Thankful Thursday! February 21, 2019

Thank you, Lord, for:

Time spent with my sweet sister!

Gil taking such sweet care of me while I was sick.  He made dinner every night and rubbed my head

Sweet texts and emails from my friends and ladies, checking on how I’m feeling. 

New clients...and my beloved old clients. 

Your provision and guidance. 

Better communication with Gil!

 

 “Let us fall into the hands of the Lord, for his mercy is great; but do not let me fall into human hands.” 2 Samuel 24:14

 

“Great is thy faithfulness! Great is thy faithfulness!

Morning by morning new mercies I see:

All I have needed thy hand hath provided—

Great is thy faithfulness, Lord, unto me!

 

One of the stunning realities of the Christian life is that in a world where everything is in some state of decay, God’s mercies never grow old. They never run out. They never are ill timed. They never dry up. They never grow weak. They never get weary. They never fail to meet the need. They never disappoint.”

 New Morning Mercies, by Paul David Tripp

Thankful Thursday! February 7, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

My precious family!   Each and every one of them! 

Ren & Lex spending time with us

My husband taking care of things

Picking up my dear Whitty from the airport, spending time with him again!

God’s promises and His faithfulness! 

He is my strength and my shield!   My heart trusts in Him and I am helped!   My heart leaps with joy and with my song I will praise him.   

 

“When amazing realities of the gospel quit commanding your attention, your awe, and your worship, other things in your life will capture your attention instead. When you quit celebrating grace, you begin to forget how much you need grace, and when you forget how much you need grace, you quit seeking the rescue and strength that only grace can give. This means you begin to see yourself as more righteous, strong, and wise than you actually are, and in so doing, you set yourself up for trouble.”

So we need to remember.

Remember the horrible disaster of sin.

Remember Jesus, who stood in our place.

Remember the righteousness that is his gift.

Remember the transforming power of the grace you and I couldn’t have earned.

Remember the destiny that is guaranteed to all of God’s blood-purchased children.

Remember his sovereignty and his glory.

Remember that remembering is spiritual war;

even for this we need grace.

 

“New Morning Mercies” by Paul David Tripp

 

Thankful Thursday! January 31, 2019

Thank you, Lord, for:

Sweet Jeanine who took the time to reach out and asked if there was anything for which I needed prayer. Heart warming!

A peaceful Sunday!   

Beautiful sunshiny, perfect temp day!

My wonderful, loving husband who makes me laugh!!  (I looove to laugh!)

Clean bathrooms & floors 🤗

 

“And I will ask the Fater and He will give you another Counselor to be with you forever. John 14: 16

 

It’s correct to say that the Holy Spirit is our Counselor, because that’s what he does and is supposed to do....

The word counselor shows us how we should think of the Holy Spirit. A counselor is not a lawgiver or someone like Moses, who frightens us with the devil, death, and hell. No, a counselor fills a troubled heart with joy toward God. A counselor encourages us to be happy that our sins have been forgiven, death has been conquered, heaven has been opened, and God is smiling upon us. Whoever understands what it means for the Spirit to be our Counselor will have already won the battle.

That person will find nothing but pure comfort and joy in heaven and on earth. Because the Father is the one who sends him to help us, and because Christ is the one who asks him to do so, this sending is certainly not done out of anger. Instead, it flows from a fatherly, heartfelt love. So Christians should remind themselves of this name for the Holy Spirit. He is a counselor, and we are the troubled and timid ones whom he helps.”

Martin Luther

Thankful Thursday!

Thank you, Lord, for:

Gil and I being grandparents together, the opportunity to babysit and getting up together to feed him at night   

Tru slept til 5:30!!! Then went back to sleep after his bottle!

A nap! 

Gil always cleaning up and putting things away.💗

Papa and Poppy and the Kelly’s at Whitty’s game!

Whitty playing well even though he’s hurting


“There’s a Place for You

When you feel like you don’t fit in, may you walk in faith because you have a place at the Table of Grace.

