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Knowledge, inspiration, and encouragement from a Christian perspective is my goal. I post a weekly commentary, which could be about world events or the events of my week. Other days I might share stories, recipes, homemaking tips, book reviews, political talk, biblical truth, or other blogs and websites I like. This blog is like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.

Monday, October 31, 2011

MARTIAL LAW IN AMERICA?

"The Presidential executive orders are in place, Fusion Centers and FEMA detention camps are operational, and 20,000 US troops have been trained to deal specifically with economic collapse and civil unrest and are ready to be deployed immediately."


Someone asked me recently what would happen if martial law was put into place in America.  The article below answers that question. 

http://www.shtfplan.com/gerald-celente/gerald-celente-economic-martial-law-will-be-declared_08012011

Friday, October 28, 2011

HOW CAN WE TRUST THEM? THE VACCINE DEBATE

New revelation about high ranking CDC official who played a key role in the H1N1 propaganda scare, and pushed vaccines on young children... This evidences her lack of integrity and concern for children and should finally settle your trust issue. Isn't it time to look elsewhere for advice?  The second link reveals the neurological disorder that comes with the swine flu vaccine.
http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/10/28/cdc-director-arrested-for-child-molestation--bestiality.aspx

http://www.naturalnews.com/033816_swine_flu_vaccines_neurological_disorders.html

Thursday, October 27, 2011

THE STATE OF AMERICA

This photo, from a small gathering of Occupy Wall Street protesters in Phoenix, shows that not only the police outnumbered the protesters but showed the level of intimidation and force used against just a few people sitting in a park.  Their crime?  They were there after "curfew".  I've been searching my copy of the US Constitution for any reference to curfew but have yet to find anything.  Read the entire article below.  Know where your country is headed.  Be prepared.
http://www.dollarvigilante.com/blog/2011/10/25/the-us-is-fast-becoming-a-third-world-police-state.html

CAPITOL CITY ON SELF DESTRUCT

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/10/27/us-usa-harrisburg-politics-idUSTRE79Q2RN20111027

US: Veteran Scott Olsen Could Be The First Person To Die At A Wall Street Protest -- Society's Child -- Sott.net

US: Veteran Scott Olsen Could Be The First Person To Die At A Wall Street Protest -- Society's Child -- Sott.net: http://www.sott.net/articles/show/236754-US-Veteran-Scott-Olsen-Could-Be-The-First-Person-To-Die-At-A-Wall-Street-Protest

Monday, October 24, 2011

THREE PEOPLE, ONE JESUS

 
photo

Akiane Kramarik painting Prince of Peace at age 8

The above painting was created by a girl who claims that she makes regular visits to Heaven.  Many of her paintings are inspired by what she sees while in Heaven.  The fascinating part is that two other people (perhaps more) saw this painting and immediately realized it was Jesus.  Three people recognized this same man as Jesus. Two saw him in Heaven and one saw him in a dream. 

If you read the book Heaven is For Real, you will see this same painting in the book.   This is the painting that Colton Burpo recognized as Jesus, the man he met in Heaven when he almost died on the operating table.  The links below are stories about three people who met Jesus.  The last story was written by someone who read the book Heaven is For Real and saw the painting of Jesus in the book and then recognized him as the same man in her dream. 
http://youtu.be/MBNMtPlBD0Y
 http://youtu.be/QdUGoFTfP7w
http://michellewegner.com/2011/03/16/heaven-is-for-real/

How To Make Gourmet Caramel Apples

How To Make Gourmet Caramel Apples

Sunday, October 23, 2011

THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT book review

                                                      Butterfly Effect

"Every single thing you do matters.  You have been created as one of a kind.  You have been created in order to make a difference.  You have within you the power to change the world."
Andy Andrews

The Butterfly Effect shows how your everyday actions can make a difference for generations to come. Through inspiring stories, The Butterfly Effect, by Andy Andrews, shares the secret of a life of permanent purpose, where every decision and action you make in life matters, not only today, but for the future. 

When you understand that every action matters, every result of our actions immediately improves! A life of permanent purpose will make you a better parent, a better spouse and a more valuable friend. The Butterfly Effect illustrates the unique power of the individual. 

