Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Solution To The Problem

Seems like everyone is searching for happiness, contentment, and peace these days. Well, I guess that's the way it's always been. Isn't it funny how we know what to do to fix certain problems, but we just don't do it?
For example; one of my children pointed out the fact that all of his life I have been dieting, but yet I haven't lost (or at least I don't lose and keep it off) his words, "You are still the same, you aren't smaller, but you are also not bigger." What do I need to do about that? Do you know? I know. And if I didn't know, that same child would be glad to coach me each day to do the right things to solve my problem. My problem is fixable, but I keep listening for a different answer; an answer that has nothing to do with my eating and my exercising! Just ain't gonna happen! The answer is still the same. In my son's words again, "Mom, if you'd just walk for 30 minutes 3 or 4 times a week, and I mean REALLY walk, you wouldn't have to worry as much about what you eat. If you aren't out of breath, you need to speed up! If you know a food is good for you, eat more of it, if it's not good for you, eat in moderation, and drink alot of water." I KNEW ALL OF THAT!!! So there, I have an answer to my problem. I know that answer, but the answer is not going to help me get smaller if I don't put into action what I know.

Another example: If your house is dirty; what is the solution? Clean it of course. You can know to clean it, but until you get out the vacuum cleaner and a dusting rag and use a little elbow grease, your house will still be dirty.

Proverbs 3 is full of 'DO THIS' and 'THIS HAPPENS'. Let's look! DO THIS:  Proverbs 3:1 My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments: THIS HAPPENS: Proverbs 3:2 For length of days, and long life, and peace shall they add to thee. DO THIS: Proverbs 3:3 Let not mercy and truth forsake thee: bind them about thy neck; write them upon the table of thine heart; THIS HAPPENS: Proverbs 3:4 So shalt thou find favour and good understanding in the sight of God and man. DO THIS: Proverbs 3:5-6a Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, THIS HAPPENS: Proverbs 3:6b and He shall direct thy paths. DO THIS: Proverbs 3:7 Be not wise in thine own eyes: fear the Lord, and depart from evil. THIS HAPPENS: Proverbs 3:8 It shall be health to thy navel, and marrow to thy bones. DO THIS: Proverbs 3:9 Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: THIS HAPPENS: Proverbs 3:10 So shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst out with new wine. DO THIS: Proverbs 3:11 My son, despise not the chastening of the Lord; neither be weary of his correction. WHY? Proverbs 3:12 For whom the Lord loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth. HOW CAN WE BE HAPPY? Proverbs 13-14 Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding. For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain therof than fine gold.

Proverbs 3, verses 1-14 are full of answers. It tells us how to have good health, how to have plenty, how to be happy, how to find direction in our lives, and how to find favour with God. We all want those things, don't we? But, are we willing to do the verses before those answers?

Just something to think on.

Monday, April 26, 2010

31 Years; I've Never Been Sorry

Romans 10:13
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Romans 10:9-10
That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Thursday, April 26, 1979, around 8 p.m., BY FAITH I accepted the Great Salvation that God so generously, lovingly, and graciously gave us through His son Jesus.   Thirty-one years ago today and it's still as real and precious as it was to that little 14 year old girl that night.  I didn't deserve to be forgiven and saved, still don't; but I'm genuinely thankful and glad that Jesus took my sins upon himself, that I through His blood could obtain eternal life.   I cannot imagine living this life without Him; and I sure can't imagine living in Hell with no end in sight.  But, even if death were the end, which it's not; what a comfort, what a joy to walk with Him and talk with Him each and every day.  I do not have the adequate words to even describe what Salvation means to me.  I wish you could see my heart, or feel what I feel; and then, you'd understand.  I pray you know Him; I mean; REALLY-REALLY know Him.  I pray it's not a head knowledge, but a heart knowledge. I pray Jesus is REAL to you, not just an acquaintance.  Bro. Allen sang a song last night at church that said I wouldn't trade Jesus for anything....  Yes and Amen.  

