12/15/2011

Trusting God


It's been a long time since I've fasted.  A long time since I've felt led by the Lord.  I didn't wake up with that in mind yesterday, but as I prayed for a friend yesterday, I felt the Lord tugging my heart to invite her to join me in a fast.
Hmmmmm, I didn't at first.  I totally did my best to ignore the nudging and almost ended the conversation.  However, God just doesn't let things go that easily.
So I invited her to join me in a fast.
We are still working out the logistics, the day(s) we will fast and because she gets sick easily, she will only fast a meal, but the Lord is clearly leading me to fast according to His timing.  So many things the Lord has begun to lay on my heart to pray for during our time of fasting and praying.  I need to begin a list of those things before I can no longer remember.

Over the last few days, the Lord has also begun to rekindle my heart to stand for my marriage.  Yes, by all accounts, I can divorce Biblically.  Yet, the Lord has constantly turned my heart away from divorce each time I have tried to make that step.  There are times I don't want to desire this man.  This man that has hurt me so deeply.  And yet, as I reminisce about our early years, I remember a man I fell in love with.  No, I didn't pray before we married.  I was far from saved.  I had no idea to pray for my future mate.  But the day we said I do, the Lord was present and in the midst of that day and our lives.  So, if I'm honest with myself and my God, I want my marriage to be restored.  I want our lives to be transformed for the glory of the Lord.  A testimony of God's strength and power and I want to encourage others to stand for their marriages as well.

In the meantime, if you feel led, pray for God's wisdom and direction in my life and the lives of my family.  I leave you with this neat story from Moody Radio.  A Marriage Carol   It has blessed me, I pray it blesses you as well.



12/02/2011

Give Me a Clean Heart

I started reading someone's blog after I typed in Googles search engine Bible study for heart transformation.  I came across Tracy's blog.  The great thing is I've been able to really sit and ponder what my hearts desires really are.  She stated it may take some time, but I knew immediately what my hearts desires are and wrote them down.

To minister to women that are standing for their marriages and families when they are crumbling all around them.  To see my WHOLE family walking with the Lord and being about our Father's business.  That the marriages in my WHOLE family will be restored to fullness and great richness in Christ.
It is NOT enough for me to just have my heart transformed and changed and walking with the Lord.  It's not enough for me to just be filled with the Holy Spirit!  I want my ENTIRE FAMILY transformed, changed, filled, and walking with the Lord!!!!  I want to see my nephews and nieces, my nephews wife, my sisters, my brother in love, my husband, my children, me...all chasing after Him and walking out His will for our lives!!!!!!

I want Ezekiel 36:25-27 for myself and my WHOLE family
Then I will sprinkle clean water on you and you will be clean.  Your filth will be washed away and you will no longer worship idols.   And I will give you a new heart with new and right desires and I will put a new spirit in you.  I will take out your stony heart of sin and give you a new obedient heart.  And I will put My Spirit in you so you will obey my laws and do whatever I command. (NLT)

I don't want us to have to think twice about our will verses God's will.  I want us to be so hungry and thirsty for God and His will and our love for Him so rich and genuine that we can't wait to wake up each morning to fulfill another paragraph in the chapters of our lives and the book of His will.

12/01/2011

Blog Decisions

I'm not happy with the direction my blog has been going lately.  I want to keep it real, but I also want God to shine forth from my posts more and more.  In other words, I want to show more of Him and less of me.  I want my posts to be more encouraging and uplifting.  I want people to want to read my blog and walk away feeling that they were enlightened, not depressed or thinking woe is Tasha.  I will continue to post about the happenings around here and I will continue to keep it real, but there will be more posts that point you to Jesus.

This also means that God will have to do a work in my heart.  Turning my heart from hopelessness to hopeful, depression into joy, gloom into vitality and life.

Please pray as I begin to learn how to let God use my mind, heart, and hands to convey His heart to those that follow my blog and that lives will be changed and transformed because of it.

11/30/2011

Grateful

Even with all my whining and complaining, I realize that I am very blessed.
I have three children that are still home, I know where they are, I know who their friends are.  I know what they are doing.  They aren't on drugs, they don't drink, and they aren't having premarital sex.  Their relationships with God may be rocky, but they haven't given up on Him altogether.
We may not stay in a mansion on a hill, but we have a roof over our heads and we are together.  My health may not be the best, but I'm still alive.  None of us wears the latest fashions, but we have clothes and we can crawl in our beds at night and sleep.
I may not have an income right now, but God has never let us go without.  Every bill paid, food to eat, etc.
So today, I just wanted to express my gratitude.

11/29/2011

Still Around...

I've not stopped reading the book, just took a semi break for the holidays and I read the rest of chapter 2 this morning.  I'm just meditating on what I've read today, as well as a conversation I had with a dear friend this afternoon.

She and I text often and as she asked how she could pray for me, I told her my desire to move and to have a decent home for me and my children.  She called me today and said something that has had me thinking ever since.  "Your vision is not big enough."

She said there is nothing wrong with what your desires are and God knows your desires and wants to fulfill them.  However, His word clearly says in Matthew 6:33: Seek first the kingdom of heaven and His righteousness and all these things will be added to you also.
Talk about a way to stop you in your tracks and make you take a look at how you have been viewing things...

She said, look at your life and how you can minister to His children.  Hmmmmmm, take my eyes off of me and my circumstances and put them elsewhere.  Is this coincidental that my eldest daughter said we should find somewhere to serve others this Christmas????
I think not!

11/24/2011

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!!!

Today we'll spend time with loved ones and friends.  We'll eat ourselves sick.  We'll watch football.  We'll nap.  We'll eat some more.  Cherish every moment!!!  Let us remember today really isn't about the food we eat, but the ability to be a blessing to others and to be thankful for what we have.
Be thankful and grateful for every blessing great and small and remember to say a prayer for those that won't spend time with loved ones or have a special meal, maybe a loved one was lost recently or far from home.

HAVE A BLESSED THANKSGIVING.....From Our Home to Yours!!

11/23/2011

Thankful...

I may continue Friday with the book, but for today and tomorrow, I just want to relish in my gratitude for my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.  Salvation is a splendid thing and I couldn't imagine going back to NOT being saved.  I am also ever grateful for the sacrifice  on calvary!!!!  I'm so thankful that God in His infinite love did not stop with just salvation, but that HIS love for me is poured out on me daily, even when I don't "feel" it.  He does love me, cherishes me, and sees me as a priceless jewel.
I'm ever thankful that His love is so great that He would not allow me to stay in my misery, but desires to reach down and grab me up from this mire.  He wants me whole and spreading His love.
This Thanksgiving I pray we not focus on the material things we are thankful for...though we are thankful for them, but to direct our eyes and hearts heavenward and realize just how blessed we are...YES, EVEN WHEN WE DON'T FEEL THAT WE ARE AND OUR CIRCUMSTANCES HAVEN'T CHANGED!!!

May God richly bless you and your family!!!

11/22/2011

Ch. 1 Continued and on to Ch. 2

"Dim vision ages us rapidly, and we lose the child likeness that once made us feel like real princes and princesses in a kingdom.  We can be young and yet feel old.  Heavy laden.  Burdened.  In a pit where vision is lost and dreams are foolishness."
Beth Moore


WHEN YOU'RE THROWN INTO THE PIT

Chapter 2 will be read a second time.  So many nuggets in that chapter, it's hard to say one good read of it is enough.  So much to soak up and in.
Thrown into the pit....hmmm sometimes you are thrown into the pit by circumstances or other people.  So as I read, I began to just go over in my mind the ways I've been thrown into this pit.  The loss of loved ones...my father, mother, and brother.  The abandonment from my husband.  The abandonment at the hands of my father through divorce.  The abuse I endured as a child at the hands of strangers and friends of the family.  Allowing others to speak into my life things that are condemning and then believing those words.  Never belonging or fitting in.  And the result of those pits now includes anger, bitterness, blame (self & others and yes, I've blamed God), and unforgiveness (towards self and others).  These things continue to hold me in the pit and dig it deeper and deeper.
How does one get free from all of this???  This is a job for a super God as I allow Him into my heart and life to help pull these things out of me and allow His healing balm to soothe over those broken areas.  This is not an overnight process.  It is not a snap your fingers and it's done kinda thing....though I know God can do that if He chooses to.  However, I think this healing process is going to be gradual and I have no time table for that, but I do want it to be complete.