When you feel like you’re just not enough, may you remember that His Enough is more than enough for you.

When you trip up and fall short, remember that He stoops down to make you great.

And when you don’t feel victorious, remember that you’re already seated with Christ because He won the victory for you.

Have a great day!



But he said to me,

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.  Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”

2 CORINTHIANS 12:9”


Excerpt From:  lBlessings for the Morning” by Susie Larson

 

Thankful Thursday! January 3, 2019

Thank you, Lord, for:

 Planning new songs and new choreography for my classes.

Putting away all the Christmas decorations. 

The house all clean!

Preston being home.

Babysitting our sweet Tru.

Parker meeting us at dinner and going to Whitty’s game.

 

WHAT AN EXTRAORDINARY place!” cried Lucy. “All those stone animals—and people too! It’s—it’s like a museum.”

“Hush,” said Susan, “Aslan’s doing something.”

He was indeed. He had bounded up to the stone lion and breathed on him. Then without waiting a moment he whisked round—almost as if he had been a cat chasing its tail—and breathed also on the stone dwarf, which (as you remember) was standing a few feet from the lion with his back to it. Then he pounced on a tall stone dryad which stood beyond the dwarf, turned rapidly aside to deal with a stone rabbit on his right, and rushed on to two centaurs. But at that moment Lucy said,

“Oh, Susan! Look! Look at the lion.”

I expect you’ve seen someone put a lighted match to a bit of newspaper which is propped up in a grate against an unlit fire. And for a second nothing seems to have happened; and then you notice a tiny streak of flame creeping along the edge of the newspaper. It was like that now. For a second after Aslan had breathed upon him the stone lion looked just the same. Then a tiny streak of gold began to run along his white marble back—then it spread—then the color seemed to lick all over him as the flame licks all over a bit of paper—then, while his hindquarters were still obviously stone, the lion shook his mane and all the heavy, stone folds rippled into living hair. Then he opened a great red mouth, warm and living, and gave a prodigious yawn. And now his hind legs had come to life. He lifted one of them and scratched himself. Then, having caught sight of Aslan, he went bounding after him and frisked round him whimpering with delight and jumping up to lick his face.

Of course the children’s eyes turned to follow the lion; but the sight they saw was so wonderful that they soon forgot about him. Everywhere the statues were coming to life. The courtyard looked no longer like a museum; it looked more like a zoo. Creatures were running after Aslan and dancing round him till he was almost hidden in the crowd. Instead of all that deadly white the courtyard was now a blaze of colors; glossy chestnut sides of centaurs, indigo horns of unicorns, dazzling plumage of birds, reddy-brown of foxes, dogs and satyrs, yellow stockings and crimson hoods of dwarfs; and the birch-girls in silver, and the beech-girls in fresh, transparent green, and the larch-girls in green so bright that it was almost yellow. And instead of the deadly silence the whole place rang with the sound of happy roarings, brayings, yelpings, barkings, squealings, cooings, neighings, stampings, shouts, hurrahs, songs and laughter.”

Excerpt from —The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe

 

Take a good look...and see that God is indeed “doing something”!!!  

“If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.” Jeremiah 29:13 NLT

Thankful Thursday! December 27, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

Sending Your Son to free us from sin!!! 

My dear Parker!  28 years with him!  He’s been a blessing in so many ways!💖🎉

Pres and Whitt home safely!

Lunch with Whitty!   SO great to hang out with him again!

My whole family here, less Parker, hanging out, having dinner, watching basketball and football together (Sat and Sun).   My home and heart are full!

Great conversation with Pres  

A sweet time with just our immediate family before everyone else came on Christmas Eve.


“As My servant Martin Luther once wrote, ‘You have not yet considered the weightiness of sin.’ The self-serving energy..., ruling so often... and actively present in you, is a far greater offense to Me than [it is] to you. Only when you see the source of your hassles as a greater insult to Me than to you will you rest in My plan to deal with it.”


