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Monthly Archives: May 2012

Jk’s latest research blog on Mississippi

County Map of the State of Mississippi

Jklyn has researched a great many things in the past few weeks, but wasn’t sure what she wanted to post on her blog.  She finally decided to write about a state that I lived in as a young child, a state I loved living in and have many great childhood memories from.  That state is Mississippi.  Here is a link to her latest blog post… http://allinthelifeofjk.wordpress.com/2012/05/31/first-expl/    I hope you will check it out and please feel free to write her a comment about her post, including suggestions for how she can improve her writing.  She loves to hear what people think of her writing.

Beach on Mississippi Coast

Mississippi State Bird

Mississippi State Flower

 

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Picture It And Write It, Prompt #28

I’ve been dealing with being physically and mentally drained for a few days because of some meds for fibromyalgia and for bone spurs on my spine.  After a 6 hour nap yesterday I finally feel like I’m back on an even keel today, so I thought I would try to spark my creativity by taking Terry’s lead, from http://terry1954.wordpress.com/ , using a writing prompt to boost my imagination.  She gets the writing prompts from  Picture it & write or   Ermiliablog, and I thank all of these blogs for sharing this picture with me.  So here it goes…

It had been years since Charity had been back to her hometown, but it was time now to face her past and the sin that had held her captive.  She must go back to the beginning, and just a few moments in her mother’s home looking at old photo albums was enough to trigger many memories, both good and bad.  Now driving down to the lake, she hoped that some of those memories would explain to her where she went wrong.  Not much had changed except the lake seeming to take back some of the land that surrounded it, a result of the Spring storms that inundated the region, pouring down flood inducing rains for days.  Mom had said the flood had reached over the top of the old dock, crumbling it like a pile of matchsticks.  The city council had decided not to rebuild it, since there was a new pier available at the new Marina just a mile around the lake from the old pier.  Pulling into the Marina, Charity marveled at the beauty that had been put into its creation.  Beautiful oaks grew to each side of the entrance, giving shade to the long drive into the Marina.  A variety of flowers stood like a welcoming committee as they lined the street under the shade of the oaks.  As Charity entered the gate, she was greeted by a security guard, who welcomed her to the Marina, and made small talk about the weather today, and how he hoped she enjoyed her time at the new Marina.  After collecting her five dollar parking fee, the security guard gave her a receipt, a pamplet of services offered and planned activities of the day, and waved her on.  He reminded Charity of a programmed robot, showing no emotion, and repeating the same mantra over and over.

Back in her childhood days, Charity would not be going to a marina on a Sunday.  For years every Sunday she would go with her parents to the little church just a few miles south of the new Marina.  She remembered how much she loved Sundays back then, the singing, people praising God together, and a sermon from Pastor Smith that left each person meditating on their relationship with Jesus Christ.  The old church had been a place of solace, of love, and a beautiful place filled with peace.  Peace…that is what Charity needed now.  Life had taken its toll on her, and nothing in her life brought peace.  After she checked out the new Marina, Charity decided to drive around the lake to the old church and see if she could make the evening service at least.

Walking around the Marina, Charity marveled at the beautiful, white marble columns that adorned the entrances of the club house.  There was everything a community could want at this marina, from a large resteraunt, to a conciearge to fulfill your every need.  There was an 18 hole state-of-the-art golf course to the north of the main building, a series of boating docks and a pier lined with old fashioned street lights reaching out into the large lake.  One dock was lined with paddle boats and canoes for rent.  The other docks were lined with ski boats, family cruisers, speed boats, pontoons, and bass fishing boats, all just waiting for the owners to take them out on the lake.  It looked like there were many families, fishermen, and water skiers preparing to make excursions out on the lake for the day.  Charity wondered about why none appeared to have come from a church service, none were in church clothing, and all seemed to be more involved in family and friend activities, and the seeking of worldly enjoyment than on giving any acknowledgement to the Maker of this day and of the creation they were about to enjoy.  This was quite different from when Charity was a child, because it was stressed that this day was the Lord’s and a day of rest.  Church would have been a families first destination, and their last destination as well.  In between there might be a picnic at the lake or a family dinner at home, but to spend the whole day on the lake was not something that was even considered for a Sunday.  Although this way of spending a Sunday was common in the city, Charity began to wonder what caused this change here in the small town she loved.  Were there even churches in the community anymore, or had the churches changed their day or times of worship to allow this activity?  She began to wonder more about the little church around the lake where she had attended as a child.  Looking at her watch, Charity decided a quick lunch and tour of the clubhouse would allow her time to drive to the church, and make it just in time for the evening service.

