A Bumpy Ride

Good evening friends. These past two weeks have definitely been a bumpy ride for a lot of us, with some of us going down roads we really were not ready to go down. But God reminds us that even though we can not see Him and sometimes can not feel Him, we have assured faith that He is there walking with us.

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It is faith and God’s love that fills us with Hope.
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We know that while we suffer on this earth, God himself will restore us and bring us peace.
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God will restore you and make you feel His strength and bring you peace and comfort…regardless of your deepest pain.
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I leave you with this prayer of restoration, comfort and peace. Hold fast to God’s hand and He will carry you when you can no longer stand.
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And I remind you as always of the majestic gift of kindness. Even when we think we have nothing left to give, a gentle smile may be the only kind thing that person has seen that day. Always be kind.
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A Little Nighttime Encouragement

With our hectic lives that we live, zooming here to there or staying closed off in our homes, we all need a little encouragement that everything will be okay…eventually. While no one can guarantee that, I can guarantee this…you are truly loved by God and I share this with you as a little encouragement to help keep you going.

To be encouraged is to be filled with courage, to face life as it moves around us. Let’s face it, there are many things we come upon that fill us with fear and discouragement, like… Is this what I need to do, am I good enough to get it done, did I do it right according to whomever, the list is endless…  but Jesus encourages us with His word as He reminds us that all discouragements that have ever made in this world… He has ultimately squashed…

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It is the enemy’s job to undermine out thinking, making us feel fear and uncertainty. While we are now in the middle of scary and uncertain times, I know for certain who really is in charge, God. While we do not understand His ways, we can understand His love. So let us snuggle up to Him as He gently gathers us in His loving arms for the evening. Let us relax in His tender mercies with the hope he grants us for restful sleep and encouragement for facing another day tomorrow.
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Have a blessed evening. And remember to be Kind. It is a true reflection of Love.
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Time for Christians to Pray

Good evening friends and welcome to a new month. My hope and prayer is June will be a more gentle and loving month than May seemed to be. We are jumping from the fire of Covid-19 to the frying pan of chaos right now in this country, a frying pan that has no business being used as its main focus is to divide and destroy. So much chaos, so much anger, so much fear and so much destruction even through the smaller towns. We will be under curfew until this meanness goes away and who knows how long that will take. In Davenport last night there were two deaths and 4 injuries. One death was innocent 21 year old bystander buying groceries for a friend at Walmart, such a waste.

In my devotion this morning from My Utmost for His Highest, Oswald made a profound statement that is so relevant for today’s mindset in the USA.

“God’s Spirit continually reveals to His children what human nature is like apart from His grace.” Oswald Chambers  
Read that again and understand its meaning. Without God’s control, the devil runs amuck.
 

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The chaos is so far out of control from the original reason of the anger and has swelled to an ideal by those whose purpose is to divide and destroy. It has turned into a chaotic dragon and in my opinion the church on its knees is the only hope of this dragon being lassoed so that God will come back in and control that dragon. And by church I don’t mean the Catholic church or the Baptist church or the Methodist church…I mean God’s church. Those who loved the Lord, His word and follow His teachings.
2 Chronicles 7:14 says if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
It is a fearful time but our faith in God proves who is ultimately in control.

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But we must do our part, we must remain strong. We are God’s church, His masterpiece of all things good.

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We can help spread God’s light to those who live in the darkness and those who do not understand the power of the darkness as it engulfs them into evil ways.

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So during this time of chaos, be strong in prayer and allow your light of Christ to shine brightly from you.

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And even in the midst of chaos, be kind when you can.
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Morning Encouragement

Good morning friends. Each morning as I read from my devotion book and the bible I try to follow that lesson I have read for that day. Today’s encouraging message is one that really speaks to me while we are in this time of uncertainty and I thought I would share my thoughts. I find it interesting that if we stop and listen, ignoring all the noise that goes around us daily, God’s scripture will open to us and start to make sense. His word never changes and never gets old and can encourage us differently each time we read it depending on what we are going through at the time.

Paul tell us in Colossians Chapter 2 how he personally struggled but that if we all come
together in love, the love and riches of Christ will be made know to us.

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While some of these treasure may come to us wrapped in the form of a trial, the trial itself is designed to shake us free from our perceived thoughts of how we think we are to be, to help understand His prepared path for you for that day. Although it can be a scary time, it is the key to the hidden treasures He has placed strategically along the way to richly bless us.

