contain so many additives and preservatives that they actually harm our bodies.

I’ve been going the rounds with the doctors lately over my feet. One doctor says Gout while another doctor say Turf Toe. One doctor hands out prescriptions that I can’t take and another says lets not add anymore chemicals to your body.

I am a researcher. That is what I did for almost 12 years with one company and I still do a lot of research on my own. I researched the Gout and the Turf Toe and just Arthritis in General. Then I went on a hunt for natural foods and herbs that treat these problems.

The toe still hurts occasionally but the redness and swelling are gone, in fact almost all the swelling in the foot has dissipated except for a small area around the back inside of the left ankle. I’ve been drinking apple cider vinegar and water twice a day. I take a vitamin “C” supplement, “Black Cherry” extract and “Celery Seed extract. The upside to this is that there are no chemicals going into my body and there are no adverse side effects.

I’m getting older and my body is wearing down. I have arthritis in several different areas and I have accepted that I will have to deal with my ailments for the rest of my life, but today I am thankful that there are still natural cures, natural remedies that can be used to help with just about every ailment there is.

common senseSeptember 11, 2016 – Good Examples

John 3:15 For I have given you an example, that ye should do as I have done to you

Children learn mostly from their parents as they grow up. They take with them the attitudes, thinking and actions that they have seen in their parents. This becomes a part of who they are. Sadly there are so many parents that don’t understand this. They raise their children on the basis of “Do as I say, not as I do” and expect them to grow up under this rule.

If a parent is drinking, doing drugs or involved in other unsavory behavior, the child sees this and may grow up thinking “If mom or dad did it, then it is ok”. If children grow up in a home where the parents argue all the time or there is physical abuse, then they go out into life assuming this is the way that everyone lives.

Being an example to your children is important. Being an example to everyone around you is just as important. If you want them raised as a Christian with a good moral core, then show them a household full of love, respect, kindness and mercy, not hatred, dishonesty and disrespect. Teach them about Christ and act as much like him as you can, take them to church so they can learn more, so they can be influenced by other “good” Christians, and do this everywhere you go. Remember that they mimick what they say and here, but others may also do the same.

I’ve had many people in my life that set examples. Some bad, some very bad, and some really, really good ones. Today I am thankful for the ones who set a good example for me to follow and I pray that I can always be a good example to others by the way I live.

laughterSeptember 12, 2016 – Humor

Proverbs 17:22 A merry Heart doeth good like a medicine; but a broken spirit drieth the bones

There are so many myths that have been passed down through the ages about the number of muscles it takes to smile or frown. One such saying was published in the Encyclopedia of 7700 illustrations in 1979 claiming it took 72 muscles to frown but only 17 muscles to smile. While scientists have never actually tested this, it has been proven that laughter is healthy for you.

I love to laugh. Laughter makes my day so much brighter. Where would our world be today if we didn’t have humor in it. Of course there are some types of humor that I feel shouldn’t even be considered humor, such as the cartoons that come out about candidates during an election year., but good humor, the good, clean kind that triggers a good belly laugh can lift your spirits high on a doldrum day.

The following paragraph is from an article in the Huffington Post dated 1/ 14/ 2014 “An old Yiddish proverb says, “What soap is to the body, laughter is to the soul.” Everyone knows that laughter makes you feel good and puts you in high spirits, but did you also know that laughter actually causes physiological responses that protect the body from disease and help your vital organs repair themselves? A good laugh can be compared to a mild workout, as it exercises the muscles, gets the blood flowing, decreases blood pressure and stress hormones, improves sleep patterns and boosts the immune system. Furthermore, a study by the John Hopkins University Medical School showed that humor and laughter can also improve memory and mental performance. Yet despite the fact that laughter has so many benefits, far too many of us forget to even crack a smile every once in a while, let alone laugh”

Today I am thankful for the humor that makes us laugh.

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Yard Sales, Trees, Pictures and Choices

junkSeptember 6, 2016 – Yard Sales

I have known people that would never think of buying something used, but other than electronics, just about everything I have ever had was used. When most kids were being taken to Sears, K-Mart or Walmart for new school clothes, I was being taken to Good Will, the Salvation Army, or watching my mom take apart one of her dresses to make me something new.

Our little town has a tradition. Twice during the summer they hold a “City Wide” garage sale. Some of the people in town actually hold a yard sale every weekend. I have always found great items at these sales at prices I can afford. For example, I own 2 Vera Wang blouses, brand new and only paid about a buck for each. I own a well preserved, antique couch that I only paid 20.00 for.

