Monday, August 31, 2009

Yesterday my church had a picnic at Webb Park. We do this every so often and it's a chance for us to come together, be relaxed, talk and just have a good time. I will be honest.. yesterday I prayed for rain. It's not that I don't like the park, I just like it better when it's cold outside.. no bugs then. And I mean I REALLY did pray for rain.. I told someone I must have started too late cause it didn't start raining until we had already cooked on the grill and began eating. By then, EVERYONE was piled under the little shed, eating.. we were a CLOSE family yesterday. But that was alright, it was fun, it really was.

Galatians 6: 10 - Therefore, as we have an opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.

I think sometimes, myself being probably the world's worst, think that the only people who need love and support are the ones outside of the church. You know, the ones who have no clue who Christ is or what he did. I imagine even the apostles and disciples had days where they needed each other to keep moving on preaching God's Word. And one of my favorite people in the Bible, Paul..needed encouragement as he preached to the churches.

I think sometimes we tend to think that if we lay it all on God, that He is going to take care of it and things will just fall into place. Please hear me when I say I totally agree that we SHOULD do that, that's what He asked and told us to do, but He also gave us family, our Christian family so that in times of need and trouble, we can go to them for support, love and prayer. And I am the world's worst ( you all know that) about asking for help, But God actually tells us in Galatians to be a support for the family of believers.. Christians.. that's us!

So, know that there are probably some people around you, Christian friends and family, who are in need of your support and prayers today. With so much going on in the world right now, the job situations, money problems, family issues..there are so many opportunities to be the person God wants you to be, to let our lights shine. Pray that God shows it to you today.

The weekend my friends, was wonderful, it really was. I look forward to another great week. If you have noticed, i have not written everyday like normal lately. That would be because I seem to be always on the go w/ a child in high school who thinks she has to be involved in everything the school has going on. My intent is to though, at least write every other day and on good weeks maybe more. I hope you are all dong well and Lord willing, we will talk again soon.

Friday, August 28, 2009

I'm pretty happy today

Last night on my Facebook page I said " I am very happy". The reason I love Facebook so much is the responses I sometimes get. After I posted that, I got so many people who replied and some of those replies were" I am happy too, pass it on". I have a friend who is pregnant so she has alot of reason to be happy. Another who is about to be a grandma really soon. One who has a son that won his football game... all kinds of reasons. And very good reasons to be happy too!!!

Psalms 144: 13-15 (NKJV) - "That our barns may be full, Supplying all kinds of produce;That our sheep may bring forth thousands. And ten thousands in our fields; That our oxen may be well laden;That there be no breaking in or going out; That there be no outcry in our streets. Happy are the people who are in such a state; Happy are the people whose God is the LORD!"

It's funny tough.. our attitudes play a major part in our happiness. I am the world's worse too. Let ONE thing throw me off and that is it for the happy me! I didn't get what I wanted therefore I am NOT happy anymore. I can't buy the new car I wanted, school is not going so well, I can't eat at the restaurant I want.. my hair is not doing what it is suppose to... the list could go on and on and it could be really simple things to really big things. But life is not about us being happy and having what we want.. it's not all about us.

Happiness is not an end, its not the final destination ... it's how we get there I think. How we work, how we handle the world, how we live and serve others. I think it happens when we throw ourselves totally into something and wouldn't God want it that way. When we live our lives totally committed and serving God the way He wants us too, we learn to live our lives not by circumstances and things that give us joy or make us happy. Happiness comes from living the way God wants us too, being excited that one day we will get our chance to meet and live with Him forever.

Thanks for the calls and e-mails about Christian.. He is much better this morning and it was not H1N1... just a case of bronchitis. I hope you all have a great weekend.. I need to rush to work cause I am late again...ughhh!! Love you all and Lord willing, we will talk again on Monday!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Can I have a do over?

So yesterday on my Facebook page, one of my old school mates tagged me in a note. I always read my notes but rarely do I respond, this time I did. Thomas is a minister here in town and a really nice guy and he made the statement " If I could do it all over again, I would...."

He talked about how we we look back and wonder why in the world we did so many crazy and stupid things. Why was he blinded to what he knew would happen. He even brought up Peter... he denied Christ three times and I bet he wondered as he did it, as those words came out of his mouth. Bet he thought he could have a do over too...

We really are lucky you know. Just think about it for a second to yourself, and maybe this does not apply to you but it sure does me. How many times have you done things that right after you did it, you immediately thought "WHY, please tell me I didn't do that" or done some things that you actually thought God would strike you dead on the spot.. I have. But we have a God who despite all our faults, all our past, present and future sins (that's what they are you know), if we confess it to him, He forgives us and gives us chance after chance. I have people who have been " friends" that when something happened, they just stopped talking to me. But I have a God, who at one point in my life I decided in my head was not working for my good and I told Him so, who through is grace and mercy forgave me (I know this!!) and is not going to bring it back up again.

