Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Love is a Many Splendored Thing

Some of you probably do not remember the old soap opera from the 60's and 70's, but some of you do~ "Love is a Many Splendored Thing".

As an elementary student who spent some summers at her dad's office in Russellville, AR, I would make sure that every day at 11am (I think), I was sitting in front of the old black and white tv to watch this show. I would adjust the rabbit ears and sit in the driver's room to watch it.

I don't remember much about the show except that it journaled the ups and downs of the love lives of a few characters. As an 8 year old, I was fascinated.

Today I am 46 and am celebrating my 26th Wedding Anniversary with the love of my life, Rusty.

I can truly say that today I am more madly in love than ever. I look back over the last 26 years, 27 since we started dating, and am thankful for all the moments we have spent together. We have laughed much, cried some, yelled a little :), but through it all our love has grown stronger and stronger.

Rusty is truly the most amazing person I know. He still takes my breath away and he still makes my heart do somersaults when he kisses me.

We are celebrating a little differently today than how we had planned, but we are together. I have known he has loved me over the last 27 years, but last night I was reminded again, that I have my "knight in shining armor".

He takes his role as my husband seriously. He is my priest, my provider and my protector~ and he is great at all of them!

I believe I am the most fortunate woman on the face of the earth! Little girls always long for the handsome prince to come in an rescue them and make them a princess. That's how Rusty makes me feel every day- as his princess. I am loved, protected, cared for and provided for. He makes me feel like the center of the world.

Every lady deserves that. I am blessed enough to have it!

Rusty Blann, a year ago we renewed our vows on a cold romantic evening by the Potomac River in Maryland. Today I recommit myself to you in a hospital room in Mississippi. :) I love you more than ever and am so glad to be Mrs. Rusty Blann.

I thank God for bringing us together and filling our lives and marriage with so much joy and happiness. With you by my side, I truly say, "Love is a Many Splendored Thing!"

Happy Anniversary to the most wonderful man on the face of the earth! I love you so very much!

PS~ for updates on my little medical adventure we are mainly using facebook, but I am doing ok. We still do not have answers, but I get to go do more tests today to help them find this out. woo hoo!!
And if you read my previous blog, please let me add to my fashion journal. Along with all of my pretty bracelets and necklaces, I know have an original design on my torso~ lots of swirly red cirles. The medical staff meticulously planned this artistry by placing adhesive round disks all over me. They would then attach my little necklaces to them. From time to time they have need to change out my disks, so I have LOTS! I guess maybe the adhesive material is a little too much excitement for my skin and my skin has responded with bright red, itchy designs. I am just all decorated up for my anniversary with my hubby! :)

PSS Andi f that didn't make you smile- this should~
My dear friend Ms. Shirley brought me LOTS of m&ms while I was in West Memphis. Yesterday afternoon I asked my daughter Glenda to get me some. She brings them to me in a cup with a sweet smile on her face. Of course, I began guzzeling them down ~ to a chorus of laughter from my 3 oldest children. My "innocent" oldest had "lovingly" placed my beloved m&ms in a sterile urine cup. I didn't catch this little fact until a few minutes later. So they all had fun laughing at me.

PSSS ~ and this little tidbit to make you feel sorry for me~ :)
Right after I finished that last paragraph, a nurse came in to change my IV. I mentioned to her that I am probably a little dehydrated because they won't let me drink anything - A G A I N. She assures me my veins are good. In the back of my mind I'm praying, "let it be, let it be!"
So she proceeds with her little gloves and huge needle.
All in MY FLESH! :)
Sure enough- the first vein rolled.
The second vein blew.

So now, I'm waiting for the charge nurse to come in and
and Prod
in my FLESH!

She also had me sign a little paper that basically said, "If the doctor messes up, if the staff is stupid, or if the electricity goes out- no matter what I - the one who is the patient- assumes full responsibility for anything that happens." Yes, I'm kidding! But it did make me think that way.

ah, well. Such is the day in the life of a patient. :)

luv u all- thank you for your prayers! Please keep praying!

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

This Crazy Week!

First of all THANK YOU everyone for your prayers!

God is faithful and I am in His perfect hands.

In case you are reading this and you do not know, I am typing this blog sitting in a hospital bed- waiting for a pacemaker to be put in tomorrow.

I am still in shock I think. I just can't wrap my little brain around this craziness.

I FEEL great! ~ at the moment. I have had lots of moments in the last several days when I haven't felt so great, but such is life, right?

Saturday, I was headed out the door to go to my office to catch up on a few things when my kids found me a few minutes later in the floor.