All of the furniture in my house, other than the washer and dryer are used items. That includes the stove, the refrigerator, beds, tables, chairs, lamps etc. Each one that I have was bought from a thrift store or a yard sale. They all came from good, clean homes. In a way, I am glad that these people have yard sales for not only are they making a few extra bucks, they are helping people like me who cannot afford to buy items brand new. Today I am thankful for yard sales. “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”. (Williams and Robert Chambers Journal of Popular Literature, Science and Arts 1879)

starry skiesSeptember 7, 2016 – Trees

Have you ever really thought about trees? There are thousands of species, each with their own colored bark and leaves, each with different types of wood, growing in different places all over the world. Trees are truly one of Gods gifts to mankind, for it was from trees that papyrus was formed to hold the written word, and it was from trees that huts were built to live in, and it was from trees that carts were made to haul our belongings.

Trees were used to make fences, furniture, dishes, utensils, farming equipment and paper. It was trees that formed our first bridges, that gave us a shady place to rest and provided homes to millions of insects and birds. It was a tree that made the first wheel, that helped build the first plane, the first boat, the first structured churches and schools.

From trees we have harvested a variety of nuts and fruits and the bark, roots and leaves of many trees have been used for medicinal purposes. Trees also protect us from wind and rain, shade our house, decorate our yards and have held a child’s first swing. Today I am thankful for trees.

Jesus with children 2September 8, 2016 – Pictures

A picture is worth a thousand words” was a quote used by Newspaper editor Tess Flanders in 1911. It has been used ever since then by millions of people. When you look at the picture, you don’t need to be told what is going on, the camera catches it all. Families get professional photographers to take a family picture several times in a life time, and the facial expressions give you an insight to what each person may be feeling. Maybe that is where “say cheese” came from, because it would cause the person to look like they are smiling.

With today’s advances in technology, with cameras that can catch the bat of an eye, with video cameras that can catch everything that is happening instantly, the pictures that flash across our screen when watching the news are sometimes violent, saddening, and horrifying. Events unfold in front of us exactly as they are being played out, nothing is hidden unless the video is edited before it is shown.

I used to always carry a small, disposable camera with me. I have graduated to a larger, more advanced camera that I can download to my computer. With these kind of cameras, you can keep your most precious pictures on a storage device or your phone and share them anywhere you go, or you can choose to print out copies to send to family and friends.

I love to take pictures of nature, the trees, flowers, forest, birds, possums, rabbits and insects. I like to catch them in their natural habitat, doing what they do naturally everyday in their quest for survival. I also take pictures of my family, sometimes sharing them on social media, and I enjoy looking at the pictures others post.

My grandchildren all live in other states so when their parents or they, themselves, post a picture, I save it, because that is the only way I will have current pictures of them. But, there are other types of pictures, those that have been drawn or painted by a person. I find many of these enjoyable. I have, on my wall, a set of pictures of a covered bridge and a barn. I have often stared at them for some time, looking at the vibrant colors, the brush strokes, the way everything was organized.

I often wonder what it would have been like if they could have taken pictures back in the days of the bible. Today I am thankful for pictures.

older woman prayingSeptember 9, 2016 – Choices

God created us with a free will. This means that we can make decisions on our own. Of course, his plan was to teach us how to make the right choices, but when his own angels rebelled, it wasn’t long before man started making the wrong choices. It happened all the way back near the beginning when Eve made the choice to eat the forbidden fruit and share it with Adam.

Since then, mankind has had a hard time making the right choices. If mankind had stayed with the rules and regulations that God gave him, there probably would never have been any wars, murderers, rapists, thieves or the like. Everyone would have enjoyed a serene, quiet, peaceful long life.

Humans have the habit of letting others help them make their choices. It only takes one drug pusher to convince several others to try his drugs. It only takes one thief to convince some of his friends that it is alright to steal and only takes so many stories about murderers to convince others it is alright to murder.

But, given that free will, we have the ability to make the right choices. If we stop to look at something, from every angle, with forethought, we can and will make good choices. We can choose to be kind, helpful, loving and honest. We can choose to leave the possessions of others alone and work for what we want, we can choose to let God take away our anger instead of hurting or murdering someone who has wronged us.

Today I am thankful that God has taught me to talk to him when I have hard choices to make.

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Busy Days, Accomplishments, Children and Sisters

shoppingSeptember 2, 2016 – Busy Days

I used to dream about being retired. I would be able to take naps when I wanted, sleep in late in the morning, be lazy when I wanted and just wile away the hours doing what I pleased. Oh, how wrong I was. It seems that I am busier than ever. Doctors appointments, store runs, ER visits and the like seem to take up a lot of hours each week, and oh, then the first week of the month running around paying the bills is just crazy.

