Friday, May 17, 2019

Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. Be clean! Immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured.  Mark 1: 41-42

Have you enjoyed the nice weather yet? Depending on where you live, it may have only had a few days so far, but there’s more ahead. Every year I tell myself I won’t miss the beach weather, but then I do. This life is to be enjoyed, so I’ve got to get out there! No excuses for not going in 2019!

In our verse today the man with leprosy came to Jesus, begging him on his knees for healing. He asked Jesus if he would be willing to heal him. The opportunity to be made whole was right before him. It would be foolish not to ask Jesus to heal. Asking the one who created us to heal is like asking the sun to shine.

Jesus is the giver of life and wholeness, so why did this man feel unworthy of healing? Some versions of the Bible say in this verse that Jesus was indignant rather than compassionate. Jesus was feeling annoyance at what was perceived as unfair treatment, according to the dictionary. 

Jesus wasn’t annoyed with the man or his question, but at the bondage of the enemy. The enemy of our souls will go to great lengths to discourage our faith. He wants us to be filled with unbelief and anger against God. Have you ever felt this way because of your circumstances?

All of us have walked through discouragement at one time or another. If we keep our eyes looking up at our Heavenly Father we will be reassured that he is working in our situation.He isn’ t the one to hold back blessings. He wants to pour out good things on his children. 

I don’t know about you, but I can get in God’s way. I try to figure out how he might change my situation, and then get discouraged  when He doesn’t do what I expected. I have found he’s capable of making my circumstance just right without my help.

 As we often do, this man runs home and does the opposite of what Jesus told him. He tells everyone about his healing. This puts Jesus in a difficult place because now he must stay out of the cities and villages or be trampled by the crowds.

This man probably didn't’ know why Jesus told him to be quiet, and the excitement was too much for him. We can identify with this average man as we are likely to do similar things. Those who are slow to speak often please God the most.

Friday, May 10, 2019

Those living far away fear your wonders; where morning dawns and evening fades you call forth songs of joy.   Psalm 65:8

Yes, flowers are really beginning to bloom on Long Island. Spring is here and the days are warmer.We know it always comes but when its cold for months, we can forget how nice the warm breeze feels.

The past month has been a whirlwind of good activities. Last Saturday, my friends and I went to Manhattan for a Focus on the Family Rally in Times Square. The area was just as ugly and vile as I remembered it. 

As we praised Him, the mercy and grace of God became real to me. Even the vilest sinner he extends his hand of love! The Rally was to encourage New Yorkers for Life. We were blessed and we felt loved!  We rarely see Christian Leaders in New York!

Our laws for abortion are the worst in the country. Today, Governor Kemp of Georgia signed the LIFE Act, banning abortion after 6 weeks. This is a landmark decision, and all of the pro-life movement is saying, this is an improvement! Life begins at conception, so we have some ground to conquer, but thankfully Governor Kemp has more sense than others.

WE can praise God even when the world around us is falling into great trouble, because we know He is the Redeemer. Anyone who turns to Him will be made whole if repentence is real in their lives. Jesus, who endured all sickness and shame for us, knows how to bring anyone to life.

He offers freedom from anxiety, fear and shame. He gives in abundance, and then He gives again! There is no end of His blessings, and He loves to give to overflowing. As a river flowing after the rain, His goodness will pour out on all who obey and follow Him.

Saturday we are having a big event at my home. A Yard /Bake Sale and a raffle. WE are raising money for the Breath of Life Maternity Home. You may not recognize this name because it doesn't exsist except in our hearts. Young women come to Pregnancy Centers on Long Island who are over 21. Our county doesn't house any pregnant woman over the age of 21.

Where can they go? A shelter? Is that a good place for a pregnant girl? 

Thursday, April 25, 2019


Cast all your cares on him, because he cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7

This is my Stephie. Today she is a senior at Smithtown Christian School, and last week was her Senior Prom. I don’t mean to be redundant, but, where has the time gone? It seems like last week I was in High School. Life was simpler then, or at least it seems like it. 

We didn’t deal with cell phones. Our house had two phones; one upstairs and one downstairs. You couldn’t call two different people at the same time since one of those phones was an extension. Can you imagine such a thing? This is all most people had. Now I take my cell phone everywhere, and don't want to be without it.We couldn't go back to the old way because the pay phones are gone. How would we reach someone in an emergency?

There is much anxiety over cell phones today. Parents and children deliberate about how much they cost, whose paying for them, and who will pay for the service. All we had to do was deal with each other's phone time. One phone for all four of us. How long is too long on the phone?

Most of the time none of this was a problem. My brother didn't make many calls. My sister and I were the only ones, since our Mom was gone most of the day at work. Today, how long one is using their personal phone is not the concern, but what's said during that time. Texting  can cause us to feel even move remote from those whom we communicate with.

The old adage, "Sticks and stones will break my bones but words will never hurt me" is such a lie! Words do hurt, and they last far longer in the mind of an individual than we may realize. Our brains hold all words, inflections, tones, and body language that go along with words.

If we could only see others the way Jesus sees them before we said or texted or phoned anyone! How many times I have read a text a day later and said" I wish I read this through before I sent it." I'm quick to say anything in a text because it is instant, almost as if the person is in the room, but they can read it when it's convenient. Guard your words, written, texted and spoken.

Here is a really different way of writing James 1:19-21 from The Message:" Post this at every intersection, dear friends: Lead with your ears, follow with your tongue, and let anger straggle along in the rear. God's righteousness doesn't grow from human anger. So throw all spoiled virtue and cancerous evil in the garbage. In simple humility, let the gardener, God, landscape you with the Word, making a salvation- garden of your life."

