Friday, October 31, 2008
The ability to find that treasure depends upon our ability to see the TRUTH.
Truth is found in the Light.
Jesus said, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Light."
Jesus is the Way to find the Truth and Light in this world.....
in this country.....
and in this election.
I want to share a link to another blog today.
Please click HERE and read the Thoene's insightful and intelligent reflection regarding this election.
Prayer is of the utmost importance during the next 96 hours.
God is mighty and able.
He just desires us to call on His Name.
Monday, October 27, 2008
- Lord, God in Heaven, please - PLEASE- don't ever let me get so stubborn that I need to be swallowed by a ginormous fish to get my attention!
- I really don't think that being swallowed by the "whale" was Jonah's punishment. I believe that event was a product of God's amazing grace. Jonah had a chance to repent and remember God.
- Jonah had made some type of vow to God. Somehow, being in the belly of a fish helped him decide to make good on that vow. :)
- Jonah's first rescue was was the whale swallowing him.
- He was about to drown.
- Jonah's second rescue was the whale vomiting him.
- He would have either suffocated or been digested alive in the belly of the whale. Ewwwww! What if he had still been alive when he started to go through the colon... That's just gross! But - the story is true!
- God's grace wasn't just for Jonah. His grace was for the big, evil city of Nineveh.
- Salvation comes from the Lord - and Him alone.
Well, that is just my rambling for the day.
Lord, I submit my life and my plans in to Your hands. Help me have an obedient heart and a submissive spirit!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Her heart beat faster.
She was afraid to look up.
It must be the elders.
They were going to ridicule her for giving so little.
Why did she come anyway? She should have just kept her little copper coins and stayed in her pitiful little house.
The few seconds seemed like an eternity.
In that "eternity" shame washed over her like a wave in the sea.
What did she just hear?
She summoned the courage to look up.
She looked into the eyes of the man speaking. There were a dozen or so other men around him. It seemed that the entire temple area was now looking at her!
But, instead of the shame she felt a few seconds ago, she now felt a peace and a warmth she had never experienced!
What was happening?
And what did he just say?
Time appeared frozen in those few seconds. She retraced her memory and found his words:
"I tell you the truth," he said, "this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on."
How did he know?
How, .... How could he know?
He looked directly into her eyes.
She felt..... She felt such love!
How could this be?
Who is this man?
Where shame had washed over her before, dignity now poured into whole being.
She glanced again at the people around this man.
Instead of the invisibility she usually experienced, they looked at her with respect!
The clank of more coins in the collection box jolted her from her "frozen" state.
She smiled a shy smile and turned for home.
He smiled back with appreciation and again, that look of love.
Her stomach growled again.
Another reminder of the realness of her poverty.
She retraced her steps home.
But this time her head wasn't hung down looking at her sandals.
She looked up and saw her world for the first time in a very long time.
The colors of the city almost overwhelmed her.
The sounds of people were intoxicating:
The laughter of children.
The banter of bartering merchants.
The whispers of women at the well.
Isn't this the same place she had always lived?
She felt like a child going to her first passover feast.
She was almost home.
Would the wonder of the last hour disappear as she stepped through the threshold to her loneliness?
A picture raced through her mind like a flash.
It was of the man at the temple.
Somehow, her life had just changed and she was determined to find out how.
Somehow she knew that loneliness would not be waiting for her inside her home.
Somehow she knew Yahweh would provide her next meal.
She determined one thing in her heart.
She would find out who that man was and how he had just made a difference in her life!
Her hand found its way in her empty pocket.
An hour ago all she had was two copper coins and a heart full of emptiness.
Now, she had an empty pocket and a heart full of hope.
Some gave all.
(I hope you liked it. If you want to read the Biblical account - go to Luke 21)
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
"Mmmmm. Fish and bread."
Her stomach growled but her mind knew she would not have the pleasure of such a simple yet delicious meal.
She followed her morning routine, simply because she had nothing else to do.
It was hard to believe it had already been ten years.
Her morning routine was always the same.
Her morning routine always brought the same memories.
She washed her plate and cup.
She remembered- She used to wash two plates and cups.
She swept the floor.
She used to have much more to sweep up from his dusty sandals.
She washed her garments.
She no longer had his garments to wash.
Ten years of loneliness.
Ten years for grief to settle in like an unwanted companion.
She sat in the chair by the window.
