Saturday, July 2, 2011

What A Joy She's Found!

God blessed me with the privilege of writing the opening note when Deborah (MaMa) agreed to begin a blog.  I am equally blessed with the privilege of writing this last note in her blog.  Deborah went home to Heaven just after midnight on July 2, 2011.  Read her blog archives and learn about her and the Savior she adored.  We will miss her...but only until our own vapor vanishes.  Then we will see her again!   - Jeff

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Attitude of Gratitude!

Most parents can relate to the disappointment that we feel when we shopped in five different stores, dodging traffic, and being bone-tired from waiting in the long lines and then two days after Christmas, finding the SUPER-DUPER-GOTTA HAVE IT-MOST WONDERFUL CONTRAPTION IN THE WORLD toy thrown over into the corner. Worse yet, when asked, they say- "I don't know where it is!"  UGH!!  I am not finding fault with wee ones today because they must be steered into the direction of thankfulness. Parents must model and teach it to them because they don't arrive on Planet Earth as very thankful little creatures, do they?  We are seeing in this generation, just as Paul told Timothy, that people in the last days would be unthankful and they are more and more about their sense of entitlements and "give me, give me" attitudes than maybe ever before. Even we, Christians in America, have been so blessed that we tend to focus more on what we don't have than being humbled and grateful for what we do have.

Monday, June 6, 2011

The Author of our Stories!

How many of you have ever read a good book or saw a movie and were disappointed with its ending? I think of one of which we all are familiar- Gone With The Wind- and we probably would not have let Bonnie Blue fall off the horse and die and depending on our personalities, some of us would have wished Rhett had stayed with the pouty Scarlett, others were happy that she got what she deserved. Yes, if we could have reviewed and edited, we would have ruined Margaret Mitchell's bestseller!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Laura Story Blessings (lyrics)

Two Truths about Trials!

One of my favorite O.T. characters is a man named Joseph, the great grand-son of the Jewish patriarch, Abraham. All who read my writings all familiar with this faith-filled man and his story so I will just take up in chapter 45 which I was reading this morning during my quiet time with the Lord. In this chapter, Joseph, now in authority in the land of Egypt, is about to reveal himself to his brothers, those same brothers who had sold him at the age of seventeen into the hands of the Ishmeelites for twenty pieces of silver and then lied to their father about his whereabouts who had no doubt mourned every day since. That is one of the saddest parts of this story to me that as those ten boys saw their daddy sad every day that none would open up and tell him the truth, that maybe his beloved son was still alive.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Come Just As You Are!

By now, I guess we have all seen the gaffe by the president of the United States as he toasted the "snippity" queen of England. At least, that is the way that I see her- you know- like Laura Ingalls defined the little rich and bratty girl, Nellie- "just snippity, Pa"!  I am a Laura student and I like that word," snippity", for people who think they are above the commoners of this world. I must admit, I could not illicit much sympathy at our Commander in Chief  as the band struck up before he was finished with his eloquent toast. The picture of his condescension to the prime minister of the country who has been and should stay our staunchest ally kept coming to mind and I just didn't feel very sorry for him. He, probably, would surmise that the band was in error and should have waited on him and I am sure in either case, the queen set it right!

More Precious Than Silver

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Fernando Ortega - All Flesh Is Like The Grass

"Every Word of God Proves True."

I read that verse from Proverbs 30:5 this morning and then turned to a chapter that I have read often in the last few days- Jeremiah 36.  A foolish king supposed that he could negate the truth that every word of God proves true by taking a knife and cutting the scroll and tossing it into the fire. Ps. 12:6- "The words of the LORD are pure words, as silver tried in a furnace of earth, purified seven times." Matthew Henry writes- "Enemies may prevail to burn many a Bible, but they cannot abolish the Word of God, nor defeat the accomplishment of it."

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Forgotten Two-Lettered Word!

