"I've had a thought in my mind all week, and this blog sparked it again. I don't know if it is just for me or others but it is simply this. At what point do we start to enjoy the life we have?Is it when the kids are grown? When we attain a certain financial goal? When spring arrives ?A myriad of different points in an uncertain future ? The moment is now,in 45 minutes, in an hour ,later tonight that is a future time.Enjoy right here right now. Be thankful,rejoice in life right now!
In sports and as a firefighter we trained in the present how we were going to respond in the future.How can we enjoy life later if we don't enjoy it now? Train yourself to enjoy life now, then you will be in the habit for the future when that time comes that you set as when you were going to relax and enjoy life.
Take a look around, anybody can be uptight,stressed and not enjoying life. Aspire to break from the crowd and really enjoy life!I challenge everybody to practice a random act of kindness this week. on Celebrate Jesus by Enjoying Each Day"
November 27, 2011
Come... It's Imperative!
The Elijah List & Breaking Christian News
Dancing with the Flame of the Lord Ministries
Tiffany Ann Lewis' Itinerary:
Girls of Grace
The Bridge Christian Church
2739 Hamburg Street
Schenectady, NY 12303
As I mosey along on these mental back road journeys, warm patches of memories dot the path like dapples of sunshine shining through the trees. Often they hit with an unexpected intensity that surprises me. It is as if they have been waiting, longing to burst free from the prison of my memory, to be shared.
I almost feel as if I should begin with “Once upon a time…” so I willJ Once upon a time, there was a little girl. This little girl had a beautiful, young aunt, and this beautiful, young aunt had a tall, dark, and handsome boyfriend. This tall, dark, and handsome young man would come home from college with the aunt for family visits. Oh how the little girl loved these visits! She loved her aunt dearly, but the little girl secretly anticipated the coming of the tall, dark boyfriend most.
However, it wasn’t the young man’s looks that the little girl admired. It was his words. The young man affirmed the little girl with his words. It was he who had declared that her middle name of Jean wasn’t Jean but June Bug. From then on, she was so and so June Bug. And it was he who would seem excited to hear her show off her newest skill, reading. A young man, fresh out of college, care about his girlfriend’s niece reading? But he did, or at least faked it really well. The little girl believed it pleased him; so for his approval she pressed on. A first grader spell “encyclopedia or gymnasium”? With her future uncle’s help the little girl did. She couldn’t wait for the next holiday to show him!
The years went on, the shy little girl grew up not knowing how to express her thanks. How does someone say thank you for being called June Bug without seeming weird and silly? How does someone afraid to talk, to say the wrong thing, say anything? They don’t, and the years go by, silently.
Many years have gone silently by. The little girl is a woman grown with little girls of her own. Some of her own little girls are now almost grown too. They, like their mother, love the rare treat a visit with the uncle provides. How the entire family adores him! His affirming, sometimes loud, attention warms their hearts. What an amazing gift this man has for noticing and loving children, for breaking through shy reserve and living open and full! How the grown little girl, her husband, and children thank God for an aunt’s boyfriend turned uncle. Only God could have given such a gift of love!
Memories, rich and full wash over like a flood as I journey through thankfulness. How is it I have kept them prisoner so long? They are begging to be released, to be shared, shouted loud. An official day titled Thanksgiving is now yesterday, but thankfulness is a journey happening still. Thank you God, for the uncle who made me a June Bug. Please show him Your love and bless Him real big, for me.
Lies abound concerning God, who He is, His treatment of mankind, how to get to Him, on the list goes. No matter how many religious opinions and theories there are, the truth is still the truth. There is only ONE way to get to the Father and that is through His Son Jesus Christ. The Bible is unquestionably clear on this point. Perhaps there are other matters of doctrine and belief that are up for discussion, but this issue is NOT debatable. God is QUITE clear. Jesus Himself said that no man comes to the Father except through Him. Salvation is through Christ and Christ alone.
