Saturday, February 27, 2010

A New Award!!!!!

This lovely award has been bestowed upon me by Trish at It's Me Again Margaret .  Please go over to her blog and check it out.  She has one of the most beautiful hearts of anyone I have ever known!

Okay, the rules for receiving this award are as follows:

     1.  List 4 things that keep your inner self beautiful.
     2.  List 4 things that keep you physically beautiful.
     3.  Tell us about a precious memory you keep close to your heart.  (Optional)
     4.  Share this award with 5 other people that you think have a beautiful heart too.
     5.  Link the blogs of the people you chose and link the blog of the person who awarded you.
     6.  Have fun!!!

Inner Beauty

     1.  A personal relationship with Jesus Christ.
     2.  Meditation on the Word of God, the Bible.
     3.  Prayer.
     4.  A daily effort to be loving and kind to everyone with whom I am in contact.

Physical Beauty

     1.  I try to smile often.
     2.  I try to speak loving and kind words.
     3.  Wand and Kim at Wanda's Family Hair Cottage (Miracle workers!!!!)
     4.  Beauty Control Moisturizer and Anti-Wrinkle Cream

A Precious Memory

The day I met my precious late husband.  From the moment I first looked into his eyes, I knew our hearts would be together for eternity.  He love me unconditionally and served our Lord with zeal.


I have been so inactive for so long and I LOVE every single lady whose blog I follow.  Therefore, I ask EACH OF YOU to take this award and pass it on!  You can find each of their links on the right side of this page.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Today I'm Three!!!!!!!!!!!!

Aunt Di & Allyson

This little angel girl is one of the reasons I get out of bed every day!  She is Charlotte and Ricky's youngest grandchild, daughter of their second son Jared.  This picture was made in October, 2009.

Today is a BIG DAY in her ALLYSON ANN is THREE YEARS OLD!!!!!!!!!!!


Allyson is such a sweet child, very quiet and introverted until she gets to know you.  Then, she becomes a well-spring of endless chatter and music!  Ohhhhh, does this little girl LOVE to sing!  She is constantly singing and/or asking you to sing.  She's very particular about who sings, when they sing and what they sing.  If you do it wrong, she will quickly throw up those little hands, palm out, fingers slightly spread, thumb bent in slightly toward the palm and command you "NO! NO! NO!  You gotsta do it wike this"!!!!

She has a big brother (Braden) and is anxiously awaiting the birth of her little sister this summer.  The little sister is, as yet, unnamed.  She loves her brother, but sometimes doesn't like him very much, expecially when he runs the battery down on her car!!!!  She will quickly announce "I'm mad at my Bubba"!  She has decided she must rock 'her' baby and give 'her' baby a bottle and even change 'her' babies' diaper when she peepees in it.  But, NOT when she doodies though!

I love this little girl more than I sometimes feel my heart can hold, yet I know that is untrue because I thought the same thing when my sister's children were born and when Charlotte's grandchildren were born .  It's just all too true what they ain't love 'till you give it away!  Then, it just keeps growing and expanding your heart and soul.  You never get full, there's always room for more!

Happy Birthday, Allyson!  I love you back together!!!! 
(Her Nannie, my sister Charlotte, always tells her she loves her to pieces and I always say "I love you back together.  )

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Love Is A Choice

Since Valentine's Day is upon us, I thought it appropriate to write about love. Unfortunately, in today's culture we somehow think romance and sexual intimacy are love.  Certainly relationships between men and women who are married involve both, but neither are love; rather both should occur as products of love.

Societal norms say it is acceptable for anyone, at any time to involve themselves in relationships where these emotions are present and where they are equated to love. 

We have bought into this myth that love is uncontrollable, that it's something that just happens to us; it's not something we control. In fact, even the language we use implies the uncontrollability of love. We say, "I fell in love," as if love is some kind of a ditch. It's like I'm walking along one day and bam!—I fell in love. I couldn't help myself. 

The problem with that kind of thinking is this, if one can so easily 'fall into' love does it not stand to reason that one could also 'fall out of' love? 

This explains why divorce and abandonment run rampant in our society.  Love is no longer a sacred commitment but a convient excuse for giving up when the really hard things happen that require dedication to work through in a relationship.  We often hear couple say "I just fell out of love with...." as an explanation for divorce.

I have to tell you the truth: that's not love. Love doesn't just happen to you. Love is a choice and it represents a commitment.  You choose to love and you choose not to love.

There's no doubt about it, attraction is uncontrollable and arousal is uncontrollable. But attraction and arousal are not love. They can lead to love, but they are not love. Love is a choice.  We cannot control whom we are attracted to, or possibly by whom we are aroused.  We can, however, exert control over how we respond to attraction and arousal. defines love as:  
A deep and enduring emotional regard, usually for another person. Love may apply to various kinds of regard: the charity of the Creator, reverent adoration toward God or toward a person, the relation of parent and child, the regard of friends for each other, romantic feelings for another person, etc.
Even today's dictionary uses the words 'romantic feelings' when defining love. This provides witness to what the secular element of our society understands to be love. In deep contrast to this, we can look in the Bible to see what God has to say about love.

