Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Gratituesday

"Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High, and call upon me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me" Psalms 50:14
Today we stop and give thanks for all God has done for us. I stand amazed at how God is working in our lives. Tomorrow we start moving into our new wheelchair accessible apartment. Rich will get to move around freely in the apartment. We're working on a permanent wheelchair for him. Rich and I will get some much needed time alone during the day. That alone will be worth the price of admission! God has not forsaken us. He is still working in our lives and for that I am eternally thankful!

Tell me what you are thankful for today.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Monday, January 30, 2012

Question #2 Does everyone go to Heaven?

I pray your weekend was filled with worshiping the ONE who is worthy of all our praise. We are in the middle of our series on heaven.

Our question for the day, does everyone go to heaven is controversial. It is hard to wrap our brains around the idea of a place that God would send anyone filled with torment that never goes away.

This topic goes to the very core of God's nature. If we believe that God is the one and only God, who created everything and is Master of the universe then we have to conclude that He can do what He wants.

Our Father is just that, our Father. He created us for a relationship. As any good father He wants the best for his family. He wants us to love him and obey. The word obey is such a tough concept and can be very hard to swallow. You see, we want to do things our way. Burger King tells us we can have it any way we want! I could bring up numerous adds that tell us we can do whatever we want. Let's look at what Jesus himself said.

Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment.

John 5:25-29 (ESV)

It's not popular to think of God or Jesus "executing judgement". That concept doesn't mesh with a loving God. In fact books have been written in the past few years about this topic. The conclusion is that everyone gets to go to heaven. That is Satan's ultimate lie my friend. If everyone is going to heaven then there is nothing to strive for on this earth. No need to be holy if we all go no matter what.

George Barna who is probably the most interesting pollster on the body of Christ says this;

Destinations

"Most Americans do not expect to experience Hell first-hand: just one-half of 1% expect to go to Hell upon their death. Nearly two-thirds of Americans (64%) believe they will go to Heaven. One in 20 adults (5%) claim they will come back as another life form, while the same proportion (5%) contend they will simply cease to exist."

Obviously the vast majority of American's believe they are going to heaven. Let's just rest on that thought for today and continue to 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".

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Would you pray?

I want to praise God in this storm we find ourselves in. I want God's name to be glorified by how we live our lives. And I especially want to be God's hands and feet for my husband.

I am overwhelmed and so very weary of the road we are on. Rich is on a downward slide again health wise. Some days I wonder just how much longer he will have to suffer. Could we possibly go years more of this?

One of our sons we adopted at age 10 is on a path of destruction. After being released from a Christian treatment center he ran away and has been living with a biological sister for the last 8 months. He has gotten kicked out of school for being high and having drug paraphernalia . His sister is coming to the end of being able to help him so I have to find a new place for him to live. He also threatened the vice principal and the pediatrician the other day. He told them if they tried to take him away from his sister he would cut their throats. I need wisdom right now.

I need an army of believers to intercede for my family today. Would you join me?
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Friday, January 27, 2012

Question of the Day

Good morning to each of you. I hope you find yourself right where God wants you!
I would like to bring up some questions and hopefully spur you on to deeper study about heaven. The first question is this, do we go straight to heaven when we die?

The answer to the question depends on what our definition of heaven is. When we go to a funeral and the speaker says our loved one is now in heaven with God we all think of the eternal dwelling place. In fact, there are two distinctly different places. There is the forever dwelling with God and the transition heaven.

When we read about what happens right after death we can go straight to Jesus' teaching with the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16:19.
The poor man died and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s side. We learn several things just from this one verse. First Lazarus is not alone. Just rest on that thought for a moment. He doesn't leave this earth alone! The angels come and take him. That should be a comfort to each one of us. The biggest transition of our lives doesn't happen by ourselves. Isn't God good like that? Picture a little child fearfully getting on a plane for the very first time. The child is firmly holding on to Mama and Papas hands for comfort. The second thing we learn is that the angels take the poor man directly to Abraham where he will be comforted till the time God designates for the earth to end. This is the transitioning period. We know that those who go there will be comforted. Now to the rich man...