April 26, 1979-Forever


1. My soul in sad exile was out on life's sea;  So burdened with sin and distressed,
Till I heard a sweet voice saying, Make me your choice;
And I entered the Haven of Rest.

Chorus: I've anchored my soul in the Haven of Rest,
I'll sail the wide seas no more;
The tempest may sweep o'er the wild stormy deep;
In Jesus I'm safe evermore.

2. I yielded myself to His tender embrace, And faith taking hold of the Word,
My fetters fell off, and I anchored my soul;
The Haven of Rest is my Lord.

3. The song of my soul, since the Lord made me whole, Has been the old story so blest,
Of Jesus, who'll save whosoever will have
A home in the Haven of Rest.

4. O come to the Savior, He patiently waits, To save by His power divine;
Come, anchor your soul in the Haven or Rest,
And say, My beloved is mine.


What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought
Since Jesus came into my heart.
I have light in my soul for which long I had sought
Since Jesus came into my heart.

Since Jesus came into my heart
Since Jesus came into my heart
Floods of joy o'er my soul like the sea billows roll,
Since Jesus came into my heart.


You ask me why I'm happy so I'll just tell you why,
Because my sins are gone.
And when I meet the scoffers who ask me where they are,
I say, My sins are gone.

They're underneath the Blood on the cross of Calvary
As far removed as darkness is from dawn;
In the sea of God's forgetfulness, that's good enough for me,
Praise God, my sins are gone.


I heard an old old story How a Savior came from glory,
How He gave His life on Calvary to save a wretch like me;
I heard about His groaning, Of His precious blood's atoning,
Then I repented of my sins and won the victory.

O victory in Jesus, My Savior forever,
He sought me and bo't me
With His redeeming blood.
He loved me ere I knew Him
And all my love is due Him,
He plunged me to victory,
Beneath the cleansing flood.


Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me.
I once was lost but now I'm found
Twas blind, but now I see.


Ever since Jesus saved and pardoned I have been singing every day
I've never been sorry that I trusted His name;
Thru the dark shadows He is with me, leading me on the upward way,
I've never been sorry that I trusted His name.

Hallelujah, What a Savior!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Ragman


Before dawn one Friday morning I noticed a young man, handsome and strong, walking the alleys of our city. He was pulling an old cart filled with clothes both bright and new, and he was calling out in a loud clear voice: "Rags! New rags for old! I take your tired rags! Rags!"

"Now, this is a wonder, “I thought to myself, for the man stood six-foot-four, and his arms were like tree limbs, hard and muscular, and his eyes flashed with intelligence. Could he find no better job than this, to be a ragman in the inner city? So I followed him. My curiosity drove me and I wasn't disappointed.

Soon the Ragman saw a woman sitting on her back porch. She was sobbing into a handkerchief, seeming to shed a thousand tears. Her shoulders shook. Her heart was breaking. The Ragman stopped his cart. Quietly, he walked up to the woman, stepping around tin cans, dead toys, and Pampers. "Give me your rag," he said so gently, "and I'll give you another."

He slipped the handkerchief from her eyes, and he laid across her palm a linen cloth so clean and new that it shined. She looked from the gift to the giver. Then, as he left and began to pull his cart again, the Ragman did a strange thing: he put her stained handkerchief to his own face: and then he began to weep, and to sob as intensely as she had done, his shoulders shaking. Yet she was now without a tear.

"This is a wonder," I breathed to myself, and I followed the sobbing Ragman like a child who cannot turn away from a mystery.

"Rags! Rags! New rags for old!"

In a little while, when the sky showed grey behind the rooftops and I could see shredded curtains hanging out black windows, the Ragman came upon a girl whose eyes were empty and whose head was wrapped in a bandage. Blood soaked her bandage and a single line of red ran down her cheek.