Anxiety can be avoided by careful consideration on our part. I don't want to have misunderstandings or hurt feelings, and neither do you. We are His creation made for good works.

Help us Lord Jesus to reflect your character through word and deed. Let us put thought behind our words and think about the long term consequences. As your coming is closer than ever before, may we take each day as a reminder that not one of us has tomorrow guaranteed. In Jeus' name Amen.

Friday, April 12, 2019

Greet all God's people in Christ Jesus. The brothers and sisters who are with me send greetings. Philippians 4:21 NIV

I hope you don't think I forgot about you. I would never do that. I am starting a new endeavor that God has placed on my heart, so I poobably will write once a week. He is moving in marvelous ways that many of us have never seen before. 

I am joining a Pregnancy Center on Long Island called" breath of life." My job will include fund raising for a Maternity Home here in Suffolk County. Presently, there isn't any Christ Centered place for us to direct a young girl to go to have her baby instead of abort.

Out of darkness comes light. From the evils of NY s240, the bill passed in January to extend abortion to birth, has come much push back. People are begining to see the darkness of places like Planned Parenthood. Other states are passing laws to slow down the progression of what has happened in New York.

New York sets precedents for other states, but this time it backfired! Thank God states like Georgia and Ohio have enough sense to set up some safeguards so full term abortion doesn't come to them.

This push back isn't completely what God would have, but it's better than moving forward. We are gaining ground for His purposes. Much prayer is required and is lifted up to the Throne of God's grace, and He is answering our cries!

The movie 'Unplanned" was released according to God's timing, and is a powerful tool in His hands to gain ground for the Pro life Movement. The horrific truth of this movie and the life of Abbie Johnson sends home the message that we are in deep trouble with the "Maker of Heaven and Earth" if we don't seriously make an about-face as a nation.

Thank God for President Trump! No matter what you may think of him as a person, God is using him. Remember, God used a donkey to speak to Baalam in Numbers 22:21-39. I don't think Trump is an ass, and I don't think of Congress as Baalam, but there could be a similarity. I'm being silly of course, but who else would stand up to the politically correct crowd without budging?

We need a stubborn donkey to stand up for us! Funny how life can turn around and be so profound. A man who New Yorkers around these parts never took seriously becomes the answer to our prayers. How funy is that! He is defunding abortion clinics.God has a sense of humor! Psident Donald Trump is being used by God. Who would have thought?

* Our Yard Sale has moved to May 11. We will have a raffle and Bake Sale at this time as well. It will begin at 10:00 until 4:00.

Friday, April 5, 2019

He tends His flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those who have young. Isaiah 40:11

This verse speaks to me about the current state of America. When did we stop caring for our young? There isn't any specific date or time we can pin this to, but the rise of abortion has made the picture clear. America needs to wake up and fight for life.

I felt as if I was thrown out of my comfortable spot when New York passed the infamous s240 bill in January. Why did the church allow this to happen? Why had we stepped back, and fallen into a stupor? I can only speak for myself on this; I was lulled to sleep by other things.

New York allowed abortion before it was federally mandated for every state. Did I think it would always be here? Did I give up the fight? Maybe, but I'm back now.

One of the things I think that discouraged me was the lack of any progress. We would pray, but not see any real tangible results. This is no longer our story! Since our campaign with"40 Days for Life" at Smithtown- Planned Parenthood, we have saved 3 babies! It is very exciting.

Not only do we help those who are needy, but we are planning a "Home for Young Mothers- Suffolk. " I am having 24 people to my house tonight to discuss the feasibility of such a place.  People from 5 different churches throughout L.I. We started a bank account, and by God's grace it is growing!

 We may have a piece of property as well! Two months ago all I had were a few friends, and some change in my bank. God spoke to my heart and said, "Focus on me, and move forward," and I have been doing this since that day. 

We hope to have a Yard Sale on Saturday, April 27 from 10:00 to 4:00 at my house, 30 Cobbler la. East Setauket. We are planning other events as well. I will keep you informed. Please pray for us. This could be a long road, but it's on God's heart.Who can stop the Lord Almight?

Wednesday, April 3, 2019

I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13 NIV

This is a picture of my youngest when she was about a year old. She is a gift from the Lord. She said to me this morning, "I didn't ask to be born", which is true. None of us ask for birth, but it is an honor given by God. I'm thinking she doesn't see this at the moment.

The teen years can be brutal especially in our current society. What someone thinks of them can ruin not only their day, but  their week or more. It's been so long ago for me since I was this age. I know it was hard, and I was a different person after High School. A new freedom came to me, and that I remember well.

I gave my heart to the Lord at about the same time as graduating from school. These were both major turning points in my life, but obtaining eternal salvation as a free gift from the hand of God, nothing can compare! I knew a freedom and confidence never imagined before! I was lighter, or so it seemed. 

The burden of sin was heavy on my shoulders, and giving over everything to Jesus was a release I will never forget. Our verse today is uplifting and inspiring and has helped many over thousands of years. There is one thing I cannot do, however. 

I cannot save myself; none of us can. Jesus, as the sinless, perfect, Son of God had to take our place and die for our sins. This truth never ceases to amaze me! Why would He do this? Why would He give up everything to take my place? Only love would be strong enough to keep Him on the cross.

This season is all about life! Jesus is risen from the dead, and life begins to sprout out of the earth. Newness of life is celebrated,  but  not everywhere. Death reigns in the hearts of unbelievers, and in some of them even to the level of destruction.

40 Days of Life, an  international organization asks us to pray to stop abortion. Planned Parenthood in Smithtown where our church is, has people outside holding signs every day from 7am, to 7 pm. I am one of them. Many churches are involved, and we stand hand in hand for the cause of Christ.

