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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.

Friday, November 30, 2012

WHY HUG UGLY?

"Whatever you hold on to will hold on to you" I read that quote today on one of my favorite blogs. I know this to be true because I have made the mistake of holding on to ugly things for far too long. And I don't mean my clogs from the eighties. I mean negative energy that brings sickness on the body. Unforgiveness, anger, ongoing frustration, and hurt feelings actually cause our bodies to become acidic, which is the perfect environment for diseases to thrive. This year has been one of the worst of my life. Perhaps the worst year ever. I will be so happy to see it go and to have a fresh start in January.

I guess I think that because I try so hard to glorify God that maybe I should have some special favor upon me. My children shouldn't get so sick that we consider a midnight visit to the emergency room. I shouldn't wake up to a swollen infected eye that looks so hideous I wonder if my eye and skin will be permanently damaged. I shouldn't have to deal with arthritis and all its unpleasant symptoms. I shouldn't have insomnia. I shouldn't have back pain. I shouldn't have dental problems since I take excellent care of my teeth.  And I shouldn't have to deal with thoughtless people. That's an incomplete list of the ugly things that came my way this year.

But life doesn't hold back pain for people who are good. And sometimes the ugly things are a result of our own doing. For example, several years ago I fell while skating backwards. That decision to go roller skating in my late forties led to my back problems. That was my doing. Also, I believe my insomnia is the result of my taking a prescription drug that should not be on the market. Drugs can cause permanent neurological damage and sometimes death. But I trusted my doctor and paid the price. That was my own doing. I should have researched the side effects.

I could blame God for letting these things happen, but what would that get me?  If I hold on to resentment, then I can add one more thing to my list of ailments. Because anger and resentment have been proven to make people physically sick. Whatever I hold on to will hold on to me. So I have to let it go. I have to make amends with those who hurt me. I have to forgive. I can't go on rehearsing things I should have said that really would have stuck it to them. I have to lay it all down and walk away from it. Only God is big enough to deal with hurt that big. If I hang on to it, it will destroy me.

I can tell when someone is holding on to resentment. Their body language gives them away. They are impatient and often sarcastic. Their words come out like bullets, with the intention of harming others. When they speak, you can see the annoyance on their faces. They are hanging on to past hurts and that hurt is hanging on to them. That hurt has changed the way they relate to others and it's changed the way they view life. They are angry people walking around spreading their anger everywhere they go. And because of this, they can't attract anything good into their lives. That wall of resentment keeps the good things out and they remain imprisoned in a mud hole of their own making.

I've learned that the quickest way to get rid of resentment is to start praying for those who hurt you. Do anything you can to restore the relationship. Make a phone call, write a letter, go see the person and let him or her know that you want to let it go. For your own peace of mind, speak your mind and put it to rest. I did this recently and after talking to the person, I realized that the relationship can't be restored because I simply can't trust her. When I can't trust people, I don't want to be around them. It's okay to distance yourself from people who don't bring anything good into your life. That's not resentment that's self-preservation.

