Sunday, April 25, 2010


Today I had a “menopausal moment” that was really a little longer than a moment. My husband and son were participating in an up-hill race called “The Summit.” They both did extraordinarily well and I was soo proud of both of them. From that exhilarating high of emotion later came anxiety that led to tears for no real reason. Suddenly, I just wanted to be left alone. But, my family would have none of it. They stayed in the car with me till I could pull it together. I told them to go on knowing they were hungry. Food was awaiting them after the race, yet they were determined to stay with me as long as necessary.

Just by them staying showed how much they loved me. They could have gone on and satisfied that ache in their tummys, but instead they lingered by my side. Even though I acted like I didn’t want them with me, they refused to go and leave me alone.

It makes me think of Jesus who never leaves us ~ Never! Even when we don’t seem to want him around… he refuses to go because He made a promise to those who know Him to never ever leave us…”Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you“ Hebrews 13:5. In the Greek, this scripture basically means Jesus will never, certainly not, by no means relax, loosen, give up, leave you. Jesus will neither abandon, desert, leave you in a difficult situation or hardship, or helpless, totally abandoned, utterly forsaken, or ever leave you behind.

You may say, how can Jesus be with us if He is no longer on the earth. That’s true that Jesus is not in physical form on earth today, but before He ascended to heaven, he lovingly shared with His disciples that He was sending the Counselor to be with them forever - the Spirit of truth which is Jesus in Spirit form. He told them that He would not leave them as orphans (John 14:17). So, even though Jesus ascended to heaven, he kept his promise to send the Holy Spirit to live in them and in all who would believe in Him today. Jesus, in the form of Holy Spirit indwells and empowers the Believer today.

What a gift of love is the Holy Spirit living within us. By repenting of sin and committing ones life to Him - Jesus comes to live in your heart. He is committed to you. There’s absolutely NOTHING more important to Him than YOU.

Even so, you may say to Him.. I don’t want You; I want to be left alone. But, just as I said to my family today and they didn’t listen…….Jesus knows you really need Him and he’ll plead to be with you because He loves you with an everlasting love (Jeremiah 31:3). Whether you’ve never known Him or you’ve slipped away from Him….. Either way, you can open wide the door of your heart today and let him come in and share the remaining “moments” of your life. There’s really nothing more important to Him than being with You!

Saturday, April 17, 2010


Good Friday, the day Jesus died for mankind was such a memorable day for me unlike any other in the past. Why? Well, my friend, Marianne and her son Simon were visiting and with our family we embarked upon a Geocashing adventure. Geocaching is a project organized by Groundspeak, which is an outdoor activity in which the participants use a Global Positioning System (GPS) receiver or other navigational techniques to hide and seek containers (called "geocaches" or "caches") anywhere in the world.

The adventure we expected was not what we experienced. We drove out a local road, took a left, another left, and before you know it we were out in the middle of seemingly "nowhere." I remember asking Marianne... how much gas you got in your tank? We drove on what appeared to be worse than cow paths, yet we continued towards our treasure. Travis, my 16 year old son was driving ahead of us with his daddy and with ever such caution we finally reached the top of a hill where we pulled to the side of the road. Now, it started to get interesting. We all got out of our vehicles, ready for the trek into the woods to find this prize awaiting us somewhere "up there...."

My husband Chuck had our GPS in hand so we all kind of lined up behind him. None of us were dressed appropriately as we soon found out there were more briers then we'd ever seen in a lifetime awaiting us. We went from the beautiful meadow to an abandoned road with debris to an upward climb toward the cache. About half way up what seemed like a mountain, we all began to spread out. Some were way ahead while others were beginning to struggle and straggle. I found an old stick which became my walking partner. I felt like Moses as we trekked along.

Chuck cautioned us all not to touch this fuzzy stuff on the trees as it was poisonous, most likely oak. So, we moved along until we encountered nothing but a brier "patch." I looked for ways to go around it, but there were none. So, being about the fourth in line, I dove into it when I let out a few screams .... the thorns had found my legs and arms. Blood began to ooze out of me. I grew fearful and felt such pain that I turned back. Our little dog Kirby was also with us and I immediately used my dog as my reasoning for staying behind. After all, what if Kirby got a thorn in him. Chuck reminded me that he was a hunting dog and he'd probably be fine, but I knew better.

There we were, me, my daughter and our friend Simon. We all were waiting below the brier patch. All of us had tried it and turned back and opted to wait. Chuck, Travis and then Marianne were blazing through it all and getting closer to the treasure. We could hear them above us...yelling out....... 200 feet and we're there... 100 feet...

To my amazement.... Ariel said with a chuckle ... "Take cover... I'm going in..." And, off she went up the hill towards the rest. Simon and I could hear the anticipation among those who had gone on. I wanted to go, but held off. Then something was said that stirred my young friend Simon and all of a sudden he was like a rocket going through that brier patch with ease. Then I heard the guys.... "oh my, I think we found it.... WE SEE IT!