Unity doesn't come easily. It took a tragic law to be passed in New York to wake many of us out of our stupor. I love the people I stand with on Maple Ave. in Smithtown, and they love me. I would never have met these lovely catholic people, if I had stayed home. God has a way of turning the worst circumstances into good! We have saved 2 lives so far. Who can stop the Lord Almighty? 

Friday, March 29, 2019

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in pleny or in want. Philippians 4:12 NIV

 The Apostle Paul is one of my favorite people. He had his trust in God no matter the circumstances, and I admire this about him.  The ability to trust didn't come from Paul's strength. I can admire him all day long, but nothing changes in me until I look at Jesus. 

Paul stood no matter what because of this time in the presence of the Lord through prayer and Bible reading. The wealthiest people in the world can be the most unhappy, because no matter how much the media tries to tell us that wealth makes us happy it doesn't work in real life.

The love of money can control, distrot, and ruin our souls, however I know those who manage lots of money well. What you love will control you. Our friend Charlie enjoys himself. He has huge sailboats, lives on a exclusive Island, and plays golf with celebrities. It has never changed who he is on the inside.

He loves people, and cares about them. He is generous, and he remembers where he came from. His friends are everyday people and some not-so everyday people. My husband and I love this  about him, and Charlie helps us every year with our finances.

He sits down with the lawn-care workers and has pizza with them. I know people in my humble neighborhood who wouldn't think of doing this! Are we too important for those around us? Are we happy on the lean times and the good? Can we trust God to provide when we don't see where it's coming from?

I ask myself these questions all the time. Where is my trust? If I look back at my life I can remember many instances when He showed up at the right time. It wasn't my choice of when He should have rushed into the scene, but it was his timing.

We might think that God missed the perfect opportunity to bless us, but he knows the best way to do all things. I need to be reminded of this too. I'm glad I have you to tell these things.

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Not that I am implying that I was in any personal want, for I have learned how to be content in whatever state I am. Philippians 4:11

This is my son Matthew at age four. I didn't send him to Pre-school because he wanted to be with me. We had a lot of fun together that year. He did go to Sunday School and violin lessons, and I was happy with this. Now that he is twenty four we still spend time together, and I feel so blessed. He will be home for a few months before he starts school again.

There is much to be said about the bonds between mother and child. My children have good memories, but not all of us can say the same. I'm not being negative about my parents because they did the best they could. They loved us as much as they were able, and I'm grateful for this. The scars are still familiar though.

I wonder how many of us can say the same? What about all the young women in our communities stuck in the cycle of pleasing others. They have bought ino the lie that they will never measure up to so and so or be as pretty as the guys want them to be. There is no peace or acceptance of who they are.

I want to tell you what God has been doing in my life recently. In late January, early February New York was thrown off their horse by the Abortion bill called S240. In passed unexpectedly behind everyone's back. I have to say my eyes were blinded to the seriousness of the situation until this passed. Abortion is now legal at any stage of pregnancy up to the baby's due date.

My earnest prayer has been"God have mercy." My desire to do something led me to empty by piggy bank {don't laugh} into a bank account. I had saved coins  from around the house for two years. I had collected the money for cans from the supermarket. My violet colored pig was about to burst, and I coud hardly carry her to the bank.

All I have done is tell this simple story to others. In two days I have had three women say to me,"I will do the same and give you the money." One woman from my church said, " I will turn in my old coins at the exchange and give you what I am given."  God put in into my heart to go to the bank. There is a saying, "Little is much when God is in it."

What is the money for? A home for Unwed Mothers. I feel if we are standing out in front of Planned Parenthood, we need to be able to tell these precious women we have a place for you and your baby. We are part of a prayer vigil for 40 days through an organization called "Forty Days For Life. We don't shout, or carry unappropriate signs. We pray. We talk when we are asked questions. Our presence has saved lives.

Last Friday a mother dropped off her sixteen year old daughter to have her second abortion. The Mom was distraught, and said to one of us,"I know this is wrong, and I didn't want to do this!" The girl who was on the other side of the building came running down the driveway saying, "Wait Mom, I want to talk to these people too!" This ladies were given directions to a free clinic for a sonogram. They wanted this child.Not every story has a happy ending. 

I am having a meeting with the Crisis Pregnancy Center leaders in our area to brainstorm about what we feel God would have here, now. Would you pray for us? Some of you are in states where this hasn't happened yet. May it never happen. All I know right now is God has said to me, Focus on me, and move forward. The Mama Bears march on.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you had renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. Philippians 4:10 NIV

My pictures lately may not be as inspiring as in the past. The site I was using didn't want me to use their pics without giving the name of the photographer. This is all well and good, but I couldn't figure out how to add this information to the pic. After many attempts, I decided to use my own pictures for a change. 

Paul is a great worshipper of the Lord. He often gives praise to the only one who deserves it. I like this about him, and I like it about me too. Worship reaches into us and releases the deepest, darkest, parts of our souls. It captures our imaginations, and allows us to see beyond the four walls around us.

I can be in turmoil over the crazies of living in a house with three adult children, a wonderful husband, and two huge dogs. {Let me say here, the hubby is never the concern.} When I play worship music whatever I was caught up in becomes a thing of the past. 

Have you ever run into a great, fluffy, warm bed with your head right into the comforter? I have, and, it feels as if clouds have engulfed you. It seems as if nothing is happening around you.
All you want to do is stay in that safe, soft, welcoming place.
There is firmness and stability, but your skin is soothed by the silkiness of the material.

Hugging a loved one especially as a child can feel wonderful too. Worship is better than anything we can try to compare to it. I thought I would write about something totally different, but this is for you, I know it. Maybe none of this is reaching you right now.