The rich man also died and was buried, 23 and in Hades, being in torment, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham far off and Lazarus at his side. 24 And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been fixed, in order that those who would pass from here to you may not be able, and none may cross from there to us.’

There are many things we learn from the rich man. When he dies there are no angels to bring him to Abraham for comfort. Why? He already got his rewards on earth. He is taken to Hades where he is tormented. Part of the torment is seeing the poor man from a distance being comforted. The rich man is tormented physically. He is in anguish because of the flames. The rich man remembers his life on earth. He is tormented by the fact that his family is headed for the same place he's at and begs for his family to be rescued and gets a very firm NO!

In each case the outcome is already fixed. There is no praying a person out of Hades. On both sides there is no changing sides. Our fate is sealed at death and there are immediate consequences. For those who did right they are comforted and for those who rejected the Master of the Universe there is torment both physically and mentally.

One last scripture...

One of the criminals who were hanged railed at him, saying, “Are you not the Christ? Save yourself and us!” 40 But the other rebuked him, saying, “Do you not fear God, since you are under the same sentence of condemnation? 41 And we indeed justly, for we are receiving the due reward of our deeds; but this man has done nothing wrong.” 42 And he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” 43 And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” Luke 23:43

Next time we will ask a very tough question emotionally. Does everyone go to heaven?
Enjoy the weekend. I would encourage you to be a blessing to someone.
In Christ Alone,
Jill







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

Streets of Gold

How does a mere mortal describe heaven? We are inside of bodies that can't begin to comprehend another dimension. So how can we get just a taste of what is to come?

Jesus' beloved disciple John was taken up in a vision toward the end of his life and was allowed to describe some of the things he saw.

The New Jerusalem

“Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.” And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great, high mountain, and showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal.

It had a great, high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and on the gates the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel were inscribed— 13 on the east three gates, on the north three gates, on the south three gates, and on the west three gates.

And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

And the one who spoke with me had a measuring rod of gold to measure the city and its gates and walls.
The city lies foursquare, its length the same as its width. And he measured the city with his rod, 12,000 stadia. Its length and width and height are equal. 17 He also measured its wall, 144 cubits by human measurement, which is also an angel’s measurement.

The wall was built of jasper, while the city was pure gold, clear as glass. The foundations of the wall of the city were adorned with every kind of jewel. The first was jasper, the second sapphire, the third agate, the fourth emerald, the fifth onyx, the sixth carnelian, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, the twelfth amethyst.

And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, transparent as glass. Revelation 21


Please take some time to slowly read this description and then just let your imagination kick into gear. Next time we will tackle some questions.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Thursday, January 26, 2012

A Tour of Heaven

And he said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.”Luke 23:43

Two wretched sinners tried and found guilty, sandwiched between the only One who was truly guiltless. One realizes he is guilty and sees the difference between him and Christ. Deep within his soul he knows the Master is being crucified without cause. He asks the question we all want to ask. Remember me?

The LORD not only remembers but is doing something so wonderful it is almost beyond comprehension. As we found in scripture yesterday a place is being prepared, for that we can be certain.
When Jesus was born a multitude of the heavenly host praised God. When Jesus told the parable of the lost coin he said this; Just so, I tell you, there is joy before the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” Luke 15:10

The angels will rejoice. I can only imagine what that will be like. Listen to what Jesus says about the resurrection.

Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment. John 5:25-29

We do know this, we are told to rejoice if our names are written in heaven. Nothing you and I can do on our own will get us to heaven. No matter how "perfect" we try to be, it will never be enough. I know that once we get there we will rejoice! Maybe angels won't play harps but there will be rejoicing!

Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; 6 do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. 7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Phil 4:4-7 (ESV)

In Christ Alone,

Jill



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

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

In My Father's House

It is so interesting how we can read certain scriptures and remember exactly where we were when that particular verse or verses came alive for us. I remember one time going to a gals home from a congregation we were attending and sipping tea and reading scripture. We focused on three verses found in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5. Those verses have become a sort of mission statement for how I view my purpose on earth.

Similarly, I have a set of scriptures that gave me hope in the midst of great sorrow. These verses became like a rope thrown to a drowning woman. I remember sitting in the office of the funeral director when our son David died. Rich had brought his Bible and was silently reading a passage in John while the director was talking about the brochure that would be handed to every guest at the funeral. This is what Rich read aloud to us;
Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way to where I am going.”