Well, something stirred in me.... There actually was a prize. It was real - not a joke.... I began to move towards the brier patch and something in me would not turn back again.... The pain... yeah it was hurting because I felt the briers all over my legs, but I kept moving. I didn't stop. I was right behind Simon and when I looked down, there was Kirby. It was like he was saying... I've got your back.. let's go. After we got through those briers.. we began to attack that hill with a strength we hadn't had before. I couldn't believe we were doing this.

Finally, we had reached the top. After catching our breath, Chuck said... ok... now you all have to find it. And one by one.... WE FOUND THE PRIZE! There it was waiting for us! Simon opened the prized box and within it was a steno pad for us to write upon if we wished, first aid, little trinkets, and a laminated note congratulating us for the find. Then the emotions began to come forth in us. Some of us cried (me) and others were elated that we did it giving hands up to one another, hugs and smiles of relief. Many of us spoke what we felt about the experience - others were silent. We took a few pictures and commended one another and began to go back the way we came.

I came to the realization that I had suffered today... though just a little and had nearly turned back - but Jesus had suffered A LOT AND CONTINUED TILL HE LAID DOWN HIS LIFE FOR ME! We were His joy set before Him. I saw at the top of this hill thorns that could have been similar to the ones they put in Jesus' head and I cried. I could hardly handle the sting of a few little thorns in my legs and arms, yet Jesus endured a crown upon his head with streams of blood going down his face. I couldn't even imagine the nails in his hands and his feet and the piercing of his side. No, I couldn't even imagine..... HE WOULD DO THIS FOR ME! I cannot tell you how this has touched me.

I didn't go somewhere to hear about what Jesus did for me, but I actually got to experience something that touched me even more. I realized that our life is this adventure or journey up the hill and sometimes there are no ways around the brier patch. We must trust the Lord as we go through every dark place in our life because we will go through them all to reach the PRIZE which is Jesus. He's worth the temporary pains of life. He's worth it all. I'm sooo glad I didn't stay behind as others went up the hilll to get the prize. I was thankful for the encouragement from others, symbolic of the Body of Christ in order that we could all seize the moment together. I felt a sense of accomplishment and was grateful to have had the opportunity to suffer .... even if it was just a little to be like Jesus.

From the words of David Crowder... We are His portion and He is our prize, Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes, If grace is an ocean, we're all sinking. So Heaven meets earth like an unforseen kiss, And my heart turns violently inside of my chest, I don't have time to maintain these regrets, When I think about, the way........... He loves us, Oh how He loves us, Oh how He loves us, Oh how He loves......

Monday, April 12, 2010


Have you ever heard anyone say ….. “Continue in the GRACE of God?” It’s unlikely you have, but it was a powerful admonishment given by Paul and Barnabas to some Jews and devout converts to Judaism in Antioch in Pisidia, now known as Turkey.

Continuing in the Grace of God was a message of forgiveness of sins and freedom from guilt that the religious leaders could not receive because it released people from the bondage of trying to keep the law. They were jealous of the freedom that Paul and Barnabas had and consequently attempted to shut them down everywhere they went. The religious leaders were clinging to their set of rules in order to make themselves feel acceptable before God and pious before man.

But, Paul was saying, having faith in Christ would forgive their sin and make them righteous before God ---- period. “ …through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you. Through him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses….” (Acts 13:38&39).

Paul had GOOD NEWS and it’s still GOOD NEWS today. When you become a believer in Christ, some wonderful things take place. First of all, you have the affection and acceptance of Jesus. He not only loves you, he likes you. You have the authority to use His Name to further the Kingdom of God and hinder the works of satan and you have the privilege of carrying the precious gift of the Holy Spirit within you who will lead you into all truth. Your sins are forgiven and you have begun a relationship with a real person - Jesus. You are no longer under the law of sin and death which brings bondage, but you will be under God’s amazing GRACE which brings freedom.

Perhaps the above statement that Paul made is what got him kicked out of the city. He was saying… your compliance to the Law can never make you right before God. Ouch! It’s what Christ has done ---- not what you are doing. God’s forgiveness and favor are available to you right now. It’s that simple! Just receive it.

God’s Grace, which is his divine influence upon the heart reflected in one’s life gives the freedom to rest from all our striving before God and man hoping to achieve an A+ for all our earthly effort. God’s GRACE enables us to do what we cannot do ourselves. It’s His super to our natural.

My prayer is that we too can receive this Good News. It’s not a set of do’s and don'ts. It is NOT a RELIGION, but a RELATIONSHIP with God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. It‘s believing in the finished work of Christ - the only one who can forgive sins and make you right before a Holy God. It’s refreshing and freeing…. Don’t let the law rule over you anymore. Let us….

“…continue in the GRACE of God.” Acts 13:43