Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year To All

2008 Thankful List

1. I have enjoyed meeting new friends through blogging this year, sharing devotions, crafts and recipes. I hope my list grows this year.
2. I am thankful for the answers to prayer and the grace God has given through the down days.
3. I am thankful I still have a good job. I will pray for those of you who don't.
4. I'm glad I got to spend time with my mother at Christmas who is 88. Pray for her.
5. I am thankful for a good husband and all of my family.
6. I am thankful for a year of good health.
7. I am thankful for Christian friends.
8. It was a blessing to go to quartet convention for our anniversary. I appreciate those who sing songs that are so encouraging to me. I love music.
9. God's Word has been a strong place to stand this year. May it be even more a part of my life for 2009.
10. Thank God for salvation.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I would like to say that there have been many people in my past that have been a blessing and a spiritual help. There were many encouragers along the way. My husband always says "You don't throw the baby away with the bath water" meaning don't toss out everything but carefully choose what was good and leave the bad behind.

A tenderhearted Christian can be vulnerable to someone else being their guide of what they should and shouldn't do because they want so badly to please God. A sinner who is looking for love and a release from sin can get saved and yet depend on another human or church family so much that they fail to get rooted and grounded in God. The aim of a mentor, pastor or church fellowship should be to encourage personal growth in God not create a person who is forever dependent on them and under their control.

Sometimes in order to follow God's leading we must "take a walk off the beaten path" and "take the road less traveled by." This does not mean we are heady and highminded, not accepting advice from anyone. It means we need to carefully seek God's will and learn to think for ourselves. I here insert a poem by Robert Frost. Have a blessed evening.

The Road not Taken
Robert Frost

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I-
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

The second puzzle piece

On Christmas day we found out our nephew was in the hospital after experiencing a very low heart rate, 30 I think. He was taken by squad and heard them saying they couldn't find a pulse. They gave him medicine through an IV and he came to. When they ran tests they couldn't find anything. But we thought we should go see him while we were in Ohio and that is where we were Christmas day. He was sitting up in bed with his wife nearby,waiting to be released. His family, too, was involved in the same church we used to be and it seemed he wanted to talk about it that day. He told of experiences they had and we shared ours. We have kept silent to a lot of people, but there are times when God fits a puzzle piece together and the time is right. Their children, our friends children (from my first puzzle piece story in the previous blog) and our children had experienced times when "elders of the church" had tried to separate them from their parents. Supposedly, we were all a bad influence on our children and we were not worthy to be our own children's spiritual mentors. There were so many bazaar things that happened. There are some today that want nothing to do with church because they saw through the hypocrisy. There are others that are still entangled in the hypocrisy of it. Thankfully, there are some that realized they could have a one on one experience with God without bowing to man rule and in spite of how people acted.

We had such a good time of fellowship and kept talking. Finally, the hospital staff kindly informed us we could talk down the hall as the patient had already been released and they needed to free up the room. Our nephew had not told us he could go because he wanted to talk. It was funny. We all left the hospital together.

I can't explain the joy that God has blessed me with as he fits these puzzle pieces together. Some would say I have backslid, but I am only making my way to the place that God would have me to stand in.

I had a freedom in God when I got saved and am feeling more of that freedom again as God untangles all the threads that have gradually bound me up. Paul spoke to the Galations about getting entangled in bondage after they were saved. And that they need not follow the traditions of men. I am thankful for all the trials that God has brought me through. In spite of all the heartache and the puzzle pieces that are still not in place as I would have them to be, God is helping be to breath fresh air again and again. Bless the Lord, oh my soul.

Monday, December 29, 2008

The first puzzle piece

The past few weeks I connected with some old friends that we had went to church with years ago. We had been in a congregation that was very conservative. The unwritten rules there was that if anyone leaves don't go visit them or you might be contaminated. When these friends left we faithfully followed the man made rules. We have had to repent several times of our negative, finger pointing ways. God continues to free us from the incorrect beliefs we held tight to. This is just one of those puzzle pieces I spoke of in my previous post.

Anyway, through facebook, we found out that our friends' son, who my husband had taught in jr. high sunday school was now a pastor. Hubby was able to call our friend and apologize and we made arrangements to go hear their son preach when we went to Ohio. My friend said "You don't have to come, they're kind of contemporary." She did not know that we were no longer looking down our noses at anyone who did not look like We thought they should. I told her we wanted to come. Yes, it was different, but it was good to know their son was saved and he brought a very good message. He was not preaching down to people like we had been used to in the past. He spoke in depth but easy to understand about Herod and his need for control and how paranoid he was, killing even his own family because he was scared of someone taking his throne. He pointed out how Herod shed blood because he wanted to be the only King of the Jews and how Jesus shed blood also but it was His Own and Jesus really was the King of the Jews. Then he asked if in our life was their any of the same attitudes that Herod had. I see where we don't need to control people. I reflected on how in our old church there was much man control and fear of losing positions and "spiritually killing" those who didn't believe like we did and the need for people to obey the pastor instead of God. I rejoice more and more of being free from that.