An unfriendly hostess, led Charity across the diningroom to a table by the main row of windows.  She mentioned that this was the area the mayor liked to sit in the most, because he was able to see money rolling into the town’s bank account.  Charity was amazed at how materialistic that thought was, and a feeling of nausea filled her stomach.  One of the things that had made her leave the big city was the materialistic attitude that seemed to permeate the rude behavior of soceity there.  No one seemed to care about their neighbor, only how they could take advantage of them.  Consideration, compassion and respect were absent for the most part, and because they were missing the feeling of community and neighborhood were absent as well.  After perusing the menu, whistling at the high prices, Charity settled for a simple bowl of New England Clam Chowder, the House Roll, and a Chef Salad for lunch.  Bowing her head, Charity gave thanks, not only for the food but for being back in a community where God was still put first.  As she raised her head, Charity realized that many eyes were upon her, as if she was doing something unusual.  She looked around the diningroom and realized she was the only one who seemed to be bowing their head in prayer before their meal.  That nauseated pit in her stomach began to grow even more.  Finishing up her food, paying her check, Charity quickly walked around the Club House, took in the Gift Shop, the Golf Pro Shop, the Rental Desk, and perused the rack of pamplets of things to do at the Marina and in the area.  Taking a few, Charity walked to her car, stopping long enough to take in one more view of the whole Marina, before she got in and drove back through the oak and flowered lined entrance.   It seemed that this visit to the Marina had only left a larger feeling of loss and anxiety in her.  Where was the peace that she had come back to her hometown to find?  Charity was beginning to wonder what had happened to the hometown she remembered.

At least the gravel road leading to her old church had not changed, and the forest that lined part of the road were still in tack.  Charity remembered hunting mushrooms in this forest, and gathering raspberries and blackberries from the bushes that grew at the edge of trees.  She always came back with enough for Mom to make pies for Sunday dinner, along with pockets full to snack on herself.  Mom always laughed at the stains of red and purple on Charity’s face, that told the truth about how many berries had actually been eaten as she picked them from the bushes.  A sense of impending peace filled Charity’s soul, only to be shattered by reality a few moments later.  Coming into the clearing of the parking area near the bridge that led to the little chapel of her youth, Charity stared in disbelief.  Her childhood memories of the little church were battling with the reality that lay before her eyes at this very moment.

The lake had all but swallowed up the land the little church set upon, and the bridge that once lay over a small creek set over a river of water from the lake that now surrounded the church, leaving a little island of land, with the church perched on the edge of it.  Where the bridge had once gleamed of white washed boards lining it, was now nothing but old damaged wood with rusty nails, and missing boards.  The path that once had been lined in beautiful wild flowers, was now lined with mud and cracked dry dirt in places.  The once well-kept lawn of the church grew wild with grass, weeds, and brush.  Only a few scraggly trees still stood near the little chapel, that looked like it would fall apart should a slight wind blow against it.  Not a drop of white paint had graced the outside of the church in years, and it was obvious that the community had let it fall into disrepair for some time.  At least the steeple was still on top, and the little metal cross that had been made by the local blacksmith as a gift to the church, still stood, watching over the lake side of the church.  As Charity looked across the lake beside the church, the glow of the gleaming white structures of the Marina spoke of where the community’s focus had been.  It wasn’t on God anymore, not on his church, but on the materialistic enjoyment of the worldly things.  Charity’s heart sank even more.

Charity was thankful that she had decided to wear tennis shoes this morning, especially when she saw what she would have to traverse to get to the little church building.  There were sticker bushes lining the broken and missing boards of the path to the bridge.  Rusty nails stuck out of the walkway, and the rail across the bridge.  Near the water’s edge the mud was slimy and thick, but the ground around the little island still appeared dry and cracked, much like her soul had felt for the past few months since losing the one man she had loved to a car accident, and then suffering a miscarriage just days later.  These losses had left her feeling empty, dry of the ability to shed tears, and as if her heart was cracked beyond repair.  Somehow this old church and its surroundings spoke with empathy to her very being.  Charity gently opened the creaking door at the front of the church, and cleared the cobwebs that hung like spooky lace curtains inside the room.  She stopped a moment at the greeter’s stand that still stood by the center entrance to the church sanctuary.  Blowing dust off the visitor’s book, and flipping through the pages, Charity noticed that there were fewer and fewer entries in the book over the last decade and a half, until finally there were no more in the last 4 years.  A sadness filled her soul, as she realized this book marked the last heartbeats of the little chapel.  A tear dropped upon the now graying silk of the book’s cover, as Charity mournfully closed it.  Walking into the sanctuary, Charity noticed that the heart of the church, although dingy, filled with cobwebs and aging broken pews, still held a warmth to it.  It was obvious that someone had been in there in the last few years, as there were areas on the velvet covered altars that were free of dust.  The shapes of elbows and knees impressed upon the knee rest and along the top of the altar spoke of someone’s journey to the church to pray.  Charity dusted off a seat in a pew near the altar where the prints were and she sat.  Could these be the prints of someone hurting like her?  Were they the prints of a parent remembering a child who was loss,  or a wife mourning the loss of a husband?  In her heart she asked the Lord to give peace to the person who had traveled there to pray, and seek peace in their stormy life.

