Friday, May 28, 2010

Let Us Remember

While we are excited about our long weekend "Memorial Day" plans, I do want to stop for a moment and reflect on what this Holiday is really about.

I read an article about a teacher who asked her class, "Why do we celebrate Memorial Day? Her students either didn't know, or even worse, they replied, "that's the day the pool opens". Shocked that the children thought the holiday was just to mark the beginning of Summer, she made a point of putting the "memorial" back in "Memorial Day".

This got me MY kids even know what Monday's observance is all about? Or have I just focussed on the fact that they are out of school and the plans we've made? I'm embarrassed to say that I know the answer without even giving it much thought.

So, on behalf of my family, and my country, I want to say a HUGE thank you to all those who have served in any branch of the military. And for those of you who have lost a loved one while they were serving this Nation, I want to say "thank you" for their sacrafice & "I'm so sorry" for your loss.

With all the problems we face, and even with the many disagreements we have over political & social my opinion, we still live in the greatest Nation in the world! This is mostly due to our awesome men & women who give of themselves to protect & defend our freedom.

Hope you all have a wonderful, safe, & blessed Memorial Day weekend!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Swagger Wagon!

This goes out to all you ladies out there like myself, who NEVER thought they would see themselves driving a minivan...but that's exactly what we're sporting these days.

This cracked me up! I hope it brought a smile to your face. Have a blessed week.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Turn Aside Into The Flame

I have been so blessed recently by the e-newsletter I receive from Ryan Wyatt, Pastor of Abiding Glory Ministries in Knoxville, TN. I wanted to share one of his older articles I read that blessed me so - I pray that it will be a blessing to you as well.

- By Ryan Wyatt
Feb 02, 2010

Since 2010 began, I have sensed a special stirring from God and in God's people. I am convinced that, “right now”, we are in a season of favor! I am convinced that this is a season for the church to be propelled further into destiny, in God's divine plan for this very period of time that we are living in. This is a season where God is granting manifest victory and advancement in our lives!

However, I have also sensed a condition to this victory and advancement. This past season and the last few years have been a very difficult and turbulent time for most believers, and even for the world. Let me say clearly that I do not think these difficult and turbulent times are going to cease. In fact, I believe they are only going to increase on so many fronts. However, this being said, IT IS TIME for God's people to advance. It is time for God's people to rise up out of depression, despair, disappointment, apathy and complacency. It is time for God's people to rise up in victory, with fresh hope, fresh expectation, and fresh boldness and courage. It is time for God's people to plunder the enemy of those things that have been stolen. It is time to BELIEVE again!

There is a condition for rising up in victory this year. God is saying: TURN ASIDE INTO THE FLAME. I lead a church in Knoxville, TN called The Habitation. Since the beginning of 2010, there has been a great stirring in our people and week after week the tangible presence of God and the breakthrough in the atmosphere is building! t's not just happening in Knoxville. Many of you have heard of awakenings, stirrings and outpourings of God's Spirit in places like IHOP in Kansas City and at MorningStar in Charlotte, NC and in many other places around the world. Something is happening!

During this time God has been speaking to me from the story of Moses in Exodus 3:1-5:

Now Moses was pasturing the flock of Jethro his father-in-law, the priest of Midian; and he led the flock to the west side of the wilderness, and came to Horeb, the mountain of God. And the angel of the LORD appeared to him in a blazing fire from the midst of a bush; and he looked, and behold, the bush was burning with fire, yet the bush was not consumed. So Moses said, “I must turn aside now, and see this marvelous sight, why the bush is not burned up.” When the LORD saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush, and said, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.” Then He said, “Do not come near here; remove your sandals from your feet, for the place on which you are standing is holy ground.”

Moses was going about his business and he sensed something, he saw something. He saw a bush that was burning yet not consumed. God has highlighted to me the fact that Moses said, “I must turn aside now and see this marvelous sight.” The scripture then says, “When the Lord saw that he turned aside to look, God called to him from the midst of the bush and said, 'Moses, Moses!” God wanted to speak to Moses. He wanted to anoint Moses. He wanted to commission Moses. But the scripture says that God did not speak to Moses out of the fire until He saw Moses make a decision to turn aside towards the bush that was burning.