We had dinner afterward with our friends. It was a good time of letting God help us put another puzzle piece in place in His own time.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Spiritual Puzzle Pieces

I have been away from blog access for the most part of the past week. Anyone who watches Anne of Green Gables, I feel like Rachel when she greeted a returning Anne "Oh I'm so glad to see you. I've got so much to tell you about what's been going on in Avonlea." Not a direct quote but I think you get the idea. God has blessed me with an abundance of spiritual inspirations and positive blessings while in Ohio and on the trip home. I hope to share them over the next few blogs.

When I put a puzzle together, I work on it for a while putting pieces together that I find. Then, nothing seems to fit, so I leave it till later. When I come back I find others that fit and so on. Now if I was in a hurry to put it together I would start jamming things together that didn't really fit and I would have a mess. Well some spiritual puzzle pieces fit together this week. Sometimes we are in a hurry for God to put things together for us. But He does it a little at a time. And it fits just right. He has to take His time not because He can't do it all at once, but because He is working with us humans. It was God that reminded me on the way home from Ohio how He had snapped a few more pieces together for me this week. What a faithful God He is.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snowmen Fall from Heaven Unassembled

Today I am sharing some items that I bought from the Western Carolina Center. It is a home for extremely challenged blessings from God. They have a Christmas shop each year that sells items that the residents have made in their workshops. They make beautiful items.

A couple of years ago I bought this little wooden box there that reads "Snowmen fall from heaven unassembled". Below you will see the box opened. Inside are wooden decorations for a snowman: the carrot nose, 2 eyes, 3 buttons and a pipe.

I bought the red metal container this year and am using it for candy. The little beaded purple ornament matches my bedroom and the placemat underneath were also this years finds.

Look for other Friday show and tell items at Show and Tell

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Please pray for my coworker. Her mother passed away last night in New York so Mary has to travel. It is icy up north and she couldn't leave today. She was blessed by the fact that she had decided to visit her before Christmas this year because her mother was ill. She was with her last week and Mary got to talk with her mother and gain assurance that she was spiritually ready to go. Also pray for her father. I believe they have been married for around 60 years. He does not seem to know how to communicate with the Lord and it would be good if he turned his life to God at this time.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

God is Good

God has been very, very good. He has lightened some of our burdens. He knows how much we can bear. I thank Him for the strength He gives me through His word and communion in prayer.

I am looking forward to being with family and friends up north. I hope their ice goes away before I get there. It hasn't been real warm down here but at least I'm not sliding around. :)

I have a few days to get some major work done on the job. Our big new project is providing continued employment for our company. I hope all of you that are unemployed have things work out for you. I can't believe the low percentage rate from the federal reserves. But we never know from one day to the next what kind of situation we will be in. That is why we must seek God. I know from experience that it is not always easy to be thankful when there are no "calves in the stall, nor fruit on the vine" as it says in the word. But God gives us grace and contentment. My mind keeps going back to the night I went up the mountain and was on the curvy road that I thought would never end. Around each curve I knew town was coming but it seemed like forever till my faith became sight. It's like God is saying, life is like that too. You wonder where God is but you just keep on going and trusting till your faith becomes sight.

I have been looking at a few of the Christmas tour of homes. I believe there are over 800 now. I'll never be able to make the full tour even a little at a time. I appreciate how many of them are teaching their children about Christ and making it the theme of their blog. Many of them are keepers at home. It makes me long to be there but alas I must be content with the responsibilities God has given me.

Well I believe I will try again to go to sleep. I started out early and tired but my mind did not cooperate.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Nativity/Show and Tell Friday with Kelli

These are photos of my Thomas Kinkade Nativity. My husband gave it as a gift to me a few years ago.

Especially look at Kathrine's show and tell at Yellow Rose Arbor. She has a lovely tea tree which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Enjoy other Friday Show and Tells by going to Show and Tell

Thursday, December 11, 2008

What is darknes to God?

Excerpts from Psalms:

Chapter 139 "...If I say, surely the darkness shall cover me...the darkness and the light are both alike to thee."

Chapter 112:4 "Unto the upright there ariseth light in the darkness.."

Chapter 18 "..darkness was under His feet...the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.."


Luke 1:79 "To give light to them that sit in darkness..."

My MOST favorite Psalm for all my life has been Psalm 27:

"The Lord is my light and my salvation: whom shall I fear? the Lord is the strength of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

When the wicked, even my enemies and my foes, came upon me to eat up my flesh, they stumbled and fell.

Though a host should encamp against me, my heart shall not fear: though war should rise against me, in this will I be confident.

