Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Friends...are a gift from above. Can you hear the song? If you are a Petra fan you'll know it...I love Petra, I love the depth and scriptural truth in their songs.

Well, Petra isn't what I was writing about (rabbit trail) I was just praising God for the women He has put in my life. The variety of people and different connections for different needs. He has gifted us each differently for building the one another up.

We have been adding on to our church. We are in the finishing stages, which is where my part comes in. I have been called on for color selection, lighting, knobs for doors and cabinets, etc. We have a pretty small congregation and I was ending up alone on alot of these decisions, when the Lord sent a friend who enthusiastically said "I'd love to help" and I jumped (for joy). What fun it has been to brainstorm together.

Yesterday we spent a few hours together. First we had lunch and then we went and added stripes to our new youth room. We have an orange wall, & a turquois wall on each end of the large room and the long wall facing the door is a warm tan on the top and a sepia color on the bottom. We added a turquois stripe at chair rail level, and then an orange stripe a ways below that (with a couple of inches of sepia in between) It was so fun to get to know each other better and accomplish such a fun project at the same time. We have lots more to do, and are looking forward to it.

Friends...isn't it heartwarming when you phone a friend, and you hear "I have been thinking of you today and praying for you." What a blast of love. Or how about recieving cards? Or when one seeks you out of a crowd of people with enthusiasm? All of these things point me toward our Friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Prov. 18:34) My friends give me a glimpse of His love. Then knowing His is perfect, beyond human ability...I stand in Awe!!

Lord, Please make me to be a friend like you. To enthusiastically and lavishly love those you have given to me. To magnify your love to others. Make me a light. Make me more like you.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Refiners Fire?

Does it seem to anyone else that the heat is being turned up???Is there an intensifying of the spiritual warfare? Are we in a period of purification??? I believe we are. That God is moving in a mighty way, and we are growing in purity, in unity (because never have we needed one another so much) and in surrender. Things hidden are being exposed to the Light and healed-halleluiah.

Alot is happening in 2008. There is a youth event in the center of America coming up in June called Paradise '08. It began in the city of Paradise in Kansas. They have moved it to a new location near there with more room for this coming event. I love it because it is centered around a throne to symbolize Jesus as our center. There will be no promos, no sales, no big names to draw crowds. Just a simple call to repentance and revival and centering life on our Savior.

The other event is Rain Down USA taking place in Washington DC. You can google these things, or Prayer Transformation Ministries, which is where I found out about them. It is a year of repentance and turning back to God. I believe He is purging His bride right now. He is training us in endurance. May we rise to the occasion, may His Spirit move and heal us, heal our land. May we become intercessors for our country. May our faith increase and may we shine for His glory.

They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor. They will rebuild the ancient ruins and restore the places long devastated; they will renew the ruined cities that have been devastated for generations. Isaiah 61:3b,4

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Lavish Love

Today I found myself wondering at the awesome love of God. As I was thinking of this love, I recalled how when someone I love falls, and they feel remorse for it, I have such compassion for them it overwhelms me and my heart almost softens more toward them than it was before they fell. I also realize just how much I love them.

Then I thought about the Prodigal story and the party the father he must have longed for his son to return to what was best for all the days he was gone. That longing we all have for our loved ones to be in the place of safety-in the arms of their Heavenly Father. How his heart must have leapt when he spotted him coming home on the road. I picture him looking daily more than once a day with an agonizing longing..."return to me my son. I want to you to come home."

And then, "It doesn't matter where you have been, you are home-halleluiah" The father not only threw a party but got out His best. Lavish love. No better way to describe it...lavish. How much, how often I need this assurance and the forgiveness that the Lord has poured out. Daily, the blood of the Lamb washes me white as snow. When I fail to keep my eyes on Jesus, my trust falters, and then I realize it with the resulting anxiety, I cry out, "Forgive me again please, Lord" and there it is. Healing, cleansing, forgiving, restoring power through our Savior. I can't help but worship, adore, and praise Him.

Wont you sing "Amazing Grace" with me?

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Tuesday's ponderings...

It was a crazy morning-all because I hit the snooze too many times. When I do that, it seems to have a domino effect on the following engagements...

I have a few girls over on Tuesday morning at 8:00. When they arrived I was filling the dishwasher...(I cut into our time...domino).When we started meeting about a year ago we did a Bible study together. Lately though, we have been praising God and lifting our burdens in prayer. One of the girls has only 45 mn. So we cover her first (unless I am spewing out my list of little annoyances :( from my hectic morning...domino), then we continue to give updates on our joys and struggles and go into prayer. God has answered us with victories in many areas over the last year and we are in awe of His grace, love and power.

Our favorite study is called "The Confident Woman..knowing who you are in Christ" by Annabelle Gilham. It is a very life changing study. Helpful in solidifying your identity in Christ and growing your marriage.We discussed going through it again this morning because it blessed us so much and we want a review.

Then two of us proceed to Moms in Touch meeting with a few other moms for our junior high and high school students and teachers. There too, we have seen God do amazing things in answer to our prayers. Two years ago we saw drug busts in our community, and knew that it was a result of our asking God to expose the dealers, and to hinder the sales of drugs in our community. We have seen children soften and open up their hearts to the Lord. We know that there are many more things that we don't see, but are being accomplished because we are praying.