John 14:1-4 (ESV) This set of verses was printed on the front of the handout for the funeral.

In my Father's house. Just rest on that one phrase with me. In my Father's house. Do you remember me telling you about the last home we owned? After getting there I was filled with such peace and was certain that I would remain there happy as a clam till I met the LORD face to face? There is a place that is being prepared for us that will make us much happier than any clam could. Come to think of it, how happy can a clam possibly be anyway? LOL

For the next few days I would like to talk about our Father's house. I want to walk into the house with you and explore all the rooms that are there. It will take some imagination on our parts but our imaginations can be helped along with scripture that we have available to us.

Some come join me as we tour this home. Bring your walking shoes because it is mighty big! Till then.

In Christ Alone,

Jill



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

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Gratituesday

"Sing praises to the LORD O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name." Psalms 30:4

"Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever." Psalms 118:1

A holy God who chooses us for his people. A holy God that loves us so much he gave his ONE and ONLY Son! A holy God that is the great I AM.

God my Father but also my Papa! A Papa that will shelter me with his presence in the midst of storms. A daughter who loves being called his very own.

A Father who wants me, his daughter to give him thanks in everything. The joyful times when all is well. When babies are born, when I am surprised by a gift of love. When the sun shines down on all I do. But then, he wants thanks in everything. The gut wrenching, soul searching witness to unspeakable pain, I thank you Father. To watch someone you cherish slide down a path that is seems so unfair I give thanks. To have a ministry that fits like a glove vanish overnight I give thanks.

Thanks in all things stretches me. At times stretches to what feels like the breaking point. It is in those moments that my Papa is proud of me. Proud I didn't give up, proud I clung to his promises and proud to call me his daughter.

Oh to give thanks to the LORD. His mercies are new every morning!
Give thanks.

In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Monday, January 23, 2012

Remember

Good morning precious one and happy Monday! Did you know that if you eat a handful of walnuts each day your memory will improve? Can't remember exactly where I read that little statistic but I know it to be true. In the society we live in there are a million voices screaming at us night and day. With all that clutter it is hard to "hear" the messages that hold real value in our lives.

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth.

Don't you just love the "if then" in this scripture? Because we are new creatures we are commanded to live differently. Our lives have been transformed by the Master. Our old life is now gone. That old life consisted of living for ourselves. As the commercial says, "go for the gusto". As redeemed believers we go a new direction and that direction my friend is UP!

God's word is like the walnuts I eat every day. I consume the walnuts so that I will remember the important things. I read God's word everyday so that I can remember this world is NOT my home. God wants me to focus on heavenly things instead of earthly things..

Next time lets look at what Jesus said about heavenly things. Till then, eat some walnuts and crack open God's word and focus with me.

In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Saturday, January 21, 2012

TRUTH

Jesus said, If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

John 8:31-32 (ESV)

The truth will set you and I free! What a promise from God. Our small group has been watching the Focus on the Family Truth Project. It is the third or fourth time that I have gone through the series. Each time I learn more and more about what real truth is. Lies are the opposite of truth. Remember that Satan is the father of all lies.

In my mind one of the most important truths after Jesus is the Son of God is that we are just travelers in this temporary home. It sure has hit home with me recently. We packed up a few things and moved over to our friends home for what we thought was 2 months of living with windows and woods. I chuckle because our plans are just that, ours. Our friends mom became ill and needed surgery so she needed to come home. So, we packed up what we had brought and moved back to our daughters. Now we are starting to pack again so we can move to an apartment that is wheelchair accessible . I feel like a gypsy again. While spending 22 years in the military we moved 14 times. I know what it's like to live like a gypsy! When you move as much as we did you end up traveling really light. Who wants to haul a bunch of "stuff" all over kingdom come?

We get SO comfortable here on planet earth. We begin to believe the lie that Satan gives us that the here and now is all that matters. It is a flash in the pan of eternity my friend. Remember when I visited the Plain Community of Caneyville back in November? They know how to travel light. As I sit here looking around the room I can see once again that I have accumulated "stuff" that will have to be moved again.

