Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Before and After


A symbol of what we look like before we confess our sins to the Lord.





A symbol of what we look like after we confess our sins to the Lord.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Israel

Please pray for the situation in Israel. The Palestians had a large protest on Sunday near the Galleria. (I am not sure why they did not protest near the Israeli Consulate.) I think we will see violent protests spring up in numerous countries.

Karen's friend Diana is in Israel through January 6, please pray for Diana's safety as well as the safety of her group.

We know how the story ends, we know through the prophet Ezekiel what happens to those who align themselves with countries against Israel.

Time to pray for those against Israel to get delivered from their false religion and take all that devotion and use it in the Kingdom.

Jesus Loves Me This I Know

Sunday I attended church with my mother at my former church. It is so nice to see friends and worship with them. During Communion, we sang Jesus Loves Me, Father Frankie had mentioned it to the children during the children's sermon. My eyes welled up with tears as we sang it. God reconciled us to Himself through the death and resurrection of His Son, Jesus Christ - Emmanuel - God With Us.

Men have given religion a bad name, just like the Saducees and Pharisees in the New Testament. The only people who did not like Jesus were religious, they knew the laws inside and out but did not have God in their hearts. Believers in Christ should follow him, but not be legalistic and hard hearted religious (dare I say) idiots like the Pharisees. My prayer is Lord Jesus stun the Pharisee right out of me. Believers must take the love of Jesus where ever they go. It's not our job to preach at people and beat them over the head with the Bible; it's our job to love and pray. Jesus saves through the power of the Holy Spirit, so get out of the way and let Him do His job.

Gandhi said, "I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ." Examine your hearts, your words and your actions today as you are out and about. Keep it simple just like the song we learned as young children:

Jesus loves me! This I know,For the Bible tells me so. Little ones to Him belong; They are weak, but He is strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! Yes, Jesus loves me! The Bible tells me so.

Jesus loves me! This I know, As He loved so long ago, Taking children on His knee, Saying, “Let them come to Me.”

Refrain

Jesus loves me still today, Walking with me on my way, Wanting as a friend to give Light and love to all who live.

Refrain

Jesus loves me! He who died Heaven’s gate to open wide; He will wash away my sin, Let His little child come in.

Refrain

Jesus loves me! He will stay Close beside me all the way; Thou hast bled and died for me,I will henceforth live for Thee.

Refrain

Saturday, December 27, 2008

A/C's, Fires in the Fireplace & Friends

Christmas Day was quite warm and humid, though we had a little freezing rain and sleet December 23. (Sometimes you can experience 3 to 4 seasons in 1 day in southeast Texas.) So to add to the ambiance of Christmas we set the A/C down to 66 and built a fire in the fireplace. My husband thought my parents would enjoy it. (Mind you my parents have a fireplace, they don't need firewood and can use a remote to light it, we need firewood and matches to start a fire at our house and there is certainly no remote.) So the point of this is: my husband wanted to build a fire in the fireplace.


After all the company left and the last of the dishes were in the dishwasher, my husband and I sat outside talking. We could hear the children across the street playing football until it became too dark to play. They were so happy because their oldest brother had leave and was home for a visit before he ships out to Guam, he is proudly serving in the USMC. Semper Fi!


I mentioned 2008 had been a long year, but it has also been a great year. My friends supported me with prayer and love while my father was in the hospital, they have cried with me, they have rejoiced with me. Friends visit my parents and offered to deliver meals to mom when dad was in the hospital and when he returned home. Cousins have visited from Indiana, Wisconsin and Minnesota and will be back for another visit soon. (I think they are already tired of winter.) Friends and family are more valuable than all the gold and diamonds in the world. I was a good friend yesterday and didn't wrap Doug's house, it was raining off and on, soggy toilet paper would not be funny.

One of the greatest examples of friendship we see in the Bible is found in Mark 2:

A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. So many gathered that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. Some men came, bringing to him a paralytic, carried by four of them. Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus and, after digging through it, lowered the mat the paralyzed man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralytic, "Son, your sins are forgiven." He said to the paralytic, "I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home." He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, "We have never seen anything like this!"

We don't know if the paralytic had any faith, we don't know if he prayed for his situation, but we know he was physically carried by his friends who had faith to Jesus and we know Jesus healed him. When we pray for each other, we spiritually carry our friends to the Lord. If you need prayer, please do not be afraid to ask for it. If you are so exhausted you cannot pray anymore, ask friends to pray for you and the situation.

And once more I say: Continue to celebrate Christmas...spread the joy and love of Christ where ever you go today.

Merry Christmas!


























Friday, December 26, 2008

December 26th

The day people celebrate Christmas has come and gone but it's still Christmas until January 6th.

Today a few women are coming over for lunch, we met in school between 5th & 8th grade and graduated from St. Thomas' Episcopal Church & School together. We have threatened one of our male classmates who moved just down the road from me with wrapping his house. We have to get a little exercise in after lunch and his neighborhood is so new, I think we can manage to throw rolls of toilet paper over his 6 foot tall oak trees. (Don't worry Doug, we haven't wrapped your house in 4 or 5 years and probably won't do it today....)

This meal with dear friends extends Christmas for me if you will. There is joy and love around the dining room table and it's great, but nothing compared to the pure love God has for us. Just imagine what it will be like when we are dining together in heaven! I try to find God's love in every day situations and events. I really find it in dining with friends who love me warts and all.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Continue to celebrate Christmas....

O Come Let Us Adore Him!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Christmas!

I hope you have a very Merry Christmas! 2008 has been a long year for my family due to my father's 8 months in the hospital plus the normal ups and downs of life. Many of you have experienced hard times this year. Keeping our eyes on the Lord is the only way to move forward. He understands our pain, our disappointments and the reasons we cry out why Lord, why? Each day is a new day with Him, His mercy and grace are poured out on us daily, they never run low or run out, He is ever faithful even when we are not.


Over 2000 years ago on a starry night, whatever time of year the shepherds were in the field with their flocks, in the City of David, Jesus our Emmanuel, the long awaited Messiah was born. Our heavenly Father trusted Joseph and Mary to raise this little baby Who would bring Salvation to all people. The Prince of Peace, the Lord of Lords, the King of Kings was born in very humble circumstances to a humble couple who loved Yaweh.

As we celebrate Christmas with our family and friends, let us remember those whose children are serving in the military, those who work at the hospitals, the police officers and firefighters, the sick, the lonely, the disenfranchised, the homeless and all those who are in physical and emotional pain. Please pray for them.

My heart is filled with joy this Christmas because no matter what, I know our Lord loves me and He loves you, too. Remember earth is our temporary home. Our real home is in heaven where there is no sickness, no disease, no tears, no sorrow. So I say it once more: Merry Christmas!

Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. And behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a manger.” And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying: “ Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace, goodwill toward men!” So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.” And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. Now when they had seen Him, they made widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds.
O come let us adore Him, Christ the King!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Annual Coffee











Pictures from my annual coffee, Ann & Karen on the love seat, they were talking to Annette of Annie's Eyes Blog, Penny (1 of my dogs) recovering from being shut out of all the excitement...Joann is sitting on the couch, she is my neighbor...then sadly I started drinking coffee and eating red velvet cake and quit taking pictures...Oh well, there is always next year.
Since it's only 38 degrees this afternoon which is cold for people in southeast Texas, I am going to make a cup of tea and warm up. Have a good afternoon. Spend some time with our Heavenly Father:
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.