This morning it was 6 degrees, and the sun was shining brightly. The fresh snow was squeaky underfoot as we went out to the car. I was 7 mn late. (we had to skip listening to the song of the day which I enjoy so much...domino) We focused on God as Creator. We read Psalm 104 which magnifies His majestic Hand in Creation and we were more in awe of our Lord. We praised Him and rejoiced in His goodness to us. We went through our time of confession, then thanks and finally intercession for our children, teachers and schools. As we lift one another's children to the Lord, He knits us together in a tighter bond.

I had a lunch date after that with my friend. This stopped the domino effect-you can't be late to lunch if you are together:-p Over lunch we continued to rejoice in all God is doing in our lives. What a privelege to share life together in the Lord! I left there to continue in my errands and then rushed home to add wood to the furnace. On my way home I was experiencing a fresh sense of wonder at the Lord and His nearness in creation, and in friendships.

Got home and added wood. The fire was almost out and the house was at 63 degrees. So I filled it up, folded a couple of loads of laundry (yes I DID have a basket unfolded and one still in the dryer-but I DIDN'T iron) After that I started supper. I think it was a 9lb chicken I put in the oven. She's a biggie, we raise them, they are better than any chicken ever. I called a friend while I was working on cleaning and cutting potatos. Then I listened to a Becky Tirabassi CD that I have from a confrence on having a burning heart-wow. I want more of the Spirit on my life.

Before supper Ethan (my son) and I met my husb. @ church to unload tile for the new addition. Then we came home and ate and watched a movie together. Laughed alot and now they are all in bed and I am here. Sweet life.

Father, thank you for all you have given us and all you have revealed to us of yourself in creation. Thank you for the rich experience of friendship. Thank you for the chickadees and cardinals that eat at our feeder, they are such magnificent manifestations of your creativity and it is theraputic to watch them feed and flutter. Thank you for keeping us warm in winter. For being our all in all!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Thankful Thursday

I want to have a Thankful Thursday post even though I don't know how to link to the blogworld. I have looked into it, but it doesn't translate into my brain...

I am thankful for my husband, that he gets up in the wee hours of the morning and drives an hour and a half to work everyday. That he is gifted with the ability to lead and oversee construction projects. I am thankful that God's favor rests on him and he is appreciated. I am also very grateful that he keeps the house and farm up. He cuts and keeps wood in the house so we can be warm. (especially the next few days dipping below zero!!) He maintains my vehicle. He clears our driveway of snow, he has done extensive work on the house and the building of the gift shop enabling me to work at home. Wow, I am blessed! Even though he oversees many men every day and has many issues to deal with, he listens to my mouth overflow about anything I have been dealing with over the course of the day. What a guy!

He also is a great dad. He has taken time to work with Ethan so he knows mechanics. He is guiding him in the rebuilding of a truck. He and Ethan have restored a fishing boat. They have rebuilt old snowmobiles and ATVs. Teaching him and giving him a valuable work ethic and skills. He has given opportunities for Ethan to learn hunting and fishing even though he didn't do those things with his own father.

With Kayla, he has always understood her better than I have because their personalities are more similar. When she was just a few weeks old, he held me down in bed while she cried knowing that she was using her tears to get me to cater to her. From that night on, she slept through the'd he know?? I have been very grateful for his understanding all through her growing up years:)

What a blessing a partner in parenting is...and all other areas of family life. Yes! - On this Thursday, I am thankful for my husband.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Temporarily Here

Losses...In the past 6 years I have lost my father-in-law to heart disease, my niece to a car accident, my little sister lost 2 sets of twin boys, giving birth @5 months and watching them die in her arms. My brother-in-law (father to my niece who died) lost both his parents to cancer on each side of his daughter. Both of my dad's siblings died, and almost 2 years ago, I lost my brother Peter (27) in a farm accident. We have also lost 4 young people in our community the age of my daughter to car accidents. I could go on and on.

Last week, on Wed, my neighbor called me crying, she has 3 diseases and now they think she has bladder cancer. She is lonely and has had a very difficult life. I have been praying for a miracle for her. On Friday morning, I asked the Lord if He wanted me to close my gift shop because I felt it hindered my freedom to minister love and encouragement to people like my neighbor....He answered in a profound way by sending a hurting soul to the shop on Friday afternoon who had lost a sister 13 years ago and still struggling with the loss, and with aging parents. I ended up holding her as she wept, going and getting my Bible out of the house and reading 1 Thess 4:13-17 with her, and praying with her. Sharing truth with her about life after death, etc. Then on Saturday, He sent another who just lost a brother to cancer, whose nephew was just diagnosed with it and in tears she wanted to know about going to our church. She just knew she couldn't do it alone anymore...It occured to me after the weekend with these two ladies that God was indeed working my losses and the losses of my family members out for good, for if I had not experienced them, I wouldn't have had the understanding I needed. It amazed me that He was using my gift shop that way...we cannot know what kind of fruit He is going to bear through the lives of His living temples. I feel so priveleged that He has called and chosen me...

I feel so blessed that He holds me and comforts me and I can comfort others with the comfort that I have recieved from Him.

I will praise Him in the storm... He gives and takes away, blessed be the name of the Lord.

Jesus, thank you for the truth that this life is temporary and our losses are but gain in your Kingdom. Thank you that life in you is eternal and forever joy. May all come to know your great love and grace and comfort and Presence in their storms.