Joseph was also thrown into a pit and his brothers then sat down to eat.  Now because I'm a visual, this is what I envision.  Here he comes along, he's been bragging, teasing, and rubbing in their faces these dreams he's had.  Not to mention that his father favors him.  He's a spoiled brat.  I think of a pesky little brother doing any and everything to get on my nerves and entice me to knock him upside the head so he can run and tell and I get into even more trouble.  Never mind that he's been asking for it for some time.  Now here he goes to "check up" on them.
"Go Joseph and see what they are up to".  "If they are really doing what I told them and report back to me".
Now he's out there in his colorful coat....further hammering in that he is the favored one.  They want to kill him, but one brother says no, let's not kill him.  Let's just put him in this pit and leave him to die.  That way there isn't really blood on our hands.  Then a caravan of people (I like to think they were gypsies...I have a vivid imagination) come along and they decide let's make money off of him.  We'll sell him into slavery.  Meanwhile, he's begging for mercy, for freedom, he's apologizing like no one's business, he wants to just go home.  However, God gave him a vision, even if he did rub it in their faces.  He had a purpose and a plan to use Joseph to bring about greatness and bring God glory.  Never in a million years did he think he'd have to suffer all of this for his dreams to become a reality.

It is hard to believe that God can and will take all my mess and turn it around for something great.  It's hard to believe that what someone did out of evil, spite, greed, or sickness, God will use to minister to someone else.  It's also hard to believe that I am my own worst enemy and holding myself in this pit through my anger, bitterness, blame, and unforgiveness.

At times this all seems so trivial to me, because I know all this.  So how on God's green earth did I allow myself to be put in this pit and how do I allow myself to hold myself here through all that garbage?  Not rendering excuses, just telling what I know to be true...when you are bombarded with tragedy after tragedy and you never have a moment to process one before you are hit with another tragedy, you can get overwhelmed and eventually you kinda throw your hands up and begin to sink in the quick sand of life's troubles and before you know it, you can't remember how you got there nor how to get out and when you do finally start getting a glimpse of light the slope is so slippery you slip back in due to non-monumental issues of life.

I had a dream of opening an orphanage and owning 100 acres to have my own little community for young people who have been told by the world "you're 18 and grown...go live life" and yet they have no clue how to do that.  I haven't dreamed that dream in a long time, so why did it cross my mind today in the midst of all this mess I'm in????  Only God knows.
I'm off to read chapter 2 again, with highlighter in hand and Bible in tow.

Thank you for praying and allowing me to be real!

11/21/2011

Get Out of That Pit...Ch. 1


Before I go further, I wanted to impress that the pushing of my buttons was not people letting me know what my children were posting on Facebook.  I no longer have Facebook and so I greatly appreciate when people contact me out of concern.  The pushing of my buttons is that I KNOW the enemy is doing ALL he can to ensnare my children.....

I decided not to post on Chapter 1 yesterday, but to just meditate on yesterdays message from church as well as to re-read chapter 1.  I'm still re-reading.  It's not a long chapter, but I'm taking it extra slow.

In the couple of pages I read the first time, tears streamed down my face.  Tears of understanding.  When we think of a pit, as Christians, we more than likely associate it with a pit of sin.  That we are in our despair because of sin.  Now for the most part, that may be true, but as I read on, it seemed to me that the 3 different ways of getting into the pit she describes are all ways I've gotten in.  The sad thing is that so many of us are in this pit and we've begun to decorate it and try to make the most of it and be content.
However, I'm like Beth, I think there are just some things we aren't supposed to be content with and being in the pit is #1!!!

"A pit is an early grave that Satan digs for you in hopes he can bury you alive.  Should you fall into it, make no mistake; he cannot make you stay.  Ironically, neither will God make you leave.  Like it or not, some things are simply up to us.  (This statement will become clearer in another chapter)

Psalms 40:1-3 says I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry.  He lifter me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.  He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.  Many will see and fear and put their trust in the Lord.

When all is said and done, this will be my victory message...

She says you know you are in a pit when.....
1. You feel stuck...Isaiah 42:22  This describes me.  I have felt like surely I did something to deserve to get here so I might as well make the most of it and deal with it.
2. You can't stand up...Psalm 69:2  I feel ineffective and powerless against the attacks of the enemy.
3.  You've lost vision...I can tell you this is a dark place, this pit.  There is no vision here.  I look around with a fleeting moment of hope and then suddenly all hope is gone.  Not able to see a way out, I turn inward.  She says "We can't see out, so we turn our sights in.  After a while, nearsightedness breeds hopelessness.  We feel too buried in our present state to feel passionate about a promised future."

THIS IS ME!!!!  THIS IS ME!!!!  Finally, someone understands!!!!!

There is one thing I know, I want out of this pit!  I want my freedom back!  I have not understood the pit, but I have prayed and told God I felt like I was in a grave, a dark place.  There is darkness all around and at times there are glimmers of light, but after you've been digging in the muck for so long, you're too tired to even try and fight for the bit of light you see or you try and you enjoy it for a moment and the enemy hits you with something else and you topple back down to the bottom.  After you've been struck down so many times, you get too tired to even dig and you sit there trying to make the best of it and be content.  And yet I'm constantly saying, Lord this does not feel like the abundant life you promised.  And by that, I don't mean EVERY moment will be sunshine, but it will far outweigh the gloom.  I have fleeting moments of sunshine and the gloom is eating me alive.

I can say I fully understand what my mother went through the last year of her life for sure, but she didn't know how to describe it nor was I fully capable of understanding what she could describe.
This is no cake walk, it is definitely a war.  It is a spiritual war and the enemy is out to steal, kill, and destroy.  He doesn't let up either.  He is relentless until we give up or we FINALLY get to that place of victory through Christ Jesus.  The victory has already been won, you say.  I say it has and I agree, but there is a battle in the spirit realm and in my mind.  The battle is ongoing and I'm fighting for my life!!!!  Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.  The only thing is.....we never know how long the night will last!!!!  As for me, THIS HAS BEEN A LONG NIGHT and I'm ready to wake up!

Thanks for allowing me to be honest.

I'm almost beginning to wonder if this book and Joyce Meyers book...The Battlefield of the Mind should be read simultaneously!!!  


11/19/2011

A Journey Out of That Pit...

I'd like to invite you into my heart, my life, my journey.  I've described a darkness that I've been in that is so oppressive and dark that my very life seems as though it would be snuffed out and at my own hands at that.

I feel a moment of a glimmer of light and within days, sometimes hours, I can be right back in that pit.  I've long since named it, but naming something doesn't mean you get the full meaning of what it is you've named.  (I know it seems I'm going in circles, but stay with me.)
Just a few days ago, I shared how God allowed me to come up out of the despair of depression and darkness.  I felt victorious, as we all should when God brings us through something.  However, I didn't know that just a day or two later I would plunge head first back into that pit.  It started with a thought and I brushed it off.  Then I got a text message about something one of my kids put on Facebook.  (The enemy KNOWS just what it is that will send you over the edge.  He KNOWS how to push your buttons).  Then I got another message about something I had been praying for regarding one of my daughters and saw things slipping from my grip.  I began to speak doubt to myself.  I began to believe lies and replace them for God's truths.  I sent my kids away to my sisters...they were enjoying a sleep over they thought, while I was sinking in the miry clay.
But God does NOT desire any of us to be defeated.  He sacrificed someone so great to conquer defeat so that we wouldn't be subjected to it.