Long story short (#1) Rusty DRUG me to the ER. :) I wasn't a very willing wife. Ha!
They admitted me and waited until today (Monday) to do some tests.

One of the tests was a thallium treadmill. I thought, "No, big deal! I've been exercising on my new little wii fit game and I will do this fine." And I did! (ha! you thought I was going to say something else.)

Fine for a few seconds that is. Then I bottomed out. Saw white lights and everything!
It scared the people and the doctor in the radiology room. We were laughing later because when I first went in there, they were discussing how tired they were and half asleep after a long festive weekend. I joked with them about some shopping stuff etc, etc.

I reached my target heart rate of 148! Woo hoo! I was rather proud that my little hiney muscles and leg muscles held me up that long (credit goes to my new wii fit, of course!).

Then I felt that weird feeling. The next thing I know that doctor is beating on my chest and yelling at me to breathe and open my eyes. "Stay with us! Stay with us!", he yelled.

I was like~ "Oh, Jesus, I long to see your face, but I want to kiss my husband, kids and grandkids good bye first!"

All I could see was WHITE!

And of course, I have been making jokes (nervous jokes) today about how glad I was that I saw WHITE lights and not darkness!! It WAS reassuring. (Don't snicker, you would be glad too if you thought you were about to breathe your last!)

So, the doc said my heart rate went from 148 to 28 in a matter of seconds. I got a sweet little dose of atropine (sp?) to keep me in this body for now.

We have had several good laughs today out of some of my memories of those few minutes. One of the assistants in there, (I don't know her professional title) was a precious African American lady. When I told them that everything was white, I looked at her and said, "Even you dear!"
She got tickled. We all laughed.

So, I have transferred to the hospital where my husband's cardiologists group is and will more than likely have a pacemaker tomorrow - or today rather.

They don't know yet WHY this is happening, but will not do a heart cath until I have the pacemaker put in. (I typed installed and erased it. I am not a car that needs a new battery! ha)

I told them, if they just would have let me have my diet coke this morning, all would be well.

Then, I have thought about the heart cath. "What if they find some blockage?" Will they tell me to NEVER eat m&ms again?!!!"

Do you see where I am going with the new line of thought and concern!

We are talking some serious stuff here!

But, I will cross that bridge when i come to it~ and will maybe take the ferry across!:)

In the mean time, I have a new jewelry collection!
New bracelets - red, yellow and white!
and a new necklace- black strands!

They took some of my bracelets away today when I changed hospitals but game me perty new ones in their place.

I also have a new wardrobe! Brilliantly designed gowns that are made for comfort and ease! Why, I don't even have to disrobe to let them look at my new necklace!

So, this crazy week isn't so bad. I just have to look on the bright side and find the funnies hidden smack dab in the middle of crazy!

Tomorrow I will be sporting a brand new accessory!
(I sure hope it matches my necklace and bracelets!)

love you all and thank you again for your continued prayers!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Every Good and Perfect Gift

"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like the shifting shadows." James 1:17 NIV

We had another one of those mornings. You know. The kind where everyone wakes up a little later than they should and where no one laid out their clothes the night before. It was a little crazy with five people running around the house looking for items that had been tossed aside carelessly the night before.

When the announcement was made that the temperature outside was a frigid 27 degrees, the scramble started again for decent coats. Everyone was successful in the hunt except for my son.

I had gone on about my business helping do my ten year old's hair when my 16 year old son walked in and asked if I could help him for a minute.

He needed help finding a coat to wear.

He did not know what I knew.

We looked at some of the hoodies and jackets he received for Christmas last year.
Last year my son was under 6 feet tall.
Twelve months later he is 6'2" and growing.

Last year's jackets looked like cute little mid-drift!

He still did not know what I knew.

He looked at me and asked what he should do. All of the shirts we bought him for school were short sleeve and his hoodies were all filthy.

I went to my closet and found the sack I was looking for.
I pulled out the Christmas present purchased the day after Thanksgiving.

It had been there all the time.
A gift.

He was glad, relieved, and surprised that the jacket was one that he had wanted.

It had been there all the time- a gift just waiting to be received.
I was waiting for Christmas, but he needed it before then.

I gladly gave him his gift because of his need.
I knew his need in advance and was prepared.

Do you see where I am going with this?

How much more does God know what we need?
How much more is He prepared to give us what we need?

Luke 11:13 says, "If you then, thought you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?"

Can I point out something else?

After my son opened his early Christmas present, a sharp Aeropostale jacket, we discussed his need for a heavy coat. I asked him about the school's athletic jackets.