Now as the tall Ragman looked upon this child with pity in his eyes, he drew a lovely yellow bonnet from his cart. "Give me your rag," he said, "and I'll give you mine." The child could only gaze at him while he loosened the bandage, removed it, and then tied it to his own head. The yellow bonnet he then set on hers. And I gasped at what I saw: for with the bandage went the wound! Against his brow it ran darker, more substantial blood -- his own!

"Rags! Rags! I take old rags," cried the now sobbing, bleeding, strong, intelligent Ragman. The Ragman now seemed more and more in a hurry.

The Ragman then came upon a man leaning against a telephone pole. "Are you going to work?" he asked the man. The man just shook his head. The Ragman pressed him; "Do you have a job?" "Are you crazy?" sneered the man. He then pulled away from the pole, revealing the right sleeve of his jacket--flat, the cuff stuffed into the pocket. He had no arm.

"So”, said the Ragman. "Give me your jacket, and I'll give you mine." Such quiet authority in his voice!

The one-armed man took off his jacket. So did the Ragman--and I trembled at what I saw; for the Ragman's arm stayed in it’s sleeve, and when the man put on the Ragman’s jacket he now had two good arms, thick as tree limbs; but now the Ragman had only one.

"Now go to work," he said.

After that the Ragman found a drunk. An old man, hunched, and sick lying unconscious beneath an army blanket. The Ragman took that blanket and wrapped it round himself, but for the drunk he left new clean clothes.

And now I found that I had to run to keep up with the Ragman. Though he was weeping uncontrollably, and bleeding freely at the forehead, pulling his cart with one arm, stumbling from drunkenness, falling again and again, exhausted, old, and sick, yet he went with terrible speed. On spider's legs he skittered through the alleys of the city, this mile and the next, until he came to the edge of the city, and then he rushed beyond.

I wept to see the change in this man. I hurt so to see his sorrow. And yet I needed to see where he was going in such haste, perhaps to know what drove him so.

The now little old Ragman came to a landfill and a dumping ground. I wanted to help him in what he did, but I hung back, hiding.

He climbed a hill and with tormented labor he cleared a little space on that hill. Then he sighed and lay down. He pillowed his head on a handkerchief and a jacket. He covered his bones with an old army blanket --- and then…he died!

Oh, how I cried as I witnessed that death! I slumped in a junked car and wailed and mourned as one who has no hope--because I had come to love the Ragman. Every other face had faded in the wonder of this man, and I cherished him; but he had died and it was over. I sobbed myself to sleep.

I did not know -- how could I know? -- that I slept through Friday night and all day Saturday and its night, too. But then, on Sunday morning, I was awakened by an intense bright light. The Light -- pure, hard, demanding light -- slammed against my face, and I blinked, but I looked, and I saw the last and the first wonder of all.

There was the Ragman, folding the blanket most carefully, a scar on his forehead, but he was now alive! And, besides that, healthy! There was no sign of sorrow or of age, and all the rags that he had gathered now shined as the sun.

Well, I then lowered my head and, trembling for all that I had seen, I walked up to the Ragman. I told him my name with shame, for I was a sorry figure next to him. Then as I looked at the condition of my own clothes, I said to him with deep yearning in my voice: "Dress me, Please!" He dressed me.

My Lord took my filthy rags (Isaiah 64:6) and put new, clean, shining clothes on me, and I am a wonder beside him.

The Ragman, The Ragman, The Christ!

Adapted from the book, “The Ragman and Other Stories” by Walter Weingren

Friday, April 16, 2010

Buds and Blooms

I planted tulip bulbs last fall for Noelle.  Tulips are her favorite.  The pale pink one is my favorite.  The purple ones are so dark that from a distance, they look black.

I like the white tulip also. It looks so clean and pure.

Dark pink and and melon

My first rose buds...

My first rose

Red rose

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Who Plants a Seed (Thursday This N That)

(This is my post for KJV Directory, Thursday This N That, April 15, 2010)

Who Plants a Seed

Who plants a seed plants faith and trust,
For only sun and rain
That comes with passing seasons
Can change the seed to grain.