When Andy Andrews was 23, homeless and scared, he was given guidance by an old man named Jones: "When you know that everything matters...that every move counts as much as any other...you will begin living a life of permanent purpose, which will make you a better parent, a better spouse, and a more valuable friend.  Your productivity and financial success will soar to new heights while the old days of uncertainty, doubt, and depression fade into the past."


That conversation changed Andy Andrews.  It became the guiding force that produced the kind of author and speaker he has become.  
"When we understand that every action matters, every result of our actions immediately improves," said Andrews.  Our decisions become wiser and more cautious when we live a life of permanent purpose.  


If you're wondering how significant your life is or if you make a difference.  If you question whether the universe even notices your existence, then you should read this small but mighty book, The Butterfly Effect.

"In 1963, Edward Lorenz presented a hypothesis to the New York Academy of Science.  His theory, stated simply, was that:

A butterfly could flap its wings and set molecules of air in motion, which would move other molecules of air, in turn moving more molecules of air--eventually capable of starting a hurricane on the other side of the planet.


Lorenz and his ideas were literally laughed out of the conference...Therefore because of the idea's charm and intrigue, the so-called butterfly effect became a staple of science fiction, remaining for decades a combination of myth and legend spread only by comic books and bad movies."


More than 30 years later, physics professors working from colleges and universities worldwide concluded that the butterfly effect was authentic, accurate, and viable.  Today it is known as The Law of Sensitive Dependence Upon Initial Conditions.

The Butterfly Effect is a series of short stories about people who made decisions and discoveries that affected billions of people for centuries to come. 


But the greatest story within its pages is your story: "There are generations yet unborn whose very lives will be shifted and shaped by the moves you make and the actions you take today.  And tomorrow.  And the next day.  And the next...You have been created in order that you might make a difference...Your life and what you do with it today...matters forever."
Go to the link below and click on The Butterfly Effect book cover.
http://www.simpletruths.com/movies.asp

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Always Learning: Finding Godly Girlfriends

Always Learning

I love discovering great blogs.  This one that I came across today answered many questions I've been pondering lately.  The blog is titled Always Learning, and that's one thing that I never stop doing.  God is still molding me and I have much to learn and much to improve on.  Yesterday I caught myself contributing to the gossip mill when I shared a comment a woman had made to me at my daughter's birthday party.  This woman is known for her blunt remarks that come out sounding not so nice.  When someone else confessed to being hurt by her comments, I couldn't resist sharing my own experience.  And I immediately felt lousy after I said it.  It seems I'm constantly being put to the grindstone lately.  God is stripping away my pride and molding me into a more humble person. 


It's not easy to be humble.  It's hard to remain silent when people say rude things.  And I wonder at what point do I become a doormat if I remain silent.  Being humble requires dying to self.  But how much dying must I do?  Must I completely ignore my own well-being in order to be like Jesus.  I guess when we consider what Christ did on the cross the answer is yes. 


I've made a lot of mistakes with my own mouth lately, so I guess I shouldn't gossip about other people who do the same.  When I come across a woman who is rude or a woman who enjoys correcting my mistakes, I need to remind myself that she probably suffers from low self-esteem or insecurity and I need to feel compassion for her instead of anger.  I need to look at the deeper issue that might be causing her behavior.  That's not easy to do when my human nature wants to give her a lecture.


Yes, as Christians we are always learning.  Because there is so much to learn.  And making mistakes is part of the process.  I'm learning to forgive myself when I mess up.  Writing a blog like this and being a speaker sets me up for high expectations of my words and actions.  But I have to remind myself that I'm flawed like everyone else.  I have to remember that I'm still learning too, and sometimes I'm going to blow it.  Maybe that's the key to being humble.

Always Learning: Finding Godly Girlfriends: We were just getting ready to pray and she exclaimed, "I need to go outside for some fresh air. My heart has been hurting and the pain is...