In a few weeks, it will be Christmas. Christmas is when believers celebrate the birth of Jesus, God with us, coming to earth. It's when God's loving plan of redemption manifested in the flesh. As with most other topics in Christianity, debates concerning Jesus, His arrival, and every other part of His life abound. Frankly, there isn't enough time or space in this one blog post to go into all of the various points of view. With such limited space and time, we will use the only 100% accurate source, the Bible. The Bible clearly tells everything. It's all in there, spelled out for any and every one to read for themselves. Whether or not a person does so is his/her free choice. I've read it, and I believe it, every word. I made my choice. No one made it for me.
There have been opportunities for me to doubt, to wonder, to question, and I have. I have been angry, hurt, confused, bewildered, and desperate. Never has God failed me. Never has He hurt me. Never has He ever sent anything harmful to me. Never. These things came about through poor or ignorant choices made by myself or others around me. Often they were simply the result of living in a sinful world. Hey, when mud’s flying, even clean people get dirty. God had nothing to do with any of it. Well, nothing except the saving, healing, and delivering me part.
I am forty years old, I have been learning of God for most, if not all, of those 40 years. At approx. nine years of age, I made a public confession of faith in Jesus Christ. I made my choice. In the 31 years that have followed this decision to become a follower of Jesus, I have learned many, many things about God, about who He is and who He is not. I have chosen to do and say many, many things that I regret. Choosing to believe in and follow Christ is NOT one of those things. NEVER have I EVER regretted this decision. It is the singularly BEST choice I have EVER made. It has not been the easiest decision, but it is decidedly the best. My prayer this Christmas season is that each and every person who reads this article has read the Bible, studied it, and made their choice.
Not only have I read the Word of God, the Bible. I have also experienced unexplainable, supernatural healing, provision, and deliverance from God. Among our family pictures are snapshots of cupboards, cabinets, and freezers filled to overflowing with food. At the time, our bank account was lower than low. No money with full cupboards? How does that happen? God impressing other people to bless us. That’s how. A mother of 15 children bringing groceries to a small family of four children. That doesn’t make worldly sense; it was God’s doing. Sales , super, great, amazing, crazy ridiculous prices on exactly the items needed for Christmas gifts, God arranged that too. No one else could have known. We hadn’t told ANYONE. Only God knew what we needed; only He could have provided so perfectly. Clothing, the absolute, most perfect Christmas tree, fruit, broccoli, a sofa, larger dining table, beds, specific desires as well as needs found their way into our lives. Time after time, year after year, every need has been met - completely.
“Only God” could be our family’s theme song. The unexplainable goes far beyond material provisions. It is with thankful awe I can testify that not one of our six children has ever had a broken bone, the number of actual trips to the doctor is well under 20 - not including prenatal or well-baby care, and that ailments considered common in young children, such as ear infection, have only been experienced by one of our six children. Yes, the common cold and stomach upsets do visit our home occasionally, but not regularly. When we take quality vitamin/mineral supplements, it is very rare for us to be sick at all. I give God the praise and thanks for bringing the truth concerning vitamins and minerals into our home as well. This information on alternative medical and preventative care has brought many blessings of health to us.
The blessings are too numerous to count. It isn’t anything that we have earned. It is the mercy and grace of a loving, Heavenly Father. It’s according to His mercy He saved us. All of these testimonies are part of the salvation covenant Jesus bought and paid for. Jesus’ death on the cross is about SO much more than avoiding hell and going to heaven. God provided for our every need, every single one. This year, right now, during Christmas would be the perfect time to find a Bible, grab some paper, a pen, and start reading to find out who God is - for real. The truth is right there in the Bible waiting to be found. It isn’t hiding. All we have to do is read and learn for ourselves. God the Holy Spirit teaches all who come to learn. After over 31 years of reading this book, I still learn something new every time. Every time I read, I learn another part of God and who He is, every time. The more I learn, the more I realize how much more I have yet to discover. Getting to know Him, Emmanuel, God with me, is a lifelong pursuit which I have chosen to commit to. Not because of what He has done, but because of who He is.
While reading a word today, a portion of the word reached out and jumped out at me. These words said exactly what I would have said had I been able to verbalize what God the Holy Spirit has been teaching me lately. Not only do these words confirm what God has been speaking to my heart, they are powerful. They contain keys to unlock doors through which we will enter into this next, new season in following Christ.
