What “for”?

This is a question I have been asking God for quite some time…

“What in the world am I here for?”

And although I haven’t received the completed and final answer to this yet (I’m still breathing), I have learned some things.  One such piece of knowledge is this… If I start with “What” and end with “for”, I have a complete sentence.

Now I can ask, “What (am I) for?”

Personally speaking, this is an easy answer for me.  I am completely bought by and sold out– for Jesus Christ, the Lord my God.  I can prove the purchase and I so pray that you can see what’s been done with the receipt.

Now for the hard part…
Addressing the “what” and “for” of the day.
Politically speaking, that is!
(I’m sure you saw this coming.)

I use to say “I am woman hear me roar.”  (Although those days have been long gone.  And not because some man whooped me into shape, either.  God has!  ♥  He’s the only one who really ‘showed up’.)  But I’m not the lion, nor do I come to kill, rob, and destroy.  There is, however, at least one who is and does.

Looking at our “choices” for presidential candidates this “fall”, I can barely talk because of the competing nausea rising up in my throat.  If you are looking for Jesus you won’t find Him at either party.   So- I can’t stand “for” either, which leads me back to the “what”.

“What” I will never be able to wrap my head around, is how anyone with a functioning brain (and conscience) can support late stage abortion.  To me, this is any time after the first trimester.  And yes, I remember well the days of “pro-choice”.  I was one of them.  I still can remember the days, decades ago, where I proclaimed that abortion was an option if I ever had to make that birth control choice.  :(  (Sadly, the enemy likes to haunt me with this, even today.)

I still find no issue with choice.  The good Lord gave us, and still does… free will to choose.  He did not create us to be robots to serve Him without question(s).  He gave us a choice to love Him and freely do “for” Him as we “please”.

Back to the “human” race-

I personally see no good in either of the presidential candidates… no not one!  But right now, there is a candidate vying for presidency who chooses to stand “for murder”.  There is absolutely no way anyone can justify this as anything else.  This goes way beyond the boundaries and heart-wrenching decisions of choice… to pro-murder.

I thank the Lord that I never had to make such a choice.  I have however, had three miscarriages.  I can tell you that they are heart-breaking and in my case, three experiences that I will never forget.  Sometimes death feels like it lasts a lifetime.  I can’t imagine what those who had to endure the ramifications and consequences of such a decision (electing for an abortion, also referred to as “a termination”) would be.  My heart goes out to them.  (And some days, I think I can feel your pain.)

You are welcome to take any or all of what I have said to heart, as you venture to the polls this Fall to make yet another choice.  As “we the people” at the moment… have the right, a voice, and a choice to do so.  “Thank God!!!”

“Lord, I need You!!!”  America needs You!!!  The World needs You!!!  We all need You… NOW!!!

 Love,
jam4JESUS with Hart Impressions

And if you are wondering what I received from Him in response to my “What in the world am I here for?”  (Even Christians call me a “Jesus Freak”.)   As clear as I’ve ever heard Him…  “What if I made YOU exactly who you are – for such a time as this?!”   “What if” and–

What “for”?!

Hart Impressions... You are wonderfully made... black background Message side of one of
Hart Impressions business cards. 

http://hartimpressions.com/what-for/

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Love is… “Stinky”?

Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous;
love does not brag and is not arrogant,
does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own,
is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things,
endures all things.”
(1 Corinthians 13)

But is it, Stinky?

I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve said to my children, “what is impossible for man is possible with God”, “greater is He that is in you and me, than he who is in the world”, and “the Lord sure works in mysterious ways”, but what I can tell you is this, on one very certain day, love definitely felt “Stinky” for us.

Here she was, an abandoned fluff ball, afraid of the world until she was nearing the end and we rescued her the first time.  We brought her into the house, and within a short time she’d acted like she was meant to be- a member of the family.

So now we had a house cat.

She had a very different color and markings compared to the other outdoor cats… browns, beiges, black, and an equally odd tail that she would parade in the air as she walked.   (It may or may not have something to do with me stepping on it.😉 )  It seemed appropriate to name her Cinnamon, until she used the litter box for the first time.  My daughter called her “Stinky” and I said “that’s going to stick” and it did.  She’s been “Stinky” ever since.

So often, you could hear the voice of my daughter proclaiming that she was Stinky’s mother, and I, her grandmother.  This, followed by my instant response “I am not that cat’s grandmother!”   We liked to joke about it, but we both knew she had a very special place in her heart and mine.

