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Showing posts from March, 2009

Label Everything!

The coffee pot was brewing and I removed from the oven one of the last frozen pies that I prepared a few months ago. We were indulging in a homemade dessert that night after our hearty casserole. I was in for a surprise as I cut into the steaming golden brown pastry only to find it was not peach or apple, but it was a homemade chicken pot pie! This is what you get when you forget to label any addition to the freezer.

I learned a much deeper lesson about labeling in Bible Study just a few days later. Pastor spoke on “cultivating joy.” He made his profound lesson points substantiated with scripture and he labeled his own personal obstacles that steal his joy. With a half hour left before closing, he released us into small groups of four and gave us this assignment: Discuss this question: “What steals your joy?”

My husband and I joined another couple sitting in our row. We broke the ice when my hubby shared of how his anger erupts when Bible study teachers abuse truth with incorrect facts.…

Prize Darts Award

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It's humbling to be recognized by your peers. Thank you, Sitka, for this award. I'm honored.

What exactly is the award? Premio Dardos means “prize darts” in Spanish. It is given for recognition of cultural, ethical, literary, and personal values transmitted in the form of creative and original writing. Here are some rules to be followed if you choose to participate in passing this blog award on to others:
• First, accept the award by posting it on your blog along with the name of the person that has granted the award and link to her blog.
• Second, pass the award to other blogs that are worthy of this acknowledgment, remembering to contact each of them to let them know they have been selected for this award.
Here are some exceptional blogs I would like to recommend that I feel are worthy of this acknowledgment:
Life of a Navy Wife is a journal of a military spouse. This Navy Wife should not only get a blog award but a medal.
Dream Big is an artsy, creative blog with everything from…

Underground Jerusalem

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Seeing the prison where Jesus was held prior to his sentencing by Pontius Pilate was deafening. It was quiet as our small archaeology class of twelve descended the steps into this dark, dreary room. No one spoke. The place, called the Pratorium, is an underground prison carved into the bedrock of Jerusalem. In this dungy, dirty prison which was originally lit by torches without running water or toilet facilities, condemned prisoners were held waiting for their execution. Our professor was demonstrating where chains were bolted into the rock wall that were fastened to the prisoners’ arms by shackles. If you look carefully, you can see a narrow bench carved into the wall where they rested. The prison held no more than six to eight people. It wasn’t necessary to have a larger Roman prison because judgment and execution was swift and fast. The Pratorium would have been shared simultaneously with Barabbas who was released in lieu of Jesus.

This dark cubby hole was where the shame and embar…

Friday Funnies...on Saturday!

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Kim at homesteadersheart.blogspot.com is hosting Friday Funnies on Saturday this week. Now that’s funny right there! She was on a hiatus yesterday but cared enough about us to spread cheer on this Saturday. Here’s my contribution:


Five Best Things to Say If You Get Caught Sleeping at Your Desk


Number 5
They told me at the Blood Bank this might happen.

Number 4
This is just a 15 minute power nap they raved about in the time-management course you sent me to.

Number 3
Whew! Guess I left the top off the White-out. You probably got here just in time!

Number 2
Did you ever notice sound coming out of these keyboards when you put your ear down real close?

Number1
This is my all-time favorite: best thing to say if you get caught sleeping at your desk:

Raising your head slowly,
…in Jesus’ name, Amen.



Thankful Thursday

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Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. James 4:14

I had a friend who used to wear a tee shirt with a profound saying. On the front were the words “now you see me” and on the back “now you don’t.” It was accompanied by scripture rapture verses. The message was clear. We are on this earth for an appointed time, and then we go to our final home where we’ll dwell for all eternity. This week I’m thankful that when those around us go to their eternal home, God comforts their family and friends and gives them the strength to go on. On Monday, my friend’s mother died and I’ve been praying for her and her dad as they plan her mom’s Celebration of Life. There’s nothing like God’s comfort!