I Corinthians 13 is often referred to as the 'Love Chapter' of the Bible.  From that chapter we find the description of love in verses 4 - 7:
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Do patience, kindness, protection, trust, hope, perseverance, the abscense of envy, boastfulness, pride, rudness, selfishness, anger and unforgivness sound like characteristics one can 'fall into' to you?  They certainly do not to me!  However, these are all the characteristics Paul listed as those belonging to love.

These are characteristics one must cultivate on a daily, moment-by-moment basis.  Therefore, it requires commitment in order to foster and build them into our lives.  In that we have the true meaning of love...the daily, moment-by-moment commitment to practice characteristics which do not come naturally to us, but which require work to display toward others and sometimes toward God as well.

Deuteronomy 30 tells of God speaking to the Israelites as they stood at the Jordan River, preparing to cross into Canaan.  He sets before them the blessings He has in store for them if they love Him and obey Him.  He also sets before them the curses disobedience will bring.  Then, He gives them a choice as seen in verses 19 and 20a: 
This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the LORD your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him...
So, we see clearly that love is a choice even in relation to God.  God does not force us to love Him; He offers us the truth about our choices and then leaves us free to choose.  He reminds us that our choices have consequences and that loving Him will require commitment.

If our love relationship with God is a choice that requires commitment, why do we think our relationships with one another should or will be any different?  Many times in our lives we will love people not because we want to, but because we choose to. 

Romantic relationships are no different; marriage is no different.  I was married to Terry for over 33 years.  I woke up every day choosing to love him and keep my commitments to him.  On some of those days, I didn't like him very much, but I kept the commitments I had made to him....I loved him.

There have been some difficult periods in my life when I haven't liked God very much, but I keep the commitments I made to Him on the day He I asked Him to come into my heart and forgive me...I love Him.

Love is a choice that requires commitment and produces contentment and joy in our innermost being.  Whether practiced between an individual and God or between individuals, love is the only choice that can bring true happiness to our lives.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Open Hands...............

To get something you never had, you have to do something you never did. When God takes something from your grasp, He's not punishing you, but merely opening your hands to receive something better.

Hello my friends. I have been absent for a very long time. If you are still here, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

As most, if not all, of you are aware, it has now been just over one year since my husband went home to be with Jesus. Although I am thankful every day that his suffering is over and he is now at rest with the Lord, the grieving process has been extremely difficult for me.

Since October 10, 2009, I have been living with my middle sister, Charlotte, and my BIL, Ricky. They were kind and generous enough to take me in when the doctors told me I should not be living alone until I could do better emotionally and physically.

With the help of my wonderful family, some very precious friends and the mercy of Almighty God, I am now much improved. So many people have prayed, and continue to pray, so many prayers for me. I am forever grateful to you for praying for me when I was unable to pray for myself.

Life is now feeling good again and I will be moving back into the house I shared with Terry for 26 years. I know things will never be same there without him, but it is where we built our life together and where our memories are. I need those memories now and look forward to getting back there.

We had moved from our home to my MIL's home in August, 2006 in order for me to take care of her. As my husband became more and more ill, we were unable to move back home before he went to be with Jesus. I have been torn between wanting to stay at my MIL's house, because that is where Terry died, or move back to our home. I now know for certain going back to our home is the right thing to do.

It has been a long and difficult journey. I am still praying and asking the Lord to help me with finding my place in His Kingdom. For so many years, Terry and I served together. I now have to find my place as a single woman of God. I make no assumptions and am open to the direction of the Holy Spirit as I search.

The first paragraph of this post I received in an email recently. It reminded me that when God closes a door, he opens a window. It will never be the same because Terry will no longer be at my side. However, his memory lives on in my heart and in my memory and the Lord continues to walk by my side and to carry me when I need Him to do so.

I am indeed doing something I have never done. I am anxious to see the doors of opportunity the Lord will open for me as He leads me into the area of service He will have me in. I am eager to serve Him and grow in His knowledge and the understanding of His Word.

So many doors are now open to me that were previously closed due to the fact that I had to be with Terry. I want to make sure I don't step off into my own will when choosing which path to take. Therefore, I will proceed slowly but steadily as I depend on Him to guide my steps.

I place my trust in Him and know that the will of God will never lead me where the Grace of God will not keep and protect me. The future now looks bright to me. Yes, there will continue to be sad times and even sad days, but in my sadness I can turn to Him and know that He understands and is there with me. When He left us, His Word tells us He left us with peace and a Friend to guide us. Praise God for that

As I comtemplate the peace of the Lord and His presence in my daily life, I am reminded of the passage from St. John 14 where Jesus tells His disciples about the coming of that Friend, the Holy Spirit. How blessed we are that Jesus knew we would need that Friend and provided for us.

Peace and a Friend to comfort me....what else could I possibly need in my hour of despair?!

"Because a loveless world," said Jesus, "is a sightless world. If anyone loves me, he will carefully keep my word and my Father will love him—we'll move right into the neighborhood! Not loving me means not keeping my words. The message you are hearing isn't mine. It's the message of the Father who sent me.

"I'm telling you these things while I'm still living with you. The Friend, the Holy Spirit whom the Father will send at my request, will make everything plain to you. He will remind you of all the things I have told you. I'm leaving you well and whole. That's my parting gift to you. Peace. I don't leave you the way you're used to being left—feeling abandoned, bereft. So don't be upset. Don't be distraught.

St. John 14: 23-27

(The Message)