Who plants a hope plants future days,
For only time can bring
The dream to fullest blossom,
The thrush to try his wing.

Who plants a seed plants faith in God,
For only He could know
How seeds and earth and sun and rain
Can make new gardens grow.

~Ethelyn M. Kincher

I've thought much about planting and sowing lately. I have a condition called Spring-fever! I also have Plant-itus! I have been planting everything I can get my hands on...let me rephrase that...I have been showing Cale and Scot where to dig holes for all the plants I can get my hands on! This is the first Spring in six years that I've been this excited about working in the yard. The people we bought our house from had alot of plants and trees established and truly, had I not planted anything else, the yard would look fine, but Scot and I wanted to add our touch to our new property. My mother-in-law started it all my birthday by giving me two rose bushes; my mother added to my disease a few weeks ago when she gave me two plants that I have yet to find out the names of. I know they are very pretty, they bloom, they get pretty big, and they repel mosquitoes. Scot added more fuel to my fire Saturday morning when he mentioned us going to Lowe's to buy some new things for the yard. We bought several plants, rose bushes, and even a small Colorado Blue Spruce tree. We worked all afternoon in the yard digging and planting, and guess what we expect in a few weeks? We expect our sowing (so to speak) to prosper, grow, spread, and bloom! In years to come, I expect that my little Spruce will be a huge Spruce. We reap WHAT we sow!  Scot and I are also preparing to plant a garden. We discussed the vegetables we'd like to grow. What will be reap if we plant bean seeds? BEANS!  Corn seeds? CORN! I got to thinking about how just a little bitty seed can grow into something that we enjoy so much and quite honestly, we have very little control over it. Yes, we can do all the right things like water, keep weeds out, but it takes FAITH to plant a garden. It takes FAITH to plant flower seeds. I can't make them grow, but I have FAITH that in a few weeks, we'll have fresh corn, peas, and beans from those little seeds that we sow.  NOW...what about the seeds we sow in our everyday life?  Sow a smile-reap a smile. Sow a frown-reap a frown. Sow encouragement, reap hope. Sow the precious Gospel of Christ-reap Christians! I surely can't save anyone, just like I can't make the seeds grow into produce, but I can by FAITH share the good news of the Gospel with others. What are we sowing in our children's lives? Are we sowing wisdom? Character? Holiness?  Remember, we reap what we sow. If we TRULY believe that, why do we not sow more good things than we do? Scot wants to plant some fruit trees. He expects to reap....FRUIT!  Should he plant a pear tree, he will not be checking for apples on the tree, he'll be looking for pears. Let's plant the precious Gospel seeds, let God give the increase, and expect God's Great Salvation.   SOW-SOW-SOW!

He that goesth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him. Psalm 126:6

But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. II Corinthians 9:6

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. And let us not be weary in well doing; for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Galatians 6:7-9

Monday, April 12, 2010

My New Love

I've always liked flowers and picture perfect yards.  When Noelle and Cale were young, we had some flowers in beds, we set out some pretty Silver Maple trees on the bank in front of our house, and I'd usually have two or three pots of petunias on the porch, but I mostly did it for the looks.  To be honest, I really didn't enjoy the actual work of it, I just liked the end results.   Then, we lived in a church parsonage for almost five years and I didn't set anything out in the yard because I didn't feel like it was mine, which it wasn't, but I would always have a few pots of flowers sitting around on the porch and carport to make it look and feel homey.  I didn't realize how much I missed having my own yard until this Spring.  I will throw in that the reason I didn't miss having my own yard is because we were exactly where God wanted us, so we didn't miss what we didn't have....That is another post within itself...   This time last year, our entire family was so sad and devastated and we were looking for a house to move into until we could find a house to buy or waiting for God to move us where He so desired.  I've already posted about our new home that we bought last fall, so I won't bore you with that story again.  The previous owners already had alot of scrubs, plants, and trees established, so our job this Spring was just to add to it to give it our touch.  Of course, my mind went totally wild because our land has MANY possibilities and such potential....I told Scot that our yard could even look magazine perfect!  That is thanks to it's wonderful owners before us.  I will share with you a few of the things we've added recently. 
Mother and Daddy gave us these two plants for Easter.  They have several of these plants and they have grown and stayed so pretty since last Spring.  Now don't expect me to go all Martha Stewart or anything on you; I know very few names of flowers and plants.  I do recognize roses, daisies, petunias, buttercups, impatiens, pansies, lilies, hostas and a few others, but that's about it.  I do not know the name of the above plants, but I do know they are suppose to repel mosquitos.  Therefore, I call them Mosquito bushes.