There is a sound of revival in the spirit right now! There is a sound of awakening in the spirit right now! I believe God is looking for those who sense this drawing, who sense this stirring, and who will “turn aside” in this season. What is God doing? He is calling us to turn aside into His flame. So many believers have become disillusioned and disappointed in this last season. So many believers have grown cold and lost hope in this last season. So many believers have lost vision and become apathetic and complacent in this last season. God is calling us to turn aside from our regular routine. He is calling us to turn aside from our present existence. He is calling us to turn aside from those things that have hindered us. He is calling us to turn aside into HIS FLAME! As you begin to turn aside in this season, God is going to warm and thaw out your heart. As you turn aside, God is going to begin to seep into the dry soil of your heart and awaken you to a new passion and a new fiery desire for Him! This is not something that you have to muster up. All He requires is that you make an effort to “turn aside” in this season and spend some time in the flame of His presence. God's fire will do the work. God's fiery presence will be released upon your heart to awaken and to revive!

Another passage of scripture that God is highlighting to me right now is from Luke 24:13-34. Two disciples were walking on the road to Emmaus and the resurrected Jesus came walking along side them. The disciples did not recognize Him in His resurrected form but as they walked with Jesus they felt their hearts begin to burn within them. They approached the city as evening was now upon them and the scripture says that Jesus acted as if He were going to keep walking farther. These two disciples strongly urged and even constrained Him to “turn aside” and abide with them for the evening. Because of their strong desire, Jesus came into their home, broke bread at their table, and the disciples eyes were opened to behold this Man, which was Jesus, in resurrection glory!

Even as I write this I feel the manifest presence of God beginning to come all over me. I feel the heart of God wooing His people to “turn aside and look” in this season. No matter how dry you may feel, just make a decision to position yourself in a place of hunger and desire in God's presence and you will find your heart beginning to come alive again! Choose to lay down all disappointment. Choose to lay down all discouragement. Choose to believe gain. Choose to hope again. Choose to expect God's goodness and fiery presence to awaken you afresh!

There are many more things that God is speaking, but for now, I leave you with this. Don't forget that God is more hungry and passionate for you than you are for Him. God is in hot pursuit of you! God wants you to burn with the fire of His presence. He wants you to be totally free from everything that has recently hindered you. Choose today to align yourself with God. Choose today to “turn aside into the flame” of God's presence and receive fresh hope, fresh encouragement, fresh vision, fresh energy, and fresh oil for this season!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Let Us Pray

I haven't done this in awhile, but I would like to ask all my blogging friends to pray with me and agree in faith for some things. Would that be okay?

I know that there is power in agreement, and I would be so honored if you would lift up your voice & heart in prayer to our Heavenly Father on behalf of my some of my family & friends. Even though you've never met them, if God is your Father, and Jesus is your brother, then they are part of your family who you will see them in Heaven one day. These prayer requests range from big, to seemingly small in comparison, but they are all important to the people believing for them, and therefore, I believe important to God.

I appreciate it so much; and likewise, if you have a prayer request that I can agree with you about, please leave it in the comment box or email me privately at and I promise I will lift it up in prayer.

Please pray for:

1. My oldest son is taking his E.O.G. testing at school this week and is very nervous. He's asking for prayer to do well & not be stressed.

2. My Pastor's father was diagnosed with Mesothelioma (an aggressive form of cancer). Please pray for his healing. Also, pray against this ugly spirit of disease because 2 others in our church have been diagnosed with some form of cancer.

3. Three of our very dear friends are in dire need of a financial miracle. Two of them desperately need to sell their homes right away! Please pray for a buyer to come quickly, and give them a good, solid offer. Also, pray for provision to come to them, all their needs to be met, and peace & joy in their household.

4. Pray for my family as we are waiting on the Lord for some promises that He has clearly given. Pray that we will hear His voice, and be obedient, walking in faith & not fear, as He begins to open doors for us and take us in new places & directions that may be out of our comfort zone. Pray that we will spend time in His presence listening so we don't miss what God is saying & doing in this season.

5. Pray for someone we are close to who needs a breakthrough spiritually, emotionally & financially. They are really going through a tough time, but God is working on their heart. Pray that they will be drawn closer to Him, and not push further away. Pray that God will show them His great love in a way where they can't deny it or explain it away. I understand that the circumstances may or may not change before the work is completed in their heart, so, pray that we can all trust God to do the most important work first, and then take care of the rest; remembering that God's ways are higher than ours.

There are so many other things that came to mind as I was typing this prayer list that it's overwhelming! I know I can't possibly list them all, but it goes to show how much we need to lift one another up.