I don't know about any of you, but when I'm depressed, I don't want to be around anyone.  I don't want to talk to anyone.  I just want to be left alone.  However, God had other plans for me today.  My kids wanted to go to the mall.  Anyone that knows me, knows I absolutely loath the mall.  I can't explain it, but I HATE THE MALL.  I totally dislike shopping, unless it's for sewing stuff or books.  So I dropped them off at the mall for an all day excursion and I went to the library, a Christian book store, and JoAnn's Fabric.  LOL
I absolutely had no money to spare, but went to "window shop".  I looked and looked and looked all around.  Enjoying the sights in Mardel's (the Christian book store).  I read quotes on cups, plates, pictures, t-shirts, I looked at their Christmas items and wandered through the kids section.  I remember walking and looking at the big wall art and reading the scriptures and saying aloud to Lord, I want this freedom that these quotes speak of.  I began crying silent tears in regards to the freedom that evades me, and begging God to help me do something.  I said "I know Your word says I can have life more abundantly, I don't want to wait to get to heaven to have it, that's not what Your word promises.  I don't want to live in hell on earth before I get to enjoy Your glory in heaven.  I want it to manifest here on earth and be magnified in heaven!!!!!
I then went to browse the books.  They have expensive books, but they also have bargain books sometimes for $1, $3, $5, and so forth.  I saw a few things that caught my eye, but knew I didn't have the funds to buy any of them.  So I just grazed the pages of some of them.  Then it happened, my eye caught sight of a book for $8.  I read the title again.  I had heard her do a Bible study on a television show regarding this same book.  I read the title again and immediately snatched up the LAST book and put it in my basket.  I took the $8 from my grocery money to buy this book.
Get Out of That Pit by Beth Moore.
This woman is a phenomenal teacher and so real and down to earth.  I've seen/heard her in person several times and each time I am always riveted in my seat listening to her speak.

I began reading her book and I hardly ever read the acknowledgements or foreword, but tonight I read even that.  Then I began to pray and pour my heart out to God.  Lord, You can use any song, any person, any book to bring me out of this pit.  I just pray You get me out of the pit.  I read chapter 1 and FINALLY I can't put things into some semblance of understanding for MYSELF and not feel like I'm going crazy!!!!  SHE GETS THIS PIT THING!!!!!!!!!!!  It's easy for us to see someone going through something and share what we would do, say, think, etc.  It's a whole different story when someone has walked the road and wore the shoes!

So, on that note, I welcome you on this journey I'm taking.  Don't bash, don't criticize, don't belittle, but PLEASE PRAY!!!  I will share as much as the Lord allows, and I pray someone else gets out of this pit right along side me.  I wish there were several of us reading this together, but maybe this is a journey God has me on by myself...and for good reason.

I'll share what I've learned from chapter 1 in tomorrow's post, but for now, I thank you for allowing me to be blunt and honest!!!  I'm ready to strip off the masks and tell it like it is!

11/16/2011

Pimping God...

In an earlier post, I told you about a conversation I had with the kids about relationship with Christ and how many of us are pimping God.  I don't mean that in a crude way.  I don't mean to offend, but it WAS the very analogy that God gave me at the time, so I'm going to keep it real.  I won't sugar coat it, but I will share the truth of it.

If we are honest, many of us at some point in our walk with God have done just that, we've pimped Him, or treated Him as our personal santa clause or sugar daddy.  We go to church on Sunday and put in our 2-2 1/2 hours and we come out with this super hero emblem puffed up on our chest.  We did something for God and NOW we're about to get "paid".  We may read a few scriptures hear and there or say a prayer...grace before a meal, and we then have this attitude that we have done right by God.  And the remainder of the time we are out doing our own thing.  Living our lives the way we want and enjoying every minute of it.  Saint on Sunday, Heathen the rest of the time.  Two standards...
and the sad thing is we think He is pleased and SHOULD be satisfied with that!!!!  Then....
we get ticked off when nothing we want or asked for comes to fruition!

OUCH or AMEN...

We now feel God is obligated to BLESS us because we have done our duty.  We have our hands out; gimme is our middle names (and some of our first and last names too)!
We don't understand why God isn't blessing us.  We can't fathom why God has stopped the flow.  If you've ever said or thought...my prayers aren't answered, He doesn't hear me, or this Christian stuff doesn't work.....you've been pimping God!

May I dare say that God is not after being your hook up, your sugar daddy, or your santa claus.  God wants a relationship with you.  He wants to be your best friend and He wants to hang out with you.  Imagine for a moment if you will, You have a friend that never calls you to just say hi or talk.  They never come by to visit you and when you visit them, they don't have time or ignore you all together.  However, if they called and the person that answered the phone said "so and so" is on the phone, your immediate thought would be what do they WANT!
That would be because you have NO RELATIONSHIP!!!
Ever heard someone say...oh they just call when they need something?
You usually nip these types of "friendships" in the bud and cease to entertain all calls from these type of people.
WHY?????  Because you want relationship!!!!

Well, if we as mere humans want something as simple as relationship, what do you think our Great Father in heaven wants?
In Genesis 3:8, They heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day..... I'd like to suggest to you that this is because He was accustomed to walking with Adam and Eve and conversing with them as friends do!  They had relationship.  They could talk with and to God, they could walk WITH Him.

There is no way possible to have friendship with the world and God.  We will hate one and love the other!!!
The issue is, what we will not accept as humans from other people, we give to God and expect Him to accept it AND be happy with it!!!  I'd like to challenge you today to examine your relationship with Him.  Search your heart and ask God to search it as well.  Ask Him to show you if you have been putting up a front or if you truly have relationship.  Ask Him to reveal your heart to you and then Ask Him to give you a new heart and teach you how to have relationship with Him.
I've been crying out for a relationship with God like others relationship with Him and TODAY, I realize that every relationship is unique and different in the sense of how He relates to each of us and yet it's not.  He speaks to us through His Word, through music, through nature, or we just may hear His still small voice whispering to us and guiding/directing us.
Read John 15.  I have the New American Standard Bible, I read it there and then looked online and read it in the New Living Translation.  I like to sum up that chapter as the relationship chapter.
God wants to freely bless us, but He does not and will not do so at the expense of relationship with Him.  That is first and foremost....Matthew 6:33 Seek first the Kingdom of Heaven and ALL these things will be added to you!!!  Seek first relationship with God, Seek first His righteousness, Seek first His glory, Seek first His face, Seek first His heart........and all the blessings He has for you in heaven will be manifested here on earth.  IMAGINE if you will that when we get to heaven, God pulls back a curtain and reveals these were "YOUR" blessings.  I had them for you and because you were an heir to the throne, you were entitled to them, but because you didn't seek Me, a relationship, you missed out on these things!  And THESE THINGS don't necessarily have to be material possessions.  It can simply be PEACE!!!!!!

Have a blessed day in the Lord

11/15/2011

I Will Not Be Moved...

This morning, I awoke with the words of a song in my heart.  I don't recall ever really listening to this song.  I do recall hearing it on the radio.  However, these words were bouncing around in my heart AND thoughts and I looked it up on YouTube.
I also prayed today!!!!!!  I actually formulated my heartfelt thoughts into words and brought them before the Lord.  I can't describe to you how good that felt.  It was refreshing.
I pray you enjoy the words to this song! I am not so into the music as I am the words.  ;-)


Light.....After Great Darkness


I FINALLY saw the Light of Hope!!!

