Comment Turned Post

This comment was posted to an article from last year. While reading through past comments, I noticed it and thought this man should write more! Christmas time seemed an ideal time to reshare these wise words.Thank You for sharing this comment. (You know who you are.) Wouldn't the rest of you enjoy hearing more thoughts from this commenter? If you would, feel free to leave a comment letting it be known.

"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"


Couldn't Be More Perfect

Here I am reading through my emails when all of a sudden, I'm reading about coming to Christ. Whoa! These words couldn't have spoken any closer to my heart! Let's continue our earlier conversations by reading this word from
Tiffany Ann Lewis of Dancing with the Flame of the Lord ministries.

November 27, 2011
Tiffany Ann Lewis:

Come... It's Imperative!
From the desk of Steve Shultz:
Are you carrying any heavy burdens? Well, we know what we are to do with those... It's been an intense season full of warfare, indeed. BUT give those burdens away to the ONE who took them for you as Tiffany Ann Lewis shares here.
Please remember us in your giving this year. We are a FOR-PROFIT organization, therefore, your contribution will NOT be tax-deductible. What you are doing is  helping us take the prophetic word around the world.  Simply go to: https://www.elijahlist.com/donations/donation.php and make a quick and easy donation today.
Steve Shultz, Founder and Publisher
The Elijah List & Breaking Christian News
Tiffany Ann Lewis:
Come... It's Imperative!
"Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30 KJV
Hidden, yet revealed, within this Scripture  there is a powerful revelation and an eternal invitation from the Lord Yeshua/Jesus. It has little to do with the submission of the servant, but rather reveals the heart of worship. Let's take a look at these incredible words from our Master and learn from Him.
In the Lord's invitation, "Come unto Me...," there is an intensity that is lost in the translation. The Greek word for "come" is deute (Strong's #1205) and it's in an imperative mood which is like a command in that it is absolutely necessary. Much like when a parent tells a child that it's imperative they don't touch the pretty glowing orange circle on the stove. That's the intensity the Lord is speaking to us with in this passage of Scripture. His intensity hinges on desperation – the kind of desperation that would drive the King of glory to a cross.
Using the imagery of an ox, our Lord and Master says, "Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me." A yoke is an emblem of oppression, and labor. It is a wooden bar or frame that joins two animals like oxen together so that they can pull a wagon or plow as their master leads. Here, Jesus is using it figuratively of the restrictions that a teacher or rabbi would place on His followers through the Mosaic Law.
Today we can rejoice that the requirements of the law were wiped out and nailed to the Cross and that we are redeemed by the Blood of Jesus Christ. Yet, we can also rejoice because a yoke also speaks of any burden, any weight, not just that of the law.
I don't know about you, but I am in a severe season right now and have a list of burdens that I am praying about 24/7. We have this eternal invitation to come unto Jesus and cast our cares upon Him. He cares for us and wants to strengthen us so that we are able to endure the crisis and emerge victorious.
This is one of the reasons why it is imperative that we not only take His yoke upon ourselves but that we learn from Him, too. The Hebrew word for learn is lamed, which is made up of the letters: lamed, mem, dalet. I am using the Hebrew word instead of the Greek one because every Hebrew letter has a pictograph. Therefore, we can look at the ancient pictographs and see a spiritual picture of the word. Looking at God's letters of light, we see that to learn (lamed) from Jesus is to be guided/prodded by the Shepherd's cattle prod (lamed) – through the chaos/mayhem (mem) of life – to a door (dalet), a porthole if you will, to the destination that He is leading and guiding us to.
Meek and Lowly in Heart
Let's walk through the door that Christ has led us to in this particular passage and learn about our Master's meekness.  He was meek and lowly in heart, tapeinos te kardia.  The heart speaks of the center of our being.  It speaks of our physical, spiritual, emotional, and intellectual being.  Our heart holds our thoughts, passions, desires, affections, and even our purposes tenderly at its core.  Thus at the core of who Jesus is, He is meek and lowly.
Notice, we have two expressions here: meek and lowly. Together they reveal that Jesus was completely dependent and completely devoted to His Father. I believe this gave His weak human flesh supernatural strength throughout His life and led Him all the way to the Cross. Let me explain.
We are in full fall splendor here in upstate New York. The trees are sporting their glorious colors. My garden is still in bloom with the mums smiling at guests as they come to the house. So picture perfect has this fall been that even my roses are still in bloom. However,  we got a surprise snow storm and I woke up recently to creation bowing under the weight of the snow.
