Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Exciting Thoughts!

     As all the hubbub of Christmas comes to a climax soon, I have been reminded of a very important fact: Christ is no longer the babe in a manger!  During my devotions as of late, and with the previous Sunday evening sermon by my husband, Christ reminds me of His glorious estate in Heaven...Right at this very moment!  Is not that fact exciting!  It is to me! :)
     Do not get me wrong, I do very much like to remember Christ's birth.  Yet, more and more I find that I focus more on where He is now, rather than where He was.  I am thankful that He was born physically, in the little town of Bethlehem-Ephratah, by the virgin Mary, of a lowly estate, with all the angels and shepherds praising Him.
     I am thankful that He obeyed His heavenly Father while on earth, by being obedient to Mary and Joseph, performing the miracles that proved He is the Christ and caused many to believe on Him, and by dying on the cross for my sins and that of the whole world.  I am most thankful, though, that He rose again and is now seated at the right hand of the Father, where He intercedes on my behalf!  Wow, what a thought!
     It brings chills of excitement all through my being to realize that Christ is right here with me, right here, right now.  He is also in Heaven with God the Father, right at this very moment.  I get excited over the description of His heavenly glory, and the heavenly praises He receives.  Oh, how unworthy am I to be His, yet so thankful!
Here is Revelation 7:9-17, very exciting!

"9After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

10And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.

11And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God,

12Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

13And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?

14And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

15Therefore are they before the throne of God, and serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall dwell among them.

16They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat.

17For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes."

Does not that account thrill your soul?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Biblical Forgiveness

     You know, I have never been one that has typically had a good outcome out of any kind of confrontation.  I have never known what it is like to talk to someone you love about a sensitive issue and it go well.  Sure, there may be sensitive feelings, I get that idea.  But, today was the first day where I have endured a real confrontation with truly Biblical results; and it was amazing.
     Whenever I have had to confront someone or be confronted, the outcome nine times out of ten ends up with a broken relationship.  Either I have said/handled things incorrectly, or vice versa.  I do not really recall a time when it has been dealt with Biblically and end up with both parties still in fellowship.  Therefore, anytime I have a problem I just try and avoid it (except with my husband, ironically), so that I do not lose that person I love.
     I know that God does not want me to do that, though.  He wants me to confront in charity the offender or offended and make things right.  If they will not forgive or what-have-you, I know that I am to get witnesses next time, and so on.  Yet, still out of fear of losing that relationship, I avoid confrontations.  But, it never gets any better that way.
     Finally, God had a dear sister of mine confront me with her own burdens.  She was asking me for forgiveness, yet I knew I was the one who needed to do so.  God used her tender heart to break mine and seek her forgiveness as well.  He also allowed me to share with her my reasons (though not an excuse) of avoiding these confrontations.  She understood, but it freed me from that fear.  For the first time I really experienced what true, Biblically-obeyed, confrontations regarding offenses can be like, and I am thankful for it.
     If anything, it caused us to love one another even more.  It caused us to love the Saviour more, trusting Him for whatever the outcome.  It caused us to know to pray for one another's sins in this area and others. We obeyed Scripture, because of Christ and through Him, and were blessed.  I know that Satan, my flesh, and this world will try to still tempt us where we are struggling, but now we have discernment and understanding.  Through Christ we can walk closer to Him and each other this time.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Unbreakable Family

     While I mope around feeling sorry for myself, life goes on.  I should not be coveting that which is not mine, whether temporal or not.  God wants me to be content with what He has given me: "Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee."~Hebrews 13:5.  Yet, I find myself not being so.
     It breaks my heart that I am so unthankful toward the God who saved my soul, yet it is the truth.  My biggest coveting problem is desiring love.  I seek it everywhere, and try to give it out everywhere.  The only problem is that I am not seeking the source of love, God, as I should.
     He is my first love, for though I love my family and friends, they could not ever do for me what Christ has done for me. He saved my soul, at such a tender age of twelve years old; knowing what I did, what I would do, what I am doing, and what I will do.  He allowed me adoption into His family once I put faith in Him, repented of my sins, and sought His forgiveness.  Why would not I want to love a God that desires my soul so?
     When I need family, He is my family. "For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father."~Romans 8:15.  He is the only one who has always been there for me, never leaving me or forsaking me.  When I rebelled against Him, quenched His spirit in my life, openly sinned against Him, He never left me.  He was always with me; I would just ignore Him.  How horrible is that?
     Yet, because He saved my soul and I was born into the family of God, He was bound by His promise to me.  Nothing could separate me from Him, and still nothing can separate me from him.  Of all the people I have sinned against and hurt, He is the one I have hurt the most; and, He still is willing to fellowship with me and love me. In fact, He has given me a home with Him in Heaven. Such love. 

"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Romans 8:38, 39

     I am the daughter of God. I did not earn this title by working into it, or being faithful to God's law.  I did not become His daughter by simply being born into a Christian family, or simply being a creature of creation.  I became His daughter by being born again through the blood of His precious Son Jesus Christ, who is also my Lord and Best Friend.

"For ye are all the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus."
Galatians 3:26 

"But now in Christ Jesus ye who were sometimes far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ."
Ephesians 2:13

     I am thankful, so very thankful, for the precious Word of God.  Since He put me in a church again, He has taught and is still teaching me how sure the Bible is.  I can always trust Him.  I never need to doubt the sincerity and truth of His Word.   It is more sure than anything else. I know that He is my family, and I am overwhelmed by the thought!  God is my Father; Christ my Brother, Best friend, Saviour, and King; the Holy Spirit my Comforter and Guide:  I do not deserve these blessings, but am becoming ever more thankful for them in my life.  I cannot wait to see them in Heaven.  I belong to them and them to me.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

It's Been Too Long...

...Since I have written an entry.

There is no good excuse. The only reason I have for not writing is this: too caught up in my own self and sins. I have had plenty to write about, actually. I have been busier, and the Lord has definitely laid a lot on my heart to study and talk about. Yet, instead of being faithful, (like He wants me to be), I have been stupidly sinful.