I haven't been able to read the Word in over 2 1/2 weeks. Hadn't been able to even open it. Couldn't fully understand why this great attack on me.

Until last night!!!

Well, let me back up. Yesterday morning I took my Bible outside and sat down and actually read about 3 passages in Psalms. That was all I could muster. I prayed briefly and that was about all I could muster. Tinkered on the piano a bit and cried out to God in great anguish.

Took my son to karate and prayed off and on while waiting in the car for an hour.

Got home and told the kids to get their Bibles. We haven't read in 2 1/2 weeks mind you. So kids are looking at me a bit strange. I don't feel like it, but I forge ahead. I don't "feel" like doing this. I don't "feel" like reading or praying. But I push forward even if it's only 5 min.
We briefly talked about relationship with God and how we (those of us in the family that don't have a relationship with God) have basically been pimping God. Do our duty on Sunday and then wait with our hand out the remainder of the week expecting to be lavished with blessings and get angry when we aren't. (another blog post on that later)

Then I began to share with them about this dark time. Why I have been so quiet, afraid, and in tears constantly. Fear of the visions I see. Fear of what I might do to myself. Quiet because I saw no hope and tears because that was all I could bring myself to do, along with begging God to please save me and protect me or else I would surely die.

As I was sharing with them, God began to bring to my rememberance a conversation I had 3 weeks ago. We were talking about fighting for our families and praying for our children that are lost and pushing God further away. I mentioned that I had challenged the enemy the day before. Told him he'd have to kill me before I allowed one of my children to be snared by him. I reminded God of all the promises He gave me for my family and again told the devil he could not have my family and the only way he would get them would be to kill me.

I was told I should never challenge the enemy that way, he will surely do all he can to defeat me. I said if we don't challenge him then we are saying our God has no power and from all I've read, my God has ALL power and ALL things are UNDER His feet. The enemy is in subjection to Him!!!

I forgot about that prayer. I've been begging God to help me understand why I was going through this dark time and to draw me out of it. I can't explain it any better than I have been deathly afraid my time was drawing nigh and that it would be at my own hands.

Little did I realize I would forget that conversation and less than a week later, the enemy began his attack on me and tried to take me out. LITERALLY
Since remembering that conversation and sharing it with the kids, I have felt a heaviness lift off me. I'm cautious but NOT defeated!!!!! For the first time in weeks I felt a ray of hope and saw a glimmer of light!!! It has been a long, hard, rough couple of weeks, but as I think about it, it seems as if it were a wilderness moment. You know in Matthew 3:17 the voice of God declares after Jesus has been baptized, "This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." and IMMEDIATELY the next thing we see in Matthew 4:1 is that Jesus is led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. I could feel heaviness all around me, but no one would be there. I could hear movement all around me, but I would be the only one in the room. The sad thing is I would cower in my bed, not fearful of the enemy and his minions that may have been lurking about, but I was afraid of what I would do to myself. I was too weak to "pray" and so I'd just lay here in bed and cry out Lord if You don't save me, I won't be saved. If you don't rescue me, the enemy will win because I am not strong enough to fight this. Sometimes it would just be Lord Help ME!

But last night, something in the Spiritual realm happened. As I shared and remembered, I no longer felt heavy or defeated. The air in the room began to lighten up. I smiled for the first time last night and truly felt it.

Please pray for God's protection upon me and my children. I don't believe he's finished, but angry (the enemy that is). I didn't denounce my Lord though I did stop reading His Word. I didn't stop praying all together, my prayers were more like cries for mercy and questions. Not only is the enemy after my children, he will kill me to move me out of the way!!!!!
But God is greater!
Immediately after sharing with the kids, God put a song upon my heart. I pray this song blesses you as it did me. I sat here listening to it with tears streaming down my face. God has not put a song on my heart in over 2 weeks. Every morning I would wake up with the words of a song in my head and I'd look for it on youtube and that would be my song for the day. I would go have my quiet time and finish up with praise or worship to the particular song God gave me for the day. I had not had that until last night and this is what He gave me!!! Enjoy! 


11/12/2011

What I'd Really Like To Do

I'd really like to teach sewing to children, youth, and teens.  I would eventually like to have a studio in my home.
Am I a good enough sewer?  Can I teach other children?  I began teaching my girls, but unfortunately they didn't want to continue.

Anyone have any ideas????


ALSO::::: on a side note, please email me if you have been unable to leave comments.  hesavedme71@yahoo.com.  I'm really missing comments.

11/10/2011

Discouraged...

The closer it gets to the holidays, the more discouraged I feel.  I truly have no joy in the holidays as I once did.

11/07/2011

I Am Still Around

It's been several days since I've blogged and I've missed it.  It can be very daunting to blog when you feel you really don't have much to say to inspire or encourage others and that is what I'd like my blog to be about...as well as just showing the real side of who I am.
I'll try to give you a "brief" run down of what's going on in my world without boring you to death, or just maybe I will bore you...sorry in advance.  ;-)

We've been dealing with a nasty stomach bug that hit my house twice in two weeks.  SO NOT FUN!!!  However, we are all on the mend now.  I hadn't done much sewing to begin with in the past month and the illness didn't help much either.  I've made some decisions in the past 20 days.  I'm closing my online shop.  I'll actually NOT renew my web thing-a-ma-jig.  I will make a few business cards and as I give items away for gifts, I will include a card with it and people can come to my blog to see pics (I'll put up later) to see some of the things I've made.  I just don't feel motivated any longer to do mass sewing on a continuous basis.  I don't mind doing mass sewing for a craft fair or bazaar, but aside from that, it takes all the fun out of it for me and I want it to still remain enjoyable.  So I guess that answered my question....I am NOT cut out for being a salesman.  Not in the sense of having a shop.

What I really want to do (I don't think any of my friends or family know this) is teach others to sew, even if it's just basic things.  I wish I could start a sewing studio, set up with 5-8 machines at all times and teach beginning sewing.  Then I wonder, do people really want to learn how to sew?  I'm looking into classes at our local homeschool coop as a trial test.  I just wish I had a better place to set up....NOT JoAnn Fabrics.  That's my favorite place to shop, but I don't want to deal with their fees and such.  If I did, I'd basically be making pennies on the dollar....and they'd be taking the dollars. :-/
I know I have to start somewhere, but as a single mama, I need to be able to bring something home with which to feed my children with.

Anyway, I've also been asked to consider doing a devotional.  I'm just wondering, do I have ANYTHING to put in a devotional?  With ALL the thousands out there, WHO would want mine?  Would I gear it towards single moms?  And I'm seriously NOT articulate with my words!  My mother was a word person.  She loved all things words and learning.  I know just enough to get me in trouble!!!  More decisions which to pray about...

And I don't have to tell you, but I will, I'm struggling in my prayer life.  Struggling because I see God at work in my life, but when I look at the massive poverty we still live in and the thought of having to go back to a 9 to 5 in order to provide for my children, it is daunting and I get discouraged.  I'm not even sure which way to pray at times and yet, I keep trudging along...my children are watching.

On to other news.....