You have had a hard day, week or life. None of this seems real or attainable at all. God is a good Father and He wants you to know His goodness. This doesn't mean you will live a perfect life, without trials and hardship.

 This is where the trials start, because God loves you with a great passion. When we open to Him, He can mold us to be useable for His eternal Kingdom and purposes. It becomes your best life ever! 

We become the truest version of ourselves when we surrender to the Almighty. He can move through us to do the work of His Kingdom. How could anything be better than this?

Monday, March 11, 2019

Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me- put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:9 NIV

What a pleasure it is to be writing to you. I have been sick for three months so you may have noticed I haven't been writing much. I just found out I have parasites in my gastro- intestinal system. I was treated initially for a urinary tract infection with no positive result; then for yeast, which I probably had, but still not well.

 Finally my doctor who is a wellness practioner, tested me for parasites after everything else was not working completely. In three days on this supplement, I feel like myself again! Thank God! I'm still fighting for complete healing but I'm confident this is the right direction.

It's hard when everything you try seems to be ok, but not the right treatment. I prayed for direction every day, and I believe the Lord sent me to the right people. Everything feels off when you are not digesting your food.  I eat clean, but sometimes this can backfire too. These little pesties can be found so many places!

Enough of that, Let's talk about Our dear friend Paul. You know he would be like us if he were here. I'm sure people flocked to him where ever he went as he spoke about Jesus. He didn't have much free time, but I'm sure he made prayer a priority every day.

Our verse today reminds us of the Godly character Paul established as he walked with God. He wasn't born with it, on the contrary, his natural man was the same as ours. He had to spend time in the presence of the Holy one, on his knees, asking, seeking and knocking. 

The fruit of our labor in prayer brings bountiful blessings with eternal value. We receive peace in this life and the one to come. What is especially important is emphasing the peace for right now. People are searching everywhere for some sort of peace.

The farther we are from God, the less peace we have. Divided families reap a bountiful harvest of pain, fear and anxiety. My father didn't mean for this to happen to us, but he didn't know the way to peace with God. I loved him, and saw the depth of his pain and emptiness.

Maybe this is why I hunger for my Father in heaven. He is my "abba" daddy God. His love comes in mountainous waves of compassion and uncompromise. He will not let me go. No, He will keep me by His side no matter what. 

This peace, which He gives, cannot ever be matched. Nothing satisfies like the one who made us to be satisfied by Him alone. Other things might fill a part of our cavernous souls for a while, but Jesus will stay as long as we want. Why would I want anything else?

Monday, March 4, 2019

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable- if anything is praiseworthy- think about such things. Philippians 4:8 NIV

If I had to choose one verse as my absolute favorite, this one would be on the list. I know this is a non commital way of saying I really appreciate it, but honestly how hard it is to choose just one!

When I meditate on these particular verses in Philippians from 4: 4-9, I can stand strong and my feet are on solid rock. It brings stability I otherwise wouldn't have. Thank God we have His word!

Dr. Caroline Leaf in her book-"Switch on your Brain" verifies  neroulogically how our brains actually change when we use the Bible as our meditation. We can block out the worthless, dead and harmful words spoken to us by replacing them with the truth. What about parts of the Bible we don't understand?

I could leave out a few, like geneologies, but they serve an important purpose. I can't apply lists of people from thousands of years ago to my life in any way, to make sense of the mess around me.  These verses don't speak peace to my soul or comfort for my  day.

The lists we see as endless, faceless people prove Jesus is from the  lineage of David, the King.  The Messiah is said to be from David's family, and this was crucial in the day when Jesus lived on earth. The Jews knew many things about the coming Savior, but few of them wanted to believe he would be a suffering servant.

We can understand this, we all want someone who can come in strenght and power and deliver us from bondage, whether it be to slavery or something else. Those who missed the Messiah were hoping to be released from earthly bondage, and Jesus offered better. Those who missed Him were not looking for eternal blessings.

Have I missed some of God's best while looking for my own way of solving issues? Have I missed the Savior by thinking I knew what I wanted would be best? I can surely say, yes. I have learned to look for my selfishness, and turn to something good, right and true. God's light shining through me is what I want, and is best all around.

Thursday, February 28, 2019

I've been meaning to tell you about my weekend, but I needed time to sort things out in my brain. I went to Albany with some friends for The Day of Mourning. New York has passed recently the most hein0us abortion bill in our country's history.

The one who organized this Prayer Meeting isn't from New York. Her name is Elizabeth Johnston, and she is know on the internet as "The Activist Mommy." She lives in North Carolina, but she felt God's tug on her heart, to come to Albany.

We didn't know she wasn't from New York. I assumed she was a New Yorker, but when I found out she wasn't I felt ashamed to be a Christian in New York. Why hadn't we thought of this ourselves I wondered? "Are we complacent Lord," I asked. He assured me that we aren't but that Elizabeth was a gift to us to move forward!

This entire meeting was put together in three weeks. When we asked those who are part of Elizabeth's group how this could be, they said,"It's a miracle." How were they able to rent out a conference room in a State building in New York? I can't even imagine!

Not only is it a State building, it was the room directly under the place that our Governor signed the bill into law. God is doing amazing things, as this is what He is known for. God God is greater than any arrogant, hostile Governor, or legislator! We have the God of all creation on our side.

We mean no harm to anyone because that's not the way God operates. He works in the silent places of the heart, to bring people to the truth. We pray for Governor Cuomo every time our Prayer Meeting meets. He is desperately lost, but no one is too far away from God. He has turned around the vilest sinner to see the light of His glory and grace.

I read today that D.C. was shocked to learn that the Law on Capitol Hill to give babies born alive after an abortion life as voted down. How can this be? It baffles my mind, and many others too. Hopefully the outcry will be overwhelming because the devil overplays his hand. 