Bowing down in worship under the weight of God's glory.
What a beautiful word picture of what it means to be "lowly at heart." The Greek word for "lowly" used here is tapeinos (Strong's #5011). Tapeinos represents that which is low (lowly) and humble. It literally means not rising far from the ground. Interestingly, the worshiper of God is also seen as bowing down in Psalm 95:6, "Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD our Maker."
Beloved, in terms of nature, the trees and flowers had no choice but to bow down under the weight of the snow. Spiritually speaking, we have a choice. God's glory, which in Hebrew is kavod, is described as a type of spiritual heaviness or weightiness. Scripture reveals that we have beheld the glory, the splendor, the majesty of God in the face of His Son, Jesus Christ (see John 1:14). I don't know about you, but the reality that He would willingly go to the Cross and suffer shame and pain just for me is a wonderful weight of love, like a yoke, that when it is upon me I simply cannot stand.
Please don't get me wrong, I'm not saying that my critical circumstances suddenly disappear. Instead, as I consider the width, length, depth and height of His love, my perspective changes and I am filled with hope and wonder. A supernatural trust that defies my reality fills my heart. Now with tears rolling down my face, I fall to my knees and am able to worship the King of glory, bowing down every day in every situation.
Yoked by Trust in God, Not by Circumstances
Jesus' invitation calls us to be meek as well as lowly at heart. The Greek word here for "meek" is praos (Strong's #4235). Praos means what you would expect: gentle, mild, meek. However, there is a little more to be discovered in this word. It is a form of the word praus (Strong's #4239) and defines meekness toward God as a quality of spirit in which we accept God's dealings with us as good, even if the circumstance itself is bad. This trust in God is similar to the revelation found in Romans 8:28. Because of this inner strength, the Believer is able to accept God's will without disputing or resisting, thus... they can experience Divine rest for their soul.
We see this meekness in our Master Jesus Christ, our sacrifice. Similar to the ox that He is teaching about in our key Scripture, as a symbol of sacrifice and strength, Jesus was full of power yet He submitted His will to the control of His Father because of trust, and in so doing became our sacrifice.
Our Master's meekness was His greatest strength. Often we think that meekness is weakness. However, as we just learned, the Biblical concept of meekness is trust in God. Jesus trusted His Father even in His darkest hour. This trust in His innermost being gave Him the strength to bow down and say, "Not My will but Thy will be done."
This trust manifested itself in meekness, which became the strength through which He could endure the Cross. This is a yoke I need to take on today and every day just to get out of bed and face the day that lies ahead. I need to be burdened, yoked by my trust in God, not my circumstances! That burden is easy, that burden is light. Would you agree? Do you need this for yourself today? The question we are faced with though is... how do we get it?  How can we create within ourselves a heart that trusts God unwaveringly through the good and the bad? We can confess we trust Him, but how do we get that confession deep down in our hearts where it really matters?  Ephesians 5:18 gives us a clue.
"Be Filled with the Spirit"
"...be filled with the Spirit" (Ephesians 5:18b). To be "filled" is also in the present tense with an imperative mood. That means we can be filled over and over and over again by the Holy Spirit. Actually, not only can we be filled, it is imperative that we are filled.
To be filled means: to be made full, to be made complete, to cause to abound, to furnish or supply liberally. Romans 5:5 teaches us that the Holy Spirit poured the love of God into our hearts. He speaks the Word to us reminding us of God's faithfulness. He will cause love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and even self-control to grow deep in the fibers of our being. Beloved, this is something we cannot afford physically or spiritually to miss out on. Everything we need is right here. The Holy Spirit will fill us with what we need, for His grace is sufficient to meet every need.
The invitation is eternal. Our meek Master continues to call out to those who are heavy laden saying, "Come unto Me." When we are burdened with a heavy heart, weary from a heavy load that life has given us and everything seems unfair, we can take on the yoke of Christ. Bowing down under the weight of His glory, being filled over and over again with His Spirit, we will find rest for our souls. Amen and Amen.
"Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30 NKJV
Tiffany Ann Lewis
Dancing with the Flame of the Lord Ministries
Email: tiffanyann@tiffanyannlewis.com