Leaning back, Charity’s memories took over.  She could hear the old piano playing, and a small choir of usually 7 singing…”Softly and tenderly, Jesus is calling.  Calling for you and for me.  Here on the portals he’s waiting and watching, Watching for you and for me.”  Charity heard herself join in on the chorus of the old prayer hymn…”Come home, come home.  Ye who are weary come home.  Earnestly, tenderly, Jesus is calling, Calling ‘O sinner, come home.”   Tears streamed down her eyes, as Charity felt drawn to the alter, to fill in the empty impressions with her own knees and elbows.  Prayer crept for her lips, as she asked for healing for her broken heart, and peace for her weary soul.  An arm filled with love and warmth reached around her shoulder, and a soft prayer was being raised beside her, for a daughter who had been lost to the world, but now had come home.  There was a thankfulness for many prayers finally answered for the child, and another prayer for healing and peace, then a simple amen to close it out.  Teardrops and another set of imprints of one handprint and two more knees joined the other imprints on the altar.  As Charity looked up, the tears flowed even more, as she realized it was her mother who had made those original imprints on the altar.  It was her mother who had come weekly on Sunday to pray for a loss child, and ask the Lord to bring her home.  It had been her mother who asked God to bring peace and comfort to a child who had suffered loss.  It was Charity’s mother, whom she had left alone in her hometown over 15 years ago, after her father had passed on, who had faithfully held onto her child in love, hope, and prayer.  Tears streamed faster down two faces now, as the welcoming of a Prodigal Child now happened.  This was not the superficial one that they had shared earlier, but the welcome that God always has for his child who has been lost, the welcome of a parent who had poured out prayer to a Heavenly Father for a child that they shared concern for.  This was the warm welcome and celebration that one who has found their way home longs for, and it was Charity’s to treasure forever.  As the two women, old and young, walked arm and arm out of the rugged, empty chapel, out into the evening, Charity and her mother turned for a moment to look at the church that brought them back together.  The glow of the sunset, gleamed like candles in the dusty windows, and at the top, the sun gleemed off of the metal cross, making it shine with golden warmth.  Charity felt the peace she had longed for bubble over inside her, and knew that although the church had been abandoned and broken down, God had not abandoned it, nor had he abandoned her.

 

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Does quake reveal when Jesus died? – Science reaffirms the Bible

And 1849 Currier & Ives lithograph showing the tumult surrounding the Crucifixion of Jesus. Note the crack in the ground before the cross, showing the earth releasing those who were dead because of the earthquake.

Most people don’t know that I took geology in college, not only did I take it though but tutored other students through the course.  I’ve always had a love for rocks, but desired to understand what caused natural disasters like earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.  I have always easily believed the Bible, and that strong belief was like a thorn under my skin when it came to studying science of any kind.  It seemed so many in the science world were trying hard to get us to doubt the Bible and I was just stubborn enough to be the last man down if need be.  So when I was told that I would have to take a science course with a lab, I wasn’t happy.  I looked through the courses and read everything that was available on what the course entailed.

I knew I couldn’t do biology because I can’t stand the sight of blood, morally I don’t believe we should kill animals just so school students can cut them up.  I believe animals should be killed only with two reasons in mind…protection from them, or for food.    Last I faint the minute that any type of needle or knife goes into skin.

I just didn’t want to attempt chemistry.  I had 4 kids at home and didn’t think I could even get the study time needed for chemistry, plus there was the problem that I would need to bring the 3 younger ones to class with me at times when my oldest daughter’s classes fell at the same time as mine.  I could not see bringing my 3 rambunctious adopted daughters into a chemistry lab at all!