What did we do for four hours in the Conference Room? We prayed for mercy on New York, and for strength for Pastors to stand up with courage against this heinous crime. My Pastor mentioned abortion for the first time in a service two weeks ago and he is planning on talking about it this Sunday too. Do what you can sisters, to save babies lives!

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

And the peace of God which transends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:7 NIV

This beautiful chapter we are studying now, has some of the most profound truths. These verses are well known and memorized because of the power and authority God has given us through His written voice.  I am glad Jesus is guarding my mind and heart.

In His tender care I rest and learn how to love. Who else should teach us about love but the one who loves us the most? We can't understand this great love and peace, but we know it is mighty. It is more real than anything we can see with our eyes, or hear with our ears.

His love and peace never waiver. We can walk away from these blessings, but He remains steadfast and true no matter what. His arms remain open and waiting for our return. He welcomes us as a long lost daughter. The parable of the prodigal son beautifully describes how God sees us, and wants us back in His arms.

There is safety there. When we feel safe, we can rest, and hear what our Father is saying to us. He blankets us by His Spirit, with a love that's warmer than your best comforter coming out of the dryer. Think of the smell of your comforter. It's fresh and clean, and you feel as if you can do anything!

The Holy Spirit is much greater than a blanket, but it is known as our "comforter." Sometimes a word picture can paint for us a feeling. Peace in God is the most amazing experience. It isn't based on our circumstances, or how much we have. It reflects heaven and all the unmerited favor He has poured out on us.

The fence in the picture today represents our hearts. Will we allow everything in, or will we allow God to protect us by closing the gate to lies, troubles or disease? Standing for God in a culture where anything goes is a bold move, but it's the place of safety.

The name of the Lord is a strong tower, the righteous run into it and are safe. Proverbs18:10 NKJV

I could quote scripture all night and not run out of verses on the security we have in Jesus. Are you in God's place of safety? If you're not sure, call upon the Lord in the name of Jesus. Ask Him to cleanse you of sin and of all unrighteousness. He will gladly come in to your life and heart!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Philippians 4:4-5 NIV

Flowers are one of the greatest gifts God has given to this earth. This is not a surprise to you if you follow my blog, because I have always made it known. What is it about flowers that make some women all mushy on the inside?

It's snowing out but my mind is on flowers. They seem to speak of better things to come. They are a bit of light in the darkness. They exsist to give us pleasure. How great is our God, to think of us and care about our feelings.

 Many people don't know that God cares about them in a very deep and personal way. Some might even say He doesn't care for anyone or anything, but they would be wrong. To experience Jesus' love and grace speaks to us of another place, much greater than our own.

At times I sit at this computer and close my eyes. I do this so I can meditate on His love. There is nothing greater, and nothing like it. How could you compare God's love to anything else? The comparison would never do it justice.

Let's take a crack at it. God's love is greater than riding your favorite roller coaster over and over with your favorite candy in hand. That is pretty lame. What about swimming in the caribbean with your best friends, and dolphins in the distance? Maybe a little better. How about enjoying your family, and praying together, and for each other?

This idea is good, but kind of designed for me. You may like it too. It hasn't happened in a while, but I'm trusting God. Rejoicing in the Lord is what I started out to share today.  God's love is something incredible to rejoice about!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Yes, and I ask you loyal yokefellow, help these women who have contended at my side in the cause of the gospel, along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the book of life. Philippians 4:3 NIV

Paul is honoring women for their work and dedication to the gospel. We don't hear much about women in the Bible but I believe those who followed Jesus honored and respected women just as Jesus did.

Our society doesn't respect women, as we are bombarded with t.v. commericals that exploit girls. Perfumes, clothing, make-up all have to be just right in order to be excepted and valued. None of these things add value to a person, or endure for very long.

The new abortion bill in N.Y. devalues life but also women. No longer is murdering a unborn child through abuse of the mother a crime. If the child dies through abuse, no criminal charges will be brought against the abuser. Before this bill it was considered murder.

How could this be good for women, but yet this is what the opposition proposes. People who never thought about abortion before are appauled by the audacity of the N.Y. Senate for allowing a child to be killed upto the day of birth! 

Changing a law doesn't make right what has always been wrong. The consequences of destroying life is not something any of these lawmakers could fathom. Evil, demonic actions don't evaporate into the air. We are praying for those who stand behind this bill, and we earnestly want them to be saved from hell.

 Paul reminds these dear people of what's valuable. Their names are written in the Lamb's book of life. Their hope goes beyond this menial existence, to a far greater reality. Winston Churchill is quoted as saying,"If you think you are walking through hell, keep going!" Words well said.

Would you pray for me and my group as we go to Albany this weekend?  We will be mourning the death of so many that have been lost or will be because of this new abortion legislation. It is an outdoor rally, so please pray for warmth, would you? Thanks, I will let you know what happens. 

The important part of this verse is how Paul reminds these dear people of what's valuable. Their names are written in the Lamb's book of life. Their hope goes beyond this menial existence, to a far greater reality.

Friday, February 15, 2019

I plead with Euodia and I plead with Syntyche to agree with each other in the Lord. Philippians 4:2 NIV

Have you ever been told by a church leader to get along with your arch nemasis? There are women that just seem to rub us the wrong way. They're too quiet or too loud, or bossy or whatever we may find annoying.

Maybe a comment here or there about your child? Women can get really protective if their child is percieved to be under attack, especially new Moms. Our sensitivities can be on high alert since we have never raised a child before, and everyone seems to have an opinion about how to do it. A comment or a dig can seem harmless to us, but wound someone else.