If God and his Spirit could convince us that this place we call home really isn't, how would we then live? If we are only here for a little while would we travel lightly? Is there anything we would give away? Is there anything we would stop purchasing? I for one have been challenged once again to view my surroundings in light of heaven.

I will never forget the last home we purchased. I finally got my "dream home". It was a simple ranch house with a full finished basement. It was out in the country. It had many trees and was just lovely to my standards. As we were moving in I remember standing at the door with Serenity. I was filled with contentment and told her I would not be moving again in this life. She would have to take me out feet first. What a foolish statement from a foolish woman! Serenity then said I better get busy dejunking some more because it would fall to her to get rid of all our "stuff" when I went out feet first. What I thought was my last home on earth wasn't.

You and I are travelers on this earth. This is NOT our home precious one. THAT is TRUTH! Now let's live like we believe it.

Till next time.

In Christ Alone,

Jill



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

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

LIAR, LIAR, PANTS ON FIRE!

Liar, liar, pants on fire! I must of heard that statement as a child but there is little doubt in my mind that I would have never uttered the words. You see I am terrified of fires.

My first memory of life was my sister talking to me in the middle of the night through the vent in the wall. She told me the house was on fire and that I needed to go and get a wet wash cloth. I was to take my baby sister out of the crib and put the wash cloth over her face and for me to hold her crouched under the crib till help arrived.

Since then my fear is that our house will be burning around me and I will become paralyzed with fear. Fear is a powerful motivator. My first memory of being taught about hell scared me to death. I was told that sinners would burn in hell. Considering my history you can see how that fear of fire motivated me! There was no way on God's green earth that I would want to go through a fire again. Since heaven was the only other choice I determined that I would definitely "work" hard to not go to hell.

I shared with you on Monday that there is a cosmic battle going on for our souls. Satan is the father of all lies. Hmm, maybe I should say that again precious friend. Satan is the father of all lies. The core of his being is filled to the brim with lies. Because of that battle for our souls he has to lie to us in order to keep us from truth.

Remember in Revelation 13:6 Satan has three main lies. Lies about God, lies about God's people and lies about the heavenly place. I think he has done a fine job of lying about heaven. When I would think about heaven as a child I was not really impressed with heaven but the alternative of fire was over powering. Frankly, as a child heaven sounded boring. Especially as a teenager heaven did not sound exciting. Would we just float around all day? Would we sing all day? Now to me that one was pretty cool since I have loved to sing since I was little. Again, the alternative was terrifying so I didn't mind so much being bored.

So these are the lies Satan tells. He doesn't have to convince us that heaven is not real. He just has to convince us that it will be boring! My wake-up call was on September 9, 1980. That is the day that heaven became a place that I yearned to go to. Our daughter Celeste was born and died that die. From that day on I studied heaven. It became a wonderful place where I would be with my daughter forever. There would be no more tears, my arms that ached to hold her would no longer feel empty. Heaven held all for me from that point on.

As I have grown in the faith I have come to realize that heaven will be wonderful. I am just starting to use my imagination that God gave me to envision what it will be like. What do you think heaven will be like? Are you unimpressed with the possibilities? Does hell motivate you to stay on the straight and narrow? What do you think?

Till next time.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

A Praise for Gratituesday

I had a wonderful praise on Sunday. My husband was able to not only worship with the congregation on Sunday but also taught his Sunday morning Bible class! I am thankful for the sweet fellowship and for once more sit at my husbands feet and hear God's word.

Thank you Lord. Please share what you are thankful for.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Monday, January 16, 2012

The Cosmic Battle

Good morning precious one. I want to continue our study of heaven this week. Before we go any further though I think it's important to look at the root of the battle we are facing.

Satan is a formidable foe. Have you ever wondered why he is our enemy in the first place? Satan was created by God. In Ezekiel 28:14 scripture says he was an anointed cherub. At one time he was blameless in all his ways. He allowed pride to get in the way of the majesty of God Almighty. In other words, he got too big for his britches!
Satan was thrown out of heaven. He lost his domain. When I think of that scenario I think of a ruler being thrown out of office. He will do anything he can to get back at the one who overthrew his government. There is a battle going on for your soul and mine.