I still miss my friend and mentor, Janine, who died suddenly in the fall of 2007. I’m thankful for the years that I knew her and the times that we served the Lord together. Have you ever had a friend yo…

Walking Strong

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I can’t tell you how good it feels to be out of pain. My right knee is still a little stiff but I’ve come a long way. Linda, who cuts my hair, shared a health tip with me. She’s on her feet all day, but before going to bed she soaks in a tub of hot water and Epson salts. She said it’s good for the joints and helps eliminate toxins. I was eager to try that, too. I take the Blue Ice cod liver oil pills and also glucosamine chondroitin so why not try the miracle bath?

Wow! I started feeling better. I was able to do some gardening over the weekend. I live near a pretty park that was built by funds from a woman who owned a NFL Football Team. She brought a lot of beauty to our town with her investment and the park is landscaped with Weeping Willow trees that are beginning to bloom. A Horse ranch lines one side of the fence. A circular trail in the center provides a scenic walk; color me blue when I can’t be out there on it! But now as the weather reaches perfect temps, it feels good to walk…

Photo of the Week

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I just got an email of a special memory I'm sharing with you today. Oh, no, another Sedona pic! A few of us enjoyed a girlfriends’ getaway in Fay Canyon a few months ago. Thank you, Mary Jane, for capturing this one of Cindy (water bottle) and me. We sure had fun!

Getting Ready for Easter

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Kelli, at Awesome God/Ordinary Girl, asked pertinent questions in her post about Lent. She wondered how others prepare for the great day we celebrate as Christians. Some call it Easter; others call it Resurrection Sunday.
I grew up in a church that participated in Lent and Advent, precursors to the big feast days of Easter and Christmas and it was most definitely a time of preparation. I enjoyed the teachings and the music and I enjoyed the creative ways we found to prepare our Lenten meals because we all “gave up” certain foods. Sometimes we extended ourselves beyond our comfort zone and chose acts of service so we could think less of ourselves and more of God. I’m grateful for a family that believed in Jesus and taught me that He died on the cross and rose from the grave so that my sins can be forgiven. I’m grateful for the renewal programs in that church, namely Marriage Encounter and Life in the Spirit, in which my husband and I participated. It led us to a vibrant faith in Jesus…

Friday Funnies

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Hi, Everyone!

Happy Friday and Happy First Day of Spring! It's getting warm here in Arizona and you know, Spring is when the snakes like to come out and sun themselves!

For more Friday Funnies, meet up with Kim at Homesteadersheart.blogspot.com






Thankful Thursday ~ We're Free!

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Lynn chose the topic: “We’re Free” for this Thanksgiving Thursday asking us to share how Jesus set us free. The answer to that for me, hands down, is that Jesus delivered me from a spirit of fear. I was a living testimony to my husband after I committed my life to Christ because irrational fears that held me bound were released. The old me, years ago, would ask him to watch the kids in the evening if I had to go to the grocery store; I would wait until the last hour before the store closed when the place was fairly empty so I could avoid talking to people. Jesus saved my life and filled me with His spirit and gave me love for people. Soon after I met Jesus, I began to serve Him in my church and in my community and fear no longer held me captive. 1 John 4:18 says: “There is no fear in love but perfect love casts out fear, because fear involvestorment. But he who fears has not been made perfect in love.” I’m on a journey; I’ve not arrived, but I’m on my way. It is so freeing to live to …

Evangelism: What's Your Style?

I’m getting emails on the topic of evangelism. Is sharing our faith a thing of the past? I’m making reference to a Christian blogger who wrote that he predicts a collapse of evangelism within ten years due to the fact that there is more emphasis among Christians on causes such as pro-life or anti-gay marriage than actually knowing what they believe about their faith. Can we Christians articulate the gospel?

Today I heard Chuck Colson address this topic on Breakpoint. He quoted Barna statistics that reveal only a grim 7 to 9% of Christians believe in a Biblical world view. He went on to say that we need discipling. We need to recapture our first love.