Sunday, December 21, 2008

The 4th Sunday of Advent

Today is the 4th Sunday of Advent, the last candle in the wreath is lit until we light the white candle in the center on Christmas Day. Hard to believe how fast the season of preparation flew by this year.

Yesterday I had several friends over, we drank coffee, ate sweets, and laughed. Annette of Annie's Eyes blog made the trip from the northwest side of Houston to my house southwest of Houston. It was a joy to see her in person. (She brought the most wonderful gift, I need to find out if she made it and I need to thank her for it.)

My husband made his escape, he decided to spread joy and pink eye to his plumbing shop. (I don't think his employees were there.)

I hope y'all are prepared for Christmas spiritually and in the natural realm. I have 1 gift to buy, a trip to the grocery store later this week, and a little baking to do. I hope we have prepared Him room in our hearts and let the things of this world that don't matter in the next world fade away.

I pray we spread joy and love this week, because the Lord has come...

In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was with God in the beginning.
All things were created through Him,
and apart from Him not one thing was created
that has been created.
Life was in Him,
and that life was the light of men.
That light shines in the darkness,
yet the darkness did not overcome it.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Handel - Messiah - Hallelujah

When I was in school I had to be in the annual Christmas Choir Concert. I loved some of the songs we sang and really didn’t care for others. I remember in 5th grade when I was 10; we sang Lo How a Rose E’er Blooming, I hated it. As I got older I liked the words and still hated the music. I have not heard it in so many years; I no longer have an opinion. We also sang a song called Fum Fum Fum (rhymes with zoom, not gum), the opening line is: On December five and twenty fum fum fum, I think we all loved it and I think we even sang it at a Christmas party a 2 or 3 years ago after a couple of glasses of champagne. Another song we liked to sing was:

While Shepherds watched their flocks by night,
Glad tidings brought an angel bright:
How great their joy, great their joy,
Joy, joy joy!
Joy, joy joy!
Glory to God in heav'n on high.
Glory to God in heav'n on high.

We would belt out the echo of the JOY JOY JOY chorus to annoy the organist Mr. Moseley, but he could never prove it. I heard the song the other day and it brought a big smile to my face. I belted it out in the car. Bring some joy into your day, belt out some Christmas Carols, you’ll feel the joy and so will the Lord.


Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Buc-ees' Fudge


As many of you know from a previous post I wanted a truffle last weekend but did not want to go to the Galleria. My husband not knowing about the desire for a truffle; stopped at Buc-cees on the way home from the deer lease and bought fudge for me. What a guy, stopping to buy fudge at the service station. Buc-ees have not been around all that long, but has a loyal following. One of my friends has been known to drive to Buc-ees to buy jerky, it's 1/2 way to San Antonio. Thankfully they have opened a few locations around the greater Houston area and one will open soon in Richmond. You can pull in pump gas, go in grab a Coke, buy freshly baked cookies, have some jerky and get back on the highway. Buc-ees is basically a massive convenience store. I love them.

It can be very easy to treat God like a convenience store. We just utter a prayer which is like a fast food order and go on down the highway of life. I am not talking about when a crisis pops up or we need a quick refreshment from the Lord. I am talking about this kind of prayer:

Lord, Did you see what Susie Q did to me? I am glad you saw it and know I don't need to forgive her. I hate my boss. Lord, the sermon was so boring Sunday, and the choir - did you hear the choir!!! Did you put your hand over your ears? I am going to buy a lotto ticket, please bless it. In Jesus' Name. amen (I did take some of this from a prayer I heard someone pray.)

Not to be legalistic and say there is a right and wrong way to pray or a set amount of time and a set place to pray, I will say pray when you have time to listen to the Lord's response. He has a lot to say to us, He will impress our hearts with answers, He may answer through other people, and He will speak to us through His word. I normally begin prayer with praises and establish Who He is, Yaweh - the Great I Am, enthroned in Heaven, then I confess my sin (I do make confessions through out the day, especially as I drive down the road, I tend to have a problem with my thought life concerning other drivers.), I then talk to Him about situations or incidents in life and pray for people with needs, and end with thanking Him. This is not the only way to pray, it's just how I pray. I also spend some time sitting quietly. Sometimes I journal. I have not journaled in a month or so, I want to be intentional about it in the New Year.

The Bible gives us the model prayer we call the Lord's Prayer. So much has been written about it, that I will sum it up in a nutshell - Jesus began by establashing God's sovereignty, asking for provision, asking for forgiveness, asking for protection and ending in praise.

If I were going to pray the convenience store prayer for real, it would be similar to this:

Heavenly Father, I know You are the Father of Lights, You are my Abba Father, enthroned in Heaven, You never change. I would then confess my sin. I would talk to Him about Susie Q. I would ask Him if I should talk to her about whatever hurt my feelings or drop it. I would ask Him to fill my heart with love for her and would pray for forgiveness because I was angry with her. I would ask the Lord to grant me favor and grace with my boss, I would pray to be the Light of Christ in the office at all times. I would pray for the Lord to anoint my minister and pour out His message through the minister in the sermon. I would thank Him for the choir and the time they give Him and the church. I would ask Him to bless them and anoint them. I don't think I would pray over the lotto ticket! I would end the prayer thanking Him.

Make time for Him. He loves you! He loves you so much, He sent His Son Jesus - Emmanuel, He trusted humans to raise Jesus. Jesus thought it was worth leaving His Father to live on earth and ultimately be our Passover Lamb.

In the same region, shepherds were staying out in the fields and keeping watch at night over their flock. Then an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Don't be afraid, for look, I proclaim to you good news of great joy that will be for all the people: today a Savior, who is Messiah the Lord, was born for you in the city of David. This will be the sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped snugly in cloth and lying in a manger." Suddenly there was a multitude of the heavenly host with the angel, praising God and saying: Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to people He favors!

Monday, December 15, 2008

The Post Office & The Holy Spirit

Does anyone relish a trip to the post office this time of year? I knew there would be a bit of a wait as parking places were scarce. I had 2 choices: stand in line and think nasty thoughts or stand in line and pray for friends and family who need prayer. Part of me wanted to do the nasty thought thing so I could contemplate the woman who told the postal worker to wait as she talked on her cell phone. He called the next customer, she hung up the telephone quickly and glared at him while he waited on her. Remember, these are people - God's children, not idiots, I am reminding myself of this point as well as telling myself I am Kingdom minded.

The Holy Spirit can change our mood in a heartbeat if we ask Him to do so. Ephesians tells us:

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory.

I want to exhibit the fruit of the Spirit everywhere I go, I want the Light of Christ to shine from my eyes and His words to pour forth as I talk to people. I know a lady named Wanda Plummer, she's 86; who in regular conversation without mentioning the Lord pours forth His words. People are drawn to her because His love is such a part of her. I don't know how many young hippies she prayed into the Kingdom in the 1960's and 1970's. People were set free from drugs in her front yard, numerous people were saved in her living room; she drew them in with love.

In Isaiah we are told: I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

Remember under our armor, we are clothed in Salvation and robed in Righteousness. Bring the fruit of the Spirit - love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness with you - don't leave home without it!