Recently Danny and I were watching the evening news when the subject of the end of the high school year proms was introduced. The sound bite just before breaking for commercial was enough to keep me hanging on for the whole story, always their strategy. "Adding to the already exorbitant expense from the dress to the coiffure to the shoes and the appointment with the make-up artist and the manicure and the pedicure and the......... , see why some parents are spending an extra $1300.00 this year, when we come back."  Wow, while I waited for the seemingly endless commercial about the side effects of cholesterol medicine, I thought to myself what could be driving up the cost of the prom date? Could it be the limousine and the fine dining and maybe the swanky motel where the dance would be? I just couldn't imagine. What? Pray tell!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Bringing Others Forward On Their Journey!

Thank you, dear Readers, for allowing me to think out loud and then put on paper my thoughts lately on how I could come to the end of my life and not consider it a waste, that I had not lived in vain. Know that I write firstly to me and if you are blessed or encouraged, then I am thankful and if I have ever sounded condescending or in a manner that suggests that I have it all together, please forgive me. I know that I have far to go but I also know that my goal is to know more of God, to love Christ my Savior in a deeper way, and then to walk worthy of that calling in Him!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

All I Once Held Dear (Knowing You) -- with Lyrics

Our Passion!

"It is beyond comprehension that soldiers of the cross would be satisfied in retiring from the battle just before the trumpet blast of victory or just before admission to the coronation ceremony." This rich quote from John Piper aids me in setting the stage for my second thought on how I, as I reflect on my life, believe I can waste it. Last time, I noted that pursuing God should be my lifelong goal. Read with me a verse in Hosea 6:3- "Then shall we know, if we follow on to know the LORD..." Following on, running hard after is what the Psalmist was teaching in Ps. 63 when David said- "O God, Thou art my God; early will I seek Thee: my soul thirsteth for Thee, my flesh longeth for Thee in a dry and thirsty land, where no water is; To see Thy power and Thy glory, so as I have seen Thee in the sanctuary. In one of my favorite chapter in Psalms, in 42, he writes- "As the hart panteth after the water brooks, so panteth my soul after Thee, O God."

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Our Pursuit!

In my last blog, I spoke of God's infinite riches of grace that He has lavishly bestowed upon His children through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. In the first three chapters of the Book of Ephesians, we read of His immeasurable power and provision which He gives us and in chapter four, Paul begins with the word-"therefore"- now pointing out our rightful response to the blessings from our heavenly Father and none being deserved by any of us. I thank Him again and again for His grace.

Monday, April 25, 2011

THINK ABOUT HIS LOVE - Don Moen (With Lyrics)

Children of the King or Paupers?

Many years ago, I read the story of a woman named Hetty Green who died in 1916 and left an estate valued at over $100 million dollars yet she ate cold oatmeal (yuck) because it cost too much to heat it. Her son had a leg amputated because she prolonged treatment while looking for a free clinic. Why a person with seemingly limitless wealth would live and die like a pauper stirred my mind and heart this morning as I read from Ephesians, chapter one. We who have been bought by the precious blood of Christ must say "oh me" because we choose to live often as spiritual vagabonds instead of sons and daughters of the King.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Wake Up!

While listening to the story of the sleeping air traffic controller this morning, my mind was awakened to some Scripture passages where the Apostle Paul exhorted believers to wake up! The planes were flying in the dark skies and the pilot needed the opened eyes and alert discernment from one in the tower so they could safely land but he was fast asleep. "We are coming in for a landing- is anyone there? Are you there, tower?"  We cannot imagine the frustration and fear of the one who is trying to get his plane and passengers on the runway but can't get his guide to hear his cry. He's in dreamland!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

An Appeal to Unity!

Recently, a couple of my blogs have been about the troublesome times  in which we find ourselves today. I believe that because of that hard fact that there is no better time for the church, those blood-bought by the Lord Jesus Christ, to stand together and put away a childhood trait that Jesus illustrated in Luke 7.  I remember when growing up that there was always a baseball game going on in our backyard, (Mother preferring an "infield look" to her lawn so she could keep her eyes on us) and there was one boy who was a very good athlete but we were always cautious about choosing him because when things didn't go his way, Billy bailed. Yes, that is right- left the game even if we were  in the 9th inning and the score was tied, he would take his glove and ..."no, Billy, please leave us the ball, please....aww", we would sigh as we saw him heading for his house.