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Changes that are coming (and not political) - Humanity Healing Community

Changes that are coming (and not political) - Humanity Healing Community

Hal Lindsey Report (10.14.11)

GLUE TO DECEIVE YOU

We have to watch for GLUED meat!  Be sure to watch this......you will be shocked The next time that you are at the grocery store go to the pre-packaged meat coolers and look closely at the list of the countries on the label of any of the packaged meats (which is a mandatory FDA law) that shows where that meat came from. Buy only meat that came from USA or Canada
I'd go a step further and only buy meat from local butchers that you can trust.  I totally understand why people become vegetarians.  This video is shocking & everyone should be aware of what they are doing and what you are buying!!! Click on: http://d.yimg.com/nl/australia/site/player.swf?vid=24472661&repeat=0&browseCarouselUI=hi

Monday, October 17, 2011

BAD DAY CUPCAKES

Chocolate on chocolate.  Scroll down for the recipe

RECIPE FOR A BAD DAY

Many women have an emotional tie to food although they don't like to admit it.  After a bad day, a woman I know likes to tear into a bag of chips.  For many women, only chocolate can soothe the fallout of a bad day. Although I know that the better thing is to pray my way through a bad day, I do find myself reaching for chocolate when I'm feeling stressed.  Chocolate cake with chocolate icing is at the top of my list of comfort foods.  This is the best chocolate cake recipe I found and I have tried many.  The icing is from Martha Stewart and the cake recipe was given to me by a woman who once made and decorated wedding cakes.  This recipe makes about 16 cupcakes.  I would double the recipe for a layer cake.

                                                 One Bowl Chocolate Cake

3/4 Cup Dutch Cocoa
1 1/2  Cups Flour
1 1/2 Cups Sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 Cup buttermilk
3 Tablespoons Safflower oil (I use peanut oil)
1 teaspoon vanilla
3/4 Cup warm water

Directions  Sift dry ingredients beat on low speed.  Raise speed to medium, add eggs milk, water, oil, and vanilla.  Beat 3 minutes.  Bake at 350 for 15 to 18 minutes for cupcakes. 

                Martha Stewart Ultimate Chocolate Frosting 

3 1/2 cups confectioners sugar
1 cup cocoa powder
12 Tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup milk
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Directions In a small bowl sift together the conf. sugar and cocoa powder.  Add butter, vanilla, and milk; beat until smooth and free of lumps.  ( I add the vanilla first and then add milk slowly until the right consistency is reached.  You may not need to add all the milk). 

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Pennsylvania, US: Mystery booms, rumbling was caused by earthquake -- Earth Changes -- Sott.net

Pennsylvania, US: Mystery booms, rumbling was caused by earthquake -- Earth Changes -- Sott.net: http://www.sott.net/articles/show/236341-Pennsylvania-US-Mystery-booms-rumbling-was-caused-by-earthquake

DON'T LET YOUR GUARD DOWN

When ye see a cloud rise out of the west, ...ye say, There cometh a shower; and so it is.  And when ye see the south wind blow, ye say, There will be heat; and it cometh to pass.  Ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky and of the earth; but how is it that ye do not discern this time? -  Luke 12:54-56

"Many people tend to let there watchful guard down because of the statement that Jesus made saying that we don’t know the day or the hour of His return and that only the Father knows that day and hour, (Matthew 24:36).  This is true but Jesus also commands us to be watchful of the times and seasons so that that Day does not come upon us as a snare, (Luke 21:35 & Mark 13:35-37).  There are more admonitions from our Lord Jesus about watching the times and seasons than there are about not knowing the day or the hour.  In fact, Jesus rebuked the people of His day for not knowing the time of their visitation, (Messiah Jesus’ first advent), even though they could predict the weather by watching the sky, (Luke 12:54-56)."
http://www.raptureready.com/soap/leasher15.html 

Saturday, October 15, 2011

PERILOUS TIMES SHALL COME

...... in the last days (extreme last - last of all days)  perilous ( troublesome or raging insanity) times shall come.... verse 3  says men will be trucebreakers ( not capable of being appeased ) and incontinent ( without self control, fierce, not tame ) among many other behaviors which are also present in today's world.

http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/blog/?p=6907
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6SnKjgKGNZM&feature=player_embedded
http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/16/world/occupy-wall-street-protests-worldwide.html?_r=1&hp
http://www.politico.com/news/stories/1011/65770.html

Thursday, October 13, 2011

WOMEN DRIFTING APART

In his book, Straight Talk to Men and Their Wives, Dr. James Dobson commented on the increase in depression and loneliness among women.  He said that the breakdown today is not between men and women, but between women and women:

     "A century ago, women cooked together, canned together, washed at the creek together, prayed together, went through menopause together, and grew old together.  And when a baby was born, aunts, grandmothers, and neighbors were there to show the new mother how to diaper and feed and discipline.  Great emotional support was provided in this feminine contact.  A woman was never really alone.
     Alas, the situation is very different today.  The extended family has disappeared, depriving the wife of that source of security and fellowship.  Her mother lives in New Jersey and her sister is in Texas.  Furthermore, American families move every three or four years, preventing any long-term friendships from developing among neighbors."