The other night I watched a really good and interesting documentary.  Forks Over Knives Now it got me to thinking AGAIN about what we eat.  I had gone the route of trying vegetarian full force and after about 21 days, I went back to my old habits.  Then just this year we gave it a go again, only this time I decided we would only have meet a few times a week.  That went well for a while as well, but yet again, I got lazy and went back to what I was comfortable with.  You know when you know something and are comfortable with it, it doesn't take much brain power to crank out a weekly or monthly menu and shop accordingly and cook accordingly.  It's a serious no brainer, but when you are switching to something so drastically unfamiliar, it takes A LOT of brain power and well, I got lazy!!!
So after watching this documentary, I began to THINK again.  I have heart disease, high blood pressure, anxiety attacks, high cholesterol, and now milk (I LOVE MILK) is doing a number on my stomach.  Now I totally dig veggies.  I enjoy them more than meat, so it's not the meat per say that I'm having an issue with giving up.  I totally LOVE dairy and eggs.  Yet this just may be one of the main culprits contributing to my health issues.  Knowing that, I still want my dairy and eggs.  I can go without milk...sigh.
I can learn to cook with almond or coconut milk, no biggie.  However, I don't know how to go without my cheeses, butter, and eggs!!!!  Well, I have been substituting coconut oil for butter whenever possible...not sure how to do that in baking.  OK, so that leaves me the cheese, eggs, and baking with butter dilemma.  I tried one of those cheese substitutes Daiya......ummm NO!!!!  What happens when I'm craving an omelet?  It doesn't happen often, but we have chickens in our chicken coop and they lay beautiful eggs.  Do I give in to that craving every now and then?  What happens when I want lasagna or a casserole that calls for cheddar cheese?  Or what about Mac N Cheese?  OH MY WORD!!!!!!!  I think this might be a bit easier if I had a nearby vegan friend that I could go to her house and sample her food.  UGHHH

Well, I've given myself until Jan 1, 2012 and I will switch over completely.  I have until then to find things I like to substitute the things I love.  Until then, I am gradually making changes.  I bought almond milk for cooking, not sure what to drink when I have a cookie....:-/  I'm already using coconut oil where I can.  I've switched from whites...flour, sugar, pasta, and rice.  Any vegans following me?  Got any pointers? I have also got to get my garden tilled and begin to compost and fertilize it now so it will be good and ready to go come spring.  Another sad thing is I JUST GOT ALL MY RECIPES CATEGORIZED AND IN 1 BINDER!!!!!  After 3 years I got it done last month and NOW I will have to redo it with vegan recipes. arghhhhhhh ughhhhhhhh

However, I know this is best for my health, so I will do it.  I'm over 260 pounds and I've got over 110 pounds to lose.  Oh My Word...seeing that just made me realize, I'm carrying a whole extra person on me.  No wonder I'm always so tired and lethargic and my heart races out of my chest!!!  Those are some sick numbers.  I've got to be serious about this whole thing...I do want to live a long life and enjoy grandchildren someday.  I can't do that if I'm in the grave because I enjoyed ALL of the things I love about food.

Anyway, that's what's going on in my world.  Ohhhh, and I am still considering moving.  I'm thinking Arkansas or Tennessee.  Just not sure when.  My youngest will be 18 in 2 years.  So then it will just be me moving if he leaves the nest at that age.  We shall see, only God knows!!

10/20/2011

Blessings...

Amarian Derrayl Randel
This little guy is the sweet blessing we have been praying for.  My Great-Nephew!!!  He will be staying within our family and not adopted.  We are praising God for answering prayers!!!  He was born on Tuesday, October 18th and weighed 7lbs 4oz.  He looks just like his daddy and big sister.  I'm in love all over again!!!!!



10/08/2011

We War NOT Against Flesh and Blood...

With our latest family situation, we have all been crying out to God and seeking Divine Intervention.  This is a battle that none of us can really fight and for a moment it seemed like our hands were tied.  Our hands tied is sometimes just the way God wants it.  This morning when I awoke, I asked the Lord for a word as I opened His Word.  2 Corinthians 10:3-5 came to mind.  Before I could actually turn there I was quoting it from memory and began to ask God to show me exactly what it meant.  In other words, what was He saying to me.

I read it and before I could finish reading it, I heard....you all are fighting this battle the wrong way.  You all are so distraught and heavy laden, you weren't meant to carry this load and you are not qualified to fight this battle.  Your focus is in the wrong area.  The enemy has distracted all of you.  You can't see the spirit behind all of this because you're so busy looking at the people involved.  You all are angry with their decisions and yet you don't see how the enemy has manipulated circumstances and thoughts.  You already have the victory and yet because your focus is in the wrong place, you all are losing the battle.

I finally said OK Lord, I'm listening.  Make it plain and clear.  He (The Holy Spirit) said, there is NOTHING new under the sun.  Everything the enemy has ever done, he continues to do and because of our growth in Christ or lack thereof, we handle the attacks differently and they go from turning our world upside down to just being an irritation.  He said you all are angry, you're growing bitter and resentful and that is the exact way the enemy wants you to respond.  If you are busy looking at the people in this you are distracted from what the enemy is really doing and thus he keeps you all in bondage.
He then said you humans are controlled by 1 of 2 Spirits; demonic or Holy.  It's a matter of whose bidding are you doing.  So while these young people are doing the enemies bidding, you all are mad at them and not the spirit behind their actions, thoughts, and words and thus now YOU are doing the enemies bidding.  So you keep fighting and you lose.  He said fight this battle with My Word and lay it at my feet and watch Me win this battle.  He said if I have told you in My Word that WE have the victory and WE win, why do you fight like WE lose?  Rebuke the enemy, share My cup/body at the table and take on MY life and victory and tell the enemy to go back to hell from whence he came.  Pray and Believe!

I called my sister and shared with her.  I told her she had to quit talking to the wrong people and pour her heart out to God.  He's waiting to fight the battle but in essence because we are trying to work things out in our own way and time, we have basically tied the hands of the Lord.  I know some will say, but the Lord has all power...and this is very true.  However, we have the ability to stay His hand and power when we walk outside of His covenant and will.

She immediately said OH MY GOODNESS, you are so right.  We knew this, why didn't we do it from the beginning.  I said....we are human!!!! ;-)

As she began to fight in the spirit her countenance began to lift and change.  Her heart began to soar.  She began to have hope once again.  This battle is far from over in the flesh, but God already said HE has the victory and IT IS FINISHED!!!!

I share this with you to say, if you are feeling defeated.  If the enemy has you going through some mess, it's time for you to stop fighting this battle on your own.  His Word tells us that this battle is NOT ours but it is the Lords.  It's time to step back, pray, believe, trust, and Know that you Know that God can and will fight the battle far better than you ever could think or imagine.  And as Shadrach, Meshec, and Abendego once said basically even if it doesn't turn out the way you want it to, Trust Him anyway and don't let go of God and do the bidding of the enemy.

NASB:  2 Corinthians 10:3-5  3 For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, 4 for theweapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for thedestruction of fortresses. 5 We are destroying speculations and everylofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are takingevery thought captive to the obedience of Christ... 


NLT:  2 Corinthians 10:3-5  3 We are human, but we don't wage war with human plans and methods. 4 We use God's mighty weapons, not mere worldly weapons, to knock down the Devil's strongholds. 5 With these weapons we break down every proud argument that keeps people from knowing God. With these weapons we conquer their rebellious ideas, and we teach them to obey Christ...

10/04/2011

A Heavy Heart...

Because of decisions made by a family member that are effecting not only him and his girlfriend, our entire family and extended family is suffering from heavy hearts today.  Would you just keep us in prayer whenever we come to mind?
Pray for the innocent life of this unborn man child that asked for none of this and yet will be dealt it anyway.  Pray for God's mercy and for a change of heart, but most of all for God's will to be done.  This is not a surprise to him, only to us and it hurts more than words can express.

9/29/2011

It's Official...