Excerpt From “66 Love Letters” by Larry Crabb


 

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Thankful Thursday! December 20, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

Sweet time (brunch) with my (Wednesday) Strength class ladies.

I love my outdoor classes...especially in this gorgeous fall weather!!  

Breakfast after class together!🤗

Lex and Tru here baking cookies!  Then Ren came over as well!🤗 

“Hiking” on my hillside with Tru.  He laughed so hard at the crunch of leaves!😂🤣

All my dear sons together at Whitty’s game!💜

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. —2 CORINTHIANS 4

 

Hard pressed, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed? Anyone who thinks the Bible doesn’t face suffering head-on hasn’t read it. Yet, while outwardly wasting away, those who draw on Christ within, who listen to God’s Holy Spirit speak to them through his Word, and who gather with the church, Christ’s body, can be renewed day after day.

Robert Rogers’s entire family drowned in a 2003 Kansas flash flood. In a moment, he lost his beloved wife and all four of his children. This Christ-centered family went to church, tithed, read the Bible, and prayed together. After the disaster, Robert entered a dark world of Job-like suffering.

We need only to read Scripture, or look around us, or live long enough in order to learn that trusting God doesn’t ward off all evil and suffering. He never said it would. In fact, he said just the opposite … but with a promise: “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16: 33).

On the worst day of his life, his ten children taken from him, Job worshiped God. On the worst day of his life, when a flood swept away his wife and four children, Robert Rogers turned to God in worship. He told me he did so because he felt his loss so deeply that he could not lose the one object he had left to grab on to: God. He couldn’t function, couldn’t go on living, without worshiping God.

Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us. (Romans 8: 18)

 “Well,” a critic might say, “such affirmations reflect the naive idealism of someone insulated from evil and suffering.” But the apostle Paul made these statements. He’d suffered through hunger, thirst, cold,

imprisonment, murderous mob attacks, and repeated beatings and floggings—five times within an inch of his life. He described himself as “exposed to death again and again.” This is what Paul means by “our present sufferings” and “our light and momentary troubles.”

Paul insists that our sufferings will result in our greater good—God’s people will be better off eternally because they suffer temporarily. From Paul’s perspective, this trade-off will in eternity prove to be a great bargain.

In fact, the argument for the greater good may be the strongest biblical case for God’s permitting evil and suffering. However, this requires trust on our part, since the promised greater good is future and we can’t see it in the present. Faith is called for, since we do not know everything God knows. But instead of trusting ourselves and our flawed judgment, we can choose to trust the one who has an eternal plan of sovereign grace and has gone to inconceivable lengths to see that it will be accomplished.

Lord, you tell us that though it may seem heavy, compared to eternal glory, our current suffering is light and momentary. You tell us not to fix our eyes on popular culture, not on fleeting accomplishments and wealth, but upon what is eternal, what will still matter a billion years from now. Remind us to focus on you, our soon-returning Savior, instead of on our suffering. Give us the eyes of faith. Don’t wait until tomorrow, Lord, for we need faith today, this very moment. “

 

Excerpt from Ninety Day’s of God’s Goodness, by Randy Alcorn

Thankful Thursday! December 13, 2018

Thank you, Lord for: 

Seeing my sweet Preston💗💗.   Chatting and laughing with him!

The deep red tops of the trees

Watching my Rendon with his son

Spending time with Lex and Tru! 

Texting with my son

Lunch with Nanny & David!

 

 “It is not in me (Job 28:14).


I remember a summer in which I said, “It is the ocean I need,” and I went to the ocean; but it seemed to say, “It is not in me!” The ocean did not do for me what I thought it would. Then I said, “The mountains will rest me,” and I went to the mountains, and when I awoke in the morning there stood the grand mountain that I had wanted so much to see; but it said, “It is not in me!” It did not satisfy. Ah! I needed the ocean of His love, and the high mountains of His truth within. It was wisdom that the “depths” said they did not contain, and that could not be compared with jewels or gold or precious stones. Christ is wisdom and our deepest need. Our restlessness within can only be met by the revelation of His eternal friendship and love for us. MARGARET BOTTOME”


Excerpt From

Contemporary Classic/Streams in the Desert

L. B. E. Cowman



Thankful Thursday! December 6, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for: 

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A great night’s sleep.