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God’s treasures also come in the form of many things we enjoy like sunshine, birds singing, colorful flowers, friendships and answered prayers. He has not abandoned this sin-wracked world, He is strongly present, in every sun rise, every flower, every smile you see and the kindness he shares with you that lifts you up so that you can share kindness with others to lift them up. My hope in sharing this with you today is that you are lifted up knowing He is there with you.

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And regardless of what is on your particular road of life, whether is be bright sunshine or  seemingly gray darkness, God never lets go of our hand and will walk safely with you so hold tight to His hand.

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May you have a richly treasured day and always try to share kindness. It may be the only kindness a person sees on any given day.
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Fears, Lies, Trust, Love & Peace

As we traverse these difficult times I am reminded of a passage in  Jeremiah, chapter 38, in the how trickery of people’s gossiping and how it can influence those who are weak in God’s teaching and begin to believe those lies. I see this same thing going on today with so much “he said/she said”, this one is lying, that one is lying. Who do we believe and who do we trust. So it is imperative we stay close to God, for He is who we can always trust. 

Jesus Calling devotion books reminds us this morning that God is not careless. He allows difficult times to come to equip us for other things in the future. I love the saying that “Sometimes God calms the storm and sometimes he allows the storms to rage but calms our hearts.”  This world is definitely in a storm but we must breathe in and relax in God and trust in His strength and counsel to keep us above water. So this morning let’s trust in His unfailing love.
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He is a mighty God and nothing is too difficult for Him. So do not fear from our seemed weakness. Lean on God’s possibilities.
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Our weakness is designed to show his strength, so don’t let your presumed limitations measure the wall that is before you. Stay connected to God and He will show you how to climb that wall.
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As we stay connected with God, we are encouraged by His love we for we know He is always walking with us.
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So just remember to talk with Him and then listen while he guides you through every challenging situation.
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As you feel the comfort of His love and peace, remember to share the peace and kindness with others. Now more than ever kindness is needed to spread across this world to bring us all a bit of peace.
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Trusting God in Crisis

Good morning friends. Hope you are doing well. Today looks to be a beautiful day, so lets see what God brings our way. I write this Words of Encouragement each morning for my church family to help lift their spirits through this time of trial where we are staying at home and thought today’s message may help others feel God’s peace.
 

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Trust...what a hard word. When I think of trust, I think of things that I am certain will benefit me or that I know fully what will happen. Today we are fighting over the trust of political issues, concern of trusting our own instincts over daily situations, trusting we will be safe going to the grocery store…and trusting that God sees all, knows all and loves all. And guess what…He does, He is our rock of trust with which to stand firm.

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I love some of the pictures I have seen on Facebook with Satan yelling at Jesus in how this pandemic closed the churches and Jesus quietly replies that the church is not the building but is in my people and that His church is ever strong. When we look around at how through technology we are spreading the love of Christ and how people who never bothered to pray before are now praying. The church is alive and well.

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God will use whatever situation we find ourselves in to accomplish his goal. He will continue to patiently wait to see what direction we chose at the fork in the road and then guide us to benefit us and His kingdom.

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Jesus Calling  devotion this morning reminds us that if we trust God…really trust God with our entire being, then nothing can separate us from His peace. This is how we foil evil, by growing in grace through the very adversities meant to bring us harm.

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So do not fear any day as it comes your way but relax in His sovereignty knowing that he is holding your hand and will bring good out of every situation you will encounter.

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As you begin to trust, remember to be kind to those who are still trying to trust.

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Strength of a Tea Bag

Today I am feeling a bit philosophical but really have no clue what that means. To me it means I have an analogy I would like to share. If you are a tea drinker, you will understand this analogy but if not, bear with me, maybe you will understand my rambling mind.

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We are all rambling of late, looking for ways to entertain ourselves, being jealous of those who get to go to work while being so grateful we don’t have to go out there. Its a conundrum.

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There are a myriad of postings on line concerning extroverts not being able to tolerate being stuck inside and how they are coping. I consider myself a “tween”. Definitely not an introvert but not a extrovert either. Maybe that is because at my age I have mellowed. But no, I think the real reason is because of the tea bag.

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When we are running full steam ahead with life, we forget who really is in control. Then  our tea bag gets into hot water giving us a false security in its strength. But once the tea bag is used it can no longer provide the strength we thought we had.