He said he told the coach he didn't want one.
Because he felt like it was too much money for us to spend. He is going to a private school this year and we have had a few extra expenses to say the least. He has always been like that. He doesn't want to ask for "too" much or "put us out" financially.

While I think he is very responsible and mature for thinking along those lines, he does not know what we know.
My husband and my resources are limited, but not depleted. :) We have anticipated the purchase of a letter man's jacket. This is something that we WANT to do, because we enjoy GIVING gifts to our children. It is SO FUN to hear joy in their voices and see it in their faces when they get a present they really wanted.

God's resources are infinite! How much more does He long to give us GOOD gifts. Not THINGS, but gifts that draw us closer to Him and make us more like Him.

God is so much more than giving us THINGS. He delights in bringing us joy! Do you really think He is with holding something you need just because?

Christmas is my favorite time of year because I L O V E to give my children LOTS of gifts. I can't give them everything they would like, but we enjoy just giving to them and providing for them. Even after they are grown and married, it won't change. Why? Because I love my kids and grandchildren! Giving is a result of loving.

"For God so loved the world that He GAVE."

So, today I encourage you to meditate on the TRUTH of God's Word, "Every good and perfect gift is from above."

Do you have a need? Know and trust in Him - that He is prepared to meet your need. You can even ask Him. (How silly would it have been for me to get mad at my son for asking for help finding a jacket this morning?) So, ask your heavenly Father. Trust Him!

I am thankful I serve such a wonderful God!


Jesus is the reason for EVERY season!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Proud Mother

Outside of Jesus Christ, my husband and my kids are the most important things in the world to me! My husband and I have a saying - that we appreciate our kids more because we HAD to wait so long to get them. We used to dream of the day we would have a family, and now that day is STILL here! WE are so blessed and so very proud of all of them!

So, we had ballgames last night- some we lost, but the last one we WON!

It was one of those "sweet" victories. If you've ever had a child play sports, you know what I'm talking about.~

Mackenzie's game was a heartbreaking lost. They fought so hard and came back and "almost" won. My Mack played an awesome game. I was so proud of her!

Jordan's game was a win! The Senior High boys played the same school that the Junior High girls played. And I wanted to S C R E E E A M from the stands for ALL of the games, "We ARE NOT playing Rugby! This is b-a-s-k-e-t-b-a-l-l." But thankfully I kept some semblance of self-control and did not. So, when the final buzzer announced the end of the game- our team had the most points, and that my friend was a SWEET victory indeed! After all the sucker punches, shoving, pushing, kicking and scratching, our kids won- by not stooping to that level. So, it was a good win. And.... Jordan played an excellent game also! I was proud of him also!

I know. I know. It's a sport. They play tough. They play rough. And the kids can take it, so why shouldn't the adults just put on their big girl undies and deal with it? :D

But two of those players are MY BABIES!!!!

So now, with every head bowed and every eye closed, please pray for me to have a Christ like spirit and attitude during ALL sporting events in which my children participate! :) (I'm NOT kidding!)

Okay, on to my other wonderful children......

My Taylor LOVES school. I can't bold it enough or capitalize it enough for you to understand how much this child enjoys learning and reading. She works hard at her "occupation" as student. She brought home her weekly grades yesterday with a big grin. We celebrated with each "A" paper I signed! She is so smart and studious!

Last but not least, I want to introduce to you, my daughter's newest Missionary Blog!

Please click here - after your done reading my blog to see it.

Brad and Glenda (my daughter) are newly appointed missionaries with the Assemblies of God. They will be living in Madrid, Spain and working with IMM- International Media Ministries. Brad creates video that shares the message of Jesus Christ. IMM is known for their quality film productions that are televised in non-Christian countries- countries where churches and preaching Jesus Christ are illegal.

I am proud of all four of my children!

God is so good to have blessed me with children and grandchildren! My life is full and my heart overflows!

I tell my kids all the time, "I am proud of you. Not because of your looks - which they are beautiful. Not because of your achievement - which they are wonderful. Not because of your athletic skills- which they are great. But because of who you are on the inside, because of who you have allowed Christ to be in your life. He is what makes you wonderful, special, unique and great! It is HIM in you that makes this mom proud!"

I just wanted to brag a little today.........
hope you didn't mind!


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

The "Wonders" of Christmas

I absolutely LOVE Christmas!
I love giving gifts to my children and granddaughters.
I love the excitement of the kids waking up that morning to see what is under the tree.
I love the music the radio stations start playing November 1st. :)
I love all the decorations the stores put out September 1st. :) :) (Just kidding)
I even LIKE decorating the tree and putting out all of our Christmas adornments.