Beautiful fall weather!  Thank you, Lord!!

My sweet outdoor fitness class walking inside on a rainy day!😀

Cozy rainy day!

Fresh baked zucchini bread!  (With lots of butter😀).  Mmmmm! 

 

 “Faith must be tested, because it can only become your intimate possession through conflict. What is challenging your faith right now? The test will either prove your faith right, or it will kill it. Jesus said, “Blessed is he who is not offended because of Me” (Matthew 11:6). The ultimate thing is confidence in Jesus. “We have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end . . .” (Hebrews 3:14). Believe steadfastly on Him and everything that challenges you will strengthen your faith. There is continual testing in the life of faith up to the point of our physical death, which is the last great test. Faith is absolute trust in God—trust that could never imagine that He would forsake us (see Hebrews 13:5–6).”



Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers

 

Thankful Thursday! November 29, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for: 

Watching Witty’s game with Gil and Rendon!

Your great love!!!

Winter candles

Babysitting Tru!! 

Pres and Whitt being home.  💗💗

Gil setting up our Christmas tree!

 

 “THE PURPOSE OF PRAYER


“. . . one of His disciples said to Him, ‘Lord, teach us to pray . . . .’”

LUKE 11:1


... Prayer is the way that the life of God in us is nourished. Our common ideas regarding prayer are not found in the New Testament. We look upon prayer simply as a means of getting things for ourselves, but the biblical purpose of prayer is that we may get to know God Himself.

 ... When a person is at his wits’ end, it no longer seems to be a cowardly thing to pray; in fact, it is the only way he can get in touch with the truth and the reality of God Himself. Be yourself before God and present Him with your problems—the very things that have brought you to your wits’ end. But as long as you think you are self-sufficient, you do not need to ask God for anything.

    To say that “prayer changes things” is not as close to the truth as saying, “Prayer changes me and then I change things.” God has established things so that prayer, on the basis of redemption, changes the way a person looks at things. Prayer is not a matter of changing things externally, but one of working miracles in a person’s inner nature.”

 

Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers

 

Thankful Thursday! November 22, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

A super quick drive home...no trafficat 9 pm!

Hanging out with Lex and Tru!🤗

Meeting Whitty’s friends at Biola. 

Babysitting Tru and going in to get him after his nap when he’s all peaceful and sweet.

Gil and Pamela coming to Whitty’s games. 

i love my Outdoor Cardio Fitness Class! 

 

 “ARE YOU EVER TROUBLED?


“Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you . . . .”

JOHN 14:27


    There are times in our lives when our peace is based simply on our own ignorance. But when we are awakened to the realities of life, true inner peace is impossible unless it is received from Jesus. When our Lord speaks peace, He creates peace, because the words that He speaks are always “spirit, and they are life” (John 6:63). Have I ever received what Jesus speaks?“. . . My peace I give to you . . .” —a peace that comes from looking into His face and fully understanding and receiving His quiet contentment.

Are you severely troubled right now? Are you afraid and confused by the waves and the turbulence God sovereignly allows to enter your life? Have you left no stone of your faith unturned, yet still not found any well of peace, joy, or comfort? Does your life seem completely barren to you? Then look up and receive the quiet contentment of the Lord Jesus. Reflecting His peace is proof that you are right with God, because you are exhibiting the freedom to turn your mind to Him. If you are not right with God, you can never turn your mind anywhere but on yourself. Allowing anything to hide the face of Jesus Christ from you either causes you to become troubled or gives you a false sense of security.

    With regard to the problem that is pressing in on you right now, are you “looking unto Jesus” (Hebrews 12:2) and receiving peace from Him? If so, He will be a gracious blessing of peace exhibited in and through you....