Again, if you have a prayer request you'd like to share, please let me know. I will spend some time praying each day for my friends & family (and that includes my blogging friends!)

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Guest or a Resident

There is a distinct difference between how we act when we have a guest staying in our home, even if it's an extended stay, than how we behave when we're just around our family, who are there all the time. Not that we are faking, but we are usually more conscious of our words & actions. The longer someone stays in our home, the more they get to know the real us, the good, the bad, and everything in between.

Before you think I had guests in my house and something bad happened, let me tell you what brought this on. I was listening to a song called "You are Welcome In This Place" by Hillsong. I started praying "Lord, You are welcome in my heart, my mind, my body, and my home..."

When I got to the word home, I began to have a flood of Scriptures go through my mind about how Christ lives in us, wants to abide in us, Emmanuel, God with us. I remembered the verse in Acts 17:28 that says "in Him we live and move and have our being..."

I sensed the Lord asking me if I would like Him to be a guest in my home, or a full time resident?

Don't get me wrong, I know He lives in my heart because I've gave my life to Him many, many years ago when I was saved. I'm talking about this "abiding" kind of fellowship where it's not up one day and down the next - or have powerful prayer & communion with Him in the morning, then start the rest of your day without another thought of Him until bedtime. It's that "living & moving and having my being in Him" that I'm talking about.

I heard in my spirit "there's a difference between my glory and my presence". So I said, "what is it?" I haven't fully grasped it all, but I think it is like when you go to pray or minister to someone, you take His presence with you, but you see His glory and feel His power being released as you minister. But this is not where you live all the time. You don't go around feeling God's power on a continual basis. But I can go about my day feeling His presence, hearing His voice, praising Him at moments throughout my long as I stay connected.

I'm the one who disconnects, not Him. I compartmentalize my time with God, almost like someone who pulls up to the gas station and fills up their tank and then it's off I go. Praise & worship and prayer & communion with God is not just to fill us up and then have us go off on our own without Him. It shouldn't be like, "thanks God, I've got what I need now, so I'll report back to you later".

One of my favorite passages in the Bible is in John 15 where it talks about Jesus being the vine and we are the branches. Apart from Him, the Bible says we can do NOTHING! In verse 7 it promises that "if you abide in Him, and His words abide in you, you can ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you." It goes on to say that by this, the Father is glorified. So by us abiding in Him, and having answered prayers, God is glorified because we're bearing much fruit.

This is the definition of "abide" - to stay; to continue in a place; to have one's abode; to dwell; to sojourn; To remain stable or fixed in some state or condition; to continue; to remain.

So, in answer to His question to me this morning...I want Him to be more than a guest who I show off my manners for a short time (religious), or who I enjoy His company but don't expect Him to stay long term. I want Him to be a resident in my house, who sees the good, the bad, and everything in between (getting real & honest with myself before God). As a matter of fact, I want Him to not only reside in my home (my heart & soul), but to be the Head of the house.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

My Mother's Day Song

I'm back in town (I was at the beach over the Mother's Day weekend) with NO computer and things have just now slowed down enough for me to write. I wanted to tell you all about my Mother's Day experience. First of all, I hope you all had a wonderful day.

As I said, we were at the beach and the weather was gorgeous, so we were off to a good start.

On Saturday night, right before we put the kids to bed, my youngest son comes to me and says "tomorrow is Mother's Day!" "Yes it is", I replied, thinking they must have something BIG planned because he's very excited.

Then he does something unexpected...he informs me that he's written a song for Mother's Day and it appears that he can't wait until tomorrow to share it. I'm thinking, how sweet is that? Next, he begins to play a melody by making armpit fart sounds while giggling through the entire song. Then he says, "Oh wait, I forgot I was going to give that to Dad for Father's Day!" and then he was off to bed.

If you have boys, you understand that this is typical behavior and after awhile you actually learn to appreciate it as their "love language". So, of course I was both proud and amused by this armpit fart song dedicated to me.

After the kids were asleep, I told my hubby what his youngest offspring had done, thinking he would really crack up laughing. He kind of smiled and didn't say anything, which was weird, but I figured he was just tired.