We have in this culture a great need for supportive networks for women.  And the church is the logical place for women to connect with other women of faith.  But are those connections the real, intimate connections that we long for, or are they just superficial gatherings where we never really get to know each other, never pour our hearts out to each other, and never experience the comfort of women who know how to listen, women who genuinely care.  Do we walk away from those gatherings feeling like we haven't really made a connection with anyone, and do we drive home feeling empty, lonely, and wishing for more?

Scroll down and click on the link below titled, Are you lonely? for more on this subject.  









Are You Lonely?

http://www.girlsgonewise.com/are-you-lonely/

Annies Eats

Another great food blog to explore.  This blog reminded me that it's past time to make another batch of homemade vanilla for Christmas gift giving.  Thanks Annie for a great blog.
 http://annies-eats.net/

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

TEA AT GRANDMA'S

Here''s a link to a lovely post by my sister, titled Tea at Grandma's.  I was planning to blog about our mother daughter tea party this past weekend, but I forgot my camera.  After seeing this post, I know why.  I couldn't have said it better and the photos are great.  Click on the link below and see that women still do have tea parties.  And they should do it more often.  I'm still waiting for the quilting parties to return.  I'll be there.
 http://deanna-wiseman.blogspot.com/2011_10_01_archive.html#8966260461507324612

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ron Paul Message to Occupy Wall Street- LETS END THE FED!

WHY LOVE FAILS



Love is patient.  Love is kind.  It does not envy.  It does not boast.  It is not proud.  It is not rude.  It is not self-seeking.  It is not easily angered.  It keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. -
 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

I don't believe that we are born with the ability to love.  Love must be learned.  The kind of love that is mentioned in the Bible in the above verse does not come naturally.  If you don't have a reverence for God, you can't love the way the Bible describes.  Until we submit to the authority of God we simply don't have the power to love others as God commands.  Love requires dying to self, and we can't do this on our own.  We need the Holy Spirit's help.

It's human nature to think of ourselves first, to look out for number one.   It's human nature to say, " What's in it for me?"  But love is not self-seeking.  Actually, love is serving others and considering others more important than ourselves.  Few of us are really able to do that consistently.  I get off track myself.  There are times when I write something and my mind becomes troubled.  That's the Holy Spirit telling me my words were selfish, prideful, or insensitive.  So I go back and edit my words until I feel okay with the final draft.  Without the Holy Spirit to keep me in check, I'm just not capable of biblical love.

Self-seeking love is the only love many people are capable of.  And I believe this is the reason so many marriages end in divorce.  Couples can't really love one another.  They are too self-seeking in their relationships, and it doesn't take long for one or both spouses to become unhappy with the way they are being treated.  If we want a relationship that lasts, we must become a servant to our spouse.  We must put the other person's needs ahead of our own.And that is not an easy task.  Few are up for the challenge.

But think about the payoff.  When both people are putting aside their selfish desires and serving one another, then both are on the receiving end of unselfish love.  The wife is content.  The husband is content.  Neither one feels like they are in second place.  This is the kind of love God planned for us to display as his children, but how much of it do you see when you look around?  I see a world that thinks it's all about me.  And that is why relationships don't work. 

Selfishness, pride laziness, insensitivity and anything else that kills our ability to love must be put away from us.  We can't do this difficult task without God's help.  If we want successful relationships, we must start with a reverence for God.  We must invite the Holy Spirit to work in our lives.  We need to be held accountable.  Someone has to keep us in check.  Our self-seeking human nature will take over unless we have the love of Christ in our hearts.  If you look at those who have loving, successful relationships, you will most likely see a reverence for God at the core of that relationship.  They are tapped into a power source that helps them die to self and live to serve others.  Selfishness never brought anyone happiness.  The greatest joy happens when we love unselfishly as God commands.  He created us.  He knows what works.

Monday, October 10, 2011

PRICELESS QUOTE

"I don't go to some women because they give the impression that they are too distracted by things in their own lives to hear me.  I don't go to others because I am never sure about their moods.  Sometimes I feel a warmth and openness but just as often I feel as if I am standing before a stone wall.  I usually won't take the risk of going to these women.  But I do go to those who make it easy for me.  I do go to those who tell me by their attitude and words that they are glad I have come."  -Susan Hunt, Spiritual Mothering
Last summer outside of our motel room, during our mother daughter trip to the beach.  No unapproachable girls here.