I'll end today with this video clip Come Thou Long Expected Jesus, the scenery is beautiful, I know our sisters up north will not appreciate the snow scenes like many us on the Gulf Coast and in south Texas...and Ang, never fear the word Hippo does not appear in text, is not said or sung in the clip. Freezing rain is supposed to begin falling soon...I prefer snow, it's time for a cup of Sugar Free Swiss Miss hot chocolate.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

No Galleria, Godiva, or Starbucks

My father ate seafood gumbo for lunch Friday which contained an ingredient he was allergic to, as a result we did not go to the Galleria today. He feels fine now. I took my parents to dinner to the Italian Maid here in Richmond, we had a great dinner and then drove around looking at Christmas lights with Christmas Carols playing on the radio. KSBJ played beautiful music tonight; KSBJ is a wonderful station, you can listen online.

My husband called from the deer lease, he has pink eye and the wind was blowing 40 mph. I don't think his evening was as nice as ours was.

I gave dad some great news today about one of his best friends, dad has been in prayer for 6 to 7 months over a situation and the prayer was answered yesterday afternoon. The Lord's timing is always perfect, He's never late. We may think He is, but He's not. I join my parents and friends rejoicing over the answered prayer.

I will attend church with my parents tomorrow, it will be nice to worship with them and many of my close friends. I was a member there for about 20 years. Goodness, I was in my 20's when I joined that church, probably wore Laura Ashley every Sunday for a couple of years and had only 1 chin!

It's hard to believe it's the 3rd Sunday of Advent. Annette of Annie's Eyes gave me a beautiful Advent Wreath, I will light the 3rd candle tomorrow. I hope y'all have a wonderful Sabbath.

Love, Annette

And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. Then said Mary unto the angel, How shall this be, seeing I know not a man? And the angel answered and said unto her, The Holy Ghost shall come upon thee, and the power of the Highest shall overshadow thee: therefore also that holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called the Son of God.

Friday, December 12, 2008

I Am Kingdom Minded, I Am Kingdom Minded

Lord help me, my father wants to go to the Galleria tomorrow. His watch is losing time again; so Tourneau here we come with 10,000 other shoppers. (My figure is not scientific and may be inflated for entertainment purposes.)

My first thoughts were:

All the idiots - oh wait - Lord, I repent they aren't idiots - I mean all the people
All the traffic
All the people
All the chaos
All the people

I thought well, maybe I'll stop by Godiva while we're there, it's less expensive than Gucci. They sell a truffle I love. The Christmas decorations are beautiful and will be fun to see.

I may take dad to Starbucks across Post Oak from the Galleria to kill a little time then take him to Goode Company Seafood so he can eat an oyster po-boy. Dad has never been to Starbucks. I think it's time he experienced it.

I intend to stay patient and Kingdom minded which will require spending quality time with our Heavenly Father tonight and tomorrow morning. I will never look back and say I wish I had stayed home and not spent time with dad to miss traffic and hoards of people.

Spend time with our Abba Father, the stress will lift and you will be refreshed. Scripture tells us:
Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

So tomorrow, I want to take kindness, love, joy, warmth, and hope wherever I go. I want to be the light of Christ in the midst of harried salespeople and customers.

I also want a truffle...

Have a great weekend and a blessed Sabbath - And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

A Little Snow & A Lot of Smiles


I wonder how many people across south and southeast Texas went a little berserk over the snow fall yesterday? I know I did. Everyone was outside laughing and smiling. Joy was all around.

It really takes so little to bring joy and warmth to those around us, as we are living in hard times for many people, try to think of ways to bring kindness, peace, joy, faith, hope, and love wherever you go.

As we near the day we celebrate the birth of our King, let's be Kingdom minded. We can renew our hearts and mind in the Word, we can be filled with His love for even the people we consider unlovable - we just pray to be filled with His love, ask the Holy Spirit to guard your lips against unkind words as well as gossip. It can be easy to fall into gossip while visiting without ever meaning to do so.

In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register. So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn. And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger." Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Snow

It doesn't happen often, so excuse me for being over the top...it's SNOWING...78 yesterday, 34 for a high today. Most people in Southeast Texas love snow. What a great gift after a hurricane.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Christmas Past

What makes you nostalgic during the Christmas season? I think of merry times with my family laughing and singing. I have so few relatives left on my father's side of the family and many of them are serving the Lord in Europe and South Korea. I remember being 9 or 10 and we had so much fun visiting, sharing our Christmas meal and playing Christmas music we opened gifts at 8pm as we were about to leave my aunt's house. I wanted gifts when I was a child, but that was not the biggest part of Christmas.

I look back at the doll buggy, the Chrissy Doll, the various Barbies and their accessories (anyone else remember when Barbie's dorm room, kitchen, and house were made of cardboard?) clothes, games, Creepy Crawlers and books, it was all fun, but I remember running into the arms of family members who were in town for Christmas. I remember my Uncle Bob sitting on the couch in his mod clothes smoking a cigarette looking at the children as if we were Martians. He was not into kids, he did however become one of my best friends when I was in my mid twenties, he died of complications from AIDS in 1994, I still miss his dry humour.

Bing Crosby singing Do You Hear What I Hear and White Christmas send me down memory lane as do children's choirs. I think of all the music I belted out at St. Thomas' Episcopal Church and School and Westbury United Methodist Church - let's just say I made a joyful noise! (Real joyful)

My maternal grandmother lived to be 87, she gave us Lifesaver Books each year. I traded my cousin Wayne all my Butter Rum rolls for His Wintergreen and Peppermint rolls. When they quit selling Lifesaver books Grandma moved on to giant cans of Popcorn. I think she bought them in July.

I know Christmases past were not perfect, but I never saw the problems, the imperfections. When we confess and repent, God no longer sees our imperfections. His love is complete and whole. His Word says:

But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.

For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.

If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Monday Morning Musings

Apparently asking a man if age spots look lighter is right up there with the following questions:

Do you like these shoes?
Do I look fat in this outfit?
Does my derriere look big in these jeans?

After getting over the shock of being questioned about age spots at 6:43am central time, he answered yes they look lighter. I was handing him a cup of hot coffee at the time, but I am sure that had no bearing on the answer. ha ha ha

So as I think Palmer's Age Spot serum is working, I know and believe with every fiber of my being the following words are true:

Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation—if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

2nd Sunday of Advent - Mark 1:1-8

If I attended an Episcopal Church today, I would hear the following passage of the Gospel read:

The beginning of the gospel about Jesus Christ, the Son of God. It is written in Isaiah the prophet: "I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way" "a voice of one calling in the desert, 'Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.' "And so John came, baptizing in the desert region and preaching a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. The whole Judean countryside and all the people of Jerusalem went out to him. Confessing their sins, they were baptized by him in the Jordan River. John wore clothing made of camel's hair, with a leather belt around his waist, and he ate locusts and wild honey. And this was his message: "After me will come one more powerful than I, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to stoop down and untie. I baptize you with water, but he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit."

We are so fortunate, we live under the New Convenant as opposed to the Law. Jesus did not come to do away with the Law - the Old Covenant but to complete it. God our Father loves us so much, He sent His Son to save us, to redeem us from bondage, to heal us, to restore us, to deliver us. Jesus the Prince of Peace, the Lord of Lords, the King of Kings loves you and me so much He took the cup that was given to Him by His Father to save us. He was obedient unto death for us. Worship Him today. Thank Him today. Live for Him and no other today and always.

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Grinch & Joy to the World

When I was a young girl, either 3 or 4 years old I received the book How the Grinch Stole Christmas. I loved it and had my parents and Sandy read it to me frequently. At the end of the book there is picture of the Who's and the Grinch holding hands as they sing. For some reason, I decided they were singing Joy to the World. A year or 2 later in 1966 the Grinch cartoon debuted with Boris Karloff (sp). The Who's and the Grinch were not singing Joy to the World, I could not believe it.