I’d thought all was well in Stinky’s world and that she was content to live inside (of ours), until the day she snuck out an open door to meet a cat she’d been watching through the window.  We’ll call him “Tom”.   ;)  And he was waiting patiently for her in the hay mount across the street.  Not long after, the kittens arrived and she was proud to lead us to them and show them off.  (“Look what I’ve done.”)  ♥♥♥♥

The kittens were about 5-6 weeks old, eating solid food and making friends.  Stinky had enjoyed spending more time in the house again, where it is cooler, closer proximity to us and her special food, treats, and attention.  None of the other cats have ever received the favor that she has had.

And that has never been more true, than on August 4, 2016.

My teenage daughter had ventured back across the road from feeding Stinky and the other company of cats who were now all living in the barn across the road.  I’d begun to prepare a late dinner, having just finished packing up and returning home after a long day at a Farmers’ Market.  (I am “Hart Impressions” and I sell Scripture inspired handcrafted jewelry.)

When (from Hannah’s perspective)…

While Stinky was running from one vehicle, crossing the street to return to the barn she calls home now, she didn’t have time to notice the car heading towards her until it was too late. I screamed ‘no’ as I watched my cat, whom we’d raised from a kitten, found cold and hungry, be thrown from the wheel of a white SUV (I don’t really know my cars, but that’s just what it had looked like in the brief moment I saw the vehicle). I’m not sure if the ‘no’s were directed towards the car, the circumstances, or God, but I screamed. Getting to my knees on the pavement, I watched as her leg twitched, eyes wide and glossed over while blood dripped from her nose and pooled on the asphalt beneath her head. Picking her up seemed like a bad idea, as I didn’t know if she was suffering internal damages, but I wasn’t going to leave her in the road. Thank God my brother saw me as he passed by a window from within the house, or else Stinky and I would’ve been stuck in the road for a while.

The driver hadn’t stopped or slowed down in the least.

My brother Mark had alerted my mother (who was making dinner in the kitchen) and both had run out to meet me. My mom, not knowing whether Stinky was dead or alive, scooped her up into her arms like a baby and walked her back to the house.  Mark and I headed back after I re-lived the scene for him.  He was shaken by all that had happened, too.  

So now, back in the house and after hearing my Mom’s side of the story, I looked into Stink’s face and watched her huge, horrified eyes dart back and forth. Her nose bled and dribbled onto my mother’s arm, and when mom had laid her on my lap, she wheezed and sneezed, blood splattering on my shoulder and neck.

Eventually, the bleeding stopped and she became more aware of her surroundings. Stinky began to remember how much she dislikes being a lap cat and, despite my efforts, she hopped down. She was groggy and weak as she walked over to her food dish and attempted to eat some dinner. She spent that night sleeping under my mother’s love seat.

Stinky is doing much better now. We “released her into the wild” a few days after the accident (three to be exact) when she appeared to be functioning properly (eating, drinking, using the litterbox with no issues of discoloration in the litter). She has a (weaned) kitten that lives across the street, so she was eager to be reunited with him. It is a miracle she is still with us. Stinky still seemed a tiny bit sluggish that first week, but overall she was acting like her normal, lovable self and is happy to be home again.

My heart is still so delighted by what the Lord did for my children that day… He heard their heart, gave them their own testimony, and told them both how much He loves them in the process.  ((Jesus loves us this we know, for He, Himself, tells us so!))

It was my prayer to Almighty God, as I went off by myself later that evening, that He would show them just how much He hears them, cares about them, loves them, and desires to prove it to them.  I am surrounded by His miraculous and supernatural blessings all the time.  “But today, right now– ‘Lord please, for my children?!'”

I also wanted my children to see what I saw.  There’s a powerful testimony here!  And so that you may see it too, I’ll re-live that day…

I was preparing a late dinner, having returned home late from my Thursday market, when my son flew passed me.  I asked what was wrong and all I could hear was “Hannah!”

I dropped what I had in my hands and joined him in hot pursuit, not knowing what I would see.  There she was, laying in the middle of the lane on the other side of the road… “Hannah!”  And I knew, there must also be a “loved one” underneath her.  I had so hoped that it wasn’t our nearly 1 year old rescued and newly released house cat, but it was.

The first thought I had, from what I saw before running across the road, was when Paul (‘or was it Peter, or both’), that laid across a deceased person, praying continually, until breath and life returned.  I was sure at the time that I was seeing what was to come and I found strength and encouragement.  (Remember this!)

It’s like riding on the fumes of faith, to me, when I’m in these situations.  (And they are more often now.)  I wasn’t emotional ‘at the scene’, even when faced with the tear soaked cries, wailing, and my daughter’s attempts to speak.  But it thoroughly broke my heart to see hers in that condition.  This was her baby, after all!   Looking back now, I’m reminded once again of “walking by faith and not by sight”, so when blinded by my circumstances and paralyzed by impending grief, I can ride it out with Jesus.