My response to Thomas was "I don't even think I can BEGIN to name all the things I have done that have been stupid, without wanting to kick myself every time. I just THANK GOD everyday for His grace and mercy, that I learned from those things and that I know despite all my past, present and future faults and mess ups, I have a God who wants nothing but the best for me and welcomes me back to Him with open arms!"The do over is not necessary you know. Once we confess and repent of it, it's done in God's eyes. We move on. We learn from our mistakes and try to help anyone else alone the way that we see who may need it. I pray the past is not holding you back... I know how that can be believe me. But turning it over to God is the only way we really get to move forward and be able to do the good works He wants us too!

I pray you all have a blessed day!! Lord willing, we will talk again soon!!

Monday, August 24, 2009

"God has editing rights over our prayers"

So I found this quote last week ... "God has editing rights over our prayers. He will... edit them, correct them, bring them in line with His Will and then hand them back to us to be resubmitted" (Stephen Crotts). I love it! I told you last week, we have been talking about prayer at church and when I found it, I was like YEP, this is it!!

See, when I have prayed in the past, I assumed it would work like this: I pray, God listens and then answers it. The end. And sometimes, it has worked like that... sometimes. Its the times that He decides that maybe I should have to wait it out that I have the problem. But have I (we) been praying with the right motives? You know, are the prayers all about YOU and what YOU want and what you think is best for YOU? That would be me... I have and had it all worked out in my head and I could not for the life of me see why God couldn't see that what I was asking for was the right decisions. Now, I can honestly thank Him for NOT answering some of that mess the way I wanted Him to.. cause that's exactly what it was.... mess!

Last night at Life Group, we were talking about God saying no when things are not good for us, but I contend that sometimes He DOES let some of those things happen just like we ask so that we can see for ourselves that it is not good. My daddy use to always say to my brother and me.. "a hard head makes a soft behind". I hated when he said that because it usually meant that we had done something he or my mama had asked us not to do and now came the punishment. I kinda see God like that. Maybe he isn't saying it quite like my daddy did, but He says,, " OK I'll let you have this and find out the hard way that its not good for you". That has happened to me and I hate I had to learn the way, but sometimes it has to be.

So when you pray, talk to God, I mean really talk to Him. Its alright to ask for what you want, r what you think you may want. I don't think God minds at all. But just know that it may not happen like you want it all the time. Sometimes when God doesn't answer our prayers its because He is sending us in a different direction, one we may not have even thought of yet that is going to be so much better for us.

I hope you all have a wonderful day and Lord willing, we will talk again tomorrow!


Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I think I see it now... or have I just not paid attention?

We have been studying prayer at church for the past few weeks. How we pray, when we pray, so we hear, what are the issues with prayer... and I have said in our life groups that my issue that I have had with prayer is that I get so frustrated because I am not getting an answer. Not that I need a yes, I just need something! And because of that frustration, I have had the attitude that I just give up because whatever is gonna happen, is gonna happen. And I actually have been thinking alot and "talking" to God alot more since we have had this series. And something funny is happening....

There is no bright light that shines above me with answers, no cup falls off the counter when I ask a question giving me an answer, but I think that maybe because I have actually been trying to listen for answers, things are working out. Does that make sense? See, let me tell you how my mind has worked...I think God has really answered alot more than I think He has, but I think that because I have such a thick head, I go " No that's not Him, he's not answering me" because I wanted to be proven right, I wanted to be able to say I have prayed and prayed and nothing", when all along, I have had my answers, just not necessarily the ones I wanted. I think we get out answers, I really do and I don't always think its a long time coming. We just want what we want when we want it and if it doesn't happen like that, well, we have frustrations and aggravations and thinks God is not paying attention to us.

My answers are coming, I really see that now. It helps to have alot of great people like I have around me praying with me and for me. People say the power of prayer is really strong and I think they say it and not really believe what they say.... I am here to tell you... it really is strong. I have noticed it in my own life the past few weeks, so much so that when I am not doing things as I should, when things are not quite right.. I have felt it physically and it was not until I actually said " Ok God, I hear you, I am listening, I'm sorry and I am doing" that I have actually felt okay.

Keep praying my friends, not just because the Bible tells us too, but to keep an open one on one relationship with God. Tell Him whats going on, ask Him for help, praise Him for the good AND the bad experiences because they really do make you stronger and you will see your relationship with him grow beyond anything you or I could ever imagine.