These two women sat under Paul's ministry so they aren't just anyone. It had to be a pretty serious rift if Paul has to address it in his letter. It doesn't matter what it was about. Our enemy knows how to divide and conquer. He doesn't have any new tricks, just the same ones he's always used.

Unity is particularily important for these two since they are witnesses to the Gospel. Our church has been praying for unity along with repentance and revival. These three seem to go hand in hand. How can we have one without the other? This is a work in progress as we pray for our Island and tri-state region.

What about our dear women in Philippi? I am quite sure after Paul's adminition there was reconcilitation. Who can argue with Paul or with the idea of laying down differences for the sake of the Lord and His message? Most certainly I would have been quite upset to have this mentioned in a letter to my church!

I would rather be beat up than to suffer such embarassment. I'm  sensitive about being wrong, or publically renounced. Who wouldn't be? Sometimes our words can sting someone, and we never meant it, but it becomes a big problem.  It snowballs into hurt feelings, feeling betrayed, or other things.

Lysa Terkeurst in her book titled "Uninvited" wanted to get a message to women. She felt women needed to know that each one of us go through times of feeling abandoned, rejected or alone. If you are in ministry this happens all too often.

Working with others in ministry can be confusing. We may have certain expectations of how others should talk, believe and worship, among other things. Can we love them anyway? Can we pray for them if need be? I know we can. Blessing and love to you for a great weekend!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Therefore, my brothers and sisters, you who I love and long for, my joy and crown,{ the Amplified Bible says wreath of victory here} stand firm in the Lord in this way, dear friends! Philippians 4:1 NIV

Long Island escaped the snow yesterday! We had a few inches but I wouldn't call it snow. The trees are clear and the streets. I love when the snow covers everything so it looks as if it is new.

The great Apostle Paul probably never had to deal with snow. I imagine most of where he went was warm, but I wouldn't put it past him. He was intense about salvation and reaching as many people as possible. In this verse, we read Paul reminding his friends to stand firm, unwavering in their pursuit of Christ.

Paul tells them how to stand firm in the chapter we just finished, chapter 3. Verse one of chapter three he reminds his friends it is needful that he repeat himself about how to stand, because there are others trying to tear down their faith and foundation. There were some like Paul before his conversion who would kill Christians for their faith.

He calls them dogs. This is an insult because dogs were not regarded as good for anything since they were not domesticated. Paul writes about being reminded. I am glad for reminders all the time, as I seem to need them more often.

 We can learn something new even from scripture we memorize.
The Holy Spirit illuminates certain things we have never noticed. Have you ever read a verse a hundred times but failed to see a key component? It happens, I presume because we need to see it in a different light at the time it is shown to us. 

Maybe you need to see God's love like you never have before,  and so a verse like, 1John 1:5 can come alive! "This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all." What if you never realized  the "at all" part, and all of a sudden you see it! There is nothing dark,bad, evil or wrong in God. It could change your whole understanding of who He is to you.

God is always on our side because He is a good, good, Father.

One of the reasons I came to Jesus was because of my need for stability. I didn't know anyone who had it, but I wanted it badly. Standing firm is a way to become immovable, unchangeable, and centered on Christ. Believe God, know His promises are true. Read the Bible, and worship.

 I love how Paul lavishes his love for his church as if he or she were family. These people probably were the only" family" to him since he had turned to Christ. We don't know, but here is a man who is not afraid to express his emotions! Thank God for it!

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform your lowly body so that they will be like his glorious body. Philippians 3:21 NIV

This is Rudy and I at Christmas. We are getting on in years, I'm told, but I don't believe it. The rest of the world may think people over 50 are over the hill. We say the best is yet to come!

We are living in a day when anything can happen, and I mean this in a good way. We have been praying for revival for years now and God can burst on the scene by His Spirit at any time. He is doing just that in places all over the world, so why not here?

Praying for God to move over a particular region can take  a hundred years, or not, depending on what is in God's plan. I read this morning about a church who decided to take their church to Planned Parenthood. Every week the worship team, the altar workers, and the Pastor show up and have church.

This might sound unorthodox, but we live in different times, so if this works, Thank God for it. As Paul states in this verse, everything is under God's control, however he will not overstep our free will. If we choose to go another way, he will not hold us back.

Who wants to do their own thing, when God is the only one to give eternal life, with a completely restored body! We won't be limited by time and space, so jumping, running, swimming are no problem.We will dance and sing and not get tired! We won't be sick or hindered by the limitations of these earthly bodies.

 This revelation encourages hope inside! If you read the end of the book, it says we win. It can be easy to forget. We battle against spiritual wickedness, but the battle has been fought and Jesus has overcome for us all. 

Fear of getting older vanishes, because God is still the same. He still lives within me, and guides me. With Him by our side we can endure whatever comes our way, one day at a time!

Monday, February 11, 2019

But we are citizens of the state {commonwealth, homeland} which is in heaven, and from it also we earnestly and patiently await {the coming of} the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah,{as} Savior, Philippians 3:20 AMP

This is a picture of Kara, a young lady in Bible school at Word of Life in upstate New York. Last summer she did a missions trip to Guatemala, and here is one of the children she met. Kara grew up on Long Island, so being in Guatemala is a drastic change for her.

She isn't moved by the poverty around her, because she can get these little ones to smile and play. I'm sure it seemed unusual at the same time. I love this verse today because it reminds me of where I am from.

My citizenship is not just of the USA, but greater than this. My name is written in the Lamb's book of Life and so I belong to Heaven. Many things are changing around us all the time, but taking hold of verses like these ground us. We need to remember we are not of this world's systems.

Lying, cheating, stealing ,undermining someone else, these are not God's ways but we see this all around. These are not attributes of Christians, and these things should shock us. Not to mention sexual sins, that some don't ever consider what God says about it.