With a new year right around the corner, it might be a good idea to ask yourself if you're hanging on to any past hurts. If you are, don't take them with you into the next year. Set yourself free from the ugliness you've wrapped yourself in and see the difference it will make in your life. I can tell you from experience, it's like walking out of a dark cave into the bright abundant life God intended for you. You will begin to attract blessings again. People will notice that you talk differently and you are pleasant to be around. The energy you give to the world will always reflect back on you, positive or negative. So the one who benefits most from letting go of past hurts is you.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Nov 12, 2012
All Aboard the Tribulation Express
from Rapture Ready 
The 2012 general election has been an absolute disaster. Barack Hussein Obama managed to convince the American people to allow him stay around for another four years, Tammy Baldwin is elected the first openly gay senator, Maine and Maryland became the first states to approve same-sex marriage, and voters in Colorado and Washington legalized recreational use of marijuana.
The prize for most idiotic voters would have to go to the people living in Michigan's 1st District. They elected Brian Banks, who has been convicted eight times for felonies involving bad checks and credit card fraud. Banks, a Democrat, won his seat in a landslide victory, grabbing 68 percent of the vote. His slogan was “you can bank on Banks.”
Romney lost the election because of two key reasons:
First, as he correctly noted in a secretly recorded talk with donors, 47 percent of the American population are dependent on government handouts, and they voted for whoever offers the best goodies.
"There are 47 percent who are with [Obama], who are dependent upon government, who believe they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you name it." – Mitt Romney
Ohio was a Key state in the election, and over a million people in that state have free government phones. One woman in Baltimore has 30 of them. Since they are commonly called Obama phones, it is a given that their vote would go to their benefactor.
Second, as our nation has drifted away from biblical values, it has become easier for the forces of darkness to influence the minds of people. God warned that those who did not follow his guidance would be given a "reprobate mind" in Romans 1:28.
The failure to understand the workings of the spiritual dimension is the reason why pundits like Rush Limbaugh, Dick Morse, Glenn Beck, and Karl Rove were totally blindsided by the election loss. Many of the people who voted for Obama have no idea why they find him so appealing. When you have a mind of Satan, a $1 trillion-a-year deficit, high unemployment, and a disastrous foreign policy don't matter.
The politicians we have chosen reflect who we are as a nation. TrimTabs' Charles Biderman gave one of the best summations of the election: "My guess is that Mr. Obama and his close buddies have no idea what they are doing, or else they would not be doing what they have been doing. The most dangerous are those people who think they are smarter than they are."
What has me the most concerned about a second term for Obama is what will happen when our nation's reckless spending catches up with us. If Romney was elected as president, I would have only given us a 10 percent chance of avoiding a crash. With Obama continuing on, we have nearly a 100 percent chance of collapsing into bankruptcy. Even the most conservative projections have Obama adding $6-8 trillion to the national debt.
I received numerous emails from people who were furious over Obama's reelection. Many of them were angry at God for allowing this to happen. I would caution anyone who is mad at the Creator. Obama may sit in the Oval Office because of evils such as greed, slothfulness, and idolatry, but God is the one who placed him there. Wicked nations are given equally corrupt rulers that cause their downfall. Since Obama was doing such a fine job, I see no reason the task would be given to a lesser skilled person.
There is already talk about who will be running for the 2016 race. I think it is premature to be planning for the next presidential election. We might not have a democratic system by the time we reach the next race. If there isn't mob rule, the job will likely be far less appealing.
The night of the election results, Terry and I agreed that we had shifted into a more rapid pace for end-time prophecy progression. We've passed a point where every Christian should take extra measures to separate themselves from the things this world. Because Bible prophecy warns that it is all downhill from here, we should expect the downward spiral to increase with each passing month.
To all my friends who are wondering if they can survive four more years of Obama. I would question whether we as Christians have that much time left on earth.
"For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words" (1 Thessalonians 4:16-18).
-- Todd

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Monday, November 5, 2012

I Leave You With This Thought: Are You Ready?

Nov 5, 2012
Hurricane Sandy: Yet Another "100-Year-Event"
from Rapture Ready 
Once again, the U.S. has been hit by a disaster being described as a record or 100-year event. Hurricane Sandy caused wide-scale destruction as it slammed into the East Coast of the U.S. It will take weeks to add up the cost of all the damage, but we already have enough raw data to make the storm one for the history books. Here is a rundown of seven historic milestones:
  • The NYC Subway System has suffered the worst disruption in its 108 years of operation.
  • New York City experienced the highest surge ever. A record high water level of 13.88 feet was set at the Battery Park point, breaking the oldest official record of 10.02 feet.
  • Sandy’s central pressure bottomed out at 940 millibars, setting a record for the lowest pressure of an Atlantic storm north of Cape Hatteras, NC.
  • According to the National Hurricane Center, Sandy is the largest land-falling Atlantic tropical cyclone, which had tropical storm force winds extending out to 600 miles.
  • The New York Stock Exchange closed for two days — the first time it's been closed for two consecutive days due to weather since 1888, when a blizzard struck the city.
  • The storm cut power to over 8 million customers. This is the largest storm-related outage in the history of Con Edison.
  • New York Harbor's surf also reached a record level when a buoy measured a 32.5-foot wave Monday. That wave was 6.5 feet taller than a 25-foot wave churned up by Hurricane Irene in 2011.
The current cost of damages from Sandy stands at $50 billion, which would rank behind Katrina ($108 billion in present-day dollars). Because most insurance policies don't cover flood damage, a large portion of the damage will not be covered.

The press has been trying to find a silver lining in the storm by promoting the idea that the economy will receive a shot in the arm by all the government spending and rebuilding that will take place in the coming months. There is nothing financially positive about a disaster that destroys property. Once we rebuild, we are only back to where we were before the hurricane. Thousands of small businesses will probably fail because of the economic stress that Sandy will place on them. The relief effort and lost taxes will eventually add another $100 billion to our ballooning nation debt.

Terry and I were recently talking about the possibility of a storm like Sandy occurring. We had noticed that the cycle for natural disasters was speeding up, and it looked about time for another birth pang. Jesus gave us the pattern for the last days when He told His disciples that warning signs would come like birth pains.

"As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. 'Tell us,' they said, 'when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?' Jesus answered: 'Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, "I am the Messiah," and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains'" (Matthew 24:3-8 NIV).

I firmly believe the birth pains factor is the reason we are seeing so many events with 100-year label. This year was already pegged as an historic year for drought and massive heat. Now we can add Hurricane Sandy to the mix.