I somehow was able to move Hannah off from what she was cradling, and saw Stinky lying there lifeless (at the moment), beneath her.  Hannah could barely cry out the words “It’s Stinky!”  The kitten’s eyes appeared as roadkill and I saw no blood.  If I had, I probably would have moved my daughter first.  I immediately scooped Stinky up and cradled her in my arms like a baby.  I walked back across the road to just outside the house, on the path to the front door.  This is a familiar place to both Stinky and myself.  I often work, read, and write outside in this place when the weather is sunny and warm- and she would visit me.

I was still cradling her outside by the front steps just rocking her in my arms back and forth, awaiting His answer and visualizing myself holding her up to the Lord for life and a super testimony (Rocking, rocking, rocking…)  When suddenly, her completely still body shuttered with movement and the hand I was cupping her dead still chest with, began to inflate.  Small drops of blood were now preceding from her nose…  she was breathing.  Stinky is alive!  Praise the Lord!!!  “Thank God for His miracles… great and small!”

I’d brought her into the house by this point, and my children had now joined me.  Hannah, who felt guilty for the accident in the first place (Stinky was still with her and she didn’t know it until it was too late), wanted to hold her but was afraid she’d hurt her more.  Hannah was thoroughly traumatized by the whole thing because she had watched it all happen.  She’d screamed to alert everyone, including the white SUV speeding toward her loved one (and even faster away after hitting her), but all her efforts had failed to stop what was about to happen.  My daughter, who invests much of herself in caring for her fuzzy family members, watched her baby seemingly die before her very eyes.  (This still wrecks me and I find it unimaginable.  “Oh God, that no one should know this level of pain.”)

When Hannah was ready to make the transfer of Stinky from me to her, the teenage kitten had a different plan.  She jumped up on all fours and began to hobble around on the floor.  It wasn’t long before she had made it to her cat dish and began to eat both the soft and hard food that was placed down for her.   At one point, Hannah mentioned taking her to a vet and that she would pay for it, but that notion was quickly deleted, considering all that was done for Stinky already– our part was to trust Him to finish what He’d started.

I did place a call to an emergency vet clinic to show Hannah that I valued her, per her request.  Only to find out that they could do no more for her (except x-Rays and take our money), then we, with Jesus, had already done.

(I, myself, have not had health insurance in nearly 7 1/2 years.  Did I need it (humanly speaking)?  You might say so.  But I didn’t…  and I am operating just fine today.  “Thank You Jesus!”)

Back to Stinky… Here she was, now walking a little better around the room and eating a little more.  By this point, a vet assistant, their dad, and a few friends had been called and heard all about Stinky.   And Stinky seemed happy to have the attention, the extra petting, and increased rest.  We’d made a bed for her and set out for our own.  I’m not sure how much sleep the kids got, but I miraculously got what I needed (I had an artisan and craftsman show in Stone Mills to get up very early for the next morning.  And you can bet all those the Lord put in front of me the next day, heard all about her, too.)

Hannah got up bright and very early the next morning.  The first thing she did was check on her patient.  Stinky had slept underneath a large over-sized chair in my room overnight.  As Hannah reached her hand under the chair (which sort of looked like a cave) not knowing what the outcome would be, her fears were quickly relieved.   And her ears and heart were immediately delighted, at the sound of Stinky’s loud purr.

By the third day, Stinky was itching to return to the barn across the road and her young family.   We walked her across, left a day’s worth of food, and witnessed her reunion with The Fam.

And before we left, I took this shot…

It's a Stinky love.

It sure is good to get our ole cat back.  Dem bones did rise again.  

 

I can’t even begin to tell you how gut wrenching and heart breaking it was for me to see my child sobbing uncontrollably, stretched out and in danger as she laid in a small huddled mass in the middle of one lane of the road.  It almost paralyzed me.  But I attribute and “I give up” all that I am, the events that surround me, along with my children… to the Lord my God.  Any and all glory goes to Him.  It’s with His amazing strength, grace, and wisdom that I was made aware of the scene in the first place, able to see what was really occurring across the street, remove my daughter from it, and “behold” the rest… on that day and all those that follow after.

I am so very thankful that the Lord answered our prayers with a “yes” on August 4th, 2016.  And because I also know that sometimes the answer is “no”… “My grace is sufficient, for My strength is perfect in your weakness”, I give you the very powerful message delivered at Gateway Church in Texas, just a couple of days after the hit and run…

“When the Answer Is No”

http://gatewaypeople.com/ministries/life/events/the-power-of-prayer-a-gateway-series/session/2016/08/06/when-the-answer-is-no?campus=22

 

“GOD BLESS YOU!!!”