After much consideration it came down to geology.  I spoke to the professor and he was actually excited to see my 3 daughter learning geology right along with me.  He even offered to give them assignments and worksheets to count as homeschooling for them.  Yes, I was going to college, working as a tutor and theater at night, and homeschooling 3 girls during the day.  It took a lot of scheduling, and the help of my oldest daughter who was in college at the time too.  In fact I went back to college at her request, so she wouldn’t feel so nervous about it, and so I could tutor through her hardest subjects.   The only one who didn’t seem to be involved in this family educational venture was my husband (now ex husband).  He didn’t mind how it worked for the rest of us, as long as he didn’t have to give up sports after work to help out with watching the girls.  But that is a story for another day, for now we will return to geology.

The class was amazing, and not only because we studied rocks, but I found that my professor was a Christian and one of the few in the school that was willing to share his faith and how science proved the Bible over and over.  He had a unique way of using visual lessons to teach about different things.  That is probably what helped him keep the attention of the 182 students and my 3 daughters during classtime.  He wrapped the whole class in a roll of toilet paper to show the expanse of known time according to scientific “theory”, and yes reminded us that he did not agree with this theory.  He took every chance to share his faith and how science had actually proved it right over and over.  He explained techtonic movement and the make up of the earth with a large watch, letting us know that how the continents were formed and how the makeup and movement of the Earth were more like a clock made by a master watchmaker.  He explained how certain movements of the earth caused certain processes like volcanic eruptions and earthquakes, which reacted much like the alarm on a clock when the inside mechanisms reached a certain time and released the piercing sound of a bell.  When asked how he believed the earth was made, my professor went back to the clock and to a poster on the wall which showed the layers of the earth, the earth’s movements, and the creation of earthquakes and volcanoes.  He went through each of the theories on how the earth developed.  He made it clear that if you look at a watch you know that it just didn’t evolve into such a marvel of technology without the hand of a master watchmaker.  He directed our attention to the poster and told us to think of how the earth works, and then how it and other planets orbit the sun without crashing into each other, and how their were millions of galaxies that had the same thing happening in them.  He said do you think if gases formed and crashed into each other that  what was formed from it would be able to just fall into such control and timing.  I can tell you, there was never such silence in a classroom as there was that day…even my 3 daughters sat there quietly pondering what he was saying.  That is when he said…”I believe that just like this clock had a master watchmaker who created it to work perfectly, there is a master creator who made the universe and the earth to work perfectly as well.  He stated that he believed that geological science proves this…all branches of sciences in fact.

Near the end of our time in his class, my professor took us on a field trip to the San Andreas Fault, to show us how they study the movement of it, and are able to date when earthquakes have happened throughout history.  He told us that they could take native lore and use core samples from the earth to date when geological events happened in any area of the world to show that the native lore was not just a tale but a story of an actual event in history.  This article is just that, where geological science gives us more proof of an event mentioned in the Bible, once again proving the Bible historically accurate.  They have been able to use core samples to put a date to the Biblical events surrounding the crucifixion of Christ, and the earthquake that happened at the moment when he died.  Here is the link…enjoy!

Does quake reveal when Jesus died? – Technology & science – Science – DiscoveryNews.com – msnbc.com.

 

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Standing Up

In the past week I’ve had conversations with a couple of fellow bloggers about dealing with fears from the past, fears from the present, and fears of the future.  Now I’m not going to say I’ve never had any fears, because I have at different times in my life about different things.  I still deal with claustrophobia on and off that was caused by a childhood memory of hiding in a closet and seeing my mother being physically abused.   I have dealt with a fear of heights from falling off a cliff at the age of 19.  I’ve had to deal with a fear of trusting anyone, because many people that I have trusted in the past have broken that trust.  I’ve had a fear of facing the future alone, and of being able to survive at times in my life.  Even now, there are times when I fear the near future because of what is going on in our country and the world, but this fear is not about if I could handle it but more on how it will affect my children and grandchildren. 

You see, we all have fears, including me, but something happened, that flipped how I handled my fears.  I use to back away from things I was afraid of, avoiding them whenever I was confronted with them.  But when my oldest daughter was in her Junior High years, around the same age as Jk, a series of events began to change things for me, and since then I’ve found that God has given me a new strength and new outlook on dealing with fear. 