 Tiffany Ann Lewis' Itinerary:
Note:  Events are subject to change at the ministry's discretion. We suggest you always check first with the event contact listed here and/or directly visit their website for latest updates on each event.
December 10, 2011 (9:30am)
  Girls of Grace
  The Bridge Christian Church
  2739 Hamburg Street
  Schenectady, NY 12303


A Thankful Little Girl Now Grown

The season for giving thanks has me meandering the back roads of my life. While always thankful, I have been spending a lot of time being thankful on a much deeper level than in seasons past. I hope and pray that this habit not only continues but goes deeper still.

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.


Right Where We Left Off

Continuing yesterday’s thoughts…

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.


It's Time To Shift

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.
If I were a preacher, I would preach this. If I were an evangelist, I would stand before the crowds and passionately entreat them to listen and hear the Word of the Lord. But I'm neither of those things. I am me; a daughter, wife, mother, who delights in hearing the voice of God. Not every word do I publically share, but this one, this one is key. Please don't just read these words; hear them. Hear them with the ear of your spirit, and receive them. I know I've said it already, but somehow these words are key. The entire word can be found in the archives at the Elijah List website. If you haven't already, please consider signing up to freely receive the daily words from prophetic men and women of God through the Elijah List. They are available free of charge.
Here is an incerpt from a recent word:
"God is calling us to make a shift – a shift in our thinking; a shift in our intercession; a shift in our prophetic declarations; a shift in our expectation. We are in a season of amnesty. "Amnesty" means pardon for offenses against a government. It doesn't mean acquittal because of innocence. It means, across-the-board forgiveness, pardon, erasure of all judgment and penalty against the offending party. This is good news for us personally, and it is good news for the world.
Often, we hold ourselves, and then we hold others around us, in a prison of guilt for legitimate offenses against each other, and ultimately the government of God. "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Romans 3:23). But it is God's glory to wipe out our offense by the power of His shed Blood. And it is our glory to extend this amnesty to the world around us. We need to make a shift, and let the reality of the Cross and the work Christ did there shape our prayers."
Can you hear it? Can you hear the voice of God calling us to make this shift in our thinking? This shift from holding others in a "prison of guilt for legitimate offenses against each other, and ultimately the government of God." ? The Blood of Christ has provided a better way, a way of mercy, grace, and forgiveness. Oh that we, as His followers, would likewise extend mercy, grace, forgiveness, amnesty as God through Christ, by the power of His Blood, has done.
God is more, so MUCH more than He is given credit for being. Around the world people, created by Him, are angry at Him. They blame, slander, and accuse the One who has given them life. When troubles and hard times come, immediately God is brought to question. Without knowing Him or His ways, people everywhere assume that He is at fault. That whatever evil came, it came because of Him. Yet, even in the face of insult, false accusation, and invalid reasoning, He still loves. How can He do this? How can God spend year after year after year listening to foolish, limited people lash out at Him for evils He has not sent? He is love. Love sees, love knows, love understands that men are but dust.
Sickness, misery, death, these things are the result of sin. Not God. Sin. Sin opens the door and paves the way for every bit of evil mankind has ever or will ever experience. Pain and sickness are the result of man's free will, mankind's own, personal decisions; they are the result of sin. And relying upon limited, finite understanding, mankind blames God. 
But God, sent Jesus. Jesus, the Redeemer. Emmanuel, God with us, came to earth in the form of a man, dwelt among us, died the death of a criminal, bought our salvation, returned from the dead, lived among us again, then returned to Heaven awaiting the moment when He might return, gather His people to Himself, and bring them Home to the Father.
Salvation? Salvation from what? Salvation from death, sickness, pain, disease, sorrow, everything that man's choice allowed. Adam, the first man, made a decision to disobey God's instructions. God didn't give the instruction to not eat of the tree because He was trying to cheat or deprive Adam and Eve. It was an instruction of protection and love. An instruction just like loving parents give their own children when they instruct them not to touch a hot object or something that would bring them harm. I don't allow my children to play in the street, even though they might very much want to. Am I cruel, oppressive? Not hardly. Does anyone accuse me of being mean to my children, or unfair, when I don't allow them to handle sharp kitchen utensils? Never. Why? Because every loving parent knows how ridiculous and foolish it would be to allow small children to do whatever they want. If mankind can understand the need for children to be told no, why can't they understand an all-knowing God's need to instruct His creation? The creation that He loves?
Somehow, in spite of miracles, loving intervention, message after message, mankind still refuses to consider, even briefly, that sickness, disease, and pain are not God's fault. He didn't send them. Mankind via Adam allowed them in when he chose to give in to his wife's pleading instead of following God's instructions. To this day, even though millions of people have chosen to believe the truth and follow God's way, the only way to life, countless others continue choosing death. They then continue blaming God when the result of their choices come to pass.
I could go on and on sharing examples, analogies, and passionate pleas concerning the truth of God and who He truly is. But when all is said and done, it really boils down to this one thing: God loves man; He is good. He gave mankind a freewill to make a choice: life or death, the blessing or the curse. Mankind chooses, then lives the consequences of that choice. God still loves man; He is still good. Either we choose to believe the truth about God and who He is, or we choose to believe the lie so many have chosen to live throughout the ages.
It is my prayer that as we enter the Christmas season of Emmanuel, God With Us, we will come to know truth concerning God and who He really, truly is. We'll end with a quote I read recently.