The memories began to roll through her mind as her melancholy mood settled in, once again, for the day.
A child's laughter brought her back to reality.
She was surprised to feel the moistness on her face as she got up to try to find something to eat.
Her stomach growled again.
She went to her night stand and found the two coins.
They felt cold to her fingers.
It wasn't much at all.
Not even enough to buy some food.
She knelt by her bed mat in a familiar position of prayer.
She would talk to Yahweh.
In a moment she knew what to do.
She carefully put the coins in her pocket and headed for the door.
The smells from the market were a constant reminder of days gone by and of the hunger in her stomach.
A few more streets and she was there.
She waited so that maybe none of the elders would be watching.
She saw her chance for oblivion.
She slowly made it up the temple steps to the box.
Oh, how she wished the coins wouldn't sound so hollow.
Just once she wondered if she was insane.
There was nothing else! She had absolutely nothing else.
But it wasn't hers.
It was His.
Yahweh had been so good to her. She couldn't not give Him what was His.
She was at the top of the stairs.
With a quick prayer under her breath that no one would mock her for her small gift, she dropped the coins in.
There. It was done.
She turned and began her walk back down the stairs.
That is all for today.
Tune in tomorrow for part 2!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
This was the day!
She jumped up and ran to her brothers' room. "Joey! Tony! Get up! We have to get dressed. We might find a mom and dad today!" As soon as she said it, she wanted to swallow the words back up. How many times had she hoped for that before only to be disappointed.
A few hours away a young couple slept.
His eyes opened first. He turned to look at his sleeping wife. He gently brushed her cheek with his hand as he silently prayed, "Oh, God in heaven! Please don't let her heart be broken today. Please direct our steps. We have no idea what we are doing. Please help us."
"Honey. It's time."
In one movement, she was up and standing on her feet.
Other than the occasional conversation and a blow dryer the house was quiet. It always seemed that way. After ten years, they had developed a routine and it worked smoothly.
The house had never experienced much ruckus that kids caused. Everything was neat and in order. No toys strewn about. No peanut butter and jelly stains on the furniture. No chocolate milk stains on the carpet. This particular morning was no different. Just the methodical routine of two adults getting dressed. Adults, not parents.
The picnic was a frenzy of activity. Kids running and jumping. Adults talking and eating.
But mostly just people watching.
The picnic was all about finding something. That something was missing in every life there except for the workers. The kids wanted it but didn't have it. The adults wanted it but didn't have it either.
The picnic was about finding it.
It was all about family.
Moms and Dads.
Sons and Daughters.
The young couple saw the brown haired, brown eyed little girl.
They were enchanted with her charming personality and the twinkle in her eye.
But they saw two little boys that tugged at their hearts also.
How could anyone be expected to choose!?
Even then, would any of these children want to be in their home?
Would they cry?
Would they scream?
What if?........................ And a thousand more "what ifs" flooder their minds.
Back at the room they spoke with the DH worker. They mentioned their dilemma of choice.
"We connected with the two little brothers. But, we also connect with the most beautiful little girl. We don't even know how to begin to choose!"
As the case worker listened, a smile began to form on her face. Surely not!
As the couple spoke she walked to the picture board. She selected the photo she had in mind and handed it to the husband and wife.
"Are these the children you are referring to?"
Confused, the pair affirmed, "Why, yes! That is the two boys, and there is Mary, the sweet little girl! Why are they in this picture together?"
"That is because they are siblings."
At that moment, a family was born.
Not in a hospital or doctors office, but in two hearts that longed to love.
A family was born~
and Two Sons.
In just two short weeks, paper work was miraculously completed and red tape all gone. In just two short weeks lives were changed forever!
The front door to the quiet house opened and there stood the case worker with Mary, Joe, and Tony.
A Family at Last!
This is a tribute to my friends whose lives recently changed DRASTICALLY!
We love you all and know God's hand is in this!
Thursday, October 16, 2008
October 16th symbolizes the beginning of my happiness! (outside of Jesus -of course)
Forty-seven SHORT years ago today the love of my life was born to two very young parents.
Even though I wasn't even born, God knew He was planning a wonderful marriage for Rusty Blann.
I am blessed beyond measure to have spent the last almost 25 years as his wife.