In Paul's letter to the Ephesians he outlines the battle in chapter 6. Perhaps it is time to memorize verse 12. Listen to what it says.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Eph 6:12 (ESV)

It's time for each of us to name the enemy and it's not your neighbor or anyone else on earth. It is Satan himself. In starting the book Heaven by Randy Alcorn he writes about the nature of Satan. At his core he is a class A liar. I hate to call anyone a liar but he is the liar of all liars. Oh my precious one, do you understand all the lies he tells you on a daily basis? One after another tailor made just for you and just for me.

The biggest lies of all that Satan tells is about God, his people and surprisingly lies about heaven. I will close with this passage to chew on for the day. Revelation 13:5-6

"And the beast was given a mouth uttering haughty and blasphemous words, and it was allowed to exercise authority for forty-two months. It opened its mouth to utter blasphemies against God, blaspheming his name and his dwelling."

More about that next time.

In Christ Alone,

Jill




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

Friday, January 13, 2012

Above the Clouds

Good morning precious friend. Our ladies class on Thursday mornings took a break over the Christmas season so we resumed on Thursday. With a hospice helper I came to class, and boy am I glad I did.

Before class started the ladies put me in a chair in the middle of the room and they all gathered around and prayed over me. It was balm for a weary soul. I am so thankful that God has placed us right where we are.

Our Daniel study is over and we started Randy Alcorn's book Heaven. What a perfect study for me to learn right now. With that back drop I would love to share a scripture with you and then some thoughts.

If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.

Col 3:1-4 (ESV)

You and I have been raised with Christ. We are part of his family and because we are part of his family we are encouraged to not get bogged down on the things under the clouds. We are to set our minds above the clouds. Now I don't know about you but for me there are some things on this earth that weigh me down. Where do we live? Will I have enough pain medicine for my husband? Is there enough money coming in to pay the bills and the list could go on and on. Certainly we are supposed to be wise with our time and our money so don't misunderstand. But it is the cares of this world that Satan loves to use against us.

In Matthew 13 Jesus talks about the Parable of the Sower. This has always been a vivid description for me because of gardening. Listen to Jesus' explanation of the word sown among the thorns...

As for what was sown among thorns, this is the one who hears the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. 23 As for what was sown on good soil, this is the one who hears the word and understands it. He indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty.” Matt 13:22-23 (ESV)

Would you join me in meditating on this passage? God tells us we need to set our minds above the clouds. In order to do that we have to get rid of the cares of the world. Seems impossible to me but that's what God has called us to. And when God calls us to something he also equips us for the job.
Lots to think on today so let's get started!

In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Climbing

As you can tell my writing has been sporadic of late. My brain seems to be in overdrive. Because of that it's been hard to live a peaceful and quiet life. Sounds ridiculous I suppose. I am trying to wrap my head around our circumstances.

I figure the gal on the right is a pretty good metaphor for me right now. I am climbing a mountain of rock. Every place I put my feet I find slippery spots. The climb is steep but there is something else I can see in the picture. There is a safety net for me as I climb the rock. It fits snugly around my waist and seat. That safety net is attached to two ropes that is secured at the top. Because of the safety net I will not fall. Oh it may get scary and I might dangle off the edge a time or two but the net will catch me.

My safety net is found in the LORD. He embraces me and holds me tight so that I will not fall. It does not matter how steep the climb becomes and how slippery the rocks get we are safely snugged in. We will not fall.
I don't know what kind of rocks you are climbing right now precious friend. You may be suffering a crushing blow financially. You might be estranged from the ones you love the most. Satan may be having a field day with your life. Let me encourage you listen to the Psalmist.

"I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come from? My helps comes from the LORD who made heaven and earth. Psalms 121:1-2

Hold
on to that promise and I will do the same.
Till next time.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Monday, January 9, 2012

Gratituesday January 10th

Meet my husband and brother Bill and sisters Susan and Leslie. Two and half weeks ago my hubby went into hospice care. It has been a long road. Friday the sibs came together to be with Rich. Saturday Mom and Dad arrived in time for dinner from Tennessee. I really enjoyed my husband making wonderful memories with his (and mine) sibs.