Enough of that already~~Life is too precious to be so stupid!

     God has been letting me read Jeremiah lately, amongst other books.  It has been very personal reading that book in particular, simply because I can relate to the sinfulness seen in its pages.  I am not proud admitting that fact, yet I am grateful for the opportunity to have my spirit be put forth in front of God's mirror.
     For those who have not had the opportunity yet to read this part of God's Word:  Israel during this time was very rebellious toward God, yet God was still pleading with them to repent of their sins.  He also warned them that if they did not repent, He would make of them a desolation.  God sent the prophet Jeremiah to preach these words to His people, yet they wanted none of it.  In fact, they were so vitriolic toward God's Word that they attacked Jeremiah.  There were many, many false prophets saying that they were preaching God's Word when they were not, and people would rather listen to sweet words of the false prophets than the harsh, yet loving, words of the Lord God.
     Too many times I have found myself that way. I want to hear something good, have my back scratched or patted, feel good about what is being said to me.  A lot of "preachers" are that way anymore, so it is not too hard to look one up and get what you want.  Yet, my soul never has been satisfied with that sugary muck that the flesh adores.  It may give me an emotional high for a bit, make me self-righteous in my own eyes, but it always leaves me with a gross feeling in my gut. Sometimes I try to ignore it, other times God intensifies that grossness by the truth of HIS WORD to remind me that He is not happy with my choice.
     Any parent who wants to take care of their child(ren) knows that not everything that their child needs to eat is going to taste good, yet their little bodies need it to grow strong and healthy.  (You are probably saying "Duh! I've heard this many times; it's a no-brainer.")  For those who are saved, God is our Heavenly Father and is much better a parent than any earthly parent can hope to strive to be.  And I know not everything always "tastes good" to first...when He is giving me what I need.  I must change my way of thinking towards my spiritual appetite:  it is not always a pleasant experience growing and getting healthy in the Lord, for there is always the issue of sin God is dealing with in me.

"For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness."
I Thessalonians 4:7

"Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth." 
John 17:17

     Holy living means being in the Word of the Lord.  Yet, I have found myself lacking in that area.  I will run through a devotion, and my mind struggles with staying focused in it.  I have to go back and re-read a portion that seemed to fly by me, because my mind drifted to some inane thought.  Then, when I should be meditating on His Word, I am meditating on every other thing but His Word.  When I should be doing the studies He has laid on my heart, for my own benefit and others, I do not; rather, I give in to my flesh's desires. Yuck.
     God is good to me. Though I cannot rely on my own self for anything, I can always rely on Him.  By His Word He saved me, by His Word He will keep me going.  By Him do I live.  Boy, do I wish I loved Him more, and I would not give into myself like I do.

"For that which I do I allow not: for what I would, that do I not; but what I hate, that do I.

If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that it is good.

Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not.

For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.

Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.

I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.

For I delight in the law of God after the inward man:

But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.

O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?

I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin."

Romans 7:15-25

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Thank You, Fairest Lord Jesus

  Thank You, Lord Jesus, for saving my soul!   Thou, the Creator of the heavens, earth, and all creation, desiredst to know me and redeem my soul!  I cannot comprehend the love Thou hast for me, nor the depths of Thy beauty and power.
LORD GOD, I desire to thank Thee for Thy loving kindnesses to me:  Thy humble child and servant.  I know that I have not lived a perfect walk for Thee in times past, but great is Thy faithfulness to me!   Thank You for chastising me to bring me back in right fellowship with Thee!
Thank You for igniting a fire in my soul to know and love Thy Holy Word!  Thank You for teaching me how to obey Thy Word!  Thank You for preserving my soul!
Thank You for reminding me of my lowly stature, and Thy perfect holy magnificence.  Thank You for answering my prayers, according to Thy will and not mine.  Thank You for Thy blessings in my life:
    Our salvation through You, by Thy rich grace, mercy, love, and namesake; our Bibles and study material, which provokes us to love Thee, unto good works, corrects us when wrong, consoles us when sad, and guides us into life everlasting; my husband that I prayed for nine years ago, and have been blessed to be married to for five years; our church family that works with us to stay faithful to Thee, praying for, exhorting, encouraging, and loving one another; our family You allowed us to be born into, to love, honor, and pray for; our beautiful home, filled with many items given freely by charitable hearts, and with the wonderful view of Your creation; our van, freely given and blessedly cared for by Thee; our clothing; our food; our doctors and nurses; our senses well cared for by Thee; our health; our finances that allow us to give back to Thee and meet our needs.

Lord Jesus, there is indeed much more that I could thank Thee for, and that right well known.  I love Thee Lord, but need to love Thee even more, for Thou deservedst it!  I pray that my heart would be knit with Thine above all others, and that my lips would continually thank Thee and praise Thee.  Thank You for never forsaking me.

Friday, September 18, 2009

God's Creation

     I am simply overwhelmed by the complexity of God's creation.  Since attending the sermons delivered by creation scientist Dr. Pat Briney, I have come to fear God even more.  There are many facets to creation, but to realize just a smidgen of the biology and mathematics behind some of it, is staggering to the human mind.  What a magnificent, awesome, wonderful God is He!
     Through these presentations, I have been left realizing that I do not fully appreciate Christ.  He deserves much more love and devotion than I have been giving Him.  My heart repents of that neglect to my Saviour, and prays that He will help me love Him more.
     If ever any of you get a chance to hear him deliver a message, take the opportunity.  He presents creation science in a clear, humble, matter-of-fact way.  He does not attack the evolutionists, but rather delivers the evidence in science that point to the validity of the creation model.  It would be well worth it to listen to him.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Remember When

