Sunday, July 31, 2011

Absolutely Devoted!

Devoted is a word we don't typically use in the 21st century. I decided to go to my original American Dictionary of the American Language by Noah Webster 1828, which by the way if you don't have a copy I would highly recommend it. I digress! When you look up the word devote Mr. Webster says it is to "appropriate by vow; to set apart or dedicate by a solemn act; to consecrate."

When I married my husband 34 years ago I stood in front of a body of believers and devoted my self to my husband. When I became a Christ follower I devoted myself to surrender my will to his.

Devoted is a strong word that reminds me that I have been set apart for the LORD's work. I have been listening on CD to a book written by William Law over 200 years ago called, A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life. I have been so challenged by this man's writing. I decided to look up all the words in scripture that use the word devoted.

Here are just a couple of them to read over this week.

And let our people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful. Titus 3:14 (ESV)

And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. Acts 2:42 (ESV)

Now I urge you, brothers —you know that the household of Stephanas were the first converts in Achaia, and that they have devoted themselves to the service of the saints— 16 be subject to such as these, and to every fellow worker and laborer 1 Cor 16:15-16 (ESV)

These are just a few. I want to encourage you to look up these verses and others that use the word devoted and study along with me.

Till then,

In Christ ALone,


Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Thursday, July 28, 2011

It's All About the Blood

There is an old time song that is called Power in the Blood. It popped in my brain this afternoon so I started singing it. Here is one of the verses:

"Would you be free from the burden of sin? There's power in the blood, power in the blood. Would you o'er evil a victory win? There's wonderful power in the blood. There is power, power, wonder working power in the blood, of the Lamb, There is power, power, Wonder working power In the precious blood of the Lamb."

I started thinking about the blood that Jesus shed for you and me. I am in awe of the amazing sacrifice because I KNOW what he has rescued me from! What about you? Do you truly get what he rescued you from? Were you "raised in the church" and never really strayed far from your parents teaching? Or were you like me, raised on the wrong side of the tracks? Those two scenarios are worlds apart. I have realized over the years that those of us who fought for a relationship with God and His people are filled with the knowledge that we were truly rescued.

Blood is critical for life. Even in Bible times the people knew the life was in the blood. Christ willingly give up a life in heaven with his Father to experience being a man. That is tough to wrap our brains around. Not only was he willing to come but he served all people and then gave up his own life for ours and theirs. He understood the power of the blood.

I looked up a couple of scriptures that talk about the blood. Romans 5:9

Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

12 remember that you were at that time separated from Christ, alienated from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. Ephesians 2:11

Next time you are wiping up blood from your child's boo boo or you scratch yourself and blood comes out, think about what Jesus' blood has done for you. Truly, there is POWER in the blood.

In Christ Alone,


Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

The View is Stunning!

Good morning ladies. I hope you are having a truly blessed day. I just have to share an experience I had on Monday. Our house has been overflowing with people for the last 10 days due to our son's graduation. Serenity and I really wanted to have one day where we all went somewhere really fun. We came up with Cedar Point, the ultimate day of fun in the sun. We are a roller coaster family and Cedar Point has the best. About halfway through the day several of us decided we wanted to try the newest "ride" in the park called "Wind Seeker". You sit in these swings and are buckled in snuggly which is a good thing since it takes you 301 feet up in the air! First it takes you half way up and just swings all the seats round and round. Then it takes you all the way to the top and round and round you go, just you in this swing. The view is breathtaking. Lake Erie is right next to the park and the swings are right at the edge so you are over the water. Swinging up above the park gives you a unique perspective. Down on the ground it is really hard to see past right where you are. Up above though you can see the whole picture.

As I was having the time of my life up in the clouds (okay, so I wasn't up quite that far) I thought about God's view. You see, he can see the big picture of our lives. For us, we tend to live in the moment and not see the big picture. We get bogged down in our daily lives that are sometimes filled with trials. Solomon challenged us to live above the clouds because everything under the sun is folly.