I watched the Grinch cartoon the other night which caused me to remember the Joy to the World notion I held over 40 years ago. My dad told me my uncle read the book to me the 1st time I heard it because he and his wife gave it to me for Christmas. Uncle Howdy read it, some of the adults listened because they had never heard the story, as he finished he said this book makes no sense. (I think the rhymes got to him as he read.) I piped up and said you can't steal Christmas it comes every year whether we have homes, gifts, or Christmas trees.

I always have compassion for those in need as I am sure you do too, but it really doubles this time of year. I want to do more. I worry about people being cold as well as hungry.

As culture tries to steal Christmas by turning it into a season of spending, business, and about anything but the birth of our Savior, let's continue to prepare Him room in our hearts, let's bring joy to the world by serving our God and King.

When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' "The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.'

Thursday, December 4, 2008

A Litle Holiday Cheer

Hope this brings smiles to your faces.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Can You Say SELF-Indulgence?

Monday was a long day due to taking my dad to the ER, though the others trips have been 9 to 13 hours before he was seen, our total time from my house to the ER and back was 5 hours, which includes picking up sandwiches and salads to go at Sandy McGee’s in Richmond. I was so tired physically; I was relieved no one was able to attend Bible Study Monday night, though mentally I was sad.

I decided I wanted to eat chocolate; I didn’t have anything chocolate in the house. I could not ask my husband to stop on the way home from work and buy a candy bar because he was at the deer lease. Far be it from me to get off the couch and go to the convenience store and buy a Snickers Bar. I looked in the pantry; I had everything I needed to make brownies. I don’t even care for brownies that much. I baked them; I cut them in 2 x 2 pieces and proceeded to eat 4 of them – FOUR, I can’t believe it – FOUR of them.

That is called self-indulgence. Hopefully my husband will eat the rest this week. I looked at them this morning and the “siren” of chocolate was no longer calling. I thought about Samson and what a self-indulgent man he was. He was called by God to be set apart as a Levite before he was born. We know he touched a dead animal, gathered honey from the lion’s carcass and ate the honey. He was a prankster, I have the feeling he was very crude. We know Samson loved the ladies and eventually sold his soul to one.

Fast forward to the book of Daniel, he was the polar opposite of Samson. Daniel was offered the food of royalty and wine, however he asked for water and vegetables. He spent much time in prayer. We know he knew the words of Jeremiah the prophet, it is found in Daniel 9:2:

in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the Scriptures, according to the word of the LORD given to Jeremiah the prophet, that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years.

Daniel knew the Word of the Lord; he remained set apart in Babylon, he remained in prayer. I want to be a Danielle not a Samsonette. I want to serve the Lord, I want to have a healthy body and be a good witness to the power of Christ Jesus and His power to transform lives.

My prayer today is that I as a Christian am not self-indulgent in anything, but I am a woman who is set apart to serve God and not her flesh. I am sure many of you have prayed something similar, maybe not over brownies but over an issue in your life. Let’s get prayed up and prepare spiritually during this time of Advent for more of the Lord in our lives; for His light to increase in our lives; for His love to pour out of us onto the people we cross paths with in our day to day lives, not our Sunday selves but our everyday selves.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

Monday, December 1, 2008

ER's and Enduring Love

I took my father to the ER at St. Luke's Sugar Land today. It was our 1st time at this location. (And hopefully the last!) We are so thankful to the Lord we did not have to go to the medical center in Houston. We are so thankful the ER doctor was concerned and listened to my father. This trip was all because of a torn ligament in his shoulder and a torn rotator cuff. He is so much better now. He had not slept since Thursday, as a result mom had not slept, they are both exhausted.

All the way home they were thanking the Lord for everything that worked out today, as in someone saw us getting dad out of my car as they were coming in to work, she ran into the hospital and came out with a wheelchair. The doctor began treating my dad immediately and we were only gone a total of 5 hours. The Lord's timing was everywhere through out the day.

My friend Sandy (who led me to love Red Velvet Cake, OJ's Beauty Lotion, and Pepperoni Pizza in the mid 1960's as well as Go-Go boots and frosted lipstick) reminded me of Psalm 136 today. Here are a few verses, they are so meaningful to me:

1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good. His love endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods. His love endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords: His love endures forever.
4 to him who alone does great wonders, His love endures forever.
5 who by his understanding made the heavens, His love endures forever.
6 who spread out the earth upon the waters, His love endures forever.
7 who made the great lights—His love endures forever.
8 the sun to govern the day, His love endures forever.
9 the moon and stars to govern the night; His love endures forever.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Happy New Year

Not quite the greeting you thought you would see 11/30/2008. Today is the 1st Sunday of Advent which is the beginning of the year, liturgically speaking. I am no longer Episcopalian, but I do still love the liturgical calendar.

This is the time to prepare our hearts for the celebration of the birth of Jesus as well as the 2nd coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Growing up in the Episcopal Church, Advent was purple and at some point Advent became blue. I did hear a priest say it’s because we are less penitential than we used to be, I was never sure if Father Steve was joking or that is why the switch from purple to blue was made.

The Advent Wreath is a symbol which reminds us we are called to be a light to the world as we reflect the light of God's grace to others (Isa 42:6). Advent is a season of preparation, hope, and anticipation. These words from Isaiah sum it up:

A voice of one calling: "In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God. Every valley shall be raised up, every mountain and hill made low; the rough ground shall become level, the rugged places a plain.

I love this passage from Isaiah as well; it’s the grandest birth announcement in the history of the world:

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Celebrate the New Year today and let your light shine. Take the next 4 weeks and prepare Him room.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thwarted by Crescent Rolls

My husband and I had a great time with our family and friends on Thanksgiving Day. We served the worst crescent rolls known to man. We commented early in the week we had not had them since last Thanksgiving and decided that was the bread we would serve with lunch. My husband banged the cans on the counter, rolled the dough out flat, and said I don't know what to do now. I looked at him - waiting for the punchline. I decided not to say anything because it may sound sarcastic. I separated the dough and rolled them up and placed them on the cookie sheet. He said oh.

11 minutes later, they were not done. 13 minutes later they were not done. 20 minutes later we flipped them. I can honestly say they are the 1st Pillsbury frozen crescent rolls I have ever flipped with a spatula. 25 minutes later they were ready to serve. Maybe something happened to them as I waited in line at Wal Mart to check out...just kidding...

It's been a long college football season for me. The Aggies lost to the Longhorns last night. They have won the last couple of years even though they were pitiful, I kinda hoped as pitiful as they were this season the could still pull it off. Gig'em Aggies...until next season unless Jesus returns 1st. Ang, I hope MSU did well. I didn't check scores today and may not have time tomorrow. To all you Longhorns, congrats, I hope OSU beats OU.

It's 8:05pm and my feet are still tired and in shock that I stood in the kitchen and cooked so long yesterday and then did the dishes. I am going to grab a piece of turkey and go to bed.

Completely changing subjects, I lift up the people caught in the big mess in Mumbai. I truly cannot imagine the motivating hate which fuels extremists. I pray the injured and the hostages are blanketed by the love of Christ and know Him as Savior, Healer, Redeemer, and King.

I lift up my eyes to the hills— where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD watches over you— the LORD is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all harm—he will watch over your life;
the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Doxology

Let us praise Him this Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thanksgiving for Free Radishes

Today I went to Kroger very early to purchase produce for the giant, garden salad I am serving tomorrow. (I began adding salads to our Thanksgiving meal a couple of years ago.) I bought Romaine lettuce, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, and carrots.