The season we are supposed to celebrate the birth of our Savior.

God the Son left the majesty of Heaven.
God the Son left the attributes of His infinity.
God the Son came to earth and clothed Himself,
not in omniscience,
not in omnipotence,
not in omnipresence,
not in glory or splendor.
God the Son, humbled Himself, coming to earth clothed in

simple humanity.

Human Flesh with its limitations, desires, needs and all that is humanity.

God the Son, Jesus wrapped in humanity.

Have you ever "wondered" about that night?

Have you "wondered":
What was going through Mary's mind?
What on earth Joseph was thinking?
Did the innkeeper have any idea his little business would go down in history?
If anyone noticed shepherds running into Bethlehem to go to a barn?
What happened to the shepherds?
Were any of them around when Jesus started His public ministry?
What Mary's parents thought?
Did they think Joseph and Mary had gone crazy?
What about Mary's best friend? I'm sure she had someone to confide in. What did she think?

I have said for years, that more than anyone else, Mary knew that Jesus was born of a virgin birth. She knew more than anyone that the child in her womb was truly the Son of God.

Every year at Christmas, I just "wonder"...........

I hope you "wonder" also!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

An Undivided Heart

Psalm 86:11,12
"Teach me your way, O LORD, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. I will praise you, O LORD my God, with all my heart; I will glorify your name forever."

After I had my devotion this morning, I was thumbing through my Bible looking at some of my underlined verses.

I read Psalm 86: 11 and 12.

Hmmmmm. And what does the Psalmist mean by "give me an undivided heart"?
I don't mean to harp on this, but I think this goes back to yesterday's blog about neglecting our salvation.
Jesus Himself said we cannot serve two masters.
In our country, we Christians live such comfortable lives. We don't have to "believe" God for our next meal. We go to the Supercenter and walk down the aisles of plenty and check out at the registers of gluttony. We peer through the catalog of wishes and purchase with our credit cards of excess and debt.
We sometimes get stuck in the quagmire of complacency.
But I want to be like the Psalmist and pray his prayer~
"Teach me YOUR WAY."
The result? "And I will walk in YOUR TRUTH."
"Give me an undivided heart."
The result? "That I may FEAR YOUR NAME."
An Undivided Heart.
What on earth does that mean?
To me, an undivided heart is having a single purpose in life, having nothing else that takes our eyes off of Jesus.

To me, an undivided heart is loving Him with all of my heart and will all my soul and with all my mind.
When I have an undivided heart, it doesn't matter what others think of me. It doesn't matter what "things" I possess. Pleasures and comforts will be at the bottom of my priorities.
When I have an undivided heart, my passion, my desire will be for my Savior, the lover of my soul.
That makes me think........
You know, I am crazy in love with my husband of almost 26 years.

I remember our first date.
I remember our first kiss!

Bear with me a moment as I reminisce. :)

I was standing at the side door between Bowie and Flower Dorms at Central Bible College in Springfield, Missouri.

It was 'late September back in 82'. :) (The song says '62- but it was 82!)

We had just been to the David Meece concert at Evangel University.

He walked me to my dorm and we were laughing and talking. The next thing I know he is looking me in the eye and he leans down and tenderly kisses me.

My heart melted.
He grins and says, "See you tomorrow?
I don't think I could speak.
I just nodded and walked in a daze to my room.

I still love him and still get "ga ga eyed" when he kisses me. :)

So..... back to the blog.

Why did I share that with you?
Because, as much as I am crazy about my wonderful and handsome husband, I am that much more in love with my Savior!
To be in the presence of Jesus and to feel His Glory and be surrounded by His love is breath taking! I yearn to spend time with Him basking in His Presence and sensing the warmth of His marvelous love.
If you have no clue what I am talking about and find an analogy of first love to God incredulous, then you haven't been "in love" with Jesus that way He longs for you to love Him.
How do you get to that point?
By spending time in His Word.
By spending time at His feet.
By seeking His face.
By saying words of adoration to Him.
With a repentant heart, asking Him to reveal Himself to you?
I think we sometmes treat the Holy Creator with a vending machine mentality.

"God, help me!"
"Lord, I need this."
"Jesus, if you will just heal my child...."
"God, you said you woud meet all my needs!"
Then, after we have received our "stuff", we forget to just love Him with all of our heart, with all of our soul and with all of our mind.
Why don't we pray for an undivided heart?
I know I need to ask God for an undivided heart DAILY!
I don't want to neglect my salvation.