When a person confers with Jesus Christ, the confusion stops, because there is no confusion in Him. Lay everything out before Him, and when you are faced with difficulty, bereavement, and sorrow, listen to Him say, “Let not your heart be troubled . . .” (John 14:27).”


Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers


 

Thankful Thursday! November 15, 2018

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Thank you, Lord, for:

Dinner with sweet Pres and watching Whitty’s!

A good night’s sleep

Taking Ren to the airport

I have a great job!

New ladies in my classes  

 

 “PRAYER—BATTLE IN “THE SECRET PLACE”

“When you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.”

MATTHEW 6:6



    Jesus did not say, “Dream about your Father who is in the secret place,” but He said, “. . . pray to your Father who is in the secret place . . .” Prayer is an effort of the will. After we have entered our secret place and shut the door, the most difficult thing to do is to pray. We cannot seem to get our minds into good working order, and the first thing we have to fight is wandering thoughts. The great battle in private prayer is overcoming this problem of our idle and wandering thinking. We have to learn to discipline our minds and concentrate on willful, deliberate prayer.

    We must have a specially selected place for prayer, but once we get there this plague of wandering thoughts begins, as we begin to think to ourselves, “This needs to be done, and I have to do that today.” Jesus says to “shut your door.” Having a secret stillness before God means deliberately shutting the door on our emotions and remembering Him. God is in secret, and He sees us from “the secret place”—He does not see us as other people do, or as we see ourselves. When we truly live in “the secret place,” it becomes impossible for us to doubt God. We become more sure of Him than of anyone or anything else. Enter into “the secret place,” and you will find that God was right in the middle of your everyday circumstances all the time. Get into the habit of dealing with God about everything.  Unless you learn to open the door of your life completely and let God in from your first waking moment of each new day, you will be working on the wrong level throughout the day. But if you will swing the door of your life fully open and “pray to your Father who is in the secret place,” every public thing in your life will be marked with the lasting imprint of the presence of God.”



Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers

 

Thankful Thursday! November 1, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

 Going down to see Whitty!  Walking on campus with him and seeing some of his friends.

Shopping with Whitty and watching him put together (then try out) his new scooter. 

Seeing Rendon at Chipotle. 💗😀

Time to read.

Lex and Tru coming to hang out...bathing him and laughing so hard at how he kicks and kicks!!!  And he’s so serious about it.    It’s adorable!!! 

 

 “I have all, and abound (Phil. 4:18).

In one of my garden books there is a chapter with a very interesting heading, “Flowers that Grow in the Gloom.” It deals with those patches in a garden which never catch the sunlight. And my guide tells me the sort of flowers which are not afraid of these dingy corners—may rather like them and flourish in them. And there are similar things in the world of the spirit. They come out when material circumstances become stern and severe. They grow in the gloom. How can we otherwise explain some of the experiences of the Apostle Paul?


Here he is in captivity at Rome. The supreme mission of his life appears to be broken. But it is just in this besetting dinginess that flowers begin to show their faces in bright and fascinating glory. He may have seen them before, growing in the open road, but never as they now appeared in incomparable strength and beauty. Words of promise opened out their treasures as he had never seen them before.


Among those treasures were such wonderful things as the grace of Christ, the love of Christ, the joy and peace of Christ; and it seemed as though they needed an “encircling gloom” to draw out their secret and their inner glory. At any rate the realm of gloom became the home of revelation, and Paul began to realize as never before the range and wealth of his spiritual inheritance.


Who has not known men and women who, when they arrive at seasons of gloom and solitude, put on strength and hopefulness like a robe? You may imprison such folk where you please; but you shut up their treasure with them. You cannot shut it out. You may make their material lot a desert, but “the wilderness and the solitary place shall be glad, and the desert shall rejoice and blossom as the rose.” DR. JOWETT”

Excerpt From “Contemporary Classic/Streams in the Desert”

L. B. E. Cowman

 

Thankful Thursday! October 25, 2018

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 Thank you, Lord, for:

Spoon feeding Tru!😃

Ren,  Lex and Tru coming over for all the Dodger games!