Rusty Blann is my ultimate hero on this earth. He lives Jesus before me and my children day in and day out. He is passionate about ministry, but more passionate about his family. And you can tell by looking at him how handsome he is! :)
He still makes my heart go pitter-patter. He is my prince charming and the love of my life.
I wouldn't trade a day of our past 25 years together- the good and the bad.
So, ladies - eat your hearts out because I have the most awesome man on the face of this earth! :)
Honey- you are the wind beneath my wings and the thump in my heart. You put happiness in my heart and joy in my soul. You are the love of my life - forever and always!
Happy Birthday, Rusty Blann!
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
"I took you from the ends of the earth,
from its farthest corners I called you.
I said, "you are my servant";
I have chosen you and have not rejected you.
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand."
My prayer today for each of you is that you let this Word sink deep into your heart.
Let's just look at it a portion at a time:
I - God Almighty
took you- rescued, brought out
from the ends of the earth- He found you!
from its farthest corners- He always knows where we are, no matter how far.
I called you - He sought you out and called to you.
The next part of the verse basically says:
I have CHOSEN YOU and have not REJECTED YOU.
So many ladies today have experienced rejection time and time again. God says He is calling you and He has chosen you! Regardless of your past. Regardless of your choices. Regardless of your mistakes~ He has Chosen You!!
(Okay - a side note here. Whenever I hear the word "chosen" I think of adoption. The beauty of our adoption in Christ is that He has "chosen" us- with all of our flaws and imperfections, He still wants us. He doesnt' just love us because He is our "parent". He had a choice and WANTED to choose us! How beautiful and how special!)
With all of that in mind He next says:
Do not fear
for I am with you;
No reason to be afraid of anything. He has chosen you and He will not leave you1
He next says:
Do not be dismayed for I AM your God.
Oh, my my my! Remember the first time He declared Himself as the I AM!?
I AM your provider.
I AM your healer.
I AM your shelter.
I AM your banner.
Anything that you may need, His Name encompasses!
He then goes on to promise:
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand!
What is that saying?
He knows when you feel like giving up.
He knows when your are simply exhausted.
He knows when all of your resources have failed.
He doesn't just know, He does something about it.
He UPHOLDS you with His Righteous right hand!
Please hold on to this Word today. May you receive strength and encouragement from His promises today!
Blessings to you!
Friday, October 10, 2008
Comfort was long gone and those still living were just existing.
Dry, parched air in.
Dry, parched air out.
Just stagnant and putrid existence.
People wandered the streets as ghosts waiting- anxiously waiting - the reprieve death would bring. The few small children that managed to survive had never known the laughter and simple joys that should accompany their childhood.
These were now synonymous with the hollow life of those left in the waste land.
Those who had lived in opulence were driven to ruin.
The poor were poorer still.
There was no economy.
There was only existence.
But for what?
Another day to search for food.
Another day to endure the craving of moisture on the palette?
Where was the god Jezebel had turned their hearts to?
Where was the God the fathers used to mention?
God Almighty had fulfilled His Word.
Elijah, the Tishbite, told Ahab there would be no rain, or even dew, in the next few years.
And so- the land slowly shriveled and died.
Not even the dew of the morning existed.
Ahab and Jezebel did detestable things in the sight of God Almighty. God longed for His people to serve Him and Him alone. He allowed the drought in order for His people to call upon His Name.
Jezebel, full of evil and hatred of God the Creator, refused to bow her heart to the one Who designed her heart. In the midst of the pain and suffering, she simply hated Him more.
God still longed for the heart of His people.
God still longed for the hearts of Jezebel and Ahab.
After a long time, in the third year, He spoke.
Elijah was to go to Ahab.
God, the Omnipotent, was going to send rain upon the land.
God, the Faithful, heard the cries of His people.
God, the Merciful, longed for the heart of His people.
The global markets are plunging.
Men and women who have trusted themselves and their fortunes are losing everything.
Fear is rising like bile in the throats of people.
Nations are beginning to tremble.
"Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the Name of the Lord our God." Psalm 20:7
I don't know about you, but I am keeping my eyes looking up~ "stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near."
Our trust should be in our God, the maker of heaven and earth and not in the economy, or even in a political leader.
Make sure YOUR heart is turned to Jesus. Allow Him to be the Saviour of your soul.
God still longs for the heart of His people to turn to Him.
May our thirst be for His Living Water.
May our hunger be for His Bread of Life.