Riding the Wind Seeker was a wonderful respite for me. By the way, it is called the Wind Seeker because it is very windy 301 feet above the ground! I am thankful it did not go any faster than it did due to the wind.

The lesson I learned while riding is this, keep the big picture in my mind. It is easy for me to get bogged down in everyday life. Watching my husband suffer so is very hard emotionally. Trying to juggle the finances is tough. Living in our daughter and son in laws home is a huge challenge. So much loss.... yet so many blessings. No matter what your challenges are I am asking you today to look at your big picture. Go above the everyday and look up into the clouds and see the big picture. You will be blessed if you do.

Till next time.

In Christ Alone,


Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Gratituesday July 26th

What a special day it was! We gathered to have our son Daniel's high school graduation and open house this past Thursday. Daniel has been schooled at home his whole life and we wanted a celebration that would honor that accomplishment. Son Richard and his wife Courtney came from Lubbock Texas to be with us. Son Gabriel came with two of his children while Bethany and newborn Oren stayed back in Indiana to rest. Grandma and Grandpa came from Tennessee to help us celebrate. We surprised Daniel and brought his BFF Taylor from Nashville. We had many families and teens from the congregation and several friends from our Lansing church.

Rich presented Daniel with a 1942 compass and challenged him to always look towards true north. Most of his siblings then got up and read a scripture they wanted Daniel to leave with. I shared with the crowd how Daniel came into our lives all those years ago. Blessed, we are blessed beyond measure.

I would love to hear what you are thankful for today.
In Christ Alone,

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Monday, July 25, 2011


Check out the latest headlines and tell me what you think.

1. Teen burned alive by mother's boyfriend

2. Four year old shot dead while fishing with Dad

3. Car bombs kill 8 soldiers in Yemen

4. Los Angeles TSA indicted on theft charges

5. Vows make New York largest gay marriage state

I could go on and on and on but I think you get the point. I went to Sam's late this afternoon to pick up some things for a day trip tomorrow. I am a people watcher and have always been fascinated with how people present themselves in public. I know I am a little late but I am beginning to think that there are few people left in the world who don't have their faces, or their chests, or arms and legs covered in tattoos. I am also beginning to think there are only a few people left in this world who don't have their tongues, their nipples or their noses hanging with pierced rings and balls. Or what about the guys who think that I need to see not only their underwear but the cheeks and cracks they were born with. I guess I am just plain weird walking down the street in a dress these days. My how things have changed!

When did all of this happen? How did it become "normal" to look like that? How come a woman in a dress and a head covering looks out of place walking down the road? Or, when did it become abnormal to be married 30+ years all to the same man?

Remember when Jesus looked down on Jerusalem and wept at what he saw? His heart has to be breaking for our country right now. We started as a Christian nation and now look at us. In a recent study by the Pew Foundation 39% of 18-30 year olds say that marriage is now obsolete.

Everything is now upside down. What was once right is now apparently wrong. What is wrong now once was right. What a sad state of affairs. None of this takes Jesus by surprise. In fact he talked about this sad state of affairs and then encouraged his apostles to stay strong.

Behold, the hour is coming, indeed it has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home, and will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone, for the Father is with me. 33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

John 16:32-33 (ESV)

There is the solution to all these terrible headlines. Because of Jesus' birth, his life, his death and his resurrection he has the power to overcome the world. He calls us to be faithful and to be salt and light to this perverse generation. So, next time you read the headlines and feel overwhelmed, look up and know that Jesus really has overcome the world!

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Vanilla Extract is Here!

Dear Friends;

For several years now I have been making homemade vanilla extract. It started out as a fun project that I could make to use in my favorite recipes. Then I decided I should make some extra and give as Christmas gifts for our extended family. Then I was encouraged to sell my vanilla at our farmers market down the road. Last summer before we moved I sold all my extra at our local market and had so much fun watching people's faces as they listened to me explain how vanilla extract is made. I wanted to double or triple my batches and sell again this summer. However, when my husband lost his job and then we lost our home and moved in with our daughter I no longer had a farmers market within 2 miles of our home.