… jam4JESUS with Hart Impressions

Acts 20 (NASB)

Paul in Macedonia and Greece

On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul began talking to them, intending to leave the next day, and he prolonged his message until midnight. There were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered together. And there was a young man named Eutychus sitting on the window sill, sinking into a deep sleep; and as Paul kept on talking, he was overcome by sleep and fell down from the third floor and was picked up dead. 10 But Paul went down and fell upon him, and after embracing him, he said, “Do not be troubled, for his life is in him.” 11 When he had gone back up and had broken the bread and eaten, he talked with them a long while until daybreak, and then left. 12 They took away the boy alive, and were greatly comforted.

Acts 9

Peter’s Ministry

32 Now as Peter was traveling through all those regions, he came down also to the saints who lived at Lydda. 33 There he found a man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden eight years, for he was paralyzed. 34 Peter said to him, “Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you; get up and make your bed.” Immediately he got up. 35 And all who lived at Lydda and Sharon saw him, and they turned to the Lord.

36 Now in Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (which translated in Greek is called Dorcas); this woman was abounding with deeds of kindness and charity which she continually did. 37 And it happened at that time that she fell sick and died; and when they had washed her body, they laid it in an upper room. 38 Since Lydda was near Joppa, the disciples, having heard that Peter was there, sent two men to him, imploring him, “Do not delay in coming to us.” 39 So Peter arose and went with them. When he arrived, they brought him into the upper room; and all the widows stood beside him, weeping and showing all the tunics and garments that Dorcas used to make while she was with them. 40 But Peter sent them all out and knelt down and prayed, and turning to the body, he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter, she sat up. 41 And he gave her his hand and raised her up; and calling the saints and widows, he presented her alive. 42 It became known all over Joppa, and many believed in the Lord. 43 And Peter stayed many days in Joppa with a tanner named Simon.

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Mirror Therapy

After reading my “Verse of the Day” from BibleGateway this morning, I just couldn’t stop thinking about it or remain silent. Having been instructed and reminded lately of how even nature will cry out in worship to the Lord (see video below), I sincerely can’t resist or stop short of proclaiming Him, or at the very least, speak with as much volume as nature speaks.

But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!”  (Luke 19:40)

The verse, good for everyday… “But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves.” James 1:22 NASB

You may be wondering “How did you get here from there?”  Well, the answer is in the how and where He leads me.

I was immediately taken to the mirror from the Word…

23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was.” (James 1)

And from the mirror, I find myself at “the quiet, the still, the tranquil, and the refreshing waters, where He leads me– that when I peer into that flat-calm, mirror-like water I can see my reflection with Him, and I’m reminded again of who goes before me, with me, beside me, and never leaves me.

“He guides me in paths of righteousness… For His name’s sake.”  “YES!” The Lord is my Shepherd that I will no longer want for anything, nor need anyone else, in His place. He has made me to lie down in greener pastures, where I can now look right up to Him and marvel at His great works, majestic beauty, glorious beginnings and final chapters.

And every time I look into that mirror now, I am reminded, clearly, of whose child I am and exactly who I walk with… as I “go”.   (Especially, as I walk through the shadow of the valley of death… )

With every breath I take <))) “Praise You Lord!!!” 

Mirror Therapy 🙂
~ jam4JESUS

My recent God-send…

Cicada friendLook who joined me after I’d packed the vehicle to leave the Farmers’ Market last Wednesday.  And once he got a taste of worship music, he wouldn’t leave me until I deposited him on a leaf across town.   (I wonder what the Lord is sending me this week.  I know it will be good whatever it is.  :)  )

 

Isaiah 55

10 “For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
And do not return there without watering the earth
And making it bear and sprout,
And furnishing seed to the sower and bread to the eater;
11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth;
It will not return to Me empty,
Without accomplishing what I desire,
And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.
12 “For you will go out with joy
And be led forth with peace;
The mountains and the hills will break forth into shouts of joy before you,
And all the trees of the field will clap their hands.
13 “Instead of the thorn bush the cypress will come up,
And instead of the nettle the myrtle will come up,
And it will be a memorial to the Lord,
For an everlasting sign which will not be cut off.”

 

Psalm 23 (NASB) The Lord, the Psalmist’s Shepherd. A Psalm of David.

23 The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside quiet waters. He restores my soul; He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for You are with me; Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; You have anointed my head with oil; My cup overflows. Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my life, And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.

James 1

22 But prove yourselves doers of the word, and not merely hearers who delude themselves. 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; 24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was. 25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.

 

“GOD BLESS YOU!!!”

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A Mother’s Prayer…

“For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him.”
(1 Samuel 1:27)

I personally can attest to the fact that a mother’s love and prayers go way back, sometimes even before our beginning. So today, I’d like to share with you one such prayer, spoken twice, that I didn’t even know I had in me. (“Hmm, I wonder if Hannah had felt the same way.”)