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What we don’t seem to realize is our strength is just as frail and porous as the paper around the tea bag. It is our deep weakness is our full strength, providing we tap into it. For when we finally give up our strength and admit our weakness, God then can be our strength. And His strength is perfect.

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My power is made perfect in  your weakness

So I challenge you today to rely on His strength. Allow Him to carry you through all of your trials today and the days to come. Remember He is always there with you where ever you go.

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And lastly I encourage you, especially during this time, to remember the value of kindness and let is ripples flow out from you where ever you go.

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Encouragement and Hope in the Storm

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In a world surrounded by the same pandemic attacking countries with no reason of sanity with over 720 thousand cases across more than 150 countries, we are scared. We are all in this together praying for the same cure. In our state today we lost an infant. An infant who had not had enough time to grow any type of immune system. A virus that shows no apathy to the young, the old, the sick or the weak and carried by loved ones who mean no harm.

But I believe in our God. A God that loves every single person on this planet regardless of their religion because he did not create a religion for us to follow. He created us to follow him. He wants a true relationship with you and you with him. He loves you.

Musicians are wonderful tools God uses to remind us that he is always there for us to come to. They write songs of courage, remembrance of his love, remembrance of our love for him and we lean on those songs in hard times.

Casting Crowns wrote a song that I think fits well with the situation this world is finding itself in and how we just need to lean on him and Praise Him in the Storm.  And while  God sometimes can calm a storm, sometimes he allows the storm to rage while calming us with reassurance that he is in control. Allow your heart to praise God in this current storm and feel his calmness reassurance for you.

Sometime when the storms seem out of control, kindness can come in forms to help settle your heart. Be that calmness for others who so desperately need it.

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Remembering Yester-Year, Friday Flashback

Fandango Friday Flashback gives you the opportunity to see what you were doing a year ago, you get to share it with new friends and you get to remind old friends of the post. A hats off to Irene of Heavens Sunshine as she was the one who brought this poem to life for me. I hope you enjoy it for the first time or again if you remember from a year ago. It was probably one of my favorite poems. See post below:

TO THE TOP from THE BOTTOM

One of the most enjoyable things about blogging is the amazing photographers, professional and non-professional that share their photographs for all to enjoy. A lot of the photographs that are shared are due to various challenges as the one I will be sharing with you today,  well technically it’s night (2:30 am)but I couldn’t sleep so I am writing.

Irene from Heaven’s Sunshine was following the challenge for stairs from Pic And A Word  by Patrick Jennings. Her picture was so inspiring to me, I told her I was going to write about it, so I did. I hope you enjoy it and do stop by Irene’s blog for some wonderful pictures.

Steps to the Cross
Bailly Cemetery – Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore

   THE CLIMB

I see and maintain it still is not fair,

I have nothing to lay at the top of the stair.

It’s not my fault, I did nothing wrong,

Well, maybe I did, it’s just been so long.

How long has it been since I climbed to the top,

I remember it’s relief, Why did I stop?

How can a symbol of such astounding grief,

Be given to us to bring so much relief?

With love so amazing, to the cross did He die,

To flood us with gratitude that still makes us cry.

The burdens we carry don’t always seem fair,

Always we can lay them at the top of the stair.

The first step looks brittle, can it carry my weight?

This burden is heavy and may seal my dire fate.

As I touch each step and climb ever higher,

Is this what I should do, is this really my desire?

As I clear the last step, the cross is before me,

I question my worth, did He also die for me?

As my knees get bent, I am smothered by His grace,

And I lay all my burdens at the accepting cross base.

                       – Anita Neal –

 

Always remember there is a burden carrier and it isn’t you. Scripture tells us repeatedly that He is there to carry our burdens for us, we just have to be willing to give them to Him.

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And as always, I remind everyone the much loaded value of kindness. Carry it with you where ever you go and share it as much as possible.

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Fandango’s Question as a 1 Liner

Today’s Provocative Question from Fandango ties right in with a possible 1 liner from Linda Hill.

Would you be willing to give up everything you have if you could go back and start your life all over again? Why or why not?

The answer is No. It is our past that makes our present.  Scripture tells us that through our trials we gain strength and preserver onward. While trials, problem or difficulties we may come across can be hard we have a choice – we own it or it owns us. I chose to be the owner and through the grace of God, preserver.

If you live in the US, may you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. If you do not then have a wonderful week and may you remember to always be kind.

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