WHY PRAY FOR ISRAEL?

"It is an infection that grows more virulent. Anti-Semitism is on the rise around the world. American universities are among the most receptive hosts of the infection. Professors inculcate students with the venom of luciferic hatred for the Jewish state. Israel is increasingly made the root cause of all that is wrong within the Middle Eastern cauldron.

Like in the days of Hitler’s rise in the mid-1930s, the Jew is made to look like the troublemaker of the world in politics and in business. From the imploding economy to the threatened war over the Palestinian refugees, Israel is the focus of attention.  
Israel–and the Jewish people—are being isolated, just as the prophets of the Old and New Testament foretold."

Terry from Rapture Ready

Israel needs your prayers.  God's word instructs us to pray for Israel.(Psalm 122:6)

Pray that the United Nations will fail in their attempts to divide Israel with the creation of a Palestinian State.

Pray the promise of God that Israel will never be divided into two kingdoms again.

Pray also that the United States will remain a strong supporter and faithful ally of Israel

Finally, pray for the peace of Jerusalem, as God's word instructs us to do 

Click on the link below for reasons why Christians should pray for Israel and to view a written prayer that you can print out and use as a prayer guide.

http://christianity.about.com/od/prayersforspecificneeds/qt/prayerforisrael.htm


Isolating Israel 
from Rapture Ready
http://www.raptureready.com/index.php 
 
Israel continues to be made the hold-up to peace in the Middle East, thus the stumbling block to peace for the whole world. That nation’s isolation is being maneuvered and manipulated by pressures from every direction.
The Islamist nations of the region hate the Jewish state–while at the same time refusing to acknowledge it even exists. They surround Israel on all sides except the Mediterranean side. Submarines of Israel’s enemies even lurk in those waters, awaiting the right time to strike.

The countries within the United Nations, led by the Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, are for the most part overwhelmingly opposed to Israel in every vote taken that involves Israel’s right to exist and thrive in that land the UN antagonists proclaim belongs to the Palestinians.  The European Union (EU) consistently comes down on the side of the Palestinian Authority’s (PA) demands that Israel give up whatever territory necessary to accommodate the two-state solution–thus to construct a homeland for the Palestinian refugees. This is demanded, although the refugees are from the surrounding Arab states, nations that prefer to keep the hapless refugees in geographical limbo so hatred of the Jews and accusations that the Jews are cruel occupiers can continue to spew forth.

At the same time, Israel has absorbed thousands upon thousands of those refugees under legal emigration practices. Those émigrés are among the most content people in the Middle East because they are treated fairly and allowed to prosper by the Israeli government and the Jewish citizenry.  The entire world comes against Israel in the form of the Quartet (US, UN, EU, and Russia) who, while putting up a façade that the group of powerful nations wants fairness and peace for all people of the Mid-East region, in actuality works through deceit and subterfuge to force Israel to give up land in every negotiation that comes up in the "Roadmap to Peace" process. 

Most troubling–for me, at least, and for those who watch this process unfolding from a premillennial, pretribulational Bible prophecy perspective—is that the United States is at the forefront of the arm-twisting in dealing with Israeli leadership. This is plainly demonstrated despite peripheral niceties by U.S. administration officials. The following recent report is a case in point. 

TEL AVIV, Israel (AP) — Israel must find a way to resume negotiations with the Palestinians and has a responsibility to try to ease tensions with its neighbors in the region, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said Monday amid prodding from the United States to return to peace talks. 

Standing next to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta, Barak pushed back a bit on the Pentagon chief's warning that Israel is becoming increasingly isolated in the region, threatening its security. And he offered no new thoughts on the thorny issues that have stymied the peace talks, including the proposed timetable and the contested settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. 

