“Triple T”

You know how so many of the Old Testament books
of the Bible seem to be filled with gloom & doom?
But there’s actually SO much more.

Here’s a quick example:

God was pointing out how so many of His people
had stopped tithing,
stopped obeying,
stopped caring about God altogether.

Then He says this…

Malachi 3:16 (another great “3:16” verse)
“Then those who feared the LORD spoke with each other,
and the LORD listened to what they said.
In his presence, a scroll of remembrance was written
to record the names of those who feared him
and always thought about the honor of his name.”

Did you notice that?

1. God was listening to the conversations between
people who served Him.
He was LISTENING! And they weren’t even praying!

2. They purposely kept a record of the people who
obeyed God and always THOUGHT about honoring
His name.

So I need to remember…

A. God is listening!
Stop complaining!

B. Think thoughts that honor Him!
He makes note of it.

C. Thinking about God will quickly make me thankful.

So… this little verse tucked away in the last book
of the Old Testament tells me to
THINK THANKFUL THOUGHTS!

Those are three “T’s” that I need to write on some sticky
notes and post them everywhere in my face,
and phone,
and mirror
and heart!

THINK THANKFUL THOUGHTS!

Shutting off Thanksgiving

Hurt.
So many reasons why that is a four letter word.
It creates deep pain when left unattended.
Or sometimes we pamper it until it’s overgrown,
Overgrown and morphed into a Beast of Bitterness.

Even in small doses hurt tempts us to close off,
To shut the doors in our hearts.
We’ve done it. Slammed it closed.
Shut off that tiny closet within.

Crazy though, that “shutting off” idea.
We’re convinced that it’s “only this one part.”
Just one teeny slice of our heart
But our hearts are not compartmentalized!

Closing off ONE part closes off ALL parts.
This explains why joy doesn’t seem joyful anymore,
Why fun leaves you bored,
Why happy expectation no longer lies ahead.

Slamming even the smallest internal door
Makes Thankfulness next to impossible.
Our eyes only focus when we’re starring inward,
all else appears blurred, wrong, incorrect.

The opposite is true.
Self-absorbsion warps sight & understanding,
It robs, and steals and destroys.
It shuts the door to true thanksgiving.

Repent. Lies do not own you,
You’ve chosen them.
Courageously open that “tiny heart-part”.
Open it all to JESUS!

He is the Way, TRUTH and Life!
He delights in forgiving and revealing,
and loving and healing!
He’s the joy & satisfaction we crave!

Now Thankfulness may grown
In a heart opened wide.
And a thankful heart is a happy heart!

Not sure how to say this…

For over a week I’ve written this post in my head, crumpled it up
and tossed it aside. I’m going crazy to say it… but how?
Nothing creative enough has risen to the surface of my brain.
Nothing deep enough as been able to form itself into words.
How do I say this?
I’ll just jump in and say, “OH MY WORD! THANK YOU!”

photo 4

A week & a half ago my husband spent the weekend as a
guest of Celebration Christian Center in Midland, Mi…
and our family was invited to joined him. From the time
we set down a suitcase they poured giant heaps of kindness all over us!

– welcome notes
– huge bag of snacks
– lovely hotel room
photo 3

– swimming pool (shaped like the state of Michigan!)
– yummy meals in restaurants
– spending money to “have fun with the family”
– trip to the frozen yogurt bar
photo

– amazing pizza (that Mom didn’t make, nor did it come in a box from a little
Roman guy for $5, already prepared & still warm)
– specific gifts for each of our children
(including our oldest daughter who stayed back in Detroit
to “hold down the fort” and also preach on Sunday morning!)
– a membership to one of the country’s most fantastic museums
– a serious chunk of money to purchase the sound system
that we’ve been borrowing & had to give back unless we
could buy it
– Even more money beyond what the sound system cost

photo 1

But that’s not really the whole story…
– So many people from this church actually pray for us, our family
and Courage Church!
– They asked specific questions about how they could continue
to pray
– They’d been on our website and cared about what they saw
– They believe in what we’re doing and pray for Detroit
– They prayed for us by name… and for all those who
minister/volunteer with us
– People walked up to us and blessed us with all sorts of
gifts and services… personally sacrificing!
(They include provision for a cavity-free mouth,
a vehicle, a winter coat and more!)

My heart just bubbles with joy as I recount their warm,
expressions of love, support and encouragement.
They believe in what we’re doing here in
the city!

Thank you, Jesus, for sending these wonderful people
into our lives! Thank you, CCC, for loving us in so
many ways!

building

A weekend that’s hard to put into words,
but forever in our hearts and memories!

AM and PM

From the moment I wake up I’m making a point to talk to Jesus about His great love…
even before I settle down to read His Word…
it’ll keep me my motives & attitudes on track
and cause me to be quicker to share His love with other people.

As I fall asleep I’m purposely praising Jesus for the specific ways He was faithful to me.
(Note: If it were possible for me to actually remember ALL His faithful ways
I’d be awake all night…
but I’m doing my best to gratefully list them until I drift off to sleep in His arms.)