There was a time not all that long ago, when I could not call myself “a mother”.  Some of this was self-inflicted, and sometimes not. (I’d spent a couple of decades crusading that I would never get married or have children. I have learned now to never say never.)

 

The History and the Pain

I had lived through and learned enough in my life to know better, and that I didn’t ever want to revisit “Hell” (divorce, bitterness, fear, isolation, poverty, abuse, addiction- Mom’s, mine, or anyone else’s, etc.); nor go to “war” (the world of abnormal rearing) once again, or lead others through there either. (Sadly at this point in the post, it appears I’ve failed all the way around.)

 

God’s still Bigger!!!

“Thank God!” He tells a different story with a totally different ending for us all, and I can prove it!!!

The Lord has blessed me with two God-sends in the form of a daughter and a son (in that order). And although I could say the same about them, having to walk through Hell (subject to divorce, bitterness, fear, isolation, poverty, etc…), they also, wear it differently with Jesus. They both have far exceeded my expectations, especially when they have grasped His. They may not be perfect, but they are close to Him.

 

The True Giver and Comforter

Let me remind you once again, I didn’t do this. He did! And I’m not talking about their dad here, either. (Although, he’s a good one.) I’m referring to our Father who art in Heaven.

Amazingly, the answered prayers had taken place years before either of them were born, unbeknownst to me; so to hear for the second time that my pregnancy would end in miscarriage- “there’s no heartbeat”, it didn’t crush mine. And although my first miscarriage was by far the most painful and lonely experience I had ever encountered in my life by that point- this second time, it was a beautiful breeze from God in comparison.

 

The Foundation

 I’d been driving down the road leading to Lowville, listening to one of Dr. Charles Stanley’s c.d.’s on Eternal Security- Can you be sure? (I’d miraculously found Dr. Stanley and In Touch Ministries when I was flipping through the TV channels just before my first miscarriage had occurred.) When I seemingly, had drifted into a deep prayer to the Lord. And at that moment, He reminded me of a prior conversation, when I’d finally abandoned my own mission (to never have children), but instead, made heartfelt petitions to be blessed with one. I surrendered at that time, my fear of childbirth, parenthood, and all the mistakes I could make. And for the first time in my adult life, I began to trust in Him for all of it.

The Prayer

So on that road to Lowville (truly a Damascus experience) leading to an ultrasound that would determine the life of my child, I asked the Lord one more time, but this time- with one exception. As much as I wanted to have a baby (to add purpose to my heart, life, and my marriage), I didn’t want one unless it was His baby first.

“Lord, you know my heart, what this means to me, and how much I want this baby to make it.  But- if it is not Yours and always will be, who will join You and me in Heaven someday, please don’t let it happen.”

I knew even then, there was absolutely no way I could do this, raise a child, unless He was with me and them. (It would crush me sometimes even after the children were born, when I’d gaze at them, and plead with the Lord that one short lifetime here with them and Him, was just not enough for me.)

 

The First Blessing…

As I had already given the spoiler in the beginning of this post, the prognosis from the doctor when I’d reached my destination that day, was a second miscarriage. The difference this time, though, was a peace that transcended beyond all my understanding and surrounded me with an unexplainable joy. I’d felt remarkably good about it. And within two months of the miscarriage, although the doctors told me not to try so soon, I was pregnant again. My beautiful daughter, Hannah, had made her debut a few days shy of Christmas. “God is so good!!!”

 

… and the Second!

As for my son, I can tell you an equally blessed experience. I’d had a third miscarriage between my daughter and son (and it was shortly before I’d become pregnant for him- a month this time). And it was also suspected after the fact, that my son was probably a twin (they run in my family on my Dad’s side). The other apparently didn’t survive the rollover accident I had in my vehicle trying to get to work in a blizzard. The same accident that totaled my car and I walked away without a scratch on the outside of me. It was a miracle that anyone found me in the first place. But “thanks” to Nancy Robbins, and the Old McDonald’s Farm farmhands that were driving by in a farm truck with broken windows that made them unable to roll up, I was. (God’s plan totally trumps anything we’ve got!)

On the road again…

Now back on that broken road which leads to Lowville, I was praying my heart out to His once again, that familiar prayer…

“Lord, you know my heart, what this means to me, and how much I want this baby to make it.  But- if it is not Yours and always will be, who will join You and me in Heaven someday, please don’t let it happen.”

And even though I was sure that I’d miscarried a fourth time (as I’d felt like an expert by then), the same doctor looked at me and said… “I can tell by just looking at you that you are still pregnant.” 

Hearing his (and His) heartbeat, proved it!!! (And what a beautiful sound <))) the heart of God, and all who are in it, makes!)

In his due time, my son was born… “Praise the Living God!!!”