Shopping in Kroger is a very different thing than shopping in Wal Mart. It was calm and quite and my grocery cart rolled through the store without squeaking at 100 decibels.

As the manager checked me out, he could not find prices for the radishes. He said Happy Thanksgiving and gave them to me. I thanked him and told him to have a wonderful Thanksgiving as well.

I think the free radishes were a little gift from God because I have been shopping with a better attitude. I am trying to live out Scripture and not let my thoughts become so negative and sinful while shopping at Wal Mart.

Now if I can only remain gentle, patient, and kind while I cook, I am not sure if I have ever mentioned how I hate to cook in previous posts. Just kidding, I know I frequently mention it.

Have a safe and blessed Thanksgiving dear sisters in Christ. It's time to put the cornbread dressing in the oven and throw the cranberries into boiling water.

Let us join the Psalmist and praise our King:

Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.
Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his ; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations

Love, Annette

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

But the Fruit of the Spirit is not Chocolate

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

I knew Wal Mart was going to be a real test yesterday, I said goodbye to my husband, I put the car in reverse, headed down the driveway and low and behold, my husband's truck was over about 5 inches from where it should be parked and I could not get by. I came back inside and he was in the shower and told me to wait a minute. I waited 8 and was either about to do my Mt Vesuvius impression or join the astronauts in orbit, I am not sure which. I fold my side view mirrors in, took down a bird feeder and made it out the drive way without hitting the house, his truck or anyone. (Though I will say it's hard to back up w/o side view mirrors.)

I arrived at Wal Mart, the greeter said hello, I said hello, he pushed a grocery cart my way and said I hope it works - that was my 1st clue - it was going to be a long shopping trip. One or all 4 wheels squeaked beyond belief. I have never heard such a racket in my life. People 5 or 6 aisles away knew I was coming. But I was able to let my gentleness be evident. I was in line to check out and someone tried to use a fraudulent Lone Star Card, could not understand the conversation because switched from English to Spanish. 3 of us were told to go to the express lanes. (All the express lanes were opened, 2 regular lanes were open, I am thankful I saved money, I am thankful I saved money, I am thankful I saved money.)

I really didn't get into sinful thoughts, didn't have to repent much compared to normal, I guess because I was angry when I left the house over my husband's truck not being parked correctly. I was able to stay focused on the Lord quite a bit while shopping. I am thankful I made the decision to live out Scripture instead of give myself over to a sinful thought life as I shopped.

I did ask the Lord why chocolate was not a fruit of the Spirit. He didn't mention chocolate when He led me to several verses about patience, gentleness and kindness.

Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all. Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

I must repeat this from yesterday's post:

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.

Today as the mad rush of cooking and preparing our homes to receive guests is on or the packing begins for those who travel, show a little kindness and patience, let your gentleness be evident. Let's all remain in an attitude of thanksgiving. Let's thank Him not only for what He has done in our lives but for Who He is - Yaweh, the Great I Am.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Prepare for Thanksgiving via Wal Mart

OK...in a few moments I will be shopping at Wal Mart. I have a love-hate affair with the store. I dislike how large it is, I dislike the mostly rude staff who will barely clear the aisle while they converse so you can push the grocery basket down the aisle, and I dislike the 49 check out stands which are always closed. The self service check outs are open, I refuse to use them, maybe I should pray about that. If I am going to spend money at Wal Mart, they should give me a little service by ringing up my purchases, right? (is that pride?) They will have 2 or 3 cashiers and 1 or 2 will be at the express lanes. I love one thing about Wal Mart, the prices are lower than Kroger and HEB. When I am buying a Butterball turkey and staples I will save money. I will buy all the produce at HEB or Kroger tomorrow morning. I end up repenting a lot at Wal Mart and on the way home.

In some ways Wal Mart is an indicator of where I am on my Christian walk. I mean why be so upset by the size and lack of service at the store. In the big picture - it doesn't matter. What matters is that I handle Wal Mart with grace. I would like to think Wal Mart is a thorn in my flesh, but I know that's just not true. Why do I let my thoughts become so negative and sinful in Wal Mart? It's ridiculous. I should be thankful I am saving money, I should be thankful I live in a country in which we celebrate a Thanksgiving holiday. I should be thankful we still have freedom in America. I could buy a Bible in Wal Mart, I could buy a Christian novel in Wal Mart - I should be thankful for Wal Mart sells these items. And most of all, as I stand in line for eons, I should look at that as extra time in prayer and be thankful.

By now, most of you probably think I need healing prayer or to see a mental health professional. I'll end the post with this:

But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who love your salvation always say, "The LORD be exalted!"

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near.

I am off to Wal Mart to let my gentleness be evident and spend some time with the Lord.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing, Jars of Clay

Let us worship the One Who is the fount of every blessing, and give thanks that we can worship freely in America.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Thanksgiving for Kip

I have a dear sister in Christ, Ann who I met at church when she and her husband moved to Richmond a few years ago. They live 1/2 way between my house and my parents' house. Ann is 84, her husband is 86, they will celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary in 2009.

I invite Ann to every holiday party I throw, she was in the Bible study classes I led at church, and she is the home group which meets at my house on Monday nights. Quite frankly, I can't imagine life without her.

3 weeks ago she was excited because her son Kip (a college professor) wrote a paper on sin which was published. He was invited to a forum in HA to present the paper and his university was going to give him a little money toward expenses and a friend called and said he would like to pay for the airline ticket and hotel. Kip lost his eye sight years ago due to complications from diabetes. Ann was also excited because all of her children, her adopted Viet Namese children and all the grandchildren, nieces, nephews etc would be attending the anniversary party in June 209.

Kip became ill with more complications from diabetes 2 weeks ago and died on Wednesday. I give thanks for his life and his witness towards the faithfulness of the Lord. (A part of me wonders what will happen to his faithful guide dog.) I pray for Ann and Mike, Kip's children, and the rest of the family to receive the comfort only the Lord can give.

We all know life can change in the blink of an eye. Let us be mindful of that and live life with thanksgiving and praise.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Preparations for Thanksgiving

It's time to prepare for Thanksgiving in America. I have decided what I will serve. My cousin Wayne assured me I can get away with boxed mash potatoes if I use creme instead of milk and chicken broth instead of water. As some of you know, I hate to cook. The turkey is no problem, throw it in a bag with vegetables and leave in baking for hours. Not hard to throw cranberries in boiling water or open a can of green beans. I will bake some type of bread, I will also make a great garden salad. My husband is in charge of gravy. I may ask him to grill some squash as well. Mom is in charge of pies. I am looking for my aunt's oyster dressing (yuck) recipe, my mom and dad love it. My aunt's granddaughter does not have it. I am waiting to hear from my cousin to see if she has it. Aunt Rosemary might not have had a recipe.

It's so easy to get caught up in the whirl of cooking, place settings, tablecloths and center pieces, we may forget that Thanksgiving is about thanks, not food and football.

Please take take in the coming days to thank the Lord our God for all His blessings, for His protection, His Word, His Spirit, His Son, our lives, our godly forefathers, etc.

Psalm 95 says:

1 Come, let us sing for joy to the LORD; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.
3 For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods.

Let us join the psalmist and praise God.