Sunday morning, the big day...Hubby took the dog out and kept the kids quiet so I could sleep late, so bonus points for him! However, I didn't really go back to sleep, but instead waited for breakfast in bed, which has happened on Mother's Day in the past. I waited, and waited, and then got really hungry waiting...Finally I came to the conclusion that breakfast in bed was not part of the deal this Mother's Day. No biggie. I was told when I appeared in the family room that there wasn't much to eat in the house and they would have gone to get something but the car keys were in my bedroom and they didn't want to disturb me. Makes perfect sense, so moving on.

I find my traditional Mother's Day cards waiting for me on the kitchen counter. One from the kids, one from hubby. I open the kids card and to my surprise it's a animated dog who is making Mother's Day music by armpit farting. At the end it says "Oh wait, I forgot I was going to give this to Dad for Father's Day". Where have I heard that before? The kids are laughing thinking the card is hysterical, my hubby says "now you know where he got that idea last night".

Really?...this explains so much about my family. No sweet, mushy cards at my house. If it's about embarrassing or gross bodily functions, if it's completely ridiculous, my boys are drawn to it. Then of course I realized, my hubby bought the card. He'd been out of town all week before our weekend trip and hadn't been around the kids without me. This means HE picked out the card all by himself, without the kids! I'm guessing the reason my youngest son was quoting the card on Saturday night, was because that was the first time he saw the card...he probably read it before bed and immediately came upstairs to act it out. Why is this significant?

Because now I understand more clearly where my boys get it! And even more eye opening is the revelation that THEY NEVER OUTGROW IT, LOL!

However, it was a wonderful day and I wouldn't change it for the world. I got to pick where we went to lunch, even though the boys were throwing out their suggestions (which was made up of fast food places). The weather was so nice we ate outside. The boys got along, no whining, no fighting, no big screen t.v. playing sports that distracts all the guys from any conversation, and absolutely NO rude noises. Really, at this point in my life that is a HUGE deal!

Again, I hope all you Mom's out there enjoyed your day as much as I did.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Why God Made Moms

Answers given by 2nd grade school children to the following questions:

Why did God make mothers?
1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did God make mothers?
1. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring..
2. God made my mom just the same like he made me. He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1 God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean..
2. They had to get their start from men's bones. Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other mom?
1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's mom like me

What kind of a little girl was your mom?
1. My mom has always been my mom and none of that other stuff.
2 I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

What did mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1 His last name.
2. Does he make at least $800 a year? Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world And my mom eats a lot
2.. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms work at work and work at home and dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller and stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friends.
4. Moms have magic, they make you feel better without medicine.

What does your mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long..

If you could change one thing about your mom, what would it be?
1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean. I'd get rid of that
2. I'd make my mom smarter. Then she would know it was my sister who did it not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on the back of her head.

Hope that made you laugh. Happy Mother's Day to all my blogging friends!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Spiritual Mountain Climbing

How many know that when you have a mountain top experience, eventually you have to go back down? Too bad we can't just camp on the mountain, right? But that's not where we live, it's just where we go to meet God. Just like Moses went up Mt. Sinai to be with the Lord. If I were him, and God spoke to me and then showed me His glory, I would have said "can I just stay here with you Lord?" "Do I HAVE to go back down there with those people?"

God has many reasons why He meets with us on the of which is to prepare us for the people we'll encounter in the valley. It's also to let the glory shine on our face after having been with Him, so that other's can see it and hopefully want to go up the mountain to be with the Lord themselves.

I want to spend more time with God, being still and listening to His voice. I also have been asking like Moses did, to "see His glory". Just like Moses, I want to carry the glory of the Lord with me, back down the mountain so the people will see that I have been with the Lord (only I don't want to put a veil on it and cover it up). I also know that just like Moses, God's glory will fade eventually, unless I go back up the mountain on a regular bases.

Have you ever heard the phrase "too heavenly minded to be any earthly good?" I've thought about this saying, and I've decided that I want both, not either or. I want to be heavenly minded AND be earthly good. I'm also convinced that in order to that, I need to have the following things:

1. More mountain top experiences with God
2. Carry glory on me when I come down the mountain
3. Clear direction from God on what He's called me to do (just like He told Moses that He was going to use him to set His people free)
4. Always use the tools God gives me to accomplish His calling on my life (Moses' tool was the staff the Lord gave him on the mountain).
5. Know that God goes with me and I'm not alone. Just because I may not hear & see God as well when people are around as I do when I'm up on the mountain, doesn't mean
that God isn't with me. He has promised to NEVER leave me or forsake me.

Lord, please help us all to go mountain climbing this week!