The Blessing Continues…

As great as all this sounds, I can speak now of a greater blessing. I can look straight into the eyes and heart of both of my children and say with absolute certainty…

“You would not be here right now
if you were not God’s child, first!”

Sure! They are attacked ferociously by the enemies of the Lord as children of God, suffer periodic doubt as they see the circumstances around them, feeling the pinch from their surroundings, knowing this is not our home— just like the rest of us. But rest assured, they know exactly whose child they are, and that He, their Heavenly Father, is with them always. 

♥ ♥ ♥

You just can’t put a price on the peace, and eternal security, that transcends all understanding.

Please keep in mind that I had nothing (or at least nothing divinely significant) to do with the series of miraculously ordered events that took place. I could not have dreamed any of this up if I’d tried. And also worthy of mention, I am thoroughly blessed that He did not allow me to mess it (them) up, also.

 

The Prayer Continues…

I pray today, the same for you… Whether you are a mother (parent) already, so want to be, or are blessed right now to be carrying His child and yours…

Pour out your heart to the Lord our God, our Creator, the One who loved us first (we were His first)! And when “it’s time”, you can bless them with Jesus and tell them how they are His, too.

 

The Conclusion

I can share with you now something that I, or the doctor, could not at that time.   We were unaware of a probable condition of mine that involved hormone levels, preventing my pregnancies to progress and the fetus to grow. It appears that the failed pregnancies just prior to the live births had a hand in making it possible for my children to make it to term and thrive still today.

Who knew? Only God! And now, I’ve shared with you two of the many reasons I love, praise, and worship the Lord my God with all of my heart.

And as for you and your house, I pray…

May the Lord bless you indeed,
and enlarge your heart, your faith, your life, and your family. That His amazingly gracious hand be upon you,
and that He’d keep you from all evil.
No more unbearable pain!

“God Bless YOU!”

Hannah’s Vow

Then Elkanah her husband said to her, “Hannah, why do you weep? Why do you not eat? And why is your heart grieved? Am I not better to you than ten sons?”

So Hannah arose after they had finished eating and drinking in Shiloh. Now Eli the priest was sitting on the seat by the doorpost of the tabernacle of the Lord. 10 And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed to the Lord and wept in anguish. 11 Then she made a vow and said, “O Lord of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant, but will give Your maidservant a male child, then I will give him to the Lord all the days of his life, and no razor shall come upon his head.”

12 And it happened, as she continued praying before the Lord, that Eli watched her mouth. 13 Now Hannah spoke in her heart; only her lips moved, but her voice was not heard. Therefore Eli thought she was drunk. 14 So Eli said to her, “How long will you be drunk? Put your wine away from you!”

15 But Hannah answered and said, “No, my lord, I am a woman of sorrowful spirit. I have drunk neither wine nor intoxicating drink, but have poured out my soul before the Lord. 16 “Do not consider your maidservant a wicked woman, for out of the abundance of my complaint and grief I have spoken until now.”

17 Then Eli answered and said, “Go in peace, and the God of Israel grant your petition which you have asked of Him.”

18 And she said, “Let your maidservant find favor in your sight.” So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was no longer sad.

Samuel Is Born and Dedicated

19 Then they rose early in the morning and worshiped before the Lord, and returned and came to their house at Ramah. And Elkanah knew Hannah his wife, and the Lord remembered her. 20 So it came to pass in the process of time that Hannah conceived and bore a son, and called his name Samuel, saying, “Because I have asked for him from the Lord.”

21 Now the man Elkanah and all his house went up to offer to the Lord the yearly sacrifice and his vow. 22 But Hannah did not go up, for she said to her husband, “Not until the child is weaned; then I will take him, that he may appear before the Lord and remain there forever.”

23 So Elkanah her husband said to her, “Do what seems best to you; wait until you have weaned him. Only let the Lord establish His word.” Then the woman stayed and nursed her son until she had weaned him.

24 Now when she had weaned him, she took him up with her, with three bulls, one ephah of flour, and a skin of wine, and brought him to the house of the Lord in Shiloh. And the child was young. 25 Then they slaughtered a bull, and brought the child to Eli. 26 And she said, “O my lord! As your soul lives, my lord, I am the woman who stood by you here, praying to the Lord. 27 For this child I prayed, and the Lord has granted me my petition which I asked of Him. 28 Therefore I also have lent him to the Lord; as long as he lives he shall be lent to the Lord.” So they worshiped the Lord there.

(1 Samuel 1)

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Well, then…

“She’s a not so good Samaritan,
and she’s waiting for him to fulfill her…”

May I offer some advice? “Stop that!”
There is only One that can truly satisfy your thirst and His name is Jesus…

“Well, then!”

nnyPHISHnet's Blog

She’s a not so good Samaritan,
and she’s waiting for him to fulfill her…

@ The Well.