Sometimes I would like to ask God, why He allows poverty, famine and injustice in the world, when He could do something about it… but I'm afraid He might ask me the same question.
Here is a letter from a dear friend. She sent in the letter last year and for some unknown reason it didn't post when scheduled. My sincerest apologies, Kim. Kim shares lovely, heartfelt memories that are begging to be shared.
I think this is wonderful how you are using your blog for Christmas. Thanksgiving to me just sets our hearts up for Christmas. I am almost all decorated, waiting on the tree(that is the guys family fun to go cut it down), then I will be complete.
I lost my Grandma on Monday, it has been harder than I thought to deal with this. I was not ready for her leaving us. Christmas was such a special time with her. She is the one we grew up next to and hung out with all the time. Grandma was our "fun mom". At Christmas she would get out her big JC Penneys catalog, a big tablet and say write down your list, starting with 1 as your most wanted. So off we went, spending the next 2-3 days getting our lists finalized. This went on till we graduated high school. As a young kid that is all I thought Christmas was, I really didn't understand it was about Jesus. So you can imagine how much we looked forward to Christmas every year. Grandma spoiled us and got us at least our top 4-5 things on that list, which really was everything we wanted. Little did I know that mom and grandma had an agreement. Mom/dad always got us clothes or things that was needed, but Grandma was the one that got us the toys. My other grandparents (that lived in Gering, but now NP) used to just get us a little trinket. Christmas was a huge deal to Grandma. It we her time of the year to really spoil us. Growing up in a big family she had very little, so she wanted to spoil us because she could:) There are tons things to say about Grandma, but Christmas was the best. She would laugh at us changing our lists around, pouring over the book, fighting over whos turn it was to look. she even got 2 so we wouldn't fight. We would try to wrangle out of our chores cause we just wanted to stay in the house, eat cookies and make our list. She would have to come back in and say put the catalog away and get out here. Sometimes even threaten to not get the toys. She would store all the stuff in her back bedroom after she bought things. She instilled in us at a very early age that if we went back into the bed room to peek, the toys would go back. The look in her eye told us that she meant business, so we never ever peeked! To this day I am very good at not peeking because of her. Christmas was the one holiday that Grandma decorated for. She would put up this awful, nasty, old (at least 30yrs) plastic tree on her buffet in the corner. It was an ugly tree, but by the time she got done with it, it was cute. There were some very weird lights that came on it. So with your reminder of Christmas trees, I will have to go look for it when I get down there tomarrow. Maybe I will even set it up as a reminder of her. She will be so missed this year.
I hope I might have access to a computer to still look at your blog, but I have not/will not be participating due to this family thing. love your blog don't get frustrated if us silly people don't participate, keep blogging we are doing it in our mind if not on paper to you. love ya! kim
So many of us need beautification in our lives. Not only our bodies but our homes, and outdoor spaces as well. Beauty around us calls to that which God has divinely placed in us and draws it out. One of the least expensive and easiest ways to bring beauty to our surroundings is through a process known as simplification.
Simplying our lives is a process similar to peeling an onion. It happens one layer at a time. Upon beginning, we often discover that there are varying layers of "clutter" in our lives. The deeper we allow our lives to be pentrated by simplification, the deeper true living becomes. Bit by bit treasures of real value shine through. Often, these riches are hiding in the most unexpected places.
We at A Mother's Rewards and Abundance began simplifying many years ago, long before A Mother's Rewards, Living Large on Less or Abundance were formed. It is an ongoing decision that has somehow morphed into an active lifestyle. After over two years of sharing and caring here on the blog, another layer of our onion is being peeled away. A Mother's Rewards and Abundance blogs will no longer be posted to. The blogs will remain open, and all previously posted articles will remain accessible. However, as far as we currently know, no new postings will be published.
Our sincerest and most heartfelt appreciation goes out to each and every reader. We can't thank you enough for all of the kindness and support you have bestowed upon us. It has been an honor to blog; an honor we don't take lightly. That people would spend precious moments of their days visiting us here at first A Mother's Rewards, then Living Large on Less and later Abundance, has been a precious gift to us; one we don't take for granted. Thank You, dear friends. You have given us of your time, and we offer our thanks to you. As these, our final words come to you, know that you are being squeezed tight in a hug of loving thanks. It has been so much fun visiting with you. Now, we take our leave. " 'Til We Meet Again" Blessed Mama and Not of This World
Whew! Up for only an hour and already the wearying of daily challenges has begun. Just a note to parents of children under 11, if you think the noise of small children is tiring, you should have teenagers. Make that self-assured teens who tend to think they are responsible to line others out and whoa! what a day it has been already this morning.