In our new town the local farmers market is 30 minutes away. It is a professional farmers market that does not fare well for little "vendors" like me. So, here I am with lots and lots of vanilla and no way to get it into people's hands until now.

My blog is all about God's word and not food. However there are several ladies in the Bible who sold things to help their families. This is my way to help our family. I have a separate page for my vanilla so it does not interfere with my blog. You can click on the homemade vanilla button and see what I have to offer. If you are not interested fear not, this is the only article I will write about it.

In Christ Alone,


Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


Today is Gratituesday. My precious sister in Christ Laura, over at Heavenly Homemakers started this special time each week to be thankful for all we have. What a blessing for those of us like me who need a little gentle nudge once in a while to remember all that God has done for us. Please stop by her blog and read what she is thankful for today. Below is mine.

Today I am so thankful for my family. This week we are celebrating our son Daniel's high school graduation. My family is coming from great distances to be together to help him celebrate the end of childhood and the beginning of adulthood. Now don't get me wrong, we are far from a perfect family. We struggle to maintain unity at times, feelings get hurt etc. but in the end we are family and for that I am truly blessed today.

Tell me, what are you thankful for today? I would truly love to know.
Till next time.
In Christ Alone,

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Sunday, July 17, 2011

My Testimony

Today I woke up and went directly to the obituaries and did not find myself there so I decided it was time to share my testimony with you! J

On my first day of middle school over 40 years ago I met a girl named Stacy. She and I walked to school every day. God had already touched my heart and I was searching. Having been raised Christian Science I saw that Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures was inconsistent with the God’s Word. I wanted to find a church that had no creed book. I believed at that time I would only be judged by God’s scripture so I wanted a church that only used God’s word. Stacey had never heard of a creed book so I figured I had just found a church.

I felt at home immediately when I went to her congregation. The men of the church always opened their Bibles to answer my questions and I loved that. I took my Bible everywhere. I remember having a big paperback “The Living Way” Bible. I read and I read and I read some more. At some point when I read Acts and asked Stacy, “Shouldn’t I be baptized and give my life to the LORD?” So, I took the plunge in more ways than one!

I would love to tell you that I was a holy teenager from that point on. I remember wearing mini-skirts and not listening when the elders shared with me about modesty. I remember going to the prom and not listening about dancing and what it could lead to. I struggled back then to put all areas of my life under the authority of God.

I spent many years taking two steps forward and one step back. I look back and remember the challenges that God has used to mold and shape me. More importantly, I know what God has rescued me from! If the LORD had not gotten my attention I would be out on the streets. He had a plan for my life just like you. He wants me to glorify Him in all I do and say. The best part is that He loves me more than I will ever comprehend. God put my precious friend Stacey in my life to speak truth into my life. I can’t imagine my life without the LORD. She was God’s tool to bring me to salvation.

Have the courage ladies to speak truth into someone’s life. Share the good news that Jesus is truly LORD of LORD’s and King of Kings. You will never regret it!

Till next time.

In Christ Alone,


"Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up!"

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Choose Life

Good morning ladies. This picture is from an ultrasound taken of a precious little baby. I was reminded the other day that we are still in a fight for this little one. I was happily driving down the road to our local farmer's market. I was chatting on the phone and caught out of the corner of my eye people walking in a circle holding signs. My brain started whirling around and I told my phone buddy what I had seen and turned around and went back.

I parked in the lot about 25 yards away since there was a big tall guy "guarding" the group. I don't look to scary :) and I walked up with a smile on my face. I put my hand out and introduced myself as a Christian who felt very strongly about the sacredness of life. I told him we had adopted 5 boys so we were willing to put our money where our mouths were. Later I realized I had miscounted, we had adopted 6 boys, oops, sorry guys! Anyway, I asked if I could join the group and hold a sign. He was happy to let me join in. I grabbed a large placard that said, "Adoption, not abortion" I figured I could rightfully carry such a sign.