Well, there are 3 things that are official.  First off, I totally love quilting, even if I'm not a professional and EVERYTHING isn't perfect about them.  I enjoy choosing the colors and fabrics.  I enjoy cutting the pieces and sewing them all together again.  I love choosing the backing and putting it all together.
Second, I totally dislike quilting on my sewing machine.  YES, it can be done, but if I had my choice, I'd have a short arm quilting machine in my home and I'd quilt away.  I'd probably not have 12 quilt tops that need to be quilted.  I'd most likely zip out quilts before you could count to 100.
Last but most definitely not least...I absolutely HATE, and yes I said HATE, making the binding.  I don't mind cutting it, but I do HATE ironing it.  I could buy the binding, but that would be a waste to me when so many have blessed me with fabric beyond my capacity to house it.  However, I would most definitely like to have one of these Bias Tape Maker.  How much binding I could whip up in minutes?????  Only God knows!!!! ;-)

A girl can dream can't she???

9/28/2011

De-cluttering...A Long Way to Go

Sorry you can't see the details of the covers...
As I look around my home, I'm getting more and more depressed.  I've got stuff beyond imagination and it's time for it to go.  I can't tell you where half this stuff came from, but then there are the things that I inherited from my grandmother, father, and mother.  Those things will stay and the rest I am slowly but surely culling.  I woke up Sunday, had my quiet time and immediately after, began de-cluttering our computer area and kitchen.  Here is a picture of the baker's rack that once housed the computer and loads of books.  I now have it back in the kitchen with all of my small appliances on it.  I am slowly making covers for each appliance to keep the dust off.  For whatever reason, this house stays dusty and I figured covers would help keep the dusty away.

My next area will be my sewing stuff.  I've cleaned and de-cluttered so much of it already, but I still have tons of fabric.  I don't wish to part with the fabric because I am using it, but I'm thinking I may store that which I am not using immediately in totes and put them in the shed for right now.  It would only be two totes, but it would allow me to get rid of an entire shelf.
And I've culled books, but they still multiplied some how.  I love books, but this is beyond ridiculous.  I've got many that I will be donating to the Bastrop, TX fire victims.  That will take care of that problem.  I've sorted through all our board games so that is done as well.

Any rate, I'm in a mood for reducing junk!!!!

9/27/2011

The Newest Additions...

Cast Iron Dutch Oven
Amish Style Apron

To my kitchen!!!!!  I have been needing new pots for a long time and as I researched what type I wanted, I settled on cast iron.  I will SLOWLY replace one pot at a time with cast iron.  I was able to get this 5 qt dutch oven and will most likely get another one, a couple of 3 qt pots, a 1.5 qt sauce pot, a roaster, and a corn cob mold.  Of course, this will be over a period of time, but they will all eventually be replaced.  I also went to a local Amish store and purchased all of my herbs for the fall season...way less expensive, and as I was standing at the register, the young woman standing there had on the most beautiful apron.  It was the exact type I had been searching for for about a year and a half or two.  I could not believe my eyes.  I asked her if she made it and she said yes, I made the others hanging in the back as well.  Now HOW did I miss eyeing those?  I couldn't tell you, maybe I was so engrossed in finding all the spices I had on my list.  At any rate, I rushed to the back and looked at those available and found one that I loved!!!!  Of course there were many others I liked equally as well, but that would have been way out of my budget.
I hope to draft a pattern from this one and make several more for various holidays.  However, THIS is the pattern and style I like beyond all the others I've seen.
I'll be choosing to wear this one over the other two I have.  I wonder if I should gift those to someone because I seriously doubt I'll wear them again.
Anyone in or near an Amish community that can snag a pattern for this style?  You slip your arms and head in and this particular one has ties at the waist in the back.  I simply adore it.

Yep, it's the simple things that make this girl happy!!!

9/26/2011

New Hens...

We were blessed with 13 hens over the weekend and they seem to have settled in nicely.  The move doesn't seem to have been to traumatizing for them, as a few still gave us a few eggs, eight to be exact.  Two of the hens were really broody so I'm leaving those eggs to see if they will set.  If not, after a couple of days I'll collect those eggs.  The majority of my new girls are Buff Orpingtons, a great breed in my opinion.  There was also two Rhode Island Reds, and two hens that lay easter eggs (they have a blue tint to the shell).  I already had a Barred Rock rooster, two Buff roosters, a Rhode Island Red hen and a Buff hen.  The two Buff roosters are now with the new hens and I've left the Barred Rock rooster with the other two hens....they followed him around anyway so no need to alter that in any way.
Most of the new girls
I just discovered today the
 roosters colors are darker


Here you can see both roosters
Hopefully they will figure things out!!!
  

The alpha rooster with his
small harem.
 


9/25/2011

Anonymous...and Lifestyle Changes

God simply amazes me more and more and It has to do with the simple fact that He is good!!!  Since I have made up in my mind that I'll do my best not to worry, just pray and trust God to do exactly what He says He will do, He has been blessing my socks off left and right.  Last week I checked the mail and to my amazement, there was a money order in the mail from someone in Florida.  I have no clue who sent it, I have no idea at all.  I did make sure it was a legitimate postal money order and after verifying that, we headed to purchase groceries, much needed toiletries, and paid a bill!!!  I had no clue how we were going to take care of any of that prior to that, but God had already worked it out!  So to who ever anonymous is.....I thank you with a sincere heart and Praise the Lord for your willingness to bless us in such an awesome way.

A sweet friend and I were talking and we both agree, if the body of Christ would step up to the plate, I don't believe we would have any Christians struggling in this nation.  Single moms would be able to fulfill their calling to stay home and raise up godly seeds.  And then, think of the testimony that would be to non believers...no brother or sister in Christ going to the government for housing, food, or medical expenses...
Now that would be awesome and amazing in and of itself and YES a mighty testimony to the world!!!

You know I do a lot of reading and many times I happen upon someone's blog and have no idea how I found that blog, but am ever grateful that I did.  Well, last night was no different.  I have purposed in my heart to make some changes for myself.  Some of it has to do with the economy and the fact that I am still unemployed.  Yet some of it has to do with the fact that I just want to live a healthier simpler life if at all possible.
So I've gone back to drinking green smoothies every morning and it has helped to cut my cravings and I find at lunch time I'm really not hungry and don't start getting hungry until around 5ish...well, dinner is at 6 so I usually drink a tall 44 oz of water and eat dinner at 6.  Since I'm on a serious budget, my smoothies are basic.  water to cover the blades in my blender, 2 handfuls of spinach or lettuce (green or red leaf), 1 cup frozen fruit, 1 cup plain yogurt.  Quick and simple yummy breakfast, followed by a large cup of ice water.  I've increased my water intake throughout the day as well.  In the last 3 months, I've switched from disposable pads to cloth pads and just in the last 2 weeks I switched from toilet paper to cloth wipes (I buy a small pack of toilet paper now for certain needs in the restroom, but that 4 pack should last me for a time).  I just made my first batch of deodorant and let me tell you it's been 2 days and I love it already.  I've been wanting to make the switch, but I've been a bit chicken!  I also tried another thing suggested from this blog and washed my hair with ivory soap...oh yea, I've switched from the fancy soaps back to ivory.  I've used dove for as long as I can remember, but found in the last 2 months or so it was beginning to cause me to itch like no one's business!  I digress.  So the reason I washed my hair with ivory soap, is that between my 2 daughters and I, the shampoo is gone in a month.  They simply use too much.  I did an experiment and bought everyone their own bottle of shampoo, the same size and my sons lasted the longest of course, then mine, but the girls were out of shampoo in 3 weeks.  So, I tried washing my hair with the ivory soap and it cleaned it very well and then made it feel like a dry mess, but I applied conditioner in it and it is just fine and very manageable.  I have used the apple cider vinegar as a conditioner before and loved the way it worked, so after we have used the remaining 3 bottles of conditioner in my home, I will be buying apple cider vinegar from that point on.  I had already been making my laundry soap so no changes there.  I have one thing I just have not been able to give up and that's the bleach.  I don't even use it on our clothes anymore, just to clean with, but I'm noticing it is causing me to have more headaches and it's burning my eyes and nose and that's just with a little bit being used.  So I'm sure that will be next.  I'm in search of a liquid dish soap replacement for hand washing dishes.  I've gone to using coconut oil in my bath water as a moisturizer....love the way it feels on my skin and I don't even have to use lotion when I get out and it only takes a little....1 TBSP!!!!  I also use coconut oil on my face.  I've weeded out hair grease and simply use a mixture of coconut oil and olive oil on my hair.  And with those few changes just for my hair, it is growing by leaps and bounds!!!