Love, Annette

PS - 1 spot on my hand has faded slightly. If all the spots would connect and give me a tan, I would be ok with them. Alas they do not connect and form a tan, so I am hoping the Palmer's removes them.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Age Spots & Serums

I read an article in Good Housekeeping about skin care and products which really work. One in particular caught my eye because it was inexpensive and passed their test. Palmer's Age Spot Serum. Drugstore.com carries it for 9.89. I ordered it because I didn't see it at Walgreens. I am putting it on 2 spots on my face and a spot on my hand. In a month I should see fading, if it does not work in 3 months I should discontinue use according to the instructions.

Aren't you glad we don't have to make ourselves spotless and blemish free to approach the Lord! He makes us spotless and blemish free through His shed blood. Colossians 1 tells us:


21Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. 22But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation— 23if you continue in your faith, established and firm, not moved from the hope held out in the gospel. This is the gospel that you heard and that has been proclaimed to every creature under heaven, and of which I, Paul, have become a servant.

I Peter 1 says:

18For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, 19but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. 20He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.

Thank the Lord today for redeeming us and making us holy in His sight without spot or blemish.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Cousins Update

So far have had a great weekend with all the family. A couple of people considered the Galleria yesterday and then changed their mind. Thank You Lord! Paul and Jan brought pictures they found when Paul's father (my dad's brother) passed away. We had a ball looking at pictures of my dad and his siblings as well as pictures of my grandparents when they were very young.

I also found out my uncle Walter and aunt Maxine secretly married when they were 16. Because aunt Maxine's family thought Walter was beneath their station in society; they lived separately at their parents' homes until the day they graduated from high school. That must have been 1 heck of a graduation. Somehow they managed to keep it a secret for 2 years and prevent conception of children. My aunt had their 1st child just after he was deployed to the Phillipines during WWII. My aunt and uncle were so straight and narrow the story shocked me. (Now I know why they were such strict parents!) They were married just shy of 70 yrs and died a couple months apart last year.

I hope the WI cousins can visit in the spring. I would love for them to see Texas wildflowers in bloom. As always it was great to see my San Antonio cousins. I know my dad has had a ball seeing his niece, nephew and their spouses. I think my mother has really enjoyed herself as well.

Hope ya'll had a great weekend. It's time for me to get caught up on Bible Study.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Cousins & More Cousins

Two cousins from dad's side of the family arrive from Wisconsin for a visit today. They were supposed to visit the weekend after Ike. We said no as did the other people they were visiting. Their friends live in League City and were hard hit by Ike. A couple of cousins from San Antonio will be visiting as well, they haven't seen the WI cousins in years. From what I can tell my parents have planned all meals at restaurants. Bar b que, steaks, and Mexican food are all a part of the plans. Maybe between meals I can take them to the Museum of History and Natural Science and or the Butterfly Center. (I hope no one wants to shop at the Galleria, 2 Saturdays in a row might make me buy a Gucci purse, ha ha ha.)

I hope ya'll have a great weekend with family, friends, and the Lord.

Be blessed with these words from Ephesians 1:

3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. 4For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. 7In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace 8that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. 9And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, 10to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Move the Bag

I felt impressed by the Holy Spirit to share this story about listening.

The other day I had an upset stomach, I didn't feel well enough to go anywhere, but I was not so ill I could not function. My husband always had various over the counter medicine he takes to the hunting lease. I dug around looking for something to take, could not find anything. I went into our bathroom and noticed he had pulled a basket of my stuff out from under the vanity and left it on the floor and put one of his shaving kits on top of it. I was annoyed. I heard the quiet voice say move the bag. I thought I'll pick it up later, after all I was looking for something to calm my stomach, it took 1st priority. 10 minutes later I was back in our bathroom to paw through drawers on his side of the vanity. I heard it again, move the bag. Let's just say I didn't move the bag. I decided to sip on water and contemplate a nap because it was lunch and I was not going to eat. Maybe I could be pathetic and send my husband to the store when he returned later that afternoon. Maybe I could ask my parents to stop at the Sonic on the way home from church and buy a slush for me. Or...maybe I could move the bag...

I went into the bathroom and moved the bag, guess what...under the bag was the medicine I was looking for...to bad I didn't move the bag the 1st time the Lord told me to move it when I whined to Him I didn't feel well.

I am used to hearing the quiet Voice, I rely on hearing it when I pray with people. Many times I listen right away in daily life but not always. He speaks to us every day in the little things as well as the big things. We must listen. As my friend Norma Dearing says, He gave us 2 ears and 1 mouth which means we need to listen more than we speak.

The Bible says:

but whoever listens to me will live in safety and be at ease, without fear of harm.

Listen to my instruction and be wise; do not ignore it. Blessed is the man who listens to me, watching daily at my doors, waiting at my doorway. For whoever finds me finds life and receives favor from the LORD.

My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires.

Have a blessed day and let's listen for the still, quiet voice of God today.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Not Today

Several months ago I posted something regarding a former partner who had owed me quite a bit of money for a couple of years. He was dodging my calls, not answering e-mails, etc. I finally said enough is enough. I wrote a letter telling him I was sorry but I would have to take him to small claims court. My friend Lyn who is an attorney re-wrote the letter (at no charge) and I printed it.

As I was preparing to print the address on the envelope, I heard the still quiet voice of God say, Not today." I sat there a minute and said OK. I prayed about it. (I had been in prayer because as a Christian going to court was the last resort.)

The next morning I checked my business e-mail, he had written late the night before and said he was mailing a check for 700.00 to be deposited upon receipt and another check for more money to be deposited November 5. I was soooo happy I had listened to the Lord.

I think getting over the fear of doing something about the money set into action the Lord working in this area of my life. I was afraid to go through the courts, I am a Christian, he is a Christian, I really didn't want to pursue it in that manner but I wanted the money he owed me.

The Bible says: "Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

Praying, listening, and timing are so important. Keep praying, keep listening, and knock when you hear clearly from the Lord.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Saturday in the Big City

I took my father to Tourneau in the Galleria today to pick up his watch. I dropped it off in August for repairs. May I just say among friends, I would rather watch a Steven Seagal (sp?) film festival than go to the Galleria on a Saturday. Traffic was awful, but it was nice spending extra time with dad.

After the Galleria, we went to Goode Company Seafood and he ate his favorite Oyter PoBoy. We then swung by the medical center to check the road construction his doctor warned him about via a recorded telephone message. I am taking him Tues. to see a surgeon regarding a torn rotater cuff. He is getting annoyed by the constant paid and I don't blame him. I told him he could be angry but sin not. He laughed.

Tomorrow I hope to play in the yard. I bought: spinach, lettuce, cauliflower (yuck), and broccoli to plant as well as a few pansies, alyssum, and snapdragons. I am planting the veggies in HUGE pots so I can protect them if we have a cold winter. After a hurricane, why not ice too.

I have had a few inquiries about the asparagus fern, I quit trying to kill it in May, it's huge and thriving. Maybe I will take a picture of it tomorrow and post it at some point.

Speaking of planting, remember to plant God's Word in your heart. Plant it deep so when the day of trouble comes, it will be in the fiber of your being. The Bible says:

Keep my commands and you will live; guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.
Bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.
Say to wisdom, "You are my sister," and call understanding your kinsman;

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Random Thoughts from A to Z

I am sharing a few random thoughts which are floating through my head:

1. No more political ads! I watched an hour of TV last night, no one promised me anything other than to transform my skin, hair, weight or sinus condition.

2. God is not shocked by the election results. I personally believe as a nation, we reaped what we sowed. It's time to pray for the president elect & George Bush w/ the intensity we had 09/12/2001.