     I, like so many others, cannot pass the day without once remembering something about this day eight years ago.  All across our nation news stations, newspapers, blogs, conversations, et cetera, are talking about the atrocities we faced when terrorists attacked our country.  It is not easy for me to remember, but today I have a different perspective than I did then.
     I was at work when a coworker called me over to listen to her personal radio.  She had just heard of the first plane crashing into the first tower, so I listened on one earbud, while she another.  It was not long before we were all called together for an impromptu employee meeting with our bosses, and we were informed of the seriousness of the situation.  It was very overwhelming.  One minute we are all working in the warehouse, doing our daily orders and such.  Then, not even two hours go by. and everything gets in an upheaval.  It was very emotional.
     I was concerned, because by the time of the meeting, there was the attack in Washington, D.C.  I have family that lives very close to that place, and at the time we were not sure if there would be any more attacks there.  They were letting folks leave who were going to be too distracted to work, so I left.   I went to M.B.'s house, and watched the news with her for a few hours.  I tried getting in touch with my family members, or those who knew how they were doing.  It took a little bit of time, but by the time I got home I knew that those I loved were safe.   However, that uneasy, vulnerable feeling had not gone away.
     I kept up with the news for a while, and after some time it all blurred together, because everyone was reporting the same thing.  I stopped trying to stay up-to-date on the news regarding the attacks, and eventually stopped thinking about them.  Yet every year when that date passed, I would remember.
Today, though, is much different than the previous years.  Today as I watched a video on, I cried.  It was difficult not to cry, watching the devastation, the loss, the confusion, the sheer terror of it all.  I was extremely burdened over the spiritual conditions of those folks.  We will never really know what went on in those moments, whether folks were saved or got saved before perishing.  It is sad.
     What I can do today, though, is be a faithful witness.  If ever a time comes similar to that one, when there is such devastation, confusion, and terror, may I be faithful to have at least prepared some by the hearing of the Gospel that removes all fear of Hell.  Since Christ suffered our penalty and then rose from the grave, we can have hope of eternal life with Him!  If ever a time comes when we die on earth, we can at least know that our soul is with Him!  Please, dear fellow Christians reading this, be a faithful witness, for we never know what may happen.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Be Careful!

     I have noticed that this world is becoming more and more dangerous, spiritually, for Christians.  There is an immobilization going on in serving Christ:  deception by way of false teachings; unwillingness to repent and live according to the will of God, but content to stay carnal; and much, much seduction by devils.  It concerns me, for as Christians we know that Christ can return in an instant.  What are we doing with our time?
     I am guilty of watching wicked Hollywood movies; eating things I should not eat, and eating too much; listening to music that is worldly (even if it is under the guise of being spiritual), instead of holy unto God; gossiping; being idle--the list can go on and on.  Yet, God has been working in my life to fix these areas, thanks be to Him who grants repentance, a contrite heart, and a desire and ability to perform His will!  It is all too easy for me to do what my flesh wants if I am in control, so I thank God every day for being in control!
     What does the Bible say, though?  I do not want anyone to take my word for it.  God asks us to live holy, which means separated unto Him:

"But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy."
I Peter 1:15, 16

     What is God separated from?  He is separated from all the ways of the world.   A clear verse indicating this fact is in James 4:4:  "Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God."  James wrote this to believers in Christ, seen in verse two of chapter one, where he calls them "brethren."
     As Christians, are desire ought to be that of the Father's.  We should not get clouded up in our own will, which undoubtedly can lead us astray from God.  If we are in His Word as we should be, praying diligently, faithfully attending church, fellowshipping with the saints, He will guide us in His will.  It is much harder to do His will when we are doing our own.
     So, that show we are watching, would Christ be sitting there enjoying it with us?  How about that song we listen to, would He love to listen to it, too?  How about those activities we spend a lot of our time on, would He join with us?  What about that movie, would He like it as well?
     What of that conversation we had, would He have joined in on it?  What of our attire and appearance, would He dress that way, (or have His sister arrayed as such)?  What of the books we are reading, would He enjoy them?  The questions can continue, but it all boils down to this one:  "What Would Jesus Do?"
     We must test all of our doings, thoughts, feelings, sayings upon the precious Word of God.  If there is anything about it that makes us sin against Him, we should not be a part of it.  If we are enjoying the works of darkness or flesh, we need to repent and forsake them.  No compromise with the world can be made, otherwise we will slip into sin.
     What are the works of darkness, of flesh?  They are: "...Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like..."--Galatians 5:19c-21e.  We must be careful--no matter how enjoyable it is, if it causes us to sin, we must depart from it.
     The problem in the world is that it glorifies these works of the flesh.  It makes it palatable to the taste buds of our emotions, and if we are not on guard we will be deceived in thinking it is okay to partake in them. We are wrong, and if we belong to God He will make that apparent.  Watch out for deceit.
Please, let us not get caught up in the seduction of the world and the flesh.  All these are for nought.  Let us fill ourselves with the goodness of God, whereby we will assuredly be most pleased and refreshed.  We can have good, clean fun with our brothers and sisters in the Lord without sinning.  We can read to the edification of the spirit, and not be constantly entertained by the world.  Please, be careful.

"Be careful little eyes what you see./Be careful little eyes what you see./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little eyes what you see./
Be careful little ears what you hear./Be careful little ears what you hear./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little ears what you hear./
Be careful little mouth what you say./Be careful little mouth what you say./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little mouth what you say./
Be careful little hands what you do./Be careful little hands what you do./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little hands what you do.
Be careful little feet where you go./Be careful little feet where you go./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little feet where you go./
Be careful little mind what you think./Be careful little mind what you think./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little mind what you think./
Be careful little heart what you feel./Be careful little heart what you feel./For the Father up above is looking down in love,/So be careful little heart what you feel./"

Monday, August 31, 2009

Blessings From A Godly Marriage

Have I ever mentioned how grateful I am to God for answering my prayers long ago for a Christian husband?  Well, I am thanking Him again for those answered prayers!

Friday, August 14, 2009

To Know...