I have the utmost respect for people who study the Bible and can articulate the gospel. That’s my goal, too. But I believe evangelism is so much more than that. I believe in relationship. I hope I’m not oversimplifying the gospel. I was won to Christianity because someone loved me; I was unlovable and knew it. I was drawn in to …

No Foolin', The River's Green!

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Happy St. Patrick’s Day, everyone! I don’t believe in luck, but I extend blessings galore to you today. We’re all on a journey in life and sometimes the world can be a letdown. So let’s be sure to cheer each other up.

When I was a young girl, I lived in Chicago. On St. Patrick’s Day, the Irish mayor of that great city would schedule a big fancy parade and dye the Chicago River green. Of course the next day, the river would revert back to its murky color. Talk about a letdown.

While I was at work yesterday, I noticed a Blue Bunny container in the freezer. The flavor was Cinn-sation. Picture this: rich vanilla ice cream with sticky cinnamon buns atop and cinnamon sticks poking out on the sides. Yum! I wondered if our receptionist gave into her sweet tooth again. I couldn’t just look at the picture, I had to see what the ice cream looked like. I dared to open the container only to see frozen homemade vegetable soup staring back at me! What a letdown. Was this her Irish sense of humor?

Somet…

Game Feast

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I’ve been cutting back on preparing a lot of meat recipes. My digestive system is happy and my husband has been a peach of guy telling me that my tuna casserole and refried beans are delicious. On the other hand, as soon as he heard the announcement for the Wild Game Feast in the men’s group at church, he signed up to go. Over 60 guys attended last Friday night and I enjoyed hearing how they devoured the venison, lion mountain stew and buffalo. My husband’s favorite was the elk enchiladas with jalapeƱo cream sauce. Macho guys!

When I picture those ravenous men devouring their delectable main course, I think to myself: “that is how I want to always yearn for the Word of God.” I envision a sit-down feast with everything my eager heart needs so I can be satisfied with a fulfilling portion. It’s a sure thing with God’s Word. He seems to know exactly what I need for the day at hand. I love the Hebrews 4:12 scripture: For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest…

Friday Funnies

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Sometimes all you have to do is stand in the middle and be cute! Happy Friday to everyone. Don't forget to see Kim's blog for more humor!

Thankful Thursday ~ Epic Story

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Thanks to Lynn for hosting Thankful Thursday this week. It’s a blessing to connect with others who are thankful and willing to share their lives. I like our topic this week: epic story. God is the author and we are the players in His book. I have always said that since I gave my life to Jesus Christ, I have been on an adventure. I never know what to expect but at the end of each day, I can honestly say Jesus was with me and I’m thankful for that. When I’m next to Him, I feel ten feet tall. I have confidence because He helps me and I’m utterly dependent on Him. Left to myself, I’ll wilt.

For instance, I had the day off yesterday. I had just walked out of the shower when I heard my back doorbell ring. It was a persistent ring, so I quickly threw on some clothes and ran to the kitchen. A woman representing a religious cult introduced herself as Ann. I’m glad that I was home and could meet Ann and I’m thankful for our discussion. I am praying for her. I am also thankful that …

Well Preserved at Fifty

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I laughed when I heard all the hoopla about Barbie turning 50. My daughters had a huge collection of the dolls when they were very young and memories flooded my mind of our living room filled with Barbie going to the beach, Barbie in evening gowns, and Barbie in casual shorts to name just a few. My husband teased about their collection telling me that our living room reminded him of a huge game of Twister with slender legs sticking up in all directions. It was their world and their dolls performed activities that their little imaginations created.