Gorgeous fall weather!!

Evenings with Gil...tea lattes and granola😋

Great cold and Flu Workshop with the ladies!

Long phone conversation with my sweet son!

 

“Are we so intimately united to Jesus Christ’s idea of prayer—“Your will be done” (Matthew 6:10)—that we catch the secrets of God? What makes God so dear to us is not so much His big blessings to us, but the tiny things, because they show His amazing intimacy with us—He knows every detail of each of our individual lives”



Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers

 

Thankful Thursday! October 18, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

Big Bear with Preston to visit my parents.  What a sweet time!

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Super relaxing and rejuvenating weekend in Big Bear. 

Great Bible study.

Tru laughing so hard while we played with his Blue octupus💗😂

Fun loooong walk with the ladies today!  Over 8000 steps!  (Got a little lost, due to detour😳😂)

 

Then Jesus cried out, “When a man believes in me, he does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me.” John 12: 44

There are two ways to believe. The first way is to believe about God, meaning we believe that what is taught about God is really true. It’s similar to believing that what is taught about the devil or hell is true. This type of belief is more a statement of knowledge than an expression of faith.

The second way is to believe in God. This not only includes believing that what is taught about God is true, but also includes trusting him and daring to be in relationship with him. It means believing without any doubt that he really is who he says he is, and he will do all he says he will do. I wouldn’t believe any person to this same degree, no matter how highly others might praise him. It’s easy to believe that someone is godly, but it’s another matter to rely completely on him.

Those who believe in God believe everything written about God in Scripture. They dare to believe this in life and in death. This faith makes them true Christians and gives them everything they desire from God. A person with an evil, hypocritical heart can’t have this type of faith, for it’s a living faith, as described in the first commandment: “I am the LORD your God. . . . You shall have no other gods” (Exodus 20: 2–3).

Therefore, the little word in is well placed and should be carefully noted. We don’t say, “I believe God the Father,” or “I believe about God the Father,” but “I believe in God the Father, in Jesus Christ, in the Holy Spirit.” Only God can give us this type of faith.

 

excerpt from: “Faith Alone”, Martin Luther

Thankful Thursday! October 11, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for

Lunch with Pres

Hanging out with Lexi and Danique!   What a treat to spend time with long time friends!💗

The sweet Howell girls!

Exercising outside

Pomegranate jam from Cindy!  Mmmmmmm!😋

Pres and Whitty home for the weekend


 “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow The Lord will do amazing things among you” Joshua 3:5

“Fathers with rebellious children wonder how they failed. Widows worry that greater faith might have kept their husbands alive. Satan encourages an obsessive and superstitious look at your failure. I see all your failure, all your filth, and I bathe you until you become a sweet fragrance. Learn the lesson of Joshua. Live in hope!”

Excerpt From “66 Love Letters” by Larry Cabb 

 

Thankful Thursday! October 4, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for:

Hanging out with Tru💞

My wonderful daughter-in-law!

Rendon stopping by

FaceTime with Whitty💜

Coming home to Gil after class

 

The following is an article from a Biola student’s blog:

Good Grief

Jasmyne Bell — September 17, 2018

Have you ever wondered why negative emotions are a part of our psyche from day one? When we’re born, our brains are already set with the capability to feel a broad spectrum of emotions. It’s only a matter of time before we access all of them. But, there’s only one emotion we are taught to avoid: sadness. It’s instilled in us from the beginning. From our childhood shows, to our parents hiding our eyes from tragedy. Obviously, sadness is not pleasant; it’s painful, it’s scarring. At times, sadness can feel inescapable. When we are at our lowest, all we want to do is get out of it. But to avoid sadness altogether can be damaging to our spiritual and mental growth. Michael Stuhlbarg’s character said it best in Call Me By Your Namewhen he was talking to his son. He said, “In your place, if there is pain, nurse it. And if there is a flame, don’t snuff it out. Don’t be brutal with it. We rip out so much of ourselves to be cured of things faster, that we go bankrupt by the age of thirty and have less to offer each time we start with someone new. But to make yourself feel nothing so as not to feel anything ― what a waste!”