I hope all this makes sense to you. Sometimes I have so much stuff in my head that when it comes out, it tends to be jumbled.. I'll work on that. I hope you all have a great day and Lord willing, we will talk again soon! Love ya!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Still learning at 36

When my kids mess up, I like for them to know what they did and learn from it. The same would apply to me. I don't really have anyone to answer to as far as parents and I guess as adults, we tend to feel like we can do and say what we want, but looking at the bigger picture, that's not always right.

I had a great weekend, I really did. I got some rest, cleaned the house up some and got to spend some really fun time with friends. I do appreciate the fact that God allowed me to be able to do everything I got to do. But during that time, I probably did one of the most stupid things I have ever done. You know how we rank sins and bad things we do (not right, but as humans, we do it!) Well this wasn't a sin so to say, but definitely NOT one of the smartest moves I have made in my adult life and I have heard and felt the consequences of it. From people and God. I stayed up pretty much all night thinking and praying about it. And to the people who were there, without going back into it, I just want to apologize. As I think with a more clear head this morning, sometimes the things we think are funny or are no big deals, really are pretty big when it upsets other people. And trust me folks, I don't like to be judged, I like my kids, don't always like to be told when I do wrong (most of the time I already know it).. but right is right and wrong is wrong.

And let me just say this I am not looking for sympathy or pity.. I can already see the e-mails popping in my in box I just messed up and I know it and I apologize.

The weekend was GREAT, church was really good and life group, well, as "hard" as I am, God is working on me, believe that!! I love you all bunches and Lord willing, we will talk again tomorrow.....

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

In Psalms 16:11, its tell us that He will guide us on the path of life, but the choice is ours whether or not we stay on that path. And there are so many things that can keep us off the right path: things are not going well at home or work, bitterness we are feeling has taken root in our hearts and we can't let go, or maybe its the fact that someone has done something to us and we have chosen not to forgive them.

When the prodigal son left home, his father was very upset. The fact that he had not done what his father wanted upset him, but he allowed him to make his own decisions and the day he came back home, the father welcomed him with love and open arms. The same with God.... no matter what we do, no matter how far we have wondered from God, He longs for us to come back to Him.. there is no place we can go that His loving arms cannot reach.

So pray that God takes away what is holding us back, what is keeping us from giving our all to Him, replace it with love and comfort and trust in His unfailing love.

Its been a good first week of school for the kids... kinda rough on me and far as getting my schedule down, but it is all working out. Have a great day all and until tomorrow..Lord willing..

Friday, August 7, 2009

What a wonderful day!!

This week has been wonderful, there really is no other way to put it. Work has been good, school started, the kids are happy, I have rested better this week than I have in a long time.. it's just been good all the way around. Praise the Lord! And what a better way to end a perfect week than my friend Rebecca calling me this morning and telling me she had her baby. Michael Jr. was born August 7 at 12:01 AM. He was 8 lbs 8 ozs.. smaller than what we all thought but perfect. Everyone is doing great!

So many good things, how can anyone think that God is not still working wonders and miracles even in this world of ciaos.

I hope you all have a great day and weekend. I am going to see my new baby today : ). Make this weekend wonderful. Lord willing, we will talk again on Monday!

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Yesterday was the 11th year anniversary of my mom's death. But it was a good day for me. The kids started school and I couldn't help but think how she was probably smiling at her grandchildren as they got ready. Her only granddaughter started high school yesterday, her oldest grandson will be in high school next week, and the two youngest ones had the biggest smiles on their faces as I walked them to class. Yep, she was happy and she was proud. My brother called me... he is a really private person, never telling anyone what is really going on but I knew yesterday. He still has a hard time (and I do too sometimes) with it. He doesn't understand and he looks to me to try to make it make sense to him. I do what I can, and he accepts that each year. We miss her alot but I know she is still here watching over us.

When I got to work, I heard/read about the gunman who went into the gym and shot it up, killing 3 women, wounding many more.My heart goes out to the family members of the victim, I cannot imagine anything like that happening and I pray I never do. But as I thought and heard more about the story, I started to feel sympathy for the man too. By NO means do I condone what he did and I definitely think that he was a very sick man, but from what I read, he was also a lonely man. From the blogs and notes I guess he left, he talked of being alone and not having anyone in his life. And I can almost feel his pain.

Loneliness can lead into all kinds of depression, I know this first hand. Now I have never thought of harming anyone during my bouts but I have thought of harming myself. There is something that just clicks in you that you can't go on anymore and you feel like it is the only way out. I don't know.. its hard to explain if you have never felt it that deep before, but those feelings are very real. That is why I think it is so important to get to know people. Not be all in their business all the time, but step outside of your boxes and try some different things. God expects us to have relationships with each other and to help each other when we can. That doesn't mean you can fix all their problems, it doesn't mean that you have to even give your opinion when people come to you.. sometimes they just come for you to listen. But it does mean opening your heart, your ears, your home, and giving of yourselves to others. Like I have said many times before.. you never know who you might be helping by just being thoughtful and kind.