One of those things that happened was a fear of losing my way in an area I was unfamiliar with.  God’s way of making me confront this fear…letting me get lost in an area I was unfamiliar with.  My children wanted to go to the beach one summer weekend, and when I asked my ex-husband to take us because he knew the way, he refused, to instead go play basketball with his friends.  This was an all too common occurrence from him, because it happened 7 days a week, Basketball and other sports before family needs and family time, even before church and God.  Well, his response just made me angry enough to look past my fear, and I grabbed the directions he wrote out on how to get to the beach, a map, and packed a cooler, got the girls in the car and drove to the beach.  Unfortunately, neither my ex-husband’s directions, nor the map included a new road feature in one of the cities we had to drive through…one of those traffic circles, and sure enough we got lost.  Just as the tears were going to flow, I realized that they would only serve to put my girls into panic mode, so I prayed.  Calmly, I stopped at a gas station on that circle of road and got directions to the beach, and an easier way to get back home afterwards.  We went on to the beach, had a wonderful day swimming and having a picnic, and we drove home safely and without passing through any of the cities on the way back, thanks to God and the service station attendant, who knew directions from our town to the beach using only major highways until we got home.  That experience helped me realize that I could get over my fear of being loss, and God could help me know what to do when I found myself lost. 

Now I told you earlier that I had a fear of heights because I had fallen off a cliff at age 19.  Little did I know that the same year as the beach trip I would be led to confront that fear through my committment to the Lord Jesus in working with the Junior High teens at our church.  They were preparing for a mission trip to the Navajo Reservation for July, and from April on had to go through a series of training meetings for it, along with some physical training.  I had been asked to go along to direct the Vacation Bible School we would be holding for the children on the Reservation, and so I had to go through the training as well.  We had planning meetings, training in being respectful of Indian customs and norms, but also on the problems on the reservations like Satanism, language barriars, poverty, and even prejudices they have against those of other races.  Then there was the physical training, since part of the trip back would be as a reward for the teens as we visited the Grand Canyon, and also a swimming trip in the middle of the week to Lake Powell to cliff dive and swim on the Navajo side of the lake.  We had to make sure of everyone’s swimming ability and if they could even hike in the Grand Canyon.  Now I have asthma, but I am one who will overlook my own health issues to encourage kids to overlook their fears and to show them that they can overcome and endure to achieve things in their lives.  So I went through the training with them, and that meant hiking up mountain paths that were sometimes so thin that you had walk with your back against the face of a cliff, scooting your feet step by sideways step.  You talk about praying abundantly, and with fervor!  That is how I made it through.  Now imagine being the adult assigned to a group of 12 to 14 year old girls, who are in tears, scared to death, and already grumpy from the long hike and California summer heat!  I had 7 of them with me, and my daughter was the only one not crying, but she wasn’t letting go of my hand either.  None of the girls knew I had this extreme fear inside me either, because I wasn’t one to let others know about my fears.  We had a little rainstorm that morning so the path was wet, and some of it had been washed out a bit, and that is the reason we had to deal with this portion of the hike where our backs would have to be against the face of one cliff as we inched our way on the path and avoided falling down the cliff in front of us.  I remember a couple girls complained about being cold as we waited to be the next group around the dangerous part of the path.  I pulled out one of those silver survival blankets, and had them sit on some rocks, huddled together with the blanket, and watched as girl after girl joined them under the blanket, and fretted over the next part of the hike.  I not only had to keep an eye on them but watch for the path to clear for our group.  Finally, I asked the girls if they were ready to go and was met with a resounding “NO”.  Hearing the teen director calling for us that we should start moving and that he was waiting on the other side of the thin path to help the girls on the last part, my mind went to thoughts of what I was going to do.  In fact, it went to a prayer…”Lord, what am I going to do now?”  That is when the Lord said that I was going to share my fear, and an example to these girls.  He brought back the memory of falling off that cliff, and of my hand being grabbed by someone I couldn’t see and being lifted back to the top of that cliff, instead of falling all the way to my death at the bottom.  God told me to reassure them that the hand of God would be on them too.  So I told the teen director to give us a minute, and I joined the girls at the rocks.  I told them my story, and asked them to open their hands out to the center of the circle we made.   I asked them to join me in prayer for God’s protection, and that he would warm their hands to show he was holding onto their hands too.  Each girl began to exclaim that they had felt a warm touch on their hands like someone was holding it.  I then asked them to line up and to take each others hands, putting the most fearful girls to my right and left, and called out to let the teen director know that we were on our way.  As usual when I’m afraid I tend to sing certain hymns, and I’ve done this since I was 5, so as we moved I began singing…”My Jesus, I love thee.  I know thou art mine.  For thee all the follies of sin I resign.  My blessed Redeemer, my Savior art thou.  If ever I need thee, my Jesus ’tis now.”  I kept singing, as we inched along that path, and listened as the girls began singing with me, and finally the teens and teen director who had already made it across the area joined in too.  As each girl made the final few steps the teen director told them how proud he was of them for overcoming their fear by giving it to the Lord, and for keeping their eyes up and focusing on Jesus rather than the valley below the cliff.  The teens kept singing until every last girl was across.  Talk about an outpouring of praise and excitement!  The air was filled with it, echoing across the valley below.  That day the Lord put in me that I could overcome this fear and any fear as long as I put it in His hands, and let him lead me through and past it. 