Please share any ideas you have or come up with that I can give a try.  I'm all about saving money and living healthier!!!

9/21/2011

He Cares for Small Things Too...

My children and I have been reading through the Bible together, along with our church family.  We are now reading through the book of Daniel.  As we are reading, I am learning great truths and drawing ever closer to My Father.  It is an amazing feeling of peace and calm.  However, as we are reading, songs I remember from a young girl kept popping into my head.
When I was a little girl, we went to church for the big holidays.  We did attend regularly for a while, but my mom was a nurse and as a single parent with the ever changing hours, our attendance began to taper off.  When my brother left home, he was in search of God.  Some horrible things had happened in his life and he was having a hard time trusting God and yet he knew his answers were wrapped up in God.  So he began a journey that led him into a couple of cults, but he had the protection of God and fled from those.  He then found himself among a group of Christians that was able to help him find some answers.  There was still a lot of hypocrisy within this group and he did eventually leave it too, but before he did, he bought me a gift.  This gift was MY first MAJOR introduction to God.  I listened to that cassette tape daily until it would no longer play and whenever I read certain stories within the Bible, I begin to hum these songs that helped me learn of the truths of God long before I ever opened a Bible and read it for myself.
I have been looking for this book and cassette for many years; at least since I was about 14 years old.  I have searched high and low looking, but to no avail.  All I had in my head and heart were tunes.  I could remember a few words, but I could not remember titles at all.
Today was one of those days after our reading that one of the songs popped into my head and I began to hum along.  Then I began to search through google trying desperately hard to locate this gift..... Just as I was about to give up, and I did say Lord I'm never going to find this am I?  Then I prayed, Lord please let me find this, it may be very small, but this means so much to me.  At that moment, the very first song on the list came to mind, along with words.  WOULDN'T YOU KNOW IT, THOSE WORDS WERE ACTUALLY THE TITLE TO THE ENTIRE MUSICAL!!!!!!!!!!  I began to search frantically for it and after only 3 minutes of additional searching, I found it!!!!  All I could do was shout praises and thanks to God and tears streaming down my face.  My kids thought I was crazy and that something must be really wrong with me, but they will never understand the treasure within this children's musical.  I loved God then with a child's heart of purity.  This was the best moment of my childhood and I had lost all touch with it.  Now, I was in touch with it once again.  I hope to purchase it very soon and share it with my nephews and nieces and give them an awesome introduction to this Great God we serve.  TIME TUNNEL when you scroll down, it's the second book on the list and you can listen to clips of each song!!!!

9/19/2011

Is the Lord's power limited?

Yesterday I awoke to have my quiet time with the Lord, only to have my mind wandering about a thousand different things.  For the life in me I could not concentrate on the Word of the Lord and I was getting frustrated.  For whatever reason, I didn't think to pray and ask God to clear my mind and help me to focus on Him.  So I gave up for the day and said my prayers.
This morning I awoke and it seemed that my mind was clear and I began my reading.  Yet again, half way through it my mind began to wander and I could not focus on my time with the Lord or His Word.  Only this time I refused to give up and began to pray that God would step in and I rebuked the enemy from causing distraction.  I began reading again and as I read I thought the Lord is just NOT speaking to me through His Word today.  I'll just enjoy it as a time of reading His Word and gaining an understanding of what things were like for Moses and the Israelites in the wilderness.
Then I got to Numbers 11.  YES....READ IT FOR YOURSELF.
The Israelites are complaining about not having meat to eat.  They don't have to DO anything for the manna they are receiving, but they are complaining because they have lost their appetite for the things they once enjoyed while in Egypt.  In other words, they enjoyed so many various things that they now have no access to and they can't remember what those other things tasted like and they are having a major craving issue.
For me as I read it, I thought this is me.  I remember living in a fairly nice home.  It was roomy and everything wasn't stacked in corners.  We had space to move around and as I'm looking at my present home in just the last few days, I thought to myself and aloud, Lord will we ever have a decent home again?  Will things always be this bad?  I didn't dwell on it, but I did bring it up and I did think on it several times over the last 3 days for sure and then I brushed it off with the remark of...I've got to get a job and do something or yes, we will be in this predicament till Jesus returns.
OK, back to my reading.  The Israelites have complained to Moses and then in verse 21-22 Moses says to the Lord basically...these 600,000 people keep asking me for meat for a month.  Should I kill flocks and herds to feed them?  Will the animals we have be sufficient to feed ALL of them or will the sea empty its vast number of fish to us for them to eat?  In other words, he was feeling totally inadequate for the task and saw no human way he could provide for ALL those people and they were getting on his nerves asking him for meat!!!
But as I continued reading, something JUMPED out and off the page at me and I began to weep.  The LORD said to Moses and me IS THE LORD'S POWER LIMITED?
Have you done like me and limited the Lord's power?  Have you, like I, said the Lord is all powerful and yet when faced with some issue you begin to think of a hundred different ways YOU can solve it instead of resting in His power?  Have you consulted Him last AFTER you have exhausted all of your human logic for answers?
He is ALL powerful!  There is NOTHING too hard for God!  And His power is LIMITLESS!!
May you and I camp out right there and rest in the fact that God is not limited to human thinking or logic and HE WILL take care of us!!!!!  May God richly bless you today as you seek His face and His will for you this day!

9/17/2011

Social Networks...

I've only been fasting from the most popular social network for 3 days now and let me tell you, I've discovered that I'm addicted to it.  Yes, I meant to say addicted.  This is the same result I discovered when we stopped watching television and stopped eating sugar.
I'm using this time to draw closer to God AND I'm getting lots done as well.  I'm also praying about whether or not to return to said social network after my fast and if I do, how I can monitor my time on it.  Actually, I've tried that and while it did work for a while, it didn't last long.  I'm enjoying not having it as a go to and I've gained more ideas for blog posts.
However, the one argument that many have brought up is the instant gratification for being in the lives of family and friends.  The analogy I immediately got was a woman at her neighbors house from sun up to sun down and sometimes beyond.  She didn't get much done in her own home.
Why do we feel the need to share every moment of our lives anyway?  Why do we feel we are entitled to know what's going on in everyone's life every single moment?  What does this have to do with Proverbs 25:17~Let your foot rarely be in your neighbor's house, or he will become weary of you and hate you.????

Well, I'm discovering I don't NEED to know everything that everyone on my friend's list is doing throughout the day.  I have more time to talk personally on the phone with my friends.  I have more time to get things done that I really want to do.  I have more time to spend with the Lord.  And all those incomplete tasks I've been meaning to finish....well, they are now getting completed.

Dare I say it is a since of freedom that I'm experiencing?  Well, that's exactly how I feel!!!!!  I even have time to blog once again.  I will seriously be reconsidering if I need to stay on the social sites or not...in search of a simpler lifestyle.