There were two Catholic priests in full garb and about 20 others walking slowly in a big oval praying over and over. I'm not Catholic but I recognized the scripture they were praying. Round and round we went praying for the lives that were being taken in the abortion clinic behind us. The grass under neath us flattened out the more we walked in that oval. It got me to thinking about leaving a mark. Like the grass that will stay flattened after we left, our lives leave a mark too.

I was truly humbled as I continued to walk that oval. Ashamed that I had forgotten that the battle is still being waged for the lives of innocent babies. I realized that I had become so single focused on my life that I failed to remember that abortion is still a battle in our country. God has humbled me and accepted my repentant heart. The group will be back in a couple Saturday's from now and I will be back, praying for those babies lives being taken away and for Mama's who feel they have no other choice. Please pray for those families who are affected by abortion, won't you please?

In Christ Alone,

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Our Brains

When I think of the amazing intricacies of the human brain I stand in awe. We are fearfully and wonderfully made. Since God is our creator then he knows just how our bodies will function. He has the best advice for how to live our lives. Our challenge then will be to learn how to unclutter those brains of ours!

I have been on a journey to unclutter my brain now for a couple of years. I would love to say I have it all figured out but that would be a lie but I am being intentional about the unclutter process. My brain has been going at mach speed for years. I think it all started when I had my second child. I started the juggling act with my children, my home and God. Time became more scarce while I got busier and busier. I can remember telling my then 2 year old, "Gabriel, could you please stop talking for just a couple of minutes so Mommy can think?" That is when I realized my brain became cluttered. How did I get to this place? Probably the same way you got there, information overload.

That is where the computer has come in. Technology is a wonderful thing but it has a double edged sword. Did you know that when the washing machine was first produced it revolutionized the clothing industry and "freed" women from the drudgery of hand washing clothes. The wringer washer was a wonderful addition to the homemakers arsenals of tools. Most women owned just a few simple dresses at the time but with the advent of the washer women had the flexibility to own more and more since there was such much time saved. More and more "stuff" is the result of any new technology that comes along.

Just think about your life and what more and more stuff brings to your day. All of that "stuff" adds to our brain clutter. It sounds funny but spend some time thinking about it. I am greatly challenged by this verse;

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, 2 for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. 3 This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior. 1 Timothy 2:2

How are you challenged by this verse? I would love to hear.

Till then

In Christ Alone,

Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Sage advice from Flylady

And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, 19 but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 20 Mark 4:18-20 (ESV

Good morning ladies. I hope you had a wonderful holiday with friends or family. The freedom that we enjoy in this country was bought with the blood of our young men and women willing to defend that gift. Jesus also paid the ultimate price for our ultimate freedom. For that I am truly thankful.

Some years ago a friend introduced me to this fluffy little purple lady named Flylady. She was very bossy. She would come into my inbox everyday and tell me how to organize my home. Flylady divides your home into zones so that every month each room of your home has been cleaned from top to bottom. I have always loved Flylady even though my dh calls her the "bug woman" !

One of her famous quotes concerns clutter. "You can't organize clutter. The only way to deal with clutter is to get rid of it." Those are powerful words in my book because she is not only talking about clutter in our homes but clutter in our heads.

Everything we buy has a cost, not only in money but in time and attention. "Stuff" will clutter up our brains. I have had to learn that lesson the hard way. When my brain is going a million miles a minute it is hard to concentrate. So much information takes our attention away from what really matters.

Jesus' point is so clear. Our desires for more "stuff" and our cluttered brains will make us unfruitful because the gospel gets pushed aside. The cure is next... Till then.

In Christ Alone,


Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the ground each morning Satan says, "Oh crud, she's up".