3. God is on His throne, He did not fall off or move to another address.

4. I wonder if I can make a quick trip to the nursery at lunch.

5. I have to clean, I think unvited guests (cousins) expect to stay with me next week.

6. I need to find a new home church.

7. Another item to add to the How Not to Break a Fast List: Buttermilk Pie

Lunch with Annette of Annie's Eyes Blog was great. We had a ball meeting face to face. I can't wait to meet all of you in face to face, it will most likely be in heaven...imagine the meal we will all share together! Guard you ears ladies from coarse jokes, there are always so many just after an election, no matter who wins. The Bible says:

But among you there must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God's holy people. Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving. For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a man is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Dolly Parton - He´s alive

The election is over, many of us are disappointed. We must keep the president elect in our prayers. And to remind us of what is really important, I chose this song. I'll be back to regular posts Friday.

Days of Elijah-Twila Paris

There is no God like Jehovah! Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, Who was, Who is, and Who is to come!

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Walls of Jericho

It's very strange, I posted a video from YouTube, when posted it says the video is no longer available. Try this link: Walls of Jericho, let us go out and praise the Lord before the walls come down.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Lunch & Lunch

This weekend I will meet Annette of Annie’s Eyes Blog in person. We are having lunch at Ciro’s. I am very much looking forward to our meeting.

Sunday I am taking my father to lunch at Goode Company Seafood at his request. He wants to eat an oyster poboy. I don’t care for seafood. I see a beautiful, green salad for lunch.

This post is bittersweet because I am thrilled about meeting Annette in person and sad because my father has been told he probably has congestive heart failure.

I am so thankful we serve a Big BIG God. I not only believe in Him, I believe Him. To believe Him, I must know His word. Here are but a few verses on which I stand:

who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty

Surely he will save you from the fowler's snare and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; by his wounds you have been healed

You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give you
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before the creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake.

So Sisters, I say remember God is a BIG, BIG God. A God Who loves us, Who understands our cares, concerns, moods (thought I would like to discuss hormones and why in the world he created mosquitoes and roaches), and temptations. Remember, not only must we believe in Him, we must believe Him!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Discombobulate vs Ovulate

A funny thing happened in San Antonio on Saturday. As Norma Dearing was preparing to speak, she was having difficulty with the microphone. I asked her if she was discombobulated. She said yes.
Father Jack Sheffield walked up to see if she needed assistance and heard what I said to her. His eyes grew large and he practically shouted Annette, what did you say to her? I repeated the question, he looked skeptical, I asked what he thought I said, he said never mind. I tried running words through my head which might rhyme with discombobulated: biscombobulated, fiscombobulated...I determined in short time there are no words which rhyme with discombobulated. Later that night as we walked into dinner, I asked him what DID you think I said? He thought I asked Norma if she was ovulating. Norma and I laughed all night.

Aren't you thankful the Lord never misunderstands us! We may try sugar talk with Him and pretend we are not mad and it's all sweetness and light, but He knows. It's for our health and well being we are to be honest when we pray. Being truthful, whether it is shouting at Him, sobbing, screaming why Lord is OK. He knows we are upset and angry when our child or spouse dies. He knows that even though we smile and tell people we are fine and smile, inside we are folding and want to know why we have a terminal disease. He knows when people think He takes their loved one from them and needs them in heaven. (Though to this, I say He does not take them, He receives them and there is a big difference.)

So be honest, if you are discombobulated talk to Him. If you are angry, talk to Him. If you are so sad, you think the tears will never stop, talk to Him. It's hard but you will find solace in the Bible. You will find solace in the prayers of others. It's time to call in the cavalry and have friends pray for you in person or in their own prayer time. God created our emotions and He can not only deal with them, He can and will heal them IE healthy grief vs. unhealthy grief. The Bible tells us we can be angry, but we must sin not. Find help and healing in God, He loves you like no other. Each one of us is more precious to Him than anything. so precious He sent His Son Jesus the atoning Lamb to die in our place, to redeem us, to pay for our sins.

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, "Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! This is the one I meant when I said, 'A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.'

Just as man is destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many people; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him.


For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Seasons

We all (Well those of us well into our 40's and beyond) remember the song Turn Turn Turn made famous by The Byrds:

To everything (turn, turn, turn)There is a season (turn, turn, turn)And a time for every purpose, under heaven A time to be born, a time to die A time to plant, a time to reap A time to kill, a time to heal A time to laugh, a time to weep To everything (turn, turn, turn)There is a season (turn, turn, turn)And a time for every purpose, under heaven A time to build up,a time to break down A time to dance, a time to mourn A time to cast away stones, a time to gather stones together To everything (turn, turn, turn)There is a season (turn, turn, turn)And a time for every purpose, under heaven A time of love, a time of hate A time of war, a time of peace A time you may embrace, a time to refrain from embracing To everything (turn, turn, turn)There is a season (turn, turn, turn)And a time for every purpose, under heaven A time to gain, a time to lose A time to rend, a time to sew A time to love, a time to hate A time for peace, I swear its not too late

Seasons are finally changing in southeast Texas, the political season is almost over, the Christmas season is almost here. As the seasons change in the natural, the seasons in our Christian walk change.

Just because you were called to teach 7th and 8th grade Sunday school for the last 5 years does not mean you are called to teach it until you drop dead or Christ returns whichever comes first. Ministry callings change according to the season of our lives. If you are caring for a loved one - a spouse, a parent, a baby - that is ministry!

Ask the Lord where you are supposed to be, what you are supposed to be doing and how you are supposed to do it. Check in with Him frequently about your ministry. You do not want to become stuck in a spiritual rut and miss your calling and prevent someone else from ministering in their calling.

Let the words found in Titus speak to you:

A faith and knowledge resting on the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, and at his appointed season he brought his word to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior,

Look for Him in each season of your life. He is there. Stay in the Word, it brings life.

Love, Annette

Friday, October 24, 2008

Prayers & San Antonio

I am off to San Antonio for a healing conference this weekend. I am posting Billy Graham's prayer for our nation. Have a good weekend and blessed Sabbath. I'll post something on Monday. xxoo Annette

'Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word
says, 'Woe to those who call evil good,' but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values. We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery. We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare. We have killed our unborn and called it choice. We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable. We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self esteem. We have abused power and called it politics. We have coveted our neighbor's possessions and called it ambition. We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression. We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from every sin and Set us free.
Amen!'

Thursday, October 23, 2008

1st Cool Day

Today is the 1st day it was cool enough to wear fall clothes. I think we may be able to use a winter blanket tonight. I am trying to decide if it would be a stretch to build a fire tonight, though the wood may be too wet from the soaking it took last night.

I am having dreams of pansies and alyssum in my flower beds along with lettuce, broccoli, and spinach. I may even plant potatoes this fall. I plant the vegetables in big pots with a few flowers tucked around them. I am looking forward to buying lobelia, snapdragons, petunias, violas, and delphinium too. Time to scatter larkspur seeds.

Too bad I am not always as excited about planting God's Word in my heart as I am about planting in my flower beds. I love how fresh His Word is each time we read it. But I have lazy periods in which I do not spend time in the Word and with Him. Lazy periods always coincide with fatigue. I am worn out for no reason. I think I will blame it on hormone depletion.

So I think tonight, I will wrap up in an afghan and spend time in the Word with a cup of hot chocolate - sugar free of course.

Such large crowds gathered around him that he got into a boat and sat in it, while all the people stood on the shore. Then he told them many things in parables, saying: "A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly, because the soil was shallow. But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. He who has ears, let him hear."

