Thursday, October 22, 2009

Toddler Talk: Look at that Reni!

While we are driving down the road, Eli spots something through the window on Serenity's side of the car. He wants to share his discovery with his sister.

Eli points toward the window

"Wow... look at that Reni!"

Serenity continues to stare the other way

"I AM Reni silly!"

"No... Look at THAT... Reni!"

"I SAID I AM Reni!"

Eli becomes frustrated and points more vigorously

"NO! Just Look at THAT...Reni!"

"ELI! I TOAD YOU A HUNDRED TIMES... I AM RENI! I CAN'T LOOKED AT MYSELF! (rolls her eyes and shakes her head) DUH!"


Monday, October 19, 2009

Seasons of change

My favorite time of the year is the fall. I love all the beautiful colors and the feel of change. I love to step outside and smell the brisk cold air. It's the smell of winter coming. It always fills me with excitement, an anticipation of something great to come.

I laugh at that statement, for I am suddenly reminded of my Dad's comment on the subject. He actually hates this time of year. He views it as a time for everything withering away and dying, only to be replaced by a bitter cold that he has to work out in. I can plainly see his point. For as much as I love the snow, I wouldn't want to work 10 or 12 hours a day wading through it.

However, I've never looked at it in that manner. I don't see death. I see change. Life is full of changes and with every turn of event we must weather a bitter cold. Just like every trial we endure, the cold winter draws us closer to our loved ones. We must huddle together to keep warm. We must depend on another to help get us through.

Fall is definitely my favorite time of the year. It's the time when I feel the the most joy. Which in itself is very ironic considering, I can link nearly every painful experience in my life to the autumn months. Three years ago we spent most of the fall in the hospital with Serenity, watching her cling to life. Seven years ago, Tommy and I, just barely escaped divorce. Twenty-four years ago, on October 14th, was by far the hardest to overcome. My oldest brother, was tragically killed in a car accident.

At the time, he was my biggest hero. He was always protecting me from the wrath of my less older brothers. :) Even though there were twelve years difference in our ages, we were very close. He always made time for me. He allowed me a tag along whenever I asked. As a matter of fact, he loved to show me off to his friends. He made me feel so very special. I found comfort and security just by being around him. So often I would awaken in the middle of the night frightened and would hurry off to his room. He never became frustrated by my intrusion. He would simply just pull back the covers and invite me to stay. So many nights I slept safely snuggled in his arms. At the age of only six, it rocked my world when I lost my brother.

Yet despite all of these attempts by Satan to steal my joy, this is STILL my favorite time of the year! I realize that we can view these occurrences two ways. I can view them the way I wrote them above or I can say, Three years ago God healed our daughter, Seven years ago God renewed and strengthened the love in my marriage, Twenty-four years ago my brother was embraced in the arms of our Lord and Savior. Today, he is resting safely snuggled within the arms of THE greatest hero.

Satan's main goal is to steal our joy in every aspect of our lives. For once that joy is gone, he has room to bring even more destruction. However, when we focus our eyes on Jesus, when we cling to the promises His blood provides, we always have VICTORY! All satan can do is try. He can't accomplish anything unless we allow him.

Autumn is the time of year set aside for God's creations to prepare themselves for the bitter winter to come. In order to prepare, a change must first take place. Although change can sometimes be scary, it can also be exciting when we realize that God is always in control. Whatever cold the winter may bring, the warm sun always returns in the spring. The flowers and trees that seem to wither in preparation, always bounce back with more life and beauty, stronger than before.

So when I step outside and inhale the scent of the oncoming winter months, I'm overwhelmed with anticipation. Excitement fills me as I step out and embrace change.
"To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant and a time to harvest; A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down and a time to build up; A time to weep, and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance; a time to cast away and a time to gather; a time to embrace and a time to pull away; a time to get and a time to lose; a time to keep and a time to give away; a time to rend, and time to sew, a time to keep silent and a time to speak; A time to love and a time to hate; a time of war and a time of peace" Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

There is a season for everything. The world is constantly changing and renewing. This is what we call life. So whatever the change may bring in preparation for the future, know that,

"He hath made everything beautiful in HIS time." Ecclesiastes 3:11a

Love in Christ,

Friday, October 16, 2009

Even Stars have their Bad Days...

Here is just a little reminder that even stars have their bad days. Take Hannah Montana for instance. In the spotlight she looks nearly perfect. Skin all glistening with glitter, makeup precisely applied, not one hair outta place. But... she's not always perfect... no sometimes even Hannah Montana has a bad hair day. Especially after living a year at our house....

Yep... she's not so perfect now. Makes me feel a little better knowing I'm not the only one who has trouble looking nice in this house... not even a Superstar can take the toll of five young kids! :)

However, Hannah Montana is a bit more upset then usual. Today, She would like me to make a special announcement on her behalf.

Attention ALL Children's Church Workers!

It is never a GOOD idea to give Serenity bubble gum and even more so... it is always a REALLY BAD idea to give Serenity enough bubble gum to share with the rest of her siblings!

Poor Hannah Montana... She has just been distraught about it for days....

So PLEASE NO bubble gum for Serenity.
You never know whose life might be affected by it!
Thank you for your cooperation! :)

Love in Christ,

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Storytime with Serenity

Serenity sat in the kitchen watching me cook and suddenly decided it was story time.