Those events made such a change in me that whenever fear took a grip on me, even as a single mom, I would turn to music and singing, along with prayer to help me get on with my life and overcome my fear.  It was at this time of fear of how to survive and what my future held, as a single mom, that I wrote these lyrics, which are a declaration that I made to myself and God about how I would handle my fears.  Here are those lyrics…

Standing Up

I’m standing up to yesterday.

I won’t let it keep me in its grasp.

I won’t let its painful memories

Live anywhere but in the past.

I don’t want to face tomorrow,

Holding to pain and chaft.

I want to face tomorrow,

With a view that’s going to last.

 

I’m standing up, standing fast.

Fear won’t hold my Spirit down.

Strength must come from inside,

Because others may not be around.

Standing up to all my problems,

Standing up to all my fears.

I’ll keep standing steady,

Knowing that my God is near.

And I’ll keep on standing up,

Until the dark clouds clear.

 

The curse that was my past,

Filled with pain and memories of loss,

No longer has control of me,

No longer does it cost.

Those who tore my Spirit down,

To gain their own control,

Can not any longer,

I’m free…both heart and soul!

 

I’m standing up, standing fast.

Fear won’t hold my Spirit down.

Strength must come from inside,

Because others may not be around.

Standing up to all my problems,

Standing up to all my fears.

I’ll keep standing steady,

Knowing that my God is near.

And I’ll keep on standing up,

Until the dark clouds clear.

 

I’m standing up to here and now.

I won’t let it get me down.

I just have to remember,

Today won’t always be around.

I don’t want to face tomorrow,

With the worries of today.

I must face tomorrow,

With Hope for a better day.

 

I’m standing up, standing fast.

Fear won’t hold my Spirit down.

Strength must come from inside,

Because others may not be around.

Standing up to all my problems,

Standing up to all my fears.

I’ll keep standing steady,

Knowing that my God is near.

And I’ll keep on standing up,

Until the dark clouds clear.

 

I’m standing up to the future.

I won’t let it seem too great.

I won’t let it overwhelm me,

Thinking I won’t make my way.

I don’t want to face tomorrow,

Through eyes too full of fear.

I want to face tomorrow,

Knowing all my dreams are near.

 

I’m standing up, standing fast.

Fear won’t hold my Spirit down.

Strength must come from inside,

Because others may not be around.

Standing up to all my problems,

Standing up to all my fears.

I’ll keep standing steady,

Knowing that my God is near.

And I’ll keep on standing up,

Until the dark clouds clear.

 

By:  Bonita L. Ledzius…copyright 2003

 

It is through the love, compassion, strength, and power of the Lord Jesus Christ, that we can get through anything, and can conquer our fears and those things that hold us!

 

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25 years later, bullies make amends with classmate

Twenty-five years after being bullied in High School, Lynda, posted a poem about herself and how it felt to be bullied in school.  Her former schoolmates, including the bullies saw the poem and decide to make amends.  They did not know what here life was back then, nor that her family was poor.  The truth is that being poor should not have been an excuse to bully her.  There is no reason good enough to bully someone.  These bullies just as most bullies, will live with a lifetime of guilt, or they will one day bully someone who can defend themselves…or will find the person they are bullying has friends who will stand up to them.  Here is the link to the video of Lynda’s story, and of the forgiveness that God gave her that allowed her to forgive those who had bullied her.

msnbc video: 25 years later, bullies make amends with classmate.

I remember in Junior High having a bully, in fact a girl named Debbie, who thought she had the right to taunt me because I didn’t pluck my eyebrows, nor did I wear makeup.  You see it is a tradition in my family that you don’t wear makeup or any other girly thing until you reach the age of 13, and you don’t date until you are 16.  She didn’t ask why I didn’t, just harangued me every day in class and the hallway between classes about it.  Until one day, my bestfriend had enough of it and took this girl on right by the door to English class.  Whenever Debbie harrassed me I just answered…”So?”, and walked off.  I had confidence that I could handle myself if I needed to so I just didn’t let it get to me.  The main reason I remember it all is because of my bestfriend  Linda.  She was the tallest girl in the school, and I was one of the shortest.  She was calm, friendly, and sweet, and I was like dynamite ready  to explode on anyone who gave me trouble.  Having been friends since 5th grade I can truly say I had never seen Linda angry, nor had I ever seen her in a fight. That day when she went off on my bully, was the day I found out how much of a friend she was, because she wasn’t going to let someone bully me or any of her friends.  When I think of best friends…Linda is the top and always will be, because she proved that like the Bible says…”Greater love has no man than this, that he would lay down his life for a friend.”   Linda knew what my home life was like and she encouraged me when it was the toughest.  It was because of Linda’s influence that I made a point of not letting my anger make me a bully, but instead to become one who would stand up for those I saw being bullied.  I wish more kids would be Lindas in this world, both like my friend, and like the Lynda in the story, and be forgiving when they are bullied, or be the friend that will stand up against bullies for their friends and even for those who aren’t their friends.  If you know someone who is being bullied, step up and be Jesus to that person.  Protect them, stand with them, encourage them, and show them that someone cares for them.  Who knows this may be the one who becomes your best friend for life.