I am praying for the victims (and their families) of this situation and also the guy who did this crime and his family. God be with them all...

I hope you all have a blessed day. It's been a good week so far, praise the Lord. We will talk again tomorrow, Lord willing...

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Trustng God

There have been many disappointments in my life. Many of you know some of them, some know alot. Through the disappointments brought alot of not trusting people. I honestly had no reason to. I really felt like and still do sometimes that people are going to always let you down, so don't get to close, don't tell them too much and things will be okay.

Everyone, including me says " Trust God", "Give it all to Him".. but saying it and actually doing it can sometimes be very hard. Even for me. I believe God created me and everything in this world, I think that He controls the universe. I know that my prayer life is not the best but I know He hears me but I learned a long time ago that I do not always get the answers I want, therefore I don't expect too much. Trust God? Hmmmm.... it's hard, it really is.

I think if we (and I really am talking to myself) would learn to open up to the Lord more, we would see his awesome power work in us and through us. I would imagine that the more we open up to Him, the more He would do for us and vice versa.. the less we trust and believe that He truly can and will handle what He said he would, things would start to happen and we will know and see it.

So I guess it boils down to this, if you believe God will do it, trust Him, then it will happen, period. If not, it won't.

This week that is what I am trying to concentrate on. I am working on my trust issues with God.. does that sound bad? For a Christian I mean.... I think its alot more common than we think. I will say this... I normally don't sleep at night.. at any given time during the night, if you are ever online, I bet I am too. I probably sleep 2 to 3 hours a night, if I am lucky. I have prayed (as well as a few other people I know) this week about how tired I have been, mentally and physically and that I just need rest. The past two night, I know this may not seem like a big deal, but I have slept 7 hours, no computer, no getting up, nothing. How can I really not think that is God.. some of you think well maybe you were just really tired and had no choice but to sleep.. but I will tell you, that is not the case b/c if it was, I would sleep like that every night.

I do believe God is with me, I honestly have no doubt. I often wish He would let me in on His plan for me though, maybe I wouldn't be as stressed. But, until then, I will have to continue to learn to trust that He knows way more than I do and He knows whats best for me.

I hope you all have a great day. School starts tomorrow for Dougherty County, and I can't wait!!

I love you all and Lord willing, we will talk again tomorrow!!!!

Monday, August 3, 2009

I got my encouragement last night!

The very first time I wrote anything that I let people read, I sent this:

Hebrews 3:13 - "But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness".

Last night at my life group, I definitely felt this. I am not really one that likes to ask anyone for anything, no matter what it is. Well last night, we talked about prayer, when we pray, how much we pray, that type of thing. I would say everyone pretty much agrees ( I think) that we tend to pray alot when we want something. once we get it, or things are gong good, we tend to forget who it was we were praying to in the first place to get it, like we actually did some thing on our own. So as everyone was talking, I do what I normally do... think. Sometimes too much I think, but it can't be helped. I debate alot on if sometimes I should even open my mouth, because one, I really don't think people are going to understand where I am coming from, two, they are gonna think I just want attention, and three and probably most important, I am not sure I wanna tell people a whole lot of what goes on in my head.

But I opened my mouth and as soon as I did, tears swelled up and I thought right then, I really should have not opened my mouth but its too late now. This is what I said ( and what I meant)..

I have a really hard time praying. I have prayed all of my life and although it says Pray without ceasing, and the prayers of a righteous man is powerful and effective, it seemed to me that no matter what I did, the prayers didn't work out like I thought they should. And honestly, it upset me more to ask and get disappointed in not getting an answer.

Now please don't think I am ignorant, because I'm not.. I realize that God has His own plan, I realize that everything happens in time and I know that I am more blessed (materially) than alot of people. But see, it is just more than that for me. I have never been a person who thinks that "things" make me, but I wonder often why my life seems to be one big test, day after day. I watch other people and I know we all have problems, some more than others, some bigger than others.... but in my head, I just keep asking, " have I not learned enough yet".... I guess I am just glad God doesn't slap me silly or strike me dead....

So after I opened my mouth, it was pretty quiet for a second and I thought GREAT, they probably think I am a freakin loon. I mean who at a church function says they really don't pray... only me... sigh... Let me say now, if I have never said it before, I really do have a great church family. They love me regardless. We may not always agree but I know they love me and my family and last night as we all prayed in our circle holding hands I heard the encouragement, saw the encouragement and I sure felt the encouragement. I have no idea what God has in mind for me, I really don't. I know that I mess up, alot, but for some reason, I am still here and He put those people in my life for a reason and I am grateful. I love them all!

Words of encouragement, you just don't know how much you can make a bad day good by a few small words.

Have a great day everyone and I love you bunches!!!