I think I can speak on her behalf.  In as much as there are things that have changed from the past, there are some things, that still have not.

“… be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of unprincipled men and fall from your own steadfastness, 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”  (2 Peter 3:17)

In a present tense, I believe she was trying to get it all right- love, family, friends, the people and the things within her world of influence that truly matter to her.  But, something or someone always seems to stand in her way.  She just can’t seem to get there…

View original post 1,095 more words

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Live Now!

If you’re right and I’m wrong-
“I can live with that!”

But if I’m right and you’re wrong–
“Can you?”

You think me to be weak, and yet, you have no idea how strong- “I am”.

You think how foolish I must be, and yet, you have no knowledge of Who I know, and just how wise He makes me.

You think “how deceived” I am– “you’re right!”  I most certainly once was.  (And I pray daily- never again.)

You think that I am blind to who I could be and all that I could have, and still, you don’t see The One I desire to be the most– and all that He so graciously gives me.

You think of me “poor thing”, and yet my riches with Him, each and every day… are endless.

You think I am enslaved to a cult of religion, but in truth, I am freer than I’ve ever been…

–“with Jesus!” 

You see, I’m not weak, unwise, deceived, blind, poor, or amiss to anything– especially to the who and what I could have.  I simply find my identity in the God who made me and choose the only One who could truly save me.   And in doing so, I choose Heaven… and not Hell.

And He (Jesus) said… “Truly I say to you, today you shall be with Me in Paradise.” (Luke 3:43)

He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To [the one] who overcomes, I will grant to eat of the tree of life which is in the Paradise of God.’  (Revelation 2:7)

I wrote this message to whomever it may concern yesterday morning, and wondered  if or when I should post it.  But after listening to David Wilkerson’s “A Call to Anguish” late last night… I decided that “it’s time!”

Because… “I love YOU!”

 

I have concluded, having heard this sermon in its entirety, that if anyone who calls themselves ‘a follower of Christ’, were to do the same (listen until the end) and not feel broken in two and crying out loud… I would seriously consider that they have no eternal pulse to speak of. 😥

And, to know full well that we have loved ones at risk of Hell or in trouble here, and choose to do nothing about it, is…

((Heart-breaking!!!))

It sincerely wrenches my heart to think about friends and family (even, if not especially, for those who believe they’ve got their room deposit slapped down for Heaven by themselves and for what they do), who are choosing to be on a present course set for Hell.  Sometimes, I just want to scream in a language I think they’ll understand- “Do you want to live forever or not?”  But I save my own breath, instead. 😥

I originally felt the prompt to address those who find my love and intentions with Jesus as lame, weak, a crutch, foolish, futile, and only for “the needy”, because I passionately beg to differ.  But instead, I want any or all of you to know… As I fight for Jesus while I’m still here, I’d love to fight for YOU, as well.  If you’ll “allow me?”  

If you’re right and I’m wrong-
“I can definitely live with that!”

But if I’m right and you’re wrong–
“Where does that leave you, exactly?”