 

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Two Versatile Blogger Awards!

Wow!  I’m so honored!  I finally got an internet connection this morning and was blessed to find that I had been nominated for The Versatile Blogger Award!  Thank you http://futureflyingsaucers.wordpress.com/ for the nomination!  As a homeschooling parent it is a wonderful thing when we can make a connection with other homeschooling parents and share activities, learning and craft ideas and experiences.  Future.Flying.Saucers is a blog full of wonderful posts on homeschooling, but it is more because it is also filled with a lot of love and joy.  I love the way this mom shares her love for her children, for the homeschooling experience, and just her love for being a mom.  Everytime I click on her site I get the excitement of opening a present at Christmas, the anticipation of what might be inside today, and I can see why her children are excited about homeschooling, and about their mother!  Thank you again, for sharing your blog with us, and for the nomination, http://futureflyingsaucers.wordpress.com/ !

Also thank you to http://scottsholar.com/  for the second nomination!  From current news events to thoughts on the teaching from the Bible, Scott always shares his Christian perspective and his love for Christ.  Although his site is new to me, I’ve loving it, because he is dedicated to standing up for his Christian faith, and isn’t being swayed by the lies the world is using to sway believers from God.  I also like that Scott is an encourager to fellow Christian bloggers, and that he is a good source for information about what is going on in our country that pertains to Christians.  Thank you Scott, for the nomination and for sharing your faith in Christ Jesus as well!

The Rules for this award are as follows:

  1. Nominate 15 fellow bloggers who are relatively new to blogging (or whose blogs you enjoy most).
  2. Let them know that you have nominated them.
  3. Share 7 random facts about yourself.
  4. Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you.
  5. Add the Versatile Blogger Award picture to your blog post.

Now for 7 random things about me.  I think I’ve shared so many things this week through the other awards, that I’m not sure what is left, but here goes!

1.  My sister, Nelda, dyed my hair the summer between my 8th and 9th grade years of school.  It was suppose to be blond, but turned out orange.  Because she didn’t know how to fix it, I went to school that year and garnered the nickname “Rusty” from my friends at school.

2.  That same 9th grade year of school, my mom decided to buy me a purple shirt for school pictures and get me a perm.  Well, the perm turned out to be really tight and frizzy, and with my orange hair and purple shirt, I looked like a clown…lol.  Talk about the worse school picture.

3.  I started working at the age of 12, cleaning houses for various people at our church, usually those who were ill and couldn’t do it themselves, and others who worked or were elderly.  I continued to work many jobs from that time on, until I started homeschooling my youngest daughter a few years ago.

4.  I have held as many as 3 jobs as a single mom, to make sure my family was taken care of.

5.  I actually graduated from Cosmetology School when I was 21, and started regular college that same year.

6.  I have a thing about Queen Anne’s Chocolate Covered Cherries, but I only want them at Christmas time and only 1 box.  It’s because of my mom, who worked at the Queen Anne’s factory in Indiana when she was 16.  She passed that love she had for them on to me.  No other brand will ever do, once you’ve had Queen Anne’s.

7.  I play guitar, and I taught myself to do it with God’s help.  I tried to learn when I was 15, but I couldn’t do it at all.  When I became a Christian I sat down with my guitar, and spent a whole day learning to play “Jesus Loves Me” and “Jesus Loves the Little Children” so I could play them with my daughters, and to use in Childrens’ Church.  By the end of that day, I could play both songs and a few more, and since have added many chords and many, many more songs to my repertoire.  I never forget though that it was the Lord who made it possible.  “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me!”

Okay, 7 things about me done, and now on to nominating 15 fellow bloggers for this award!  I have nominated so many for awards this past week that some of these may be among those already nominated for other awards.  I think The Versatile Blogger Award should probably go to bloggers who fill their blogs with a variety of posts, but while showing the various sides of them, still show their heart through each post.  So those will be the type of blogs I will nominate.  The following blogs are the ones I have chosen to nominate for The Versatile Blogger Award.