Last year was marked by record tornadoes and flooding. There were so many tornadoes, we set a record for setting records in the variety of this type of disaster.

The year 2010 was a grab bag of natural disasters. That year was the deadliest in more than a generation. Earthquakes, heat waves, floods, volcanoes, super typhoons, blizzards, landslides, and droughts killed more than 260,000 people.

It is amazing how quickly we become accustomed to the increased frequency of disasters. Do you remember way, way back in March of 2011 when Japan suffered its worst recorded earthquake in its history? And do you remember way, way, way, way back in January of 2010 when 250,000 people were killed by another quake that struck Haiti? In many times in the past century, you could go a decade without seeing an earthquake of any great significance.

We are now at a point where disasters have become so frequent and massive is scale, the news life cycle of an single event is very brief. Tropical Storm Irene was a bad storm, but it has been wiped from everyone's memory by Hurricane Sandy.

God is clearly trying to get man's attention with all these calamities. The Lord is very patient, but He is no fool. Eventually, the warnings will end and the final judgment will begin. "Am I truly ready?" is the question everyone needs to ask themselves.

"And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring; Men's hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh" (Luke 21: 8-11, 25-28). --Todd

Saturday, November 3, 2012

PRIORITY SHIFT

I spent the past four days caring for a sick child. Caretaking  is probably the most exhausting job there is, especially when caring for someone you really love. Emotions get involved with the constant demand for bed sheet changes, food, water, tissues, help getting out of bed, pain meds, antibiotics, throat spray, cool washcloths, back rubs, changing the vaporizer water, taking covers off, putting them back on, nasal spray, vapor rub, checking the fever temp, praying, crying and running to the pharmacy for the next thing that might help her feel better.

This is what I've been doing since Wednesday. Between the work and the emotional drain, a person can become exhausted. The absolute worst thing about being a mom is watching your children suffer. Today I feel that my priorities have shifted drastically. My heart just isn't into blogging. So I'm taking a break. If it's possible for you to slow down and spend more time loving someone today, don't miss the chance.

Danelle


Friday, November 2, 2012

Urgent Message From Billy Graham

Urgent Message From Billy Graham

IS FLIRTING FUN OR FOOLISH?

Do you know that the Bible tells us how God feels about flirting? Yet many Christian girls take part in this believed-to-be harmless habit. They attend church on Sundays and claim to love the Lord, but in the company of boys, you see them tossing their hair around and being seductive with their bodies and their facial expressions. 

This behavior has become more and more accepted as overall morals decline. We talk about modesty in the way we dress, but are we being modest in our body language?
http://www.girlsgonewise.com/to-flirt-or-not-to-flirt/

Thursday, November 1, 2012

ALWAYS GOOD ENOUGH TO GOD

Many women who seem to have perfect lives really don't. From the outside looking in, we think that they have everything a woman could ask for, but if we catch these women being very honest, they confess to moments of insecurity, doubts, fears, and wondering if they are really any good at anything. They feel like everything they do is only half good enough. They doubt the direction that their lives have taken and they wonder if perhaps they should give up and start over.

All my life I have felt that my efforts were never as good as they could be. If I write one story in a week, I think that I should have written two. If I create a piece of artwork, I question why I haven't created more. If I accept a job or start a business, I wonder if I'm doing enough. Each day I question if I've accomplished what I'm capable of doing. And should I be doing more?

Where do these feelings come from? What causes us to doubt ourselves and feel like we should be more than we are? Is it the culture we live in that tells us we're not good enough? Do we forget that our identity is in Christ and fall into the cultural trap of comparing and competing? We see someone who is doing so much more and we put pressure on ourselves to step up our game.

Or maybe these feelings are just normal for every woman. Just like the days we live in, which are sometimes sunny and sometimes gloomy, we ourselves have ups and downs. Perhaps God made us that way so that when we feel depressed, inadequate, or fearful, we will draw closer to Him. 

Our culture tells us that if we're feeling down we should pop a pill, get a new job, have a lifestyle lift or maybe lose a little weight and everything will be fine. No one ever tells us that we need to go to God in prayer, praise and worship. No one ever suggests that it's a spiritual issue. 

The answer to life's problems can always be found when we fall on our knees. I've learned to use those gloomy feelings as an indication that it's time to check in with my Lord. Maybe I've been too busy to pray. The further I get from God, the darker my days become. Because God is my source of strength. He's my source of light, my source of joy, and my source of peace. 

Without Him, my mind will not rest and my fears will take over. 
Without Him I'm never good enough. But with Him I'm everything I need to be. Read the blog entry below written by someone who seems to have it all together but who doesn't always feel that way.
http://lysaterkeurst.com/2012/11/from-overpowered-to-empowered/?utm_source=feedblitz&utm_medium=FeedBlitzEmail&utm_campaign=0&utm_content=303165