"Onced upon dat time, there was a little girl named My Mommy! Her had a little baby girl named Reni Rosed. Her was putted in da hospital cause her had a broked heart... BUT den Jesus fixed it... YAY Jesus! Tank you Jesus, Praise da Lord! Jesus loves us!
"Jesus love me... Jesus love me... this I owe."
See He is
(flexes muscles) STRONG! But Jesus died on dat cross (turns up bottom lip and looks down) They put a sharp knife (or nail) in his hand and made the blood comed out. He died cause he loves us..."Jesus love me.. Jesus love me.. this I owe. Cause this song tells me so"
(Her little mind starts to wander) Umm...Sometimes the rain wakes me up at night.
It rains REAL hard and the sky goes BOOM! And Daddy snores REAL hard like this...
(makes snorting noises with her nose) Den Mommy say.. "Waked UP Daddy Your snoring!"
(Her mind starts to wander again) Jesus died on dat cross and fixed my broked heart. Umm...My Daddy snores REAL loud. Den there was umm... umm... ummm... (starts to hold herself and sway left to right) Den...umm.. there was a big... umm...(starts to bounce up and down) I GOTS to goed peed! (takes off running toward the bathroom and yells over her shoulder)
De End!

Isn't it amazing how a toddler's mind works! :)

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Set apart and Pushed aside

For the past few months, I have noticed an increasing division between the worldly and God's devoted children. I feel as if I'm being set apart... as well as pushed aside. God is blessing my family tremendously. I feel protected and sheltered within His wings but at the same time I feel rejected by those I've loved and been loved by my entire life.

There is a joy and a forever glow surrounding me, yet there are those who suddenly shun me. At first I was quick to blame myself. I evaluated my behavior. Did I say or do something? Could I do more or less? Then I began to set back and notice the actions of others. I can plainly see other Christians going through the same rejection. I've witnessed those with a heart full of God's love being treated like dirt... for NO apparent reason. I have seen luke warm Christians pick apart the lives of those who are clearly on fire for God. I've heard blanant lies being told without even an ounce of justifiable cause.

On a more positive note, I can also see the difference in God's blessings. I see faithful Christians being blessed in the midst of a recession. I see a protection against viruses in the midst of a declared epidemic. It is as if there is an invisible shield surrounding the faithful. God is definitely taking care of those who remain loyal to trust Him!

Lately I feel as if I'm living Psalms 91 "A thousand may fall at your side, And ten thousand at your right hand; But it shall not come near you."... "No evil shall befall you,Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling; For He shall give His angels charge over you,To keep you in all your ways."

Yet...I also feel as if I'm living out John 15:19-21
“If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own. Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you. If they kept My word, they will keep yours also. But all these things they will do to you for My name’s sake, because they do not know Him who sent Me.

God is setting apart His Children, because He wants everyone to see His glory. He's crying out to a lost and dying world... Come to me and I will shelter you! I AM your Hope! I AM your salvation! Just as a parent tries to reward the obedient and use tough love to shake the rebellious. Our Heavenly Father is trying to make a point. He wants the world to see the harsh reality of serving the world vs the benefits of serving an awesome savior.

Now there has always been a line drawn between the world and God's kingdom. God has always blessed His people and Christians have always been persecuted. But the fact that there is a sudden increase in this division, the fact that it is suddenly magnified, tells me one thing.... OUR TIME IS ALMOST UP!

There is a major spiritual warfare going on! Just as Ephesians 6:12 says...
"For we wrestle NOT against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age..."

We are in the middle of a spiritual battle.... a spiritual awakening. The tides have suddenly shifted because God is fed up with our rebellion, He is fed up with luke warm Christians. He's fed up with our wishy washy behavior. He's declaring.... You will either get in or be left behind. God is raising up His faithful followers and He is preparing them for a mighty outpouring of His glory. He is preparing them for one last and final revival. This is His desperate call for the world He loves!

The enemy is also fighting! He knows what is coming. He is fighting God's people with everything he has. He is desperately trying to discredit God's chosen. He wants to destroy God's faithful, but he can't penetrate God's shield of protection without our allowance. So he's coming in through the backdoor... using everyone who will allow him access. He's pulling families apart. His destroying life long relationships. He's bring in strife Because James 3:16 tells us... "For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and EVERY evil work." As long as there is strife... he is able to hit God's people with EVERY evil devise he has. As long as there is confusion he can plant his seeds of doubt.... as long as there is doubt.... there is NO faith... Without faith there is NO spiritual blessings.

We MUST stay prayed up. We MUST stay within God's presence. We MUST remain with a pure heart, sensitive to God's touch. WE MUST NOT ALLOW THE ENEMY TO STEAL GOD'S BLESSINGS! We must stand firm, declaring the truth, even though.... NO... ESPECIALLY WHEN we are persecuted!

There is a spiritual battle going on and the end is drawing nigh. Now we all know how this book ends! We all know who wins the war of good and evil!!
So It's time to decide...
Whose side will you be fighting on?
Will you shout Victory OR cry in agony?
Will you be set apart & pushed aside OR lost in the shuffle?

The choice belongs to us... I pray for God's mercy and grace!

Love In Christ,

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

What Faith Can Do... WILL DO!

Eli and Reni watched this video together and Eli asked.. "Reni, why are you in da hospital?" Reni answered... "Cause my heart was broken, but then Jesus fixed it."

I'm sooo thankful for a Savior who mends broken hearts!

Don't forget to pause our media player located at the bottom of the page before you hit play!

You can find this video on youtube...

This is my first blog hop. When I found out the theme for this week was "Anything that feels good..." including encouraging or inspirational. I just had to include Serenity's video, Even though it's been posted for a week. I wanted to share "What faith WILL do" with the blog hopping community. Sorry folks a new post is coming soon! :)
MckLinky Blog Hop