Keith & Kristyn Getty - O Church Arise

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Keeping Our Eyes Upon Jesus!

In my last blog, I wrote of the unsafe world in which we find ourselves living, not only from "natural disasters" but from the rampant evil that we see perpetuated today. The city of Athens said "good-bye" to a police officer today who was shot in the head by a man who had carjacked a vehicle and was on cocaine as law enforcement officers negotiated his surrender. A friend of his (the alleged assailant) said that he was a good man. My definition of a good man differs. I believe the good man was the one who told his pastor that he knew being a policeman was dangerous but thought it was God's will for his life. Now, his wife is left to explain to a 2-yr.son and 5-yr. old daughter why their Daddy won't come home. They won't understand- I don't understand but I do know that those guilty of crimes like this are not good men.  I pray and hope you do too for our men and women in uniform who are called to defend our communities and cities from criminals. My husband usually buys their meals if they happen to be in the same restaurants that we are. The least we can do is to tell them we appreciate their sacrifice on our behalf.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Are We Safe?

Much of the media's coverage in America has been focused around this question since last week when a 9.0 magnitude earthquake and a devastating tsunami hit Japan. Now the nuclear threat is at the forefront and let me say quickly that my heart breaks and my prayers go up daily for the people who have been affected in that country.  With that said, let me answer the question that Americans are asking...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Are You Listening?

Lately, I have been trying to draw parallels between our natural children and God's children by grace through faith in His Son, Jesus Christ. Children, I have noted previously, are hungry, humble, and trusting, all qualities that we need to be growing toward as we walk with our Lord. This morning, in my reading of Ps. 81, I saw a similarity of a negative component of children as God says "If my people would just listen to Me!"

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

"He Giveth More Grace!"

I heard this old hymn this morning and rejoiced in the truth that God's Word promises us. "My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness," Paul tells us in 2 Cor., chapter 12. James writes in chapter 4 as he addressed conflicts in the assemblies which really are started because of conflicts in hearts, that the Holy Spirit is powerful to master and to the humble, God gives more and more grace.

"He Giveth More Grace" By Larry Ford

Saturday, March 5, 2011

'Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus, Casting Crowns

Hungry, Humble, and Trusting!

If the saints of God would show up at their corporate places of worship tomorrow with these positive attributes that children have, such a blessed day it would be, wouldn't it? Or better yet, that we would aspire for them to be in our lives every day as we walk in the Spirit.  Yesterday, we saw from 1 Peter 2 that we are to desire the Word of God as babies do their life-sustaining milk. Of course, as we grow in the Lord, we are to progress toward the meat as Heb. 5 and 6 instructs us to do. Having tasted the grace and goodness of our Lord, we thirst and hunger for more of Him all our lives. Jesus told us in the Beatitudes in Matt. 5- "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled."

Friday, March 4, 2011

Speak O Lord - Kristyn Getty

"Dad, Mom, I'm Hungry!"

We who have raised children or are now in the process of doing so have heard this "mantra" as they grew. From the time in the nursery at 2:00 a.m. until the teen-aged boy who we thought must have a bottomless pit, these words burst forth from their mouths. Children are hungry!  Reading in the Gospel of Luke recently, I noted our Lord referring to little children, once in a positive example- Luke 9:46-48- and on another occasion- Luke 7:31-32, a negative aspect of children- I began to have the idea of writing maybe a couple of times about some of my favorite people on the planet- children. I love children and today, I want to start with their appetites and draw a parallel for us, God's children through faith in Christ Jesus.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Grace - Michael W Smith

The Kindness of the King!

For several days now, I have been meditating on the beautiful Scripture from 2 Samuel, chapter 9. The Bible tells us that "the LORD gave victory to David wherever he went" and at a peaceful time in his reign, he remembers his love covenant with his best friend, Jonathan. Jonathan, along with his father Saul, David's enemy, even after David's graciousness to him, have died in battle and David, no doubt, is reflecting about the wonderful friendship and communion that he and his friend had enjoyed in days gone by and the promise he had made to him.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

"Pray For Us!"