Noelle helped me pot these Saturday.

Here she is filling the pots with dirt.

Scot and I went to Lowe's Saturday morning.  We bought a Colorado Blue Spruce tree, 3 scrubs (for screen), 5 rose bushes, 72 impatiens, and around 2 dozen petunias.

Cale went to work in my rose garden.


My rose garden.  Notice my little tree behind the garden. 

These pansies are from late last fall.

If you've read my blog much at all, you know I'm wild about birdhouses. (Houses and churches in general)  Bro. Sidney, a sweet man from church gave me these.  He made them.

He also made this one.  This one is sitting on a post at Remington's pen.  Remington loves birds.
The Barn is also close to his pen.

The PINK impatiens will be so pretty when they grow and spread together.
We also set out 3 sprigs of ivy close to the wall.
The field looks nice.  Our wonderful cousin Dale came a few weeks ago and bush-hogged the field with his tractor.  Last week, Scot borrowed his daddy's tractor and plowed and disked.    We will soon start planting a garden on part of that land.  I also plan to have a row or so of flowers out there.

Noelle even got in on the action.  She helped her daddy alot last Tuesday while Cale and I were at XC.

I love this picture.  I'm so glad Scot has taken the time to teach our children how to work.  Not only can Noelle work inside, she knows how to do things outside.  Same way with Cale...he loves the outdoors, but he also knows how to iron, cook a little, and clean inside.

I also love the nearby woods.  I plan on enjoying them alot.

And of course, I'm a bit partial to my new mailbox that Cale made me.

How peaceful is this.

This was one of those moments I would have missed had I not looked out the window at the right time.

Life is busy, but I want to enjoy the place God has so graciously provided me with the people He lets me enjoy it with.  Life may not always turn out how we think or hope, but the journey is always sweet with God leading the way.  My job is simply to obey and follow.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Cale's Handiwork

Cale's Pa-Pa wanted a Martin Birdhouse.  Cale asked Bro. Sidney from church about the specifications of one and Cale also got online and did a bit of research, and then, he went to work on it.

If I were a Martin, I wouldn't mind living in the hotel!

The finished product.  I think his PaPa will be pleased.  Notice the roosting bar at the top.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

My Children

An afternoon on the porch in old clothes...just enjoying the beautiful Spring weather and each other.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Resurrection

Now if Christ be preached that he rose from the dead, how say some among you that there is no resurrection of the dead?  But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen:  And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain.   Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that that dead rise not.  For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised:  And if Christ be not raised,  your faith is vain, ye are yet in your sins.  Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.  If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.  But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.  For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.   For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.  But every man in his own order:  Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ's at his coming.  Then cometh the end, when he shall have delivered up the kingdom to God, even the Father: when he shall have put down all rule and all authority and power.  For he must reign, till he hath put all enemies under his feet.  The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death.   I Corinthians 15:12-26

Without the resurrection:
1.  Preaching is vain.
2.  Our Faith is vain.
3.  Christ was a fake.
4.  Death would be the end.

Because of the resurrection:
1.  Preaching is not in vain.
2.  Our Faith has substance; it is not vain.
3.  Christ is alive, our sins are forgiven.
4.  Heaven is our home.

To the lost, The resurrection means an invitation.

(Notes from Sunday morning's message)