I’ve never been a lazy person. I have always worked and at most jobs I would work overtime when it was allowed, along with having the grand-kids on weekends, Church on Sunday, house cleaning and shopping on Saturday. There weren’t many free moments in my day.

When I stop and think about, busy days aren’t all that bad. They help me to get some exercise that I wouldn’t normally get, I get out and associate with other people, I get things done and it keeps my mind active. Today I am thankful for busy days.

Proverbs 20:13 Do not love sleep or you will become poor, Open your eyes and you will be satisfied with food..

awardSeptember 3, 2016 – Accomplishments

It seems to me today, that the upcoming generation doesn’t understand working for the things you want. I have heard teens complaining because their parents can’t or won’t get them the latest phones, computers, i Pads, i Pods and the like. I read an article not long ago where a survey was done among a vast amount of high school students getting ready to graduate. The majority didn’t think that they should have to work for a living.

I don’t know about anyone else in my age group, but I was taught from the beginning, if I wanted something and wanted it bad enough it was worth working for. My parents weren’t rich, but they were willing to help get certain items if I took the initiative to work for them. It might mean babysitting so they can have a night out, or doing extra chores. Then when I was old enough, I earned my own money by babysitting or cleaning someone’s house.

When I became an adult, I had to work, and when I had my son I had to work harder to insure that we had what we needed and some of what we wanted. Today I am disabled and cannot work, but I can still do some things around the house. Days that are good, when I can actually accomplish something make me feel good. It always feels better when I can do something on my own. Today I am thankful for those days when I can actually accomplish something.

Proverbs 19:21 Many are the plans in the mind of man, but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand

Jesus with children 2September 4, 2016 – Children

There is a meme that circulates around Social Media that goes something like this “It doesn’t matter how big and bad you think you are, when a 3 year old gives you a toy phone, you answer it.” John says in chapter 16:21 that When a woman is giving birth, she has sorrow because her hour has come, but when she has delivered the baby, she no longer remembers the anguish, for joy that a human being has been born into the world.”, and many mothers will attest to this.

When my son was born, I didn’t remember the 34 hours I was in labor and I didn’t care how long it would take me to heal, all I cared about was this tiny little boy laying in my arms. When my grand kids were born and I held them for the first time, I can’t even describe the joy that I felt.

Children don’t come into this world filled with prejudice, selfishness, hatred, or evil thoughts. They are innocent and full of love. They don’t see skin color, hair color, eye color, scars, disabilities, overweight or too skinny, they see the heart.

Sadly, as they grow, it is the people around them, the parents, grandparents, older siblings, teachers and other adults in their life that teach them prejudices, hatred, and dishonesty. It is the people around them that surround them with all of these negative feelings.

Recently I had a chance to spend the day with a little 3 year old boy. At first he wouldn’t come near me but within ten minutes I was his best friend. We played on the couch while his parents talked to his grand father. He had me pole the pillows on top of him so he could hide, then we went through and talked about all the designs on those pillows. Later we took a trip through the house looking for a pirate.

How precious, how enjoyable it was to see the world through the eyes of a 3 year old. To see something interesting and new around every corner, to seek an adventure in just an adjoining room and hear his giggles and laughter. It lifted my spirits and made my heart swell. Most of my grand children are in their teens so when I get to spend time with a small child like this, I feel doubly blessed. Today I am thankful for all the children that have been in my life.

Matthew 18:3 I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

sistersSeptember 5, 2016 – Sisters

My family was torn apart when we girls were just little children. My older sister was 9, I was 7 and my little sister was 2. My mother became very ill, a nervous breakdown and was hospitalized. We spent the next 6 years in Foster care.

After I graduated High School, my mother and step-father took my little sister, my half sister and my half brother and moved to Mexico. Several months later, my older sister and her husband moved to Texas. Once during the next 18 years, my younger sister came to visit but I didn’t see my older sister for 33 years.

Several years ago my older sister decided to come and visit. She was having problems at home and needed to get away for awhile. Soon afterward, she came to live with me. Eventually she went back to Arizona, but a few years later she moved back with me. It sounds a little like a broken record, because she eventually went back again, only to move to this little town when I did, and yes she is back in Arizona.

I now live only ten miles from my little sister and I keep in contact with my older sister. I can understand why she went back for two of her sons and all of her grand-kids live there. Sometimes there are bonds formed in families that are unbreakable, and I would have to say that is true for my sisters and myself. Of course we have had our squabbles, our differences and even though we didn’t have a lot of time together growing up, we have developed a super strong bond between the three of us and I love them with all of my heart. Today I am thankful for my sisters.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices in truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.