Making his first trip to Israel as defense secretary, Panetta has pressed the Obama administration's view that the two sides must restart the long-stalled peace talks. And during a news conference with Barak, Panetta said it's time for bold action by both sides to move toward a negotiated two-state solution.
The visit comes amid new international pressure to reach a peace deal by the end of next year, fueled by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' move two weeks ago asking the U.N. Security Council to recognize an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza Strip. (Lolita C. Baldor, "Barak: Israel-Palestinians Must Find Path to Talks," Associated Press, 10/3/11) 

The U.S. State Department operatives and the Quartet negotiators are concerned about Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas' asking the UN Security Council a couple of weeks ago to acknowledge the presence of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank, east Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip. They want to avoid a vote on granting this, and prefer that both parties sit down and negotiate Israel’s acquiescence in giving up land for peace. Regardless of the façade of wanting a peaceful solution, the international community, like Abbas–like all of the Jew-hating Islamists—won’t relent until Israel gives them what they want. The deadly, humanistic peace plan stems from a satanic rage long ago prophesied to come to a climax at the end of the age, just before Christ’s return. 

Sunday, October 9, 2011

COMPLETING HIS TASK

http://www.nowtheendbegins.com/blog/?p=6821

OUR HOPE

The video below states that there is no hope.  It also states that your religion is irrelevant.  I don't agree with these statements, but I posted the video because he makes some valid points.  I believe we do have hope.  God is our hope.  "Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you."
People simply are seeking the wrong things and that is why they falter.  In this time of great uncertainty, it would be wise to seek the greatest kingdom and cling to the promises of God. 


"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose."  Romans 8:28

Global Collapse

Thursday, October 6, 2011

HOME IS WHEREVER I'M WITH YOU

SO CLOSE, SO REAL

My day was filled with so many good things.  I just got back from the pregnancy center where I volunteer once a week.  Some nights we have no clients scheduled to come in, so we get a chance to chat about life, God, and the amazing ways that God works in our lives and the lives of others. We got to talking about the Bible, and  I shared with three other women how I often let my bible fall open to a random page in hope that it will hold a special verse that God chose just for me, a verse that will be perfect for whatever problem or concern I'm facing at that moment.  Today I did my little Bible trick and after several tries I came across a verse that brought tears to my eyes.  It was as if God was speaking directly to me about the very thing I had on my mind.  The verse was basically telling me that God will continue to prosper me and my children. 


"Do you really think God honors such a thing?" I asked our client services director.  Would he really honor my Bible trick and let my Bible fall open to a verse that brought me so much encouragement.  "Yes! she said without hesitation.  I believe God honors every attempt we make to seek Him.  And He knows your heart, Danelle.  Whenever we come to Him like little children and ask for Him to reveal himself, He always honors that."  Her answer was so well-worded, I wish I could remember everything she said, but as she spoke, her words were so comforting and I knew what she said was true.  It was as if God himself was sitting beside me and confirming, "Yes, Danelle, that was me.  I did that for you." 


Ever since I've been praying for God to show himself to me every day, I'm having more and more moments like this.  Moments where I'll see something, read something, or hear something that seems to be a message just for me that's coming straight from God.  My daily prayer is, "Please God, let me see you in this day."  Whenever I pray that prayer, I experience a moment in my day that takes my breath away, brings tears to my eyes, or gives me goosebumps.  It's a moment that is so clearly of God because only He knows me so well.   He knows the things that hold special meaning for me, and he uses those things to reveal himself.  Or He uses godly people to reassure me when I'm troubled about something.


The idea of asking God to physically show himself as I go about my day, came to me after reading, "Twelve days out with God," a book that encourages the reader to invite God along when traveling to various places such as a museum, a restaurant, a park and even the mall.  The book showed me that wherever I go, God will be there.  "God desires to become so close to us that he wants us to feel we could almost reach out and touch Him," the book says.  After reading the book, I realized that God is always willing to share himself with me.  He wants to be found.  All I have to do is ask and then keep my eyes open and wait for the moment when I hear Him, see Him, feel His presence.  And if I have doubts that it was Him in that moment, He'll reassure me, saying, "Yes, Danelle, that was me.  I did that for you."


"God is actively involved and interested in every part of our lives, no matter how big or small.  He cares deeply about how we feel and what we do, and he wants to have an on-going relationship with us," the book claims.  But the only way you can know that is true is if you make the effort to discover it for yourself.   The Bible tells us that we will find God when we seek Him with all of our hearts.


I'm planning to say that same prayer tomorrow, "Please God, let me see you in this day."  I can't wait to see what tomorrow brings.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

IMPARTING GRACE

We all need Grace.  As a writer, I need it too.  There are times when what I write rubs people the wrong way.  So I need Grace from my readers.  I need them to believe that my intentions are good and if I point out flaws, I do it to bring improvement not hurt.