I was amused one day when I listened to the dialogue exchanged between my two girls and a friend’s daughter who was spending the night. The Barbie setting was Christian focused and the back drop was Sunday School Class. Lynda, our pretty pastor’s wife was in the cast as well as Elaine and Judy, both of them Sunday school teachers as well as moms and also good friends of mine in Women’s Ministry at our church. lt was so cute to hear these thr…

Spiritual Sunday

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On this Spiritual Sunday, we also celebrate International Women’s Day and the accomplishments of women worldwide. I noted that Russia applauds women on this day particularly for homemaking and motherhood. This made me think of a friend of mine. She declared while still in college in Russia that one day she would fall in love with an American and move to the US and raise a family. Our friend in business, Richard, married Yana (not their real names) and they had two children: first a boy and then a girl.

Yana is well educated, speaking perfect English and I learned to pitch a lot of my slang hanging around with her. She excelled domestically as well as managing the family business. She is gorgeous, slim, fashionable and smart. Yana lacked only one thing: faith in the real God.
It was Yana who attended a notary seminar in the mountains with me the year we became notaries. It was Yana who shopped with me in the mall before I left on a trip and helped me find stylish clothes to pa…

Friday Funnies

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A little boy was in a relative's wedding. As he was coming down the aisle he would take two steps, stop and turn to the crowd (alternating between bride's side and groom's side). While facing the crowd, he would put his hands up like claws and roar. So it went, step, step, “ROAR,” step, step, “ROAR,” all the way down the aisle. As you can imagine, the crowd was near tears from laughing so hard by the time he reached the pulpit.
The little boy, however, was getting more and more distressed from all the laughing, and was also near tears by the time he reached the pulpit.
When asked what he was doing, the child sniffed and said, "I was being the Ring Bear." Thank you, Kim, for hosting Friday Funnies!

Thankful Thursday - Wisdom

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I spent the day in Prescott, AZ, today with my husband. On our way home, we stopped for lunch in the shopping mall. I got a massage and he purchased some dress shirts for work. We were amazed that so few shoppers were out and about in that huge mall. We felt a little blue to see that this economy has wiped out so many businesses and put so many people out of work. Those that still have a job are hanging on to their money and not spending it which is probably wise. These times are unsure times for consumers. It felt lonely to shop in the stores. It was a strange feeling not have to wait in long lines at the cash register. The vast parking lot held only a few cars here and there.
Today our Thankful Thursday focus is wisdom. I am very thankful that I grabbed a Christian teaching on CD this morning and jammed it in my purse on my way out the door. On our long drive home this afternoon, we listened to the CD. The teacher eloquently spoke of being focused in our faith during thes…

A Gotcha Moment

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Once in a while it's fun to joke about where I live. Sedona, with its beautiful red rock landscape attracts the spiritual crowd allured by fascination with crystals, majic and aliens. I met with a friend for lunch over the weekend. I parked my car right next to this truck. It was fun to hobnob with the tourists in town. I asked a woman from California if she believed in aliens. She shook her head yes. I thought to myself, "this is going to be fun." She replied: "Yes, I believe in aliens; my mother-in-law is an alien." A gotcha back for me! We're sporting temps in the high 70's and I'm excited when I see new growth on the trees.
Here's my good friend, Maureen, and I enjoying lunch on the restaurant deck in this wonderful warm weather.

Out From Under the Covers

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I thought it was so neat when the main character, Jody, in the novel, The Yada Yada Prayer Group, would give a birthday card to the woman in her prayer group celebrating her special day. Jodi always wrote out the meaning of the woman’s name in the card as a special way of celebrating her.
I thought about the significance of names. In my family, my mother’s name, Sophie, means wisdom. She named my sister, Judy which means praise. I named my daughter Amy, which means beloved and my daughter, Carrie means strength. This name stuff reminded me of studies I attended years ago of Women in the Bible. It always amazed me how my teacher would feature a character and explain the meaning of the person’s name. I’ll never forget studying Naomi and how she named her sons, Mahlon which means sickly and Chillon which means puny. What kind of parent would name their kids like that?
When I learned the meaning of my name, I wanted to hide under the covers for the rest of my life. My mother named me Mary,…