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.


Grandma's Tree

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


Simplifying One Layer at a Time

Hey There! I'm over here today browsing for last year's post on gift baskets. I couldn't find it at our sister blog, Abundance so I came over here to look. My sis-in-love told me she loved my ideas from last year so I had to check them out and remind myself:) Maybe I'll get some ideas - again. I'm still looking for that crazy post. Guess this is why so many bloggers use labels. Now I know.

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


At The Feet of Jesus

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.



And The Winner Is...Answers Too

We've been hanging out playing some trivia this week. The commenter with the most correct answers wins a gift basket filled with handcrafted goodies, and the winner is(drumroll please)... Tim! Congratulations, Tim. I will be getting your gift basket to you as soon as possible. Of course we both know that means as soon as I am in town when the post office is open. I also want to send a special thank you out to my mom as she is the only commenter who even attempted to answer all of the questions. Also, Emily, please leave comments everytime you stop in. I love reading them. Who does get to decide what numbers are what, anyway? OK, I'll confess. The reason I loved your comments so much is because I too guessed gazillion. Great minds and all that.

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.


The Rest of the Questions

Let me just begin by sharing a bit about myself, I like variety. I don't mind doing the same things over and over sometimes, but others...that being said, we're giving the rest of the questions all at once - today! Thank you for remembering to send your answers in as a comment and also for including either your name or a chosen username so that we can keep track of correct answers. The commenter with the most correct answers will soon be receiving a gift basket of handcrafted and homemade goodies. Ready for the questions? Here they are #4-15:

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!


Luvin' The Trivia - Question #3

Hope everyone else likes trivia as much as we do! We're ready for question #3 as we just hang out havin' fun for a couple of weeks. Don't forget about the gift basket for who answers correctly the most. Just a reminder that answers can be left in a comment, not email. Answers received via email will not be counted.

Here's question #3:
3. Coca-Cola was originally what color?


Hanging Out - Question #2

We're still hanging out throwing some trivia around. It's not too late to join in the fun. There's a free gift basket for the one with the most correct answers. Please include your name or a chosen username with your answers. We want to give credit where credit is due. On to question #2:

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.


Just For Fun

Alright, we're going to do something a bit different here at A Mother's Rewards. We're going to take off our shoes, change into comfy clothes, and lounge out for a few days. For the next several days, there will be at least one, maybe two, questions posted. Everyone who knows the answer to the day's questions will leave a comment sharing the answer. Please include your name or a chosen username with each answer as A Mother's Rewards will be keeping track of the correct answers and sending a gift basket to the one with the most correct answers. Remember, only answers shared in a comment will count. If answers are sent via email, they will NOT be counted; only those left in the comments will receive credit. The comment button is at the bottom of each post. Ready to hang out and have some fun? Here's the first question:

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.