Live Now –“with Jesus!”
jam4JESUS

~~~

“Christian”, if you dare…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q-CFMN3wDPo

David Wilkerson and “A Call to Anguish”.

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Every day… If we’re honest

The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail.   They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness.    “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I have hope in Him.” (Lamentations 3:22-24)

Every morning… I hope to see Him again, hear His word again, feel His peace & love again, and start fresh- “Oh to be new again.”

But every morning (even before an hour has passed)- I’ve regressed, again…

“Oh God,😥 ”

No matter what I do, how much I try, and in my heart “I’d so love to”- I plain and simply ‘cannot seem to get Him right.’ I am a big fat cruddy sinner- no matter what!

And this morning, as I pleaded with the Lord to take me over once again and do what He must do, I was impressed with something a little different this time.  I wondered again on what He meant, exactly, when He said, “It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire compassion, and not sacrifice,’ for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”  (Matthew 9:12-14)

((And I personally think– Jesus loves ‘the good, the bad, and even the cruddy’ sinner.))

I then began to think of all the sermons and messages I’ve ever heard that made it sound like only once and awhile ‘we as Christians’ fall down, slip up, have an occasional “wrong” thought, or say a bad word (after all, we “are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you.” Romans 8:9); and even when we do- we quickly repent and ‘it is done’.

“Say what?” Does anyone out there have it this easy and are “that good”?  Or is it just me who feels like even my daily missions end in great loss, cause I’m “that (hopelessly) bad”?

I know that the Holy Spirit isn’t going to let even one sin slip by without telling me.  And I am confident that ‘Our Father’ will not slap “good” on any of my siblings (in Christ) bad behavior, anymore than He does mine.  So- Am I the only one ‘in the wrong here’ or do I have company?

 

A sinner, by definition, implies… one who sins.  And if “Christians”, formerly known as “sinners”, are now “right”, does that lead one to believe that they are righteously no longer a sinner?

(Hey, I love the Lord as much as it is possible for me to do- with all my heart, soul, mind, in the strength He gives me– and I’m confused. Imagine what those who don’t know Him yet, are thinking.)

I began to ponder, if a child of God can be perplexed by this, “how much more will everyone watching (whether believing, unbelieving, on the fence, or forever in search mode), be?” And I’m also thinking that a lukewarm (take Him for granted) love affair, self-serving faith, and look what “I” can do mentality– must be among the greatest and most pervasive lies the enemy has ever showed us, and as a result, we (as “righteous Christians?”)– the biggest “posers” this world has ever seen.  No matter what, we are not going to fool all the people (least of all God), or all the time.  None of us are good, no not one!   So what can we say after that?  How can we say we are “alright”?

It is my concern, that the very people who are the most comfortable sitting in ‘their pew’, in ‘that position’, feeling cozy and justified as they’re lulled to self-righteousness (comatose or developing amnesia for “those sins” along with the rest), or straightening up just a little at the very mention of religious fame, are in my opinion– in the most dangerous place of all.  If you already feel that your righteousness precedes you, you have your room deposit slapped down for Heaven, and “I’m good!”, who in the World is going to move you?”

I would prefer to err on the side of “conviction”, be His subject in humbled affliction, and share the reality that I am truly a sinner who Jesus came for, leaned down to, met with, healed, drew a graceful line in the sand with His finger for (written in love with His blood), and then stood up–> selflessly taking my place on a cross.

As for me, every day in fact…
“Oh Lord, I so need a Savior!!!”

 

With my head now pressed up against the wall (spiritually banging it up against it), it all suddenly started to make some sense.

If we’re honest…

We all have enough real life material, dis-orders, and yes- sin, in order to reach others right where they are, where [we] walk out… together.  No one really likes to ‘venture out’ alone- especially in uncharted territories.

Each and every one of us has harbored the pain, endured the break, suffered through an attack, felt wounded beyond repair, strived to nurse back to health… our broken heart. We can tell of shattered dreams and hopeless plans, lost loves or when we never really had them in the first place.

We have talked the talk, but too often it appears- we’ve kept silent about our walk there.

What do we hope to gain by our silence?  Are we worried that they will look down upon us (a position we are most uncomfortable with) or dethrone us from our “holier than thou” status?  Did we ever truly have a place there, anyway?   (“Certainly not!”)

When we’re “finally” on the outside looking in, and reflecting back, should not it be our mission to open the blinds and serve as a compass for those walking beside us (or the late comers who are trailing in the footsteps behind us)… ‘all points lead to Jesus’?  (“I certainly hope so!”)

And if we are truly being honest, isn’t it even hard for us [sometimes] to utter the name of “Jesus” and tell His Story, or find it convenient to omit Him in the first place… time after time? 😥

How will they know if no one sees them, listens to them, identifies with them, tells them, and then- shows them who He is? 

Who will go for them?  Who will find it in their hearts, to be so moved with compassion, that they cannot help but to share Him? 

(“Amazing grace how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me.  I once was lost but now I’m found, was blind but now I see…”)

If we are so far out ahead of people, and unrecognizable, how will they reach us?  If they look at us and find us in another class, how can we address or reach them?  If our hearts appear without crack, spot, or blemish (“perfect”)- how will they know that we too, have one- or know what broken looks like in theirs?  And if people can not relate to us, what difference does it make when we preach “Jesus” to them? 

(“I think I’m having a heart attack!”)

But if we’re honest…

 

 

 

Let’s review…

“It is not those who are healthy who need a physician, but those who are sick. 13 But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire compassion, and not sacrifice,’ for I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” (Matthew 9:12-14)

By the way,
I haven’t been able to shake
or get over

my chest cold, either.
😉

 

I am reminded of Romans 6…

“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?”

I live often with Romans 7…

The Conflict of Two Natures

14 For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin. 15 For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate. 16 But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good. 17 So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not. 19 For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want. 20 But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.

21 I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good. 22 For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man, 23 but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members. 24 Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? 25 Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord!

And I am so grateful for Romans 8…

24 For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? 25 But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it.

Our Victory in Christ

26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; 27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose…

And I conclude with…

 “For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you (and me) will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:6)

And-

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful (wicked) way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.” (Psalm 139)

For all the things I’m not- there’s Jesus. For all the things I am- there’s Jesus.
For all (every day and no matter what)—There is Jesus!!!

And with Him, I need to be honest!

 

Verse of the Day (Bible Gateway)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction so that we will be able to comfort those who are in any affliction with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NASB

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