     There are lots of changes that have been going on in our world lately.  It is all too easy to get caught up in the hubbub of it all, even for us Christians.  I know that every time I take my eyes off of my God and onto the swirling waters of this world I start to fear, like Peter did when walking on water to Christ.

     It is natural for us to be that way.  However, God wants us to cast ALL our care upon Him.  We are to die to self, and live in Christ.  Christ never feared come what may.  He trusted His Heavenly Father, just like He wants us to do.  He is not asking us to do anything He has not done. Because He has already done it, we can go to Him for the grace we need to do it.

     In my morning devotion, I came across part of a psalm that I thought was all too fitting for the hour we are living in, my dear Christian brother or sister.  This promise is for us!  So, if you are truly a born-again believer you can hold on to this hope, knowing it will not slip--even though our world's finances, structure, etc. are doing so.  REMEMBER--if you belong to God, He will take care of you!

"Behold, the eye of the LORD is upon them that fear him, upon them that hope in his mercy; To deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine. Our soul waiteth for the LORD: he is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in him, because we have trusted in his holy name. Let thy mercy, O LORD, be upon us, according as we hope in thee."
Psalm 33:18-22

     God is faithful to us, even though we are not to Him.  Remember Israel in the wilderness?  It was not long after He saved them through the crossing of the Red Sea, and they were worshiping a golden calf made by their own hands.  Yet, for forty years He supplied their needs.  He did show His hot displeasure at their adulterous, idolatrous, and rebellious hearts; but, He mercifully and graciously met every need.  They even had manna from Heaven!

     Though God will meet our needs, does He also show us His displeasure at our adulterous, idolatrous, and rebellious hearts?  Are we saying "Thank You, Father," for His goodness, then running off to call our own shots in the life He gave us?  If so, we bring Him displeasure.  Instead of running off to call our own shots, why do we not stay put and let Him do it?  I mean, after all, He is the only One who can see down the road, and He did save our soul from Hell.

We were bought with a price, that price the shedding of Jesus Christ's blood on the cross.  We therefore, are not our own, if indeed we belong to Him.

Praise His Name!

"Rejoice in the LORD, O ye righteous: for praise is comely for the upright...For the word of the LORD is right, and all his works are done in truth. He loveth righteousness and judgment: the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD. By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. He gathereth the waters of the sea together as an heap: he layeth up the depth in storehouses. Let all the earth fear the LORD: let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of him. For he spake, and it was done; he commanded, and it stood fast. The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations."
Psalm 33:1, 4-11
Rejoice!  There are many reasons to praise the LIVING God, and these are but a smidgen of them.  Next time you are given opportunity to give God praise, please do so!  There is nothing too big or too small to give praise to the LIVING God for, believe you me.  All that matters is that it is not for show, but to bless Him.

"By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name."
Hebrews 13:15

  Praise the LIVING God!   Do not get caught up in praising and adoring man, for all has been given to him.  Praise the one through whom all blessing flow!  Surely there is something praiseworthy in your life to bless His name!  Do not let those opportunities to shower Him with the praises He is due slip by, for it is comely in His saints and pleasing to Him. :)

Friday, July 24, 2009

Let Us Quit Ourselves Like Christians

  As I was reading 2 Chronicles 11-13 for part of my devotion this morning, my heart was pricked over one of Rehoboam's sins, primarily because I have seen that same sin in my life.

"And it came to pass, when Rehoboam had established the kingdom, and had strengthened himself, he forsook the law of the LORD, and all Israel with him."
2 Chronicles 12:1
      Later it also says of him,

  "And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the LORD."
2 Chronicles 12:14

  I immediately saw my selfish soul when I read those verses.  Many, many times had I been faithful to God when times were hard and He had allowed me to get to the end of myself.  However, once things started "looking up" and I was sailing smoother waters, I neglected that faithful love to my LORD.  Of course I was not alone, for other people (lost and saved) were watching my testimony; and, unless they were of stronger character, would follow suit.
  During the rougher patches in my life, when I finally gave up and let God have the control of my now yielded life, my faith seemed to soar!  I rarely had doubts of His abilities to do whatever He wanted to do, and I was more willing to accept His will, come what may.  My heart indeed was much more humble, because I realized that I was useless, but He could put me to use if I was in submission to Him.  These were the times that my walk seemed stronger.
  Yet when God allowed things to ease up, how fickle I became! I  honestly believe that God allows them only for a breather, as well as a good looking glass:  for in these times I see how utterly despicable I am, and that indeed in me dwelleth no good thing.  Lately, though, God has been giving me gentle reminders that during these "smoother" times we currently are blessed with, do not forget to stay humble to Him.
He has also been gently reminding me to prepare my heart to seek my LORD.  I know that I am not the best at this feat; my husband is much better at study, devotion, prayer, and service to God.  I am very weak in this area.  Yet, every time I do my devotions, God reminds me to not stop seeking His face, to not stop learning of Him, to not stop living as He would have me to live, and so on.   Oh boy, am I ever grateful for His tenderness!
So, I guess my question for you would be:  Are you forgetting God when times are going good?  Have you also been neglecting the preparation of your heart for Him?  Ladies, we simply will not be Christ's ladies if we neglect these things.  I have learned, through my unfortunate stubbornness, how ineffective and destructive I can be when I am unfaithful to God.  I really do not want to see any others tread the path I have trod!  TRUST ME, IT ISN'T WORTH IT!  It will be much better for your soul, and much sweeter to the heart, if God is your first love and King of your heart!
Do not forget Him or His commands when things are relatively calm and easy-going.  Do not stop preparing your heart for Him.  Do not stop loving Him with all your being.  It is a much ruder wake-up call to humility when He rips it away due to idolatry and rebellion in the heart.  It is a lot easier to gladly accept God's will, when He allows harder times to come when a heart has stayed faithful to Him; for, it knows His will is best.  Please, let us all strive not be be Rehoboamites, but Christians.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Ornan the Jebusite

     A while back when I was doing my daily devotion, I happened upon the account of Ornan the Jebusite.  It was he who gave his threshingfloor, tools, oxen, and anything else King David needed for his sacrifice to the LORD:   to stay the angel of the LORD executing any more judgment.  He showed such great diplomacy, as one king to another, during this difficult time of chastisement.
     The fact that this man was a Jebusite got me thinking more about Ornan.  I knew that there was something about the Jebusites that I was not remembering.  So, I did a little corresponding with my computer's concordance.  The Jebusites, for one thing, are mentioned back in Genesis 15:21 as one of the pagan peoples that God would be removing from the land He promised to Abraham.  More specifically, their former city of Jebus became what King David renamed Jerusalem.