When I first heard this quote, I remember the weight it had on my heart. It was convicting in a way that stuck with me for a really long time. I started to wonder, “Why are we so quick to shut down our sadness?” Sorrow isn’t something we experience for no reason. I believe that when we experience hurt, grief and everything in between, we gain something. Perhaps it’s a better understanding of the people around us. Without going through hard times, how could we relate to one another on a deeper level than simply our interests and hobbies? I tried to remember conversations I’ve had with my friends and family that led to deeper discussions. It was equally puzzling and comforting that a lot of memorable conversations stemmed from relating to each other through hurt.

By avoiding the bad feelings we have, it forms a callus on our hearts. It’s a toxic cycle that can eventually lead to hurting our relationships. Doing life alone is impossible.

Living life in aloneness is already hard, but being alone while being sad is even worse. Surrounding ourselves with a loving community during hard times is the best thing we can do. You are not a burden for sharing your true feelings with those who love you. They want to sit with you through whatever you’re going through. If you are in a season of trials, whether they’re emotional, mental, or spiritual, don’t let yourself endure it alone. Bonds are made stronger when we’re honest with our loved ones. And our loved ones want us to hear what’s on our hearts, even if it’s sadness.

Jasmyne Bell

Jasmyne (‘20) is a Journalism major at Biola University.

The views expressed in this post may not necessarily represent the beliefs of Biola University or the GRIT Editorial Board.

Thankful Thursday! September 27, 2018

Thank you, Lord for:

 A short visit with Johanne.  

Long drive to and from Pearblossom, listening to Billy Graham’s “Peace with God”.    So good! 

Hanging out with Matt and Kelly!  Their home, property and view is beautiful!  And they love it!  Such a treat to be there with them!☺️

God’s Word is life and light!  It warms my heart with its amazing truths!  Would that I understood better.  Open my eyes that I may see wonderful things in Your Word!!

Visiting with my dear son!  So good to see him!

Coffee Bean with my girlfriends!  Its therapeutic! 😃

 

Good morning, y’all!    Happy Thursday!☺️

You may have noticed  that some of the excerpt in my Thankful Thursday come from a book called “66 Love Letters” by Larry crab. The “66 love letters” are the 66 books of the Bible💗      It’s a great book along with the Bible, it really helps you understand the big picture.  

So, I am in the book of John and I wanted to share something I’ve been reading the past few days:

John 13:3-5

“3 Jesus KNEW that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God;  4 so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.  5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.”

Did you catch that?!   Jesus knew who He was, where He came from and where he was going, SO, in His great love, he served his disciples!

If we know who we are, where we come from, where we’re going, how deeply we are loved by our Lord and Savior, then we would be able to love and serve other; we would be able to overlook offenses and freely forgive,...   This is not easy!   We must not KNOW.   

Then I read:   

John 14:6

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

John 14:11

“Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me;...” 

&  

John 14:20-21

“On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. (WOW!)

Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”

 

Wow!  That God, the Master and Creator, the Sustainer of all things, would include US with Him!   It’s too great to fathom!    

Come to Him!   Trust Him!  Just like my little Tru who has such limited (to none😜) understanding of life and how it works, we are unable to see the big picture that God, our good Father, sees.   Our understanding will always be limited while on this earth!   Just trust Him!  Get to know Him!   It’s safe to surrender your life to Him   He’s the only place to find lasting hope, joy, fulfillment, love.

 John 14:23

“Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”    Lord, come make Your home with me!!

Thanks for reading! 

Renee😘

 

 

Thankful Thursday! September 20, 2018

Thank you, Lord, for: 

Sweet text from Whitty  

Time spent with my dear friend LaMarr!

Driving with the sunroof and windows open after class

Gil cut my hair!😳 

My green shake: frozen pineapple, spinach, celery, lemon & honey!  So refreshing and energizing. 