1.  http://momentumofjoy.com/  I love her thoughts on Christ, but I also love the laughter she brings through some of her posts.  I find this site to give me great moments of introspection and joy!

2.  http://birdmartin.wordpress.com/  Whether speaking of her love for Christ, about her love for family, or just a funny story about her life and her family, Bird always shows her heart and her personality in every single post.

3.  http://canadianmommytime.wordpress.com/  You want a taste of Real Housewives, then quit watching television and visit this Canadian Mommy’s blog.  This is a real mom, real housewife, and real woman’s life, not that glitz and glitter of shallow, spoiled women you see on television.  Canadian Mommy shares her love of her family, and of her life in every post.

4.  http://e1aine.wordpress.com/  I love this young lady’s blog, whether she is showing her beautiful jewelry creations, talking about fashion, or giving a good grammar lesson.  She writes with the heart and humor of youth, and the wisdom of maturity all at the same time.

5.  http://homeschoolyear.wordpress.com/  I know this is a Homeschool blog, but the variety of posts feature not only the written word, but photos, craft ideas for families, and even book reviews.  This blogger truly approaches homeschooling and blogging from a variety of angles.

6.  http://barbarabazzocchi.wordpress.com/  This blog is filled with a love for crafting, crocheting, gardening, travel and family!  Every time I click on Barbara’s blog I feel like I’m about to set off on a new journey filled with adventure!

7.  http://5gsandacupofjoe.net/  I can’t tell you how much I love this blog, but I can tell you why.  Visiting this blog is like sitting down with an old friend and talking about anything and everything in life, from Christ, to prepping, world news, to family.  This regular Joe makes you feel right at home when you visit his blog.

8.  http://sharinhislove.wordpress.com/  This blog does just what it says.  It shares the love of Jesus Christ in a variety of ways.  If I need a word of encouragement, or need a new way of looking at things that are going on, or just want to feel the joy and love of Christ in my life, this is one blog that gives me those immediately.

9.  http://hometogo232.wordpress.com/  What to feel love in a variety of ways, this is the blog for you.  You’ll either feel like you are at Grandma’s home, Mom’s home, or a dear friend’s home when you visit this blog, depending on your age.  It is evident, no matter what Diane is blogging about, you will feel welcome into her life, and her heart, but most of all you will feel her love for Jesus.

10.  http://thehomesteadatspringcreek.wordpress.com/   Have you ever wondered what it would feel like to homestead, to live off the grid, or what it must have been like for early settlers?  Then this is the blog for you.  Each post is an adventure in the making, whether family life, gardening, information about different plants, recipes, or a new look at things in nature.

11.   http://pulchradoctrina.wordpress.com/   Another homeschool blog filled with ideas, photos, family, and personality.

12.  http://lynnecobb.com/   I love that this blogger writes about a variety of things from a variety of emotions.  One moment you will feel empathy with her, the next you will be laughing at her adventures and her look at life.

13. http://originalapplejunkie.wordpress.com/  Can’t forget my Apple Junkie  Sister-in-Christ!  Her blog is filled with her adventure of living in Portugal, yet filled with a variety of things from cooking, family, and personal thoughts from the heart.  You can’t help but feel the heart of home in her writing while enjoying her adventure in another country at the same time.

14.  http://naturallyfundays.wordpress.com/  Another homeschooling blog with a variety of adventures, ideas, and lots of family love.

15.  http://childdrivenlearning.wordpress.com/  Nothing I like more than traveling…taking a journey to some place new.  This blog takes the reader on a trip with them through their homeschooling adventures.

16.  http://lbtk.wordpress.com/   I’m adding an extra one because I feel this one is so deserving of this award.  The variety of posts which all share this bloggers love for life, for teaching, and for the Lord Jesus, always leaves me with a warm feeling of standing at the foot of the throne of Jesus, yet feeling his warm hugs and love for me, that I’m drawn back to see how that love is expressed with each post.

Again I would like to thank http://futureflyingsaucers.wordpress.com/  for the nomination, and to all these other bloggers as well for filling my blogging adventure with variety, warmth, and fun!

 

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What Have You Done For Your Fellow Man?

This is a video that will make you question your life, especially in the area of what you have done to help your fellow man.   This man died more than once from heart problems, and you have to hear what happened to him when he died, but also his doctor’s description of what what going on for him when he kept dieing.  Click on Jesus Loves You to see the video.

Jesus Loves You.

 

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