"Aha," I said to myself, "I found it!"

     Ornan, as he is called in 1 Chronicles, is also known as Araunah in 2 Samuel.  I would like to put in just the passage found in 2 Samuel 24:17-25 for study:

"And David spoke unto the LORD when he saw the angel that smote the people, and said, Lo, I have sinned, and I have done wickedly: but these sheep, what have they done? let thine hand, I pray thee, be against me, and against my father's house. And Gad came that day to David, and said unto him, Go up, rear an altar unto the LORD in the threshingfloor of Araunah the Jebusite.  And David, according to the saying of Gad, went up as the LORD commanded. And Araunah looked, and saw the king and his servants coming on toward him: and Araunah went out, and bowed himself before the king on his face upon the ground. And Araunah said, Wherefore is my lord the king come to his servant? And David said, To buy the threshingfloor of thee, to build an altar unto the LORD, that the plague may be stayed from the people. And Araunah said unto David, Let my lord the king take and offer up what seemeth good unto him: behold, here be oxen for burnt sacrifice, and threshing instruments and other instruments of the oxen for wood. All these things did Araunah, as a king, give unto the king. And Araunah said unto the king, The LORD thy God accept thee. And the king said unto Araunah, Nay; but I will surely buy it of thee at a price: neither will I offer burnt offerings unto the LORD my God of that which doth cost me nothing. So David bought the threshingfloor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver. And David built there an altar unto the LORD, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings. So the LORD was entreated for the land, and the plague was stayed from Israel."

     First of all, here is the whole reason there was a plague in Israel, 

"And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel. And David said to Joab and to the rulers of the people, Go, number Israel from Beer-sheba even to Dan; and bring the number of them to me, that I may know it. And Joab answered, The LORD make his people an hundred times so many more as they be: but, my lord the king, are they not all my lord's servants? why then doth my lord require this thing? why will he be a cause of trespass to Israel? Nevertheless the king's word prevailed against Joab. Wherefore Joab departed, and went throughout all Israel, and came to Jerusalem. And Joab gave the sum of the number of the people unto David. And all they of Israel were a thousand thousand and an hundred thousand men that drew sword: and Judah was four hundred threescore and ten thousand men that drew sword. But Levi and Benjamin counted he not among them: for the king's word was abominable to Joab. And God was displeased with this thing; therefore he smote Israel." 
I Chronicles 21:1-7

     I was impressed by Joab's response, because he was not always a faithful fellow; but, at least here he shows discernment.  It is evident that Satan was stoking the flames of David's pride, and David bit.  He was not going to be swayed by the plea of his servant Joab, and it was not until the fruition of his sin did he repent, (by the way, it took the men who numbered Israel nine months and twenty days, 2 Samuel 24:8).  By the time David repented, God already decided there was going to have to be punishment.

     He was given three options:

  1. 7 years of famine, 
  2. 3 months of running from his enemies, or 
  3. 3 days' plague by the Lord's hand. 
     He chose to have the three days' plague, knowing that the Lord's mercies are infinite.  Finally, David was told to go to Araunah's threshing floor to offer sacrifice unto the LORD.

     I find it interesting that God told him to go to a Jebusite's home.  David overcame the Jebusites to have what is now Jerusalem.  I am sure they were not exactly peaches-and-cream over the idea of that defeat.  They were also listed with other pagan nations God was going to remove from the land for Abraham and his seed.  Yet, the place God wanted David to sacrifice was at the threshing floor of a Jebusite.

     The Jebusite Araunah was extremely diplomatic to the king who took his land.  He was willing to give all his equipment and livestock necessary for offering.  It is worthy to note that in 1 Chronicles 21:23, Araunah (mentioned as Ornan) offers not only his oxen and threshing instruments, but also wheat for a meat offering. That was not a cheap offering!  David realized this fact, and gave him 600 shekels of gold (shekel = weight).

     The fact that God mentions that Araunah treated David as a king to a king is notable.  He did not have to be that way, yet he was.  If God noticed it to have mentioned it, no doubt David, a man after God's heart, noticed it, too.  Araunah shows humility and diplomacy, something I know I lack a great deal of both.

     The thing that I take from these two passages is the fact that I need to be humble, diplomatic, and willing to give what is asked of me or needed of me.  Araunah was willing to do all, without any air of arrogance, or showing at all that he would be put out by it.  How many times do I struggle to give because it requires me to do without?  I must remember that God gives me those opportunities to give to glorify Him, as Araunah did.  I must also remember that I must always show diplomacy, for I am an ambassador for Christ.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Our Bible Institute Graduation