I am grateful for today because today is all that God has given us. Live today like it was your last.

Please be patient with me as I struggle juggling all the balls I am juggling. There are times when I simply can't write and for this season it needs to be enough. No super woman cape to wear for sure. Just a woman who wants to glorify in any season I am thrown in.

I have started a journal of my husband's time in hospice over at:
www.caringbridge.org/visit/theroadlesstaken/ if you are interested in keeping up with our journey.
Seize the day my precious friend. You don't know if it is your last.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Welcome Back to Daniel

It's been almost three months since we started the book of Daniel! I dislike having to jump back in since it has been so long but the book of Daniel is SO worth it. So my first request is to go back and read chapters 1-5. It is a fairly quick read. It will help refresh your memory. With that in mind lets go to chapter 5.

King Belshazzar was the son of our buddy King Neb. He had to have grown up knowing the stories surrounding Daniel and his friends. He also had to have known that his Dad, King Neb spent seven very long years living with the beasts of the field and eating grass like an ox. I don't know about your family but when we have significant emotional events they are passed down to the next generation in the form of stories. I would venture to guess that he just forgot the lesson. Aren't we just like the King? We forget the lessons God has for us. We throw aside things learned for the urgent.

When Daniel comes before King Belshazzar he is promised purple clothes (a symbol of importance) gold around his neck (being rich) and third in line to the King (power). Doesn't that remind you of Satan in the wilderness with Jesus? We are also temped with all three of these things. Daniel wasn't even tempted. He said "no thanks, you can keep all of it."

I love Daniel. He is a man of courage and integrity. He inspires me to be better than I am. I hope you are also challenged. Be blessed. Till tomorrow.

In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Gratituesday January 3, 2012

New beginnings are wonderful. They are filled with promise and hope. I have been in short supply of both lately. I am thankful that the old year is now gone.

Today I am so grateful for a wonderful gift Rich and I have been given. One of our church friends is a snow bird. She leaves for 2 or 3 months and settles in the land of sun and fun. Her home is absolutely beautiful and she offered it to us for while she is gone. Everything my husband needs is on the first floor. There are huge windows looking out into the woods. It is so quiet you can hear a pin drop. We are so thankful for some time alone.

This gives me great hope. It will provide some needed rest for both of us. Thank you Sheila, we love you and am so thankful you opened your home to us. For that I am truly grateful.

I would love to know what you are thankful for.
In Christ Alone,
Jill



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

Monday, January 2, 2012

The New Year

Good morning sweet friend. Hopefully the whirlwind of the holidays is over for you. It's now time to reflect on the past year so that we can move into the new one with great hope.

I realized recently that I had lost hope and that is sad. When God is silent it is difficult to hold onto hope. Now that doesn't mean I had lost my faith in the LORD and his WORD. God is still God even when he is silent. I had lost hope that anything would change and there would be no improvement in Rich's health and our circumstances. In fact, someone had wished me "Happy New Year" and inside I was thinking, " I see nothing good about another year". It represented another year of horrible pain for my husband, another year having to depend on our daughter for housing, another year, another year!

God has shown me though that even though I feel like he is silent, he is still working in our lives. Hospice has now taken over my husband's care which to me is hopeful. Hopeful that the pain will soon be under control and he will be comfortable. Hospice is wonderful. They take seriously pain issues and will go to any extreme to make their patients comfortable.

God has been working in other ways in our lives while all I could feel is silence. A dear friend from church travels to Florida for the winter months and offered her home to Rich and I and our son Michael. Two of the men in the congregation came over and built a wheelchair ramp for Rich before we even moved in. It is a beautiful home to rest in. Rest is the order for the day.

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Matt 11:28 (ESV)

This brand new year is full of hope no matter what our circumstances. We are promised rest from every side. The new year reminds me of a huge winter storm that comes roaring in. When the storm finally passes you can look out and see fresh snow with no prints on the ground. It reminds me of an empty canvas just begging to be painted on! That is what our new year is all about. A fresh canvas. The old is gone. The new is here.

Won't you embrace this canvas with me to grow into the woman God has for us? I am hopeful.

In Christ Alone,

Jill




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