Tears welled up in this grandmother's eyes this morning as Amy related this story to me. As Landon walks from the car to the front door of the schoolhouse each morning, he turns around as many times as distance allows to wave and say good-by again. "I love you, Mommy- have a good day, Mommy." but this morning, as he stood on the last step before entering the room, he turned around and said loudly enough for her to hear these words- "Pray for us!"

Friday, February 18, 2011

Open Our Eyes

Open Our Eyes, Lord, That We May See!

This morning, as I was reading in 2 Kings, chapter 6, I meditated on the account in Elisha's life when his prophecy had thwarted the king of Syria's plan to ambush Israel. The king is greatly agitated and asked- "Who is it in my kingdom who is betraying my trust?" I am sure that his subjects feared for their lives and one answered quickly-"It is Elisha, the prophet; he apparently knows the words you speak in the privacy of your bedroom."

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Life in the Trenches!

I must admit the title probably doesn't entice many to read today, does it?  For about a month now, the Lyme  Disease battle (for about 11 yrs. now) has heated up and last week while talking with Amy, she reminded me not to be discouraged because the doctor assured me that halfway through this new treatment, the symptoms would worsen. When I remembered an expert's words that  this would be a good thing, that the Lyme "critters" would fight back aggressively when challenged, I was encouraged and could not help but to see the spiritual parallel while reading Paul's letters to young Timothy this morning.

By Faith - Keith and Kristyn Getty

Friday, February 11, 2011

Onboard With Jesus!

"If we want to fish with Jesus, we're going to have to set sail into the waters of faith."  And with that quote from Charles Swindoll, I launch my thought today from one of my favorite Gospel writers, Luke, the physician. In chapter 5, we see a story very familiar to students of God's Word where Jesus has begun His public ministry and the people are following Him by the throngs to see His miracles and on this particular morning, to hear the Word of God.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

What's the Name of That Song?

My daughter, Amy, usually checks in with me every morning after dropping off the precious ones at school. This morning, when the phone rang a little earlier, I thought maybe someone was ill but was nicely surprised that the two of them just wanted to talk to me before they headed off to school. They wanted their MaMa to tell them a story so I shared a funny one about their Uncle Mark and their Mommy when they were little kids. Alicia and Landon really enjoy the escapades of these two as they grew up.

Maranatha singers The steadfast love of the Lord

Monday, February 7, 2011

I Bless Your Name - Selah

Sing, Christian, Sing!

I love good music or have I told you that already? :)  It is the reason that at times I will post on my blog site a song that has particularly ministered to me and we like to share with others the things we enjoy, don't we?  I think that we don't sing enough, Saint! I am not talking about down at the church house on Sunday but in our homes and cars on Monday through Saturday. I was reading three different passages this morning and noted that all had reference to singing.  In Psalm 137, the writer asks this question: "How shall we sing the LORD's song in a foreign land?" And how can we in this foreign land in which we dwell?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Change My Heart Oh God by Eddie Espinosa

"And Lord, Please Forgive THEM!"

I want to use a funny illustration to open up a most serious thought on my mind and heart today. And yes, it again comes from the two "grands."  You who have been around children know that there are many hilarious examples that come from around age 2 to 6. The funniest thing about them is that they don't know they are and aren't trying to be. And with their "out of the mouth of babes' " statements come life lessons and so is the case today.  On Sunday evening, with Jeff at a pastor's conference...

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Come, People of the Risen King

Joyful Kids!

Yesterday, Grandanny and I enjoyed one of our favorite things- we spent the day with the two precious grandchildren with whom God has so graciously blessed our lives. We love to hear them laugh and they laugh alot. At the restaurant, while awaiting our food, we were playing the game "Guess the animal." You have heard of that one, haven't you?  Someone thinks of an animal and gives one clue at first and the one who guesses wins. Simple enough, right? When it was Alicia's turn, we were up to two clues, this animal is gray and you might see it in the air. Landon's answer, in not his "inside voice"----" An ephlenant." (Yes, I see spellcheck but this is how he pronounced the huge mammal.)  Alicia said, "Landon, you are silly, you don't see elephants in the air."  "You might," he exclaimed, "if they had been jumping on a trampoline."  He has inherited his Daddy's quick wit, I believe.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Prodigal: An Animation

"A Man Had Two Sons."