We all need Grace.  I need grace on those days when I'm too tired to carry on a conversation, so I get in and get out as quick as I can, hoping I won't have to chat with anyone.  I need grace on the days when I have things on my mind, so I might walk right past you and not even see you.  I need grace on the days when I chastise my daughter publicly instead of waiting until we get to the car.  Teenagers can be very disrespectful and that's one thing I won't tolerate, so it's hard for me to keep my cool.  I need grace.

I also need to extend grace.  In a moment of excitement, people make promises they can't keep.  They say impulsive things they later regret.  Parents react rudely when they're stressed or shy people can be seen as snobs.  "Extend grace," I say to myself.  The truth is, we've all had those moments when we wonder if we spoke too harshly, when we regret the way we worded something,  when we wish that we could turn back time and say or do it over.  We extend grace because we ourselves will need grace before this day is over.     

Monday, October 3, 2011

WOMEN LACKING UNITY

You've heard the phrase, "United We Stand, Divided We Fall."  I've been wondering lately how many of our problems can be blamed on a lack of unity among Christians.  When asked what he thought was the biggest problem facing the church today, Pat Robertson said, "Lack of unity."  His answer intrigued me because I see the same problem in churches today, but I tend to focus on the lack of unity among women in the church.  And one of my goals as a writer and speaker is to build a greater sense of unity among Christian women. 


Why is it so hard for women, even Christian women, to love each other and work together?  I believe the answer lies in where they are looking for their sense of worth and security.  If a woman finds her security in Christ, she'll have no reason to distance herself from women in the church.  But if a woman finds her security in the things of the world, then she'll have every reason to compete with her sisters in Christ rather than to love them.


I have yet to walk into a church, even my own church, and feel a strong sense of love and respect among the women there. Instead what I see is women who purposely keep their distance from one another.  I see unwelcoming body language and women who again and again walk right past me without even making eye contact.  

Some days I want to stand up and shout, "What's wrong here!  Why do we bother coming into this building every week if we're going to treat each other like strangers,  even rivals?  Where is the love of Christ?  Why do women have such a hard time displaying that love to each other?


The reason is that our culture sends some very strong messages to women and most of us believe those lies.  Our culture shouts, "You gotta be the best. You gotta keep up with the Joneses"  The world tells us that image is everything and we must portray a perfect image.  And because we are so in-tune with this pressure the world puts on women to be perfect, we tend to see other women as our competition instead of as our sisters in Christ.  It's very sad how we've been brainwashed to value worldly opinions more than the word of God. 

The love of Christ is not always evident in the way women relate to one another within the church.  I've heard other women say this same thing.  They're frustrated because they don't feel that they're a part of a circle of friends who encourage and support one another.  Women long for that.  It's biblical for women to mentor each other and uplift one another, but it's hard to encourage women when you feel so distant from them.  I've often wondered what I can do to change this, but have yet to find an answer.

I believe that women are the backbone of the church. If there's a lack of unity there, the whole church suffers.  We need to take a good look at how we relate to each other.  We need to make more of an effort to reach out to each other and display gestures of friendliness, even if it's just a smile.  Don't walk past your sister in Christ without so much as a smile.  Make eye contact.  Let her know you see her as a friend not a competitor.  If women don't stand united, the church they love is going to fall apart.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

WEIGHING THE EVIDENCE

"The number of good jobs continues to decline, more stores are closing, incomes continue to go down, credit card debt and student loan debt are soaring, the housing market resembles a corpse, the number of Americans living in poverty continues to rise and government debt is at unprecedented levels. We are losing blood fast, and almost all of our leaders are either too corrupt or too incompetent to be able to do anything about it. 

The U.S. economy really and truly is about to go into the toilet, and if something is not done very quickly we are going to experience a complete and total economic disaster in this nation...An old maxim says, “Forewarned is forearmed.” Ladies and gentlemen, we need to prayerfully and seriously weigh the evidence that is before us and make decisions NOW to prepare ourselves for the days to come. We need to heed the words of Scripture that twice say, “A prudent man foreseeth the evil, and hideth himself: but the simple pass on, and are punished.” (Prov. 22:3; 27:12 KJV)
 Chuck Baldwin -- Economic Bad Times Just Beginning