We live in a sexualized society, but we don't have to be led by it. We need to pray for God to send a mighy move of His Spirit to cause the lost to be aware of their need. The truths from the Spirit of God have been glossed over as another idea comes into vogue.

This world says do whatever you want, you can be a Christian and still do yoga.  Yoga was designed to worship foreign gods.You can smoke marijuana, and have another beer while you're at it. God wants a people who worship and rely on Him. I'm not saying it wrong to have alochol once in a while,but once in a while can lead to every day pretty easily. My son Matthew found this out the hard way.

Are you expecting God to show up? Do you know it is on His mind? The Bible is filled with references of Jesus' second coming, and we are living in the days when this can happen. 

We are told, " But concerning that day and hour {of Jesus' return} no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only." Matthew 24:36  We can see the signs of the times the Bible says, and the increase of violence is one of them.

Paul, our dear friend from the first century, was awaiting the day of Christ's coming, patiently and earnestly. How much more should we be seeking God with pure hearts for His return. Pray for those who don't know Him as Savior and Lord. 

Friday, February 8, 2019

Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Philippians 3:19 NIV

Although we have had a mild winter so far we still can't go to the beach and sit for a while. In less, of course you are somewhere tropical right now, to which I have to say, God bless you. Send some warmth up north please.

Our verse today is really an extention of yesterday's verse. Paul lements in verse 18 about many being enemies of Christ. We see the same pattern in America today. Little or no regard for life. Thousands of children from Central America being smuggled into our nation illilegally for sex trafficking.

We prayed in our prayer meeting this week that these people who traffick children would be exposed and this injustice come to a grinding holt! The demand is so great the traffickers can't keep up with it. This is where prayer for our men becomes important.

Nobody starts with a child. It usually starts with pornography. Did you know that Starbucks has free wi-fi and it allows pornagraphic material to be available to anyone? The National Center on Sexual Exploitation is holding Starbucks accountable. Let's pray this business would stop allowing porn in their cafes.

Inappropriate material on the internet has huge repruccusions.  When I was young it came in magazine form, but children are the most vulnerable with internet access almost everywhere. What is the answer to these gigantic problems?

It always comes down to one name: Jesus. Pray for a mighty earth shaking revival to move across America so the lost will come to Christ, and these horrible addictions would stop. It takes the power of God to change people's hearts. My Dad used to say,"You can't legislate morality" and I didn't understand what he was saying.

Just recently I was thinking about this, and I realized he was right. People need a change of heart, a change in focus to see beyond themselves. Please pray for the lost to have a revelation of their need for a Savior.

I am thankful for you, my readers, and I hope you enjoy
reading these blogs as much as I do writing them. Have a blessed weekend!

Thursday, February 7, 2019

For as I have often told you before and now say again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ. Philippians 3:18 NIV

Paul is just like us. He is an emotional, dedicated, on fire follower of Jesus, and his heart breaks for the things God's heart breaks over. Some of you know about the recent abortion bill in New York that allows a child to be aborted up to their due date. I don't know, but isn't that called murder?

This breaks God's heart. He is the giver of life, and doesn't allow us to treat any life with disrespect. It boggles my mind to think others actually were celebrating this "Victory"? What were they thinking?

They weren't thinking the way a Christian thinks. Their eyes are blinded by the enemy to do his bidding. Selfishness seems to be rampant and sometimes abortion can be a selfish thing. I saw an excerpt recently from a magazine about doing good deeds so you will feel good. Good, do helpful things, but do it with a heart of praise to the one who made you. Real, lasting joy comes from doing these things in Jesus' name. 

The self oriented person will leave a good deed and say to themselves," I can pat myself on the back because I helped someone. The God oriented person will say,"Glory to God, I  did what Jesus would do! I please my Father in heaven."

 One is sowing to self which profits nothing in the kingdom of God, and the other is storing riches in heaven. Jesus said, " When you give to the needy, don't let your right hand know what your left hand is doing." Matthew 6:3 NIV.  What Jesus said means: When you give, {and I think giving aid to someone fits here} don't hold on to the thought of what good you have done. It can play on in your mind and you will think better of yourself than others.

Sorry for getting off track. The godly are pursuing a different goal than those who aren't looking to God. This is why Paul cries, and our world today is worse. Paul was surrounded by people who were idol worshipers. Today our idols can be money, power, accumulating things, or even food. God deserves to be first in our hearts.

There is no one like our God; no one could ever come close. As we walk this life on earth let us be aware of how much the enemy wants to trip us. Don't give in to selfish thoughts; live to build the Kingdom of God by doing what He says. I'm praying for you, and please pray for me.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. Philippians 3:17 ESV

I'm having techninical trouble with the site I get pictures from, so today you get to see our Daisy, when she was 3 months old. She just turned 7 months, and is about 65 pounds, and who knows where she will be when fully grown? It's a great adventure with our Great Pyrennes. She is so loving and calm so when she's 100 pounds she won't jump on anyone, maybe?

Daisy follows our golden retreiver, Buddy around the house and outside. Sometimes I think Buddy is tying to tell me he's not thrilled by this new addition to the family. He's 8 years old, and enjoys playing with Daisy, except now she is bigger than him.

Buddy is as perfect as a dog can be, we think. Daisy is following his lead on most things, and she has a great example to follow. Everyone needs to follow others in order to learn what's right.Our children follow us and learn to walk, and talk and even those things we don't want them to learn.

I remember as a child having my mouth washed out with soap at pre-school when I repeated something my Father said at home. I did not make that mistake twice. We learn  much by the example.  This is why Paul writes, "imitate me!" His course was set to love the Lord from the very beginning, and so is yours if you are His.