We refer to the story that Jesus told in Luke 15 as the parable of the prodigal son yet the Master Teacher, Himself, begins with "A man had two sons." While recently studying the first two beatitudes in Matt. 5, this portion of Scripture came to mind because I see the younger son returning "poor in spirit" and comforted because he mourned over his sin. John MacArthur entitles these first two beatitudes "Happy are the Nobodies" and "Happy are the Sad."  I think the young prodigal realized both of these facts about himself while he was on his journey.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Rock of Ages

Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit

At the dinner table on Christmas Day, sports being the topic, Amy remarked that she could hardly stand to watch professional football players as they pump their chests, flex their biceps, and "strut their stuff" as they make plays. Really, after all, shouldn't men who are making millions of dollars to play a game catch passes and sack quarterbacks? I remember the day when athletes played because they loved the game and they left the cheering to the fans in the stadium. In fact, those are still my favorite players. Watch them, though they be rare- they excel at what they do and walk back to the huddle.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

A God For All Seasons!

Yesterday on FaceBook, I posted this simple message:  "38 years ago today, while most of Georgia was reeling from the effects of an ice storm, we were warm and safe in Northside Hospital welcoming our new and beautiful baby boy. Happy Birthday, Mark!"  A friend commented that it was a good story and at first I thought that I had merely related a happy time in mine and Danny's life. Then, it hit me that there was a "good story" to be expounded upon and this Scripture from Ecclesiastes 3 came to mind.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Yet Will I Praise Him!

Following up on yesterday's thought from the ending Hallel Psalms, while looking for a song to go along with the blog, I ran across- no, let me rephrase that- I believe God directed me to it called Yet Will I Praise Him!. I had never heard the words to this one and am blessed as I hear it sung.  The song comes straight from one of those books in the Bible that we don't find so easily when the Pastor directs us there. Just last week on the way to Knoxville, Alicia and I were playing "Bible Questions." She loves to do this when we are in the car and when she asked me to name all the Books in order, I quicky confessed that I get those minor prophets turned around most times. She soared through all with great ease, I might add.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Yet will I praise him

"Let Everything That Hath Breath Praise the LORD!"

Amy and I laughed yesterday when we were talking about losing phone service in the middle of a call  without realizing it. I told her that my last 2 minutes of my "mini-sermon" to her was not even heard when I realized "Failed Call" was appearing on my phone screen. My humorous remark to her that I had wasted my breath led to a serious reflection on how much we really do that exact thing, using our ability to breathe air and articulate words to do everything but praise the LORD.

Monday, January 3, 2011

You Heavenly Father Knows!

When we attended Northside Baptist Church in Roswell many years ago, our Pastor, Billy Wallace, had an evangelist come a few times named Lavon Boatner.He was, I believe, from Kentucky, wearing cowboy boots and a bolo tie and he could preach. He would read his passage from the blessed Book and then say these words, words that I have never heard any other man of God say- "I'm interested in this phrase" and that would launch his sermon in that Southern drawl and we, the listeners, would go home blessed and challenged.  I thought of Bro. Boatner who may now be with the Lord- God knoweth- this morning as I was reading the Sermon on the Mount. I love to imagine sitting on that mountain as the Master Teacher expounded on kingdom principles. In chapter six, "I became interested" in the phrase repeated twice by our Lord and thus, the thought for this blog.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

After Jesus Was Born, Wise Men Came!

On this first day of 2011, I was reading and meditating on the magi's visit in Matthew, chapter two, and thought I would share a few insights into a lesson that, I think, their example can teach us.  When the Christmas season is over, there is still a Savior to be worshiped! These wise men were from the east,( and we don't know the number and there is much speculation about who they were,) and I imagine it was a large caravan, traveling probably thousands of miles to see Jesus, now a young Child in the house with His mother, Mary. "When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy," and when they "saw the Child, they fell down and worshiped Him."