May our desire be for the sustenance of His Spirit.
God longs for your heart.
blessings and prayers,
Thursday, October 9, 2008
"Praise the Lord, all you nations;
extol Him, all you peoples.
For great is His love toward us,
and the faitfhulness of the Lord endures forever."
From America to China, Canada to Brazil, Greenland and Austria, Poland and Uganda-
"Ascribe to the Lord, O families of nations,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.
Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His Name;"
We are called upon time and time again in scripture to honor the Lord with the glory due His name.
We are challenged to "declare His deeds among the nations.
Jesus told us in Matthew 28:19 to "go and make disciples of all nations".
I did a search on the word 'nations' at studylight.org from the NIV. It is used almost 600 times through out God's word.
My favorites are those of the psalmist.
"Sing praises to the Lord; enthroned in Zion;
proclaim among the nations what He has done!" (9:11)
"I will perpetuate your memory through all generations;
therefore the nations will praise you for ever and ever." (45:17)
This next one is a familar verse, but we seldom remember the result of being still before Him:
"Be still and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth." (46:10)
The Nations need to know our God and our Savior.
The Nations need to know of His redeeming love.
The Nations need to know of His miraculous nature.
The Nations need to know of the Justness of His person.
The Nations need to know how Great and Glorious He is.
The Nations need to know Him!
Missions is about proclaiming our God to the Nations.
As I have said before, the simplicity of missions is this:
At our church we are in the middle of our annual Missions Convention. We bring missionaries in and honor them, pray for them, and give to them. Every year or so we take a team of workers to one of these places and help with construction projects.
Let's pray together that the Nations will know and reverence the Name of our God!
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Saturday, October 4, 2008
Ok. So I am a proud mom, but you have to admit he is VERY handsome! :)
Jordan escorted his friend, Rachel, who was a freshmen maid.
The 2008 Homecoming Court
The family came to watch.
Mackenzie in the stands with the 7th graders.
It seems like yesterday my son was the cutest toddler alive with no hair and lots of pacifiers.
Thursday, he was the most handsome 9th grader alive with a beautiful girl by his side.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Tears were rolling down my face.
I was trying to dry my face without smearing my mascara everywhere.
I made it to my vehicle and just sat there.
This feeling of love and joy just flooded my soul.
Wow! God is so good!
Rusty was sitting in his recliner when he phone did the "blurpy" thing letting him know he had an email.
"Honey! Come look at this!"
I read it and my heart just soared!
"Awesome! How exciting!"
There it was again!- That feeling of love and joy that just sweeps over my little soul!
I took Taylor upstairs to STARS last night. We ran into Mr. E. He had his three precious - NEW- children with him. I helped them find their Wednesday night classes.
The joy on all four of their faces was absolutely beautiful.
With each moment they were discovering the wonder of family -
through the beauty of adoption.
That is what all three of these excerpts from my life are about.
I went to see a young lady who just had her baby boy. I visited with grandma and grandpa - who were beaming so brightly they could have furnished the entire hospital with electricity for the day.
I "warned" them of the "dangers" of grandparenting.... you know - how you just get absolutely senseless and all that.
They did not know our story of adoption - two fold-. So, I shared.
Grandpa, with a gleam of love and joy, looked at me and said, "Did C. ever tell you she was adopted?"
Well, that was when the waterworks started, and they didn't stop until I regained my composure in my car.
The email Rusty received was from Mr. E. letting him know that he and the Mrs. were attending a picnic that weekend to meet some children. They asked that we pray over the time for God to guide them.
At the picnic they met their family.
Hand delivered by God.
Before Mr. and Mrs. E ever knew about these precious children, God had a plan. A plan that involved three adorable siblings being placed in a loving and caring home.
You mention the word "adoption" to me and I get all these ooey-gooey feelings in my heart.
Adoption brings so much joy to so many lives.
It breaks my heart to know that some young ladies choose to end the life of the child in their womb when so many couples would embrace that LIFE with love and tender care.
So, let me go just a step further with this today.
This is an election year. Life is PRECIOUS to God. He created us in HIS image.
There are numerous scriptures in His Word speaking of the value we are to place on life and of the value HE places on life - even in the womb!
I believe God blesses a nation that values life as He does. When we turn our backs on Him, we de-value life.
Let your vote count for LIFE!
Check out ALL of the elections and vote for the PRO-LIFE candidates- regardless of what party they belong to!