I don't want to become calloused to the freshness of His love!
I want to be CRAZY in love with Jesus all the days of my life!

Lord, give me an undivided heart today! ~That I may fear Your Name!



Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Neglecting Our Salvation

The question was asked:
"Can I lose my salvation?"

I wanted to be careful of my answer because this was not an adult seeking "life's answers". This was a teen who came from a home with doctrinal differences than mine on the subject.

Do I give my "learned A/G" response or do I cause her to ask herself more questions with answers in scripture?

I asked myself, "But do I really think that differently from what she has been taught?"

I replied:

"I don't know necessarily. I'm thinking about what God's Word says. The New Testament teaches that we are born into the family of God through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ. (Romans 7,8) I have children. There is NOTHING they could do to make me stop loving them. NOTHING. Nothing they could do to make ME disown THEM. But, should they reject mine and my husband's rules, there will be consequences. I hate to say it, but for their own good, if they totally rebelled against our parental authority, they would lose the comforts of living in the home, my husband and I gladly provide for them. Their choices would cause certain consequences, not because we look for any chance to punish them, but because we love them more than they can imagine. They could change their name and never speak to us. They could walk away from all the love we give freely and all the blessings of provision we give, but we would never disown them. We would never go to court to say 'No longer are you my child'. Our home is established in love, but love AND discipline. Because of our love we have rules to protect our children. Rules that we enforce ~ out of love. Rules that if rejected do bear consequences such as loss of privileges and blessings. Rules that if continued to be rejected ~ or even 'neglected' would result in not being able to continue living under our roof ~ that is after they became of a certain age. (Important point)

I believe our relationship with God is a lot like that. He loves us more than we can imagine, but just because He is a God of love and mercy does not mean that there are not consequences to our actions. He would never just cast us out, but we, being creatures with free wills may leave His blessings and grace at any time."

I continued:

"I think the question might better be stated, 'Can I neglect my salvation'? 'Lose' denotes an accident or something that wasn't meant to happen. 'Neglect' may indicate something we didn't mean to happen, but because of our carelessness, what once was precious, has now become something we thoughtlessly toss aside.

God's Grace is loving enough and merciful enough to KEEP us. His Holiness is perfect enough to demand a just retribution. Yes, we are covered by the blood of Jesus. Yes, His blood cleanses us from all our sins, BUT, there are many 'IFS' in God's Word attached to our salvation. (Romans 6-8). The Word speaks much of 'living by the Spirit, walking in the Spirit, not living according to the flesh or giving in to the desires of the flesh'. The Word also says that should we decide to live according to the flesh the end result is (spiritual) death. When our spirit dies, we are in need, once again, of being born again. If we live according to the spirit on a daily basis, crucify our flesh, and die to our self, our spirit man will not die, but live and thrive and become spiritually mature.

Does this mean we become perfect? ~ Oh, no. Not by a long shot, but it does mean we can grow and develop the likeness of Christ in who we are."

She looked at me and looked at her Bible. "I have some studying to do."

Inside I was thanking God for His Spirit giving me Words to say.

Deep down, I think we A/G loving folks sometimes forget the "Eternal Security" Christ's blood has afforded us. Yes, He DID provide an "Eternal Security" for us, but He did not provide "unconditional security" for us.

I cannot "fall" from grace, but should I rebel and reject His love and sacrifice, I can "jump" from His loving mercies.

What "fool" would do such a thing - to know the love and grace of Christ and then totally reject all that Christ has to offer? One who has tasted one bite at a time of the temptations of this world~ wealth, pleasures, idleness, selfishness, all the temptations Jesus faced, but refused.

Jesus said Himself in Revelation 3, "I will spit you out of my mouth". He was talking to the church of Laodicea- people in the CHURCH - those who know and have tasted of the salvation of our God.

I am not writing this blog today to start some crazy debate regarding doctrinal differences. I am writing more to all of us to NOT NEGLECT this wonderful and marvelous salvation that has been given to us, paid for by the precious blood of Jesus.

I want to be passionate about my relationship with Christ.
I want to be intentional in my relationship with Christ.
I want to be radical in my relationship with Christ!

I just want to become more and more like my Savior, my Redeemer, the Lover of my Soul. Because when it is all said and done, it is not about THIS life that matters. It is about spending eternity with the Glorious and Majestic King of Kings and Lord of Lords- The Great I AM!

I just want to hear HIM say, "Well done, my good and faithful servant."

Wow! Come quickly Lord Jesus!