Psalm 92:1-2

“It is good to give thanks to the Lord,
to sing praises to the Most High.
It is good to proclaim your unfailing love in the morning,
your faithfulness in the evening”

I Was a Turkey on Thanksgiving

My turkey tale from this year’s Thanksgiving Day:

Besides the traditional food that is made only once or twice a year at our house, I made several  dishes & desserts that I’ve made for years & years. But something happened. What really happened BEFORE all our friends arrived? My family experienced it with me… but here’s what only they know…

I failed. Flopped. Messed up so many things.

The wonderful sausage stuffing was NOT supposed to be so dry.

The lovely sweet potato dish was NOT supposed to be soup that later solidified & looked like a giant orange blob.

The chocolate cranberry bread budding – that no one even knew I’d made- was NOT supposed to be made from the extra bread I’d made for croutons… the GARLIC bread!! ick

The pumpkin pie was too done.

The apple crisp (that I’ve made numerous times every fall for the last 20 yrs) had rubbery apples and a crisp that wasn’t crispy. (It was fed to the garbage disposal the night before any guests arrived.)

And even the ice tea that I make EVERY stinkin day was TOO strong!

 

What in the world?  I can make some of these dishes with my eyes closed? What happened? I only know two things:

1. Our friends brought lots of yummy food & saved the day

2. My identity was perhaps a little too tied into all my “homemade this & homemade that”… and pride comes before a fall.

I was a little cranky that day because I’d let myself down. But the next morning in prayer I was convicted & asked Jesus to forgive me for being too proud & to forgive me for thinking about myself on a wonderful holiday that is about thankfulness… not selfishness.

This doesn’t change the fact that much of our menu items will continue to be homemade… it’s just healthier & cheaper. But it has changed my outlook. A little slice of humble pie was the best thing I ate this Thanksgiving.

 

 

Freedom isn’t Free

Freedom is Free – someone did and is paying for it.

AnySoldier.com connects you with info on how send

small “care packages” to actual service people in our armed services!

I’m so excited to have found this site thanks to “Or So She Says…”

This week my kids & I will prayerfully select an email from the many on this site

from actual soldiers and then fill a box with the supplies they’ve requested.

We want to share our gratitude and also let them know of Jesus love!

Wanna join me in doing this?

Maybe you have another source which offers similar opportunities… would

you share it with us, please?

(Now, if only we can get all those extreme couponers to stop hoarding

& ship some of their loot to the soldiers, too… don’t even get me started on that! )

I stopped apologizing

Years ago I decided to stop apoloizing… for the condition of my house, that is.

I was a young Mom at the time & went to the home of a friend who had a

gorgeous house that was “magazine” perfect. But throughout out time together

she continually interjected apologies for this and “sorry about that” and fusssed

around putting “junk” away.

Hmm, not only was her house nicer than most people I knew, but her “junk”

would’ve put most of my nicer things to shame.   And if she thought her

beautiful home was “a mess” then she better not EVER come to my house.

sigh

That was it. I decided on that day that I would NOT do this to anyone else.

My house is the best I can do with the time & resources God’s given us.

People will always be MORE important than “stuff”  and my house serves

our needs… we don’t serve it.

So, when I’m tempted to relapse and start apologizing I remind myself that:

1. My house is a gift (& I totally LOVE it, by the way)

2. It serves me, not vise versa

3. People are my priority

4. Vain “apologies” are really selfish complaints

5.  I don’t ever want to make someone feel uncomfortable

6. A gracious hostess is far more noticeable than a few dusty corners

Right?

 

Not the Norm “Thankful For” List!

Besides my JESUS, my MAN, My CHILDREN,  FAMILY, 

Church Family, Friends, House, etc,
Here’s a list of some of the “little” things that add up to 
 BIG things in my life… and I’m thankful for them, too!!!
In Random order...
– Giant WINDOWS in my house
– Beautiful views of cool buildings out my window
– Historical old houses all around us
– A giant pot to make a huge batch of chili for a crowd
– That my family IS a crowd
– Computers & wireless Internet
– Digital cameras
– Being able to print out postage 
   at home from the USPS
– Delivery trucks that bring 
   goodies from Amazon
– Huge, blue Ikea bags that serve us 
   in countless ways
– Skype… even thought I forget to use it most of the time
– Text Messaging- especially now that most of my closest friends
  FINALLY have it!
– The color RED… and of course PURPLE!
– Storm windows that allow me to continue to love my old 
historic windows
– Fabric Softener balls, cuz I could 
never add the softener at the
right time without it!
– Those bumpy dryer balls
that make the clothes dry sooner
– A basement that’s not a complete
freezer
– An actual freezer in the corner of my basement that helps me
use our money & food wisely
– Toilet Paper! (Hey, my Dad use to tell stories of corn cobs &
old magazine pages.)  ick
– Christmas Music
– A loud laugh (well, most of the time I’m thankful for that,
except for the times that something is totally funny & I’m
NOT suppose to be laughing. opps!)

The funny little “mouth piece” I wear to bed that keeps
my TMJ headaches in check
–  A working fireplace… and friends that delivered firewood!
(I’m so excited to use it!)
– Fuzzy slippers (that happen to match Mariah’s Snuggie. 
She better now try to “adopt” them while she’s home!)
– YOU!  For reading my blog, sharing in my life and being
a sounding board for the thoughts that room around in my
brain!  *
HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!
HUGS!
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