     Okay, so I have waited long enough to enter a new post.  I did not prolong the time of writing in here because I did not have anything of which to speak, but because I was hoping to have some pictures from the graduation to add along with the article.  Oh, well.
     The graduation was simply amazing!  The Lord was definitely glorified that night, and not because of our power, but by Him using us for His glory!  My soul was truly touched by Him that night, and yes, family members were able to attend!
     I tried very much not to cry, however, it was inevitable that I would.  I think I lasted as far as my pastor giving the introduction, and that was as long as I could hold them back.  The tears flowed, and I barely was able to sing my favorite hymn ,"It Is Well With My Soul," without being constantly choked up.  Then, I was the first to go up to give my testimony, and I cried all the way through it.  The Lord is immensely merciful, gracious, and loving with me!
     I am so grateful that my pastor suggested the idea of writing out my testimony for the graduation, because I surely needed it that night!  There would have been no way, save the Lord's good graces, that I would have remembered everything I wanted to say, in regards to the Bible Institute and God.  It really helped having it right there ready for me before I began!
     Dear's favorite hymn was sung after I sat down, and then he was able to go up and give his testimony. He was able to give his testimony without it being written down.  His testimony was beautiful, though!  Seeing the Lord's work in my husband's life since his salvation three years ago, has been a wonder for me.  I am so glad that God answered my prayers!
     Once Dear was finished speaking, the preacher gave us our charge.  It was a wonderful message, and we are both so thankful that the Lord let him be the speaker!  Following his message was the distributing of the diplomas, and they are beautiful!
  I am so thankful that the Lord has seen fit to allow both of us the privilege and honour of learning more of Him through Bible Institute.  I am so very fortunate to have been saved, and to be blessed through these studies.   I will never be able to fully express my love and gratitude to Him for all He has done, and continues to do in my life.   Experiencing the graduation and commencement service was very humbling.
     On another note, last Friday I was able to enjoy the birthday present his dad and stepmom gave to me:  a trip to the zoo!  It was absolutely beautiful:  no cloud in the sky and 85 degrees. :)  I was able to take many pictures of God's wonderful creation!

Friday, May 15, 2009


     I am so glad that I serve a risen Saviour!  He is so good to me!  I am glad that He humbles me, for it causes me to remember how much I need Him.  Without Him, my life would be miserable; and, those times that I go on living how I think is best, or how it makes me feel--well, let us just say, those are very opportune times for humbling lessons.
     I hate the flesh. It is my own worst enemy.  I wish I would remember that fact more often than I do.  I cannot wait until I get a new body, in a new heaven, and new earth!  I know that it almost sounds too good to be true, but PRAISE THE LORD, it is true!  I am so glad that the Bible is no fairy tale:  It is the I AM!
     So, publicly, I would like to tell my gracious Lord God Jesus Christ, the Great I AM, thank You for loving me.  Thank You for dying for this vile, fleshly, wicked me.  Thank You for saving me in spite of myself.  Thank You for forgiving me of my sins.  Thank You for sealing me forever to be with You.  Thank You for giving me the grace I need to serve You.   Thank You that Your Word is ever true, even when I fail.   Thank You.  I love You, Lord.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My Gracious Lord

     I have realized that even though I have done things that God never wanted me to do, He is allowing the lessons from those experiences to glorify Him.  I am ever grateful to Him for that wonderful blessing--to help others avoid the same mistakes, and take what I have learned to help them make the wisest decisions in those situations.
     God is so merciful, though. I do not deserve to be used in that capacity, but am so glad He has bestowed His grace to allow me to perform the task given.   It is definitely humbling, simply by remembering my sins. Yet, it is good to remember where He brought me from...He definitely is a loving, gracious God!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Honoring Christ In Stewardship

     Well, the Lord has continued to prepare us for many things:  the remembrance of His death, and our future (both near and far).  I am glad, though, that He is causing our attention to the details of preparation.  He wants His children to be good stewards, and the countless testimonies I have heard of those who prepared well in advance for their future, has pricked my heart.

     I had never personally seen anyone who prepared well for the future.  It was not, really, until I came here that I saw it.  I am not saying that there were not people around me who were doing it, but that I never really saw it.   Yet, since the Lord added us to this church, He has done some real eye-opening for us.

     I know that there are some who would think it morbid to start preparing a will, life insurance policies, etc., when we are still in our twenties.  Yet, the Lord could call us Home at any given time--I want those left behind not to be stressed out over the fine details that I could have very easily taken care of while still alive on earth.  Though I am thinking on all these things, I do hope that the Lord will allow Dear and I plenty of time here on earth for kids and such.  However, I am not God, so I try to rest in the fact that He knows best, not "Renee knows best."

     With regards to the Lord's Supper, I am thankful that He is preparing me for it.  So many things needed weeded out, still do. But, He brought a lot to head recently, though it was painful, I am so glad I go through His refining fire, not that of another.

     He is also making me more and more aware of how precious He ought to be to me.  I am amazed at His capacity to love me, in spite of the fact that I do not fully comprehend Him, appreciate Him, understand the full sacredness of His sacrifice, and more.  He knew all these things, yet still saved my wretched and vile soul. He knows me, and still He allowed me to be His own.  It is too much for me to comprehend!

     I love Him for loving me, in spite of who I am, what I have done, what I will do.  He loves my soul! What He did for me that night, when I humbly came to Him, repenting of my sins, seeking His salvation and forgiveness:  I never realized all that came with it!  The more I draw closer to Him, the more wretched I am: for not appreciating Him like I should have, and should today; for realizing the depth of consequences for my sins, and how He suffered them for me; how He chose to save me when I was twelve years old, knowing that later I would choose to walk a very shallow walk with Him, then backslide for a few years; AND, HE STILL SAVED ME.

     I do not deserve Heaven.  I do not deserve Jesus Christ as my King, Saviour, and Friend.  BUT, THAT IS WHO HE IS TO ME!  He wanted, and wants, to be that for me!  How can I possibly comprehend that love?  I am so thankful that He loves me enough to refine me more to His image.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Learning From Backsliding

     I am so thankful for my Lord Jesus Christ.  The more I learn about His salvation, wrought for me, the more humbled I am.  I did not understand the gravity of His precious gift when I came to Him that day, fourteen and a half years ago, but I understood the gravity of eternal life without Him.

     I am so glad that He did not require me to walk a thousand miles on my knees to Him; that He did not require me to be a scholar in the doctrine of salvation; that He did not require anything but faith, repentance, and seeking forgiveness of sins.  What wondrous love!