One thing have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the Lord, and to inquire in his temple.

For in the time of trouble he shall hide me in his pavillion: in the secret of his tabernacle shall he hide me: he shall set me up upon a rock.

And now shall my head be lifted up above my enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises unto the Lord.

...I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.

Wait on the Lord: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart: wait, I say, on the Lord."

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Lady Ann

This is a picture of our dog Lady. She is really Lori's dog. She has had her for about 14 years, since she was a pup. Her mom was a full blooded sheltie and Lady looks mostly like her. She is very good natured. This is where Rick and I found her napping in Lori's chair during Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Are we making the way harder or easier for others?

Meditating this morning on stumbling blocks. Sometimes it doesn't take much to cause a person to stumble. Your toe can catch on the smallest bump and throw you off balance creating a fall which bruises and possible breaks bones or brings a concussion or even death. Now apply this spiritually. What small action can cause someone to stumble? What about continual actions causing someone pain? Are you kicking someone or helping them along? Romans 12:13 tells us to "distribute to the necessity of saints" What can you distribute to someone to help them along? What is the brother or sister in need of? Don't throw more gravel in his way and make it harder for him to run the Christian race. Don't ignore his needs and pretend they aren't there. Many a soul is crying out for a kind word or just acceptance. Or an "I'm sorry. Forgive me. I love you."

Do your actions say "Don't touch me. I am holier than thou?" Or do you reach out and gently blow on the smoking embers and help heal their wounds?

Friday, December 5, 2008

Show and Tell Friday

Sharing with Kellie today at
I like to collect snowmen and today I will share my favorite find. I found this special snowman puzzle in a small shop in our town. It was one of my favorite shops and sorry to say it is no longer there. It was one of those times you splurge a little on yourself and later you are glad because you would have missed out. It is ceramic and goes in stages of the snowmen melting.

Here is a picture of it separated so you can see the different pieces.

Thursday, December 4, 2008


My blog picture seems to have resized in my absence. I have been experimenting with my blog as anyone who looks can see. I tried the red background with snowflakes but that seemed to gaudy and I felt like I lost my quiet solitude of the breath of fresh air. The red reminded me of a peppermint candy that was too strong. I went to the snow picture of my bench in the backyard. That is one of my best quiet places to meditate and pray. But lately my quiet place has been inside at the sofa before anyone else is up an moving. It's still dark when I get up and too cold to stay outside at that time of the morning. It will have to wait until Saturday in daylight.

Meditations lately have been on those humble humans that were around for the birth of Christ. I am blessed that God works through ordinary people. I am so blessed to have fellowship with him. I love Mary's praise speech when she realizes God has looked upon her low estate. I rejoice with the shepherds that God sent them an announcement in the field with angels singing. It is special that God consoled Simeon and Anna in their old age to see the fulfillment of the promise of salvation.

Tomorrow evening, Lord willing, we will be going to the outside walk through Bethlehem near by. We have been several years and it always seems to make the whole Biblical history of the birth of Christ come to life. I can't wait. I am to pick up my friends niece so she can see it for the first time. I hope we get some pictures that can be shared.

We put up Christmas decorations this evening but are not quite done. Things were getting pretty messy around here and just cleaning up greatly helped. And I am ready for Kellie's show and tell tomorrow. I have my draft waiting to share. Have a blessed evening.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

May I have some blog help?

1. I would like to know how to make my blog heading picture smaller.
2. Can you tell if people are visiting your etsy shops?
3. How do you set up a give away with Mr. Linky?


Monday, December 1, 2008

Velvet Curtain

I want to share the theme of a book "The Velvet Curtain" by Trudy Harvey Tait. Lori had a friend who shared the book with us to see what we thought. It is fictional. The girl who is the main character comes from Eastern Europe when Communism ruled in the eighties. She comes to live with distant family in America. On the plane over, a Christian elderly gentlemen admonishes her of the velvet curtain. She has left the Iron Curtain behind but has exchanged it for another type of curtain. At first it is a real culture shock seeing people waste food at restaurant buffets and seeing how freely young people dress and act. She is pretty and attracts attention. Her cousins influence her and the velvet curtain starts to close in on her till she messes up her life. She rejoiced in her new found freedom but found that she also had to escape the velvet curtain and find the balance that is in the freedom that is found in Jesus. I know there is much need for prayer for those who are persecuted in foreign countries. But there is much need for prayer also for those in America who are so swallowed up by this velvet curtain. The root of all sin against God is wanting to go our own way and not His. Revelation 3, the letter to the Laodiceans, warned them of feeling like they had no need of anything but yet they were wretched and poor and needed the eye salve of God so they could have a good vision of themselves. This was not just a letter for them, but a lesson for us. I constantly need God's guidance on my life that I may let Him shepherd me. That will always lead me beside the still waters where I can find a breath of His fresh air.