Paul tells us in chapter 4 of Philippians- "If there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things-fix you minds on them." verse 8b AMP. There seem to be many things vying for our attention. In Hebrews we find -" fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith" Hebrews 12:2 NIV

What's interesting about this verse, is the" cloud of witnesses" in verse one before it. This refers to those who have gone before us to heaven. Paul likens our Christian walk to a race to be run with perserverance, and certainly this is true. We put off every sin that weighs us down so we can run well, but not too fast.

We don't want to burn out in the first lap. If we are looking to Jesus, He will be all the reason we need to finish our course well, with honor and dignity. Paul says later in Hebrews 12 "the peaceable fruit of righteousness" will be ours if we continue on God's path.What a wonderful Father we have!

Monday, February 4, 2019

Neverthless, whereto we have already attained, let us walk by the same rule, let us mind the same thing. Philippians 3:16 

Being of one accord is important for lots of reasons. If you are in the back end of horse suit, you won't fool anybody if you don't stay in agreement with the front. If you are on a seesaw,  balance is important. Our bodies need balance as well.

Paul is not talking about any of those things. He wants the Philippians to understand as a church, correct doctrine is important for every beliver. There were many in Paul's day who would like to kick a believer off the right path.

Today isn't any different. Belivers are hit with all kinds of false teachings from media, movies, books and other people. 

If we don't know what we stand for, we won't stand at all.

There are many ways to find what the Bible says on many subjects.
Ask your Pastor to recommend a commentary or book that will guide you on your journey. Many churches have classes for new believers teaching what is right in God's eyes.

Time spent reading God's word, the Bible, is time well spent! Nothing will increase your love for God or help you see Him in everything like His written love letters to you. In every book of the Bible we can find our loving heavenly Father speaking the same message. Redemption!

I may be wrong about every book, because I don't know if Leviticus or Numbers spells out redemption but, the main thread that flows easily through most books is red. This refers to the coming of a Savior who would die for the salvation of all those who would trust in Him.

Unity within a church is one thing, but unity among churches is an entirely other debocle. We don't have to agree on everythng, just the basics. Quarrels cause our energy to be wasted when we have much better things to do for the Kingdom of God. 

The enemy's main goal is to keep our eyes off the prize of life in Christ Jesus, and the world likes nothing more than to find Christians who don't get along. Hippocrates are what unbelievers will call us, so it should be of great importance to us to forgive.

Love among God's own is crucial for this world to know we are from the Father. We don't have to be best friends with someone who has harmed us. Wisdom says to stay away from such people, but we can lay down our hurts at the cross, and find strength to be obedient.

Friday, February 1, 2019

All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you.   Philippians 3:15 NIV

My garbage has been deemed unacceptable by the town. I got notices on my can telling me this. I wonder if someone in to Sanitation has too much time on their hands? I did break the rule unknowingly. I had paper in my can that cannot be recycled.

Such things were never a problem was I was young. The garbage men came and took whatever you put out. Simply. Easy. Now I feel as if I have to practically gift wrap my garbage so it will pass inspection! My Town decided they will no longer take glass containers and we have to drive 12 miles to a drop off center.

I'm sure my neighbors who work full time aren't going to do this. In fact one of them told me she wouldn't. I guess she will get unacceptable on her can too. I decided to do what is asked, but no one likes having services taken away, especially when taxes are so high. Sorting through my garbage isn't my ideal way of spending my time.

Maturity says do what is necessary and move on. Paul is speaking about this to the Philippians. He wants them to know that giving their all is what it takes to follow Jesus.

 I love how our friend Paul is factual in his approach with the Philippians. He wants them to realize as adults, each of them must commit to pressing close to Jesus in order to stay true to Him. He isn't concerned though. He is sure God will show them the way. I love his assurance here, about God making things clear.

And if God did this for the Philippian church, He will do the same for you and I. God is not a respecter of persons and it's comforting to know God will keep us. When we seek God above all other things, He guides us into all truth.

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

and so somehow, to attain to the resurrection from the dead. Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal,  but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Philippians 3:11-12 NIV

While walking down the cleaning products aisle today, I spied a can of room spray that said, "You will feel as if Spring has come."I thought: All I have to do is buy this can of artificial fragrances and chemicals and my life will be complete?

Somehow I didn't believe that. As we all know, ad slogans are an American concoction. Consumers will believe anything, some would say. But not this "been around the block too many times" consumer. Gullibility is not a New York trait. We are usually hard to convince.

Most restaurant chains will come to New York last because they know we are hard customers. We want things done the right way. Paul feels the same way about His walk with God. He knew Jesus paid for his sins and wrong doings so he wanted all God had for him. He knew like I do, God isn't finished working great character and love in us.

We have to be open to God loving us. When I first came to Jesus, I had no idea how deep His love was for me. The Holy Spirit made Himself real to me, and this awesome adventure continues. Why do I ever doubt that He has everything under control? I guess it comes from the world around me.

Our world today is so contrary to what God wants for us. Hostility, anger and outright hatred for other seems to be the way of many. Even our government officials have taken hold of this. We need to take hold of Jesus. He is the anchor for our souls.

It is not easy to press in for more of God. It's not as if He is trying to hide, on the contrary, He longs for us to push through the worldliness around us to experience more love, peace and joy. Silencing the voices around us that vy for our attention is something Christians have had to do from the beginning.

Again our friend the Apostle, is honest about his life. All pretense and formality is behind him as he gives us a glimpse of the Christian walk. What if he decided not to write from his heart? Maybe we wouldn't know what's normal for a follower of Jesus.

I thank God for truth written from the pen of this great man. I have a whole new respect for him since we started this study of Philippians. He seems to have a blend of steadfastness, and emotion, but there is always room for improvement!