     I am ashamed that I backslid.  I am ashamed that He paid the price for my sins, and after He became my personal Saviour, I walked away from living for Him!  Oh, I was stupid, selfish, rebellious.  Yet, on that night that I sought His salvation and received it, He knew I would backslide.  What a wonderful Saviour is Jesus my Lord!

     I know I set a poor example to my brothers and sisters, family members, friends.  I set a poor example for other Christians, too.  I did not yield to the pricking of my Lord in my heart; those times that He would catch me unawares, totally immersed in my sinful pleasures.  OH, how I wish now that I would have not been stiff-necked!

     But, I know I cannot change the past.  I know that I must move forward, which I am doing.  But, even as Moses before leaving this earth preached to Israel, I am reminded and reminding myself from whence the Lord brought me.

Sure, at twelve years old, I really had not "done" a whole lot, but I still was a sinner in need of salvation.  I was living an empty, shallow life.  I had no direction, save what my parents tried to instill in me, and that of what felt good to my flesh.  I thought I would just go to Heaven, probably because of feeling as though I was pretty good.  Yet, through the preaching of His Word, and finally realizing that if I were to die, I would go to Hell:  I was able to go to the Throne of Grace and receive salvation!

     He brought me even further. As I aged, I wandered.  I went pretty low.  Many times I wonder now how I could even be where I am, save for the mercy and grace of Christ.  I could have been in jail, a hospital, or the grave.  I was a prodigal daughter, that is for sure.

     Thank the Lord Jesus Christ for being willing and able to save my soul from Hell, even when He knew all that He knew, and knows, about me.  I will never be able to comprehend that kind of love.  I only pray that others that are going down the path I trod would wake up and see the danger in which they are immersed:  so that they can be in right fellowship with the Lord again, leading others to Christ, rather than away from Him.

Friday, March 20, 2009

For Righteousness' Sake

"Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." 
Matthew 5:10

"And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for his name." 
Acts 5:41

"Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer:" 
II Thessalonians 1:5

"But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled;" 
I Peter 3:14

So thankful am I, and comforted, by God's Words.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

He Said It Best...

The Lord has said it best:

Mat 10:34-39 "Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance, against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household. He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake, shall find it."

Pro 27:6 "Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful."

Monday, March 9, 2009

My Devotional Today

     I appreciate my Lord Jesus Christ.  I really, really do.  He is always meeting my needs, providing above and beyond what I deserve.  I watch Him take care of those that we love, and how tender, yet just, His care is.  I really appreciate what He did for me today, though.
     As I was reading the portion of Scripture for my devotional today, I came across Psalm 51, and it is always nice when I come across that one, because it is one of my favorites!

"Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according to thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Wash me throughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest. Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Behold, thou desirest truth in the inward parts: and in the hidden part thou shalt make me to know wisdom. Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean: wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow. Make me to hear joy and gladness; that the bones which thou hast broken may rejoice. Hide thy face from my sins, and blot out all mine iniquities. Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Then will I teach transgressors thy ways; and sinners shall be converted unto thee. Deliver me from bloodguiltiness, O God, thou God of my salvation: and my tongue shall sing aloud of thy righteousness. O Lord, open thou my lips; and my mouth shall shew forth thy praise. For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Do good in thy good pleasure unto Zion: build thou the walls of Jerusalem. Then shalt thou be pleased with the sacrifices of righteousness, with burnt offering and whole burnt offering: then shall they offer bullocks upon thine altar." 
 Psalm 51

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Right on Time

     Did you know that the Lord knows what is needed to pick up your spirits?  When I needed a pick-me-up, He gave me a dear woman.  She is a dear, dear sister in the Lord, and a surrogate mommy in my heart. I am so thankful that He has put her in my life.  He knew I needed her.

     When I needed a place to live, she and her family provided me one.  When I needed a shoulder on which to cry, she provided one.  When I needed advice, guidance, prayers, and more--she gave.  The Lord has put her and her family in my life to be a family to me.  I am so thankful for their love, prayers, and guidance they have given me through the years.  I have known them now for almost nine years.

     Her husband was the one to walk me down the aisle at my wedding.  They were there to try to bring me back to the Lord, while I was rebelling against Him.  They did not have to be there, but they were. I am so glad that the Lord has allowed them in my life!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

I Love My New Blender!

     I love my new blender!  I absolutely do!  There is a valid reason for this excitement over a blender ( and not just because I am relatively a newlywed....):  my old one could not crush ice, therefore I could not make my blended mochas...Therefore I had to hammer or beat my ice which upset at least one apartment neighbor, (upsetting me, as well!)...So, I REALLY LOVE my "new" Kitchen Aid Blender.

Here is the story how I came across my beloved, ice-crushing dream machine: 

     I got fed up with my Hamilton Beach BlendMaster...I appreciated it, because it was free and did not have one yet.  However, I soon found out why it was free...It just was not the best for the job at hand.  Oh well. So, I prayed that the Lord would allow me to purchase a new blender; and, I had eyed one at Costco, which depending on the location, could cost anywhere from $60 and higher.  Well, I just do not have that kind of money to be throwing around on blenders, so I was going to have to settle for the non-ice-crushing thing.

     I had the grand idea to hammer my ice.  At first, no big deal.  We did not have a downstairs neighbor, so no problem.  However, we did get a new neighbor, and it was a problem for him.  I quickly apologized, which it turn he apologized for jumping the gun (he had very loudly banged on his ceiling, my floor--which he had every right to do).  Well, amends made, I turned to my husband for ice-crushing support.  He came up with some ideas, but ultimately the conclusion was no more blended mochas at home, 'til we got a new machine.

     I had pretty well stopped praying over a blender. Not that I did not want one, but there were more important things of which to pray.  So one Friday, I am out running my errands, and just as I was about to pass it, the thought came into my head to stop at the Senior Center thrift store.  I was wanting to find something to cheer up a friend, so I started browsing all the aisles.