9/16/2011

Quirky Denim...

Yesterday I completed a quilt for one of my daughters.  She's all original and has very much an out of the box personality.  The pictures below are of her completed quilt and yet it's not complete.  It has to be washed and dried several times so that it will fray around all the edges and each block.  I pieced together the back to match her personality....quirky (in a good way).  She loved it and I'm pleased with it as well.

I don't have the batting to complete the other 5 quilts I have waiting.  So today's project is to make a fitted sheet for my king size bed.  This will be fun!!!  Pictures soon to come.

Front

Back


Embroidered date and signature on lower back corner.


Appliqued name on front lower corner.

9/15/2011

My Heart, Your Heart, His Heart...

Do we have the heart of God within us?  Do we mourn the things that God mourns?  Are we grieved by the things that grieve God?  or...
Do we look at things with indifference around us and brush it off as the way of society, modern day times?  Do we look at things as peoples rights?
Do we put His ways before our own?  Do we run towards His will for our lives?
Do we even bother to ask God what He wants and desires for us?

9/14/2011

He is Holy...

As I think of my Lord and Savior this morning, I can't help but think about His holiness, His worthiness, and His faithfulness.  He has truly been good to me.  I pray for all to know Him and have a taste of who He is!  You won't regret it nor will you ever desire anything else in place of Him.  He's just that awesome!!!!

9/10/2011

How I do my menu planning...

Anyone can glean from this as they wish, but I am mostly doing this for my friend who has asked.  Also if you have a simplified way of doing something or just want to throw me a tip, PLEASE SHARE!!!!!!

Today (I'm actually late), I am going to sit down and begin the preparation for my menus for the next 4 weeks "hopefully".
First note that I am a collector.  I collect recipes.  I used to have a ton of cookbooks, not because I used them a heck of whole lot, but because I LOVE collecting recipes.  After I try a recipe a time or two, I usually have it committed to memory and no longer need the book.  I usually then begin to alter it however I like.
So months ago I went through this phase of wanting to do away with all those books collecting dust.  I did the unthinkable...I began to rip out whole pages of recipes I knew my family loved and put them in a binder in sheet protectors.  I'm trying to get a system down and instead of having ONE HUGE binder, have several smaller ones.  One specifically for breads, one for sweets, one for vegan, one for....I think you get the idea.  I'm still working on it...Nevertheless, I need to cull many more of my recipes. (That may NEVER happen, better just do what I do with what I have).  So I now have 5 binders with specific titles.  I have culled all the unhealthy recipes or found alternates....like whole wheat chocolate chip cookies or whole wheat oatmeal raisin cookies.  YUMMY...these are delish...Oh sorry, I did it again.  Ok, focus..........LOL

OK, so here is how I begin.  My printer is out of ink so I can't print blank calenders.  I use my dry erase board calendar or I have a notebook and I will list the next few weeks on it beginning with Monday, because that is when I will be going shopping.  Otherwise, I would have started with Sunday.  Anyhoooooo, I am now surrounded by recipes and my laptop.  The seasons are gradually changing so I know I will be having more soups, stews, and baked goods....anything to help keep the house warm and us too! ;-)  For this next week I will check out the forecast so I don't cook meals that are really too warm for warm weather.  However, we are in Texas and we are known to have ALL 4 seasons in one day.  HA HA I just checked and it's gonna be hotter than a bear all week once again. UGHHHHHHHHH at least for the next week.  OK, I digress.  So now I know I will NOT be doing any soups.  I am sooo very ready for soups.

I plan out simple breakfasts and they normally don't change much unless we oversleep and then it's just a smoothie.  It helps to keep the costs down.  Oatmeal, Malt-O-Meal, Cream of Wheat, Grits, Green Smoothies, rotate those and have one day for a big breakfast like pancakes, eggs, & sausage or grits, eggs, & sausage.  It's usually pancakes, eggs, and sausage and I make a triple batch and freeze all but 10 and that's our breakfast.

Lunch will always be leftovers.  This REALLY helps keep costs down and when I was working it ensured I had a meal for lunch....no eating out means lower budget.  The only time lunch is NOT leftovers is if we are out and about or someone else buys us lunch and then leftovers become dinner. :-D  Works for me!!!!  We only eat out if it is a special occasion.  Gives my children something to look forward to and doesn't get them thinking that fast food is the way to go.  While my mom was in the hospital, we ate fast food for a month and when I started cooking again, they were all elated!

Based on my days and what name I have given them, I go through my recipes and find things that are appealing to me and my budget.  On a separate sheet I may write down 10 Meatless meals and then go back to my calendar and assign them to various Mondays.  Sometimes I ask the kids what they would like from the list and assign from there.  I'll do this again with the remaining days of the weeks until I have the next four weeks filled.  Then I look at my calendar and look up the recipes and write down EVERY ingredient I will need for EACH MEAL....yes, that is a lot, but it's how my brain functions.  If I have milk on my list and 5 recipes call for milk, then I put 5 tally marks outside of milk.  We drink a lot of milk anyway, so I'd get 5 gallons of milk.  If I need tuna for 3 recipes and they each take 2 cans, then I'll put the number 6 next to tuna.
If 8 recipes call for shredded cheese, I put 8 tally marks, but then think about how big the bags of cheese are and mentally process how many bags I need.  I write down the number 2 and regardless to what my tally marks say, I know I'm going to buy 2 large bags of shredded cheese.  Then I take that sheet of paper with all the ingredients, tally marks, and numbers, and go to my kitchen and look at what I have that's on the list.  If I have plenty of a particular something, I cross it off my list.  If I have about half of something or less than half, I leave it on the list.  I then rewrite my list according to what I need along with the number and sometimes I arrange it to the isles in the store, most times I do not.  I have 3 children so when we get in the store I send one to get all the dairy items, one all the baking items and one all the meats....or something like that.

I know some of my friends after they get their menu, if they wake up that day and don't "feel" like cooking that particular item on the calendar or have a taste for something else, they cook something else.  This drives me bonkers, it makes my whole process pointless and a waste of my time.  So I NEVER and yes I said NEVER alter my menu once I have it written on the calendar.  I have made it known to myself that it is now set in stone and only God can change it.  ;-D

My favorite things to cook are crock pot meals, casseroles, and one pot meals.  We also only have dessert on Sundays.  We have junk on Fat Fridays, but an actual dessert after dinner is ONLY on Sundays.  Otherwise, we get carried away with sweets here and with cutting out sugar, that doesn't help us.

Also note that I have changed a bit of what we eat for healthier alternatives.  Stevia or honey for our sweetners, whole wheat flour instead of white, brown or wild rice instead of white, I incorporate more veggies, so instead of lettuce on tacos, we have finely shredded cabbage, in meatloaf I'll add shredded carrots (don't tell my kids...heeheehee).  We have eliminated about 98% of processed foods in exchange for real foods.  This includes making our own bread, pie crusts, crackers, etc. I also mix a lot of my own mixes and store in jars.  For instance, taco seasoning, chili seasoning, sausage seasoning (it's cheaper to buy ground turkey or beef and then season with sausage seasoning and you can buy bulk seasonings for dirt cheap at a Amish bakery in Kemp Tx.  Heritage Market & Bakery), pancake/waffle mix, bisquick.  I'm branching off into making our salad dressings.  Next up is ketchup, spaghetti seasoning, and salsa.  I want to master bbq sauce.  I don't see myself making mayonnaise, so we just opt to buy ours from the health food store and get the vegan kind.

I think this became a lot more than I planned, but if you have ANY questions, tips, ideas, or you're near and want to make a date for going to the Amish store...I'm game!!!!

LilySlim - Weight loss

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