Hanging out with sweet Lexi.

 

 “We want every love story to have a happy ending. Too many don’t. God’s does. It just takes a long time to get there. And for good reason. Our understanding of love is so twisted that it takes a lot of work, centuries worth, to straighten it out.

Think about it. Somehow we’ve gotten the idea that if God loves us, He wouldn’t let hurricanes ravage New Orleans or tornadoes devastate Myanmar or earthquakes kill thousands in China, not if He could help it. Every time I hear about the latest natural disaster or yesterday’s terrorist bombing or someone’s parental heartbreak or a good friend’s diagnosis of level 4 leukemia, a voice inside me that I can’t quite muffle whispers, “God, I know You’re good, but tell me again: What are You good for?”

Maybe the demonic twist in our understanding of love boils down to this: because God is love, the abundant life that Jesus promised us means an abundance of blessings now, you know, all the good things of life that make us happy.

Where did we get that idea? Certainly not from the Old Testament. And (I peeked ahead) not from the New Testament either.

Jesus made it clear that life, real life—the life He died to give us— centers not on nice homes, happy families, and good health in a safe world with a booming economy but rather on knowing Jesus’ Father as our Father—in good times and bad—and relating to His Father and everyone else the way Jesus does—in good times and bad.

....

 if we miss the message of His first thirty-nine letters, we’ll miss the message of His last twenty-seven. Or worse, we’ll pervert it and think we’ve got it. We’ll make it fit into our hellishly twisted definition of love and never be captured by the real story of love that could take our breath away, that could humble us enough to change us from self-obsessed lovers of short term well-being to God-obsessed lovers of others at any temporary cost to ourselves.

....

 “What most needs changing is not your circumstances. Blessings in the short term are dangerous to your long-term joy. If I used My power to make your life work in ways that you found easily and quickly satisfying, you would become even less aware than you already are of what I designed you to enjoy and more stubborn in your pursuit of everything else.

You are on the road to eternal misery. I cannot sit back and do nothing. I love you too much. The only cure that works will at times seem worse than the disease. Your naïve self-centeredness can only be transformed in suffering, yours in measure and Mine without measure.

But know this: no suffering that you will endure in this life is worthy to be compared with the joy that awaits you in the next. Live in hope ! True hope breeds joy and empowers love. My love story has a terrific ending that never ends.”


...hear Him tell the rest of the story. It gets good. Be patient.

In Genesis, I hear God pouring out His love to all of us as He sings the opening line of His love song: “I have a terrific plan. It’s why I made you. You’re invited to My party of perfect relationship in a perfect world. And I mean to get you there.”


Excerpt From

66 Love Letters

Larry Crabb

 

Thankful Thursday! September 13, 2018

Thank you, Father!! 

Preston & Whitty home for the weekend!💗💗💗

New Zumba class at my house!   I love this class!  SO fun!

Peaceful lunch with Kris!

Making Saturday morning breakfast for the boys

All of my dear kids (and Raquel:)) here💜 for Pres’ birthday  

 

 “Come to Me . . . .”

MATTHEW 11:28


    God intends for us to live a well-rounded life in Christ Jesus, but there are times when that life is attacked from the outside. ....it is never God’s will that we should be anything less than absolutely complete in Him. Anything that disturbs our rest in Him must be rectified at once, and it is not rectified by being ignored but only by coming to Jesus Christ. If we will come to Him, asking Him to produce Christ-awareness in us, He will always do it, until we fully learn to abide in Him.

    Never allow anything that divides or destroys the oneness of your life with Christ to remain in your life without facing it. Beware of allowing the influence of your friends or your circumstances to divide your life. This only serves to sap your strength and slow your spiritual growth.   

The only solution is a very simple one—“Come to Me . . . .” The intellectual, moral, and spiritual depth of our reality as a person is tested and measured by these words”


Excerpt From

My Utmost for His Highest

Oswald Chambers

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