     The store had recently reorganized and rearranged itself, so it was neat seeing what they had done.  As I was walking down the kitchen appliances aisle, my eye came to behold the blender the Lord had there waiting for me: my Kitchen Aid Ultra Power!
     Well, it was for ten dollars.  Normally, I do not like to spend that much money at a thrift store for one item...usually.  But, this was different.  This had all sorts of cool functions:  puree, chop, mix, et cetera.  It even came with a pulse button!  I immediately grabbed it off the shelf.  I was able to find some other items I had been needing, praise the LORD!  I spent a total of sixteen dollars and change, for a bag full of goodies, as well as my new blender!
     While I was looking for a picture of my new blender online to put on here, I found out the retail price of one of these beauties: one hundred and nineteen dollars.  That is a lot of moolah.  The Lord let me have one for ten dollars.  He did not have to let me have it.  He did not have to let me have it for ten dollars.  It humbles my heart to see these types of blessings, on top of the fact that He has saved my soul from Hell...
I am very thankful for this new blender!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

I Belong to an Awesome LORD!

I just wanted to say today that my Lord, the Lord Jesus Christ, is the absolute best God in the whole world! I love Him and am thankful that He saw fit to save my soul, even when He knew the things that I would later do, say, cetera. Oh my, what love does He have for me!

Friday, January 30, 2009

He Careth for my Soul!

I am so glad for my LORD Jesus Christ!  I have faith that when I go to Him in prayer, seeking His forgiveness of my sins, asking for strength to avoid those sins, and for His cleansing power, that He answers my prayers according to His will!  What peace, knowing that my LORD careth for my soul!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Through Christ I Live

     Have you ever had those times that you REALLY hate sin?  I mean, you REALLY hate it because you know you are more than likely prone to yield to certain sins?  Well, I have had those moments lately, and I REALLY hate sin!  I hate its destructiveness, the dirtiness of it, and the fact that it causes harm in the fellowship with God.  I REALLY hate sinning!
     Yet, God has been so gracious to me.  He shows me how much He loves me by convicting me of my sins, even while I am committing them.  He will not allow me to go through and continue offending Him.  I SO appreciate His love toward me!
     I am so glad that He lets me realize that I cannot live righteously without the strength of the Righteous One.  I tried living as a Christian in my own strength, and I backslid.  I am grateful that He let me learn the lesson so needed:  through Him I live, not through me do I live.

"Draw me nearer, nearer, blessed Lord/To the cross where Thou hast died/Draw me nearer, nearer, nearer blessed Lord/To Thy precious, bleeding side./"

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

God's Testimony

     Well, I promised a friend of mine from church that I would write the testimony of my husband regarding how he received his current job, and I am finally getting around to doing it.  I will, of course, be writing of other things, but I will be focusing on getting out this testimony so that others may be blessed!
     Three years ago this coming December, my husband received his current, blessed, job.  This job is only twenty minutes from home, pays for all of our medical benefits, plus gives him sick/personal/holiday/vacation time:  all paid.  He is also on salaried pay, which was such a blessing; last month when he was only able to go into work two days in two weeks, he was able to get full pay.  Even better, he is able to be a witness for the Lord daily, and read his Bible, and  study Scripture, all while working.
     This job did not come to him because of his charismatic personality.  It was not because he begged and pleaded with them:  it was because the Lord gave it to him.  It was not until we both decided to yield ourselves to the Lord's will regarding his work that He gave us this blessing.
     Dear had been working at a place that was over an hour to get to each day.  He was spending nearly three hours or more on the road, just traveling to and from work.  He did not spend enough time with God, with church, or with me.  Then came the time to start looking for another job, because this one was not a permanent one.
     We had talked of moving back east to where my folks were, and were even looking online for houses out there.  Yet, that was not what the Lord wanted.  We started Bible Institute, and at the time only he was becoming more involved with soul-winning activities.  Finally, we realized that whatever job Dear was going to get, he wanted one that would:

  1. Give him more time with the Lord in the mornings, when he got home from work;
  2. Give him more time with me; 
  3. Give him more time for serving the Lord through church services/activities; and,
  4. Give him more opportunities to be a witness for the Lord.

     Well, shortly after praying about it and leaving it in the Lord's care, it was not too long that our brother-in-law called and asked if Dear was still looking for work.  A friend from their kingdom hall (Jehovah's Witnesses) was looking for a delivery driver for his plumbing supply company.  Dear gave it a shot: he went to meet his future boss, and within days was starting his new job!
     It did start with less pay, a two dollar cut to be exact.  However, that was just for the first ninety days, and I was still working.  Yet, we did feel the crunch.  Soon, though, they increased his pay a dollar, and put him on salary, as well as medical benefits after his first sixty days there for the both of us (with just us paying for mine).  He received all the other benefits mentioned earlier, too.
     After I finally left my job last April, it was hard.  We lost half of the income we were used to, but God has blessed our obedience to His command that women are to be "...keepers at home..." as seen in I Timothy. I became freer to help within church ministries, with friends and family, but our marriage has been so blessed the most (because my relationship with God and David was getting better!).  Recently through this obedience, we have seen God give Dear a raise in pay (in a sense) by the company now paying for my insurance as well as his!  It has been wonderful obeying God.
     It was not easy, though.  My stubborness and my pride kept getting, and still gets, in the way.  I wanted, and want, control.  Yet, God keeps reminding me to yield to Him, and that is the best blessing in the world. Sure, all these material things are wonderful, but the best feeling in the world I ever have is when I have been obedient to my Lord and Saviour:  from the heart.  He has been a wonderful Lord to love and serve, and am thankful for His love toward me; for, He helps me through it all.

"Through this world of toil and snares/If I falter, Lord who cares?/Who with me my burdens share/None but Thee, dear Lord, none but Thee./
Just a closer walk with Thee/Grant it Jesus, is my plea/Daily walking close to Thee/Let it be, dear Lord, let it be./"
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