But, don't just take my word for it- check out GOD'S WORD on the subject!
Bottom line- adoption is a word that warms this mom's heart. I have been blessed beyond measure through adoption.
Spiritually - God adopted me into His family.
Physically - I personally know the true joy of my child being added to our family through adoption- and my precious grandchild that was adopted. (My two fold blessing of adoption)
Just some things to think about today.
blessings to you all!
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
"Honey! What is wrong!"
"I'm.... I'm having a .... a ...... I'm having a MELTDOWN!!!"
"A What?! Are you okay?"
"Why, yes!? Why would you ask a silly thing like that?"
And so the conversation started.
It sometimes feels nuclear~!
The actual meaning?
I looked up the meaning of meltdown. According to wikipedia it is:
Meltdown- a particular kind of fit or temper tantrum that occurs in babies and young children.
I feel mature.
But ya know, hormonal women can bring a new and clear definition to the lovely term.
The LAD Dictionary (different from the LAD version of the Bible) - Life According to Dorinda-
Meltdown- the verb of action immediately following the intense feeling of "overwhelmed". This "meltdown" action does not last long. It usually coincides and subsides with the surge and leveling of the hormone, estrogen, in a woman's body. Once stability and sanity is regained in a woman's life, the verb of action "meltdown", once again, is referred to in children. The actions associated with "meltdown are most often crying, sniffling, moaning, and repeated sighing. It is advised that once a female is in a crisis meltdown state to refrain from excessive questioning, talking, touching, and staring. (There is nothing you can do! She will recover. She is a woman.)
I decided to elaborate on my topic from yesterday "Overwhelmed". I had emails and comments that let me know I had found common ground with you ladies.
I told a friend that I struggled with the post because I didn't want to sound "whiny". But I think you all need to know we are ALL human. We all have those days where we get a little overwhelmed. We feel like we are supposed to complete many more tasks than humanly possible, but we put that pressure on ourselves.
If we keep it up without letting the peace of God rule our hearts, the result will be a "meltdown". Now, please understand, there can be ok meltdowns and there can be "nuclear meltdowns". In my LAD version, nuclear meltdowns do not glorify God.
A normal meltdown is basically just releasing that pent up emotion we women hold in. We are emotional creatures. We are nurturing souls. We want our spouses and our children to be well cared for and thriving. Sometimes- well most of the time, the sense of feeling overwhelmed, which can lead to a meltdown - is because we take on the responsibility of caring for our spouses and children all by ourselves. We inadvertently leave our Redeemer, our Savior, our Creator, our Almighty God out of the equation of our hectic lives.
Thus~ resulting in a meltdown.
Nuclear meltdown (according to the LAD) is a loss of temper, anger, rage, and all those things that do not exemplify a woman of God.
Meltdown is just releasing some emotion from the fact that we tried to do it by ourselves.
We are responsible for our meltdown moments.
What we say.
What we do.
What we think.
Even how we respond.
How do we make sure we glorify God even in a meltdown moment?
Well, it doesn't start at that moment. It starts in the good times. When life is rosy and peachy and just summer breezy, picnic-y wonderful. We pour the Word of God into our hearts, planting seeds of peace and goodness and patience and kindness and self-control.... you know- the seeds you plant in order to reap a harvest of Fruit of the Spirit.
Then, when the life of chaos shows up on your doorstep, you just go to your little orchard and reap a harvest of the Fruit of the Spirit.
Awwwww. Trust me. This post-hysterectomy woman knows the feeling of being overwhelmed and the occasional meltdown IS going to happen.
But for our spouse's sakes and the sake of our children- let's plant that orchard now! Or if you have planted it, make sure you have dug up the weeds of bitterness and frustration.
And~ when you feel the meltdown coming, remember to release EVERYTHING back into God's hands and the meltdown may be avoided.
Let Him worry about your child's grades.
Let Him take care of your spouse's health.
Let Him be the Great I AM in your life.
He said to Moses, "I Am that I Am".
I Am your Healer.
I Am your Deliverer.
I Am your Prince of Peace.
I Am your Provider.
I Am your Shelter.
I Am your Righteousness.
I Am your Creator.
I Am your Redeemer.
I Am your Savior.
I Am the Lover of your soul.
(So, please let Him be what you need!)
wow! That felt good!
love you ladies!