What is a parent to do in times like this? Go to her daddy, her Heavenly Abba Father and bring her children with her. We are all real people doing real life, hopefully together. Each of us are in need of spending time at the feet of our sweet and precious Lord Jesus. We have an Almighty God who is worthy of our praise and adoration, and only He knows the answer to the challenges each day contains. He is the answer.
While we here are gathering together to focus on the Father, what about you? Has it seemed like a lifetime already this morning? Have the past few years seemed like an eternity of trouble and heartbreak? Please join us, right where you are, at the feet of the Loving, Heavenly Father who loves and cares for each one us. He loves us so.
Thank you to everyone who left a comment, and to those who stopped by to visit. It is much more fun when everyone joins in. Also, please don't be shy; feel free to leave a comment. Every comment increases the fun. Now, here are the answers everyone has been waiting for:
1. More money is printed for Monopoly than for the U.S. treasury.
2. One Thousand is the the first number using the letter "a".
3. Coca-Cola was originally green.
4. Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of their birth place.
5. The state with the highest percentage of people who walk to work is Alaska.
6. 28 percent of Africa is wilderness.
7. 38 percent of North America is wilderness.
8. The cost of raising a medium-size dog to the age of eleven is $16,400.
9. The average number of people airborne over the U.S. in any given hour is 61,000.
10. Intelligent people have more zinc and copper in their hair.
11. The first novel ever written on a typewriter was Tom Sawyer.
12. San Francisco cable car is the only mobile national monument.
13. Bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers, and laser printers were all invented by women.
14. The only food that doesn't spoil is honey.
Did any of the answers surprise you? Some of them did me too. More than anything, I hope everyone had fun. We all need a little change of pace once in a while to keep us from getting stale.
Now that our week of trivia is over, I don't know what we will be doing here at A Mother's Rewards. This is the first time in a long time that there aren't any posts pre-scheduled for the next week. There are some thoughts roaming around inside of me that might just end up on here sometime though. Beware.
So, until our next get together, enjoy the greatest resource on earth, each other. The weeks preceding Thanksgiving are also a marvelous opportunity to refocus our thoughts and attitudes towards thankfulness. Together let's get out of ourselves and bless somebody. Come on! It'll be fun! Even more than the trivia questions. Love to you all, Blessed Mama.
4. Half of all Americans live within 50 miles of what?
5. The state with the highest percentage of people to walk to work?
6. The percentage of Africa that is wilderness?
7. The percentage of North America that is wilderness?
8. The cost of raising a medium-sized dog to the age of eleven?
9. The average number of people airborne over the U.S. at any given hour?
10. Intelligent people have more what in their hair?
11. The first novel ever written on a typewriter?
12. The only mobile national monument?
13. What do bulletproof vests, fire escapes, windshield wipers, and laser printers have in common?
14. What is the most popular boat name?
15. What is the only food that doesn't spoil?
There they are! Have you clicked the comment button and started answering yet? Thank you for joining in the fun. A Mother's Rewards was ready for something a little different. Basically, we were looking for an excuse to host a giveaway when these questions presented themselves and thought, why not? Hosting a trivia game via blogging wasn't quite the same as hanging out in our pjs and munching popcorn together, but hey, it was still fun. Thanks for coming over! We had a great time! Don't forget to come again! Love to you all.
Oh yes, if you sent in comments with the answers, remember to include a mailing address. We will need one to send the gift basket to. Thank you!
Here's question #3:
3. Coca-Cola was originally what color?
2. If you would spell out numbers, how far would you have to go until you would find the letter "A"?
Answer can be left in comment, not email, to be entered in giveaway.
1. For what is more money printed for than the U.S. Treasury?
Remember: Leave answer in comment (not email) to receive credit towards giveaway.