I want to be good soil...Jesus is coming, I want to be ready!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I Love Lucy: Lucy Does a TV Commercial

I thought we might like a commercial which is not political.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Ads, Commercials, and Endorsements

I am sure many of you are like me, you do not want to see another ad in print, a commercial on TV, or hear another endorsement for years to come. In 2 weeks we vote...and it should all be over.

I ask you to join me in praying for:

Voter's Registration Fraud to Be Exposed Now
Only Citizens of the USA Vote
Traditional Marriage
Preservation of Life from Beginning to Natural End
We Continue to Be an Ally of Israel

I am conservative, God issues matter to me more than financial issues. I don't really care about the US on the global stage...we all know what the Bible says about the coming one world govt and religion. We know what happened when people in the Old Testament tried to build the Tower of Babel.

A few years ago, I would have been very concerned about global issues. Please do not misunderstand me, I help in charity endeavors in Africa and across the world as well as the USA. I just don't look to the US govt to save the world.

The Bible tells us Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life - it does not mention the US govt or EU being the way, the truth or the life. The Bible also tells us to remain in Jesus:

You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

So I say, vote for your candidate, pray for both Senators McCain and Obama. Pray for their safety, for what they really think to make it on the news, any hidden agenda or lies to be exposed now.

I am still praying principles from Esther over my candidate. I am praying he is saved from wicked advisers and wicked advice. I am praying he is saved from spiritual assassination. I am praying for Esthers and Mordecais to come to prayer and fasting the next two weeks. My friend Anna Marie is doing a fast for 3 days before the election, no water or food. If you feel called to join her, please let me know.


Rise up, Church of the Living God, in this hour and PRAY!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Breaking the Fast

I thought I would share something that may aid you in your Christian walk...how not to break a fast.

A few years ago I broke a fast with Mexican food. Not a good idea. I almost passed out from the carb rush. I thought I had balanced the carbs in the chips with the queso I put on them.

Friday night I broke a fast around 9pm at the church in La Porte. They had a little buffet for us. I thought 4 bite size quiches will be OK, followed by 3 miniature cheese cubes - you know - the more protein thing that failed a few years ago. And after the protein, I am sure eating 2 bite size cheesecake cubes is fine...surely we can put the cheesecake into the protein column. I then drink a Diet Coke for the 1st time in a week, you know - need caffeine for my 50 plus mile drive home. (Can I justify or what!)

On the way home, I thought wow, I think I should have broken the fast with a piece of toast and maybe chicken broth. I know many people are fasting in various degrees the next 2 weeks.

Take my advice do not break your fast with the following:

Mexican Food
Italian Food
An all you can eat buffet
Pizza
Quiche of any size
King Ranch Casserole
Cheese
Cheesecake (not a protein)
Chocolate Pie
Red Velvet Cake
Chick Fil A
Sonic

Have a blessed day sisters, it's time to go to work.

Let us serve the Lord today.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

La Porte Recap

Last night the meeting was short, most people attending are back at work, but still repairing their homes. Jack preached on God being with us in the storm. Jack then had people pray for one another. (1 couple left, I think it scared them.)

Today Jack and Anna Marie both taught about healing. They were so anointed. God really poured out His message through them.

We broke up into prayer teams at the end of the day and prayed with people. So many were in their late 60's up into their 80's. They had been carrying around deep hurts since they were young. The storm brought emotions up to the surface that needed healing. You can only squash it down so long. Backs were healed. One lady received emotional healing from a trauma she endured as a young lady, she then realized she didn't need her cane or her walker. She let out a shout and ran up and down the center aisle to double check what she felt. No pain. Her legs and back were strong. We asked her if she was going dancing tonight. She said no, for the 1st time in a long time she was going to carry a laundry basket to the washer and do laundry for her family. I tried to give her my address...I have laundry...I would have invited people over to witness it. Just kidding.

God rocked the house. If you need healing in your emotions, spirits, or physical bodies. Seek Him in His Word, get people you trust to pray with you and for you. Keep praying, keep asking, keep seeking.

I am so tired, I am going to bed. I hope this post made sense. I think I will watch an episode of Keeping Up Appearances, the British comedy which aired in the early 1990's and drink a cup of hot chocolate.

Friday, October 17, 2008

La Porte, Texas

I will be in La Porte this weekend as a prayer minister. Jack and Anna Marie Sheffield,
Deep River Ministries are preaching and teaching on healing this weekend.

Everyone attending was impacted by Hurricane Ike. At the very least their homes had 5 feet of water inside, at the worst their homes were ripped apart.

I pray Jack and Anna Marie are anointed and gifted as they minister. I pray all the prayer ministers are gifted by the Holy Spirit as we pray for people.

I know the Lord will rock the house. I'll be back Monday with a recap of the weekend.

Ya'll have a great weekend and a blessed Sabbath.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Life & Family

Maybe I have missed it, but life and family don't seem to be mentioned much during the campaign speeches. Last night during the debate pro-life and pro-choice issues were discussed. It was the first time I heard the issues mentioned. The last debate touched on each candidates views pertaining to Israel. I personally believe the Lord cannot bless us as a nation if we put the economy ahead of life, family, and Israel. (That's my opinion.)

I received this video via e-mail, I tried to post it from YouTube, but it would not post if I added a comment. At some time in the future I will probably sign in to post something and all the attempts will be displayed as posts. I found this video to be profound in it's message.

Please watch the pro-family, pro-life video. Be warned you made need a Kleenex, it brought tears to my eyes.

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

A Prayer for You

Heavenly Father,

I lift up my blogging sisters to You. I thank You for their lives and their service to You. I ask You to bless them this day in such a way, there is no doubt it's from You. Please give them a deeper revelation of You in Your Word. I ask You to refresh them mentally, spiritually, and physically. So many have special concerns. I pray for husband's to be healed. I pray for properties to sell. I thank You Connie's house sold. I ask You to pour out Your wisdom on parents who need it as they deal with issues concerning their children. I pray we do not become so caught up in the business of life and opportunities to serve that we miss You. I pray we stand in in faith on the Covenant promises You made to us when Your Son died and was resurrected from the grave. In Jesus' Name I pray.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

One Month Ago Today


I took this picture facing to the Northwest at 9pm, September 12, 2008. Looking across my neighbor's yard. It was already dark when suddenly there was burst of sunset in the night sky. A glimpse of beauty a couple of hours before we began to feel the effects of Ike.

I read many angry comments in the Houston Chronicle blogs after the storm such as:

If there is a God, why did this happen?
Christians are so intolerant and stupid to believe miracles happened when so many houses were flattened and washed away.

I can only answer for myself. God is God! He is the Creator of the universe, I know He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to save me and all people. He loves each and every one of us. As a chaplain, I ministered to Katrina victims at the Houston Astrodrome, so many told me Katrina was the best thing that ever happened to them. Many said they were so far from God, had not called on Him in years. Jesus was not their Lord and Savior, His name was their favorite curse word. As they waited to be rescued, many of them prayed for the 1st time in years. They knew hard times were ahead but were thankful they had found their way back to God.

If you feel far from Him today, call out to Him. He is there, He loves you, He is waiting for You to return to Him. Scripture tells us:

"Can a mother forget the baby at her breast and have no compassion on the child she has borne? Though she may forget, I will not forget you! See, I have engraved you on the palms of my hands; your walls are ever before me.

Your name is engraved in the palm of His hand. Have a blessed Sabbath.